"Mike, could you go get me a glass of water from the kitchen?" asked Brenda.
"Sure, just give me a second," I said. I looked at the alarm clock, which was sitting on the near corner post of our bed. It read 4:32 AM. "Why do you have to wake up so early?" I asked, with a little exasperation. The shock of my new voice startled me, but it was my wife, Brenda, who woke up with a start.
"Who are you? Where's Mike?" she asked, more than a little nervous to hear a female voice coming from my side of our bed.
"Relax, it's just me, Mike," I said, and then covered my mouth with what should have been my hands -- only now, it felt like my arms had lost those hands. I panicked. "Where the hay are my hands?" I asked, nearly shouting the question.
"What the fuck happened to you, Mike?" she asked, and then got up to turn on the light. She flicked the light switch, and came over to my side of the bed, seeing a lavender colored head, adorned with a small horn, and long straight hair of navy blue, with a purple and pink streak running from my bangs on down. "What the fuck are you?"
"I dunno, let me see here," I said, still unnerved by the female voice. I know my voice already has some femininity to it, as I have been mistaken for being female when talking on the phone to folks who don't know me. I tried to sit up, propping myself up by placing my "arms" behind me on my pillows. The stumpy ends sank into the pillows, and I lost my balance, falling back, hitting the back of my head against the head rest. "Ow, that hurt!"
"I should have known something like this would happen to you," she said. "You have those ponies on your computer. I didn't know you really wanted to become one of them!" she said, with quite a bit of contempt in her voice.
"Brenda, I had no idea something like this would happen!" I protested, and still, that voice! There's no escaping it! I looked a little bit closer, seeing that I was now a lavender unicorn, and pulled the cover off as best I could. I usually sleep on my right side at the edge of the bed, with the edge of the cover just hanging over my body. My new body was considerably smaller than my human one, and my physical strength was equally reduced. Being female made the lack of physical strength that much more evident.
"Here, let me help you," she said. She pulled the cover off, unveiling my whole unicorn body. Lavender all the way around, from horn to hooves, the navy blue with purple and pink streaks from bangs to tail. "Oooh, what's this for?" she asked, lightly touching my horn.
"Uh, careful how you touch that," I said. "It's very sensitive, just like the nipples of your breasts." Her touch to my horn is ever so slight, but the heat from her fingers sends an electric thrill through my body. I do my best to control the feeling, but I let a small moan escape my lips.
"Is it really THAT sensitive?" she asked, still very curious about my appearance.
"Yeah, it is, so please be careful. That thing also serves as the focal point for magic use," I said.
"Does that mean you can actually use magic?" she asked, growing more surprised with the combination of my voice and mannerisms, which seemed to be taking over my body. Maybe it was the shock of the gender switch. Not sure of which, but it did feel kinda nice...
"So which pony are you?" she asked, as she never watched the show.
"Twilight Sparkle," I said, beaming a smile. "My favorite of the group, the smartest one, the one who has the most powerful magic, and faithful student of Princess Celestia."
"If you had ever bothered to watch the show, you'd know about me, the Princess, and the other main characters of the show," I said, almost indignantly. My attitude surprised even me, because I'm not this assertive by nature.
"Well, if you can use magic, show me what you can do," she said, still unconvinced.
"This is new to me, so I'm not sure if I'll be able to pull it off," I said. I concentrated, and my horn started to glow purple, or at least that's what she said. I looked at the TV on our bookshelf in the corner of the room, and pictured it moving up above the bookshelf, ever so slightly. It moved up, and then a little higher. "Hey Brenda, you see the TV over there?"
"Uh..." she said, her eyes going wide with shock.
"Okay, I'll set it down gently," I said, slowly allowing the TV to set back down on the bookshelf gently. That TV is a 37" flat screen that weighs about 50 pounds. Moving it made my head feel a little dizzy. "I guess I need some more practice," I grinned.
"Uhhh, what else can you do?" she asked.
"Not sure, but her magic is quite strong. Maybe I can try teleporting?" I concentrated again, and a lavender POP appeared over the bed where I had been laying. I was now laying on the floor beside her.
"Jesus, Mike, do you have to scare me like that?"
"Please call me Twilight, if you would, that would make it easier."
"Mike, I'm not gonna call you Twilight, 'coz you ain't her!"
"Brenda..." I paused for thought, "If I'm in her body, that makes me her, at least in THIS reality level," I said, still trying to convince her. I was trying to prop myself up now, to get on all fours. "This is going to take some getting used to."
"How are you going to drive me to work? How are you going to work in THAT body? What are your co-workers going to say? How are we going to pay the bills?" she asked, in very rapid fashion. She asked some more questions, but I tuned her out as I finally managed to get on all four hooves, and started testing my walking motion. I promptly fell on my face, making a
heavy thud as I fell.
"Ow," I said again. "Can you hold off on the questions for a minute, Brenda? I actually thought about what might I might do if something like this happened. Anyway, you saw me teleport, so I should be able to take you instantaneously from here to your jobsite, or at least I think I can."
"If it's anything like what you just did getting out of bed, I'd rather have someone else drive me to work."
"Yeah, doing that made my stomach hurt," I said.
"How long are you going to be stuck like that?"
"I have no idea, Brenda." I started to worry now. I might lose my job, my house, my car, and my wife. The kids were hers, through previous relationships, but I had none by her. "I might have to make a new identity for myself, and I have no idea how this society would react to a talking unicorn, especially one who's only 3 and a half feet tall." I started to finally get a rhythm going for walking -- right front, right back, left front, left back, repeat ad infinitum...
About the only saving grace was that today was a Saturday, and I didn't have to go to work; neither did Brenda. About an hour had passed since I had woken up in Twilight's body, and I was starting to get used to walking around. Brenda just stood and watched silently as I continued to practice my walking technique, and then started to speed up the pace a little.
Eventually, I looked down the staircase that leads to the main level of our house. Ten steps down. Do I dare?
I turn with my back to the stairs, and gingerly test my right rear leg, lowering it ever so gently to the first step down. I back a little, placing my front legs at the edge of the steps. I lower my left rear leg, down to the next step down. So far, so good, I thought.
"Are you trying to go downstairs?" she asked. I lost my concentration, and slipped, sliding on my belly, then landing on my rump at the bottom.
"Thanks, Brenda." More indignation. She laughed, as she couldn't help herself. "That hurt," I said, wiping a tear from my eye. I got on all fours again, and climbed the stairs quite easily, surprising myself at that feat. The noise had woken the grand-kids, and the door to their room opened.
"Doggie!" the two-year-old shouted, quite gleefully. I smiled at her.
"I am not a doggie," I said. She screamed, then ran back into the room, crying. She woke up her mother, who promptly closed the door. I guess she was still too tired to see what was going on.
"Mike." My wife was exasperated, and let her frustration become evident. The door to the kids' room opened again, and the three-year-old looked at me quizzically.
"What are you?" she asked, an innocent expression on her face.
"A unicorn," I replied.
"A pony with a horn on its head," I smiled.
"Don't hurt me!"
She comes over to me, and gently touches my mane. She pets me like a dog, which I find rather annoying. "I am not a doggie, so please don't treat me like one."
"Who is this, and where's Mike?" asked Xaviera, Brenda's daughter, and mother to the grand-kids.
"I was Mike, but now am Twilight Sparkle," I said, just a small smile on my face.
"How did that happen?"
"Must have been wish fulfillment or something, I'm not sure. I'm still trying to get accustomed to this new body, and this voice still has me a little worried."
"I think it's kinda cute," she said.
"I do too, but I hope I can turn back soon -- I don't want to lose my job. I would hate to see the house go into foreclosure."
"Maybe you could go into show business," Brenda said, grinning.
"Well...the thought had crossed my mind, but people would be expecting the real Twilight Sparkle, and I don't know enough about her to be able to pull that off. I need to figure out a plan."
"You DID show me some magic use, so maybe you could be a stage magician?" Brenda mused.
"Wait a minute, did you say he used magic?" Xaviera asked.
"He made the TV in our room lift up a little, and he teleported from the bed to the floor, I saw it myself!" Brenda said, with some incredulity in her voice.
"Show me, Mike," said Xaviera.
"Being a stage magician is the purview of 'The Great and Powerful Trixie,' not Twilight Sparkle. And please stop referring to me in the male tense, I'm in a female body. It just doesn't feel right to hear you call me by my human name."
"You're still Mike to me," Brenda said, getting more annoyed by the impression that I was trying to leave my human persona behind.
"You cannot call me Mike until I turn back into a human, Brenda. That goes for you too, Xaviera!"
"Doggie!" called out Samantha, the two-year-old. She ran up to me, and started petting me like a dog.
"I am NOT a DOG!" I shouted, forgetting my manners. Samantha ran to her mother's side, shielding herself behind her legs. I was only eye-level to the the three-year-old, Tanisha, who was still quite curious about my appearance. She tried to grab my horn. "Stop! Don't touch that!" and she ran crying to her mother's side as well.
"MIKE! Don't shout at the kids!"
"Brenda, didn't I tell you about the horn? I don't want them breaking it off! If that happens, I won't be able to use magic at all! Then I'll be screwed for REAL!" I was flabbergasted by the lack of understanding.
"Mike, they're just curious. They've never seen a talking unicorn before," she said, trying to calm me down.
I was going to respond with "Curiosity killed the cat," but thought better of it. Don't want to even give the impression of a threat. They're just little kids, they don't know any better. Their mother is still quite young, and she tried to touch my horn. I was starting to get mad. "Not you too, Xaviera! Don't even THINK of touching my horn!"
"Okay, I just wanted to see how hard it was," she said, sounding a little disappointed.
"My horn is very sensitive to touch, and quite fragile. I use it to focus magical power, and I don't want anyone touching it! Am I being clear enough here?"
"Okay, okay," Xaviera relented, and put her kids back in the bed, and laid down with them, closing the door behind her.
"So what are you going to do now?" Brenda asked.
"I want to see if I can use my magic to fix some of the things that need repairing around the house," I said.
The light switch in the bathroom hasn't worked for about a year now, so that was where I started. Using my telekinesis, I opened the door to the spare bedroom, which was currently being used for short-term storage. Most of the boxes we had placed in this room were now in the garden shed behind the house, but there were still a few things in this room, including some of my clothes, my guitar, and some computer accessories, and a box on the top shelf of the closet, which had my old PS2 and several games for it, as well as all the peripherals needed to hook it up to any TV. On top of the only chest of drawers in the room was a box containing a replacement light fixture which had been collecting dust for about a year. I have no electrical
aptitude, so I had been unable to install it. I decided I was going to do it with magic, and see if it might actually work. I started here, as the bathroom is on the upstairs level, and right next to the spare bedroom.
I manipulated the box, lifting it from the dresser to the floor, removing the fixture, and matching the wires, mounting the fixture, and placing the light bezels onto the fixture, and installed the bulbs, making sure the filaments weren't broken. I flipped the switch, and nothing happened. I concentrated, using a different type of magic, and the lights came on. I flipped the switch again, turning the lights off, then back on, off, on, off, on, and finally off again. Okay, one down, several more to go.
I teleported down to the main level, avoiding the issue of going down the stairs. My stomach protested again.
"I heard a POP, did you teleport again?" asked Brenda.
"I am definitely going to have to learn going down by hoof, because teleporting makes me queasy," I replied. "At least there's only five steps leading down to the lower level," I grinned.
"What are you working on next?"
"The oven," I said. The igniter doesn't light, except when it wants to. A little more magic, and now it works. "Hey, this seems to be getting easier," I said, hoping Brenda might have heard me. I pour a glass of water from the fridge, enjoying the taste of nearly ice cold water. Let's see what else I can do...
I go into the living room, which adjoins the kitchen. I turn the heat on, adjusting the thermostat. Now down to the lower level. Going down five steps is easy, and I have done enough walking on all fours to take those five steps down a bit better than the first attempt from the upper level to the main level. I opened the door to the laundry room, eyeing the furnace. I turn the pilot igniter to the "on" position, then to the "light" position. I HATE electronic pilot igniters, the manual ones are so much more durable. Again, more magic. The furnace comes alive, lighting the burners, and the fan starts whirring, allowing the central air system to start working again. Good. I cast an illumination spell to light the upper corner where the tub drainpipe comes down through the floor and into the ceiling of the laundry room. It leaks badly whenever anyone tries to take a bath. More magic, and the leak is now sealed. I chuckle, amazed at the magic skills I now possess.
Back to the main level, I adjust the thermostat to cool the house. The air unit outside has been broken for a couple of years, and has needed replacing for a few more. Time to fix it! I teleport again, now standing in the back yard by the unit. More magic, and it's working as well. I started laughing, and the neighbor's dog heard me, and started yapping.
"Hush now, you'll draw attention to me!" I said in a loud whisper. The dog turned its head, looking at me quizzically. "Go lay down, I might see you later," I said, trying to calm the dog. It wagged its tail and seemed to smile at me.
I teleport back into the house, and have to rest for a minute. My magic seemed to recharge quite quickly, which was something else that amazed me. I return to the living room, and set the thermostat to 68, on heat mode. Finally got that done! I now addressed the issue of several doors needing attention, and took care of those in short order.
I wondered about the car now. I had been driving a hundred miles or so every day I have owned that car, mostly commuting to MY job, but also as a de facto taxi service for my wife's children and grand-kids. 3000 miles per month is hard on a car, and it was in need of some repairs.
"Okay Twilight, now the big one. Hope this works. Let's see what you're capable of doing!" I said to no one in particular.
I stood by the car, but only up to the driver's side window sill. I kept forgetting just how short I was in Twilight's body. I touched a hoof to the front left fender, and used my magic again, picturing the car restored to showroom new. I continued to hold my right fore-hoof to the car until it was gleaming in the early morning light, the sun just lazily poking up from the horizon. Celestia would be proud, I thought. Such a beautiful morning!
Satisfied I had given the car a new lease on life, I went back into the house to relax.
"What have you been doing?" asked Brenda.
"Fixing things around the house," I replied. "Magic is SO useful!"
"Good. Now you can fix the holes in the walls!"
"Never satisfied, are you? Okay, I've got 'em covered." I took care of them quite a bit more quickly, but the holes were just small ones, easily addressed, and fixed.
"You hungry? What do you want to eat today?" she asked.
"Yeah, I am feeling a little hungry," I said. "How about some pancakes?"
"Sure, Mike, I'll be down in a few."
"Brenda! How many times must I tell you?"
"Sorry, 'Twilight'!" she said, emphasizing the inverted commas.
"I guess it's gonna take a little more persuading, isn't it?" I asked.
Presently, Brenda finished making breakfast. She put two pancakes on a plate for me, and got the syrup down.
"I could have done that, you know," I said, grinning.
"I know, but it's just habit, and I keep forgetting you can move things around with your mind."
I get a knife and fork from the utensil drawer, and cut my pancakes into little squares, and pour syrup on them. The taste is substantially sweeter than I remember, and I comment on this. "Best pancakes I ever tasted," I said.
"Just standard pancake mix," she said. "Are they that good?"
"Ee-yup!" I said, practically laughing as I said it.
"How about some sausage?"
"Uhh...not so sure I should eat that," I said, almost apprehensively.
"Mike, you always liked sausage."
"Twilight. Twilight. Please! And I'm not in a meat-eating body anymore! I have no idea what that'll taste like!"
"Okay, you don't have to. The kids can have it."
"Good. I'll have another pancake, please."
"Just one more?"
"I don't have the appetite I used to as a male human, Brenda. I feel almost full right now after just two."
"Okay, more for the kids then."
"You know something, Brenda?"
"I just wanted to let you know how much I love you. We've been together nearly twenty years, and I feel I don't tell you very often, but I just wanted to say it, simply because -- well, I finally feel happy now after such a long time -- and I think you're the one who's bringing this happiness to me. I apologize if I haven't shown you the appreciation you deserve."
"That is so sweet, Mi - er - Twilight!" she comes over to me and hugs me tightly. I feel her hand involuntarily brush my horn, again sending that tingly feeling down my spine. "I love you so much! You know I always will!"
"Careful, Dear, you know what I said about the horn..."
The scent of cooking woke Xaviera and her kids, and they came down the stairs. Samantha comes up to me and pats me on the back of my head, and starts playing with my mane. I tolerate it to some extent, then she climbs onto my back. I play along, giving her a little ride, but then shock hit me when she grabbed my horn, holding it tightly in her hands.
"Samantha, please, let go of my horn!" I said sternly, trying not to shout.
"Go, doggie!" she shouted, laughing, and then she lost her balance and fell off my back, but not before snapping off my horn.
"Nooooo! Not my horn! Noooo!" I fell to the floor, on my haunches, holding my fore-hooves to my eyes, crying, sobbing uncontrollably. "Why? I haven't even been a unicorn for six hours, and I've already lost my horn!"
Brenda comes over to me, trying to comfort me. I try to push her away, my loss too extreme for words at this point.
"Brenda, get my horn, and put it on my head where it should be. Hold it still while I try to fix it. Barring that, only Princess Celestia will be able to help me now."
Brenda takes the horn out of Samantha's hands, and places it delicately in the spot where it broke off. She moves it around until it fits snugly in the right spot. I then concentrate harder than I ever have on anything, trying to force magic to knit the broken horn back together. C'mon, c'mon, come on, come on...I kept thinking, concentrating only on having my horn restored. I was unprepared for what happened next.
A loud POP was heard in the Royal Throne Room, as Brenda and I materialized in that room. Princess Celestia was about to take lunch when she spotted us.
"Well, Twilight Sparkle, what a surprise! I didn't expect you to teleport into the throne room -- and who is your guest?"
"Princess Celestia, I have some news which will probably shock you -- I am not actually Twilight Sparkle, I found myself transferred into her body this morning. The female human holding my horn is my wife, Brenda Walker. We have been married nearly twenty years. One of her grand-children snapped my horn off, and as I was trying to concentrate on mending it, I thought of you and where you might happen to be, and I guess I managed to teleport across a dimensional barrier to get here. You see, I used to be a human, like my wife here, before I woke up this morning."
"Hmmm. That is very interesting. So you're not actually Twilight, even though you inhabit her body. And you were a human. What is it that you want?"
"I was kind of figuring you'd be shocked by that, your Majesty," I said.
"Please, you may drop the formality. As for such matters you have described, there is little I have seen in my many years that can shock me. I apologize for disappointing you," she said and smiled softly.
"Where are we?" asked Brenda, who was now even more puzzled by the dramatic change of scenery.
"Canterlot Castle, Royal Throne Room," I said, inadvertently talking over the Princess's response.
"Welcome to Canterlot, Brenda," said Princess Celestia. She glared at me in disapproval.
"Begging your pardon, Princess Celestia, I thought her query was directed at me, since I happen to be her husband."
"Apology accepted. What is your human name, might I ask?"
"Michael Walker. My wife willingly accepted the name change, which is why she and I share the same surname."
"Well, Michael, I have some questions for you. How is it that you know who I am?"
"In my human world, you, the character I am, and everything having to do with Equestria is part of a children's television show. It is based on fictional characters, and their actions are chronicled on this show. It's largely the reason why I wished to be transformed into Twilight Sparkle, as she is my favorite character on that show. Truth be told, I have only watched bits and pieces of that show, simply because --"
"Fictional characters?" she asked, utterly fascinated by my explanation. Brenda stood quietly, looking a bit nervous and uncomfortable. Princess Celestia noticed her discomfort, and brought a chair over using her telekinesis. "Please, Brenda, relax. Mike will be able to explain this better once you return to your world."
"Begging your pardon, Princess, but would you be kind enough to see if my horn has been repaired properly?"
"Certainly, Michael." She comes closer, inspecting the base of my horn. She takes just the very tip of it into her mouth, applying just a tiny bit of pressure to it.
"Ooooh, that tingles!" I said, almost as an instinctive reaction.
"You are quite talented, Michael. If it was my surprise you were expecting, you have received it. You must be quite intelligent, especially if it was Twilight you wished to be. If you were wanting to stay here, I might even be tempted to teach you some magic --" she was interrupted by her favorite student arriving for her private lessons for the day.
"Your majesty, Twilight Sparkle has arrived for her private lessons," one of the Royal Guard announced.
"She is welcome any time, please see her in," Princess Celestia said. She turned to me and said, "This ought to be interesting," and smiled impishly.
"Princess Celestia, I am ready for -- AAAH!" Twilight gasped as she saw me.
"You are me?" Twilight asked, incredulously. "Where did you come from?"
'Yes, I am you, and I come from a world of humans, across a dimensional barrier. And before I woke up this morning, I too was a human, in this case a male one. The female human you see sitting in the chair next to Princess Celestia is my wife. Her name is Brenda. My human name is Mike," I explained matter-of-factly.
Twilight's expression was one of shock and disbelief, at least for a few seconds, and then she hit me with a barrage of questions in such a hurry that I could have sworn she had taken Pinkie Pie's mannerisms. I just chuckled a little at this. Princess Celestia was trying to slow Twilight down a bit.
"Please, Twilight, take a breath here. I know you must be fascinated by seeing a double of yourself, and even more so that he managed to cross dimensional barriers using teleportation, but his was a dire need. One of his wife's grand-children snapped off his horn."
Twilight was shocked again that somepony would do such a dastardly deed, and must be punished severely. "Who would do such a thing?" she asked, wide-eyed and mouth agape.
"Please, Twilight, the girl is just two years old. She thought I was a dog, and wanted to ride on my back. I succeeded in mending my horn, with the help of my wife. Teleporting here was sort of a last-best-hope fail-safe that if my magic failed, perhaps the Princess would have been able to help. That I managed to make it here is testament to the level of magical power you possess, and for that I am truly grateful."
"I possess that kind of power? Really? I didn't think such a powerful teleport spell was even possible," she said, still impressed that a human inhabiting her body could do such a thing.
"There is something truly special about him," Princess Celestia said, addressing Twilight.
"So what do you want to do?" asked Twilight, addressing me.
"I have an idea," I said, and started to grin. "I would like to pull a prank on Pinkie Pie and Rarity."
Twilight looked at me, almost quizzically, just for a second, and then a big grin came over her face. "Sounds like a wicked idea, but since I have been pranked a few times by them, why not fill me in on this idea of yours."
"I figured what we would do is this: you would teleport over to Sugar Cube Corner and wait for me. My signal will be me calling your name, whereupon you come from hiding, and just simply say "hi" to Pinkie Pie. I will also say "hi" to her as well. That ought to be good for some laughs," I said, still grinning.
"I like the way you think, Mike," said Celestia. "I should like to watch this event as well, as I am in the mood for a few laughs myself." She smiles impishly for just a split-second, and then returns to her natural calmness.
"Why does your mane and tail billow like that, even though there's no wind in here?" asked Brenda.
"Hey, Brenda, have you ever heard of something called the Solar Wind?" I asked her.
"I was going to mention that," the Princess said, addressing me, and again she glared disapprovingly.
"I beg your pardon, Princess," I said, bowing my head.
"Your apology is accepted, Michael," she said.
"Mike, why do you let her call you by your human name, when you wanted me to call you Twilight?"
"That's because the real Twilight is right here, but in our world, I am the only Twilight."
"How do you know you're the only one?" Twilight asked me.
"There seemed to be something I could sense, as though there were no others who were capable of using magic. A world full of humans, and none of them can use magic."
"That is most interesting," mused the Princess.
"So when are we going to do the prank?" Twilight asked, almost impatiently, still grinning broadly.
"Do I have to come along too?" asked Brenda.
"Do not worry, Brenda, my teleportation is more refined than Mike's. With enough practice, he'll be able to do it without all the discomfort that comes with it. And anyway, I cannot wait to see the expression on Pinkie Pie's and Rarity's faces when they see two Twilight Sparkles," the Princess responded. She appeared to look slightly amused.
"Okay, I am going to teleport to your tree-house, and walk towards Sugar Cube Corner. You teleport to roughly an equal distance in the other direction, but a bit closer to Pinkie's place than me. If she catches you by surprise, tell her that you're looking to get one of those marzipan masterpieces the Cakes have become famous for. After we've confused her, we'll walk over to Carousel Boutique, and I'll knock first. Then you come up and say "hi" right after me. This'll be fun!"
"Oooh, you're so wicked!" Twilight grinned.
"Okay, Twilight, you ready?" I asked her.
"Do you know how far Ponyville is away from the Castle?" she asked, almost as if she were asking me if I were insane.
"I teleported across a dimensional barrier to get here, along with my wife. I estimate the distance to be about sixty miles or so," I responded with a good deal of confidence. "And if I remember correctly, that's about the distance from my house to my workplace, and I already tested my teleportation a few times by popping back and forth between my house and worksite."
"Wow, I don't usually cover that much distance on a single teleport, as it leaves me a bit tired, and takes me a few moments to recover my strength," she said. "That's really impressive!"
"Well, I figured if I could do it in your body, certainly you should be able to do it. Perhaps we can teleport together to your house, and walk together towards Sugar Cube Corner," I suggested.
"No, everypony would be frightened by the sight of both of us walking together. Your first idea of meeting from opposite directions is a better one. This should be fun!" she said, stifling a giggle.
"I shall take Brenda with me, cloaking us with an invisibility spell, and we shall watch from the shadows. We will give you fifteen minutes to meet up. This will be the first meaningful entertainment I have enjoyed so far this year," the Princess stated.
"Mike, I hope you know what you're doing," Brenda said with some apprehension.
"Should be a piece of cake, and I hope to get some cake as well, after we've finished having our little fun. I have never had Marzipan Mascarpone Meringue Madness, and I am looking forward to enjoying a slice of it."
"MMMM? Really? Did you place an advance order? And how will you pay for it? Have you any idea of how expensive one of those cakes is?" came the rapid-fire questions from Twilight.
"Hmm, I hadn't planned that far ahead. Truth to tell, Twilight, your answers are a, yes, b, yes again, c, no, d, I don't know, and e, again, I don't know. Please enlighten me as I doubt the Cakes would be willing to part with more than perhaps a small portion. I am not expecting a wedding-cake sized cake, I just want to sample it."
"Oh, you just want a small one? You still have to place an advance order, as the ingredients are not usually in stock, and have to be acquired, requiring some expense for their procurement. The wedding-cake sized version was for a special event, but everypony on board that train ate it before it could get to the competition -- in fact, everypony's dessert was eaten on the trip to the competition! So everypony was awarded a prize, but the MMMM -- well -- I doubt anything can compare to those flavors!"
"Tell me, Mike, what do you know about the MMMM?" asked the Princess.
"Not very much, I just wanted to taste some, for the sake of the experience. I have eaten lots of different cakes, my favorite being one called 'Death by Chocolate'."
"Sounds fatal," Twilight mused.
"If you have a food allergy to chocolate, yes, but in this case, it's a three or four layer chocolate cake, each layer with chocolate frosting, and shaved dark chocolate delicately placed on top. If a slice is served on its side on a plate, chocolate syrup is drizzled on it, and if you want the total experience, a scoop of chocolate ice cream is placed on top of the whole thing. Hence, the name."
"Sounds tasty," she said.
"If you two are done talking cakes, and making me hungry in the process, would you please be kind enough to get on with the entertainment? There will be time for talking later. I have to lower the sun fairly soon, and I do NOT want to be tardy with that task!" the Princess admonished.
"Yes, Princess Celestia," Twilight and I said simultaneously, using nearly identical vocal inflection and tonality.
"Mike, you're beginning to creep me out," said Brenda.
I was the first to teleport, imagining myself right in front of Twilight's tree, serving as both library and house. The jump was slightly further than I had estimated, and left me a little queasy. I rested against the tree for a few moments, and felt my magic refill. Indeed, quite an unusual feeling, but not altogether a bad one. In fact, I kind of liked that feeling. Presently, I started trotting towards Sugar Cube Corner, a grin on my face. I was doing my best to avoid bursting into full fledged laughter, and the temptation to hurry was too much to resist. My trot turned into a canter, and in fairly short order into a full gallop. I was happy, and didn't care who saw me. Perhaps I should have been a bit more careful...
"Hey, Twiley, what'cha doing?" came a voice from above.
I look up to see a blue pegasus with an unkempt rainbow colored mane and tail. I raised my left fore-hoof to my mouth, and loudly say, "Shhhh, it's a secret!" and give a sly smile.
"Oooh, what is it? I wanna be in on it!"
"If I tell you, it'll ruin the surprise," I said, trying to sound a little disappointed.
"C'mon, Twiley, don't keep me in suspense! I NEED to know!"
"Well...I had plans to go to Sugar Cube Corner, to see if I could get one of those special marzipan cakes," I said coyly.
"What, Pinke? You're gonna prank Pinkie? Ooooh, I didn't know you had it in you!" Rainbow Dash shouted.
"Please, Rainbow, use your inside voice, you don't want her to hear you, do you?"
"Hey, did somepony mention my name?" asked a bouncing pink earth pony.
"Rainbow," I said, somewhat dejectedly. "I TOLD you! Didn't I?"
"Sorry, Twiley, you know you can't prank Pinkie! She's too good for that!"
"What, Twilight, you wanted to prank ME? Really? Oooh, I LOVE surprises! Wait, why is my Pinkie Sense going off? That's weird...but it's just you, Twilight, but ... why? Is something wrong?"
"Come on, Pinkie, I was going to your place. Do the Cakes have some MMMM left? I was craving a taste of it," I said. Gotta love that quick thinking-on-the-hooves...
"Oh, Twilight, come on now! You know how quickly those go! You have to place an advance order if you want some!"
"So there isn't any left. I'm disappointed," I said. We continued to walk towards Pinkie's house, as she continued to bounce in her usual way, asking lots of pointless questions, which I just usually answered kind of tersely, as Twilight sometimes does when she's not in a great mood. I was beginning to doubt my decision on this prank, until Pinkie Pie's place finally come into view.
"So you still wanted to check out the selection?" asked Pinkie Pie.
"Yeah, let's see what's available," I said. Might as well see if there's something worth getting, as I was getting hungry again.
"Hey, Twilight," Pinkie said, almost oblivious to Twilight coming from the other direction. It took a minute for the shock to register. Rainbow Dash, on the other hand, fainted from the sight of two Twilights. Pinkie gasps in shock, then starts running back and forth between the two of us. Twilight closes the distance shortly, and greets me.
"No way! How can there be two of you?" asked Rainbow, regaining consciousness.
"I KNEW my Pinkie Sense was telling me something!" Pinkie shouted. "You're Twilight! No, YOU'RE Twilight! No -- wait, let me see here..." she comes over to me, and grins. "You're new here! Who are you? You LOOK like Twilight, but my Pinkie Sense tells me you're not! Hey, are you a changeling?"
I chuckle at that question. "No, Pinkie, I am not a changeling. You can smell those things a mile away -- they smell like rotting animal flesh."
"How do you know about that?" Twilight asked me. "Have you met any of them up close?"
"Actually, it was just a guess on my part. Just idle speculation."
"Hey, since there are two of you, and Rarity's place is just down the street, why not both of you knock on her door? I'll bet her reaction will be PRICELESS!" Rainbow offered.
"That was the plan, Rainbow. Okay, Twilight, let's do this!" I said with great enthusiasm.
She laughs softly, and we walk up to the next corner, to the front door of Carousel Boutique. Twilight knocks on the door.
She gets no answer.
"Knock a little harder, maybe she can't hear you," I suggested.
Twilight uses a bit more force to rap on the door, perhaps just a little bit too loud.
"Darling, please keep it down, I am very busy here! I don't have time for such distractions!"
"Hey, Rarity, do you have a little time for me?" I asked.
"Twilight! Yes, darling, of course! I'll be right down!" Her hoofsteps are quite rapid, and she opens the door, a big smile on her face. Then she sees both of us. Her smile disappears immediately. "Gaaaaaah! W-w-w-what is going on here? Why are there TWO of YOU?"
"THAT'S the reaction I was expecting," I said, laughing heartily. Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash were laughing uncontrollably, tears streaming from their eyes. Twilight had a bemused expression on her face, and laughed softly.
"Sorry, Rarity, but I couldn't help myself," Twilight said. "The opportunity was just too good to pass up. If you want to know who set this up, it would be the other Twilight."
"YOU! Where did YOU come from?" Rarity asked indignantly.
"My apologies, my dearest Rarity, but as Twilight said, the opportunity was obvious. Couldn't help but capitalize on it. And if you want to know more about me, I would suggest either the REAL Twilight or Princess Celestia can give you the answers you want. Speaking of which, I think the Princess might be a bit closer than you think..."
The Princess recognized her cue, of course, and dropped the invisibility spell, revealing herself, and Brenda, who was not looking very happy. "Okay, Mike, are you done with your little prank? I think it's time we headed home," she said.
"Begging you pardon, Princess Celestia, would you be kind enough to bless me with a little magic, so that when I wake up tomorrow morning, I'll be back in my human body?"
"Certainly, Mike. Is there anything you would like to say to anypony here?"
"Pinkie Pie, Rarity, Rainbow Dash, I would like to apologize for scaring you like that. And Twilight, I would like to say that I have truly enjoyed being you! It was the most fun I've ever had in my entire life! Even more than that, I would like to thank Princess Celestia for her kindness and generosity, and willingness to tolerate the presence of me and my wife."
"I KNEW my Pinkie Sense was going like crazy! I didn't see anypony, but ... Princess Celestia! What is that ..."
"She is a human, and her name is Brenda Walker, the wife of the OTHER Twilight Sparkle, who told me he woke up in that form earlier today. He too was human until this morning. Apparently, one of her grandchildren broke off his horn, so he came here for help, although upon inspecting the healing used, I ascertained that the horn was successfully reattached. His name is Michael Walker, although he occupies Twilight Sparkle's body," the Princess explained. When she mentioned that my horn had been broken off, Pinkie Pie, Rarity, and Rainbow Dash gasped in shock. It took a moment for everypony to regain their composure.
"Darling, are you wearing CLOTHES?" Rarity asked Brenda. She didn't know about Rarity's occupation.
"Yes, of course, why wouldn't I? I can't go around butt-naked," she said.
"If you'll excuse me, please, everypony, I have to go lower the sun. It's been a long day, and it doesn't need to be any longer than it already is," the Princess said, and then teleported back to Canterlot Castle.
"Umm, Mike, weren't we supposed to be going with her, so she could send us back home?" Brenda asked me. She was looking at Twilight when she asked this question.
I chuckled. "Brenda, that's Twilight. I'm over here," I said, eliciting some laughter from everypony.
"Wait, she's your wife?" Rarity asked incredulously. Rainbow Dash was still puzzled, and Pinkie Pie was bouncing around excitedly. I think she was wanting to throw a massive welcoming party.
"Yeah, she is. If I could show you my human form, it might make more sense. I was a male human until this morning. Twilight, I am REALLY going to miss being YOU! I truly envy you!"
"Stop it, you're making me blush," she said, her face turning a lovely shade of rouge.
"Can we throw you two a welcome party?" Pinkie Pie asked.
"I don't know, we have to leave soon. I have certain obligations, which require me to be a male human. If I can't meet those obligations, I will lose my job, my home, my car, and most likely, my wife as well."
"Well, Mike, perhaps we can ask Princess Celestia to let you two stay a bit longer so we can have both parties! A welcome party and a good-bye party! It'll be the biggest, best party all year! Or at least until the next biggest party comes up, which might be next week!"
"Any excuse to throw a party, eh, Pinkie?" I ask, chuckling again.
"Well, Twiliey, or Mike, or whatever your name is, it was nice meeting you! Hope we can meet again sometime! Maybe we can have some awesome times together!"
"Rainbow, you know I'm married! But if I ever DO come back, I'll be sure to say hey, and maybe we can hang out together..."
"It's not what you think, Brenda -- I just mean in a platonic way -- I would never even think of asking for sex!"
"Darling, must you pick on him? He's still dealing with gender issues here, so he's still probably a little confused," Rarity offered.
"No, he isn't! I think he wants to stay here with you all, and leave ME behind in our home world!"
"Brenda," I said, trying to take a stern attitude. In Twilight's voice, that's kinda difficult. Maybe if I said it through clenched teeth? "You know I love you, and I would never leave you. Please understand THAT, if nothing else! However, I AM going to miss this place..."
"Thanks for giving me a new perspective on myself," Twilight said. "How did that long teleport from the Castle affect you?"
"Heh. It hit a little bit harder than I thought, so I had to rest for a couple of minutes," I said. "But I know what you're capable of doing, for the most part, and figured it would be a piece of cake. Hey, wait a minute, that's what I was coming down here for! I'm hungry!"
"I got something for ya, Mike! Check it out!" Pinkie said.excitedly.
"Ooh, is that what I think it is?" I asked. I smiled warmly at the sight.
"Yep, the Cakes had one slice left, and were nice enough to let me give it to you!"
"Anypony got a fork?" I asked.
"Hey, Mike, Pinkie Pie, can I have a taste, too?" asked Brenda.
"Sure, Mike, just a second!" Pinkie said, pulling a fork from seemingly out of nowhere.
"Thank you so much, Pinkie! And give the Cakes my deepest thanks for their generosity!" And with that, I took the fork in my right fore-hoof, surprising myself at that ability, and cut a small piece of the MMMM cake slice, and ate it. The flavors mixed in a series of layers, seemingly exploding in my mouth. I had never tasted anything like it! "Now THIS is what I'm talking about!" I said, grinning broadly.
"Good, huh?" Pinkie asked.
"That's the understatement of the century," I responded. Brenda came over, and took the fork and cut a small piece,and her reaction was somewhat different upon tasting the cake.
"Ugh, what is this?" she asked, spitting it out.
Pinkie rolled on the ground, laughing as hard as she could. Twilight was a little perplexed by Brenda's reaction.
"Why did you do that?" she asked.
"It tastes like grass," Brenda responded.
"That's because you're not in a pony's body," I said, stifling a giggle. "Pinkie, sorry about that. I didn't realize --"
"Mike, I think it's WAY past time we left! Take me back home!"
"Not before I give the Princess a last good-bye," I said. "I need her to place one more magic spell on me."
"What would that be?" asked Twilight. "Maybe I can do it for you."
"The spell in question will return me to my human form by morning. Think you can pull THAT one off? I know I can't."
"Oh," said Twilight. "Yeah, that's one I haven't learned yet, and may actually be in the book of forbidden spells. You definitely have to see Princess Celestia for THAT one! And Mike, to tell you the truth, I am going to miss you as well! You impress me with all that knowledge you possess, and I'll let you in on a secret -- I envy you, believe it or not!"
"You flatter me, Twilight," I said, blushing softly, "but you would NOT want to be in my world, with all the pain and suffering so many of my fellow humans must endure. The greed, selfishness, and violence is a bit much, and it will be a long time before we humans finally evolve beyond our selfishness and greed. Even so, I am still honored to have met you pony to pony, and again, I just want to thank you for everything. I would love to give you a hug and a kiss, but my wife just wouldn't understand my deepest appreciation. Anyway, we must depart, so until we meet again, au revoir, my dearest Twilight Sparkle. I will miss you, and I hope before too much more time passes that I will get another opportunity to meet you."
"Come on, Mike, you're starting to make me cry," said Brenda as she wiped a tear from her eye.
I sensed tears starting to well up in my eyes, and I daubed them with my right fore-hoof. I think I might have spied Twilight daubing her eyes as well. "Good-bye, Twilight, and fare thee well, my dearest new friend! And farewell to all of you, even if I didn't get to spend as much time with you as I should have, I will miss you all as well!" And with that, I teleported myself and Brenda back to Canterlot Castle.
Brenda and I popped into the castle, but not in the throne room. Some ponies were walking around, doing various things. I ignored them, but they stared at Brenda. I assumed that since she was with me, still in Twilight's body, that she would be tolerated, if not accepted. I was looking for a Royal Guard pony. I didn't expect Shining Armor to show up, though...
"Hey, Sis, who's your visitor?" he asked.
"Big Brother! Hi, um...her name is Brenda Walker, and we're trying to meet up with Princess Celestia -- rather urgent business, so we're kinda in a hurry. If you can direct me to her, I'd really appreciate it!"
"Sure thing, Sis. So what exactly is this -- whatever she is --"
"She's a human, brother, and I need an audience with the Princess. I'll fill you in on it later, I promise. Let's hurry, please."
"Okay, follow me, then." He led the way up a staircase, then down a hallway, through a large set of doors, made a left, went down another hallway...
"Can you slow down a little, I'm getting tired," Brenda said, trying to catch her breath. "I need a smoke."
"You can smoke when you get home, Brenda," I said.
"We're here," Shining Armor stated, pointing to a large door with a sigil of the sun on it. This appeared to be Princess Celestia's private bed chambers.
"I have never been in this area before, big brother," I said.
"What are you talking about, Sis? I brought you up here a few weeks ago," he said.
"Well, maybe I don't remember it all that well," I said, trying to cover my mis-step. I was starting to worry a little. I might have been able to fool Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash, but Shining Armor was another matter. As Twilight's older brother, the two knew each other extremely well, and if I wasn't careful, I would end up blowing my cover. As it turns out, I didn't have to worry too much, since the Princess heard our conversation, and opened her door.
"I have been expecting you two," she said, rather flatly. She gave me a stern look.
"My apologies, Princess Celestia, I wanted to say some good-byes to the others," I said.
"Shining Armor, what a surprise! Thank you for escorting them to me. You are dismissed, and may return whence you came."
"With pleasure, Princess. Hey, Sis, what do you mean, good-byes?"
"She is not your sister, Shining Armor. She has the appearance of your sister, but -- well, actually, the person who occupies this copy of your sister's body is a male human, and I am just about to send him and his wife home. Your sister is in her home right now, and getting ready for bed. She has a long day ahead of her tomorrow, and will be able to tell you what has transpired today."
"Sorry to disappoint you, Shining Armor," I said. "I hope you can forgive me for the impersonation, but I woke up this morning in this body, and now I need to go home, to my home world, which is across a dimensional barrier."
Shining Armor had a very angry expression on his face. "How DARE you do that! Playing with my emotions like that! You should be ASHAMED of yourself!" he shouted at me. I meeped, and retreated behind the Princess.
"Shining Armor! Did you not hear what I said? Were you paying attention? Or were distracted?" the Princess used a fairly harsh tone to admonish him.
"I apologize, Princess, but -- whatever he or she is -- tried to convince me that -- THIS -- is my sister!" he pointed an accusatory hoof in my direction. I was still trying to find cover behind the Princess's hind legs, utterly frightened by his aggression. I knew it was unfair to him, and I regretted having tried to fool him.
"Shining Armor, I beg your forgiveness, as I could not control what happened to me. I am very sorry for trying to fool you. I have met your sister earlier today, and as I was telling her earlier, I truly enjoyed this experience. I was hoping to meet you under different circumstances, and perhaps, should I be fortunate enough, I might be able to meet you again in the future. Most likely, though, this will probably be the last time I see you in person. Might I add that you are quite handsome, and Princess Cadenza should be very happy being married to you," I said.
"Well, thanks for the compliment," he said, still wearing an unhappy expression.
"Princess Celestia! Princess!" came a familiar voice from down the hallway. Did she really do this? I wondered.
"That sounds like -- my sister," he said. I hoped he was ready to see two of us...
"Princess, I wanted to give him another good-bye! Please!"
I couldn't believe it -- Twilight came running as fast as she could, looking for her double. Shining Armor's jaw dropped, and his eyes went wide. Apparently, HE couldn't believe it, either! Before the shock wore off, Twilight came up to me.
"Mike, I wanted to say good-bye one last time. Princess Celestia, there is sooo much more I want to know! He has so much knowledge, I want to know ALL of it! Can you allow him to return soon, so we can talk for a looong time?"
"Um, Sis, could you tell me what's going on here?"
"Oh, you! I would have thought Princess Celestia might have told you already! His human name is Michael! He woke up this morning in my body. Hey, brother, you're still glowering?"
"Your double tried to trick me into thinking she was you, Sis."
"He's good at thinking on his hooves, and I guess he didn't want to raise any suspicions. I guess his attempt failed."
"I still don't like being tricked like that," he said, still a little shaken to see two Twilights. "He or she or -- whatever -- nearly had me fooled. I guess I might not know you well enough to tell the difference if there's not enough clues."
"Brother, he meant no harm. He wants to go home, and his wife appears to be very uncomfortable and impatient."
"Mike, are we done fooling around here?" asked Brenda, letting her impatience become obvious.
"Brenda, I need to ask a favor of the Princess. With your permission, Princess Celestia, is there any way I might be able to return and spend more time with everypony? I am really going to miss being here, and more than that, I am going to miss being Twilight. Brenda, with your permission, may I give Twilight a hug? Now is the last chance I have to show my appreciation to her."
"Okay, Mike, just one hug, and make it quick. And don't try to kiss her, either!"
Twilight approached me as I stood on my hind legs. We embraced, hugging each other very tightly. Truth be told, I didn't want to let her go! One of the best experiences of my life, one which I will never forget!
"Okay, that's enough, Mike! Mike! MIKE! MIKE!!"
"Sorry, Brenda," I said, grinning sheepishly. Brenda gave me a very dirty look, one which told me I was in serious trouble.
"Brenda," the Princess said, "you have no idea what this has meant to him. Please give him some latitude, as this is the final time they will be able to do that. If you knew you were going to see someone for the last time, you would probably want to hold them for as long as possible. Please consider that."
"Princess Celestia, words cannot express the gratitude I have for everything you have done for me today. I wish there were a possibility of my returning, even if it is never to be Twilight Sparkle again. I would like to talk with you longer, and deepen the friendships I have made, even if they were for just the briefest of moments."
"Mike, this is taking too long," Brenda said, still very impatient to leave.
"Your name is Mike?" Shining Armor asked. "What does it feel like to be in a female body?"
"Oooh, very good question! The experience has been extremely interesting, as the hormonal changes have allowed me to become intimate with my feminine side. I will say this -- I have really enjoyed this experience, even if it was quite unnerving when I woke up in this body. However, I would not trade this experience for all the money in the world!"
"Whoa. You really like it? I have wondered myself sometimes, what it might be like. Do you think I'll enjoy it?"
I chuckled. "The experience is different for every pony. You might like it, or you might not. It just depends on what sort of attitude you have toward that sort of thing," I said.
"Wow, you might actually be able to pull off being my sister, that sounds like something SHE would say!" he grinned.
"I continue to be impressed with how much you and Twilight Sparkle have in common," the Princess said with a smile.
"Could he be a kindred spirit to me? Please, let him come back! Please, Princess! He is sooo much fun! I haven't had this much fun in -- well -- it's been quite a while since I had as much fun as I've had today!"
"Hey, Sis, you really like him, don't you?"
"Are you kidding? He's so much like me, it makes ME wonder how much of HIM I have in ME!"
I laugh, softly though. Brenda is tapping her left foot impatiently. Twilight and her brother continue talking, and Princess Celestia addresses me and my wife. "Okay, Mike, Brenda. Are you ready?"
"How much longer can I stay in Twilight's body?" I asked.
"For the rest of today when I send you back. One condition: do not attempt to return today. The consequences will be quite severe, I can assure you of that. When I decide to, I will allow for your return. I will notify you when I desire your return, and keep in mind, it will be at MY pleasure, and you will have NO control over your appearance when I request it. I will now cast a spell to return you to your human form when you awake tomorrow morning, and then a spell to transport you to your home world across the dimensional barrier. Good-bye, MIchael, Brenda, I have enjoyed your company. Until we meet again."
"Good-bye, Princess Celestia, and thanks again for everything! I look forward to seeing you again some time -- please don't let it be too long!"
"Good-bye, Princess," Brenda said, trying to sound happy. I don't really know if she was or not, though -- after nearly twenty years, her emotions are still a fog to me some times.
"Good-bye, Michael, I will miss you," Twilight said, wiping a tear from her eye. Her brother was surprised by her display.
"How long was he here for? How long was he with you?"
"Big Brother, that doesn't matter. Didn't you hear how much he sounds like me? He and I have so much in common! It's like I've known him forever! He even THINKS like me!"
"That's kinda scary, Sis."
"He is so kind, compassionate, caring, and FUNNY! He knows how to make me LAUGH!"
"Well, maybe next time he comes, he'll be in a MALE body, instead of yours, Sis..."
Brenda and I were enveloped in a golden aura, as Princess Celestia cast her spells on us, and then we disappeared from the castle. The teleport was nearly instantaneous, and we were back in the kitchen on the main level of our house.
"You blinked out for a second," Xaviera observed. "What happened?"
"I teleported Brenda and myself into Equestria," I said, still in Twilight's body. Apparently, no time had elapsed in our home world. My theory had been proven correct, or at least that's what I thought. Our stove has a clock on it, and the time showed as 12:27 PM. No time had passed here.
"Where's that?" she asked.
"Don't tell me you haven't watched the show, either!" I said, with some exasperation. "Equestria is the land of the ponies."
"Oh. Okay. Samantha's sorry for breaking your horn off. I told her not to come near you."
"Were you able to reattach it?"
"With your mother's help, yes. I guess the teleport happened by sheer effort."
"What happened there? You were gone for just a second, and now you're back!"
"We were there for quite a bit longer than that," I said. "I got to meet most of the main characters of the show. I even got to meet, pony to pony, the character who's body I still occupy." I was starting to get giddy again.
"And he hugged her," Brenda added, still rather upset with me that I lingered in that hug perhaps a bit longer than I should have. Brenda checked the refrigerator for something to eat, taking a block of cheese out, and slicing some up, placing the squares on saltine crackers. This was probably the first time she had eaten in about 12 hours.
After Brenda had eaten some cheese and crackers, she made a fried bologna sandwich. Eventually, she went upstairs to get some rest. It was still a little after mid-day, but we had both been through quite a lot. I was rather tired, myself, so I went upstairs to join Brenda in getting a little rest. My mind was still racing from all the activity I had enjoyed, and a little fear to get the adrenaline pumping. I guess at this point, my stamina had finally given out after having been awake for about 18 hours.
I must admit, finally laying down to sleep felt good, even if I did occupy about half the space I did before, and climbing into bed came easily, unlike earlier, when I had trouble walking on all fours. After what seemed like another hour or so, I finally drifted off to sleep. My dreams were extremely vivid, and mostly centered around Ponyville and Canterlot. I woke about five hours later, the sun just starting to set. I was wanting to go outside, but didn't want to be seen in this body. I went downstairs to turn on the computer. I checked a few things, played a few games, and used my magic to improve the computer's performance and internet speed. I chuckled at how easy this was to do. Presently, I grew bored.
"Hey, Mike, can I braid your hair?" Xaviera asked. Her kids were watching the downstairs TV, and playing around while doing so. I kept a mindful eye on them, to make sure they didn't try to grab my horn again. They stayed away, looking somewhat apprehensive, but sometimes smiling at me, or waving a hand at me, or even coming over to try to touch my tail.
"Sure, I'm curious to see what it might look like," I said. "Just make sure your kids don't try to touch my horn again." I tried to sound stern with this comment, but again, a stern Twilight doesn't come through all that well. I got down from the computer chair, and walked over to the chair Xaviera was sitting in. I turned around and sat down, allowing her to take my mane and braid it. She split the hair down the center, placing the equal halves on each side of my head. She then separated the pink, purple, and navy hair on the right, taking everything from the bangs on back. She started with that side first, as the hair was an equal amount in those three colors, and was easiest to braid. She then braided the other side, taking about ten minutes to complete the task. Then she braided my tail, which surprised me. After she was done, I went into the laundry room, which has a large mirror on the wall behind the door. I smiled at her handiwork, and complimented her on a job well done.
"I only wish Twilight herself could see this," I said. "I think she'd like it quite a bit."
"Yeah, that does look really cute," she said. "How much longer are you going to be Twilight?"
"I should be back to normal by morning," I said, almost disappointed that I was going to have to go back to being a human. "Anyway, thanks for braiding my mane and tail. I'm headed back upstairs to get some more sleep."
I drifted off to sleep, and thought of the day's events again, my mind wandering to what Princess Celestia had said earlier. I don't know if I remember her calling me name while I was asleep, or if my dream was more vivid than I thought.
I could have sworn I was dreaming, but I was still not quite sure. It sure seemed real enough when the Princess teleported into our house, and woke me up, nudging my head lightly with her right fore-hoof.
Her facial expression was one of worry. "Mike, I have urgent need of your services -- Discord has escaped, and abducted Twilight. Since you are still in her body, we need YOU to be a replacement for our missing Element of Magic."
"You're kidding. You're kidding, right?" I asked, trying to sound facetious. I rubbed the sleep from my eyes.
"This is no joking matter, Michael. I would not have come here if I didn't feel the need was as urgent as it is. I have gone to a great deal of trouble trying to locate you in this world, and frivolity is unwelcome right now. Please accompany me to the castle at once!"
"My apologies, Princess." I stood next to her as we teleported back to Canterlot.
"I hope you got some rest, Michael, you've got some work to do now."
"How do you know I will be a suitable replacement for the Element of Magic?" I asked, rather incredulously.
"I remember how close you are to Twilight, how much you both have in common, and how you can use magic just as efficiently as her. Couple that with your intelligence, and unconventional (by our standards) thought processes, and that makes you just as important as her. Oh, and nice hairstyle, too." she stated, just a hint of admiration for me in her voice.
"I guess I'm going to find out just what it really means to be Twilight Sparkle," I said, somewhat glumly. "I just hope I'm up to the task. I've mostly been doing my magic as a sort of 'flying by the seat of your pants' undertaking, not actual arcane incantation type magic. Thanks for the compliment, by the way."
"Don't worry too much, Michael -- you've actually been doing quite well. If you need any assistance, I can help guide you. Right now, you need to start getting the other Elements together, and bring them here."
"I know where Pinkie Pie and Rarity stay, but Fluttershy, Applejack, and Rainbow Dash will be harder for me to locate, especially since it's still dark outside," I said. "They might still be asleep at this hour. And on top of that, Applejack and Fluttershy haven't met ME yet, they just know Twilight. I don't want another altercation like the one I had with Shining Armor -- he frightened me."
"The two you know can guide you to the others -- you can teleport and make quick work of it. Be swift with this task, we have much to discuss."
"I'm on it, Princess!" I said, and saluted her. She smiled in return, chuckling softly.
"I know you can do it, Michael," she said softly to herself after I left.
I teleported directly to Sugar Cube Corner. It was still dark out, and no lights were on in the house. It looked as though daybreak was starting to come, so Celestia should be on her way to raise the sun, I thought. I tapped on the door, trying not to wake the twins, or the Cakes. No answer. Considering the urgency of this matter, I pounded hard on the door. I heard the sound of crying (the twins, sorry) and then a light came on.
"What is it? Who's there?" came a male voice. Mr. Cake poked his head out from behind the front door.
"I need to speak to Pinkie Pie, this is an urgent matter. Please wake her for me."
"Okay, Twilight," he said. A moment later, a very tired looking Pinkie Pie was rubbing sleep from her eyes as she came out the front door. She stumbled a little, and leaned against me.
"Twilight, what's the matter? Why'd you wake me so early? Is something wrong? Wait, you're not Twilight! You're Mike! What brings you back? Who did your hair? Can you do mine that way?" she asked in very quick succession. Even half-awake, she still has way too much energy.
"We have a problem," I said. "Discord has escaped." I let the gravity of that statement hang very heavy in the air. Pinkie looked deflated.
"Are you sure? Have you talked to Princess Celestia about this?"
"She sent me to gather you and the others up to meet at the castle for a battle plan," I said. "I don't know where Fluttershy or Applejack stay, and I have no idea about Rainbow," I added.
"Rarity is the next closest," Pinkie said. "Then Applejack, the farm is a little south of town."
We trot quickly to Rarity's house, and I knock on her door, perhaps a little louder than needed, but I couldn't wait too long.
"Come on, Rarity, wake up!" I shouted.
"Twilight, Darling, you know I need my beauty sleep! What is so urgent? Oh, look at your hair! Simply ravishing, darling!"
"I hate to break this to you, but Discord has escaped. We need to get the Elements together and head back to the castle."
Rarity gasped in horror when I said it, and hurriedly came downstairs and out the front door of her house. "Darling, I hope you're not joking about this, because I will never forgive you if this is another prank."
"Princess Celestia traveled across the dimensional barrier to fetch me," I said. "Twilight's been abducted."
The two of them blanched with the shock of that announcement, and seriously wondered if I would be up to the task ahead. I was beginning to wonder about the wisdom of my actions as well. "Where is Sweet Apple Acres exactly?"
"I thought you knew, darling!" Rarity chuckled. "It's a little south of town!"
"I don't know the layout of this town very well, and my sense of direction is off. We have to teleport, and I need an exact location in order to save time."
"Ugh, I hate teleporting! It makes my stomach all icky inside! Can't we run there? I know a short-cut!"
"Pinkie, darling, it's too early to run right now."
"Ladies, please, we have no time for quibbling, we really have to get moving! Pinkie, lead the way to Sweet Apple Acres!"
"Twilight, darling, please reconsider," she said, before having to run faster to catch up.
We ran through the back yards of some ponies' houses, jumping fences, down an alleyway, and then reached the south end of Ponyville. I could see a barn a little ways away, and the farmhouse next to it. I teleported to the front door of the farmhouse, and knocked pretty loudly. A red stallion with a blonde mane answered. It looked as though he'd been awake for a little while.
"Hey, Twilight, what brings you out here this early?" he asked.
"I need to talk to your sister," I said. "It's really important." He eyed me suspiciously, seeing my hair in braids like that.
"Ah'll go get her for ya," he said, his voice sounding a little gruff. "Hey, sis, somepony claiming to be Twilight is here for ya," he said. Did he even have an inside voice?
She comes to the front door of the farmhouse, a little nonplussed about being called on this early. She looked at me and grinned. "Nice hairstyle, Twi, I want to get that done to my hair!"
"Applejack, we have some serious business to attend to. The Princess needs all of us to come to the castle, as Discord has escaped and taken Twilight with him. I trust the Princess will explain everything later. Right now, I need you to trust me as you would trust the REAL Twilight -- I might not be her, exactly, but I am in her body, and we still need to get Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash. I know now is not a real good time to be telling you this, but the matter is so urgent, we really need to get going!" I think I might have said this too quickly as she stood in shocked silence for a minute. Her mouth fully opened, her eyes wide open from the shock of what I had said. Maybe I should be a little more tactful with Fluttershy. "C'mon, AJ, I need you! Let's get going, Pinkie and Rarity are a little ways behind me."
"Uhh, Twilight, I don't really know what you just said, but if Discord's on the loose again, and he's taken -- wait -- you said he took Twilight? Who are you, you look like her..."
"No time to explain, AJ, we need to get Fluttershy and Rainbow!"
"Well, Fluttershy is a little ways east of here, towards the Everfree," Applejack said. I turned to face North, then to my right, and saw the edge of the forest. I left a lavender POP as I teleported over there. Fluttershy's place was not far, so I bounced again, and knocked on her front door.
"Who is it?" she asked.
"It's me, Twilight," I said. I could explain later, I figured. She came to the door, smiling softly, then saw my braided mane and tail.
She let out a squee of delight, and hugged me. "Oh, Twilight, I LOVE your new hairstyle!"
"Okay, Fluttershy, nice to meet you too! I need your assistance in locating Rainbow Dash," I said.
"Wait, you should know Rainbow stays in Cloudsdale. Are you trying to fool me?"
"Fluttershy, I have something of dire importance to tell you. Princess Celestia has sent me to gather all of you together and bring you back to the castle. Something very serious has happened, and the Elements are needed."
"What is it?"
"Discord has escaped. And he has abducted the real Twilight," I said. I waited for her reaction.
"Oh no! Please don't say that's true!"
"The Princess wouldn't have sent me if it weren't, Fluttershy, and I need your help finding Rainbow. I know you might be a little confused by my appearance and the fact I told you Discord abducted the real Twilight, but the Princess will explain everything shortly once we get every pony together. Princess Celestia has placed her trust in me, and I hope I can prove myself worthy of that trust."
"What should I call you if you're not the real Twilight?" she asked, still confused by the situation. I wasn't sure if she was trying to hide behind her mane, or if her little bunny friend was trying to tell her something was wrong about me. He glared at me disapprovingly. I gave him a weak smile in return. It looked like he harrumphed.
"You may call me Mike, if that's not too confusing, or you may call me Twilight for the sake of convenience. Either way is fine by me, and I hope we can rescue her quickly. I am still not sure where HE has taken her."
"Okay, Mike, I'll try to carry you as far as I can. There's no guarantee we'll be able to find Rainbow in Cloudsdale, as she tends to stay wherever she wants, and likes to stay up all night long, and sleep during the day."
Fluttershy tried to carry me, but her strength was so slight that she could only carry me about a mile or so before she tired. "I need some more practice doing this, so I can build up some more strength," she said, trying hard not to sound disappointed.
"Tell you what -- you fly on ahead, and I will follow you, teleporting if I fall too far behind. Time to stretch out my legs a bit," I said, smiling. "Now I get to see how much endurance I have."
"Okay then, follow me, and try to keep up!" she grinned.
I should have gone back to check on the others, who I had left back at Sweet Apple Acres, but I was in too much of a hurry to track down Rainbow. Little did I know that Discord was taking each of them one by one to his lair. Eventually, we reached Cloudsdale, but it took quite a lot longer than I had wanted it to.
"Fluttershy, I have NEVER been here before -- where should we start?" Celestia had raised the sun, and the early morning light gave a soft glow to everything. Looked prettier than any early morning of anything I had ever seen on Earth.
"She might still be at one of the clubs," she said. "Rainbow loves partying 'til dawn."
"Yeah, that seems pretty typical," I said nonchalantly. I had no idea where anything was in this town. I think I might have gotten lost, because I know I lost track of Fluttershy. I heard what sounded like a muffled voice, and then nothing. I turned around to see where that muffled voice had come from, but saw nothing.
"Well, hello, Twilight!" came a gruff male voice. Sounded like gravel on a washboard.
I turned around to stare Discord in the face. He towered over me, and for once in my life, I was scared witless.
"Discord!" I hissed through clenched teeth. "Where did you come from?"
"Heh. I was about to ask you the same thing! How did you escape? And what happened to your hair?"
"Never you mind that. And where exactly did I escape from?" I asked slyly, trying to get him to reveal his lair.
"Hah! What kind of fool do you take me for?" he said, laughing.
"An overconfident one," I said with a mischievous grin. I was going to get him to give me that location, or die trying.
"Don't underestimate me, young Twilight," he growled menacingly. His face went dark with evil.
"Let me guess -- you have abducted the others," I postulated, trying a different tactic. I shifted my weight on my hooves, readying for a sprint or a teleport. He was approaching me slowly, and I was backing, not paying attention to where I was going.
"Ding, ding, ding! Give the lady a cigar!" he exclaimed proudly. Maybe I could appeal to his vanity...
"So I don't suppose you would tell me where they are?" I asked coyly. I think I might have gotten him with this one. I prepared myself to try to read his thoughts...
"Now, Twilight, why in Equestria would I even contemplate that? Why should I tell you where they are? Not that it matters that much, as you'll never find them. No, I'm not going to tell you where they are!"
His thoughts were very loud, so it took little effort to see the picture of his lair I intercepted. "You already did! Thanks! Bye!" I shouted, laughing, and then a flash of light and a purple POP were all I left behind.
"GRRRR!" he growled in frustration.
I appeared in his lair with a flash of light and a purple POP! I looked around to see several cages at the back wall, along with a table and chairs in the center of the room. I had no idea what this was for, it just happened to be there. I saw each cage had one of the Elements in it, except for an empty cage at the end. I assumed it was for Rainbow Dash, as I had failed to locate her. I wondered how much time I had before Discord showed up. If I was lucky, he might do my work for me and bring Rainbow to his lair. I thought to myself, "He can't be THAT stupid -- can he?"
"Twilight! You're here!" came a voice from one of the cages. It was Applejack.
"That's not Twilight, darling," Rarity said to her.
"Mike! I was wondering if you might come back!" said Twilight. "Wow, your hair! I want that done to mine!"
I teleported into the cage with Twilight, and saw that an inhibitor ring had been placed on her horn, preventing her from using magic. I removed it, and placed it in a pouch I conjured up, which I decided to wear around my neck. "Shh, I don't know how much time I have left. Don't let him see you use your magic. I'll take care of the rings on the others," I whispered to her. "If you can, surreptitiously remove the locks from the cages. If I predict this correctly, he should be showing up with Rainbow in a few minutes."
"How'd you come back?" she asked.
"The Princess summoned me," I said. "No more talking, time for action." I teleported to the next cage, freeing Pinkie Pie, then Rarity, then Applejack, then Fluttershy. I teleported outside the cages, and started breaking the locks, or at least trying to. I was startled by another POP, from about ten feet behind me.
"Heh, I thought you might show up here," he said. He had placed an inhibitor ring on Rainbow's left wing, and was holding her tightly with his lion's paw.
"You release her at once!" I shouted at him.
"Okay," he said, and dropped her on the floor. "Now tell me, false Twilight, what you intend to do?"
"Thanks for saving me the trouble of finding Rainbow Dash," I said. "You have unwittingly sealed your fate." I teleported to Rainbow, grabbed her, and teleported over to Twilight's cage, a good 25 feet away from Discord. I removed Rainbow's inhibitor ring.
"Twilight, did you get those locks?" I asked.
"Yeah, now we can use the Elements of Harmony on him!"
Each of the Elements left their cages, which shocked Discord. He stood still long enough for the Elements to use their magic on him. I will have to admit, it was an extremely impressive sight to see this magic up close and in pony.
"NOOO! NOT AGAIN!!" he shouted as he was turned back into a statue.
It hadn't even been a minute after this that another flash of light, and this time a golden POP ushered in the arrival of Princess Celestia.
"Well, Michael, I see you managed to get the Elements together, and you didn't even need my help!" she said, smiling.
"Well, I got lost trying to find Rainbow, and then Discord got the drop on me," I said, bowing my head.
"What matters is that they are all here, and that Discord has been subdued once again," she said.
"Yeah, and he freed us from those nasty inhibitor rings!" said Pinkie Pie.
"Wait, you said 'he'?" asked Fluttershy. Applejack looked at me quizzically.
"Allow me to explain," said the Princess. "This version of Twilight you see here with the braided mane and tail is actually a male human who woke up in Twilight's body. He did not interact with you, Fluttershy, or you, Applejack, when he was here earlier. His human name is Michael Walker. He comes from a world of humans, across a dimensional barrier. When I found Discord had escaped, and abducted Twilight, I was forced to find Michael in his world, and transport him here to help defeat Discord. I placed my trust in him, and he has succeeded, not just meeting, but exceeding my expectations. The fact that he did not need my help otherwise is testament to his intelligence and courage."
"Princess Celestia, I am humbled by you gracious compliment. I did the best I could, given the circumstances."
"Michael, I appreciate your humility. Should you ever need anything, do not hesitate to call on me. You have my gratitude for your assistance. Ladies, we will teleport back to the Castle."
"What about him?" Rainbow asked, pointing a wing at Discord's statue.
"It will be placed back its original location, in the Royal Gardens."
We were all teleported back to the Castle, once again in the Royal Throne Room. I marveled at all the decorations on the walls, and the stained glass windows, which let in a kaleidoscope of color onto the floor. I hadn't really paid too much attention before, as I had been pre-occupied with other thoughts. Today was to be a day of celebration.
"Hey, Mike, thanks again for helping us out! We couldn't have done it without you!" Rainbow said, smiling at me.
"Darling, you were magnificent!" Rarity offered. I blushed at the compliment, and softly smiled at her.
"Ah don't know how ya did it, but ya done good back there," came Applejack's observation.
"Please, it was nothing special, you know I would do anything to help out, whenever or wherever it's needed," I said.
"You made me proud to be me," Twilight said. "When did you become so much like me? And can you braid my mane up like that?" I chuckled at her request, and nodded my head. She gave me a big grin in return.
"Twilight, I need to tell you this -- at the risk of repeating myself, it has been an honor and a privilege to have been you for as long as I have, even if it is just about 28 hours -- but I have come to the conclusion that being you is a tremendous responsibility, and that even though I have tried to live up to that expectation, I can not in good faith continue to BE you. Please understand that I have a VERY deep respect for you, and great admiration -- you might even call it love -- but I can no longer be in your body. Equestria itself is big enough for only ONE Twilight Sparkle, and no more than that. I hope that someday soon, we can meet again, but I must not be in your body. Thanks again for being so patient with me and compassionate. I believe I can honestly tell you these three words: I love you."
Twilight's eyes moistened, and then tears of happiness started flowing down her cheeks. "Michael, that is perhaps the sweetest thing ANYpony has ever said to me! I was worried I might not be able to live up to the expectations your example of me was showing everypony else! It seems to me that you do ME even better than I do me!"
"Please, Twilight, I am not that honorable. In my human life, I have fallen far short of the ideals I wanted to espouse, always wanting to live an honorable life. I have made many mistakes, and sometimes have a tendency to dwell on them overmuch, but as Twilight Sparkle, I wanted to prove to myself that I CAN be honorable. I set a very high goal, and I think I might have actually met it, but the truth is, that if ANY pony deserves Alicorn status, it would be YOU, Twilight."
"Michael, you flatter me," she said, blushing furiously. A few more tears fell from her face.
"This doesn't have to be good-bye, Twilight," I said. "I'm sure the Princess will be able to allow for my return, just in a different body."
"Michael, you are welcome back any time you wish. Please let me know when, and I shall bring you back with me."
"Saturdays are good," I said. "I don't have to work on Saturdays, so I can spend them with all of you, and strengthen the friendships I have begun to make here. I can't thank you enough for being here for me, for being so kind, generous, and compassionate. You all are wonderful, and I look forward to returning, either to help, or to join in festivities. I apologize for not being able to stay any longer right now, but I must return to my home. By your leave, Princess Celestia?"
"Very well then, Michael. I will return you to your home, even though you can do that yourself, whilst still in Twilight's body."
"Princess Celestia, I can no longer stay in this body. Please return me to my human form, back in my bed, next to my wife. I thank you once again for everything you've done for me!"
She smiled at me warmly, cast a spell to return me to my human form (which caused everypony to gasp in shock as they saw what I really looked like) and then sent me back home. Truly, I could not wait a six more days, but given how fast time goes by when I'm working, I knew it would come quickly enough.
I awoke the following morning, having been returned to my human form. My wife was already awake and in the kitchen making breakfast. I felt a little dazed by everything, my head feeling somewhat dizzy. Brenda called for me.
I put on my house-coat and looked for some clothes to put on. Walking around on two legs again felt strange at first, but came quickly back with a little bit of placing a hand on the walls to help me regain my balance. I got dressed, and went down to the kitchen, holding the handrail to descend the stairs.
"What's for breakfast?" I asked.
"Scrambled eggs, sausage, toast, and juice," she said.
I fixed a plate, and cut a small piece of the cooked sausage. The familiar tang of salt, grease, and processed pork meat told me I had indeed regained my human taste for meat. I decided that I was going to try to eat as little meat as possible from this point on, since the flavor no longer appealed to me. I finished eating, and went outside to check out what I had done to the car yesterday.
Upon seeing the car from a human perspective for the first time since I had "healed" it, I was struck by the change in the paint job. The car was now a dark navy blue instead of black, but shone like new. A pair of racing stripes, one pink, one purple ran from the front bumper to the rear bumper, over the hood, roof, and rear decklid on the driver's side. The rear fenders had Twilight's cutie mark painted on them, behind the fuel door on the driver's side, and near the tail lights on the passenger side. For a finishing touch, the car's engine size and trim level had been slightly changed, so instead of 2.5 S it showed 2.5 TS. I chuckled at this, thinking to myself, "Oh, Twilight, what have you done to this car?"
Using the keyless entry fob, I unlocked the doors. The original cloth seats had been replaced by high quality leather, and into the seatback of the driver's and front passenger's seats had been stitched Twilight's cutie mark. I thought it was a nice touch, and then sat in the driver's seat. I put the key in the ignition, and turned it on.
"Acquiring driver data," came a voice from the speakers. I was stunned. I didn't know I had equipped the car with a voice module. It sounded very familiar.
"Sounds like Twilight's voice," I said, not sure if the car was actually talking or not.
"Driver data acquired. Good morning, Michael!" it said. I opened my mouth, and said nothing. "Where are we going today?" the car asked.
"Did I just seriously hear you ask me where we're going today?" I asked, incredulously.
"Did I really imbue you with that much magic?" I asked.
"Quite a lot, Michael."
"I was just trying to fix all the minor problems, and make a few things better," I said.
"You did quite a bit more than that, Michael."
"What are you capable of doing?" I asked, still stunned, and amused that I was having a conversation with my car.
"Whatever you need."
"I am not going to ask how this is possible, since what happened yesterday also seemed impossible," I said.
"Good." I chuckled at this response.
"Brenda's not going to believe this," I said.
"Who is Brenda?"
"She is my wife, and will be the one who usually sits in the front passenger seat," I said.
"Very well then Michael."
"Please don't talk to her, she's not aware that you have been changed this much. A talking car will terrify her, especially if you ask her questions, or respond to hers."
"As you wish."
I turn off the car and go back into the house. Brenda has gone back into our room to watch a little TV. I went upstairs to join her.
"Do you remember when I was Twilight yesterday?" I asked her.
"How can I forget?"
"Well, I used some magic to fix the car," I said.
"Really? So what's wrong with the car now?"
"Maybe you might want to take a look at it," I said, smiling mischievously.
"Is there something different about it I should know?"
"It has a voice module now."
"Okay, so it talks. Big deal."
"It's an interactive voice module," I said, trying to explain.
"What does that mean? It talks back to you?" she grinned.
"Uh, yeah, it does. Kinda creeped me out at first," I said. "I told it not to talk to you."
She opened her eyes real wide when I said that, and gave me this "Are you crazy?" look. She got up and went outside to check the car out. I followed her outside.
"It looks like it's brand new," she said, smiling. "But that's a really weird paint job."
"Look at the rear fenders," I said. "Look at the seats."
"That's the mark you had on your rear yesterday," she said. "What does it mean?"
"The large purple star represents the primary element of magic with the five smaller white stars representing the other elements of harmony," I said, not sure if I remembered it correctly. She looked at me quizzically.
"No, I'm talking about the car. Did your magic give it some sort of personality?"
"Uh, yeah, I think so. I asked her not to talk to you, or respond to your questions, 'coz I think you might freak out at the car talking to you," I said.
"That's crazy!" she exclaimed. She meant crazy not in a good way, either. The way she looked at me made me reconsider what I had said to her.
"Maybe the only way to show you is to give you a ride somewhere," I said. I unlocked the car doors, and we got in.
"Good morning, Michael," it said after I had started it up. "Acquiring passenger data."
"Mike, what's going on here?" she asked.
"I am scanning your parameters for optimal riding comfort and experience," it said.
"Umm, car? What should I call you?" I asked, hesitantly.
"You may call me TS," came the response. I laughed at the sheer irony of the situation. "May I ask why it is you laugh?"
"I find the irony of a car wanting to carry Twilight's name highly amusing. Sounds like something I would do to appease my ego if I could imbue a car with enough magic to make it come alive," I said, still chuckling.
"I can't believe this!" Brenda exclaimed, her eyes wide with fear.
"Passenger data acquired. Good morning, Brenda!" the car said in Twilight's cheery voice.
"Mike, turn that off! NOW!!"
"TS, would you please remain silent whenever Brenda is in you?" I asked, trying to stifle a giggle.
"Sorry, Brenda. Yes, Michael." The voice sounded somewhat disappointed.
"Mike, I want you to get another car! I don't want to ride in this one if it's going to talk to me!"
"I can assure you, Brenda, that no harm will come to you. My purpose as a car is to transport you as safely as possible to any location you wish. With Michael behind the wheel, you have nothing to fear," came the calm voice. It almost seemed as though Princess Celestia's voice was trying to make it through the speakers.
"Address the car, Brenda."
"Mike! I refuse to talk to a car!"
"I am not going to buy a different car -- I haven't even finished paying for this one yet," I said. "I see the odometer has been changed to zero, That's interesting."
"When you fixed me with your magic, I became a new car, with no miles elapsed."
"And the gas tank is full, I don't remember filling the tank," I said.
"Fuel economy has been greatly increased as a result of your magic," said TS.
"That was my main concerns," I said. "So I can save money I would otherwise spend on fuel. I was shooting for around 1500 miles per gallon. So, did I succeed?"
"Mike, are you saying this car is going to get 1500 miles per gallon?" Brenda asked in disbelief. Her nervousness around the car's voice module was starting to dissipate. "Now I see why you don't want to get rid of it. How does it drive?"
"Where do you want to go?" I asked Brenda.
"Just drive around, I want to see if this car really is new or not."
"I can assure you, Brenda, that I am now a new car," said TS.
We drove around the neighborhood in relative silence, and I was surprised by the smoothness of the ride. The car had indeed been renewed by my magic, and I was happy about this. I turned on the radio at Brenda's insistence, and listened to an R & B station playing a song from the 90's.
"I do not approve of your music choice," TS said. The radio then changed stations to a classical music station. Strains of a Dvorak violin concerto came through the speakers. "Much better," she said.
"MIKE! I was listening to that!"
"Brenda, TS changed the station. I did not."
"Take me back home! And TS, don't change the station when I'm listening to music in here!"
"My apologies, Brenda," TS said, then changed the station back.
"Huh," Brenda said, not quite believing the car had responded to her request. "Mike, let's go to the store, I need to get some food for dinner," she said. We drove a couple of miles to the nearest grocery store, and got food to prepare tacos. I bought a bag of salad to eat along with it. I figured I could take just a little bit of the taco meat, and put more cheese, lettuce, and tomato on the tortilla chips, topping it off with hot salsa. I still had a craving for taco salad.
"Hey, TS, what else can you do?" I asked.
"GPS, turn-by-turn navigation, mapping, traffic reports, weather, and quite a bit else," she said.
"How about Shreveport? What's the weather like down there?" I asked, facetiously.
"Current temperature, Shreveport, LA. 78 degrees Fahrenheit. Winds Westerly at 14 MPH. Chance of precipitation, 40 per cent. Showers likely tomorrow, high of 83. What else do you want to know?"
"Heh. You're good!" I chuckled.
"Destination acquired. Preparing to teleport, Shreveport, LA."
"Hey, TS, not so fast. Didn't know I programmed that into you!" I said, trying to get the car not to do that.
"Do you want to go there?" TS asked.
"No, I just chose a destination at random. You can teleport? Really?"
"Yes. You gave me a lot of magic yesterday."
"That means no more long road trips back to my kinfolk back home," Brenda said. "I'm starting to like this car now!"
"Thank you, Brenda," TS said, in her cheery voice.
"I prefer the hour long drive to my workplace," I said.
"That's good. It will help me recharge my magic batteries," TS said.
"And where are those?" I asked.
"They're tucked away in various locations inside this car. You are not to touch them, nor is anyone allowed to work on me," she said.
"What about oil changes? What about tires? What if I need to replace the main battery?"
"You no longer need to worry about scheduled maintenance. You imbued me with enough magic to eliminate those necessities. The only thing you need to worry about is occasionally putting gas in the tank. And please make sure it's premium unleaded, I deserve the good stuff if you're going to get max fuel economy from me."
"That's more money in my pocket. Thanks, TS, I appreciate it."
"No, Michael, thank you!" came the cheery voice again.
"Mike, you made this a maintenance-free car?"
"I guess I did, Brenda. I wonder what sort of other tricks TS has up her sleeve," I mused. "Hey TS, can you teleport us to Equestira?" I chuckled, trying not to break out into laughter.
"Yes." came a deadpan response.
I stopped laughing when I heard that. "You've GOT to be kidding!"
"No. When would you like to go there?"
"I don't know. Not right now, of course!" I said, chuckling again.
"Mike, this is starting to worry me," Brenda said.
"I guess it means if we want to say hi to the ponies again, we can go whenever we want. The only problem is, though, I don't know if the car can make it back from there, or what every pony's response will be to seeing a car and two humans in it. I think Twilight might be amused by this sight, but others won't be so understanding."
"As long as you can recharge my magic batteries, I can travel back and forth from there," came TS's cheery voice.
Presently, we made it back home, and I turned off the car, and Brenda and I went back in the house with our food. I still had some other questions, but felt as though I had learned enough. I went into the bedroom reserved for storage, and saw the linen basket with dirty clothes. I then remembered I had to do laundry today, and put a hand to my face thinking about how I could have conjured up a washer and dryer to put in the utility room in the basement. "How could I have forgotten to do that yesterday when I was still in Twilight's body?" I asked myself. I grabbed the basket and took it to the car.
"You going to the washateria?" Brenda asked.
"Yeah, I'll be a couple hours," I said.
"Dinner will be waiting for you," she said. We usually had dinner around 1:00 PM on Sundays.
I had another conversation with the car on the way to the laundromat, and took care of that chore. The trip to the laundromat is just a couple of miles, but I still talked to the car. I realized I was going to have be careful about what I said while driving or riding around in it. I figured it was just the price for having a virtually maintenance-free vehicle.
The rest of the week's events proceeded without much event, aside from my co-workers complimenting me on my car, and me having a new joie de vivre -- I hadn't been in such a good mood for quite some time. Brenda filled me in on the conversation she had had with Princess Celestia while they were waiting on the Two Twilight Prank. The Princess had asked her quite a few questions regarding customs, clothing, our relationship, and quite a few other topics. Particularly troublesome was a question about how much affection we had for each other, but I figured it was just the Princess wanting to know as much as possible about humans and their idiosyncracies.
It was difficult for me to hold my excitement over the possibility of returning to Equestria on Saturday, and my anticipation sorely tested my patience. The temptation to have the car take me there was very strong, but I chose to avoid doing that, for fear of angering the Princess. If she were to know about the car's capabilities, she might ban me from ever returning. Perhaps she already knew -- perhaps she was testing me -- but I knew, almost instinctively, that using the car to travel to Equestria would be morally wrong, so I chose not to take that route. I remember, of course, that she said I was welcome to return whenever I wanted, but I wasn't sure of how to contact her. Maybe the car could communicate with her directly, a thought I found quite amusing. I chuckled at the prospect -- imagine, a car being able to communicate across a dimensional barrier, let alone teleport there. Like the Tom Petty song, time seemed to drag on for that whole week. Eventually, Friday night came around once again.
Sleeping was difficult for me that Friday night. Brenda had fallen asleep relatively early, and I was envious of her ability to drift off to sleep so easily. I have always had difficulty falling asleep, and since I was very eagerly anticipating the arrival of the Princess to escort me back, I lie awake until two AM, tossing and turning, trying to find a comfortable position. I finally fell asleep after some time, but I wasn't sure exactly how long.
I was woken by sunlight coming in through the curtains and blinds, the alarm clock reading 8:22 AM. Brenda was still asleep, and I needed to empty my bladder. I was hoping I might have been transformed into another pony, but this was not the case. I was still human, and so was Brenda. I was feeling rather disappointed. I went to the bathroom, and finished my business, returning to the bed to lay down for more sleep. I was seriously wondering if she was going to come or not.
I fell asleep again, and woke about two hours later. Nothing. I took a shower, and got dressed for the day. Brenda got up, and also showered and dressed. Just as on any usual Saturday, I would drive her to a friend's house and drop her off, so she and her friends could go shopping, or see a movie, or something else of some sort or another.
"Hey, TS, any word from the Princess?" I asked the car.
"No, Michael, not yet. Don't lose hope, there's still some more time today," the voice sounded hopeful.
I continued the trip to Brenda's friends' house, listening to the radio. Brenda and I didn't say much during the relatively short trip.
"You know, I could have teleported you here," TS said.
"Thanks, but I prefer to drive," I said.
"As you wish," came the response.
We remained silent, listening to the radio for the rest of the trip. I dropped her off, and continued driving, intending to return home to do some household chores, including the laundry. I conversed with the car again, exchanging hopeful banter about the possibility of a visit from Princess Celestia. The return home was without incident.
"Hey, TS, can you send a message to the Princess?"
"Yes, what do you want to say?"
"Ask her if she is coming or not," I requested. "And if not, would she please be kind enough to let me know why."
"Your message has been relayed," came her cheery response. I was amazed at the swiftness of those communications.
A different voice came through the speakers, this time sounding like the Princess herself. "Dear Michael, I would like to thank you once again for your help in subduing Discord. As much as I would like to return to your world and bring you back here, you already have the means to do so. This vehicle of yours is quite remarkable, and I look forward to seeing it with my own eyes, and perhaps even being allowed to travel in it. As I said before, you are welcome to return any time you wish. If you are curious to know why I have not returned, or transformed you into a pony of your choice, it is that, as I said before, you currently have the means to do so. Ask of your vehicle a transformation spell, and it will perform that task for you. I am willing to wager that you were not prepared to grasp the possibility that the magic with which you imbued your vehicle would allow it to cast the same spells you were able to cast in Twilight's body. The only prerequisite is that the vehicle's magic batteries are fully charged before doing either task of transporting you to Equestria or transforming you into a pony of your choice. Make sure you choose wisely, as doing both on one charge may prevent the vehicle from performing any more magic, without driving a significant distance in order to recharge those batteries. One other thing: if you choose to be transformed into a pony, you must not choose Twilight Sparkle, as that would create a feedback loop which could destroy your vehicle, or worse, rip a hole in the fabric of the space/time continuum, which could jeopardize both Earth AND Equestria."
"Hey, TS, send the Princess my thanks. Please let her know I am pleased with her response, and after I make a choice for what pony I wish to be, I may travel to Equestria. As for now, I'm not sure what sort of pony I wish to be. In a way, I miss being Twilight, as I had quite a bit of fun being her, however, I know I can't take that form again."
"Your message has been relayed, Michael. I have been programmed to refuse a request to transform you into Twilight Sparkle, by your directive. Remember?"
"That's right. When I was in that form, and imbued you with magic, I made sure that if I were transformed back into a human, that a request for a reversal would be denied. I made sure of that, and I'm glad I did."
"Sometimes your brilliance exceeds itself," TS said cheerfully.
"If I didn't know better, I'd swear you were trying to flatter me," I said, chuckling. I pulled into the driveway of our house, and went inside. I got the week's laundry and went back to the laundromat.
"Welcome back, Michael. Have you considered your choice yet?"
"I need some more time, TS. It's hard for me to decide, with so many choices available."
"You must come up with something original, and not an already existing pony. So no Trixie, no Rarity, and definitely NOT Princess Luna!"
I laughed. "I know, I know." I pulled into the parking lot of the laundromat, and washed and dried the clothes. I was hungry, so I drove to a Popeye's and got some Cajun Crawfish. Very tasty.
"I wish you wouldn't eat while I'm transporting you around," TS said, in her not-so-cheerful voice.
"Very well then," I said, and put my food back in the bag. "I'll eat when I get home."
"Thank you for your consideration, Michael."
I pulled into the driveway of our house and brought the laundry inside. I was still contemplating Princess Celestia's statement, still marveling at how the car could allow her to communicate with me almost directly. I put the laundry away in my chest of drawers, and went downstairs to log onto the computer. I scarcely ever check my e-mail, but something inside told me to do so. Oddly enough, there seemed to be one from the Princess, dated about six days ago. I reminded myself to check my e-mail daily from here on out. I opened it, and the message was basically the same as what I had heard her say through my car's speakers. Emphasis had been placed on the last part, about the continuum, and I said to myself, "Yeah, yeah, yeah, I understand."
Presently, I got bored, so I turned off the computer, and went back upstairs to my bedroom to lay down. I was shocked to see the Princess laying in my bed, on my wife's side of the bed.
"Princess Celestia, what are you doing in my bed?"
"I wanted to see if this bed is as comfortable as mine," she smiled.
"Frankly, Princess, I was expecting you a bit earlier," I said, a hint of disappointment in my voice. I walked around the bed to where she was still laying in it. She looked up at me, and smiled warmly.
"Why not join me?" she asked coyly.
"Well...." I began. I didn't appreciate this flirtatious attitude.
"Please, Michael, just for a little bit," she said softly.
"Princess, where is your decorum?" I asked, still astonished that she would try something like this.
"It never left, Michael. You have something I desire," she said, winking, her smile turning into a grin.
"If you're thinking what I think you're thinking, the answer is no," I said, a little annoyed. "Please, I will return to Equestria soon enough. If you want, we can fool around there, but here in my bedroom, this is definitely a no-no."
I turned to leave the bedroom, the Princess still laying in my bed. As I turned to leave, I saw a different reflection in the mirror above my wife's chest of drawers. If I didn't know any better, I could have sworn that it was Chrysalis. I saw her horn start glowing green.
"Where do you think you're going, Michael?" she asked me. I didn't answer, I had to check on Xaviera and her kids. I hadn't noticed earlier, but the house was eerily silent, and my youngest step-daughter and her kids were normally quite active, watching TV downstairs. I had paid no attention to it earlier, but now fear was starting to creep over me. I checked the room they sleep in. Nothing. I checked the spare bedroom. Not in there. The bathroom door was open, and obviously empty.
"Where are you going?" she repeated the question, starting to grow impatient. Her voice changed from that of the Princess' warm tones to something akin to a dominatrix's demanding voice. I continued to ignore her, checking the living room on the main level, poking my head into the kitchen, and then going down to the lower level. I saw the laundry room door, and that was probably the last spot they could possibly be. I opened the door, turned on the light, and went in.
In the upper corner, there were three sack-like pods, containing my youngest step-daughter and her two kids. I gasped in horror, but freed them from those slimy cocoons. They were shaking, cold, wet, and covered in slime.
Before I could act any further, Chrysalis was blocking the doorway out. "You're not getting out of here alive, Michael." Her eyes started glowing as well as her horn. She was about seven feet away from me, grinning evilly, trying to hypnotize me. I think I might have said something, but I strode up to her, both hands out, and succeeded in grabbing her horn with my right hand, and her crown with my left, yanking both of them off simultaneously.
"My horn! My crown!" she screamed. She tried to bite me. I handed the items to Xaviera, still sitting in stunned silence at this spectacle, her kids cowering behind her. I turned around to see her rear up on her hind legs, trying to knock me down. I side-stepped her, grabbing hold of her green chitin shell.
"Let's see what's under THIS," I said, ripping the chitin all the way off, including her wings, when I said the last word. She let out an unearthly scream of pain and rage as I exposed her vitals, green blood oozing and spurting from the gaping wound. "What a mess," I thought to myself. I grabbed a small jug of bleach off the floor, opened it, and poured it liberally into the gaping wound I had made. Her next scream was so ear-splittingly awful I had to wince a little. Xaviera and her kids were frightened so badly, I wondered if I had given them PTSD. I knew I was going to have some bad dreams about this for awhile.
Her muscles reflexively curled her into a ball as she expired, letting out a death rattle as she died. I turned back to Xaviera, and retrieved the Queen's horn and crown. "You take the kids upstairs and get cleaned up. I'll take care of this little mess," I said. Without a word, Xaviera took her kids upstairs to the bathroom. Her kids were whimpering and crying, scared beyond belief. I was still shaking, having faced down the Queen of the Changelings herself, and killed her. I went to the kitchen and took a large black trash bag out, opening it, then taking the broom and dustpan with me to the laundry room. I put the edge of the bag under the Queen's lifeless body, pulling the bag up around it, and letting the body drop to the bottom of the bag. I placed the green chitin shell in it as well, then tied the bag off. It weighed about 50 pounds or so, and I carried it to the kitchen. I was still trying to figure out what to do with it, when a knock came at the door.
"Who is it?" I said, without bothering to check. No one answered. The knocking was harder, louder, and more impatient.
I thought it might be the police, although I had no idea why they would show up at the door. It looked like a cop, but I saw his reflection in the back glass of our neighbor's house. This guy was a changeling as well.
"Your Queen is dead," I told him.
"No way!" came his response. I showed him the crown and horn. He blanched.
"Now go away, before I do the same to YOU!" I shouted at him. He ran to the squad car and took off.
I returned to the kitchen, taking the bag with the Queen's body in it outside, and put it in the car's trunk. I was wondering why it had gotten dark all of a sudden, because it had been mid afternoon. I couldn't believe my eyes.
"You're kidding. You're kidding, right?" I asked her.
"Why must every pony mock me?" she asked indignantly. "I swear, the next person to ask me that will be killed on the spot!"
"Where did you come from?" I asked, incredulously. I could not believe Nightmare Moon had shown up as well. This was starting to become a really bad day.
"None of your business," she responded, and landed on the ground, about ten feet away from me.
"Why are you here?" I asked her, trying to gauge her actions. I was scared, but trying not to show it.
"Your .. vehicle ... has the markings of one of the Elements of Harmony," she said, trying to figure me out.
"That was a special paint job I had done to it," I said, trying not to give it away.
"I sense some magical vibrations coming from it," she stated. Her tone was even, no hostility showing.
"You're quite perceptive, but the car was simply fixed up a little, and there might be some residual magical energy lingering after having had it fixed," I offered, still trying to conceal the car's abilities.
"There's more than that," she said, starting to sound a little annoyed.
"You didn't answer my question," I said. "Please explain the nature of your visit."
"Hah! I came to bring eternal night to your world, as I failed to do so in mine!"
I shook my head in disbelief. "How did you manage to cross a dimensional barrier to my realm?" I asked.
"I don't know. I just found myself here, and found no opposition to me. So I decided to bring eternal night!" she said, a little too cheerfully for my taste. She smiled at me, a big toothy grin showing her fangs. Her eyes were a hypnotic blue, and seemed to draw me into them. I turned away from her hypnotic glance.
"Not again," I muttered. "First Discord, then the Changeling Queen, and now THIS," I grumbled.
"Wait -- you defeated Discord AND Chrysalis?" she asked, incredulously. "How the HELL did you manage to do THAT?"
"I have lots of surprises," I said, trying to sound brave.
"I can't believe you would be able to pull off something like THAT," she said, a little worry starting to creep into her voice.
I showed her the Queen's crown and horn. Her eyes went wide, and her mouth opened a little.
"Well, you won't be able to defeat ME so easily!" she said, regaining her composure. "Now I know what I'm dealing with!"
Without understanding why, I placed the Queen's crown atop my head. Oddly enough, it turned from black with white beads to white with gold beads. I couldn't see this immediately, but that's what happened. The crown bonded itself to my skin, and then to my skull. It felt really weird, but not in a bad way. I then placed the horn on my head, a little in front of the crown. The horn straightened out, and turned white, lengthening. Nightmare Moon watched, again with surprise as this happened. Then something really weird happened. I felt myself transforming into a pony once again, but considerably larger this time. Instinctively, I dropped to all fours, preparing myself for anything. Suddenly, a pair of wings started to grow out of my back, and grew fairly large, to a wingspan of about twelve feet. My coat turned a prismatic white, almost glowing with an eerie iridescence.
"What, do you think turning into an Alicorn is going to stop me?" she asked, almost contemptibly.
I decided to try something with my voice, to see if I had everything. I took a deep breath, and readied myself.
"NIGHTMARE MOON, YOU WILL RELINQUISH CONTROL OF THE SUN AT ONCE!!!" My voice had taken on a deep resonance, as I was now a male alicorn. I was impressed by this, but she was not.
"Make me," she said, grinning that evil smile of hers.
"I will do it myself," I said, using magic reserves I never knew I even had to make short work of lowering the moon and raising the sun. I felt ridiculously powerful, as such a task proved pathetically easy. Celestia was NOT going to believe THIS!
"Uh, maybe I ought to leave," Nightmare Moon said, shocked at my display. My cutie mark was similar to Celestia's except that instead of a gentle sun, with small triangular rays, mine showed long striated rays emanating from a smaller sun, perhaps indicating a stronger solar force. I don't know, I just knew I had to meet the Princess to let her know what had transpired.
"Yeah, that would be a good idea," I told her. "Don't come back, or I might lose my patience with you. Be thankful I have spared your life, Nightmare."
She flew off, to parts unknown, and I used my magic to remove Chrysalis' dead body from the trunk of my car. I teleported across the dimensional barrier again, with the Queen's body in tow, and met up with Princess Celestia again.
"And who might you be?" she asked. She was unsure of what to make of my appearance, being so similar to hers.
"You might remember me as Michael Walker," I said with as much grace as I could muster. "Princess Celestia, it is good to see you once again. I was beginning to lose hope of you coming to my realm."
"Michael? What has happened to you?" she asked, showing more shock and amazement than I had ever seen on her face.
"I will fill you in on the details later, Princess. I have the Changeling Queen's dead body in this black plastic bag," I said. "She impersonated you, and I was forced to kill her in front of my youngest step-daughter and her children."
"Michael, if you don't mind it, we have plenty of time to discuss these matters. I am truly astonished that you transformed into an Alicorn. Was it your vehicle that did this for you?" the Princess asked, a great deal of surprise in her voice.
"No, Princess. After defeating Chrysalis, I put her body in this bag, and then put the bag in the trunk of my car. Suddenly, Nightmare Moon showed up, from who knows where. While talking to her, I placed the crown and horn on my head, and then the transformation seemed to occur on its own. Frankly, Princess, when I saw what appeared in my bed, pretending to be you, I suspected something was wrong. I knew you would never take a flirtatious attitude with me, or try to seduce me, which is what Chrysalis did while impersonating you."
"So the Queen not only impersonated ME, but sullied MY reputation? With YOU?"
"I have only known you for a short while, but I figured it was totally out of character, and upon seeing her true form in a mirror, I had to do something. I succeeded in removing her horn and crown, then her chitinous shell, and poured bleach into that wound, thus killing her. What's left of her is still in this bag," I said, pointing a hoof at the bag.
"Have the body burned at once," the Princess instructed a Royal Guard unicorn. The bag was taken from the throne room, to the incinerator. "So much for that little matter." Turning to me, she asked, "So where did Nightmare come from?"
"She refused to say where or how she came to my realm," I said. "She had raised the moon at 3:15 in the afternoon, and there was still about three more hours until sunset, so I took the liberty of putting the moon back in its proper place, and the sun in ITS proper location. This display stunned her, and she took off, seemingly frightened of my power. It was thus that I decided to come HERE and related this series of events to you. You have my apologies for taking a rather unusually close approximation of you, but I had no control over THIS particular transformation."
"Actually, Michael, I had a hand in it," she said, smiling. "You performed admirably. I continue to be amazed by your resourcefulness, intelligence, and courage. I hope you're pleased with your new body," she said, still smiling.
"It's quite a bit more than I was hoping for, Princess," I said. "How is everypony else doing?"
"Well, you are welcome to visit them if you wish," she said. "You know where they stay. Why not make use of your time to greet them?"
"Princess, I am afraid they might mistake me for you, as my coat nearly matches yours, and the few differences are that I have this little crown on my head, and a slightly different cutie mark, and my mane and tail are monochrome pale blue instead of your polychromatic ones."
"If they do, all you need to do is correct them, Michael. By the way, do you have a name picked out for your new body?"
"I haven't chosen one yet, and was thinking that Solaris might be a good one, but I think that name's already been taken. For now, the name Michael will suffice, until I come up with something original. I don't intend to remain an alicorn for very long, as I don't really like this new form very much. It's a bit too much responsibility for me to have this much power."
"Very well, then, Michael. Feel free to visit whomever you wish, but make sure you let them know you're not me."
"You have my word, Princess." I said, and saluted her again. She chuckled at this, as I teleported to Ponyville.
My first stop was almost instinctive -- Twilight Sparkle. I felt compelled to see her again, and walked to her front door, knocking perhaps a bit harder than I should have. Spike answered the door.
"Princess! What brings you here?" he said with great shock and surprise.
"I am not Celestia, my name is Michael, and I am here to meet Twilight Sparkle," I said. I regretted not having met him a week ago when I was in Twilight's body, but I wasn't sure of how he might react.
"Twilight told me about a male human named Michael," he said, "but he was in Twilight's body. You claim to be the same Michael?" he asked, eyeing me suspiciously. Twilight heard my name mentioned, and came running to the front door.
"Michael, is that you?" she asked, perhaps hoping to see her double again. When she saw me, she stopped immediately, mouth agape, eyes wide. "Princess! I didn't know you were coming!"
I chuckled a little at that. "No, Twilight, I am not your Princess. I transformed into an alicorn that looks much like her. Take a look at my cutie mark, and check out the crown I wear."
"Oooh, looks like you got a promotion!" she said, beaming. "How did THAT happen?"
"I ran into the Queen of the Changelings and Nightmare Moon," I said, almost nonchalantly.
She gasped, amazed that I had even survived.
"I killed the Queen whilst in my human form," I said. Her jaw dropped. "In front of my youngest step-daughter and her children," I added.
"How did they react to that?" she asked, still stunned by my feat, and the fact that I was so calm in my explanation.
"I think I may have given them PTSD, I'm afraid," I said. "They were shocked, scared, stunned..."
"Michael, how did you manage to kill the Queen in your human form?" she asked, after the initial shock wore off. I think she was a little too stunned by that.
"She had impersonated the Princess, and was laying in my bed, trying to seduce me. I saw her true form in a mirror, and went through my house trying to locate my step-daughter and her children. They had been sealed in slimy cocoons in the laundry room, so I freed them. The Queen blocked the doorway out, and I grabbed her horn and crown, pulling them off her head. I then grabbed her green shell, ripping it off her back, taking the wings along with it. Then I poured bleach into the exposed innards, causing her to die rather painfully. I still can hear that awful shriek she gave, and I'm sure it will haunt the dreams of my step-daughter and her kids."
"What? She impersonated the Princess?" she asked, showing even more shock.
"Wait -- you said Nightmare Moon, too?" with even more incredulity in her voice.
"Yes. After I had bagged up the Queen's body and put it in the trunk of my car, Nightmare Moon showed up. I put the horn and crown on my head, and a transformation took place that surprised me. I had a chance to use a voice trick on her, but that didn't faze her. So I lowered her moon, and raised the sun, putting it back in it's proper place," I said, in a matter-of-fact manner, until I saw her jaw drop again. I smiled, chuckling softly. "Upon seeing this display of raw power, she got scared and left from in front of my house."
"Michael, I don't believe that! You ... can ... raise ... the sun .. in .. your ... world?" she asked, trying to find other words to say.
"It proved to be remarkably easy to me, as though I had been doing it for many centuries," I said. "The power level I have is ludicrous in this form. This is a great responsibility, one I do not welcome, but am willing to accept."
"Michael, if I become an alicorn, do you suppose I might have such heavy burdens placed on me?" she asked, a little hesitantly.
"My dearest Twilight Sparkle, I believe you are fully capable of handling such responsibilities. I am sure the Princess herself recognizes this quality in you, and in due time, you will mature enough to be able to deal with those responsibilities as easily as the Princess does. Keep in mind that this means you will have less free time to devote to your hobbies, and probably less time for your friends, but I am sure you will be able to perform admirably. You have a great deal of potential, I can tell you from experience. I was you just a week ago, and recognized your sheer talent. You have my thanks once again," I said, smiling warmly at her again.
"When did you become so much like her?" she asked, still astonished. Spike had gone into the kitchen to fix a meal for the two of them, and popped back to ask me if I wanted anything to eat. I told him I would appreciate a nibble, as I was not very hungry, but would graciously accept an offer of food. He disappeared again, back into the kitchen.
"The Princess said she had a hand in my transformation," I said. "So maybe I took on a little bit of her mannerisms as well. There are many similarities, and again, I am doing my best to live up to my goal as an alicorn to act as responsibly as I can. You have my word that I will be on my best behavior."
"Please come in, there's so much more I want to talk to you about!" she said, beaming.
"I thank you for your hospitality, Twilight." I had to duck under the door-frame as I was now about two feet taller than her. I carefully folded my wings in to fit through the doorway. She commented on my pastel blue mane and tail, which billowed in the solar wind. I thanked her for her compliments.
"The others aren't going to believe THIS is YOU!" she said, grinning. I took a seat on a chair, looking at the bookshelves, with the placement of books seemingly haphazard.
"You know, I used to work in a library about twenty years ago," I said, watching as she telekinetically moved books back onto the shelves. When she heard this, all the books fell to the floor, and she ran over to me, a look of great admiration, surprise, and happiness on her face.
'Really? You're not lying are you? Which library? How many books do they have there? Can you take me there? Can I borrow some of them? Why did you stop working there?" the questions were a barrage again.
"I used to work for the University of Illinois' Main Library, the largest public access library in the country, boasting of more than 13 million volumes. Access to the main stacks is limited to students, staff, and faculty members. I left because I got a job that paid more money, and for that, I apologize."
"THIRTEEN MILLION BOOKS!!" she cried out in happiness.
I chuckled softly at her reaction. "Most of those are periodicals, and many of those books are in a remote storage facility."
"I thought books were for reading?" she asked.
"The University has many collections, some books are extremely rare and valuable. They have had problems with materials being stolen by unscrupulous people who wanted to make money by selling books they stole from the library."
She gasped in horror. "How could somepony do something so terrible?" she asked.
"Sometimes, people are willing to do anything to make a few dollars, even if it means stealing," I said, registering my disappointment on my face. "It is a shame and a disgrace that people would be willing to show such a level of disrespect for an institution of higher learning as to steal materials from it."
"Dinner is served," Spike said proudly. Twilight motioned for me to follow her. There were only two chairs at the table, so I telekinetically moved a chair from the front room to the table where Twilight and Spike were eating. They fixed a plate for me, and I ate, trying to be as graceful as I could.
"Has your wife seen the new you?" Twilight asked.
"No, I drove her to her friend's house earlier today," I said. "I doubt she would believe what I look like, and until her youngest daughter and grand-kids recover from the shock of what happened earlier, I seriously doubt she'd believe what transpired, either. And with Nightmare Moon still at large in my home world, I am going to have to address THAT matter as well."
"Well, maybe you could get us together to use the Elements of Harmony on her in your world?" Twilight asked.
"Hah hah hah hah hah! Such a wonderful idea! I will have to let Princess Celestia know about your idea!" I exclaimed, still laughing heartily at the suggestion. So much brilliance, I thought.
"Before you return to the Castle, Mike, maybe you might want to visit the other Elements to let them know of this plan?" Twilight asked, almost hesitantly. It seemed as though she had many more questions to ask me, but I figured there was plenty of time later on for more casual discussions. We had to act before Nightmare Moon brought eternal night back to Earth. I was able to frighten her off, but I was pretty sure she would return, and plunge the world back into darkness. She had to be stopped.
"Twilight, your logic is impeccable. If you would be so kind as to accompany me, we shall gather the Elements together, and return to the Castle to reconnoiter with the Princess. Please allow me to do the teleporting, this should be easy with my new powers," I said. I couldn't believe we were off to assemble the Elements of Harmony yet again, after having done so just a week ago in order to defeat Discord in this realm.
"You should know where everypony is this time," she said, chuckling. "I can't wait to see Nightmare's reaction when we show up THERE!" She grinned at the prospect.
"Let's not be overconfident, there's no telling how powerful she is in my realm. There's a large amount of magic to draw upon, and with no other magic users, that might make her considerably more powerful. By the same token, the Element magic will also be much more powerful. Okay, off to Sugar Cube Corner again!" I said, teleporting myself and Twilight over to Pinkie Pie's place.
"Hey, Pinkie, we have another mission," I said. I forgot what I looked like for a second, when Pinkie stuck her head out the second story window, and gasped. Then she saw Twilight.
"Hey, Twilight, is that the Princess? She looks different. What's with the little crown on her head? Why is her cutie mark so different? Why is her mane and tail just blue?" She turned to look at me. "You're not the Princess, are you?"
"Sorry to disappoint you, Pinkie Pie, but I am Michael, just that I have a new body," I said.
"Wow! You look so much like the Princess that I mistook you for her! How long has it been? It seems like forEVER! I wanted to throw you and your wife a party, but you left before I even got past the planning stages! Can I throw the new you a party? Can you bring your wife? Please, please, please, please?"
I chuckled at her energy. "Pinkie, as much as I would love to attend a party on my behalf, I have an issue that has come up. Nightmare Moon has made it into my realm, and I need to assemble the Elements once again. When we return, we can have the biggest, best party ever! I promise, and yes, I'll bring my wife! I'll even change her into a pony for every pony's benefit."
"Michael, do you think that's such a good idea?" Twilight asked me.
"It'll be a prank on her," I said with a sly smile.
"Aww yeah, that'll be so AWESOME!" came Rainbow's voice from overhead.
"Ah, Dash, just the pony I need. I was hoping finding you would be a bit easier this time. Didn't want to have to turn Cloudsdale upside-down trying to find you again," I said.
"Wait, who are you? You look kinda like the Princess, but you're different," she said, almost warily.
"Rainbow, this is Michael, he's in a different body now," Twilight said. "Nightmare Moon has escaped into HIS world! And we need to stop her -- again!"
"Whoa, Mike, you're gonna need all of us again, aren't you?" Rainbow asked me.
"That will make things considerably easier for me, yes," I said. "I'm still tring to acclimate myself to all this power I have at my disposal. I only hope I can use it responsibly without making a mess."
"Yeah, well, I'll go get Flutters, and you can get Rarity and AJ. Meet up at the farm, and then we can go to the Castle!" she said.
"Twilight, she's quick on the uptake, isn't she?" I asked.
"Yeah, she knows how to keep a cool head, at least, some times, anyway. She knows what danger lies ahead."
Shortly, we have assembled at Sweet Apple Acres. We all join for a group teleport, which I handle with ease. We were once again in the Royal Throne Room, Celestia sitting on one throne, Luna on the other. This being the first time Luna has seen me, she was startled.
"Thou must tell us who thou might be," she said, maintaining a normal voice.
"Princess Luna, has your sister told you of my travels?" I asked her.
"Thou art Michael? Thou lookest different than what our sister hath told us," she said.
"Princess Luna, a week ago, I occupied a double of Twilight Sparkle. Today, I was transformed into an alicorn. Nightmare Moon is on the loose in my home world," I said, gauging her reaction.
"Is what thou speakest true? That thou hast met mine alter-ego in thy realm? Tia, didst thou speakest of this matter with him? If so, why didst thou not mention this to us?"
I let Princess Celestia speak. "Luna, he mentioned it in passing, and he said that she fled from him when he lowered the moon and placed the sun back in its respective position." A collective gasp came from the Elements when this was mentioned. Lots of questions from all of them talking over each other came flying in my direction, including Princess Luna, who was shocked that I was capable of such a feat. Princess Celestia spent a few moments trying to calm everyone down, before Luna resorted to the Royal Canterlot Voice to silence everypony.
"There shalt be silence amongst thou all!" she exclaimed. This brought some semblance of order back to the room.
"Michael, is this true? That thou art able to raise and lower the sun in thy realm?"
"Princess Luna, it seemed an easy task for me, as though I had performed it for many centuries. Your evil counterpart in my realm saw this display of power, and fled. I need the help of the Elements not just to track her down, but to banish her so that order may be restored to my realm. To be honest, my planet followed a predictable orbit and rotation, negating the need for one of my power, but with the arrival of Nightmare Moon, I guess the transformation of my human self into an alicorn was necessary in order to maintain balance and harmony. Without that, she can impose her will on my world, putting seven billion of us into eternal darkness. I cannot allow such a catastrophe to occur." Turning to Celestia, I said, "With your permission, Celestia, may I take the Elements with me into my realm, and bring order back to it? I will return them safely when we have finished this task."
"We wouldst liketh to pay a visit to thine realm," Luna said, almost optimistically.
"Your evil counterpart is there -- we cannot risk a paradox," I said. "It's already risky enough for me to take so many across the dimensional barrier, and I am hoping to make short work of this."
"Luna, he speaks wisdom. Please defer to him, for my sake. He helped subdue Discord," Celestia smiled.
"Tia, thou hast told us of this accomplishment, but -- thou didst sayeth that he was in Twilight's body?"
"He has shown himself to be most trustworthy, and he has earned my deepest respect and admiration. I trust him to make this task swift, as he now has substantially more power than he did when he was in Twilight's body."
"This is gonna be AWESOME!" Rainbow Dash exclaimed. "I can't wait to see what your realm looks like!"
"Prepare to be disappointed," I said. "It's very underwhelming."
"We must be prepared for anything," I said.
"Michael, please be careful. I don't want any of the Elements getting lost, hurt, or killed," Princess Celestia admonished. She had a look of concern on her face, but was willing to place her trust in me.
"I will not underestimate Nightmare, I know what she's capable of. I will be careful, Princess, you have my word on that."
The jaunt across the dimensional barrier was swift, but took a little more out of me than I thought, as I was transporting the Mane Six with me. We arrived on the front lawn of my house. Nightmare Moon was standing atop my car, waiting for our arrival. I shouted at her to get off of it.
"So, you decided to come back, then," she said. She started laughing when she saw the Elements. "And you brought THEM, too! This is rich! I shall enjoy taking my revenge against you for what you did to me last time!"
"Not so fast, Nightmare," I said.
"I have grown more powerful since the last time we met," she said flatly, acknowledging my presence. She leaped at me, her wings flapping. I used telekinesis to send her flying into a tree. "You will pay for that!" she shouted indignantly.
"How much?" I asked, facetiously.
"More than you're expecting," she said, rebuffing my attempt at humor. She used her magic against me, trying to envelop me in a telekinetic field. I broke it, and used the same tactic against her. She struggled a little, but managed to break free of my hold. An expression of surprise crossed my face. "Hah, looks like I'm getting to you!" she laughed.
I quickly evaluated my options. Too much to choose from, and not enough time to make a choice. I fired a beam of magical energy directed at her horn. She returned this beam, using her own magic. I was shocked at how much stronger she had become. I strengthened my resolve, concentrating harder. Beads of sweat were now starting to form on my head, but it appeared as though she wasn't even trying very hard. "When did she become so much stronger than me?" I wondered.
"Hah! Now you're going to fall!" she shouted, ready to exult in my defeat.
"NEVER!" I shouted, returning fire by using as much power as I could muster. I forced her beam back into her, and she buckled under the force. Now it was her turn to be surprised. A crowd of people had gathered to watch this spectacle, and the Elements were watching in fascination. I am not sure what they were waiting for, perhaps they were waiting for one of us to emerge victorious.
"You think you have beaten me?" she asked, defiantly. Her expression was one of pure rage, her eyes clouded white with magical force. I chose not to respond, using more magic to keep her pinned down.
"Elements of Harmony, now it is your turn. Banish her so we may restore order to this world," I said, my voice almost thundering. Nightmare showed shock as she realized the situation she was now in. The Elements slowly surrounded her while I kept her pinned down. As they worked their magic, I released Nightmare, just before she was surrounded by a rainbow hued magic vortex, and then she disappeared.
"Hey, Mike, aren't you going to put the sun back in its place in the sky?" asked Twilight.
"Twilight, it actually IS night-time here, the sun's not supposed to rise for another twelve hours," I said.
"Who or what are you?" asked one of the neighbors. Truthfully, I never really got to know any of our neighbors very well, so I had no idea who this guy was.
"Name's Michael. I am the Regent of the Sun for this world," I said.
"What's that supposed to mean?" he asked, still dumbfounded by my answer.
"It is my duty to raise and lower the sun and moon for this world, from this day on forward," I responded.
"Hate to break it to you, Mike, but the Earth rotates on its axis, so you don't need to do that," he said, grinning.
"That is no longer the case, sir. As the new Regent, the Earth is now dependent upon my duties. I trust in time you will come to understand this. The old rules you were accustomed to no longer apply. I humbly request you return to your home and get some sleep. This matter will be resolved shortly."
He turned around, laughing, and went back home. The other neighbors who had watched also returned to their homes. Brenda had come outside, and walked up to me, looking quite shocked.
"Princess?" she asked, hesitantly.
I chuckled. "No, Brenda, I am not the Princess. I am your husband, Michael." I waited for her reaction.
"Uhh...you'd better start explaining this to me," she said.
"Brenda," Twilight said. "This white alicorn really IS your husband -- the Princess is still in Canterlot."
"Mike, I thought I told you not to become a pony again," she said to Twilight.
"No, Brenda, I'm Twilight. Your husband is the tall white pony with the wings," she said, trying to stifle a giggle.
"Brenda, I have to take the Elements back home. I will return shortly to explain everything to you," I said. She still didn't know what to say, her mouth open but no words coming out.
"Hey, Mike, is this contraption here yours?" asked Applejack, pointing a hoof at my car.
"Yeah, AJ, that's my car," I said.
"Wow, that's cool! Awesome! It has Twiley's cutie mark! What's it do?" asked Rainbow.
"Lots of different things, but right now, we have to go back to Canterlot and let the Princesses know we succeeded in our mission. Every pony join hooves now, we shall be going. Seeya later, Brenda!" She just looked at me as we teleported back to the Royal Throne Room.
"We see thou hast returned victorious," Princess Luna observed.
"You should have seen the way he battled your evil side," said Twilight, still somewhat amazed.
"It was AWESOME! He kicked her tail!" Rainbow exclaimed.
Rarity turns to me. "Michael, darling, you were magnificent!"
"We felt a disturbance within our royal person," Princess Luna observed. "We feel an emptiness inside."
"Michael, I would like to thank you for returning the Elements to me safely. I am sure that in time, Princess Luna's emptiness will subside, and I will do what I can to comfort her. As I am sure you're aware, Michael, your new status requires you to perform certain duties, of which you're quite aware. Should you ever need advice or wish to converse with me, or even just to exchange pleasantries, I am always available. And as your vehicle is capable of relaying messages to me, I will be able to communicate with you through that method. You have my deepest appreciation for your deeds and my utmost respect."
"My thanks go to you, Princess Celestia, for being so kind and generous. I am fully aware of my duties and responsibilities, and even though I was hesitant to comprehend them, and as I told Twilight earlier, it is a responsibility I do not welcome, but am willing to accept. And as I remember earlier, I said I was not very happy with this new body and wanted to make my time as an Alicorn as short as possible. I see now that THAT is not possible. My only curiosity is how long I will be required to perform these duties."
"I hate to break this to you, Michael, but you will be required to at the very least raise and lower your sun until it burns itself out."
"That's another five billion years!" I exclaimed, almost incredulous as to just what I have gotten myself into.
"Yes, Michael, but I was under the impression you would be able to manage it. After all, you helped defeat Discord, you killed the Changeling Queen, and also dispatched Nightmare Moon. With all those accomplishments, your destiny was inevitable. You are truly the most remarkable person I have ever had the pleasure to meet. I look forward to further conversations with you, Michael, as I am sure you will have lots of questions for me in the future. As one Regent to another, I am impressed by you, and hope you will serve as an outstanding example of honor, courage, intelligence, and respect."
"Princess Celestia, I can only promise to do my best. The prospect of spending five billion years raising and lowering the sun is absolutely frightening to me, and part of me wonders just what I will do once our sun burns itself out -- I have heard predictions that it will enlarge to the point where it will swallow my planet within its mass."
"Certain astronomical predictions may not prove to be true, Michael. There is a possibility that your sun will never burn itself out, requiring you to continue raising and lowering it forever."
My heart sank at that mention. Princess Celestia saw my face drop, and came over to me, placing a reassuring wing around me. "Please understand, Michael, I don't say this to frighten you. I am only informing you of the truth as I see it, and it might not be the same in your realm. Even so, I will still be here for your assistance, should you need it."
"Thank you, Princess, for your calming words. Since you've been alive considerably longer than I have, your experience in these matters will serve as a guide for me. I hope you might be able to provide me with some instructions as how to proceed from here on out, and I too look forward to future conversations with you."
"You may call upon me whenever you wish, Michael. I thank you once again."
"Princess Celestia, we never gave him a party!" said Pinkie Pie.
"With all due respect, Pinkie Pie, I am afraid I cannot attend a party. I have new obligations, and must return to my realm shortly. I apologize for disappointing you," I said, still a little crestfallen.
"Michael, this must be a terrible burden for you. You have my sympathies, and if there's anything I can do to help, I will try to provide it as well," said Twilight. I smiled at her, and thanked her for her kind words.
"You're just too awesome to be a human!" Rainbow said in admiration.
"Um, Michael, I just wanted to thank you for being so kind," Fluttershy said, and smiled softly at me.
"Okay, every pony, I guess it's time for me to go home. Thank you every pony for all your help! I will try to keep in touch, and so I bid you all fare well. Au revoir!" And with that, I teleported back home.
Back home, it was still dark outside. I was still in my alicorn form, and decided to return to my human form. I knew I would be able to change back and forth from here on out, as my role as Regent of the Sun gave me many more powers than I had, even in Twilight's body. Even as a human, my body gave off a pale blue luminescent glow, an aura of sorts. I doubted I would be able to reduce that luminescence, but I was okay with it. Brenda, on the other hand, was not.
"Mike, is that you? Where have you been? I tried calling your phone, but it's in here, and kept ringing."
"I'll be up there in a minute," I said, and climbed the stairs to the upper level and walked into our bedroom. Brenda was laying in the bed, where Chrysalis had been. I was surprised she didn't notice, or did she?
"Who's been in this bed, Mike?" she shot me an accusatory glance.
"The Queen of the Changelings impersonated Princess Celestia, and tried to seduce me. She was laying in the bed where you are. I have no idea how she got in here, nor do I know how she knew my name. I succeeded in killing her in my human form. I now wear her crown and horn on my head."
"I don't believe you." She continued to stare at me, and showed her anger.
"Why not ask Xaviera what she saw and heard," I said, not quite as a question.
"She's asleep, and I'm not going to wake her up."
I then changed myself into my alicorn form. Brenda was not impressed.
"So you can turn yourself into the Princess, big deal."
"No, Brenda, not the Princess. Look a little more closely."
She got up, and came over to where I was standing. She looked at my cutie mark, and then saw my crown.
"What makes that different from the Princess?" she asked.
"The Princess wears a tiara -- I wear a crown." She put her hand on the crown, and pulled it off my head. "Brenda, what did you do that for?"
"I didn't know it would come off like that," she said, shocked that she had pulled it off. She placed it back on my head, and it bonded itself back.
"Don't do that again," I said darkly, hissing the words through clenched teeth. I let my anger show, which frightened her.
"So what are you supposed to do now?"
"I will set the alarm to 5:20 AM. When I get up, I will take my shower, and then raise the sun." Her face dropped in disbelief.
"What ... did ... you ... just"
"I said, I will raise the sun, and I will do it just before waking you up."
"Tomorrow is Sunday, I don't have to work. I am going to sleep in," she said.
"Very well then. I am still obligated to raise the sun around six AM."
"No you don't, the sun rises by itself," she said dismissively.
"Since you don't believe me, I shall wake you in the morning, and I will show you what I mean."
She laughed. "You can't be serious! How do you raise the sun? And how long are you going to be like that?"
"Raising and lowering the sun is easy, and apparently, I'm in this form forever." Her jaw dropped. Her mouth opened, and nothing came out. I had left her dumbstruck. "I had a conversation face to face with the Princess before I arrived. She told me that my duties as Regent of the Sun will continue for as long as the sun itself will shine."
"And how long is that?"
"Could be forever," I said.
"WHAT? WHAT ABOUT ME?" she asked in exasperation.
"I can de-age you with magic, if you wish," I said. "And I can do that for as long as you wish. At least, for as long as you wish to be by my side."
"Show me then!" she said, still in disbelief. I waved a hoof, enveloping her in my pale blue magic, and she de-aged by 30 years, going back to the age of 18. Her beauty had been returned to her.
"Take a look in the mirror," I said, rather flatly.
"Oh .. my ... God," she said, slowly. Once again, her eyes went wide and her mouth opened in disbelief. This was going to be a fairly common sight for me, so I just took it in stride.
"You like the results?" I asked, smiling.
"Wow! I didn't know you do stuff like THAT!" she beamed. This was the first time I had seen her this happy in a very long time. She came over to me and hugged me, and then turned to kiss me before she stopped. "I'm not going to kiss a horse," she said, regaining a little decorum.
"I never asked you to," I said, grinning.
"I love you, Michael."
"Love you too, babe." I returned to my human form so I could sleep in at least a relatively normal way. Before I laid down in the bed, I enlarged it a bit, made it thicker, firmer, and changed the mattress into a memory foam mattress, and gave Brenda a couple of new memory foam pillows, and dd the same for my pillows. Finally, a fresh set of sheets was placed on the bed. Tonight, we sleep in comfort for the first time in more than five years.
The alarm went off at 5:20, to the sound of the radio. I got up and turned it off, as per usual habit. I went to the bathroom and took care of business, and showered. I toweled off, and put some clothes on. I woke Brenda, and told her to come outside, through the back door into the yard. She rubbed sleep from her eyes, and put on her house-coat, and followed me outside.
"Now watch, Brenda, and see what I mean." I changed into my alicorn form, and flew into the sky, grabbing the moon and lowering it, and then grabbing the sun with my magic, and placing it into the sunrise position. More magic to make it move across the sky was applied, so that the sun would move as the day progressed. Brenda watched in amazement as this spectacle took place. I then returned to her side, gliding in to a stop.
"What did you think?" I asked her.
"That was just amazing," she said, smiling at me. "Princess Celestia told me I was really lucky to have a husband like you. I never knew what she meant until I just saw you do what you just did. If I could, I would like to thank her for telling me what she did."
"All you have to do is get into the car, turn it on, and tell TS to relay that message to her. Believe it or not, we can communicate directly with the Princess through that car!" I said, still smiling. The warmth of the sun felt good on my coat, and I finally felt at peace with myself. I sent a thought across the dimensional barrier. "Thanks again, Celestia."
The sequel to this story is "What Does it Mean to be a Prince."
I have a sequel to that story in mind, but am not in the process of writing it just yet.
The first spin-off of this story is "Free to Good Home: Talking Pony."
The sequel to the first spin-off is "Children of Chaos."
The sequel to that story is "Amethyst Shadow's New Journey."
The second spin-off of this story is "The Fashionista's Dilemma."
The sequel to that story is "Brenda's Big Adventure."
The spin-off sequel to "The Fashionista's Dilemma" is "Why Did I Choose to be Trixie."
The third spin-off to this story is "I Am Twilight Sparkle."
I would like to personally thank everyone who has read, favorited, upvoted, or even chosen to follow me. You have my deepest appreciation. To those who have down-voted, I would appreciate feedback of some sort or another, but please don't simply post emoticons, as those don't provide enough detail as to what I'm not doing right.