The farmhouse seemed to have been built relatively recently, judging from the fresh coat of red paint that gave the structure a rather stunning shine. It was strikingly similar to Applejack's home, aside from having an unpainted wooden roof. From the gate to the porch was smoothed out with plenty of rocks, stopping anypony from gathering mud on their hooves or withers.
Beside the path stood a closed storage shed, along with several plows and a wooden grain silo that was leaning off to one side, the wood having been cracked along one leg. The other side held a small patch of tilled dirt with several roses having poked their way out. Further along stood the barn, with the sun setting behind it and basking the world in ethereal twilight.
"Okay, I'll go up and see if they're hostile or not. If you see fire or hear screams, you run. Don't come for me, okay?" Twilight ordered, looking between the sisters for confirmation that they understood.
Unfortunately for her, they frowned back at her.
"I cannot let you do that, our Moon. I am the least hurt, so I will go up and see," Luna scoffed, shaking her head. "Besides, you must look after our 'Tia."
"Don't I get a say in this?" Celestia asked as she squirmed and slid off Twilight's back.
"No," both Twilight and Luna answered, before turning to look at each other with a smile.
Celestia only rolled her eyes and huffed as she leaned against Luna.
"Fine," Luna said, sighing. "You go and look. I'll look after my sister."
Twilight unlatched the gate with her magic and passed through, then walked down the path towards the home. She could see the upstairs curtains move and moved more cautiously, knowing that she was now being watched. Her wings twitched on her back as she took her first step up onto the porch, then across the deck to stand in front of the door.
With a knock, she waited and took a glance around at the quick nice looking porch. A number of weighted cushions and couches were laid out, as well as a small table in the center. Upon the table sat a vase with a bunch of roses inside; no doubt clipped from the garden.
The sound of claws on wood came from inside the house and after an eternity, the inside door opened to reveal a weathered, white and brown Gryphon. The outside door was pushed open with a claw and Twilight took a cautious step back. She could see numerous scars which ran around the Gryphon's front legs and chest, while a deep scar cut across his left eye, leaving it cloudy.
"Who are you?" he asked, standing tall, even as movement could be heard from inside the house. He jostled his wings, fluffing up the feathers in case of a fight. "Why are you here?"
"My name is Moonlight, sir," Twilight began, giving a respectable bow. "My," she paused, catching herself, "friends and I have traveled through the Badlands and we were wondering if we would be allowed to stay, just for the night, in your barn?"
The old Gryphon blinked and raised a brow upon listening. "The Badlands you say? Nothing has gotten through there, let alone a mere pony..." he stated, a mixture of respect and suspicion oozing into his voice. "You come from Springwallow, eh?"
"Yes, sir. We were ambushed while moving through the tunnels and woke up along the river."
The Gryphon was about to speak when a quieter, feminine, voice spoke up behind him. "Father? Can I see the pony?"
Out from under the Gryphon's legs squirmed a younger Gryphon, who's eyes widened considerably once it saw Twilight.
"Grace, go back inside and let me handle this," he said, using a claw to slide her back under his legs as she whined. Moving his attention back to Twilight, he took an appraisal and grunted. "Fine, you can stay in the barn. But if I hear anything untoward, you'll be out of here."
Twilight didn't exactly know what he meant, but nodded anyway, grateful. "Thank you! We really appreciate this," she thanked, releasing a sigh of relief. "I'll just go and collect them."
"Hun?" another feminine voice sounded out, this one more mature sounding. "Who are you talking to?"
Another Gryphon wandered out and brushed up against the male, causing him to huff and roll his eyes.
"Oh, a pony. Hello there, I'm Gabriella!" she said, holding out a claw towards Twilight with a smile. "I hope my husband hasn't been giving you a hard time?"
"Oh, no. Not at all. He's been really generous by letting me and my friends stay in your barn for the night!" Twilight replied, placing her hoof in Gabriella's to shake.
"In the barn?" Gabriella mumbled, turning her eyes onto her husband, who was looking anywhere but her. "George, how could you! We have a guest room just for this purpose..."
"B-But they're ponies, Gabby... they'll get up to all sorts of weird stuff," he tried explaining, but a frown from Gabriella stopped him dead.
"I don't care if they rut in the living room, we don't deny someone in need, okay?"
"Yes dear," he mumbled, wings sagging in defeat.
"Good," Gabriella spoke, nodding in satisfaction. She turned to the shocked Twilight and smiled. "We have a guest room for you to stay in tonight. Please, gather your friends and I'll show you to it."
Twilight simply nodded, unsure as to how to process what she had just witnessed. 'Wait, did she just say rut?!' she asked herself, thoroughly confused.
After gathering the sisters, the three were allowed into the house, with George keeping his distance and Grace peeking out from behind his legs with a barely contained grin.
The stairs were the first thing that was noticeable, along with the hallway down the side. There was a door on either side, one leading into the living room and one leading into the dining room. Further along, the hallway lead to the kitchen which spanned the entire back half of the home. Most of the walls were practically covered in drawings of flowers or various animals. The spots that weren't, held small framed pictures, drawn with crayon.
"So this is our humble home. It's not much to look at, I know," Gabriella gestured around. "I'll show you to your room," she said, climbing the stairs. "We'll be having dinner in an hour or so. You're free to join us... though I'm not sure what you ponies eat, so it might not suit your tastes."
Celestia chuckled while following, being held up by Luna. "Don't worry too much. Ponies eat greens, but us three can eat practically anything if need be."
The three reached the landing and turned left. The hallway held two doors, one on each side. Gabriella opened one and gestured inside to the guest bedroom. Inside was bare, like most of the house, but it did have a large bed and a table with a candle sitting on it.
Twilight stopped just inside the door and glanced to Gabriella with an appreciative smile. "Thank you, really. I don't know what we would have done if you hadn't done this for us."
The Gryphon looked surprised, but held a claw to her own chest and shook her head, a ghost of a smile on her face. "What sort of mother would I be if I didn't teach my girl to help others. Now, rest and do whatever you ponies do and I'll call you for dinner."
With that, Gabriella walked off, leaving the three alone.
Twilight closed the door and levitated her saddlebag over to the table. Sparking the candle to life, she closed the curtains and smiled over to the others. "Well, that went better than expected."
"Indeed. I guess fate smiles upon us once again, eh, sister?" Luna laughed, nuzzling Celestia.
"Yes, surely we must be blessed," Celestia groaned, slowly moving her tender leg.
"Oh, let me check that out," Twilight said, trotting over with the candle. She knelt down and gently held the mare's leg in her hoof, inspecting the damage. "Well... it looks like it's healing quickly. The healing effect must be physiological and not magical in nature. From what I can see, you'll be perfect, again, in the morning."
"Not soon enough, I would say," Celestia sighed, resting her head on her good leg. "We were extremely lucky, Moon. Another blast and we would be dead, or worse."
Twilight suddenly found the grains of wood on the floor very interesting. "I know," she mumbled, letting out her own tired sigh. "At least we can rest for the night before moving on. The Gryphons here seem nice, but I have my suspicions that they think we'll do something lewd."
"Oh? How so?" Luna asked, scooting over and brushing up against her sister.
With a chuckle, Twilight pulled away and moved the saddlebag back onto the table. "Well, for starters, the husband seems to think that we'll, uh," Twilight trailed off, looking away and clearing her throat.
"He thinks we'll what?" Celestia asked, her curiosity having peaked.
"He- he thinks we'll rut, or something..."
A silence filled the room as both of the sisters stared at Twilight in shock, then turned to each other, before bursting out in laughter.
"W-What?! Why would he think that?" Celestia asked, scooting slightly away from Luna.
"Yeah, that's preposterous... we would not do such a thing..." Luna agreed, noticing her sister's movement.
Twilight saw the slightly hurt expression on Luna's face, but bit her tongue. Shrugging, she wandered back over and climbed onto the bed. "Who knows what the mad King spouts. At least his wife is more calm about the whole thing. I doubt they get many visitors out here, especially ponies."
Still giggling slightly, Celestia rolled her eyes. "Let's hope they're not sympathetic to the King. I would expect them to ask us what we're doing or where we're going."
"I wouldn't wish to lie to them, especially since they were so kind as to house us," Luna mumbled.
"True. I guess we should tell them, but only if they ask," Twilight agreed, nodding.
Just then, a soft knock at the door stole their attention away from each other. "Uh, hello?" a quiet voice called out. "M-Mother says it's time for dinner."
Celestia rose up off the bed and hobbled over to the door, opening it slowly to peek out. With a smile, she pulled the door open further and let the others see Grace standing there, her curious expression having changed into a one of hesitation upon seeing the three ponies looking her way.
"Hi there," Celestia cooed, giggling. "Lead the way."
Grace nodded and scampered over to the stairs and descended, looking back every few steps to make sure the ponies were following her.
Twilight slid up against Celestia and helped her, her wing wrapped tightly around the mare. "Let's enjoy this, okay? I'm sure we won't get another hot meal for a long time," she said, looking to the sisters.
"Too right. I doubt we'll be welcomed with hugs and nuzzles," Luna chuckled, descending after them.
Walking into the dining room, the ponies found a circular, wooden table set with fine cutlery and bowls. A bottle of red wine sat in the center, alongside several crystal glasses and three ladles. Six chairs sat around the table and the ponies filtered in, with them sitting on one side, while the Gryphons sat on the other.
Gabriella walked out of the kitchen with an iron pot, the handle firmly held within her beak. Nearing the table, George reached down and lifted , placing it beside the wine.
Twilight sniffed the air and let out a soft hum, trying to think of what food they were being served while the sisters looked at each other with an uneasy expression.
While they could technically eat almost anything, the taste didn't change, and with them still being ponies, most things tasted as if they were just wrong for them to eat.
"May I ask what that is?" Luna asked, gesturing to the covered iron pot. "It's hard to pinpoint what the smell is..."
"Oh, my lovely wife has pulled out all the stops today," George began, causing a soft giggle to be heard from the kitchen. "It's chicken soup."
The sisters sat back in their chair and nodded, while Twilight leaned forwards with an inquisitive look.
"I've never had that before," she said, smiling as she inhaled.
Glancing at the ponies on either side of her, she rolled her eyes. "It'll be just as nutritious as anything else, you should know this. If the taste really doesn't appeal, I have a spell to help."
Grace gazed over the table towards Twilight and asked, "You can do magic?!"
"Of course! My special talent is magic. I know all sorts of fun spells!"
This only caused Grace to jump up and down on her seat. "Like what?"
George cast a tentative glance towards Twilight, then his daughter. "Grace," he warned, raising a brow and causing her to settle, while still smiling up at Twilight.
Gabriella came back out from the kitchen and sat down beside George. She gestured to the pot. "Please, guests have first pick at the food."
Levitating one of the ladles up and pulling the pot's cover off, Twilight filled her bowl with the creamy chicken soup, then provided Luna with the ladle. Sitting back, she gazed down into the steaming bowl with a mix of curiosity and hunger.
The soup itself held a good amount of vegetables, chicken and several spices, and Twilight was impressed. She didn't know a whole lot about Gryphon cooking, but if it tastes half as good as it looked, then she'd have no problems enjoying herself; though the lack of food was a big motivation.
Brushing her mane back, she picked up her spoon and waited for everyone else to have filled their bowls before scooping up some soup and bringing it to her lips. Opening her mouth, she slurped up the food and closed her eyes as the taste hit her tongue.
It wasn't like what any of the ponies were expecting. A burst of flavor flooded her mouth as various flavours of spice could be tasted. Looking down, she quickly scooped another and smiled.
"This is really good!" she exclaimed, slight surprise on her face.
"Oh, please. It's just something I cobbled together," Gabriella giggled, waving a claw. "But thank you. It's not often we get to enjoy chicken... the king forbids us to use up our own stocks."
"Yet, you do anyway?" Luna asked, tilting her head.
"The King doesn't own us," George grumbled. "Plus, one chicken won't be missed; especially for guests."
"Sounds like it's pretty bad here?" Celestia added, eating her soup.
"Here, no," Gabriella mumbled. "The farmers near to the towns and cities have it worse. But they can't go anywhere else. Who would take in a Gryphon? The King has alienated us from all other countries."
Placing her spoon down, Twilight sighed, gaining the Gryphon's attention.
"Have you been to the capital lately?" she asked, staring over the table at George, who stiffened up.
Twilight looked to the sisters and received nods. "We're after the King's crown and we need passage, or information on how to get into the city," she simply explained, having grown serious.
George and Gabby stared at Twilight in shock, until George asked, "You're either as mad as he is, or suicidal. Which is it?"
"Take your pick. In the end, it won't matter when we have the crown," Twilight replied, taking a breath. "As long as he wears that crown, you'll continue to be oppressed and at war."
"And for you? Why do you need it?" Gabby asked, now curious. "To go to such lengths as to cross the Badlands."
Twilight looked down at her soup, then closed her eyes. She felt the soft touch of the sister's hooves on her shoulders and opened her eyes to see the pair smiling.
"We're dying," Celestia simply stated, turning to the Gryphons. "The crown is one of three artifacts which we need."
"Oh," Gabby whispered. "I-I'm sorry..."
"Don't be. We have made peace with it, but it shall not be our fate," Luna said, holding a hoof up. "We shall not be dissuaded by a literal army and private guards. We are Alicorns," she growled, trying to reassure herself more than the others.
Despite that, it did put a smile on Twilight's face. "As I asked, any information will be helpful for us to get in," she asked, turning from Luna to face George.
George tapped a claw against the table as he shared a look with his wife. Upon seeing her nod, he said, "Fine. I can rustle up some grain and wine to take to the castle as tribute. You three can hide within the bags. Once we get in, you break out and go on your way. I've been taking our tributes in for quite some time, so the guards know me. I would doubt they would do a thorough inspection, especially for grain and wine barrels."
"Wait, really? It's that easy?" Celestia asked, surprised.
"I don't know about ponies, but Gryphons trust those that they know. I don't like breaking that trust, but if it means removing the King..."
"It's the same for us," Twilight replied, nodding.
"I'd think that without the King in power, and no war, our countries would be good allies," Celestia added, before finishing her soup.
"Indeed. It's a shame it's come to this," Luna agreed, shaking her head with a sigh. "But tomorrow, we change it. Then we can move on with gathering the Orb."
"Another artifact?" George asked.
"Yes. We have found it to be located in Heliopolis."
"I am unfamiliar with that place."
"Most are. It is across the other side of the planet."
"T-The other side?!" Gabby choked, looking shocked.
"I'm afraid so," Twilight sighed, a hint of resolve forcing its way to the surface. "I feel like the King is only the start of our problems. Things very rarely go right when trying to save lo-" she caught herself and let out a huff. "When saving others."
The sisters gave a curious glance at Twilight, but let it go for now.
George, for the first time, smiled and crossed his arms. "I can't speak for what you're going through, but I can attest for plans never going right, no matter how detailed they are. Sometimes the best course of action is to just leap headlong into action and see it through. What will happen cannot be predicted, so the only thing is to hope for the best outcome."
Twilight stared at him, then nodded slowly. "I... I think I get what you mean. I should trust that things will work out, no matter how bleak."
Laying back on the bed, Twilight's mind ran over what George had been talking about as well as the lies which she had been keeping from the others. She knew it was wrong, but surely it was for their own benefit, right? If they knew they would become Princesses, lead a country and even meet her in the future, then surely it would all change; there would be no Equestria as she knew it.
'The Princesses didn't seem to indicate that I had told them this before, even going so far as to call me Moon,' she thought, a puzzled look appearing on her face. Turning over to face away from the door, she let out a huff. 'Perhaps I didn't tell them my real name, but I did tell them about the time travel. They could confirm that, at least.'
Hearing the hoofsteps of the sisters coming up the stairs, Twilight steeled her nerves and ruffled her wings with slight agitation. 'Celestia told me that she can't tell me stuff, so all of this must have happened already, which does give more merit to the theory that this is on repeat. So, if I tell them now, this is how it's supposed to be, but if I don't...'
The mare held her head in her hooves and let out a groan, rolling back and forth on the bed just as the two sisters entered the bedroom. "Buck!"
"Language!" Celestia chided, limping over with a frown as Luna closed the door. "What's got you all annoyed?"
Twilight stopped and rolled over to face the two, an embarrassed look on her face.
"She must be thinking of who will be sleeping on the floor," Luna joked, wiggling her eyebrows towards her sister.
"Behave, Lu," Celestia giggled, waving a hoof. "No pony will sleep on the floor. The bed is big enough for the three of us. Besides, we'll need our rest for tomorrow."
Twilight opened her mouth to protest, but thought better of it and climbed off the bed. "Lay down, I need to talk to you two about something," she ordered, brushing past them and beginning to pace back and forth to try and gather her thoughts.
Sliding onto the bed, the two Alicorns laid there, watching Twilight as she mumbled to herself, showing a side that they hadn't seen before: pure uncertainty.
After an extended silence, Luna cleared her throat. "Moonlight, what is the matter?"
Twilight's eyes flicked to hers and she tapped her hoof against the wood. After a second, she sighed heavily and nodded, closing her eyes. "Celestia, you asked me to be honest, right?"
"Y-Yes, I did," the mare said, unsure.
"Well, I'm going to be honest with you both. You deserve to know some stuff... but I cannot share everything with you. There will be some questions I can't, or won't, answer. Do you understand?"
The sisters glanced to each other, then back at Twilight with a nod, a slight tinge of fear apparent on both of their faces.
"Good. Good," Twilight muttered, stretching her wings and cracking her neck. "So, uh. This might sound impossible, or downright silly, but... I'm being one hundred percent truthful. I'm from the future."
The ponies laid there, blinking at the news, until it actually hit them. Celestia laid there, her eyes widening in shock and disbelief. Luna frowned towards Twilight, before rising up and trotting over.
She raised a hoof and slapped Twilight across the cheek.
"I deserve th-" Twilight hissed, before being slapped again. "Stop hitting me!" she whimpered, backing away from Luna, who kept striking her with her hoof.
Backed Twilight into a corner, Luna snorted and narrowed her eyes. "How could you lie to us about something like this?!" she growled, flaring her wings and causing Twilight to wince and cover herself with her own.
"Lu..." Celestia mumbled, despite the anger in her own chest.
"Don't 'Lu' me, sister. I doubt this mare can even spell the word truth!" Luna spat, her hoof crashing down in front of Twilight, who kept herself as small as possible.
Twilight felt she deserved all of this, and more, despite the fact that Luna didn't seem to be putting her entire weight behind the hits.
"That's enough, Luna!" Celestia hissed, climbing off the bed and flaring her own wings. "Let Moonlight explain herself before we choose whether to hurt her."
Luna didn't seem to like the idea, but relented and backed off. "Fine, but I shall not be responsible for my actions if she does not explain sufficiently."
"Moonlight," Celestia said, gazing down upon the mare and holding her shaking hoof out. Upon Twilight taking hold of the sizzling hoof, she pulled her up onto her hooves.
"O-Of course..." Twilight whispered, rubbing her leg. "I'm from Equestria, two thousand years in the future." Hearing Luna scoff, she continued. "I'm one of the Princesses that rule the country. Specifically the Princess of Friendship."
"Of Friendship? Bah," Luna mumbled, shaking her head as she scowled at Twilight.
"It's not as glamorous as the Princess of the Sun, or Moon..." Twilight replied, a half-smile returning when she saw the Celestia's eyes widen.
"Are you saying...?" Celestia whispered, confused.
"Indeed, Princess. Let me prove it?"
Celestia nodded, allowing Twilight to flare her horn and press it to her own.
Within an instant, Celestia was alone within an inky void that stretched out into infinity around her. Nary a sound except her own breathing could be heard as she floated.
Though, as the seconds ticked by, tiny pricks of light appeared to her, buzzing about like fireflies and slowly coalescing into Twilight's form.
"My apologies for the Theatrics. I've still not mastered dream magic," Twilight said, sitting down on her rump as the their orientation snapped into a fixed position.
Flicking her eyes around, Celestia swallowed nervously. "You put me to sleep?" she stuttered.
"It is the easiest way to show you proof," Twilight replied. "Besides, it's one thing to see memories. It's another to be inside them."
Closing her eyes, Twilight's horn glowed and the darkness was literally swept away in a great gust of wind. In its place sat Manehatten at night. The pair of them were sat just off to the side of the cherry blossom tree in the middle of Central Park.
The sound of ponies chatting away, laughing and shouting could be heard behind them, in the city, but looking around the world grew out of focus and distorted, as if not fully formed.
"Don't focus too much on the visuals," Twilight mumbled, running her leg awkwardly. "Anything that I couldn't immediately sense won't be in focus for us."
Despite some of the city being out of focus, Celestia still gasped and marveled at the sheer size of the buildings. Great skyscrapers of glass and steel that pierced the heavens.
"Where is this?! This can't be Equestria, can it?"
"This is Manehatten. One of several cities that span the south east coast," she explained. "Equestria changed in two thousand years, 'Tia. More than I'm able to tell you."
She looked away and closed her eyes. "I see so much of what you two will become."
"And just what do we become, Moonlight?" Celestia asked, standing up and pacing around. "I'm not a Princess, or whatever version of me you know in the future. I'm just-"
Her voice quivered, causing Twilight to open her eyes and gaze over. "I'm scared, Moon. What if we get to Eden and it doesn't work. No more Equestria, no more Princesses!"
"Of course it wi-"
"Don't give me that! You know that for a fact?"
Twilight stared at her, then looked down and sighed. "No. I don't. Every sign points to us being successful, but it's not one hundred percent guaranteed."
Celestia, out of the corner of her eye, noticed two ponies walk up to the cherry blossom tree.
Within an instant she was next to them, with Twilight on the other side.
"They're us. I had just taken you out on a small date," Twilight explained as the past and future selves stared up at the moon. "And this is where you say..."
"... Our Moon."
She nodded and smiled over at Celestia, then back at the memory. "Still as radiant as ever..."
Celestia herself simply gawked at her future, larger self. "I get so... Bulky," she muttered, tilting her head to examine parts of her. "I guess there's no shortage of food in the future."
Twilight giggled as she walked around the memory pair who had begun to smooch. "Everypony is fed and happy, because of you and Luna. You two bring stability in a world of chaos. Don't forget that."
Celestia stared down at the pair making out as her cheeks flushed a healthy red. She looked back over at Twilight and frowned. "Be that as it may, I- we are not the Princesses you know. They have had two millennia of practice and knowledge!"
"I'm not saying you are, Celestia. I'm simply showing you what you can be," Twilight stated, moving closer and taking the mare by her shoulders. "It's up to you if you want to light the way for your little ponies."
"Is she by my side throughout everything?"
Twilight hesitated, then nodded. "She's always yours."
The Alicorn's eyes gazed deep into Twilight's own, searching for some meaning from those words.
With a chuckle, Twilight shrugged and let go of Celestia. "Both of you tell me in the future. I don't mind, considering," she explained, gesturing to themselves rolling about on the grass.
With a flash, the spell ended and Celestia stumbled back, staring at Twilight.
Luna wrapped her wings around her sister and held her. "Is it true, 'Tia?" she whispered, hesitant.
Celestia glanced at Luna, smiled and nodded while nuzzling her. "Yes," she whispered, flushing slightly.
"It will be, or was..." Twilight replied, sighing. "They're my memories, but your future. Time is fickle, I don't know if telling you this will change it, but here we are..."
"You're actually telling the truth," Luna muttered, pulling up and closing in on her
"I'm sorry for keeping everything from you. I didn't want time to mess up... but I think we're past that already. Those ponies with the masks have the symbol of... well, it would be spoilers, but let's just say they shouldn't have that symbol for another thousand years."
"Be that as it may, I would suspect events are not playing out as expected?"
"No, but the main problem is that you two wouldn't tell me anything about what happens, so I'm in the dark as to what happens just as much as you," Twilight replied, stretching her neck. "The good news is that because we talk in the future, things go well for you two."
"Not for you?"
"I make it to the end, but past that I don't know. I'll choose to believe that everything works out fine."
"Of course. I doubt it would do you well to dwell on things outside of your control," Luna said, before climbing on the bed as well. "May I ask, why did you come back?"
Twilight let out an awkward chuckle and averted her eyes. "It's a stupid reason, really."
"Moonlight, I'm sure it isn't."
"I came back to learn more about my marefriends," Twilight quickly answered, her cheeks flushing.
Celestia let out a quiet, "aww", then noticed Luna stare at Twilight in shock.
"You- us... Wait, marefriends?!"
Twilight let out a quiet chuckle. "Yeah... we're marefriends, in the future, that is."
"Just you and 'Tia?" Luna asked, showing her worry.
"And you, Lulu," Twilight giggled, closing the gap and shrugging. "I fell in love with both of you," she admitted, looking away with a smile. "Some might say I was selfish, or too indecisive, but I knew you two for a long time before I even thought of making my move and I couldn't have been more happy."
The sisters stared up at her with wide, misty, eyes then together, they rose up and pressed their lips against both of Twilight's cheeks, causing her to squeak.
"Don't misunderstand, Moon," Luna started, gazing into Twilight's eyes after using a hoof to force her attention over to her. "I'm still angry that you didn't tell us. But," she whispered, sighing. "I understand why you did it."
"I concur with my sister," Celestia said, using her own hoof to do the same. "That trust we had is broken. But, you did tell us without any prompting and I'm sure Luna is just as grateful for that. This information will take some time to process though."
"Of course... I'm sorry for dropping this on you just before we go tomorrow," Twilight said, nodding. "I just didn't want to hold onto this before anything happened. I'm going into uncharted territory here. While the outcome for you two indicates that we'll be fine, I have no idea what would happen up until the end. I could lose a wing, lose my magic, tortured... so many variables... not to mention the issue of if I'm wrong about how this plays out!"
Twilight backed up and turned around, her breathing starting to pick up. "What happens if I'm wrong and this isn't playing out like it should. If time is malleable, all my friends might be gone, Equestria could be gone, or worse, it could be a dead wasteland again!"
The sisters glanced to each other and lit their horns, freezing Twilight in place with their magic.
"Our Moon, calm yourself," Luna ordered. "I will not sit by while our future marefriend frets like this," she grumbled, narrowing her eyes.
Twilight blinked, closed her eyes and took a slow, deep breath.
"Good. Now, we'll let you down, then we'll get into bed and cuddle under the blankets while we try not to worry about tomorrow," Celestia said, smiling over to Luna. "Does that sound good?"
Upon seeing Twilight sheepishly nod, the sisters relinquished control of Twilight's body, letting her move. She trotted over to the bed, pulled the covers back waited for the pair to climb in. Luna slid under the covers first, a wide grin on her face, then Twilight, who pressed up against the dark mare. Celestia cuddled up against Twilight's side and softly sighed when the covers were draped back over them.
Twilight squirmed for a few seconds to find a comfortable position, then quickly opened her wings, only to pull the two in, cuddling them up. "Much better," she whispered, nuzzling into the pillow. "Much more comfortable."