• Published 17th Nov 2017
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My Little Universe: Season 6 - EquestrianKirin



New Gems, old foes, and a big mystery to tie them together. Who's ready for their big reprise?

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Waving the Red Cape

My dear friends of the Earth. It's my great honor to offer this request for you and your company to come to the Summer Sun Celebration. I do understand that you've all had a rather hard time as of late, considering how much you all had to handle over these last few years, though if I recall correctly, none of you had seen the Summer Sun Celebration before. So I'll take the time now to invite you to the upcoming event.

A rather long time it had been indeed for the Alicorn princess Celestia. A simple writing of a letter was even a bit for her, as all of the preparations still called for her to be present. She was lucky to have the time to write this out, let alone get the letter prepared altogether. Just as she was putting the finishing touches on the letter, the study door opened up and in walked Luna.

"Sister, there you are. Preparing that letter we talked about?" Luna asked, trotting to her side, as Celestia rolled up the scroll with a bit of magic.

"I just finished. I do hope the Crystal Gems do have time this year to come visit. It's been too long," Celestia said, as she wrapped the letter in her signature red ribbon. Once that was done, Celestia focused her magic, and had it teleported away (she can give Spike a break from belching her letters).

"Eh, speaking of which, how much is left until the celebration's ready?" Celestia asked.

"Oh, it's almost ready ... but ..."

"But what?" Celestia asked. Luna's mood towards the event got her slightly bummed out all of a sudden.

"Well ... I don't know if I should be there or not."

"Pardon me?"

"The Summer Sun Celebration's a nice party, I know, but ... it's marks the day Nightmare Moon was defeated." On the surface that sounded good, but all it was was just a reminder to the alicorn of her alter-ego that took control of her for the longest time. All Celestia did though was rest her wing on her back and smiled to her sister.

"It also marks the day hat my dear sister has come back to us," Celestia said. Luna didn't need too much more convincing on that statement, mainly because it was true and a far better meaning than Nightmare Moon's defeat. Luna hugged her sister on that note, grateful for that, when ...

"Princess!"

The doors to the study suddenly swung open, and one of Celestia's pegesus high guards was suddenly in the room. And by the look on the guard's face, the news he had on his mind wasn't the best news he could give to them. Both sister turned to the guard at this point.

"What seems to be the trouble?" Luna asked. The guard needed a minute, his wing wiping his forehead of some sweat since he flown all the way there nonstop.

"I'm so sorry to report this, so close to the celebration and all, but ... something's come back."

"Something? What sort of something?"

*ARRROOOOOOO*

That was more than enough of an answer to the alicorns in the room. The distant sound wasn't exactly a howl of a wolf, but more like a low moo, but just as ominous. Both alicorns looked shocked on the sound, Celestia looking out from the study's window. She may not see what danger was coming their way, but she knew well what was actually coming.

"What shall we do?" asked the guard.

"Have the unicorns create the magical barrier. It should be enough to keep him away," Celestia advised. The guard nodded, and galloped off to pass word.

.......

Off over in Ponyville, just leaving from the boutique, Rarity and Twilight Sparkle had some outfits for the upcoming Summer Sun Celebration. It took Rarity a while to get the outfit for Twilight just right for the celebration, even if it was just a simple alteration from the Grand Galloping Gala party. Same thing could be said for the other outfits Rarity had brought on for the rest of the group, along with a few extras for a few other Ponies. And just as well, they were on their way to the train station for the ride up, and to meet up with the rest of the party.

"Oh, I swear, time surely has flown by, hasn't it?" Rarity commented, carrying her neatly folded outfit in a blue aura of magic.

"I know what you mean. It felt like it was just yesterday we were at last year's Gala."

"I know! Such a fun and life-changing experience to last a lifetime every year, and I've heard that Canterlot's going to make this one a little special," Rarity explained. Twilight wasn't sure what Rarity was getting at, and Twilight tried to work her memory on the event.

"OK, you got me, what is it?"

"Steven's first Summer Sun Celebration of course! He and the Crystal Gems are invited as honorable guests!"

"Oh yeah, that's right! They should be there by now ... well, most of them," Twilight said. Both ponies knew that the Gems are very busy, and with what they now had to deal with, it wouldn't surprise anypony if most of the group didn't show up. They are trying to solve a case after all.
Anyway, it wasn't much longer until they reached the station, and today the springtime warmth had given the station more business than ever for the springtime travelers. As Celestia had already wrote on about, warm weather had hit hard in Equestria this year, and it was to be expected that ponies of all ages would be wanting to go off on some vacation in the nice weather. The Mane six were there too, along with the CMC and Spike, and all of them were ready to go off on their way, the train itself awaiting departure.

"Twilight, Rarity, there you are! The train's about to go!" called Rainbow.

"Sorry, everypony, there were just a few little adjustments and trinkets I just had to add to the outfits before we went," Rarity said, presenting each and every one of them their own outfits for the Summer Sun Celebration. Even Spike was put in a cute tuxedo, red rose included.

"Oh, you just look so adorable!" Pinkie said, honestly not able to help herself, as she hugged Spike. Spike flustered up a bit.

"Well, it fits," Spike said meekly.

"Don't worry, sugarcube, it's not like this is some life-changing experience or no - thiiiiiiiin?" Before Applejack could finish, she turned and saw that Apple Bloom was all dressed up and ready to go off herself, Rarity doing the honor of putting the outfit on her. Seeing Apple Bloom in that green dress with apples lining the rim actually brought tears to AJ's eyes.

"My little sister's all grown up," she wept in joy, smile on her face. She even went as far as to blow her nose on Rainbow's tail.

"HEY!" Rainbow snapped, pulling her tail away. All the same though, all the ponies were pretty much ready to head off towards Canterlot. They all were outfitted, all having everything finished before hoof, and all rearing to go.

"Ok, everypony, let's make this celebration one to remember!" Pinkie beamed.

~~~~~~

Pretty soon, with the calm rumbling of the engine, and a clear line ahead of them, the Ponyville express went off on its way from the main station and over towards the grand Canterlot castle. Typically a train ride wouldn't be too crowded, but it wasn't just the Mane Six and CMC on this train, many other Ponyville ponies taking the trip to the Summer Sun Celebration. It only made sense for plenty of them, as it was the quickest way to reach the place before the true event was to happen, even if it was a day prior to the true event the next day. It was also a good time to see the spring landscape, no longer full of snow, and green and healthy as can be. Fluttershy smiled and sighed happily seeing nature at its finest here.

"It's so lovely," she sighed. While some ponies were glad for a good view, others were getting a little antsy on the ride up.

"How much longer?" Scootaloo asked.

"It's still gonna be a while yet, so just sit tight," Rarity advised, though it didn't help Scoots out any. Scootaloo just sat there with Applebloom next to her, as Rarity turned back forward.

"Hey, Scootaloo, cheer up. And hey, maybe we might find one of those monsters on our ride," Apple Bloom said. That got Scootaloo pretty excited all over again, but unfortunately, Applejack wasn't having it.

"Oh no, we're not havin that today."

"Come on, sis, you've been everywhere, can't we tag along for at least one?" Apple Bloom asked.

"No way. Sorry, you two, but they're way too dangerous for just anypony to jump at. Besides, if y'all ask me, we've been going through enough of it, Equestria and Earth could use the break," Applejack explained. A pretty true statement agreed on 5 out of 6.

"Aww," both fillies sighed.

"Cheer up, you two, we'll have you come along one day. Just maybe on a day that isn't involving a yearly holiday," Rainbow said, though in her heart, some action would be nice. Why not?

"Looking forward to it," Scootaloo said. That surely sounded pretty good, and good enough for her. It was just the matter of which day that would end up being exactly.

"Oh, speaking of which, check this out!" Pinkie was waiting for a good audience for this, and her hoof went into her mane, and popped out a letter.

"A letter, Pinkie?" Twilight asked. Pinkie nodded quickly, and got out the message. She got the letter opened up, and cleared her throat a little bit before she started reading.

I got through some of my errands, I'm sorry that I just had to run off after my visit to Ponyville, but I had to be called away for something. It's the last bit of my BIG list I had, and I'm gonna be stopping by Beach City at the end of the week. Connie already knows, and probably told Steven already, but I thought you'd want to see me too. hope to see you then.

signed: Connie II

"Who? Connie ... two?" Spike wondered, scratching his head.

"Don't you remember silly? She stopped by with amazing tales of wondrous adventures with big mean monsters, and lots of magic tricks! She talked it up in town square during Winter Wrap-Up!" Pinkie said, actually hopping on the back rim of the train seat, and looking like a superhero in stance ... until she fell backwards back in her seat.

"Oh yeah, I saw her then too! If even half of those stories were true, the girl's got guts to face all those things by herself," Rainbow commented, having seen the girl as she was flying around Ponyville. Kinda hard to miss during her flight around town., especially with the crowd she had with her for these said stories.

"I wonder how everypony else will react to her," Fluttershy wondered.

"Oh, I know I know. Ahem ..." It took Pinkie a moment, but suddenly she looked absolutely shocked, her eyes wide, irises shrunk, and ears tucked back in shock, blank in overall expression.

"Eh, I don't think the Gems will be that shocked," Twilight noted.

"No, that's for Connie's parents."

"Oh. In that case, nevermind," Applejack said. It would only be a matter of time before Connie II would meet her technical "grandparents", and mother and father of Connie, so a reaction like that was sugarcoating it, if not spot on. Far as they were aware, Connie probably never told her parents about Connie II yet, for obvious reasons. They'll cross that bridge when they get to it, but for now it was the Summer sun Celebration they have to get to.
Meanwhile, the conductor for the train kept the whole thing moving right on schedule. Tracks all cleared up, and the conductor and firemare were actually relaxing. The conductor kept his eyes on the tracks ahead, as the firemare rested on a nearby chair. If all goes according to schedule, they should be there in no time at all. The world zoomed by the windows, though as the conductor looked on ahead, he took notice of something standing right in the middle of the tracks! There was a lot of distance between them and the object, so the conductor went on the blow the horn good and loud. Usually that would send it going ... but instead, it turned and charged towards them!

"Ponyfeathers," he muttered, before quickly going for the breaks! The wheels locked up and the train started to screech a horrid noise. The passengers on said train were only mildly surprised, the other cars not too effected by the quick breakage. And if that didn't get their attention, the sudden halt of the entire train did! The object, whatever it was, made contact with the train's front, and stopped it dead in its tracks, literally. And the hit made almost everypony thrown off their seats towards the front, some ponies slamming against the wall! It was just a few seconds until the train made a complete stop, everypony in the train getting to their hooves in a groggy state.

"What the hay happened? Everypony ok?" Applejack asked, shaking her head from the hit. The ponies were alright overall, albeit a bit sore from the hit.

"What a stop that was," Pinkie said. Spike took a look out the window to see what was what, and it was clear that something was indeed on the tracks, but he couldn't see what it actually was. The train was letting off steam, and smoke bellowed out from the engine.

"I think we got a little problem," Spike said, as some of the other ponies took a look outside. The conductor and firemare came out to see the situation themselves, and they could just make out a leg moving in front of the train.

"OH MY GOODNESS!" Fluttershy gasped, almost blindly jumping out of the window and straight to the front of the train. Fluttershy skidded to a halt, and the result was just as she feared. It was an animal who got hit, and a fairly large one at that. It looked unconscious at best from the train itself, though it had to be very strong to make the train stop like that. The rest of the Mane six were outside at this point to see the situation for themselves.

"What happened?" asked Rarity.

"I swear to Celestia, I tried to get it away, but instead it charged right at us! What kind of animal does that?" the conductor questioned. AJ and Rainbow took a look to the train's front, which had a deep dent to the cowcatcher on the impact.

"One that can dent metal, apparently," Rainbow simply stated.

Then the animal began to come back to life. As Everypony watched, the large animal raised itself back onto its hooves, shaking off the blunt force of the hit. As for what this animal was, everypony got a far better look at this thing and saw that it was some sort of bull. A big. Red. Bull. And not just any bull, but more rather a Muskox. Dark red fur ran all over its body, large sturdy hooves holding him up, none of which were broken surprisingly. The horns curved back to create a bony helmet on its head. The Muskox shook its head and soon turned to the ponies nearby. its snout sniffed the air before it began to move again, its bulk pushing past any pony in the way, until it stopped in front of Twilight and Rarity.

"Eh, we apologize for ... running you over. You alright?" Twilight asked, only to get a loud snort to her face.

"Not nearly enough," the ox snorted.

"Ok, ok, let's not start getting upset now," Rarity insisted, but the muskox wasn't giving them much chance

"Anyone would be finding vermin by the tracks!"

"Eh, couldn't have. Mice don't really like going by such big, loud tracks," Fluttershy explained.

"What mice?" the muskox spat.

"... The vermin by the track?" Twilight said. The muskox snorted again and moved forward, enough to make Twilight and Rarity fall onto their backs.

"I mean you! You're the vermin!"

... Huh?

"We're the vermin?" Twilight asked, skeptical of course.

"I'm glad you admit it," the muskox said, as the two got up. Why would this bull see Twilight and Rarity as vermin? The two were very good as far as everypony else was concerned.

"I think you got em confused, pal," Rainbow said. The bull didn't turn to the Pegasus.

"As far as I'm concerned, any pony with a horn on its head, or uses magic, is vermin. That makes you vermin," the muskox concluded, marching towards the unicorns right in front of him. Both of them moved back until their flanks touched the train, the muskox snorting at them again.

"Now let's not go down to petty insults! You're talking to the elements of harmony, you know. May I remind you, we actually saved Equestria from -"

"I don't care."

Well, that was blunt. So much for that card. AJ then made a bold move against the muskox, and bit into the brute's tail. That made the beast freak out, and buck like crazy to get AJ to let go. One of these did hit someone, but it struck Fluttershy instead, sending her flying into Pinkie Pie! AJ released the ox when she saw this, and they all rushed over to her seeing a hoof mark implanted on her chest, Flutters in a daze.

"OH, you're on thin ice, you cow!" Rainbow warned, cracking her front hooves, ready for a rumble.

"I don't have time to deal with you. Where's Canterlot?" the muskox demanded, not looking to the Pegasus flying overhead. No way were these ponies going to tell this ox where Canterlot is if he was treating them like this. Odd thing though, Canterlot was in plain sight from the tracks there. Rainbow glanced over to the castle from where they were.

"... Eh, that way," Rainbow said, pointing in the opposite direction.

"Which way?" the muskox questioned.

"That way, over there."

"Over where?"

"Come on, THAT WAY!" Rainbow kept saying. All she was doing though was getting the muskox ticked off at her for not giving any details. Seemed though that this Pegasus wasn't getting the idea yet. Before Rainbow Dash could blow a gasket, Applejack gave it a try instead.

"Now, turn around, about one eighty, and start marching off that way, and you'll run into it in no time," AJ said. The muskox stood there for a moment or two, and actually followed Applejack's instructions. He turned about one eighty degrees from where he was standing, facing away from the train, and he stormed off as fast as he could, barreling through some bushes and even a tree on the way. Not the most peaceful way to avoid a danger, but at least nopony else got hurt in this odd encounter. Though, they do have a little something to tell Celestia now.

~~~~~~

Well, the rest of the ride to Canterlot was without incident, and without any more angry bulls messing them up again. And aside from being a little sore from the actual crash, and a few from the muskox's hits, everypony made it through fairly uninjured. Their arrival to Canterlot was met with plenty of nice faces, and some good decoration for the event to come tomorrow morning. Plenty of magic surely helped getting things together too, and while it may not be as extravagant as Heart's Warming, or the Galloping Gala, it still showed some interest anyway. Seemingly though, the Gems hadn't arrived yet by what the group could figure out, so they had the moment to themselves going around town. Good thing the train could make it there before it needed repairs, otherwise it would've taken them all day to get there.

"Canterlot never ceases to amaze me with their decorations," said Rarity.

"I see ... flags," started up Apple Bloom, pointing over to a few hanging up on some banners down one of the streets.

"And I see some guards," Scootaloo said. Some passed them by, and Scootaloo actually gave them a salute as they passed, one of them doing the same to her. Might as well give some respects as they went along.

"You know what I don't see? The Crystal Gems! I really was hoping and hoping and hoping they would visit this time," Pinkie said, not seeing them anywhere.

"It's not like they didn't want to, Pinkie. but really, if anypony deserves a stop, it's them," Fluttershy agreed. With how much they've done, who wouldn't think that?

"They'll show up somewhere, but it's not like they'll just pop up outta -"

"SNEAK ATTACK!"

She stood corrected: before Twilight could finish, suddenly a Crystal Gem zoomed out of nowhere, and Lapis Lazuli had the alicorn in hand. And she was surely in a good mood to be here, and she wasn't alone either: some other Gems started to walk out to see them.

"Hello everyone," said Fluorite.

"Hey, gang, see you made it," put in Amethyst.

"Hello." said Blue Pearl quietly.

"My prediction says our friends will meet us here soon," said Padparadscha.

And adding in with Pearl, Tiger's Eye, and Steven, they got a fair group here. So there's nine ponies, one dragon, and eight Crystal Gems joining the celebration.

"They did pop up outta nowhere," Pinkie commented, smirking and nudging Twilight.

"Howdy partner, good to see you all made it here," Applejack said, going up to the Crystal Gems there.

"We missed this too many times, no way I'm missing this one," Steven said, psyched to be there, and being able to be there all the same. It was then that Fluttershy looked and noticed Blue Pearl standing over nearby.

"Oh. You're visiting Canterlot too? ... Where's your Diamond?" Fluttershy quietly asked.

"She's back home," Blue Pearl simply said, quietly. At least Blue Pearl was with people and ponies she knew weren't willing to harm her, or her Diamond in anyway.

"Blue Diamond's letting her come with us for a while. Apparently she's been hanging around for a good two weeks, Yellow Pearl too. ... though Yellow's not interested," Tiger's Eye explained.

"....... Blue Pearl's staying with us," answered Padparadscha, though Tiger's Eye literally said the same thing moments ago.

"Sweet! more friends for summer sun fun time!" Pinkie beamed, hugging Blue Pearl. Blue Pearl flustered slightly from the sudden grab, but didn't make an attempt to get herself out of the hug.

"There's no reason to be afraid," said Fluorite.

"I-I'm just not ... not used to it," Blue Pearl said. Pearl got Pinkie Pie off of her so she could get a little more comfortable. No reason for anyone to get uncomfortable during a celebration like this.

"Hey girls, you can show the Gems around a bit, I want to go see the princesses," Twilight said, ready to fly off to them. It was bound to happen.

"Alright, see you in a few," AJ said, as Twilight started off towards the castle.

.......

And the red muskox was rushing off there as well. Or at least, where he thought was the right way. Plenty of forest was in his way, yet this charging bull stopped and yielded for nothing. Any bush he trampled, and tree he knocked aside, any boulder he crushed, this beast was relentless in his charge.

"Canterlot can't be farther now," he thought. As he huffed and puffed, his snout started to realize something, and he skidded to a halt for the first time since he left the tracks.

"Wait a minute ... it's weaker now. ... Blast, they tricked me!" the ox realized. And almost immediately, he turned around and began charging back the way he came. Now he was ticked off.

~~~~~~

It took just a little bit of fly time before she reached the castle, and a good time as well. With the odd bull that attacked them on said train ride, it was probably a good idea to tell Celestia and Luna about the situation, considering his goals seemingly involved Canterlot. By the time Twilight reached the throne room, Celestia was waiting for her. It was only her, Luna not around for the moment, and Twilight landed down gently inside the throne room.

"Twilight Sparkle. I trust you came here safely?" Celestia asked. Immediately Twilight recoiled a little bit on that statement, all things considered.

"Well ... yes and no."

"You ok?"

"I'm alright, and everypony else, but ... I-I'm very sorry to just barge in and ask, but do you know any ... ox?" Twilight asked. Celestia was hoping she wouldn't say that, and the alicorn princess lowered her head, sighing sadly as she walked over to the throne windows to check outside at the shield covering.

"So you did meet him," Celestia simply stated. Twilight looked a bit perplexed, trotting over to her teacher.

"Meet who?" Twilight asked. Celestia stepped away from Twilight a little bit, her horn glowing brightly until a projection of the same red muskox now stood right in front of her. It was smaller of course, but still the same bull.

"The muskox is named Solitaire: a large and dangerous ox with a deep hatred for our kind," Celestia started. Twilight's ears folded back in worry.

"Is this another thousand year old enemy? A-Another tyrant wanting to take over Equestria?" Twilight asked. If her encounter said one thing, it's that Solitaire was a deadly adversary to be charging into Canterlot. Celestia shook her head.

"Actually no. Solitaire wouldn't reveal to me or my sister why he wants to attack Canterlot, or why he hates our kind so much. He arrived into Canterlot many years ago, and immediately tried to tear the city to pieces. Me and my sister managed to drive him out, but he swore that he will return to finish what he started. If he does manage to get in here ..." Celestia didn't really need to finish her sentence to get the idea across. Whatever reason Solitaire was against them surely was something deep, and by the sound of it he wasn't talking. Though, this was probably the first true enemy Twilight had met in Equestria who wasn't a thousand years old, or had a larger reason for attacking Equestria. Sombra, Tirek, even Discord wanted to take over Equestria, but this Solitaire didn't seem to have that kind of motive in him. All the same, that didn't mean Solitaire's going to get a free pass into Canterlot though, not if she could help it.

"Don't worry, Celestia, me and my friends will be sure that Solitaire doesn't get into Canterlot," Twilight proclaimed.

"Thank you, Twilight. We've already had the guards raise the kingdom's shield in case he does arrive, so you don't need to worry too much," Celestia then stated, a hoof aimed back outside at the shield. Twilight saw at the moment that Luna was checking on the shield, making sure it was still as strong as ever. Guess that explains the shield itself being up.

"I would've done the same thing. Anyway, our group already sent him the wrong way."

"Excuse me?"

"He kept demanding us to tell him where Canterlot is, so we just pointed him the wrong way. It'll take him a while to get here, even if he figured it out by now," Twilight explained, informing her what happened earlier.

"Hence the damaged train?"

"Heh, yeah," Twilight said, a little flustered about that. They both knew it wasn't her fault, but she still wished the accident didn't happen. At least nopony was hurt, that's the important thing. Twilight looked on outside, wondering just how big of a threat Solitaire actually was. If that muskox could shake off being hit by a train, that should suggest some sort of mighty strength in him, one way or another.

"In that case, everything should be fine," Celestia simply said. They had the elements of Harmony, and a huge shield to boot, and with Solitaire seemingly going the wrong way, Canterlot should be alright. After that was discussed, Celestia turned to her student.

"Now, that aside, do you know if the Crystal Gems arrived yet?" Celestia asked, changing subjects so they wouldn't worry too much about it. both alicorns walked on out of the throne room and continued their conversation.

"Not all of them, but yeah they're here," Twilight answered. suddenly, something else popped in her head, and she galloped in front of Celestia.

"Oh, yeah, I forgot, uh princess, we actually have some new members visiting for the Summer Sun Celebration. So if you see a ... giant caterpillar, t-them don't be alarmed."

"Giant? Caterpillar?" Celestia asked, a little confused. she knew the Gems, but none of them resembled any caterpillar. Twilight felt herself fluster up, realizing how stupid that actually sounded now that she said it, without much context no less.

"It's ... kinda hard to explain," Twilight replied meekly. Celestia them smiled.

"Then why don't we go meet them? Any new members of the Crystal Gems shouldn't be wary of us. Happen to know where they are?" Celestia asked. Twilight calmed down a little bit, glad to hear that. Plus, it would be good for the Off-Colors to meet the princess of Equestria, and what better time than now?

~~~~~~

Meanwhile, the group within Canterlot was going through with some anticipation, especially the Off-Colors of the group, who had never been here before. All these new colors, and preparations were making the whole place pretty interesting to say the least. In fact, much of the group arrived over in the seating areas where the main event was to be taking place.

"So what actually happens during this Summer Sun thing?" Tiger's Eye asked at one point.

"Oh, it's so exciting: a big party for Canterlot, and then tomorrow morning Luna and Celestia bring the moon and sun up and down, and then Twilight flies in and BOOM! Magic flair!" Pinkie explained, super psyched for when that'll happen. It'll have to wait until tomorrow morning, but Pinkie really couldn't wait for it any longer, finding a good seat for a good view of the event itself. Not a single pony was there, so seats were a plenty for everyone.

"Sounds dandy ... so, when is this?" Tiger's Eye questioned.

"Tomorrow morning," Pinkie chirped. It was a big event, but considering it was still the afternoon, why stick around?

"Tomorrow? Pinkie, aren't we a little bit premature about waiting right now?" Rarity asked.

"Nope."

"Come on, Pinkie, we got all day. Let's check and see how Twilight's chat with Celestia is doing," Rainbow suggested. Pinkie thought it over for a bit, at first happy, but turning a little bit unsure.

"Oh, yep, ok," Pinkie said. The others started to head off to do just that, but after a few little steps, Pinkie Pie stopped herself.

"Wait! I can't."

"You can't? Why?" Steven asked.

"Because if I go away from here, I might miss the event, and if I miss the event Twilight will be disappointed, and if she's disappointed, she wouldn't concentrate, and if she can't concentrate, she won't do so good, and if she can't do so good all her dreams will be crushed! And it'll be all ... my ... fault." Her spas ended with Pinkie Pie falling down onto her back, leaving the others ... confused, to say the least.

"... So in other words. Your staying right here," Pearl concluded.

"Yep," Pinkie chirped. Well, fi many of them knew anything, it's that it would be hard to get Pinkie out of a decision like this one, so they just left it at that.

"Suit yourself," said AJ, just before they went off to check on the rest of the festival. So, Pinkie Pie sat there at attention, and waiting much like a pup would by the door waiting for her master to come home. Well, they knew what Pinkie Pie will be up to today, and she wasn't going anywhere anytime soon.

"K, didn't she kinda jump to that?" Tiger's Eye asked.

"That's Pinkie Pie for you," replied Rainbow. Best not to question the pink mare, under any circumstances, unless you want your mind blown to the moon and back. Padparadscha actually giggled slightly after that. Fluorite was looking to Padparadscha, and seeing the shy and timid Blue Pearl not too far away, and then she got an idea.

"Padparadscha? Blue Pearl?"

Blue Pearl stopped on hearing her name, turning to Fluorite.

"Yes?"

"Why don't you two go, and have some fun in the celebration?" Fluorite suggested. Blue Pearl wasn't too sure about it, as just like Beach City before her vacation started, she only been here once, and even then it was mostly in the castle itself, not around Canterlot. Blue Pearl looked around a bit more, and eventually Fluorite gently placed Padparadscha down, just for Padparadscha to say "Ok."

"Uh ... Y-You sure about this? I'm not too familiar with Canterlot."

"Oh clod, you sound just like Rhodonite. It'll be fine, just stay around in Canterlot, that's all. We'll meet up later," Tiger's Eye said. It sounded pretty simple enough, and with the shield they had a boundary, so maybe it wouldn't be too bad if they went around a little bit. The others stopped at this point, and heard what Fluorite suggested.

"Here, I'll tag along with ya if it helps," Amethyst decided, going over to them. She may not live in Canterlot, but she knew the place far better than these two.

"... Thank you," Blue Pearl simply said. At least they had some sort of guide around here, pony or not.

"Well, alright then, see you guys later. Meet us by Pinkie Pie when you're done," Applejack said, as the trio went off on their way from there. Well, that's four members now out of the current group. One waiting for the event to occur and three going off to check out the rest of the place. Well, it was bound to happen anyway.

"K, Pinkie's one place, they're going somewhere else, where we going?" Spike asked. Before anyone could answer, a silhouette began to appear from above them, and landed down gently over nearby: Twilight and Celestia. The ponies immediately bowed when Celestia showed up, though brief, yet Celestia was quick to notice the "giant caterpillar" Twilight told her about.

"Greetings, everypony. You must be the new Crystal Gem Twilight told me about," Celestia said. Fluorite nodded slowly.

"Indeed. A pleasure," she said with a soft smile.

"Hey girls, sorry for the wait," Twilight said, going over to them.

"Don't worry about it. We were heading your way anyway," Applejack answered. Tiger's Eye showed a bit of interest in seeing Celestia, heading over on her four legs, and seeing what this new arrival was about. The long flowing mane, the multiple colors, the royal appearance, it all intrigued Tiger's Eye.

"Huh, a clarity. Oh, I really like your mane," Tiger's Eye said, feeling her flowing mane. Celestia kept her composure together, and gently moved her mane out of the way.

"And you're a new Crystal Gem, I see. First time in Equestria."

"Well, second time, but first time here. And yeah, we're new to the Crystal Gems through and through. They're nice enough to give me and my group a home back on Earth," Tiger's Eye explained.

"How thoughtful of them. It's a pleasure to have you all here for the Summer Sun Celebration," Celestia said, a smile similar to Fluorite. Tiger's Eye felt the leadership and gentleness of one when she saw that smile, since both smiles had a similar feeling about them.

"Well, not everyone: most of the Crystal Gems are fairly busy right now, you understand," Pearl stated. It did bum her out a little bit, but Celestia understood it better than anyone else.

"I see. Oh well, at least you've made it to see the celebration. Is this everypony?" Celestia said.

"A few of us had left just moments ago. You know, checking out Canterlot," Tiger's Eye answered.

"I see. Well, I hope you all enjoy your stay for the celebration."

"Oh, wait, before you go, one question: why's there a huge bubble around Canterlot?" Tiger's Eye was referring to the shield around Canterlot, pointing off to the shield in the sky around the kingdom. Celestia and Twilight glanced to eachother before Twilight answered, as much of the ponies could probably guess why.

"That's a shield to make sure Canterlot's safe and sound," Twilight answered.

"Oh. Clever," Fluorite complimented. A simple security measure wasn't something that should be questioned too much. With how much goes on, some shield magic was a necessity at least. Plus, it would be bad for a threat to barge in during the celebration, of all times.

"I do hope you enjoy yourselves. I'll see you all again tomorrow morning," Celestia said, before opening her magnificent wings and then flying off back to the castle. It'll be a bit until she would meet up with the rest of the group, but she wasn't going to rush them on that part. So, with Celestia going one way, the rest of the group went off to enjoy the celebration themselves.

~~~~~~

Time ticked by through the afternoon, and as they were hoping for, not much incident so far. Celestia got the sun down to sunset as it was supposed to, leaving the sky a nice amber and orange. Much of the group went around town and basically enjoying themselves, Pinkie being the only exception since she was still sitting at her seat for the actual event. As most of the group did their thing, Blue Pearl, Padparadscha, and Amethyst were going around Canterlot themselves, over nearby the outskirts, still checking things out for plenty of them.

"Ah, that was delicious," Amethyst said, still licking her lips from having a little snack on their walk around.

"I guess it is," Blue Pearl replied. Blue Pearl actually had a little extra something on her person by this point: the shirt she bought while out with Yellow Pearl and CG Pearl.

"I predict that the sky will change in hue," Padparadscha said, looking up to the sky and seeing the nice colors.

"It's called a sunset, and Celestia's got it all covered with her magic anyway," Amethyst said. It took a bit, but Padparadscha looked surprised.

"Who?"

"Princess Celestia. She's got a lot of magic, and apparently she can move the sun and moon around in the sky," Amethyst said. Padparadscha was amazed, never had she heard of a being so powerful they can move the stars! Not even the Diamonds could do that, and that was saying something from a Homeworld Gem.

"....... Incredible!"

"You're telling me."

"But the sun and the moon rotate around in gravitational pulls. You can't move it with magic ... can you?" Blue Pearl asked.

"It's magic, don't question it," Amethyst simply advised, which was a wise thing to say actually. Magic knew no limits when it comes to the laws of the world its in, so questioning that was way too difficult to get an actual answer. During their walk around, Lapis Lazuli started to fly on down to see them, and she gently landed over nearby.

"Hey guys, there you are! ... Is that me?" Lapis asked. Blue Pearl blushed up like crazy, and quickly got the shirt off of her and folded up so Lapis didn't have to see it. Blue Pearl liked the shirt, but she didn't want to give the wrong idea.

"What's up, Lapis?" asked Amethyst.

"Here comes Lazuli," said Padparadscha.

"Just wanted to see where you're at. Celestia wanted to see you, Padparadscha," Lapis said.

"....... To see me?" Padparadscha asked, in surprise. Lapis nodded.

"Well, let's check her out then," Amethyst decided. As they continued walking along, Padparadscha then stopped at one point, her gaze aiming up to the sky for a minute, Amethyst, Lapis, and Blue Pearl stopped and turned back.

"I predict that the sky will start to shiver."

"Shiver?" Amethyst questioned. They looked up into the sky, and sure enough, the shield covering Canterlot was starting to shake in waves, as if something was actually slamming into it from somewhere. From where exactly they weren't too sure about, but it had to be a bit tough in order to make that kind of impact.

"Eh, here Amethyst, you go and put Padparadscha away, we'll be with you in a minute," Lapis said. And so, Amethyst did just that and started to bring Padparadscha along, as Lapis and Blue Pearl started to head off towards the odd occurrence. Shields shouldn't ripple like that unless they're made of water, and this shield wasn't water.

Lapis and Blue Pearl took the moment to head over to the edge of the border shield, which honestly didn't take too much time, and soon they found the cause of the disturbance. Over outside of the shield, they found that someone was just on the other side, and he wanted in. Solitaire had redone his tracks, and now he actually got the place found, but the shield was brutally keeping him out, regardless of how many hits this ox made to the shield. He banged, charged, and rammed over and over again, but it wasn't working in the slightest for the bull. Lapis and Blue Pearl weren't sure what was going on with this beast, and they also saw a few unicorn guards making sure the shield was still up and strong enough to keep the bull back, but it seemed this was going on for a while. Solitaire backed up again for another charge at the shield, and rushed forward, making a hard ram on the shield again.

"What's going on?" Lapis asked.

"Solitaire's trying to break in, that's what," one of the guards answered, just as Solitaire slammed into the shield again. After that, instead of backing up, he just kept banging his head down onto the shield over and over again. Not as strong as a full charge, but more persistent. It surely wasn't enough to break open the giant shield.

"Give it a break, Solitaire, you're not getting in here!" a guard yelled. Solitaire snorted.

"That's what you think, you magical rat," Solitaire snorted, backing up for another large charge. Lapis didn't want to see him hurting himself any further, so she actually got out of the shield and stood in Solitaire's way. However, the muskox wasn't stopping for anyone, and barreled at her! Lapis though her standing there would be enough, but the muskox just trampled right over her! Lapis avoided getting crushed, but the muskox slammed into the shield again, still not breaking through it. Solitaire backed up again, but he backed into Lapis next, which made him spin around, swinging his horns at her.

"Sneaking up on me?!" he yelled.

"What're you talking about, you ran me over! Now what're you doing?" Lapis asked. Solitaire huffed at her.

"I'm trying to get into Canterlot, that's what," Solitaire announced, turning himself around to face the shield again. Lapis went over in the ox's way again, and the muskox started walking again. However, he didn't stop until he bumped into her, quickly backing up.

"How'd you do that? You were behind me, you didn't teleport!"

"I ... just moved," Lapis said blankly. Surely this bull would know that, right? ... Right? ...

"Just get out of my way, unicorn," Solitaire said. that made Lapis even more confused, Blue Pearl gently moving out as well.

"I'm not a unicorn, I'm a Gem. You can see that for -" Lapis suddenly stopped herself, a thought striking her. On that thought, she moved closer to the still muskox, and took a good look at the bull's eyes. nothing but white, blank slates. Lapis and Blue Pearl both looked shocked.

"... Y-You're blind," Lapis concluded. Solitaire snorted again.

"I'm not blind."

"But, then how -"

"I just can't see," Solitaire stated, which was basically the same thing. The muskox moved back again, gaining some distance, before he began to charge. Blue Pearl was in the way this time, and almost instinctively she got a grip on Solitaire's horns. A ox who can halt a train, and Blue Pearl, somehow had enough strength to skid him to a halt!

"Whoa."

"Let go!" Solitaire demanded, shaking his head until Blue Pearl released him.

"Please stop," Blue Pearl said, not enjoying seeing him hurting himself in front of her, though she was intimidated same as anyone else by this angry beast.

"Why should you care unicorn?" Solitaire asked.

"I-I'm a Gem," blue Pearl said meekly.

"Same dif."

"No, not same dif., big dif.!" Lapis insisted, but Solitaire was getting annoyed, and he grew tired too. All that ramming can drain energy out of anyone, or anything.

"Whatever. You didn't care for me then, you're not going to care now. And I as heck am not caring about you, so out of my way," Solitaire demanded. Lapis didn't think that was a good idea, Blue Pearl going behind her fellow Gem.

"But. Were you always ...?" Lapis asked, concerned. Solitaire couldn't believe his ears. That, and with him being tired already, took a break by the nearby tracks, laying down for a minute, facing away from Canterlot (he didn't realize it of course).

"Oh, hush it. I can still see things in my head, you know."

"What kind of things?" Lapis asked, fluttering over to him, and landing by him. Solitaire groaned before answering.

"I see this unicorn standing in front of me. Small, standing out in the cold. I see this glow of light shining bright off the horn, then something sharp. Then I fall asleep. ..." really, it didn't take much to put two and two together here, and one of the guards actually decided to gallop off to tell the princess about this. There was no better time to do that than now, and no way Solitaire would tell them otherwise.

"And look who's fault it is," Solitaire scoffed, referring to the unicorns nearby.

"Not wait a minute, Solitaire, you can't blame all species for one incident."

"Why not? Only a unicorn could do a cruel thing like this," the muskox insisted. Lapis knew well there are worse things that other species could do to him, speaking as a species who would take down an entire planet.

"I know, I can get someone to get your eyesight back," Lapis decided. It was the best she can do for Solitaire. The muskox didn't feel too confident about it.

"And why would they do that?"

"Just stay put, we'll be right back. Come on, Pearl," Lapis said, starting to fly through the shield again, Blue Pearl following behind. It sounded like a pretty easy fix fi this could work.

"I'm not planning to go anywhere anyway," Solitaire groaned.

.......

"Where are they? They should be around here somewhere."

As time ticked on to nightfall, Lapis and Blue Pearl went on back to Canterlot, and as Blue Pearl actually just returned to the others, Lapis took it on herself to try and find where the Alicorn princesses were. If anypony could help and undo this mess it would be them, but she had to look for them first. At least she can confirm that they didn't leave Canterlot, Summer Sun Celebration and all that. And the first place for her to fly off to was the castle itself (obvious, I know). Lapis flew on inside through the throne room window, but when she landed, she found that no one was really there. No Celestia, Luna, no one.

"Princess! Where're you?" Lapis called, only to be met with the wind blowing in outside slightly. A bit odd to see the two gone like this. But the commotion did get one of the guards to check into the room, and find Lapis inside.

"What's going on?" the guard questioned.

"Have you seen the princesses? I thought they'd be here," Lapis asked. The guard stood at attention, hoof over his head in salute.

"Princess Celestia and Princess Luna had stepped out."

"Stepped out? Where are they, I need to tell them something about Solitaire," Lapis explained. Before she could detail who Solitaire was, the guard went on answering her.

"They already got the message from one of their high patrols. They're going to help him as we speak, they shouldn't be too long if everything goes well."

~~~~~~

And back at the shield covering, the muskox in question still stayed and kept his lonely, silent wait. A part of him wanted to believe that Lapis would figure something out, but another part of him knew better than that. He kept quiet, knowing in his mind that at least one guard was still there to maintain the shield itself, so another charge would be futile anyway, not to mention another bang to the head might give him a migraine at this point.

"Is he sleeping?" whispered one of the guards.

"Doubt it, just keep watch soldier," whispered another soldier.

"Oh Celestia, I never would've guessed he was blinded. For a blind ox he's good at going around," a guard commented, still wondering about that himself.

"Me neither. Speaking of which, they should've got that message by now. Hope they come soon."

"I'M STILL AWAKE, RATS," Solitaire suddenly said, getting back up onto his hooves, and turning to the voices. The bull started moving to them, only stopping when his head bumped the wall of the shield.

"Stay down, Celestia will be arriving any moment."

"Why? You plan to tear off my horns too?" the muskox snorted, the snort fogging up the shield. Some of the guards stepped back from the muskox.

"We want to help you, Solitaire," one of the braver guards said. Solitaire was not buying it.

"Yeah, right, and I want pigs to fly over my head dropping bombs on me. You drove me out last time I was here, rodents!"

"Hey, you tore down half of Canterlot, what were we supposed to do?!" shouted one guard.

"And besides, none of us knew you got blind, why didn't you say anything?" asked another. The ox turned away.

"Sure. The same species who blinded me will suddenly change their mind. How big of a fool do you take me for?!" His question ended with another ram to the shield, again quickly being mended up by the guards standing there. Solitaire shook his head, and was just about to charge forward again, but then his snout started to smell a stronger source of magic slowly coming their way. Solitaire stopped and aimed his head upward, the guards doing the same.

"Your highness!" one of the guards said, bowing to their presence. Celestia and Luna landed down in front of Solitaire. The muskox backed up slightly, but was ready to fight them either way.

"Solitaire."

"Celestia. Luna. I supposed you've come to fight me, but I swear I won't give us as easily as before."

"Solitaire, wait. We never knew what happened to you before, Solitaire. You never said anything when you first arrived about it."

"As I told your other vermin over there, why should it matter? You made me blind in the first place!"

"And we're willing to heal you ... if you'll let us," Celestia proposed. The muskox scoffed at the idea.

"You think I'm stupid? You're just here to finish me off, aren't you?!"

"What? That's not what we said at all," Luna said.

"You can't fool me, princess. Now get trampled!"
suddenly the muskox dug at the ground, and charged forward right to them! The guards were ready to come out to help, but Celestia extended one of her wings as to block them, keeping the guards back. The muskox charged closer and closer with each stride, the ramming head ready to clobber both alicorns, but both princesses knew what had to be done. Just before the muskox could trample them, Celestia used her magic around the bull to keep him still, and Luna's horn started to glow. Solitaire struggled, and bucked like crazy for a little bit, but Luna's horn gently tapped on the muskox's head, a flash happening pretty quick. Solitaire freaked out after that, and only then was he released. He shook his head for a bit, his eyes staring right at the ground for a moment or two.

"What did you do to me, you bloody -" the muskox paused when he looked up to them again. looked. So many colors, shapes, and textures. Solitaire could see again!

"There Solitaire."

"... And why did you do this?"

"Because we wanted to help you. Solitaire, nopony deserves what you got back then. The least we can do was heal you if anything," Celestia stated. Solitaire used his new eyes to see who Celestia really was. This youthful, beautiful alicorn princess of Canterlot. He could tell that this was no joke this time, and he turned red faced and turned his gaze away. Such an anti-climactic way to end things, but it was an ending all the same.

"Well ... I may be cured of my blindness ... but I still don't like unicorns," Solitaire stated, giving one more snort their way before he turned around, and started to slowly stagger away. Crisis obverted.
And hey, no fight this time!

.......

Well, that was that. With Solitaire now gone, the actual Celebration itself could go on as properly planned. and in the twilight hours of Canterlot, much of the group was now ready to see the main event of the Summer Sun Celebration. Everypony gathered up along the area, and looked up to the main balcony. Twilight, Celestia, and Luna were up and ready to go.

"Citizens of Equestria, it is no longer with a heavy heart but with great joy that I raise the summer sun. For this celebration now represents not the defeat of Nightmare Moon, but the return of my sister, Princess Luna," Celestia announced. Luna smiled on that, and everyone watched as Luna took the stage first, flying up. With the moon behind her, Luna floated in the air, and started to lower the moon downward, and alongside her, Celestia began to raise the sun up from the horizon behind her. The brightness of the sun and beauty of the stars mixed in from the moon dazzled the crowd. And then the final jump: Twilight opened her wings, and then charged up right in between them, released a huge blast of magic, it looking like her cutie mark as the main event. The crowd cheered when this was all done, the main act now complete.

And while this was going on, another figure silently slithered off with the knowledge it now gained, same as before. And out of sight of everypony in Canterlot.

Author's Note:

This idea stuck in my head since season 5 ... and i guess it took a little too long, because the ending was far too rushed. Sorry :twilightblush:.
Solitaire was a bit of an odd card for me in terms of creation: I originally was just putting him as an angry bull, but last second he turned into a Muskox. Eh, creativity works like that I guess. And before you ask:
Yes, Solitaire's based off the Last Unicorn's red bull. Not as violent of course, but hey, I'm surprised a bull like this hasn't appeared in the actual show yet. BTW, if anyone knows any fanfiction involving this guy and MLP, let me know. :raritywink: