• Published 15th May 2015
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The Sparkle Family Reunion - sunnypack



An honorary sister. An adoptive family dragon. Two princesses. A prince. The two most overbearing parents in the world. A loony grandma. The Sparkles are coming to visit.

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2 - Family Matters

Chapter 2: Family Matters

It’s not everyday that an alicorn crash lands through a window while you were eating breakfast. One thing that never really crosses Applejack’s mind is, ‘Gee, Ah wonder how’d everypony would react to an alicorn crashin’ into our table while we’re tryin’ to have a meal’?

But that particular question and more were answered as a purple blur tumbled through their centuries old vintage window and upended an equally aged vintage table. She eyed the suspicious pile of feathers, cracked glass and shifting wood, not knowing what to expect. She thought a large bugbear might have invaded her home. A purple bugbear. She bit her lip. Probably not as likely.

There was a familiar moan from the wreckage.

“What the—oh hickory haystacks! Twilight, are you alright?”

From the debris and detritus, something that resembled a pony staggered out of the wreckage of what was to be a good family meal. Now the meal lay somewhere within the ruins and half-covering a bedraggled princess. Twilight clambered out and surveyed her attentive audience somewhat unsteadily.

Apple Bloom had a spoon halfway to her mouth, but no table to set it back down on. Granny Smith held aloft a pie she had only just retrieved from the kitchen, while Big Mac looked at the broken table and silently added it to the ever-growing list of repairs scheduled for the week. The steadfast pony supposed having a princess crashing through your window and upending family furniture was a mild improvement to the Cutie Mark Crusaders doing it.

“Twilight?”

Applejack was worried for her friend, but even she couldn’t keep a glib undertone of exasperation. You’d think one would get used to property destruction in Ponyville, but every time it happens it’s a whole plethora of frustration. Little did she know, her brother was having the exact same thoughts. With the resounding scrape of a chair, Big Mac levered himself from his seating and dragged his hooves out of the room.

“Gettin’ the—?”

“Eeeyup,” the stallion replied, a little snippy, she didn’t really blame him.

Applejack tried again. “Twilight?”

This time the alicorn was able to focus on Applejack. She shook her head slightly and both eyes snapped to Applejack’s own. “Hey, Applejack! Just the pony I was looking for!”

“Hay, sugarcube,” Applejack greeted hesitantly, she trailed off as she groped around for words and came up short.

Granny Smith piped up in the ensuing silence. “Not that we sure ain’t happy to see you, Twilight, but why through the window?”

Apple Bloom finally decided to place the spoon on her chair and clambered out of her seating. “Are you okay, Princess?”

Twilight shook her head, but her eyes went slightly out of focus. “Fine!” she replied in a way that suggested it was anything but. “You’re good with families, right?”

Applejack glanced back at Granny Smith and Apple Bloom.

“Ah’m too old fer this,” Granny Smith replied to the pleading look. The mare got out of her chair and headed to the kitchen. “If you’ll pardon me, Ah have some cookin’ to do.”

Applejack went back to eyeing the alicorn warily. “Now sugarcube, not that Ah don’t appreciate you… dropping by, but couldn’t you have used the front door? Even Rainbow checks to make sure the window was open.”

Apple Bloom joined her sister during the observation of a rare moment when one of Applejack’s friends finally became aware of the destruction they’d caused.

Twilight twitched, looked at the mess, and then let out a gasp. “Oh, Applejack, I’m so sorry!”

“It’s alright, sugarcube,” Applejack replied uncertainly.

“Yeah, it’s not like Ah liked that table anyway,” Apple Bloom put in helpfully. Applejack shot her sister a glance. She returned the look with an exasperated huff. “Did you see Big Mac? He looked mighty mad, sis’.”

Applejack softened. “Yeah—” a thought struck her “—Apple Bloom, would you mind helpin’ him out?”

Apple Bloom pouted. “Aww Applejack—”

“Now, Apple Bloom.”

The filly sighed, visibly trying to suppress her curiosity. Under Applejack’s watchful gaze, she retreated, going out the front door. Applejack returned to Twilight, watching the alicorn fidget. Something was definitely on her mind, and it wasn’t the fact that she had destroyed part of the house. The farmer lead her friend to the adjoining room, brushing off a few splinters of wood and glass along the way. She sat her down on the couch and looked her friend in the eye with an expression that brooked no concession.

“Now, tell me what happened.”

Twilight rubbed an embarrassed hoof through her mane. “It’s kind of stupid.”

Applejack raised an eyebrow, but kept silent.

Twilight pushed on. “It’s my family.”

“Your brother?” Applejack tapped a hoof nervously. “Is something wrong with the Crystal Empire?”

Twilight stared at her friend then shook her head. “No! I mean yes it has something to do with them, but no no, not the Crystal Empire. My family’s coming over.”

Applejack took a few moments to digest the bombshell. “Hay that’s wonderful, sugarcube! When’s the gathering? How many are there? What would you like me to do?”

Twilight looked liked she bit a lemon, but didn’t say anything.

“Uh, Twilight? You don’t seem all that happy.”

Twilight grimaced, but didn’t say anything, letting the silence speak for itself.

Applejack hazarded a guess. “Is there some problem with your family?”

Twilight hesitated then shook her head. “It’s not a problem, per se…”

Now it was Applejack’s turn to let the silence speak for itself.

“They’re a bit eccentric,” Twilight admitted. She nervously ran a hoof down a wing in a comforting gesture. “I mean Dad’s always been alright. Mom can be overprotective sometimes. Shining has been the best. Granny… she’s something special, and individually I can handle them…” Twilight shut her mouth and blushed when she realised she was babbling. “Anyway, it’s just that…”

“Together they’re a bit of a hoof-full?”

Twilight nodded.

Applejack nodded genially. “Huh, it’s funny apart from your brother you’ve never really mentioned your family, but now Ah can see why.” She smiled at her friend. “It’s only natural to get a little antsy when they come. You want to make a good impression.”

“More like damage-control.”

“What?”

“Nothing.”

Apple Bloom’s voice called out from the front door. “Hay Twilight? Spike’s here and he’s a little grumpy.”

Applejack glanced back quizzically at her friend. Twilight started, looking really guilty.

“Why’s that, Apple Bloom?” Applejack called back.

“He said she dropped him a while back.”

Twilight groaned as Applejack shot her an unimpressed stare. “I’m sorry, I had a lot on my mind.” Twilight slided off the couch and took a deep breath, looking visibly calmer. She didn’t look convinced, but it didn’t look like she thought Equestria was on the verge of collapse anymore. “Thanks, Applejack.”

“No worries, sugarcube. Just don’t get all tied up in the small stuff,” Applejack said, then gestured to the dining room. “And Ah’d be happy to help out if you need anythin’.”

“No!” Twilight said quickly. Then she scrambled out of the room, darting around Apple Bloom returning. Applejack scowled, staring after her panicked friend.

Apple Bloom sidled up to her sister and leaned in conspiratorially.

“You’re totally spyin’ on her family, aren’t ya?”

“You’re dang right, Apple Bloom.”

———————

Spike greeted Twilight with crossed arms and a tapping foot.

“Hello, uhm, my number one assistant!”

Spike raised an eyebrow, not looking as usually pleased with the title as he would be in normal circumstances. He kept silent, letting his posture do all the talking.

“Hey, I’m sorry about—”

Spike raised a claw and massaged his forehead with care. Claws were dangerous tools that should be kept away from the eyes most of the time. He took a deep breath and sighed.

“That’s right,” Spike said. “I had something to tell you, except you went into ‘Twifright’ mode.”

Twilight opened her mouth to retort, but closed it belatedly when she remembered that she had dropped him near thirty feet in the air. She cocked her head. How did he land safely?

“You’re spacing out again, Twi’.” Spike’s irate undertone cut through her scattered thoughts. “By the way, I landed in a hay bale.”

“How did you—”

“You were talking to yourself.”

“Oh.”

“So?”

“So…?”

Spike huffed. “So what did you talk about with Applejack?”

Twilight started. “Oh, right! She told me not to worry.”

“That’s it?”

“That’s it.”

“And you believed her?”

“Not in the slightest.”

Spike snorted. “It’s probably good advice.”

Twilight shook her head. “What are you talking about? That’s horrible advice. She’s never seen my family.”

“Maybe you should, you know, invite your friends? It’d probably smooth everything over.”

“No!” she exclaimed, then wiped a hoof across her face. “My brother is okay, but Mom? Dad? No way.”

“Twi’…” Spike gave her the raised eyebrow look. “You’re overreacting.”

“No I’m not. It’ll be fine, perfectly fine. Fine, fine, fine!”

“You said fine like five times.”

“That’s perfectly fine. I can say fine as many times as I like.”

“That’s not the point Twi’.” He sighed. “Anyway, there’s this other thing I have—”

“Wait! I can probably create an exclusion zone around my castle. If I time the spell right…”

Spike watched as Twilight galloped down the path, neglecting the fact that she could have flown her way back to the castle. He shook his head and glanced back at Applejack who was standing a modest distance away.

“You heard all of that.” It was not a question.

“Eeyup.”

“You know what we have to do, right?”

“Eeyup.”

Spike smiled gratefully. “You gather Fluttershy and Rainbow, I’ll get Pinkie and Rarity.”

Applejack nodded, then hesitated. “Actually,” she said with a raised eyebrow. “Mind if I take Pinkie and Rarity?”

“Shucks, almost got away with it,” Spike mumbled.

Applejack chuckled and patted the little dragon on the head. “One day, Spike.”

——————

It wasn’t long before Twilight was back in the castle.

“Okay, all I need to do is find a spell, find a spell, find that one spell.”

Her jittery gaze settled on a book recessed in a shelf. One labelled ‘Do not touch! Dangerous!’.

Twilight bit her lip. Couldn’t hurt to take a look, right?

——————

“Honey, dear, buttercup…” Night Light’s deep and soothing voice would usually be able to calm any histrionics, but the mellow tones fell on deaf, twitching ears.

“We’re going and that’s final!” Twilight Velvet shot back. “Not writing back to all those letters I sent, the nerve of my daughter!”

“I’m sure she didn’t mean anything by it,” Night Light reassured. He tried a different tack. “She was awfully busy during this year. She’s saved Equestria numerous times, she’s a Princess now! We’re proud of her.”

Remarkably, that argument seemed to take some of the steam out of Velvet.

“Maybe we could just forget the whole thing and give her a chance to send us a letter?”

An ear twitched, a tail flicked and a head cocked, considering. Then her eyes hardened and Night Light repressed the urge to sigh.

“My boy Shiney has been able to send me replies and he’s a grown stallion! A Prince, too! My little colt is settled down with a wonderful mare. I bet I’ll have grandfoals within the year! I’m worried about Twilight, dear. She’s so wrapped up in her career, she’s bound to be lonely.”

Night Light didn’t look so sure. “She seems happy.”

Velvet shook her head. “No, no, no, she just seems happy. Behind that smile is the tinge of loneliness and heartache! She needs a family there to support her. She needs a special somepony.”

“You want more grandfoals don’t you?”

“Well it wouldn’t hurt! It’d give me a reason to visit too!”

“Velvet, dear,” Night Light pressed. “Aren’t you… overreacting?” He hated using that word, but sometimes it worked.

“I’m not overreacting,” Velvet replied a tad too quickly to suggest she wasn’t. “I’m fine! Perfectly fine!”

Night Light put at his disposal all the years of experience his marriage had given him in one last effort.

“Are you worried our foals don’t need us anymore? They grew up awfully fast.”

Velvet fidgeted. “It’s not that…”

Night Light drew a hoof around her neck and led her to the sofa. “Really, dear? Is that all?”

Velvet played with a stray mane. “We’ve never had much of a connected family. When I see my little foals growing up and moving away, I feel like we’re cutting threads, one by one.” She sighed. “Dear Celestia, I hardly get letters, let alone see them.”

Night Light finally realised the crux of the matter. He’d been easy-going, admittedly, but he did miss seeing their little bright faces around the house.

“Okay, dear, I understand wanting to visit,” he said gently, giving her a light kiss on the forehead. “But really? Hinting at romance? You know how awkward our little Twilight is.”

Velvet wrung her hooves. “That’s what I’m worried about! She’ll end up lonely like Miss. Wibbly!”

Night Light raised an eyebrow. “The old mare that lives down the road?”

“Yes!”

“She’s happy, dear, someponies like being alone.”

Velvet bit her lip. “Not my little Twi-twi!”

Night Light patted his wife on her shoulder. “Love, my dear, comes differently to everypony. Just give her a while.”

For a moment, Night Light relaxed as Velvet nodded slowly.

Good, he thought. Disaster averted.

Then Velvet’s ear twitched, her expression became a mixture of thoughtful and scheming. Night Light fought the urge to suppress a groan. He’d been with his wife long enough to recognise that look.

“What is it, dear?” he asked reluctantly.

“You know, we’re not experts in love,” she began, her hooves gesturing in the air like she were weighing her thoughts.

Night Light rolled his eyes, sensing there was a trap, but not seeing the form of it.

“Yes…” he replied cautiously.

“So, maybe we should ask the opinion of sompony we do know who are experts!”

Night Light gaped at his wife, knowing exactly what she was suggesting.

“Hey now wait a minute—”

“We’ll ask Shiny and Cadance to set them up!” Velvet exclaimed, looking thoroughly pleased with herself.

Night Light gaped at her. “That’s got to be the most—”

“Amazing idea ever, I know!” Velvet replied blithely ignoring her husband’s groan.

“Remember why you married her,” he muttered to himself. “Remember why you married her…”

“Nighty, dear, I want you to get a directory from Ponyville and Canterlot.”

He took a deep breath, curious despite himself. “And why is that, honey?”

She blinked at him as if he were a foal for asking such a simple question. “Why to make a list of all the potential partners my little Twi-twi can date! We can all go through the list together. I can wait to show this idea to Shiny and Cadance!”

——————

Shining Armor shivered as he stepped on the train.

“Is something wrong, Shiny?”

The former Captain glanced back in the direction of Canterlot.

“I-I don’t know,” he replied warily. “I felt an ominous premonition.”

Cadance gave him a small peck on the cheek. “Ah, a dark and brooding Shiny… I like it.” She giggled as he turned blush red. “A cute Shiny is almost as nice.”

Shining Armor shot Canterlot one more look. Maybe it was just a few misgivings about seeing his parents again. He shook his head. Mom was ecstatic when he revealed his feelings for Cadance. He had nothing to worry about… right?

Author's Note:

Whooo update. In a looooong while. Yep, finally. Got around to it. Finally.

As usual, bug me for updates and I'll prioritise around them.

Next Chapter: The Power of... Matchmaking?

As always, my ludicrous-speed readers, thanks for reading!

P.S. One rough passthrough from editing, sorry! Some very minor edits. Some more minor edits, thanks cyberlord4444!