• Published 30th Jul 2013
  • 5,094 Views, 685 Comments

Trixie vs. Equestria - PaulAsaran



Oh look, Trixie's life has come crashing down. Again. Is there any way she can get out of her cycle of success and failure? A certain Princess of the Night might have the answer, but first Trixie must catch her attention.

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First Battle! Trixie vs. Rarity!

Trixie had never been to Canterlot before, and she couldn’t help feeling anxious walking its immaculate, white-brick streets. Buildings of pearly stone towered all around her, their golden roofs shimmering in the sunlight. In the distance towered Canterlot Castle, rising over its lesser neighbors like a regal giant overseeing its subordinates.

The street was crowded with unicorns, who dominated the local population. Every now and again Trixie would spot a pegasus or Earth pony among them, but it was a rare sight. The immaculately dressed unicorns paid little heed to Trixie or Amethyst, which greatly annoyed Trixie. What was she, shredded cabbage? Clearly these uptight ponies didn’t have any idea who she was. If they did, they’d be gawking in wonder!

“Trixie should have come to Canterlot years ago,” she grumbled. “These ponies have been missing her amazing gifts. She should fix that.”

“Whatever you say, Trix.” Amethyst stepped out of the hotel with a large saddlebag hovering before her. Trixie gave her friend a sour look but allowed the heavy thing to be strapped to her back. “Be careful with this. It costs a fortune.”

Trixie took a moment to peek inside one of the saddle’s four bulging pouches. It was loaded to near-bursting with diamonds, sapphires, moonstones and other types of gems. She frowned and heaved a sigh. “Who in Equestria would want that many gemstones? Trixie considers it a waste of bits.”

“This waste of bits pays for my miners’ salaries and my living,” Amethyst countered. “They’re for my top client, who pays handsomely for the best. Now come on, I want to get this over with.”

Trixie followed after her with heavy steps, moving slowly from the weight on her back. She glowered at the unburdened Amethyst but made no attempt to complain. Amethyst had gotten her to Canterlot – it was time to make good on her side of the bargain. Trixie was no workhorse, but she wasn’t going to back out.

She eyed the castle in the distance with a pout. Her original intentions had been to see Luna upon arrival, but Amethyst had reminded her of their deal. Acknowledging that Amethyst's delivery was time-sensitive, she had waited – for a friend and for their deal – but what an agonizing wait it had been!

She slipped on the curb of the street and had to pause to regain her balance. “H-how far is this delivery of yours? Trixie does not feel comfortable carrying such a load.”

“However long it takes to get to the castle,” Amethyst replied.

“The castle?” Trixie glanced up at the towering structure once more, its golden roof glistening. “You did not tell Trixie the delivery was for the castle.”

Amethyst seemed determined to keep her eyes on their destination. “I thought you’d be happy.”

“Trixie would be... if she didn’t have to carry all these gems that kind of distance.”

“Oh, stop whining,” Amethyst ordered. “It’s not as far as it looks.”

Trixie went silent, determined to carry the hefty saddlebag without another complaint. She focused on the castle and tried to ignore the weight, her breath coming in strained huffs. She wished she could have carried the saddlebag with her magic, but it was far too heavy for continuous levitation. Still, she was able to use her magic to relieve some of the weight for a few minutes at a time, which helped immensely. If only Amethyst would lend her horn to the cause, but of course she didn’t.

She tried to distract herself with the sights. Trixie didn’t much care for the crowded city scene, even in a place as significant as Canterlot. The tall buildings with their medieval designs were interesting, but after a few blocks they all started to look the same. The posh unicorns didn’t interest her much; she’d seen plenty of their kind in places like Manehattan, and at least those ponies had been more social.

There was only one other means of distraction: Amethyst. Trixie eyed her friend, who’d been blatantly ignoring everything save for what was immediately ahead with a grim expression. “So,” Trixie tried, “this is your hometown, correct?”

“Don’t remind me.”

Trixie's eyebrows rose at the response: Amethyst’s tone had been so bitter she could almost taste it. “Trixie has known you for ten years, but you never informed Trixie that you did not like Canterlot.” She waited for some kind of explanation, but Amethyst remained silent. Trixie pouted and averted her gaze. “Trixie supposes she should not meddle in your affairs.”

“Trixie is very wise,” Amethyst grumbled, but after a moment added, “Canterlot is Hell to anypony who isn’t a unicorn.”

Trixie tilted her head. “Trixie observes that you are a unicorn.”

Her friend nodded. “Mm-hmm.”

Trixie glanced around, her eyes skimming past all the unicorns that surrounded them. At last she spotted a lone Earth pony near a shop window across the street. “There’s an Earth pony right there. She does not appear to Trixie to think she is in Hell.”

Amethyst made no attempt to look. “And what is the Earth pony doing?”

“Umm… Cleaning the street.”

“Slum bum.” Amethyst acted as if this answered everything.

“Trixie does not understand.”

“That Earth pony lives in the slums,” Amethyst answered, her face marred by a grimace.

“What slums?”

“The slums beneath Canterlot.” She glanced back at Trixie with sharp eyes. “If you’re not a unicorn, you probably live in the slums. You can only come up here during the day with a worker’s pass, and those can only be acquired from The Gentlepony. How could you not know this, Trixie? It’s common knowledge.”

Trixie blushed and glanced away. “Trixie has never been to Canterlot.”

“How about history class?”

“You know I never went to school.”

“Gotcha.” But Amethyst made no attempt to touch Trixie’s muzzle this time, and her tone was flat with disinterest. “You’re pathetic sometimes, you know that?”

“The Great and Powerful Trixie is many things,” Trixie growled, “but she is not pathetic.”

“How could you have not known about the slums?” Amethyst pressed.

Trixie thought for a moment, trying to find a new topic. She gritted her teeth in frustration. “Well… Trixie… Trixie desires to know why you hate Canterlot.” She winced; if she weren’t carrying such a heavy load she’d have facehoofed.

Amethyst came to an abrupt stop, Trixie nearly walking into her. Trixie stared at the back of her friend’s head for a few seconds, chewing her lip and fidgeting. Amethyst didn’t bother to look back at her. When she finally answered, her voice was cold as ice. “Trix, you’re my friend, and I like you. Do you remember way back when I told you I didn’t want to talk about home? That was a warning. This is a threat: don’t ever ask me about my time in Canterlot again. Ever.”

She walked on, leaving Trixie to stare in stunned silence.


The rest of the trip had been made in silence, Trixie’s mind flitting with possibilities. She wanted to ask Amethyst so many questions, but didn’t dare speak up. Amethyst had returned to the brooding manner she’d had ever since they’d arrived in the city. She glared straight ahead, refusing to acknowledge anything other than their destination.

When at last they reached the towering main gate of the castle, they were stopped by a pair of heavy-built guards in golden armor. One of them took a step forward, his eyes hard as he addressed Amethyst. “State your business.”

“Amethyst Star of Sparkler Mines.” Her tone was rigid with formality. “Here to make a delivery.”

The guard studied her, his expression softening at the name. He glanced back to Trixie, who met his gaze with a firm one of her own. “And this?”

“The Great and—”

Trixie’s eyes crossed when Amethyst, without even looking, reached a hoof back to press her jaw closed. “Trixie Lulamoon, my assistant.”

The guard’s eyes lit up. “Of course, we’ve been expecting you! You are to go straight to the throne room.”

Amethyst tilted her head at that, but said nothing as the guard turned to open the gate. Trixie followed her through, amazed at how easily they’d gained entry. They found themselves in a tall hallway, vast marble pillars stretching in a line ahead of them and tapestries hanging from banisters on the walls. At their hooves was a long, red carpet stretching the entire length of the hall. Important-looking unicorns dressed in white uniforms were all around, some talking in groups, others running as if on some important errand. There was nothing leisurely about them.

“Trixie expected them to at least search the saddlebag,” she noted, eyes roaming the vaulted ceiling with its massive but intricate mosaic depicting the defeat of Discord. She caught sight of Luna’s image, standing beside her sister and the overshadowed visage of the Unknown Princess as they all dueled with the spirit of chaos. Why did just seeing Luna's image fill Trixie with frustration?

“They always search,” Amethyst said, interrupting Trixie’s thoughts. “That they didn’t do it this time is… strange. They’ve never told me to go to the throne room, either.”

Trixie tried to maintain a proud posture, despite both her sudden anxiety and the weight on her back. She was beyond ready to have the unbearable weight removed. “Trixie is ready. She cannot wait to teach Princess Luna a lesson.”

“Princess Luna sleeps during the day,” her friend noted with a bored tone. “Bad timing, Trix.”

Trixie missed a step and nearly fell to the floor. Of all the things she might forget! “Sh-she’ll still see Trixie,” she declared, fighting to keep confidence in her voice. “Nopony ignores the Great and Powerful Trixie.”

“Does it still count as ignoring when she’s not even awake?” Amethyst lead Trixie up a massive flight of stairs, its entrance protected by two more stone-faced guards. It brought them to another large hall, though it was smaller than the one before. Ahead of them was a tall door flanked by no fewer than six guards.

That had to be the throne room. It abruptly dawned upon Trixie that she might be seconds from meeting the most powerful pony in all of Equestria. “Umm, Trixie assumes you've been here often?”

“Y... yes…” Amethyst sounded about as anxious as Trixie felt.

“So you’ve met Princess Celestia before?”

“No,” her friend whispered. “No, I haven’t.”

“Wonderful.” Trixie raised her head high. “The Great and Powerful Trixie is not worried, though! She can stand hoof-to-hoof with a princess if she must.”

“C-care to stand in front of m-me, then?”

Trixie bowed her head again, cheeks burning. “Umm… T-Trixie believes you are doing a fine job in the front.”

This wasn’t going at all like she’d planned. She wanted to meet Luna, not Celestia! Why had she not waited until nightfall? The Princess of the Moon was one thing, but her sister was another matter entirely. What was she supposed to say? Or do? Obviously she would tell the truth, but where would that lead her? Would Celestia even allow her to see Luna?

She shook herself with a snarl that made Amethyst glance back. What was she thinking? She was Trixie! She would meet with Luna, Celestia be damned! She had to meet Luna’s challenge, she simply had to.

They came to a stop before a desk beside the tall door, where a slender, pale-green unicorn was analyzing a stack of documents. Oblivious to their presence, the mare continued poring over the paperwork, occasionally brushing an offending strand of pink from her face. Amethyst finally tapped her hoof against the desk, earning a glance of contempt from the startled unicorn.

“Who are you?” she demanded while looking back down at the forms on the desk. “The princess is in a meeting, nothing scheduled for the next half-hour.”

Amethyst’s face hardened, her previous nervousness gone in an instant upon hearing the secretary’s indignant tone. “Amethyst Star of Sparkler Mines.”

The secretary glanced up at her with a disinterested scowl. Her eyes shifted to Trixie. “And you?”

Trixie opened her mouth, but paused to glance at Amethyst. Her friend had an eyebrow raised and a disapproving frown. “Trixie Lulamoon.” Amethyst smiled.

The secretary’s eyes widened just a tiny amount. “I see. One moment.”

She stood up and went to the door, her horn glowing. The door opened just enough to allow her through, then closed with hardly a sound. Trixie and Amethyst shared a frown and waited, both of them fidgeting. “Perhaps they really are expecting you, Trix,” Amethyst offered.

Trixie might have sat if she weren’t afraid of the saddlebag tipping her backwards. “O-of course! Trixie told you as much. You should listen to Trixie more often.”

Amethyst turned to her with a curious expression. “So what are you gonna say?”

“Umm… Trixie will think of something!”

Amethyst facehoofed. “This is gonna go well.”

Trixie tried to think of how she might introduce herself, but her mind was blank. She couldn’t face Princess Celestia without some sort of plan! She didn’t understand why Celestia was so much more intimidating than Luna. She suddenly wished she’d not been so quick to accept the Moon Princess’ challenge.

The door opened once more. “The princess will see you now.”

Trixie turned to the door, where the secretary was waiting with an anxious expression. She didn’t want to go… but when she glanced at Amethyst she was startled to find her friend pale-faced. “Ammy? Are you okay?”

Amethyst said nothing for a few seconds. She swallowed, took a long breath and lowered her head, ears tucking down. “Umm… can you go in ahead of me?”

That wasn’t anything like the Amethyst she knew. “What’s wrong?”

“P-please, just go. I’ll be r-right behind you, I s-swear…”

Trixie eyed her friend, uncertain of what to do. She forced her legs to move upon hearing the secretary’s cough. A glance back found Amethyst following just behind, though her hooves dragged and lips trembled. Trixie wanted to ask, but she didn’t dare; she had her own worries.

The throne room was in the shape of a great oval, with four marbled pillars standing in a square formation and rising to the domed ceiling. Dozens of statesponies stood facing forward in two organized groups, and the floor between the groups was covered in red carpet. At the other side of the room was the throne. It was tall and steepled, a massive sun emblem near the top and golden inlays throughout its design. A massive window was just behind it, revealing a beautiful view of the lands below the castle. And there, her multicolor mane flowing about her like a majestic cloak, was Celestia.

Trixie slowly followed the path made by the dignitaries, all of whom were now watching her with haughty airs. She wanted to glance back and make sure Amethyst was behind her, but didn’t dare take her eyes off the Sun Princess. The princess wasn’t alone: standing just beside her throne was a mottled-brown unicorn stallion in a black vest. He stared down at the newcomers with hard rosewood eyes. It appeared he’d been interrupted by their entrance. Between him and the thought of facing the princess Trixie had to fight herself to keep moving forward.

Trixie was at last standing apart from the statesponies. “Ah, so this is The Great and Powerful Trixie,” Celestia announced. “It is good to finally meet you.”

Trixie blinked and her jaw dropped. “You know of Trixie? …er, your Highness.”

Celestia nodded with a warm smile, the tiny movement a study in elegance. “Indeed I have. My dear sister has told me of you.”

Trixie blushed and glanced at her hooves. “Oh… Of course…”

“And who is this with you?”

Trixie glanced back to see Amethyst trembling just behind her. Her friend leaned sideways to peer past Trixie and tried to speak, but had to clear her throat before anything would come out. “A-Amethyst St-Star, owner of Sp-Sparkle M-M-Mines, your Majesty.”

Celestia raised a graceful hoof to her lips and eyed Amethyst. “Your father… he was Jewel Hoof, was he not?”

Amethyst let out a terrified squeak, her eyes going wide and pupils shrinking. “Umm… Well… Y-yes…”

Celestia nodded with a pleasant smile. “Your gems make an integral part of the royal fashion. Your father would be proud of your work, and I thank you.”

Amethyst bowed her head stiffly, her knees shaking so much that Trixie wondered how she was still standing. “Her M-M-Majesty is too k-kind.”

“Nonsense, you should be proud.” Celestia clapped her hooves and gestured to an attendant at the bottom of the stairs. “The royal tailor should be here momentarily for her delivery.” The attendant left the room at a trot.

The stallion next to her cast a frown at Celestia. “Princess, there are still urgent matters to discuss regarding—”

“Fine, such matters can wait,” Celestia told him, her tone kind. “I am entertaining guests now.”

“But I need to know—” His words died at her glance. There wasn’t anything menacing or impatient in her look; as far as Trixie could tell, it was an expression of polite interest. Fine clearly saw something else in those eyes. “Very well. I will return at a later time.”

Celestia nodded. “Thank you, Fine. My apologies.”

He bowed and turned to the door. His eyes locked with Trixie’s as he passed. For a frightening moment, Trixie had the impression he knew far more about her than she would like. The feeling died the instant he moved past her, quietly making his way for the exit.

“Sweet Mother of Luna,” a trembling Amethyst whispered, voice so low Trixie almost didn’t hear her. “That was Fine Crime...”

Trixie would have inquired further, but Celestia caught her attention. “So, I’ve been told you are seeking my sister.”

Trixie fought down the butterflies in her stomach. “Trixie has something important to discuss with her.”

Celestia leaned forward as if hoping to learn a dark secret. “Does it have anything to do with dreams?”

Trixie hesitated – just how much did the princess know? “Well… yes.”

“That’s delightful!” The princess leaned back with a grin and a small giggle. “It has been some time since the last pony came to address my sister’s dreams.”

Trixie’s jaw dropped. “You mean I am not the first to be challenged?”

“Challenged?” Celestia slightly tilted her head. “Is that how she lured you here? No, Trixie, you are not the first. Others have come before you and – I’m sorry to say – all have failed.”

Trixie stiffened, forcing herself to her full height. “Trixie does not fail!”

Celestia’s smile widened just a little as she considered this response. “Miss Lulamoon, tell me, what is your profession?”

Trixie’s pride nearly came crashing down and she almost lost her confident posture. Even so she managed to announce, “Trixie is a showpony – a magician of the greatest caliber!” No need to mention she was out of work at the present time.

“Is that so? How wonderful!” Celestia’s horn glowed, and Trixie felt her saddlebag abruptly rising off of her. She let out a sigh while flexing her shoulders and back, thrilled to have the thing gone. “So tell me, why are you carrying this when you could be levitating it ahead of you?”

Trixie’s ears drooped. Her mind fumbled for a response. “Trixie… umm… Trixie does not need to use her magic all the time. She is as strong in body as she is in magic.”

“Ah, of course.”

Celestia’s horn lost its glow and the saddlebag dropped onto Trixie’s back like a ton of bricks. She let out a gasp, but managed to keep her balance and her bluff both intact. Even so, the effort left her panting.

“I do apologize,” Celestia went on as if unaware of Trixie’s trouble, “but I have a curious streak in me. If my queries trouble you…?”

Trixie inhaled deeply, steadying herself. “Trixie can take it. Ask any question!”

Celestia grinned once more. “So open! You may be just right for Luna, all things considered. So… where did you train in magic, Miss Lulamoon?”

Trixie’s mind froze. She stared up at the princess with wide eyes, her lips moving quietly. She couldn’t answer that, not in front of all these ponies! “I… Umm… Well…”

“Gotcha.” Trixie glanced back. Her friend still cowered behind her, but Amethyst was somehow able to cast a very weak smile of encouragement. Trixie smiled back, glad for the assistance even if she didn’t feel any better.

She turned back to Celestia and considered the situation. Should she lie? No, she didn’t dare! But to tell the truth…

A side-door opened, catching the attention of all the ponies present. Trixie’s breath caught in her throat at the sight of the intruder. She wanted to say something, but for the moment she was still scrambling for a way around Celestia’s last question.

A fatigued-looking Princess Luna made her way to the throne. Her mane seemed unusually dim compared to what Trixie remembered. Perhaps because she was out in the day?

Luna seemed oblivious to Trixie’s presence as she cast her eyes upon the throne. “I am here, sister. Do tell me: what is so important that you must have my sleep interrupted hours before sundown?”

Celestia beamed down at Luna. “Dear Luna, good news! You have a visitor.” She gestured to Trixie.

Luna cast an unpleasant glance at Trixie. She looked up at Celestia again with little interest… then performed a double take as her comprehension dawned. “You?”

Trixie bristled at her expression and instantly took on an aggressive stance. “Yes, it is Trixie! She has come for you, Princess Luna!” There was a long, tense pause as the two locked gazes, Luna's slack jaw a stark contrast to Trixie's determination.

Celestia clapped her hooves together, the sound echoing through the silent room. “Clear the throne room! I believe this calls for a more personal touch.”

The statesponies immediately began to leave, though the slightly alarming scene held their interests. Neither Trixie nor Luna spoke; they merely watched one another as the others departed. Soon it was only them. Amethyst remained behind Trixie, but her previous fear had diminished now that she was getting the chance to find out the truth regarding her friend and the Moon Princess.

“Isn’t this wonderful, Luna?” Celestia asked as soon as the great doors closed. “At last, another pony has come to see you.”

Luna’s head drooped just a touch. “Sister, I really must protest. This is not what you think!”

“But it is,” Celestia countered pleasantly. “Trixie has come to learn about your dreams.”

Luna’s eyebrows rose a little as she cast her gaze upon Celestia. “My dreams?”

“Yes, that’s exactly it!” Trixie took a determined step forward. “Trixie also demands to know why you attacked her in her own dreams!”

Luna's shoulder sagged just a touch. “Attacked you?”

“Do not feign ignorance! You came into Trixie’s dream as Nightmare Moon and assaulted her!”

Celestia set a dainty hoof to her wry lips. “Such aggression..."

Luna's demeanor shifted. She studied Trixie with a deep frown, then cast judgmental eyes upon her sister. “So this is the way of it? Are we really doing this again, Celestia?”

The Sun Princess tilted her head with a small frown. “I thought you’d be happy, Luna.”

Luna turned her head away with a sneer. “You know better."

Trixie stomped a hoof with a snarl. “Stop ignoring Trixie! She came all the way—”

Bang!

Where is she?!”

Trixie spun about in alarm. Standing at the door was a white unicorn mare, her body lowered and face steaming red. She was clothed in a soft blue dress covered in sparkling gems. “Nopony comes into Canterlot to steal my princess. Nopony!”

As the stranger marched in she was followed by a purple baby dragon in a black tuxedo. He glanced back and snapped his clawed fingers. Seconds later, a small army of lavishly-dressed ponies began pushing dozens of mannequins into the room, each in its own brilliantly designed dress.

“Trixie, meet Rarity, the royal clothier.” Celestia's voice was kind despite the perplexed frown on her face. “Miss Rarity, what has gotten into you?”

“Oh, don’t act so innocent, Princess!” Rarity walked right up to Trixie with a menacing glint in her eye. “You know exactly what is wrong! You—" she addressed Trixie now "—are you this Trixie I’ve been hearing about?”

Trixie took a step back and raised an eyebrow. “Err… yes?”

Vile seductress!”

A small beam struck Trixie in the shoulder.

“Hey!” Trixie retreated a few steps and pressed a hoof against the burned spot. “What did Trixie ever do to you?”

“You can’t fool me.” Rarity came forward, turned about and bucked Trixie in the chest! The startled pony landed on her side with a grunt, the gems in her saddlebags scattering across the floor.

Rarity stood over her, seething through gritted teeth... but then Amethyst appeared at her side and tapped her shoulder. “Hey, Rarity.”

Rarity acknowledged her with a short glance, then turned her attention back to Trixie. “Oh, good evening, Amethyst. I’m a little busy at the moment.”

Amethyst pointed over Rarity’s shoulder at the gleaming gemstones. “Just thought you might like to know: that’s your order.”

“Huh?” Rarity’s anger faded as she took another look at Amethyst, then back at the gems. Her eyes flashed with renewed fury. “A harlot and a jewel thief, too! How dare you steal from my supplier!”

Amethyst started to nod, but paused and blinked. “Wait, that’s not what—”

“I’ll teach you a lesson!” Rarity’s horn glowed, and a moment later the gemstones began to rise off the ground.

Trixie had no idea why she was being attacked, but she knew what was coming. She scrambled to her hooves and fled as the tiny gems began to fly at her, impaling themselves in the red carpet as they zipped past.

“Watch it, Trixie could get hurt by those things!”

“You’re gonna scratch their finish,” Amethyst added with dull tone and critical frown.

The baby dragon rushed to Rarity’s side and pulled on her tail. “Rarity! You need those gems for the princess’ gala dress, remember?”

Rarity glanced at him and sighed. The gems dropped gently back to the floor as her horn dimmed. “Of course. You’re right, Spike. I apologize.”

Trixie gave an exasperated “Thank you!” She came to a stop, breathing heavily and turning to her opponent. “Now would you mind—”

“I’ll use the old standby!” Rarity’s horn glowed yet again.

Trixie prepared herself for another attack, but nothing happened. She relaxed and glanced around. As far as she could see, her opponent’s new magic was doing nothing. “Well,” she declared, tapping the frayed edge of her hat, “Trixie found that pointless.”

Then she saw the movement: one of the mannequins had begun to step down from its foundation. A purple glow appeared where the mannequin’s eyes should have been as it slowly paced its way towards Trixie. She glanced at Rarity, who wore a wicked smirk, then at Amethyst, who simply shrugged. She glanced towards the princesses; Celestia smiled, lazing cheek-in-hoof across her throne, while Luna stood alert, frowning ominously.

When Trixie turned back, the mannequin was standing right in front of her, its blank white face inches from her own. She stared at the glow that made up its eyes, but there was simply no expression there. After a second she sat and turned her head towards Rarity. “Umm… is Trixie supposed to be intimidated?”

Right at that moment the mannequin raised a fake hoof and bashed Trixie across the cheek. It hurt… but not much.

“This is pathetic!” She used her magic to lift the mannequin high in the air. It hovered for a few seconds before she brought it down to the floor, smashing it to pieces. “Is that all you have for Trixie?”

Then she noticed that she was surrounded by mannequins, all with glowing purple eyes. How did they get there so quickly?

“Don’t worry about quality.” Spike appeared with a smug grin between the legs of one of the fake ponies. “We've got quantity.”

“That’s right.” Trixie turned to face Rarity, now leering behind her. “No pony is allowed to be with my Luna!”

Trixie's mind blanked. “Wait, you’re fighting with Trixie over Princess Luna?” She cast a glance at Luna, who facehoofed.

Rarity blinked. “You… You mean you don’t know what this is about?”

Trixie rubbed her chin and thought for a moment. “Umm… Trixie admits to being confused.”

Her opponent glanced at Luna and gestured to Trixie. “Luna, really?”

Luna shot a grimace at Rarity. “I had no part in this. Also; it ended a long time ago, Rarity.”

Rarity’s eyes went wide. “Ended? Ended? I am still the best mare in Canterlot for you and I will prove it!” She turned her fierce eyes upon Trixie, all the mannequins coming to life once more.

One cracked a hoof against Trixie’s shoulder, another bucked her in the side. Neither were very effective. “Would you stop that?” She swung her hoof wide, the force of her attack more than enough knock off the flimsy head off the nearest doll.

Trixie was coming under attack from all sides, the fake ponies battering her with weak strikes. They couldn’t do much damage, but in such numbers she was actually having difficulty. They crowded her in. She tried to shove them back, but their total mass was too much to resist. She felt legs wrapping about her and trying to drag her down. Her hat fell off her head as she was shoved to her knees.

“Trixie demands you get off!” She concentrated and fired a few small lasers, causing some of the mannequins to erupt in a shower of plaster and thin wood, but there were simply too many of them. She soon found herself pressed down to her belly on the carpet. “Let Trixie go this instant!”

“Well that was easy.” Spike stepped up to her from beneath the many white legs and tapping her between the eyes playfully.

“But of course,” Rarity declared from beyond Trixie’s vision. “I am the greatest unicorn in Canterlot, after all.”

Trixie heard that tone and felt anger boiling within her. She began to concentrate, focusing all her strength into the magic. “How dare you. Trixie is the greatest unicorn in Equestria and she will prove it!”

“Oooh.” Spike waved his claws in mock fear and grinned. “Whatcha gonna do?”

She shot him a death glare, teeth grinding. “If Trixie can cart those… those worthless stones… halfway across Canterlot…“

Rarity let out a shout: “Worthless?”

“…then this should be… nothing!”

She released the spell with the last word, a vortex of wind suddenly churning around her. The mannequins went flying, Spike letting out a surprised shout as he joined them. After a few seconds the air above seemed to burst, sending the mannequins sailing in all directions. Some smashed into the walls and pillars and shattered, dresses ripping apart. Spike flew across the throne room and hit the main door upside down, his spikes impaling upon the wood and leaving him hanging helplessly.

Celestia tilted her head with a pleased smile. “Impressive."

Trixie stood up, snatched her hat from the floor and dusted it off before setting it atop her head with a haughty expression.

A whining disc of rapidly-rotating gemstones flew overhead, eliciting a rrrip before crashing against a nearby pillar. Trixie’s eyes went wide as the frayed top of her hat fell before her eyes. She stared at the piece of fabric on the floor, then pulled her hat off and gaped through the hole. “Trixie’s hat…”

“Serves you right for calling my precious gems worthless.” Rarity punctuated her words with a hmmph.

Trixie turned on her with a snarl. “How dare you! Trixie had this tailor-made. It is irreplaceable!”

“It was tacky,” Rarity corrected with nose held high. “Clearly designed by a rank amateur. A foal could have done better. Might as well use it as a Frisbee.”

Trixie let out a sinister growl, then cast a look around. The mannequins that hadn’t been smashed by her spell were getting up and coming for her again. She rubbed a hoof against the hat’s brim, an idea coming to mind. “Good idea.” The brim's edge began to glow magenta. Hoping she wasn’t about to look foolish, Trixie tossed the hat to the side.

It flew to the nearest mannequin and sliced through its plaster neck like hot knife through butter.

Trixie had an instant to recognize her success before generating a smaller version of her wind spell, steering the hat about the room. It went from mannequin to mannequin, slicing off legs, heads and sometimes going right through torsos. The mannequins dropped like flies until none were left. Trixie couldn't help grinning; the spell had worked perfectly and she’d only just made it up!

“Hiiiya!”

Trixie was sent sprawling to the floor by a well-placed buck from Rarity. The hat went wild and stuck into the side of Celestia’s throne with a thunk. The princess didn’t even blink.

Trixie was on her back, her opponent snarling right in her face. “You! First you try to steal my love, then you try to steal my gems, and now you ruin my dresses. You’re trying to sabotage me, aren’t you? I won’t forgive you!”

Trixie snarled right back. “Do not twist Trixie’s doings. It was you who attacked Trixie in the first place. Now get off!” She kicked out with her hind legs, simultaneously jerking Rarity's mane forward with her magic. The combination sent Rarity flipping, her back smacking against the carpeted floor.

Trixie stood and glared down at Rarity, whose eyes swirled from the impact, then marched towards Celestia and her throne. “Please excuse Trixie, princess.” She tugged on her hat. It stretched a bit but remained firmly in place. She glowered and tried to use her magic to pull it out, with similar results.

“Allow me,” Celestia offered, her long horn glowing golden.

The hat promptly popped out of the wood and floated up to Trixie, who took it with a blush. “Umm… thanks.”

There was an angry shout, and Trixie stepped aside just in time for Rarity to come flashing by with a powerful flying kick clearly meant for her head. Rarity’s anger turned to alarm as she ended up smashing into the window, the glass shattering as she sailed right through.

Thinking fast, Trixie darted to the window and concentrated. Rarity screamed in terror at the ground hundreds of feet below, but came to an abrupt stop as her glowing tail held her aloft.

Rarity twisted her body up to clutch at her tail. “Pull me back in, pull me back in!”

Trixie did so, slowly bringing the terrified pony back into the throne room and depositing her on the floor just as she was beginning to feel the strain of Rarity’s weight. She sighed in relief before asking: “Now will you please stop attacking Trixie? She is not trying to steal Luna from you!”

Rarity took a moment to recover, her breathing coming in gasps. After a few seconds she looked up at Trixie with wide eyes. “You… you saved my life.”

“Of course! Trixie is not a monster.” She glanced around and used her levitation spell to gather all the gems and deposit them at Rarity’s hooves. “Here, take the jewels. Trixie doesn’t want those, either.”

“I think we have a winner,” Celestia noted.

Trixie eyed Celestia, who nodded with a smile. She turned her head and saw that Luna was watching her with much more interest, though not of a nice variety; she had a hoof to her chin and eyes locked on Trixie in a studious, sharp manner.

Well, at least she finally had Luna’s attention. Trixie turned to Rarity, who was slowly climbing to her hooves with head bowed and ears tucked. “I... I guess a lady should know when to accept defeat,” Rarity said. “I apologize for my uncouth behavior.”

Trixie considered the defeated unicorn. “It’s alright. Trixie supposes she might have been angry too, if she thought another mare was stealing her love.”

“Alright!” Amethyst appeared beside Trixie to deliver a playful whack against her shoulder. “I’ll admit it, Trix, I’m impressed. I’d like to see that again sometime.”

“You’re not the only one,” Celestia said. Amethyst shrank away from her, tail tucked between her legs. Trixie couldn’t help wondering why she was so terrified.

“Umm, Miss Trixie?” She turned to find Rarity standing before her, a surprisingly large red gemstone floating at her side. “This is from the collection you were bringing me.”

Trixie raised an eyebrow. “The one you accused Trixie of stealing?”

Rarity blushed, her eyes shifting away. “Y-yes, that one. It’s a fire ruby, an exceptionally rare gem. I want you to have it, as a gift for saving my life.”

Trixie eyed the stone. It certainly was a beauty. Even so, she strongly considered turning it down. Then she thought of something and took the gem, letting it float before her. “Thank you. Pardon Trixie, please.”

She walked past Rarity to the main doors, aware of how all eyes were on her. She approached Spike, who was still struggling to free himself from the wood. He grimaced at her, but she only offered him her hoof. He studied it with suspicion, but finally accepted. She tugged and managed to pull him loose.

“Thanks,” he grumbled, standing and dusting himself off. His grumpy manner faded, though, when she lowered the fire ruby to hover before his face. He gazed at it with wide eyes as his jaw dropped.

“You may have this,” she announced haughtily. “Trixie has no need for it. Think of it as a peace offering.”

“Oh, how generous…” Rarity noted with awe in her voice.

Spike slowly reached up to grab the ruby. He studied it lovingly for a moment, then looked up at Trixie. “I can really have this?” She nodded, turning her head away in a dismissing gesture. “Th-thanks… Thanks a lot!”

“You’re welcome. Now—” she turned away and trotted back to the center of the room to face the two princesses, “—Trixie thinks it is time she attained what she came for. Trixie has surely earned the right by now.”

There was a long pause as Celestia and Luna studied her. Celestia was beaming down at Trixie as if she were a gift from Heaven. On the other hoof, Luna had her jaw set in a regal frown. After a while Celestia glanced down at her sister. “Luna?”

Luna observed Celestia, then looked back at Trixie. Her expression held no pleasure whatsoever. At last she sighed. “If that’s the way it’s going to be. Come.” She turned and walked to the side door from which she’d first entered the throne room.

Trixie grinned triumphantly; she would finally be able to face Luna’s challenge! She began to trot after her, but paused when she felt her hat lifted off her head. She glanced back to find Amethyst sitting nearby, holding the ruined accessory with a grin. She peered at Trixie through the gaping hole that had been made. “This doesn’t really suit you anymore, Trix.”

Trixie felt her pleasure drop, but she was too proud of her victory to let it bother her. “No, Trixie supposes it does not.” She gestured to the door. “Are you coming?”

“Oh, no.” Amethyst shook her head. “I think the invitation’s for you only. Besides, I have to talk to Rarity for a bit. Top client and all. Speaking of which, why the heck did you give the fire ruby away?”

Trixie frowned. “Is it not obvious? Trixie doesn’t need gems, Ammy, and she thought a bit of diplomacy was in order.”

Amethyst studied her before replying in a dull tone, “That gem was worth more than your wagon, Trix.”

Trixie stared in open-mouthed astonishment. “It… it was?”

Her friend nodded. “You could have bought it back easy.”

Trixie cast her eyes upon Spike, who was sitting and cradling the fire ruby as if it were a newborn baby. She stared at him for some time, but then whacked herself on the forehead. “No. No, I offered it and I will not take it back!”

“Double gotcha.” Amethyst tapped Trixie’s muzzle twice with a grin.

Trixie wrinkled her nose and rubbed it as if scratching an itch. She frowned at her friend and opened her mouth to speak—

Come.”

She glanced back to find Princess Luna waiting impatiently by the exit. “Trixie must go,” she announced as she headed for the door.

“I’ll catch you later then,” Amethyst called. “Good luck!”

Author's Note:

Can you say... FATALITY?

I have no idea what made me think of Kung Lao's hat attack, but there ya go. Creative or dumb? I'll leave that up to you.

Here we see the first real hints of what that 'alternate universe' tag is referring to. There are a lot of things that occurred or are mentioned in this chapter that will likely have people going "why the heck is that happening?" As this story moves along we'll gradually see more and more differences in the world, and of course we'll eventually find out why everything is so off.

I haven't planned the next chapter out so I could be mistaken, but there might not be a fight in it. We'll see.

Why is Rarity the 'first' fight when Trixie recently fought Nightmare Moon? Because that fight was just to test if she was worthy to get into the real fights, of course!