Plural Possessive

by Aquaman

... It's Probably Going To Hurt A Lot

In the interest of giving credit where credit is due, I must confess some degree of vexation during my first few moments in Dinky Doo’s body. I had every confidence that Twilight Sparkle would prove a formidable opponent in our inevitable battle for dominance over her anatomy, and in fact spent a great deal of time over the last months perfecting a comprehensive defense against such a resistance. I was prepared for master-level counter-possession charms, advanced occulumental techniques, practiced meditative exercises, even the simple sheer force of disembodied will.

I was not prepared for her immediate reaction, upon realizing that some unknown spirit had forcefully taken up residence inside her body, to be punching herself in the face as hard as she possibly could.

With my psyche still growing accustomed to a healthy, functioning nervous system, the blow feels more like ten piled all on top of one another, enough to send me reeling off to the side balanced on two legs. The other two flail in midair completely outside of my control, presumably with the intent of making contact with Dinky’s skull again. Another point of credit for the little whelp: like all ponies, she seems insufferably tenacious in the field of ignorant, incoherent fear.


Dinky’s thoughts swarm over mine like drunken wasps, piercing and stabbing at every notion I try to cobble together in spite of them. The pain from the throbbing lump on her temple is nothing compared to the twinging ache inside my mind. How can a mortal pony scream like a banshee inside their own mind?

“Silence, you fool!” I order her, but the words almost choke me as they leave her throat. The voice I hear rattling around the room isn’t the familiar booming call I’ve grown accustomed to, but instead a gravelly, broken cough that somehow manages to crack on all four words. Bile rises in her throat to match the blood rushing to her face. I don’t sound like me. I sound like a pathetic little foal trying to sound like me. And failing.


“Damn you to the moon, will you shut-OW!”

Before the last feeble, pitiful word can squeak out past her lips, Dinky Doo once again speaks without using them at all. I duck her head just in time for her forehoof to glance off her ear instead of her teeth, only for the frame of the vanity glass to finish the job for her. Pain fogs her vision as I clamp the only hoof I can control over the fresh bruise on her scalp, right in the center of her miserable skull. Between my inexperience with scrawny mortal legs and the fact that only one of them is now left touching the ground, I feel her falling before I have to chance to steady herself. Before I can stick her hoof out again to break her fall, some other infernal piece of furniture beats me to it.


You think?” I seethe through gritted teeth, our motives coalescing for once as both Dinky’s forehooves wrap around the sides of her head. It feels like her skull is splitting apart between them, each heartbeat pounding another searing crack through the fragile bone. I don’t have time for this foolishness. This is but a temporary setback, a simple and meaningless mistake. Nothing will deter me from reaching Twilight Sparkle tonight. One way or another, come dawn tomorrow vengeance will yet be—


Dinky overpowers me before I have a chance to parse a single syllable of the claptrap spewing from her side of her brain. I wasn’t prepared for this. She has too much influence over her body. I have just enough time to curse my own damnable weakness before her windmilling legs carry us just to the left of her wide-open door, directly into the corner of its cedarwood frame.


Finally, I’m granted a respite from the foal’s insufferable keening wails. I think I am, at least. Another possibility is that she no longer retains the mental faculties to give internal voice to her whinging, in light of the other sensations taking precedent over what little space remains there. Most of those sensations being pain.

“Blasted… fool of a… weak, impuissant little…”

A discombobulated mash of invectives turns out to be all I can manage. To an infuriating degree, the trauma to my body’s brain affects my own mind as much as hers. Her sluggish limbs wobble through my commands, but with some effort I prop her up against the wall and guide her to the top of the stairs. Outside the bay window above the front door, a splash of orange and pink paints the lightening horizon. Dawn is upon me. There’s little time left. I must go now.


In the middle of stretching her forehoof out, Dinky expends the last of her energy to yank it back towards her chest, hard enough to bounce off her sternum. Her hind legs twitch with the added strain, and for a moment almost hold. For the second time, Dinky falls into silence, beginning to realize what she’s done. She leans back hard, lets her rump drop in sync with her heart, thrashes her limbs around in a frantic attempt to stay upright, but I know long before the insipid little foal does that it all came far too late.

Between her panic and my palpable, spellbinding incredulity, neither of us can maneuver her body into a position that might have saved us some modicum of additional pain. Instead, we tumble down the stairs like a sack of potatoes mixed with concrete bricks, limbs and mane and pulsing, pulverized skull flying every which way and bashing into every single one of the fifteen steps. The final bounce at the foot of the staircase sends us careening across the house’s foyer, stopping with a jarring thud against a cabinet set up next to the door.

Again—of course—head-first.

I find myself left without the capacity to speak. I’m not sure I could bring myself to say anything even if I had it. In a way, it’s almost satisfying that things have turned out this way. There were times during the last months, inside a place in my heart I dared not show the light of day otherwise, when I wondered whether my conscience would withstand the path to glory I intended to set it upon, whether my immortal soul would someday balk at the notion of once again enslaving an entire race of sentient, independent creatures. It comforts me to know that my deep-rooted fears were unwarranted. I will have no qualms sentencing everypony in Equestria to a lifetime of misery and servitude. In fact, I imagine I’ll enjoy it even more now.

vase …

Dinky Doo sounds comatose inside her head, a single word all she can manage as she clings to the last few threads of consciousness. I squeeze my eyes shut and let her talk. Whatever saintly patience allowed me to engage with the suicidal simpleton before is well and truly vanquished now.

… big vase …

Stars only knew what she’s even prattling on about. She hardly seems lucid. I hardly feel lucid just listening to her.

wobble wobble

Now a flash of an image accompanies her babbling, though: an ornate white flower vase painted with swirling blue patterns. Sitting on a cabinet inside a house. Next to the front door. At the bottom of the steps.

falling …

Through Celestia’s blinding sunrise, I crack one of Dinky’s eyes open. On top of the cabinet next to the front door at the bottom of the steps we just fell down, an ornate white flower vase with swirling blue patterns teeters back and forth right over Dinky’s head. It balances on its edge for a moment, then with a scrape of china on wood tips over and starts to fall.
I don’t even bother trying to move. There’s no point. Mortal life is pain.


• • •

Time passed over us like water falls: there was a lot of it and it was really, really loud. I am not particularly sure why. It was never like that before. Maybe mortals feel time in a different manner than me. I have never asked them. Should I have asked them? No, they are mortals. Stupid mortals. I am not mortal. I am the keeper of death and the destroyer of worlds. I am darkness and shadow and some other scary third thing. I am Dinky Doo.

No, Sombra. I am Sombra. Dinky Doo is… I am inside Dinky Doo. Dinky Doo is my body. Dinky Doo will not shut up except now she has, mumbling instead of yelling, dizzy and throbbing it hurts oh stars above Dinky Doo hurts. Why does she hurt? Why does everything hurt? Why does her throat hurt when I talk through it and hoof hurt when I move it and ears hurt when sound enters them another voice someone else talking stabbing into her skull with needles and pinpricks and ten-foot-long swords.

“Dinky? Dinky, is that you down there?”


“What in Eques… aw, you poor thing. Did you fall down the stairs again, honey?”

Dinky opens her eyes, wriggles towards the sound as I try to buck it away. Messes of color form into blurry shapes: four gray hooves, more gray torso and face, short mane yellow like buttercup buds, eyes tawny and perfectly straight. She looks like Dinky, but I am Dinky. Or… not Dinky. She is not Dinky, is what’s important. She is Bigger-Dinky. I don’t know her, except for all of my life since birth.

“Uh-oh, looks like Aunt Daring’s vase broke too…” One of Big-Dinky’s eyes vanishes as her mouth wavers into a crescent. “Don’t worry about it, sugar-bear. Between you and me, I always thought it was kind of ugly.”

Bear made out of sugar. Vase made out of ugly. I don’t understand. I don’t know what’s happening. Who is Big-Dinky? Me-Dinky knows. I think she’s Mother. Not my mother. My mother is eternity, and my father is… is… something. Damn it to the moon, I had something for this.

… I had something I needed to do, didn’t I?

“Now, come on, Dinky, you don’t have to be so embarrassed. Everypony’s a little clumsy now and then. Just sit tight for a minute and let me clean all that up, and then I’ll make you an extra-big breakfast before I drop you off at school. Sound good?”

Dinky-Mother’s voice is softer now, farther away in the room I think is called kitchen. I don’t have time to be tight for a minute. I have something I need to do. I have… I know I have it, it’s… she’s…

Twigli Spakrull…

Dinky mumbles her name right when I do. She is what I need to do. I need to find her and take her vengeance, get my body and… no, that’s later. First vengeance, then body. But with her body, to get the vengeance. And… power too?

Dinky shakes her head as I roll onto my stomach and blink her eyes. Something inside her brain stirs as I stand—it is her, but not. Just part of her, like the echo of her annoying voice.


“No,” I tell her. “Veggence firs’.”



Dinky starts to walk forward, kicking through shards of ugly vase along my way. When she gets there, I bump my head against the front door, gently, just enough to black out all the lights and bury our stomach under a haze of nausea. It only stops me for a few waterfalls or so. Nothing can stand in my way. I’m going to school—no, vengeance—and that’s final.

“Dinky? Dinky, I told you to stay still while I… wait, are you going to school already?”

“Uh-uh,” I tell her with a nod of my head.

“Well, aren’t you gonna stay for breakfast?” she asks next. She didn’t listen to me. This is why I hate mortals.

“Haffa go.” I clamber down the stoop in ten steps and reach the edge of the yard in five plus one trip over Dinky’s clumsy hoof. “Needa… Twahglaspigle.”

“Oh… okay, then. Have a good day, sweetheart!” My mother sounded confused for a moment, but by the time I can’t see the house anymore from the sidewalk, she’s calmed down a bit. I suppose she trusts Dinky a lot. That’s why I love her so much.

Dinky walks down the street from one side to the other, swaying in time with the squat little houses floating above me. Twilight Sparkle lives in a tree house right across from mine, but that one’s gone now. I have to find the other. I have to take control of her body and take over Equestria and study for my test next Thursday and maybe eat lunch on the same side of the playground as—

Dinky’s hooves clunk against each other beneath me, then tangle together so that we both stumble. Her right hoof points left, towards another street where Twilight might live. Her left hoof points right, down a winding lane leading to the edge of town and then all the way out to the schoolhouse, which is where I’m not going, I swear to Old Celestia.

Dinky lurches forward, and I fall to my knees with my hooves still tied in a knot. I grit my teeth, and Dinky shakes her head.

“School,” I say in a slurry hiss. “Haffa goda school.”

“No we don’!” she argues back, straining against my own body.

“Stoppit!” we both growl together, but where I possess finely tuned mental acusity or however it’s spelled, Dinky Doo wins out with sheer idiotic strength. With a cough and a scrapped knee for her troubles, she smothers me under overwhelming mortalness and wrestles us onto the winding path, tottering forward two steps for every one I can force in what I’m almost positive might be the right direction.

Without her body to lord over, I’m left with no choice but to take aim at her mind instead. I rage about how loud I’d be roaring at her if she’d just quit hogging her diaphragm for a second. I poison her thoughts with horrific memories of the Crystal Palace dungeons, which in retrospect would look a lot more horrifying if they were made out of my crystal and not just the regular kind. I go into exquisite detail of exactly how agonizing her death will be just as soon as I remember how hooves are supposed to work.

But nothing does work, any of that or her hooves. All the way from the center of town to the front gate of the schoolyard half a mile away, Dinky Doo just keeps waddling along, refusing to submit. Can she not comprehend the magnitude of my power? Is her intellect too feeble to recall the horrors of my eternal reign, or not to keep her eyes closed once in a while so the sun doesn’t burn holes straight through our brain? Curse this maddening mortal mind! Curse this puny mortal body! And curse the old gods for making the sun so moondamned bright!

By the time Dinky reaches the white wooden gate separating the schoolyard from the path that led us to it, all hope seems lost. Neither extortion nor intimidation proved at all effective against the infinitesimal mind of a child, and I’ve enough dignity left to resist stooping down to such a low as persuasion or reason. Mortals do that, not me. I am Sombra. I am not a dumb mortal. I just have a dumb mortal brain right now, and it’s making my smart ideas feel dumb. It’s probably so dumb that Twilight Sparkle’s already noticed how smart it suddenly became just because I’m inside it. She’s probably coming to save me right now, flying down from Canterlot with a counter-spell already—

No, wait, that’s Celestia. I hate Celestia. I don’t need her to save me from anything. Plus Twilight doesn’t even have wings. She’s just a unicorn who lives in Ponyville in a big treehouse and she’s really smart and good at magic and… wait, what if I possessed her? Yeah, that’s a great idea! She’d be much stronger than this little Dinky thing I’m stuck in right now. I should go find her. I’ll look in the schoolhouse first.

When I push Dinky’s forehooves forward, though, she doesn’t seem to expect it. They touch down on the grass and keep going through it, sliding back under me until they’re pinched together beneath her waist. Her teeth clack together as her chin bounces off the ground, and suddenly it’s like a weight been lifted off her shoulders. She’s dazed. Confused. She doesn’t even know why she fell.

I can take over again. I can go wherever I want.

Dinky’s legs straighten out as my mind fills out her brain completely again, and the ease with which I use them to stand up again makes her whole chest feel weightless. This body—this whole entire body—is me. Like it’s… like it’s just been part of me all along. I can just lift my hoof up and wave it around in front of my face, and it’s just the funniest thing I’ve ever seen and I have to bite my tongue hard so I don’t laugh out loud. I had no idea mortals could do things like that just by thinking about them. I always thought mortals were stupid.

I clench my teeth down on my tongue again, but a giggle sneaks out of my throat anyway. Stupid mortals with their stupid bodies. They don’t know what they’re missing. This hoof is the greatest hoof I’ve ever seen, and Dinky just walks on it like a… like some stupid mortal. She’s so stupid I think I giggled again.

“Wow… have a nice trip, Dinky!”

“Yeah! See you next fall!”

The two voices come out clear as crystal, high-pitched and ringing with laughter. With a swivel of my head, I can see where they came from: a couple fillies about my size, one pink and the other gray, both snickering behind their hooves. I smile and wave my hoof again so they can see it, and they giggle even louder. They seem nice. Maybe I’ll kill them quickly once I’ve banished the old gods to Tartarus and pillaged their land for all it holds dear.

what happened

Oh, great. Dinky’s back. I was having a lot of fun without you, you stupid mortal.

what are you doing

I’m taking over Equestria, idiot. I mean, not really now, but I’m totally going to. I have a great plan for it. I need to find Twilight first.

why do you… oh no oh celestia you’re right that’s a good plan let’s go do vengeance please

No, Twilight. Twilight Sparkle. Celestia’s the old god. I’m gonna kill her or make her beg for mercy or something. That’s all in the plan too. Were you even listening when I…

“Uh… you okay, Dinky?”

oh my gosh

I swivel my head again, back the other way. This voice sounds deeper, like a colt’s maybe. In fact, it is a colt now that I can see him, one with an orange coat and a blue mane that looks like an ocean wave. He’s giving me a funny look, like he’s confused. I’m confused too. He looks familiar. I’ve never seen him before.

oh my gosh please no

I lift my hoof up in thought, point it right at his chest. I know I know him, but… no, I don’t know him. Dinky Doo does. Dinky Doo’s seen him before.

you can take over everything it’s totally fine I don’t mind at all just can we please go NOW

“You…” I tell him, my voice slow and sluggish as his identity finally dawns on me. “You were in the dream.”

oh luna

“I… what?” he says. I nod my head, squinting my eyes at the same time so he stays clear inside my vision.

“In the dream,” I say again, doing my best to ignore whatever Dinky’s yelling about and really getting pretty good at it by now. “Well, not… it wasn’t my dream. It was her dream,” I explain, pointing at my head so it’s clear I’m talking about Dinky and not me. He still looks a little bit puzzled, but I’m sure he’ll catch on. He looks like a pretty smart mortal to me.

“You… dreamed… about me?” he asks. I mean to answer him out loud, but for some reason all I can manage is a nod. Something else has started to happen inside of me, getting stronger every time I look the colt in the eyes. My chest feels light again like it’s filling with air, and it’s buzzing too like the air is filled with butterflies. It’s happening to my head too, spawning heat in my cheeks and a thick lump in my throat. I know this too. I remember this from a long time ago, from stories I read back in the Crystal Land. It’s dumb mortal stuff, but then again Dinky is a dumb mortal, so I guess it makes sense.

“I’m very attracted to you,” I inform the colt, nodding to myself as the thought solidifies in my head. “I think you’re hot.”

He doesn’t seem to understand that either, though. Even the two fillies have stopped giggling, although the pink one’s lips are curling back up into a toothy, delirious grin. At least Dinky has finally gone silent, though for some reason I can’t shake the thought of her screaming without any noise coming out.

“It feels weird,” I go on. “I’ve never actually felt this before, it’s… you mortals are weird.” I point my hoof out again, and this time the colt edges back a step. “I like you, though. Well, she likes you. I’ll probably torture you and immolate your kingdom in flames or… I don’t know, something like that. It’s nothing personal. It’s just a thing I’m gonna do with Twilight and… y’know, taking over the world and stuff.”

I think I gave the colt more credit than he deserved. From the way his mouth hangs open and his eyes bug out of his head, he looks like he didn’t comprehend a word I just said. I guess that’s just dumb mortals for you. I thought I explained things pretty well.

When I turn around to go finally meet up with Twilight, though, I find myself facing an impassable wall made out of magenta forelegs and blinding white nothing above them. Somehow the sun got brighter than ever when I wasn’t looking. I feel kind of dizzy too. It’s probably the colt’s fault. Stupid mortal.

“Are you… feeling all right, Dinky Doo?” the mare in front of me says. I lean forward and crinkle my eyes up until I can see the worried look on your face, and then I remember I’m probably supposed to answer her. Well, that’s easy. Dinky knows her name, and I know just what to tell her.

“Yes, Miss Cheerilee,” I say with a nod. “Yes, I am.”

I make it two steps past her before the world flips upside down and the sun burns out. I’m not completely sure that my head exploded too, but I’m going to call it a fairly safe bet.