• Published 10th Nov 2019
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Equestria Girls: Love Is Magic - onekface



A new enemy threatens Sunset's new home. It craves magic and it craves all who has it. She and her friends must rise to face it. But they can't do it alone. Flash x Mane 7

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Between Friendship and Vengeance

Chapter 15: Between Friendship and Vengeance

(Monday) (Afternoon) (Canterlot High) (Band room)

“… and then we got to use his pool! Which is twice the size of what we have here in school!” Twilight dodged Rainbow Dash’s arm as she swung it out trying to express the exaggeration of her story. She and Fluttershy had been regaling them about their amazing adventure in Flash’s house. Rainbow in particular seemed to be the more bombastic of the two spinning the story in such a way that many of them found rather… exaggerated. But surprisingly enough Fluttershy confirmed all of it. “And you guys should’ve seen his garage. His whole basement is a parking lot! He’s got a lineup of all the latest models! It’s like an art gallery… but for cars! He even has these all-terrain-vehicles just gathering dust on the back!”

“Don’t forget the aviary.” Fluttershy added cutely as ever.

“Wow…” Sunset whistled impressively. “Sounds like you guys had a great time over there.”

“Great? It was a blast!” RD made an explosive sound. “Who else do you know has their very own pool? Or a basement full of exotic cars!?”

“Or an aviary.”

“We should definitely a have a party there one day. One big pool party! You guys have to come and see it! It’s got a giant diving board so tall you can practically touch the clouds!”

“And the aviary!”

The girls looked at the two and chuckled. It didn’t take a genius to know that they had the time of their lives in there.

“Speaking of aviaries.” Twilight interrupted turning over to the fashionista and raising an imaginary glass in her honor. “Congratulations to Rarity on her successful sideshow. I heard that you got some kind of… prize?”

“Not so much as a prize but an acceptance, darling.” She casually waved it off while she gleefully squealed. “Hoity Toity of Hoity Toity Trendsetter, was so taken in with one of my designs that he wants to build upon it as an inspiration! He already ordered 10 of them to be made by the end of the week. He’ll even cover all my material cost!”

“That’s wonderful Rarity.”

“Thank you darling. Which is why I’ll need to ask Rainbow Dash to help me with the designs.”

“Me?” Rainbow pointed at herself dumbly. “Why me? I don’t know the first thing about clothes. Pretty much all I can do is look at something and tell you if it’s clothes or not. Like… this chair I’m sitting on?” She pointed at it, looked at it, and then nodded to her friends. “Definitely not clothes.”

“I know darling. But Hoity Toity was absolutely taken by the buttoned blazer you wore and the coat with the extra lovely collar. I’ll need you to model for me so that I can make multiple variants of it. Trust me. You’ll become a star at the end of the week.”

Sunset and the others gave her an applause. “Wow Rarity. That’s…”

“And that’s not even the best part!” It’s not? “I just got word that renowned designer, Hoity Toity, is also planning to build a branch store right here in Canterlot City!”

“Yay!”

“No Pinkie. No yay.” The pinkette deflated like a balloon. “Anyway. He plans to open it at the old Uptown Amphitheater. He’s hosting a show there looking for unknown artists to present their designs!”

“Yay!”

“Not yet darling.”

“Oh come on!”

“And if I make the cut, he’ll put three of us on the hit show, Fashion Firebrand, at the Grand Runway at the Capitol City as his latest discovery. We’ll be presented there as the new upcoming stars. His successors, his protoges! I’ll be famous! Can you believe it? An entire show all for me!?” She paused then, allowing the words to sink in. “You may ‘yay’ now.”

“YAY!” Pinkie brought out her mini-confetti cannon and fired it off.

“Does that mean you’ll be leaving Ms. Hemline?” Sunset inquired, sounding a little intrigue. “You worked at that place for a while now. Don’t you think she’ll feel… unappreciated?”

“Oh I wouldn’t worry about her. As you can guess, her designs won over the audience in a landslide during the pageant show. Her Winter Collection at the store are selling over like hotcakes if you can believe that.” Rarity added with a small grin. “And not to mention her agent in the capitol got her a contract for some upcoming gala. Why I wouldn’t be surprised to see her on the front page of this season’s Fabric Fontaine. She’ll hardly notice that I’m gone.”

“Wow Rarity. From small time employee to rubbing elbows with the rich and famous. You’re moving up in the world.”

“I know, darling. Isn’t it exciting!?” She placed her hand over her head in a dramatic fashion. “A small town country girl dreaming of becoming star. She came from nowhere, unheard of, until one day… she appeared on stage and shined brighter than the sun itself! Eeeeep! Yes! These are the kind of stories that inspires greatness! People will be lining up to buy my own autobiography! They might even make a movie about me. Oh and who would star me? J.R. Mewling? Chestnut Magnifico? Spoiled Rich?”

“Actually if you shined brighter than the sun, it would ultimately…”

Applejack placed a hand over Twilight’s mouth, smiling. “Why don’t you let her have this moment, Sugar Cube?”

After a few more minutes of idle chattering, Sunset raised her hand up to call the gang into order.

“Alright guys. While it has been fun, I didn’t call for a Canterlot Magic Investigation Club meeting just for this. There’s something you all need to know.” They hushed up, knowing well that this was a serious talk moment. “During our investigation at the Natural History Museum yesterday, Twilight and I stumbled on something… big.”

“Whoa…” Rainbow Dash muttered what everyone thought when Sunset finished her tale. It was hard to believe but seeing the proof they brought with them, they could hardly deny it. No one ever really thought about Cynch since the Friendship Games. “I don’t believe it.”

“Me neither.” Fluttershy agreed. “Poor Ms. Cinch.”

“Ye – wait what? No! Not poor Cinch! Bad Cinch! She’s the bad guy!”

Rarity gasped. “Goodness. I knew that she was quite the meanie back then. But I never imagined she’d hold a grudge against us for what happened. It was her fault to begin with, forcing Twilight to unleash all that magic. A lot of people could’ve gotten hurt.”

“And it looks like she’s using some of Twilight’s research to further her own purposes.” Sunset finished.

“So she’s sending this big bad wolf out there to gather magic?” Applejack deduced questioningly. “But why? What does she need all that magic for?”

“We’re not sure. But it can’t be good.”

“What we do know however that her plans are still months away from completion.” The nerd gal added. “The spell she’s trying to cast requires the Winter Solstice which is in the middle of the Winter Holidays. So we still have plenty of time.”

“But we’re not going to give her the chance.” Sunset said with a determined look on her face. “We’re gonna put a stop to her plans before it even comes up. Vice President Twilight. Would you care to do the honors?”

“With pleasure President Sunset.”

Applejack chuckled at their tone. “You two are really taking this whole club thing seriously, aren’t ya?”

“Of course! We’re an official club now. Each of us here all have our own positions. Sunset and I are President and Vice President respectively. Rarity’s our web designer.”

“We have a website?” Rainbow Dash blinked.

“It’s been on the school website since last week.” Sunset pointed out. “Where’ve you been?”

“Uh… ahehehe…”

“Applejack is naturally our treasurer who handles all the money should we ever start any activity, Fluttershy’s our club secretary…” The girl in question nodded back holding a notepad. “…and Pinkie Pie is our very own Publicity Officer.”

The party girl grinned widely. “Want a poster made out of frosting, flyers made out of macaroni? I’m your girl! Woohoo!”

“That’s awesome! But… wait.” Rainbow noted something amiss. “What about me? Don’t I get a cool position too?”

“Oh…” Twilight opened her mouth and checked her notes. “Well I guess you can be our… Club Historian. You’ll be in charge of all the notes and taking pictures.”

“I can lend you one of my instant cameras if you want.”

RD wasn’t really sure if she should be grateful, annoyed or insulted that Fluttershy suggested to give her last gift back.

“Anyway now that’s settled, let’s discuss our plan: To take down Professor Cinch and stop her once and for all.” Twilight moved over to the blackboard flipping it around to reveal a rather detailed plan of the operation. “As we all know, Professor Cinch has somehow managed to acquire and use Yaztec magic. She’s done it to summon Uta, the shadow wolf from the legends. We don’t know how but we can speculate that she needs an item of sorts to channel that energy. She’ll most likely have it with her at all time. We take it from her, and all the magic she has will be useless.”

“But it’s not going to be easy.” Sunset added. “By now she probably knows we’re coming. She’ll definitely be on her guard. She’ll most likely have a few tricks up her sleeves so we have to be ready for anything. Not to mention she still has that shadow monster on her side. We’ll have to beat it before we can even get close to her. And if what Adagio says is true, that thing can split into smaller versions of itself. We might get outnumbered.”

“Leave them to me.” Rainbow Dash cockily stated. “I’ve taken on bigger monsters before and a giant robot to boot. A few hungry wolves aren’t gonna be a problem.”

“I’m in too.” Applejack agreed much to everyone’s surprise. “I got a bone to pick with that creep. It’s the reason why Big Mac’s lying in the hospital and it tore down my barn. I’ll be more than happy to even the score. So how are we doing this?”

Sunset nodded back continuing the briefing. “I asked Maud to keep watch over Cinch while she works at the museum. From what she’s gathered Cinch works at the museum around the clock coordinating with the other archivists. That place will be crowded with people so having a fight there isn’t an option. However, there is a bright spot. She’s usually the last person to leave the museum after dark. That’ll be our opening.”

“That’s when we Pony-Up and pounce her to the ground before she even knows what hit her!”

“What? Pounce? No!”

Twilight gasped. “Rainbow Dash, how could you? This isn’t an ambush. We are not attacking Cinch.”

“Oh… a…ha. Sorry.” The sports gal blushed. “I got a little emotional there. It’s just that the way you said those things kinda made me assume that we were gonna pounce her. Weren’t we going to stop her from using magic?”

“We are.” Sunset confirmed it. “Just… not with pouncing. You guys have to understand that magic can be a bad influence to ordinary people. Remember Gloriosa, Wallflower Blush or Juniper Montage? When they got their hands on magic it corrupted them, twisted their desires into something… different. This could be the same case. Cinch might not even realize what she’s doing.”

“So what?” Applejack asked. “Are we just gonna walk up to her and ask her nicely to give up her powers?”

“It worked before.” The redhead smiled. “We have to appeal to her humanity. Despite everything we’ve done to her, she deserves a chance to do the right thing. And besides, I believe that violence should always be a last resort. And when it comes to that, I’ll have you guys to back me up.”

“And should the worse come to worse. We’ll use this.” Twilight proudly showed them her newly recreated device. “It’s the Magic Trap. If Cinch tries to use any spells, this thing will drain all the magic she has into this gizmo. And then she’ll be powerless.”

“Just remember to point it in the right direction. That test run we did gave me a splitting headache.”

“Hey that only means it’s working properly.”

“So when are we doing this?” Rainbow inquired.

Sunset turned the group, nodding. “Tonight…” She answered. “We’re doing this all… tonight.”

xxxxxxxxxx

Professor Cinch tapped the final entry on her keyboard that afternoon detailing the financial report of the new wing’s construction. It was a job for her and a front for everything else she did. After all you can’t expect her to go gallivanting around with magic less she drew the attention of more… unsavory characters.

She took a sip out of her coffee mug finding it warm to the touch. It was a welcome taste in this godforsaken weather. While it wasn’t snowing yet, she still felt the chill from the outside. She missed the brew back in her old office in Crystal Prep. The Valiant Black. A rather pricy brand but one that she had grown accustomed to. It was one of the few perks of being the Principal there.

But she stopped on her work when she felt a familiar presence slithering through her window. It came through unopposed, merging itself to her shadow. Silently it leaned over, whispering to her ear, making her smile evilly.

“So the girls want to play?” She removed her glasses, eyes furrowed like daggers as the news was delivered. “Very well then. Let’s prepare a… cold welcoming.” A multitude of slit eyes opened within her shadow, fangs and hungry snarls followed by her malicious laughter.

(CHS soccer field)

Flash grunted as he carefully made his way through his opponents kicking the ball as he went pass their defenses with little resistance. Snips and Snails attempted to outmaneuver him but they ended up stumbling on one another then falling on their backs.

With the path clear and one last obstacle to clear, Flash set the ball up and put all his focus on the kick sending the ball curving around the goalkeeper, slamming against the net with a defining swoosh.

The crowd… or at least some of the students who were watching cheered out. If any of them had banners or foam fingers in hand they’d be waving it too. It was a clean goal and it ended the game in a high note. Some of the boy’s teammates came by and patted him on the back congratulating him on that awesome kick and a fine game before parting ways to get cleaned up. They all worked up quite the sweat.

He opted to join them until his eye caught a familiar figure leaning by tree. Her large puffy hair was hard to miss but judging by the way she kept to herself, one might guess she was probably trying to keep a low profile.

“Hey Flash.” His friend called out. “Me and the guys are gonna grab lunch. You want in?

He waved back declining the offer. “Nah. You guys go on ahead. I’ll catch up later.” The boy waited for them to disappear into the school doors before he went to approach the figure. He swiped a soda can from the bleachers where his jacket was, eyeing the girl suspiciously.

“Nice game.” Adagio stated with an amused grin. She was giving off those mixed signals again which confused the heck out of him. “Those losers didn’t stand a chance against you.”

“Uh… thanks. I guess?”

“Never took you as the athletic type. Figured you were just a one-trick pony with those sweets words and that instrument.” If that was a compliment, she was sure to make it sound painful.

“Well… I’m no match for the soccer team but I’d say I’m good enough for a friendly match. It’s all just fun and game.”

“That didn’t seem like the case with those guys.” She darted her eye over a few lingering watchers crowding around a tall, blonde scraggly boy.

“Thank you for your kind patronage.” Zephyr Breeze held back a laugh ignoring his fellow classmates’ sulking sobs as they reluctantly handed over a portion of their lunch money. “Yes yes. Thank you sir. And you as well. Better luck next time folks. Come back whenever you want and don’t be shy either.”

Flash groaned, tracing one hand down his face. Those guys must’ve betted for the other team to win and were now paying for misjudgment… literally. He can’t say that he felt sorry for them but he’d wish that they’d keep that stuff away. It would set a really bad example for the younger kids.

“Their sorrow and misery are quite… delicious.”

“Well… nobody likes to lose.” He popped the soda can open and took a sip.

“True words.”

He chuckled. “So what are you here for Adagio?”

“Why? You sound like you don’t want me around.” Her smile turned to an irritated frown.

“No. It’s not that. It’s just that… you don’t look like the type who’d go anywhere without a reason.”

Again her smile returned, though looking more impressed than annoyed. “Very observant. Did you made that assumption based on something or did you simply guess?”

Both actually, but she didn’t need to know that. “Well you just don’t look like that kind of person who’d waste time doing nothing.”

“So both then?” She assumed correctly earning an irritated growl from him to which she smiled back at. “Don’t be mad. I can’t help it, seeing how you’re like an open book. Your face practically gives everything away. You’re a lot of things, boy, but a good ‘liar’ isn’t one of them.”

“And you would know?” He countered back sounding confident and cocky only to pause when he remembered who he was talking to. She grinned menacingly back like a cheetah. “Ok that was a bad comeback. Let me try another.”

“You got presence Flash. But presence alone isn’t gonna cut it if you don’t have control.” She tapped him on the shoulder, cupping his chin in one hand. “The moment you lose control, you lose the fight. You have to keep your face in check. Try smiling more.”

“Smiling?”

“It gives the impression of control in any situation.” She explained with a wink giving him a prime example with that smug grin on her face. “Even when you have no tricks left up your sleeves, even when everything looks hopeless – as long as you have that smile on your face, you’ll always make the other guy doubt their actions.”

“Like a poker face?”

Adagio released his head and nodded. “A good example but you’re going to need something a bit more… believable. It has to look natural. Practice it in front of a mirror or something.”

“Yeah I don’t think I can just smile on command.”

“You’ll have to if you don’t people like me reading you like an open book.” Her smiled grew even more diabolical. “So come on, lover boy. Give me your winning smile.”

Flash wasn’t sure where she was going with this or what kind of game she was playing with him. But if she was right then he certainly use a lesson in lying. It wasn’t exactly the best trait to have but he decided to comply either way. With a slow nod he loosened his cheeks and smiled – a little too widely with teeth and gums showing. “Hhhowes gish?”

It was obviously fake and painfully forced. Painful enough that even she felt it. Adagio patted his cheeks sighing. “Now you’re just trying too hard.”

“Ugh… please don’t tell me this is another one of your ‘advices’. I can still feel that last one you gave me on my back.”

“Then it’s working.” She laughed. “Pain is a good reminder and an even better teacher. It becomes a lesson you don’t easily forget. I should know. I have plenty of them to remind me of all the mistakes I made in my life.”

“Sounds like a rough life.”

“It was, considering that I’m a creature that feeds off the negative energy of others.” The Siren approached him, dragging one finger around his cheek as if she was trying to lure him to a trance. And there was little point in trying either. He had no defense. Not like those girls he hangs out with. “But we can trade history another time. To answer your previous question. You were right before. I did come here for a reason.” His eyes shot up at attention. “I thought you’d be interested to know what your ‘friends’ will be doing tonight.” She swiped the soda can from his hand and took a deep gulp in.

(Principal’s office)

Ah… it’s good to be back. The same plain old office, same plain old desk, same plain old paperwork and the same plain old coffee pot. After a week of visiting Crystal Prep, Celestia can finally sit on her own throne and worry about the normal things in school life rather than all those awkward conversations with Sombra. No more speeches or annoying meetings or high class parties. Now it was back to overdo paperwork and assignment charts.

“Welcome back, Principal Celestia.” The lady greeted raising a pot in hand. “Coffee?”

“It’s good to be back. And why yes I would. Thank you Vice-Principal Luna.” She returned to her chair, noting the seat lowered. No doubt her sister did something to the adjustment. “I take it everything is in order while I was away?”

“Nothing out of the ordinary. Just a few things that I need you to sign.” Luna placed a folder on the table with a nice hot mug of coffee beside it. “Our cafeteria lady wants to restock the condiments before the New Year. Salt, spice and everything else. I approved it of course. Having the kitchen stocked for the next semester will be one thing off the list.”

“Good good. What else?”

“The new order of books for the library. Ms. Cheerilee noticed that many of our stocks are rather outdated and wants them replaced with newer volumes. I also approved that one. Naturally of course. I even picked out the supplier who offered a good deal for delivery.”

“Hmm… not bad. Sounds like you had everything under control. I hope you didn’t let all that authority get to your head.”

Luna shrugged. “Well it was fun being the boss for a change around here. I did enjoy the power. Speaking of which, some of the students have been requesting that we use the gymnasium to hold a Winter Holiday party. Some of the teachers have also agreed and I have the signatures from almost all of them right here.” She placed a sheet of paper on the table.

“Hmm… a party for the end of the semester? That doesn’t sound too bad. I’ll ask Leo if he would work on the day after to clean up the gym afterward.” She gave the approval stamp on the paper. “So long as the party is tame. We’ll need to have someone chaperone the whole thing.”

“I… Luna, Vice Principal of Canterlot High, humbly accept the responsibility of that position.” She raised her hand up while the other placed on her chest like she was swearing an oath.

Celestia simply threw her a knowing grin. “You’re not planning to pull another stunt like what you did back at the last party, are you?”

Luna looked away feigning ignorance. “I’m sure I don’t know what you mean.”

“Really? Because if my memory is correct, Granny Smith reported several cases of cider and root beer missing from the welcoming party during the Friendship Games.”

Luna clicked her tongue in disappointment. “Tsk tsk tsk. Students these days will do anything for a free drink. Some of them really have no respect for the games at all.”

“And Doodles stated that a few canned peaches from the canned food drive mysteriously vanished right before delivery. They were all replaced by… beans.”

“Terrible. Just terrible. Swapping delicious treats for bland beans is an insult to the integrity of this school! What diabolical children. Those responsible must be severely punished.” Luna shook her head shedding an imaginary tear. “If only they weren’t so well organized, we would’ve found them by now.”

Celestia rolled her eyes. “Well… seeing as you’re the one volunteering, I don’t have any valid reason to turn you away.” She paused. “Fine. You can be the chaperone.”

“YES!”

“But keep the party tame. I don’t want to receive any calls regarding over the top noises. I already had two complaints regarding Vinyl’s performance.”

“You can’t blame her. Music is her passion.” Luna reasoned.

“There are times and places for such things. She already got one strike from the local hospital. Two more and they’ll impound her car. And I don’t want that.”

“Very well sister. I’ll make sure that the sound we make is within acceptable parameters.” But then her mood darkened. “Moving on however. There are a few incidents that require your attention.” Incidents? That didn’t sound good. “One of our students, Big McIntosh, was hospitalized earlier last week.”

“Big Mac?” Celestia recognized the name. He was Applejack’s brother and a strong one to boot. He didn’t join any sports club in school but the boy was definitely stronger than your average teen. Heck even Bulk Bicep would agree that he was a tough nut to crack. They once arm-wrestled each other to a tie. And that was after they broke two tables with their overwhelmingly manly pressure. “Whatever happened to him?”

“I’m… not quite sure on the details. He claims that he was attacked by a wild animal but I get the feeling that there’s more to that story than he’s willing to tell.” Celestia wasn’t sure what was more surprising. The fact that one of her students was attacked or that Big Mac actually talked. “If I were to follow my gut feeling, I would point it over to 7 girls I know well enough to get into some… unnatural mischief.”

“Let me guess. Magic.” Her sister nodded in reply. Of course it would be magic. What else could it possibly be? “As if we didn’t have enough to worry about. The finals are in a week and the Winter Holiday starts the week after. These magical incidents are becoming a problem more every year.” She groaned. “Sometimes I feel like I want to remove that statue at the courtyard and drop it into the ocean.”

“I don’t think anyone would mind.” Luna gave it a thought. “It is a rather old statue and we can use some of the school funding to get a new one. We can pass it on to the board of directors and see if we can get funding for the project. We can simply say that we want to do some… renovations.”

“Luna. When did you get so sly?”

“Oh please. It’s just something I developed when we were in college.”

“While I do appreciate the idea… I don’t think the board will want us to waste precious money on… renovations. You know how tightfisted they are.”

Her grin widened. “If that’s the case… we can probably ask your boyfriend to fund the project.” Celestia’s face froze. “He is rich after all. Like… super rich. A little sculpture like that would hardly put a dent in his accounts.”

Don’t fall for it. Celestia breathed out. She’s baiting you for a reaction. Don’t stoop to her level. Resist the urge to slap her even though she totally deserves it.

“There will be no renovations.” She said finally much to Luna’s dismay. “Besides, it has sentimental value. Speaking of which. What did Sunset and her friends have to say about this?”

“They say that they’re handling it.” Luna took a sharpened breath and sighed. “I decided to give those girls some leeway as a gesture of good faith. So I gave them permission to form their own club.”

“A club?”

“It would give them maneuverability when they investigate these incidents. I granted them full access to the school on holidays. It’s the least I can do seeing as no one else here has any knowledge of magic.”

“That sounds… rather reckless.”

And Luna would agree on that. “Do you have a better idea on how to handle this?” No… no she did not. “Do you want to intervene? Lunch is still in session right now but I could probably call them over.”

“No.” She raised her hand up in decline. “While I wouldn’t want anything better than ridding this school of all its magical elements, those girls have proven themselves to be strong and capable. They deserve a chance to handle this on their own. So long as it doesn’t endanger the school any more than it has.”

“And if it does?”

She looked at her sternly. “We intervene.”

(Evening) (Twilight’s house)

Ok… one last checklist before I go.

Flashlight? Check.

Emergency energy snacks? Check.

Night vision goggles? Oh wait… those are from Pinkie. She’d better return it. Check.

7-way walkie-talkie that she personally handcrafted for this operation? Check check!

Band-aid in case of injuries? Hm… maybe it would be better to bring more than one. Check.

“Uh Twilight.” Spike spoke up with a worried look on his face. “Are you sure you should do this? It sounds kind of… dangerous.”

“Oh it’s definitely dangerous Spike.” She replied patting the little guy on the head. “But we have to do it. If Professor Cinch really is using magic to hurt people, we have to stop her.”

“But does it have to be you and your friends? Can’t you like… call the authorities or something?”

“And tell them what? My former Principal is using dark magic to attack people with a shadow monster? They’ll never believe it.” No but he wished she would at least try. “Besides, if she really is using magic, they’ll be powerless against her. As far as I can see, when it comes to all things magic, we’re the authorities here.”

“That… doesn’t feels right to me.”

“I know it doesn’t Spike. But we’ve been given these powers for a reason. It’s our responsibility to ensure that people don’t abuse magic for their own twisted desires.”

“I don’t know. That sounds like a pretty big responsibility even for you.” He whimpered. “You sure you don’t want me to come with you? I can still watch your back or be your lookout. It doesn’t feel right to leave you alone out there.”

“Thanks for the offer Spike. But this might be a little too dangerous for you. I don’t want to put you in harm’s way for my sake.” Twilight quickly poured the guy a serving of his dinner and made sure his water bowl was full. “Besides I won’t be alone. I have all my friends with me. With the seven of us together, there’s not a problem we can’t tackle. And… here.” She gave him an extra portion on his bowl. “I’ll be staying over at Sunset’s place for a ‘Study-group’ sleepover so I won’t be around for your breakfast. Promise me you’ll be good until I get back?”

The little mutt sighed. “Alright. But I expect some premium treats afterward.”

“Deal.”

A knock on the door came a few seconds later. “Twilight honey. Your friends are here to pick you up.” That must be Fluttershy. She was carpooling with her to their destination.

“On my way!” With one last glance she tucked her items in her bag and dashed off to the door.

(Downtown) (Alleyway)

Sunset was sure that the plan would work. It wasn’t the best thought out plan but at the very least they covered most of their bases. While they were prepared for the worst possible outcome she had high hopes that it won’t come to that conclusion.

The Natural History Museum was just across the street and most of the store in the area were closing up for the night. There were a few pedestrian by the streets and a few security personnel guarding the museum itself. The streetlights were coming on as the sun went down. In a matter of minutes this whole place will be going dark. And that meant that the shadow wolf will be coming out to play.

There were only three exits in the museum and two of them were only used by staff members or during fire emergencies. She and Pinkie covered the front gate while Applejack and Rarity covered another. Rainbow Dash covered the third. If they were going to confront Cinch they will have to do it when she was truly alone. That meant no one else must be involved.

She had a car parked in the local parking lot which meant that she was still inside. Either she was burning the midnight oil or she was plotting something within.

“This is Sunset to all teams. Report in.” The redhead unicorn whispered to her walkie-talkie while peeking on her binoculars behind the large trash bin that acted as her cover.

“Rainbow Rocker here.” RD replied. “All clear on this end. No sign of Professor Evil. Yet.”

“Breaker breaker. This is Apple Taters. All quiet over here.” Applejack grunted on the other line. “It would also be a lot easier if I didn’t have to wear this ridiculous hat.”

“Don’t be ridiculous darling. You look absolutely gorgeous.” Rarity chimed in. “It’s a great improvement over your whole cowgirl look. And besides, it’s just a prototype. I just wanted to see how it looks on you before I make one for each of us. And I must say that you are quite dazzling.”

“You do know that we’re trying to look inconspicuous, right?”

“Why of course. That’s why you’ll notice that I decided to go for the darker colored fabric. And the hat really brings out the color of your eyes.”

“I don’t really get it.” Rainbow Dash argued. “Don’t we get these super awesome costumes every time we Pony-Up? I don’t see what’s the point if we’re gonna have the coolest uniforms ever.”

“Yes but they disappear every time we un-pony-up. Why settle for amazing for half the time when you can be amazing at all times?” Though no one could it see, they can tell that Rarity was grinning on the other end. “I’ll even add a nice long flowing cape for your uniform Rainbow.”

The sports gal paused. “You… can do that?”

“Of course! Diversity creates individuality. If everyone in the club looked the same, we’d look ridiculous. Every uniform should have a touch of personality.”

“If that’s the case then I want mine to be 20% cooler. Oh! And extra pockets for gadgets just in case.”

“And change my hat.”

“Functionality and fashionable.” Rarity jotted it down seperately. “A little out of my depth but I think I can work with that. Anyone else wish to add something to their designs? I’ll be more than happy to add variety in yours.”

Sunset chuckled. “Why don’t we focus on the mission before we worry about our uniforms?”

She couldn’t believe that Rarity got Applejack to actually wear the darn thing. She traded that Stetson for a deerstalker hat, replaced her shirt and skirt for a thick long sleeved buttoned coat over a blouse, and a short cape that protected her from the elements. Rarity kept her word and made her look part detective and part wizard. All that was missing was a wand and a bubble pipe for effect. It was even more surprising that Applejack agreed to it at all. Perhaps deep down that Cowgirl actually had a secret desire for fashion.

“Are we late?” Twilight’s voice chimed in as Fluttershy parked her car close by.

“Not at all. We just started.” About half an hour or so. So far all they’ve noticed were people coming and going. The museum wasn’t exactly rolling in locals like they used to. Not surprising seeing as they haven’t had anything new in the exhibit for years until Professor Sombra added his collection to the roster. “We’re keeping an eye over all the exits. So far Cinch has moved from the museum. And from the looks of things they added extra security. I’m guessing our recent theft got her attention. You and Fluttershy can take the high ground and keep watch over the area.”

“Ooooh! This is so exciting. We’re actually doing a real live stakeout like those detectives in those cop movies!” Sunset gave her a mocking look. “What? I do like things other than science, you know?”

“Uh huh.”

“Oh hush. Look. I even brought some snacks.”

“Pinkie already got us covered for that.” She gestured over to the said girl who was continuously pulling pastries out of her hair. “But just so you know, real stakeouts aren’t like those you watch in the movies.”

“And how would you know about stakeouts?” Sunset returned cocking one brow with a playful grin. “Oh come on!” Twilight whined. “Can’t you give me one tiny shred of hope? I thought these stakeouts were supposed to be a tense moment where we share our feelings and deepest darkest secrets which will in turn give us conflicting emotions that will boil over to an argument in the next chapter! Maybe even a side story!”

“Yeah… I think we already had those.”

“Like… many of them.” Pinkie added. “Like in the span of 5 movies. Unless you include those short video chapters on the internet, musical numbers and a bunch of non-canon fan fictions!”

Twilight opened her mouth to argue but she’d rather not dive into Pinkie’s reasoning. She figured she’d just let Pinkie Pie’s logic be as it is.

“Ugh… there goes another dream in my bucket list, dashed.” She groaned. “One of these days Sunset, you and I are gonna have a serious talk about your unusual skillset.”

“Like I said. I used to be a very different person.” She reasoned back casually. But before she could add anything else, another figure arrived with a grin on her face. “Adagio?”

“Missed me?”

Twilight’s eyes sharpened at her with a hint of distrust. “Oh… right. You’re here too.”

“Oooh, the egghead’s can growl.”

“How did you get here?”

She shrugged back nonchalantly holding a suspicious smile. “I… hitched a ride. Public transportation are such a drag when they charge you.” Her face suddenly turned serious. “But enough about me. What about that old lady? Is she out yet or do we have to get in there and drag her out here ourselves?”

“Easy Adagio.” Sunset cooled her jets. “While I’m glad that you’re here, I’m sure that it won’t come to fighting. We’re just gonna talk to Cinch. I’m sure we can convince her to stop her plans.” She paused. “Whatever it is.”

“So you’re going for the passive approach?” She asked sounding rather skeptic. “This is a woman who is hell bent on gathering magic and doesn’t care who gets hurt along the way. You really expect someone like that to just give up if we asked them nicely?”

“It worked before.” Twilight reasoned.

“Well you certainly didn’t try hard enough with us.” Adagio reminded. “It took you guys all your magic to beat us at our full powers summoning a giant crystal alicorn and blast us with your silly rainbow beams.”

Yeah… that did happen.

“We won’t know unless we try.” Sunset said.

“Well we can find out right now.” Pinkie announced as she pointed over to the museum main entrance where Cinch came from. “Wow. Isn’t that weird? She came out of there at the exact moment when the sun went down and this strange fog rolled in out of nowhere. Quite a roll of coincidences, don’t you think?”

Author's Note:

Heya fellas. Not a lot of Flash in this chapter. I'm really trying to integrate him into the gang but that might come later down the story. I like Flash. I wish Hasbro would've fleshed him out as a character. But alas we will never see that day.

Anywho, I am now officially making Tuesday my update day. So look forward to next Tuesday for a fight! Woohoo:pinkiehappy:

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