• Published 26th Jul 2015
  • 10,653 Views, 4,220 Comments

The Things Tavi Says - shortskirtsandexplosions

Let me tell you a few things about my roommate, Octavia. After all, she saved my life.

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Lovely Things

Author's Note:

It takes me five minutes to get used to... walking on all fours again.

Then another five minutes to get a read on Princess Twilight Sparkle.

Since emerging through the portal, she's been pacing wildly back and forth before the mirror. Her eyes are distant, her ears folded back under a cloud of anxiety.

At last, after gulping a lump down her throat, she turns towards me.

I blink behind my shades.

She shuffles closer, plops down on her haunches, and speaks to me in a quiet tone. "You have to understand, Vinyl. What you saw over there... what happened between the... the other Vinyl and the other Octavia. Well..." She grimaces slightly, then recomposes herself. "It's a completely different universe. It's not a mirror. I mean... we took a mirror to get there, but that doesn't mean that every single thing that happens in that universe is an exactly duplicate of what happens here... or even wh-what's possible here! After all, that dimension is just as old as ours, if not older, and even Starswirl made visits to it and... and..."

I gaze at her, shivering slightly. It's getting harder and harder to contain my own breaths.

She sees it... and she sighs. "Are you familiar with the butterfly effect? Even the smallest variations in causality—Vinyl—expand exponentially to create dramatically different results. Who knows what actually happened to that Vinyl in the past to have affected her life in such a way to... to..."

I raise an eyebrow.

She bites her lip, then hangs her head. "... ... ...I'm... I'm sorry that I had to throw you into a place that was so strange and overwhelming, Vinyl. It's just that... I-I'm so powerless in that universe, and I didn't know of a better... or a faster way of saving the other you. And as soon as I hypothesized that your abilities would function on the other side of the mirror, I knew you would be perfect for saving your doppelganger. And you were, Vinyl! You saved her... you saved the day!" She smiles... but then that smile dissipates. "But you have to understand that what happens on that side must stay on that side. It would be presumptuous to assume that anything in this realm could be recreate—"

Using telekinesis for the first time since returning, I lift two pens out of my saddlebag and immediately twirl them in the air: "Then. Why. Do. You. Recreate. Him?"

Twilight blinks. Her lips move, as if to retort, but the Princess has nothing. She slumps down on folded knees, shuddering a bit. Her vacant eyes stare into the crystalline floor of the palace's basement.

"You... you h-have to understand," she murmurs, her voice tiny... vulnerable... like a foal's. "The first time I arrived on that side. I was so lost. So confused. Everything was riding on me and my ability to retrieve the crown. And—out of nowhere—he showed up to help me. His fingers gently clapsed mine, and... and it felt like everything made sense. It was something special... something different than friendship. Not better—but magical in its own right." She gulps. "And... and it g-gave me strength, Vinyl. It gave me confidence in myself. And... and even now, as I think about it, I-I just feel an abundance of warmth and... and meaning." She looks up at me. "And when I met this world's Flash, we just... we just connected, you know? Everything about us and who we are and what we do just... just feels so—"

My pens twirl: "But. It. Did. Not. Start. With. Him."

Twilight gapes. She bites her lip, glancing aside.

I stare at her in quiet sympathy.

She sniffles, rubbing a hoof across her eyelids. "I... I-I've faced Nightmare Moon. And monsters." She gulps. "A changeling queen and a centaur bent on world domination. And even still... after all of those crises... nothing frightens me... nothing makes me feel more anxious than when I'm in the presence of him on that side." She stifles a whimper. "I no longer feel the magic... or the charm. Just this... deep... bone-chilling sense of unease. And the worst part is, Vinyl, is that I know..." She closes her eyes. "I know that it's all my fault... for setting it all up for a collapse. But the worst of it is..." She gazes over at me again, eyes moist. "...just who will it collapse on?"

I exhale with a magenta sigh and gesture: "You. Should. Tell. Him."

She bites her lip. Eventually, she nods. Her next breath is a wilting one: "And I suppose you sh-should tell her... too, Vinyl."

I feel my blood freezing over.

Twilight stands up, shivering slightly. "I... uhm..." A gulp. "Anything, Vinyl. Just... just anything. And it will be yours. As best as I can make it happen. But even more importantly than that..." She shuffles over, and I gasp to find myself on the receiving end of a hug. "You have my deepest... deepest gratitude. And I-I hope you still respect me enough to be a friend."

I grimace slightly at that, then usher it away with a genuine smile. I hug her back, easing her shivers slightly. Sometime, several meandering thoughts later, I look past her shoulder at the mirror from which we came.

The ripples in the portal make it impossible to see myself with any clarity. Perhaps... just maybe... that's the way it's always been.

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