• Published 29th Nov 2012
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Polarity: A Tale of Two Sisters - Shinzakura

Prequel to All-American Girl. Derpy Hooves must face a number of sudden important life decisions

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Chapter Six: Some Adjustments Must Be Made

The days passed. Derpy had a successful meeting the following day with bison chieftains Big Littlehorn and Runs-Many-Grasslands. Both chiefs, indeed, were impressed by the mare’s bravery and told her so, much to her blushing. They also found Sparkler to be an absolute delight and made her an honorary member of the tribe, complete with a bison name: Kisses-and-Hugs.

But on a more serious front, both bison chiefs informed Derpy that their tribes’ braves, working alongside guardpony forces and a fully-armed combat airship, were able to get the ponies to surrender. This was confirmed later that afternoon, as the engaging forces returned victoriously, their captives hobbled and ready for transport to Canterlot for trial. Some of them looked defiant, as though they expected this to be nothing more than a momentary respite in their imaginary leader’s quest to conquer Equestria. But most of them knew they were headed for some time in the jails and dungeons, and the shame and humiliation that would follow afterwards.

The following day, the Archmagus of the Mage Guild, Glittering Prize, arrived with dozens of mages as well as a second cohort of guard troops. The reason for that was to secure the roads back to the main portion of Equestria and with that in mind, Prize marshaled the forces and sent them into battle. Shining was grateful for the break, both because of the archmagus’ expertise and also so that it gave him more time to recuperate from his own injuries.

As for Shining himself, once had time to think about it, he realized it was nothing more than a diversion, the ramblings of a now-deceased madstallion. Twily, after all, was under the careful watch of Princess Celestia as well as Cadance – and neither of them would ever let her go astray. Plus, she kinda sorta had friends in the other fillies that Cadance foalsat, so there was that.

“Yeah, I definitely overreacted,” Shining said in a guilty tone. He looked down at his desk and said, “You know, I really wonder if I am cut out to be captain of the guard someday. I shouldn’t make mistakes like this – Old Soldier certainly doesn’t.”

Derpy gave him a smile. “Shining, I’m sure Archmagus Prize said the same thing when he was just a junior mage. And the archmagus who comes after him will probably say the same thing, as will the next. You can bet that Old Soldier said the same thing when he was just a lieutenant, too. You just took over command of this fort, and you’re keeping all these ponies safe. If you did something in error, well…I just don’t know what went wrong.”

“Yeah, maybe you’re right. Thanks, Derpy,” he said with a smile. “And speaking of things needing to be said….”

She sat, listening as he spoke. When Shining was done, she asked, “Are you sure about that?”

He nodded. “Just let me take care of it.”

Ditzy stretched out luxuriously in this cloud bed. It felt almost as soft and desirable as clouds made by pegasi. Yeah, it didn’t have the neat shape of what pegasi were used to, but for a hobbyist not used to working with weather magic, this was perfect. Just the right amount of warmth and softness, and sooner or later, he’d get the structure right.

Besides, she thought to herself, there’s other shapes he’s got that are just perfect. She looked at his sleeping form, and remembered that one of the little known benefits to gryphons was that they could get back up to speed in a moment. She found that out while being invited to a “special” party being thrown by some mare she met a few years ago. The party turned out to be an interspecies swing and she got her fill – both metaphorically and literally – of some of the studliest males outside of ponydom. And the best of all? No need to worry about contraceptive spells.

So as she ended up spending the rest of the night and part of the next day with a gryphon with a hobby in cloudmaking and the biggest – well, there was much to be said about the pleasure of pain. He chattered on incessantly and to be honest, Ditzy couldn’t even remember his name; it was probably something with a G, knowing his species’ predilections towards that tradition. But he was an attentive lover and he caressed her in the way she hadn’t been caressed since…


Tears began to fall. Autumn, what have I done? The tears streamed, unbidden down her face. What’s-his-name caressed and cuddled her just the same way her estranged husband did, a kind, caring love that her body ached out for. And that’s what she really realized she needed: it was the touch of love. Yes, last night was fun – oh, was last night fun, especially that one zebra mare and that thing she did with her tongue – but….

Not entirely in control of herself, she found the exit to his home and launched into the air immediately. Part of her wanted to wake her bedmate back up and do it until she was raw and sore. But if she did that, she’d have no strength in her to head home and beg her husband and family to take her back. Once again she’d made a brutal mistake and she had to correct it if she could. She had to see them again, and find some way – any way – to get back in their good graces.

She was halfway back to her home before she remembered the gryphon’s name was Gibril.

“Wow, really?” Meteor Flash said to Autumn once he’d announced the news. “No way, man. I mean…can you really afford it?”

Autumn nodded. “I can rent out my old house as needed, and then with the raise, I can buy yours, if it’s still on the market.”

Meteor gave his friend a wide grin. “Dude, seriously, going to miss having you here. But I can’t think of anypony better to get their hooves on that old home than you.”

“Hey, I’m still trying to make sense of it all.” And indeed, that much was true. He remembered waking up drunk at Rocket’s home, with Blossomwind looking at them both with a bemused smile and little Blossomforth bouncing up and down like the excited little filly she was. After the two made themselves presentable and ate a nice breakfast courtesy of Blossomwind, there had been a knock at the door of Rocket’s home. It was Rocket’s boss, Towering Cumulus, who had a problem and needed to consult his right-hoof stallion on it.

“Yeah, and just like that Fallstreak decides she’s gonna be a housewife and stay home with her husband. I mean, she’s always been flaky, but this time just took the cake. Anyway, so do we know any ponies who can take over the weather instructor job here in Cloudsdale? Especially since fog training is a huge specialty – it’s one of those things you have to get just right.”

Rocket’s answer had been to point out Autumn and extol his position as the head of the fog patrol in his own weather facility. At that, Cumulus brightened and started talking to the olive pegasus in earnest. Twenty minutes later, Autumn was offered the position of head fog instructor at the weather school in Cloudsdale. It had taken all of a couple of seconds for Autumn to snap out of his reverie and only a second after that to wholeheartedly accept the position.

After all, who could say no? The instructor job bumped his pay up by a third, and some of the schools around Cloudsdale were amongst the best for young pegasi like his daughters. There would likely be more foals their age to play with and best of all…no Ditzy. He could just leave and file the divorce papers at his leisure; also, being seen in town as the one taking care of the fillies would be good for him should Ditzy want a nasty custody battle.

Focusing back on his conversation, Autumn grinned and said, “Well, if you’re ever in town, you’ll know where to find me.” Meteor nodded and then excused himself; he had to start getting the sales paperwork ready if he was going to transfer the house in a timely manner; plus, he did have to get ready for work for the day. As for Autumn, he was going to have a hard time concentrating on work today, as his mind was now on what was going to be a better life for him and his fillies and best of all…away from Ditzy for once and for all.

He couldn’t wait to tell the girls tonight.

She walked in while he was asleep. He looked a mangled, broken mess – and to Derpy, the most handsome thing in the universe. Silversteel had nearly died for her sake and had proven his feelings for her in the grandest way possible and in doing so, opened hers up to him as well. In that moment, her world had changed. Now, she wasn’t alone anymore. Now, she had somepony to face the future with. Now, she had someone who could bring a smile on her face and a skipped beat in her heart.

As she approached him, he opened his eyes slightly. “Derpy?” he spoke softly.

“Sssh,” she whispered. “Don’t say a thing.” She bent over and kissed him slightly, her heart racing as she knew they belonged to one another. She put her head down on his prone form and sighed in contentment; though she couldn’t see it from this angle, the look on his face was one of utter peace as well. The duo remained like that for several minutes, each soaking in the newfound love of the other. Finally, she lifted her head and looked at him once more, letting her smile say everything she never could.

He smiled back, as feeble as it was. “Looks like I’m going to be down for the count for a while,” he replied. “They’re probably going to transfer me to another garrison to recuperate. Doctor said it’s going to take at least six months before I’ll be fully qualified to go back on regular duty, though I’ll be back on my feet in a few weeks.”

“I’ll come visit you every day,” the gray pegasus promised. “I don’t care how fa—”

“Derpy, you have to worry more about your cousin’s foal,” Silver insisted. “Wherever I’m stationed at, I’m sure I can come visit you whenever. I’ll be on light duty, which means that my main job’ll be to heal.”

“I….” A lump solidified in Derpy’s throat. Could she tell him the truth? Would he still love her if she did? Would he accept being the father of a foal he hadn’t sired, just as Autumn had accepted Fluttsy and Orange? And, for that matter, what would Autumn think?

Thankfully, the gray stallion misunderstood. “I know. I want to be with you too, Derpy. But I have to get out of the infirmary, first. I just hope that they’ll transfer me to the Canterlot garrison where I can be close instead of some place like San Caballo or Las Pegasas.”

“Well, I think I can solve that for you right now,” Shining Armor said as he came in. Silver, on instinct, immediately tried to stand at attention and render a salute while in traction, but the older stallion merely shook his head and said, “Relax, Silver. We’re off the books on this one.”

“Thanks. I can’t quite be all shine and spit-polish,” the earth pony replied in a woozy voice. “By the way, these meds the doctors are giving me? They’re making me a little dizzy.”

“Well, you’ll have time to get over that with some tender loving care from your fillyfriend, Sergeant,” Shining said, his face cracking into a grin, “because you’re going to be stationed really close to her – you’re being temporarily assigned to the garrison at Berryville.” The look on Silver’s face was one for the ages, and Shining had to prevent himself from breaking out into complete fits of laughter over that. “The medical facilities at the Berryville garrison are more than sufficient for your needs, Silver, and I’ve sent a message to Coronet Straitlace – he’s willing to train you in how to be a sergeant.”

“But how…why…uh….” Sure enough, the earth pony stallion was at a complete loss for words.

“Because you risked your life to save a high-level Crown official,” Shining replied. “Yes, I know it’s Derpy and you would have done so regardless, but the rules are the rules, and those rules said you went above and beyond the call of duty when you saved said Crown official. That earns you some medals, and along with that, a promotion straight to sergeant.”

“But I would have done it for her anyway,” Silver stammered, finding his words. “And I let Tiny Dynamine….” He trailed off, unable to say more on that subject. Derpy reacted to her beau’s anguish, running her hoof through his mane.

“You weren’t to blame for that,” Shining said. “She knew the risks and was there to help you both. She’s just as much a hero as you are, Silver. And if she were here, she’d want you to smile and know you did your job.”

“I guess,” the younger stallion answered, not feeling confident about that.

His unease sank into Derpy’s mind as she went back to her quarters to pack her and Sparkler’s bags for the trip back to Berryville the next day. As she arrived, the guard assigned to protect the quarters waved and said hello; he’d been one of the ones on the Serene Velocity and was grateful for the impromptu job she’d done that saved the ship just a few days prior. She chatted with him for a few minutes before going in to see how her charge was doing.

In the center of the room, perspiration on her brow and mane as she was trying to fine-tune her telekinesis, Sparkler was currently trying to pick up a bunch of flower petals individually instead of as a group. Her face was screwed up in concentration as she reached out with her magic to poke and prod at each item before her, hoping to get a literal rise out of the small array of objects before her. Finally, she let out her breath, her magic spent and the few petals that had been wavering just hairs’ breadth above the ground gently fell back to earth.

“That was wonderful, Sparkler!” the gray Pegasus chirped as she came in. “You did very well!” The little filly gave a tired smile and a yawn as her guardian came in and scooped her up in a hug.

“But I didn’t lift the petals, Miss Derpy,” the foal mumbled as she teetered on the edge of needing a nap and enjoying being hugged.

“But you tried, muffin,” Derpy replied. “That’s the important thing – there are too many adults who never try and never really reach their dreams. Even when they get their cutie mark, it’s more because they got it when it was time, not because they really tried to be the best at what they do.” She nuzzled Sparkler, a loving smile on her face. “Promise me you’ll never give up?”

She giggled softly and said, “I promise!” But the younger pony then yawned and said, “I think I wanna take a nap, though.”

“Well, let’s take one together, okay?” the mare said and Sparkler sleepily complied, her head bobbing in a narcoleptic nod. Clambering onto the bed, she was nearly asleep the moment her head hit the pillow. Looking at the tiny unicorn with a soft smile on her face, Derpy hopped on the bed herself and gently extended her wing over Sparkler as if it were a blanket. Instinctively, Sparkler snuggled closer, the look on her face priceless as she slept soundly under the pegasus’ wing.

“And that should be the last of it,” Shining said as he burned the document, sending it magically transporting away back to the main Guard garrison at Canterlot. “All in all, things went much better than they could have. We defeated the enemy with a minimal loss of our forces, though if you ask me the price was still too high.”

Stroking his short beard, Glittering Prize nodded. “We lost a promising mage. I know Tiny Dynamine’s father, Gulf Fritillary. He’ll be devastated at her loss, but proud as a peacock that she was there to help those in need. And I knew Wisdom Seeker personally…I’m at a complete loss as to why he turned, and I suppose without him alive we’ll never truly know. But I intend to interrogate a few of the prisoners and get some answers. We’ll get to the bottom of this, Lieutenant, I assure you.”

Shining nodded. “Thank you, Archmagus. I appreciate the assistance.”

The older unicorn chuckled. “All in a day’s work, Lieutenant. Besides, if I may be so bold, this bit of travel has given me a bit of a respite; her majesty’s personal protégé has been asking me questions about magic theory and thaumaturgical protocols as of late that would vex ponies three times her age and decades more experience. I’m not sure where the Princess found this little teenage dynamo, but I fear that if I’m not careful, by the time it’s time for me to retire, she’ll be trying on the Archmagus’ hat next.”

Shining suppressed a grin; it was clear that the Archmagus had no idea of the relation between him and Twily. “Sounds like you’re in much need for a vacation, sir.”

“Not if I want to keep my job,” he said with a soft smile. “I’ll be returning to Canterlot tomorrow; I can only hope that Miss Sparkle hasn’t commandeered my personal library by the time I arrive.”

Both fillies were wide-eyed at dinner that night. “Really, Daddy?” they chorused as one.

He nodded softly. “We can move next week. You two can attend the Pegasus school and go to the best flight camp in the country!” he said, feeling a little envious; the flight camp he’d attended near Detrot when he was their age was top-notch, but it was often said about the storied and historic camp at Canterlot that it was the place of Wonderbolts in training. While neither of the girls aspired to it, it would mean that they would have the best education possible. “Who knows? You two might even get an autograph from one of the Wonderbolts!”

Both Fluttsy and Orange looked at each other, grinning happily at that. The Wonderbolts’ current leader, Cloudy Contrails, was an extremely friendly and outgoing pegasus; Meteor said that she lived across the way from their new home and was, despite her position, a very likeable and friendly sort. But for him, seeing the pair smile meant more to him than anything else. His girls deserved happiness and one way or another Autumn was going to make sure that they got it.

And then the question came.

“Daddy…if we move, will Mommy know where we moved to?”

A couple of seconds passed before the stallion realized he was holding his breath. He knew this question was going to come up and sooner or later he was going to have to deal with it. “We’ll talk about it later, sweetie, okay?” he said gently.

“But my school project is this week!” she cried, “and I need her there!”

“Sweetie, your Aunt Derpy should be able to do it,” Autumn replied. “Your mother is ver—”

“At school today Puppydog Tails said that Mommy is a tail-lifter, and all the other foals laughed.” The look in Fluttsy’s eyes was one of sudden sorrow.

No, not now, Autumn moaned silently. Stay a foal a little while longer, sweetie. Please just stay my filly a little longer. The moment he dreaded was on the verge of arrival: the day he’d have to tell his daughters the truth.

She looked at him strangely, then asked, “Then he said to me that maybe when I’m as old as Mommy I’ll be a tail-lifter just like her. I didn’t understand what he meant but he was mean and….” She looked at him, the picture of confusion. “Why was he mean? And why did he call Mommy a tail-lifter?”

He looked at Flutterwonder, his eyes both sad and kind. “Sweetie, sometimes ponies say things they shouldn’t and it hurts others. You…ignore him for right now and I’ll talk to your teacher tomorrow, okay?”

“Okay,” she said, not convinced.

“Besides, we’ll be moving to Cloudsdale next month and then you won’t have to deal with Puppydog Tails or any other colt like that. You’ll be with a bunch of new and nice colts and fillies that you and Orange can make friends with, okay?”

Fluttsy perked up at that, grinning. “Uh-huh!” she agreed.

“Good. You and Orange can play for a little while longer after dinner, then get ready for bed. I have to write a letter to your aunt to make sure she’s going to be there for you, okay?” Fluttsy nodded then left the table, going to ask her younger sister if they wanted to play a game of Cloudbusters, leaving her father behind to sigh in relief.

This time had been too close. There wouldn’t be a next time, he knew. Next time she would know and he’d have to tell her the truth and break his daughter’s heart. He didn’t want to do that; Dear Celestia’s Sun he didn’t want to ever do that. But he knew one thing: that no matter what, he’d always be there for her and Orange. They were his daughters and that’s what they’d always be to him.

The next morning, the pair awoke and had a quick breakfast before they had to pack their bags. While Derpy handled the majority of that, Sparkler went back to attempting to lift the flower petals individually. The pair had been at it for several minutes before a knock came at the door, and a few seconds later Shining Armor came in through the door. “So, you guys will be leaving on the Sudden Stars, which just arrived in-port last night. They’ll be headed back later this morning, so you have time to say all your goodbyes before you go.”

Derpy looked at her old friend, then reached over and embraced him. “I’m going to miss you, Shining,” she said with a loving smile.

“Hey, it’s not like it’s forever,” he said, returning the embrace. “I have to head to Canterlot sometime next month to give a final report on the situation. I can swing by Berryville on the way back.”

“I’ll hold you to that,” she insisted.

He nodded and said, “I’ll let you go see Silver so you can spend time with him before you two depart.” He gave her a chaste nuzzle before focusing his attention on the younger unicorn. “Heya, Sparkler. Heard you need a hand with learning how to increase your telekinesis?”

“Uh huh,” she said, not taking her eyes off her targets. “Miss Derpy says I can do it if I really try, but so far I haven’t, Mister Shining.” She finally took her eyes off the petals and looked at him hopefully.

He grinned. “Well, let me teach you a trick I taught my little sister,” he said as he approached her. Derpy knew that Sparkler would be in good hooves, so she took that moment to leave the quarters, headed straight towards the infirmary.

“And yet you came to me,” the voice said gruffly, “and not to your family. I’m not sure how I feel about that.”

“Look, Will,” she said to the minotaur sitting before her, “I just need some advice.”

Will to Power looked at her, his heavily muscled green arm effortlessly lifting a keg of cider and pouring two glasses, one for him and the other for his friend. “Ditzy, have you forgotten that I’m not exactly the most expert on relationships either?”

“You’re better than me.” Will was Ditzy’s friend because of the one thing he’d accomplished that no other being had done before: turned down her advances willingly. Strangely enough, he’d been holding out for a minotaur cow that Ditzy had ended up sleeping with, and while trying to give relationship advice to the bull the two had become friends of a sort…even if she’d had sex with Will’s now-wife more often than he’d had. “You even got Pasiphae to stop running in the meadow, and she likes that sort of thing.”

“She promised me that when she got pregnant, that’d be the end of it,” he’d told her. “We’ve got a daughter on the way, and I want little Scylla to have a normal life with normal relationships – none of that meadow-running business.” He looked at his friend. “So, you want me to tell you how to fix things with your husband and be a good mother to your foals? That’s easy: just stop chasing tail. I understand that Cloud Kicker already said the same thing to you, didn’t she?”

Ditzy was shocked. “H..how…?”

He grinned. “She’s been telling everyone you’re off-limits now and that she’ll beat the stuffing out of anyone who even tries. Looks like if you’re going to keep what you’re doing, you’re going to be playing on the periphery for a long, long time.” He held his mug up to his face, then took a quick drink. “Ditzy, you and I have known each other for a few years now. You’re…you’re not cut out for this. I know you. You’d make a wonderful mother and wife if you’d let yourself and stop comparing yourself to your sister.”

The gray pegasus’ face contorted in disgust. “This isn’t about my sister.”

“Yes it is. You can’t fool me,” he said. “There’s something about your sister that you just can’t let go of, and it’s eating you alive. You keep listening to the same basic advice over and over again, and you won’t let go. Instead, you blame your sister for everything that’s wrong in your life and you retaliate by throwing your own life away. How many foals have you and your husband had, Ditzy?”

“That’s none of your business,” she said sharply.

“Zero. I know you have at least two foals, so that’s two times you’ve slept with someone else and then dumped the remains onto your husband. I swear, that stallion is a bull amongst bulls – he must absolutely love those foals to accept some other stallion’s results as his own.”

Ditzy wanted to reach over and slap Will. He wasn’t helping – he was insulting her! How could he?

“Ditzy,” he said kindly, “I know what you’re thinking, and yes, you probably want to beat me to a pulp. But ask yourself: why? Is it because I’m lying or wrong – or is it because I’m telling you an uncomfortable truth?”

She drained her mug in one. “This conversation’s over, Will,” she said, storming upstairs. She was staying at his house a couple of days to think things through. Maybe in the morning he’d be nicer to her.

Will merely looked at the pegasus as she stormed upstairs and knew he’d hit paydirt. It was cruel and painful, but she’d been cruel and painful to him once and it had helped him. Ponies were, as a general rule, not like that, but then again it was part of the reason his family had moved from Minos when he was just a calf – because his family was gentler than most minotaurs and it showed. Hell, his baby brother Iron Will even wanted to be a self-help coach someday.

“Your hatred for yourself is going to destroy you someday, Ditzy,” he said sadly to the space where she’d been a few minutes ago, “and I hope someone’s there to pick you up when it happens.”

Clambering up into the bedroom, Ditzy opened the window and looked outside. In the distance she could see the town of Ponyville, just about forty or so miles north. To the left, she could see Cloudsdale, bright and shining in the sky, as the sun reflected off its silvery clouds. She’d thought about moving there once with Autumn, starting over again and just having the two of them together, happy. Then she met Skyswift, one hell of a stallion with a…well, she’d spent plenty of time whittling him down to size. She was pretty sure that he was her oldest daughter’s sire, but she had no interest in keeping in touch with him once he’d started getting serious with another mare. Instead, she’d bore the foal and convinced Autumn she wouldn’t stray again. That had been the lie a few months later when she met a husband and wife group. Beautiful View had been more fun in the sack than her husband had been, but it had been Mango Grove that had gotten her pregnant. Eventually Beautiful View had become with foal as well and they got out of meadow running, leaving Ditzy to head back to her husband with a new foal and more arguments.

And all this time, Autumn had stayed with her…even as she knew her husband’s deepest secret: after all these years, he still loved his first girl, her twin sister, Derpy. Her brainiac-but-dorky sister, her deeply flawed idiot of a twin – the one who always seemed somehow to get all the breaks and chances that were rightfully Ditzy’s. Why did Derpy have to have the first coltfriend out of the two of them? Why did Derpy insist on being smart instead of beautiful…well, admittedly, she didn’t have a choice there. But why was Derpy so gifted and blessed with everything while Ditzy had to scrabble and scramble for every little scrap? Hell, even their own parents favored the older sister.

Ditzy didn’t know, and Ditzy would never know. And as she closed the window and for the first time in weeks slept alone in a bed, she wondered if those answers would ever come.

“Silver, I….” Derpy was about to say something else when she was silenced by his kiss.

“You don’t have to say anything, Derpy. I’ll be along in a couple of weeks, the doctors told me. We won’t be apart long. And I’ll be there to help you when you stop flying. I mean, you’re almost at the point where you’ll be too big to fly, right?”

Silver, if I tell you the foal is mine, will you still love me? she wondered. If I tell you my brother-in-law’s the father, will you still respect me? She turned away, unable to say anything to the stallion she cared about.

Thankfully he misunderstood. “I understand that losing your ability to fly is a big thing for pegasi, but I promise I’ll be there for you, Derpy,” he replied. “And once you give birth to your cousin’s foal, we can actually focus on our own relationship.” Again, it was forward of him, but she found it was something charming about him, that expectation that tomorrow would always be there and that she was going to be a part of it.

“But I’ll miss you every moment until we’re together again,” she told him, leaning forward to kiss him again—

—only to be interrupted by a doctor. “Dr. Hooves, I’ve been told to inform you that they’ll be boarding your ship in an hour,” the medic informed her. “Plus, the sergeant here will need his rest, so I’m afraid you’ll have to say your goodbyes now. Additionally, by the table,” he said, pointing with his horn, “there’s a letter for you, just dropped off by the Commander’s office.” Nothing further to say, the unicorn departed the room, leaving the two lovebirds to get back to their goodbyes.

Settling on just holding each other for a few moments, Silver and Derpy gazed into each other’s eyes – or as much as he could into hers – beholding one another, silly smiles and bright blushes on both their faces. But after a few more minutes, it was time to depart.

“I’ll see you soon, and miss you every moment,” she said, kissing him tenderly.

“I’ll be looking forward to it with every moment,” he said, watching her depart.

She grabbed the message left for her and left the room, blowing him a kiss before closing the door. As she departed, she opened the message. Magically ensorcelled, it floated before her, letting her read it as it levitated in the air:


Thank you. Thanks to you, Shining is safe, and you were able to put a stop to the Nightmare Army. My aunt finally came clean with me last night about the whole thing (apparently it’s something to do with an ancient monster she trapped in stone a long time ago and ponies now seem to think it’s the Mare in the Moon, go figure), and she was glad I was worried about her. Twily has also been somewhat concerned, but when I told her Shining’s best friend was on the case, she felt much more comfortable.

Shining also sent me a report about what Wisdom Seeker told you. The fact is, he was a madstallion, and I don’t know how he could have figured out Twily’s cutie mark unless he saw something similar. Then again, from what Shining’s mother has told me, the magenta star has been a symbol in their family since their ancestor Clover the Clever, so maybe he just took a famous mark and did something coincidental. In any case, both my aunt and I will keep an eye on Twily. I don’t think she’ll ever be a problem and I love her too much to let her get into danger.

Lastly, I can’t thank you enough for everything you’ve done. I wish I could fly down to meet you at your home so we can get to know each other better, but my schedule doesn’t permit the time right now. I promise that the first chance I can, I will. For everything you’ve done for Equestria and my coltfriend, I consider you a dear friend as well. I really don’t have too many ponies that I can call one, so you’ll just have to settle for being one of those lucky ponies, right?

Your friend,
- Cadance

Derpy smiled softly as he took her eyes off the scroll, triggering it to roll up once more and settle on the floor before her. Picking it up in her mouth, she left the hospital, heading toward the guest quarters to get Sparkler and plan to head home. Her job was done here and tomorrow was another day. She could get started back on the Stereolab again and plan—

“Regardless, Doctor, you are an important mare. I have seen it in the skies, in my dreams, in the ripples of water as a tea leaf dances on the toroidal. There will come a time when your actions will change, irrevocably, the future of all ponydom, and with your silence you will send a foal on a journey that even you cannot comprehend and she will change everything we will ever know. But until the quiet comes, you have much to do.”

She froze in her tracks as Wisdom Seeker’s words came back at her. Looking down at her growing barrel, soon she’d give birth to a daughter, and what that child’s fate would be was either prophecy or problem. Only the future would know for sure.

Derpy could only hope that she’d be strong enough to face it when the time came.

Author's Note:

Thanks for waiting for me to get this out - I know it was a bear.