• Published 19th Dec 2017
  • 969 Views, 28 Comments

Ashes to Inferno - Sun Aura

Sunset Shimmer has reached her lowest point. Thankfully, there are those that would be happy to help her up.

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The Mystery of Closets

As she got to know this Twilight more, Sunset realized that comparing her to Fluttershy was a little accurate. It was more like if Fluttershy and Princess Twilight fused together.

With a group of friends supporting her, she was more confident. But she didn’t take the lead, and if someone questioned her she went into a mumbled ramble of her thought process interspaced with apologies. While she knew Princess Twilight could have her anxieties, she was much more confident in her ability that they weren’t as much of a hindrance.

Princess Twilight would worry about terrible outcomes, but fight tooth and nail to stop that bad outcome. This Twilight seemed to freeze in her tracks. It was so strange, having met multiple Counterparts to find one so different. The closest she had seen to such differences were the Celestias, as the Principal could connect emotionally, but that was because Sunset met her in the Recovery Stage. And even then, the Princess was much closer than she had been when Sunset first left her.

At first, she thought Twilight’s differences might be because of what had happened. Because of what the group had officially titled ‘Midnight Sparkle’. But when she mentioned it to Spike, he said this was pretty normal for her.

Even so, the group did keep an eye out. Sunset knew that the girl had nightmares the night after the games, though that was only because Princess Twilight had been with her and asked if Sunset went through the same. She didn’t know if the nightmares continued. She hadn’t when they were in the hotel, but that could have been because no one really got much sleep.

If it were anyone else, she’d ask. But Princess Twilight suggested that, if it were her, she’d want them to wait until she was ready to talk. So she promised herself that she’d only bring it up if it became a real problem. Like if her lack of sleep caused problems. Then again, Twilight seemed like someone who was used o functioning on no sleep. Stars, that girl probably had her blood replaced with coffee by now.

“So, uh,” Twilight began, “Why did you decide to… to use Magic for this?”

Sunset looked up from one of the many suitcases Rarity had packed. Twilight was sitting on the other side of the room, oddly without a dog as Fluttershy had offered to take Spike and Rhea out for a walk.

“Because it’s a lot easier,” Sunset said. “I mean, this world’s Magic has stabilized enough to give me my horn back when we ‘Pony Up’. Why shouldn’t I use it?”

“But you…” Twilight trailed off. “You’re uh, just packing for the trip.”

“True,” Applejack nodded, catching something Rarity chucked out of the closet. “But knowing Rares, this would take her forever.”

“You’re absolutely right!” Rarity said, poking out of the closet to put something in Sunset’s telekinetic grasp. “Friends help, but an extra pair of hands comes in handy!”

“Well, there’s that,” Sunset admitted. “And the fact that I was thinking about putting a Hammerspace spell on a suitcase or two. You know, so that your stuff can actually fit on the bus.”

“Are you saying I could, in theory, bring my entire workshop?” she asked, eyes lighting up.

“Well, maybe not the whole thing,” she said. “I mean, the downsides to tying Hammerspace to an object means you’re limited to what you can fit through the ‘entrance’. So a few bolts of fabric would be fine, but the sewing machine and mannequins wouldn’t fit. And you’re also a bit more limited on space, as you need to be able to reach in to grab things easily.”

“So just a few suitcases,” Pinkie clarified.

“Is there a way to unlimit it?” Rarity asked, all too obvious in her thought process.

“Sort of,” she said. “Tying Hammerspace to an object is a lot harder than using the spell directly. Either way, it depends on your own Magic ability for how much you have, but you can put objects of any size inside as long as there’s room.”

“You know what?” Rainbow sighed as she walked back in. “I don’t even want to know what you’re talking about. But look what I found!”

She held up an occupied hanger. It was a deep pink sleeveless dress, with a tiered skirt and a purple and white sash tied into a bow around the waist. Most girls in the room tilted their heads.

“Is that Twilight’s dress?” Applejack asked.

“What?” Twilight asked.

“Other Twilight,” Rarity clarified. “And it is. I found it back in here after the Fall Formal. How it ended up here when she went through the Portal in it, I have no idea. The stranger thing is that her other outfit stayed too, but when she showed up the last two times she was wearing it again!”

“You’re telling me,” Sunset muttered. “After the band competition, I found her bra in my couch cushions. But when she came through the other week, she definitely had a new one.”

“Wait,” Pinkie said. “Why was her bra in your couch cushions?”

“And how do you know it was hers?” Rainbow asked, giving her a smirk.

“W-well, I, uh,” Sunset stammered, feeling her face heat up. “I-I don’t exactly know why it was there, but I found it because…. Well…. Okay technically…. Technically Flash found it.”

“That’s beautiful!” she snorted with laughter.

“No it’s not!” Twilight protested.

“Come on, it’s a bit funny,” Applejack snickered.

“I…” she sighed. “It’s weird because she’s the other me, so… you know?”

“I get it,” Rainbow said, putting one arm around her while the other waved the dress around. “It’s personal because it’s other you, but it’s also not you so you can laugh!”

“That still leaves one question,” Pinkie frowned. “How’d you know it was Princess Twilight’s?”

“Did she have a specific reason to take it off?” Rarity asked, having a particularly Rainbow-like smirk as she did.

“Just the sleepover,” Sunset said. “And I knew it was hers because it wasn’t mine, and it was too big for you, Rainbow or Flutters, but too small for Pinkie or AJ. And the only other person to be in my house was Flash, and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t his either.”

“You never know,” Rainbow said. “It could be.”

“And now I’m going to have that visual in my head for all eternity,” she sighed. “Can we get back to packing?”

“You’re right,” Rarity sighed dramatically. “We do still have a lot to do. Pack that dress though, we might need it.”

“We’re going camping,” Applejack said, giving her a look. “We’re going to be in the woods. No one’s going to need a dress.”

“So you say,” she replied, waving her hand dismissively. “But if we did need a dress, wouldn’t you rather we had one?”

“Yeah,” Rainbow agreed. “Maybe there’ll be a need for emergency cross-dressing.”

“Ugh…”Sunset groaned. “You’re not going to let that go, are you?”

“Never,” she grinned.

Author's Note:

We're coming up on the LoE arc pretty quick, but that's because most of the 'in between' stuff was in LoaR and RH.
Speaking of those two stories, LoaR had been written right after Friendship Games premiered, and it's going to change some of LoE. Not derail the plot, but minor things. The inclusion of the Unicorns having their horns, the fact that Sunset and Flash's friendship is more of a thing here, and the discussion of what 'Midnight Sparkle' exactly is.
Long story short, that arc will have a good bit of changes but it'll be fun changes!

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