• Published 11th Jun 2015
  • 1,868 Views, 81 Comments

Rise of the Elements: Journey to the Old World - Radiant Dawn

A new adventure for Frost and the gang has come from the need for some downtime. How will ponies get along on Earth?

  • ...

Chapter 1: A New World...for Some

Author's Note:

Well, I promised this story would continue, and I meant it. Here is the first chapter of the "vacation" everyone had planned to take, and needless to say, it's going to be fun for all involved. Read and enjoy.

Chapter 1: A New World...for Some

“Ow, fuck!” shouted my brother’s voice, along with a loud thud.

“Watch yer language, Dark!” chastised who could only be Applejack.

I opened my eyes to the bright sun and squinted in pain from it. I groaned and stood, nearly stumbling as I remembered that I only had two feet now instead of four, but after a few seconds I righted myself and took a look around. I gaped in surprise though, when I noticed the other fifteen gathered around me. With it being only the second time I’d cast this specific spell (and the first time I’d seen what the others looked like in human forms), it went without saying I was a little surprised.

Spike was as tall as I was with olive-colored skin and bright green eyes. One of the things I’d made sure to change was everyone’s hair, as the hair colors of most of us was unnatural, so I’d given the young dragon straight black hair. Spike was built like a powerlifter though, and so was probably the most intimidating out of all of us. His fangs had been replaced with the dull canines of a human, and his tail was of course removed as well.

My brother was just what he had been when we lived on Earth, a tall 6’10” light-skinned black guy with buzzed hair and a powerful build. His eyes were now dark-brown again, and like Spike, all his draconic attributes had been removed.

Venn and Moonfang were the biggest surprise thus far, as this would be the first time either of them had been in a form other than that of a wolf. Both were equal in height at around 6’2”, and both were well-defined powerhouses. Venn’s eyes were a piercing blue-gray, while Moonfang’s were normal eyes of pale gold instead of the burning fire they once were. Both of their hairstyles were long and shaggy (Venn’s black and Moonfang’s bown), with Venn’s being more spiky, and both were currently wobbling a bit, getting used to their new legs.

Twilight was short, probably only about 5’4”, with a fairly slim build and dark brown skin. Her hair was the same style it usually was, but jet black without the pink and violet stripe, and she had dark brown eyes.

Lyra was just a tad taller than Twilight, with strawberry blonde hair, pale skin, and amber eyes. Like Twi, she was also very slim, but with longer legs and a more shapely behind.

I could already tell that Pinkie was going to cause trouble. I had changed her hair to blonde to go with both her personality and eyes, but this had in fact worked a little too well. Being naturally more curvy than the others, this had turned her into a blonde bombshell, with a tall stature of about 5’10” with softly-tanned skin.

AJ looked like a farm girl through and through. Luckily I was able to keep her the same for the most part. Her skin was well-tanned (as it would be from working hard in the fields all day) and she was maybe an inch shorter than Pinkie. She was extremely muscular for her size, but without looking like a bodybuilder -- more like someone that actually works manually for a living (which she does). She still had those cute freckles of hers, and her feminine curves were accentuated by the ropy muscles that covered her body.

Much like her pony body, Rarity was tall, lean, and gorgeous. Her eyes were the same deep pools of blue they normally were, but with black hair and pale, flawless skin. She was just a little shorter than me at 5’11”, and she had a build that would make supermodels jealous.

Fluttershy was the beautiful shy girl of the group. Her body was proportionate to Pinkie’s, but with a much shorter stature at Twilight’s height, and her pink hair had been changed to a soft blonde. Her skin was lightly tanned, and her eyes were still a vivid teal.

Rainbow Dash was no surprise whatsoever. She was the same height I was, and had an intensely athletic build. Like a sports car, she was lean, sleek, and built for speed with well-defined muscles in her arms and legs. Her hair was a short and spiky blonde, and her rose eyes were changed to a dark blue.

Ditzy was the very embodiment of a soldier. Like Dash, she was tall and muscular, but also with a little more femininity to her body. Her hair was still the golden blonde it usually was, but her eyes were now a soft hazel and her skin lightly tanned.

Vinyl was maybe 5’6” or 5’7” with pale skin and a dancer’s body -- fit, slightly curvy, and built to party all night long. Her crimson eyes had been changed to hazel, and her wild blue hair was now red.

Lastly were Celestia and Luna. Both were tall, with Celly being slightly taller than me, and both were feminine perfection. Both goddesses looked like they had been hand-carved by the high gods themselves (which may not be too far off). Even with the ample feminine attributes, there was also a dense underlay of muscular definition in the two of them, tempered from thousands of years of life and even war. Luna’s skin was a flawless canvas as fair and pure as snow, while the elder sibling’s skin was exactly what could be expected of a sun-goddess: dark, like that of a Pacific islander. Luna had hair of charcoal, while Celly had hair of a luxuriant brunette, but the sun princess’s magenta eyes were changed to brown.

Simple clothing had been tied into the spell I cast for each of us (so as to preserve modesty), along with the belongings we had brought -- a void-bag (subspace compression included), and a large sack of single-bit coins, the latter of which would be more than enough to fund our little vacation.

I gathered my bearings and shook off the momentary disorientation caused by the massive spell I’d spent almost six hours casting, and then walked over to the group that was talking with and inspecting each other.

Dash noticed me first and smiled. “Hey Frost! Lookin’ pretty good there.”

I chuckled and shook my head. “You know I never thought I’d miss having my mane and tail as it was.” I ran my hand through my ash-brown hair. “Brown hair is so boring.”

“So why don’t you just change your hair color?” Twilight asked curiously.

I shrugged. “Just in case someone recognizes me, I don’t want to have to try and explain why my hair and eyebrows are dyed, because I never dye my hair.”

“Good point.” she replied.

I nodded and then looked in the direction of the pseudo-wolves. “Venn, Moonfang, how are you guys doing over there?”

“I feel...naked.” Venn commented as he brushed his hands over his smooth skin.

Moonfang frowned as well. “Yes. Not having fur is going to take some getting used to.”

“So bouncy!” I heard Pinkie’s voice exclaim from behind me, and I turned to see her bouncing up and down causing her feminine assets to also bounce noticeably.

I sighed and shook my head. “Try and not do that in public, Pinks. You are going to get stared at or at worst, arrested. While it’s something I could handle if I really need to, I’d rather keep the fuzz away from us.”

“Fuzz? Who’s fuzzy?” the bubbly girl asked in confusion.

“I meant police.” I responded simply. I then looked over the group. “Also there’s something you should know as far as speech. Here, there aren’t any talking ponies, so everypony is going to become everyone, anypony becomes anyone, and so on and so forth.” I chorus of agreements answered me and I smiled before looking around. “Well it seems we arrived just where I wanted to, and at the perfect time. So first, we’re all going to head downtown to change these bits in before we get a hotel for us all. And I know just the place.”

I’d thought ahead as far as clothing, so I’d given all of us common summertime wear of jeans, tee-shirts, and the like so as to blend in with the crowd in Atlanta. To the people there, we just looked like a group of tourists (of which we were) that were seeing the sights and enjoying the day in one of the coolest cities in the United States.

Through some asking around, we found a gold exchange shop after some looking, and went about converting some of the bits into cash. Needless to say the people working the shop were more than a little surprised that the coins were made of two very precious metals, and that each one weighed nearly an ounce by itself...and we had an entire large bag full. This caused nearly everyone in the building to gather around us as we did our exchange, and the manager even brought out his expert, who confirmed that the coins were indeed solid gold and platinum, and easily worth a fortune. We exchanged only a very small amount for now, as even twenty coins gave us more than enough money to do what we had to do, so we took our newfound currency, waved happily to the shopkeepers, and headed out into the city again.

After boarding the MARTA buses for a bit, we arrived at one of the tallest buildings in the city, and one of the nicest hotels to stay at.

For a few seconds our group of sixteen simply stood outside, looking at the utter splendor of the building before walking inside.

As I expected, how we were dressed earned us little more than a nod from the different employees gathered, which meant my choice in clothing for us had worked and we blended in just fine. How we were dressed also worked against us though, as people dressed in “common” clothes as we were usually didn’t come to there.

But money fixes all things in this world.

I strode up to the front desk with my company and stopped once I stood in front of the man there. He gazed at us for a second before asking, “May I help you, sir?”

I nodded. “You may. We’d like four rooms, please.”

The man stared at me for a moment before handing a brochure to me. “These are the rooms we have available.”

I took the paper and looked it over for a few minutes before nodding. “All right then, I’d like one presidential suite and four deluxe suites with full options. I want a king-size bed in all rooms, please.”

The man raised his eyebrow and asked, “Are you sure, sir?”

I nodded. “I am.”

“Very well,” the clerk responded, “for how many days?”

“Three.” I replied curtly.

The front counter clerk typed on his computer for a few moments before nodding. “All right, the total comes to $4896.48. Will you be paying with debit, credit, or-”

“Cash.” I answered with a grin. The man stared at me in surprise for a moment, until I started pulling out $1000 stacks of one-hundred dollar bills. With each stack, his eyes got progressively wider until the count was five stacks.

My display caused an uproar in the thankfully sparsely-populated lobby, and suddenly five employees were hooking up a cash machine that would verify whether the money was genuine or not. I’d expected this, so I couldn’t help but chuckle softly as the men and women scurried about and set out verifying forty-nine marks of currency to be sure they were real.

After it was all over, the front clerk smiled in relief. “Apologies sir, but I had to be sure you were not attempting to scam our establishment.”

I chuckled and shook my head. “Don’t worry about it. If I were in your position, I’d probably have thought the same thing.”

With the business taken care of, he nodded. “Very well. I’ll need to see all your ID’s, please.”

Thankfully I had taken care of this with the multi-tiered spell I’d cast to get us here, change our forms, and so on. So, at this request, all of us fished out our respective ID cards (most with altered names) and presented them to the man. He took a few minutes in taking down all the information into the system before handing them back with a smile and motioning for an escort to join us.

“Maria,” he started, smiling at the young woman, “could you show our guests to their rooms?”

The woman nodded and grabbed four small envelopes, then looked to us with a smile. “Follow me, please.”

During our ascension up the seventy-one floors in the dual glass elevators, I couldn’t help but smile at how excited Twilight was. She had been quietly asking questions nonstop about the way elevators worked, how big the city was...everything. It made me smile at just how much wonder she had in her eyes at seeing something so beautiful, though I couldn’t help but remind her of just how amazing it was going to look in the night of midsummer.

As all of us piled out of the two elevators, we continued following the hotel staff member to our rooms. It was a long hallway with the softest carpet, and while it didn’t even compare to the Celestial Palace, it was still a sight to behold.

After a few moments of walking, the woman stopped at a large door that read “Suite 5” and turned to us with a smile. “This is the presidential suite. The other four are on the floor below.” She then handed us all the keycards. “Will there be anything else?”

I casually slipped her a $100 bill and smiled. “Nope, we should be good for now. I appreciate it.”

The woman beamed at the tip and nodded thankfully. “Very well, I’ll leave you to get settled in. The fireworks display will begin promptly at seven and can be seen from the rooftop restaurant, which will be open to all guests beginning at 5:30.”

I nodded in return and shook her hand. “Thank you ma’am. We’ll be there.” With that the woman departed, and I slipped the keycard into the lock as I looked to the group. “Mason already knows this, but this is how you open the doors with your respective keys. That means that Venn, Moonfang, and Spike all need to do it the same way, okay?” They all nodded, so I pushed the door open and walked into the room.

All of us entered the massive presidential suite and each person went off to inspect the large suite in all its glory. My brother and I had been there when we were younger, but only the guest room and only for a day. Needless to say, I found that this would be more than enjoyable for all involved.

“Dude, there’s a little fridge in here! With ALCOHOL!” shouted the deep voice of my brother.

I sighed and shook my head. “Put it back, dude. It’s not even midday.”

Mason came striding back into the room with a frown. “Ah, you’re no fun.”

“I’ll buy you a keg when we visit Germany if you quit bitching.” I retorted.

My brother mulled it over for a minute before nodding. “Sounds good to me. Just to let you know, I’m gonna get fucked up when we go to Oktoberfest.”

I shrugged. “I’d consider you a whiny little bitch if you didn’t.”

He chuckled and slapped my shoulder. “Good man.” The tall man then stood and smiled. “Anyway, I’m feeling like a dip in the pool. I haven’t been swimming in a long time, as Obsidians aren’t really built for swimming. You wanna come with?”

I nodded. “Sounds good. We can all go to chill out there until tonight when the fireworks start. Lemme just dig out our suits and we can go.” I then reached into the void bag and focused on what I was looking for, and sure enough my hands caught on a nylon handle. I pulled it out of the magic bag to reveal a large duffel bag filled with all our swimsuits. I set it on the sofa beside me and unzipped it, throwing a pair of white trunks to my brother, and grabbing the black ones for me. I then called, “Girls and guys, come and get your swimsuits on! We’re going to the pool!”

When we all arrived downstairs to the indoor pool in our robes, it was to find that we were definitely not the only ones there.

Oh...this was going to be fun.

Nothing could be seen of the girls as of yet, but already they were getting leered at by the men gathered in the place. With it being summer, a weekend and Independance Day, it went without saying that the place was packed with all manner of people, but even the gazes that we were receiving was nothing compared to what happened when Celestia dropped her robe on a chair, revealing her attire to everyone assembled.

Bear in mind that everyone had chosen their own attire for our vacation, so any and all reactions are not my fault.

Celestia had chosen very specifically to cause a specific reaction. She’d never outright admit it, but even as a pony, she took great pride in the form she kept her body in, and loved to show it off. True that only I got to see all of it, but there’s no harm in teasing the dear subjects, now is there?

She was clad in a white bikini of the finest enchanted silkworm silk, made to both repel water and provide comfort for those oh-so-sensitive areas of hers. It revealed just enough to be a ridiculous tease without coming off as a trashy, which was a feat that only Celestia could easily accomplish.

Maybe it was the way she carried herself or something...I don’t know.

As the solar princess made her way to the pool, all eyes were on her as she nearly glowed with radiance, which in all actuality she might have been. The dark-skinned woman sighed as she lowered herself into the refreshingly cool water before looking to me with a smile.

“Coming Drew?” she asked curiously. I chuckled and ran before cannonballing into the pool, covering her with a wave of water. When I resurfaced I was rewarded with a splash of water to the face and a wry grin. “You and your entrances.”

I leaned forward and kissed her gently, and I could have swore I heard someone in the pool area groan in disappointment. “You know I like to make a great impression, my dear.”

“Dark!” screeched Applejack’s voice from behind me, and a second later the water was broken by her body and then my brother’s. The farmgirl surfaced and rolled her eyes, splashing him in the face. “Tha’ wasn’t very nice.”

“Maybe I just wanted to get you wet.” he said in a low voice, causing his fiancée to blush. The two of them kissed gently before smiling at each other and going off to mess around in the pool.

I turned around to see the rest of the group entering the water, although Dash, Ditzy, and Fluttershy looked a little hesitant. From what I understood, pegasi weren’t really keen on swimming because of their wings, but Dash and Ditzy were willing to try anything once, and Fluttershy was reassured by the humanized wolf at her side. With the plethora of scantily clad women entering the water, the eyes of the males in the room now held a hungry expression, and I just chuckled at their misguided belief that these women weren’t accounted for.

But they’ll know soon enough.

A half-hour later, all of my friends had relaxed more and were having fun now, and even the two wolves had loosened up and were splashing around with everyone. Dash was doing laps with some guy on the other side of the pool (she was happy to have a challenge; he was pretty fast), and Vinyl was chatting and playing around with Pinkie Pie. Lyra, Twilight, and Luna were all sitting on the steps in the pool talking about who-knows-what, and Spike and Rarity were conversing idly as they leaned together against the edge of the pool. The others were messing around with the other people there (Venn had taken to playing catch with a football with a guy in the deep end), which left Celestia and I to watch everything that transpired.

“Things seem to be going well so far, Drew.” she whispered in my ear.

I nodded as I looked into her beautiful eyes. “They do. I’m glad everyone’s enjoying themselves; we really needed this.”

Celly nodded solemnly. “We did. We worked hard for this and everything else. We needed a bit of a vacation to raise our spirits.” She then looked to me with a grin. “Do you know it has in fact been over four centuries since I’ve taken a real vacation?”

“No kidding?” I responded with a raised eyebrow.

The solar princess nodded with a sigh. “Don’t misunderstand. I love what I do, but it can be trying at times.”

I shrugged. “It wouldn’t be work if it was easy.”

“True.” she responded with a grin.

It was then that I felt a nudging at my shoulder, and looked to see Spike pointing to the other end of the pool. “Looks like we’ve got trouble, Frost.”

I glanced to where he was pointing, and saw Ditzy standing with her arms crossed while some guy was talking to her. I didn’t think anything of it until I saw her posture: defensive. She was agitated, and it was clear that the guy was the cause of it. I knew for a fact that normally this wouldn’t pose a problem, but Ditzy had a rather short fuse when it came to things like this.

Let’s just say I didn’t want to explain to a police officer why my girlfriend kicked a guy’s ass.

I looked to Celestia and said, “I’ll be right back, love.” I then quickly made my way over to Ditzy and found her being harassed by some guy that was obviously drunk (at 10:00...what a loser).

“C’mon babe, what’s the problem?” the man slurred. He was some lanky, ratty-looking guy with a 70’s porn stache.

I stepped up to the guy and pushed him back. “Back off dude, she’s spoken for.”

“By who?” the jerkoff asked with a snarl.

“Me.” said Vinyl’s voice from beside me, and I looked to see the DJ sling her arm around the soldier’s shoulder. Ditzy played along without missing a beat, and kissed Vinyl’s cheek softly, causing the DJ to blush a bit with a smile.

Suddenly the guy was joined by two others, and with the situation soon heading in a bad direction, I couldn’t help but wonder what assholes like this were doing at such a nice hotel.

“Oh really?” the same man asked.

I nodded with a stern expression. “Really. Don’t make this into something ugly, dude.”

“What’s the problem, Drew?” asked Dash’s voice from beside me.

I turned to her and explained, “These guys were just bothering Danielle is all, but they’re done now.”

The daredevil bared her teeth and stood beside Ditzy (Danielle). “I think it’s about time all of you left before you get hurt.”

“What the hell’s your problem, bitch?” the drunken asshole grumbled.

Okay...I’d tried to be cordial.

“Guys, I need you!” I called, and within a few seconds, the other men of our group were flanking me and glaring at the problems in front of me. Without taking my eyes off of the man I was dealing with, I explained, “You just insulted my wife, dickhead, so you officially have ten seconds to get out of here before we forcefully swap your face with your ass.”

Even in his drunken stupor, the guy knew he was outmatched and apparently hadn’t had enough to drink to where he didn’t care about getting his face smashed in. He grunted and exited the pool with his two cronies, muttering under his breath.

“Wow...sore loser much?” Rainbow Dash thought out loud.

I chuckled and nodded. “You girls are gonna get a lot of that, so I’ll try and keep us away from drunken idiots if at all possible.”

“Let’s not go downtown then.” Mason quipped with a grin.

“What was that guy’s problem?” Ditzy questioned as she watched the group leave.

I shrugged. “It could have something to do with the fact that all of you are good-looking women in skimpy outfits; just a thought.”

Luna appeared beside me and shrugged her shoulders with a smile. “I cannot say it is something we are not accustomed to. Tia and I have lived for upwards of three-thousand years, so we are rather used to the attention. It is very common for such high-visibility beings such as us.”

“Besides,” Dash started jovially, “we still have magic on our side if things get too hot to handle.”

I nodded with a grim expression. “True, but I’d like to try and keep things low-profile here so we can have fun. After all, this is a vacation for us.”

Anything’s a vacation compared to the war against Death.” Twilight said from behind me.

I nodded. “That’s very true. All right girls, new rule: come to Mason or I if you have any problems like what Ditzy just had to deal with. We know ways to handle it without things getting too out of hand.”

“Dude,” my brother growled from beside me, and I turned to see him pointing at a man with a camera, “I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure that guy was just snapping pictures of us.”

I smirked and chuckled. “Well let’s give him a show, shall we?” I then pulled Twilight in close and unleashed a strong kiss on her, and I felt as her entire body went limp in my arms. After a few seconds, her arms went up and around my neck, and she returned the liplock with passion, moaning slightly. I then looked up to see pretty much everyone staring at us, and I just winked at all of them and swam away with my herd.

We spent some hours in the pool and enjoyed the good swim and fun time, luckily with no others causing problems, and Venn made friends with a guy that had watched everything transpire.

As we prepared to leave though, something peculiar happened.

A young girl approached us as we were all drying and redressing in our robes, and she walked right up to Celestia and Luna, who were coincidentally right next to each other. The young girl then smiled up at the two princesses and squealed, “I know who you are!”

Celestia closed her robe and tied it before stooping low and asking, “And who am I, little one?”

“You’re Princess Celestia!” the young girl exclaimed happily.

I tried to keep from flinching in fear, but failed miserably. Celestia however, ever the iconic leader, kept her cool and simply smiled at the little girl. “I am. It is a pleasure to meet you, Tracie.”

“H-how did you know my name?” the little girl asked in shock.

Celestia gently placed a hand on the girl’s shoulder and continued smiling warmly. “I know everything about my subjects, my dear.”

I realized what Celly was doing, so I focused for a moment and materialized a vintage “flash ‘n’ spit” type of old Polaroid camera behind me, and then stood behind Celly with a smile. “Why don’t we take a picture of all of you, so you you can have a photo to show all your friends?”

The little girl jumped happily and nodded. “Yes please!”

I chuckled and gestured for all fifteen of them to stand around and behind the girl, with Celestia, Luna, and Rainbow Dash up front, and with Twilight in the middle, holding the girl on her knee. I then snapped a picture and held it within my forefingers before grinning and casting a simple spell and then snapping another picture. I shook the two pictures to cause them to develop and looked at the photos that were created.

In the first one, the girl was surrounded by beautiful women and four very strong-looking men; in the second photo, she was surrounded with those same beings in their true forms.

I leaned down to the little girl as I showed all of them the pictures, and her eyes were immediately drawn to the second one. She gasped and said, “I knew it was you!” She then frowned as she looked at the others in the picture and said, “I don’t recognize the two doggies and dragons though...”

I chuckled as Venn growled softly, then responded while pointing. “That’s my good friends Venn and Moonfang, this is my brother, and this is Spike.”

The little girl smiled softly before gasping and looking at the daredevil pegasus. “You’re a princess?”

“I am now,” Dash began before pointing to me, “he and I got married; he’s a prince.”

The girl smiled happily and took the pictures in her hands, but then she frowned again. “I don’t think my friends will believe this...”

Luna kneeled beside her sister and said, “Perhaps, or perhaps not...but you will know the truth, and with these, you can always remember it.”

“Tracie? Tracie, where are you?” pleaded a voice from the other side of the pool. The sound of footsteps got closer and a tall blonde-haired woman rolled her eyes at the little girl when she saw what she was doing. “Tracie, I told you not to bother people.”

Luna stood tall with a gentle smile. “It was no bother at all, miss. Young Tracie simply wanted to meet us.”

The woman nodded with a smile before picking the young girl up and carrying her away, but upon seeing the photos, she stopped and looked back at us with a raised eyebrow. Celly just smiled with a wink, and the women smiled back before walking away.

“That might have been a really stupid thing to do. You know that, right?” Mason said from behind me.

I shrugged. “She’s a six-year old girl and photos can be altered. It’s not like anyone’s going to believe the truth, so we’ve got nothing to worry about. Besides, the innocence that she displayed...I couldn’t help myself. It’s something this world could use a lot more of for children her age.”

I turned and watched as my brother sighed and responded, “All right, I guess you have a point there. Anyway, the fireworks are set to start in about another three hours, so lets go upstairs, get dressed, and make our way to the rooftop.”

As we all headed back upstairs, I couldn’t ask but think about that little encounter, and I mused out loud, “I wonder how she knew who we really were.”

“Who?” my brother asked in confusion as he leaned against the railing of the elevator.

“The little girl.” I answered.

Luna leaned against me slightly as she responded, “The innocence of a pure young child is in many ways the epitome of Harmony. They are honest, generous, kind, loyal, and bring laughter to the world. This magical combination of traits is what allows them to utilize the power of the Elements of Harmony, even though they do not exist in this world. Because of this, she had the innate ability to sense our aura, even if our visage is different from normal.”

“Is that something we should worry about?” I asked worriedly.

The night princess shook her head softly. “No. Unfortunately that period of true innocence is a very short time in our lives, and so once she loses that innocence, she will lose that ability.”

I nodded. “Well that makes sense.” I then chuckled. “Bronycon is going to be fun.”

“Y’know I never thought I’d be going to Bronycon, let alone looking forward to it.” my brother quipped with a grin.

I shrugged as we left the elevator, meeting up with the others as they exited theirs as well. “Well you’ve got Applejack, and you know what Equestria is really like.”

“True. Dude, everyone that’ll be there would scream if they knew what we had seen and been through.” he responded with a chuckle.

I slid the card into my door before opening it, leading all of us inside the suite. “Yeah. Still, it’s gonna be fun to see just how much of an uproar the girls are going to cause.” I then turned to the assembled group. “All right, Rarity made and packed us plenty of clothes for this trip,” I then picked up and handed the void bag to the mentioned woman, “so pick out something nice for tonight. Also, for the love of God, don’t forget underwear and socks unless you’re wearing high heels or something -- then you don’t need socks.” I threw a glance to the fashionista. “Rarity, please make sure their outfits match.”

“Of course, darling.” the black-haired designer responded. “Come now girls, let us not waste time!” And with that, all the other girls followed her into the closed bedroom.

My brother looked at me and said, “I’m gonna rock some tripp pants, a tee shirt, and a beanie. What are you thinkin’?”

I shrugged. “I think I’m gonna pull a Robert Downey Jr. and go with a suit and sneakers.”

“He rocks sunglasses though.” my brother corrected.

I sighed and shook my head. “I’m not going to wear shades at night. It would be like wearing camo if I don’t hunt -- I’ll just look like a big fucking tool.”

The tall dark-skinned man thought for a moment before nodding. “Yeah, I guess that’s true. All right then. I’m gonna get dressed then I’ll take AJ up to the roof and start us with some drinks and food.”

“Start a tab under my name, because I’m going to be drinking a lot tonight.” I suggested as my brother left the room, which left me to get myself dressed.

An hour or so later, all of us were gathered at the rooftop restaurant, and just like at the pool, all the girls were getting stared at.

Celestia and Luna couldn’t help themselves, and went with very fashionable evening gowns, constructed by Rarity herself. They were lavish by design, and since they were custom-made, they fit the two princess’ curves perfectly, showing their physical beauty to the world. The slit in the sun-princess’ dress was borderline scandalous, stopping high up her thigh, and while Luna’s gown was more conservative, it was no less stare-inducing. Celly’s gown was a sparkling white, fitted with real diamonds, while Luna’s was solid black, accented by black diamonds, and both had high-heels to match.

Rainbow Dash opted for something simple and functional, and so went with a track suit that was an exact match for the flight suit she had back in Equestria, complete with the goggles that Rarity had gotten her for her birthday.

Rarity herself was wearing a gorgeous frosty-white gown with violet accents, and she had four-inch heels. I knew for a fact now that beauty was painful...poor woman.

Applejack, Lyra, and Ditzy were no surprise at all, as each girl had opted for a simple jeans-and-tee outfit, only with differences to the colors -- each matching their natural colors from Equestria, though AJ wore her favorite hat.

Pinkie was wearing a mid-length pink skirt with a pink tee to match, along with flat-bottomed shoes. What I found funny was what was on the shirt: it was a certain chocolate-shaved cake with eight globs of whipped cream along the top, each topped with a single cherry, and it lastly had a single candle in the middle. Underneath the picture was simply the word “LIE”.

I couldn’t help but chuckle at it.

Twilight and Fluttershy were dressed rather similarly, in that they both wore a long skirt that went to their ankles, along with mundane strapped sandals and a simple, collarless, v-neck tee (showing the timid pegasus’ ample cleavage). The colors however were very different, with Twilight’s skirt and shirt being lavender and white (respectively), and Fluttershy’s brown and yellow.

Vinyl was also no surprise, though she still made sure to amaze with her style. She wore tight-fitting black leggings and a silver silk button-up shirt with nothing but a black bra underneath, having only one button actually used to preserve modesty but still be a hell of a tease. She was wearing a variation of her trademark glasses, and for fun, we had changed her hair to what it normally was. Her electric style and eccentric personality had already garnered quite a few looks from the patrons.

Venn and Moonfang had opted long ago to be considered brothers on this planet, since they looked so much alike and had similar style. So, with that in mind, they dressed in similar attire as well, and with their personalities the way they were, Rarity had the perfect idea. Both of them were wearing MCCUU urban MARPAT flak jackets, though sleeveless, along with the matching trousers and combat boots. Along with this, I had added a magical tattoo of sorts of their true selves on their biceps, along with a pin of the Equestrian Silver Shield that they had received after the war. This completed the look, identifying them as warriors and veterans of war, even to people that weren’t in the military.

Lastly was Spike.

The young dragon was outfitted in a full tux that was specifically made to compliment Rarity’s evening gown, complete with a bundle of two nightshades tucked into his pocket in front of a violet pocket square, and black bowtie. Even with his muscular build, the suit fit perfectly thanks to Rarity, and I could see a few jealous single woman eyeing Rarity with envy as he stepped next to her and pulled the woman into a kiss.

”Drew, over here!” shouted Mason from a table near the window of the rotating restaurant. I turned to see him standing in his “rave gear” next to two long tables, complete with chemically glowing bracelets.

I made my way to the two tables and sat down, glad to see that a rum and cola was already waiting for me. I took a large gulp of the drink with a smack of my lips before saying, “Thanks for the drink, Mace.”

The tall man slapped my arm and grinned. “No prob, man. Anyway, I’m feelin’ kinda hungry already, so I ordered us some hot wings, along with some bruschetta for whoever doesn’t feel like trying meat.”

At the mention of the spicy chicken wings, my mouth started watering in anticipation. “Dude...I love you. I’ve been craving hot wings for the longest time.”

“You and me both, man.” the Obsidian-in-disguise shot back with a grumble. “You have no idea how hard it is not to eat meat as a dragon. Ponies got it easy-peasy, man.”

I rolled my eyes as I leaned back and took another sip of my drink. “Well imagine how conflicted I am to be a fucking pony and still crave meat from time to time. I feel like a cannibal.”

“Cannibals eat those of their own kind, man.” he corrected.

I downed the last of my glass before motioning to the bartender for another, then glared at my brother. “You know what I mean.”

He chuckled. “Yeah, I’m just messin’ with ya.”

I rolled my eyes and smiled as a young female server set my drink on the table, so I quickly took a swig of it...only to notice from my view that Luna was apparently being hit on by some pretty-boy that looks like he’s the physical embodiment of all things Hollywood. I growled, “Fuck me, not again.”

I went to stand up, but my brother stopped me and said, “C’mon man, you know her better than that. She can handle this; just watch.”

I nodded slowly and sat back down, watching as Luna kept her cool as the guy seemed to flirt with her, and even bought her a drink, which she took without hesitation. Luna then looked directly at me and curled her finger in a beckoning motion, so I stood and approached.

Once I arrived at the man’s side and joined Luna, she looped her arm in mine and said, “Cal, this is Drew. Drew, this is Cal.”

The man smiled brightly and grasped my hand in an excited shake as he said in a very campy tone, “Ah! Lenore has told me so much about you.”

Okay, a gay guy...definitely was not expecting that.

“Uh, hi.” I responded, dumbfounded.

“Let me guess, you thought he was courting me, yes?” I heard Luna ask in my mind. I just nodded, causing her to giggle reservedly.

Cal then smiled as he released my hand and said, “I was just marveling at Lenore’s amazing dress and couldn’t help but compliment her on it...and when she told me of you, I just had to meet you!”

I chuckled before releasing myself from Luna’s grip and saying, “Wait here Cal, I got someone I want you to meet.” I then made my way to the table and stood in front of Spike and Rarity. “Hey Rare, there’s a guy that would love to meet you. He thinks Lulu’s dress is to die for.”

“Truly?” the fashionista asked in excitement.

I nodded. “Yep.” I then turned to the young dragon beside her and said, “And don’t worry Spike, he ‘plays the other field’ if you know what I mean.”

It took Spike a second before his eyes widened and he chuckled. “Oh, all right then. Go ahead Rare, he’d just bore the hay out of me. I’ll keep an eye on you from here and drink with the guys.”

The elegant woman leaned over and kissed her fiancée gently before standing and bounding over to the man I’d mentioned.

Wait a minute...the song playing...is that?

Once I listened intently, I hopped up, letting out an, “Aw shit!” I looked to my brother with a smirk, and we stood next to each other and began singing the song (with him as the “woman”, of course). We went about belting out our own rendition of Electric Six’s “Danger! High Voltage!”, much to the enjoyment of the entire crowd. Yes, we are stupid and random, but who cares.

After finishing, I arrived back at the table with Mason in tow to find everyone staring in confusion at the large plate of hot wings.

Venn pointed at the plate and asked, “Frost, what are those? They smell amazing.”

I pushed the plate closer to the gray wolf and coaxed, “Eat one. Don’t eat the really hard parts though.”

Venn nodded and picked up one of the wings and bit into it, and by the way his eyes widened, I could tell he already knew what it was...as did the rest of the table once they saw the “hard part” was a bone.

Before anyone could say anything I explained, “It’s chicken. Like I said, humans are omnivores, and while we’re here, I’m going to eat meat.”

To my surprise, the table didn’t erupt into a cascade of gasps of shock or disgust. Instead, everyone was either glancing at the plate curiously, or ignoring it completely...

Except for Fluttershy.

She kept inching closer as she saw Moonfang tear into the spicy chicken and I asked, “You all right there ‘Shy?”

She was silent for a long moment before softly ordering, “Give me one.”

“Come again?” I questioned, unsure I’d heard what I thought I did.

The usually timid girl looked directly in my eyes and repeated, “Give me one.”

I shrugged and grabbed a nearby napkin before picking up one of the wings and handing it to the timid girl. She took it in her hands and studied it for a moment, sniffing it. Then, after taking one last look at Moonfang, she bit into it.

The amount of shock I felt was unfathomable.

First off, I had actually expected to catch some flak from Fluttershy about this. So not only did she not yell at me, she was also the first one of the girls to try meat.

She chewed and swallowed before slumping in her chair with a very audible moan. “Oh my, that’s the best thing I’ve ever eaten. It’s a little spicy, it’s savory and...something else I can’t place.”

“That would be your human body craving meat.” I explained. “Just like ponies, humans need a certain blend of different nutrients to survive; unlike ponies, meat happens to carry a lot of those required nutrients. So whenever you’re craving meat of some sort, you’re body’s telling you that you’re deficient in something. The difference between ponies and humans of course is that humans were made to consume meat.”

“I wonder what this is...” I heard Fluttershy say, and I looked at her in time to see her take a big bite out of a certain orange pepper.

I gulped and leaned back to the bartender and said, “We need a glass of milk over here, pronto.” I then turned back to the table. “Oh boy...this is gonna be bad.” I turned to Moonfang and said, “You might want to keep a tight grip on her so she doesn’t start flailing around like an idiot.”

“I don’t see what the big deal is.” Dash responded with a curiously raised eyebrow.

All of the sudden, everyone’s eyes widened as they looked at the timid girl. She broke out in a sweat, her face began to turn from a healthy tan to red, and her eyes squeezed shut as her hands balled into fists.

Instinctually, she reached for the water, but I snatched it away. “No, that’ll make it worse.” The glass of milk was set down on the table by a server and I handed it to the squirming girl. “Here, drink milk. It’ll get rid of it a lot faster.”

The blonde-haired girl snatched the glass from my hand and upended it, causing some of the milk to stream out of the corners of her mouth.

I chuckled and grabbed the other two peppers that were on the plate, handing them to Pinkie. “Spicy stuff is more of Pinkie’s thing I think. Normal hot wings are pleasantly spicy, but habanero peppers want to burn your mouth off of your face. Ask about something before you eat it.”

Fluttershy slammed the glass on the table and sat back. “I-I’m sorry, the food was just so good I-I got a little excited.”

I chuckled as I looked to the rest of the group and gestured to the plate of steaming wings. “As I said, don’t judge until you try it.”

With the most timid and animal-friendly girl in the group having audibly enjoyed the treat, most of the others quickly joined, except for Lyra and Twilight.

Twi looked at me and said, “I guess I don’t really have a problem with you all eating animals, but I just can’t do it.”

“Me neither.” Lyra added.

I reached over and pushed the plate of bruschetta to the two girls and smiled. “That’s why I got this. No meat in that at all, just some feta cheese.”

The two girls happily picked up the pieces of toasted bread, tomatoes, spices, and cheese before taking a big bite...each letting out a hum of happiness a the taste.

“Mmm...the royal kitchen needs to make these.” Twilight commented.

“They’re pretty easy to make.” I responded as I grabbed my drink and took a few sips. “So long as you have the right ingredients or can get them, I can show everyone how to make this.”

“Simple, filling, and yet elegant.” I heard Celestia speak from behind me. I turned around and she was holding one of the chicken wings as she chewed slowly. “In all my years of life I never believed I would consume another living creature, let alone enjoy it.”

I smiled as I nudged the sun goddess. “Even an eternal princess can learn new things, hm?” I leaned back against the soft seat and sighed. “Animals kill and eat each other every day to survive because they have to. Well, humans need certain nutrients, and of those nutrients some of them are the easiest to get from meat.” I took another drink and added, “Vegetarian humans don’t eat meat, but they also have to be very strict about how they supplement their diet to keep from being malnourished. Just like a bear,” I gazed at the two happy wolves, “or a wolf, humans were designed to eat meat as food, but they also consume plants.”

“Curious.” the solar princess responded with a grin. “For a heterosexual man, you know quite a bit about meat.”

“Haha, nice!” I heard my brother interject.

I sighed and closed my eyes. “Celly, you’ve been hanging around my brother way too much.”

It was then that I felt a soft rump plant itself directly on my lap, and two arms snake around my neck. I opened my eyes to see Luna looking at me intently before leaning in and kissing me softly. I accepted the gesture wholeheartedly and held her close against me.

After a few seconds the lunar princess pulled away and said, “This night has been wonderful already. I can only imagine how much better it will get.”

I took a look at the wall clock and grinned. “Well you’re about to find out, love.”

“What do you me-” the woman tried to say, but was cut off as a boom sounded in the distance.

This caused all of us to turn and look out the window of the rotating restaurant, which was perfectly facing the spectacle of exploding fireworks in the clear night sky. I glanced at the obsidian-haired woman in my lap to see the reflection of the fiery lights in her eyes, and her mouth was slightly agape in wonder.

“Beautiful.” Luna whispered in awe.

I nodded with a smile of my own. No matter how many times I saw them, the sheer beauty of fireworks always fascinated me. True, they were nowhere near as powerful or versatile as Twilight’s displays, but that’s what made it special. To know that even without magic such a beautiful thing existed...it was inspiring. Humans had to build things, and be proficient with chemistry, physics, and have all the math right in order to pull something like this off, whereas Twilight and I could just cast a spell. That’s not to say I didn’t love magic and Equestria, but I guess in a lot of ways magic was the “easy way”.

Easy, but better.

For all humans’ ingenuity and industry, it had caused the world as a whole to become polluted. Even in the very air, I could taste and smell the difference. Equestria smelled fresh and clean no matter where you were (well, except the royal forge, but that was an exception). Outside, the air was always crisp and clean, and you could breathe in lungfuls of air without ever worrying about what’s in it. Here, there was pollution everywhere we looked. The girls were still too much in awe to notice it of course, but having been here before, I noticed all of it.

Still, I was going to make sure the girls and guys had a great time on this trip.

As I left my thoughts behind and reentered the world around me, I couldn’t help but smile at the awestruck faces of everyone there. I then smirked and whispered to Twilight, “And Twilight: humans don’t use any magic to do that.”

“Wow...” she woman mouthed as she nearly pressed her face against the window.

I smiled and lovingly ran my fingers along Twilight’s back and neck, smiling even wider when I felt the chain of the necklace we’d made for her. Ever since the day I’d proposed to her, I don’t think there has been a single day she’s taken it off.

My physical representation for Rainbow Dash was less elegant, but then again she wasn’t really into jewelry. So instead of something flashy, we instead settled for a single horn ring, which until her human transformation had always been upon the base of her horn. Now, it was upon the ring finger of her left hand -- a simple, flat gold band with magic woven into it that caused it to shimmer with the colors of the rainbow whenever she used magic (which considering her recent fascination with the energy, was quite a lot).

As I watched all the group’s eyes widen in awe, I allowed myself a smile.

“All right, enough playing around.” my brother announced from behind us. I and all the others turned to see him standing beside the table, which had seemingly magically been graced with seven large bottles of assorted liquors, along with chasers of various kinds. “We are going to drink, dance, and laugh tonight. Even you, Fluttershy.”

The mentioned girl shrank a bit at being put on the spot. “Oh. Um, I’m not sure that’s a good idea.”

I chuckled as I rubbed the girl’s shoulder comfortingly. “It’s all right, Shy. Just a few drinks for a celebratory night. We’re not going to get you black-out drunk, I promise.”

“For example,” my brother began as he dropped a shot of a certain german dark liquor into a glass of what could only be Red Bull before handing it to the shy girl, “try this.”

Fluttershy looked a little intimidated by the drink, but did as she was told and took a sip of it. The girl’s eyes lit up as soon as the drink flowed down her throat, and she smiled. “Oooh, that’s good! It tastes like fizzy licorice with bubblegum! And it’s so warm...”

I smirked and nodded. “Jägerbomb. It’s a mixture of two drinks that’s meant to give you a little buzz without making you sleepy. I wouldn’t recommend too many more of those though unless you want to wake up with a hangover in the morning, so limit it to two.” I then grabbed a bottle of JD along with a provided bottle of dark apple cider. I quickly mixed them in a 2:4 ratio before handing the glass to AJ, who took it gratefully. “This is what humans call hard cider. It’s not as sweet as yours, but it’s got more of a bite to it, along with a little of a sour kick.”

The farmgirl nodded before taking a swig of the drink, rolling it around in her mouth a bit before swallowing and looking skeptically at the glass. “Well, it ain’t as good as mine, but it’ll do. Ah like tha sour bite to it; gives it a little somethin’.”

I nodded. “Yep. It’s a favorite of mine, actually.” I then stood and motioned to the table. “Fix them some drinks, Mace. I have to go do something really quick, and I’ll be right back.”

I didn’t even have to say anything in regards to the matter, but I had a feeling he knew what I was going to do. It would be the same spell I cast long ago, putting our marks themselves in the sky for all to see. It would be an unexplained phenomenon for the humans of Earth, but it would be something that would open their minds and hearts to magic, and the truth that the unknown did not need to be scary.

Besides, the children of this world needed to be given a bit of magic for their generation.

As I reentered my room, I quickly made my way to the balcony, all the while charging the spell into my hands as I continued to add intricacies to the spell, and spatial commands for it to do what I wanted until it was ready and at its apex. I then poured more magic into it, causing it to swell within me until I began to feel a little dizzy. I then placed my hands in front of me with the palms facing each other, and allowed the multicolored spell to flow into the space between my fingers, beginning to condense into a sphere of swirling color and crackling energy. I then gently used my aura to cloak the ball and push it into the sky, shielding it from prying eyes until it cleared the rooftops of the city. I released my hold on it, causing it to phase into visible existence as it continued to ascend of its own accord, and I could already spot a few curious observers from the ground and other tall buildings pointing and even taking video of what was happening. I simply smiled before leaving my room and heading towards the elevators again.

As I walked to the table in the restaurant, I caught sight of everyone in the place crowded against the windows, watching the glowing sphere in the air with curiousness and awe.

“Just couldn’t help yourself, hm?” my brother quipped as I walked over.

I just kept silent for a moment as I also looked out the window. After a few silent moments, I looked to the group and explained, “This world could use a little wonder and beauty. Too many are beaten down by it, and too many lose hope...well this is my gift to those people. This little bit of beauty and magic is for them, so that they can keep the flame within them burning strong.”

I felt as Luna laced her fingers in my right hand, and also felt as Twilight clutched my arm with her own.

The girls all gathered around me as Celestia commented, “I’ve always wondered how you did that.”

I shrugged. “I could explain it, but for whatever reason, it’s one of the few spells I can’t teach.” I then held my arm out to the sun goddess with a smile. “Place your hand on my arm.” I looked to the rest of them. “All of you, put a hand somewhere on me. Discreetly, please...I don’t want to cause a scene. Just make it look like you’re looking out the window.”

Everyone gathered around me and did as I asked, and soon I felt their own latent magic mix with my own ever so slightly.

I then smiled and let my aura reach out to the sphere in the sky, as if cradling it within my hands again. The warmth of the orb flowed through me, and I heard a few sighs of happiness as it happened. Figuring that it had been put off long enough, I then flexed my hand and brought my fingers gently into a fist before squeezing tightly. I felt a bit of resistance before something gave, so I turned my eyes to the sky.

The orb in the sky burst into ribbons of color, as it had the times I had cast this spell before, but I had put quite a bit more complexity into it than normal, opting to give the audience across the city (and likely the entire nation) a show to remember. For a few minutes the ribbons of color flowed around the sky, as if alive. I then felt as the magic began to gather and construct itself into something specific, and watched as the outline of a large shield formed in the sky, with fifteen multicolored orbs fluttering around it like a swarm of bees. As we all watched, each orb imprinted itself on the shield into the shape of the cutie marks of those with me...except for four of them. Near the bottom formed the Drakkhenmyst Isle tribal insignias for my brother and Spike. The last two orbs burst into color around the shield, into the shapes of two certain wolves’ heads, roaring with ferocity.

I looked out the window and down to the streets below to see nearly everyone out of their vehicles, either staring in awe or taking pictures and video of the event.

“Is that what you feel like whenever you cast a spell?” Venn questioned with surprise and awe.

I shrugged. “Depends on the spell. Some require only mental acuity to cast, while others hinge off of a certain emotion.” I inclined my head to the sky and added, “That spell in particular was born of love and happiness for my friends and family...and so what you all just felt is what I feel whenever I cast it.”

“It was so warm...and happy.” Pinkie commented in a soft and thoughtful tone.

I nodded as I closed my eyes and sighed with a smile. “It’s a little taste of what I feel for all of you.” I then turned to my brother with a smirk and said, “Go ahead and call me gay; get it out of your system.”

“Fag. Bet you love the ‘D’.” my brother commented with a smirk of his own.

I chuckled and grinned at the tall man. “Better?”

“Much.” he replied with a smile. Mason then stepped back and pulled AJ to the open floor. “All right, enough waiting; I’m going to dance, and you all are ordered to join me.”

I shrugged. “Sounds good. Get the barman to put on a good tune and I’ll join you after I get a few more drinks in me.”

An hour or two later was marked by a rather exhausted me dancing quite animatedly with Vinyl, who luckily took charge of the dancing and made sure I didn’t look too bad. Still, I knew for a fact that my brother was snickering the whole time, but at that point I was just drunk enough not to care. I was also thankful that Luna was dancing with Twilight, as I would end up dry-humping the night princess in public had she been my dance partner.

Damn, she looked good tonight.

“I know that look, Frost.” Vinyl commented as she turned my face to look at her. The DJ grinned and kissed the corner of my mouth before motioning to Luna. “Dance with her this next song, and for the love of Celestia, please control yourself. Save the action for after we get to the room...” she then leaned in close and breathed a hot breath on my neck, causing me to shiver, “and if you’re a good boy, I’ll be a bad girl for you.”

Damn her and her...her-ness.

I composed myself and looked to Vinyl just as a slower song came on, and smiled. “All right Vi. I’ll be good.” I then leaned in and kissed her softly before breaking away and making my way to the princess of the night.

Luna noticed me approaching, and instantly her face lit up with a smile. I saw her whisper to Twilight before the shorter woman walked away, leaving the tall goddess waiting for me. Her black dress clung to her supple, yet firm curves, and I had to consciously remind myself not to drool as I walked over.

The night princess smirked as I stepped next to her, and she gently took my hand in her own. “You know, everyone has been talking about the display in the sky.”

I looked up to see the the glowing emblem still burning brightly, along with a few news helicopters flying around it at a cautious distance. I chuckled and nodded at the sight. “Yeah, that was a given. Honestly I’d be a little suspicious if it didn’t cause a stir.”

Lulu stepped forward and draped her arms on my shoulders as I snaked my own arms around her body, resting my hands on her lower back. I pulled her close against me and kissed her on the cheek gently before smiling, causing her to return the gesture.

“Why did you do it?” she asked as her eyes twinkled with love and happiness.

I again turned my eyes heavenward, taking in the rippling plasma in the sky. “It was for Tracie...as well as other children like her.” I then turned my eyes back to Luna before adding, “This world has a way of making children cynical and cold too early in life, robbing them or their innocence and childhood. There’s no magic left to childhood in most places; it’s just a time after infancy and before adolescence.”

“That’s...rather disheartening.” she replied solemnly.

I nodded in agreement. “It is, but it’s what this world has become.” I sighed as I yet again flicked my eyes to the billowing gift of colors I had given to the world. “There’s a lot of people out there in the world that needed to see this ‒ something beautiful that they can’t explain. It will allow them to see that maybe there’s something bigger than just this world, bigger than them, and bigger than this life. Humans don’t live as long as us, love, and that’s supposed to be what makes life so precious here. However, every day thousands are murdered, or imprisoned wrongfully, or abused...and no one bats an eye. This world needs magic just as much as I need all of you.”

“From what I understand,” Luna began, smiling gently at me, “that is quite a bit.”

“More than I could explain in words.” I confirmed firmly. I then looked off to the side to see Celestia and Twilight talking at the table as they sipped their drinks. “I think I’ve proven by now that I literally love you all more than anything in existence -- in this world or home -- and nothing will ever change that. Each of you are unique and special to me in your own rights, and while some of you may not always be around, my heart will forever belong to you all.”

“And how can you be sure of all that?” she asked curiously.

I shrugged. “My heart speaks to me, and I just project the words. The mind allows for too many errors when dealing with affairs of the heart, so I cut it out completely. In war or governing our people, my mind is at the forefront of the process, but when it comes to any of you girls, it takes a nap.”

Luna giggled and nodded. “I see. Perhaps the younger ponies could learn a thing or two from you.”

I shrugged again, dipping Luna gently before kissing her on those dark maroon lips. I pulled away after a few seconds before pulling the two of us to a standing posture again. “It’s something that can’t be taught, my dear; the young ones will have to learn it for themselves. My only guiding hand will be in teaching them to be open to such things, and allowing themselves to see the world for what it is as well as what it can be. It is a view of reality that could very well end or diminish much of the hostility and negativity in our home, as well as here.”

The moon goddess smiled and nodded. “You have noble yet great ambitions.”

I smiled and stroked her back through the silky fabric of her dress while we slowly danced. “It is an ambition that will never truly be realized, but that doesn’t bother me. If only ten percent of the population has come to understand things in such a way, then my job is done. Those ten percent will be compelled to share that vision with others, and it will grow and spread to those who wish to hear it. It sounds a bit like a virus or a cult if I think about it, but no great changes in history have been met without its opposition. Just as many will embrace it, many will also resist it and fight to stomp it out...but an idea is not like people. An idea cannot be crushed, burned, or imprisoned. An idea cannot be swayed by honeyed words and it doesn’t have fear or malicious intent. An idea, in its most basic form, is invincible; it is everlasting, and for those that hear and understand it, it can be either salvation or damnation.”

“So how do you know that your idea will not damn this world?” Luna asked knowingly.

I let my hand slide a little lower, just to the top of her rump before teasingly slowly tracing my fingers up her spine again. “Because I have faith, my dear Luna. I have faith in those that will be keepers of such a thing, and I have faith that they will preserve it for what it is, no matter the form.”

As the song ended finally, Luna and I left the dance floor towards the open door that led to the walkway that rounded the outside of the restaurant, giving us an open view of the entire city.

I felt as the night goddess’ hand held my own, and she asked, “And how do you plan to spread such an idea?”

I sighed as I stood with my goddess, looking over the bustling city. “I’m still working that part out, my dear.”

I felt as Luna kissed my cheek softly, and when I turned my eyes to her, she was smiling. “Take your time, Frost...do not rush it.”

I smiled and nodded. “Of course, love.”

After my brother and I decided to hold a little improv jam session for the people of the rooftop cafe, we all decided to call it a night and head back to the rooms. The late night hours found all of us spending time in the large suite that was my quarters, and while the others watched Dreamcatcher and Up, Pinkie and Vinyl had me more than occupied in the large bedroom.

On one side of me was the sensual Pinkie, taking her time as she slowly undressed me from my confining jacket and shirt, laying warm, wet kisses along my neck and jawline as she did so. On the other side of me was Vinyl, who was voraciously engaging my tongue in a battle of supremacy with her own -- a battle I was sorely losing.

But then again, in this situation losing was winning as well.

I felt as Pinkie finished unbuttoning my shirt before pulling it off of my arms and tossing it aside, and then felt her hands and Vinyl’s grab the bottom of my tank top to bring it up and over my head, breaking my oral embrace with the DJ. A moment of blindness took me as the clothing was taken off, just before I was pushed down and mounted by the bubbly blonde-haired Pinkie Pie. She resumed the liplock I had previously shared with the DJ hungrily, moaning softly and whispering my name as I ran my hands along the soft skin of her curves.

I felt as another body descended on my thighs, and watched as Vinyl’s strong hands slowly pulled the party girl up before beginning to run her lips along the girl’s throat, her hands slowly and gently bringing Pinkie’s shirt up more and more. Pinkie closed her eyes and bit her lip as she stifled a moan, and simply let the DJ work as I ran my own hands over the supple flesh of her long legs. Finally, Vinyl slowly and gently pulled the graphic shirt up and over the girl’s head, revealing the ample bosom to the two of us.

“Nice...” Vinyl commented before wrapping her hands over the soft orbs of flesh.

Pinkie moaned loudly again, and brought her arm back to run her hand through the vivid blue hair of the DJ. “Mmm...Vivi, don’t stop.”

I quickly cast a spell around the room to soundproof it before turning my gaze back to the pair, who were fervently making out, and in the process actually making me a little jealous. My envy was short-lived, however, as the two girls quickly took places on either side of me, once again making me the center of attention. My hands roamed over the bodies, eliciting a few sighs and giggles of happiness before I pulled the one button from Vinyl’s shirt free...and found she had somehow already removed her bra without me knowing. With the button undone, I watched from the corner of my eye as Vinyl whipped the shirt off in fluid motion, leaving her pale and lightly freckled skin basking in the moonlight.

“Damn...” I couldn’t help but mutter.

Vi responded by leaning down and kissing me deeply, with her wild hair tickling my forehead as she did so. It took everything within me not to reach my hands up and fondle the beauty, but I wanted to see how long I could control myself.

Besides...something told me it would be more fun with a build up.

“So,” Vinyl began, smirking quite obviously, “I take it you like the new body?”

I licked my lips sensually as I eyed the blue-haired girl with lust building within me. “Almost as much as your true self.”

She laughed and shook her head, causing her amazing hair to shimmer in the dim light. “You’re already getting laid, Frost. You don’t need to butter me up.”

I frowned and stopped my hands from caressing Pinkie as I propped myself up on my elbows. “You think I’m just spitting game? Why do you think I’d lie about something like that?”

Vinyl’s playful attitude diminished almost to nothing, and she frowned as well. “Well you used to be a human, Frost. The kinds of things that you’re used to, and the kinds of things that you find sexy or attractive...well, that doesn’t just disappear; it’s still a part of who you are.”

I turned my eyes to Pinkie, and though she said nothing, I could tell she agreed with Vinyl. It was an odd situation with the atmosphere suddenly becoming so tense with the three of us being half-naked, but righting such an incorrect assumption was more important to me than sexual gratification.

For the moment.

I eyed the two women for a moment before asking, “When you think about me, what do you see in your mind? Physically, I mean.”

“Umm…” Pinkie hummed for a few moments, “well, your really pretty gold eyes.”

Vinyl nodded. “Yeah, and your mane. I wish I had hair like that.”

“The way your coat color shifts in the light, like I’m looking at an ocean.” Pinkie added as her frown softened a bit.

I nodded as I looked them over. “And that makes sense, because that’s who I am.” I then motioned to myself and said, “All of this is a temporary disguise. This isn’t who I am, and I don’t think it ever was...not really. Just like what you two look like now isn’t who you are.” I sat up fully, causing Pinkie to scoot back off of my legs and next to Vinyl, who was also looking at me with growing realization. “When I take any of you to bed, it’s not because I’m solely attracted to the body you possess, it’s because I’m attracted to you.” I motioned to the two of them and added, “That’s why these bodies aren’t any more attractive to me than your true selves. Not because you don’t still look good -- because you do -- but rather because this is the disguise; it isn’t your true self.” I locked eyes with Vinyl and said, “Your pristine white fur, and those amazing ruby-red eyes -- those are what you are, and when I find the need to show you how much I desire you, that is what I’m thinking of.” I leaned forward and kissed Pinkie gently on the lips, before pulling away and smiling. “When I kiss you, I am enjoying it because I know that though the body is different, I’m kissing the lovable pink pony that loves it when I tickle her tummy. I like it because it’s you. You’re more beautiful to me as ponies because it is your true self, not just a disguise.”

Vinyl’s face slowly changed from blank to a smile, until it looked like she was trying to grow more teeth to fit into her grin. “Buckle up, Frost. You’re in for a wild ride.”

Perspective change -- Twilight

So much wonder in under a day, and Frost had assured me there was much more to come. Such things as television, movies, elevators, and the skyscrapers of such a large city had already exceeded my expectations; it was all so amazing.

Frost had told me once that humans were a very industrious people, forced to use their minds and ingenuity to create ways to do things, seeing as how they lacked wings or magic. Something considered commonplace in this world -- such as the automobile -- was a wonder to me and the others. Telephones too were an exciting thing to study, and at Darkflight’s approval, I took the room’s model apart and jotted down notes on its inner workings. Such a thing could revolutionize the way Equestrians communicated, as it was much faster than sending letters, and was more personal than words on a page. I just needed to find a way to convert its power source from electricity to magic and it could work.

“Having fun, Twilight?” questioned Night’s strong voice from behind me.

I smiled without turning around and nodded. “Just learning something new.”

I didn’t so much as flinch as I felt her lay down on the bed beside me, her soft obsidian hair brushing against my shoulder. More often than not, Night could be seen walking around as a separate person from Luna, as Luna had perfected the spell used to give Night her own body. Luna’s magic refractory period was that of only a day, so out of a week it was possible for her to passively channel the spell for six out of seven days. And seeing as how Luna’s magic was not used for much other than to raise and lower the moon and basic levitation, it meant that Night was a near-permanent fixture in our lives. Her and I had grown rather close as a result, and I felt more comfortable with her around than without. After all, she had saved us all during the final rush against Death, and had proven her loyalty to Equestria and its ponies.

Which was why I merely smiled as she rested her chin on my shoulder, looking over my work.

“What are you doing exactly?” she asked curiously.

I took a look over the parts again as I continued sketching them, as well as writing down the order in which I had taken them apart and where they went. “Well, this device is used to speak to someone over long distances. It uses no spells though, so someone without magic could use it.”

I felt her nod against me as she observed, “So an earth pony or pegasus could speak to another instantaneously over long distances.”

“That’s the idea.” I replied with a smile. “It could make passing messages along so much quicker for ponies that aren’t unicorns, or aren’t powerful or practiced enough to cast a long-range telepathy spell. I just need to study its inner workings and I should be able to figure out how it works.”

She giggled softly through her nose at my response in that strong, multi-toned voice I had come to appreciate. “Only you would consider such a thing recreation.”

I shrugged my unoccupied shoulder. “It’s part of what makes me who I am.” I finished writing down the specifications of the telephone device before using my magic and memory to repair it, and placing it back on the end table. I then closed my notebook and finally looked over to meet eyes with Night. “Besides, a chance to further our own technology and the chance to learn something new is always fun to me.”

“Dude, the news is on!” we both heard Darkflight exclaim from the other room.

Night caught my gaze and motioned to the living area. “Perhaps we should go and see what he is so excited about.”

I nodded and followed her as she pushed herself off of the plush bed.

When we arrived in the living area of the suite, it was to see the television on. Everypony was gathered around it, watching with rapt attention as a reporter spoke on the screen.

“Yes indeed, the night crowd at one of Atlanta’s most popular hotels was treated to quite the show tonight as two seemingly common customers performed two songs for the patrons of its rooftop restaurant. The two men produced their own guitars and performed for those present, free of charge, stating simply that they were ‘bored’.”

The camera then cut to a blurry video of Dark and Frost playing their music.

“Ryan, a patron of the establishment, describes the encounter:

‘I was just enjoying a bit of a wind-down with my family, when all of the sudden, these two guys start singing a song that was already playing. I thought, ‘All right, I guess that’s nothing I haven’t seen before,’ but then they got out two beautiful guitars and started playing a song on their own! I mean wow, I didn’t know the place employed performers to just randomly play a show for residents of their hotel. I’m definitely going to make sure we come here again.’

“Following that, all of the state of Georgia was awed by a strange phenomenon in the sky.”

The camera didn’t cut away this time, but merely panned to the sky, where Frost’s spell still burned brightly.

“Shortly after the firework display at Six Flags began, this glowing shape appeared in the sky. No one seems to know how it came to be or how it remains there. Onlookers describe it as having a texture like the Northern Lights and its shape looking like a coat of arms, but no one seems to be able to do much but stare in awe of the shape as it lights up our sky. An eyewitness who chooses to remain anonymous recounts what she saw:

‘I was street-level when it first happened. I saw this weird glowing ball float up into the sky, and it kept going higher and higher. Finally, it just exploded into ribbons of color. The way it was moving makes it obvious that it was being controlled by someone, that’s for sure. At first I could only look up at it, wondering what it was, but as the shapes started to become sharper, I recognized them. Fluttershy, Rainbow Dash, Twilight Sparkle, Rarity...those are all cutie marks from My Little Pony. Save for the two strange marks near the bottom and the two wolves, that’s what that thing is. Any fan of the series knows that.’

“While opinion on just how the strange happening has come about, the consensus seems to be that it is harmless, and is simply something to be awed at. Have an opinion of your own? Go onto our website at‒”

Darkflight switched the television off as he chuckled. “Man, what a night. One day here and we’re already causing trouble.”

“Could you really call that trouble though?” asked Frost’s voice as he rounded the curtained glass door that led to the bedroom, shutting it behind him. He was wearing a simple pair of blue silk pajama pants as he walked over to the window, looking up at the sky. “I mean, I think we could have done things so much more subtly, but that just wouldn’t be fun. Humans as a whole are pretty arrogant, thinking that they can understand anything they put their minds to. Let them try to figure this one out.”

Darkflight looked over to the digital clock/calendar on the table and said, “Just under an hour. Nice.”

I blushed a bit at the implication of what they were talking about, somehow still embarrassed from time to time from the subject of sex, but oddly only when I wasn’t involved in it. Hmm…

Frost shrugged as he turned around to face us all. “Would have been shorter, but Vinyl zapped me with some spell that ‘rejuvenated’ me. She said she wasn’t done with me yet.”

“I bet.” Darkflight commented with a grin. “Well, it’s getting late, so I guess we should all get to our rooms. We’ve got things to do tomorrow, so we’ll need a good sleep.” He then dug around in his pocket and fished out four small sleeves with cards, and reading the numbers as he handed them out. “Okay, Venn, Moonfang, and Spike, come get your door keys.” As the four men grabbed their cards, he then turned to the rest of us and smiled again. “Well, we’re off. You all have a good night.”

I watched as my friends left the room, leaving me and my other herdmates to ourselves. For the moment I wasn’t feeling very tired, but I knew Frost well enough to know that I should expect a full day tomorrow, so I walked with the rest of the girls to the bedroom.

It was when we arrived, however, that we came upon a bit of a problem.

“There’s no way we’re all going to fit on that thing.” Dash commented in annoyance.

In Equestria herds were fairly common, but generally speaking it was rare for them to have sleeping quarters large enough for all of them to sleep on a bed together. More often than not, sleeping cushions would be used in lieu of a bed, or they would simply use separate beds. Frost’s herd, however...well, we were all very close. We didn’t like to sleep separately, and I actually had trouble sleeping if at least two of my herdmates weren’t close by.

I looked at Frost to see his face scrunched up in thought. “Matter manipulation spell?”

I shook my head. “The matter has to come from somewhere, so we’d end up with a very thin mattress, which would be very uncomfortable.” I brought my finger to my lips (hehe...fingers) and thought for a moment. “Hmm...this is a conundrum.”

“What if we just place the mattress and the futon cushion on the ground in the main room?” Ditzy suggested.

I shrugged. “Sounds like a good plan, but what about-”

Frost’s silvery blue aura wrapped around the mattress, hoisting it into the air with the two naked sleeping women still on it. He looked at the rest of us and smirked. “Trust me, they’re not waking up anytime soon.” I was rather pleased to notice that Frost’s skill with cleansing spells had improved, since the bed and air around it looked and smelled as clean as the day it was made. That’s not to say that I wouldn’t have lain in the bed if the opposite had been the case, but let’s just say that it was difficult to focus on sleep when I smelled such strong concentrations of pheromones.

The large-sized mattress was levitated out of the double bedroom doors and gently placed on the ground, while I used my own spell to grab the futon cushion off of the support frame, placing it on the ground next to the mattress. There was now more than enough room for us all, but one issue still remained that I needed to make known.

“Do we have to wear these clothes to bed?” I asked, hoping the answer was “no”.

Frost looked at us and chuckled. “I mean, pajamas would normally be what a human would wear to bed, but…” he quickly made his way over to the door that led to the hallway outside the room and grabbed a small piece of plastic before opening the door and putting it on the door handle outside the room, then closing the door again, “there, now you all can get rid of those clothes.”

I sighed in relief. Frost had told me about most humans having a taboo about nudity, but while I could follow the rules well enough in public, I didn’t want to wear clothing if I didn’t have to. Especially these undergarments; they were very constricting.

So, one by one the seven of us disrobed and laid down on the bed with Frost as we prepared to sleep, each taking our places with one another. Luna of course did what Frost called “playing the big spoon” as she pressed herself against my back as I lay on my side next to Pinkie. Human breasts were new for us all, and it was quite a sensation to feel Luna’s pressed against my skin. In fact, the human body in general was much more sensitive than a pony’s, since there was no fur to act as a buffer to sensations. It made wearing those undergarments take some getting used to for multiple reasons, and it made the sensation of touch so much more...special. A soft kiss, a caress...it was going to be such a new experience for me -- for us all, really. Everything about this world was just so different and amazing to me, and Frost had told me that there was still so much to see.

Suddenly I began to feel very tired, and before I knew it, my eyes seemed to be closing of their own accord. Whatever...sleepy…

Perspective change -- Luna

As I finished casting the spell, Twilight began to snore cutely as she slept, and I lowered my hand and wrapped it around her waist.

“Had I not done that, she would have stayed awake another four hours from the anticipation.” I whispered gently.

“She always was one to let her mind override her exhaustion.” Night quipped with a smile from the other side of the bed.

I nodded, returning the smile. “Yes, but that wonderful mind is one of the things I love the most about her. It helped to reintroduce me to our subjects, and helped to win the war.” I looked down to Twilight and gently brushed my fingers through her hair, causing her to mumble incoherently and press firmer against me. “She means the world to me.” I looked back to Night and offered another smile. “You all do, really.”

Night’s smile softened as she replied, “It’s amazing how much can change, isn’t it?”

I nodded, locking eyes with her. “It truly is.” I then untangled my hand from Twilight’s hair and reached across to grasp Night’s hand, which she gave a firm squeeze before pulling away. I then closed my eyes and settled in to sleep, as we no doubt had quite the day ahead of us tomorrow.