After leaving the boutique Lightning made her way home. She’d not paid much attention to how late it was until she was standing on her front step. The sun was almost below the horizon and the sky was getting darker. Feels like I only left a few minutes ago. Time flies when you’re having fun I guess.
She laughed wryly at her thoughts. What she’d just came from was anything but fun and the backlash would come pretty soon. Choosing to not focus on the possible trouble brewing in the near future Lightning opened her homes door and walked in.
No sooner was she through the door when Scootaloo came rushing down the stares and tackled her in a hug. “Where in the world were you? You didn’t have a weather shift today so I was worried.”
Lightning smiled and returned the hug, nuzzling the fillies mane. “Sorry kiddo. I’ve had quite the day.” I should tell her what went on. And I need to tell her the truth of how I’m confused about how to feel towards her.
The changelings smile wavered as she released her daughter and gave her a serious look. “Scoots I... I need to talk to you. Come to my room.”
Scootaloo tilted her head in confusion but instead of asking any questions she followed her mom up the stairs. Why’s she so serious all of a sudden?
When the two entered Lightnings room there was a flash of green as Lightning dropped her disguise. She climbed onto her bed and leaned back on the pillows at the head of it. Giving a tiered sigh the changeling patted the space on the bed in front of her. “Come up here ok?”
Scootaloo had no idea why Lightning looked so tired or what was going on. She did know it was important so when she was facing her mother on the bed the filly decided to start asking questions. “Mom what’s up? Did something happen today?”
Lightning closed her eyes. “You could say that. A lot of things happened and I....got to thinking about a few things. First though I should tell you what’s been going on.”
Lightning opened her eyes and went into her story. “Twilight and her friends know I’m a changeling.”
Scootaloos eyes widened but her mother continued before the filly panicked. “Don’t worry they’re not gonna do anything. They found out because I helped them save Rarity.”
The orange filly sighed in relief before raising a brow. “Save her? She was fine the last I heard from Sweetie Belle.”
Lightning chuckled. “Well the whole story is this.” Lightning began retelling everything she’d done. From her looking for the first scouting pair. To when she got Rarity out of the cocoon. “So I need to be ready to help them fight off the other changelings when they get ready to attack.”
Scootaloo nodded but her gut told her that wasn’t the whole story. “If that’s it then why do you look so down?”
Lightning shifted her eyes to look at the bedspread she sat on as her ears shifted to lay against her head. “I told you that I got to thinking about a few things. Well I was thinking about what I feel. Towards you.”
Scootaloo tilted her head. “What d’you mean?”
Lightning sighed and looked into her daughters eyes. “I... don’t know what I feel.” She looked away after saying that. She just couldn’t face the filly right now. “My whole life I’ve only stolen emotions. I’ve only cared that I survived and I didn’t event give a thought to who I hurt to stay alive.”
As she spoke the changeling clenched her eyes and became angry. “And for what? A queen that just threw me away? A life of feeding on others like a leech?” She shook her head as if to shake of the memories. “I’m a parasite! Just some pathetic thing that steals the happiness of others!”
Scootaloo watched, stunned as Lightning was breathing hard and shaking from her outburst. Then the changeling seemed to deflate and when she spoke it was in a hoarse whisper. “I know what I did and I don’t regret it. I’m alive because I fed on others and I don’t regret it.”
Lightning rose her head to look at Scootaloo. “I don’t even know if I can regret it. I... I’ve spent my whole life imitating others. Imitating emotions. Even with you I did it. I wasn’t trying to hurt you but.. I just don’t know what I feel.”
Her eyes cast downward again as her throat tightened and her solid blue eyes misted. “I don’t know...”
Scootaloo didn’t know how to respond to any of this. The one she called her mother was in some kind of pain but couldn’t figure it out. Scootaloo wasn’t to good with her emotions either. She always tried to play off what she felt but she at least knew what the emotions were. Lightning didn’t know how to deal with hers it seemed.
The filly thought about what she should do and then did the only thing she felt she could. She moved toward the distraught changeling and hugged her.
Lightning felt the little forelegs of the filly grip her and she responded by wrapping her own forelegs around the little pegasus.
They stayed that way for what could have been hours or just minutes before the filly decided to speak. “You said you don’t know what you feel but let me ask you something.”
Lightning sat the filly in front of her and nodded prompting Scootaloo to continue. “When you met me and hugged me that first time, why’d you do it?”
The changeling thought about that and she went with what she told Rainbow dash. “I wanted to protect you. You looked hurt and I.... didn’t like it.”
Scootaloo nodded. “What was it like when you thought you couldn’t save Rarity?”
Lightning thought back to the moment she’d thought she failed to revive the unicorn. “It was like I was... stabbed. And my chest felt tight.”
Scootaloo smiled faintly. “And when you found out it worked? How was that?”
Lightning cracked a small grin. “Like I was lighter then air. I almost laughed when I saw her wake up.”
Scootaloos smile became wider. “Then you do know about emotions.”
Lightning gave the filly an odd look before the little pegasus continued. “When you didn’t want to see me hurt and wanted to protect me. That was love. When you thought you didn’t save Rarity that was sadness. And when you saw it worked that was happiness. I’m surprised you didn’t realize it yourself.”
Lightnings eyes widened before she started laughing. “I spent my whole life sensing and feeding on emotions but when they’re my emotions I’m completely lost.” She shook her head at herself. “I’m a real piece of work.”
The changeling looked to the filly in front of her. “Thanks Scoots.”
Scootaloo smiled and nodded her head. “No problem. Now that the mush is outta the way are you ready to fight some changlings?”
Lightning chuckled. “You bet. I should ask Twilight if she got ahold of the princess. Stay inside and lock the doors and windows.”
The filly nodded as her mom went to the window in her room and opened it. Before she flew of she turned to Scootaloo. “Be safe ok.” With another nod from the filly Lightning sped out the window and headed straight for the Library.
Twilight sat at her desk on the upper level of her tree home. She’d quilled a a letter to Celestia outlining what had gone on since she’d received the letter about the changelings. The odd thing was that even an hour later there’d been no return letter.
The lavender unicorn tapped her hoof on the desk. “What could be keeping her?”
She would have continued talking to herself but was taken from her thoughts by a knock at her door. Trotting to the ground level of the library she opened the door with her magic.
Lightning stepped in once the door was open. “Hey Twilight. Did you send that letter yet?” The unicorn nodded as she waved a foreleg to the side inviting the mare further inside.
“I did but I’ve gotten no response in over an hour.” The unicorn sighed as she sat at the table in the middle of the room.
Lightning rose a brow as she sat across from Twilight. “Could she be busy?”
Twilight shook her head. “Not at this hour. Once the sun sets she goes back to her private chambers.”
Lightning nodded. “Well could we send one of the others to tell her? Rainbow seems fast enough.”
The unicorn thought about that for a moment. “No if we send anyone it should be me. I could just teleport there and back when I’m done.”
Lightning gave her a surprised look. “You can teleport? Why didn’t we use that before!?”
Twilight tapped her hooves together, embarrassed. “Well I can teleport myself easily but more then one or two at a time is harder. Plus it takes up more magic when I split the spell for more then one.”
The changeling grinned. “Well you’re just all kinds of powerful huh? Ok you pop over to the princess and tell her about the other cells around Equestria.”
As Lightning got up to leave Twilight went to get the door. “Shouldn’t we ask for help in Ponyville?”
The ice eyed mare shook her head. “No. With all the other cells in Equestria she needs to focus on that. Besides I think with you and your friends Ponyville should be fine. Bye.”
Twilight shut her door and returned to her room where she roused a sleeping Spike.
Said dragon yawned and rubbed his eyes as he woke. “What is it Twilight? Another letter to send?”
Twilight smiled at her assistant. “No Spike I just wanted to tell you I’m teleporting to Canterlot. For some reason Celestia hasn’t contacted me or came herself so I’m going to see what’s going on.”
Spike nodded. “Ok. Speaking of the whole letter to her thing, what’re you gonna do about Lightning?”
The unicorn sighed. “I’ll speak on her behalf to the princess. She did save Rarity after all.”
The baby dragon smiled. “Yeah that makes her ok in my book. Anyway I’ll keep an eye on the place while you’re gone.”
Twilight nodded with a grin. “I shouldn’t be gone long but thanks for the offer. See you later.” After she spoke the unicorns horn sparked and with a flash Twilight was gone.
In the gardens of Canterlot castle the guards were startled by a flash of purple. When the light faded a lavender unicorn they recognized was standing there.
The night lieutenant approached Twilight. “Hey there Twilight. What brings you here so late?”
Twilight turned to the guard with a serious look. “I need to speak with the princess. I have information on the changelings.”
The lieutenant quickly dropped into business mode. “Yes, the princess told us about their possible return. But why didn’t you send a letter if you have information?”
Twilights head tilted in confusion. “I did send a letter. What’s going on?”
The lieutenant paused to think then turned to one of the pegasus guards. “You. Fly to the repository that holds the message crystal.” The guard saluted and flew towards a tower on the western edge of the castle.
The lieutenant motioned with his head to follow as he walked toward the castle entrance before speaking again. “If you sent a letter and it didn’t get to the princess that could mean the changelings have gotten into Canterlot and damaged the message crystal.”
Twilight nodded. “That would disable any communication from reaching the princess or the other royal outposts across Equestria. But I thought only the royal guard could get into that room. Besides the princess of course.”
The lieutenants eyes narrowed. “Exactly. That means our ranks have been compromised. I need to get you to the princess as soon as possible.”
As the two continued through the halls and up staircases a group of guards approached them. As they got within speaking distance one spoke up. “Sir you’re needed at the crystal repository. The changelings are there.”
The lieutenant grit his teeth. “So they were here. Fine I’ll go there and you three escort Twilight to the princess.”
The guards saluted as the lieutenant galloped away. Twilight turned to the guards who started to surround her. The unicorn rose a brow at them. This isn’t right.
Just as she thought that one of them tried to tackle her. She dodged but the other two came in and pinned her. Thinking fast Twilight quickly charged her horn and blasted the three of them. The guards fell and with a flash of green reverted to their true forms. Changelings.
After the changelings fell Twilight started to gallop as hard as she could to Celestias tower. As she ran a few more changelings tried to stop her but a quick and well aimed burst of magic stopped them.
Finally the unicorn came to the top of a tower where a pair of elaborately carved doors were. Wasting no time she burst through the doors startling the rooms occupant.
Celestia had been reading a book when Twilight burst in looking like she ran a marathon. “Twilight what’s wrong? Why are you here so late?”
The unicorn panted as se tried to regain her breath. “Changelings...in castle.... Cells in Equestria.... Trouble.”
The alicorn moved closer to her student and laid a hoof on her back. “Calm yourself and tell me what’s going on. What’s this about the changelings?”
Twilight took several deep breaths before speaking again. “You were right about the changelings. I’ve learned they had a second plan already in progress when they attacked Canterlot. Changeling infiltration cells are hidden near each city and town in Equestria. They’re trying to take over quietly this time and there’s more of them then we thought.”
Celestia took all this in as she lit her horn and sealed the doors to her room. “I see. I knew that first attack was to simple to be their only one. You said they’ve even compromised my castle?’ The unicorn nodded as her teacher turned and walked to the balcony. “Thank you for telling me this Twilight. I will handle the changelings in Canterlot and when I am sure the city is safe I will send my guards to the other inhabited areas of Equestria.”
The alicorn faced Twilight again. “Is there anything else?”
Twilight hesitated but she know there was one more thing her teacher needed to know. “Yes there is. One of the changelings has sided with us and even saved Rarity from her own kind. When this is over I ask that she be allowed to live in Ponyville.”
Celestia rose a brow but nodded. “I will consider it. Once the threat is more under control I will speak to this changeling. "
Twilight smiled. “Thank you princess. Now I need to get back to Ponyville. The cell there will attack soon.”
The alicorn stepped forward to lightly nuzzle Twilight. “Be safe and stand firm my student.”
With a nod and a determined look in her eye Twilight activated her magic and in a flash was gone.
After she left the library Lightning had noticed that a storm front was making it’s way to Ponyville. Wondering if any weather teams hadn’t been warned by Applejack and Rarity the changeling flew over the town to where Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy were watching the horizon in the direction of the mines they’d come from earlier that day.
“Hey Rainbow why’s a storm rolling in? Didn’t your teams get the “stay inside” message?”
The cyan mare first turned to Lightning and then rose her eyes to look at the approaching storm and groaned. “Oh hayseed. I totally forgot that we had an incoming storm from Fillydelphia. It’s on a flight path to go over our section of Equestria and distribute water for our area. We can’t stop it.”
Lightning shook her head. “Looks like when the cell attacks we’ll be in for a wet fight. Are the towns folk safe?”
Fluttershy turned to the rose colored mare. “Yes. Rarity and AJ told us about an hour ago that they’ve been told to stay inside and lock themselves in.” The pink maned pegasus gulped. “But can the seven of us really take on that whole cell by ourselves?”
Lightning chuckled. “Are you serious? In that attack on Canterlot you took out at least that many. We only have to worry more show up.”
The pegasi nodded as Lightning continued.”I’m gonna take a look around and see if I can find Pinkie. Where’d she go anyway?”
Fluttershy shrugged and Rainbow waved of the question. “Who knows. She’s random like that but she’ll be around when the going gets tough.”
Nodding to the two of them the changeling turned and started gliding over the town in search of the pink pony.
After a few minutes of flying Lightning found Pinkie beside a house at the front of town fiddling with something. Landing beside the party pony Lightning could see that she was wiring some type of cannon to a remote.
The changeling cocked her head in confusion. “Pinkie what’re you doing?”
Pinkie turned with a smile while holding the remote in one hoof. “Hey Lightning. I was putting some party cannons around town for defense.”
Lightning blinked, still not quite sure what was going on. “Party cannons? Like that thing you had in Canterlot that shot confetti?”
The pink mare smiled wider. “Yep! See I figured since Twilight didn’t give me anything to do I’d go and make myself useful.”
Lightning nodded. “Ok but those cannons can't be very powerful.”
Pinkie folded her forelegs with a grin. “Not at first but I tuned them up. Now they fire big wads of confetti and have enough power to launch a pony twice my size.” The pink pony thumped her chest with a hoof. “I’ve got many hidden talents.”
Lightning just stared at the pony in front of her. “You set up a defense of party cannons all around town and tuned them up in under two hours?”
Pinkie giggled. “I can work pretty fast. Also I got the Doctor to help me.”
The changeling rose a brow. “The Doctor? Doctor who?”
Pinkie giggled again. “Exactly. He's a guy I know who lives in a blue box thing. Anyway what’er you up too?”
Lightning wanted to question the eccentric mare further but thought better of it. “I just wanted to find you and see what was going on. I...”
Before she could continue a beam of purple shot into the air from the library. When it faded Pinkie hopped towards it. “Come on Twilights calling. Maybe she’s got good news.”
The two made there way to the library to find the others gathered inside. Once they sat down Twilight spoke. “Here’s the situation. I’ve informed the princess of the danger and she, along with Luna and the guards, will deal with the cells in the other regions of Canterlot. She’s charged us with protecting Ponyville. Any questions?”
No one spoke up so the lavender unicorn continued. “Ok then I suggest we all stay here for now. We’ll use the telescopes in the library to keep an eye on the mines and we’ll sleep in shifts so we aren’t taken by surprise.” Twilight turned to Lightning. “Can you take the first shift while the rest of us rest?”
The changeling nodded and resumed her natural form. “Yeah. Go ahead and rest up. I can go for at least another few hours till I need sleep.”
With a nod Twilight led Lightning up to her observatory and showed her how to calibrate the telescopes before going to her room for some much needed rest.
At the hive Chrysalis was listening to reports from the other cells about their progress. She was in a room that held maps that detailed the locations of her changeling cells. she was discussing attack stratagies when a scout approached her. “My queen there is a problem.”
The matriarch turned her attention to the scout and waved a holed hoof for him to continue.
“It appears that Celestia has been told of our plan and is now expelling the drones we have in Canterlot. Also she is rallying her guards to go to the aid of the other populated areas of Equestria.”
The queen sighed in frustration. “What is the status of our occupation in the locations besides Ponyville?”
Another scout steeped forward. “We have most of the towns under control and a few cities are in the midst of being taken over.”
Chrysalis shook her head. “This would have gone much smoother without that annoying little traitor spoiling my plans. She needs to be taught a lesson.”
The first scout rose a brow. “My queen?”
The queen turned to him. “Be prepared for a fight. Tell the cells and their commanders to step up the rate of occupation and send a message to the cells outside Ponyvile.”
The scout bowed. “Yes my liege. What is the message?”
Chrysalis chuckled darkly. “The elements are a threat and this traitor is among them. Tell the cells to give no quarter.” She grew deathly serious at his point. “I want that town wiped from existence.”
The scout bowed again before gathering others and flying off to deliver the orders to the cells. Chrysalis glared at a map of Equestria. “These ponies are so troublesome. I may have to turn this into an actual war to get what I want.”
It had been twelve hours since the seven had taken turns watching the mines for any activity. Applejack was on watch and was about to wake Rarity for her turn when changelings began pouring from the mine. They gathered on the ground and swarmed in the air.
Even with the dim light of early morning she could also make out more of them coming from a distance to join the ones already here.
The farmer turned from the telescope and rushed down to where the others were sleeping. “Wake up ya’ll! There’s trouble brewin’ out there.”
Twilight was the first to wake fully. “What’s wrong AJ?”
Applejack shook her head. “I don’t know Twi but I reckon that Lightning might.”
Hearing her name the changeling looked to the orange mare. “What’s going on?”
The blond maned pony tipped her head in the direction of the telescope. “Go an’ take a look for yerself sugarcube. I ain’t sure but it looks like we’re in for a heap o’ trouble.”
The changeling flapped her tattered wings and carried herself up to the telescope. Looking through it she could see the mass of her kin gathering at the mines. Seeing so many of them gave her a bad feeling. That looks like way more then what’s needed to take over a town this size. Even if they took it by force this many would be overkill.
Turning her attention back to the six ponies she hovered down to the main floor. “It doesn’t look good out there. I think I know what’s going on but...”
As she trailed off rainbow rose into the air. “Hey come on it can’t be that bad.”
Rarity nodded. “She’s right darling. What are they going to do, burn us to the ground?”
Lightning looked to the white unicorn. “I think that’s exactly what’s going to happen.”
The six ponies went quiet. Each of their eyes widening at the dark implications of that sentence. Twilight stepped to the front of the room beside Lightning. “But that makes no sense. Doesn’t Chrysalis want to use us as food?”
Lightning sighed heavily. “Doesn’t look like it. With the number of siege changelings out there I think she’s going to start going on the offensive.”
Twilight quirked a brow. “What does that mean? Didn’t she already try that in Canterlot?”
Lightning nodded. “She did but in that first attack she was arrogant. She told us that there hadn’t been a true war in Equestria of centuries and that would make it easy to take what she wanted. She didn’t count on you ponies to be so... resilient.”
Rainbow folded her forelegs. “So does that mean she didn’t really try last time?”
The changeling nodded. “Yes. She left the bulk of the swarm in the hive. Our numbers are equal to that of the whole of the Equestran population.”
Fluttershy was the next to speak. “I don’t rally want to ask but... what does that mean for us? What’s going to happen?”
Lightnings gaze went to the floor before she rose her head to face the others. “I think that with you six living here and with my being a traitor and protecting Ponyville she’s going to kill us.”
The ponies gasped unsure of how to respond. Lightning turned to look out a window. “I wish I could think of another reason the queen would send so many here but I can’t. The only thing that makes sense is that she wants us gone.”
Applejack shot to her hooves from her place on the floor. “Then how’re we supposed to fight ‘em? We all could hold are own but most o’ the folks in ponyville couldn’t fight their way outta a paper bag. Not to mention all the foals and elderly.”
Pinkie sprung up next. “What’re we gonna do?”
Lightning turned to the group with a hard stare. “We’ll have to fight and take them down. And when I say down I mean six feet under.”
For a second time the group was stunned. Each of them had been in bad situations but never life or death.
Fluttershy shook her head vigorously. “No we can’t do that. There’s got to be something else we can do.”
Lightning huffed. “Like what? Knock out the whole cell that was here before plus their reinforcements and tie them up?”
Twilight placed a hoof on the changelings shoulder. “Lightning you have to understand, we ponies are a peaceful race by nature. We have law enforcement but that’s about it. Like you said, there hasn’t been any real fighting in Equestria since the unification of the three tribes over two thousand years ago.”
Rarity chose now to chime in. “Well what about the elements of harmony? Can’t they help us as they did with Discord or Nightmare Moon?”
Twilight shook her head. “I’m afraid not. With what I’ve learned about the changelings I don’t believe they’re a force of evil. The elements of harmony dispel any inharmonious beings but the changelings are acting on their very nature. The elements could no more change or stop them then they could change the Everfree forest.”
Rainbow rose a brow at this. “Then what about Nightmare Moon and Dixcord?
Twilight sighed. “Nightmare Moon was a manifestation of the disharmony Luna felt with the world. She fell out of harmony with herself so the elements were able to change her back. Discord is the very embodiment of disharmony so of course the elements work on him. As for the natural order of how something like the changelings operate? The elements can’t change the true nature of a being.”
Lightnings ears lowered. “So my true nature is an emotion stealing death dealer? Great.”
Twilight turned to the changeling. “I’m sorry that’s not what I meant. What I mean is the changelings need emotions to live. How they get it doesn’t matter. They could get it like you do. By taking what is given by someone else. Or they can steal it. The whole death dealing, conqueror thing that Chrysalis uses is just a side effect of how she chose to lead her people to live.”
Applejack spoke up when the unicorn was done. “Well that’s all fine and dandy but we still gotta figure out what to do about that big ol’ swarm out there.”
Lightning sighed. “Fine if you don’t want to take them out then one of us needs to think of something.”
Twilight levitated a book from a back shelf and opened it. “I’ve got one but it’ll take some time. I’ll need Raritys help and the rest of you will have to keep the changelings off of us while I get this spell ready.”
Lightning nodded. “We can do that but first I need to warn all of you about what changelings do when they don’t take prisoners.”
After saying this the changeling stood on her hind legs and held out her forelegs. With the usual flash of green her forelegs changed shape. From the hoof to the first leg joint they were more like the blades of a praying mantis but sporting the holes her legs had before.
She looked at Twilight. “Throw something at me.”
The unicorn wasn’t sure of what the changeling was getting at but she picked up the wooden pony head sitting on her table with her magic and chucked it at Lightning.
With a quick slash the changeling cleaved the solid wood in two like a knife through butter.
As the pieces fell Lightning spoke. “When we’re in our natural form we can alter ourselves like this. Blades, claws, club like arms. Even those scoops I used to dig us into the mine. Don’t let your guard down.”
Rainbow rose a brow. “Why didn’t you cut yourself out of that cloth the fake Rarity had you in?”
Lightning blushed in embarrassment and looked away. “My arms were pinned to my side and I was kinda miffed about being caught so it slipped my mind.”
The brash pegasus chuckled. “Wow. I guess you’re not evil if you can be embarrassed by that. Anything else we should know?”
The changelings legs became normal and she tapped her chin in thought. “No. Just watch out for the dangerous transformations and such and you’ll be fine.”
Twilight nodded. “Ok now that that’s out of the way let me go over my plan.”
A few minutes later the seven defenders had assembled at various positions in Ponyville. Twilight and Rarity were at the center of town concentrating their magic.
Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie were at either end of town each holding a remote for the party cannons the party mare had set up.
On the front lines were Applejack, Rainbow Dash and Lightning. They stood at the front of Ponyville watching as the swarm of changelings got closer and the storm clouds overhead finally began to release large drops of rain.
The farm pony turned to the two beside her. “So let me get this straight. The five of us are gonna hold of that big ol’ swarm while Rarity and Twi charge up that spell? And on top o’ that we gotta keep ourselves from gettin’ horribly dismembered while doin’ it?”
Lightning smirked. “Too big an order for you guys?”
Applejack adjusted her hat. “Would ya be surprised that it’s almost par for the course? Minus the dismemberment bit.”
Lightning laughed. “You sure have exciting lives here don’t you?”
Rainbow grinned. “You don’t know the half of it. All kinds of crazy things go on here.”
Lightning cchuckled lightly for a second longer. “You’ll have to tell me about some of them later.” She shifted her focus to the approaching swarm. “Cuz right now we’ve got other things to do.”
She and Rainbow started hovering lightly while Applejack crouched, tensing her muscles.
The swarm was a few hundred yards away when they stopped their advance. The three in the war path didn’t have time to question what was going on before one of the changelings made it’s way forward.
Lightning grit her teeth as the changeling got closer. She recognized this one.
The changeling stopped a few feet in front of it’s opposition before speaking. “Well isn’t this something? The queen’s very angry at you ya know. She sent two more cells here and gave us a kill order for what you’ve done against her.”
Lightning landed directly in front of the changeling. “Quit wasting time and get to the point Shiv. Why are you even here?”
Shiv shook her head. “I was sent here because I used to be your commander. I'm here talking to you because I'm the one you fooled around with from time to time. My official orders are to kill you.”
Lightning narrowed her eyes but before she could speak her old commander continued. “I could get you out of this though.”
Lightning rose a brow “You’d go against a kill order? Why?”
Shiv smiled. “Oh because then I could have you all to myself. You’d be my personal slave but you’d be alive at least.” The changeling commander stalked forward and slid her muzzle beside Lightnings ear. “Think of all the fun we could have. All you have to do is go with me. I’ll wipe the village off the map and you’ll be mine. What’ll it be Lyse.”
Lightning backed up and stared the other changeling in the eye. “My name’s Lightning. That’s who I am now.”
Shiv frowned. “I’d hoped you would see reason. Being cut from the hive made you weak I guess. If you’re that broken I’ll just get rid of you.” The commander flew back to the waiting changelings.
Rainbow and Applejack had said nothing while the two were talking but curiosity got the better of them now.
Rainbow walked up beside Lightning. “So your name is really Lyse?”
Applejack went to her other side. “And that there Shiv was yer... lover?”
The changeling sighed. “My name’s Lightning now. Lyse died when I was cut off from the hive. I’m not her. As for being involved with my former commander yes I was. Though lover is a strong word, everything was physical."
The swarm had begun advancing again and the three readied themselves.
Lightning smirked "Enough talking. I feel like hitting something."
When the swarm had gotten to the outskirts of the town there were several booms and groups of changelings dropped as they were tangled in long streamers.
Seeing this Lightning shot forward with her two companions as the fight for Ponyville and their lives began.