Neither Chip nor Twilight could quite believe it. They held on to each other, in silence, their heads empty of thoughts. It seemed like this whole mess started years ago… How much time did pass anyway? No, that was not important now. They wanted to savor the moment – get a feel of their bodies once again…
And of each other. Chip was still wearing his pony guise, so he felt the warm body of Twilight nearby – her chest was steadily rising and lowering with her breath. Her coat tickled his skin. Her hooves connected on his back in a hug gave him comfort. He felt something new – under his heart, a heat was rising. It didn’t feel threatening – it might as well be a left-over thing from this whole mind-melding.
The colt looked down at Twilight – she tilted her head upwards to meet his gaze.
“How do you feel?” he asked in his own voice. Celestia, that felt wonderful.
“A bit sore… And very tired,” chuckled Twilight, also enjoying the sound her own mouth gave. The smile on her muzzle softened a bit, and her ears lowered slightly as she asked: “And you? Does it… Hurt?”
“I’m tired too… But nothing seemed to be hurting…”
“… You know what I mean,” she whispered, breaking eye contact.
“Oh,” said Chip after a while. “That… I told you. I got used to it. You needn’t worry, I got it under control.”
“I’m sorry…” blurted out the mare.
“… You know… What I did to you…”
“Oh,” commented Chip, yet again understanding what she meant some time later. “You don’t need to be. Let’s just forget about all this… Mess… It’s in the past now. Let it stay that way.”
Twilight shrunk a bit and gave out a small chuckle.
“If it only were so simple… Flip a switch and forget…”
“We’re tired. We’ll feel better once we get some rest,” reasoned Chip in a soft voice. He felt compelled to brush the mane off her face. As he did so, the mare looked briefly at him, before turning away, blushing.
“You’re right… Tired… I wonder how Spike is doing…”
Leaning against each other, the two managed to climb the stairs to Twilight’s bedroom. It was an exhausting endeavor, and they were close to collapsing by the end of it.
The small basket in which Spike used to sleep was covered in pillows. It didn’t make a sound, and Twilight and Chip decided that if the baby dragon was asleep, they best not wake him up. Having to explain what has happened in their current state could end up in more confusion than necessary.
With the last of her strength, Twilight rolled onto the bed. The mattress felt divine – soft, comfortable, a totally different world compared to the hard floor they spent many, many hours on.
“Goodnight,” smiled Chip, turning away and dragging his feet towards the staircase.
“Chip,” hissed the librarian, making an effort and pushing herself to a sitting position.
The stallion stopped and looked at her with a half-conscious gaze.
“… Don’t go.”
Tired, Chip slumped into a sitting position, puzzlement on his face.
“Why?” he asked in a whisper, eyeing the basket. It didn’t move.
“You don’t have a bed… And you might fall off the stairs in the dark… You can… You can sleep here,” offered Twilight, moving to the side of the bed. “There’s plenty of room… And it feels really… Soft…” She again collapsed onto her bed, waving a hoof at Chip.
“Are you sure?” groaned the colt, forcing himself to stand up and approach the bed.
“Yes… But only for sleeping… Uh, you know what I mean,” yawned the mare. Her eyes were fighting a losing battle with the comfortable bed and tired body.
“What else can you do in a bed…” asked Chip. He didn’t expect an answer – he was too tired to listen anymore. The bed was really soft. And bouncy; just enough to make it feel really comfortable.
The colt was on the verge of consciousness in a matter of minutes. He took a deep breath. He felt Twilight beside him; she smelled of relief and comfort, mainly. There was something under the surface too, but it was too subtle for the tired mind to identify… Maybe in the morning…
Spike woke up after a restless night of on and off sleep. There were screams, banging, and all sorts of weird noises coming from downstairs. He didn’t budge from his basket, just like Wub told him to. Cautiously, the baby dragon peered from under his pillows – he scanned his surroundings, noticing two lumps under Twilight’s bed sheets.
Hesitantly, the number one assistant put away the pillows and stood up. He still couldn’t see the heads that were poking out from the covers… He had to move. But he promised not to… Frustrated at this point, he looked around for something to aid him. The mirror at Twilight’s drawer. Yes, it was tilted downwards, helping him see what was in the bed!
Her best friend was sleeping, her purple mane a total disaster, as always in the morning. Just to her right was Wub, with her white mane all over the place. That one had her mouth wide open, but surprisingly no snoring was head. Their bellies were moving rhythmically and they looked perfectly fine. So all was good?
Cringing, Spike took a step out of his basket. The world didn’t end, nor were there any explosions or sirens, so he followed up with his other foot. Nothing. So far so good. Little by little, the baby dragon approached the bed and looked at Twilight’s head. Horn was where it was supposed to be, coat as purple as always, no strange marks or signs on her muzzle… It was all good.
The memory of Wub’s hungry eyes, the stare that chilled his whole back… No, it was a bad idea to wake them up. It was best if Spike wasn’t in the room when they came to. Who knows what the hay was happening, or still is happening. Maybe downstairs he’ll find an answer…
Chip woke up first. He closed his dry mouth, running a tongue over his sandy lips. Straight of the bat, he felt the fresh scent of emotions – fright, curiosity, those came from somewhere below and were faded. A lot closer were comfort, happiness, and that covered up scent that felt like… Huh. Intriguing.
The changeling shifted to look at the purple mare. The back of her head was all he saw… And he touched it delicately. He retreated when she shifted and turned to him, afraid he woke her up… But no, she was still sleeping, a faint smile slapped on her face. Her hair was a total mess – stiff, divided into strands that poked out in different directions. Most of it obscured her horn and eyes, causing Chip to giggle silently. She looked cute, if that was the right word to use.
As delicately as he could, he slipped from under the cover and down onto the floor. His joints snapped as he moved them about, causing a little bit of relief to ripple through his tired body. His mind felt fresh, though. All that transpired just a few hours ago felt like a bad memory now, something that couldn’t have really happened.
Chip looked at Twilight yet again, wondering how she will feel after waking up. Will she remember any of it? Will she still like him? The mare did live in his body for a short while… She might think he is a monster now. More so than before, at least. Hopefully, that won’t hinder the research that still had to be done… The silly task that seemed so insignificant now, after all these intense, life-changing events.
As the colt made his way down the stairs, he thought hard about it. There would be a lot of words to put into a new report, and they needed to decide what was important and relevant. Discovering how magic works on changelings was monumental, yes – but they would need to back it up with the story they agreed the Princesses didn’t need to know of. Maybe Twilight would change her mind now, that everything was okay?
Chip was going to enter the laboratory, the doors to which were in really bad shape, when he felt a smell come from the kitchen. Someone was cooking. Cautiously, the changeling peeked around the corner and saw Spike, overseeing some pot with boiling water. That’s right, he totally forgot about the baby dragon!
“Um, Spike,” began the colt.
The startled dragon jumped, spilling some water onto his belly.
“Geez, dude… Uh oh,” gasped the dragon, falling off his stool and retreating into a corner. “Twi, please don’t eat me! Please!”
“Settle down, Spike. It’s me, Wub,” said Chip in a reassuring voice, slowly approaching the scared dragon.
“Y-Yeah? What is the fifth law of spellbinding, variant C, special rule I?!” Spike yelled in defense.
Chip stopped and squinted in confusion. “What?”
“Oh… Okay. Then you’re not Twilight. Phew. So everything is normal now?”
“Uh, y-yeah… What was that just now?”
“Well… Hehe… I figured that Twilight would recite the rule even in her sleep. I guess that wasn’t the brightest idea, huh?” blushed the baby dragon, much to the amusement of the changeling.
An awkward silence between the two fell. Some water began spilling from the pot, snapping Spike back into reality.
“Oh, uh, care for some breakfast? I made too much anyway.”
Chip’s groaning stomach was answer enough. He took a seat and waited patiently as the dragon finished up preparing pasta, covered in some red goo the dragon got from the freezer. Hopefully, it wasn’t some kind of red wasabi.
Twilight gradually woke up from a dreamless sleep. She felt stiff all over and her head was pounding in a steady beat. She moaned and put her hoof forward, expecting to feel Wub’s fur. He wasn’t there. Hesitantly, one eye opened. The image was unfocused, so the other eye came to the rescue. Their forces combined, Twilight was able to look around the empty room. No Chip, no Spike. Some sounds were coming down from the staircase.
The mare pushed herself down from the bed and reveled in her joints snapping into proper positions. The librarian looked at herself in the mirror – her muzzle was smiling right back at her from under the storm of a purple mess on her head. She levitated a comb over, noting how the thudding in her head intensified, and gently brushed away until her mane settled down, unmasking her glowing horn. She looked good. Her mind felt fresh, contrary to her body, which was probably still a bit sleepy. She gave herself a shake and slowly descended the stair.
The smells and voices from the kitchen drew her in. The mare saw Chip sitting at the table, noodles dangling from his face; Spike was looking at him intently, a mentoring expression on his face.
“Right, good. Now, draw them in with your mouth. Just suck them in.”
“Like tfis?” asked the changeling, his full mouth distorting the words. He bent down slightly and begun sucking the pasta in, really slowly, his chest heaving.
“No, you’re breathing again, not sucking the noodles in. Didn’t you suck on a pacifier when you were small?”
“A what now?” said the changeling, making his meal escape his mouth onto his plate. Spike deadpanned while Chip looked down, clearly amused. “It fell,” he commended, cocking his head.
Twilight couldn’t help but giggle at the scene. Chip and Spike jumped slightly, turning to the mare who was standing at the doorframe.
“Twi!” shouted Spike, running up to her dear friend and hugging her “You’re up! How are you feeling? Does anything hurt? Are you hungry? Did you sleep well?”
“Settle down, Spike,” smiled Twilight. “I’m alright. A bit stiff, but fine.” She looked at Chip, feeling her lips curl up into a smile. His muzzle reciprocated.
“That smells delicious,” said the mare, sniffing the air and approaching the table.
“I can’t tell,” shrugged Chip, not letting his eyes off of Twilight who sat beside him.
Spike observed as the two stared at each other with those stupid grins slapped across their faces.
“What were you doing down there? Huh?”
“Oh, uh,” they stuttered, looking away.
“Long story,” shot Twilight.
“Complicated. Maybe later,” added Chip.
“… Okay, whatever… You guys will have to share. I already ate mine, and Wub never ate pasta before, so I was trying to teach her how to do it properly… But she just doesn’t get it.”
“Really?” asked Twilight. “Oh, uh… Wub?”
“Help yourself,” replied the changeling, pushing the dish between them.
“It’s really simple,” said the mare, levitating over a fork and stabbing at the pasta. She drew in a few strands and put them in her mouth. “Now, all you do is… Suck!” And with that, the pasta vanished in her mouth, some sauce splattering over her lips. “Oh, excuse me! You try!”
“Okay.” Chip looked really focused. He stabbed the noodles violently and managed to pick up barely three strands. He put them in his mouth and sucked; probably more air got into his belly, but in the end the food vanished in his lips.
“Not that hard, see?” smiled Twilight, picking up another forkful of the pasta.
They ate in silence from the same dish, each entrenched in their own thoughts. Chip was happy that Twilight didn’t cringe at the sight of him, but wasn’t sure if this wasn’t just a play; the mare herself was thinking back to her experience with his body, and how to thank him for helping her.
They both didn’t notice as the last of the pasta lifted into the air in between them. Each was sucking on their end of the food, and soon their muzzles turned so that they faced each other.
The two snapped out of their thoughts when it was all said and done – the last of the pasta disappeared between their pressed together lips.