Cadence stepped back in horror from her former captor, petrified to see those goo green eyes. The pink Alicorn looked as if she was about to hyperventilate, breathing deeply and her pupils smaller. “No, no, no, no… She’s not here. She’s not going to hurt me… I’m fine! Everything’s fine!” Cadence shook her head, five months of therapy melting away at this unpredicted meeting of her nemesis.
Luna, on the other hand, was not shaken in the least. The Lunar Princess’s face donned an angered look and she got into a defensive stance. “Foul wretch! How dare thee desecrate the harmony of our walls!” Her archaic dialect returning, Luna’s eyes flashed white as her ethereal mane suddenly became larger. The dark navy blue and lighter purplish outlined mane became as big as the Princess herself. The mane then began wrapping itself around Luna until she was completely enveloped in it, only her white glowing eye discernable in the swirling cloud of magical mane. Luna shouted; bursting the mane and reappearing, clad in dark silver and purple armor that covered her forehead, legs, front chest, and some at the top joints of her wings.
Luna flared her armored wings open and scowled at the beast next to her sister. “Thou shall regret ever stepping back into these halls degenerate hag! Prepare thy innards to be ripped from thy thorax and feed to thee from thine own anal cavity!” Luna jumped at Chrysalis, her horn flaring black and her face contorted into one of utter rage.
Before Luna could tackle Chrysalis and commit the acts she had promised, Celestia jumped in front of Chrysalis sitting on her haunches and spreading her fore legs out wide to protect the Changeling. “NO, LUNA, STOP!” She yelled as high as her voice could go without using the Royal Canterlot Voice (which actually wasn’t all that high believe or not).
Luna stopped in midair, only a meter away from Celestia and Chrysalis. She still had the all the rage and battle cry look on her face. The Solar Goddess and Changeling Queen both looked at her with cocked eyebrows, wondering how she could float there with no obvious assistant. Suddenly Luna came back to life (still in midair). “What? Why should We sister?! This creature is one of pain and cruelty, the very same that locked away our niece and try to take Equestria as her own love farm! For what sane reason could you have for protecting her now?!”
Celestia looked off to the side, embarrassed. “Because… well… she’s my marefriend.”
Luna continued to float in the air for another moment, blinking at Celestia while her mouth shaped itself into a little O. Finally, the Lunar Princess spoke. “Oh… I see.” She stated blandly.
Almost instantly Luna quickly fell to the ground, encasing herself in a dark blue flame that melted away her armor. She then bypassed Celestia and faced Chrysalis snout to snout. The Changeling Queen backed up a bit, nervous. Luna glared at the Queen and opened her mouth to speak, inhaling a lot of air. Chrysalis backed her head up, preparing for a verbal lashing that would no doubt scar her for the rest of her…
“Well hello there Queen Chrysalis, how do you do?” Luna took Chrysalis’s holey hoof and shook it adamantly, smiling. “As you may or may not know I’m Princess Luna, Tia’s little sister. It’s nice to finally meet you, I’ve heard quite a bit about you! Well, they weren’t really good things but whatever right? That’s all in the past and I’m glad to see Celestia reaching out to another being again and I just want to apologize about the whole disembowel thing I yelled earlier. Yeah, really sorry about that, won’t happen again, I hope we can move past it become good friends… Well, not as good friends as you have become with Celestia, wink wink, but still pretty good friends regardless!”
Chrysalis’s eyes were spinning; she couldn’t keep up with how fast Luna was talking to her. Eventually she processed it all and returned the hoof-shake Luna was giving her. “Umm… thank you, Princess Luna, I am humbled by your acceptance of me.”
Luna laughed. “Oh, think nothing of it! How could I, a being who has betrayed all she loved once before, think ill of one who wishes to change their ways in the name of love? I was reconciled back to the world, why not you? Besides, as a sister, I have to be supportive of anypony my sister decides to~…” Luna held onto the ‘to’ until she got a good look of the bits at the other end of Chrysalis’s undercarriage. Her head shot back up instantly. “To connect the lower caverns with!” Chrysalis’s eyes widened, Celestia faced-hoofed.
Regardless of her sister’s… uh… bluntness, Celestia exhaled deeply, relieved by her sister’s acceptance. Luna, ever since being redeemed by the Elements of Harmony, had been very accepting of any creature that had found fault in their wrongdoings and wished to atone. Just one more lesson she learned from her ordeal, Celestia thought. It was a bittersweet pill, how much more mature Luna had gotten from her lunar imprisonment. It was like teaching a child to fear fire by allowing them to get burned. Still, it was nice to see the two getting along, Luna already asking Chrysalis about her holey hooves and the Changeling answering with eagerness and pride.
Cadence, however, was much less enthusiast about Chrysalis in her home. The Alicorn had tried going through the stages of grief, her denial stage holding her for much of the time the others had been talking. Now, however, the mare was now stuck on anger, and currently boiling in it. Cadence felt her face contort with anger as her mouth deformed into an open mouth scowl, showing all her pearly whites. Her teeth clenched, as she couldn’t hold the rage she felt over that… that thing being in her home. Chrysalis had kidnapped her, thrown in a cavern to rot! She’d tried to destroy Equestria and now… now the Princesses were letting her here with open arms?! This would not do! Cadence took a few stomps towards the three mares. The Alicorn inhaled. “WHAT. THE…”
The grey earth pony stallion Pickpocket looked at his friend with a confused look. “Hat Trick, you screaming ‘BUCK!’ isn’t going to make me kick harder.”
The brown pegasus stallion Hat Trick rubbed the back of his neck. “Well you don’t know that! It could motivate you to do better.”
Pickpocket rolled his eyes at his friend. The stallion turned to the lock door in front of them. “How in the heck did you lose the key to the storage room? We got supplies in there that need to be sent out to the other charity locations pronto.”
Hat Trick shrugged. “I don’t know, if I knew how I lost it I’d have found it by now!”
Pickpocket face-hoofed. “How could this get any worse?”
Hat Trick’s eyes perked and he looked towards the castle. “Hey, Pickpocket, you hear that? Sounds like somepony’s screaming the F-word really loud.”
Pickpocket grunted. “Well, glad somepony’s voicing my anger right now, saves me the trouble…” The stallion returned his glance to the door, How are we gonna get this open?!
Cadence’s face was red and sweating, the mare panting heavily after her five minute long curse word shout. Celestia, Luna, and Chrysalis looked at her wide-eyed (Luna was personally impressed her niece held the word that long). Celestia shook her head of shock and walked up to Cadence, looking very alarmed.
“Cadence?” She started, placing a hoof on the mare’s shoulder. “What was that about? Are you ok?”
Cadence moved her shoulder to knock off Celestia’s hoof. The mare looked her Aunt in the face. “WHAT’S WRONG?! I TELL YOU WHAT’S WRONG! SHE’S HERE!” Cadence pointed an angered hoof at Chrysalis, who shrunk away from it behind Luna. Cadence returned to Celestia’s glance. “Auntie Celestia, how could you bring her here?! She’s evil and wants to destroy Equestria!”
Celestia stood straight, adopting a stern glare. “Why did I bring her here Cadence? I did it because I love her. She and I are together.”
“She found love in a Changeling’s place.” Luna said in a singsong manner, obviously parodying the song she was thinking about.
Celestia ignored her sister’s comment. “Yes, I love her and vice versa. She is also not evil Cadence. She has made mistakes and gone about her life in an ill manner, but she's not evil.”
“But…” Cadence protested.
“If you had to lead an entire colony of creatures that feed off only love what would you do Cadence? Love isn't exactly a crop you can grow or a beast you can hunt. I myself have had to do regrettable things as Equestria’s leader.”
Luna coughed. “One of its leaders.” She coughed again.
Celestia gave her a look. “All of what happened is in the past. Chrysalis has chosen a new path. One that involves me… luckily.” Celestia looked towards Chrysalis and smiled. The Changeling smiled back in response.
Cadence almost gagged. “You can’t be serious! She’s obviously using her Changeling magic to manipulate you! You’re just her puppet right now!”
Celestia sighed. “Luna…”
Luna dashed right to her sister’s side. “Tia?”
“Please magically scan me for hostile, mind altering magic.”
“But doesn’t doing that usually hurt?”
“If it proves Chrysalis’s innocence, so be it.”
Luna nodded, charging her magic. Celestia became encased in a dark aura as Luna scanned her body, rather invasively, for hostile magic. The Sun Goddess clenched her teeth and bit her lower lip as the pain from the procedure started to affect her. After five minutes Luna’s magic dissipated. “Yeah, she’s clean.” Celestia lost her regal posture and slumped a little from the soreness of the magical scan.
Cadence was unconvinced, seeing first hand the power of Changeling magic. “Are you sure? How do you know she’s not just hiding it well?” The mare sat on her haunches and crossed her fore legs together.
Luna gave Cadence a disappointed look. “Cadence… I am an Alicorn. I have…” Luna inhaled deeply, standing on her hind legs and raising her arms so they made a U shape. “PHENOMENAL COSMIC POWER!!!” A flash of lightning struck behind her, adding to the ambience. Luna returned to her normal stance. “I’d be able to sense any hostile magic in my sister’s body. I didn’t, so she’s clean. Got it?”
“GOT IT?!” Luna shouted, not enjoying the validness of her word being in question.
“Alright… Alright…” Cadence said, motioning her hooves for Luna to back down. “I get it, she’s not hexed… just crazy…”
Chrysalis stepped forward, deciding it was time to speak for herself. “Please Cadence, I know you don’t think much of me…”
“Understatement of the year…” Cadence grouched, crossing her fore legs.
Chrysalis looked off to the side. “Yes… well, I’m sorry for what I’ve done to you and Equestria. I only wanted what was best for my people… without thinking of others. But now that’s changed. It took awhile and a lot of thinking but, I’m ready to change my ways… especially for Celestia.” The two smiled at each other, each deciding to go in for a little muzzle nuzzle. Luna aww’d while Cadence gagged.
Celestia stepped next to Chrysalis and glared defiantly at Cadence. “Besides, I do not need your permission to court and romance anypony.”
Cadence would not let up, however. “What will the citizens think?! How open will your Equestria be about you dating a Changeling?!”
Celestia sighed. “It will be a challenge I’ll admit. But I will try, regardless of that.”
Luna leaned next to Cadence’s ear. “Yeah, she’s got the look on her. Sorry, Cadence, you aren’t winning this debate.”
“NO!” Cadence yelled. “I won’t accept that my Aunt is dating an ugly, black BUG!!!”
The other mares looked wide-eyed at Cadence. Luna’s eyelids slid down until her eyes were half closed in disappointment. “Oh great… we’ve just had an international incident. We’re definitely getting letters cause'a this one…”
“CADENCE!” Celestia shouted, the Canterlot Voice slipping through for emphasis. “How dare you insult not only a foreign leader, but she is also my lover! You need to calm down and think about leaving the past where it belongs. GUARDS!” Two Solar Guards rushed into the room and saluted. “Please take Princess Cadence to her room, so she may think about what she’s said.”
The guards nodded and turned to Cadence. “Princess. Please come with us.” Cadence stood defiant for a moment before slouching in defeat. The mare followed the guards out, a defeated look on her face.
Celestia, Luna, and Chrysalis watched her being escorted out. “I-I’m really sorry about this Celestia. It’s all my fault…” Chrysalis scratched the back of her neck, embarrassed.
“No.” Celestia replied. “Cadence is just being difficult. She’ll come around, I’m sure of it.”
Chrysalis sighed. “I don’t think difficult is the right word. I think reasonable is a more accurate one, considering all I’ve put her through.”
“Cadence is a loving mare, she’ll finally forgive you, it’s simply fresh in her mind right now. Come on, I’ll show you around.”
Chrysalis nodded and the two mares walked towards the exit of the throne room. Luna watched them leave, a blank stare on her face.
“Well, this isn’t going to end in an orderly fashion.”
Luna looked over to her right to see the newly reformed Discord standing next to her, giving the same blank stare Luna was giving. “How long have you been standing there?” The Night Princess asked.
“I’m always here.” Discord replied.
“Huh.” Luna said, looking to the floor. “Oddly enough I find myself more intrigued than disturbed… Weird.”