• Published 17th Nov 2011
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Twilight Then, Twilight now - Paradise Oasis



From across time, Two different ponies named Twilight are drawn into a mystery transcending the ages

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chapter 15

sixteen

now...

"Look, she's waking up!"

"Ohhhh my my my! Looks like my 'up and at 'em' spell did quite the charm!"

Applejack's eyes flickered open, and she blinked to adjust to the bright light. Looking around, the orange earth pony noticed she was in a small room, filled with gnome-sized furniture. AJ then noticed Twilight and Spike standing over her, concerned looks on their faces.

"Ugh..." She groaned, her voice having lost it's accent, and returned to it's modern nasal twang. "Somebody get the number of that apple truck that ran me over?"

"Applejack! You're alright!" Twilight hugged her tightly. "I was so worried I had hurt you!"

"Awww, AJ's tougher than that!" Spike added with a grin, "She could get stepped on by a dragon, and gallop away without a scratch!"

"Thanks for the compliment, Spike." Applejack chuckled. "But I really wouldn't want to test that at my age!"

"Ahhhh, nonsense my dear! Your advanced age has left you tougher than you think!" A small, bearded gnome in a green outfit and hat, slowly walked up to her. His hair was as white as the new fallen snow, his ancient form learning on a gnarled staff . "And my healing spells should have you up, and feeling better in no time!"

"Mr. Moochick! I should have realized this was your place!" Applejack greeted him. "But how did I get to your mushromp?"

"The moochick found us outside his home after your...uh... accident." Twilight answered sheepishly. "We were going to take you back to the army camp, but he insisted we take you inside."

"Accident? what..." It all came back to her in a rush. "TWILIGHT! Great horsemaster, I almost killed you! I almost killed our friends!" Tears welled up in her eyes. "I almost murdered my husband... and my little girl...." The traumatized earth pony broke down crying.

"Applejack, listen to me, it wasn't your fault." Twilight told her friend, "The rainbow of darkness was still affecting your brain. You had no control over what you were doing."

"Ahhh, you would have realized that, had you been practicing that detect evil spell I had taught you," The moochick chided her.

"Hey, she's kinda helping a traumatized friend right now, Moochick!" Spike complained. "Now's not the best time to criticize her, doncha think?"

"No Spike, he's right." Twilight replied somberly. "As the Moochick's student of magic, it was my job to keep up on my studies, so I can be of better service to queen Majesty."

"And has that husband of yours, has he been keeping us on his lessons as well, hmmm?" The Moochick asked, stroking his beard.

"With all the work the queen's been giving him, he hardly has any time for me, let alone for his studies." Twilight whinnied sadly.

Sensing her unhappiness, the old wizard changed the subject. "Anyway Twilight, I want you to came over and have a look at this new spell, that I wish for you to learn."

"All right, Mr.Moochick." Twilight looked back at her best friend. "Are you sure your going to be ok now AJ? I can stay here with you, if you like."

"Don't worry about me, Twi. You just try you're best to learn that spell." AJ replied, trying her best to hide her pain and trauma. "It's takes more than a little mind control to get the best of me!"

As Twilight and the Moochick went over to look at a spell book, Spike and Applejack watched her go.

"So studious... so concerned about her studies." Spike commented with chuckle. "Kinda reminds you of somebody, doesn’t it?"

"Yeah... she does." Applejack reached for that faint wisp in the back of her hazy, clouded memory... and saw the brief flash of a purple unicorn smiling at her. "She's way more girly and frilly than Twilight Sparkle... but yeah, there's a lot of our old friend in her."

"I gotta admit, when I first saw you with the other ponies during the battle at Midnight Castle, I didn't realize it was you." The small dragon admitted. "I just thought you were a member of the modern Apple family, or something."

"The rest of the Apple family died out two centuries ago. And hey, don't feel bad... I didn't recognize you, ether." AJ pulled herself back up onto her hooves. "But... why are you still a baby dragon, Spike?"

"Dragon's have a six-thousand-year lifespan." Spike replied with a shrug. "And despite our ages, a dragon's size changes based on the size of their horde, and I've avoided amassing a treasure. Besides, I've tried my hardest to never be greedy again. We both knew what happened the last time I got big due to my selfishness."

"Listen Spike, I'm so sorry about you and Rarity..." Applejack told him.

"Awww, don't worry about it." He waved his arm dismissively. "I'm a dragon, she was a pony... it was only natural she was going to fall for a stallion like she did." Then a sad look spread across his face. "But I did stay in Ponyville after you left, AJ.... I stayed with Rarity after her kids grew up, and her mate died." Spike closed his eyes. "I watched, year after year, as her Mane got grayer and grayer. But she was still the same old Rarity in my eyes."

Then the young dragon's expression darkened. "But one day after her hundredth n' twentieth birthday... one night it got cold.... and it got rainy.....and Rarity was shivering. She asked me to pull the sheet up over her. 'Spike... you're such a dear' she told me. But when I went to wake her up the next morning...she was cold... and quiet..." Spike couldn't bring himself to finish.

"So many sad memories." Applejack replied sadly. "You and I, Spike... we're all that's left."

"Why us, AJ?" The depressed baby dragon asked. “What’s so special about the two of us, that we keep living, while all our friends grow old and die?”

Applejack wished she had a response for the baby dragon… but as she looked into his saddened, weary eyes... the earth pony found that there was really nothing she could say.

After the two finished talking, Twilight came trotting back over. "Hey, guys! Guess what? The Moochick gave me a new spell that'll let me..."

"Yeah, that's great. Twilight." The depressed AJ sighed.

"We'd better get back to the camp. "Spike agreed.

The two depressed friends shuffled out the door, leaving a confused Twilight behind them.