• Published 11th May 2018
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The Issue of Multiple Sunsets - Hopeful_Ink_Hoof

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A Harry situation

Normally, on weekends, Canterlot High School was locked up, keeping students out of it until the next school day. There were exceptions, though, such as with some of the school clubs. Some of them would meet on weekends or after school, and one of the officers would be allowed a key to access the school. Sunset Shimmer -- their normal Sunset Shimmer -- had been given one because of all she had been doing to help make up for what she had done, and so she could get onto campus in case of something happening with magic. And, although it was not technically a school club, Rainbow Dash had managed to convince Principal Celestia to let her have one so that The Rainbooms could practice at the school instead of finding somewhere else to rehearse.

Once inside, Rainbow Dash made her way to where Sunset's locker would.

Only then did she realize a major problem.

She had no idea what the combination to Sunset's locker was. Rainbow had never paid attention to Sunset unlocking it, and it was not like she could just call and ask. Also no way to really guess based off of what she knew about Sunset since the school programmed the combinations. Maybe one of the other girls knew? Fluttershy may have noticed when she was being unobtrusive, or Twilight might have picked it up. Actually, Pinkie Pie might be the best choice. That girl picked up all sorts of weird bits of trivia here and there. Rainbow was willing to bet that Pinkie had even put something in Sunset's locker at least once. Like a cupcake, or something to explode confetti to celebrate Sunset not being a bully anymore.

Rainbow came to a stop as Sunset's locker came into view.

Which was open.

With Sunset Shimmer standing in front of it.

This Sunset was taller than the one Rainbow Dash knew, with her hair cut extremely short in a style that Rarity probably knew the name of. She was dressed in a black leather jacket that went down past her knees, and had multiple piercings in her ears.

"Ah-ha!" she cried out, pulling out Sunset Shimmer's journal.

Slipping up behind her, Rainbow snagged it right out of her hands.

"That's not yours," she declared, stepping back.

The new Sunset turned to face her, and Rainbow noticed that this one was older than her friend. It was like in a movie where they got some thirty year old to play a teenager.

Sunset's eyes flicked up and down Rainbow before narrowing. She stood up straighter, crossing her arms. Hanging from a necklace was an amulet that looked like Sunset's symbol, with the yellow part of gold, and the red a single ruby.

"Listen, kid," the older Sunset said, her voice deeper and raspier than regular Sunset, "you don't know what you have there."

Rainbow straightened up, scowling.

"I know exactly what I have."

She then smirked as she spun it by the base of the spine on one finger.

"More than you do. That's for sure."

Sunset took a deep breath, and slowly let it out.

"What's your name, kid?"

"Rainbow Dash."

Sunset let out a fake laugh as she rolled her eyes.

"Right. Sure. Seriously. What's your name?"

"Rainbow Dash," Rainbow repeated.

Sunset's eyes narrowed and brow furrowed. She took a step forward as she looked Rainbow Dash up and down.

"You do... kind of... but you can't... she's... you..."

Taking a step back, she rubbed at her head.

"Something's not right here."

"Understatement of the day," Rainbow mumbled as she took a step back.

Holding up a hand, Sunset took a deep breath and gave a shake of her head. She turned her full attention back to Rainbow.

"Look, kid, this is going to be hard for you to believe, but that's not an ordinary book you have there. I--"

"It's magic," Rainbow interrupted. "I know."

"... you do?"

"Yeah," Rainbow replied. "I mean it's not a secret. It's all part of something else I really don't have time to explain." She then rubbed the back of her head with her free hand.

"Actually, maybe there is?" She raised an eyebrow. "Don't supposed you would willingly come with me to meet up with my friends? I mean, yeah, the whole thing will be kinda weird, bu--"

"Look out!"

Instinct kicking in, Rainbow Dash activated her magic and darted to her left. Just in time to avoid being tackled by the Sunset Shimmer she was talking to. As well as some sort of energy blast that struck the lockers instead.

"Awww," a voice moaned out. "You made me miss. And she was such an easy target."

The new arrival was another Sunset Shimmer. This one had longer hair, with the yellow being replaced with black, and her clothes following a similar color scheme. Even her nails were painted red and black. Her skin was also paler, the yellow looking more sickly than golden tan she normally had. She turned her attention to the other Sunset.

"Ventus ira!" she called out, throwing her hand out. The sound of howling wind filled the hallway as the first Sunset was thrown into the lockers with a slam, causing her to grunt out.

"Hey!" Rainbow cried out, running over to short-haired Sunset, crouching down to check on her. "You okay?"

"Yeah," this Sunset replied. "Just... had the wind knocked out of me."

Rainbow then stood and turned her attention back to the black and red Sunset.

"What's the big idea?"

Red Sunset pointed a finger at Rainbow.

"You." Her eyes narrowed. "What does that book do?"

"The book?" Rainbow asked. She then held up the journal. "You mean this book?"

"No," Red Sunset huffed, rolling her eyes. "I mean the other magical book that you've found. Yes, that one!"

Rainbow stepped away from short-haired Sunset, clutching the journal closer and readying her magic.

"Okay." She took a breath. "It's my Defense Against the Dark Arts textbook." She grinned. "Yeah. See, I have some homework, due Monday, and I forgot my book. So I had to come get it."

"I could set you and fire and bounce you off the walls like a flaming pinball," Red Sunset growled out. One of her hands clenched into a fist. "So, tell me what I want to know, or I'll do just that." Her gaze then flicked to the prone Sunset. "Or... maybe I'll use her instead."

"No," Rainbow cried out, moving to step between the two Sunsets. "Okay, but it's not that big a deal."

"I'll be the judge of that. Now spill."

"This journal is connected to one in another dimension," Rainbow Dash explained. "Whatever is written in it can be read in both of them, as can whatever is written in the other. Although, as far as I know, it only works between the two of them." She then held the journal up. "This isn't even the original. It's and the other one are copies made when the first pair were full."

Seconds passed in silence as Red Sunset stood there, staring at Rainbow Dash. At the same time, the short-haired Sunset, got back up to her feet, rubbing her back where it had slammed into the locker.

"You're serious, aren't you?" Red Sunset finally asked. "You're not making it up. That's seriously all it does?"

"Yeah," Rainbow answered. "That's it."

On a technical level, and as far as Rainbow actually knew anyways. In total truth, the other half of the original journals had been used to open a gate to the other dimension, although it was one that already existed and was simply closed because of something to do with time and moons or something.

No reason to tell either of these Sunsets about that, though.

"Why would she send me for something as stupid as that?" Red Sunset mumbled to herself. "Whatever." She then spoke up louder. "Toss it here."

Rainbow's grip tightened on the book as she got ready. She was certain that she could outrun both of them, and probably avoid any spells thrown at her. She would have to be aware of what was being thrown and where, though.

"Ventus glacialis!" short-haired Sunset called out, throwing up one of her own hands. Again, a wind howled through the school hallway, but this one was ice cold, sending a chill up Rainbow Dash's spine. Fortunately, she was not the target. Instead it went past her and hitting Red Sunset. The cold wind knocked her back, slamming her into the wall as she did short-haired Sunset earlier.

The wind did not end there, though. Instead it kept blowing, coating her in a layer of frost.

Short-haired Sunset stopped, turning to Rainbow.

"We should go before she recovers or back-up arrives. You said something about meeting friends? I could give you a ride."

Rainbow looked between the two Sunsets, then gave a nod.

"Yeah. Let's get out of here. Don't wanna see her mad."