Gravity of the Situation

by DJSkywalker

First published

A young girl sealed in stone for over a thousand years has been releaed due to Discord's chaos. After everything that happened can she forgive the alicorn sisters for what they've done? Or will Equestria be destroyed by a great force of the

How long have I been here? I don't know and am not sure I want to. All I know is that my old "friend" Discord is free and he is saying that I can be free too. Why would he want that? Doesn't he remember what I promised I would do if I got free? He causes chaos for fun. Me... I cause chaos to destroy. Celestia and Luna will pay for what they did, or so help me I will cause this entire planet to pay!

Meet Allison, a young girl transported to another world over one thousand years ago. Armed with incredible powers, she attempted to be a hero of this new world, but was shunned and feared by its leaders. After a particular incident, she was sealed in stone by the Elements of Harmony. Now that she has been freed, will revenge be her goal or will she focus on returning to a home that may no longer exist?

Rated teen for use of strong language, intense violence, and death. You have been warned.

Based of the PlayStation Vita exclusive: Gravity Rush.
Holy Crap my first featured story! Woohoo! Featured on May 8, 2014
Featured again on June 16, 2014!
And again on August 5! I'm gonna stop here, but man it's great to have such amazing fans!

Pulled Back to Reality

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Darkness. Darkness was all around me. How long? How long have I been in this eternal void? I cannot move, cannot breathe, and I can only barely think. The darkness, no, emptiness was my only companion for all these long times. I didn’t used to be alone. He was right by my side from the very beginning. Always there to keep my spirits high and my mind focused. Why? Why was he taken from me? He was the only one I could really call a friend.

Then in front of me, there was a spot. Light, a point of light. I stared at it for what felt like eons and then it started to grow. It grew and grew until it loomed over me and drew me forward into its awaiting embrace. I was blinded by the whiteness, but that gave way to weariness.

I collapsed where I once stood. I coughed as I took in fresh air for the first time in who knows how long. Wait, I can breathe? I fluttered my eyes open to find myself laying on a large block of stone and a familiar figure looming over my disgruntled form.

“Welcome back to the world of the living, my dear Kat!” said my old “friend”. I looked to the figure, a draconequus, a mismatched being that just screamed chaotic. Discord was his name and whenever he was around, things got messy. “It’s been far too long since we chatted, but I cannot stay long. I have a Princess to annoy and some Elements to steal. Ta ta!” With a snap his talon hand, good ol’ Dissy poofed away.

I tried to stand, my legs were weak from being in one place for too long. It was shaky trying to stand, but I got there eventually. I took in my surroundings, I was in some form of a garden that was decorated with several stone statues, but my guess is that they were just carved from stone and not turned into it like me. I hoped so at least. I took a look down at myself, yep still in that same old costume from that stupid convention. My skin tight outfit was still black in color with gold linings and depictions. My legs still had gold bands wrapped around them going down to my black high heels. My wrist bands, again black with gold trimming, were still in place. And my matching scarf and headband were still with me as well. I brushed my blonde hair from my eyes and slowly got myself down from the stone slab I was on.

Once I got off, I realized the stone was my pedestal as there was a golden plague on it. Carved into the gold was one word only: “Gravity”. That was all that it said, the only thing that I would be remembered by was as Gravity. I don’t know how long I stared at the plaque, but it must have been pretty long as the sun was slowly starting to sink into the sky. Had I paid attention earlier, I would have noticed that the sun and moon had been switching places all day. Then, I was brought out of my thoughts by blinding dome of white. It engulfed me and everything else as it blew on by. Then I remembered. I remembered everything. From the day that I bought that little stuffed cat at the convention and then suddenly appeared here in Equestria, to that day. Where those two alicorns took the one thing I needed most.

I felt hot tears stain my cheeks as I remembered what they did. It all came crashing around me. The loneliness, the despair, the heartbreak, the anger, the rage! Yes, the rage!! I could feel myself powering up. The energy inside me wanted to break free. I wanted to let it. To let this world crumble before me for what they did. No, no he wouldn’t want that. He taught me better, it was not the citizens’ fault for what happened. No, it was their fault! Celestia and Luna were the problem, they took him from me.

The anger roared inside me and I let it all go!

***Inside Canterlot Castle (Third P.O.V.)***

Princess Celestia felt relieved that her faithful student and her friends were able to once again seal Discord away in stone. “You all did very well, my little ponies. I am proud of you all.”

“Wasn’t nothin’!” boasted the one and only Rainbow Dash. “We kicked that guys’ sorry flank no problem!”

“Of course it was something, dear Rainbow,” admonished the beautiful Rarity. “Our friendships were nearly destroyed by that brute!”

“But we all pulled together in the end!” said the ever-bubbly Pinkie Pie.

“It was all thanks to Twilight and her quick thinkin’. She truly saved us, ain’t that right sugar cube?” dear, honest Applejack praised.

“Hmm,” said the studious Twilight Sparkle while blinking. “Oh sorry, Applejack, didn’t hear what you said. I was just thinking…”

“Tell us something we don’t know,” Rainbow quipped.

“Something on your mind, my faithful student?” Celestia asked with concern.

“It’s just what Discord said before we sealed him away. He said that another force of chaos has been released and soon the Princesses will pay for their past mistakes. What did he mean by that Princess?”

Celestia racked her mind, trying to decode the riddle as well, but she didn’t have time to make an answer as a loud screamed came from the outside the castle. This was not a scream of terror, but one of agony and anger. Without warning, the wall behind the ponies was suddenly pulled apart revealing a lone figure standing in the dust. This creature was bipedal in stance, her blonde hair billowing in the breeze, and her eyes screamed with burning anger.

“Hello again, Celestia,” the figure spoke with a light, yet menacing voice. “Remember me?” Her claws then began to glow in a reddish, black aura that made the petite thing ever so much more menacing.

Celestia stared at the figure in horror. The memories of their last encounter running amok inside her mind. One word only stood out amongst the running thoughts. One word that the immortal Princess of the sun spoke aloud in terror. “Kat.”

Falling from Grace

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I stared down the object of my hatred. After using a little trick I came up with, I found her location and decided to make a grand entrance. Blowing a wall apart in less than ten seconds seemed to fit the bill. There she was, a tall white alicorn mare with a multi-hued mane blowing in a nonexistent breeze. The sight of her made everything in me snap. The memories of what her and her sister did tore at my very being. I was going to make her pay.

“Hello, Celestia,” I said trying and failing in keeping my anger out my voice. “Remember me?” I could only let the power flow into my hands as I awaited her answer. She should at least have the gall to remember the one who nearly leveled all of Equestria in a fit of rage. After a moment, the alicorn spoke, horror ever-so evident in her voice.

“Kat.” That one word was enough to make her coat all so much paler. It was a good look for her.

“So you do remember me,” I sneered. “Then do you remember my promise? Here’s a hint: I’m gonna kill you!” With that I rushed forward, shifting the air around me so that I flew with incredible speed. I was intercepted, however, by a rainbow streak that bowled me over, causing me to instead fly into the adjacent wall.

“No one hurts the Princess,” the pegasus yelled at me. I stood up from the rubble of the wall, shakily. My power was still not fully returned but it would be enough to take down one princess.

“Don’t interfere. This is between me and Celestia. She’s gonna pay for what she did to Dusty!” I screeched at her, failing to stop the tears from coming falling. “She took him from me and now I’m gonna kill her!” I shifted again and started falling right towards the solar princess. I aimed a powerful kick at her, giving a battle cry the whole way down. “Hyaaaah!!”

Only to be for naught as she teleported out of the way a few meters. I shifted back to normal gravity and stared her down. “Coward! Fight me!” I didn’t even bother shifting and just rushed her head on. And once again she teleported out of my way.

“Please, Kat. We can talk about this,” Celestia pleaded to me, but it fell on deaf ears.

“That last time you said that, you killed my only friend!” I could hear the massive gasp from the ponies around us, but I didn’t care. Then something clicked. My gravity sense was showing me her magic, and it scared me. How had her magic powers grown so much? How long was I trapped in that stone prison? This level of magic is nearly thrice of what it had been back then and that’s saying something considering it was quite high then, too.

I realized that with her level of magic and my current condition, there was no way that I could fight her like this. Celestia was far too powerful and I was nowhere near my fighting best. I had to run, I had to get away before she could seal me again. So, I ran to the wall I had ripped apart and shifted gravity into a horizontal slant and fell away from the castle, boosting my speed so that none of the pegasi could catch me. Sometime later, I landed in a lush green field and settled on one of the many rolling fields. I didn’t know how long I had been gone, but all I knew was that for the first time since I had come to Equestria, I was truly alone. This time, I didn’t even bother trying to stop my tears from falling.

***Canterlot Castle Throne Room (Celestia’s P.O.V)***

I simply stared out the window in the direction that Kat flew off. She looked like she was in so much pain, more so than the last time she and I met. I could feel the gazes of my student and her friends boring into me, wanting to know what was going on. I promised to tell them everything once Luna arrived. My time was for naught, however, as I felt my sister’s presence enter the room.

“Sister,” she called to me. “Why hast thou awakened us from our slumber? Thou knows we cannot raise our moon without our beauty rest.” Always the charmer, my sister. I wanted to smile along with her, but my heart was far too burdened. “Sister?”

“Princess?” asked my faithful student. Oh yes, Twilight was always the curious little filly. There was rarely a time I can recall that she couldn’t be found in the castle without a book somewhere on her. I miss those days sometimes. Twilight has grown into a fine young mare thanks to her friends, but now I fear that what they must do is far beyond what even I should be willing.

I sighed before my explanation. “Luna, she has returned.” It was as simple as that, but Luna seemed not to understand.

“Who has sister?”

“Kat. Kat has been freed from her imprisonment.” I looked up from the ground to see Luna’s face pale. She obviously remember the young girl as well. I watched as her jaw opened and closed in rapid succession, not unlike a fish. Before she could utter any form of response, Twilight spoke first.

“Princess, who is this ‘Kat’?”

“Yeah she sure doesn’t look like a cat!” Pinkie added, though it wasn’t helpful. Her cheery mood was enough, though. Even I wasn’t immune to the pink pony’s antics.

“Kat was a… friend of ours over a thousand years ago. She has powers the likes have never been seen before on Equis. For you see, Kat is a shifter.”

“A shifter?” asked Applejack. “What the hay does that mean?”

“It means, fair Applejack,” my sister intervened, “that Kat can manipulate every aspect of gravity at will. This makes her both a great ally and a dangerous foe.”

“What!? She can control gravity? How is that possible?” Twilight was beginning to look hysterical. Most likely out of shock and curiosity. Knowing my faithful student, she was probably racking her mind trying to think of someway that Kat’s powers would be possible. Before I could answer her curiosity, it was the lovely Fluttershy that spoke next, albeit very softly.

“Um, Princess Celestia? Who or what was Dusty?” The one question I feared. The reason for Kat’s hatred of us both.

“Dusty was Kat’s companion in this world. He was a cat, one that was the color of the night sky and even had twinkling stars on his body. Kat always said that Dusty spoke to her constantly. That he was her only friend.”

The girls in front of me didn’t seem to like where this was going, but Fluttershy asked again. “What happened to him?”

I let out a deep sigh. “Luna and I destroyed him.” They all gasped in shock. Fluttershy had tears moistening her eyes.

“W-why Princess? Why would you destroy a little kitty?” It wasn’t hard to hear the hurt in her voice.

“Luna and I wanted to discover the source of Kat’s powers. At the time, her control and sanity were waning. She was not meant to be gifted with immortality and it weighed heavily on her mind. As her mind began to degrade her powers got more and more erratic. We thought that if we could find the source of her power and turn it off, it would prevent ponies and other creatures from getting hurt. What we didn’t expect was that it was Dusty that was her source of power. In our ignorance, Dusty was wiped from existence by our spell right in front of Kat. I can still remember her screams of grief to this day.” Now I was the one with tears in my eyes. I couldn’t continue and I am thankful that Luna was able to.

“We never wanted to hurt Kat. She was a dear friend and a valiant ally. Always putting the needs of others before her own. But something grew worse out this. It seems that Dusty was not the source of her powers, but instead was her focus and limiter. Without Dusty, she lost all control over her powers and nearly destroyed the entire planet by trying to reverse its gravitational field.”

“What?” several of the mares asked, not knowing what Luna had said.

“If Kat had been successful, Equis would have literally ripped itself apart!” Twilight explained in a panic. The others paled at the very thought.

“That is correct. We had no choice but to seal her away with the Elements of Harmony. That memory still pains us as well. Those eyes of hers that were pained with anger and grief, her voice was maddened by her mourning. Looking back, we think losing Kat was just another step towards our turning.”

I draped a wing around my sister as neither of us were comfortable speaking about Nightmare Moon just yet. Right now, we had to focus on Kat. “Girls, I know this will be difficult, but I need you six to find Kat and use the Elements on her if she resists. If she doesn’t, then please bring her to us safely. Kat never gave a chance to even apologize for what we did, even if it would mean very little. We just want a chance to have our friend back. Will you do it?”

“You can count on us, Princesses,” Twilight said proudly as the others stood around her with looks of determination.

“Then I wish you all the best of luck.”

***Whitetail Woods (Third P.O.V.)***

Twilight, Rarity, Applejack, Pinkie Pie, Fluttershy, and Rainbow Dash walked through the woods as quietly as possible. Princess Celestia had told them that this was the general area of where Kat had come to. The chariot could only take them as far as the entrance to the woods, but it was a good start. With Twilight leading, the others followed her into the brush.

After an hour of searching, they found no sign of the gravity shifter. No broken branches, no gravitational anomalies, nothing. They were all starting to get worried that Kat had taken off somewhere else. The “human”, as Celestia had called her, was able to fly long distances fairly well, so it was within the realm of possibility that she could have gone elsewhere.

“Ooh look there she is!!” Pinkie spouted out of nowhere pointing to a large clearing in the woods. The other girls looked to where the energetic mare was pointing and saw the girl was indeed there. She was sitting all alone on a hill as the wind blew her hair about. Kat sat on her haunches, head leaning down into her chest.

Cautiously, they all approached the human, not wanting to disturb her or her slumber. But as the neared Kat, they noticed that the sounds coming from her were not that of snoring, but was instead a mournful sobbing. Fluttershy couldn’t help herself and flew over wanting to comfort the young girl. The others were freaking out at her sudden foolish bravado. Fluttershy landed right next to the crying maiden who had yet to notice the peagasus’ presence.

“Um excuse me?” Flutters asked quietly. Kat stirred for a moment, but never looked at the pony.

“Go away,” Kat responded. Though, it didn’t sound very sincere.

“Please, I want to help you,” Fluttershy encouraged.

“No one wants to help me. They only want me gone. I bet I could just vanish of the face of the planet and no one would even bat an eye.” Fluttershy wanted to gasp, but knew would only make things worse. This guilt was piling on the young girl hard, so Fluttershy did the one thing she knew would help. She gave Kat a great big hug. Kat froze from the sudden contact, but the warmth and comfort of the embrace kept her calm. “Thank you,” Kat whispered.

The other mares stared in disbelief at the scene before them. This was supposed to be the greatest threat of Equestria? This sobbing creature was supposedly capable of ripping the planet apart? That seemed a little farfetched. Twilight was the first to walk up to the pair.

“Excuse me? Miss Kat?” Kat raised her head slightly to see her visitors for the first time. The pony that hugged her was a pegasus that was yellow in color with a long flowing pink mane. The other was a unicorn with violet fur and a deep navy mane with a pink stripe running down it. “We were hoping that you would come with us back to Canterlot. Princess Celestia and Princess Luna would really like to speak with you.”

“I doubt that,” Kat said with her voice dripping with fury. “Knowing them, they’ll probably send me to join Dusty in the afterlife.” She stopped for a minute and looked to the sky. “Then again, maybe that wouldn’t be so bad. At least I wouldn’t be lonely anymore.”

Fluttershy felt sick. This creature really went through hard times to be stuck in such awful thoughts, and it seemed Twilight felt the same. “No, no! They want to apologize to you. They want to right their mistake.”

“Their only mistake was letting me live. They probably should have just killed me the day we first met. Then none of this heartache would have ever happened.” The other ponies gathered around them as Kat started to have a thousand meter stare. “It feels like only yesterday when I was normal girl. Had I know what was going to happen on that day all those years ago, I probably would have just stayed in bed.”

Dropped to Another World

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*****One Thousand Two Hundred and Seventy-Five Years Ago*****

*BEEP* *BEEP* *BEEP* Ugh, I hate mornings. I reached over and hit the alarm snooze as hard as I could. Which wasn’t very hard since I was straining to reach it. With reluctance, I got up from my amazingly comfortable bed to start the day. If this were any other day, I probably would have put up more of a fight to wake up, but I had great plans for this day. Today was going to be my very first video game convention and I even had a costume! I still don’t know how my friends tricked me into going as the main character from Gravity Rush, but at least it’s cute.

I got myself out of bed and took a nice shower to finish my awakening. With myself freshly cleansed and now fully awake, I went to the kitchen to fix me some breakfast. It was a meager one, unfortunately. I had spent this month’s paycheck on my costume; stuff like that isn’t cheap. With my stomach full, I got into my costume and waited by the front door for my friends to arrive to pick me up.

I took this moment to look around my meager apartment. It was rough and dingy, but it was all I could afford. The life of an orphan is certainly not an easy one. My parents had died in a car accident when I was eight and I had been on my own ever since. I mean, sure there was the foster homes and the few orphanages, but they were never a home. Sure it was a lonely living situation, but at least I had a couple of friends who were there for me when I was really low. Even if they could be obnoxious dorks.

I saw their car pull up outside the building and I got ready to leave. “I’m going out! I’ll be home tonight, bye!” I called to the empty house. “Great, talking yourself. Nice going Allison, proving your therapist right about that insanity thing." I pulled myself into my friend Rita’s car.

“Heya there ‘Kat’!” She giggled as I rolled my eyes. It was just going to be me and her at the convention today. The others would try and make it for tomorrow’s. “Really, you look good Ally. Though, were you talking to your house again?”

Rita’s expression had turned serious as she asked. She was the daughter of my therapist and had really made it her business to make sure my mind stayed in proper order. “Maybe…” I answered trailing off in embarrassment. The talking to myself thing wasn’t all that odd, no, but it could lead to more extreme symptoms like my anger bouts. Whoo, boy those could get ugly.

“Dad’s really not gonna like that you’re still trying to pretend that someone’s waiting for you at home. You need to move past this, Ally.” Rita was trying her best to maintain a serious conversation with me as she drove and, unfortunately, she had mastered this little trick with me years ago.

“I know, but how can someone just get over seeing their parents die right in front of them. It’s still hard. Don’t worry, it’s just a little tick. I haven’t had any major freak outs in months.” This was true, and that last one was totally justifiable. That jerk freakin’ cut me off on a one way street! Who does that?! At least we didn’t go to court, that’s something, right?

“I worry about you, Allison. One of these days you are going to crack and I’m afraid that you’re gonna hurt someone or yourself. Please try to take my dad seriously when he’s trying to help you. I know you’re eighteen and all and feel like therapy is not helping, but it will if you let it. Please, for me?”

“I’ll try, Rita. Really, I will. I don’t want to hurt anyone, that’s true.” Only those that deserve it, that is. “Hey is that the place?” We were pulling up at the convention center and my smile grew wider as Rita pulled into the parking lot. Rita wasn’t dressed up, so I was feeling a little self-conscious as we walked into the massive convention hall. There were signs and poster and stands for all of the best video games in the world. I think I even saw one for Gravity Rush’s rumored sequel. It wasn’t a popular game, but hell if I didn’t love it.

After about thirty minutes, Rita and I split up to go enjoy our own likes and interest around. I walked from stand to stand in awe of all the games and related items. Though I was blushing profusely from some of the catcalls I heard as I walked past. I wasn’t all that pretty, but this outfit was really snug. Still cute, though. Even had a few pictures taken with some fans of the game. It was a lot of fun in all. A couple hours went by when I ended up near this prop stand full of video game memorabilia. There I saw him, a plush cat that was as a black as the night itself with stars that seemed to shine off his coat. A plush Dusty! I didn’t even know they made these!

“I see you are interested in this little guy, eh?” asked the man behind the counter of the stand. He looked pretty normal, but there was something off about the air around him. I brushed it off, though; Dusty was too important. I had to have him. I did bring some money with me, but I had planned on using it for a bite to eat. He was just so cute, though.

“Eh, yeah. How much for him?” I asked trying to hide my enthusiasm.

“For you? How about seven bucks? Always need to complete the costume right?” His smile creeped me out, but how could I pass up that deal? That would still leave me with enough to get a bite to eat later.

“Deal!” I opened my purse and practically threw the money at him. I picked up Dusty and walked with a big grin and hugging him dearly to my chest. “You are so adorable! Yes, I got my very own Dusty! Life is complete!” Looking back, I never should have said those last three words. Immediately after my little gush fest, I felt the floor beneath my feet give way and I started to fall. I felt my purse flung from me and Dusty fall into the abyss below, me right behind him. I screamed as loud as I could, but there was nothing but darkness to hear me out.

I don’t know how much longer it was when I awoke, I only knew that my back was incredibly sore. “Ah, ooh, that stings,” I groaned getting up off the ground I was on. I stood up shakily and took in my surroundings. Somehow I went from a big city convention center to the middle of a dense jungle. “How in the hell did I get here?”

Through magic,” responded an unseen voice. Okay, now I was scared.

“Who said that? Hello? Where are you?”

I’m right at your side, my friend.” I looked down to see a cat that was covered in stars with black fur. And it was real, because on real cats wave their tails and blink at you. I was so speechless all I could do was gape. “Mistress Kat? Are you alright?

“Mistress? Kat? My name is Allison. Are you, are you really Dusty?” Hey when you’re scared and you don’t know what’s going on, best to gather some form of intel.

I suppose my name could be Dusty. I am yours after all. Are you certain your name is not Kat? It feels… natural to call you that.”

“Yeah, I’m certain, but if you want to call me Kat, I don’t mind.” I cosplayed as her for reason, remember? “Do you know where we are? And how you can talk?”

I am not really talking, mistress. Our minds are one so I can speak to you. Only you can hear me. And no,” He looked at the ground in shame, “I do not know where we have ended up. Though I do not think there any life forms around us. A good thing as it will give us time for you to control your powers.”

“Powers? What powers?” What was this talking, err, thinking cat saying?

The powers that are keeping us on a tree branch right now.” I looked down closer at my feet and saw that I wasn’t standing on dirt, but was on a large branch of wood. Glancing back at the forest made me realize that the entire thing was upside down!

“What am I doing upside down!!??” I started to go hysterical, another symptom and not a good one. Usually led to hyperventilating, but Dusty calmed me down, surprisingly.

Breathe, mistress, breathe! You are a shifter, this comes naturally to you. As long as we are together, you will be able to control yourself. Please mistress, calm down! If you keep like this you could hurt someone!

That got my attention. I never wanted to hurt anyone, no matter what. Sure there were times when I raged and punched someone’s lights out, but that was only if they really and truly deserved it. “Okay, okay, okay. I think, I think I’m good.” I kept a hand on my chest to keep my heart rate down. This was so not helping with my thoughts of insanity. “Now how do I get back down?”

Just think of it, mistress, and your powers will react in kind.” I listened to Dusty’s advice and thought of reverting back to normal gravity. “You’re doing it Kat!” Dusty cheered. I opened my eyes and say that I was floating where I was once standing. With a little harder focus, I flip myself around and gravity around me reverted to normal. It didn’t work like I had planned, though. Instead of flipping around, I ended up landing on my head in a heap on the ground.

“Ow,” I said quietly in pain. Dusty walked into my vision, with what looked like a small smile on his face.

Looks we have some work to do,” he said simply.

*****One Year and Seven Months Later*****

I have been here for almost two years now, practicing day in and day out with Dusty as my guide. We fell into routine soon enough after the first few weeks and simply went from there. I still questioned my sanity over this whole thing happening, but after I continually fell asleep and woke up with everything being the same, I had to come to terms with being in the middle of nowhere with a talking cat and gravity powers. That was not a day I wish to repeat.

But with all that training with me, Dusty and I decided to find a way out of this forest and see if there was any civilization nearby. We trekked for miles of forest, my idea so that no one freaked out about an unidentified flying girl, but found nothing. Just forest, forest, and more forest! Not helping with headaches. They kept coming for some reason; not too strong, but enough to make me slightly irritable. I was pretty sure they would pass.

Then it happened. A scream came from the brush ahead of us; a scream of pure terror. I rushed ahead, Dusty calling after me. “Kat!” Took a while, but I finally got him to stop calling me ‘mistress’, just sounded wrong to me. “Please, Kat, we don’t know what danger lies ahead!

“Someone’s in danger! I have these powers now and I’ll be damned if I don’t use them to help people!” I ran faster, knowing that no matter how far I ran, Dusty would always appear near me. Benefits of having a magical cat! I ran right through a bush and found myself in a clearing. What I saw there was the strangest thing I had ever seen at the time. A giant, the only word that comes to mind is ‘dragon’, attacking a group of small, multicolor horses. And they were the ones yelling as they were roasted by the dragon fire. They were helpless. I was not. Seeing that monster attacking those horses riled a great fury in me. He was no different than those bullies I faced down during my school years. I was gonna put him in his place.

“HEY!! LEAVE THEM ALONE!!” I shoved a hand-sized rock with my power at his head, drastically increasing its velocity. It shattered against the scales on his head, but definitely got the thing’s attention. He turned around and eye me up.

“Stay out of this whatever you are,” it warned with a deep voice that would have sent shivers up my spine if I wasn’t completely pissed at the jerk. “This is not for you to interfere with. Get lost.” Okay, that was not the right thing to say to me. Apparently, even Dusty backed me up on this.

I think it’s time to see the results of your training Kat,” he said, sounding both irked and bemused. “Show that big lug what happens when you mess with shifters. But be careful.” Always the watchful guardian.

“No worries.” My body began to glow with a red and black aura that engulfed my entire being. “This is gonna be awesome.” I flew forward with incredible speed, my body stretched out with my left leg at its fullest; a gravity kick. I aimed right at the center of his back and impacted, hard. He out a groan of discomfort and pain and reared on me.

“I warned you creature and now you will join these ponies! Hraa!!” He let out a large burst of fire, but I simply flew out of the way. I knew I couldn’t fly forever, but my training had drastically improved my time. Wait, ponies? The horses were called ponies? Well, that’s different, but whatever, I have a dragon to fight. I should have been paying attention as he swatted me into a tree. THAT hurt like HELL!!

“Okay, maybe I need to rethink this whole ‘hero’ thing,” I groaned as I pulled myself out of the tree.

Are you alright?” Dusty asked with concern.

“Yeah, I can take it. My falls have hurt more than that.” True, I did end up falling from the stratosphere once. Still one of the most painful things to ever happen to me. Compared to that, being swatted like a fly was nothing, even if it was something I had to get used to later on. The dragon had gone back to burning poor ponies alive and I got furious. He had one right underfoot and was going to burn him point blank. Not on my watch!

“Let’s try out that specialty I figured out,” I thought out loud. I powered back up, my body once again coated in a black and red aura, and focused on my target. I only had one shot and I couldn’t miss. I drudged up my newest ability and roared forward. “Hyaa!!” I fired forward with incredible speed and ferocity. The Spiraling Claw, was its name and it was more effective than I had hoped. I was just planning on impacting his thick hide, not barreling straight through it!! I stopped immediately once I had come out his front and fearfully looked back at what I had done.

In front of me, the dragon was staring wide eyed in shock and pain. He lowered his head down to the massive hole in his chest and grabbed at it. He groaned in pain and fell back, freeing the trapped pony in the process. I dropped down to the ground and the ponies surrounded me fearfully, spears pointed at me. I didn’t pay any attention to them as I stared at my deed. I had just killed a living creature. Sure it was surprising that it was intelligent, but that just made my murder even worse. My first kill and it felt awful. Dusty formed right in front of me, worry in his voice.

Kat? Kat, please we need to leave.” I knew he was right, but I just couldn’t bring myself to move. The ponies didn’t know what to think about me, but I think I overheard them discussing bringing me to some ‘princesses’. I didn’t struggle as they bound my hands and feet and carted me off to their leaders. The dragon just weighed too heavily on my mind to do anything else.

Hours later, I found myself being forcefully shoved through a large castle in the middle of the forest. It looked beautiful, but I just couldn’t shake the guilt to really pay any attention as I was lead onwards. We stopped at a pair of large doors and the guards chatted for a moment before they opened the doors. I looked up briefly to the sight of two larger ponies with horns and wings on thrones. The shorter one my right had a blowing mane of the color of a moonlit night with stars flowing through it. Her dark blue coat was so beautiful, but her harsh glare ruined it for me. The taller of the pair was pure white in color with a multicolor mane that was also blowing in a non-existent wind. It was the latter who spoke first, directly to the guard.

“What is this that you have brought before us, Captain?” she asked with the voice that a mother would use on her children. It was warm comforting, yet also commanding. The lead guard in front of me spoke.

“We are not quite sure, Princess Celestia. All we know is that it is incredibly powerful. It saved me and my men from a dragon scout by flying right through its heart.” Both of the ponies looked at me in shock, though I still stared at the ground, wallowing in guilt.

“If it saved thou, then why hast this creature been chained?” asked the smaller pony.

“We were unsure of its intentions so we took precautions. It seems capable of speech, but it hasn’t spoken since it killed the scout.”

The two ponies looked to one another and then back me. “Creature,” called out the white one. I lifted my head in acknowledgement. “Do you refute these claims?” The question was a minor one, but everything that had been building in me broke and poured out.

“I didn’t mean to!!” I screeched out and fell to my knees, tears falling heavily from eyes. “I didn’t want to kill him! I just wanted to protect the ponies; I don’t want to be a murderer!” I started sobbing into my chained hands, no longer caring about the shocked looks I was receiving. A moment later, I felt a hoof on my shoulder and looked up at the white pony looking at me with a comforting smile.

“You are a creature with a good heart, aren’t you?” It wasn’t mocking or blaming, just comforting. I nodded in return, my sobs still choking out. “I thank you, creature, for saving my little ponies from certain death. This war with the dragons has been a deadly one and I don’t think we would be able to do it without our good captain. So, thank you…”

“Kat, my name is Kat.” With powers and dress like this, I might as well be. I didn’t want my original name smudged with murder either, so it fit.

“Kat, we thank thou as well,” said the other behind her. “Captain, why is there a cat in our throne room?” Everyone looked over at Dusty who was simply sitting by my kneeling form.

“I am not sure. I thought we left it outside,” he turned around, thinking the door might be open, probably.

“His name is Dusty. He is my companion, my friend. My only friend in this world.” I deeply missed my friends, especially Rita. Her companionship would be great right now, especially her brand of therapy.

“Allow me to introduce us. I am Princess Celestia, princess of the sun, and this is my sister, Princess Luna, princess of the moon. We rule of the country of Equestria as its alicorn leaders.” Not quite sure what ‘alicorn’ meant, but I guessed it meant a pony with wings and a horn. Their gracious attitude really help me out my little funk there, but it still hurt. “What are you Kat? I can say that I have never seen a creature like you before?”

“I am a shifter,” I answered after a moment. “A kind of human with special abilities.”

“Human? Never heard of such a creature. What are these abilities thou speakest of?” Luna asked me.

“I shift gravity, Princess Luna. I can manipulate the gravitational fields around me to work as I see fit.”

The princesses looked highly intrigued. “May we see?” Celestia asked.

“Okay,” I shrugged. I powered up, my aura momentarily scaring the ponies, and I began to float in place. I shifted up and hit the ceiling of the throne room and looked ‘up’ at the ponies ‘above’ me. “It’s pretty cool if I do say so myself.”

“Certainly spectacular,” Luna said in awe.

“Indeed sister,” added Celestia. I lowered myself back down to the floor and shut down my power. Celestia and Luna looked at each other for a few minutes before turning back to me. “Kat, I have a proposition for you. Would you be willing to assist us in protecting Equestria from the dragon’s attacks? We could truly use the assistance.”

I thought on their offer for a few minutes. There were several pros and cons to this. Pros being that maybe I could get a house or at least some place to live out of the deal and maybe even some form of money. Cons being that I would quite likely be asked to kill again and I didn’t know if I could do that. But if I didn’t, it won’t necessarily be soldiers getting attacked next. Next time it could be innocent civilians, possibly even children. The very thought made my blood boil. If that dragon was just a scout, then actual soldiers could be much worse. I made my decision right there and then what I would do in this world.

“Princess Celestia, Princess Luna, as a shifter and protector of the innocent, I will join you in your efforts to protect your citizens.” They smiled gratefully at me, but I wasn’t done. My next words were the reason that the police had a file on me; my life’s code. “Be warned. I will do what is right and only what is right, even if it means breaking your laws to do so. The lives of the innocent are more important than your rules. That is my only condition.” Luna and Celestia didn’t look like they were all that happy with my condition, but consented nonetheless. They offered me place to stay at the castle as well as military pay for food and furniture my new room. I gratefully accepted and our friendship bloomed from there.

*****Present Day*****

“I fought on behalf the two princesses for years, fighting side by side with them against the dragons, the Minotaurs, and the griffins. The zebras were the first we actually settled diplomatically, but the changelings were another story. I think the sisters were actually prepared to commit genocide against them for what the changelings did to Trottingham. That was a hard one to talk them out of. It was after several decades that we all found out that I had become immortal as well. A real shock to me, though Celestia and Luna seemed happy about it. It meant that none of us had to be alone.”

I stopped talking for a moment. I didn’t even know why I was telling these ponies my story. It was obvious they were of some importance to Celestia, but they seemed harmless enough. I just had to remind myself that I needed to save my energy for that backstabbing bitch and her sister. After everything I did for them, they go and rip away the one thing that had kept my sanity together. I needed to diffuse this anger, so I kept talking.

“I met Discord after the first hundred years and he was kind of nice at first, though he was pretty loopy. Then for some reason, he went bat-shit crazy and decided to muck up the world. He was a good friend before he snapped and it hurt us all to seal him away with those Elements the Princesses found. Though it was only another hundred years or so when the sisters killed my companion Dusty. They never even said why they did it, not that I really cared at the time.” I clenched my fist hard, scaring some of the ponies. “I will make them pay for his murder. I swear it to my very soul.”

I felt a hoof on my shoulder and looked to see that yellow mare looking back at me with big sad eyes. One of my major weaknesses here in this world. “You have been gone a long time, Kat,” she said with an amazingly quiet voice. It was so cute! “You were sealed away for a thousand years and the princesses just want a chance to explain themselves and apologize. Can’t you give them that?”

A thousand years? The revelation hit me like a sack of bricks. I knew after the first hundred years that there was no way I could ever go home as everyone I knew would have died years ago. But a thousand years! It seemed too unreal even in a world of mythical talking creatures. But forgiving the princesses. Sure, we were friends once, but they kept growing distant from me after Discord turned. By the point they killed Dusty, I don’t really think we were true friends anymore. “I don’t think I can do that. Not now anyways. Maybe when I have enough power, I will see them again, but I don’t even want to hear their names until I have enough power to fight them on equal grounds again.”

The ponies stayed quiet for a few minutes and then backed off to talk amongst themselves. Then I felt something, a prickle in my mind; my broken, messed up mind. I could feel others, other humans. Not here though. Confused, I activated my gravity sense. It was one of the powers I cooked up during my imprisonment. It allowed me to ‘see’ gravity fields and since everything and everyone had their own personal gravity fields, it was a good tracking power. You just had to know how to discern what from what. Back to the matter at hand, I began to scan the horizon, looking for human gravity signals. Instead I saw what could only be described as a gravitational disturbance. I got up and approached the portal-looking field at the bottom of the hill. I could feel it, other worlds. Other Equestrias. The Multiverse theory was right I guess.

I could see things there, images of other humans trying to make their way through their own lives in Equestria as well as them helping one another along the way. Maybe I could do the same? I saw that each picked an object reminiscent of themselves and distributed it into the void between worlds. I just needed to pick something and the Void would do the rest. I scanned my surroundings and saw the perfect thing. It was a black rock, a piece of coal. How it got here is beyond me. With a little bit of focus, which I found coming back to me, I condensed the coal as hard as I could, pouring on the pressure. After a minute, I unclenched my hand to be staring, not at a piece of crushed coal, but a perfect diamond. I smiled at my handiwork; Dusty would be proud of my progress.

I wiped away the few tears that bloomed from those thoughts and held the diamond high above the portal. “I am the protector of the innocent, warrior of the weak, call upon me for assistance and I shall come. Call for the Gravity Shifter and I will make those who harm others beg for mercy as they are crushed at my feet. Hold this gem close to thine heart and I shall be at your side as a fellow warrior!” I dropped the gem into the void, feeling a little weird after my cheesy speech. The diamond disappeared into the Void and spread to the other worlds. “I hope none of them call before I get more of my strength back." I heard hoofsteps behind me and turned to the approaching six ponies.

“Kat?” said the purple unicorn. “We understand that you may not want to see the princesses right now, but would you at least be willing to stay with us in Ponyville until you are ready? We don’t feel right just leaving you out here in the cold.”

More like they want to make sure they can keep an eye on me. I don’t know how these six relate to the two sisters, but, hey, I get a place to stay and maybe even some food. “Okay, but only if you’re fine taking in a formerly insane human.” My grin definitely sold the mad crazy look.

“Formerly insane? How could you be formerly insane?” asked the purple one. Must be a scholar.

“Quite simple Miss…”

“Twilight. Twilight Sparkle. And these are my friends Fluttershy,” gesturing to the yellow pegasus, “Rainbow Dash,” the cyan pegasus, “Pinkie Pie,” earth pony (color self-explanatory), “Applejack,” an orange earth pony, “and Rarity,” she finished with the marshmallow-colored unicorn.

“Thank you for the introductions. As you already know, I am Kat, Gravity Shifter extraordinaire. And to answer your earlier question, basically I went fully insane while I was entombed. Nothing else but my thoughts to keep me company will do that to anyone. After a while, though, I got bored of insanity and decided to go sane again, with a few crazy benefits. There are many things open to you when you close the door to crazy town.”

“Like what?” Pinkie asked with a happy grin. She could be infectious with all that happy.

“Ah ah, that is for me to know and you to find out. So, if that is acceptable may we be off to this ‘Ponyville’?”

“Yes that is acceptable, follow us Kat. We’re certain you’re going to like the town.” I followed as instructed, awaiting to find what had changed in the last one thousand years. Though my promise still stands, I will avenge Dusty. No matter what the cost may be in the end; even if I have to join him in the end.

Down on the Ground

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*****(Twilight’s P.O.V.)*****

I had my friends all gathered around me after listening to Kat’s tale of how she arrived in Equestria and how she first met Princess Celestia and Princess Luna. Her story was… different, from what I expected. When she came bursting in at the castle claiming she would kill my mentor, I truly believed her to be another villain like Nightmare Moon or Discord. But now, now I wasn’t so sure of that. “Well, what do you girls think?” I asked my friends.

“She ain’t lyin’, Ah know that much,” replied Applejack. I was hoping deep down that she said that Kat was, but it was for naught.

“Are you sure about that AJ?” Rainbow Dash asked with an incredulous look. “After what she pulled at the castle, I don’t think we can trust her.”

“Now Ah never said nothin’ ‘bout trustin’ her. All Ah'm sayin’ is that she told us the honest truth about her origins. Ah frankly don’t trust her neither, but at least she ain’t a liar.”

“Despite her uncouth manner at the castle, Kat seems like a lovely young lady,” Rarity put in. “We’ve all seen and heard of what she is capable of, but she hasn’t laid a hoof, or whatever it is she has, on us.”

“I like her! Even if she can be a big meanie pants, she certainly doesn’t show it.” Always the optimist, Pinkie Pie.

“I don’t trust her either, girls,” I said. “Not after what she’s said she can do. What do you think, Fluttershy?” She was the only one who hadn’t said anything, yet.

“Oh, um, well I think that we shouldn’t take her to the princesses. Not yet, anyways,” she responded quietly. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. How could she think that?

“What are you talking about, Fluttershy?!” Rainbow burst out again. “Why shouldn’t we take her to the princesses? Kat is a danger to everypony on the planet! She needs to be locked away.”

Fluttershy started glaring at Rainbow. “Rainbow Dash! How could you? You’re not seeing it Kat’s way! She’s hurting, deep down.”

“Hurting from what?” I’ll admit, I was curious to know as well.

“Don’t you see, girls? Kat is friendless!” Pinkie gasped out loud, though I just kept my attention on Fluttershy. Could she be right? “Kat’s only real friend was Dusty and he’s not here anymore. She once thought the princesses were her friends, but right now I highly doubt she still thinks that way. Kat is all alone.”

Right there, right there is where it finally sunk in. Kat wasn’t just upset about losing Dusty, no, she was upset because now she was truly alone. Being the only one of your kind in Equestria would be awful, to say the least. But Dusty probably made it alright for Kat. He was always there for her from the sound of it, and having him taken away left Kat all on her own. I really didn’t even bother to think of it until Fluttershy pointed it out. Nopony deserves to live like that, nobody, either.

“Then what should we do?” asked Pinkie who now had a somber expression. She must have realized it, too. From the look of it, all of my friends came to the same conclusion I did.

“Why don’t we take her to Ponyville?” Fluttershy offered. “We can help Kat. The princesses told us why they took Dusty away. Maybe we can teach Kat that they didn’t mean to hurt her. To help her see that it was just an accident. At least she won’t be alone.”

Fluttershy’s plan did make sense. It would also give us chance to keep an eye on her for the princesses and maybe I could learn a little bit about her culture and her powers. Seemed like a win-win to me. That is, taken that Kat doesn’t destroy the world with her gravity powers before then. Ah well, cross that bridge when get to it, knowledge awaits!

“I think that’s a good idea, Fluttershy!” I praised her. “That way we can keep an eye on Kat and maybe get her to calm down in the process.”

“I don’t know about this. Sounds like bad idea written all over it,” Rainbow added with a cautious look.

“Yay! Ooh! Maybe Kat would like to be friends! You think she would?” Pinkie was once again bouncing around with her happy smile. It brought a smile to my own face seeing her back to normal.

“She just might, darling. She just might.” Leave it to Rarity to calm down Pinkie.

“Well, Ah suppose it wouldn’t hurt to give the poor girl a chance,” Applejack said thoughtfully. “Ahh shoot, why the hay not? Those powers of hers might be useful. Long as she don’t go usin’ them on anypony.”

“Then it’s settled, we ask Kat to live with us in Ponyville!” With the plan in place, we went to ask Kat how she felt about living with us. She didn’t give any indication that she minded, though that little tidbit about going insane and then sane again was fascinating. I can’t wait to hear more! And so, with Kat in tow, we headed off in the direction of Ponyville. It was a quiet walk, almost awkwardly quiet, so I decided to learn a little about our new companion. “So, Kat, why did you run from the Princess earlier?” Okay not the best way to start conversation.

Kat looked at me funny, but answered my dumb question anyways. “I saw that Celestia had far more power than me at the time. I knew I would be no match for her so I ran off.”

“So you’re a coward?” Not helping Rainbow.

“No,” Kat scoffed. “I just need to wait for my powers to come back in full. After being so stiff for a while, I need time to recover. Then Celestia will be no match for me.”

“Really?” I asked curiously. I wonder how powerful Kat really is?

“Hey, at one point I was the strongest being on the planet,” Kat said boastfully, causing us all to stop in our tracks. We stared at her with big, wide eyes of shock. “It’s true. Even the dragons bowed to me after I kicked their emperor’s butt up and down a mountain.”

“You’ve fought dragons?” asked Fluttershy meekly.

“Mmhmm. They’re definitely the toughest creatures I’ve had to fight. The minotaurs were just incredibly stubborn, while the griffins were just aggressive and hot-headed. The griffins were definitely the easiest war we ever fought. They never stood a chance.”

“Wow. Ever kill anypony?” Rainbow asked nonchalantly. I was about to berate her for such a question, but Kat spoke before I could.

“Any pony? No, I’ve never killed any ponies before. Dragons, minotaurs, and griffins, yes. Those I have killed before. We suffered no casualties on either side during the Zebra altercation, surprisingly. I did learn a few tricks from some of their martial artists, though. Changelings, too. I’ve killed changelings.”

Kat looked off into space after mentioning the changelings. Something about those creatures seemed to disturb Kat deeply. Though, I wondered what changelings were? I don’t think I’ve ever heard of such creatures. Another thing to ask Kat once we got to the library. Then Kat shook out of her self-induced stupor to finish.

“But, ponies, no. I have never ever killed a pony before. And the only time I will break that rule is when I face the princesses. They will be my first, and last, pony kill.”

Okay, and we’re back on that subject. Kat was starting to look angry again, so now was definitely not the time to bring up the princesses reasons. Later, hopefully. Then I saw that we were starting to come out of the woods, I smiled as we exited only to be shocked as spears were pointed in our direction.

“Kat Shifter! By order of the Royal Guard, you are under arrest for attacking Princess Celestia!” Oh, boy, not good.

*****(Kat’s P.O.V.)*****

Okay, so let me get this straight. I walked for hours with a group of mares through a forest only to come out surrounded by Celestia’s lapdogs? They really think they can take me? Me, of all creatures? This… this could be fun.

“Wait, your last name is Shifter?” asked the pink one with puffy mane and tail. Ah, Pinkie, that’s it. That’s her name.

“Yes, Pinkie. I thought I would need one to sound a little more impressive, so I decided on Kat Shifter. Not all that original, I know (the princesses had their little giggle fit when I came up with it), but it works. Now, can we go into town, now?”

“What about the guards?” asked Twilight.

“Pffbt,” I scoffed. “They can’t do anything to me, I’m too powerful.”

“Ah thought you said that you were weak at the moment?”

“Weak when compared to Celestia, Miss Applejack. For any other creature, I am perfectly fine with taking them on.”

“Hey!” shouted the lead guard. “Stop ignoring us and back away from my sister and her friends!”


“Shiny?” asked Twilight. “Shining Armor? What are you doing here?”

The lead guard took off his helm to reveal a white unicorn with a blue mane. “Get away from her Twily! That creature is a wanted criminal and needs to be brought to justice.”

“Are we almost done?” I said with a bored look. “I was promised a bed tonight and I would very much like to get to town before dark.” I started to walk towards where the ponies had indicated the town was, but the guards just pushed more spears in my face. “You really want to do this?”

“You can’t hope to handle the Royal Guard!” Shining Armor said with a growl. I rolled my eyes and lit my hands with power.

“You talk too much.” Suddenly all of the guard ponies were forced onto the ground by invisible weights, all of them struggling to even stand up, let alone move. I looked to the girls and saw them staring wide-eyed. “I call it ‘pressure’. Another I came up with while trapped. Each of those ponies is now feeling the planet’s gravity times twenty. And—oh?” I look and see that this ‘Shining Armor’ was actually standing again and staring daggers at me as he tried to move. “Impressive, most impressive. You are definitely one tough stallion, unfortunately,” I raised up my hand and so did the pony, “you are way out you league, boy.”

“Hey, put me down! I am the Captain of the Royal Guard and I order you to—“

“Shut up!” I growled at him, and he did. His mouth was clamp shut, and I didn’t even have to do it for him. “Listen and listen good! Tell the princesses that we will meet again and soon. However, any pony, dragon, griffin, whatever, that they send after me next, I will destroy them. Now leave! Or will have another pony deliver my message.” I covered my body in aura as I spoke the last sentence. I was always told that it scared ponies to see my like this.

“Um, Miss Shifter?” called one of the guards I was crushing.

“Yes, little pony?” I answered with a teacher’s tone.

“The princesses don’t actually know we are here. They didn’t send us; we kinda came after you against their wishes.” She laughs nervously in embarrassment. I will admit, that took me by surprise. I really did think that these ponies had been sent by sunbutt to take me in. “She’s not as stupid as I thought.”

“Well then, you all will have an interesting talk with the princess when you return to Canterlot, won’t you? Just deliver the message and get out of my sight.” I was rapidly losing patience with these fools.

“I will never surrender!” Shining Armor proclaimed, still floating. I sighed. He was making things more difficult then they needed to be.

“Look, I get that you are trying to be heroic and brave in front of your troops, but it’s just making you look like a stubborn idiot. You can’t protect the princesses from me and they know that. Just go back to your guarding in Canterlot and leave this to the true powerhouses, mmkay?” I know I sound like a bitch here, but this guy really couldn’t take the hint. Sorry Twilight, but your brother is a big doofus.

Twilight then walked over to where I was keeping Mr. Armor floating. “Please, Shining. Stop this, Kat is far too powerful for you and the Guard. She will be just fine in Ponyville. We will make sure of that.” I don’t think I quite like how she said that.

Shining Armor floated there silently for a moment, glaring daggers at me then let out a big sigh of defeat. “I accept your terms, Shifter. We will return to Canterlot.”

“Thank you.” I lowered him down to the ground. “I am glad that this did not lead to an altercation between us. The only ponies I plan on killing are the two that wronged me and I plan on keeping it that way.” I snapped my fingers and the rest of the guards were freed from Pressure. “Now get out of my sight.” The guards reluctantly stood and followed Shining Armor to the train station. I smiled and turned back to the mares. “Well, shall we?” They nodded slowly and once again led me into town.

Settling Down

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The ponies were giving me a wider berth as we continued on our way into town. The sun was already setting as we entered the town proper so there were very few ponies on the streets. A good thing, too, considering how cautious ponies are when around something new and strange. Been down that road one too many times. After another few minutes of silent walking, our little group came upon a large tree near the center of Ponyville. “Really, Ponyville? I mean, come on! Trottingham was bad enough!” I shook my head, thinking like that is going to drive me mad, again. Anyway, Twilight gestured to the door.

“Well, here we are,” Twilight said. “This is the Golden Oaks Library, where I live and work. Let’s go in and we can talk a little about you Kat.” I could see her eyes gleaming brightly. Definitely an intellectual. If I didn’t know any better, I would say that she was related to Starswirl. That old coot and his experiments! He always knew how to bring a smile to my face.

“Alright then Twilight. But, mind if I use your kitchen first? I could really go for some food after being ‘stoned’ for so long.” I chuckled at my own stupid joke, but the looks I received in return meant that it went completely over their heads. “Never mind the joke, but I am famished.”

“Sure thing, Kat. Kitchen’s in the back.” She opened the door, allowing me and the other mares to enter first. Though Rainbow stopped Fluttershy from entering.

“We’ll join you girls in a moment. I need to talk to Fluttershy for a moment.” I shrugged and so did the others. Twilight closed the door and I started for the kitchen. I wonder what she has for food. I am still partial to meat, even though it was hard to acquire for a long time. The griffin trade really helped that out. It was a part of their surrender.

Back to the quest at hand, I entered the relatively small domestic kitchen. It looked like a typical one from the fifties back on Earth, even in coloring. White everything: built-in oven (dial, not digital), an old-style microwave on the counter (surprised they advanced that far, honestly), an ice box in the corner, and a refrigerator with a purple tail sticking out of it. Wait, refrigerators don’t have tails. Something was in here with me! That tail looks familiar, actually, it looks like a… dragon’s tail! There was a dragon in Twilight’s kitchen with me!

Cautiously, I activated my hands again, drawing in all of the cutlery in the kitchen to surround the drake. How did I know it was a drake? Well, most don’t know that male and female dragons have different looking tail fins. Males’ are more pointed on the tip, while females’ are smoother. Okay, lesson over, back to me about to skewer a lizard with about a hundred forks and knives. The dragon closed the door and I couldn’t believe what I saw. He had a spoon in one claw, a large tub of chocolate ice cream in the other. The little thing, being that the guy was about as tall as my knee, was stealing ice cream from the fridge. Wait, who keeps ice cream in the fridge?

The drake looked up as he picked up a spoonful of ice cream, only for him to notice his situation. I glared daggers at the creature before I spoke. “Don’t move dragon, I don’t wish to get blood in an acquaintance’s house.” The dragon nodded, scarred out of his mind. “Twilight!” I called out to the main room.

“Yes, Kat?” she yelled back.

“Are you aware there is a dragon in your kitchen, stealing ice cream?”

“What are you talking abo—SPIKE!!” I heard Twilight’s hooves rushing towards me and then I saw her, a frantic look of worry on her muzzle. She brushed passed me into the kitchen, immediately seeing a dragon surrounded by her silverware. “Oh thank Celestia. You didn’t hurt him.” She sighed out a breath of relief and then looked to me. “Kat, this is my assistant and practically my little brother, Spike. Please don’t hurt him.”

“Oh.” Now I look a jerk. I moved all of the sharp, pointy things away from Spike and returned them to their proper places. “Sorry about that Spike. I know that dragons are welcome in certain parts of Equestria, but I have always been cautious around them. I thought you might have been here to harm Twilight, so I reacted. Again, really sorry.”

“Uh, don’t worry about it?” he replied, still a little nervous. “Um, if you don’t mind, what are you?”

I was about to reply, but Twilight beat me to it. “Kat, here, will answer all questions when we return to the main room. Come on, Spike. You can help me gather the materials I’ll need to mark this momentous occasion.” Twilight walked out of the room and Spike began to follow, but Twilight poked her head back in the room. “And put the ice cream back. You don’t need it.”

“Aw rats!” the dragon pouted, complying with her request and walked out of the room, still sulking. I chuckled a little at his pouting, it was humorous. I made myself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (classic), mostly due to their being nothing but lettuce, tomatoes, and other plant based foods available. I retired to the main lobby where six mares and one dragon awaited me. I saw that Rainbow and Fluttershy had finished their talk and came in to join us. I looked around and noticed a distinct lack of chairs, so I plopped myself down on the floor, opposite of Twilight. Said mare was currently surrounded by several notebooks, papers, and books, with a quill and parchment floating in her magic awaiting to take notes.

“Are we ready to begin?” Twilight asked with a beaming smile. You know, when the ‘scientists’ way back when said that to me, it was incredibly creepy. When Twilight said it, it seemed, I don’t know, pure, I guess? Like a complete lack of malicious intent, I suppose. I don’t know, I’m not a scientist! Practicing theoretical physicist, yes, but only just to understand gravity more. That’s about as far as I go.

“I think so. You don’t mind if I eat while we do this, right?” She nodded and I dug into my sandwich.

“Hey, Kat?” Spike asked while reading one of Twilight’s books. I look up and swallow my bite. “Is this you?” He passed me the book. It was a guide to the myths and legends of Equestria and the page he showed me was my own.

“’Gravity’,” I read aloud. “’A mystical being that at one time was believed to have served under Princess Celestia as a warrior and confidant before disappearing nearly one thousand years ago. Not much is known about this creature only that it was able to manipulate the very force of gravity at will. Many sightings were made during the Dragon War, the Minotaur Skirmishes, and the Griffin War, though none were conclusive. Some even claim to have seen Gravity at the defeat of the great chaos lord, Discord. The last sighting of Gravity was in the aftermath of the Trottingham Massacre, where witnesses claim they witnessed Gravity destroying the attackers of the city, who, to this day, remain anonymous.’” I sighed, once again the memory of that night coming back to haunt me. “Yep, that’s me alright. At least it doesn’t call me a murderer or a monster, I can be thankful for that.”

“So you really were a part of those ancient battles?” Twilight asked me.

“Yes, I was the one who led Celestia and Luna’s troops into battle. At first I was more of a secret weapon and a body guard, but after I defeated the Dragon Emperor on my own, they saw fit to place me in charge of their military. At least on the front lines, that is. Dusty never really approved of me taking militaristic actions, but at least I was helping others and that was all that mattered to me at the time.”

“Could you tell us a little about Dusty?” Fluttershy asked nervously. “If you don’t mind that is.” There it is again. Why is it that that mare seems so familiar? Could I have known one of her ancestors? I wonder which one it was.

“I guess I could.” I really didn’t want to, but I figured that reminiscing about him would be better than just letting the pressure build until I grow a tumor. “Dusty was, well, he was my only friend when I arrived in this land. That cat was always by my side, offering advice, tactics, and suggestions. He was my confidant, my friend, my rock, and my only family. Of course he could get into the fighting spirit himself now and them, especially when others doubted my power, but he was usually the one who would keep me on the right path. Dusty always wanted to hash things out diplomatically, without violence, but even he knew when it was time for talk and time for action. Whenever I began to fall into despair, Dusty was always there for me. No matter what happened, he would always come back. I have seen him squished, stomped on, smacked around, and even blasted by dragon fire and he always just poofed right next to me a moment later, completely unharmed. He was the only constant I had in a world of unpredictability. And then one day, he’s just gone forever.” I felt my fist clenching again, and the tears threatening to fall. “I let it happen again.”

“Let what happen, darling?” asked a concern sounding Rarity.

“You can’t keep blaming yourself for this Kat,” Twilight said comfortingly, interrupting Rarity. “I know you hate the princesses right now, but believe me when I say that they had the best intentions. They weren’t trying to take Dusty away from you, that was a complete accident and they feel horrible for it. The princesses just wanted to make sure you didn’t harm anypony since your powers had begun to act erratically with your increasing age. Your mind was deteriorating, Kat, and it was affecting your powers.”

“That doesn’t excuse what they did Twilight,” I said with anger. “If they were truly my friends, they would have come to me with their concerns. I did nothing to warrant such actions, the only thing close to me letting my powers out of control was Trottingham!” I clasped a hand over my mouth, but it was too late. The girls stared at me with bewilderment and confusion. I stared back in horror, silently praying they didn’t begin to question this.

“Kat,” Twilight started and I knew it wasn’t going to end well. “You mentioned earlier that some creatures called changelings were the ones who attacked Trottingham. I have never heard of such creatures, so I must ask, why is that? What happened at the Trottingham Massacre?”

“I can’t tell you that Twilight. It was one of my weaker moments and I am far from proud of what I did. Maybe I will tell you some day, but not now. Not when I can still hear the children of that night in my nightmares.”

“There it is again,” spoke Applejack who had been silent through this whole thing. Rainbow had been too, but that seemed to be just out a lack of interest. Pinkie was, I don’t even want to know why, but she was too preoccupied licking her hoof. “You constantly mention children over and over again as your reason for fighting. While Ah admit that it’s a noble reason to fight for, it just seems like your might obsessed with it.”

“Applejack, do you have any younger siblings?” I asked in return after a moment’s thought.

“Eeyup, Ah got my little sister, Apple Bloom to look after.”

“What would you do if she were to die in front of you?” I asked bluntly causing many stares at me, though Applejack’s was one of horror and anger.

“You best not be threatin’ mah little sister,” she warned me.

“No, Applejack, I was trying to help you understand what I went through.” The room went cold suddenly, realization coming down upon them all like a ton of ice blocks.

“You don’t mean that…” she started in horror, but couldn’t bring herself to finish, so I did it for her.

“In the accident that took my parents, so too did it take my little brother from me. I watched them die, girls. The reason I was in therapy for so long was because even to the point where I was entombed, I could still hear their screams as they burned alive in front of me while I was powerless to do anything about it.” The ponies were deathly silent, even Pinkie could only gape at me in horror. I suddenly felt a pair of legs wrap themselves around me. I looked down to see that it was the usually bubbly Pinkie who was holding me as hard as she could.

“That’s so sad!!” Pinkie cried out while hugging. “No wonder you got angry when the princesses killed Dusty! It’s the same thing that happened to your family! That’s not right!”

The others must have come to the same realization as I was suddenly the object of a group hug. I just sat and waited for them to be done, I was tired of crying right now. “Thank you for that. I appreciate it, but enough sad talk. Were there any other questions, because I would like to ask one?”

“Oh, go ahead, Kat. It’s only fair that we share what knowledge we have of the past thousand years,” Twilight said waving her hoof dismissively.

“Okay, then I wanted to ask, why were all of you there at the castle with the solar princess? Are you nobles of some kind?”

Twilight giggles a little before answering me. “No, we’re not nobles. You see, Princess Celestia is my teacher and I am her personal student sent here to Ponyville to study the magic of friendship. The girls and I are also the bearers of the Elements of Harmony. We were at the castle to return Discord’s stature back to the Canterlot Gardens after we sealed him away again.”

I think my brain stopped working when I heard that these six ponies were the elements. That was a little too much and now I was a little worried that they were going to seal me away like they did Discord. Then I thought better of it. As Dusty always reminded me, innocent until proven guilty. These mares have done nothing, but be kind to me this entire time, so I need to give them some level of trust in return. It’s only fair.

“That makes some sense I suppose. How did you six become the new bearers of the elements?”

“Actually, Kat, could you show us some of your powers before I answer that? You know, so we can do this as more of a back and forth?”

“Oh, that’s fine. What powers did you want to see?”

“I heard you can fly,” Rainbow said on my left. “Is that true?”

“Well, it’s not really flying, I suppose. It’s more like falling with style.” Again, my reference went, *zoom*, right over their heads. “Anyway, I can redirect my personal gravity field so that I fall in where my shift had gone. You saw me at the castle, right? Well, there I shifted gravity around me to a horizontal slant which caused me to fall away from the castle. I have learned a few tricks which help increase me speed though, since before I just had to rely on my own weight time the force of gravity itself for speed.”

“What about the one you used on my brother?”

“Ah yes, that is one of my original powers called the Stasis Field. Basically, it allows me to use my gravity shift on nearby objects and manipulate theirs as well. It comes in handy for taking packages and troops. It took a long time to be able to pick up things like I did that stallion, though. At first, I could only lift objects up that were in my immediate vicinity. After getting jealous of unicorns and your levitation, however, I decided to focus on turning that power into my own form of a levitation spell. Took nearly twenty years, but I did it!” To prove it, I activated a stasis field around the book nearest Twilight and began to lift it up. “See.”

“That’s amazing!” Twilight beamed excitedly. “There’s not even an aura around it. Simply fascinating. What else can you do?”

“Why don’t we let the rest be a surprise? You still haven’t answered my question, yet?”

“Fine,” Twilight grumbled reluctantly.

Then Twilight went into her whole story about coming to Ponyville after being ordered by Celestia to make some friends, while also supervising the Summer Sun Celebration (whatever that is). She talked about meeting Applejack and her family, Rainbow Dash bawling her over, Rarity fixing her mane after said bawling, Fluttershy obsessing over Spike, and Pinkie’s surprise party at the end of the day. Then came a part I wasn’t prepared for, the return of Nightmare Moon.

“Who or what is a Nightmare Moon?” I asked.

“Oh, that’s right, you were sealed before Princess Luna turned, weren’t you?”


“You see a few years after your, um, banishment, Princess Luna let her rage take control of her and transformed into Nightmare Moon, a pony bent on making night last for eternity. Princess Celestia was forced to use the Elements of Harmony on her and sealed Nightmare in the moon for a thousand years. It was through facing her that I gained my first friends in the ponies that are around you and we also freed Princess Luna from her hatred.”

“Wow,” I said amazed. “I guess Luna should have been meeting with my therapist too. I know she always felt a little miffed about ponies not caring for her night like I did, but wow! Going bat shit crazy was not how I would have guessed she would have handled it. Only to be defeated in the end by a bunch of young mares. That’s kind of embarrassing when you think about it.”

Twilight giggled nervously. “Yeah, I suppose it is. Does this mean you won’t kill the princesses?” she asked me hopefully. I sighed out loud. Honestly, I didn’t know the answer to that question myself. Did I really want to kill them? After everything we went through, do I really want to make one mistake the whole reason to take back centuries of friendship. I didn’t really know anymore.

Before I could say anything, however, a coin appeared out of nowhere in front of me and landed on the floor with a *klang*. I looked at it incredulously. “Did anyone else see that coin just pop out of thin air?” I asked the ponies around me. They were just as surprised as I was and nodded in response to my question. I stared at the coin for several long moments, but decided ‘ah the heck with it’ and picked it up. “As the saying goes, find a penny, pick it up, and all the day you’ll have good luck.” Coin in hand, I inspected it, though nothing jumped out at me as it being anything other than ordinary old coin. Then a bright flash of light appeared in the center of the room. “So much for good luck.”

Once the light faded, it revealed a new pony in the room. He was an orange-coated unicorn with a black mane that was tipped in gold and an eclipse for a cutie mark. Very unassuming from my end and I just assumed he had goofed up a teleportation spell. Lord knows Starswirl did that almost every other time before he finally mastered that effin’ spell. Then my world had to go and shatter as the pony spoke.

“Hello there, Displaced from Earth. We should have a little talk about your plans for vengeance.”

Wait …what?

Downhill Visit

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I was quite stunned already from the sudden appearance of this unicorn and then he goes and says that we need to talk about my revenge? Who the hell is this guy? “Um, okay, and you are?” He smiled at me and took a look around the room. The mares were staring at him with suspicion as well. Not that you could blame them.

“Allow me to ask a quick question so that I understand when I’ve come to: what was the most recent major calamity to strike? Talking things like Nightmare Moon here, ponies.” Now I am confused, weirded out, more than a little frightened. I had activated my gravity sense as soon as he appeared and it was showing that this pony had quite a good amount of power in him. Me spacing out at this left his question unanswered until a certain pink pony decided to yell out.

“Discord!” Pinkie replied happily. I wonder how she got a long with Discord. Those two would certainly be a whole new level of chaos.

“Whelp, that’s two years I can’t talk about that may or may not relate. Infinite multiverse and all.” This pony makes no sense, what so freakin’ ever! “Auric Fulcrum is my name. Might I have yours?”

Oh, wait he’s talking to me. “Kat. Kat Shifter,” I answered nervously. I was a little scared because in my current condition, I don’t know if I could take this guy if we came to blows. And why is he talking like The Doctor? I always hated that meme. He cocked his head at me for a moment and then continued speaking.

“Okay, so you’re probably wondering about the whole ‘we need to talk’ bit I introduced myself with. And the multiverse bit. And how I know about Earth and look like a pony. And just…everything. Am I right?”

“That just about sums it up,” I replied, still a little bewildered. He looked around again, and then motioned towards the exit.

“Walk with me? This isn’t a conversation that others need to hear. From one Displaced to another.”

“Um,” I said ‘intelligently’. “Should I be worried about stranger danger, here?” I looked at the girls, hoping for some kind of help. The pony’s chuckling did not help at all, just made it that much creepier.

“Dear, I didn’t jump across realities just to have relations with you. Besides which, if the diamond that impacted me is any indication, you’re powerful as well. I just want to talk about what I saw and how it relates to you.”

Diamond? “Wait, you’re from the void? Huh, when I sent my calling card through, never expected to be visited. At least not by a pony from another world.” Now things were starting to add up. “Alright, let me finish my sandwich and I’ll join you.” He seemed to accept this, but before he left, Auric turned to Pinkie and Twilight and made an effort to explain to them that he was only staying for a short time. Why? I have no idea, but the again I only just met these mares and know very little about them. He walked out the front door and the ponies turned to me.

“You’re not really going out there, are you dear?” Rarity asked with concern.

“Might as well humor the guy. He is powerful in his own right. Plus, there are some questions that I would like answered.”

“All right, just be careful, Kat,” Fluttershy said. “We don’t want you to get hurt.”

“I shall do my very best not to, Miss Fluttershy.” I downed the last of my sandwich and leapt out the front door. Auric was standing nearby, waiting for me. “Okay, I’m here. What is this all about Mr. Fulcrum?”

*****Auric's POV*****

I sighed and looked up to the sky. “What do you know about the Multiverse?”

“It’s ever expanding, ever growing, and every possibility exists somewhere.”

I nodded at that. “Good answer. What do you know about the true nature of Time?”

“To quote a favorite movie: ‘Always in motion, the future is.’ Nothing is set in stone. Is this going somewhere?”

I sighed and looked her in the eyes. “I have a mirror. It lets me look at the Multiverse. More specifically, it lets me look at Displaced humans and those that receive my token, along with those that send me tokens. When I look at some worlds, I sense nothing terribly wrong. But then there are others that cause me pain.”

I paused for a moment to let the implications sink in and let her get a few words in. Terribly rude to dominate a conversation after all. She let out a sigh and slumped against the wall of the tree. “Let me guess, my future is bleak?”

I smiled at her. “To quote a favored time-lord, ‘Time is full of wibbly-wobbly stuff.’ Nothing is set in stone, m’dear. It’s just…” I shifted a bit, thinking of how best to phrase it. “I asked it to show me your most likely future, if nothing changed. Your future isn’t exactly...bleak. But it’s certainly black.”

“Oh, joy.” She certainly didn’t sound joyful. I shook my head.

“Tell me your story. The one that would give you reason to want to slaughter the Sisters.”

“Tell me Auric, did you have any problems with the princesses?”

I actually laughed at that. It felt good. “That’s like asking if the ocean’s wet! I showed up, terrified of what I’d turned into, eventually mastered my powers, and became the bogeyman that scared all of Tia’s bad little ponies. Guess whose side she takes?”

“After working with the princesses for nearly three hundred years, I would have to believe that even an alternate Celestia would side with her ponies no matter the circumstances.”

I smiled and nodded at her. “Correct. So Tia and Lulu finally catch me and succeed in besting me. Guess what my sentence is? No, wait, don’t bother. They chained me up and locked me in their basement for fifteen hundred years. I got the impression they forgot about me until I walked back up to their faces. Were it not for Dissy, I’d still be chained up.” I then looked her in the eyes. “And you know what? I never hated them for it.”

Her eyes widened in shock. “Woo, fifteen hundred years? Damn, and I thought being trapped in stone for a thousand was rough. And you call Discord that, too? Huh, maybe I need to come up with something more creative. You know, if he is ever set free again. Though, I sorta envy you, Auric.”

I looked at her sadly. “Is it because I forgave them, despite what they did?”

“No, because you didn’t have your heart wrenched out of you through betrayal.”

I sighed at that. “True enough. I’ve not been betrayed nearly so badly as you seem to have been. After all, you did just say that. But maybe arriving as a giant headless possessed suit of armor had something to do with it. Nobody got close enough to form that bond, after all. Can’t rip out what’s only recently begun to regrow.”

She raised an eyebrow at the mention of old headless. “I don’t even want to know what you mean by that.”
I waved a hoof. “Dullahan, from Golden Sun. Optional boss. Was my costume at Halloween. Picked up his sword, made a foolish wish to ‘look this badass all the time.’”

“So with you it was a sword, huh? With me it was a plush cat I picked from weird creepy merchant at a video game convention.”
I nodded at that. “Heard that one. Seems the Merchant’s actually a Void-Dweller, he’s Displacing humans fer kicks. Or at least, that’s what me and Xante have figured out so far.”

“Well, I don’t know whether I should thank the guy or kick him where the sun don’t shine. I actually like being here in Equestria, even if I do miss my old friends. Not like there was anyone else to miss me.”

I sighed at that. “I know those pains as well. I made...a few...well, call them acquaintances back when I first roamed, and when I got out, all that was left was their legacy. Rather sad to know they’re gone, but at the same time, they would be damn proud of their descendants. Every so often, a Jupiter Djinn plays a masterful prank, and I swear I see Puck for a moment.”

“Well, I’m glad you at least have something to remember your friends by. Celestia and Luna took the only friend I had away from me. I don’t have anything to remember him by except my memories and my burning hatred.”

I cocked my head and looked up at her. “They’re called ‘memorials’ fer a reason, Kat. That way, even if you’re not there, others can learn of what he meant to you. That way, he’ll live on in more hearts and minds than just yours.”

“Dusty was much more than that, Auric. He was family to me, and Celestia and Luna killed him right in front of me without so much as a reason or warning. Only now do I find out they did it on accident and it was because of what happened in Trottingham so long ago. A memorial won’t help either, as reading of what the legends of me detail, Dusty is not included at all. He always was such a sly cat.”

I walked up to her and put a hoof on one of her knees. “Then make them remember. Make them revise the tales. Tell them what he meant to you. After all, if I’ve been reading between the lines, you’re a living legend returned to life. They’d be idiots to doubt your word!”

“No, they wouldn’t. All of the higher ups of Equestria’s allies know what happened at the Trottingham Massacre. It was on that day that I was forced into retirement and my word was dishonored amongst all ranks. You weren’t there, Auric. You didn’t see what I did.”
I sighed and closed my eyes. “I don’t have to have been there to know it weighs heavily on you if you avoid talking about it. That just screams ‘I’ve done unnamable acts.’ And you think it’ll phase me at all. You really do.”

“Do you really think the extinction of entire sentient species is an easy thing to bring up in conversation?”

I smiled at her. This wasn’t a kind or happy smile. This was a smile I reserved for this particular line of conversation, to let people know how bonkers I was. “My dear. I’m more crazy than you could know about. After all, I only did ask an innocent question back on Earth, and get an answer for it. Tell me, what do you think the answer to the question of ‘how does everything work’ would do to a mortal mind?”

“Heh, so you went bat shit insane, too, eh? Small multiverse. I guess having emotional issues, then becoming immortal, and then being sealed in stone for a thousand years and some change really doesn’t help with therapy. Though it was fun after the, I’m guessing five hundred years since I was insane for the first half. Sanity is only fun once you’ve gone insane after all.”

“Sanity is overrated,” I stated with a hoof-wave. “It’s learning to balance your madness with the rest of your tattered, shredded mind. Now there’s where the fun lies. Oh, and did I happen to mention that my sword caught on to the moment when I comprehended everything? Yeah, became a bit of an issue when anyone who touched it experienced it as well. Damn crystal-blue joker.”

“Hold on, crystal-blue? As in the same color as your hooves?”

I smiled at her. “And now you’re catching on! Don’t worry, Eureka is more harmless in this form. It takes a codeword to unleash his potential, and I have to speak it.”

“Good, but if you use it on me, you’ll learn just exactly how it feels to be a pancake.” Kat’s hands glowed a reddish-black aura just to prove a point. I shook my head up at her.

“Wasn’t going to. But the knowledge I have of how things actually work tie in with how the mirror works. I saw your most probable future, I mentioned. I want to know: what would it take for you to not want to kill the Sisters anymore? Anything. Anything at all. Because believe me, you really don’t want to know what I saw.”

“Actually, now I kinda do. I am not really worried about the movement of the sun and moon because I know other unicorns can do it. Can’t be that bad, right?” Oh, you naive child.

I looked up at her and killed all expression on my face as I began reciting what I’d seen. “Monsters from the borders, smelling, sensing, I don’t know which, that the Sisters aren’t there to protect their ponies, decide it’s snacktime. An ancient empire reappears in the north, and with no pony in charge, falls to the darkness, casting the world into depression with it. And a wedding gets interrupted by the changelings, who take over. Who win.”

“I hate to say it, but you’re mirror must be broken.”

I shook my head at her. “Happened to me too, except with the sisters, the changelings were fought off. I might’ve dabbled a bit, but I’m pretty sure I was unnecessary. They, however, are the heart of the country. Without them to lead…”

“That’s not what I meant. The changelings can’t invade Equestria.”

I looked at her face, studying it for clues. That twinge there. That far off look. The same way she’d looked when she talked about exterminating an entire species. “You...oh that’s rich. You actually think you killed them all?”

“Have you ever heard of a black hole, Auric?”

I waved a hoof at her. “How or what you did doesn’t matter if there was more than one Hive. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned about changelings, it’s that they adapt to their surroundings. If anything, your little battle at Trottingham probably set the rest of them on track to hide and blend in more than...whatever led into it.”

“I never said that I stopped at Trottingham.”

I looked up at her and smiled again. “Really now. Going to those sorts of lengths. On the one hand, you’re impressive. But on the other…” I gained a darker countenance as I called up my power, all that I could of it. “I’ve actually made peace with my world’s changelings. So I’m wondering here. Just how extreme did you go? Did you kill their little ones? Did you hunt down every queen? Did you crush them with your strength? Oh, do tell me if I’m being too graphic here.”

“Not graphic enough, actually. There used to be five changeling hives on Equis. Within twenty-four hours all that remained of them were craters. I couldn’t control myself, Auric. That was the first time I activated my black hole, and not even Dusty could get me snappe out of it. I just kept hearing the screams of foals, over and over in my head as I took down each and every changeling I saw. No one was safe.”

I nodded at her. “PTSD, you have it bad. You’re home, but your mind is still at war. You can’t not be in a combat situation. I think the best treatments would be isolation from elements you perceive to be hostile, or gradual re-introduction to those elements. I should know...I...I still react that way sometimes myself. To a lesser degree, but it’s there.”

I heard a snort coming from the young girl. I turn to look back up at her and see she is starting to laugh. “PTSD? Really? After fighting war after war, you think I really am still affected by that? Puhlease, you should have seen me after the first living being I killed. No, my guilt over the changelings, is because, because, well…”

I wait a moment, before deciding to interrupt her. “Tell me, have you reacted to any species that, before your isolation, was hostile, before you actually got to know if said being was hostile in a hostile manner?”

“Whether you believe me or not, I am no murderer. Even on the front lines, I always gave my enemies the chance to back down. If they ran, they ran. But if they chose battle, I put them in their place. The changelings were different. I never should have let my rage control me. I destroyed four innocent hives because of the actions of one. No matter how gruesome that hive acted. Though, it still gives me nightmares seeing those things draining love from the ponies like they were vampires.”

I sighed and looked up at her. “I’m not hearing an answer to my question. And killing never ever sits well with anyone. No matter where it is or whether you’re the one responsible or if your emotions are. I know this too.” I stared off while remembering Lady Skycleaver and The Wise One. The Newvale Troupe…

“You’re not the only one who can sense emotions, Mr. Fulcrum. Did you know that one’s gravitational field can actually be influenced by their emotions? It’s quite a trip, seeing things like I do sometimes. You have experienced loss yourself. Others who you considered dear friends. I apologize if I am being difficult here, Auric, but I really don’t know much about social interactions. I fear getting close to others, because every time I do, something comes along and rips them away from me. My parents, my baby brother, Dusty, as well as Rita and all my friends back home. I just really don’t know what to do anymore.”

I looked up at her, seeing the barest hints of liquid in her eyes. I sighed and began my trek down melancholy road. “One, I allowed my rage, my darker half, to slay. It was justified, he says. She was going to try to take the Elemental Stars, he says. No other dragon will mess with Newvale now, he says. But I still take the blame, because I walked us to her den. I had the idea to deal with her in the first place. I knew of what would happen and how it could have been prevented. I allowed my rage to take her and decided not to save her.”

I then looked up to the sun. “Another, an invader, wanted to rule the world so as to fulfill his ‘purpose.’” I looked to her out of the corners of my eyes. “I tore him apart on the subatomic level with my newfound, at the time, powers. Quite interesting, seeing as he was the Wise One.” Her eyes widened at my description, though they turned away, as if she was hiding something. I then looked down at my hooves for the last bit. “A stallion by the name of Omega was studying Psynergy and stole four Adepts and their Djinn and all the Djinn he could get his hands on, so as to drain their powers for his own use. The Djinn he must have thought of as disposable. But when I found his lair, those four Adepts that I helped train, that I sent out into the world, they…” I broke off, my voice choking up then as I recalled the memory.

“What were there last words, Auric?”

I closed my eyes and gulped a few times. “They begged me to kill them. I finally did.”

“You fulfilled their dying wish even though it pained you to do so. Well, that is what I am trying to do as well. Dusty’s final words to me before he was ripped to dust, ‘Don’t let them get away with this.’ So I won’t, not until the princesses lay broken at my feet will I stop. For Dusty.”

I opened my eyes and looked at her. “One, the mirror isn’t busted. I talked to my changelings. What little history they keep is interesting. Especially as in my time, they kept quite a few hives. No less than half a dozen. Granted, they eventually all became less than important save one final one that we have good relations with. So ‘tis highly likely some changelings survived your onslaught.”

“I kinda hope you are wrong about that. Considering how changelings here extract love from others.”
I sighed. “Yeah, not pretty. Mine needed to learn to take up positions where they would naturally be adored and loved for what they could do. Entertainers, healers, doctors. They’re still trying to integrate into society, but they’re making good progress, especially when they learned how to drain excess from the air.”

“You mentioned that they would invade a wedding. Whose wedding? Maybe we can prepare just in case some did survive.”

I shook my head. “Just telling you puts you at risk. Future knowledge is not meant to be acted on. It’s not quite paradox-worthy, but you shouldn’t know. Not until it becomes needed. I’m from at least two years ahead of you, after all.”

“Oh, come on! It’s not like this a tv show, anything can change between the worlds! Just a hint?”

I cocked my head, thinking over the ramifications. “Interesting. You mean you don’t know?”

“I swear if this a ‘bird is the word’ joke you are going to be in space very soon.”

I shook my head. “So you’re from that sort of alternate reality. Allow me to explain: in some realities, there was a version of My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic. It lines up quite eerily with this world. From Nightmare Moon to the Grand Galloping Gala. I could go in there and reveal things about those six little ponies - and dragon - that they would claim I was a spy should such words leave my lips. Season Two starts with Discord getting free.”

“My Little Pony? That cheesy show from the eighties? How is that anywhere near this place?”

“My reality has this woman named Lauren Faust, Hasbro hires her to redo it, and her version is this place.”

“Hasbro? They got bought out by Kenner in the nineties, I should know. Did an English report on old toy companies freshman year.”

“Right. In your reality. We clearly originate in different ones. I have knowledge about this world and many iterations of this world thanks to Faust that I should not be spouting off.”

“My brain hurts. Come on, I just want to know who’s getting married. Is it Celestia? Luna? Cause if they are getting hitched, I don’t think I can bring myself to beat them to a bloody pulp.”

I blinked at that. “So you didn’t meet their niece. Pink alicorn? Maybe she’s from after your imprisonment. Interesting.”

“Wait, you mean little Cadneza? Oh, so the adoption went through after all. Good for Luna. She needs the love.”

I smiled at that and waved my hoof at her, trying to get across the message ‘now think about what you just said.’

“No way! Little Cadenza is getting married?! Oh come on, tell me who the lucky stallion is! Or mare, I don’t judge.”

I shook my head. “All I’ll tell you is he’s related to one of the mares in there. And think about her talent.” I blinked a few times. “ know her talent, right?”

“The only relative of those mares I met was… Oh hell no! She is not marrying that dumb ass prick! Unh uhn. Not happening. I won’t allow it!”

I sighed. “They’ve been friends ever since she foalsat Twilight. They’ve got a good relationship, despite his overprotective tendencies. Makes sense, considering that his sister is Cel’s protegee and his talent is protecting others. He just took an oath to the rulers, and sometimes...acts without really thinking. The invasion won’t help.”

“He’s already in trouble for going against the princesses wishes.”

I blinked, then smiled at her. “Lemme guess, regarding you? She can’t afford to not have a stallion that can shield a damn city as her Royal Guard Captain. He’ll be fine. A few months probation, maybe latrine duty. Who knows?”

“I feel more sorry for the squads he brought along on his suicide mission. I ended up putting twenty G’s down them for trying to stand up to me when it was that doofus’ idea in the first place. You know he actually refused to surrender, even when I had him floating in the air? That stallion is a few cards short of deck. And that’s saying something coming from me.”

I waved a hoof around, looking for the right words. “He’s really overprotective, and really acts before he has the facts. So yeah, not blaming you. But it’s his relationship with Cadence that...grounds him, I think is the best word. He’ll be a better guard for it.”

“Fine, I’ll give the colt a chance, but one hoof out of line and he will be living on the moon. Though, since you are older than me, I want to ask. Do you know the names of any of Fluttershy’s ancestors? Something about her is highly familiar, but I just can’t place it.”

I blinked, thinking on the stories the girls back in my world told me before I started smiling. “Sadly, my knowledge on pony genealogy is rather limited. The only famous pony I’ve ever really interacted with besides the sisters is Starswirl. But I know when you can get those answers. The girls will end up going to Canterlot to put on a Hearth’s Warming pageant. You should go.”

“Ah yes, Hearth’s Warming. It’s the most wonderful time of the year. You know, after Halloween, which I never could get the Princesses behind. Spoil sports. Oh, and you knew Starswirl too? Wasn’t that guy a hoot? Always practicing some new spell, always causing excitement when he visits. Never a dull moment when that bearded bastard walks in the door, that’s for sure.”

I shook my head. “Nah, I wouldn’t say I knew him. I met him. Princesses sicced him on me to figure out just how I do the things I do. I gave him the basics without telling him anything, and he said ‘well that’s not proper magic. Would you like me to teach you?’” I snorted at the memory. “I still see a lot of him in Twilight.”

“Yeah, he tried studying me, too. Only for us, we ended up stuck to the ceiling of the grand ballroom for four hours. Took that long just to get the princesses to stop laughing their asses off. I wonder if Twilight is a descendent of his, though I doubt it. He sucked when it came to finding a date.”

I smiled and snickered. “While I don’t doubt that at all, seeing his bloodline waste away would have probably made the princesses frown at the thought of wasted potential. I wouldn’t have put it past them to arrange for him to ‘conveniently bump into some mare’. Or if they got desperate to preserve his bloodline…” I deliberately trailed off.

Kat shuddered at the thought. “Thank you, Auric, for those disturbing mental images. I might just have to go kill them now just to put a different image in my head. Where’s the brain bleach when you need it?”

I snickered a bit before calming down. “It’s called Fluttershy, and you hug her.”

“I think you mean ‘glomp’. She is soo adorable! I just want to hug her, and squeeze her, and call her George!”

I rolled my eyes. “Reel it in, Bugs.”

“Finally someone gets my references! I’ve been doing this stuff for hundreds of years and never once cracked a genuine smile. These ponies need to live a little.”

“Now, you were on about the invasion that’s going to happen. Think. Do you know what Cadence’s talent is?”

“No idea. She was only three when I was stoned, so she didn’t even have a cutie mark yet.”

I sighed at that. “It’s for spreading love wherever she goes.”

“Well, how am I suppose to know that! She was a filly! That’s what all fillies are good at!”

I smiled. “Depends on the age, really. But yeah, it’s what she’s really good at. Now, why don’t you piece the puzzle together?”

“Hmm. Does a changeling take Shining’s place and attempt to marry Cadence? That would make the most sense, well, if she truly loves him that is.”

I nodded while letting out a low chuckle. “That would make sense, yes. If the queen was smart. They decide that Cadence’s talents could be of far more use in the Hive, and that they can get by on Shining’s love for Cadence.”

“How dumb is this Queen? Because the last one I fought definitely fell under evil genius.”

I sighed again while I considered our different histories. “I don’t know. It might not play out like that here. After all, my changeling’s history is different from yours. That’s what happens in my dimension. Yours might play out differently, but take heed: once unmasked, my queen had absorbed so much love from Shining, she stood up to sunbutt.”

“Yes and a thousand years ago, I had enough power to do to Celestia and Luna, together, what you did to the Wise One. It’s a forbidden power known as Extinguish.”

I smiled and lit up my horn in golden flames, picking up a leaf nearby before manipulating its structure in a variety of ways. First, I turned it blue. Then, I turned it into a rose. And finally, I turned it back into a leaf and dissolved it on the subatomic level. Which, by the way, still stings.

“Show off. There’s a reason it’s forbidden. It only works on organic material. Extinguish is the only gravity technique I learned that I regret learning. It rips away one’s gravitational field. As I absorb the field, the subject slowly drifts apart. A slow and painful death that can take hours to accomplish. There is no stopping it once it activates, though. Not like I’d need to use it, however. I have plenty of other powers, some I still need to try out since I thought them up while imprisoned. Glad Pressure went off without a hitch. I could have killed those guards if it didn’t work quite right.”

Once she was done, I picked up a nearby stone and dissolved it into dust as well. Looking at her stunned expression, I explained. “This is my power. The Flames of Alchemy. Essentialy, so long as I keep in mind what I want to do and how it would be best to go about it, no transmutation is too much for me. Matter is my damn plaything. Comes from answering The Question in our homeworlds, ones that are Science-based. Knowledge of how everything works makes Alchemy not-useless.”

“Okay, yeah, that’s cool. Though, at least I can fly! I doubt Alchemy lets you do that. I would brag about levitation, too, but you’re a unicorn right now, so it’s kinda pointless.”

I hummed and put a hoof to my chin. “While unaided flight is beyond me, I could alter the properties of stone to create a stable hovering platform. With work, I could even get it to move while in the air. Or maybe I could just alter a cloud so that I can stand on it and go from there. But I’d like stability, so I think if I do, I’ll go with stone.”

“Sounds more like you’re ripping off Static Shock.”

I shook my head at that. “While I was a gamer, that wasn’t one I was familiar with. Anyways. Like I’ve been trying to do and been continually sidetracked from. Yeah, I get that you hate the sisters. For one shining moment, I did too. But then I did something that I’m sure will get to them a thousand years from now, and I was content. Wanna know what I did?”

“One, Static Shock is a DC superhero who rides around on a electricity infused disc. Two, yes, yes I would like to know.”
I smiled up at her again. Damn, Nocturne, I’ve been smiling a lot since I met you. “I founded a town where Adepts who disliked Sunbutt came together and proclaimed one very important thing to her. ‘We don’t need you.’ While I doubt that there are any ponies here that could use your powers, the point stands. Stay away from her. Tell her you don’t need her. And it will hurt worse than any beating you could ever deliver. To quote Green Goblin: ‘The cunning warrior attacks the heart.’”

“There is one flaw in your logic there, Auric.”

I sighed and looked at the ground. “Do you honestly think Cel’s incapable of admitting when she did wrong? When I presented my case to her, gods...that face’ll haunt me.”

“Not what I meant. Did I tell you what I did when Dusty was killed by the princesses?”

I tilted my head at that. “No, but I get the sensation that this is worse, far worse, than any of the times they and I danced together.”

“Ever heard what happens if you reverse a planet’s gravity?”

I actually backed up in fear before I realized I was doing so. “Damn! Just...damn! Okay, I can see you being angry. I can see you being mad. But that’s worse than Mad Discord! Just what the- you weren’t, were you? You weren’t thinking.”

“Actually, I was. Only one problem, though. At the time, Dusty was a limiter on my power, so when he was destroyed…” She trailed off, allowing me to think on it. I shuddered a bit at the mental images before I walked up to her and placed a hoof on her knee again.

“Did I ever tell you that while Eureka is mischievous and has a code word, the things it shows you cannot be forgotten and are never false? I can also channel it, direct it a bit, show you the things I want you to see, or the things you need to see. I use it on a millennial-old lich and made him feel his victim’s pain and joy, lives and deaths.”

“Okay, that sounds creepy as all get out. But there is one thing worse than all of this. The one thing that makes me regret that day when Dusty was killed.”

I hardened my look then. “Do tell. Your next words may determine a very important thing on my part.”

“The day before Dusty was killed, I snuck into Celestia’s personal chambers. I was bored and had nothing to do. I was just wandering around, looking at the books she kept ‘borrowing’ from the library, the half-eaten piece of cake on her nightstand, but what stood out to me was a sheet of paper on her desk. A parchment that brought me to tears upon reading.”

I paused in forming the mental construct. “What did you read?”

“Auric, it was an adoption form. One with my name on it under Celestia’s.”

My concentration actually shattered. “ think...oh gods. Okay, if I can try to construct this from her point of view? I’ve known my Cel for a bit, I think I can do a good job.”

“...Alright,” she said cautiously.

“You’re a dangerous, unknown entity. Until you decided to fight for her, she didn’t know if she could trust you or not, but most importantly, she didn’t know if she could trust you around her ponies or not. Once you started proving yourself to her, she began to see the value in keeping you around. And once you proved yourself to be at least as ageless as any other being by living far past normal human years, she began to see herself as someone you should, nay, could look up to. A friend, if nothing else. She wanted to be better for you. And then she looked at Dusty. She probably blamed the Trottingham thing on him influencing you, rather than whatever actually happened. You already said he’s a limiter, it isn’t that large a leap to think that he would be the reason you would go to such extremes in hunting down every last changeling. She doesn’t want to believe that you have any genuine darkness in you, so she blamed him instead. And then she thought that if he got rid of him, he might take whatever he did with him and return you to normal before it was too late.”

Kat blinked once, twice. “That is incredible how you thought that all out. Although, I never told Celestia and Luna what Dusty was to me other than a friend. It took me a hundred and fifty years just to tell them that he talked to me telepathically.”

I shrugged my shoulders. “Probably didn’t help any, that. And if he was just as ageless as you were, they probably saw him as the little imp on your shoulder with a greater hold than he should have had. They probably did mean well. They just didn’t have a lick of what your relation to each other was.”

Kat nodded a little. “I think I get it. Though there is still one question that is nagging my mind.”

“Ask away.”

“When Celestia and Luna brought me and Dusty in for the chat that led to his death, they said that there were several events that had led up to this. I thought they were going to be putting me back in therapy, just to be clear. Only problem is, the only conflict I had been in in the last ten years was Trottingham. They were listing reports from Cloudsdale, Manehatten, Vanhoover, and several others, when I hadn’t even left the castle in ten years.”

I blinked at that, thinking slowly. “It could be...that not all of your power is under your direct control. Hear me out before you scoff. There are two types of Psynergy. Active, which is when Adepts direct the power to any number of techniques, depending on their affinities. And passive, which can do a myriad of things that they aren’t even aware of. From sensing the power of other Adepts to protecting them from truly lethal techniques. The list goes on and on. Maybe...some of your power is tied to your subconscious, and your bad thoughts, dreams, feelings, were changing the world outside the castle?”

“Not possible. Before Dusty was killed, long range gravity manipulation was beyond me. If Dusty wasn’t within ten feet of me, I couldn’t even use my powers. It was only with him gone that I have been able to learn how to use them to their fullest. Thinking back, Dusty seemed quite tense through that whole decade, distant, too.”

I sighed at that. “Budding Adepts are able to things without their direct intention behind it. Only by training and focusing their minds and energies are they able to refine their accidents into actual techniques. This leaves us with two options, then.”
I waited for her to nod so that I could list them off. “The first, which I prefer, is that you were developing budding long-range manipulation powers at the time, but had no control over it yet. Those locations were affected, and the Princesses blamed either you or Dusty.”

“And option two?”

I sighed and looked off into the distance. “Tell me, did he ever have the same powers as you did, no matter how far away from you he went?”

“The only powers Dusty ever displayed were gravity sight and invulnerability. Other than talking to me through a mental link, which allowed me to feel his death by the way (which was extremely painful), he was just an ordinary cat.”
I looked back into her eyes. “Then you have a rogue gravity shifter in the same time as you, causing the same sort of things you could. A pegasus, by the sounds of it. Or, a Unicorn with the cloud-walking spell.”

“I wish I could help narrow it down, but Celestia never told me exactly what happened in those places. Just that me, or something like me, was there causing trouble. I worry about what another shifter in this world could mean. Especially if they are still around to this day.”
I waved a hoof around. “So that actually does narrow it down a bit. It was probably a unicorn with both cloud-walking and an illusion to make it look like you. Or a pegasus with a unicorn friend who could do illusions. And they did it for one reason.”
I walked up to her and poked her in the chest. “To make sure that your and Cel’s relationship was soured.”

“I both hate and hope that’s what happened. When I started to think along the lines of another shifter, I started wondering if another like me had made it to this world. Perhaps one who didn’t share my intentions of befriending the populace. Auric?”

I nodded at her, waiting for her to continue.

“Do you think there’s still a chance for me and Celestia? That sheet, it, it gave me so much hope. I don’t want to be alone anymore, Auric. It’s my worst nightmare come true.”

I smiled and put a hoof on her knee. “Hey, it’s okay. I may look like a pony now, but I’m actually an immortal human with far too much power. I just sorta broke my immortality and drained my power to save a mare from certain death. Once my power returns, I’ll be human again, and assuming nothing kills me, I’ll be immortal in time. So you have me at least. Just keep a hold of that coin.” As she looked at it, I continued. “And if I know Cel, then all you’ll have to do is ask her to explain herself. Ask her why she killed him and listen. If you can find it in yourself to forgive her for her misdeeds, then both of you can put your names on that paper and put up a shrine to Dusty in the Gardens.”

Kat smiled as she thought over the idea, it was faint, but it was there. “You’re a good pony, Auric. A good pony. Are you sure you want to be human again? I don’t think a mare and a human would be very good mates.”

I sputtered a bit at that accusation. “First of all, we’re still getting to know one another. And second, this is a temporary thing because I drained myself. It happens. If you don’t have enough power in yourself to fight off Equus’ natural Harmony magic, it will change you to fit to be more ‘in tune’ with the natives. And third, master of transmutations, including self, here. I can always go back...once I get enough strength back, that is.”

“You’re kinda cute when you’re flustered, ya know? Maybe you should work on hiding your emotions a little better. Right now, you don’t want to see what I am seeing.”

I grumbled a bit at that. “I swear by Sol, if you start scratching me behind the ears, I will activate Eureka on you so fast and leave it unguided.”

“And I can manipulate gravity until you are unable to move and I can do anything I want to you. Maybe I’ll even bring Pinkie out here. She seems like a good prankster.”

I rolled my eyes. “She and Dash are a terrifying duo. Never get one over on them, you’ll just start a prank war. The only peace Ponyville knows from that is when they’re turned on each other.”

“Should I mention that I had a prank war with Discord before he went all take over the world loony? And won?”

I blinked at that. “Huh. I only barely got to know mine before he touched the sword by accident. I should try that with him now that he’s out.”
I clapped my hooves to my mouth and looked to Kat. “I just said that, didn’t I?”

“Eeyup. Be careful around the balloon tanks. He usually fills them with acidic chemicals. I think my ears are still ringing when Luna accidentally set off the one filled with liquid nitrogen.”

I sighed and looked back to the library. “So, think you’re at least a little bit more at peace, now?”

“If you mean am I willing to kill them, then no. I am not hell bound to put two alicorns in the grave. Though, I still think I want to fight them, just to get rid of some of this pent up rage. We used to spar for hours on end in our free time.”

I smiled a bit at that. “I should try that when I get restored. But that sounds healthy. And hey, in a little while, Cel will try, and succeed, in reforming good ol’ Dissy. So the option of having an endless prank war is on the table.”

“Actually it’s not. Discord refuses to have another prank war with me. He is such a sore loser! I mean, did he really expect me to not launch the molasses nuke? Really? I mean how could I--” Kat suddenly bolted up to standing, looking off in the distance.

*****Kat's POV*****

"I mean how could I--”

Ka~~t,” I heard it, but I couldn’t believe it. Far off in the distance, some strange force had made itself known, but I couldn’t have cared less. That voice, it was his.

When Auric spoke again, it sounded rushed, though I paid him little mind. “Okay, first, I meant having a war with Dissy against the sisters. Second, I should go, that didn’t feel right. And third, a warning. Not all the Displaced are as nice as me. Beware the Triad of Madness, for their weapons are much like Eureka. Jack of Blades with his Sword of Ages, Pyramid Head with his Knife, and Alice with her Vorpal Blade.”

“Yeah, uh huh.”


“Okay, there it is again. But how? How am I hearing this?”

I heard a hoof stamping on the ground and looked over to see a disgruntled Auric looking back at me. “Focus, those names were important! Who do you avoid and why?”

“The Triad of Madness because they are worse than your blade. Now I know this is important and all, but if you were hearing what I am, you wouldn’t be paying any attention to this either.”


Auric sighed once again and spoke. “I feel something, and it sets off all my senses too, but I don’t know what or where it is. Just...if you need me, hold the coin and call for me, okay? I have to go back now, before whatever this is finds me here. Dimensional interlopers aren’t looked upon too fondly.” I watched as Auric began to glow again. He was returning to his own world.

“Okay then!” I said while waving goodbye. “Maybe when we see each other again, you can meet Dusty!” And with a bright flash, Auric Fulcrum was gone from my world. Despite the strange disturbances I was feeling off in the distance, I couldn’t help, but jump for joy at the voice I was hearing. I rushed back inside the library, scaring the ponies inside.

“Kat!” Twilight exclaimed after regaining her composure. “Is everything alright?”

“Everything is better than alright Miss Sparkle.” I looked at them, a happy smile on my face and hope in my eyes. “Dusty is still alive!”

Ups and Downs of Living

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The girls stared at me with slack jaws and bug-wide eyes. This lasted for several moments before Twilight spoke again. “He’s alive? How do you know for sure? Did that ‘Auric’ pony tell you that?”

I shook my head. “No Twilight, I can hear him. I can hear Dusty’s voice in my mind. I-I have to go! I need to find him!” I began to turn around, but the ponies called after me.

“Wait Kat!” I heard from Fluttershy, whose voice was much louder than I had ever heard it before. Just her calling out to me like that was enough to cause me to stop and look back just to confirm she had actually said that. “Sorry for yelling,” she said hiding in her mane. Is she bipolar? “You shouldn’t go out late like this. Maybe you should wait for morning. If that’s alright.”

There it is again. She is so dang familiar to me. Ah well, think on it later, I have a friend to find. “I can’t do that Fluttershy. I can hear Dusty calling out to me, but it’s getting fainter and fainter. I need to leave now so I can find him.”

“If you do,” started Pinkie, but I interrupted.

“Not ‘if’, ‘when’.”

When you find Dusty,” Pinkie corrected, “does that mean you’ll finally forgive the princesses?”

“You know, Auric spent that entire time we had out there trying to convince me to do just that.”

The mares all leaned in, eager for my reply. “Well don’t leave us in suspense!” Applejack demanded. “Will ya? Will ya forgive the princesses for their mistake?”

I looked at them with a genuine smile and answered. “Not on your life!” They all gasped a reared back. “I will never forgive those two. Not until they lie at my feet, crushed beneath my power!”

“Not even our visitor from another world can dissuade you?” Twilight asked with fear in her voice.

It was at that point that I burst out laughing. I hadn’t laughed so hard in years, not since owning Dissy in every prank war he ever started. I never began the fighting, it was all on him. “That guy was a fool! He thought he was so smart! I led that guy on like a fat kid with a Twinkie. As if some strange human-pony thing from another world could talk me out of this. I just told him a bunch of fake sob stories when I realized he was here to dissuade me from revenge. I even mixed up my own thoughts to believe I was saying was true, just in case he was a telepath. Don’t think he was, but you can never be too careful.”

“Th-then you lied! You lied to that pony!” Applejack admonished.

“He was so easy to fool. I played him just like a freakin’ harp. And the things he was telling me? Pffbt, I could come with better material off the back of a cereal box. Played the old broken damsel card; works ever time,” I said with a smug grin. “Thanks to that, I know what to expect from him and a few others as well as few interesting tidbits. Perhaps he should learn not to be so open.”

“That’s terrible Kat!” Rarity threw in. “Why would you do that to somepony who was trying to help you?”

“Because I don’t need their help! I have always been fine on my own. The only reason I took up Celestia’s offer was so I would have a place to sleep and money in my pocket. I didn’t need to work for them to protect others. I just did it for the benefits. Sure after a while we bonded a little, but then everything went south when Discord went crazy. Those two were always suspicious of me, with good reason. They are probably freaking out still in their little castle. They should be! Within the week, my powers will be back at full and then, oh ho ho, then I’ll have the rulers of this country beaten and battered to a pulp.”

“Are you sure you’re not a villain Kat?” asked Pinkie with narrowed eyes staring at me. It looked as if she were waiting for me to start glowing and yelling out ‘this isn’t even my final form!’ or something.

“Only to those who harm the innocent. Other than that, I just do my job and live. Now, if you will excuse me, I got a friend to find.” I took off before any of them could say anything and took to the sky. I could still hear Dusty’s voice calling out to me and it got louder as I continued south. I began to fly over some strange looking forest as I followed my dear, departed friend’s voice. I soon came across a large ruin in the center of the forest, truly ancient and falling apart. I descended and landed outside the front entrance. Walking through the decaying front door, Dusty’s voice much louder than before.

Ka~~t!” He was calling for me, I had to find him.

“Dusty? Dusty! Dusty, where are you?” I yelled out in to the ruins.

Ka~~t!” Further in! I took off in a run, being careful not to trip on any of the rubble. Even after wearing them for hundreds of years, running in heals was still an annoyance. I really need to get some new clothes. I ran into a large open room with what looked like the remains of two stone chairs. Two familiar stone chairs. I looked around at my surroundings so much more clearly. Those crumbling walls, the moth eaten curtains, the broken stone floor. Then I looked up above the chairs and there they still hung, the banners of the Sisters. It finally clicked, this was the old castle. My old home; what happened to it? I need to call in a redecorator, because if Celestia abandoned this place, then I call dibs!

KAT!!” The exclamation in my head brought me back to reality and began to search around the room in a panic.

“Dusty! Where are you?”

Over here, mistress. It is go-good to see you ag-again.

His stuttering was weird, but I looked back towards the old thrones and then down. There he sat, fur still black as night, stars twinkling on his body, red eyes that took some getting used to. Right where he had once been, my Dusty stood again. Tears began to stain my eyes and cheeks as I rushed towards him. “DUSTY!!” I threw my arms around him…only for them to pass right through him. I stared in shock and fear. I waved my hand towards my old friend and it just passed right through.

Kat,” he said mournfully.

“What, what is this? Some cruel joke!” I felt like screaming, tearing this world apart, piece by bloody freakin’ piece.

No, Kat. This is no j-joke. I still do not have enough power to return.” His visage began to stutter, as if he were…

“You’re a hologram?” I asked, pulling back.

In a sense. I felt you return and knew that we would n-need to talk. You-you must w-warn the princesses, Kat. You all n-need to pre-need to prepare.

“Prepare? Prepare for what? And why would I need those traitorous bitches? They killed you! You told me not to let them get away with it!”

I was not r-referring to the pri-princesses. Another power grows, Kat. The same one th-that framed you for the disasters at those other cities. You are going to need the princesses’ h-help to win the coming battles.

“Why? Why is all this happening? What is happening? Dusty, tell me what is going on?”

I can-cannot stay m-much longer. Do not worry, Mistress, I will-I will return. Be careful Kat. Remember what I taught you: Innocent until proven guilty, gather the facts, and always, always…

“Always think with my head, not my powers,” I finished for him, tears falling much fiercer. “Please don’t go Dusty. I need you.”

It won’t be forever, Kat. Be warned, my dear Kat, we are not alone. There is another, another who will destroy.” His head whipped around, staring at nothing. “I need to go, they are coming. Stay safe Kat, master your strengths and face your weaknesses. I have faith in you. Farewell.

I watched with moist eyes as Dusty once again faded away from my life. I placed my head in my hands and sobbed, desperate for my little Dusty to come back to me. I didn’t get time to grieve for long, as I heard a strange whirring coming from the thrones. My head jerked up and what I saw was not something I ever thought I would see in Equestria. It was a gravity cloud, like from the game! But those always led to…crap!

They jump out of the cloud, six in all. Their black and red skin reminiscent of my own aura, but with grotesque, massive, pink eyes protruding from the top of their bodies. Four, tall, crab-like legs sprouted from them and they looked to me with death-like stares. Nevi! The enemies of the game, come to life. More specifically, Nevi minions, the weakest of those disgusting creatures. I shuddered and backed away from them, but that was a mistake. My movement caught their attention and they started scuttling towards me with fervor. I freaked, and lit up, floating higher than they could reach.

Then it hit me. These were the creatures that Dusty was referring to. Somehow the Nevi must have been what attacked Cloudsdale and the others. They were the reason that Celestia and Luna killed Dusty. I felt my rage grow at the realization, my anger for the sisters growing to include these monsters. I roared in anger at them and flew forward, left leg fully extended. I hit the first one dead in the eye, blowing it to pieces instantly. The rebound sent me back to the air and I looked at the remaining five.

“Who’s next?” They screamed at me and I returned in same, launching in to a full face fight.


When I awoke, it was late morning as the sun was high in the sky. It took longer than I thought to off the other five minions and coupled with my already exhausted self, I collapsed after kicking the last one into hell. I stretched after sitting up, stone not being the best bedding. I looked around and saw that the small battle actually did very little to the ruined castle. Honestly, it hurt to see the old place in this state.

That’s when I had an idea. Those six ponies probably don’t want to have me around right now, not for a while, anyway. So I was going to need a place to stay and what better place than the old homestead. I may not be much of a carpenter, or an architect, but I bet I could piece this place together with that Gravity Bind technique I have been working on. My stomach grumbled before I could do anything, though.

“Heh, looks like I am going to need food before shelter.” Then I stopped as I realized what I was doing. “And I’m talking to myself again. Oh well, Auric was right when he said sanity was overrated. Time for scavenging!” I lit up and took off for the forest, hoping for a berry filled breakfast.

It wasn’t quite as filling as I had hoped, but at least I had something in my stomach. I immediately got to work on fixing the castle, starting with the bedrooms. I took Celestia’s since it was always the biggest. That’s one small victory for Kat! Ha ha Celestia! Told you one day I would take this big ass bedroom from you, ya cake obsessed jerk.

With that little smile-inducing thought, I finished up my new living quarters. Gravity Bind is definitely a neat little trick. See, how it works is that I focus on two objects with Stasis Fields and I force them to bind to each other’s gravitational field. This is permanent until something comes along that can split their fields apart. And it works with stone, who knew? Now there aren’t even any unsightly grout and concrete lines. I admired my work for a moment, but then I began to think on what Dusty had told me: that I would need Celestia and Luna’s help to fight these nevi. Why Dusty? Why would you want me to work with the ones who took you away?

Wait, ‘innocent until proven guilty’? Ah, man! Dusty! Really, you even knew it was an accident, yet your last words are ‘don’t let them get away with this’? After knowing me for over two hundred and fifty years, you really didn’t think I would take that wrong way? I sighed aloud and shook my head. He has too much faith in me, that cat. Well, I may need their help, but that don’t mean I am going to forgive them. That would make Auric right and that certainly ain’t gonna happen soon. Thinks he so smart, I’ll show him! He fell for the oldest trick in the book and still thinks he knows everything. Well, he don’t know me, that’s for sure as hell true. The pleasures of the insane gone sane.

I suddenly felt a new pressure coming from nearby. I looked out in the direction of Ponyville and recognized the feel and sight from there. Celestia had come to town. Should I go and meet her? No, not yet. Not until I had all the facts. I needed to see how bad this nevi threat was and I had a several more days to go before my power would be back at its fullest. I can’t face Celestia until I knew I could take her down if need be. So I turned away from Ponyville and focused my attention to the world at large. Yesterday’s gravity disturbance was still there, far off from Equestria. Someplace I hadn’t been in a long time. I powered up and took flight once again. Time to visit the Dragon Lands.

Meeting Up with an Old Friend

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*****Third Person POV*****

“Now if you will all excuse me,” spoke Princess Celestia to Twilight and her five friends, “I must return to Canterlot.” Early in the day, Twilight Sparkle had caused a mass outbreak in Ponyville after using the ‘want-it-need-it’ spell on a doll. The townsfolk ended up in a large brawl over the doll and Princess Celestia had come to quell the fighting. After failing to keep Kat in Ponyville, Twilight had freaked out over not having anything to report to her teacher as she did weekly and now, thanks to Spike, she no longer needed to worry about such things. Princess Celestia had come down and instructed Twilight and her friends to only send friendship reports when they discovered something new about friendship.

Princess Celestia was just about to take off back to Canterlot, but Twilight felt that she had to tell her mentor about Kat. “Wait, Princess!” Twilight called out.

Celestia turned to her student with a questioning look. “Something else, my faithful student?”

Twilight looked to the floor of her balcony with shame. “I meant to tell you Princess, but the girls and I, well, we found Kat.”

The news caused the solar princess to blink. “What? When?”

“Yesterday. I am sorry Princess, I should have told you, but I thought if we could gain Kat’s trust, she would be more open to forgiving you and Princess Luna. Unfortunately, not even a pony who said he came from another world was able to relieve her anger. She took off last night, saying that she was hearing a voice inside her head. We haven’t seen her since.”

Princess Celestia let out a sigh, both of relief and exasperation. “Do not blame yourself, Twilight. Nor any of you,” Celestia added looking to the five mares behind her student. “Kat has always been one to hold a grudge and is not so easily dissuaded. Her anger is one thing you do not want, my little ponies, so I am glad that you are all safe.”

“Ah just wish she didn’t go and lie to that feller who came to visit her,” Applejack said angrily while shaking her head. “It just wasn’t right the way she fooled him like that.”

“Ah, yes, so she still does that from time to time,” Celestia said while averting her gaze to the stars. The six mares looked to their princess with confusion. “Allow me to explain. One of Kat’s greatest tacts is she is capable of fooling just about anypony or anyone. It is why, in many places, she is referred to as the ‘Manipulator’. Not just because she bends gravity to her will, but also because she was always good at manipulating her emotions on a mental scale. She has this uncanny ability to control her mood swings. Kat may be whiny and complaining one minute, then happy and content, the next. She was one of the best infiltrators we ever had. Being rarely seen helped along with that.”

“You mean she messes with ponies all the time?” Applejack asked in angry stupor.

“No, not all the time. Only when she feels she needs to. It does make one worry at times whether you are talking to the real Kat or one of her ‘personas’, though she is much more honest when she is being herself. I do hope that she changes her mind about attacking us, however. I truly do not wish to imprison a friend again.”

“I don’t think we have that option, Princess,” Rainbow Dash said, causing everypony to look at her.

“What do you mean, Miss Rainbow Dash?” Princess Celestia asked the pegasus.

“I mean that somepony here can’t be trusted to use their element on Kat!” The girls all gasped, but Rainbow wasn’t done. “Isn’t that right, Fluttershy!?”

Everypony’s eyes turned to the meek pegasus who was doing her best to hide behind a bookcase. She was wearing a look of both shame and fear. “Is this true, Fluttershy?” Twilight asked, slowly approaching her friend. “Will you not use your element on Kat?”

Fluttershy looked close to tears as she spoke. “I-I’m sorry girls, b-but I can’t. I-I can’t hurt Kat.”

“Why not, dear?” asked Rarity.

“Um, well, it’s because of…Oh, lookatthetimeIneedtofeedmyanimalsgoodnightgirlsbye!” And with that rapid sentence, Fluttershy took off at Rainbow Dash speeds towards her cottage. Then all eyes turned to Rainbow Dash.

“Well, Rainbow?” asked Applejack. “Care to tell us what the hay just happened?”

“Remember last night when I needed to speak with Fluttershy?”

“Yeah?” all five asked, while Celestia watched on with interest.

“Well, it kinda went a little like this….”

You all had just gone inside the tree when I confronted Fluttershy on something I had noticed when she was around Kat. “Okay, Fluttershy, spill! You have been comforting, protective, and helpful to that ‘Kat’ ever since you saw her. What gives? She’s a bad pony!”

What I didn’t expect from Flutters was for her to turn red faced angry. “Never. Say. That. Again! Kat is not a bad pony! If it weren’t for Kat, I wouldn’t even be alive!” As soon as Fluttershy spoke those words, her hooves went straight to her mouth, while I was speechless..

“Wh-what?! What are you talking about Fluttershy?”

She sighed. “Rainbow, did you know that my family is not originally from Cloudsdale?”

“They’re not? Then where do they come from?”

“My family is originally from Trotingham.”

“What does that have do with Kat?”

“Rainbow, my family was living in Trottingham at the time of the great Trottingham Massacre. Kat, or Gravity as my family knows her, is the one that saved my ancestor from being killed by the invaders. My family owes their lives to her.”

I just sat there, dumbstruck by her revelation. “E-even so, can’t you see that she’s dangerous?”

“So are Twilight and the Princesses, Rainbow. You don’t get it, she saved us and we honor her for it. Every year, my family makes a trip to Canterlot to pay our respects to the statue of Gravity that sits in the Canterlot Gardens. There is a shrine to her in my cottage. She is a hero to me and I will do everything I can to help her. I’m sorry, Rainbow, but this is one thing that I have to be adamant on.”

Before I could say another word, she got up and walked in to the library. I sat outside for another moment and then followed her in.

“And that’s what happened,” Rainbow said finishing her recount. Everypony were staring with wide eyes at the pegasus. “We can’t trust Fluttershy to help with this, so the Elements are useless.”

Everypony stayed silent, trying to process everything they had been told. It was just so mind bending that Fluttershy was the one to not help protect others. After another moment, Princess Celestia spoke. “This certainly a setback in our plans to protect ourselves from Kat. Luna and I must ready ourselves for Kat’s inevitable attack.”

Before Celestia could continue, a day guard flew in and stayed flying above the balcony. “Your highness! The Gravity Shifter has been spotted!”

“Where!?” Celestia asked, her eagerness a little too obvious.

“She was seen flying towards the Dragon Lands. Shall we pursue?”

Celestia ground her teeth. “No. That would be a mistake.”

“Why is that Princess?” Twilight asked, a little scared of her mentors apparent anger.

“Because it would be unwise to attack a goddess in a domain of her followers.”

*****(Kat’s P.O.V.)*****

It’s been nearly twelve hours of flying, but I can now see that Dragon Lands stretching out below me and, wow what a sight! The magnificent mountains of these lands always amazed me and in one thousand years it had only gotten so much more beautiful. The mountains looked a little bigger than last time and the valleys below had gotten so much greener. It looked like a land of peace, save for smoke billowing from a few of the cave riddled mountains. I landed near the entrance to one of the caves and peered inside. Oh. Wow.

I couldn’t believe what my eyes were telling me. Everywhere, they were freaking everywhere. Nevi as far as the eye could see. I could see minions, stars, and hulks. Minions are easy enough, stars are just difficult, but hulks are just problems on their own! The minions and stars have only just one eye which make them easier targets, hulks, however, have multiple eyes that need to be taken out and they are extremely strong. At least I don’t see any great whites or spearquines. Those are toughies, too. And it looks like the dragons were having troubles with them as well. In all it was about fifty nevi against a hundred dragons. Guess who’s winning, and no, it’s not the dragons.

I knew I had to do something, the dragons were good allies back in the day, well, after the war anyways. I saw a relatively young drake taking on a hulk and it wasn’t going good. The big ink-like behemoth had the teenage dragon under its weight and was about to deal the killing blow. The dragon just kept spewing flames, desperate to live. I powered up and launched myself right for the big guys side, taking out its largest eye on the shoulder with a swift kick. The hulk reared back, allowing the dragon to get free.

“Take out the red eyes!” I yelled to him and he took the hint. With a big inhale, the young drake bellowed out a large flame that singed away the nevi’s remaining eyes. The beast fell to its knees and shattered. “Nice one!”

“T-thank you, you know for saving me and all,” the dragon sputtered out. “What are you?” A roar came from behind me and I saw that the other nevi had noticed my arrival.

“Talk later, fight now. Tell your friends to attack the eyes. It’s their only weakness!” I surged back into the fight. I landed in the midst of a minions with a few stars hovering above me. I smiled wickedly. “Alright you bloody demons, you want a fight? Then let’s get started!” I started to swirl myself around in a tight circle, powering up my most deadly move, the micro-black hole. It was unlocking this power that led the extinction of the Changeling race. My spin got tighter and tighter, until black waves started to surround me and began striking the nevi, several being sucked into the spiral disappeared without a trace. The stars above just started shooting at me from their lower bellies, trying to save their brethren. With most of the minions sucked away and the power starting to wane on my attack, I started to maneuver up towards the floating nevi. Before my black hole dissipated, I was able to take a couple stars with it. With twenty remaining, I took flight and started using my gravity kick to decimate their eyes. One after the other fell, but a few got in some lucky shots and I was starting to tire.

With another star destroyed, I looked around me to see the dragons were starting to destroy the nevi in force. Guess that kid got the others going. Good, because I can’t keep this up much longer. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the focus of the strike force: a gravity storm. Unlike the previous one back at the castle, this one was still roaring and producing nevi. I knew I had to stop it so I flew towards it and landed nearby.

“Okay, so how do you destroy a gravity storm?” I thought out loud. “Screw it, I’m just gonna try and condense it into nothing.” I reached out an aura covered hand and pretty much imagined I was Darth Vader choking the life out of some unfortunate soul (yeah, I’m a nerd, get over it), only it was a gravity storm and not a living being. I poured all I had left into the grasp and I saw that the storm started to shrink, getting smaller and smaller as my power increased against it. When it was about the size of my hand, I clenched my hand into a fist to destroy the nevi factory. With a massive burst, the storm imploded, sending shock waves out that sent me flying a good distance before stopping myself with a stasis field. I set myself down on the rock of the mountain and watched as the dragons picked off the few remaining nevi.

It was roughly ten minutes later, I was approached by several dragons. I was still pretty wiped and just wanted to relax. Twelve hours of flying and intense fighting can really tire a girl out. “Can I help you gentledrakes?” I asked, trying not sound as tired as I really was.

“You’re the one who helped us. Why?” asked a brown scaled, pudgy dragon.

“No one attacks the dragons. That’s my job,” I joked, but they started to become suspicious. Before any of them could say anything, however, a larger dragon approached us, his deep blue scales glowing in the lava light. He looked familiar, but I couldn’t place it.

“Enough!” he bellowed. “This one is a friend to our kind.” That voice…No. Way!

“PACO!!” I yelled jumping up from my spot and rushed the big dragon in a tight hug.

“How many times have I told you: my name is Pacolytese?” the big dragon grumbled out.

“That’s what I said: Paco!” I retorted still hugging his barrel. He chuckled a little and returned the hug.

“Ah, Kat, I have missed you my dear friend. Much has changed since you last visited our domain. Come, come. I must show you around.” Paco turned back to his younger affiliates. “Go and spread the word that Gravity has returned to our home!” The dragon’s faces paled and they gasped. With amazing speed, all of them took off, flying in all directions. I turned to face my old friend with a questioning look.

“What was that about?”

“Allow me to explain as we walk.” He gestured forward, I shrug and begin to walk with him falling in step beside me. “Do you know how long you have been gone, Kat?”

“From what I’ve been told, a little over a thousand years.”

He nods. “Yes, almost a thousand and twenty-five years have passed since your banishment. And much has changed in our way of seeing you, my friend.”

“How so?”

Paco chuckles a little and then drops a bomb on me. “You are revered as a goddess amongst the dragons. Gravity the goddess of battle! Your deeds all those years ago started a fresh belief that you were sent from beyond the heavens to bless our kind with glorious battle! Strange how young minds think, no?”

I have no word for what I was feeling about this. Me? A-a goddess? “That is… so freaking AWESOME!! Am I worshipped? There’s no sacrifices to me is there?”

“No, no, nothing that serious. Just a prayer to you when we prepare for a battle. Whether it be a war or personal skirmish, Gravity is who receives our prayers.” We make a turn around a corner and end up in what some dragons would call ‘plush’. I prefer to think of it as a penthouse made of rock. “Ah, here we are. Welcome to my abode.”

“Homey,” I said as he gestured me towards a stone chair. I sat down on it, but wasn’t able to get comfortable. I hate resting stone, always gives me cramps. “So, Paco, what’s been new with you? Still emperor?”

“Hmm, hmm, no I haven’t been emperor in over four hundred years,” he chuckled out. “Let the new generation take care of all the diplomatic and political crap I put up with for centuries. I get to do as I please nowadays as an elder amongst my people. You know though, to this day I am still picking rocks out of my scales thanks to you.”

I smiled a little. “Well then, you shouldn’t have been attacking ponies.”

“Doesn’t mean you had to throw me down a mountain!”

“And then back up, and then down again, and then back up again…”

“Yes, yes, I remember quite well. One does not forget being thrown up and down a mountain thirty times quite so easily.” I giggled as he gave me a deadpan stare.Then he chuckled a little himself. “Oh, it’s been so long since I have heard that wonderful laugh of yours. It’s, been...quiet without you around every now and then, Kat.” We both sighed and looked at the floor. “So, tell me, what all has happened since you awoke?”

From there, I went into full explanation on what had transpired since I was imprisoned. From me attacking Celestia and fleeing, to meeting the new Elements of Harmony, meeting Auric Fulcrum, but Paco interrupted me before I got to tell him the big news.

“So you finally met another human after all this time? That sounds like it would have been interesting.”

“I’m still not quite sure that he was indeed human, as he was a pony, but meeting him did give me some information about some things to be watchful for. Though I had to use the old mind bender to lead him on.”

“Ah, ho ho, the ‘manipulator’ strikes again, eh? Yes I remember you using that old trick to get sympathy from one of my maids that led you right to me.” Paco put on a light glare as he focused on me. I was remembering it quite well.

“I still can’t believe that worked.” I smiled and then changed my face to one of a massive pout, fit with puppy dog eyes that bordered on tears. “‘Please, miss. I have no home and no family. May I please come out of the rain?’” I switched back to my normal face with a bright smile. “Worked like a charm back on Earth, and just as well here. I was made for this stuff. I even figured out how to actually change my thoughts while I was imprisoned. Now I can even convince myself of the stuff I start spewing out.”

“How do you go back to you being you, then?” Paco always was the curious dragon.

“Simple, a time limit. It wears off after about thirty minutes, so I have to be careful with it. I didn’t want to use it on Auric because he was being so nice, but I couldn’t let him convince me to give up revenge on the sisters. He knew too much for his own good, that’s what I think.”

“So you are after revenge.” He let out a sigh. “How is it that one so small can hold so much anger?”

“Hey! I’m not small! I’m five foot, ten inches thank you very much!” I pouted and crossed my arms. “Big meanie.”

He let out a hearty chuckle and my pout crumbled. “I know very much how you act Kat, your manipulators don’t work on me anymore. Now, what are you going to do about this revenge of yours? Do you truly intend to kill the Equestrian Princesses?”

I let out a long sigh. “Originally, yes, I was going to kill them. Now, well after talking with Auric and another, I don’t think killing them would be right. There are too many lives at stake if I were to kill them. No, I have a better plan. I’m just going to beat them to within an inch of their immortal lives. That should be enough to get my payback for sealing me away in stone.”

“What about killing your cat, Dusty?”

“About that…” I went on to explain all that had happened at the old castle and he was surprised to say the least that Dusty was actually trying to restore himself all this time. “These nevi worry me, though,” I said afterwards. “From what Dusty said, it was the nevi that struck at those cities where I was blamed. If that’s so, then how come they haven’t appeared until now? I’m missing facts here, Paco, and it’s very irking.”

Paco smiled at me. “Well then, I think I have something that will cheer you right up! Follow me.” He got up and I moved to follow. We walked down the passageways in silence, though we were stopped a few times by my new worshipers. After a while, we reached a passage with no other dragons in sight. A long time ago, I would have been worried that Paco was leading me to my death, but after the war, we had become fast friends. Paco was a very understanding drake, and we were able to tolerate each others quirks. He’s a history buff and I’m a crazy psychopath; it works. “By the way Kat,” he said after a painfully silent experience. “Where did you come up with that adoption story you told that Auric pony? That isn’t one of your usuals.”

I shrugged. “Don’t know. I just had this strange dream the night before I was sealed that I had found an adoption form in Celestia’s room. Me and my crazy mind, right?”

“Are you certain?” Paco didn’t look so sure. “There were rumors circulating among the ruling leaders that Celestia was thinking of adopting you.”

I waved him off. “Nah, Celestia and I were close, but not that close. It was a dream, nothing more. Where are we going anyways?”

We stopped at a door, normal for a dragon, but it was quite large from my perspective. Paco opened the door and entered with me trailing. It was small armory room as their were swords, spears, and… is that what I think it is? My eyes widened as I noticed the centerpiece of the room. Held up high on a pedestal was a large shield, it’s silver metal gleaming in the fire light of the room. I recognized it right away.

“My shield!” I rushed forward and grabbed it, lifting it to my face and seeing my reflection on the metal. Long ago, I had the dragons comission me a weapon befitting me. Swords were cool, but they weren’t my style. Spears just didn’t work with me. I tried archery once, let’s not go any further than that, yeesh! A shield is what had been decided and I had them craft one after one of my favorite heroes: Captain America. The shield was large and circular in shape with amazing defense. It took all sorts of blows and I even used it as a sled from time to time. It worked perfect with my powers.

“It took a few hundred years to finally rework it back together after it was smashed in the Griffin Wars. The metal has been re-enforced with the most powerful metals we have found, while also decreasing its weight substantially. It is much more durable as well as being protected from most magic spells. There is also a little present inside. Take a look”

I looked at where my arm would sleeve the shield and noticed a small bar latched on to the gauntlet. I removed the bar and lifted to my eyes as it suddenly sprung out on both sides into a bow staff. “Awesome! Pony smiths got nothing on you guys. You did amazing work in repairing my old weapon and the staff was a nice bonus.” I reattached the staff, it shrinking back down immidiately and strung the shield across my back. Suddenly, I felt the weapon shrink, so I looked back and saw that the shield was now roughly the size of a back pack. “Convenient. Thanks Paco. I can always trust you.”

“Any time my old friend. I hope you take it easy on the sisters, they truly did not mean to hurt you after all.”

“Don’t worry Paco. With Dusty still alive it wouldn’t be right to kill them for wrongdoing. But betraying me and sealing me in stone must be repaid. Near death experiences never hurt no one anyways.” He looked at me incredulously and I rolled my eyes. “You know what I mean.”

Paco chuckled. “Yes, unfortunately I do. Are you leaving so soon?”

“Yeah, I need to keep repairing the castle. I need a roof over my head that ain’t leaking. I’ll be sure to visit, though. And keep an eye out for more nevi for me, will ya?” I covered myself in aura and began to float.

“If I see anymore of those creatures, I shall notify you immediately. Stay well, Kat, and be safe.”

“Thanks for everything Paco! See you around!” I flew off the way we came, me hearing something along the lines of ‘and my name is Pacolytese!’ or something along those lines. I smiled as I continued flying by the dragons, some bowing or cheering as I flew by. I waved to them and sped off into the distance, heading for my new home.

Shifting Attitudes

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Have you ever just had one of those days? Well, I’m having one right now, and believe me, it is just freakin’ messed up! Let’s start where my day began, shall we? Okay, so after returning to my castle (yes ‘mine’; if Celestia wants it she has to come and take it!), I retired to my new bedroom, collapsing on the bed asleep almost immediately. After what felt like ten seconds of amazing sleep, I start getting attacked. No, not by nevi (oh, how I would have loved for it to have been nevi). No, just a bunch of random junk falling out of a portal above my bed! So much crap fell on my head, felt like I was in a freakin’ hail storm with baseballs! Okay, so it wasn’t all that much, but it freakin’ hurt!

Now fully awake, I decided to go through my new treasures. Picking one up, I got a similar sensation that I had not too long ago. Then it clicked, these were the summoning items of the other, oh what was it that that alchemist called them? Ah, Displaced, that’s right! So many others. Since I had no place for them, I decided to make a trophy shelf near my bed for all of them. There was the coin Auric gave me, a bronze coin with some angel on the front and the back reading the ‘king of angels’ (which is weird), a black token, a book, a chain (why do I feel I should hide that one in a closet?), a soapstone, and a weird ice cube. Strange collection that’s for sure.

And then there was this tube. I was truly curious as it didn’t give off an aura like the others. I opened it up to find a folder inside and a note written by… oh joy, it was Mr. Fulcrum himself. Apparently it’s an instruction book for either sending me home or to keep me here for all eternity. While going home is completely off the table, making sure nothing else invades this planet could be handy later on. So, I did what most eighteen year olds do with important documents, shove it in a drawer and hope you remember where you put it when ya need it. Okay, so technically I’m not eighteen anymore, but I’m crazy; sue me!

Shaking off my headache from having objects dropped on me in the middle of the night, I figured that I need to come up with some sort of plan for what to do now. I kinda wanted to go see where some of those items came from, just to satisfy my curiosity, but there was a couple other pressing matters that needed to be attended to. One was that there was still a gravitational disturbance above my bed that could still have potential summons coming my way. I need to find a way to move it or contain it so it stops waking me up. And the second and most important thing on that list was that I needed some new clothes! Those blasted nevi went put tears and holes in my outfit! I haven’t had tears this bad since I got into a scuffle with a griffin butcher that had been drafted for the war. Yeesh, I know now what it feels like to be a cow on the slaughter line! That dude was bucking crazy!

What? Yeah, I said ‘bucking’, it’s a pony term, so what? You wanna fight about it? Nah, just joking, but I did pick up on some of the vernacular after living with them for nearly two hundred and fifty years. Certain things just stick, like curse words. They’re fun! Wait, what was I talking about? Oh, right, new clothes. I really hope that pony tailors have gotten better over the years. The only thing they could do way back when was repair this stupid outfit time after time. They even got lazy doing that and just used a duplication spell on it so they wouldn’t have to keep repairing the same one! Only one problem, though. I have no idea how to take care of any of that.

Hmm, maybe that ‘Ponyville’ place could be of some help? I wasn’t really sure because of the way I had left. I did act kinda bitchy towards those ponies, even though they were just trying to be nice. Maybe if I go back and apologize, they’ll help me out? That might work, though it would probably better to not do it with them in a group. Going one by one outta work out better in my favor, right? I sure as hell hoped so.

Well, after getting in a few more hours of sleep, being woken up by the sun of all things (damn that floating fireball!), I decided to get crackin’ on a few things. Mainly on better modes of transportation. I have always flown everywhere, and I still enjoy it, really, it’s just that it takes forever! I need to master this new way I came up with. I call it the ‘Worm Hole’. Means exactly how it sounds. I will attempt to bend gravity to the point where I can literally walk to where I need to be. The problem is that it is extremely difficult and only theoretical at this point. Whelp, no time like the present. I put both my hands flat out in front of me and concentrated. I focused on the location that I wanted to go and tried to tear my way through to it using gravity manipulation. I reached out grabbed…something and began to pull and stretch. Next thing I know, I am flat on face on a wood floor. I got up, rubbing my bruised nose, and looked around to find myself in some place familiar. It was that library I was in the other night. Twilight’s house.

I did a quick little celebratory dance where I stood. The library was exactly where I had wanted to go. The worm hole worked! Oh man was I happy! Now I just needed to work on that landing and we’d be good to go. Work, work, work, it’s all I do. Le sigh. Now to find the owner of this fair establishment. Now you may be wondering why I came to the library. Well, I knew immediately that Twilight was a scholar of some kind, being Celestia’s student was a dead giveaway, and most scholars focused mainly on magical theories and applications. So who else would I come to figure out how to contain a portal to other universe? Yes, I know the princesses could probably help with, but we’ve been over why I can’t do that, now haven’t we?

Back to reality (man do I need to stop talking to myself; this can’t be healthy), I started to rummage through some of the books. Mainly just skimming over the titles, looking for something interesting until the owner came down from her bedroom. The sun was only just beginning to rise above the horizon, so she had to still be asleep. I found one book that interested me called Daring Do. Based on the description, she seemed like a cross between Indiana Jones and Tomb Raider. Sounded interesting enough, so I made myself comfy in the back on the library and began to read.

*****Twilight’s POV*****

Today was going to be a good day, I could feel it. After a blissful sleep, I was awakened this morning by my teacher’s beautiful sun, its rays shining through the blinds on my window. I arose and looked around my room, noticing a certain little dragon still sound asleep in his basket. I giggled a little as I watched him for a moment; he’s cute when he’s sleeping. After taking a quick shower, making sure Spike had enough hot water, I began to head down stairs for a nice breakfast.

It was usually Spike’s job for breakfast, but it’s good to make one’s own food every now and again. It also gave me some time for my thoughts. They focused mainly on Kat Shifter. I can understand her anger, I truly can. If anypony were to take Spike from me forever, I might be tempted to following in her footsteps, but there has to be another way. I let out a sigh, wanting very much to help the poor girl, even when she could be quite cruel when she wanted to be. After Celestia told us that Kat was a goddess to the dragons, I had decided to conduct some more research on the mysterious ‘Gravity’. Unfortunately, all I could dig up was mere rumors, legends, and speculations about her. Only Kat herself would be able to approve or disprove any of them, but I highly doubt she would ever come back here.

Suddenly, I heard a strange sound coming from deep within my library. It was the sound of a gasp. That meant only one thing: somepony was in the library! Maybe it’s a burglar! Or maybe a…uh….uh, *gulp* I can’t even say the word. Crime is extremely low in Equestria, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen. Cautiously and with my horn lit, I walked the aisles of my home/work, looking for who had broken in. I heard another sound, but I couldn’t make this one out. It came from just around the corner, so I edged myself closer and closer to the turn. I just peeked my head out around the corner and nearly had my jaw fall on the floor.

Stretched out on the floor of my library was none other than the elusive human herself. In front of her lay a book, but I couldn’t make out which one it was. That is, until she started talking aloud.

“Come on Daring, you can do it!” Kat said in a loud whisper, her eyes glued to the book. “Yes! Take that you stupide overgrown cat! You got nothing on this girl, Ahuizotl!”

I, I just couldn’t believe what I was seeing. The great being who was threatening her mentor and the princesses of her country, was laying right in front her, engrossed in a Daring Do. That happy smile on her face as she read, the gasps she was making as Daring kept getting into trouble. If I didn’t know any better, I would say I was watching a young filly. It was just so strange seeing Kat like this that it actually made me giggle, quite loudly in fact. Kat looked up from her book to see me giggling at her and I stopped as soon as I noticed her staring. We stared at each other for what felt like hours, neither of us knowing what to say. That was until Kat smiled sheepishly and waved at me.

“Hi again, Miss Sparkle.”

*****Kat’s POV*****

“’Hi again, Miss Sparkle’? That was really the best I could come up with?! Stupid, stupid, stupid!” Well, I may have just ruined my chances here. I wasn’t expecting that book to be so thrilling. Finally ponies made books interesting! Took ‘em long enough, but I digress. Need to focus on the scholarly unicorn in front of me, the one whose house I broke into.

“Sorry for, you know, coming in without notice,” I said shyly. It was more out of being embarrassed about being caught so easily then actually being shy, though. Her earlier giggling also didn’t help keep the red blush from my face, either.

“N-no it’s okay,” Twilight responded the same way. Though, I suspect it was more out of fear than anything else. After another few moments of awkward silence, she spoke again. “So, um, why are you here? I you don’t mind me asking?”

That caught me off guard. I was actually expecting her to start panicking or something. Wait, what was I here for again? . . . Oh! I remember now! Stupid book, made me all scatterbrained! I’m kidding, Daring, I love you! Okay, enough fangirling, need to focus. “Oh, um, I was wondering if maybe you could help me out, Miss Sparkle. I could really use some help.”

“What kind of help?” Twilight asked suspiciously.

“Well, one, I need help in moving a magic portal and I was hoping you would know a little bit about how to do that. And the more important number two being that I could really use a tailor.”

Twilight looked at me aghast. Why? No idea. “How are clothes more important than magical research!?” she screeched at me. So that’s why. “What kind of portal is it? Where does it lead? How does it work? Tell. Me. Everything!”

Okay, I think I just walked on to the set of a mad scientist’s TV show. “Um, I thought that maybe you could just point me to a book on the subject or—“

“No! This my field of expertise!” Twilight pulls out a notebook and quill with her magic and sits down in front of me. “Now tell me about this ‘portal’.”

There are no words with how strange this is for me. Aw, to heck with it. “Okay, um, well it’s a portal that is connected to the void between the worlds. Last night it dropped a bunch of crap on me, as it somehow positioned itself above my bed.”

“Now when you say it’s connected to other worlds, you mean…”

“Yeah, others like me. Auric called us Displaced, which kinda fits.”

“Now were you wanting to close it?”

“No, I want to move it so that it’s not over my bed. I need some way to either move it or contain it. Any suggestions?”

“Well, I have a few books that speaks about the theories of the multiverse and other worlds, but I would need to see the portal before giving a proper diagnosis.”

I raised my eyebrows in surprise. “Wow, you seem really on top of this.”

She smiled at my praise. “My special talent is magic, after all. I need to be versed in all manner of magical theories and practices.”

“Cool!” “Maybe she could help me master a few of my new tricks? As long as I don’t buck this up, that is.

I think Twilight suddenly realized who she was talking to as she began to shake. “Um, can I get y-you anything, Miss Shifter?”

“Ugh, Miss Sparkle?”


“There is no reason for you to fear me. I have defended ponies since I came to Equestria, and I am not going to stop just because of two of your species. Look, I’m really sorry for how I acted the other day. It wasn’t very becoming of me and it was highly rude. That’s not how you treat friends.”

“Y-you think of us as friends?” she asked with bewilderment.

I smiled. “Well, I’d like to. If you’ll have me.”

“B-but you want to kill my teacher! How could we--.” I interrupted her by putting up my hand.

“Twilight, I have rescinded that decision. I am no longer going to kill the Princesses. It would be disastrous for this country if I did and I can’t put others at risk because of my revenge.” She didn’t have to know that wasn’t entirely true, so let’s keep that a secret for now.

“R-really!” she beamed happily at me. “Oh this is so great, Kat! I can’t wait to tell the Princesses that you—“

“Actually, Twilight, I’m not quite ready to meet them again. Not yet, okay?”

Twilight deflated a little, but still gave me a small smile. “Okay Kat. But will you at least tell the others?”

“I don’t think that’s a bad idea,” I answered with a small smile of my own. “But, back to the more pressing matter, I really need new clothes,” I said while displaying my ripped and torn outfit.

“How is that the more pressing matter?” Twilight asked confused. Ah right, ponies don’t understand the human need for clothing. They only need it for being fancy or for winter wear.

“Well, um, humans need clothing, unlike ponies. My kind are a little more ‘exposed’ to the elements as it were. Clothing rectifies this.”


“Intimately exposed,” I corrected myself. Twilight suddenly blushed at what I was implying.

“Oh, oh wow. That’s, um, well that’s something alright.” I think I may have broken her through embarrassment. Is that possible? “My friend Rarity is a dress maker. The best in Ponyville, she should be able to help you, I think.” Suddenly both our stomachs grumbled, causing us to both blush. “After breakfast that is.”

“Sounds like a plan!” I jumped up and followed Twilight to the kitchen, where a certain purple dragon was already cooking.

“There you are Twilight! I thought you would already…what is she doing here?” Spike asked angrily while pointing a spoon at me.

“Spike, enough. Kat is here to apologize and I have already forgiven her. Isn’t that right?”

“Mm hmm,” I nod. Sniffing the air, I swear I almost started drooling. “Mmm, what is that delicious smell?”

“Pancakes, of course,” Spike said, still with his arms crossed. Got give him an ‘A’ for effort, at least. I couldn’t have cared about his attitude, though, once he mentioned the greatest breakfast imaginable.

“Pancakes? You guys have pancakes!?” I think I did drool because now they were extremely weary of me.

“Yes?” Twilight asked hesitantly. “Is that a bad thing?”

“Not in the least. I haven’t had pancakes since before I came to Equestria! Oh, please let me have some, Mr. Spike. I didn’t mean what I said, I swears it!” I was on my knees begging this hatchling for food. Was this really necessary? For pancakes, I would destroy this very planet. That’s how serious this is!

“You really love pancakes don’t you?” Twilight giggled to me as I stood back up.

“You have no idea,” I smiled in return. After an amazingly delicious breakfast, Twilight thought it was time to sneak me over to Rarity’s. Spike wanted to come to, and for some reason there were hearts in his eyes. I tried gravity sense and had to shut it down almost immediately. There is such a things as too much love, dude. And I thought the alchemist had it bad, yeesh! I didn’t want to sneak, but my worm hole only works if I know the place I’m going to or at least a general location and since I hadn’t been to this ‘Carousel Boutique’, I had to be stealthy.

Once we were out the door, I powered up and floated, on my stomach, close to the ground. I now know what it is like to be a fish. I bobbed and weaved around, though there were very few ponies out, being this early in the morning. Took about ten minutes, and a few falls into some alleys, but we finally made it to the boutique. Even looks like it belongs at a carnival! The place was tall, had prancing ponies up top and was all around girly. I think I’m gonna be sick, girly is not my style. I need power, poise, and style. This ain’t it.

I still found myself dragged into the shop anyways, a bell going off as soon as we were through the door. Inside was a bunch of pony mannequins that were wearing dresses of intricate design. I may not be a dress kind of girl, but even I know when to appreciate talent. Rarity certainly had plenty of that.

“Welcome to Carousel Boutique!” came a posh voice from up the stairs. The purple maned unicorn comes trotting down the stairs, looking as regal as ever. “Where everything is chic, unique, and…oh Twilight and Spike! Good to see you come by and with…Kat?! Whatever are you doing here?!”

“Calm down, Rarity,” Twilight urged. “Kat came back to apologize and she has a favor to ask of you.”

“Really?” Rarity asks.

“Yeah,” I reply with a sheepish smile. “I am really sorry for how I acted the other night and I was hoping you could do a big thing for me.”

“And what would that be darling?”

I got down on one knee and bowed my head to her. “Madam Rarity, I humbly request the creation of new garments for mine self to wear.” Everyone seemed taken aback by my little speech. I smirked a little at that, but kept it hidden; Luna taught me well.

“You want me to make you a new outfit?” Rarity asked, a small glimmer of light in her eyes. She was intrigued by the prospect, I just know it.

“Why yes, Madam Rarity. As you can plainly see my current wear has been dreadfully ruined and I am in the need of a new attire. If you are wondering why I don't just simply remove them, well it’s because humans require themselves to be clothed constantly. It’s a cultural thing.” That’s not technically a lie. Rarity’s eyes grew wide and they shined like freshly polished diamonds.

“Oh my goodness!” She leapt towards me, causing me to stand upright again as she began to circle around me like a bird of prey. She narrowed her eyes at certain points, muttering to herself, and examined and scrutinized every inch of my being. Rarity once again found herself right in front of me, with a hoof on her chin in thought. Then she gasped loudly and yelled, “IDEEEAAA!!!”

I felt myself pulled forward by her magic and placed onto a circular platform in the middle of the store. Rarity magicked up a long measuring tape and began to wrap it everywhere around my body. “Now tell me, darling,” Rarity said making conversation, “what is your personal style?”

“Well, I’m what some might call a tomboy. Not really one for being prim and proper like yourself. I need to look awesome, powerful, and cool. Something that just screams to the world around me that I can kick some butt!” I was smiling proudly, but Rarity just seemed a little disappointed.

“I see. That is something I could do, but you would look so much lovelier in a nice, white sundress. Are you certain about what you want?” She was almost pleading with me.

“Yes, I’m certain. But, if I am pleased with it, I may just come back sometime for that sundress.” Rarity perked right up and clapped her hooves.

“Oh yes! Yes! Yes! I have such great ideas for you Kat, such great ideas!” She started pulling down fabrics and color swatches, levitating them around me with finesse. I have to admit, her levitation skills are to be admired. Maybe I should come to her when I choose to focus more on training my stasis field. Who knows how much more I could be able to do with it after learning from this master?

It was about another hour later before Rarity had finished making me a new outfit and it couldn’t have been better. I was staring in awe at what the fashion mare had created. It was just so awesome! I put it on almost as soon as she said I could. When I walked back out of the changing room, I once again felt like me. That costume was cute, but I need to show the power inside me and this definitely did the trick. I had on a plain white t-shirt and a pair of grey jeans, with the best part being the faux leather jacket. The jacket was the same black color as the old costume with gold bands going down either side of the zipper on the front and back as well as around the cuffs. Just as awesome was the matching boots she made for me which I knew were gonna make my kicks even more powerful, plus I no longer had to worry about heels. I looked just plain awesome!

“Rarity! This has to be the greatest outfit I have ever seen, let alone worn! I feel like such a powerhouse! Oh yeah, those nevi are gonna fear me now!” I admired myself in the mirror making all kinds of poses, while the others looked at me weird.

“Nevi? What are those?” asked Twilight.

“These strange creatures that have been popping up in certain places. They appear from gravity storms and attack anything and everything. Nasty little buggers.” Then I felt it, another disturbance far away. Another gravity storm. “Well, I hate to just run out on you girls, but I just felt another storm appear. I’ll be back as soon as I can!” I covered myself in my aura and began to tear another worm hole.

“What are you doing!?” Twilight cried in a panic.

“Teleporting, Shifter style!” I called back. Once again, I fell through without even noticing, only this time I was above a city that looked extremely familiar. I was in Manehattan, and it was under attack by nevi! I smiled, knowing this would be the perfect start to my plan. “Well Manehattan, prepare to meet the Gravity Queen!” I flew forward into the city, prepared to do some damage.

A Lateral Shift

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I looked out at the city beneath me, amazed at how much the growing city had changed in a thousand years. Back then, it was a little more like Ponyville is today, but now it looked closer to the Manhattan of Earth in the twentieth century. Or it would if there weren’t inky black creatures with bulbous red eyes destroying everything. From this high above, I spotted several Royal Guards being cornered by Rabbiphants, the hoppy nevi that looked like giant rabbits save for the elephant like trunk. Three in all and all ready to rip into the pony guards. While I am not a fan of the guard at the moment, no one dies on my watch. Covered in my reddish-black aura, I charged from my high altitude position, aiming right for the back of the nearest Rabbiphant, where the eye was.

In moments, I was plowing right through the giant red eye, shattering the monster in an instant. The nevi immediately focused on me and attacked with their trunks. They were simple enough to dodge and, a minute later, the three nevi were gone. I turned towards the guards, no emotion present on my face. “Where is the gravity storm?” I asked with a tone of authority. They only looked at me in confusion. “The thing that is spawning all these creatures?” I pressed. A look of realization came over them.

“Oh! It’s in the basement of the building down the block. Are you here to help?” one asked, his badges and medal signaling a sergeant status.

“Only for my own interests, Sergeant,” I replied. “What’s the status of the civvies?”

He blinked. “All civilians in the area have been evacuated to Central Park. Who are you?”

“Call me the Gravity Queen. Clear out your guards, Sergeant, or they will be in my way.” I glared down on him, causing the veteran pony to shake in fear. I inwardly smirk as my plan falls into action. What is my plan? Well, how do you convince a peace promising princess to fight a near god-level girl like me? Simple, you become a villain and let the populace make the decision for her. I figure that if I can become a villain in their eyes, Celestia and Luna will take me seriously in a fight. I may want to beat them into a pulp, but I want a good fight, too.

I look out at the battlefield in front of me, grimacing at the nevi before me. Several different types were present. I saw Snails, giant four-legged monsters with massive snail shells that cover a second eye, Spearquines, a two-legged nevi with the front end being a massive spear while the eye was on its hind end, and Shellicles, tall tentacle like nevi with three eyes that were hidden behind a massive spiral shell. These ones were moderate in difficulty each, but with the number of them around, I needed to get to the gravity storm to shut them down. “Sergeant, the weakness of these beasts is those red eyes. Break them and they just dissipate. Don’t expect my help in the future; I have my own plans for Equestria.” Not even waiting for a response, I took off.

It took nearly thirty minutes for me to reach the storm. Along the way, I destroyed as many nevi as I could. The Spearquines were the easiest to take out, not being hidden behind shells. Since the shells were going to be a problem, I smashed as many that I saw and just left them for the guard ponies to finish off. Now standing outside the building that the storm was in, I ran through the front door to a sight I wasn’t expecting: a rare nevi. Rare nevi look different from their counterpart as they are black and pulsing green instead of red. Also, they are much more difficult for them to be destroyed. Thankfully, it was a rare Minion instead of something hard like a rare Hulk. Now that would be scary.

Unfortunately, the nevi saw me before I had time to process what I was looking at. With a quick forward motion, the Minion shot its tentacle at me, sending me flying into a wall. Groaning in pain, I pulled out of the wall, looked up, and dodged to the side as a nevi blast blew apart the wall I was just in. I didn’t have time to waste on this guy, but he had plenty for me. Another tentacle wrapped around me and began slamming my body into the ceiling, the floor and the adjoining walls. After about five different slams, I was thrown away like trash. As I held my head in pain, I remembered why I depended so much on my flying kicks: because I have no idea how to fight. Honest! Sure I know a few martial arts techniques, but not really for any kind of conflict. Even my shield was just so I never go punched in the face.

Gathering myself up, I powered up slightly and launched forward with one of my special moves: The Spiraling Claw. I shot forward at incredible speed and spun around creating a whirlwind of tearing power that slammed into the rare nevi. It was a resistant little bugger, holding out for a little while before succumbing to my pressing power. It blasted apart just as I ran out of spiral. I should really learn how to fight before I’m ready to fight the princesses.

As I stood, I looked around to find myself surrounded by glowing purple crystals. I blinked. These were the currency of the game and no doubt were impossibly rare here in Equestria. I smiled, knowing that these could be useful later on. I lit up a hand and drew in the multitude of crystals with a nano-black hole, depositing them into a pocket dimension that I created by bending gravity. These could make me a very rich girl. Without anything else to trouble me, I proceeded into the basement of the building. I found the gravity storm in the very center of the unfinished cement room. I smirked, reaching out my hand to destroy the storm with my gravity grip (patent pending). I squeezed the storm and it was destroyed a few seconds later.

Thinking back, I should have realized that was a bad idea. Especially since the entire building support surrounded the storm. The storm burst just like the one back at the dragon home, sending out a massive shockwave that shattered the supports entirely. It also blasted me away into the wall, again. As I shook off the daze, I was distracted by the sound of crumbling rock. I looked up to see the ceiling above me cracking and crumbling. “Oh, not good.” The next second, the building collapsed, sending thousands of pounds of rock and concrete on my head. Just as it began, I created a wormhole below me and fell through into the open air above the city. I looked down to see the rest of the building fall to pieces below me. Good thing, too, considering that it was a pretty extensive skyscraper I was in.

As the dust settle, the citizens and guards of Manehattan looked upon me, floating above the destruction with a dark smile on my face. “Ponies of Equestria!” I shouted out to them. “I am the Gravity Queen, destroyer of the nevi!” Before I finished, though, cheers went up from the ponies. Freaking cheering! I was supposed to strike fear into them with my easy destruction, not get applauded for it. Unless… Damn it Celestia! Now it makes sense why the guards didn’t know who I was; that damned princess hasn’t told the ponies that I have been released! How can I be a villain if nopony knows who I am!?

“We love you Gravity Queen!” I heard some of the ponies shouting at me. Grimacing, both in disappointment and in pain, I worm holed out there and landed on my butt back at Rarity’s boutique.

“Ugh, that could have gone better,” I commented to myself. Though, I wasn’t alone in the room.

“Kat! You’re back!” I looked over and saw Twilight and Rarity looking back at me with smiles, though there was an underlying feeling of concern that I could see. “Are you alright?” asked Twilight.

“I’ve been better. Note to self: Do not destroy a gravity storm in a basement of a skyscraper. Leads to a collapsing building and a thousand pounds of debris landing on me.”

The girls gasped and Twilight started looking over me. “You had a building collapse on you?! Are you hurt? Are you injured?”

“I’m fine Twilight.” I smiled at her. “Though I appreciate your concern. What I am surprised about is that even after the beating I’ve gone through, my clothes don’t have a single scratch on them.”

“That’s because I enchanted them, darling,” Rarity informed me. “You are a mare of action after all so I thought it would be better if your clothes don’t get shredded after your first fight.”

My eyes were wide. “Really!? That’s amazing Rarity. Thank you. Are there any other protections?”

“Oh yes. They are fireproof to an extent, cannot’ be torn except by you, water resistant, shock resistant—“

“Shock resistant?” I asked.

“Yes. With how Rainbow Dash hold grudges, as well as her tendencies to zap ponies she hates, I just wanted to be prepared.”

I grimaced a little. “Well, thanks for that. You know girls, after everything that’s happened today, I think I’m gonna go home and take a nap.”

“Oh, do you have to go?” Twilight asked with puppy dog eyes. “I wanted you to make up with our other friends.”

“Another time, Twilight. I am exhausted and really want to just lay down for a good sleep.”

With a downtrodden look, Twilight replied. “Okay, but can I come visit about that portal?” There was almost a pleading in her voice and I smiled at her.

“Sure Twilight, you can come over in a few hours. I took up residence in the old castle that I used to live in. You know where that is?”

“The Castle of the Two Sisters? Yes, I’ve been there. I’ll drop by later tonight, if that’s alright.”

“That would be lovely. I’ll put out a spread. Oh and I haven’t paid you for your services, Rarity, have I?”

“Oh don’t worry about it, dear Kat. I couldn’t expect a friend to pay me.”

“Nonsense, I insist. Here,” I opened up my pocket dimension and summoned three crystals, “Would these suffice?” I floated them in front of her and her eyes lit up in wonder.

“Oh. My. Goodness! These are beautiful! Such shine, such gleam; they are positively divine! Where on Equis did you find these wonderful gems?”

“They are created by a nevi I destroyed. I refer to them as Gravity Crystals.” I summoned another and handed it to Twilight. “Here, Twilight, for your research. Maybe you can tell me a little more about these things. All I know is that they seem to put off some kind of energy.” Now Twilight’s eyes were shining in scientific wonder. “Consider it a gift of friendship.”

“Thank you Kat. I love the challenge. I’ll bring you what I find as well as some textbooks and notes that I would like to go over with you.”

“I look forward to it. Now if you'll excuse me, I have some sleep to catch up on.” With that I fell through to my room. I got up and stretched out on my bed, falling asleep just as soon as my head hit the pillow.

I woke up about an hour later, more refreshed than I had been, but not as much as I could be. With several hours before Twilight was supposed to come over, I decided to focus on my plan. My first attempt at being Equestria’s newest villain didn’t pan out how I had hoped. Then again, I was always the hero, no matter what I did. My fighting skills are also quite lacking. So, I need a teacher. One for villainy and one for fighting. I looked over at my shelf and had an idea. What if one of my fellow Displaced could help me?

I got up and went through my different trinkets. I avoided Auric’s because I wasn’t quite ready to face him again. The book didn’t lead anywhere, nor did the angel coin. My others led to nowhere either, leaving only the token. I picked it up and heard a voice ring through my head.

“I am the Overlord! Scourge of Equestria! Corrupter of innocence! If you seek to dominate the weak. If you wish to destroy all who oppose you. If you are willing to pay the price, then you may call upon my aid!”

I was visibly shaken by the amount of evil that permeated the coin. I want villainy, not pure black evil! Whoever this Overlord was, I needed to avoid him at all costs. Possibly not even as a last resort. I even considered destroying the token, but something told me that evil like that could come in handy sometime in the future. Sighing in defeat, I flung myself back on to the bed. “There has to be someone out there who can help me. I don’t need evil, just someone who can teach me how to feign villainy. Out there, somewhere, there is the perfect teacher for me.”

And it appeared my wish was granted. Not even a second later, another item fell from the portal above my bed, striking me right on the top of my head. “AAHH! YEOWCH!!” I sat up rubbing my head. “Aw, that hurt. What is it this time?” I looked over to my bed and found an oval stone laying on the covers. Intrigued, I picked it up and examined the strange stone. Written on it was some weird text. I couldn’t understand it, but it did look familiar; couldn’t place it, though. Was this a sign? Does this Displaced have the skills that I need? Well, wouldn’t hurt to ask.

Not exactly sure what I was doing, I called upon my powers and poured a small amount of energy into the stone. It glowed slightly and the next thing I know, my room is shrouded in a dark shadow. I hear the sound of something large and mechanical approaching from the darkness. I gulped audibly, thinking aloud, “Oh, this is not going to be good.”

Down in the Shadows

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The shadow around me was darker than anything I had ever experienced. There was not even a single shred of light. Out of the darkness, came a loud, mechanical sound, reminiscent of footsteps. As suddenly as it appeared, the shadow faded revealing a massive being in my bedroom. His deep red eyes hidden behind a mask of pure black. I blinked once, then my eyes widened to the size of dinner plates. I recognized this creature from my childhood and reacted as anyone else would: I screamed.

“AAAAAHHHH!!! IT’S THE MAKUTA!! HIDE YOUR KIDS, HIDE YOUR WIVES, HIDE YOUR HUSBANDS! RUN AWAY!!” I dove behind my bed, shaking in fear and my head slightly peeking out to keep my eyes on him.

He gazed at me with a slight frown. “Come out of there. You’re a grown woman.”

“Not in mind! Jerk!” I called out not moving from my spot.

He sighed, and with a minor shudder started shrinking down, into a form about the height of a pony, a rusty, pockmarked Hau on his face. Glowing yellow eyes glared in my direction. “Get out of there before I make you get out of there.”

I blinked twice at what just happened. Definitely one of the strangest things I’ve seen. “Well, okay, but no funny business!” I slowly got out from my hiding spot, but made sure I was near my shield just in case.

Makuta’s eye changed color, into a sickly green. “Right.” He then shrugged. “So, may I have the pleasure of knowing your name? You already know mine, or are at least grudgingly accepting of it.”

“Kat. Kat Shifter. Why did your eyes change color?”

Teridax chuckled. “Quite simple. It conveys my eyebrow raising normally, but I changed it to yellow so that it wouldn’t be so… intimidating. After all, just because I am a criminal does not mean that I cannot be considerate of the needs of other people.”

“Wait…you’re a civilized villain?” I asked cautiously. Never offend a villain, it doesn’t pan out well. He chuckled, faintly.

“Culture is never too hard to acquire. An intelligent villain is something above a more… shall we say, crude and unrefined one. After all, a man can smile, and smile, and smile, and still be called villain.”

My eyes lit up. This was the guy I needed! I wasn’t sure whether or not he was evil yet, but he wasn’t trying to kill me so I figured the risk was worth taking. “Can you teach me?” I asked with enthusiasm. He shrugged.

“Villainy is hard to teach. Intelligence above all else, but presentation is good as well. Villainy is also aided by having… less than is commonly accepted goals.”

“Like beating up a princess or two?”

Teridax waved a hand. “I’ve been busy for a very, very long time. My plan requires a lot of pawns to be in the right place at the right time. Everything is a piece on my board. Everything.He paused. “And I would say no to that. Examining the princesses, assessing psychological weaknesses, then speaking exactly the right words at the right time, letting them fester in the backs of their minds until the wrong circumstances at the wrong time roll by… that would be more my style.”

I put a finger to my chin and started tapping. “Hmm, you may have a point there, but I don’t want to drag this out longer than I have to. All I need to know is how to make the ponies of Equestria fear me without becoming some kind of evil monster. I don’t want to hurt anyone, well except the Princesses.”

Teridax seemed bored. “Put on black and red and apply red contacts. Then, get a dread fortress. And a cape. It’ll get results quickly- most things that are evil use that. Or use black and green- the changelings pulled off the ‘dark’ look very well with that color palette. Don’t use natural green though, use lime green. Or if not green or red, use purple. Not a colour often seen.”

I gave him a deadpan look. “I don’t quite like that attitude, mister. If I wanted sarcasm, I’d go someplace else! Look, I really need some help in this area. I’ve always been a hero, so I rightly don’t know what I’m doing. And don’t think I’m some pushover; just because I’m a hero doesn’t mean I’m against destruction. I did nearly destroy the entire planet in a psychotic rage after all.”

Teridax seemed curiously calm. “Duly noted.” he then rubbed his mechanical hands together. “But I am actually offering some serious advice with the dread fortress. Get a fortress and minions. Dependable minions are hard to come by, but get them loyal and your work will be super easy. Have a plan for what you want to do- not a long one, like the gambit I’m running, but a simple, short-term one. Make it flexible and adaptable as well. Finally…” He looked at me. “Gain an appreciation for culture and poetry. A sound body hosts a sound mind.”

I raise an eyebrow slightly. “Okay, that kind of came out of nowhere. Minions, huh? Hmm… would worshipers count?”

Teridax shrugged. “Organized religion is not something I have dabbled in. Though…” he tapped a large foot on the floor. Eventually, he came to a decision. “Yes, I did move a couple of religions around… along with starting and destroying a couple of monarchies. Personally, I never used them as minions, only as fall-guys. After all…” he tore into his chest, pulling out a kraata and staring at it, “why hire, when I can birth?”

I stared at the strange looking creature. “Yeah, that’s creepy. I was just wondering since the dragons apparently see me as the goddess of battle. Some of the older ones probably wouldn’t go for it, but I was thinking more along the lines of the younger generation.”

Teridax nodded. “Get them at about the dragon equivalent of twenty. Don’t want puberty getting in the way. Plus, any younger and your opponents will exploit it. Hang on.” He pulled out another mask, and with a wave, a hole was created. He tossed the writhing slug in, letting it close. “There, that’s out of the way. Now then.” He faced me.

“For the basis of an evil lair, particularly with dragons, I cannot, repeat, cannot emphasize the importance of location enough. A volcano lair for you, my dear, it seems. Be careful not to fall into it, and make sure all your precarious catwalks have railings.”

“Eh, wouldn’t be the first time I fell into lava,” I shrugged. Teridax tilted his head, then apparently decided not to ask. “Regardless, Miss Kat, location, location, location, as terrible estate agents always say. But even so, evil is not always clear cut. For instance, to be morally good I would advise that you start an anti-smoking campaign, rebuild a collapsed economy, and talk about how the public will cheerily accept a big lie over a small lie. Are those not noble things?”

“Uh, dude, this Equestria, not America,” I say with a raised eyebrow. “Even back then, everything was practically perfect. I may have to check with Twilight later, but I’m quite sure the crime rate hasn’t increased since then and, while I may loathe them right now, the Princesses were always pretty good about keeping a balanced checkbook.”

Teridax shook his head. “Oh, no. All those things? Hitler actually did every single one of them. Oh, and he kept a dog. Very well, according to historical accounts.” He paused. “Just a thought.”

I glared at him slightly, though not sure why. Why did it bother me that he just compared Celestia and Luna to Hitler? Eh, figure it out later. “Okay, so step one: evil lair. Step two: Minions. Step three: try to make things better for other compared to the princesses (not really confident on that one). Anything else?”

He chuckled. “Oh, not the last one; I used that as an example of how morality is not always so easy to determine. And I wasn’t comparing the Princesses to Hitler- though there are qualities I admire in the man. Not his policies,” he added as an afterthought, “not his prejudices, but his strengths. He was charismatic, patriotic, and highly intelligent. And above all else, his pragmatism and ruthlessness. Character traits that are to be admired in all.”

“Well, unfortunately, for my plan to work, I need the ponies to despise me. I need to get on everyone’s bad side here. It’s the only way the Princesses will take me seriously when the time comes.” Teridax seemed curious.

“And what will happen then?”

I stopped for a second . . . then waved it off. “Eh, that’s future Kat’s problem.”

He shook his head. “My end goal is clear in my mind… though I will not tell you what it is. But you must have a clear goal, that you work towards in smaller goals until you have achieved it.”

I shrugged. “Just call me Sasuke Uchiha.”

Teridax shook his head. “More of a Hamlet if you ask me, if revenge your true goal be. Just the honest opinion of a classicist.”

“I just need to focus on my current plans. After that, I’ll probably focus on the nevi threat.”

Yet Teridax focused on that. “Villainy is something I picked up, from snippets of advice and my own designs on it. You could form your opinions on villainy without much help at all. Yet it is the case of ‘to be or not to be’ all over again. You are simply too morally… good for villainy. I cannot teach you on my level. Our worldviews are too different, my dear. I can give you general pointers, but I dislike leaving things to fate too much. I have… plans within plans within plans, so complex that to show you might break your mind. I have steered a planet to my will for the best part of four thousand years, through dreams and portents.” He paced. “Setbacks have come and I have adapted them in to my plan, as simple as breathing. Or rather, as breathing used to be for me.”

I stopped on the break my mind part, thinking, “Too late for that…” “Well, Mr. Teridax, it’s probably because I’m not trying to become a villain. I just want to look like one to the people. I’m still a hero at heart.”

Teridax shrugged. “Acting. Admirable in one so young. The world is a stage, miss Kat; and all the living creatures within merely players.” He gave, somehow, the impression of a smile. “In my world, guess who holds most of the strings? Who wrote most of the script, who designed the costumes? Not me, but rather, people who have become convinced that they are doing it for them, but actually for me. I merely need to poke at a string, and it reverberates with my tune.”

I shrugged. “What can I say? I’m a stickler for the drama. I do thank you for the advice, Teridax. It has been most helpful.” Before Teridax could speak again, another voice rang out through the castle.

“Kat? KAT? Are you awake?” I recognized the voice as Twilight’s. It must be time for our get together. I need to wrap this up.

"That's my friend, we have plans." Teridax shrugged. “That means you need to leave… like now.”

Teridax nodded. “In that case, good day.” With a wave, a similar portal appeared. He was about to leave, then paused. “By the way… I’ve been reading your mind the entire time.” And with that, he left.

I stared at the spot where he seemingly vanished back into the shadows, blinked once, and then fumed. “You what?! OOOHH! Teridax if you ever come near me again, you and the ground will get to know each other on an intimate level! That bucking jerk! If any of his plans involve me or my world, so help me…” I ranted on for another minute before I heard Twilight calling for me again. “Coming Twilight!” I called back. I looked back to where the Makuta had vanished. “That’s it, no more multiuniversal help for this girl for a while.”

Downhome Honesty

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As I walked through the castle halls to find Twilight, I thought back on what Teridax had told me. They were some decent ideas, I’ll give him that, but kind of cliché when you really think about it. I was certainly intrigued by the idea of an evil fortress. I could picture it now. Deep within an active volcano, hidden in a dangerous mountain range to the north, I and my dragon minions would plot for the destruction of Equestria and our eventual conquest of the world! Catwalks running through the upper levels, leading down to a platform suspended by chains slightly above the magma. Caves and Caverns hiding long lost treasures and weapons of war!

Okay, I may be crazy, but I don’t think I need to go that far! Though, the dragon minions I think could be workable. There were plenty of the younger ones back at the coven that seemed enamored by me and there was that one I saved from that nevi Hulk. Being a goddess was certainly surprising, but it definitely could give me an unprecedented advantage. What pony doesn’t fear a dragon attack? But, how do I get them to cooperate without alerting Paco and the other elders? I doubt they would be behind my idea, despite how supportive he is.

“Kat?” came a voice from above me. I looked up in surprise, finding the pony I was searching for looking down at me.

“Twilight? What are you doing up there?”

“Uh, Kat, you’re the one that’s up,” she responded.

“Huh?” I looked down at my feet and discovered that I was walking on the ceiling, not the floor. “Oh come on! I thought I got past this! Ugh, one second, Twilight.” With a quick shift, I righted myself back down. “Sorry about that.”

“What were you doing up there?”

“Sometimes when I’m deep in thought, I’ll shift accidentally without noticing and just keep going. Honestly, thought I got over doing that a long time ago.” She giggled a little and I blushed slightly. “So,” I said switching the topic, “ready to help me move that portal?”

“Of course!” Twilight beamed. “I can’t wait to see it!”

I smiled at her enthusiasm. “Follow me, I’ll show it to you.” With Twilight by my side, we walked back to my room. “It’s right inside,” I said as we reached the door. “Now we have to be careful, I really don’t know much about this portal and I don’t—“ I stopped after opening the door to find a strange sight of a pink pony bouncing on my bed. “What the what?”

“Pinkie?!” Twilight said with mutual surprise. Yes, dear Pinkie Pie was bouncing on my bed with a stern look, trying to get at the portal. “What are you doing?!”

The pink mare stopped for a second and smiled at seeing us. “Hiya Twilight and Kitty!” She then looked back at the portal and glared again. “That meanie hole dropped something heavy on me and it won’t apologize!” Pinkie proceeded to go back at trying to jump up to the portal. I looked at Twilight with an ‘Is she serious?’ face and she just laughed nervously. I roll my eyes.

“Okay, Pinkie just calm down,” I say moving over to the bed. “I’m sure the portal didn’t mean any harm, plus it’s not really sentient. Or at least I hope not,” I say thinking on how that could make things difficult. I shake my head clear of that thought. “Just stop trying to attack it, it’s very dangerous.”

Pinkie stops bouncing and looks at me with a bright smile. “Okie dokie lokie!” With that, she just sits there on my bed, doing nothing but staring off into space and occasionally scratching her ear with her hind leg. “This mare confuses me,” I think to myself while shaking my head.

“Moving on,” I say, “Well Twilight, that’s it up there.” I point up at the swirling gravity storm/portal that was just below the ceiling above my bed. “It leads to the Void between worlds. Think we can move it to where it’s not dropping more totems on my head?” Twilight moves closer to the bed for a better look, a hoof rubbing her chin and her eyes narrowed at it.

“Hmm, I don’t think it would too hard to manipulate the event horizon, though we may have to seal the portal in something for it work properly in the future.”

“Seal it? You mean like put in an object or something?”

Twilight nods. “Mm hmm. I know a few spells that could do it, all we need now is the sealing device. Any ideas?” I start to tap my finger in thought. What could we use to seal the portal in? A mirror? No, that’s the alchemist’s thing. Maybe a crystal ball? I get the feeling that that’s too overdone. As I continue to think, I begin to look around the room and notice something on one of Celestia’s old book shelves. I move closer to the shelf and find one her favorite books: The Greatest Works of Whinnyam Shakespeare. Ugh, the pony puns just get worse and worse! Although, this could be my solution.

“Hey Twilight, how about a book?” I called to her while showing off said book.

Twilight gave me a weird look. “You want to put a portal to an infinite number of universes inside a poetry book?”

I shrug in response. “Why not? It’s original at least.”

“You can’t argue with that logic!” Pinkie exclaimed supportively.

“Thank you Pinkie!” I said to her getting a nice big smile in return. “Come on Twi, it’s not like this book is all that important anyway. I’ve read it before and it’s not really my thing. Please?” I stuck out my lower lip in a pout. These ponies have done it to me for years, so why can’t I do it every once in a while?

After about a moment of thinking, Twilight relented. “Alright, fine. Give me the book.” I handed her the poetry book. Twilight took it and opened it to the center and laid it on the bed underneath the portal. “Okay, this may take a few minutes.” Twilight’s horn lit up in a violet aura and she cast her spell. Pinkie and I simply sat back and let Twilight do her thing. I saw the book light up in the same aura and it began to suck in the portal like a vacuum. Slowly, but surely, the portal was absorbed into the book and once the spell was complete, it slammed shut. When her horn powered down, Twilight looked completely exhausted. I got up to hold her steady when she began to tilt.

“Woah there! You okay there, Twilight?”

“Yeah… yeah, I’m ok. The spell just took a little more magic than I thought it would. But, I did it!” She levitated the book to me and I took it from her magical grip. I could feel the power held within its pages, causing me to think of how many others ended up like me. Stuck in a world we don’t understand with no way of getting home. How many others lost years of their lives like me? Only time would tell on how many I would meet. Leaving those thoughts and questions in the back of my mind, I used a stasis field to move the book over on to my dresser by the bed.

“Thank you for your help. It means a lot to me,” I said once she was back on her hooves.

“Don’t worry about it Kat. Anything for a friend, especially since you’re not going to kill the Princesses anymore.”

“You’re not?!” Pinkie exclaimed and then rushed into me with a big hug. “That so great, Kitty! Now I can throw you a party without worry! It’ll be great! There’ll be cake and streamers and balloons and games and friends and…” She went on like this for almost two minutes without stopping for a breath. Honestly, she kind of scares me. Then I remember something from the beginning of her speech: what party?

“Party? What party?” I asked, interrupting Pinkie.

“I throw a party for every new pony in Ponyville! Even if you’re not a pony, you still get one, too! It’s going to be so SUPER!!”

“I get a party?” I asked, completely bewildered. Pinkie nodded her head feverishly. “Wow, I haven’t been to a party in my honor since the Griffon War.”

Pinkie let out a huge gasp. “What?! But what about your birthday?!”

I stopped. My birthday… the worst day of my life. The day everything changed. “My birthday isn't special anymore,” I said somberly after a moment.

“Kat?” Twilight asked, concern in her voice. “Is something wrong?”

“Did I make you upset Kat?” asked Pinkie. I look to see that she had a fearful face, her mane was turning straight from its normal poof, and her coat seemed to be a darker shade of pink. With tear in her eyes, Pinkie said, “I’m sorry.”

I reached out and scratched to top of her head. “It’s nothing, girls. My birthday just isn’t a happy day for me anymore.”

“Can we still throw a party?”

I stood still for a second. “Sorry, Pinkie, but I need to be alone on that day. It’s personal.”

“Oh,” Pinkie said dejectedly.

“But,” Pinkie raised her head, “I will probably need some cheering up the next day. Can I count on you to make me smile again?”

Pinkie’s smile was biggest and brightest I had ever seen. She wrapped her hooves around me in a near bone-crushing hug. “YES!! I’ll throw the bestest party ever!!” She gasped loudly again. “I need to get ready! Bye Kitty, bye Twilight!” With that, Pinkie zoomed off like the road runner.

I blinked and looked back at Twilight. “She worries me,” I say bluntly.

“You’ll get used to it,” she laughs out.

“Don’t be so certain about that,” I mumbled. “So, any luck with that crystal I left you?”

Twilight shook her head. “No, all I could determine is that they do have some kind of energy permeating through them. I theorize that if we could tap into that power, who knows what pony kind would be capable of.” I nod, thinking back to how those gems were used to power certain devices in the game. Maybe I should find some more. “Sooo, Kat, are you up for meeting more of my friends?”

“But I just met Pinkie,” I pointed out.

Twilight waved her hoof. “Yes, but Pinkie can make friends out of anypony. I would like for you to meet back up with Applejack and Rainbow Dash, and I’m pretty sure Fluttershy would love for you to visit.” Why did she seem so certain about Fluttershy? She knows something, but I might as well. If these six really are the new Elements of Harmony, I need to be friends with them. I can’t risk being turned to stone, plus they are kind of fun to be around.

“Hmm, okay. I’ll meet some of your friends. How about Applejack? She seems nice.”

“Oh they’re all nice. Applejack can be a little stubborn, but I’m sure you two will hit it off. You can come with me later, I need to go to Sweet Apple Acres to check on the desserts anyways.”

“Desserts?” I ask.

“Yeah, Applejack’s family farm is catering this year’s Nightmare Night festival.”

“What’s Nightmare Night?”

“Oh, that’s right. Nightmare Night was formed so ponies would get no longer fear Nightmare Moon. Makes sense that you wouldn’t have heard of it. Ponies dress up in costumes, the foals go trick-or-treating, the adults have parties, and --. Kat are you okay?”

I was fuming mad! This Nightmare Night sounds particularly close to another holiday I tried to convince the Princesses to create: Halloween. They turned it down, thinking it would be too scary for anyone to enjoy. And what do they do while I’m gone? They go and create it anyway! What the hell?! After another moment of fuming, I let it all out. “WHAT THE BUCKING HELL!!!!!!?????” My scream scared Twilight into a corner. I panted a little, calming down. “Sorry Twilight. Got a little ticked there.”

“W-why?” she asked shakily.

“Because a long time ago, I tried to get Celestia and Luna behind a holiday from back home called Halloween. It was about my kind getting past our fears of the dark and spooky. They turned down my idea because they thought the idea was too scary. And now, a thousand years later, I find out they went and ripped of my idea! It’s not fair! That’s my favorite holiday, damn it! I want some credit here!”

“You came up with Nightmare Night? Fascinating! I’ll need to write that down when I get back to the library. You want to come with me?”

I was about to reply with a ‘yes’, but something stirred in the back of my mind. My gaze hardened as I stretched out with my gravity sense. I turned my head every which way, trying to get a definite location. Then I found it: Vanhoover. Only, something was strange there. It seemed, more powerful than the last few attacks. That could mean only one thing: a boss nevi. I turned back to Twilight. “Sorry, Twi, but another gravity storm has appeared. I need to take care of it. Don’t worry, I’ll be back later today.”

“Okay, Kat. I’ll be waiting for you at the library.” I nodded, powering up to teleport, but was stopped. “Be careful, okay?” I turned toward her and smiled. It was nice having someone worry about me.

“I’ll be fine. See ya around!” I tore through time and space, forcing myself through right into… the dragons’ nest. If I was really dealing with a boss nevi, I was going to need back up and what better way to get some loyal followers too. I floated right in the middle of the nest, unnoticed at the moment, until I yelled. “HEY~ PACO~!!!” Every dragon in the area turned to see me floating amongst them, I just laid back on air and twiddle my thumbs, waiting for my friend to come—

“What the Tartarus Kat!!” I looked over to see Paco fuming at me. “You know I sleep at this time a day! I need my nap!” I blanched, not actually knowing what time it was.

“Uh, oops,” I said laughing nervously. “Sorry Paco.”

“Don’t call me Paco.”

“I just wanted stop by, say hello, take some of your dragons, the usual stuff.”

“What was that last one?”

“Take some of your dragons?”

“And why are you going to take some of my kind?” His face was beginning to turn a little dark.

“I need help,” I admitted. “I need to go to Vanhoover to stop a nevi attack, but I get a feeling that I’m going to need back up. I was hoping I could borrow a few of my followers.”

Paco scratched his chin in thought. “Well…”

“I’ll go!” came a voice from behind Paco. He turned revealing the young drake I had saved on previous visit.

“Aren’t you that dragon I saved?”

“Yes, your worship.” Is it bad I like the sound of that? Looking him over, I saw that he was still fairly young, around teenager in dragon years. His red scales and orange spines complimented him quite nicely.

“What is your name, young drake?”

“Garble, your worship. I’m am willing to pledge myself into your service, if you will allow me.”

“Hmm,” I said, tapping my chin with a finger. “You did prove yourself quite nicely against those last nevi… Oh, what the hay! Sure, kid. You’re in!” His eyes lit up in glee.

“Thank you so much for this, your worship! If it would please you, I have a couple other friends who mentioned that they would be willing to follow you as well.”

I nodded appreciatively. “I like the initiative, Garble. Grab them and let’s go!” The drake smile and ran off, returning a few minutes later with a purple dragon with long spines that covered most of his face (almost like hair) and a large pudgy one with brown scales and a mace-like tail. “This is TK and Tiny. They are willing to fight for you as I am.”

I smiled inwardly, knowing that everything was going smoother than I had hoped. “Alright you three, you’re coming with me to kill some monsters. Grab on to my shoulders and we shall go.” They did as I instructed as I powered up the worm hole.

“Don’t be out with them for too long, Kat,” Paco warned me. “We do exercise a curfew in this nest!”

“I’ll keep that in mind, Paco.” Before he could reprimand me, I teleported the four of us to the outskirts of Vanhoover. I stared out at the city beyond us, the three dragons flapping their wings around me. I turned around to face them, a stern look on my face, and my tone that of the General I once was. “Alright you three, listen up!” The stood straight, saluting me with their left claws. I guess there are things that span beyond the multiverse. “What I am about to tell you three is to never be repeated to anyone for the rest of your days or until I say otherwise. Am I understood?”

“Ma’am, yes ma’am,” they returned.

“Good. Now here is the plan. In that city is another group of monsters that attacked your nest.” The glared out at the city, no doubt having their own grudges against the nevi. “Those monsters are called nevi and we are going down there and destroy them. Also down there is what I believe to be a boss nevi. This one will be massive in size and particularly powerful. Your job is to keep the smaller ones off of me while I handle the big guy. Also, try to cause as much damage as possible to the city. You don’t need to know the why, just do it!” I reprimanded as Tiny tried to say something. “However,” I said with a dark tone, “if any of you hurt any civilians in the process, I will very displeased.” I made sure to that I was completely covered in aura, glaring deep into their souls. “Got it?”

“Ma’am, yes ma’am!!” they shouted back, a little fear in their voice. I smiled and turned to the city.

“You are to tell no one of our rampage, not even the elders. Destroy as much as you can without hurting anyone and do your jobs. If you do well, I will be sure to reward you accordingly. Now go!”

“As you command, your wor—“

“In the field, you will address me as the Gravity Queen, Garble.”

He nodded and bowed at the same time. “Of course. As you command, my queen.” They took off at a good speed towards the city. I smiled to myself, thinking on how well this was going. Now, to find the big boss. I sped down to the city, taking out several Minions with my landing. I look all around me, seeing the occasional fire spewing from my dragons, but not finding the boss. My gravity sense was telling me it was around here somewhere, but where? Suddenly, the sun was blocked out from behind me.

“Oh, you gotta be kidding me.” I turn to see the big boss itself. I recognized it as the Star Creature. This nevi had five eyes, only one was much tougher and hidden under its tentacles. The remaining four made up its head, while the rest of its body was draped in its tentacles. “This is going to be fun,” I said, powering up. It roared and sent a tentacle at me, but I dodge rolled out of the way. As I stood up, it fired its gravity blasts. I pulled my shield out in front of, expanding back to its original size as it slid on to my wrist. I braced myself as the blasts hit, causing me to slide back a little from the force. As soon as it let up, I shot up towards the sky, the Creature’s eyes tracking me.

I stopped just at the skyline and launched towards one of the eyes with a Gravity Kick. With great force, I shattered the eye, taking another one with due to the power. Two down, two to go before I get to the real one. Using the shield like a sled, I slid over some of the rubble of destroyed buildings, keeping up my momentum. I hit an angled rock like a ramp and shot up towards a nearby building. Again using my shield, I made a sharp turn on the building that aimed me back toward the boss nevi. I charged forward with the shield, hitting right between the two remaining eyes, shattering both.

The Star Creature roared and lifted its tentacles, revealing the fifth eye. In this position, it looked like a giant, upside down Star. I knew I had to act fast, as it would only show this eye for a short amount of time. If I didn’t take it down now, it cover back up and another eye would regenerate. This would prove to be difficult since it started to send out a massive circle of blasts. I dived underneath the projectiles and tossed my shield right into the eye, hitting it square in the center and rebounding off to where it lodged into a building. The eye changed from its white center to a deep red, meaning it was weak enough to be destroyed. So I charged with a gravity kick, landing right in the bull’s eye. The nevi roared in pain and turned into dust, leaving behind a collection of crystals. I sucked them up, storing them with the rest, somehow knowing I had nearly a thousand of those gems now.

I took a moment to check on my dragons. I rose up above the skyline, seeing the three of them causing fires all over the city, but I my gravity sense told me they hadn’t killed anything besides nevi. With that worry off my chest, I focused on finding the gravity storm. I turned towards the center of town and shot forward. Thankfully, this storm was right out in the open. I landed far enough away where I wouldn’t be hit by the shockwave. I grip it with my power and squeezed until it burst into nothingness. I smiled at the job well done, but it disappeared as a guard pony approached me.

“Gravity Queen! Thank you so much for your help with these monsters! Now, think you could deal with the dragon problem?” he asked.

I did my best impersonation of an evil laugh, and I think it was quite good, honestly. “Now, now. My dragons need to have their fun every now and then.”

The guard paled. “Y-your dragons?”

“Why yes! What? Did you think I was some protector of you ponies?! AHAHAHAHA!! Not even close! My only focus is those blasted nevi, I could care less about anything else.”

“Y-you’re a monster!”

I smiled wickedly. “What was your first clue? Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some business to attend to. See you at the next attack!” I shot off to gather my dragons, hearing the guard shout back to me.

“Celestia and Luna will stop you! No evil is allowed to live in Equestria!”

I turned back to him as I continued forward. “They tried to get rid of me once; they failed. Those princesses will never be able to defeat me!” I laughed as I flew off, leaving the guard to fume. I floated high above the city and used wormhole to teleport the dragons in front of me. They were shocked about the sudden shift, but bowed as soon as they saw me. “Report,” I said emotionlessly.

“All nevi have been destroyed, your highness,” Tiny said.

“Half of the city is on fire and the other half is falling apart, but no casualties to report,” Garble informed.

“Last count was three hundred nevi before they dispersed,” I received from TK.

I nodded in appreciation. “You three have done well. Here is your reward.” I summoned three crystals and gave one to each dragon. They eyed the gems greedily, devouring their respective crystals in a blink of an eye. They seemed satisfied. “I will call on you again. You best be prepared for when I do. Dismissed.” They bowed one last time before I sent them back to the nest. I teleported myself back home a moment later, falling back onto my bed in exhaustion and passing into a dreamless sleep not even a second later.

Hours later, I awoke, feeling refreshed for the first time since I had been freed from stone. Kind of hard to believe that was only a few days ago. I got out of bed and looked to see the sun was still high in sky. I guessed that it was probably around one in the afternoon. I smiled knowing I hadn’t missed my plans with Twilight and Applejack. I decided to fix up my hair a little, brushing it out straight and replacing my headband. I made sure my scarf was tied just right around my neck and began to warp out, but was stopped when I saw something lying on the floor. I picked it up and was surprised to find that it was an hourglass. I hadn’t seen one of these in a while, but it had a strange presence about it. I realized that this was what hit Pinkie. It was another totem. I shrugged and put it with the others on the shelf by my bed. With that out of the way, I warped to Twilight's.

I appeared right in the middle of the library, spooking the young drake that was busy sweeping the floor. “AAH! Oh, Kat, it’s just you. Don’t do that to a guy!”

I giggled as he blushed about being scared by a girl. “Sorry, Spike. Is Twilight around?”

“Right up here, Kat!” I looked up to see the smiling unicorn at the top of the steps. “You’re just in time, I was just heading out to see Applejack. Still up for coming along?”

I smiled back. “Sure thing! Let’s go!” We waved goodbye to Spike and we headed out. Since Applejack’s farm was on the outskirts of town, Twilight teleported us to one of the unused roads that led there so I wouldn’t be seen by the town. Neither of us were ready for that kind of reaction just yet. We walked in comfortable silence until we reached the massive orchard. And I mean massive; there were trees as far as the eye could see without any end in sight. I whistled appreciatively. “Daaaang, that’s a lot of trees.”

“Yep, the Apples are very proud of their work. Come on, Applejack’s probably out apple bucking as we speak.” I giggled inwardly at the use of that word and followed right behind her. I heard the rustling of leaves and the sound of multiple somethings hitting the ground up ahead. Once we were over the hill, I could plainly see the orange earth pony mare kicking apple trees, sending the scrumptious fruit into the barrels below. Not a single apple landed outside the barrel, which was very impressive. “Hey Applejack!” Twilight called out to her friend. Applejack looked up from her work, smiling at the sound of her friend’s voice, but frowned upon noticing me.

“And just what are you doin’ here?” Applejack asked me accusingly. I really couldn’t blame her, especially after how I acted last time we met.

“She’s here to apologize. Aren’t you, Kat?” Twilight said, trying to defuse the situation.

I smiled apologetically. “Yes, I am. Applejack, I am really sorry for how I acted the last time we met. Could we start over?” Applejack looked at me thoughtfully, inspecting me just as Rarity had done previously. I was a little nervous because I did actually want these girls to like me.

“Sure Kat,” Applejack said after a moment. “We can start over.” I smiled gratefully, but she went and trashed that. “On one condition: ya’ll gotta help me with the chore today, then we’ll see where our friendship stand.”

I gave her a suspicious look. “Getting someone to do your chores with belief of friendship? That’s devious!” I accused and then smiled. “I think I like you already.” The three of us laughed a little from my statement.

After calming down, Twilight said, “Well, I’ll let the two of you get to work. I’m going to go see Granny Smith on how the catering for Nightmare Night is coming.”

“Sure thing, Twi. Granny’s up at the house takin’ a nap in her chair.”

“Thanks AJ. I’ll see you both later.” Twilight walked off, heading towards a barn-shaped house. You think I would have gotten used to the strangeness of this world, but there is always something that surprises me around here.

“Alright, rookie. Let’s see how well you do at buckin’,” Applejack said, bringing my attention back to her.

“Didn’t know your barn door swung that way, Applejack,” I said with a sly smile. “Little forward, don’t ya think?” Applejack’s face turned hot red at my little joke and she started stammering.

“NOT LIKE THAT!!” she screamed at me. I laughed at her little predicament.

“I’m just funnin’ with you, AJ.” I walked over to one her trees. “Now, how does this work?”

Applejack calmed down and walked over to join me. “All ya gotta do is give it nice good kick to the center of the trunk. If ya can do that, the amount of apples will determine yer skill. Go ahead.”

I eyed up the tree, looking for the best spot to aim for. I found one just right above the very center of the trunk. I backed up slightly and kicked the tree as powerfully as I could without destroying it. To Applejacks’ surprise, my kick left the tree barren of all its fruit that now laid perfectly in the baskets that had placed below. “How was that?” I asked, feeling a little smug.

“Gosh golly, Kat. How in tarnation did ya’ll do that?”

“Most of my attacks are based around my gravity kick, so I need to have some good leg muscles otherwise not even gravity could make my attacks do anything.”

“Well, I’ll be darned. This might just work out better than Ah thought.” For the next couple of hours, we worked on the rest of the western field. It was roughly around four when we decided to take a break, both us having bucked at least fifty trees each. “So, what do you think of farm life there Kat?”

Laying back on the ground with my arms and legs spread out eagle style, I responded, “Reminds me of home.”

Applejack raised an eyebrow. “Really?”

“Yeah, or at least my first home anyway. In Ashland.”

“What do you mean your first home?”

I sighed, knowing that this conversation might start turning uncomfortable soon. “I moved around a lot, especially after the accident.”

The mare winced a little. “Oh, right. Sorry ‘bout that.”

“It’s okay,” I shrugged. We sat in silence for another few minutes before Applejack spoke again.

“You know, we’re kinda alike, you and me.”

“What makes you say that?” I asked with genuine curiosity.

“Well from the sound of it, we’re both farm girls. Both enjoy being around our friends and we’re even just a little bit stubborn. We also lost ones we really cared about when we were young.”

My eyes widened a little. “You mean that you…”

“Yeah. When I was just a little filly both of my parents died from illness. It hit me hard, so hard that Ah even left the farm to try to get over the pain. But, I came back and here’s where I’m gonna stay.” I stared in awe at the young mare before me, now understanding her just a little bit better. “So, Kat, I was wondering, if ya don’t mind me doin’ so, what happened? With your family, Ah mean.”

I sighed again, laying back on the grass. I wanted to tell her not to ask such things, but she had been honest to me, so maybe I should repay her in kind. “It was when I was eight years old. We, myself, baby brother, and my parents, were coming home late one night from a movie that I had begged my parents to take me to. I can’t even remember what movie it was. It was dark that night, eerily dark, but we just kept driving. Out of nowhere, another driver came out from in front, headlights glaring at us through the windshield. He was swerving all around the road, only after did I find out that he was indeed drunk off his ass. He just kept coming towards us, my dad trying to swerve out of the way, but nothing worked. Only now do I wish I had been wearing my seatbelt that night, for the next thing I saw was a great flash of light and the sound of crunching metal.

I woke up laying on the ground, pain burning through every pore on my body. I saw glass and shrapnel all around me. I turned to see the ruined remains of my parent’s car, engulfed in flame. I called out to them, wanting to know if they were alright. I heard my mother and father call back, telling me to get help. I didn’t know what to do, I couldn’t move I was so afraid. Then before my eyes, something ignited the fire even more, probably that drunk bastard’s alcohol, and I heard them screaming in pain, my brother wailing. I covered my ears with my hands, it was just so painful to hear. An hour later was when the police and ambulances arrived, but they were too late, my family was already gone.”

Applejack simply stared at me, aghast in shock and horror at what I had described. She didn’t say anything so I continued. “The only solace I had from that night was that the driver that hit us was killed as well, burning in his sleep. After that night, I was moved from foster care to foster care, not staying in one place for too long. Sometimes it was because of my anger bouts, others because they couldn’t afford my therapy sessions. Thankfully, my father’s military life insurance kept me from ever starving or staying out on the streets. I also had plenty of help from of my dad’s old war buddies if I ever needed a place to stay for the night.”

“Yer pa was in the military?” Applejack asked.

“Yeah, two-star general if you can believe it. I still have no idea how he got stationed in Nebraska of all places, but I digress. It helped me out of some tough jams.” As I brushed my tears away, I felt the warm embrace of friend. I look to see Applejack hugging me, tears in her own eyes from my story.

“I get it now, Kat. I get why you are who you are. It was because of the life you were forced to live. But don’t you worry none. I’m not gonna let anything like that happen to you ever again and I know the others will feel the same.”

“Thank you Applejack. Thank you.” After that tear fest, the two of us finished up our work for the day and we met Twilight back at the house. I thanked both of them as well as the other Apples that I met for their hospitality, and privately thanking AJ for the talk. I said my farewells, with Twilight making me promise to come back tomorrow to see Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash, and returned to my castle, hoping to get another peaceful rest after today’s events.

Kindness, Loyalty, and Gravity

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I awoke fairly well this morning, of course the sun still burned into my eyes, but that’s just Celestia being a bitch in the morning. Today was going to be hectic, I could just feel it. I am just glad that the plumbing in the castle still works miraculously so I could have a shower. After that refreshing experience, I got ready for the day, throwing on my shirt, jeans, and jacket. I adjusted my headband into its perfect spot and tied my scarf comfortably around my neck and I was ready for the day, once my boots were laced up. As I headed out, I remembered one last thing: my shield. I picked it up from the hanging spot I had on the wall and strapped it to my back, also checking that my staff was secure in its spot. I felt the shield shrink down to the size of a small backpack and I walked out of the room.

After scaring Spike yesterday, today I decided to fly into town. It was still pretty early so I wouldn’t have to worry about being seen. I flew over the small village softly, like a gliding bird, enjoying the fresh morning air. It was so calm and peaceful this morning that I just decided to lie on my back as I floated over to the library. The feeling of serenity was so nice…and then it was rudely interrupted.

“HEY!” I opened an eye slightly to the sight of a rainbow maned pegasus glaring harshly as she floated above me. I raised an eyebrow in response to her yelling. “What do you think you’re doing here?”

“Um, resting,” I reply, a little annoyed with her attitude. “If you really want to know, I’m waiting for Twilight to wake up. She and I have plans today.”

“And just what are you going to be doing with one of my friends?”

I glared slightly at this pegasus. “She wants me to make friends with you and Fluttershy. After that, I don’t know.”

“Well, you may have Flutters fooled, but not me. I know you’re bad news, Gravity. You’re just a monster and I’ll be watching you every step of the way. You’ve been warned.” With that, Rainbow Dash flew off in a huff, ruining my happy morning.

“Rude much,” I mumbled under my breath. I looked down below to the library and saw movement by one of the windows. I landed down at the front door and knocked, not loudly, but just enough to be noticeable. A few seconds later, the small drake opened the door, smiling at me for once.

“Good morning, Kat. Here to see Twilight?” he asked, sounding chipper.

“Well that, and maybe get some breakfast. If you wouldn’t mind.”

“No problem, come on in.” He waved me inside and I followed after closing the door. He led me to the dining room where Twilight was already eating a healthy stack of pancakes. Upon seeing me, her face brightened.

“Good morning, Kat,” Twilight greeted me. “Care to have some?” she asked pointing at the remaining pancakes.

“Don’t mind if I do!” I picked up a fork and levitated a good stack for myself. After stuffing three of the golden cakes of the gods down into my gullet, I chatted with Twilight and Spike. “Ya know, I flew into Rainbow Dash this morning.”

“Oh, how did that go?” asked Twilight.

“Not very well. I think we can skip me seeing her later today. She seems really peeved.”

“Well, Rainbow has been known to hold a grudge. She’s also very protective of her friends, and that includes the Princesses.”

“That explains the ‘tude. Let’s just skip her and move on to your other friend. We can work of Rainbow another day.”

“If you say so,” Twilight relented rather reluctantly. “That leaves just Fluttershy and I am not completely certain on how that’s going to go.”

“Why’s that?” I asked, truly curious. Both mares made mention on Fluttershy reacting to me strangely previously. Is it because she seems familiar to me? Guess I’ll find out later.

“Oh it’s something I would feel better about having Fluttershy tell you herself.” Yeah, that’s not suspicious at all, but I let it pass. The rest of breakfast was just some idle chit chat, nothing important. A little while later found me and Twilight on our way towards Fluttershy’s cottage. We had gone out the back door of the library and were skirting around the town itself so I wouldn’t be seen. This caused the walk to take twice as long as usual, or so Twilight told me. So, it was a full hour of walking until we came across a quaint little cottage settled just outside the Everfree Forest. I could see animals all running around happily around the cottage with birds chirping musically in the background. It was like a scene right from the mind of Walt Disney! Twilight approached the door as I found myself surrounded by little critters, all wanting to climb on me. I heard a door open and a butter-yellow pegasus appearing from the doorway.

“Oh, hello Twilight. What brings you by? If you don’t mind me asking,” Fluttershy said in her shy little voice.

“Morning Fluttershy. I just wanted to stop by and say hello and there’s a certain someone I think you’ll be glad to meet.”

“Oh? And who’s that?”

Twilight gestured over to me, as I was covered in animals all acting like I had a treat for them or something. I even humored the idea that I was the treat. “Fluttershy, I would like to re-introduce you to Kat Shifter, a.k.a. Gravity.”

Fluttershy stared at me for a moment or two, before breaking into giggles at my predicament, Twilight following suit. I gave both ponies a deadpan look, not amused in the slightest. “Yeah, yeah, I’m a riot. Now could one of you please get these animals off me.”

“Oh! Of course!” Fluttershy flew over to me and began brushing the rabbits, ferrets, and whatever else had clung to me. “I’m sorry about that Kat. I don’t know what came over them.”

“There your animals, Fluttershy. I am sure it just come naturally to them by now,” Twilight said oh so matter-of-factly. What the hell did she mean by that?

“M-maybe,” Fluttershy admitted. She then turned back to me. “Would you like to come in, Kat? It’s alright if you don’t want to.”

“No, I would love to.” I got up and followed the unicorn and pegasus into the cottage, ducking slightly from the low door opening. The inside was quite lovely as well, kind of a mix of The Hobbit and The Seven Dwarves. Very quaint. “I like this place,” I said looking over everything.

“Oh, that’s wonderful,” Fluttershy beamed. “I’ll be right back with some tea. Just make yourselves comfortable.” She trotted out of the living room and into what I assumed was the kitchen with a happy skip in her step. Weird. While Twilight took a seat on the couch, I decided to look over the small collection of knickknacks that lined Fluttershy’s shelves.

There was nothing to special. A few pieces of china, some wooden dolls, a small diamond, some family photos...diamond?! I sent my eyes right back to the small black diamond that rested on her mantle. It was cracked right down the middle, yet the gem was still in one piece. What stopped me on the diamond was the fact that it was crafted perfectly. The lines were accurately cut, giving it the appearance of being sharp, but was actually smoother than any other like it. There was only one diamond I knew of that had ever been crafted like that. It was meant as a symbol for her, a gentle soul with great beauty that could be hidden behind a fierce exterior.

It was during that moment that Fluttershy walked back into the room, placing a plate with tea and treats on the table. She noticed me hovering in front of the diamond. “Oh, do you like that one? It’s a family heirloom that’s been in my family for generations.” My eyes turned to dinner plates, though my back was to the two ponies, hiding the fact. “It was given to my ancestor over a thousand years ago from a very special friend. Her name was--”

“Flitterbee. Her name was Flitterbee,” I interrupted turning toward the shy pegasus who was looking at me with pride.

“You do remember her,” Fluttershy said with a tearful smile.

I just stared back in shock at her. “How could I forget my greatest friend?” I finally said, tears growing my eyes. I crouched down and held out my arms. Fluttershy understood the gesture and flew into my arms. I hugged that mare like the world was ending and she was my special someone. “You lived on Flitter,” I whispered under my breath. “I am so glad.”

“She never gave up on you, Kat,” Fluttershy said back. “My grandmother passed down her diary to me. I read every entry and she always believed that you had been wronged and you would one day return to us. And she was right, I knew she was right.”

I could feel that hot tears flowing from eyes. This was Flitterbee’s descendant, and I could feel her spirit emanating with the mare. I wasn’t alone after all; she waited for me. “It took a thousand years, Flitter, but I’m back. And I’ll never leave again,” I whispered into Fluttershy’s massive pink mane.

We stayed like that for a good five minutes just crying on each other. Twilight just stayed where she was, saying nothing and giving us the space we needed. We separated after that and I was lead over to the couch where I sat next to Twilight while Fluttershy took the chair nearby.

“So, what was that exactly?” Twilight asked after a moment.

I sighed and began the tale. “A long time ago, roughly two hundred and thirty years after I had been transported to Equestria, I met a young filly named Flitterbee. Flitter, as I called her, was shy little pegasus who could barely stand up for herself. I had been stationed in Trottingham at the time, looking over the town as it’s the closest town to the badlands and we had received some ominous messages from the area. I met Flitter when she was crying in an alley after a particularly rough session with her bullies. Flitter was picked on constantly being unable to fly very well as well as being an orphan, like myself. The very thought of bullies hurting such an innocent little filly ignited a fury within me. So, I took her to meet these bullies and I had a few words with them. It was on that day where I swore I would protect the little filly.

I watched as the Flitter grew, always there to make sure she was alright. She prospered under my care, I even would consider myself her big sister or maybe even mother. It just hurt me deep down to see any harm come to my little Flitter. It was a few years later when I saw her hidden talent. I saw another pack of bullies picking on her one day as I arrived to pick her up from school, but something happened before I could intervene. She exploded on them, yelling even harsher words and she just glared at them. Five colts, several years older than her, suddenly wet themselves and ran off crying to their mommies.”

“The ‘Stare’!” Twilight interrupted.

“Excuse me?” I asked.

“The Stare! Fluttershy can do it too!” I looked at Fluttershy in shock and surprise.

She blushed a little and hid behind her mane. “I don’t like doing it, but sometimes my animals need to be reeled in a little.” I smiled like a proud mother; Fluttershy was much more like her ancestor than I thought.

“A year later, Princess Celestia ordered me back to the Castle of the Two Sisters. The dragons were starting to refuse coming to meetings if my presence was not there. So, regretfully, I packed my bags for my home. Flitter was in tears as I prepared for my flight, but I promised that she would never be alone. I told her I would come back some day and to prove it, I gave her a perfect diamond, one of my greatest works. I told her that all she had to do was think of me while holding the diamond close to her heart and I would be there for her. I’m glad I did because not ten years later, Trottingham was invaded. If it wasn’t for that diamond, I never would have been able to find my little Flitter in the panic. I got to her just in time to beat down the bugs that had attacked. I got her to safety as fast as I could, Flitter holding me tight the entire time. I think it was because of Flitter that I lost it on those changelings. It was because of my feelings for her that I did what I did.”

“That’s something that’s been bothering me, Kat,” Twilight said. “You keep mentioning these things called ‘changelings’ that invaded Trottingham, but I couldn’t find a single mention of any such creatures in my books. Why is that?”

I sighed. “That would be because of me. The Trottingham Massacre, as it would be later called, does not refer only to the slaughter of the innocent ponies of that town, but also to the murder of the invaders. I personally wiped the changeling race out of existence for what they did. I made the changelings extinct.”

Both girls were gaping at me. “You k-killed an entire race of beings to save your surrogate daughter?” Twilight said, almost accusingly.

“Not just her, also there was the nearly fifteen hundred lives they devoured. Be glad they aren’t around any more. Where do you think the story of the vampony came from?”

“Amazing,” Twilight said. “I’d like to discuss these creatures in depth sometime. If you’re up for it.”

“Some other time, but yes I will, Twilight.” I sighed happily and turned back to Fluttershy. “After what happened, though, the princesses forced me to stay in the castle at all times, so I never got to see Flitter again. I am truly happy that she was able to live her life to the fullest.”

“But she never forgot you, Kat,” Fluttershy reminded me. “She kept you story alive with our family. We all are grateful to you for everything you did for us. If weren’t for you, I wouldn’t be here, nor would my mother and grandfather. You are our hero, Kat, and our greatest friend.”

With tears in my eyes, I replied, “Thank you Fluttershy. If would be alright with you, I would like for us to be friends. Can we?” I opened my arms wide again. Fluttershy smiled and hugged me tight.

“Of course. . . Grandmother,” Fluttershy responded.

I smiled and chuckled a little, hugging her back. “Don’t call me that,” I laughed back, getting a laugh all around. From there we talked so much, I learned all about my little Flutters’ life, from Cloudsdale to Ponyville, Twilight filling me in a little more about what I had missed in the thousand years I was missing. “You sure have been through a lot girls, though I must say I am proud of you for standing up for your friends to that dragon, my little Flutter. That took a lot of courage.”

Fluttershy blushed. “Oh, I’m not a very courageous pony. I was very frightened.”

“Yes, but you did it anyway. That is what courage is: being able to do what you need to do, despite your fear. I am very proud, Fluttershy.” She blushed even more, getting a hearty chuckle from me. I glanced around the room for a moment, then my eyes got stuck on an object on the table. It was a calendar, the date plain as day in bright red: October 21. I paled, it was today. I stood up suddenly, moving towards the door.

“Kat? Kat, what’s wrong?” Fluttershy asked, sounding hysterical.

“There’s something I need to do today, Flutters. I need to be alone. I’m sorry.” I took off outside of the house, taking flight and heading back towards the castle. What I didn’t know was that as I flew over the Everfree Forest, Fluttershy and Twilight rounded up there other friends to go out searching for me. They even got Rainbow Dash to do, albeit reluctantly. Several hours later was when Rainbow found me, though I didn’t even know she was there. I was too busy staring at the massive stone in front of me, the millennia of vines that had once surrounded it, now laying heaps all over. Etched into the stone were three names, all weathered from time.

Tears stained my eyes. I couldn’t read the names anymore and I couldn’t even remember them, either. I sat there, tears falling to the ground. “I’m so sorry,” I said to the stone. “I can’t even remember your names. What kind of daughter or sister can’t remember her family’s names? I’m so sorry Mom, Dad, little bro. I’m so so sorry. I wish I could have visited before, but I got stuck. Heh heh, bad joke I know. I wish I hadn’t dragged us to that movie all those years ago. It’s all my fault this happened; I’m so sorry. Truly the worst birthday ever.” I let the tears continue to fall and then I felt a hoof on my shoulder. I turned to see the rainbow mare looking back at me with a pained expression. I turned my head harshly. “What do you want?”

Rainbow hesitated, not knowing what to say or how to say it. “I’m sorry.”

My head turned back to her so fast, I should have gotten whiplash. “What?”

“I’m sorry, okay!” she huffed. “I shouldn’t have been so harsh. I should have just given you a chance like the others. So, I’m sorry.”

I sighed, turning back to the memorial I had made all those years ago. “No, Rainbow, you have nothing to be sorry about. I know that you’re the Element of Loyalty and you were just being cautious for your friends. I can’t fault you for that. I am glad you’re willing to give me a chance, though.” We sat there for a few minutes in silence both staring at the stone in front. I began to hum a small little tune that my father had showed me along time ago. Rainbow turned her head back to me.

“What are you singing?”

“A little song my dad taught me. He said that it described how he felt in Vietnam quite well. He was so young, nineteen, going into a war that he wanted no part of.”

“Your dad was in the military, too?!” Rainbow asked in shock. I was equally shocked.

Your dad was in the military?!”

“Yeah. He was in the Griffon Incursion couple decades back. The Griffon tried taking back some of the land they lost in the Griffon War. It wasn’t pretty, or at least that’s what he told me. He was a hero, always putting his life on the line for others.”

“Sounds like my dad to a tee. What does he do these days?”

“Nothing really,” Rainbow said with a sad expression. “He just sits at that home, staring off into space. Nothing ever reaches him now, not after the accident that took his wings and left him in a vegetative state.”

I nodded solemnly, knowing a few others like that back home. “I am sorry to hear that Rainbow. It sounds like he was true stallion for his country. While my dad may not have liked the situation he was in, that didn’t stop him from fighting for what he knew was right.” Again, silence reigned between us.

“Do you… do you think you could teach me?” Rainbow asked hesitantly. “The song that is.”

I turned towards Rainbow and smiled lightly. “Sure Rainbow, just join in when you feel comfortable.” She nodded and I began to sing.

Rainbow joined in around the chorus, her voice blending with my own seemlessly. Even though we had no music to voice this song, it didn't matter, the lyrics alone were enough. Both of us, two souls bonded by our heroic fathers who gave so much for the ones they loved. I didn’t need to look to know that she was crying, since I was crying too.

We leaned into each other, offering the emotional support we had been deprived of for years. Barely a moment later, both of us were enveloped in a hug by five other ponies. I knew it was our friends, who had no doubt been watching from the trees, letting us have our peace.

“Hey Kat?” asked Pinkie in a soft whisper.

“Yes, Pinkie?”

“Happy Birthday.”

I sniffled. “Thank you. I expect there’s a party for me tomorrow?”

“It’ll be the greatest party you’ve ever had. I Pinkie Promise. Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye.”

“And we’ll all be there by your side, darling,” Rarity informed me.

“You may not have had friends back then, Kat, but you have them now,” Twilight said quietly.

“And there’s nothing you can do to get rid of us,” Fluttershy said firmly.

I sighed happily. “Thank you girls, thank you very much.”

The next several weeks passed by in a blur. The very next morning, Pinkie threw me what I can honestly say was the greatest party I have ever been to. She called it my After-Birthday Party and it was rockin’! The DJ was one of the coolest mares I have ever met. The food was de-lici-ous! How does that mare make food of the gods?! I tried to get some recipes, but was turned down each time. The party was also my introduction to the town. They took my presence slightly better than I thought and we all had a good time.

The next day was when news of the Gravity Queen reached Ponyville. I was scared that everypony would believe the papers (mostly because they were true), but they all brushed it off as just fear mongering. Apparently the editor of this paper had once even called the Elements of Harmony menaces to society so his standing wasn’t very high in the town. I later found out that his name was, I kid you not, Jay Jay Jameson. Can you believe that?

Then came Nightmare Night which I was dying to attend. So, I did… for like an hour. Then a certain lunar princess came down, scaring the crap out of everypony and forcing me to hide out at Twilight’s for the remainder of the night. I passed out candy to trick-or-treaters, though made sure it was only through a crack in the door, to pass the time. Now it was November and time for my midday nap. I just got back from a nevi invasion of Mareami; that was a fun place to burn. There were actually stoned ponies on the beach thanking me for the extra tans they were getting from the burning city. How ponies tan, I will never know. That was the third nevi strike this week. I’m starting to want a vacation. Even with hanging out with Fluttershy and the others, a girl can get stressed out easily being in mortal danger all the time. Wish there was some way I could take a break from all this.

Okay, note to all other Displaced who somehow read this, never, I repeat, never say or think that statement. For what happened next has got to be some of the weirdest shit I have ever gotten into. Suddenly, out of nowhere, I hear a loud voice ringing in my ears, saying, Mistress of Gravity, wielder of one of the laws of nature, hear me! I, the Mighty Gilgamesh, call upon thee! Come, Kat Shifter!

First response: who the what now? Second: scream! Why scream, because the magical portal book on my bed somehow flipped itself open, revealing the portal that sucked me in like a bucking vacuum. Got to say, not fun at all. Next thing I know, I am laying face down on a suit of armor, in a compromising position, I might add. I thanked whatever god was looking out for me that no one could see me right now. And then that thought got thrown right out the freakin’ window!

"Huh,” spoke the armor. I shot up immediately, seeing a face behind the mask. “Pretty girl with exotic eyes and hair from another dimension falls on top of guy. Now all we need is a dramatic wind to come in from nowhere and the background to be filled with rose petals and we can start our own harem manga."

What? I looked back down, reminding me of the position I was in and my face turned beet red from anger and embarrassment. Lighting my hands with power, I got up, grabbed the guy in the armor with gravity and flung him into a nearby tree as hard as I could, sending him right through said tree and into another behind it. He spoke again, lying in a heap, and me now realizing it was the same voice as the one that summoned me here.

“Ah, also the 'girl beats up guy in over the top manner due to embarrassment' trope. How could I possibly forget that one?"

I put my hand to my head, slowly getting a headache and thinking to myself, “What the hell have I gotten myself into this time?

Truth Above All Else

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As the portal closed behind me, I laid back on my bed as the tears continued to fall from my eyes. I really bucked up this time and lost another friend in the process. I thought back on all the training the Mighty Gilgamesh put me through. The endless sparring, the musical mayhem, the philosophical lessons. But his rejection of my plans damn near broke my heart just as he shattered my totem. I looked down at the medallion that I was holding tightly in my hands.

“I am so sorry, Gilgy,” I whispered through my tears. “I-I can’t turn away from this. Celestia and Luna have to… they have to pay for all the pain they put me through. I can’t forgive them, not without finishing things.”

I don’t know how long I stayed there, curled up on my bed and soaking my pillow with tears. I couldn’t help it, I can’t stand losing friends and I really thought he and I were. Suddenly, I was awakened from my fetal state by the flapping of large wings and three young drakes flying in through my window.

“Your worship!” Garble greeted happily and then bowed low. “It is good to see you have returned. You have been missing for three weeks.”

Three weeks?! Gilgamesh was right that the worlds had their own times. I kept my face hidden until I had wiped away all of my tears and set my voice stoically. “I was busy. Is there anything to report?”

“There have been two nevi attacks, both of which happened over two weeks ago,” he informed me. “Both of which we destroyed as many nevi as possible, but the storms disappeared after an hour.”

I found that highly confusing. The storms never ceased on their own, at least they hadn’t prior to now. Is it just a coincidence that the nevi stopped attacking while I was gone? I sure hopped so. “Good work, you are…” I hesitated on dismissing them. Could I really continue doing this to them? Keeping them in the dark as I slowly push my way towards an epic fight with the princesses? No. No, I am done being Kat the manipulator. No more lies, no more half-truths, no more hidden agendas. There is only one me and its time I made everyone aware of that.

“Is there something wrong, your worship?” asked Garble, sounding a little concerned.

I sighed and turned towards my three dragons. “It’s time I was honest with you three,” I told them. “After everything you have done for me, it is the least I could do. The reason I have us going around destroying the cities the nevi are attacking is so that Celestia and Luna will be forced to fight me. Based on Celestia’s cowardice last time, I need to convince them that they have to fight me at their full. I was going to keep you in the dark until your usefulness wore out, but I just can’t feel right about doing that anymore. I do still need your help, but I will not force you, nor any others, to follow me down this path.”

The three drakes were surprised by my blunt statement and quickly huddled around each other. I could hear them whispering to each other, but couldn’t hear anything fully. They spoke quietly amongst each other for a good three minutes before breaking and turning back to me.

“Your worship,” Garble began, “thank you for being honest with us. It means a lot that you put so much trust in us. As such, we wish to continue serving you. We can’t very well leave you on your own.”

I smiled, holding back the happy tears. “Very well. Oh, and when we’re alone, you may call me Kat. I prefer casualty when around friends.” They brightened at me calling them friends and I did to. “Was there anything else?”

“Uh… yeah!” TK said while dragging out a large, heavy bag. He threw it to the floor in front of me and I opened it to reveal a collection of new crystals. Half were similar in shape to the gravity crystals, though were skinnier and glowed a faint green color. The others were multi-point star shaped crystals that glowed a light blue. I recognized them as status crystals from the game.

“Where did you get these?” I asked them in amazement.

“Some of the nevi we busted dropped them,” Tiny explained. “We thought you might know what to do with them since they smelled too weird to eat.”

“Yes, these will come in handy. The green ones are health crystals and the blue ones are stamina crystals. You break them and you’re cured of all ailments or feel like you just had eight hours of sleep.” I stretched out a palm and absorbed them all into pocket dimensions. Now I had one for gravity, another for health, and a third for stamina. Just ripping apart time and space right here! “You all have done me proud, now should probably return to your coven before Paco gets upset with me. You don’t have to tell him about this if you don’t want to. That is all up to you three now.”

“Of course, Kat,” they said in unison before taking flight towards the Dragon Lands. I sighed contently, watching them disappear into the rising sun. I then grimaced as turned in the direction of Ponyville. I was honest with those three, but could I bring myself to tell the others? I guess I’ll just have to find out. I started towards the door, but stopped when I remembered I still had Gilgamesh’s medallion in my hand. I was about to put it with the other tokens, but something stopped me. It didn’t feel right to put such a gift with a bunch of other trinkets, so I instead slipped the medallion into the inner pocket of my jacket and I put Auric’s coin in there, too, just for good measure. I really need to apologize to him sometime.

All prepared, I teleported out of my castle and into a special confectionary. I dropped to the floor, but not without the customers within gasping at my sudden appearance. “Kitty!” I heard from behind me and turned just in time to get a massive hug from Pinkie Pie. “Oh! How I missed you so~ much! Where have you been?”

“I was with… a friend, Pinkie. Sorry if I worried you and the others, but it was kinda a spur of the moment vacation.”

“Don’t worry about it Kitty! Oh, are you here for a cupcake? Or maybe some Germane chocolate cake?” Again with the pony puns? I really need to learn not to be surprised by it anymore.

“No, I’m not here for food, Pinkie. I need a favor.”

“Anything! Just name it!”

“I need you to gather Twilight and the others and meet me at Flutters’ cottage. As soon as they can. Can you do that for me, Pinkie?”

Pinkie shook her head and put on a look military seriousness. “Ma’am, yes ma’am!” Then she broke into a fit of giggles. “I’ll go get them and we’ll be there faster than you can say ‘Marzipan Mascarpone Meringue Madness’!” Pinkie then zoomed off, leaving me to wonder exactly how she does what she does. I shook my head, no time to think on that, I needed to go see my granddaughter. I quickly teleported before the other customers could say or do anything and I found myself outside of my favorite mare’s cottage. I knocked on the door just right so that it wouldn’t startle her.

“Coming~!” I heard her sing-song voice from within the house. “Yes?” Fluttershy asked as she opened the door, but then gasped as she saw me. I waved at her, smiling brightly. Then she flung herself at my chest, hugging me tightly. “Oh Kat! You’re back! I’ve missed you so much! We thought something bad happened!”

I wrapped my arms around her comfortingly. “Sorry for worrying you, Flutters, but I kinda got pulled away by a friend. By the way, the girls are coming over soon.”

“Oh? What for?”

“I need to tell you all something, but I feel it would be best to tell you all at once.”

“Oh, okay. Would you like to come in and wait for them?”

“That would be lovely.”

Fluttershy and I had some refreshing tea while we waited for the others to show up. Twilight was the first to arrive, already thinking she was late, but we were able to calm her down. Next came Rarity and Applejack, and a little while later, Pinkie came in dragging Rainbow Dash who was being too lazy to do anything at the moment. They all settled in the living room around Fluttershy and me, who stayed on the couch.

“I found everypony, just like you asked Kitty!” Pinkie said happily. “So what now?”

I sighed and let out a deep breath. “Now, I tell you the truth.”

“Huh?” I got from all six mares.

“Whatever do you mean, dear?” asked Rarity.

“Grandmother?” Flutters muttered while looking at me.

“I haven’t been completely honest with you all. I haven’t given up on revenge against the Princesses.”

“What?!” they shouted in unison.

“Why Kat?” began Applejack. “Why would you lie to us about that?”

“I haven’t lied to you, just as I haven’t said the whole truth. I won’t kill them, that much I can assure you all, but that doesn’t mean they can get off Scott free for what they did to me. I am going to challenge them to duel where I can finally show them that they can’t control me.”

There was silence all around. A few moments later, Twilight spoke up. “So then, are the newspapers true? Are you destroying cities all over the country?”

I sighed. “Yes, me and my team of dragons burn the cities the nevi invade. The thought behind it is that if the citizens of Equestria and the Princesses see me as a villain, Celestia and Luna will actually fight me instead of dodge me like last time. I always make sure that nopony is hurt, though. I will always protect the innocent, no matter what.”

“How could you, Kitty?” I looked over and saw that Pinkie’s mane had deflated and there were fresh tears in her eyes. “How could you do this to us?”

“I wonder, too,” stated Rarity, who seemed to have trouble controlling her emotions. “What did you hope to accomplish in befriending us? A strategic advantage?”

I shook my hung head. “No, what I hoped to gain… was friends. Despite everything you had been told about me and how much of a jerk I was, you still allowed me into your homes and lives without asking for anything in return. And that’s why I can’t keep this from you anymore. I can’t lie to my friends.”

The room fell back into silence and stayed that way as each of my friends debated within themselves over this new knowledge. I knew they would need some time. “I should leave,” I stated as I stood up and began moving to the door. But, I stopped near Rainbow, an idea coming to me. I ripped open a whole in space, reached in, and retrieved a green healing crystal. “Rainbow?” I said to the sulking mare. She looked at me, fury hidden behind her sadness. I put the crystal in her hooves and said, “Take this. I want you to break it above your father the next time you see him. I promise that nothing bad will happen.” I turned around, headed for the door, and teleported back to the castle.


The girls had all gone their separate ways after Kat left. Each had been left with much to think about regarding their human friend. Rainbow Dash especially was hard hit. She had trusted Kat, trusted her with information that only her closest friends knew of. Dash was now starting to believe that it was a mistake to have ever trusted the ‘manipulator’. But something was holding back these thoughts and Rainbow, for the life of her, couldn’t figure it out. She tried to mull it over while flying, during her nap, while eating, but nothing was ever resolved.

Well, there was one thing left she could do: visit her father. It wasn’t because of what Kat said, no, as Rainbow Blaze was always inspirational to her. Rainbow trotted silently through the home where her father was admitted, she was always happy to see him, no matter how much it hurt. She soon found her way to her father’s room and sat down near his bed. Blaze was just as she had last seen him: bandaged and broken, staring blankly into space. Rainbow would never admit this to anypony, but one of her greatest wishes was for her father to hold her in his arms, just one more time. Though she knew it would never happen, it was a happy dream.

“Hey, Dad,” Rainbow started. “I need some advice. I have this friend and she, well, she lied to me and the others. She plans on doing something terrible and she lied to us about it. I trusted her, Dad, to the point where I even told her about you. Her father was in the military back in her home, even said he was a two star general, before he died. I want to be loyal to my friends, heck, I want to be loyal to Kat, but how can I when I don’t even know if she means what she says?”

She knew there would be no answer, but at least it was off her chest. Rainbow then looked at her father, how broken he was, and then to her saddle bags which had that weird crystal. She pulled it out and looked it over. It didn’t look dangerous, despite that ominous glow, so she decided to see what would happen. Rainbow hovered over her father and broke the crystal in two above him. The crystal shattered and released some weird energy that was absorbed into Blaze. Rainbow fluttered back to the ground and watched in silence… for nothing. She sighed, expecting such disappointment.

“I wish you could tell me what I should do, Dad. This eating me up. I want to trust Kat, but how can I?” She turned away preparing to leave. “How could I trust someone like her?”

“Perhaps, you simply need some blind faith for once, squirt.” Rainbow stopped at that voice. Her eyes widened to dinner plates and her mouth dropped. Slowly, Dash turned her head back and saw something she never thought she would see again. Looking at her a few feet away, with that cocky smile that never failed to brighten her day, was Rainbow Blaze, happy tears brimming in his eyes. “Sometimes, that’s all it takes.”

Rainbow couldn’t hold back any more and launched towards him, embracing him tightly. “Dad!!” She held on to Blaze with all her might, daring anypony to take him away from her. “You-you’re better! B-but ho-,” Realization came to Rainbow. It was the crystal Kat had given her. That was the only explanation. “Kat,” Rainbow whispered to herself, “Thank you, my friend.”


Applejack stared blankly into her soup. She simply sat there, staring at her reflection in the delicious broth that she had yet to touch. The events of today had given her a lot to think about, leaving her with very little of an appetite.

“Applejack?” asked Granny Smith, sounding concerned. “Y’all right darlin’?”

Applejack blinked and looked up from her meal. “Uh, yeah. Just peachy.”

Granny Smith frowned. “Now don’t you go lyin’ to yer granny!” Her gaze softened and she put a hoof on her granddaughter’s shoulder. “So what’s gotcha so down?”

Applejack looked around the table and was glad that Big Mac and Apple Bloom had already finished dinner and gone to bed. She sighed. “A friend of mine is about to do somethin’ incredibly stupid and mean. No matter what we do, none of us can seem to talk her out of it. Worse of all, is that she lied to us about it! I… I just don’t know if we can stay friends after all that.”

Granny closed her eyes and nodded. “Yer talkin’ ‘bout that ‘hooman’, Kat, right?” AJ’s surprised expression was all she needed. “Thought so. Fluttershy wasn’t the only one who grew up hearin’ ‘bout ol’ Gravity. Mah pappy told me many different stories about that heroic creature. Ah never believed Ah would ever get to meet the legend, though. She has had a hard life, AJ; harder than anypony could believe.” Granny got up and moved towards the window, looking out at the night. “Ya know, Kat kinda reminds me of some the ol’ minotaurs I met a long time ago.”

Applejack blinked in surprise. “You used to have minotaur friends?”

Granny nodded and smiled with a laugh. “Oh, yes. Bunch of ruffians, they were. Always getting into trouble and fightin’ amongst themselves. Made this peace-lovin’ pony wonder how they could be friends with how much they argued and fought. So, Ah asked them one day an’ you know what they told me?” Applejack shook her head, ensnared in her grandmother’s story. “They said, ‘Those who walk the path of life alone, are bound to greet its darkest territories and perish within. Those who would walk the path with friends by their side, will fight through those territories and come out as better ponies.’ Do ya understand what Ah’m tellin’ ya youngin’?”

“Un, kinda?” Applejack admitted sheepishly.

Granny sighed and rolled her eyes. “What Ah’m sayin’ is that as long as Kat has friends by her side, she won’t go down the dark paths. As long as you and the others stick with her, Kat will always be the good pony we know her to be. While it’s downright plain to see that she is goin’ down one of those paths now, if she has you, Fluttershy, and yer other friends, then she will be able to return to her original path of light. Ah will always believe that Gravity is a hero, even if she is actin’ like a villain, Ah know she has her reasons. But, Ah suppose you would know her better than me, so, AJ, what kind of pony is Kat?”

Applejack was about to retort, but put her hoof down as she truly thought about Granny’s words. Kat wanted revenge, but she just wanted to show the princesses that they were wrong; would she do any different? If somepony had wronged her so, could she forgive them so easily? AJ had known Kat for a much shorter time than the princesses, but she had seen so much in the young girl. Kat had a hard life, that was true, but she was making the best of it. Kat was always smiling around them, always willing to lend a hand, and she was carefree in everything she did. AJ had her answer. “Kat is a good pony who just needs to let out a little anger. Yer right, Granny, I can’t abandon a friend to a life of vengeance. Ah gonna be right there with her, making sure she don’t do somethin’ too stupid.”

Granny smiled and nodded. “That’s what Ah thought y’all was gonna say. Now, why don’t I tell ya a few more stories ‘bout my minotaur buddies?” Granny asked as she led AJ into the living room

“Ya know Granny, that don’t sound like a bad idea at all.” Applejack took a seat on the couch while Granny got in her chair.

“Well, let me tell you about them. There was Brutus, and Steel Fist, and ol’ Iron Side. Bunch o’ fools with big egos, but they were friendly. I learned a lot around them, such as minotaurs fight between each other to gain a proper understanding of who they are. If they have an argument, they believe a good fight will help them understand each other better. Kinda like what Kat’s plannin’ right?”

AJ blinked, noticing the similarities as well. They were strikingly similar. Maybe she needed to bring that up with Twilight? She would know better about such things. “Well, don’t leave me in suspense! Ah wanna hear it all!”

“That’s the spirit, youngin’!” Applejack laid back and listen to her granny ramble about her friends, lulling the orange mare to sleep after about five minutes.


I had been lying in my bed since I arrived back at the castle. I just couldn’t bring myself to get up and do anything. Didn’t really matter, though, because I had already repaired nearly three-fourths of the castle, so I had no problem just laying around. Didn’t make me feel any better, unfortunately. I knew that telling them the truth would hurt, but I had no idea how much. I could feel a tear in my heart looking at their heartbroken stares; it was the worst feeling I had in a long time.

It’s been only a little over a day since I told them all the truth, but it felt so much longer. I finally pulled myself from the bed and decided to go for a walk through the castle. As I wandered the halls, I continued thinking on my friends and how much those six ponies had grown on me. Fluttershy, especially, meant a lot to me. She was in all essence, my only family on this planet and I will do whatever it takes to keep her safe, even if she hates me. I really hope she doesn’t hate me. I sighed and looked up to see where I ended up. Seems I found myself in the rebuilt throne room, on the ceiling. I sighed again, this time in frustration. It really gets annoying when you don’t even realize you’re not on the ground anymore. Maybe I should just give up walking and rely on floating all the time? Eh, maybe someday, but not today.

“Kat?” My head shot up from the sound of another’s voice. I looked around frantically, recognizing that voice.

“Uh, down here, partner.”

I stopped moving my head and face-palmed, completely forgetting I was on the ceiling. I looked down and smiled at the group of ponies beneath me. “Girls!” I cried and flew down to them. “You came!”

“Yeah, we did,” Twilight said with a glum look. My good mood melted away and I hung my head.

“You decided then?” I asked, beginning to float away from them.

“We sure did,” Rainbow said. I just continued floating, not even looking at them. That is, until I was suddenly tackled by the cyan pegasus mare. I was spun around from the momentum, but I realized that she was clinging to me with tears in her eyes. “Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!” Rainbow was crying into my chest.

“It worked, I take it,” I said with a soft smile.

“Like a charm!” Rainbow said, before hugging me again. “Thank you for giving me back my dad, Kat. It means a lot to me.”

“I had something that could help,” I shrugged. “Why keep such a thing to myself when it can be used to help others?”

“And that’s why we have decided to stick by ya, sugarcube,” Applejack said moving towards me and Rainbow from the group, Fluttershy by her side with a comforting smile. “You may have lied to us, but yer a good pony. Ya just need help in making others see it, that an’ yer dang anger issues.”

I stuck my tongue out at her playfully. “Hey, it’s not like I am doing any permanent damage. And once I’ve shown those two not to do that again, I’m going to put all my focus into destroying the nevi. That’s a promise!”

“And we will certainly hold you to it, darling,” Rarity said with a wink. “Though you must earn my forgiveness.”

“How?” I asked with a little fear of how she was looking at me.

“Well, I just so happen to have a slew of new dresses that I need a model for and…” she looked at me with a glint in her eyes.

I deadpanned. Okay, I know where this story’s going. “Fine,” I huffed and crossed my arms. “But, I won’t like it!” That got a chuckle out of the others.

Twilight walked up to me next, still with a glum look. “I still don’t like that you want to hurt my teacher, Kat. Celestia is like another mother to me and you want to drastically hurt her. I don’t know how I feel about that.” I winced at her confession, not knowing the extent of Twilight’s feelings towards Cellie. I hope that this doesn’t ruin things. “However, you have proven yourself truly capable of handling yourself and protecting others, so I believe a symbol of faith is in order. As long as you promise not to cause any permanent damage, I will respect your decision.”

I let out a breath I didn’t know I was holding. “I can agree to that, Twilight. Thank you for staying my friend. Pinkie? Flutters? What about you two?”

“I don’t like that you want to be a meanie pants, Kat, but if this will make everything better, I’m game!” Pinkie announced with a smile. “Then we can throw a big party!”

The others and I chuckled at Pinkie’s enthusiasm and then I turned to Flutters who was still near Applejack. I got down on my knees so I was eye level with her and the others. “Flutters? Will you still be my friend?”

Fluttershy slowly moved closer to me until she was right in my face. Without warning, she pushed forward and wrapped her arms around me. “Of course, Kat. I could never turn my back on you.” She pulled back and I saw a few tears in the corners of her eyes. “We’re family and that is a fact that will never change. I love you, grandmother, I always will.”

I felt the tears in my eyes and down my cheeks. I pulled Fluttershy closer, feeling her warmth. I had family now, a family I could protect. “Thank you, my little Flutters,” I whispered into her ear. “I promise that I will always protect you. As long as I exist, no one will harm you or your friends, or they will pay the price.” I let Fluttershy go and we both wiped the tears from our eyes. Then I had an idea. “Hold on a second girls.” I teleported off to Fluttershy’s cabin and looked around. A few of the animals ran in fear of my sudden appearance and a certain little bunny was glaring at me with his arms crossed and a foot stomping in irritation. “Sorry Angel,” I said while rubbing the back of my head. “Hey, you know where Shy’s diamond is?”

Angel’s eyebrow lifted a little and he pointed towards the lower bedroom. I questioned why it was there, when it was last on her shelf of knickknacks. “Thanks,” I muttered and moved towards the room. I opened the door and found the last thing I was expecting: a shrine, to me! Did not see that coming. There was a little statue of my frozen state in the center surrounded by a few other items. I saw a small book that had definitely seen better days. I picked it up and looked at the first page.

The Personal Journal of Flitterbee, daughter of Gravity

I felt tears coming to my eyes again. I always wondered about how Flitter thought of our relationship and now I knew. She truly thought of me as her mother and I couldn’t be happier that she did. “Thank you Flitter,” I whispered as I put the book back. “I will always remember you, my little pony. And I will do my very best to protect your legacy. My only regret is that I couldn’t see you grow up into the great mare I knew you would become. Rest in peace, my little Flitter.” I wiped the fresh tears from my eyes and I spied my prize near a few framed, ancient news articles. I picked up the black diamond and Wormholed back to the girls.

“You’re back!” Flutters announced happily.

“Yep, had to grab this,” I said while presenting the gem. I bent down and held out the gem for all to see. “Check this out.” I let my hand glow with power as I held the diamond. The crack down the middle began to repair itself immediately and it began to glow softly. With the repairs complete, I whispered into it, just loud enough for the others to hear. “I, Kat Shifter, Queen of Gravity, lend this diamond to my granddaughter, Fluttershy, and her compatriots. As my solemn duty, should she ever call out for me whilst holding this gem, I shall be at her side, post haste. This token of mine will always be with her, never leaving her side, even if it is never seen. I give this to her as a token of my love and pride in her, something that will never change.” I smiled at Fluttershy who had tears in her eyes, happy tears. I grabbed her hoof and placed the gem in the flat. It disappeared in a glimmer of light. “This gem is now a part of your soul, Fluttershy. Whenever you need me, all you need is to call for me and I will be there for you, no matter what.”

“…Thank you, grandmother. I will make you proud,” Fluttershy said after a moment of speechlessness.

I smiled and rubbed her mane affectionately. “You already have, my little pony.” She smiled back and we hugged. I looked at the others, all of them looking at me with various looks of happiness. We broke after a moment. “So my friends, why don’t we go get something to eat at Sugar Cube Corner. My treat!” They all ‘whooped’ in happiness and I teleported us to go get some delicious treats.

Without my knowledge, however, another was in my castle, watching from the shadows. “You seems so happy now,” it said with sinister sincerity. “It will be glorious to take it all away from you. You speak of revenge, but you know nothing of the subject. Soon, very soon, I will destroy you and all you care about. You will pay for everything… Ally.” The figure disappeared in an instant, leaving none the wiser that it had ever been there in the first place.

Down with the Queen

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Several months have passed since I told the girls my true intentions. It has been hard earning back their trust, but it has been worth every bit of blood, sweat, and tears. And the multitude of dresses and interrogative sessions with Rarity and Twilight; they even overlapped sometimes! Talk about going through hell! I have also begun to notice a lot of things happen around my friends, too. It started to appear that way when they told me all that I had missed in my three week absence. A sisterly spat between Rarity and her little sister, Sweetie Belle, to a danger filled pet race because of Rainbow, all ending with Spike going through his first greed growth. I am honestly glad I wasn’t there for that last one, otherwise I may have ended up having to kill my little dragon friend. Greed Bursters, as the dragons call them, are the most dangerous and are very difficult to almost impossible to revert back to their original selves. I am very glad he is okay, though.

What disappointed me the most, though, was that I had to miss spending Hearth’s Warming with Fluttershy. She and the others had been invited to Canterlot to take the lead roles in the holiday play. They all came back as soon as they could, but at least I did get to spend the day with Garble, Tiny, and TK. They each gave me a gem that resembled their scale colors and gave each of them a large bag of diamonds, rubies, and emeralds in return. The girls had come back a couple days later and we spent it all talking about past Hearth’s Warmings and having delicious hot cocoa around the fire. That was only possible thanks to all the repair work I had gotten to do on the castle. Nevi attacks were getting rarer and had left me with plenty of free time. Thankfully, I got the new den done just in time for the holiday.

Even more excitement came as winter began to wind down. I wasn’t able to see much of Pinkie, now that the Cakes required her to foalsit their new twins, but I still stopped in now and again to lend a hand. Those two have trouble written all over them. A little while after, a pair of conmen came to town in attempt to take over Applejack’s farm; like hell was I gonna let that happen! Sure, I helped from a distance, but my stasis levitation had improved a ton ever since Rarity had shared her secrets to multitasking. With that little boost, the Apples cleaned those fast-talking colts clocks! Serves ‘em right for trying to take my friend’s livelihood and AJ even made us all honorary members of the Apple family! How great is that?

A few days later, I found a familiar looking flyer in town as Flutters and I were getting her groceries. It was the same flyer Gilgamesh had shown me for that minotaur’s self-help class. I cringed at how his Fluttershy had acted afterward and made sure that my little Flutter didn’t see the poster. I took it upon myself, instead, to help get Fluttershy to be more assertive. Surprisingly, it worked like a charm. I helped her to the point of where she could look one those stand owners in the eye and haggle with the best of them. I’m so proud of her! And there weren’t even any backlashes; she still acts like the Flutter I know and love. Then there was that wackiness involving Twilight and time travel, but let’s not go into that. Except for this weird feeling I still got in the back of my head after Cerberus broke free, it’s just better off forgotten.

Speaking of weird feelings, I think Teridax is still watching me. I few months back, I sensed something watching me and sought it out with my gravity sense. To my surprise, I discovered a Rahkshi hiding in the shadows of my castle. I guess the big lord of evil considers me a threat, which he should. I left the creature be, though. He wasn’t hurting anything at the moment and doing anything to harm the beast would surely bring the Makuta back to my world. I am not putting Fluttershy and the girls in danger like that. So, it just sits there, watching me like some freakin’ stalker.

Getting back on track, was when Garble and the gang begged me to come with them on the Dragon Migration. They wanted the great Goddess of Battle to bless the migration with her presence. I was initially going to refuse, but then Spike went on about wanting to learn more about his kind. Twilight pleaded with me to watch over him at the migration, leaving with me no choice, but to go. It was just like the last one’s I had been to over a thousand years ago: a bunch of dragons sitting around a volcano, sharing stories while the young ones acted like a bunch of drunk morons. It was there that I introduced Spike to my dragon trio. They started off a little rough, due to his pony childhood, but they had become good friends by the end of the day, even though I had to crush their hopes of going on a raid. Phoenix’s are graceful creatures and I was fully against the smashing of their eggs, especially when they reminded me of Philomena, Celestia’s pet phoenix.

Then came one of the proudest moments of my life. This year turned out to be Ponyville’s responsibility to resupply Cloudsdale with water and Rainbow Dash needed every able bodied pegasi’s support to create a tornado that would launch water up into the clouds. Fluttershy was included, but her wingpower was dreadfully low to where it wouldn’t help at all. She didn’t want to let down her friends, so her animals helped her train up her wingpower. I was so proud of her for wanting to get better for her friends that I lent my own skills to help her. What I did was increase the amount of gravity on Fluttershy’s body, to make it so it was like she was constantly carrying around weights, also I made her fly at all times so her wings received the greatest benefits. We started at five times the planet’s gravity, moving up to ten after a day. By the time it was time to create the tornado, Fluttershy was able to hand twenty-five times the planet’s gravity with only a fair amount of difficulty. The results were nothing to scoff at, with Fluttershy’s wingpower increasing from 0.5 wp at the start, to an amazing 11.2! With her massive speed boost, Ponyville was able to set a brand new speed record for the tornado, even earning my little pony praise from the captain of the Wonderbolts. That presence may have kept me in the shadows during the actual event, but I was watching nonetheless, scooping up my granddaughter in a big hug after Spitfire had left.

It wasn’t all unicorns and rainbows for me, though (wait, can I still use that expression here? ...Might as well). Even though the nevi weren’t attacking as often, when they did, they went for the massive damage. I didn’t even need my dragon team to spread the destruction as the nevi were perfectly capable of doing it themselves. New nevi showed up each battle, even a few boss nevi coming in. The most difficult by far was the one earlier today when my worst fear became real and I had to fight a rare Hulk! Holy. Shit! He was almost impossibly strong! See what the rare nevi lack in real size, is not only are they immensely stronger than their counterparts, they are also immune to my three super strike powers: Spiral Claw, Gravity Typhoon, and even Black Hole! Wait, have I shared Gravity Typhoon yet? No? Oh, well, that’ll have to wait because I am absolutely beat. It took me five, count ‘em, five freakin’ hours to beat that lousy bucker! I don’t think I will ever be allowed back into Detrot ever again.

After nearly five months of this, I’m almost tempted to wish myself on vacation again. Thankfully, Rarity showed me a better way to relieve stress. Thank all that is holy for the spa! Oh my god, that place is a miracle. Aloe and Lotus are masters in the art of pampering a girl into submission. The Russian accent takes a little getting used to (I had an American military father, of course it would put me on edge!), but it is totally worth it! I was relaxing in the hot tub after going through my usual pampering through the massage and sauna, when I heard the front door open and two more customers came in. I smiled when the spa ponies brought in Rarity and Fluttershy. It was there weekly session! I had completely forgotten about that.

“Hey girls!” I greeted from my spot in the tub. They looked up in surprise, but smiled right back at me.

“Welcome back, Kat! I trust your mission went well?” Rarity returned.

“Oh, I hope you’re not hurt grandmother,” Flutters said as she flew up by my side. “You’re not are you?”

I shook my head. “I’m alright, Flutters. Just having some relaxation after the big fight.”

“Oh, yes,” Rarity said as she and Flutters dipped themselves into the spa tub. “The papers are already going crazy with the destruction of Detrot. Honestly, Kat, I thought you had more decorum than to destroy an entire city.”

I deadpanned at Rarity. “Okay, for once the destruction wasn’t my fault. An extremely powerful nevi was in charge of that last bunch. It took a lot to put it down, which left TK, Tiny, and Garble to deal with the rest as I got smacked up and down the city!”

They gasped. “How are you not hurt, grandmother?” my granddaughter asked as she looked over my body. Sure, it was a little creepy being that I was naked, but I knew there was no stopping her when it comes to my safety.

“It’s a benefit of being a shifter,” I explained. “I can take it as much as I deal it out. The worst I’ve ever really felt is when I fell from the upper atmosphere during my early training. Now that hurt. I really don’t recommend it without the proper safety gear. So, what brings you girls here?”

“Well, not only is it our weekly session, but we need to be prim and proper before we leave for Canterlot tomorrow,” replied the fashionista.

“Huh? Why are you going to Canterlot? Why wasn’t I told about this?”

“Oh, we only just got invited,” answered Flutters. “Princess Celestia has asked us to help out with the Royal Wedding that’s coming up. Rarity has been asked to help with the wedding dress and I’ve been asked to provide the music. Pinkie will be in charge of the reception, Rainbow’s been asked to provide a Rainboom when the bride and groom say ‘I do’, Applejack’s catering, and Twilight is in charge of keeping everything organized.”

Royal Wedding? Why does that sound… oh, right. “Um, who, by chance, is getting hitched?”

“Twilight’s brother, Shining Armor and Princess Mi Amore Cadenza. We aren’t exactly sure who that is, but she sounds nice.”

Crap. I was really hoping that that little prediction I had been told about was wrong. Why would sweet little Cadenza marry that dense moron? Then again, I did only meet him once and it wasn’t on the best of circumstances. Might as well give him the benefit of the doubt, for now. “That sounds like it should be… interesting. I hope you girls have fun.” I stood up, facing away from the girls, and covered myself with a nearby towel. “I do need to get going, though. I still have some repairs to finish at the castle, with luck I should be finished with it soon.”

“That’s great, grandmother. You will see us off tomorrow, though, right?” She looked right at me with those puppy dog eyes of her. So. Much. Cuteness! I nearly squeed from the sight and died of an adorable heart attack. It took all I had to stay amongst the living, but I was able to nod my answer. Fluttershy smiled brightly, squeeing herself, and clapping her hooves with joy. “Yay!” Oh good lord, I can die happy with that being my last sight. I couldn’t do that to her though so…

“Seeyoutomorrowbye!” I said as fast as possible and Wormholed to my castle. It took me a few moments to get my heart rate back down to a manageable level, but I did it. How on earth did my granddaughter become so cute? I need to keep a closer watch on her. Soon enough, she was going to get noticed by the stallions around town and I was going to have to start beating them off her with a stick. That or make them become intimate with the ground instead of my little pony. I smile at the thought of squishing some poor colt that was stupid enough to make a move on my Flutter without permission. Then I blinked. When did I become the overprotective parent? I haven’t even met Flutter’s parents, yet, which made me feel a little hollow inside that I, technically, had more family out there that I hadn’t met. I never really pegged myself for being the one to be overbearing on her children, but I guess missing out on Flitter’s life had made me a little protective of Fluttershy. Well, I guess I need to give her a chance at dating, but one step out of line and Flutters’ date is a pancake!

With those thoughts making me smile, I got back to work at repairing my castle. It was nearing completion, with only a few more rooms and hallways left to fix. After that, I would need to work on the gardening since the place was still covered in vines and weeds and the lawn was a complete mess. This passed the remaining daylight hours, even going a little into the night. I laid down on my bed after all that, smiling as I finally finished all the repairs. It took a little over six months, but it was well worth it to have my old home back in working condition. Now I just needed to worry about aesthetics and it would be completely restored! I thought back on everything that had happened ever since I returned from my imprisonment as well as my goals. Over the past few months, my resolve for attacking the sisters had been faltering. I, honestly, wasn’t really seeing the point to it anymore. Every one makes mistakes, even immortal alicorn goddesses, right? Maybe I should just let them off the hook, like Auric and Gilgamesh had suggested? I really couldn’t be sure, not just yet.

The next morning, I saw Flutters and the girls off, though I kept wondering why Twilight looked so pissed. I tried to ask, but was interrupted by the train whistle blowing. I bid farewell, waving as the train took off down the track. I slumped when it was finally out of sight, immediately feeling the boredom coming on. I really hated when the girls went to Canterlot because, with me being a wanted felon, I could never go along. Nothing exciting ever happened while they were gone, leaving me bored out of my mind. Instead of sulking around town, also because I barely knew anypony outside of my little circle of friends, I went back to my castle. With the repairs finally finished, there wasn’t really much for me to do. Gardening was certainly not one of my specialties, so I knew that was out. I was going to have to hire a professional at some point. This left me with only one thing to do: battle training!

Even though I took Gilgy’s rejection hard, I promised him I would keep up with my training. I knew each lesson he taught me by heart and kept practicing each and every day so my skill would sharpen to their greatest potential. I pulled out my shield and sprung my staff to its full length, getting into a ready position. I took a deep breathe, then swung out my staff, putting a lot of force behind it. I followed up with a push of my shield and a strike with my left foot. I continued my practice for several more hours, only stopping as the sun began to set. I remembered that Flutters had asked me to feed her animals while she was away, so I retracted my staff, placing it into its slot on the innards of my shield, and stowed the shield on my back, causing it to shrink down to a manageable size. With my weapons stashed, I teleported to just outside of Flutters’ cottage and got to work. The animals had been wary of me when I had first started coming around, but they warmed up to me, all but one. I don’t know why Fluttershy keeps the thing around, but it’s a little demon!

“Ow!” I let out as something pointy was chucked into the back of my head. I turn, rubbing the sore spot on my head, to see the little devil now. “Hello, Angel Bunny,” I retort as if I was facing down my archenemy. It wasn’t far off from the truth. I swear that this freakin’ thing is evil! It always knows when and how it can do what it wants and get away with. I have tried more than once to punt him to the moon, but Fluttershy always swoops in at the last second and scolds me for being too harsh with him. I gave up trying to convince her that he’s not as good natured as she thinks long ago. Now, the problem was that he wouldn’t eat what I gave him. I’m quite sure he mimed out that my cooking was god awful, which I know it isn’t! How dare that stupid fuzzball say otherwise! Unfortunately, there was no way Flutters would ever forgive if I hurt the stupid thing, so I gave in to his demands and made him some weird salad dessert for his dinner, most of which he left untouched after filling up on only four bites. Rat bastard, literally!

After all of today’s excitement, I decided to just crash at Flutters. I’m sure she wouldn’t mind, plus it means that I’m already here to give them breakfast in the morning. I just flung myself on to her couch and passed into a dreamless sleep less than a minute later.

I awoke hours later to a loud thumping near my ear that eventually started to occur on my head. I shook myself free of the nuisance and sat up with a stretch and a yawn. I looked back over to where my head was laying to see a very disgruntled Angel glaring at me and still thumping his foot. I sighed and groaned at the same time, forcing myself to get up to feed the bastard and his much more cooperative brethren. That took an hour longer than expected because of that stupid spoiled bunny; I swear that I’m gonna end him one of these days. Since I had nothing better to do, I continued to practice my forms for a little while. Around lunch, I settled down outside with the other animals and a nice PB n’ J. I sat and watched as the other animals played around with one another, giggling at a few of their antics. I looked off into the distance at Canterlot, wondering how the girls were doing. Then I saw something weird, for some reason, the capital city seemed to be encased in a massive barrier. What was even more freaky was the strange mass of clouds that hovered right above the bubble.

Something about that cloud just screamed trouble to me. I really couldn’t place it. My musings were interrupted, however, when the animals shrieked in terror. I turned back to them and was surprised to see my dragons touching down not far from me. They ran up to me, worry on their face. “What’s up you guys?”

“Kat! Something is attacking Canterlot!” Garble spat out between his pants. How far did they fly to tell me this? I started to get an uneasy feeling, something about all this feeling familiar.

“What is this ‘something’?”

“Uh, well they look like ponies,” Tiny said.

“But, like, not,” TK supplied. Still not liking the sound of this.

“They’re all black, with holes in them, and they all have strange horns and insect like wings. Also they have these big, blue eyes and wicked fangs.”

I paled. No. No, no, no, no. This cannot be! I destroyed them! I left none… no. I told her. I warned her! I began to feel my fear be destroyed by my anger and fury. How dare she! I gave her another chance, a way to fix her mother’s mistakes and she does this?! Then a sense of dread washed over me, and it wasn’t just mine. I felt a tugging in my chest and I looked deep inside myself. Then I heard it.

Help us, grandmother! Please help us!

My little pony needed me! I instantly remembered that she was in Canterlot… with the changelings! I instantly sprung to my feat. “Hold on Flutters! Granny’s coming! Boys, hold on to me, we are going to Canterlot.” They instantly obeyed and a second later, we were floating above Canterlot which was being laid siege to by an army of the bug-like ponies. I felt white hot fury pouring through me. They dared show their faces like this, now they had to pay. I turned to Garble and the others, my voice darker than ever. “Boys, we got work to do.”


Everything had gone according to plan! More so even! Chrysalis, queen of the changelings, thought this as she looked out at the city of Canterlot below her. She had succeeded in infiltrating the castle, absorbed much love energy from that foolish lovesick stallion, and now her brood were taking what they wanted! To make things even sweeter, she had even defeated the great Princess Celestia and now had the Elements of Harmony themselves held hostage! Yes, this truly was her day!

“Hmm, hmm, hmm,” she chuckled to herself. She turned towards her captives all of them glaring at her, save for the few looks of fear from those that knew better. “What do you think Celestia?” she asked the cocooned royalty. “After nearly a millenium of regrouping, my children have succeeded in putting your pathetic ponies in their place.”

Celestia glared through her prison, but was still too weak to fight back. “You will not win, Chrysalis. You will be stopped, just like last time.”

“HA! The only reason we changelings were stopped before was due to your pesky little guard dog. And from what I hear, she’s no longer very loyal to you, now is she?” Chrysalis laughed mockingly, making Celestia wince at the reminder of Kat’s betrayal.

She had hoped for the better of the past months that Kat was simply just fighting the monsters, causing her usual amount of collateral damage. But, her ponies didn’t see it that way. They saw a monster that was no better than the ones already destroying their homes. When the dragons started helping her, as well, Celestia knew her fears were true. Kat had become like the very creatures they used to fight together. It anger her as much as it was saddening. Kat used to be a dear friend and now, she was an enemy, bent on her destruction. But, Celestia still had hope that Kat would come back; she hoped with all her heart for that.

Before Celestia could rebuttal, a changeling drone rushed into the throne room, out of breath from his run. “Queen Mother!” he shouted to her in a desperate tone.

“Yes, my little one? What is wrong?”

“D-d-dragons, your majesty! Dragons are attacking us!” he screamed.

The room went deathly silent as Chrysalis glared down at the bug-like pony. You could feel the tension in the air, save for the relief that was coming off one butter-coated pegasus. “What? Dragons? Why would dragons be attacking?!”

“I do not know, Queen Mother! But they are decimating our ranks! We have already lost a quarter of our strike force!”

“WHAT?!” Chrysalis was livid, with a subtle hint of grief. “Get out there and stop those monster from destroying any more of my children! Right this instant!”

“Yes mother!” the changeling screamed and scrammed at the same time. This left the room silent as Chrysalis stared back out at the city, now noticing the flames in the distance. She snarled at the sight, then fiercely turned to Celestia.

“This is your doing, isn’t it? You had this planned out all along! A final good riddance to my kind, well too bad! Gravity made the mistake of letting me live before, and I shall not squander this chance for the changelings to prove their dominance!”

Celestia wanted to say that she knew nothing about these dragons. She wanted to tell Chrysalis that she never wanted the changelings to be destroyed. She never got the chance to do either.

As soon as those words left Chrysalis’ mouth, a familiar voice rang out through the throne room. “And that is a mistake I will not make again.” Everypony and bug in the room froze in place. Even Celestia felt a twinge of fear from the dark tone the voice had used, immediately noting who had spoken. Suddenly, the ceiling above them was blown apart and a figure floated in through the newly made hole. She was bipedal, with long-flowing hair, and coated in a black and red aura, her eyes glowing with power. It was Kat, and she looked mad.

The room was silent as Kat made her entrance.She floated there, above them all, glaring Chrysalis down. “No,” Chrysalis whispered, her voice giving off tremendous amounts of fear. “No, this can’t be possible.”

“It is very much possible, Chrissie,” Kat spat at her. “I spared your life, all those centuries ago, not so you could follow in your mother’s hoofsteps, but so you and your kind could live. It appears… that was a mistake. This time… there will be no survivors.” Kat’s voice was frighteningly calm, not showing her full fury at the vampire-like creatures below. “I gave you a chance, Chrysalis, and you will pay the price for your insolence.”

Kat raised her left hand, summoning power to it. Around the room, all of the changelings, save for Chrysalis, began to float upward. The screamed in terror as they rose without meaning to. They rose up into the air, then hovered just beneath Kat’s height. With massive force, Kat launched her arm forward, sending the bugs flying out to the city. Chrysalis watched in fear as her children flew off, but let out a breath as she saw them stop above the center of the city. Only for her to gasp again as the rest of her children began to be gathered in the air above the city, many calling out to her through the hive-mind, begging for their mother to help them. She could feel the tears beginning to gather in her eyes as she turned back to creature that had once spared her life.

“No, please,” she begged Kat. “Please do not harm my children!”

Kat’s only response was a glare that frightened Celestia to the core. “You should have thought of that before you decided to attack. This was your decision, Chrysalis, and now you will face the consequences.” Above the changelings, a massive cloud of darkness began to swirl into existence, twinges of red lightning bursting from it. The changelings were screaming in terror of the sight.

Chrysalis instantly remembered what she was seeing. It was the same thing that had destroyed her brothers, sisters, and mother. The greatest power of Gravity: Black Hole! “Please, no! Anything, but that!” Chrysalis screamed at the sight.

“No more chances,” Kat said, eerily calm. “No more mercy.” She flung wrist up, causing Chrysalis to scream in terror as her children were launched into the destructive storm. The screams intensified in her head as they fell to their untimely demise within the black hole. Then suddenly, silence. The hive-mind went deathly quiet. Chrysalis trembled and shook as the hole began to fade, leaving no trace of any changeling behind. This was it, she was, once again, the last of the changelings.

“How could you? How could you do this to me, again?” Chrysalis said through her tears. Then she shrieked as she too was brought into the air, being forced to face Kat. Celestia was beyond frightened at this point. She knew that Kat was going down a dark path, but never did she believe that Kat would purposefully wipe out an entire species. The concept was beyond the sun diarch’s grasp. “Put me down! Let me go!”

“No. This time, I will not make the mistake of letting one of you bugs escape.” Kat threw a hand forward and Chrysalis began to be surrounded by an orb of black-red power.

“What are you doing?!” she screamed in terror.

“What I should have done many, many years ago.” Chrysalis continued screaming and thrashing in place as she was sealed within the sphere. Even though she was out of sight, everypony could still hear her screams. “No more of this. Today, the changelings become nothing, but bad memories. Be gone!” Kat began to clench her fingers into a fist, causing the orb to begin shrinking. Chrysalis screaming intensified as the sphere got smaller and smaller. The ponies began to hear sickening crunching from within, indicating that the changeling queen was literally being crushed to death. Just as the orb got to the size that a normal pony would be able to fit in with some difficulty, Kat yelled out, “Gravity Crush!” Kat instantly enclosed her hand, and the orb immediately followed suit. Chrysalis screamed out once more, before a loud, stomach churning crunch was heard from within. The orb continued to shrink, more crunching following, until it finally collapsed on itself, disappearing from existence.

Celestia held back a gasp and a cry at the brutality of it all. Kat had done it, she had finally caused the extinction of the changeling race. It was harsh, brutal, cruel, and many more things. Celestia didn’t know how she felt about this, but one thing came to mind. That if she didn’t act, and soon, Kat may endanger her ponies. Not even Kat could be allowed to do such a thing. The Gravity Queen had to be stopped.


I did it. The changelings were gone for good, and I will forever curse Auric’s name for being right… again. If I had known this was going to happen, I never would have let the filly Chrysalis live. Hindsight is 20/20 they say. I floated down to the ground, making sure I was still coated in aura. I walked over to where the girls were, lowering down to their height. “Are you all alright?” I received nods from each of them, making me let out a breath of relief. I smiled and ruffled Fluttershy’s mane lovingly. “Thank goodness. I was afraid you had gotten hurt.”

“Well, we wouldn’t even be in this mess if we had believed Twilight in the first place,” Rarity said with a look of regret. She turned to Twilight and hugged her tight. “Please forgive us, darling. We should have listened to you.” The others followed suit, confusing me.

“What are you girls talking about?”

“Twilight noticed that something was off about Cadence the whole time and we didn’t believe her,” Fluttershy explained. “None of us believed her, not even her brother or the Princess.”

That last part made me twinge in anger. Twilight knew the whole time that something was wrong, and Celestia had the gall not to believe her sown student? Putting not only her whole country at risk, but also the six most important ponies in my life?! That is the last straw! Nopony, no anything, puts my little Flutter in danger and gets away with it! “Celestia!” I roared, turning around to face the now freed princess, who was looking at with daggers as well.

“Yes, Gravity Queen?” her voice, dripping with venom. “You have something you wish to say to me?”

“There are many things that need to be said, but time will come for them. Right now, you have angered me. Not only did you wrongfully imprison me for over a thousand years, but you nearly let your own country fall to the changelings of all things! That is the last straw, Tia!” I spat, making her cringe slightly. “No more waiting, you have one week, sun goddess. One week to prepare for my arrival. When I return, all will be settled between you, Luna, and myself. The world will finally see that I am still the most powerful being on the planet, and all will fear my name. Do you accept my challenge, Tia? Are you willing to finally fight me?”

Celestia glared daggers at me. “I never impeded you in anything Kat, if anything, I always hoped that you would come back to me someday. I see that I was wrong. I wish it weren’t so, but you have given me no choice. Your challenge has been accepted, Kat Shifter. In one week’s time, the Princesses of the Night and Day shall put you in your place.”

I was tempted to both smile and cry. I don’t why I would cry, but I just had this strange feeling of heart break. Why is that? I shook myself free of that distraction, never taking my eyes off of Celestia. “Until then, Princess. I eagerly await our battle.” I teleported out of there, missing Celestia’s last, whispered words.

“This all could have been avoided, you know.”

The Long Awaited Showdown, part one

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I floated above the floor of my castle, midway through my rant. Ever since I came back to my castle, I had been screaming and yelling through the throne room about Celestia nearly letting Chrysalis and the changelings going on a mass killing spree. I had sent the boys back to the coven after they gave me the damage report. In all, sixty-three ponies were killed in the invasion attempt. That was sixty-three too many. “What was she thinking?! I know for a fact that Celestia had more power than that over grown bug, so why the hell did she sit there and do nothing?! She could have stopped that invasion easily, Luna going in would just be overkill, and kept everypony out of danger. What the hell is her problem?!”

“It is the same as it has always been. Celestia made a mistake, something you know quite well.”

“Well, when you put it like that…” I stopped speaking when I realized that something actually answered my question. I knew for a fact that no one else was in my castle, so who just answered me. “Who said that?” I asked without moving.

“I did,” the voice answered. Now that I focus on it, the voice was very… familiar. I turned around as fast as I could and was greeted to the sight of a black, star-coated cat smiling at me.

“Dusty?” I asked, tears building in the corners of my eyes, eager to burst forth.

To my surprise and glee, the cat nodded. “Hello again, Mistress Kat. I told you I would return soon, didn’t I?” I rushed forward with speed not even I knew I had, scooping up Dusty, and hugging him crushingly tight.

“DUSTY!! You’re alive, you’re alive, you’re alive!!” I screamed as tears of joy rolled down my face. He was here, I could feel his soft fur, the beating of his heart. My Dusty was back!

“Yes, Mistress, I am alive, but I won’t be for much longer if you keep crushing me,” he wheezed out. My eyes shot open and I let him go, tumbling to the floor. He coughed a few times, refilling his lungs with air, making me blush from my reaction.

“Sorry,” I squeaked out.

Dusty only shook his head, still smiling. “No harm has been done, my old friend. It is good to see you after so long as well. Now,” he said while straightening himself up, “I do believe that we have much to discuss.”

The next few hours flew by fast as I told Dusty everything. And I mean everything. From my return, to the changes, the friends, the family, and my revenge plans. It took a little bit longer to explain Auric, Teridax, and Gilgamesh, but he was able to understand it after a little bit. When I was done pouring out my heart to him, he sighed and hung his head. “Why is that whenever I take my eyes off you, you always seem to get in to trouble?”

I glared playfully at him.

He just shook his head lightly. “Kat, what part of ‘we need the princesses’ did you not understand? I know you’re mad at them, don’t think I am not, but if we are to defeat the nevi, we are going to need their help. I have felt the disturbances getting stronger, so I am sure you have noticed.”

I nodded. “Yes, the nevi are getting stronger. Much more than I thought they ever would. But why do we need them? They can’t even defend their own capital?”

“KAT!” he yelled at me, causing me to flinch. “You stubborn, hard headed fool! We need the princesses because no matter how strong you become, one person cannot handle this alone! Let go of your stubborn pride for once and see reason!”

I was very tempted to growl at him for his words, but I kept calm because I knew there was no way he could fully understand. “Dusty, they took you away from me. They have toyed with others lives for centuries and have put thousands of lives at risk. They put my only family in danger when they could have stopped the threat before it occurred. They need to know the price for messing with others’ lives!”

He glared right back at me. “Is that really your reason?” His question threw me off, allowing him to continue. “You’re sure there isn’t another reason behind all of this? Maybe something a little more personal with Celestia?”

“I have no idea what you are talking about.”

“Don’t play dumb with me, Kat! I, of all people, know how close you were to Celestia all those years ago. You used to look up to her. She used to be your role model, the kind of being you wanted to be. What happened to that Kat?” His tone softened as he asked that.

“She was stabbed in the back, one too many times,” I refuted. Dusty seemed taken aback by that, as he went quiet. “I have to do this. It’s the only way I can show them the real me. That I am not their plaything. It’s time to prove who I am to them.” I walked off from, needing a few minutes of space. I sped off so fast, that I missed Dusty’s last words to me.

“But at what cost, Mistress?”


A few days passed, the entire time taken up by me trying to convince Dusty to help me with my impending fight. I only had four more days before everything came together and I knew that I would need Dusty as a fail safe. It also wouldn’t hurt to have a friend there with me. He immediately refused to have any part of it, not wanting to cause any more damage. I wasn’t deterred. Every few hours, I would pester him with the question again, each time getting a ‘no’, but it got weaker each time.Yesterday was the breaking point when I informed him that I was still capable of losing control, knowing that he was the only one that could keep my power from going out of control. Knowing full well what the implications that would occur if I somehow lost control, he relented into helping me, but he didn’t have to like it.

It’s not like I wanted him to fight alongside me. I just needed him the area so I didn’t accidentally Extinguish either Luna or Celestia. I wanted to beat them up, not rip them apart on the atomic level. Even I think that’s a little bit of an overreaction. With my failsafe in place, I could now focus on getting in some last minute training. I was practicing in the throne room today, swinging my staff in fierce, fluid movements. Just as I was instructed, I had been focusing on swift, lighter strikes instead of strong ones which restricted my movements. I was going for quantity with the staff,with quality from the shield as I would imagine bashing my target with the shield. I had even took a little more from the good Captain by throwing my shield around, directing it with shifts that would eventually bring it back to me. You did not want to get hit by this thing!

My concentration, however, was broken as the doors to the throne were suddenly burst open, revealing five familiar ponies and a sixth that was also familiar, but was also looking quite furious. I saw her looking around the room, her glare never relaxing. “Come out Kat!” Twilight yelled. “I know you’re here!”

Wow, does she look pissed. Wondering why she can’t see me? Well, that would because I was on the ceiling. Less stuff to break up there. I put away my weapons and floated down in front of them. “What’s up girls?”

If looks could kill, I am pretty sure I would be nine feet under with a hole in my chest, based on Twilight's glare. “What’s up? What’s up!? That’s what you have to say after what you did?! Not, ‘Oh hello girls. I am so sorry for causing a mass genocide and then challenging Celestia to a duel to the death.’? What is wrong with you?! How could you do something so, so, so monstrous?!”

“Monstrous?” I parroted with surprise, that quickly turned to anger. “Monstrous?! I’m the monster?! What’s wrong with me? What’s wrong with you? I did this world a favor by finally eliminating those bugs!”

“That is not a decision you had any right to make!” she countered. “You are no god! You are just like any of us, and nopony, or person, has any right to decide whether or not an entire species has the right to live! You never even gave them a chance!”

I was getting very tired of my unicorn friend right now. “I gave them a chance, Twilight. Maybe it’s time you finally heard the true story of the Trottingham Massacre.” The girls leaned, including Twilight, who was both suspicious and curious. “As you know, the changelings invaded Trottingham, unprovoked, and attacked it’s populace. What you probably do not know is that they were already in Equestria at the time.” I saw their eyes widen, but I continued on. “The changelings were in Equestria under invitation from Princess Celestia to conduct peace talks between ponies and changelings. The queen eagerly accepted and they flew in to the country, unimpeded. With no one there to stop them, the bugs immediately flew off to the nearest city and began to devour its citizens, that city being Trottingham. When we received word at the castle, I sprinted off to save the ponies, especially my little Flitter. However, it had been a few hours since the invasion had begun, so when I arrived there had been many, many casualties. In anger, I released black hole with all my might, decimating the Queen and her kin. Only one survived my onslaught, Princess Chrysalis. I left her alive, because I had hoped that she would not fall like her mother did. I warned her that if they ever did anything like that again, I would eradicate them.”

I turned back to the girls, specifically Twilight, and gave them a fierce look. “Do you know how many lives those monsters took that night? Two thousand ponies were brutally murdered. Why? Because of Celestia, that’s why! Luna and I both told her not to trust the changelings. We pleaded with her not to go through with this and the citizens of Trottingham paid the price for her stupidity!”

“Don’t talk about Princess Celestia like that!” Twilight screamed at me with angry tears in her eyes.

I glared right back at her. “Why shouldn’t I? It’s the truth! Celestia is not some perfect goddess; she is far from it! Celestia has made mistake, after mistake, after mistake, with this latest changeling invasion the most recent. You put your teacher on such a high pedestal that you can’t see what kind of a terrible pony she really is! She’s just as much at fault for her actions as you and me. She is no goddess, she is just a simple pony with too much power.”

“Celestia is NOT A TERRIBLE PONY!! She is the kindest, most caring pony in all of Equestria, if not the world! You are just too stubborn to see past your own revenge and self pity! Celestia did what she felt she had to do to protect everypony. You forced her! You speak of her having too much power, but what about you?! You’re just as at fault!”

“FINE!” I roared at her in anger, I had enough of this. “If that is how you truly feel, then you can just go! Get out of my castle! Get out of my sight! Just run along back to your precious princess and you can wait around until she stabs you in the back!” I turned away before she could even offer a rebuttal and started to walk off.

“Grandmother,” Fluttershy called out to me. I stopped for a moment and noticed that she was right at my side, looking at me with those big,.almost sea-green eyes. I patted her on the head, giving her a small smile and then continued off.

*****Dusty's POV*****

I watched as my mistress walked off in anger from the group of ponies. I had kept myself hidden so as to see how she and these ponies truly acted around each other. Not that I mistrusted Kat’s word, but she did have a tendency to bend the truth. Seeing their reactions, however, have solidified what Kat had told me. None of them would understand how Kat feels about all of this, so I decided that I would inform them. I made my presence known as subtly as possible.

“Well, that certainly could have gone better, or worse.” All six of them jumped, my mistress’ granddaughter freezing up and falling to the floor. Why there was the sound of a bleating goat, I will never know. They turned towards me with looks of surprise and fear, not something I was accustomed to seeing. The purple unicorn, Twilight I believe, approached me with caution, her anger seemingly forgotten.

“Who, who are you?”

“Apologies,” I said, giving them a small bow. “I am known as Dusty, familiar to one Kat Shifter, as well as her guardian and best friend. It is an honor to meet her friends and granddaughter. I thank you for watching over her in my absence, as such, I am in your debt.”

Fluttershy had unfrozen by the time I was done speaking and approached me cautiously. “You’re really Dusty?” Her voice was quieter than I assumed, it was quite beautiful actually. She seemed so much like Kat’s beloved Flitter, I know now why she had become so attached to this mare.

I nodded in response. “I am he. You are Fluttershy, correct?”

“Yes,” she nodded in response.

“You are so much like your ancestor,” I said, making her blush. “Kat has told me much about all of you, and I see that her trust were put in the right mares. Especially you, Fluttershy. If were not for you, I believe that Kat would have fallen deeper into the darkness that her heart currently resides in.” I approached her and put a paw on her heart. “For that, you have my eternal gratitude and thanks.”

The pegasus blushed even brighter. “It-it was nothing. I just couldn’t let my grandmother become a truly bad pony.”

“Person,” I corrected out of habit. “It warms my heart that Kat has found new ponies she cares about. Though, I am afraid that it has not deterred her from her goal.”

Twilight seemed to remember her anger upon me saying that, as she immediately scowled and growled. “Why does she have to be like that?! What is her problem?”

I sighed, beginning to follow after Kat. “I cannot answer that in full, I would suggest you find your answers in the library further in the castle. I must attend to Kat, so I will leave you with this, Twilight. You would be in same position as Kat, if your mother-figure had betrayed you.” I turned my form into wisps and teleported to my mistress’ side, leaving six wide-eyed ponies in my wake. I found Kat laying on her bed, reading over a book. “Tis a rare sight to see you reading, Mistress.”

She sighed, putting the book down for a moment. “I thought you had gotten over calling me that, Dusty. If you must know, I am reading up on the few powers that I had written down of the sisters having. I must not only prepare physically, but mentally as well. Know thy enemy and all that.”

“You have learned much, my friend. And I call you Mistress because that is who you are to me. My mistress, my friend, my responsibility. My life is yours Kat, remember that.”

She rolled her eyes and patted me lovingly while smiling brightly. “Just stop risking it so much. I need you Dusty. You are my rock. I already feel saner just having you around again.”

“Nothing could ever make you sane,” I quipped.

She giggled and scratched me behind the ears. Ah, that feels sooo amazing! “There’s that wit I missed. Come on, let’s get back to work. I’m running out of time to get ready.” I sighed and nodded. While I may not approve of this direction, I’m not going to let my Kat fall into the darkness alone. I will follow her into the depths and be the one to pull her back out into the light. I died for her once, and I am more than prepared to do so again.

*****Twilight's POV*****

The girls had left hours ago, leaving the library to me alone for that time. It was quite the expanse of books, so many books! Books, books, books! Whoops, focus Twilight! Dusty said that the answer to Kat’s anger was held within one of these ancient tomes of knowledge. Oh, if only I had brought Spike, then we could be getting this done twice as fast. I sighed, closing the book in front of me and adding it to the pile on the floor next to the table. Another dead end. That’s all I’ve had for the past six hours, nothing, but dead ends!

Ugh, this is completely tiring. I put my head in my hooves, groaning in frustration of this all. What Dusty had told us doesn’t seem to add up to how Kat acts. I understood that the shifter and the princesses were close, but I can’t really believe that they were that close. It’s just too unbelievable. Kat’s words even more so. How could Princess Celestia, of all ponies, be a terrible pony? Okay, so she’s made a couple of mistakes, but it can’t be as many as Kat said. She’s my teacher, almost like another mother to me. Of course I would think highly of her, but if Kat really felt that way too, then what made her change? One event alone couldn’t have done it. What happened back then? When did everything change?

I sighed, leaning back in my chair slightly. To my surprise, the chair stopped leaning and something ‘clicked’ off to the side. I look over to see part of the bookcase sliding away and revealing a hidden room! I was stunned at first, but soon gathered enough courage and curiosity to explore the new room. It was very nice inside, almost perfectly preserved. It seemed to be some kind of private chambers, noting the beds and cushions inside. Then, I noticed a book stand in the center of the room, with a nearly perfect book resting on it. The cover was covered in a light amount of dust. I blew it off with a quick breath, revealing two golden pony heads, the symbol of the sisters. I opened the book carefully, hoping not to damage it. I read the first line inside:

The Journal of the Two Sisters

I gasped. This had to be what Dusty spoke of! I levitated the book of the stand and positioned myself on one of the cushions. I began to read, hoping that all of my answers could be found within.

*****Kat's POV*****

I laid awake late into the night, working through many different plans and ideas. Dusty had curled up on one of the pillow near the headboard, leaving me to work in silence. While I may have never been the best student in school, I was no idiot. I had to think this through. In all honesty, Celestia was the bigger threat between the two alicorn sisters. I needed to focus on her, but I doubt Luna would ever give me the chance. I wrote down and worked through idea after idea, making sure I had at least some kind of plan. I think I finally worked one just right, to where I got to fight both of them at their fullest, as well as making certain I would win. None of us will be holding back this time around. I will finally show them my true power.

My silent night was broken suddenly from a soft knocking at my door. I was surprised, thinking that the girls had left hours ago. I floated to the door and saw the pony I least wanted to speak with: Twilight Sparkle. I felt as if I should speak to her rudely, probably making a sarcastic remark, but the look on her face instantly dissuaded me. It was one of sadness, grief, despair, and guilt. I saw many signs that she had been crying, noting her bloodshot eyes and the tear marks in her fur.

“Twilight?” I asked, keeping my voice low and calm. “What are you still doing here? And why have you been crying?”

“Hello Kat,” she replied solemnly, seemingly ignoring my questions. “Can I come in?”

Not sure what was going on, and probably against my better judgement, I allowed her in, closing the door after her. I floated back to the bed and motioned for her to join me. She didn’t say as word as she pulled herself up and we just sat in silence. It was not an uncomfortable one, mind you, but it felt as if it should be.

“Are you okay, Twilight?” I asked. She was beginning to worry me.

She looked right into my eyes; I could practically feel the guilt pouring off of her. “Kat… I’m sorry.” I was too shocked to say anything before she continued. “I found Celestia’s journal and I read everything.” Oh, that explains it. We found out the same way, then. “Kat, I am so sorry. I, I should have… I don’t know what I should have done. I didn’t want to believe you,” I saw her tearing up, not even bothering to keep them in check. “I wanted to much to believe that the Princess was perfect. The perfect teacher and role model that I had known all of my life. But, after reading everything she’s done, I-I just don’t know what to think anymore. I shouldn’t have snapped at you, Kat, but… oh, I don’t what to do with this information!”

Twilight flung herself at me and began to sob into my chest. I was surprised at first, but soon wrapped my arms around her, cradling the crying unicorn. I began to rock in my seat, keeping my rhythm steady. “Shh, shh, it’s alright, Twilight. I forgive you. I know it’s hard, but you will move past this. I wasn’t able to, but you’re stronger than me. You, Rainbow, Applejack, you’re all so much stronger than I could ever be. I wish I could be like all of you, able to move beyond the past and take in life as it is, but I can’t. I promise you, Twilight, I will not kill them. I don’t think I ever did, even when I yelled it right in her face. I don’t think I could have ever gone through with it. Be strong, Twilight, I know you can be.”

Her sobbing began to calm, looking at me with tear filled eyes. “Do you really promise?” I nodded. She sniffled and put her muzzle back into my bosom. “I don’t want to hate her, Kat. But, how can I after reading of everything she did?”

“Because of who you are, Twilight. Celestia has wronged many, but not you. You know her better than most ponies or beings ever will. I wish I was like you, I really do, but I am not, so I have to make things right. Celestia broke me, and now I have to break her.”

“Just… don’t do anything too crazy, Kat. I still love her.” Silence reigned as she spoke those words, the young mare falling to sleep in my arms soon after. I saw a drop of water fall from my face. I put my hand up to my face and felt warm tears pouring from my eyes. Why was I crying? A sudden realization came to mind, but I didn’t know if I could believe it. Did I still love Celestia, too? I looked out into Luna’s moonlit night, knowing that soon, I would know.


The next several days flew by, focusing on reinforcing my plans, polishing and cleaning my weapons, and finishing my training. I trained until my muscles ached and sweat was pouring out of me. The girls left me be over those days, save for Flutters who drop by once a day to make sure I was still eating and getting proper rest. She’s so thoughtful! But, today was the day. I stared out at the horizon whilst out on the very peak of my castle. Dusty sat on a perch just below me, watching with the same hardened look as me. I simply stood there and waited, then it came. Celestia’s sun rose steadily into the morning sky, blanketing the land in it’s rays of warmth and splendor. It was just as beautiful as it was back then, only now it was a symbol. The symbol that would be the beginning of the end.

I looked over to Dusty who was already staring at me, his face completely unreadable. Then he turned back to the sunrise, but spoke, addressing me, “Are you ready for this Kat?”

I nodded, looking back at the rising sun myself. “Yes. On this day, the Sisters will fall to me.” I gave him a quick glance and put on a small smile. “Thank you for helping me, Dusty.”

“Well, I can’t let you go and do something stupid, now can I?” he asked with a smirk. “I will be in the shadows during your confrontation, Kat. I will be with you, even if you can’t see me.”

I nodded again. “I understand. It’s time for all of this to end.” Without another word, Dusty and I warped to just outside Canterlot Castle. Dusty immediately ducked into the shadows, masking his presence completely. Two guards were there to meet me, eyes wide at my sudden arrival. I glowered down on the two stallions and spoke with an emotionless tone. “Step aside, the Sisters and I have an appointment to keep.”

The guards recollected themselves immediately and put their spears together, attempting to bar me from entering. “You shall not pass, Gravity Queen.” I glared at them and then rolled my eyes. I wormholed right past them and walked off, ignoring their yellings for me to stop. This occurred a few more times, each going the same exact way until I finally reached the entrance to the throne room. I was honestly surprised to see that it was Shining Armor guarding the doors, alone.

“Captain Armor,” I said in a toneless voice.

“General Shifter,” he returned in kind. Him referring to me as a general was strange enough, but he didn’t even seem upset at my presence. “I should fight hoof and nail to keep you from reaching the princess, but I was told not to engage you in combat. That doesn’t mean I have to allow you through.”

I scowled at the (comparatively) young unicorn in front of me. I looked above him to the doors and shouted out, “Celestia! Luna! Enough of this foolishness! Stop with these distractions. It. Is. Time!” ...Did you really think that those two were the only ones capable of such a thing as the Royal Canterlot Voice? Shining was cringing from the volume of my voice and was about to say something, only to be interrupted by a familiar voice from behind the doors.

“Let her in Captain Armor!”

Shining was surprised, to say the least. “B-b-but Princess--!”

“Do it, we have put this off for far too long,” spoke Luna from the throne room. Shining looked ready to argue, but let out a sigh of defeat and hung his head. He stepped away, giving me free passage. I looked at him, and then strode past the doors. Once I had entered the room, I slammed the doors shut with my powers, preventing any future intrusions.

There they were. Princess Celestia and Princess Luna.

We simply stood there in silence, staring one another down. There wasn’t even the sound of wind as the watched me from their thrones. After what felt like an eternity, I spoke first. “It’s nice to see you again Luna. I’ve heard some interesting things about you.”

Her stare turned fierce. “And we have heard tales of your adventures as well, Ms. Shifter. How disappointing for one so great to fall so far.”

I snorted indignantly. “That’s certainly a mouthful coming from you, Nightmare Moon.”

“How dare you! Why we ought to-, “ Luna’s words were cut off by an alabaster wing blocking her. She looked over to Celestia who simply shook her head. There was a twinge in my heart at that sight, but I ignored it and continued standing in waiting. “You have come to challenge us,” Luna said after calming down.

“That’s the simple version, yes.”

“Are thee prepared for mortal combat?”

I reached behind my back, and pulled on my shield. Just for this occasion, I had my weapon of choice specially painted in my signature colors: black and gold. The outer ring was black, and interchanging with gold for each ring. In the center, was a solid picture of Space, representing my friend. I slid back my right foot and lowered my center of gravity.

“I am.”

“Good.” With a burst of speed, Luna sprung at me, using her wings for a massive boost. I pulled myself behind the shield and braced against her sudden charge. I felt the massive force of her magic and body hit my guard, but I held my ground with a small bit of shifting. With a quick burst of force, I shoved Luna off, sending her into the air where she hovered above me. I noticed that Celestia simply sat there and watched. I would make her regret that decision.

“You have betrayed the very beings you swore to protect, Kat,” Luna shouted to me.

“The only betrayal I know of was committed by the two of you!” I lifted into the air and fired a gravity kick right at Luna. She flew out of the way, which put me in the position to hit the wall.


I hit the wall with the ball of my foot and, using the moment, turned and sprung at Luna. I slammed my shield right into her muzzle, sending her to the floor with a yelp. I shifted gravity to an intense level that sent me slamming into Luna with a massive force. She screamed out in pain, but I gave her no chance of recovery. I activated a stasis field, causing her body to orbit around me. She struggled to break free of my gravitational field, but it was too strong. I flung out my free hand and sent her flying into the castle wall.

“Luna!” Celestia cried out, yet she stayed put. Works for me.

Luna groaned from her crater, but I kept her pinned, putting an increasing amount of pressure on her. I walked slowly towards her, glaring at her in deep anger. “I warned you, princesses. This time was for real, and you were not to go easy on me. You will pay the price for your disrespect and arrogance, princess of the night. Be gone!”

“NO!” I heard Celestia cry, but it was too late. I created a dark red and black orb around Luna, sealing her within. With a quick twirl of my wrist, the orb condensed into nothingness in less than a second. And like that, Luna was taken care of.

I turned towards Celestia, who was staring wide-eyed at where her sister once was. The air in the room was still, but then instantly became supercharged with solar energy. I watched as Celestia’s rage poured over into her physical being. Celestia’s mane and tail had turned into a living fire, her eyes glowing a near blinding gold. Very few beings have ever had the pleasure of seeing this side of Celestia, and now I was among their ranks. The Celestial Rage.

With a quick flash, Celestia summoned her legendary armor. It was pure gold, that I knew, but I had never seen her wear it. She looked magnificent under the plating. The chest plate was large and fiercely thick. Her helmet was similar to the guards, but included a special ring around where her horn went through that would triple her spells’ powers. Her wings were encased in the golden wing blades that were rumored to tear through anything with ease. Seeing them in their full splendor, I believe it. To finish it all, Celestia summoned her mightiest weapon: Mjolnir. This was nothing like Thor’s pitiful weapon, no, this was a true war hammer. It was the same height as the princess, it’s handle made of the purest gold that was reinforced and enchanted with magic older than her star itself. The hammer itself was made from the densest material in the known universe, with itself being the only known amount on the planet. This substance was so old, that its very name was lost to time. I referred to it as Black Matter (not to be confused with dark matter). Legend has, that it is the remains of a black hole that used to reside where the sun is now. Whether I believed or not, the metal still existed and was now to be used against me in full force.

This was the fight I was looking for. I was no longer facing Princess Celestia. No, I now faced her true form: Solar Flare.

“Are you prepared to perish for your crimes... Allison?” she asked in a very calm voice, despite her raging exterior.

I didn’t even smirk as I summoned my staff from the shield, the weapon springing to its full extension as soon as it hit my palm. I covered myself in aura and power in the same instance, lowering back to my stance. “Just how it should be,” I remarked. “You and me, Celestia.”

“Yes. It will end, just as it began.”

“Then let’s get started!” I yell as I fly at her, she repeating the action in kind. In that instant, Gravity clashed with Sol itself.

The Long Awaited Showdown, part two

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Canterlot Hospital was all in order this fine day; no emergencies, no crisis, all was finally calm after the hell that was brought upon them over the last week. Some of the nurses and doctors were still feeling the after affect the failed changeling invasion had done, especially on those that were lost, but now things had returned to their normal pace. The doctors moved from room to room, checking in on patients and going over charts for others. The nurses were either assisting patients or gossiping behind the counter. All in all, it was a normal, peaceful day.

That is, until a large black and red sphere suddenly appeared in the waiting room, frightening all in the immediate area. Just as suddenly as it appeared, the sphere dissipated, leaving behind a lone pony, a very familiar pony. She was a fair sized alicorn with a whisping starry mane and crescent moon cutie mark. The doctors were stunned at the strange arrival of Princess Luna, but immediately sprung into action when they noticed the sorry state that their princess of the night was in.

“Somepony get me a stretcher!” one of the doctors called to the nurses as he started looking over Luna. He gently nudged one of the many bruise patches on fur, indicating a massive struggle. Luna let out a small shriek of pain, causing the doctor to flinch. The nurses returned a second later with a stretcher and everypony assisted in getting Luna on it. She groaned as she was wheeled rapidly through the hospital corridors, making the doctors even more worried for her condition.

Out of the air, a guard who had been posted out front swooped in through the open windows in the halls. He quickly moved into step next to the doctor and began to question them on Luna’s sudden appearance. “What happened? Why is Princess Luna here? What is her condition?”

The doctor looked back to Luna, running several diagnoses through his head in rapid succession. He turned back to the guard. “She’s very banged up, almost as if she was hit by a train running at full speed. I see massive bruisings, perhaps a few cracked ribs and a couple broken bones. Other than that, I see no mortal injuries, but that is only what we can see. We won’t know more until we run some more tests.”

“Protocol dictates that a guard must be in your presence at all times to maintain watch over an injured princess. Will that be of any inconvenience?”

The doctor winced at having royal guard looking over his shoulder, but he knew that the guard was just doing his job. While he may get in the way, with the state of the princess was too important. “No there will be no problems, just let us do our jobs and the princess will be just fine."

The guard nodded stoically. “No harm will come to any of you, that I will make sure of.”

The doctor returned his worried gaze to the princess as they wheeled ever closer to the examination room. But will it be enough? he thought to himself. Whatever did this to Princess Luna, Celestia help us should it come back to finish the job. He shook his head free of those distracting thoughts, knowing that healing Luna had to be his only concern. The moaning of the princess stopped for a moment, making the doctor lean in closer to her to make sure the princess was still breathing. Then he heard it, something that would affect many for years to come.

“Kat… why did you not trust us? We could have been a… family…”

The doctor blinked at what he heard, not knowing what it meant. Then he saw a small tear shining in the light as it fell from Luna’s eyes. The doctor steeled himself, focus on Luna first, everything else came after.

*****Kat’s POV*****

Celestia and I clashed with the massive sound of metal clanging on metal as my shield met her warhammer. The force was beyond anything I have ever felt; the strength of Mjolnir combined with Celestia’s overwhelming magic was almost too much. Were it not for the enhanced strength I now had after Extinguishing that Ursa Major, I probably would have been dealt with there and then.

That wasn’t the case, though, no I was able to hold my own as her hammer pounded on my shield with fury-fueled vigor. I put my strength behind my shield and pushed, forcing Celestia back, her face showing a tiny bit of surprise.

“You have gotten stronger, Kat.”

I didn’t show any emotion for my response. “Of course. A thousand and some years gives one plenty of time to focus.”

Celestia glared right back at me. “You gave us no choice!”

“You gave me no choice!” I sprang forward, staff held high above my head. Celestia charged as well, hammer swinging with her magical might. I used a quick shift to alter my course, moving my shield into position and meeting the hammer head on. The impact sent both Celestia’s weapon and my shield arm back, but I used another shift to use the momentum and swing my staff straight at her.

Celestia thought otherwise. She conjured up a small barrier faster than anything I’ve ever seen. My surprise was my undoing, as Celestia swung her hammer once more, aiming for my gut. I reversed my gravity just in time to avoid being blasted apart. I hit the ceiling and sprinted forth. I got into position right above Celestia, shifted back to normal, and multiplied my gravity by fifty. I plummeted with extreme force right for the princess, but she was quicker than I thought and jumped out of the way, spreading her huge wings and taking to the air.

I was quick to recover, though, stopping in a hover mere centimeters above the ground. I growled at the solar diarch and burst forward, our weapons meeting once again in the air.

Again and again we clashed, neither gaining ground, relatively, on the other. I would strike out with my staff, only to meet with the handle of Mjolnir. She would swing that infernal hammer for it simply bounce off of my shield. Time did not exist as we traded blow for blow, each strike only infuriating me more as nothing I did fazed her.

I needed to amp things up!

As we once again blasted each other back from a rebound, I screamed at Celestia, “I’ve had enough of this!” I spread my arms wide and portaled in several boulders to surround me, each large enough to squish that backstabbing liar like a bug! “Take this! Gravity Typhoon!” I threw my arms forward, the rocks responding by sending themselves at Celestia. As they flew, I summoned more in their place, only for them to follow their brethren, and so on and so on.

Unfortunately, Celestia knew of this one quite well. I saw that smirk on her lips as she swung with Mjolnir faster than anyone could with their arms. Her and that accursed magic! Rock after rock was decimated by the blasted thing, until I was all out of rocks to summon. All around us lay a wasteland of debris; not a single rock managed to strike that damn alicorn!

“I thought you would use one of your classics, Shifter.” Celestia boasted. “You can try Spiral Claw, Gravity Typhoon, and Black Hole all you want, but I have counter measures for each. Let’s see something new.”

I snarled at the princess in response. “Fine! You want to see what I got? Then you are going to see what I bucking got!” I could feel my rage growing towards her. I did all that work to get her to rage on me, only for it to turn to taunting when she thought I couldn’t match her! That’s it! No more nice Kat! I could feel my aura burning around me as I fueled my rage into my power. This was something I had spent years studying, trying to mimic the unicorn/alicorn rage shift, and I think it worked, even if not aesthetically. This power, I could get used to it.

I immediately charged forward, my speed near triple what it was. This sudden burst caught Celestia off guard, and I was able to crash my shield right into her muzzle. The impact sent her flying back into the wall behind her throne, missing it by mere inches.

It wasn’t enough though, because I charged for her once again, attempting to bring my staff right down on her. But she was quick to recover, meeting my staff just above her face with the handle of her hammer. We fought for dominance, staff to handle, neither of us letting up. I realized the futility of this small clash and backed away with a quick flight.

Celestia wouldn’t have it. As I retreated to a safe distance, she lobbed her hammer like a javelin, aiming right for my head. Luckily, I was able to grab the hammer with my stasis field and put into a high speed orbit around my body. I had the golden weapon’s speed continuously build as it raced around me. When I felt it had enough, I let the hammer fly free of my orbit and aimed right for a charging Celestia. The speed caught her off guard, but she was quick to fly into the air, letting the weapon fly underneath her.

I wasn’t going to let her off that easily, though. As Mjolnir soared right under her, I used a quick shift to magnetize the hammer to the alicorn princess. Celestia’s steely expression immediately went to surprise as her body was suddenly forced in the exact opposite direction that she was flying and crashed into the wall. As she shook herself free of the debris, I was able to get a good look at how I had stuck the two, forcing me to burst out laughing.

“Hahaha! Oh, Celestia, I knew you cared for your hammer, but I never would have thought you used it like that!” Celestia looked confused and looked down to see that Mjolnir was stuck in a very compromising position near her *ehem* royal bits. Her blush made her look like a ripened tomato; it was hilarious! Then her expression soured and my magnetization of her hammer broke. I stared in surprise as she hefted her hammer in her magical grip, smirking victoriously at me.

“Oh, did you really think I couldn’t break your control? Foolish Kat, your manipulative abilities are no match for me! Surrender Shifter, and maybe there will be mercy!”

“Mercy?” I parroted, my face hardening in anger. “Mercy?! There will be no bucking mercy! Stop acting all high and mighty, when you are just as faulty as your so called little ponies!”

“Everything I have done has been to protect my citizens! I --,” she tried to continue, but that’s where I cut her off.

“EXACTLY!! That’s your problem! Your ponies are all you ever care about! Don’t even try to tell me that’s not true! If it wasn’t, then I wouldn’t have been sealed in stone, Dusty wouldn’t have been destroyed, and Luna wouldn’t have been banished to the moon! You think of your citizens before your own loved ones!” Celestia was aghast at my accusations, making me feel all that much better. “Here’s another bit you probably didn’t know: I didn’t commit those crimes you accused me of! It was the nevi; they’ve been behind it all!”

Her gaze once again hardened. “Oh? So it was the nevi that burned down hundreds, if not thousands, of ponies’ livelihoods with their dragon lackeys? It was the nevi who wiped a sentient race out of existence for simply being who they were born to be? It was the nevi who have caused millions of bits in damage all across the country?” My eyes showed only anger as she spoke. “For the millionth time Kat, neither I nor Luna meant for what happened to happen. We only wanted to disable your powers so that you wouldn’t hurt somepony accidentally, especially somepony like your surrogate daughter. We did not know! How many times will it take for you to understand that?”

I was literally shaking with anger, hiding behind my bangs with my head lowered. “Oh, I understand your reasonings quite well. What infuriates me, is that you never trusted me.” I could see Celestia’s eyes widen with shock. “You never thought about asking me about any of this. It never once crossed your minds to tell me about all this, to bring me into your world. All I ever was was on the sidelines, only being put on the front lines for battle. You never thought that I could help in other ways, too. I wanted to be a part of your world, to help you as you helped me, but NO!”

I raised my head, showing the pure hatred in my eyes. “All I ever was to you was a damn pawn! Just another piece for you to manipulate! And you called me the manipulator?! So says the chess master of everypony on the damn planet! I’ve seen your journal, you damn fraud!” Celestia paled at that little factoid. “I know how you secretly started every war Equestria has ever had so you could force those countries into peace treaties! You have been behind the scenes, controlling the world from the very beginning. Well, NO MORE!"

The floor beneath my feet began to crack and crumble as more and more power flowed through my very being. My rage was reaching its peak, and I knew exactly who to use this new power on. "I will no longer be you pawn! You are done controlling my life! You and I. Are. DONE!!” I charged forward, putting everything I had into this one blow. “I’m going to kill you just as I killed Chrysalis and Luna!!"

Celestia’s burning mane suddenly was ablaze at the mention of me killing Luna. “I’m going to kill you, SHIFTER!!” She roared at me as she blasted forward with a burning trail behind her.

“I’m going to show you how powerful I really am, CELESTIA!! I’m going to finally prove myself to you!” As we neared each other, time slowed to a near standstill. I saw that Celestia was preparing to bring Mjolnir down on me, so I moved my shield to block the strike. As the hammer came down, I braced myself for the impact… which was more powerful than anything I had ever felt in my life. With the force of ten kilos of TNT, I felt myself being thrown down into the floor below, going further and further down through the mountain.

I don’t know how many floors I went through, but I finally hit a stop when I ran out of momentum. I landed hard on a golden marble floor, several tens of pounds of debris raining down on my prone form. I slowly eased myself into a sitting position, rubbing my aching back. Thank God for shifter invulnerability. “Ugh, where am I?” I started dusting the dust and rocks out of my hair, moving out of the way of the hole as it continued to sprinkle down debris. I stood shakily as I examined my new location, finding myself in an entirely golden, massive room. it was like I was in some kind of vault, especially with the massive bank vault door behind me. All around, I could see many, many displays of different ponies. It looked like I was taking a trip through time with how each pony looked.

Then it clicked: it was Celestia’s Memory Vault! She had told me many, many times how much she wished to have a place to store the memories of all the friends and loved ones she had over the years. The princess must have finally got her wish in this new castle. Curiosity peaked, I began to wander through the exhibits of different ponies. Most of which I didn’t recognize, probably being from the over one thousand years I was stoned (that sounds very different when taken out of context). Then I started to remember a few of these as I drew closer to my time range. There was a small shrine with a rubber chicken, some plastic pies, and a kazoo, all surrounding a picture of a blonde, curly mane pegasus.

“Surprise,” I whispered in, well, surprise. Another exhibit had a hat and cape that was tailed with bells, a large tome, and some personal letters. I looked at the picture and immediately remembered the bearded unicorn. “Star Swirl .” I continued remembering several different ponies, from the first general I served with to that wonderful maid that had helped me adjust to life in the castle. They brought back so many memories, all of a better time.

That’s when I saw it. A small shrine in the back of the vault, littered with tattered fabric. The material was black, though several pieces had some gold twinges. There were also a few books that had been well known by me placed around the table, as well as a few familiar pictures. This all surrounded a picture of a young, blonde girl hugging two alicorn sisters, all looking happier than ever on that day. It was my shrine, a shrine to Kat Shifter. But that’s not what made me stare at the shrine like it was a horror show, no, it was a small little plaque beneath the photo. Right there, framed in a embroiled and golden picture frame, was a single sheet of paper that I had always thought was a dream.

It was an adoption form. With my name on it. And Celestia’s signature on the bottom. The only thing missing was my own signature to make it official. It was at that moment, that everything went black.

*****Celestia’s POV*****

I stared down at that hole in my once pristine throne room with all the malice I could muster. Before all of this started, I truly hoped in my heart that Kat would give up this ludicrous revenge of hers and come back to us… to me. Oh, how much I had wanted her to return, only for her hatred to have festered in her imprisonment. And now, now she had the gall to destroy so much of my life! My ponies’ lives, the changelings, and even… Luna. Why Kat? Why did you take my sister away from me when I had only just got her back? I felt a small tear descend from my eyes at my loss.

I shook my head to clear it of those thoughts. There would be time for mourning once her threat had been ended. But… could I really kill Kat? It seemed so easy to her, almost like she was playing a game, a game I wasn’t sure I could participate in. No… I had no choice this time. Kat had to face punishment for her crimes and I had no doubt that the ponies would call for her death. While the death sentence is rarely used anymore, it is allowed in the most extreme of cases, which I’m quite sure this particular situation falls under.

I looked down into the hole, quietly wondering exactly how far Kat had been thrown down. I spread my wings and began to get ready to take off after her, but I was interrupted when one of my guards burst into the throne room, shattering apart some of the wood due to Kat’s power on them. “Princess Celestia! I have urgent new for you!”

“It will have to wait, corporal. I am in the middle of dealing out a punishment.”

“But it’s about Princess Luna!” I stopped immediately, turning to the guard with a look of shock. “I received an urgent message from Canterlot Emergency Hospital! Princess Luna apparently appeared there from a large black and red orb. She has several broken bones and some cracked ribs, but she is otherwise in fine and in stable condition.”

I blinked, both in surprise and confusion. How could Luna be alive? Kat distinctly said that she had killed her. Why would she lie? What would be the purpose of forcing me into such a rage? What could possibly have been her reasoning behind this? It came slowly, but I soon began to put the pieces of the puzzle back together.

She did everything for me?!

Or is it because of me? Kat destroyed millions of bits worth of work, but she never killed anypony. Her dragons would go on rampages, but nopony ever died. She killed the changelings, but only because they refused to change. None of that condones any of her actions, but I finally see her reasonings. She wanted me. She wanted to force me to my limits so she could fight me as equals. Not as a general against a princess, not a human versus a pony, just Kat Shifter vs. Celestia. That’s all she ever wanted out of this. Kat wanted to prove herself, to show me that I can’t control her life, that’s what she meant.

I sighed in exhaustion, Kat was much more work than I ever thought would be possible. She’s always such a hoofful that it’s ridiculous. Why did things go so terribly wrong that day all those centuries ago? If only things had worked out, I wonder how different my world would be today. So many things could have happened differently. Now is not the time to think on these things, however.

“I thank you for your report. Now, I must chase after a criminal. Return to your post.” I didn’t stick around to hear his response as I flew down the hole I had created. With my wings tucked close to my barrel, I shot down through floor after floor, level after level of the castle. She really did get sent far, as it took over a minute to finally reach the final hole. I landed with grace beneath it and took a look around. I was surprised to see that the destination was my memory vault. I didn’t see any other holes, meaning that Kat still had to be in here. I began to walk around, giving small smiles at the memories of all those that meant so much to me. I finally found her in the back of the vault, at her own shrine. She seemed to be frozen in place, staring down at something. I raised my neck to see what it was, giving a small start when it was the adoption form I had prepared for her.

I sighed, fearing the day that she found out about my little secret for her. I still dream sometimes of showing her that document and getting a ‘yes’ from her, both of us hugging with happy tears in our eyes. Now that dream was but a wasted memory. “Kat--”

“This isn’t suppose to be real,” she interrupted me, her voice unnervingly even.

“What do you mean?”

“This… this thing was just a dream. It shouldn’t be real.”

It dawned on me then. Luna had said that she would ‘test the waters’ on how Kat would react to adoption. I had no idea what she meant, but now I knew. “Kat, yes it is real. That was my plan, to ask if you would let me. If only things had worked out that day so long ago. I still wish--.”

“Shut up.”

Her voice was still even, but it frightened me senseless. “E-excuse me?”

“I said, shut. UP!” Her body suddenly burst into her aura, but it was different. Instead of black and red, it was a harsh white and black. I could feel the pure fury that was pouring off of my former friend. It was indescribable, that amount of power should not be possible. Yet, there it stood before me, in all it’s gloriousness.

“I’m tired,” Kat said in a voice that was just above a whisper. “I’m tired of it all,” he voice got louder as she continued, up to the point where she was shouting at me, still without even facing me. “I’m tired of everything! Of you, your stupid planning, the nevi, the ponies, I’M FUCKING TIRED OF ALL OF THIS SHIT!!” Kat turned around, and all I could see was fury in her pure white eyes. “I’m done with all of it! I’ve had enough of you and your plans for my life! I am not yours, I will never be yours! I’m not something you can control! No, you cannot control me, because you cannot control gravity!” She pulled out her staff and screamed at me, “YOU CANNOT CONTROL THE GRAVITY QUEEN!!”

It happened in less than a second. Kat was on me faster than I ever could have anticipated as she brought her staff down on me. The strike was masterfully done, and incredibly painful. The blow sent me flying into a nearby wall. I groaned as I tried sitting back up, but Kat didn’t give me a single moment’s rest. I was pulled from the wall and sent flying back at her, only to be ‘clotheslined’ in the neck and fell to the ground, coughing up my larynx in the process. I realized a nanosecond too late that I never actually hit the ground, and I paid the price by being flung into the ceiling.

This process repeated itself many times, each time getting hit harder and harder. It was as if Kat was getting stronger and stronger as she continued to fight. I was sent into wall after wall, from floor to ceiling, or getting beaned with the staff. I was just being sent from another wall back towards my attacker, but she did something different this time. As I pulled in front of her, Kat had her left fist raised and brought it down on my head just as I got in front.

My head hit the ground hard, nearly knocking me out cold. But, I wasn’t moving anymore; Kat had stopped. I couldn’t move anything, it all hurt far too much. I could feel Kat still standing above me, glaring down at my prone form with malice. I couldn’t see it, but Kat was using her stasis field to bring something to her hand. As I weakly opened my eye to see her, I paled at what she held in her hand: Mjolnir! I was a fool! How could I forget that Kat could lift anything just by using that damn stasis field of hers, just like my magic.

“You have taken much from me, Tia,” Kat spat at me. “My daughter, over a thousand years of my life, my best friend! Now, it is time to take something from you.” Kat raised my hammer high above her head, readying herself to bring it down on me. I closed my eyes and accepted my fate, knowing that there was nothing I could do to stop her. I’m sorry my little ponies, but I failed to stop her; Kat is far too powerful. “I shall take what you hold dear, Celestia!”

The hammer fell with a swift swing, and I heard the sound of shattering bone. I felt a tidal wave of pain wash over me, but then everything fell into the abyss.

*****Kat’s POV*****

What happened? Oh no! Did I lose control? And why do my hands feel heavier than normal? I warily opened my eyes, showing me a scene of pure horror for me. At my feet, lay Princess Celestia, beaten, battered, and bloody. What was horrifying was her warhammer, Mjolnir, was in my hands, head buried in the ground. I let go of the hammer, my hands, no my entire body shaking in fear. What the buck did I just do?!

Suddenly, the vault door swung open and a platoon of Royal Guards entered the room, spears pointed at me. “Halt, you are under arr… OH MY CELESTIA!!” the lead one shouted. That was my chance to escape, instantly Wormholing out of there.

After I was gone, the guards warily stepped towards Celestia, worry and fear plastered on their mugs. One got close enough to her to notice the rhythmic rising and falling of her chest. He instantly perked up. “She’s still alive! Quick, let’s get her to the hospital!” Three of them heaved up the fallen diarch with their magic, levitating her as if she was on a gurney. “The rest of you stay behind to pick up… the pieces.” His fellows nodded gravely as they ran off with the princess. They looked around at the damage, most notably the around the impact zone, where millions of pieces of alicorn horn were scattered into dust.

I appeared in my room no more than a second later, falling onto my bed with fear and tear filled eyes. I gripped my head fiercely, begging for what I had done to be nothing bad an awful nightmare. Just seeing that form… it destroyed all my reason. It was… It was everything I wanted, but all it did was infuriate me. Why? Why did I break like that?! Why? Why did it have to happen like this?


I looked up in shock, seeing Dusty looking at me with worry and sadness in his eyes. My eyes filled with more tears and brought him in for a hug that I desperately needed. “Dusty, oh Dusty, I didn’t mean to do it! I didn’t mean to hurt her like that! Please, believe me!” I was pretty much begging him not to hate me, like I feared.

I felt him put a paw on my shoulder and nuzzle my cheek. “I believe you Kat. You broke for a second, but that is in the past. You have gotten your revenge, so now what will you do?”

“I-I don’t know. I’ve put all of Equestria, no, the world at risk. How can I make up for something like that?”

“That is what you have to figure out, Mistress. What will you do?”

“I shouldn’t do anything,” I say as I curl up in the corner of my bed, clinging to Dusty as if he were the only thing keeping me alive. “I never should have done anything. I messed up. I’m… I’m nothing but a monster!” I broke down into sobs there, embracing Dusty, who just laid in my grip, doing what he could to keep a monster from destroying herself.


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*****Dusty’s POV*****

I laid there in my mistress’ arms as she cried herself to sleep, not knowing what else I could do. I felt truly terrible; I promised to protect her from her own emotions, but I never believed that they were as bad as they are. I tried, I really did, to keep her emotions in check, but I was overpowered almost too easily. She has grown so much in such a short time that it is very frightening.

I looked at her sleeping form, feeling a deep pain in my heart. I failed her, I let Kat down and now all of Equestria, no, the entire world will pay the price for my failure. I should have talked her out of this, I should have never let her do this. I knew it would end terribly, but still I let it happen.

The anger deep in heart started to glow. But I wasn’t angry at Kat, no I could never be truly mad at her. No, I was angry with myself. How could I fail this badly? I should have done something, anything that would have prevented all of this, but I waited like a fool. I’m so sorry Kat, I couldn’t save you from yourself.

Then I felt a change in the air; someone was in the castle. I dispersed myself into mist and floated out of the room, stopping a few doors down to see the six ponies Kat had befriended in my absence. Only, they didn’t look very friendly at the moment, especially the leader, Twilight. I reshaped myself in their path, blocking them from continuing. “Greetings, young mares. Can I help you with something?”

Twilight literally growled at me. ”You go get that backstabbing, lying bitch you call a mistress, now!”

“Excuse you?” I demanded. “I will not let you speak ill of my mistress, no matter what she--”

“Shut it you stupid animal!” Twilight yelled in my face. “I want to see that monster now! I am going to drag that bitch to Canterlot where she will pay for all of her crimes! I thought I could trust her, but in my heart I knew all along that you can’t trust a monster like her!”


That shut her up, also silencing any other retorts from the others. It was silent for the next few moments before another pony spoke, that being one called Rarity. “Um, not to be rude, darling, but what do you mean ‘kitten’?”

My anger had still yet to subside so I continued to scowl at them, specifically Twilight, refusing to take my eyes off her for a single second. “Kat is mine. I have been with her since the beginning, so as far as I’m concerned she is my kitten.”

“Well, you should have taught your ‘kitten’ better!” Pinkie, of all ponies, said back, her mane completely straight and her coat a darker shade of pink.. “She broke a promise to Twilight that she wouldn’t hurt Princess Celestia too bad. Breaking a promise is the fastest way to losing a friend… FOREVER!”

“If you want someone to blame for the loss of Celestia’s horn, then you can blame me. I was supposed to keep her in check, but her powers prevented me from doing so. I was only barely able to keep her from fully breaking and using her most powerful techniques on the solar princess.”

“Oh, I haven’t forgotten about you, Dusty. You're at fault here as well, and I’m going to bring you both in. No doubt you both will be banished for all of time.”

“And who says I’m going to let you harm my kitten? Even if Kat doesn’t think of me like that, I will protect her with my life. And I will not stand here and let you call her a monster!”

“That’s all she is! Kat is a lying, manipulating monster who needs to be sealed away in the darkest depths of Tarta--”

*SMACK!!* Twilight was suddenly slapped from the side, nearly sending her to the floor. Everypony was frozen in place from shock, not just from the act, but by the one who did the act: Fluttershy. The butter-yellow pegasus was staring at her friend with pure hatred, tears threatening to fall from her eyes.

“D-don’t you ever, ever call my grandmother that again!” Twilight was aghast, holding her cheek. “Kat made a mistake, Twilight. She’s probably feeling bad about enough without you making things worse.”

I nodded. “It’s true, she cried herself to sleep as soon as she returned here. Please understand, Kat is not as strong as she tries to make others think. She is more fragile than glass and something set her off at the castle. What that is is not in my liberty to discuss, but it broke her mind. Kat has never been right since she was eight; deep down, she still has the mind of her eight year old self. She’s broken, don’t you understand?! She needs help, she needs people like us to help keep her together!”

Twilight stood, holding her reddened cheek, still scowling. “I don’t care. She’s had enough chances, as far as I’m concerned, Kat Shifter is an enemy of Equestria and most definitely not my friend.”

“I concur!” announced Rarity, joining by Twilight’s side.

“Me too!” Pinkie said, moping by them. They looked at the others, urging them to join, but Rainbow and Applejack hesitated. Fluttershy already announced her position, setting herself down by me.

“Well?” urged Twilight.

“I-I can’t,” Rainbow slumped, shocking the ponies against Kat. “She gave me back my father, girls, and I know the kind of things she’s been through because of my background. I need to stay loyal to her.” She flew without enthusiasm, joining Fluttershy who wrapped a consoling wing around her friend.

“AJ?” Twilight nearly pleaded.

Applejack hung her head, slowly turning away from Twilight, Rarity, and Pinkie. She trotted over to us and sat down on her haunches. Twilight was near tears as she saw the orange mare make her decision. “Why AJ? Why?” Pinkie cried.

She sighed. “Because if Ah turn mah back on Kat now, then things are only gonna get worse. If Kat don’t have her friends by her side, especially during this hard time, then she’s only gonna go further into the darkness.”

“Let her!” Twilight screamed. “She’s already evil! She’s a terrible monster who has destroyed the lives of thousands of ponies! She doesn’t deserve friendship!”

Once again, my anger boiled over. “How dare you--”

“Dusty,” a soft voice calls out, chilling me to the spine. I turned around and I saw her there, her eyes red with tears that still streamed from her eyes. She was holding on to the wall for support, but her eyes… those beautiful red eyes that were usually so full of life, now were those of one who had no will to live. Kat was shaking her head. “Don’t Dusty. I’m not worth it. She’s right. I am a monster. I don’t deserve any of you. I don’t deserve anything.”

“Grandmother,” Fluttershy called out as Kat turned and started walking down the hall. She tried to go after her, but found herself blocked by gravity shields. “Grandmother…” Kat ignored her, her head hung low as she continued to walk. Fluttershy began to tear up, several falling to the floor. She turned to Twilight and the others, her face showing anger and sadness. “Are you happy now, Twilight?! Are you happy that you’ve destroyed my grandmother?!”

“She’s not really your family, Fluttershy!”

“Kat is my family!! Nothing will ever change that and I will always support her and be there for her! As long as I live, I will not let her fall to the darkness!”

“Well said, Fluttershy,” I nodded. I then turned to Twilight and the others on her side. “Now, I must ask you to vacate the premises. You are no longer welcome in this castle.”

“That’s fine with us!” Rarity huffed. “Consider our spa appointment canceled Fluttershy. Neither you nor your grandmother are welcome in my boutique.”

“No cake for you!” Pinkie proclaimed with a strange accent. The three ponies filed down the fall, Twilight stopping and turning to us.

“I will not stop until you and Kat are sealed in stone, Dusty,” she spat at me. “You and her will pay for your crimes, mark my words.” She gave one last dirty look at all four of us and then walked away.

I sigh and turn to the remaining girls. “Thank you for supporting my kitten, girls. It means a lot to me.”

“Anything for you, great-grandfather,” Fluttershy said with a sad smile, which I returned.

“I have a debt to repay her, so I’ll stay with her until the end,” Dash replies with fake enthusiasm. This was obviously eating her up inside, and I only wish I could do more to ease her pain.

“Kat needs somepony ta keep her from fallin’ further. Ah gave mah word to help her and an Apple never goes back on a promise. That’s the honest truth.”

“Thank you, now let’s find Kat before she does something truly stupid.”

*****Third Person POV ~ Canterlot General Hospital*****

Princess Celestia and Princess Luna were not happy ponies right now. After everything that happened with the Gravity Queen, they were battered, bruised, broken, and deeply hurt. Kat had truly broken them, both physically and emotionally. Celestia was feeling it more than Luna, however. The breaking of her horn and her heart was truly devastating to the solar diarch. After coming out surgery, with the doctors being unable to restore her horn from the thousands of pieces, she had yet to say a word to her only sister.

Luna had only just enough power to lower the moon and raise the sun, having to limp back to her bed painfully. “Sister, please, speak to me. I know you are hurt, but I need to know you are ok.” Still Celestia stayed silent, only proving to make Luna even more worried.

“Why did this happen?” Celestia spoke with a pained whisper, surprising Luna. She smiled for a brief moment before the depth of the question hit her. “Where did we go wrong? Why couldn’t we just be the happy family I wished for?”

Luna sighed, reclining back in her hospital bed. “Those are questions that I cannot answer, sister. But we must focus on the problem at hand. Kat is far more dangerous than we anticipated and we paid the price for our arrogance.”

Celestia nodded. “I agree, Lulu. But what is that we can do? I am no longer in any shape to face her, nor are you. Kat just has too much power for us to take on in our present condition. What is it that we can do against the Gravity Queen?”

“Perhaps I could be of assistance,” spoke an unknown voice, surprising the two sisters. They moved their heads back in forth looking for the source of the voice. “Over here.” They look over to a darkened corner of the room, engulfed in shadow. The darkness twisted and turned before a human girl walked out of the shadows. Her hair was black until it hit her shoulders before it turned a deep red as it progressed down to her waist. Her eyes shined a pristine blue, though there was a coldness to them. Her dress was very revealing, only barely covering her breasts, leaving her midriff and shoulders bare, exposing a crescent moon tattoo just above her breasts. The outfit covered her arms and legs like a drape, with an extravagant belt over her waist. Rimmed bands were on her four limbs making it seem as if her boots were a part of her dress. “Greetings, Princesses of Equestria.”

“W-who are you?” asked Luna, slightly afraid of another human in her home.

“There is no need to fear me, Princesses. I am here to help.”

“Help?” Celestia asked with a raised eyebrow. “I don’t think we need anymore of your kind’s help!”

“You misunderstand me, Princess Celestia. I am here to offer my… services.”


“Yes, Princess Luna. I, too, have no like for the Gravity Queen, Kat Shifter. As such, I wish to offer my abilities to you so that she can be brought to justice.”

“Princesses!” exclaimed a guard who burst into the room. The princesses were immediately distracted by the guard, then looked back to where the girl was, only to see that she was gone.

Celestia shook her head clear and addressed the guard. “Yes, what is it?”

It has returned.”

Celestia paled. “Alert Shining Armor and Princess Cadance, send them there now. Go!” The guard saluted and sped off. “I have feared this day.”

“Sister, what did he mean by ‘it’?”

“The Crystal Empire has returned,” spoke the voice of the girl. The two princesses were startled, looking up to the source of the voice and finding the human standing on the ceiling. She jumped down in a slowed backflip, landing daintily on her feet.

“How did you know that?”

“I have been keeping an eye on that area due to the high amount of energy coming from there. If I may, I suggest sending your pupil to the Empire to assist.”

“Why would I send Twilight there?! I will not lose my precious student to that monster!”

“Because if she goes, so will the Gravity Queen.”

“I don’t follow,” Celestia admitted, feeling both angry and confused.

“Kat and your student are friends. She has befriended all of the Elements.”

“WHAT?!” exclaimed the princesses.

“It is the sad truth. She has blinded them, making them think she is the victim in all of this. When she is only manipulating them further.”

“My poor Twilight,” Celestia said while hanging her head sadly.

“It will work in your favor, though.”

“How so?” Celestia asked with a cautious look.

“Well, if you agree to accept my help, I can get you Kat Shifter.”

Luna and Celestia looked at one another, weighing the benefits and the consequences of this new shifter’s offer. On the one hoof, it could help capture a powerful criminal, but could also turn loose one who could be just as bad. However, Kat was the greater threat and if this shifter could help them, then they would let her. Celestia turned back to the shifter. “We accept your help, Miss…”

Suddenly, a starry black bird cawed from the window as it flew to the shifter’s shoulder. The girl scratched the underside of its beak affectionately. “I am the one who will bring justice to she who has wronged us, the true Master of Gravity. I am Raven, Raven Masters.”

Rise Above the Darkness?

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*****Canterlot General Hospital*****

“Are you certain of this?” asked Princess Celestia as she hoof wrote a letter to her faithful student. “This seems like a longshot at best.”

“You must have more faith in those willing to help you, Princess,” replied Raven, casually petting her familiar as she looked on. Princess Luna simply watched on in silence, thinking over the deal they made with the shifter. Raven promised a way to capture Kat with ease as well as offering to raise and lower the sun with her powers, all in exchange for being put in charge of the Royal Guard for the mission. She promised to relinquish the position after Kat was captured, but would it really be that easy? The shifter had yet to discuss what her problems involving Kat were, leaving both princesses in the dark on her motives.

“If that had worked out better for us in the past, then we would not even be here, Ms. Masters,” Celestia replied coldly. She was already frustrated at having to remember how to hoof write after over millennia of relying on magic, and having Raven constantly remind her to trust her was not making her mood alter. “There, it is finished. If you would please, sister?”

Luna nodded and lit her horn, dispersing the letter in a wisp of smoke that flew out the window. “On it’s way to your faithful student. But, perhaps you could share more of your plan, Ms. Masters?”

“All you need to know, Princess Luna, is that when all this is over, Kat Shifter will never harm another being ever again. Trust me, I am here to help.” Raven smiled sincerely at the two alicorns, though they still felt the unease in the air. They both had the same thought: Who is this girl?

*****Kat’s POV ~ Castle of the Two Sisters Gravity Manor*****

As I wandered the halls of my castle, all alone, I was given plenty of time to think of everything that had happened. How wrong I had been… about everything. Gilgamesh, Auric, hell even Teridax was right about me. I was blinded my vengeance, vengeance that didn’t even need to happen. Or at least I should have gone about it differently. Celestia...she cared about me. I, I always thought she just tolerated me. That’s what I thought about both of them, but I was wrong. Oh so wrong. They wanted me. Somebody actually wanted me. I could feel the fresh tears beginning to fall from my eyes.

“What have I done?” I cried silently. I heard the girls, I tore apart their friendship! Twilight, Rarity, Pinkie Pie? They all hated me! And I saw that look in Dash’s eyes, she was torn inside. Loyalty between her friends or loyal to the one who gave her back her family. I did that to them. It was all my fault.

“It’s always my fault.”

I just kept wandering, not really even paying attention until I found my way on to one of the balconies of the castle. I looked out at the shining full moon whose light was brightly illuminating the dark forest outside. I would have considered it beautiful if I wasn’t currently dead inside.

“Grandmother?” I turned around at the sound of that familiar quiet voice. Fluttershy was standing there at the balcony door, her worried face easily seen the moonlight.

“Hello Flutters,” I said, my own voice a pained whisper. I really wished she would stop looking at me like that, it only made me feel worse about what I had done.

She trotted up to me, standing at the balcony and staring out at the landscape, and put her forehooves up on the ledge. We silently stood there, saying nothing at all, just watching and listening to the night. After a several minutes, I couldn’t stand being able to see such beauty and began to move away. I didn’t get too far when a hoof grabbed my hand. I looked back to see Flutters holding tightly to my hand with her hoof. Her gaze at me was one of pure compassion and it only broke my heart knowing I didn’t deserve any of it.

“Please let me go, Flutters.”

“I can’t do that, Kat,” she said with a shake of her head. “I won’t leave you alone. You’ve been alone far too long and I’m not going to abandon you when you’re going through this. We’re family.”

“Fluttershy, we’re not really family. There is no blood relation between us. I simply was a guardian for your ancestor, nothing more. I don’t deserve your love. A monster like me only deserves to be either banished or destroyed.”

There was silence between us and I slipped my hand free of her grip. I walked away, not even giving my ‘granddaughter’ a second look.

“Grandmother?” I turned to look at her again, only to suddenly and painfully finding my face flying further sideways. It took me a moment to process what had just happened: Fluttershy just smacked me! I looked at the butter-yellow pegasus, holding a hand to my sore, reddening cheek, to see her glaring at me with eyes that were filling with tears. She then pointed an accusatory hoof at me. “Don’t you ever, EVER, say things like that again! You made a mistake, a horrible mistake yes, but that is not any reason for us to abandon you. I love you, Kat, you are my family.”

I was stunned into silence for a moment, before lowering my head. “Why?” She sounded confused, so I elaborated as I began to cry again. “Why do you stand by me? I have destroyed the livelihoods of thousands, made a race extinct, and destroyed the horn of the goddess of the sun. Why would you possibly still stand by my side and say that you care about me?”

I felt her put a hoof on my shoulder and I looked into her eyes, eyes that held as many tears as my own. “Because Kat, we are family. You have made mistakes, mistakes that we should have tried harder to prevent, but we are here for you. Dusty, Applejack, Rainbow, and me. We will always be here for you, always there to keep you from falling into the darkness. You can be better Kat. You were a hero once, and I believe you could be again. I know you can right your wrongs, because I believe in you.”

“B-but you should hate me! Why? I don’t get it! Why would you stand by me when all I have ever done is cause pain and suffering?!”

“That is not all you have done! You saved Rainbow’s father! You’ve been protecting ponies from the nevi! You taught Spike about his race, keeping him safe during the migration. You help me everyday just by being there, grandmother. I love you for you, nothing more. And that is a fact that will never change. We will help you through this, Kat, I promise.”

She smiled sweetly and sincerely at me, her eyes showing only love. I tried to find any sense of falseness in her eyes, but I couldn’t and immediately felt bad for ever doubting my dear Flutters. I started crying again, a mixture of joy and pure sadness in my heart and I embraced my granddaughter hard, sobbing against her soft coat. I could feel her rubbing my back, telling me that everything was going to be okay.

It felt like hours that we stayed that way, but it was so nice having someone who did love, despite all the horrible things I had done. ...That’s it! “I-I know what I have to do.”

“Hmm?” Fluttershy asked as she pulled away to look me in the eye.

“I need to make this right. I-I need to fix all that I have done. It won’t be easy, but if I have some help…” I looked up at Flutters, a spark of hope in my eyes.

She smiled sweetly. “Of course. I’ll be there with you every step of the way.”

“We all will.”

I turned suddenly, and saw Rainbow, AJ, and Dusty watching the two of us, all smiling compassionately. I blushed a little.

“How long have you all been there?”

“A while,” Rainbow shrugged.

Dusty moved forward, an expression of care on his face. “We all will be by your side, Kat. We care about you and simply want to help. Will you let us?”

I looked at Dusty and then between AJ and RD. They smiled at me, showing that they were sincere. A couple more tears fell from my eyes and I smiled for the first time since I fought Celestia. “Thank you,” I said as I wiped away the tears. “Thank you all so much. I don’t know how, but I will undo all the damage I’ve done. Some way, some how. And then… then I will surrender.”

“Huh?!” they all said instantaneously.

“When I’ve made my reparations, I will surrender myself to Celestia and Luna to face my punishment for everything. I made these mistakes and I need to face the music.”

“B-but they’ll--”

“I know it will separate us Flutters, but I can’t escape punishment. Being a fugitive will only cause more problems. Everything will turn out fine, eventually.” I gave them all a sad smile.

“Well, Ah do believe ya gotta make things right, but are ya sure you should surrender? Equestria does still have the death penalty.” Fluttershy gasped, and I admit, I gulped inwardly.

“That may be, but I need to do this.”

Dusty nodded in understanding. “Alright Kat, while I do not like having to surrender, it is the right thing to do. I’m proud of you, Kitten.” I smiled at his old nickname for me. He hadn’t called me that in a long time, and I enjoyed it very much.

Without warning, a violet flash appeared in front of us, blinding us for a quick moment. When we could see again, standing there was a very miffed-looking Twilight. She glared harshly at all of us, which Fluttershy returned in kind, staying close to me.

“What are you doing here?” Dusty asked, not hiding the anger in his voice.

“I’m not here for the shifter, if that’s what you’re asking, cat,” she snarled back. “If I didn’t have to come here, I wouldn’t have. Celestia wants me to go somewhere called the ‘Crystal Empire’ and I need to take the Elements with me. So, Rainbow, Applejack, Fluttershy? You’re coming with me.”

“Why should we?” asked Fluttershy. “You’re trying to kill a member of my family. Why would I go anywhere with you?”

“Like I said, this isn’t out choice. My brother and Princess Cadance are already there and they need help to restore the empire before its former king returns.”

“...Sombra,” Dusty and I snarled. We both remember that tyrant and the terrible things he had done.

“You know ‘im?”

“Yes, Applejack, we know Sombra. And if he is the one you’re dealing with, then I’m going too.”

“No. Absolutely not. I will not let you accompany us anywhere, you traitor!”

I flinched slightly from her harshness, but I refused to back down. “You are dealing with something above your powers, Sparkle. I am going, whether you like it or not and this time, Sombra is not going to get off Scott Free.”

“This time?”

“Yeah, he got sealed away when he should have been destroyed!” I stood, shakily, but I still got to my feet to stand firm. “That ‘king’ only ever tortured those under his rule, he was a slave driver and an all out evil pony. He will face damnation!”

“No,” Twilight said with firmness. “You have done enough killing, Shifter. We are going to help the crystal ponies rebuild and protect themselves, not to kill this King Sombra. Do we have an understanding? Do. Not. Kill.”

Twilight and I had a stare down at that moment, both of us trying to bend the other to their will. I closed my eyes and sighed, knowing that she was right deep down. I had to stop kidding myself, this wasn’t me. Sure, I was angry, but I kept making the wrong choices. I was not a god, I couldn’t keep making these decisions on who should live or die.

“Alright, Twilight. I won’t kill Sombra, but if he attacks, I will step up to defend everyone.”

Twilight narrowed her eyes at me and then shook her head. “Fine. But you do anything, anything, to obstruct this mission and I will not hesitate to tell Celestia everything.”

“Why haven’t you?” asked Dusty.

“That’s classified by the crown.”

Rainbow crossed her forelegs. “Ya mean you?”

“Again, classified.”

Rainbow and Applejack looked pretty annoyed with the unicorn, but I knew we were wasting time. “Let’s go grab Rarity and Pinkie Pie and I’ll warp us to the Empire.”

Twilight looked at me with a raised eyebrow. “And why should we trust you? You could just get rid of us right then and--”

“Twilight…” Fluttershy growled. My eyes widened at the sight, never seeing my granddaughter so angry that it was actually quite frightening.

“Fine… I’ll go get the others and we’ll meet back here.” She teleported the next instant not even saying goodbye. As the girls got together to discuss what had just occurred, Dusty and I stared out into the distance, far to the north where lay the greatest threat Equestria had ever faced since the Reign of Discord, once again amongst the living.

*****The Crystal Empire ~ 1,101 Years Ago*****

Dusty and I lay await in the shadows of a bakery, waiting for the guards to march by. It sickened me how this monster would enslave the strongest as his personal suicide army. Made the Japanese look like pansies. I watched them move past us, unnoticed completely, a snarl on my face.

We must focus, kitten. The Princesses will be making their move soon, we need to get in place now,” Dusty said through my mind. I knew he was right, but seeing all of this slavery just completely pissed me off. No, have to follow the plan, it’s the only way all of this will be undone. I nodded to him with determination etched into my expression and we moved out.

From shadow to shadow we skulked our way to the massive central palace of the Empire. The castle eerily reminded me of the pictures of the Eiffel Tower in France, from earth. Of course, if you made the steel tower entirely out of crystals and had a cloud of dark magic surrounding the top of the spire. Like I said, creepy.

Dusty and I snuck up behind a pair of guards, neither noticing us approach. I motioned for my guardian to take the right while I took the left. I stealthily moved around to his back, and then bashed him over the head with my shield. He crumpled to the ground, and his partner went limp as well. I smiled at my little cat friend, sitting there on the pony’s back.

“I will never know how you can do that.”

I told you, it’s a little extension of mind over matter. You should pay attention to my teachings more often. Brains will always be better than brawn.

“Uh huh, sure. Let’s just get this war over with. Come on! We got to get the signal to Tia and Luna!” We raced off, well, flew off as I was
not going to deal with this sick pony’s stair fetish. I’d rather not go into how bad it really was. We took care of the few guards on the lower level with relative ease, one strike each taking them down. The entire time, a scowl never left my face and my faithful companion picked up on it.

Kitten? I know you and this is much fiercer than any time you have ever fought. Please, tell me what is wrong.

I was silent for a moment, and not just to avoid the next set of guards that were passing by. “’ve seen the reports, Dusty. The images that they painted. He has foals down in those mines. Fillies and colts with their lives ahead of them, dying from the smoke and collapses. As long as I’m alive, I will not tolerate the abuse of children. That bastard’s gonna pay.” I glanced down at the pocket watch I had to mark the time. Only a few minutes left. “Let’s move.”

We raced forward, knocking guards aside with quick bursts of gravity.

The throne room was just up ahead.

Only a few more feet.

*Wham!* I kicked the doors in powerfully, and immediately I saw our target. His pitch black coat, those glowing demonic green eyes, and that sickening curve of his red horn. King Sombra himself.

He snarled as we approached, not looking pleased in the slightest. “If it isn’t Celestia’s little pet, Gravity! What brings you to my kingdom, creature?”

I smirked. “We about to Americanize this bitch!” My words caught him by surprise, going by the bewilderment on his face, giving me my chance. I focused a little bit of my power into my hand and fired it upward. It was a technique that I despised using: the Gravity Bolt. I didn’t know why, but using it made me feel… unclean. Like there was something wrong with it. The blast did make for a great signal flare, though. It blasted right through the ceiling of the castle and into the air above, bursting in a mass of red-black power.

All was still afterwards, and then it happened. It twin flashes of light, one golden and the other a shade of blue, Princess Celestia and Princess Luna appeared. They were garbed in their armor and brandishing their weapons, Mjolnir and Moonlight Strike, a warhammer and rapier, respectively. And they did not look happy.

“King Sombra,” Celestia began with a cold tone of command, “for crimes against Equestria as well as against thine own citizens, we hereby decree that thou shalt perish!”

“Prepare thyself, Sombra,” Luna snarled. “We shall repay thee in kind for Hoofington!”

To his credit, Sombra only smiled wickedly. “Ah, the Princess Sisters. We meet after so long apart. I see you have healed quite nicely since our last encounter, moon butt.” Luna’s expression darkened ever more from his favorite insult for her. Then he turned to me. “Can’t handle me yourself, creature? I thought that the great Gravity always dealt with her foes alone, have you gotten weak in your old age?”

“Stow it creep. Either free your citizens and surrender or be destroyed.” I flared my aura, just to prove that I was being serious.

“Very well,” his horn flashed and a curved blade appeared in his magical grip, “Let’s dance once more!” He charged forth, aiming his sword at me, but Celestia blocked him with her hammer.

“You will not harm her!” She pushed him away and swung her mighty weapon at his barrel. Sombra leaped back, but was quickly put on the defensive again as Luna charged with her rapier. She launched strike after strike, preventing Sombra from having any form of recovery.

Realizing his disadvantage, Sombra flared his magic once again and a massive black crystal shot up from beneath his hooves, taking Luna by surprise. She was able to launch into the air at the last moment, preventing her from becoming a shishkabob.

The I got into the fight, slamming into Sombra’s side with my shield, throwing him against a nearby wall. He grumbled in pain as he slid back down to the floor, shakily standing to his hooves. He lifted his sword once again, but gave a quick twist of my wrist to shift the sword far away from the corrupt unicorn.

Sombra stared at the three of us in fear, truly realizing now that he was outmatched and outgunned.

“Surrender Sombra!” Celestia boomed once again. “Give up now, and we may take pity on thine life.”

Sombra’s glare turned harsher than the sun as his anger rose from being beaten. “You think you have won, you think that I am all done? No, Princesses of the moon and sun! For now you have pushed me too far, and there is no place you can run!”

Okay, creepy rhyming aside, that didn’t sound good. Sombra’s horn glowed even darker, his eyes giving off greenish flames. We felt the entire kingdom begin to shake beneath our feet. “Luna! Kat” I heard Celestia scream as she rushed the two of us. I felt wings wrap around my body and then the familiar feeling of teleportation. There was a flash of golden light, which cleared to reveal that the three of us were staring down at the Crystal Empire from above. We watched in horror as the entire kingdom was swallowed in shadow magic, screams coming from the streets below. Soon, everything was covered in a dome of shadow. As suddenly as it appeared, the massive dome faded away, taking the entire city with it.

There was nothing left, not even a crater. It was just… gone. All those ponies, all those lives. I am not ashamed to admit that a few tears leaked from my eyes at the reminder of all those children being lost forever. Celestia and Luna noticed, though, and we shared a large, feathery hug.

When they pulled away, we simply stared at where the once proud empire formerly stood. I sighed, letting my shoulders slump, which is pretty hard when there’s a cosmic cat on one shoulder. “Tia, Luna?” They looked at me with curiosity. “I think I need to take a vacation.”

*****Crystal Palace Throneroom ~ Present Day*****

I had just finished recounting my memories of the Crystal Empire to the girls, Spike, Shining Armor, and Cadance. Shining Armor and Spike really didn’t like that I had tagged along. Spike considered Celestia like a mother figure as well, being one of his main caretakers when he was a hatchling, and Shining still held some negative feelings from when I showed up him and his guards. Cadance, however, was very happy to see me, only briefly seeing each other at her wedding. She squeed and embraced me tightly, making her husband impersonate a fish for a good few minutes. It really was nice seeing Cady again, but we had a situation on our hands/hooves.

“So, let me get this straight. King Sombra has become a massive shadow that is stalking just outside the massive shield of love magic, that you created and is slowly sapping you dry, trying to break in and once again rule over the Crystal Empire and eventually the whole world?”

“That about sums it up, General Shifter.” Shining Armor was using my rank as a way of keeping himself in check. I’d seen it before; previous ponies under my command would do so outside of duty as a way of keeping themselves calm when around superiors… or those they didn’t like who were above them. “We’re running out of time to think up a strategy, what do you suggest?”

I was a little stunned to see that he was leaving things in my hands, but a look at the disheveled Princess of Love, who was barely standing as it was, put plenty in perspective. He wanted to protect her, even if it meant getting help from Equestria’s Most Wanted. That’s not a hyperbole either, Shining Armor said I was Public Enemy #1 now, by the order of both princesses. It hurt a little, but it would be taken care of in the near future. Back on topic, I tried to sort through my memories to anything pertaining to the Crystal Empire. Then it clicked.

“The Crystal Fair!” I shouted with a snap of my fingers.

“Huh?” they all responded.

“What is the Crystal Fair?”

“Well, Ms. Sparkle, the Crystal Fair was an annual event where the citizens of the Empire would have a massive carnival to spread love and harmony. It was a huge event, but I was only able to attend once, so we need to find something, like a text or manual, on the subject. If I remember right, there was a massive library a few blocks from here.”

“A, a, a library?!” Twilight’s eyes widened and glazed over with glee. She squeed loudly and raced off and out of the room. She peeked her head back in a moment later, crazy happiness etched into her face. “Well? Come on! Knowledge awaits!” And she was off once again. Everyone sighed and shook their heads with smiles, myself included. I may never be able to be her friend again, but at least I could still be around those I called friends.

After finding a written history of the Empire, and dragging Twilight out of the library, we reconvened in a sanctuary to discuss the plans. Shining Armor remained with Cadance to keep her strong as we gathered around. Twilight dealt particular jobs: Fluttershy and Rainbow were to partake in jousting, Rarity would decorate, Applejack would prepare the treats, Pinkie would go around blowing a traditional horn whose name escaped me as she blew it in my face when Twilight said the name, and I was to leave things to everyone and go away. That was a quote from her, one that angered my Flutters to no end. The two nearly got into a slap fight before we could intervene, but I agreed with Twilight. They stared at me in shock, so I expanded that this way I could go and guard the city on the off chance that Caddy’s magic finally gave out. Flutters wasn’t happy with it, but relented in the end. With a plan in place we went our separate ways.

That was a few hours ago, so here I wait for something to happen. I tried to lead any crystal ponies I saw in the direction of the fair, but not many lived this far out. Dusty occupied himself by sitting on a rock not too far away and glaring out at the shield. It was getting rather boring, actually, but I had to remain vigilant. I heard the beating of wings behind me and saw Rainbow Dash coming towards me. As she landed, I asked, “Rainbow, has something happened?”

“No, but… look Kat, we need to talk.”

I nodded and motioned for us to sit on a few rocks not too far away. After taking a seat we sat in silence for a moment. “So, what did you need to talk to me about?”

“Kat… you know I still consider you a friend, right?” I nodded. “Well… OH! Why is this so hard!?”

I sighed as the pegasus began to beat herself up. “Rainbow, I am not going to make you choose between the others and me. I don’t want to be the one who breaks your friendship, I never did. You shouldn’t be paying the price for my mistake.”

“B-but, the others turned on you! I-I’m the Element of Loyalty! I need to be loyal to all my friends, but how can I when they’re at each other’s throats!? Fluttershy looks more than willing to fight Twilight to defend you!”

“I know, but that is not what I ever wanted. I was a fool, a jerk, and a true manipulator. I became the same kind of person I used to fight against, and I hate myself for it. You and the others are right to hate me for what I’ve done, but I promise to fix this. To fix everything.”

“...I don’t know what to say, Kat. You’re basically telling me to turn my back on you, to take the easy way. While that may be my style sometimes, I will never do that to a friend. I’m going to talk to the others, maybe we can fix this. By the way, alicorn horns can heal, right?”

I nodded. “Yes, it will take many years before it will be the length it was before, but Celestia’s should be usable within a month or so.”

“Well, can’t you use those healing crystals that you gave me for my father?”

I blinked at her, then slammed my palm to my face. “DUH!! Why didn’t I think of that!? It’s so simple!” I opened a tear and reached in and pulled out… only three crystals?! “Wha--?” Then I remembered, all those fights had done some massive damage before and I used them to heal. Now I only had a couple left. I looked at Rainbow and then handed her a crystal. She looked at me confused. “Hold on to that for me, Rainbow. Just in case.” She nodded and hid in her saddle bag. “You should probably get back there, Flutters needs a punching bag.” Rainbow laughed out loud, but the stopped.

“You haven’t uh, …?”

I gave her a knowing look. “Her training’s been coming along nicely, let’s say that.”

Rainbow blanched then gulped. “...You’ve changed her ya know? Not int a bad way, but definitely different from the friend I used to know. She’s stronger, more confident in herself. I like it, honestly, but it’s taken some getting used to.”

I nodded again. “I wanted her to be more confident in herself, more secure. I want her to be the best Fluttershy she can be, like any parent would I suppose.”

“You love her Kat, and she loves you. It’s only natural you want what’s best for her. I should go, the others will be wondering what’s taking me so long.” She flapped off, giving me smile before speeding away at her incredible speeds. I shook my head with a smile, knowing that she would be fine, eventually. I got up and walked over to Dusty, though he didn’t move a muscle.

“Something on your mind, Kitten?”

“Just a little question. Why are you speaking aloud now? Before, you would only speak via telepathy, so what’s changed?”

“...I didn’t trust the Princesses back then, Kat. To an extent, I still don’t. I feared what they could do to you, that they would take you away from me. I was right in the end, but they did not do it out of malice, no, it was only a mistake. I have decided to trust them, despite everything that has happened, as well as trust your new friends and family. I only want to protect you, Kitten, that’s all I’ve ever wanted to do.”

I smiled happily and scratched my faithful familiar behind the ears. He melted to my touch, purring contently from the scratch. We sat like this for several blissful minutes… before everything went to hell.

The shield all around us fell away, revealing the frozen wasteland beyond. As well as the menacing shadow that was waiting for this very moment. I could see his glowing green and red eyes in the smoky form, glaring down at the Empire from above.

“Crystal ponies!” the shadow bellowed with that familiar deep voice. “Your true king has returned!”

“Not gonna happen, Sombra!” I yelled and charged forward, my shield bearing down on his form. He glanced down just as I barreled right through him, coming out the other side with a sense of dread and shock. I turned as he did, our eyes meeting and narrowing.

“Ah, the great Gravity graces me with her presence once again. Figures that Celestia would send her pet. Too afraid to come after myself, is she?”

“Celestia’s currently recovering from an attack, Sombra. And I’m not her pet, I am the one who defeated her!”

My words had the intended effect, stunning the shadow into speechlessness. Then he began to laugh, laughing loudly and maniacally. “That’s a good one, creature. You? Defeating the solar goddess? As if you could ever be so bold. Do not lie to your masters, girl!” His unicorn head appeared from within the shadow, his horn lighting with dark magic. He fired his bolt at me, to which I met it with my shield, blasting it away. I knew that the girls had to be working on some way to defeat this monster, all I had to do was buy it time.

I snarled at him and charged at his head, which receded into the smoke just as I approached. I went through the smoke and came out the other end. I glared back at his eyes, which showed amusement in return. I called out to Dusty with my thoughts, Dusty!

Yes, Mistress?” I noticed him racing along the ground as I dodged bolt after bolt of dark magic.

Get to the castle! I need you to be my comms for this mission. I need intel!

Of course! Be careful!” He disappeared in a wisp of energy as I struck out at another bolt. I threw out strike after strike, trying not to be blasted by that infernal magic. As long as Sombra was in this form there was no way I could do anything to him. Then it came to me, I did have one energy attack, even if I didn’t like it. As I beat away another blast, I pouted the energy into my staff hand, seeing it flow into my weapon until it was glowing the same as my aura. With a mighty swing, I sent out a wave of gravity energy that struck Sombra right between the eyes, sending the evil spectre backwards and into the ground with his crystal.

As he reformed, he glared harshly at me while I smirked back. I still felt… off about using that attack. I glanced towards the palace, hoping for some new soon. That was a mistake.

I felt a stinging sensation in my arm, before I was bowled over by the shadow. I was slammed down into a nearby building, parts of it collapsing on me. I think I blacked out for a moment, but it didn’t last. I used a stasis field to blast all the debris away, then I noticed the blood in my arm. I look over to see a massive hole in my shoulder, leaking blood down my arm. I grabbed it in shock, sending painful shocks through my body.

Kat! Kat are you okay?

Yes, Dusty. I got a hole in my shoulder, but I’m alive.

WHAT?! He, he, that bastard! Imma claw his fucking eyes out!!

My eyes shot open wide at his use of profanity. Dusty was usually not the one to freak out. Dusty, I’m fine. I have a healing crystal I can spare. What about Sombra? Do we have a plan?

...Yes. Twilight and Spike are looking for the Crystal Heart as we speak. You do remember the Heart, yes?

Yes, it was the source of all power in the Empire. Should have known he would hide it. How close are they to finding it?

It should be any time now… SPIKE!!

I turned towards the castle after pulling myself from the rubble and I gasped at seeing Spike on the very top holding the Heart. What made it worse, however, was that Sombra was heading right for him. I saw red at that moment and charged after that blasted shadow. I saw he was returning to a physical form to catch the Heart, but I was going to let him. I flew right above, powered up to my strongest and swung down hard on his head. I didn’t hear any crack of bone, but he was certainly in pain as he immediately sent flying into the ground below. I look down on his prone form, seeing he was attempting to stand from his crater. I turned back up to see Spike trying to climb down. I tried to fly over to him, but I suddenly felt my waist grabbed by magic and I was whipped down to the ground far away from the castle.

As I picked myself up, I look into the distance to see Sombra, blood trailing from several points on his body, deathly glaring at me. I could feel several bones broken or shattered, possibly even internal bleeding, not to mention the hole in my shoulder. We stared each other down, neither willing to give the other a moment’s peace. I could feel the eyes of hundreds of ponie watching us, but I paid them no mind. My only focus was the evil bastard in front of me.



We continued our battle of the minds, a deathly silence falling over the area.

“You. Cannot. Defeat. the King!” he yelled at me.

“Wrong, Sombra. It is you who cannot defeat the Queen!”

The ponies suddenly gasped, looking up as Spike fell from the top spire. Sombra started rising with a black crystal, but I threw my shield, splitting the crystal apart. I saw Cadance flying at Spike out of the corner of my eye, catching him in mid drop. I raced forward as Sombra fell, watching in horror as Spike and Cadance flew to the middle of the castle.

“Look! It’s the Crystal Princess!” a pony in the crowd cried.

At that moment, I decked Sombra in the face, sending him flying upward. As he passed me, I whispered to his ears, “Never mess with the Gravity Queen!”

I saw a grand light appear from the palace, blasting outward in a massive field of love. It flowed over me and everypony else, basking us in its light. When it hit Sombra, however, he screamed in pain and he was destroyed by the very thing he sought to eradicate. Served him right!

All around me, the Crystal Empire shimmered with a new gleam, just like in my memories. I saw everypony shining like gems. I looked upward, seeing my pony friends and family looking back at me with smiles, even those who hated me. I smiled weakly, before falling to the ground, out cold before I even felt anything.

*****Unknown POV ~ Unknown Location*****

“Hmm, it seems that Kat was able to survive her encounter with King Sombra.” A dark figure watched the scene in front of her with keen interest. Her lips curved into an evil grin. “Good, I was hoping this wouldn’t be to easy. A thousand years in change is a long time to for things to go too easy, after all. Time to bring in the real player!” She laughed into the darkness, her only witness was a starry bird that watched her with keen eye, never once looking away from her.

*****Kat’s POV ~ Crystal Palace*****

I awoke a few hours later, no more pain anywhere on me. I lazily opened my eyes, taking in the room, being a very comfortable guest bedroom. I sat up, cracking my back in doing so. I was getting too old for this.

“Grandmother!” I was once again on my back, but this time something was cuddling me. I look down and smiled at the sight of my granddaughter nuzzling me affectionately. I petted her mane, gently soothing her.

“I’m alright, Flutters. A little disoriented and sore, but alright.”

“Thank goodness,” my little Flutter whispered back. I looked up to see the other ponies around me, all looking at me with differing expressions. I flinched slightly as Twilight approached.

“Kat… thank you.” I blinked at her, not expecting such a response. “I, I may not like what you have done in the past, but you out your life on the line to protect Spike. Thank you for protecting him from Sombra. And for keeping him busy so we could find the Crystal Heart.”

I stared at the violet mare for a minute, before smiling kindly at her. “No, thank you Twilight. For your friendship, as well as your words. You may no longer consider us friends, but I still count you as one of mine. I was wrong about what I wanted, Twilight, and I took that anger out on Celestia. I’m sorry, so, so sorry. I want you to know that I will make reparations soon, and then surrender myself to the Crown.”

The ponies who didn’t know my plan blinked in surprise. “Are, are you sure aunty?” asked Cady. She used to call me that before, considering me family after all these years.

I nodded. “It needs to happen. I’m hoping that if I can fix some of the damages I’ve wrought, I might be able to get some mercy, at least enough to escape the death penalty. By the way, why am I healed? I didn’t have a healing crystal prepared.”

“I pulled it out of your storage.” I looked over to see Dusty nestled by my side. “I learned to access your storage spots, Kitten. I pulled out a healing crystal as well as one of these.” He reached behind the pillows and pulled out a stamina crystal and handed it to me. I smiled at him and shattered the gem, feeling a surge of energy flowing through me. I stood up with fervor, like drinking a Red Bull mixed with a can of Monster and throw in some coffee for flavor! ...Side note: never do that! Not a good idea in any way, shape, or form!

“Woo! That’s some strong stuff! I feel wide awake! Thanks Dusty! Well, let’s get to work!” I began to stroll off, Fluttershy and Dusty following. “There’s probably a fair amount of work that needs to be--.” I stopped dead in my tracks, the same happening with Dusty. As one, we turned towards the direction of something big. Something bad. Something… in Canterlot?!

“Do you feel that Kat? A disturbance, far larger than any previous.”

I nodded, the others watching me with worried looks. “Yes, a massive gravity disturbance has appeared in Canterlot. Either we’re dealing with the largest hoard of nevi yet, or it’s largest one we’ve ever faced.”

“And it’s in Canterlot?!” Twilight screeched, then gasped just as loudly. “The princesses! They have no way to defend themselves in their shape!”

Dusty and I were already in motion. I grabbed my jacket and slipped on my boots. “No one is going to hurt them, Twi. We’ll make sure of that. Ready Dusty?”

“Yes, let’s go save us a princess or two!”

I turned to the girls and smiled. “Don’t worry, I won’t let them get hurt anymore. I will protect them and everypony else with my life. I’ll be back to fix the damages soon! See ya!” With my familiar perched on my shoulder, I warped away, leaving the ponies and dragon behind.

When I left, however, the girls all turned to each other and nodded. “Girls,” Twilight began, “We got a friend to help!” As one, they raced off in the direction of the train station. Cadance and Shining Armor waved them off, with Spike running after them.

With that bit of knowledge unknown to me, I warped right on top of Canterlot Castle. I looked out at the city below… and my eyes nearly bugged out of my head. What lay before me was certainly not what had I expected, and most certainly was not wanted! A few choice words came to mind at the sight before me and I could keep them in. “Aw, bucking hell!”

Facing Down a New Threat with an Old Friend

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I, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. It was pure and utter chaos, the kind that would have made ol’ Dissy proud. There was destruction everywhere I looked, fires raging in certain parts, and ponies running for their lives from the massive behemoth that was destroying the city. It was large and long, with a head that looked as if it were made of bone, with a massive spinal-like feature running down it’s back. It had a enormous maw and bulbous turrets that jutted out from parts of its spine. It had to be at least fifty feet in length and was roughly half the size of the castle. I remembered this monster from the game, a creature that had feasted upon children that were trapped in its realm. The great leviathan, Nushi.

I tried to shake myself from the shock as its massive tail trashed yet another building, sending it to the ground as a pile of ruble. “Dusty, are you seeing what I’m seeing?”

“If you mean the massive fish destroying the royal city, then yes, yes I see it. How are you suppose to fight that thing? It’s massive!”

“If I remember right, there’s a weak point on the back of its head. There was some condition for it to appear, but I can’t recall what that…”

The great beast opened its maw as we spoke and energy began to build in its mouth. A second later, a massive beam of gravitational energy was fired from it, destroying three blocks of the city in seconds. I noticed on the back of its head was the red eye that needed to be smashed.

“Oh, right. It has to do that for it to appear. This is going to be the most property damage yet. Alright, let’s get this over with.”

“Uh, Kat....” Dusty carried off and I followed his gaze downward, my eyes widening in horror. Not only was the Nushi here, but also he had a pack of nevi with him! I saw Hulks, Stars, and Minions all over the place. Then I looked back to Nushi, and saw that the monster was actually creating its own guards!

“Aw… buck! This is going to be a chore.” I powered up, Dusty hovering with me, and flew off to take on the monster.

As I flew, I slammed my shield and staff into several nevis, trying to give the populace a better chance to escape. There were still ponies running everywhere, and it made me choke back a few sobs to see some were lying dead in the streets. This steeled my resolve as I charged the Nushi. I went up under its chin and flew straight up, bashing my shield into its jaw. The monster flew up slightly, but simply used the momentum to turn in midair. Then came my crap moment, when I got slingshotted by its tail. Yeah… that happened.

I flew backwards at incredible speed, slamming into a building and came out the other side. I plummeted to the ground, making a crater with my body. I groaned as I tried to get back up, feeling pain racking my body.

“Kat! Are you injured?”

“I’m… I’m fine. A little shaken up, but fine. Oh man, how can that thing pack such a wallop?”

“I’m not sure, but we have to destroy it soon, or it will destroy everything here. Then who knows what it will do.”

I nodded, getting shakily to my feet. “Let’s get this done. I got repairs to make.” I took off and flew right back at the leviathan, only to be blasted by its turrets, falling to a roof. I got up once again and flew back, bashing away a Star in the process. As the nevi dispersed, I found myself face to face with a gaping maw. I blanched as the beam powered up. Stupid on my part as I was frozen in place as the massive beam of energy was fired directly at me. I had just enough cognitive thought to put the shield between me and the blast, but I was still sent flying, crashing once again into a building. I groaned in pain as I pulled myself from the wall I found myself pressed into.

“Kat?” I opened my eyes painfully to see to familiar alicorns staring at me in surprise, which I returned.

“What are you two doing here?!”

“That’s what we were wondering about you,” Luna said, surprisingly not sounding angry or annoyed.

“I’m trying to fight off that!” I pointed back out of the hospital. Their gazes followed and then widened and paled at seeing the Nushi attacking Canterlot.

“What is that thing?!” they screamed.

“That’s the Nushi, the most powerful of all the nevi. And I’m trying to stop him from destroying everything.”

Celestia looked at me in surprise, while Luna stared at the monster. “Why? Why would you help?”

“Because… because that’s who I am,” I admitted with a shy smile. Then it turned remorseful. “I hope to show you that in time. But for now, I’ll be content with defending. Where’s the staff, they should be evacuating you.”

“We haven’t seen anypony since the earthquakes, which we are guessing was that thing,” Luna explained, pointing out the hole in the wall.

“They probably all ran off, but that doesn’t explain the guards disappearing. Ah, just stay here then,” I said as I started to march back into battle. Then I stopped. “Dusty! Keep an eye on them for me. Let me know if something comes to attack.”

“As you wish, Kitten,” Dusty said as he appeared between the two princesses, who went bug-eyed at seeing him. “Hello princesses. I hope you are pleased that you didn’t kill me.” I noticed out of the corner of my eyes, that both princesses were doing impressive impersonations of fishes, Dusty giving them a trollish smile. I smiled and shook my head, then shot off.

I was going the speed of a bullet, aiming right for that stupid eye on the back of its head. If I could just cause enough damage, I could prevent it from firing off the beam it was charging. I fired up my Spiralling Claw, giving me the needed boost to plow right into its weak spot. I put as much pressure as I could, but the damned eye wouldn’t burst! I ran out of stamina for the claw and I had to retreat. Thankfully, it was enough of a force to keep Nushi from firing.

I panted in exhaustion, this fight taking a lot out of me after my time with Sombra. This beast is far too powerful for me to take on by myself. I need help, I need -- Oh crap, it noticed me! I was slammed by its tail once again, shooting down and into the ground.

“I gotta rethink this whole hero thing sometime. It’s not good for my health,” I choked out as I pried myself from another crater. I looked around me, and could only see destruction. Bodies lay dead in the streets, nevi were running rampant, and the Nushi was destroying everything from above. This was no attack, it was a full on invasion! I was subtly reminded of Avengers for a moment as I took in everything. The sight brought tears to my eyes, especially since I couldn’t do anything.

I knew Garble and the others would come in time, as they always did when nevi appeared, but by the time they made it, there might not be a city to save. I needed help now. But how? From who? I sighed, looking the ground in sorrow. That’s when I saw it, a gleaming medallion in the rocks at my feet. I bent down and picked it up, revealing the totem that my teacher had gifted to me. That was it!

“This will do it! Gilgamesh will surely help me!” I said with glee. There was no way he could deny my request to help the innocent! I help up the medallion and shouted, “Oh great and mighty Gilgamesh, I ask for your aid! I, Kat Shifter, the Gravity Queen, required your assistance in defending Canterlot from a great threat! I summon you, oh great and mighty warrior!”

I waited like that for a moment, expecting him to come gallivanting out of a portal like he used to. One minute, one and a half, two… and nothing. Only the breeze of the wind and the sounds of destruction. I lowered my arm and stared in horror at the coin. Was... was he ignoring me? Did, did I really mess up so bad that he wouldn’t even talk to me?! “Gilgy?” I whispered to the coin, sorrow and dread filling my voice.

“B, but I can’t do this on my own.” I looked up at the monster that was causing all of this pain, only to see it was much farther away. Almost near…

Kat! Get back to the hospital! The Nushi is coming!!”

My eyes widened and I rushed off, warping from my spot back to the hospital room. Just in time, too, as I put my and my shield in front of Celestia and a stream of gravity blasts. “Made it,” I whispered to myself. I looked out at the missing section of the building, the Nushi having made a much bigger hole. It stared down at us, its soulless eyes watching us with intensity. It roared loudly, declaring us its enemies. I looked behind me and smiled sadly. “Don’t worry, I’m going to protect you. Just as I should have been doing all this time.” Celestia and Luna were shocked by my words, but I couldn’t focus on that. I need to focus on the giant monster in front of us. I brandished my shield, my staff held out at the ready. “YOU. SHALL. NOT. PASS!!!!” I roared in return.

The leviathan brought down its tail, to which I met it with a gravity kick. I batted back a turret blast, bashed away a limb, and held back a head butt. There was no way in hell, I was going to let this thing get the princesses. But it was getting to be too much. Faster than I could block, I was smacked by one of its clawed limbs and sent back to the hospital floor.

“Kat, look out!” I opened my eyes to see another limb barreling down on me. I rolled to the side just as it passed through the floor. This was getting nowhere fast. Not even in the game could this thing be beaten by only one. I needed help. The princesses would normally be an option, but with Celestia missing her horn and Luna still pretty beat up, there was no way it was going to happen. I could call on Auric since I still had his coin on me, but I had no idea if that knowitall pony could fight. He claimed he could, but I highly doubted it. That left my only option to be my former teacher. I needed Gilgamesh.

I summoned the medallion to my hand and fixed it to the shield with a stasis field and tried again. “Gilgamesh! I request your aid once again! I need your help! I can’t save them without you!” I dodged another blast, constantly making sure the Princesses, who Dusty had moved to the room across the hall as more and more of the building was destroyed, would not be harmed.

“Gilgy!” I screamed, taking a blast to the gut.

“Come on, Gilgamesh!” I was trapped against the floor. A claw followed me to the floor and impaled my staff arm. I screamed in agony, but had to beat back another that tried to go for my other arm. More and more blasts were fired from it and I had to strike each with only my shield. Then one shot got lucky and blasted my shield free of my arm and was sent flying across the room. I looked up in fear at the massive nevi.

“GILGY, PLEASE!” I screamed as its maw opened wide.

“GILGAMESH!” Energy gathered into a massive ball, aimed right at my head. I was pale with fear. I didn’t want to die, not like that, not without fixing everything!

I poured everything I had into one last shout, begging to be saved.


A massive blast rang out. For a moment I thought I was dead until I noticed that my arm still hurt. I opened my eyes to see that Nushi had been smashed into a nearby building, as if it had been swatted out of the air. But more important was the tall and armored figure that stood in front with his back to me, his weapon drawn as his scarf flowed in the wind.

“Sorry I didn’t respond immediately. I was going through a rough time,” he said in a calm voice before turning his head towards me. “That’s no excuse to let my student suffer. I apologize.”

I stared at him in shock and awe, seeing that monster struck away so easily. Then I began to tear up and a smile touched my lips. “Gilgy,” I whispered before flinging myself at him. “Sensei!” Yeah, I glomped him, so what?

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you so affectionate, Kat. I hope it hasn’t been too rough without me,” he said as he hugged me back.

“Uh… noooo,” I said slowly. Before he could ask what that meant, Dusty called out to me.

“Kitten? Kitten are you alright?” He walked and stopped upon seeing Gilgamesh. “What am I looking at here?”

“Ah, Dusty. We finally meet. It’s good to see my student has her old friend back.”

“Ah, so this is the warrior you spoke of. The one that was strange beyond what should be allowed, I believe were your words.”

I facepalmed. “Dusty, sometimes you have no tact at all.”

“I’m just teasing you, Kitten. Ah, here comes the princesses.”

I blanched. “Uh oh.”

“What’s wrong? We could use their help,” Gilgamesh asked. “Honestly I’m surprised they’re not helping alre-”

He cut himself off as he saw the two alicorns enter the room. “Is the monster gone?” asked Celestia, Gilgamesh staring at the lack of a horn on her head.

“No, it’s only been pushed down for a little bit, but it’ll get up soon,” I replied, slowly distancing myself from the speechless Gilgamesh. This was not going to be good.

He looked back and forth between me and Celestia for a few moments before his eyes began burning in anger. I could hear him gritting his teeth underneath his faceguard. I was sure he was going to hit me right there until he closed his eyes and took in a deep breath before letting it go.

“Be like water,” I heard him mutter before opening his eyes. “An issue to be resolved later. Kat, get the Princesses to safety, or at least somewhere safer. I’ll hold this thing off for a little while. And Kat?” I saw his eyes burn with anger. “When this is over, we will have words,” he finished in a venomous tone.

I gulped and nodded, but then remembered one problem. “One issue with that.”

“What?” he asked.

I pointed back out of the hole, down at the rampaging hordes of nevi in the streets. “He made some friends.” I turned to my guardian. “Dusty, can you get them somewhere safe?”

He nodded. “Easy enough. Be careful, kitten, but you may want to use a healing crystal before that hole in your arm gets any worse.”

I looked over at my right shoulder and sighed. “Two holes in one day. This sucks.” I opened up my storage and looked for a crystal before paling. I pulled out the lone healing crystal in there. “Uh oh.”

“What’s wrong?” Gilgamesh asked.

“I only have one left. B-but I can’t use this!”

I could see him about to ask why until he noticed the Princesses again. He nodded to himself for a moment before walking over to me and raising his arm.


I felt the hole begin to heal and close. A second later, there was but a lone hole in my clothes where it used to be through skin and bone. “Thanks Gilgy,” I said with a smile before putting away the crystal. I then powered up and looked out at the nevi. “Now, let’s go kill some monsters. Keep them safe Dusty!” I jumped out of the building, heading straight for a Hulk and taking it out in one blow.

“Keep yourself safe, Kitten!” I heard him yell back.

Gilgamesh jumped down and landed on the street below, many Nevi surrounding him. “You have attacked this city, slain innocents, and harmed my student,” he began, unclipping his weapon. “Congratulations, you mindless beasts, you have earned my undying rage.”

Several of them rushed him only for him to swing his spear and unleashing a burst of wind that seemed to tear through them like a hot knife through butter, immediately dispersing the lot of them. A Hulk jump at him from behind only for him to turn and shove his spear through it’s eye. He then lifted the nevi above him before firing a beam from his eyes that annihilated it.

“Impressive,” I said flying above him. “But we still got the big guy to deal with.” The Nushi had gotten up and was flying high above us. “Unfortunately, he’s got conditions for us to get his eye. The only time it appears is when he’s about to fire off his big gun.”

“Let me guess, giant mouth laser?” he asked before lunging forwards and ripping out the eye of minion before crushing it in his hand.

“Eeyup. Then we can finally start to attack its main weak points, if the game is to be believed. Roughly ten more eyes should appear running down its back afterward and once those are gone so is he and all of his pets,” I explained as I swatted out a couple of stars. “Ugh, what is taking them so long?”

“Who?” he asked, summoning a missile and blowing up large group of minions.

The group of nevi to their left suddenly burst into a torrent of flames, three young dragons walking through. I smiled at them. “They would be who.” I flew down to them and hugged Garble. “About time you got here.”

“Sorry, your highness,” Garble said through his blush as I released him. “We had to get around my grandfather first. He figured out we were helping you and wasn’t too pleased when the news hit about your destructive habits. He’s especially pissed about the thing with the princesses.”

“I figured as much, but we’ll cross that bridge soon enough. Boys, meet Gilgamesh, he’s on our side.”

“Huh, I never thought you’d have these brats working for you. I guess you weren’t kidding about the ‘worshipped by dragons’ business.”

“Brats?!” the three said in unison.

I glared at Gilgy. “Don’t be mean. These three have stood by my side since the beginning. And, yes they knew the eventual goal. Garble, TK, and Tiny are my friends. Just because they were like that where you come from, doesn’t mean they are like that in every world.”

“What’s he calling us brats for?”

“I think it had something to do with Spike on his world.”

“Spike? What does the little dude have do with any of this?”

“Let’s just say in my version of Equestria you three were a real bunch of assholes to him and his friends. Sorry, hard not to associate the faces with what I’m familiar with,” replied before turning around and grabbing a Hulk by the leg and using it to bludgeon nearby nevi into oblivion. He then quickly shoved both hands into it’s body, gripping the eye before he smashed it between his hands.

The dragons stared in shock at his brutality, their mouths agape. I was impressed myself, but we had bigger fish to fry. “Boys,” I said, them standing at attention. “Your mission is to hold off the nevi down here while Gilgamesh and I take care of the big one known as Nushi. There will be no destruction this time around, what I want you to focus on is getting the ponies to safety and protecting them. And Boys?” The looked at me with curiosity. “I want the nevi to burn.” Their eyes turned harsh and they smiled.

“As your will commands, great Gravity Queen. Let’s do this!” They took off with impressive speed and started torching Nevi left and right. I turned to Gilgamesh who was staring in surprise. I smirked.

“Telling a dragon to burn something is sort of like telling a dog to sick ‘em. It’s a switch that let’s them go wild. We won’t have to worry about the smalls anymore.”

“I see. I’ll keep that in mind. After all, I still have Everflame indebted to me.” We both then turned to Nushi, flying above us. “Game plan?”

“We need to keep it busy, block the turrets and get it to focus on us instead of the city. Wait for its maw to open wide, that will be our chance. It can’t move when it’s charging so once that happens, go buck wild on the eye. Smash it in time and it will break it focus.”

“And so video game strategies prove useful once again,” he said with a chuckle while planting his weapon in the ground. He took a series of sweeping poses before shouting ”Henshin! In a flash he took his eight armed form, this time armed with weapons instead of musical instruments. “I can get up there easily enough, but I might need some help actually staying up. No levitation powers and and all.”

“Easy enough.” I threw my hand in his direction and Gilgamesh lifted up in the air. “I can give you simple controls, but not much else. Just think of moving and it should work. I think that’s how Dusty does it.”

“Wait, you just made me a shifter?”

“No, you just inside a stasis field. Don’t go to far from me otherwise it will fail and well… you can probably guess what happens then.”

“Eh, I’m sure it won’t hurt too badly. Anyway, let’s get this done with,” he said as he blared a new song, flying towards the massive Nevi along with me.

Nushi came swimming through the air at us, and we split, Gilgamesh going low and I went high. I flew up above its head and smashed my shield down on its head, sending it down where Gilgamesh went on a barrage on its underbelly. Nushi roared in protest, wiggling free of us and swimming a bit away before firing its turrets at us. “Gilgamesh look out!”

He unleashed a torrent of bubbles from his mouth before using his two free hand to force them forwards. The bubbles and blasts of energy met and destroyed each other, but the force of the blasts was still great enough that it sent him hurtling away. I was about to head after him when I saw him land on the side of a building and jump back at the monster, striking it’s face with his flail and axe and sending it hurtling further upwards into the air.

The Nushi righted itself and look down on us both. It roared and opened its maw wide. “This our chance! It’s right on the back of the skull!” We launched forward, and got right behind the monster. “Don’t hold back!” I roared bringing my staff down on the eye. Gilgamesh planted himself onto it’s back, keeping himself there by stabbing it with his sword and spear before hacking at the eye with his flail, axe, claws, and even his fists.

As one, we punched the eye, shattering it and sending the Nushi writhing in pain down. As we stood back, I watched as the ten new eyes appeared along its back. “Now for the hard part. Those eyes will open and close every now and then, but as long as we keep crushing them they won’t seal back up. And one more thing, like any game boss, when you get it weak enough,” the Nushi roared and sped towards us, “It get’s stronger and bolder.”

“Let’s finish this thing off!” he shouted before dispersing his weapons and firing eight comically large boxing gloves at it’s face, which promptly exploded. It didn’t do any damage but it did cause it to flinch. “CHARGE!” he shouted while dashing forwards.

I flew forward with increased speed, heading for the first eye. I placed my shield in front of me and slammed hard into it. The eye held firm so I twisted my body and jabbed it with my staff, blasting it into oblivion. I had to back off as another eye shot blasts at me, but that wasn’t stopping Gilgamesh, who simply cut at them with his sword. Even though they detonated in his face I saw him continue on, his body glowing a bit as I recognized one of the protective spells he often used. He stabbed into one of the eyes with his spear before summoning wind to make it spin like a drilling, continually damaging the eye until it finally broke.

“Two down, let’s keep up the pressure!” I fired up my Gravity Typhoon, summoning multitudes of boulders and fired them at the remaining eyes. Some were destroyed by the by the turrets, but it was enough to take out half of the eyes. “Take it, Sensei!”

He raised his arms, causing lightning bolt rain down on one of the eyes finally destroying it. He then dashed over and stepped on another unleashing an Earthquake spell, which I was surprised worked in the air, unleashing a massive shock wave that broke it.

“Let’s take the last two together!” Side by side, we charged against the final eyes. I fired up my Spiral Claw, while he brandished his weapons. We slammed into the eyes and burst right through and out the other side of the Nushi. The monster wailed in pain before dispersing into nothingness. We both panted in exhaustion from the battle, looking down to see all of the nevi following their creator to hell. I looked down and saw Garble, TK, Tiny, and Dusty with the Princesses just outside of the city by the train station. I flew us down and released Gilgamesh from the gravity field, while I dropped to the ground on my butt.

“That. Sucked!” I groaned.

“Perhaps, but… I think I needed this,” he said in an unexpectedly somber tone, changing back to his previous form. “I think I needed to see that… I could actually do something without screwing up.”

I looked back to Canterlot, the still burning and destroyed city. “Yeaahh, not screwing up.” I was about to say more, when a train pulled into the station. Immediately afterwards, I was tackled by a yellow blur.


“Gah!” I yelled as I was bowled over. I looked down to see Fluttershy nuzzling me. “Oh, hey Flutters, what’s up?”

“What happened to my hometown?!” I looked up to see Twilight about to have a full on panic attack and then she turned to me. “You! It’s always you! Shifter, I’m gonna--”

“Touch one hair, Sparkle and I’m not gonna hold back on you!” Flutters yelled, getting in a defensive position in front me. Rainbow and Applejack joined her, while Pinkie and Rarity stood by Twilight. Spike just joined the other dragons watching in silence. I looked up a Gilgamesh, an apologetic yet confused look on my face.

“This was entirely unintentional.”

He sighed for a moment before taking his place between the two of them.

“I don’t know everything that has happened here, but I can get an idea. The damage to this city was not caused by her. Surely you noticed the monster in the skies above?”

“Yes, but they are always after her! The nevi and her are related, there’s no denying that. After everything she’s done, she needs to be locked away. Despite what she did in the Crystal Empire, her attack on Celestia as well as the extinction of the Changeling race are proof enough.”

“‘Extinction of the-’!?” he began, only to turn back to face me, anger in his eyes. He looked ready to shout at me before exhaling sharply. After a moment he walked over to me and grabbed my arm, pulling me to my feet. His grip hurt. “We need to talk,” he said in an icy cold voice.

Dusty suddenly appeared on my shoulder, the same one Gilgamesh was holding. “If you have something to say to her, then you will do it in front of all of us. I don’t care what problem you have with her, I will not leave her alone with you.”

“Nor will I,” said Fluttershy. “She is my family and I won’t let you hurt her, whoever you are.”

Gilgamesh stared the two down before sighing and letting go of my arm. He walked over to a piece of debris and sat down, glaring at me. “I want to hear everything.”

“Where do you want me to start?”

“The beginning. The absolute beginning. What was your name before you were Kat Shifter?”

“My name is Allison, I do not remember my last name. Nor can I remember the names of my family. It was too long ago and filled with too much pain.”

As I explained everything, Gilgamesh simply sat there in silence. It was slightly unnerving, but once I had said everything, leaving out exactly what sent me over the edge against Celetia, I laid back against a rock, Fluttershy and Dusty by my side. Celestia and Luna sat by with the others, save for Rainbow who needed a cloud to be truly comfy.

“And that’s everything that’s happened.”

He took a deep breath before getting up and strolling over towards me. “You promised me, Kat. You said you wouldn’t abuse what I taught you.”

“I couldn’t control it,” I said while hanging my head. “I don’t even remember what I did. I blacked out and the next thing I know, I’m holding Mjolnir and Celestia is at my feet with her horn in pieces.”

“And the Changelings? What do you have to say about them?”

“I say that Chrysalis should have heeded my warning. I told her exactly what would happen if they tried this again. It was her own fault.”

My head whipped to the side as I felt something smack my cheek. It took me a second to realize he had slapped me. “How can you say that!?” he shouted.

Fluttershy immediately reared up and slapped him back. “Don’t you dare strike my grandmother!!” I pulled her back, rubbing my cheek.

“Calm down Flutters, he’s a protector of all. I can say that because they deserved no kindness. Maybe genocide was a little harsh, but if they had gone for peace instead of killing innocents and attempting to take over, then they would still be around. I will not tolerate monsters, not even when I am one of them,” I finished with a sorrowful moan.

“Tell me Kat, was it difficult to stop them? Did you struggle to fend them off?”

“When has that ever worked? Fending them off would have resulted in it happening further down the line. I’m not Batman, I’m not going to let the villain go hoping they’ll change. If anything, I guess I’m closer to the Red Hood.”

“Killing is done out of necessity, Kat, not punishment! You could’ve at least imprisoned them! When the Changelings invaded in my dimension I drove them off without killing a single one! With your gravity powers it should’ve been easy for you to restrain them long enough for them to be imprisoned! And before you try and tell me that it would only put off the problem, peace has been made between the ponies and changelings before! Auric did it his dimension! I plan to do so in mine! You should’ve strived for the same!” He raised his fist, ready to punch me. Fluttershy, Dusty, Applejack, Rainbow Dash, Garble TK, and Tiny all readied to jump at him when he stopped, just hanging there. After a few tense moments his fist unclenched and his arm fell. He then dropped to his knees and wept openly.

“Gilgy?” I questioned at his actions. “Why are you the one who is crying? I’m the one who did the deeds.”

“Because it’s my fault. All of it,” he managed to say through sobbing breaths. “I should’ve taught you better. I sent you away because I didn’t want to make you stronger, but I was a fool. I gave you power, but I didn’t give you control. If I did, maybe you wouldn’t have… OH GOD, IT’S ALL MY FAULT!”

We were all stunned at his open weeping. I was stunned into silence, never expecting to see this side of my teacher. “Gilgy… it was not your fault. This was going to happen eventually. I didn’t need your teachings to destroy the changelings. I only used your teachings to keep myself from being squished by a massive golden warhammer that’s denser than anything in existence. You are not to blame, only me.”

“But if I’d taught you better you might’ve tried something different! You could’ve learned the value of all life! You could’ve decided that you would try something different! As your teacher, all of your mistakes might as well be my own! I might as well have come here and killed them myself!” I had no idea what to say. He was actually taking responsibility not only for what I had done but everything I was going to do. After a few moments more he stood up. “Promise me, Kat. Promise me you’ll make up for it. All of it.”

“Uh, I’ve already got a plan to make up for the whole destruction thing, but I get the feeling you mean more than that.”

“Kat, I know you have things to do here, but once this is all done, I want you travel to other Equestrias and do what you didn’t here. I want you to make peace between the ponies and changelings in no less than ten other dimensions. I don’t mean ten tries, Kat, I mean no less than ten successes.”

“Aw man. I get the feeling I don’t have a say in this, either.”

Dusty looked at me with a raised eyebrow. “Why are you even listening to this blowhard? I understand that he was a teacher and a friend, but you don’t have to do what he says.”

“I listen to him because I don’t want to die. I’m still not strong enough to take him on. Maybe some day, but especially not after fighting Sombra, a ton of nevi, and the Nushi. Not to mention I’m still not fully recovered from my fight with Celestia.”

“Then maybe you shouldn’t do what he says,” said Twilight with bite in her voice. “One less problem to deal with.”

“Watch yourself, Sparkle,” Flutters warned.

“ENOUGH!” Gilgamesh shouted, causing everyone to seize up for moment. “Kat, you will do as I say.” He then turned to Twilight. “And you will try and forgive her. I know she has done horrible things, but she is not evil. And before you accuse her of causing destruction simply by being present, do not forget all of the craziness that follows you and your friends around. And I hope I need not remind you of ‘Smarty Pants.’ Besides, such aggression does not become one who wishes to champion the ‘Magic of Friendship.’”

Twilight glared at Gilgamesh before lowering head with a grumble. “Fine. I’ll give her another chance, but only because you brought up the ‘Smarty Pants’ incident.”

Gilgamesh then walked towards the Princesses before stopping a few paces from them. He then removed his helmet before holding it at his side. His face was chiseled like something out of a greek statue. His hair was golden blonde, tied into a shoulder-length ponytail, and his skin was dark grey. A chinstrap beard followed his rather impressive jawline.

“Damn. Good thing I don’t date my teachers,” I muttered. He was quite strapping, but that personality was a big turn off.

“Princess Celestia, Princess Luna, though you’ve probably already guessed by now, my name is Gilgamesh. I am a warrior from another version of Equestria. I met Kat Shifter by chance and she asked me to train her in the art of combat so she could defeat her enemies. I did not know that those enemies included you at the time, but that doesn’t matter. The blame still lies with me. I know I have no right to ask this, but please listen to my request. I ask that you please not punish Kat for what she has done.” He then removed his spear and his shield from his back and set them on the ground along with his helmet. He then got on his hands and knees and lowered his head. “If you must punish someone, please let it be me. I will take whatever you deem fit. Take my arm, my leg, even my life if you must. Just please, I beg you, don’t hurt her.”

Celestia looked at him in shock and awe, while Luna was literally slack-jawed. “...Mr. Gilgamesh, we do not blame you for these instances. If anything, the blame lies with us. For you see, Dusty’s death was intentional.”

“What?” I asked, glaring harshly at her.

“Kat, quiet. Let them speak,” Gilgamesh ordered as he lifted his head.

“It is not something we are proud of, but yes. We feared Dusty, you were the only one who could hear him, Kat. We were afraid that he was steering you in the wrong direction. When those disturbances were reported we feared that Dusty was the one doing it. Or was convincing you to do it. We knew that you could use your powers only when he was around so we thought that if we got rid of him, we could take care of two problems at once. If we hadn’t ever done that, then none of this would have ever happened.” Celestia began to tear up, no longer able to hold back her sobs. “I just wanted us to be a family and I thought Dusty was the one in the way of making that happen.”

For a moment everyone was silent, only Celestia’s sobs breaking it.

“So, this was all just a horrible misunderstanding,” Gilgamesh confirmed as he stood and faced me. “Well Kat? Can you not forgive them? You yourself have made bad choices in the name of love and affection. Can you not forgive them for doing the same?”

I was silent, thinking over Celestia’s words. They kept playing over and over in my mind. I didn’t know what to feel. Should I be angry? Angry that they destroyed Dusty due to fear. Should I be happy? Happy that they still wanted to be a family. Or… or… GAH! I just didn’t know! “I, I don’t know. I, I want to forgive them, but… but, how are they supposed to forgive me?” I started to crack up with sobs. “They destroyed my best friend, but I’ve destroyed the lives of thousands.”

Dusty, who had remained silent the whole time, finally spoke. “Well, I can forgive them.”

“HUH?!” sounded the ponies.

“Yes, I can see that it was a misunderstanding. Of course, I felt no pain so it’s not like I can hold that against them. The only anger I hold is that they didn’t try to figure this out before hand. Then again, that may have been my fault for not trusting them all those years ago. So yes, Princess Celestia and Princess Luna, I forgive you for killing me.”

“So one forgives. Surely you can do the same, Kat.”

“Well, if Dusty can forgive them, I should too, right? Dusty was my whole reason for doing so in the first place. So, Celestia, Luna, if you are willing to give me a chance to prove myself again, then I can forgive you both.”

Celestia, tears still in her eyes, said, “Of course, Kat. All I’ve ever wanted is for you to be by our side. I would love to be given that chance once again.”

“I’m still a little miffed that you slammed me around and got rid of me before we had a proper fight, Kat,” Luna said with a little smirk. “If you can give me a proper fight, then I will give you a chance to prove yourself.”

“You are on, Luna,” I said with a smile. “Don’t expect me to go easy on you.”

“Of course not. If you do, then I will be very displeased.”

Twilight and the others were slack jawed. “Just like that? You’re going to forgive her just. like. that?!” Her hair started to fizzle a little and stick out. Then she let out a massive groan. “UGH!! Why is everypony so forgiving of this girl!?”

“‘To err is human. To forgive, divine.’ Alexander Pope,” Gilgamesh said. “Although, in this case, perhaps the proper word would be ‘mortal’? It certainly can’t be ‘pony’, as that’s not all that’s here.”

“Ok, I’m gonna stop you right now before you go too far down this rabbit hole,” I interrupted. “Honestly, I don’t Twilight and the others are going to be as easy to convince. The only reason we became friends was because she was curious about me, but was always wary. I don’t have any right to judge her on that though. I have been pretty awful as of late. But I’m trying to change and that starts with a simple gift.” I got up and walked over to Gilgamesh. I picked up a stone on the ground and crushed it in my hands. When I opened it again, a shining black diamond was there.

Even though all I do is sin, you have guided me time and time again. For that I give this gem where by all it will be seen, I bestow upon you my gift, the powers of the Gravity Queen.” I embedded the diamond on his chest plate, right in the center where it glistened in the light. “I want you to know that for all you can or cannot do, like you were there for me, I will be there for you. Whether in times where you are about to meet your end, or when all you need is a friend. Always remember, never forget, from me to you, from your faithful student, Kat.

Gilgamesh looked surprised for a moment before a smile came to his face. Not a cocky or mischievous smile, but a warm and simple one.

“Kat, could you give me the medallion I gave you?”

I reached into my pocket and took out the trinket with his insignia on it. He clasped both of his hands over my own and closed his eyes. A bright light emanated from under them before I felt the object disappear, only for something now to be covering both my hands. The light disappeared and I saw two gauntlets now adorned my hands all the way down to my elbows.

“These are the Genji Gloves. They are my summoning token, and are also a useful armor. They will defend you from physical and magical attacks and render you immune to Toad and Paralyse ailments. To be honest, I’m still not entirely sure you deserve these right now. However, I do believe you will be.”

I stared at the gauntlets in awe, and smiled at my teacher. The gauntlets were then engulfed in my power and disappeared. “I refuse to use them,” I said with a smile. “Not until I have completed my mission. That is a promise I make to you, a Pinkie Pie Promise. Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye. And for you, that gem is not only my new token for you, but it will also give you my powers. Highly limited, mind you, to only my originals and lasts for only five consecutive minutes. Each time it will need a 24 hour recharge. I know you will use it well.”

“It’s fine. I enjoy making creative solutions. And there is one last thing I can give. It was something I should’ve given you before I sent you away.” He took a deep breath and closed his eyes.

Be like water.
It is the softest element on earth, yet it penetrates the hardest rock.
It may flow swiftly or it may flow slowly, but its purpose is inexorable, its destiny sure.
Water may seem to move in contradiction, even uphill, but it chooses any way open to it so that it may reach the sea.
Be pliable.
When a man is living, he is soft and pliable.
When he is dead, he becomes rigid.
Pliability is life, rigidity is death, whether one speaks of man's body, his mind, or his spirit.
The meaning of life is that it is to be lived.
It is not to be squeezed into a pattern of systems.
Living exists when life lives through us.
Be like water.
Even though I, Gilgamesh, may die some day without fulfilling all of my ambitions, I will have no regrets.
I did what I wanted to do and what I've done, I've done with sincerity and to the best of my ability.
You can't expect much more from life.”

He opened his eyes before continuing. “That is my mantra. It was what I always refer to when I’m trouble or I feel without direction. It is what I try to live by, though like any mortal I fail every so often. You can use it if you’d like, but I recommend you make one more personalized to you.” He then picked up his spear, shield, and helmet, returning them all to their proper places, save for his helmet. “Kat, I wish you the best.”

I smiled warmly at him. “I’ll give that mantra thing a try, but that might be a little too hippie even for me. What would my father think?” I asked with a laugh, a small one, but a laugh nonetheless. “Thank you for everything Gilgamesh.” I floated up and gave him a little peck on the cheek, getting a little blush from him. “I hope that the worlds are kind to you.”

He recovered after a moment. “And remember Kat, no less than ten. I hope you find it in your heart to do more.”

“Yes, Sensei,” I said with a smile and roll of my eyes. “Mighty Gilgamesh, I declare our contract complete.”

With that a portal opened up behind him.

“Huh. First time someone else has done that to me. Well, see you later Kat. May the winds of Freedom carry your wings.”

“And may you fall free in any direction you choose.” I smiled as his stunned expression which turned into a smile. And with that he stepped through the portal and disappeared. I turned back to the mares, still smiling.

And that’s when everything went to hell.

“I thought that weirdo would never leave,” said a voice from behind me. I turned around in surprise, seeing another human, one that looked exactly like the rival in the game, Raven. She smiled evilly at me, sending a shiver down my spine. “Guards! Seize them all! They have attempted to take the princesses hostage!”

Ten guards came rushing out of the bushes and tackled the mares. “Girls!” I screamed as Celestia and Luna tried to get them off. I tried to get to them, but was suddenly thrown backwards. I had to correct myself mid air and found Raven blocking my path.

“Unh unh uh,” she said with a wave of her finger. “Not gonna happen, Kat.” She powered on her aura, similar to mine save that it was blue where mine was red. “I’ve been waiting a long time for this, Shifter. I hope that you do not disappoint.”

I growled at this newcomer for ruining my moment of happiness. “I don’t know who you are, but you are not taking my family anywhere.” I brandished my weapons and stared her down. “Get outta my way!” I charged forward.

She smirked and a rapier formed in her grasp. “I’m going to enjoy this.” She rushed me and my staff and her sword met, a glare on my face and a sinister smile on hers.

Gravity Falls, part one

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I charged at Raven as she charged at me. Her rapier was placed just so perfectly as to go right through my defense, but I shifted at the last second for the blade to bounce of my shield. We were both thrown back from the impact, but I used the momentum to spin around and swing my staff at her. To my surprise, she had already righted herself and had her pulsing-blue hand out in defense. My staff was pushed away like two magnetic poles of the same type, taking me off balance. Raven threw out her sword arm, the blade piercing right through my shoulder.

“Ah! Shit!” I screamed. I lifted my legs and kicked her, sending her tumbling backwards. I lifted my staff arm to my shoulder, holding it as I forced my skin to fold and cauterize. And yeah, that hurt like all hell; I always hate having to do that. I glared at Raven, who smirked right back at me, reveling in my pain. “What is your problem?!” I screeched at her. “Who are you? Why are you doing this?”

“Can’t you tell, little kitty?” Okay, that was uncalled for, you bitch. “I am Raven, Raven Masters. I am the Gravity Master, here to dethrone the Queen. I’m going to defeat you and make you pay for your crimes.”

“I’m already in the process of paying for them! Celestia and Luna are--”

“I don’t care what those two animals have planned for you!” she growled at me. “Your crimes are too severe. I will not allow those two to let you off with a blasted warning! No, I am going to make you suffer for everything you’ve done.”

Before I could ask what that meant, she blasted right at me, barely giving me any time to get my shield up to avoid getting pierced again. Raven’s movements were swift and fierce. I had to keep on defending as she struck, constantly moving my shield to block her stabbing blade. After a particularly fierce strike, she lifted her hand and slammed it down. I instantly felt the air around me get heavier and had to fight with my own power to avoid being smacked to the ground. I snarled at her through my focus, her Pressure increasing by the second. She simply sneered at me, obviously enjoying every moment of it.

I tried to fight it, countering it by using my own Pressure in reverse. This, however, removed my attention away from Raven. With my attention on not being pancaked to the ground below, she flew right up to me, cocked back her fist and slammed it into my face. My concentration instantly snapped and I was sent soaring into the ground. Dirt and dust went flying as I plowed through six feet of earth, Pressure keeping me pinned to the bottom of the crater. I forced my head up, seeing Raven at the edge of the crater.

“Well, looks like I’m ahead of schedule. I wasn’t suppose to put you six feet under for a little while longer.”

...okay, this bitch is dead! I let my anger flow through me, my entire body coated in energy. I roared out, overwhelming her Pressure with pure power. The crater I was in tripled in size in an instant from the massive burst of power.

I stood on my two feet, panting slightly from exhaustion. I glared at Raven through my energy coated eyes, hers returning it with no emotion at all. My grip tightened on my staff, my knuckles going white if they weren’t covered in aura.

“I don’t know what your problem with me is, but,” I said, venom in my voice. “For attacking me, my family, and my friends, I’m gonna beat you into oblivion!”

She smirked back at me, increasing my ire. “I’d love to see you try.”

I was so mad, I was shaking. Finally at my limit, I roared at her and pushed off from the ground, another crater forming where my foot had once been. I shot right at her, and for a moment I saw a flash of surprise in her face. I couldn’t think on that, though, as I bashed my shield right into her face. Raven went flying, tumbling head over foot. She eventually righted herself, skidding in a crouched position. She raised her head, snarling at me, but I was already nearly on her again, eager to slam my staff into her face next. I swung and she grabbed my staff with one hand. I was honestly surprised. I mean, I have the abnormal strength as it is, but I have even more ever since I Extinguished that Ursa Major and absorbed its strength. To be able to catch my staff when I’m swinging at full strength was rather impressive.

“You’re going to pay for that,” she growled at me. She lifted her other hand and blasted me away, imitating the classic Force Push. I went flying skyward, Raven flying right at me. She rematerialized her rapier and swung the single-edged blade at my neck. I countered with my staff, catching it an inch away from my vital area. We pushed against each other, trying to overwhelm the other. After a moment, we reached the peak and pushed away.

We stared at each other, her only just now starting to let out little breaths of exhaustion. We stayed like that for a moment, both catching our breaths. Then we glared and charged once again, metal clashing against metal.

*****Celestia’s POV*****

I couldn’t believe what was happening before my very own eyes. The Canterlot Royal Guard, my Royal Guard, was chasing down my student and her friends! I saw one, a unicorn, use his magic to rip Rainbow Dash right out of the sky. She slammed hard to the ground and he immediately jumped on her back, clamping braces on her wings. She stared in horror at the clamps, her one advatage stipped away in an instant.

Another, a pegasus, was chasing after Applejack. She was a fast runner, but the guard had the sky, where she was limited to the ground. He flew right above her and dived bombed her back. She was instantly forced to the ground, all four legs pinned by the guard. Using his wings, he bound Applejack’s legs together, preventing her from running again.

“Consarn it!” she yelled at the pegasus. “Lemme outta these durn blasted things! We ain’t after the princesses dammit! We were helpin’ them!”

“All threats to the princesses will be neutralized,” the guard droned out. I never taught them that! That wasn’t something they were supposed to say. A sudden realization came to me. I looked at the other guards and noticed that all of their eyes had a twinge of red aura around their eyes. They were being controlled!

“Stop this at once!”

I looked over at my sister, seeing her doing her very best to stop another two guards that were forcing a magic-disabling ring on Rarity. She was doing her very best to fight back, but the might of the two stallions outmatched her easily. Luna tried to force them off her, but while with still physically weak from the fight, there wasn’t much she could do. She tried to use her magic, but somehow, it canceled out as soon as it touched the guards. That was surprising to say the least. Their armor does have some magic nullifying charms on them, but our magic should be able to cancel those charms. What has happened to my guards?

I heard a series of large clangs above me and I looked to see Kat fighting tooth and nail with Raven. Wait...was this her doing?! Was Raven behind these treasonous acts? But why? I knew she had her own motives for hunting down Kat, but this was something else. I squinted at Raven.

“What are you planning, Masters?” I asked quietly to myself.


My head whipped around at the scream and I gasped at the sight. Four of the guards were approaching Twilight, spears drawn and ready to pounce. My student had her horn lit, but even she knew that it would be futile to hold off such an onslaught. I felt a fierce, burning fire light within my heart, anger searing into my eyes. Even if they were being mind controlled, nopony. Touches. My. Student! I flared my wings and blazed towards Twilight. I may not have had my horn, but I still had my earth pony and pegasus magic, plenty to take care of a few thugs!

Just as I neared the assailants, I spread my wings again and came to a screeching stop. My momentum, however, carried me right into them, knocking them away from Twilight. I glared fiercely at the mind controlled guards. “Don’t. Touch. My. Student,”I growled at them. Adrenaline pumping through my veins, I began flying around the ponies at top speed. Soon enough, I created a swirling twister that carried them off. I landed right by Twilight, panting heavily. With my fire now extinguished, my legs buckled and I hit the ground.

“Princess!” Twilight said with concern as she ran over to me. “Princess, that was amazing! You saved me.”

I looked at her with pure kindness. Despite the spat she and my little Kat were having, she was still my most faithful student. “Of course, Twilight. I could never forgive myself if you were brought to any harm.” Her cheeks flushed with embarrassment. She nuzzled me and I returned it.

However, our moment was ruined as Twilight was ripped away from me by guard magic. She screamed as I yelled out to her. I tried to reach her with my hooves, but m exhaustion coupled with my injuries kept me from being able to grab her fast enough. The guard slammed her to the ground and placed a ring on her horn, then proceeded to bind her legs.

My heart broke at seeing my faithful student bound like a common criminal. I looked around and saw all the other Element Bearers in similar positions. Each one had a guard stationed over them, spears pointed at their necks. The four remaining guards broke into teams of two, one approaching my sister as the others came to me. They pointed their spears at me, but it was more in a warning manner instead of threatening. I looked to see Raven floating down into the circle that we all had unintentionally formed. I glared at the girl, my hatred burning brightly because of this betrayal. Alright, Masters, let’s see what your endgame is.

*****Kat’s POV*****

Time and time again our weapons met, sparks flying as the metal clashed. Raven would thrust with her sword and I would throw up my shield in defense. I would swing my staff down on her and she would raise her blade to parry. It was becoming more and more apparent that we couldn’t overpower each other.

After another clash, Raven glanced behind her, whatever she saw making her smile. Curiosity taking over, I looked over as well and my eyes widened in horror. Down below were all of my friends (frenemies if you counted Twilight, Pinkie, and Rarity) bound by the guards who were holding spears at their vitals. I was so frozen in shock that I never noticed Raven floating down to them, still smiling at me.

“It appears,” she called to me, “That we have reached an impasse, Shifter. Good thing I prepared for such a possibility. Let’s make a deal!”

I glared at her, not moving from my high position. “What kind of deal?” I asked with suspicion.

“A simple trade. I spare the Element Bearers, your friends and granddaughter. In relinquish all of your powers to me.”

My eyes widened to the point of breaking. “W-what?! Are you insane?!” I screeched at her. “Why would I relinquish my powers to you?! That would doom us all!”

To my horror, she smirked. “Well, if that’s your answer… Guards!” The guards tightened their respective grips around their spears. I saw with fear as they started to press the points into their necks. I saw a trickle of blood fall from Flutters neck, reaching my breaking point.

“STOP!!” I yelled throwing out my hand. I could easily stop the one on my granddaughter, but in that instant the others would be gone. I couldn’t risk their lives to save one. Fluttershy would never forgive me, and neither could I. Floating to the ground, I put my weapons away. I already knew I was gonna regret this. “Alright, you have a deal.”

Celestia, Luna, Flutters, and, well...everypony stared at me in shock. “No, Grandmother!” Flutters cried. “Don’t do it!”

“Quiet, you!” Raven snapped and the guard pressed his spear further into her, causing her to squeak in pain.

“Stop!” I shouted. “I’ll do it, okay!? I’ll give you my powers, just don’t hurt them!”

She smiled at me. “I knew you would say that.” She reached out her hand and it lit with power. I instantly felt a pull in my gut; deep down, I wanted to resist it, to remove it from me, but I knew it had to be done.

“For Flutters,” I whispered to myself. Then came the pain, the most excruciating pain I had ever felt in my entire life. I could feel all my strength literally being ripped away from me. I fell to my knees, my mouth open in a silent scream as the pain was so strong. I peaked from my closed eyes, seeing my black and red aura flowing out of my body and right into Raven’s. It was a distressing sight, but catching Fluttershy in the corner of my eye, spear to her neck, I just sat back and let it happen.

The moments drew on like hours, pain echoing through every fiber of my body. Then, as the last bits of my power ebbed away, I fell forward, catching myself with my arms, panting heavily.

I hear Raven humph, so I looked up at her piercing blue eyes, a disappointed smirk on her face. “Well that was practically too easy, Kat. I was honestly hoping you’d put up more of a fight. I guess I was wrong.” I could only stare back as she motioned to her guards. “Round them up and lock ‘em in chains. Take the princesses to the castle, the others...find them some nice cosy cells.”

I tried to lunge at her, my anger spiking back, but my exhaustion was too much. “You lying bitch! You said you’d let the other go! They had nothing to do with this! Let them go!!”

She smiled maliciously at me, bending down to cup my chin in her hand. “Oh, but they have everything to do with you. You and your accomplices will face punishment for your crimes against Equestria, your highness.” She practically spat those words at me. She released my face and stood as two guards grabbed my arms with their magic. “Take her away.”

I tried to struggle, to do anything to save the girls as they were hauled off like poached animals. “Raven!” I cried out in anger. “Raven, I swear, if you harm them in any way, I will destroy you, atom by atom!!” My rage only increased as she smiled victoriously as I was hauled away. I could hear Fluttershy crying out for me, urging me to keep fighting, but it was too late. Raven had us all.

*****Dusty’s POV*****

As my mistress was carted off by those poor, mind-confused guards, I stood off in the shadow, helplessly watching. Unlike my mistress, I could not use the powers of gravity, even if I knew precisely how they could be done. I looked over myself as a few black and red wisps flowed into me and then got to my paws.

If I was gonna be able to save my mistress and her friends and family, then I would have to be discreet. I needed more information, more on what was really happening around here. “Well Kitten,” I whispered to myself, “as I’ve always said, time to find the truth hidden within the truth. Do not worry, I’ll find you again. Count on it.”

With that, I dispersed myself into wisps and flowed off towards the remains of Canterlot.

*****Kat’s POV*****

It’s been several days since I was thrown in this cell. The only light in the room came from a very small barred window near the ceiling of the far wall. With my powers, the simple black bars of the cell would have been easy to bend and break, but that wasn’t going to happen. Not now, not ever. It had all come crashing down on me after that first night. Of what I had done. I had given up my powers, the one thing that made me unique, to save my only family I had left and it ended up getting us all locked away. I had no idea what plans Raven had for us, but I knew that it wasn’t going to be good.

What was even the point of fighting back now? There was absolutely nothing I could do to change things. I was powerless, weak, and pitiful. I hear the rustling of keys and look up from my rock-hard mattress, if it could be called that. I see a unicorn guard unlocking my cell, his partner already having binders prepared for me. He opens the door and says,

“It is time, Gravity Queen. Time for your judgement.”

I really did not like the way he said that, but I also knew that it meant it wasn’t a request. With a sullen look, I got to my feet and presented my hands which were immediately bound together with the metal cuffs. The unicorn then used his magic to pull me after him, like a dog on a leash. It felt more demeaning than anything.

I continually kept pace as they led me down the corridors of the palace dungeons, making sure that I didn’t have to be dragged like a freaking animal. The lights were so minimal in this place, with only simple oil lanterns placed sporadically throughout. I could hear the drip-dropping sound of water falling from the dank ceiling. Why are stone place like this alway so dank? Never made much sense to me, but hey I hadn’t been in a science class in nearly thirteen hundred years.

Eventually, we come to a stop at a hardened steel door, a single barred pane of glass letting in the shadow of a lit room beyond. The unicorn put his hoof on the door and slowly pushed it open, bright light flooding the dark corridor and my vision. I was pushed forward, into the light, and found myself immediately under assault from all sides. My ears are ringing with all the shouting directed in my direction. As my eyes finally began to adjust, I found myself to be in a courtroom, ponies on both sides of me, all screaming and yelling at me in unrelenting fury. Some were even throwing things at me, I know this because I was struck in the head by a soda can not a minute after I walked in.

From there, I ducked and dodged other objects that were thrown at me as I was led towards the front of the courtroom. I took my place behind the defendant table as the judge on the stand pounded her gavel.

“Order! Order in the court!” she bellowed out. It took a few moments, but eventually the mob settled into their seats and my trial commenced. The bailiff trotted forward and spoke.

“The case of Kat Shifter, the Gravity Queen v. the nation of Equestria, is now in session. All rise.” Which we did. “Judge Lawful Order presiding. Your honor,” he nodded to her and she banged her gavel once.

“Miss Shifter,” she spoke, but I interrupted her.

“General Shifter, your honor,” I spoke out of habit. I don’t like being called ‘miss’ in formal settings. My shrunk back slightly at the glare Judge Order was giving me for my interruption.

“As I was saying, General Shifter. You are charged with several counts of destruction of public and private property, arson, and attempted murder of a political figure. How do you plead?”

That was the question, wasn’t it? How did I plead? I knew I had done each of those things, but if I were to just accept that, I’d forfeiting any chance of saving the girls and maybe even myself. “For Fluttershy,” I whispered to myself, hoping that it would bring me luck. I looked at Judge Order with a righteous determination. “Not guilty, your honor.”

The courtroom burst into a storm of anger instantly, the ponies behind me restarting their hurtful words and chants. They kept telling me to die for what I did, to pay for it with everything I had. Judge Order banged her gavel loudly, quelling the storm almost as instantly as it started. “Very well, General Shifter. May the prosecutor please come in.”

The side doors opened and in strolled...oh no. It was Raven, smirking like she already won the case. The cheers from the ponies behind me already told the truth: she had won. I started to shake with sudden fear; this was no trial, this was just a show, simple theatre to entertain the masses.

Another banging of the gavel brought me back to the world that was beginning to crumble around me. Raven walked right into the middle of the room and began a well practiced speech. “Ladies and gentlestallions of the court, I, Raven Masters, have been asked by Princesses Celestia and Luna to speak for them in this most trying of times. And I assure you, that justice will be served here today.”

This time, only polite clapping followed instead of massive cheering. Oh god, I was doomed. She began to pace in front of the judge as she continued. “Kat Shifter, the name used to be synonymous with ‘Gravity’, the mythological warrior of Celestia and Luna. A great and noble being who fought for the ponies in their most desperate hours. Now? Now, she is a symbol of destruction. Wherever the so called ‘Gravity Queen’ goes, destruction and death is sure to follow. In the span of only a year, twenty-five different towns and cities have been wrecked by monsters or burned to the ground by her dragon followers.”

She stopped again and turned to the crowd. “Some say that Kat is a hero, one protecting these cities to the best of her abilities from dangerous monsters, known only as nevi. Others point to her destruction of the invading changeling army three weeks ago during the wedding of Princess Mi Amore Cadenza and Captain Shining Armor. But to them I say this: Kat is only a monster who is defending her prey from other monsters. She uses these instances as opportunities to destroy all of you. Stallions, mares, colts, fillies, not even foals are safe from her rampages. Her bout with the princesses, leaving Celestia heavily crippled should have opened your eyes to the who she truly is.” Raven looked at me and sneered. “Murderous and destructive monster.”

“And not only that,” she said dramatically moving over to a large object under a massive sheet. She grabbed the edge and pulled while saying, “she had help!” As the sheet fell to the ground, everypony, including myself, gasped at what lay within the cage underneath. They were all there, looking more depressed than ever before. Applejack, Rarity, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Twilight Sparkle, and Fluttershy. Oh dear god, what are you doing Raven?! “Now, you may all be wondering why the famed Elements of Harmony are here, locked away in a cage. The answer to that is simple: they have wronged Equestria. Ever since Kat’s return, these six ‘patriots’ have kept her existence and location a secret from all of Equestria. Did the report her to the princesses? No. Did the attempt to reseal Kat away in the stone prison where she belongs? No. What did they do? They helped her!!”

The crowd gasped, looking highly betrayed at the six downtrodden mares. I wanted to say something, but I just didn’t know what. “That is right,” Raven continued. “These six ponies have known about the Gravity Queen the entire time, including her plans for the princesses and assisted in keeping her location a secret. In other words, they committed the greatest act of treason and are traitors to Equestria!”

Oh no! No, no, no, no!! Raven was doing it, she was punishing the girls right along side me and the ponies were buying it hook, line, and sinker! They were shouting at the girls, all who cringed at the verbal onslaught. Each of them looked at me with big, sad eyes, no doubt wondering why I did this to them. I couldn’t help wonder that myself. To my horror, though, Raven kept going.

“These...terrorists, will never stop until all of Equestria has been destroyed and they reign supreme. And those nevi that have been attacking and nearly decimated Canterlot? It has been discovered that it was none other than General Shifter herself that created them!” The ponies gasped in shock and I was looking at with eyes that had shrunk to pinpricks. I knew she was lying, I couldn’t do such a thing, but that’s when it clicked. She could!

Just as Raven said those words, three minions suddenly appeared right next to her and she yelped in fright, backing away slowly. The ponies all screamed at the sight of the bulbous, crab-like creatures. The minions looked around the room with their glowing, red eyes and they homed in on me. They approached and I found myself backing away from them, but only was able to back into the railing behind me. They climbed on the table then...bowed to me! I paled at what that meant and looked at Raven, staring in shock, but I saw that malicious glint in her eyes. And all my hope shattered in that one instant.

Three guards charged from the air, piercing the minion’s eyes with their spears, dispersing them into dust. Raven falsely regained her composure and bellowed to the ponies, “Now do you see? Kat Shifter is responsible for all of your pain and suffering! She won’t ever stop, not even if she is sealed away! She needs to be stopped, once and for all! What say you, Equestria?! What is Kat’s fate?”

As one, the ponies shouted the one word I deathly feared. “Death!!” They kept chanting that word, then the phrase: “Death to the Gravity Queen!”, Raven spurring them on more and more.

Eventually, Lawful Order banged her gavel hard enough to get everypony to settle and stared down at me with a most hateful of gazes. “Kat Shifter, it seems that a verdict has been reached. You have been found guilty of all charges. You, and you coconspirators, shall be sentenced to execution for your treasonous crimes against Equestria. May Faust have mercy on your souls.” She banged the gavel. “Court dismissed, have these traitors thrown back in their cells. Get them out of my courtroom.”

I had gone blank when she said that the girls would be executed too. Then I felt myself being dragged away by the guards as the girls’ cage was wheeled in the other direction. That snapped me right back. “No!! No you can’t!! They didn’t have anything to do with it! Let them go! It’s me you want! Let them go!! Please, they’re innocent!!” I could feel the hot tears falling from my eyes as I tried to reach out to Fluttershy who was doing the same.

“I know you’ll save us, Kat!” she screamed, a hope filled shine in her eyes. “You’ll save us all. I have faith in you!”

I kept reaching out even as the door I came in was slammed and I was continually dragged down the dungeon corridors again. I still fought as the guards shoved me back to my cell. As they trotted off into the dark, I screamed at them. “Leave them alone!! Please just let them go! PLEASE!!” When the guards were finally out of sight, I fell into sobs on the floor, grasping the bars tightly. I felt like such a failure. And now the girls would pay for my mistake. What have I done?

*****Celestia’s POV*****

I was shaking with pure rage as I saw Raven enter my throne room. She looked so proud of herself, so successful, when all I wanted to do was strangle her skinny little neck. “Oh, you’re shaking, Celestia!” she noted in a mocking tone. “Are you as excited as I am?” Her stupid little bird let out a cackle as she did, filling the room with her laughter.

I snarled at her, attempting lunge, but was stopped short by my chain. I glared at the black little thing that kept me on my own throne. I had occasionally thought of this castle at a prison during my lowest moments that Luna was gone, but now, it truly was my prison. A prison created by a madwoman.

“Unh, unh, uh,” Raven said as she wags her index finger at me. “Fighting will only make it worse.”

“Why are you doing this?!” I shouted at her. Even after several days of containment by my own guards, I still knew nothing about why she was taking my country. What were her plans for my little ponies and, especially, my Kat?

“Well that’s quite simple, Celestia,” she said oh so sweetly, twirling in giddy joy around me. “I want Equestria. And you’re going to give it to me!” she announced while pointing at me.

My jaw unhinged at her statement. “W-what?! Why would I ever do such a thing?!”

“Well, I’m sure you heard about the trial today, yes? How all of your precious Elements are going to be executed?” My glare easily indicated that I had heard. It was the only talk nobles around here wouldn’t shut up about. Even through those thick doors, gossip can spread like wildfire. “I’m going to make you a deal, Princess. You publicly announce that you will be stepping down as ruler, use your horn as an excuse or something, and place me as your successor. In return, I will grant the Bearers full pardons and they can return to their happy little lives. Easy as that.”

I watched her with suspicion, looking for any indication of betrayal as she had done to Kat. Speaking of which, “And what about Kat?”

She ‘tsked’ at me, shaking her head. “Oh, Celly, Celly, Celly. Kat has caused unforgivable damage to this country and must be punished. Sure, I suppose with my new powers as princess I could relieve some of her sentence, but I won’t.” Raven’s expression turned hard and furious. “She will pay for everything she has done. Then she won’t ever hurt anyone ever again.”

“And should I refuse?”

“That’s also simple. They all die and you’ll be so overcome with grief that Equestrian law dictates that you would have to stand down. Normally, succession would be taken up by Luna, but since she’ll be in the same boat of losing the only ponies she had as friends, the role of ruler would fall to the highest military command, which you gave to me as General Masters.” She lifted my chin with one finger, smiling smugly at me. “Either way, I win, princess. Now, it’s just up to you if your ponies live or die.” She started to walk out of the room, her bird landing on her shoulder. “You have until tomorrow morning, Celestia. If I don’t hear from you before nine, then the first of the six will be executed. Think about it.” She slammed the door as she left and I was all alone with my thoughts.


I don’t remember passing out, but I was awoken by shouting. I tried to keep my ears close to my head to block out the sound, but it only got louder. I slowly opened an eye and saw a navy-blue blur standing in front of me. It appeared to be the source of the noise too. I blinked a few times and the blur came into focus, showing my little sister to me. She seemed highly distressed and worried. I sat up from my position on my chafing throne, the chain rattling slightly, and stretched my back and wings as I yawned.

“Good morning, Lulu. Did you sleep well?”

“Celestia, now is not the time for your pleasantries! The execution is already under way!!”

In that instant, I was awake faster than I had ever been. I looked over at the lone wall clock in the room and noted the time to be eight fifty-two!! “Oh no! I’ll never make it!!”

“Make it? You truly wish to see such a thing, sister? We should be trying to stop it!”

“I already know how to stop it! But I need to get to the execution now! Luna, can you free me of these chains?”

“I don’t know what you’re planning sister, but if you have a plan to save the Elements, I’ll gladly help.” Luna pointed her horn at the chain and fired a quick beam of magic that completely severed it. I immediately took flight, heading for the window and smashing right through it.

I turned back to Luna and called, “Come, Luna! We have no time to lose!!” She nodded and followed after me. We flew off around the castle, heading right for the guard arena. I looked up at the sun and noted the time to be ebbing away much faster than I would have liked.

We banked the last corner and spied down on the arena, but it was not a sight I wanted to see. Oh goddess, I could hear her screams from up here, They were filled with pain. Those screams filled me with fear. I cared deeply about all of the Bearers, but it was Twilight who took over my thoughts. I couldn’t lose her, not like this!

I dived bombed the arena, intending to stop this all. But as I neared, I got a better look at who was being executed and my face paled. Not her! Anypony but her! No, no, no, no!! Faster, wings, faster!! I flapped as fast as I could but--,


…I was too late. She was gone before I even landed.

Gravity Falls, part two

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The hours ticked by in the darkness before me. It was practically silent all through the night, only the occasional sound of dripping water from the dank ceiling giving me company. The guards had come by a couple hours previously to deliver a small meal of water, bread, and celery. I recognized it as the meal we used to give to prisoners of war, save for celery instead of hay. It felt demeaning to eat it, but I was so hungry that I didn’t really care.

It was roughly midnight, if I was reading what little moonlight I could from the cell window. When I was finally able to crawl up to the small window, I was able to see that it faced the center of the guard arena. It had taken me a moment, but I had realized why. That’s where it was going to happen. Where our executions would take place and I was gonna have a front row seat.

“How are you enjoying your accommodations?”

I jumped at the sound of another being, but my expression instantly turned cold and harsh at the one speaking. Standing in front of my cage was none other than Raven Masters herself. The cold hearted bitch who put me in here. She was smiling oh so sweetly at me, as if she truly cared. I had a tough time believing she actually cared about anything other than herself.

“As a matter of fact, I’m not,” I said strongly, trying to hide my hopelessness. “Why are you here, Raven?”

Her smile increased slightly. “Why to see you, of course. Kat Shifter, the Gravity Queen. The stuff of legends and myths the world round. You’ve been busy, haven’t you?”

I simply glared at her as she paced in front of my cell, just watching me. “Why?” I asked after a moment of silence. “Why are you doing this to me? What did I ever do to you?”

“Oh, that’s the question, now isn’t it? What did you do to me? What did you do to little old me?” She laughs slightly, before slamming her face right to mine through the bars. “You ruined my life is what you did, you little prick!”

She pulled back, leaving me to rub my face. “What are you talking about? I don’t even know you!”

Raven’s glare was harsher than anything I had ever seen from her. “Oh, maybe you don’t now, but you will. But I most certainly know you. Ever since I came to this world I’ve been haunted by your image. The legends and tales of Gravity destroyed me. When I came to this world, was a I greeted with love and understanding? No! No, I was treated like a monster by those who you tried to stop. I ended up in some of the most crime-ridden areas in this country. The areas the profited the most off the wars you stopped. They all thought I was you!!”

I started to back away from her ranting, her face contorting in anger. I felt my palms hit the back wall before my back did and I pressed as tightly as I could against it. “I-I’m sorry that happened. I didn’t kn--,”

“You didn’t what?! You didn’t know?! Of course not! How could you have? All you have ever cared about is yourself! Never the ones who actually bothered to give a damn about you!”

Okay, now I was seriously wondering who this girl was. “Who are you?” I asked as curiosity took over. “Who are you, really?”

Raven began to laugh, like full on evil laugh. “Oh, you really don’t remember me, do you? That’s really heartbreaking. And to think, we used to be so close you and I.” She leaned against the back wall, smirking slightly.

“I don’t even know you! How could we have been close?!”

Raven snarled slightly, getting irritated with me. “Now you’re just being mean. We used to be as close as sisters. Remember all those sleep overs, the camp outs, the dances? We were practically inseparable back then. Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten me, Ally?”

My eyes had slowly started to grow in fear as she continued to speak, but then she said my name. My real name. Very few knew that name, and Raven most definitely wouldn’t, unless… “Dear god, you can’t be. Y-you just can’t be her.”

Her smirk was one of true evil. “Oh, but I am, dear little Allison. I’m one of the few who actually gave a damn about you on Earth. One of the few who bothered to by your friend. I was the one who treated and saw you as family. Do you remember me now? Do you remember your own sister?!” she yelled, banging her fist on the bars of the cell.

“I never forgot,” I responded. It was true. No matter how much time had passed, I could never forget her. “’s been a long time.”

“Yes, it has,” she said with a sneer.

“But how are you here?” I asked. “How did you of all people get to Equestria?”

“Same as you, I’d wager. But to understand that, you’d have to now how much so you ruined my life.”

“Wh-what do you mean? Please, Rita, tell me what happened.”

“It all started the day you disappeared,” she began, putting her back against the bars. “Do you remember that day? All those years ago? You just vanished without a trace, and I was so frantically worried. I searched up and down the convention center, looking for any sign. I thought you had been kidnapped, dragged off to a slave ring or some shit like that. I went to the police of course, but they never really tried. Small town girl goes missing in the big city? Ha, like they’d give a damn. That’s what we get for going to Lincoln, I suppose.”

I saw her tighten her grip on her arms, shaking slightly, out of anger or sadness I didn’t know. “That’s where everything went wrong. Your little disappearing act had more effects than you could ever believe. The whole town was in mourning as the weeks drew on into month. Small town America, we look out for our own, only to lose one so suddenly and without warning. Our family took it the worst, being as close to you as we were. Mom cried for weeks, sitting by the phone waiting for any kind of call. went into a deep depression. He’d felt like he failed you. After a year of drowning himself in alcohol, he killed himself.”

I couldn’t have held back that gasp even if I’d wanted to. Rita’s dad was as close to a father I’d had before coming here. I always saw him more like an uncle, but he’d considered me a daughter, I know. We spent a lot of time together, what with him being my therapist. I saw him almost weekly, even when it wasn’t court mandated, which it usually was. But it was so hard to believe that he’d actually fallen that far...all because of me. Was I really that important to the town? I was just an orphan, how could have coming here had done all this damage?

Rita ignored my gasp and continued speaking. “Me? I almost did the same, was even considering ending my life. Then dad beat me to the punch and I knew I had to keep living, if only to keep mom from going insane from grief. We tried to move on, for ten years we tried to go on with our lives. I went to college and even got my doctorate in psychology. I had planned on following in my old man’s footsteps. Then I made the stupidest mistake of my life. Another convention was held that year and I couldn’t resist going in your honor, even dressing up like Raven. I was only recognized by true PlayStation fans, though, what with Sony going under back in ‘15. Tsunami nearly wiped them out.” Well….that sucks. One of the great gaming companies, destroyed by Mother Nature. Figures, just like a mother to hate gaming.

“While I was there, I found this small little vendor with all kinds of props and what not.” Uh oh, him again. “Along the shelves, what did I spy? Why a certain little star speckled bird, of course. Raven’s raven. The strange man that ran the shop noticed me eyeing the plus little doll and offered it to me for a decent price. Only a few bucks. I’m sure you know what happened after I bought it. Probably the same that happened with your little cat. When I awoke, I was outside some dinky little town in south Equestria, my plush bird now real and speaking to me in my head. I tried to get some help from the natives, but what did they do?” She turned around and stared at me with pure hatred. “They tried to kill me! Why? Because they thought I was you! It was the same wherever I tried to flee. I would either be shunned or hunted. After a while, I figured enough was enough and hid out in the mountains. There I trained and trained and trained, trying to master these powers of mine.”

She lit her hand with that blue/black aura of hers. “Took me a few decades, but I finally learned something useful out there.” She slowly moved her hand out to her side and a little portal appeared that let out a simple little minion. “I learned how to create my own nevi. I sent them out into the world to bring me back as much information as they could. It was through them that I learned of you. Oh, I recognized you in a flash. I remember crying when I saw that little newspaper clipping. But something else grew in me that day, a pure burning hatred for you. You, the girl that ruined my life, the reason I was living in cave while she was living it up in a castle, would pay. It’s taken years of careful planning and patience, but it’s all been worth it to see you behind these bars.” She tapped the metal bar with a smile. “I should thank you, Ally, for you acted just as I predicted you would. Your every action, every reaction, all of it I knew it would end like this. With you at my complete mercy. Poetic, isn’t it?”

“No! It’s not poetic, it’s sick!” I yelled out as tears streamed from my eyes. They were tears of both anger and sorrow from her story. “I didn’t intend to come here! I was sent here against my will, just like you. I had to make choices here and it just happened to turn out in my favor. None of this was supposed to happen. Surely you must understand that, Rita!”

She powered up in a sudden burst that threw me back against the wall, slumping down to my rump. I looked up at her amazing powered form in awe and fear. “Do not call me ‘Rita’. I am Raven Masters, Master of Gravity. And I will not accept excuses from you! You always got everything; all the sympathy, all the goodness of others’ hearts. You lived in the life of luxury for years, while I was forced into hiding and survived off scraps! No more, one way or another, everyone will bow before their master. You were a destroyer and I will be their salvation.”

I was left speechless as Rit--Raven, made her way to the exit. She stopped at the door, though, and turned slightly towards me. “You’re just like him, you know?” She then bore her eyes right into mine with that glare. “You’re just like that drunkard that killed your parents. Thinking that your actions didn’t have consequences and, in the end, just hurt yourself and others. Farewell Allison, I’ll see you on the execution block.” And with that scarring remark, she left me to the fading moonlight.

I curled up on that spot, crying into my knees as Raven’s final words shook me to the core. Deep down, I knew she was right. I had become the very monster that I had sworn never to become. I had gotten drunk, not on alcohol, but on power, and went on a joyride with it. I’ve already crashed into the innocents and now I’m just slowly burning alive. “Dear god, what have I done? What have I done?”


I stayed in that spot for several hours, the moonlight slowly fading into sunlight as the time ticked on. I had eventually cried myself to sleep, only to be awoken by the sounds of trumpets. I was thinking to myself on what kind of alarm clock uses trumpets when it hit me. I froze solid upon my realization and slowly turned and looked up at the lone window in the room. With hesitation of the greatest extent, I climbed up the wall, getting on the tips of my toes as I stared out the small, barred, opening. The light blinded me slightly, but when it cleared….oh how I wish my vision had never cleared. Upon the massive stand, in the middle of a massive crowd, stood Raven over a single lone pony. This pony, whose arms were tied to parallel post at her side, had her head hung, allowing her long, pink mane to drape over her face. Her butter-yellow coat was matted and covered in dirt and grime. When she finally lifted her head, I choked back a sob as I saw her sunken, cyan eyes.

I put a hand to my mouth as tears already started to fill my eyes. That was Fluttershy, my own granddaughter, up on the execution stand. Raven looked in my direction and smiled slightly, looking ever-so-pleased. It broke my heart seeing my little Flutters looking so tarnished. What nearly shattered it was remembering that it was because of me she was there. And then, it began.

“Ladies and gentlestallions,” Raven boomed out to the crowd. “We gather here today in ceremony to start the beginning of the end in one of Equestria’s darkest chapters.” Claps and cheers followed her words, sickening me to the core. “Here in the binds before you,” she indicated to Fluttershy, “is one of the traitors who assisted the Gravity Queen in her acts of destruction against Equestria. You may know her as Fluttershy, the Element of Kindness, but there is another truth you may not be aware of. That this pony considers herself family to that loathsome heathen!”

Boos and yelling hailed from the crowd, even a metal can being thrown directly at Flutters, striking her in the head. She yelped in pain, only feeding the crowds hunger for blood. Raven continued her rant over the crowd. “For these treasonous acts, this poor excuse for a pegasus has been sentenced to death! The worst of punishments for the worst kind of criminal. Do you have any last words?”

Fluttershy was quiet for a few tense moments. The tension was thick, the entire crowd had gone silent, expecting to hear her last words.

“Well then--”

“You won’t get away with this,” she said almost too quietly. She tried to turn her head to look at Raven, but her bindings only allowed so much. I could feel the power of her stare bearing down on Raven, but she was far too strong for such a technique, no matter how fierce it was. “You will fail in the end and it will be Kat that stands over you.”

I could only weep as she spoke those words, much to Raven’s ire. No doubt she was hoping for pleads of mercy or begging for her life. “Fluttershy,” I whispered. Even now, she still had faith in me...but it was too late, there was absolutely nothing I could do.

Raven sneered darkly at Fluttershy, almost ready to glare. “How dare you.” She stepped forward and backhanded my granddaughter across the face. “You will not speak as such, traitor!!” My anger spiked at seeing her do that to Flutters, so much so that even in my weakened state, I was pulling on the bars to get to her.

Fluttershy may have cried out, much to the pleasure of the crowd, but she only returned a glare of defiance. “She will defeat you! My death will only be another nail in your coffin!” Oh my dear sweet Fluttershy, how much you’ve grown in such a short time. “You will lose!”

“Enough of this!” Raven yelled. “Your time has come Miss Fluttershy! Your execution is at hand!” Raven stepped back and reached out her hand, it glowing with her aura., no, no, no!!! Not that!!

“No, Raven!!” I cried from my cell, but it was drowned out by the crowd. “Please!! Anything, but that!!”

But it was to no avail. Fluttershy started to groan and shake as particles of energy began to drift from her body and into Raven. The next second, she was screaming, writhing in pain as her bindings kept her still.

“Kat!” I saw her mouth even though her voice was too small.

“Fluttershy!” I shouted back.

Another huge ripple ran through her body and her screams could have been heard from outside the stadium, I’m sure. “Grandmother!!”

“Flutters!!” I reached out through the bars, so desperate to stop this. I would have given anything for her to be saved. For anything to happen. “Please,” I whispered as the tears flowed like rivers of sadness from my eyes. “Please, someone, anyone, please stop this!! Save her! I’m sorry, please just don’t let her suffer!! PLEASE!! SOMEONE SAVE HER!!”

But no one heard me.

Anyone who could were to busy cheering for the execution. I could see her form begin to shimmer and fade. No, it was happening far too quickly for me. An eternity would have been too fast for this. I knew she felt it too, as she let out a loud scream and the most heartbreaking thing I have ever heard in my life was shouted to the heavens.

“Kat! Never stop fighting! I know you can beat her!!” She paused as tears of pain fell from her eyes. Then she screamed it: “I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU, GRANDMOTHER!!!” There was one more scream of pain and then...silence.

Everyone went quiet as Fluttershy’s body broke into the tiniest of particles, little wisps of energy finishing flowing into Raven. Then as one, the crowd roared with applause. I could hear screams of sadness coming from the other side of the area and I knew that the others were watching too.

My body was wracked with despair at seeing that.

I could barely keep my balance.

My tears wouldn’t stop.

My breathing was ragged at best.

And, most of all, my heart was shattered.

Then I saw Celestia land with such ferocity and speed, I thought for sure she was going to kill Raven. She certainly looked angry enough. The ponies had gone silent, but Celestia didn’t speak to them. She walked right up to Raven and spoke directly to her. I couldn’t hear them, but I could definitely read lips.

“You. Me. Throne room. Now.”

Celestia took flight, heading back the way she came, leaving Raven behind to smirk like she just one the lottery. She turned to the crowd and said, “Apologies my little ponies, but I have to meet with our dear Princesses. You may see yourselves out. Raven levitated off the ground and flew after Celestia.

As the ponies filed out of the arena, I finally got down from the window, putting my back against the cold stone of the wall. I slowly sunk down the wall and curled up into the fetal position and wept.

*****Celestia’s POV*****

I landed quietly in the throne room, barely able to control my anger. How could someone be so cruel? So purely...evil? Murdering Fluttershy of all ponies was crossing a line and I intended to show her how much so.

I turned around as I heard Raven fly into the room. Luna was standing off in the back of the room, my only backup just in case. I glared right at the human, a burning hatred in my heart. “Miss Masters,” I growled out.

She appeared unfazed, though, responding simply with a neutral face. “Princess. You wished to speak with me?”

“What you did out there was completely uncalled for! You made poor Fluttershy out to be a monster!”

Raven sneered at me in response. “She was. Siding with that despicable excuse for a human. That particular pegasus deserved the death she got, being absorbed into me!”

I was taken aback by that statement. “W-what? What do you mean absorbed?”

“Oh, you don’t know about it? Of course Kat would keep such a power secret from the ponies. Extinguish is the greatest technique in a shifter’s arsenal. It allows us to not only kill our enemy, but also make their greatest strengths our own. I know she could use it too, I could feel its power when I took her abilities.”

I felt sick, truly, truly sick. “I-I can’t believe you would do such a thing. No moral being would willingly do that to another! That is sick and inhumane!!”

“You could have stopped it, remember?” she said with a tone of mockery. “Why didn’t you? Did you think I wouldn’t go through with it? Oh trust me, I will. I have seven days of execution all planned out. Maybe they’ll make a national holiday out of it. Execution Week, or something. I don’t know; was never good at naming things.”

I felt truly guilty now at sleeping in. She was right, I could have saved her, but I didn’t. There was no way I could let that happen again. Despite my anger, I couldn’t risk Twilight’ life, nor those of her friends. I lowered my head in shame. “Alright Raven, you win. Equestria is yours.”

“Sister, no!” Luna shouted. “You cannot do this! We cannot allow this heathe to control our ponies!”

“Silence, Luna!” I shouted at her as tears began to fall. She stopped and stared at me in shock. “We have no other option. Both of us are still too weak to fight her.” Even if we could, I fear she is far too powerful now, I added thoughtfully to myself. “It is the only way to save the other Elements. It may not save Kat, but if I can save just one, that would ease my soul.”


“Equestria is yours, Raven. Now release Twilight and the others!”

“Nuh uh,” she said wagging a finger at me. “You have to make a public announcement of putting me in charge. Tonight.” I was about to protest before she added, “Or Twilight is up on that stand tomorrow morning.”

I held back a gasp, not wanting to give her more satisfaction than she probably already had. “Fine. I will set up a press conference for later this evening. Will that be sufficient?”

“Most. Do not dally, Celestia. I do not like waiting. I’ve done enough of that.”


Later that evening, Luna and I stood side by side in front of a large gathering of our little ponies. I had released to the press there would be a grand announcement at this time and they showed up in droves. Despite the reconstruction, hundreds of ponies showed up to hear what their princesses had to say. I only wished that it had truly been a happy reason to gather.

I walked up to the podium and spoke with as much authority as I could muster. “Greetings, my little ponies.” There were murmurs of greetings in return. “I have asked you all today for a special announcement. Unfortunately, due to my injuries, I will be stepping down as your princess as will Princess Luna.”

I had expected some resistance to such an announcement, but I never foresaw the uproar that was in front of me. There was screaming and shouting the likes of which I hadn’t seen since Discord had betrayed us. Luna, though, was always good at silencing a crowd.

Silence!!” she bellowed in the Royal Canterlot Voice. One word was enough to bring the ponies back to attention.

“I know this must be upsetting, but we do it for your own best interests. Our replacement has assured us that Equestria will prosper under her rule. Would you please come forward, Miss Masters?”

Raven stepped forward as I relinquished the podium. When she got up there, the ponies applauded just as they had more me. I was disheartening to see and hear, especially since I knew nothing good would come from her leadership.

“Thank you, thank you!” she cried out to them, fanning away false tears. “Oh it is an honor to lead you all. I am most grateful Princess Celestia for bestowing this position upon me.” There was only more cheering. “Now, I do not plan to simply replace your princesses. As such, nopony is allowed to call me Princess Raven. No, you will all know me by another name.” She paused as the crowd silenced itself, but I noticed a change in Raven, a darker sense over her.

“You all will call me...MASTER!!” She threw out her arms and countless nevi appeared at her side. The ponie all gasped and some ran screaming in fear. “Nevi! I want those ponies in their homes. I will decide what to do with them later.” The monsters obeyed and started to chase off the ponies.

I stared in horror at what was happening, but my dread was not complete. Raven turned back to us, smiling both evilly and victoriously. “Now then,” she summoned to more large nevi by our sides, blocking any means of escape. “I have a new position you two. I think it’ll be just perfect.” Luna and I both feared what she meant by that.

*****Kat’s POV*****

I awoke from my weeping sleep by the screams of ponies from outside. I got up slowly from my fetal position and once again looked through the barred window. What I saw was nearly incomprehensible to my disheveled state. I could see ponies running for their lives as hundreds of nevi chased them through the streets.

“What the hell?” I asked aloud, not expecting to be answered.

“Truly does look like hell out there, doesn’t it?”

I jumped slightly, turning around in a flash to see Raven smiling at me. I frowned at her, lacking the proper energy to scowl. “What do you want?”

“Oh, so harsh,” she teased. “And to think I had some good news to share. I guess you’ll just have to keep wondering.” She started to leave, but had to know.

“Wait!” And she did. “What good news?”

She turned back to me. “Your friends? I’ve decided not to execute them.”

“W-what?!” I was surprised beyond words I was so happy.

“Instead, they’ll just serve life sentences. Not the ideal punishment for the crime, but I am a woman of my word.”

“Huh?” I asked in confusion.

“Oh yeah, I made a deal with Celestia. Equestria for the Element Bearers. She made the deal of course. Who wouldn’t, right? That’s good news for me on two levels. For one, now I have all of Equestria under my thumb, there to do anything I please. And two, I get to kill you sooner!”

I blinked as fear gripped my heart. “W-what?!”

“That’s right, Ally. Since the others are off the hook, or noose I suppose, it means yours has been moved up.” She turned to leave, this time for real. “See you first thing tomorrow morning Ally.”

And she was gone, leaving me to hear the screams of ponies outside. I curled up once again on the floor as everything came crashing down around me. I had lost everything. My family, my friends, and everything else I cared for. I was all alone. The one thing I never, ever wanted to be. My worst fear come to life. I was alone, forever alone.

As I cried, I whispered to myself, “I don’t want to be alone.”

Little did I know, a certain little coin in my pocket was about to help me deal with that.

Rising with the Flames of Alchemy

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*****Auric’s POV*****

It started out like a normal day for me and the wife, you know, good a cup of coffee, some waffles, the usual. It seemed as if everything was normal, for once, that is until I heard a voice call out to me, one I had not heard in quite some time and had almost hoped I wouldn’t hear again. It was the voice of Kat Shifter, the gravity manipulator who I had tried to convince not to follow a path of vengeance only for her to not only lie to me, but completely blow me off after I left. This time, however, it didn’t seem she was calling for me, specifically, but was simply calling out. Her voice was ragged and almost desperate. Her words were simple, but the emotions behind them were strong, stronger than I had felt in a long time.

I don’t want to be alone.

Those six words were surprising to say the least. I wondered, briefly, what she meant by that, but figured it meant that her plans for revenge had fallen through. So, I ignored her, or tried to at least, but Measured noticed my discomfort.

“Is everything alright?”

“It’s nothing, just a certain Displaced calling out,” I replied.

“Which one?” she asked, sounding curious.

“Remember the gravity shifter I told you about?” She nodded and comprehension came upon her. “It seems something has happened to her.”

“Shouldn’t you help her?”

“I tried that once, only for her to ignore me entirely.”

“Still, Auric, what if she’s in danger? Can you really just sit back and let something terrible happen when you know you can make a difference?”

I thought on those words for a moment, running through all different situations that could possibly happen. In the end, I knew that Measured was right. “You could be right, maybe I’ll just check on her.”

“May I join you?”

“I don’t see why not, but be careful,” I say before looking around, knowing I wouldn’t see anything, or anyone, “you never know who might be watching.”

“Stop being so paranoid, come on!”

The two of us made our way to the Black Lab and towards the Mirror. I placed my hoof on the mirror and thought in the direction of Kat. As the mirror changed, it showed… Kat in a prison cell sobbing intensely?! Now, I was slightly intrigued.

“Oh, wow,” Measured said looking at the same thing I was. “What all lead to this?”

“Why don’t we take a look?” I commanded the mirror as such: Show me Kat’s experiences since we last met. What the mirror showed me was simply amazing. It seems that after I had left, Kat discovered an enemy in these strange, ink-like monsters called nevi, and used them as an excuse to become Equestria’s most wanted. And it seems I was right about her not killing off every last changeling, though she seemed to have rectified that at the wedding of Cadence and Shining Armor. That seemed to have been the final straw for the Sisters, as it was there that they called Kat out and she supplied it… immensely. The way she handled their fight was rough and powerful, almost surprising me at how powerful she could be.

Oh wow… okay, did not see that ending coming. That last blow was beyond what I thought even she was capable of. Harsh girl, harsh. Fast forward to a giant monster attacking Canterlot and Kat defending the Princesses? Wait, is that Gilgamesh helping her?! Wow, even I’m starting to get confused here. And now there are two gravity shifters? What the? Okay, the other one seems to have it out for Kat and… I have no words for what I just saw. That was utterly beyond anything I would have expected and now I know Kat needs my help!

“Dear Celestia,” I heard Measured whisper as she held back her tears. The very sight of that pony being killed in such a cruel manner is just unbelievable. “Auric, you have to help her.”

I nodded. “I know. I just hope she listens this time.” I gave Measured a quick kiss and flung myself through the mirror. I appeared instantly behind Kat who was muttering to herself about being alone and being a terrible person. “Maybe you just made some bad choices.” Kat wheeled around in an instant, her eyes were red and her face was stained with tears. Her voice was shaky and pained, saying one word only.


“The one and only. Why, do you know of another unicorn like me? Cause if so, I’ll have a copyright infringement case to get started on.” Snark and sarcasm to break the ice, and hopefully bring her mood up a tick. It’s easier if they laugh with you.

She stared at me for a good few seconds before flinging herself at me. I was prepared for something, but not this. She was hugging me! Embracing me as if I were an old childhood friend come back to life. “I’m so sorry, Auric,” she sobbed into my neck. “I should have listened to you. I should have just given up revenge when I had the chance.” She couldn’t continue as her sobs picked up.

Warily, I picked up a hoof and started to rub her back. Normally, I enjoy people saying that I was right, but considering the circumstances… “What brought this on? Last I checked up on you, you were laughing my ideals off. And I checked up again when I left. How did you go from confident to...this?”

She sniffled as she pulled back slightly. “I made friends,” she whispered mournfully. “They were the greatest I had had in a long time, a very long time. They stood by me even when I told them the truth. I couldn’t have asked for better. I even found out why Fluttershy was so familiar to me. Auric, she’s my granddaughter.” She hesitated, before turning away slightly. “Was my granddaughter.”

I blinked at that as the meaning behind the past tense kicked in. “No. No, no no no. That...what monster would do that?!”

“A monster of my own unintentional and intentional making. Do you remember me speaking of a girl named Rita?”

I shook my head, still shell-shocked by the very idea that I’d been forced to contemplate. “It doesn’t ring a bell. Should it?”

“I suppose not, or it didn’t then. Rita was my very best friend back on Earth. We had been friends since we were three, both of our fathers were in the military together in Vietnam and the Gulf War. My father stayed in the military, while hers pursued a psychology degree. Her father was my therapist for a long time and we became exceptionally close after my parents were killed. We were like sisters. She was also the only one with me when I was sent here. I thought I would never see her again, until now.”

I breathed deeply. In, out. “When did this happen, Kat? When, precisely?”

“Only a little before you came did I finally learn the truth. Rita has been behind everything. Ten years after I left Earth, she fell victim to the Merchant and came to Equestria as Raven, Kat’s rival in the game. If she hadn’t done what she did, I would feel sorry for her. It had been a busy ten years for me, already ending the century long dragon war, and there were many who were displeased at that. Selfish creatures. When Raven came here, they thought she was me and attacked her. She was forced to hide and hone her abilities with only that bird by her side. It was during this that she learned how to summon the nevi. That was after two hundred years and after all the tormenting and shunning, she had come to hate me. She attacked those towns with the nevi and I got blamed for it. That’s how I got sealed in stone, if you remember. When I was freed and she found out, she had had a thousand years to hone her powers fully and use them, while I was forced to only learn of them. She wanted revenge on me and now she has it.”

Her sobs began anew and she placed her head in her hands. “This morning,” she cried. “She killed her and made me watch! Her last words were: I will always love you grandmother! How could you, Rita?” she started talking to herself again. “How could you Extinguish such an innocent soul?”

“We have one shot.”

That got her attention. She snapped her eyes to me as I continued. “In the Starswirl the Bearded Wing, there’s a scroll on Time Travel. Got it from my Twilight. Lets you travel one week back into the past. And as I’m currently a unicorn…”

She shook her head. “It won’t help. It may bring back us back in time, but how can I help? Auric, I’m powerless.”

I smiled at her. “Compared to her, yeah. Compared to me? Dear, my tank’s running on empty. I need magic, energy, chakra, ki, power, call it what you will. I broke my immortality to save a pony close to me, and it takes a lot to recover that. You might as well be a damn star next to me!”

“No, you don’t understand. I’m not a shifter anymore. Raven took my powers. She said if I gave them to her she wouldn’t harm my friends. I never should have taken her word.”

I snorted at that. “Kat, you were an inanimate statue in a magic laden world for a millenium. Trust me, there’s power in you yet. You just can’t use it. Give it to me, I’ll recover at least a noticeable portion, and try to find the damn scroll. It’ll take careful maneuvering to create a new, stable time loop. But I’ll try. For you and her, I’ll try.”

“Thank you for that Auric, but I don’t have anything. I’m just a human now, Raven is much more powerful. She has Equestria now, Celestia made the deal. If she made Raven the ruler, the other Elements would be allowed to live, but not me. My execution is tomorrow. I can’t beat her, she has all of my powers and I have nothing. I was locked away while she ran free. She’s taken everything from me, not that I had left myself much to lose.”

I rolled my eyes and turned to the door. “This little thing?” I focused my mind on it, seeking the pins holding the hinges together, and neatly dissolving just a tiny portion of them.

Of course, said tiny portion ended up with the door creaking, falling down an inch, and then falling into the hallway. I quirked an eyebrow at Kat then. “Cause that’s not an issue. And the Kat I knew fought for what she wanted with all her heart. She certainly didn’t let a ponified Alchemist tell her what she had to do. She did what she wanted, how she wanted, and took no guff from nobody. Are you sure you’re Kat? I can almost see hooves if I look hard enough.”

Much to my annoyance, Kat simply stayed in the corner of her cell. “You’re right. I’m not good for anything, all I do is make things worse. I forced Celestia into this because I messed up.”

I snorted, reared back, and placed my front hooves on her shoulders, locking eyes with her. “Exactly! It’s your fuck-up! Are you just gonna let it fester? Or do you intend to clean it up? Because the way I would do it would be highly messy, involve quite a few Banishments to the Void Eternal, and I’m not sure even that would be enough! I might just go hunt her down afterwards and see to it she’s present for the birth of a new star! So man up or wuss out! Because if you don’t, I will. And when I’m done with her, because you caused this situation, I’ll come back for you afterwards.”

“Fine, do it then!” she roared at me. “Just end me now so I can be with my granddaughter and her ancestor! What do I have left to live for?! I bucked up! Okay? If I hadn’t lost my cool on Celestia after seeing that the adoption form was real and broken her horn, then she never would have been forced to rely on Raven for anything! What good am I to this world?! Huh, how can I, a pitiful human with nothing, stand up against the most powerful being on this damn planet?!”

I slowly blinked. “You don’t get it. They didn’t like you for your powers. They liked you for you. You made friends, not just because you could compress coal to diamonds, but because you were human. You made Flutters proud she was your granddaughter, enough that she died with that on her lips. You ask how can you? I ask, how come you can’t? It doesn’t matter if you fail. What matters is, you fucking try!

“But how?” she asked me in a desperate whisper. “I want to do something, but how? I don’t have any powers.”

“That is not entirely true,” said a voice from the shadows. It walked slowly into the light revealing a pitch black cat with a starry coat and nearly glowing white eyes. “There may still be hope,” it said.

“...Gonna guess that you’re not only important and you know Kat here, but also Dusty, wherever he may be, and agree with my sentiments, if not my wording. I assume you also know our names, so care to give us yours?”

He chuckled, which was a little creepy. “I know my Mistress’ name, yes, but not yours. Based on your speech, however, I assume that you and she are alike. And I don’t just know Dusty, for I am him.”

“...Well this makes me feel all sorts of awkward. Apologies, but I never ran into you. Merely heard of you. And yeah, we’re kinda sorta alike, except I’m not the one acting like all is lost and giving up. I assume from your earlier introduction, you have a plan? Care to inform us?”

“I apologize as well, I was quite dead until about two months ago. I assume Kat informed you of that much prior to this encounter. And I do indeed have a plan. Though, I feel I must also apologize for my mistress’ behavior. She doesn’t take loss very well as I assume you have seen.”

I sighed and looked to the ground, thinking of all I had lost, all I had almost lost, and all that I day lose. Potential immortality sucks sometimes. “Guess we’ll see how well I deal with it when my turn comes.” I looked the cat in the eyes. Have I mentioned how freaky it is to see a cat that’s only slightly smaller than you? Damn pony form. “So. What’s the plan, and do you need me to deconstruct slash banish anyone? Cause I’ll do it.”

“I think we are all misunderstanding the situation we are in. As I have told Kat in the past, we need to find the truth hidden within the truth. We know that Rita, a.k.a. Raven, has created the nevi to attack Kat, but she also has taken control of all Equestria. But why? What is her motivation for this? All I have determined is that something is wrong with her, there is something... else. What, I do not know, but I fear that we will need to. What we need to do is get Kat powered up, for the lack of a better term.”

“You can handle that. I think I have a shortcut for figuring out ‘what’s going on’ with me.” I held up a hoof that glinted in the little light there was in the cell. “But get her at least somewhat strong again. I’m not about to inflict this without her consent and her being able to withstand it, even if I can direct it.”

Kat blinked. “Oh no, you are not touching me with those screwed up hooves of yours. I am insane enough and mourning will only make it worse.”

“I am not quite sure what you speak of, Mister Fulcrum, but it seems to be quite upsetting. May I inquire as to what you mean?”

I smiled evilly, or as evilly as a pony can. “It’s quite simple. Eureka, blade of Understanding. Touching it is highly inadvisable, because it can and tended to show the everything works. These days, I’ve formed a bond with it, and can direct its powers somewhat. It’s still a damn mischievous blade, and in this form, it takes the place of what would be my hooves.” I stepped one step closer to Kat and didn’t drop the smile. “And dear, insanity? Is mandatory for this knowledge.”

“No! I don’t want that kind of knowledge. I will leave that to you and Teridax!”

I growled at his name, but quickly plastered my smile on again. “I fully intended to direct it, dear. Just to make you remember everything about your life and hers that you could recall. To make you truly understand yourself and what you can remember of her, and compare it to the her of today. It’d probably sting a bit, but look on the bright side. You wouldn’t be forced to see...what I’ve seen and can’t unsee.”

Dusty put a paw on her knee. “I will be right here, Mistress. This may be our chance to understand what has happened and how we can fix it.”

Kat sighed. “Alright, but I want to know how I’m supposed to power up first. Just in case.”

“Wise and good. You go over that with her, Dusty, I have to wrangle a mischievous sword.”

“Very well. You see Mistress, when you relinquished your powers to Raven, I simply couldn’t let you. Since the beginning I was the source of your abilities until you developed your own, from whence I became more of a surge protector. As such, I still have a connection to your original abilities and I decided to take them back, just for this moment. I can give you all my powers, Kat, and then you can take yours back.”

Kat blinked and her eyes widened as she realized something. “You learned Extinguish, didn’t you?” I remember her mentioning that the first time, though I still wasn’t quite certain about what it meant.

“I did indeed,” Dusty replied sadly. “I wish I never had, that is until now. With it you can take back your power and end Raven’s threat all at once. It will be the only way since you will only have your three original powers to back it up, along with the first basics.”

“Nice to see I count for so much,” I snarked. Yeah, emotional conversation, Dusty likely to sacrifice himself so that Kat can fix this. I know the score. Damn TVTropes. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I can still feel! It was just...somewhat predictable when he said he could give her her powers back and that he’d taken them.

Dusty raised an eyebrow at me (still creepy). “I believe you misunderstand, Mister Fulcrum. Gravity shifters have the ability to pass their powers between each other, given that both are willing. It is relatively painless and as her familiar, I can do the same. As if I would miss out on a chance to see that evil witch writhe in pain for the hell she has put my Mistress through.”

“Ah,” I replied intelligently. Hey, shut up, mind being force to rearrange what it thinks is predictable over here, thank you very much. “So, question. Will you actually kill her, or will you not have the heart at the time? Cause if you don’t intend to have her die, I have a very fitting punishment all lined up. Just wanna know ahead of time, it takes a minute to charge.”

Kat blinked. “That’s right, I never did fully tell you about Extinguish, did I?”

I shook my head. “Nah, but feel free. Nearly done here. It’s not being quite as belligerent today.”

“Extinguish is the only move I have ever forbidden myself from using and have only ever used it once on accident. Extinguish rips away my enemy’s gravity field, painfully, and I absorb it, gaining their strengths in the process. This results in the target having no gravity at all and their particles are drawn to the nearest source, usually the planet below. What makes it so deadly, is that it can only be used on actual living creatures. I used it once on an Ursa Major and it turned to dust while I gained its immense strength. Wish that hadn’t been taken with when I gave up my powers. It was also that incident that got me kicked out of Gilgamesh’s training camp.”

My mind was abuzz, instantly. “That’s how it works? But then, if she Extinguished...and you did it to her...would you still have any chance?!

“What do you mean? If Dusty can give me back that power, I can end this. It may not bring back my granddaughter, but at least I can say she didn’t die in vain. All I have to do, is to make sure she doesn’t use it on me, as well as try not to get killed by every other power she has and… I am not helping myself by talking about this, am I?”

I shook my head and rapidly made hoof movements while I talked. “She Extinguished Flutters. So she absorbed what used to be Flutters. If you were to use it on her, then you would absorb everything about her...including the things she took. Would you or her have any hope, then?”

“There is a way that could be beneficial, but it would need something,” Dusty said. Kat looked confused, but didn’t say anything.

I nodded once, satisfied that one of them got what I was saying. “Dusty, the cat with a plan. Okay, so. My part. I can help you figure out just where the hell things went wrong. Maybe. And gravity may be your domain, but with my Understanding, don’t undercut me. I’m willing to try as well. The important part isn’t the impossible odds or the certainty of dying. It’s that we need this to work, and I would be a right ass if I didn’t pitch in. Dusty, do your thing, then I’ll do mine.”

“One problem with your statement, Auric.”

I quirked an eyebrow as I finally reached an accord with my sword. “And that is?”

Dusty smiled. “The transfer is already complete. I have been giving Kat my powers as we spoke. Simple as that. And they say dogs are a human’s best friend; I’d like to see one of those mongrels do that!”

I blinked a few times at his efficiency and smiled. “Actually, dogs are loyal and dumb, cats are clever and independent, and my personal favorite has always been vulpines. Dogs live with you, cats live in your house and consider themselves your superiors, and foxes are just awesome.”

Dusty deadpanned at me and then looked to Kat. “Should we tell him exactly what we ate during that first year and a half of your training?” Then he turned to me. “I take affront to your words, Mr. Fulcrum. I am nothing if not loyal! Do you know how many times I have been blasted, burned, crushed, squashed, and trampled? And each time I returned for more to keep my Mistress safe. Hell, I came back from the dead just to be with her!”

Kat smiled for the first time since I arrived. “Don’t dis the cat, or you get the smack.”

I shook my head at Dusty. “Those are just my views. You’ll never be able to top a vulpine in my mind. ‘specially fennecs. Sorry. If it helps, have Kat tell you what position cats held in Egypt, if she hadn’t already. But hey, if I had to choose between cat and dog, I’d go feline every time. You just failed to take into account that I might like another kind of animal more than your binary choices.”

“Ah, yes,” he said with a dreamy expression. “I remember the last time we had fennecs. They were quite delicious. Those dragons certainly knew how to cook. Though, I thank you for the compliment, Mr. Fulcrum, I do believe there is a task that needs to be completed. Morning is only a few hours away, leaving Kat’s execution only an hour after.”

I walked up to Kat and held up a hoof that was brimming with light and power. “Last chance. Once I touch you and speak the words, there’s no going back. You’ll see everything that’s true, everything that should hopefully help, and you won’t be able to forget it. Tell me right now otherwise, or we go ahead with this.”

Kat hesitated for a moment, but nodded. “This may give us the lead we need. I’ll do it, for my little Flutters.”

I smiled sadly at her. “That’s the kind of resolve I was looking for.” My grin faded. “This...will hurt. I’m sorry.”

I brought the hoof to rest on her hand and breathed deeply once. “Kat, you need to focus, to know, to Understand your friend Rita, or as she’s now known, Raven.”

And with that sentence, the cascade triggered. Her screams and the open cell door, however, also brought down some...attention from the guards, what few there were, in the area. I looked to Dusty and laughed slightly. “Eheh. My fault?”

“Ya think? Just be lucky the only guards down here are Minions. If it were a Hulk then we would be dead.”

The nevi, as Kat had called them, gathered at the open door and looked from the screaming Kat, to me, to Dusty, back to Kat, and then apparently decided ‘eh, screw it,’ and walked in. My eyes narrowed and I spat something to Dusty, something that probably sounded like ‘you take the ones on the left.’

The next thing I can recall, I was standing near the door and panting heavily. I...don’t remember the intervening moments. At all. I’ve tried before, but all I get is this...ball of rage and anger. I might have...gone off a bit.

“Oh,” said Dusty, who was wide eyed. “Now I ‘understand’, you’re just as crazy as Kat, if not more. Are all humans as unstable as you three?”

I snarled at him slightly. “These buckers serve an insane murderess who tore apart the kindest pony in any existence on the atomic scale. Not only is that a crime against all Equestrias, that’s also my shtick! You better believe I’ll go a little crazy against such monsters! It’s no less than they deserve!

Just then, I noticed my coat had shifted from Day to Night. Definitely was recently angry, then. Should probably look into that.

“Well, at least nevi are unintelligent beasts with no soul or anything. Just simple constructs that do as told. No harm, no foul.”

I looked back to Kat, who’d stopped screaming and fallen against the stones. “Ah, good. The flood has stopped. Integration should soon begin. That takes a minute or two. Then she’ll probably jump up and say my blade’s name or something similar.” And just like that, back to Day again. I should get a handle on my emotions.

Another minute passed in silence, but then Kat’s head slowly rose up, revealing an expression of pain. “The bird,” she whispered, just loud enough to be heard.

Didn’t she say that Raven’s familiar was a bir- wait. I glared at Dusty. “Something you’re not telling us, Dusty? It seems odd that she would name the familiar to her rival, don’t you think? Almost as though her actions weren’t her own. I’m not doubting your loyalty, but is there something about familiars you’ve neglected to mention, ever?

Dusty shook his head. “I know very little about my kind, unfortunately. Only small bits that I learned of from the Void as I put myself back together over the millennia. I know not much else save that we can communicate telepathically with our respective persons. Though, I don’t quite think that matters here. Now, Kat, what did you learn?”

“The bird. It’s the source. We don’t have to destroy, Rita. She never relinquished her bond like we did. The bird is still the source of her power! We just have to kill it! I can still keep my sister!”

I blinked a few times. “Okay, new question. What’s to stop the bird from crushing you? If she’s the source, then she knows Extinguish, right? Or is it a totally different dynamic than the one you and Dusty share?”

Kat blinked, then looked at Dusty, who was looking back at her. “Though I am able to learn gravity techniques, Mr. Fulcrum, I am unable to use them. Familiars do not posses such an ability, as far as I know. Otherwise do you really think I would have let Kat fight on her own for so long? I would have been out there protecting her if I could.”

I shrugged my shoulders. “Fair point. New question. Why would the bird ever be apart from Raven? If it leaves her, it’s defenseless. It’d be the opportune moment, true, but if the bird is as half as smart as you, Dusty, then it’s got a goddamn roost set up on her back.”

Kat then took on a hard expression, one of pure determination. “We don’t have to wait. It’s time this ends. Rita, NO! Raven said that it was unfortunate that I gave up so easily. Well, now, she’s gonna get her fight. I may not have the power to rival hers, but I won’t give up!” She looked at me and smiled. “I have friends I need to save and that alone will give me the strength to win. I will tear that damn bird to shreds and everything will end. There has been enough pain and suffering in this world because of her, now it’s time to end it.”

I walked over to the cell wall with a window in it and put a hoof to it. “The only question now, dear, is do you want to tear this complex apart on your way out, or will you let me make for you an explosive exit?”

I could feel Kat smile behind me. “If you would be such a gentleman, Mr. Fulcrum, or do you prefer gentlecolt?”

I focused on the stones in the wall and carefully selected a few, enough to blast a hole through the entire thing, and replied absentmindedly. “Actually dear, those that I trust enough? I prefer they call me by my birth name. Frank DeFontaine. And get ready. This is gonna be fun.”

And with that, I ‘flipped’ some of the atoms in a wall for those with their exact counterparts. Or to put it another way, I turned four atoms into antimatter. More than enough to blast the damn wall open. One would have done the job. And instantly, I was drained. It would take a good ten minutes to recover from this. Damn my showman’s nature.

Kat whistled appreciatively at my handiwork. “Damn, you sure know how to show a girl a good time. Also, I would say that it’s alright to call me by my real name, but I can only remember my first name. It’s Allison, by the way, or Ally for short.”

I wheezed as I held a hoof to my chest. “Well Ally, go get ‘er. I’ll just stay here and recover from turning matter to antimatter if you don’t mind. Though if you scream enough, I might could intervene in your fight if you need me.”

“No, this is my fight Auric. You have been help enough, but I need to do this.” She leaned down and kissed my cheek, surprising me. “Thank you for giving me another chance, Frank. I hope I can repay you for it some time.”

I would have blushed, but Measured’s done a good job insulating me to the embarrassing effect of kisses. I did cough, which can still be attributed to needing to recover from the whole ‘let’s make antimatter’ shtick I just pulled off. “ spoiler for you, then. If all goes well and you succeed, not only in this, but in bringing back your granddaughter? Ask Cel who was contained in the world’s oldest prison, and ask her to check if He’s still in there. Cause I think I’m still ahead of you by a year or so.”

Kat sighed. “Tirek’s free, isn’t he? I knew I felt his presence a while back. It doesn’t matter, at least not right now. That is something they will have to deal with when the time comes. Because after all this, I don’t think this world can take any more gravity shifts. Besides, I fear Teridax is up to something. I felt his spy for a long time, but simply ignored it. I noticed that grimace of yours earlier, Auric. I have met Teridax, live and in person. He is a dangerous one.”

I snarled again. “Yeah, he’s up to something. Me. Because we both Understand, he’s declared me his polar opposite, his perfect foe. I’m trying to refill my immortality gas tank before he truly fights me, and so far, all I’ve done is drain it.” I looked to the ‘courtyard’ below and grimaced. “If you live through this, come find me. I have at least one guest room at my tower. I could use all the help I can get. If you’re willing to give it, that is.”

She nodded. “I think I will take you up on that, that is if you can put up with someone like me.” She smiled at me. “I’ll probably be there in about a month. Hopefully by then, the last thing this world will need, is me.”

I shook my head and began to pull on the connection to my homeworld, but not before leaving her with one final saying. “If you can truly look into the eyes of your granddaughter and say that without either one of you objecting, then it’ll be a cold day in hell, m’dear.”

And with that, I vanished back home.

*****Third Person POV ~ The Dragon Lands*****

“But granddad, you have to listen to me!” shouted a red, teenaged dragon at his much larger superior. This argument had been going on for days now as Garble tried to convince his grandfather, Pacolytese, and the Dragon Emperor, Excalibur.

When the Royal Guards had come for the Elements and the princess, Garble, TK, and Tiny had fled as per the usual orders of their goddess and friend. Unintentionally, Spike had been brought with as he had been with his elders when the guards attacked. It turned out to be a good thing as Spike received newspapers via his dragon flames, allowing the four drakes to keep up on the situation with Kat and the Element Bearers.

Garble was furious when they received the news about Kat’s sentence and went straight to the Emperor. Ever since, he had been trying to convince Excalibur and his advisor, Pacolytese, to assist in freeing their Battle Goddess. It wasn’t going very well, though, as Kat’s actions had severely ticked off Paco.

“For the last time, flameling, we are not going to assist Shifter. Her actions as of late reflect very badly on us all. You three helping her all this time has made things even worse. And don’t think I don’t know about you sneaking off earlier! I know you had something to do with the destruction of Canterlot!”

“No, we didn’t! Kat wanted us to stop the nevi, so she could deal with the big monster attacking the city! She wanted us to save everypony, not destroy!”

“That matters not!” Paco roared at him. “The burning of cities and towns, the changeling extinction, and the destruction of Princess Celestia’s horn cannot be overlooked.”

“Gramps just listen to me!” Garble pleaded. “They’re going to kill her! She’s been sentenced to death; we have to save her! She’s my friend!”

Paco actually looked surprised at that. “Your friend, you say?”

Garble, TK, and Tiny all nodded. “Yes, she is. Sure she can be harsh, but she always said that we were friends. She told us about her plan, gramps, about why she was destroying towns. She trusted us. We can’t let her down now!”

At that moment, Spike let out a loud belch and a new newspaper appeared from a gust of flame. “Heh,” he said as he rubbed his head embarrassed. “Um, excuse me.”

“You are excused, young one,” Emperor Excalibur said with a small laugh. Spike blushed slightly and went to read the paper.

Spike was actually enjoying his time in the Dragon Lands, despite the circumstances. He was completely worried about Twilight and the others, but he was also learning a lot of his culture amongst his fellow dragons. Much more than when Kat had taken him to the Dragon Migration. Spike smiled as he began to read the front page, but he soon paled and started to shake. His claws gripped the paper so tightly that they dug symmetrical holes into it. He felt a huge ball of burning anger in his gut as he finished reading. For once, Spike felt like a dragon.

The little dragon marched back to his elders and glared up at Paco. “Yo, Paco!” he shouted at him.

“Pacolytese!” the larger dragon corrected instinctively. He looked down at Spike and lowered his head so the young drake didn’t have to shout. “Yes, young one? How may I help you? Make it fast, we are in the middle of a discussion.”

“Well stop discussing and do something!” Spike said with fury. He presented the front page of the paper to Paco, depicting Fluttershy on the execution block along with Raven and a cheering crowd. “That monster just killed my friend and now you need to do something about it!”

Paco took the paper, pulling a pair of reading glasses out of nowhere and began to skim through the article. “While I’m sorry for your loss, hatchling, why should we do something?”

“Because that pony is also Kat’s granddaughter. And they executed her!”

Paco froze at that and looked down at Spike with true shock. “What was that? This pony,” he pointed to the picture of Fluttershy, “is Kat’s granddaughter? How?”

“She’s Flitterbee’s descendant,” Spike said simply with his arms crossed.

Paco froze at that, shaking slightly as he looked back to the paper. Suddenly, the elder dragon roared and ripped the paper to shreds. “THEY KILLED FLITTER’S DESCENDANT?! THIS IS AN OUTRAGE!!” He let out a large burst of flame into the open air above, his fury reaching its peak.

“You know Flitter, Mister Sharp-Tooth?” asked TK, a little in awe at Paco’s fury.

“You’re damned right I know her! Kat introduced me to her a long time ago and I knew those two had a special bond. I knew how much Kat cared for that filly and now,” Paco snorted and turned to his emperor. “Your highness, this ‘Raven Masters’ has murdered the chosen heir of Gravity herself. We must claim revenge in her name! No one, pony or dragon, will get away with harming one so close to our goddess. Please, my Emperor, allow me to lead a legion to war against this heathen!”

Excalibur was quiet as he looked over his elder. “Pacolytese,” he said before another moment of silence. “I have always taken your advice, knowing that you knew better from experience. You always allowed me to think for myself, though, to use my own logic and reason to lead our kind. Your watch has helped me succeed in keeping us together. That is more than enough to allow you a favor from me. As such, I grant your request. Take five, no more.” Then the Emperor growled. “Teach this ‘Raven’ that you don’t mess with our goddess. Now go, choose your army and rectify this sacrilege.”

Paco bowed slightly. “Thank you, my friend. I shall.” He then pointed at the four other dragons in the room. “You four, suit up, your coming with me.”

“US?!” they shouted.

“Yes, you! You three have proper experience with nevi and Spike knows the layout of Canterlot. I shall retrieve the final member of our squad.”

Garble gulped. “You don’t mean..him?”

Paco nodded. “Yes, your father will be the perfect choice for this.” The elder took flight and headed out for the southern Dragon Lands.

Spike looked at Garble who was a looking a little scared. “Why are you scared of your dad?” he asked. “That sounds pretty weird to me.”

“My dad is a tricky case,” he admitted. “He’s a loner and prefers to hide out away from the Dragon Lands with his hoard. If gramp is bringing him in, though, means we’re in for a big fight. My dad was the greatest warrior the Lands ever had.”

“Wow, where is he now?”

“Last we heard, he was ordered out of Equestria due to his snoring or something. I dunno, only gramps knows the full story. Let’s get goin’, little dude, we gotta get armed up.”

As Garble and the others ran out, Spike just stood there in a daze. “Raven is so doomed,” he said before shaking himself out of his stupor and ran after them. “Hey! Wait for me!”

*****Dusty’s POV*****

Kat and I moved through Canterlot Castle with pace and purpose, not a single step out of stride. There were no words between us, only furious silence. At first, I thought she would go searching for her weapons, but from the path we were taking, I knew we were heading straight for the throne room. There was no stopping her, this is knew for sure now.

“Kat,” I said, hoping to get her to talk to me. However, before either Kat or I could speak, a Hulk rounded the corner up ahead, immediately spotting us. The behemoth roared and rushed towards us, intent on killing us both.

Kat never stopped or strayed from her path. She just kept walking as the nevi got closer. The beast roared and raised its fist and prepared to slam down on her. “Kat!” I yelled out, but it wasn’t necessary. Kat simply raised her hand and the nevi shattered apart as it lit with power. I swore my jaw went slack as Kat miraculously Extinguished a nevi. I never even thought that possible before now.

“No mercy,” Kat said under her breath, but I heard it as plain as day. “No more chances, no more redemption.” She tightened her fist and stopped walking. “Raven started this, and now I’m gonna end it, once and for all.” She turned towards me and my eyes turned to pinpricks, or they would have if I had pupils that is. Her red eyes were much sharper and darker, with none of the warmth I knew Kat had. No, these eyes were cold and uncaring. Those blood red eyes of death that I hadn’t seen in many years. “Once that bird is dead, Rita goes right in that cell and never sees the light of day. Death would be too easy for her.” She turned back around, “Come on, Dusty. Let’s end this.” And she started right back on pace.

“Yes...General Shifter,” I said, turning to mist to catch up to her. This was going to be a fight of legends, that was all I knew now.

Falling with Style, part one

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*****Third Person POV ~ Canterlot Prison*****

Silence reigned upon the cold, stone walls of Canterlot’s prime penitentiary. Under Princess Celestia’s leadership, these cells were normally empty. Their existence was only meant to scare those days, not to be used. Now, five of these one hundred cells were occupied. Five ponies, left to rot within those walls. There was a sixth, however. A sixth that had shared that prison with the five. A sixth that no longer was among the living.

Twilight sat in silence in her cell. Her entire world had crashed down, quite literally. She and her friends would spend the rest of their days in these cells, never to be free again. Not only that, but they would always be incomplete. She looked longingly to the empty cell across the way where only the previous morning a close friend had laid her head.

“I never even got to apologize,” Twilight whispered to herself. Those walls, however, carried sounds much better than those of plywood and drywall. The deafening silence didn’t hurt the sound either.

“None of us have, darling,” spoke Rarity from the next cell over. Twilight glanced in that direction, even if she couldn’t actually see her friend. “We’ve all been fairly horrible to each other as of late.”

Twilight leaned her head slightly through the cell door, trying to look at Rarity. She was able to catch a small glimpse of the fashion mare lying on her bed, simply staring at the ceiling. She retracted her head and resumed her sitting.

“Yeah,” Twilight heard Pinkie on the other side of her cell. That had been the first time she had spoken since… she still couldn’t think about, it hurt so much. “We all used to be the bestest best buddies there ever were. Now look at us.” Twilight she swore she heard Pinkie sniffling. “We’re broken.”

“Broken don’t even begin to cover it,” Applejack groaned out. Twilight looked at the farm mare’s “accommodations” across the way, next to the abandoned cell. Applejack was occupying her time through exercise, a way of distracting herself from the morning’s events. “At the rate we were goin’, we’ve matched Discord in terms of chaos. Goin’ down a dark path, we were. Eeyup!” She completed another set and moved to the other hoof as she continued her push ups.

Twilight glanced over to the other cell adjacent to the empty one, where Rainbow sat with her back to the group. Like Pinkie, Dash hadn’t said a word since that morning, seemingly content with a grieving silence.

“Rainbow?” Twilight gently called out to her pegasus friend.

“What?” she nearly growled out.

“I know you’re upset, but please talk to us. I don’t want our friendship to continue to falter.”

“Didn’t stop you from breaking it in the first place.”

Twilight froze. Then she lowered her head and sniffled as another tear fell to the cold, damp floor. “You’re right, Rainbow. You’re absolutely right. I let my own anger control me and it turned me into a monster. I threatened all of you and turned my back on our friendship. I just wish I could take it back and maybe then…” More tears and a sob escaped her lips. “I’m sorry, I’m so sorry.”

Rainbow sighed and turned to finally face the group. Her eyes were bloodshot and deeply red, showing how much she had truly been crying. Twilight had to hold back a gasp at the sight, never having seen her friend cry before. Rainbow’s fur was still matted and stained from her tears, making her truly look like a mess. Then she spoke three words that resonated deep within Twilight.

“I forgive you.”

Twilight was shocked to say the least. When she was finally able to find her voice again, all she could do was to ask, “W-why? Why do forgive me?”

Rainbow Dash looked at the lavender mare with a wry smile. “Because we’re friends, egghead. Friend’s forgive each other for their blunders. And of course, I never turn my back on my friends.”

Twilight looked at Rainbow Dash again, only this time with a smile of her own. New tears were building in her eyes. The first signs of joy the mare had felt in days.

“Ah suppose Ah forgive ya too, sugar cube.”

Twilight snapped her head back to Applejack, her mouth agape. “W-wha?!”

“Ya may’ve been actin’ more like a mule than a pony lately, but that don’t mean we ain’t friends. Ah stuck by Kat because she was bein’ stupid and needed somepony to keep her on the right track. So, Imma stick by you too. Get that flank going the right direction again,” she said with a small laugh.

“Applejack….” Twilight mumbled happily.

“That goes for me too, darling.” Twilight stuck her head through the bars, looking over to see Rarity doing the same. “You are a true friend, Twilight. I feel as if we’ve been friends for a long time. For the life of me I don’t know why, but that is how I feel. And I know that a few mistakes happen in friendships, but helping eachother move past them is what makes those bonds even stronger.”

“Rarity…” Twilight whispered in awe and happiness.

“Yay!” Pinkie squeed. “We’re all still the bestest of the bestest buddies!!” Twilight looked over and saw Pinkie bouncing up and down with her head through the bars. “Hugs!!”

“Pinkie,” Twilight chuckled happily, “We can’t hug, we’re not in the same cells.”

“Air hugs, silly,” Pinkie said in a ‘duh’ kind of tone.

The other mares giggled, but did just that. It wasn’t quite the same as their usual group hugs, but it made Twilight feel warmer inside. Even as her happiness grew, she couldn’t help but glance at the vacant cell across the way. There was still something missing, or somepony missing that is. Twilight sighed, truly missing Fluttershy. She noticed out of the corner of her eye that the others were watching the cell too, longing in their eyes.

Suddenly, their whole world was shaken, the five mares jumbled about the massive quake.

“What was that?” Twilight yelled as the shaking stopped.

“Sounded like an explosion,” Rainbow said, trying to look out her window. “Nothing else could break the sound barrier like that.”

“How do ya know it broke the sound barrier?” asked Applejack.

“Trust me,” Rainbow said with a cocky grin. “I know.”

“That, ladies, is the beginning of your escape.”

Each of their heads snapped to the source of the voice and they gaped at the sight. Standing at the end of their cells was a little, purple, baby dragon, spinning a key on one of his claws.

“SPIKE?!” they all yelled in surprise.

“Who were you expecting? Derpy?” Spike walked over to each cell and unlocked the doors with the keys. Once the last door was opened, Spike found himself in the midst of a massive group hug. Even got a kiss on the cheek from Rarity.

“Oh Spikey! We’re so glad you’re ok!” Rarity gushed, now keeping the drake to herself. Not that he minded in the least.

“But what are you doing here? It’s dangerous!” Twilight nearly yelled, rather than asked.

“Rescue detail,” Spike said simply.

“Huh?” they all responded.

“Garble and the others are waiting outside, we need to go. I’ll explain everything on the way out.” Spike reluctantly freed himself from Rarity’s grasp and started to run down the hall. “Come on! More guards will be here soon!”

That was all the encouragement they needed and they followed the drake with a rushing pace. “So what’re y’all doin’ here, Spike?” AJ asked as they ran.

“The Dragon Emperor dispatched us, Pacolytese, and another dragon to avenge Fluttershy and to help Kat however we can. Turns out Flitter was a dragon ambassador after Kat was sealed. She’s a beloved pony in dragon history. As such, the murder of her descendant had really ticked off Paco.”

“All because of Fluttershy?” Twilight asked in surprise.

“Yep.” Spike looked over his shoulder and smiled at his caretaker. “We’re gonna avenge her and make things right.”

Twilight was surprised by the fiery fury in Spike’s voice as he said those words. They kept running, hoping to catch up to the other dragons.

“There’s the exit!” Spike said as they neared a light up ahead. “Garble, TK, and Tiny should be right outside. From there, we find Raven and kick her butt!”


“Aw yeah!”

“Darn tootin’!”

“Mm hmm!”

Twilight was the only one who remained silent, she was stopped by something on the wall near the exit. It blended in so well with the dark corridor she nearly missed it. Twilight walked right up to the fairly large object and, with determination in her eyes, she ripped it from the walls with a levitation spell.

“Come on Twi!” Applejack called from door. “We gotta go!”

“Coming!” She ran to the others with the object in her telekinetic grasp. When she caught up, they all gasped at what she had.

“Is that…?”

“Yes it is, Spike. And we’re going with you.” Now the fire was in her eyes too. “No one messes with our friends.” Everyone smiled at her and then walked out of the prison, determined to do what they could to help.

*****Dusty’s POV*****

We were finally nearing the throne room. Along the way, we had been attacked several times after that first Hulk. There had been roughly six more a little further ahead. Kat had Extinguished each and every one of them. Later, we had come across one of the rarer forms of nevi: Spike Bombs. Simple nevi that explode with spikes, then retreat back into its eye form. Kat had walked right through the field of spikes and, with one punch, shattered its existence.

There were no words as Kat continued to take on more and more nevi as we walked the path to the throne room. We faced Stars, Spearquines, Squids, and even a Long Leg. What’s a Long Leg? The tallest of the nevi, Long Legs are nearly twelve feet tall and have the appearance of a large mawed beast. The only advantage to them was that they were fairly skinny legged, making them easy to trip. Which Kat did before brutally kicking in its eyes.

When we rounded the corner, guarding the throne room doors was at least twenty Minions, lead by a lone Hulk. They spotted us quickly and the Minions rushed forward, jumping into the air in hopes of crushing us beneath them.

They never stood a chance.

Kat simply raised her hand and Extinguished the entire group in an instant. I was wide-eyed at the sight, looking at Kat in shock. They were the most recent of her victims. Kat had Extinguished at least three of each nevi we had come across. This was a forbidden technique, but she just kept using it over and over again. It was...disconcerting to say the least. With each one, though, Kat would get stronger, taking on the nevis’ strengths and abilities.

The Hulk roared at us for destroying its army, but Kat ignored it and started walking again as if nothing was wrong. The nevi didn’t like being ignored, it seemed, as it rushed right at Kat. She just kept walking, making it three-fourths of the way to the doors before the Hulk was bearing down on her.

Kat stood straight as the nevi attacked her, its arm raised to crush her. The arm swung and I nearly cried out, but just as the arm got near her, it moved slightly to her left and smashing into the ground next to her. I swore that the Hulk’s front eye blinked in surprise.

“My tun,” Kat said simply. She cocked back her fist and let it fly! The Hulk’s eye shattered on impact and its whole body was thrown back through the door. When it hit the floor, there was so much pressure and power behind the strike, that the back eyes shattered as well and the monster dissipated into nothingness. A stamina crystal remained behind, and Kat summoned it to her hand, crushing it and restoring her energy.

“Well, well, well, look who’s here.”

Kat and I looked up to see Raven sitting upon Celestia’s throne, smiling down at us. “If it isn’t Kat, come to exact her vengeance it would seem.”

“Raven,” Kat replied simply.

“Do you like what I’ve done with the place?” she asked, spreading her arms wide. “The nevi really tie in the castle, don’t they?”

“They make things interesting, I’ll give you that.” Kat’s glare never once lessened.

“They do, they really do.”

“Where are Celestia and Luna?” Kat demanded.

“Who? Oh! You mean my servants.” She swept her arm to the side, having us follow her line of sight. Standing off to the side was Celestia and Luna, both wearing French maid uniforms. I was frankly quite surprised at their new… ‘attire’. Though Celestia did pull it off quite well….

….She would kill me all over again if she ever knew I even thought that. Neither looked very happy to be in uniform though as they were both scowling quite hard.

“Quite fetching, if I do say so myself,” Raven commented as she walked closer to us, stopping only about ten feet away. “Suits those animals just fine.”

“You never did grow out of that stupid fetish,” Kat said emotionlessly. “You and your messed up reasons for needing to see everyone in a maid outfit.”

“Oh don’t be like that,” she said poshly. “I remember you quite enjoying wearing the one I put you in all those years ago, Ally–”

Raven’s sentence was cut off as Kat practically teleported in her face and decked her into the wall behind the throne. I took that moment to mist myself over on to Celestia’s back. She noticed and nodded a greeting to me, same with Luna. I responded with a polite nod myself.

Raven groaned as she picked herself out of the wall and back on her feet. “Good punch,” she complimented.

Kat just stood there, glaring daggers at the other shifter.

“What? No snarky comeback? No insults? I was expecting banter of some ki--”

“Shut up!” Kat growled at Raven and, for once, she looked surprised. “You will not call me ‘Ally’. I am not her anymore. I am Kat Shifter. And you!” She pointed right at Raven. “Are not Rita. You are Raven Masters, my enemy. My target. My victim!”

Celestia looked surprised, before narrowing her eyes at Kat. She gasped at what she saw.

“You see it too, then,” I said quietly.

Celestia nodded her head. “Her eyes. Those cold, calculating, deadly eyes. That is not Kat standing there. That is General Shifter, the greatest military leader in Equestrian history.”

“So it is true,” Luna added. “I never joined Kat in battle, but I had heard the stories. How her eyes would become the color of blood and her personality changes.”

“Yes,” I nodded. “Kat is much more violent like this and will have no mercy. This is Kat at her most deadly.”

“This will be a dangerous battle indeed,” Celestia commented. “But one I wouldn’t miss for the world.”

*****Kat’s POV*****

Raven stared at me in shock and then started to laugh. “Ahaha!! Oh, so this is the great Kat Shifter I heard so much about.” She started to walk around me, eyeing me with interest. “The great general who took down dragons, decimated minotaurs, ripped apart griffins, and obliterated the changelings. You finally show your true colors. As a ruthless murderer.”

“A ruthless protector,” I corrected. “Enough talking, Raven. We are going to end this fight here and now. And one of us isn’t walking away in the end.”

“So sure of yourself now,” Raven said mockingly. “You’re finally going to give me a proper fight? Can you really kill your own sister?”

“You are not my sister. Rita was a kind and caring girl, who would never do what you have done. We are not sisters, not anymore.”

Raven glared harshly at me, no doubt realizing how serious I was. “No matter what you think, it is the truth! We are who we --”

“Enough!” I shouted, interrupting her for a third time. Raven just stared daggers at me as I continued. “It ends here, Raven. Your tyranny, your threats. You. End. Here!” My whole body suddenly was ablaze with energy and I shot forward at Raven.

She recognized the threat immediately, encasing herself in her blue-black aura. I put my feet forward and plowed forward with a powerful Gravity Kick. Raven covered herself by crossing her arms out in front. My foot slammed right into her guard, creating a shockwave that put a crater in the tile flooring.

Raven glared as the dust settled and the shaking stopped. She threw out her arms to send me away in a massive wave of energy.

I was thrown several feet, but righted myself against the far wall. I reached out with my powers and ripped two chunks of rock out, one on either side of me, and fired one at Raven. It shot like a bullet, only to have my opponent punch it out of existence upon reaching her. I saw my opportunity and had fired the other almost immediately, slamming into Raven hard.

She picked herself up off the floor, growling in anger. “You’ll pay for that, Kat!” she spat at me. In her hand, her sword appeared through a portal and she ran at me. “Die!!” She began to thrust her rapier at me with such speed that it was extremely difficult to dodge.

I avoided a particularly deadly strike only for Raven to smirk and kick me in the gut.

I staggered back and she blasted me into the wall. I felt a ton of pressure fall against me and I realize that Raven had pinned me into the wall. I had difficulty just moving my head to look at her, those cold eyes focused on me in hatred.

“This wasn’t how you were supposed to die,” she told me as she slowly walked towards me. “Your death was going to signify the beginning of a new era for this world. It would have struck fear into the nations of the world that even the great Gravity, the strongest this world possessed, could defeat me. And you just had to ruin that! You always ruin everything!” She pointed her sword right at my neck. “No more. You will never hurt me again.”

Dammit! Move Kat, move! I shouted to myself. But it was no use, with my powers only still recovering, she had the advantage in that scenario. That didn’t stop me from doing my best to break it. I felt the blade leave my throat, glinting in the light of the morning sun as she raised it behind her head.

Raven thrust forward and…nothing but the sound of metal on metal.

I looked in shock to see my shield floating in front of me, blocking Raven’s lethal blow.

“What the?!” Raven cried out.

“Get away from our friend!” Applejack and Rainbow Dash yelled as they punched the Gravity Master away from me. She was sent flying back into the air, righting herself above us with a sneer.

“Putrid farm animals!” she snarled.

“Takes one to know one,” Rarity shouted back as she, Pinkie, and Twilight helped me out of the crater.

“Are you alright, Kat?” Pinkie asked with concern.

“Yeah, I’m good,” I answered in surprise. “Why are you all here? I thought….because of….”

Twilight put a hoof to my mouth with a sad smile. “You’re our friend. I’m sorry, for everything.”

I could feel a twinge of tears piling up behind my eyes as I gave her a smile. “I’m sorry, too.” Twilight and I hugged, confirming our friendship was rekindled.

“Disgusting!” Raven yelled out. We all turned up to her, glaring harshly. “I’m tired of all of you! This time,” her power began to radiate even brighter as the castle began to shake, “I’ll kill each and every last one of you!” The entire ceiling above us shattered into a storm of rubble and debris. Raven screamed and an army of nevi, including two, count ‘em, two Nushi!

“Shit,” I cursed. I felt something land in my lap and I saw that Twilight had given me my shield.

“Focus on Raven,” she told me. “We’ll take care of the nevi.”

“What?! Are you insane?! How are you going to take those things on?!”

“With them!” Pinkie pointed to the sky and I saw two dark figures in the distance. Faster than I could track, the blurs became much larger and slammed into the Nushi, causing the nevi to cry out in pan. Twin roars were blasted from the massive monsters that attacked the Nushi, lighting the nevi ablaze. They crashed into the massive army, obliterating on contact. From the fire, two massive dragons appeared. I instantly recognized one as Paco, but the other was unknown to me. The girls, however, let out a gasp.

“Ah don’t believe it,” Applejack said with a slack jaw. “It’s that dragon from before! The one Fluttershy convinced to move before his snorin’ covered all of Equestria!”

“Yep.” I looked over and saw my dragon team there, along with Spike. “That’s my old man. The ferocious Fire Fang. The greatest dragon warrior in millennia.”

The massive red dragon let out a roar into the heavens, rattling the very ground below us. “For harming such an innocent soul,” he shouted, “you will burn!!” He made this true by lighting up many of the nevi monsters.

Spike walked over to me and put a claw on my shoulder. “We got them nevi covered Kat. Go get her.”

I looked to all of my friends, each and everyone of them nodding in agreement with solemn faces. I reverted back to General Shifter, placing my shield in its proper position. “Keep them off and away from us. Keep an eye out for her bird as well. If you see it, shout it to me. I’ll take it from there. Am I understood?”

They all saluted the best they could. “Ma’am, yes ma’am!”

“Good.” I took off into the air, to join the stunned Raven.

As soon as I was on the same level, she turned to me, trembling in rage. “You. Ruin. EVERYTHING!! I’ll kill you!!” Her sword suddenly disappeared and was replaced with….aw shit! Raven then swung mjolnir at me, forcing me to duck back as the massive warhammer swung by. “I’ll destroy you with the very weapon Celestia had made to kill you! How fitting that its destiny will be fulfilled after all! Now die!”

I braced my shield against the next swing.

And the next one.

And the one that followed after that.

One after another, the hits kept coming. Raven’s extreme strength made it easy to swing such a dense weapon. I could feel my teeth chattering with each and every blow.

Then, the impossible happened.

Her last strike had been enough to send me back to the wall, but I had braced my body against it and used it to propel me even faster at her.

Raven swung mjolnir…..

I put my shield directly in front of me….

And we collided. The force of the collision racked the battlefield below with a massive shock wave. But the more surprising thing was….both of our weapons had shattered!!

Mjolnir was blasted into oblivion due to the ferocity of the strike, while my shield had shattered into several pieces.

Thankfully, my staff had survived the attack. I grabbed it from the ruble, causing it to extend.

While I was shocked, Raven was dumbfounded. Her eyes had that thousand-yard stare and her body tremble. Then her eyes focused into fierce pools of hatred. She yelled out bloody murder, reappearing her rapier and struck at me.

I defended with my staff, each of us parrying the other. Blow, after blow, after blow, we clashed high above the field of battle. The fires roared around us as the dragons burned away her monsters, while my friends defended the princesses.

It was the fiercest battle in Equestrian history.

Eventually, I grew tired of our constant back and forth, so I parried her last blow, then wormholed up above Raven and slammed my staff into head. Like a cement block, Raven dropped out of the sky and onto what remained of the castle floor. I floated down not too far from the groggy shifter. Using my powers, I lifted up the remaining pieces of my shield from the floor and began to have them orbit my body. Round and round they went, their speed increasing with every revolution.

Raven must have picked up on my trick as she began to fire rocks and rubble at me. For each one, I shifted a shield piece and blocked them. No matter how many she threw, I was perfectly defended. I moved closer to her, forcing her on the defense with my perfect technique.

As I struck, my “shield” would form to protect me from any counter attack as well be sharp and agile enough to be a weapon themselves. Raven parried time and time again, getting more and more frustrated that she couldn't attack me.

Then out of nowhere, “Kat! Look out! The bird!”

I turned to Spike in a second of confusion. That one bit of hesitation was enough for Raven to fire a Push, breaking my concentration on my shield. She opened up several portals, causing the pieces to disappear into oblivion.

I would have cursed if not for the screech that assaulted my ears...and the talons that suddenly clawed my face. I shrieked in pain as Raven’s bird began to attack me. I growled at the pest and struck at it with my staff, sending the damned thing into the far wall.

Turning quick, I did the same to Raven but with my boot instead and sending her in the opposite direction. She slammed into the pillar, causing it to collapse behind her as she slumped to the ground.

I walked over to my enemy and stared down at her from. “Get up, Raven. I will give you that honor. Now stand and face me.”

Raven groggily shook her head, groaning as she put a hand to her head. “Ugh...where, where am I?” Her voice was suddenly softer and much more….like I remembered. She looked up at me and I instantly noticed that her eyes were much softer and full of warmth. Raven gasped when she saw me. “Ally?” she asked like an innocent child.

I was at a loss for words as she suddenly flung herself up at me and hugged me around the neck. “Oh my god!! Ally it is you!! I’m so happy to see you!!” she shouted out in happiness and glee.

I was stunned, all I could say was, “....what the fuck!?”

Falling with Style, part two

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“What the fuck!?”

That was all I could say as Raven hugged me--tightly, I might add. It was so disconcerting that I think I actually believed it….for less than a second. I stone-faced almost immediately and shoved the “giddy” girl off of me. She looked at me in confusion while I glared at her.

“Allison?” she asked. Her voice sounded so innocent now, devoid of that harshness that she had only a moment ago. “Allison, it’s me,” she pleaded. “Rita, your sister!”

I got into a battle stance. “You are not my sister,” I snapped at her, causing her to recoil. “You are a monster and I will not fall for your tricks.”

“Tricks?” How could she sound so genuine? What is going on here?! “B-but, Ally--”

“I told you not to call me that!” I roared. “My sister would never have done the things you have! She was not the evil, backstabbing, little bitch that you are!”

“W-what? What are you talking about?! I’m not evil! I-I’m your sister, dammit!” She stomped her foot, not even taking notice of the cracks in the destroyed floor she just created. “I’ve been looking for you for ten years! Where have you been?!”

“You already know the answer to that, Raven,” I spat. “Now stop with this shitty facade and let’s get back to me kicking your ass.”

Raven looked aghast. “B-but I….” Tears formed in her eyes and she began to cry. “What happened to you, Ally? Why are you being like this? We used to be so close.”

“That was before you destroyed my life, you bitch! Now put up that sword and let’s get back to fighting.”

“Sword?” Raven looked down to her right hand where the sword was in plain view. She yelped, dropping the blade. “What am I doing with a sword?! I’m a psychiatrist not a fencer!”

“You were using it to fight me!” I was getting tired of her act. “Drop the act, Raven. You’re not fooling me.”

“Ally,” she pleaded to me, making me grit my teeth. “I don’t know what’s going on! Honest! The last thing I remember was being thrown out of some town full of talking animals!” Raven put her hand to her head, rubbing it slightly. “I-I don’t even know how I got here. Where am I, anyway?”

My patience with her was running thin, and fast. “For the last, mother fucking time, I am NOT going to fall for your fucking tricks!!” Though it was normally against my personal code, I slammed my staff into the side of her face, sending her flying into the wall. “Now fight, dammit! Before you irk me even more!”

Raven slowly pulled herself out of the debris, groaning loudly. She looked at me with surprise and hurt in her eyes. “W-why Ally? Whatever I’ve done, I’m sorry! Ok? I’m sorry!”

“I don’t want your apology!” I shouted at her, making her flinch. “I want your fucking head on a stick! I want you dead! You hear me?! DEAD!!” Yeah, I was pretty much snapped at that point.

I saw her hands clench on her knees and could have sworn tears were falling from her lowered head. “You……..YOU BITCH!!” Raven suddenly shot forward, her rapier instantly appearing in her hand. I was so shocked by sudden turn that I forgot to block as her sword pierced through the right side of my abdomen. I shrieked in pain as she dug the blade all the way to it’s hilt. I looked down at her hate-filled eyes. “I’m going to kill you, Kat! Slowly, painfully, and it will oh so sweet for me.”

I growled at her, slamming a left hook into her face. I sent her rolling a little ways, but she used the momentum to launch into the air. Raven teleported her sword out of my chest and back into her hand. I grabbed the bleeding hole and fueled my power into my hand, searing it shut. The pain was immense, but my anger and hatred was burning so much hotter. I looked up at Raven, my rage fueling my energy as I powered back up.

“Then bring it, Masters!” I shot forward towards her, staff prepared to swing.

“Die, Shifter!” she shouted back as she launched towards me in retaliation.

We collided in midair, our weapons sending sparks off each other. And so our fight started anew.

*****Dusty’s POV******

As Mistress and Raven restarted their fight, I found something terribly wrong with it. Raven’s temporary switch into Rita was very off putting and set off a multitude of warning signals in my head.

It had to be more than just a trick or a trap. If it was a trap, it was set off very poorly. Sure, she got a good hit in because of it, but there was just….too much. The emotions, the actions, the overall feel of her switch just felt too real.

No, it had been no trick or trap. It had been real. For those few fleeting moments, my mistress’ sister had returned. That was her true mental state, but what brought it out? And how did she have no recollection of current and past events? What was the trigger? What was the linchpin?

Then something occurred to me. What had Mistress said when Auric helped her Understand the situation?

“The bird.”

The pieces instantly began to fall into place in my head. I looked over and saw that the bird was back up and flying, having been knocked under a pile of rubble earlier.

Just as Raven reverted into Rita!

Mistress must have misunderstood what that Auric pony had shown her! It wasn’t that the bird was the key to taking away Raven’s powers. The bird was the key to Raven!

But then that means…..oh, that mother fucker is dead meat!

I jumped off of Celestia and proceeded to stalk closer and closer towards that damned bird. She must have noticed me getting down.

“Dusty? Where are you going?” she asked me.

“To put an end to all this,” I told her cryptically.

She seemed to be conflicted about it, but she reluctantly nodded. “Be safe.”

“When I’m done, we’ll all be safe.” I turned into a starry mist and regenerated on a higher wall, above my target. I could still hear the banging and crashing from above. Taking a glance, I saw my kitten still rigorously beating on Raven. Neither were giving in to the other, sparks flying everywhere….and rocks. There were a lot of rocks flying between them.

I stole a glance out to the ruins of Canterlot where the dragons and the ponies were decimating the nevi ranks. If it had been a normal army, I’m certain that the battle would already be won. But it wasn’t a normal army. It was an army with an infinite amount of troops. Whenever one nevi fell, three more would join the advancing ranks. Yet still they fought, fighting for their lives, their homes, and for their friend.

I looked back to my target, my eyes turning frostbite cold. “This ends, NOW!” I said to myself as I pounced on the raven. As we collided, it squawked in pain, my claws digging into its back. We hit the ground a moment later, and the damn bird rolled me off. I got into a ready position almost instantly as it got defensive.

I lunged again, taking a swipe across it’s eye, leaving a deep scratch. It squawked again, flapping wildly as it tried to claw at me with its talons.

“For my kitten!” I shouted, throwing us into a fighting frenzy.

*****Kat’s POV*****

I swung left.

Raven swung right.

I swung right.

Raven swung left.

Time and time again, we collide each of us trying to get the upperhand on the other. My staff would meet her sword with a loud ‘CLANG!’, multitude of sparks shooting off our metallic weapons.

We pushed off each other again, both panting and glaring.

“ ready to give up yet...Raven?” I gasped between breaths.

“Never!” she said, in the same state. “I…will never give in…to you!” Raven pointed out at her army, and I saw the state the battle was going. “My army…will continue so long as I breathe. It no longer takes… a toll on my energy to produce more… and more nevi.... Your army is limited…sooner or later…it will fail. Not even dragons….are invincible.”

“You give them…too little credit...Raven.... Those are warrior dragons…I can tell.... My friends…never lose...and neither will I!”

We charged at the same time, but something went wrong. Not with me, for once, but with Raven.

Before we could collide, she stopped in midair, grasping her head and screaming bloody murder. She started convulsing, whipping her head to-and-fro, even dropping her sword from forty stories up. Raven was gripping her head so hard that I could actually see her beginning to bleed.

“What the-? What’s going on here? This better not be another trick, Raven!” I shouted at her.

She screamed again, lowering her head slightly and looked to me, tears of desperation in her eyes. “Ally, h-help me.”

I did a double-take. “Wh-what?! What are you talking about?!”

“It hurts,” she whimpered. “It hurts so much. He’s constantly there. Whispering in my ear, controlling my every action. Please Ally, please make the voice stop. Make it go away!” She arched her back in a second, screaming out into the air.

I heard a strange sound coming from the battle below. I took a quick peak and did another double-take. I saw all of the nevi beginning to disintegrate into nothingness. The dragons and ponies were in the biggest shock, seeing all of their enemies just falling apart in front of them.

Another sound came from directly below us. It sounded…like a warring cat? …Dusty! I instantly looked down and saw Dusty in a literal cat fight. Well, a cat-bird fight. …I’m just gonna call it Sylvester vs. Tweety reimagined. Might as well have been, anyway, with how our two familiars were fighting. I saw Dusty actually rake his claws down the raven’s back and…Raven shrieked in pain?!

I looked back over to the convulsing human. Then back to the fight. Then back to Raven. And it clicked!

“I’m a fucking moron,” I whispered to myself. How could I misunderstand what Auric had shown me?! The bird wasn’t the source of Raven’s powers (okay, still might be, but that’s not the point at the moment, now is it?), it was the source of Raven herself! I had to do something.

“Luna!!” I called out to the night-blue alicorn. She looked at me questioningly. “I need spell number 682! Cast it on Raven, NOW!!” Luna looked at Celestia, no doubt confirming if she should. I saw the sun goddess nod, and Luna powered up her horn. I looked back to Raven and actually started to smile as a light blue bubble began to surround her head.

Right as it finished forming, Raven stopped screaming and convulsing altogether. In fact, she wasn’t doing anything….including keeping herself afloat! She dropped like a rock. After a quick moment of hesitant surprise, I shot after her, scooping her out of the air only seconds before she would have landed on the ground.

I looked back over to Dusty with Raven in my arms. I gently set her down on the rubble covered ground and gave that damned bird a glare. I lifted up my hand slowly and then forced it forward. Instantly, the bird went flying from Dusty and crashed into one of the few remaining walls. I reached up and yanked the ceiling below down on the horrid creature, sealing it under several feet of crushed bricks, stone, and whatever else was on the floor above.

Dusty turned back to me in a little surprise before huffing. “Hmmf, I could have taken him on my own.”

I chuckled a little. “Uh huh, of course. No one gets past the great Dusty.”

“Damn right,” he said back with a hint of pride. I rolled my eyes as everypony and dragon started to gather around Raven.

“Did we win?” asked Twilight, looking far more ragged from the fighting. I doubted she had any magic left to spare at the moment.

“We are unsure,” Luna said. She turned to me. “Pray tell, Kat, why didst thou have us perform a mental blockage spell upon thine enemy?”

“Because Rita is not our enemy,” Dusty answered first. Obviously, everyone was shocked.

“B-but she’s the villain!” Rainbow exclaimed. “How could she not be our enemy.”

“Our enemy was Raven Masters, but the girl before us is not the merciless woman we have come to hate. No, this is who she truly is: Rita, the sister of my kitten.”

“Uh, Ah don’t follow, sugarcube,” Applejack said while scratching her head.

“Rita’s been controlled this whole time,” I told them. “When Auric showed me the problem we were facing, it told me the bird was the key. Only, I thought that meant that if we got rid of the bird, Raven’s powers would dissipate. That wasn’t it.” I shook my head. “No, the bird was the true evil being. He’s been controlling Rita all these years, from the very start by the sound of it.”

“So that pesky little flying rodent was the cause behind everything?” asked Paco, rubbing his chin.

I nodded. “Yes. Everything from placing blame on me for attacking those towns twelve hundred years ago, to now.”

“So her actions were nary her own?” Luna surmised. “Well, that would explain how such a kind hearted person became so cruel and vicious.”

A slight groan came from Rita, her eyes fluttering open to see eight ponies, five dragons, a star-coated cat, and me all staring down at her. “Ally?” she asked, sitting up slowly. “I-it wasn’t a dream? Y-you’re actually here? O-or is this just another terrible dream?”

I smiled warmly, crouched down and put my arm on her shoulder. I squeezed a little and she flinched. “You don’t feel true pain in a dream, Rita.” She looked at me with wide eyes. “I-I’m sorry for hitting you before. I thought you were someone else, someone evil. But now I see sister.”

Rita’s eyes began to water and she pulled me into a tight hug. I wrapped my arms around her as she clung to me, crying loudly. “I-I never thought I’d see you aga-a-ain!” she sobbed.

“I know. I thought the same,” I whispered.

“I-I was so alone. Everything just went so wrong. I-I thought he was going to help me, b-but he just used me! I-I remember now, I remember everything he made me do.” I just shushed her, rubbing my dear friend’s back. I was honestly tempted to cry myself, but I wanted to be strong.

My sister was back in my arms, and back to her old self. This must have been what Celestia went through. And it made me feel complete.

But, of course, the good things never last.

Behind us, the massive pile of rubble and debris exploded outward, showering us with tiny bits of shrapnel. A horrible shriek roared out as the raven rose from the rubble. It’s body was glowing a deep, dark red as it’s eyes burned even redder.


Holy crap it talks! ....given that Dusty could talk, I shouldn’t have been all that surprised. Then again, this whole time it never once opened its beak to speak before.

“King,” Rita whispered. I looked to her, then back at the bird.

“King? Its name is King?” I muttered to myself.

Celestia stepped forward a bit, standing right by my side...somehow, that felt right. “Stand down, bird,” she said calmly yet with a stare that would melt rock. “You have lost control over this young girl and your army. Surrender now.”

The raven had the gall to laugh uproariously. “Lost? Surrender?! Ahahaha!!!” He glowered at Celestia. “I am far from defeated, worm!”

Rita grunted, holding her chest. “Rita! What’s wrong?” I asked in concern.

“I...I don’t know.” She looked like she was going to be sick. “Th-there’s something weird in my chest. It feels like, oh god it hurts, it feels like there’s something pulling on my chest!”

‘Pulling on her...’ Oh no! I grabbed Rita’s shoulders and looked her right in the eye. “Rita, you have to fight it! It’s the bird; it’s King who is doing this to you! You have to fight him off!”

“What’s going on?” asked Twilight.

I did a quick turn at the bird. “King is stealing her powers, just like how Raven stole mine but Dusty stole some to keep safe.”

“King?” She looked where I was looking, understanding donning on her.

“I-I can’t!” Rita whimpered. “He’s-he’s too strong, I can’t fight him!”

I made Rita look me right in the eye. “Yes. You. Can. You’re not a weakling. You’re not a pushover! The Rita I knew, the sister I looked up to, would never give up or give in. Rita was the sister I needed to keep me sane. Be that Rita again, the one who was my rock. I know she’s still there, you just have to fight!”

Rita stared at me in shock for a moment, still clutching her stomach. Then I noticed her eyes begin to harden and a familiar little smirk appeared on her face. “You always knew how to bring me back, didn’t you Ally.” The smirk turned into a little smile. She shakily stood up, me helping her to just to be safe. She glared at King. “You think you can control me? That I’m your little fucking pawn?! NO MORE!!!” Her hands glowed brightly and the ground beneath her began to crack and crumble. “I am Rita Masters! You are no longer my puppet master, bird!” Her entire body glowed. “THERE ARE NO STRINGS ON ME!!”

Rita’s body shot out a massive burst of power, slamming into the bird. He stumbled in flight a little, but righted himself. “Stupid girl!” he shouted with a smirk. “I already stole more than enough power to do what I need to!”

King’s entire body began to glow brightly. His form elongated and began to expand. His wings began to shift and grow, and his legs and talons thickened. We watched in horror as the bird, turned into a humanoid monster! King now had arms and hands, legs and feet, even a human-esque head. His wings were ten times larger than before and extended right out of his back. And his entire form was a deep, dark black-red with tinges of extremely dark green here and there.

“Wh-what the hell am I looking at?” I pondered aloud.

“He changed into a monster,” Rarity gasped. Applejack actually performed a cross symbol over her front in fear. How she knew about that is something to ask at a later date.

“Dear mother almighty,” Celestia and Luna whispered. ...what? Okay, I really need to ask how their faith system works at some point.

King looked over his new form with his glowing eyes, an evil smile forming. He flexed his fingers, forming a fist with his left. “I am reborn,” he said quietly. He turned to all of us. “Now you will all bow down before your new king. For I am...the Gravity King!!”

Rita sneered at King. “Bow before you? As if I would ever bow to a fuckin’ bird-angel thing. What are you supposed to be? A fuckin’ anthro? Heh, ew!”

I smiled, knowing that my Rita was back. “Maybe he wants to be king of the furries.” Both of us laughed out while he growled.

“You will regret insulting your king.” He lifted his hand and I felt something coming towards us.

“Brace yourselves!” I shouted out to everyone. I put hand on Rita’s shoulder as the gravity of the entire area suddenly shifted, increasing drastically. Even as prepared as I was, I was still forced to a crouch from the power. Rita was on her knees, struggling to stand. I turned my head as best I could, and caught glimpses of all of the ponies on the ground, struggling desperately against the force bearing down on them. The dragons were no better, actually being forced into craters due to their extreme size. Except for my dragon and Spike, who were just stuck on the ground.

King laughed again, forcing me to look over. His razor sharp teeth glinted in the light of the moon as he smiled. “This has been over a thousand years in the making. I’ve been ever so patient, being forced out by common beasts! No more will I bow to others. No, they will bow to me or be destroyed like the scum they are!”

I looked at Rita as she looked at me. “Rita, what say you we put this fucker in his place?”

She smirked at me. “Oh most definitely, Ally. But how do we get out of this?”

“With one of my worst powers.”I put out my hand and began to gather power into it. I could already feel the sting of forming it, burning slowly into my hand. A nice little, glowing, red orb formed into my hand. “The Gravity Burst.”

Rita’s eyes widened. “You can do that? How?”

“You never could?” I asked confused.

“No,” she tried to shake her head, but failed. “Even though I could summon nevi, I was never able to use their fire power. How did you do it?”

I looked away for a moment. “That’s a story for another time. Anyways, I’ve learned that it’s not affected by other gravity effects, so it should be able to ignore the Pressure he’s using.”

Rita attempted to nod. “Go for it, Ally. I’ll be right beside you.”

“Kat,” I corrected.


“I go by Kat, nowadays. Allison died a long time ago.”

I felt Rita’s hand tighten on my wrist. “I’m looking right at her. No matter what wrongs you’ve done, I’ll always be your sister; Allison’s sister.”

I smiled thankfully at her. “Here goes something.” I fired the bolt, soaring over the ground at high speeds. King only saw it just as the blast slammed right into his face. He screamed in pain, putting his new hands to his scorched face, releasing us from the Pressure..

That gave us the chance we needed. Rita and I surged forward, our weapons brandished. I stuck at his left, while she struck at his right. It was going to destroy him.

Or so we had hoped. Faster than we could see, he grabbed each of our weapons with his hands, stopping us cold. In our surprise, King twisted, sending us flying slightly. As we both righted in midair, King kneed Rita hard in the gut.

“Rita!” I screamed before he warped in front of me and brought his fist into my face.

“You’re going to pay for disrespecting me, you infidels!” Before I knew what hit me, his elbow crashed down on the back of my head. I plunged into the ground, Rita following after being kicked in the back.

We both groaned as we pulled out of the rubble. “How is he this strong?” asked Rita.

“He must have been siphoning energy off of you from the very beginning.” I looked up as he sneered at us. “He’s more powerful than Raven ever was.”

“But that’s not gonna stop us,” Rita said as she stood up, teleporting her sword into her hand.

I smirked, doing the same, but with my staff. “We’re military girls, ain’t no bird-angel monster gonna stop us!”

“Bring it on, King!!” we shouted together, powering up and launching after him.

“You will both be destroyed!” he roared.

*****Third Person POV*****

As Kat and Rita (or Raven, as she technically still was) fought desperately against the Gravity King, the ponies and dragons watched on in awe. Back and forth those three would go, fighting and clawing at each other.

Kat would swing her staff at King, occasionally bashing him. Raven would stab and slice with her rapier, often getting a nice cut along his body. Unfortunately, King kept getting the upperhand, his punches, claws, and kicks always beating the two shifters away.

“This isn’t good,” Celestia noted. “He’s too powerful for them.” She watched as Kat was thrown against a wall, with King following as he repeatedly punched her in the face. Celestia flinched each time Kat was struck, letting out a breath of relief as Raven slammed into him, allowing Kat to get free.

“We’re dealing with something so much more than familiar now,” Dusty noted.

“How so?” asked Luna.

“Look at King’s aura. Do you notice those small twinges of green in his form?”

“Yes, and it looks very tacky,” Rarity said with a disgusted huff.

“It’s much more than a fashion statement. Green aura is the sign of a rare nevi.”

“A rare nevi?” asked Paco.

“What’s so special about it being rare?” Fire Fang asked.

Garble shuddered remembering them from before. “I’ve seen rare nevi before. They’re extremely powerful and very hard to get rid of.”

Dusty nodded. “Correct. But this is something never seen before. King’s power has evolved. Rita completely severed her tie to her familiar, and as such he has reverted into his natural form.”

“Natural form?” Applejack parroted. “What d’yall mean his ‘natural form’?”

“He’s become a nevi. That’s what we technically are, but by being attached to a shifter, we are much tamer and far more in control of ourselves. But now that the tie has been severed, his power has skyrocketed. He’s become a boss nevi, but those twinges of green mean that he has become something never to have been existed before: a rare boss.”

“That’s bad, right?”

Dusty nodded. “Yes, Spike, very bad. Rare nevi are roughly ten times as strong as their normal counterparts, while boss nevi are roughly about five times as difficult compared to a normal nevi. Which roughly translates as,” Raven suddenly shot past them, blasted into the ground directly behind Paco. “About fifty times more powerful than your typical nevi. Merge that with stolen gravity powers...and who knows how powerful that monster has become.”

Kat let out a scream, causing them all to look at her and gasp in fear. King had Kat in his energy, choking the life out of her.

Rainbow shook with anger at seeing her father’s savior in such a position. Then she couldn’t hold it anymore. Before anyone could stop her, Rainbow Dash soared faster than ever towards the nevi monster. “Let go of my friend you bucking creep!” she yelled before going into a sonic rainboom that slammed into King.

King yelped in surprise, letting Kat go. The rainboom blasted her back a ways, but she pulled out of her tumble before crashing. “What are you doing, Dash?!” she screamed out.

“The same thing we all shoulda done!” Applejack shouted as she raced off to where King was falling. He righted himself just before he hit the ground, only to get bucked in the face by the farm mare. “Take that, ya damn varmit!”

Rarity lit her horn, causing several nearby rocks to levitate off the ground. “This has been a long time coming, you dirty ruffian!” The rocks shot forward with extreme speed, colliding against King’s body, making him flinch.

“This for making my friends tear themselves apart, you big meanie!” Pinkie yelled out before firing her party cannon, which actually fired a cannonball that exploded in King’s face. They all looked at her in shock. “What? It’s still a cannon, sillies!”

They all shrugged. “It’s Pinkie Pie, don’t question it.”

King pulled himself out of the crater in the wall, groaining slightly, only to open his eyes at seeing Celestia and Luna in front of him.

“This is for wrecking our family!” They bucked him right through the wall, flying into the adjacent room.

All of the dragons them converged on the hole in the wall. As one, they let loose a torrent flames, turning the closed room into a massive, fiery oven. Yet, even as they finished, King pulled himself from the hole.

“I...will inferior beings!!” he roared before blasting the dragons with a simple push.

Twilight watched each of her friends attack the monster with righteous fury, but she just couldn’t. Why? Why couldn’t she?

Because it’s wrong, she told herself. I’m not a violent pony. I’ve never hurt anypony with my magic before. But...King is a true villain. There’s no redemption, no fool-proof plan to stop him. And because of him, Rita became Raven. Who destroyed Kat’s life. Which led her to hurt Celestia. And that led to… Twilight finally connected the dots that she needed to. It was because of King that her friends tore themselves apart and because of him they would never be whole again.

She felt her anger boil as she increased the magic flow to her horn. Twilight stared down King with deadly fury. Her horn brightened to frightful proportions and her eyes turned white. King took notice of this, his eyes actually going wide along with everyone else. “This for Fluttershy, you son of a bitch!!” Twilight fired a massive burst of magic at the nevi, his form disappearing in the light.

When it cleared, the remains of the wall were completely gone, as well as the next several rooms down. In the middle of the path of destruction, laid King, groaning from the pain. Everyone moved to surround him, Kat and Rita on either side of him.

“You’ve lost bird,” Kat said emotionlessly.

“You can’t win now,” Rita added.

King glared at both of them and at the group around him. “I. Never. Lose,” he growled at them as his body began to glow. Kat and Rita blinked, but that quick moment of hesitation was all King needed. He shouted in anger as a wave of gravity energy burst from his body, sending everyone flying and digging a massive crater into the floor.

Kat groaned in pain as she pulled out of the rock and rubble. She looked around, noticing everyone else had been knocked out cold from the blast. King stood in the middle of it all, floating above the gigantic crater. She tried to stand, but fell to her knees, falling slightly into the crater due to exhaustion. King took notice of her as he floated down to the bottom of the crater

“Now who has lost, Gravity Queen?” he questioned snarkily. Kat glared at him with a slight growl. He lifted a hand towards her with an evil smirk. “You’re time has come, Shifter.”

“Not today!”

Kat and King both were surprised by the outburst, but even more so as Rita fell on top of King’s back. She planted her feet in the ground, instantly locking them there with her power as King struggled against her grip.

“You stupid girl! Let go of me!”

“Not a chance, bastard!” She looked at Kat. “Now Ally! Do it!”

Kat nodded, lifting her hand towards King. “Get out of the way, Rita!”

Rita’s face suddenly softened as she held on tight. “If I let go, he’ll escape. You have to Extinguish us both.

“WHAT?!” Kat and King shouted.

“Are you insane!” Kat screamed. “I can’t kill you like that!”

“You have to, Ally! We can’t let this monster win!”

“There has to be another way!” Tears started to roll down Kat’s face as she kept trying to come up with someway to save Rita yet still destroy King, continually failing to come up with one.

Tears were present on Rita’s face as well. “It’s better this way, Ally. Think about it, no one is going to believe I was controlled by a fuckin’ bird. The ponies will call for blood, just like they did for you and the Elements. Either way, I’m dead. At least this way, I can say I died for something.” She sniffed. “I can’t live with the things I’ve done to you, my dear sister. Please, give me peace.”

“I can’t!!” Kat shouted as she bawled. “I can’t kill you! I just can’t, dammit!!”

“You have to! Your big sister orders you to!” Her face softened one more time. “Be the girl I know you are. A protector, a savior, be the greatest hero there ever was! I know you can!”

Kat’s eyes were red from her tears as she struggled to lift her hand back up.

“That’s it,” Rita whispered as Kat’s hand began to glow. “Be the hero, Kat. Just like our fathers. Be the hero I know you always were.” Rita felt the pull on her body, grunting as the pain began to escalate to excruciating levels. Yet still she remained, keeping King right where he was.

Kat watched as her power began to surround the calm Rita and the struggling King. They both looked to be in extreme pain, but still Rita held on. Tears continued to fall as Kat began to absorb the wisps off of the two, their bodies slowly starting to fade.

“I’M SORRY RITA!!” Kat yelled through her tears. Kat saw Rita smile, her teeth showing. The last time she would ever see that smile.

“We’ll see each other again, Kat!” she yelled. “I’ll be waiting for you on the other side. Just don’t show up too soon!”

Kat sniffled as her power increased the pull. “RITA!!” she screamed as Extinguish blasted right through King and Rita. The final wisps drained from them as their bodies burst apart into trillions upon trillions of particles that disappeared into the surface below.

She stared at that spot for what felt like hours, tears silently falling down her face. Kat felt a wing drape across her back, making her look up to see a crestfallen Celestia looking back at her. Kat’s sobs picked up anew as she threw herself at Celestia, crying and wailing into the mare’s fur. Dusty teleported by her side, cuddling up to his dear kitten in her time of need. Celestia just kept the girl close, being the comfort she so desperately needed as the others gathered along the crater’s ring in respectful silence.

Gravity of the Situation

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*****Third Person POV*****

A few days past since the death of the Gravity King and the Gravity Master. The ponies returned to Canterlot after Princess Celestia and Princess Luna proclaimed their return to the throne. Of course, they were aghast at the horrific state the city was in.

Thankfully, Pacolytese was able to convince the Dragon Emperor to lend assistance in rebuilding all that the gravity shifters had destroyed. Along with Canterlot, repairs sped up in the other cities that Kat and the nevi had trashed.

It was on this day, that seven ponies, a dragon, a star-coated cat, and a human gathered around a single slab of stone. This slab was placed delicately into the ground underneath on a shady tree at the peak of a meadowy hill just outside of Ponyville. Upon the stone, simple words were written that carried so much weight:

In memory of Fluttershy

Friend, Granddaughter, and Carer of all Living Things

May she be long remembered

Celestia looked upon the grave faces of those around her with deep regret and sadness. She still blamed herself for being unable to stop Raven from destroying Fluttershy, and seeing how much it had affected her dear student and her friends hurt deep. Slowly, she looked upon Kat, standing directly in front of the stone with her eyes fixated solely upon it.

Kat’s face was empty, having cried constantly over several days over her sister’s death. Celestia and Dusty had done what they could to comfort her, but it only slightly lessened her grief. Now that they were laying Fluttershy to rest, Kat seemed emotionless compared to before.

“Is anypony going to say some words?” asked Twilight solemnly as she looked upon her friend’s grave.

“I will,” Dusty said stepping forward from his spot by Kat’s leg. She looked down at her familiar with a glint of suspicion before returning to looking upon the stone. Dusty cleared his throat as he sat down in front of the grave. “Fluttershy, I knew you for only a short time. Too short, I suppose. But in that short time, I saw something grand within you. Single handedly, or hoofedly in your case I suppose, you changed around Kat Shifter. Something that not even after having been with her for nearly three hundred years was I able to perform. You brought her comfort, you brought her joy, happiness to an extent I had never seen in my kitten. And for that, I thank you. From the bottom of my heart, I am truly grateful to you.”

Dusty bowed his head in silence as well as everyone else.

“And as such, I wish to show you my gratitude,” Dusty continued, surprising all but his mistress. He turned and looked at Kat. “You know of what I mean, do you not?”

All the ponies looked to Kat. After a moment, she let out a small sigh and unfolded her arms. “Ever since I Extinguished Rita and King, I’ve learned of several different techniques that I never knew of. But you knew, didn’t you?”

Dusty nodded hesitantly. “I only knew of its existence, not of how to perform it. If I had, believe me kitten, I would have told you in a heartbeat.”

“Uh, what are you both talking about?” asked Spike. The others all nodded, equally confused.

“There is a cure, a cure for the Extinguish technique,” Kat said monotonically. They all gasped and began to smile.

“So, ya can bring back Fluttershy? Could it be true?”

“Yes,” Dusty nodded. “It can be done. However...there is a price to pay for it.”

“What kind of price?” Rainbow asked excitedly. “Whatever it is, we’ll pay it!”

Dusty looked back at Kat with a nod. She sighed again. “Restore. It’s called Restore. It allows me to reform a being who was Extinguished--”




“BUT!” Kat shouted over the cheers of joy. “Not only does it take an extreme amount of power to be done, it also needs something else: a sacrifice.”

The ponies gulped. “A-a sacrifice, darling? As in….”

“A life for a life,” Dusty summed up. “For Restore to bring back one destroyed by Extinguish, a life needs to be given in the process.”

“But then that means,” Luna said before going silent, with understanding coming to her only a moment later. “Thou wishes to give up thine own life for dear Fluttershy’s?!”

The others gasped, and again after Dusty silently nodded.

“B-but you can’t just do that!” Spike shouted. The others voiced their own disapproval on his plan, but he just looked at Kat. She was just standing there in silence as she looked back to Dusty.

“Well, Kat?” he asked, looking at her. “What will you do?”

Kat was silent for a moment. “Just answer me this: why? Why would you do this?”

Dusty sighed. “This has been a long time coming. I’ve been by your side for so, so many years now, Kitten. I’ve watched as you’ve grown into the woman you are today. From that weak, traumatized girl who was gifted with incredible power, to the queen who stands before me. You may still see yourself as nothing, save for a military general who committed murder, but I see a true queen, a Gravity Queen. You don’t need a dirty, old cat keeping you safe anymore.” He looked over at Twilight, Rarity, Applejack, Pinkie, Rainbow, Celestia, Luna, and Spike. Then he turned back to her. “You have great friends by your side now. They are all you need.”

Kat sighed, shaking her head. “You stupid little cat.” She got down on her knees and hugged Dusty close. “I will always need you.”

Dusty hugged back, purring warmly. “Maybe, but you need Fluttershy even more. The world needs Fluttershy so the Elements can work. I know it will be hard, but it’s for the best.” He pulled away slightly, looking at her with caring eyes. “It’s time you let go of your past and move on to a better future.”

Kat put Dusty down, looking at him with slight tears in her eyes. “Do you really have to go?”

Dusty nodded solemnly. “I do. It’s time for you to grow up, to be the hero I know you’ve always been.”

Kat gave Dusty a small kiss on the top of his head, stepping back slightly. Kat’s hands began to glow as they stretched towards Dusty. He held his head high as her power began to surround him. The ponies and Spike just watched on with bowed heads, some tearing up slightly at losing yet another friend.

Wisps began to pour off of Dusty, orbiting around him. He opened his eyes and looked at Kat. “This is farewell, my kitten. Remember, I will always love you. And always be with you in your heart, and in your memories.”

“I know you will, Dusty,” she said with a smile despite the tears beginning to fall down her face. “But so you know,” she started, making Dusty cock his head a little, “You were the best father a girl could have.”

Dusty’s eyes widened, a couple tears forming in his eyes. He bowed his head as his body shuddered from Restore as well as his own emotions. “Thank you, kitten. Thank you.”

“I love you, Dusty. I’ll miss you.”

“And I you, Allison. Goodbye.”

Those were Dusty’s final words as his form burst into particles. But instead of falling to the ground, they began to get mixed in with the wisps. Against her tears, Kat searched inward for the being that was absorbed. She found them deep within the energy she absorbed from Rita and King and began to focus them into the wisps.

Slowly, they started to wrap around each other, forming the basic shape of a pony. With a final push, Kat poured as much power as she could into the form. A bright flash of light erupted from the body, blinding them all.

When they looked again, a butter-coated pegasus with a long, pink mane and tail laid upon the ground. Everyone was quiet as the mare began to stir awake. Her eyes fluttered open, slowly lifting her head up and looking around at all the creatures around her.

“Wh-where am I?” she asked in a soft-spoken voice.

Instantly, cheers and shouts of joy erupted from them all, her five friends hugging her tightly.

“Eep!” Fluttershy yelped from the outburst. “Um...what’s going on? Last I remember...I died.”

Kat got down on one knee in front of her, just the sight of her grandmother making Fluttershy smile happily. “There’s a lot we need to catch up on, Flutters.” Kat pulled the mare into a comforting hug. “Just know, I’m overjoyed to have you back with me.”

Fluttershy was surprised a little, but hugged her right back. “I missed you, too, grandmother.”

*****Fluttershy’s POV*****

It’s been a few months since grandmother brought me back to life. Of course, after I heard what had happened and how I was brought back, I cried for a few days. I was afraid that Kat would come to hate me for taking Dusty away from her. But she never did. In fact, she wanted to spend more and more time with me.

From watering my plants, to feeding my animals, and even just going shopping with me. She was always juggling her time with me with her duty to clean up her mess in Canterlot and the other cities. Even with the dragons helping, there was still a lot to be done. I felt happy just that she would spend time with me.

Grandmother and I were walking through Canterlot, helping out with repairs. Most of the city had been restored, thankfully, but homes and businesses still needed help. I noticed that as we were walking by, several ponies were shooting some very nasty glares in Kat’s direction. I looked up at her with a little worry, but she wasn’t paying them any mind, just looking forward as we walked with a tiny smile.

That made me smile a little, knowing that their opinions of her were not affecting her. That was good, I was afraid that the ponies’ hate for her would make her sulky and depressed again. Many were still very angry with her for her actions over the past year. I knew they had a right to be, but Kat did still save them all from a much worse fate than property damage.

I felt a sudden pull on my wing and was yanked off my hooves. I was forced violently against a cold, damp wall. I squeaked as I opened my eyes, seeing a very angry unicorn glaring back at me. “Wh-what do you want?” I barely managed to say, I was so frightened.

She growled at me. “I want you to die, you damned traitor! Bullshit that you were never killed by the Master. I was there! I saw you die!” She held up a knife in her magic, holding it against my neck. “Time to finish the jo--”

In a second, the mare was ripped away from me and thrown against the far wall.I coughed a little, standing back on my hooves. I looked over and gasped at what I saw. Kat had the pony lifted high up against the wall, flailing her hooves and looking like she was choking. Kat’s hand was coated in energy and I saw that she wasn’t even holding the pony, just using her energy.

“St-stop,” the unicorn pleaded, tears in her eyes. “I… I don’t...wanna...die!”

I glanced over and saw that Kat’s eyes were colder than ice. “I should kill you,” she said calmly, which sent chills down my spine. “I used to have so much mercy a long time ago. But you, ponies like you ripped that from my soul. I’ve protected your kind for longer than you will ever live. I lost good friends on those bloody fields. I lost my family through much terrible means. Yet you, you little piece of shit, want to take away my only remaining family.”

The mare cowered as she choked. “I-I-I’m sorry! I...’m sorry!”

I saw Kat’s grip beginning to tighten. “I should just Extinguish and be done with it. There’s nothing to stop me from killing you. From killing all of you who stand against me.” She dropped her hand and the mare fell to the ground, cowering and rubbing her reddening neck. “But I won’t give you the satisfaction. I won’t be the monster you all love to believe I am. I will defend the ponies to the last of my breath not because I feel I owe you anything. Not because I see the ponies as superior. No, it’s simply because I have made promises to others as well as one simple fact.” She leaned into the pony’s face, glaring into her eyes. “Because I am a good person.” She leaned back. “Whether you believe that or not.”

The mare cowered even more as grandmother turned and walked past me. “Let’s go, Flutters. Celestia and Luna want to see us before dark.”

“Uh… right.” I took one last look at the practically traumatized unicorn before following her towards Canterlot Castle. I should have been surprised by how Kat acted back there. I knew in my heart it was wrong, but… this wasn’t the first time something like this had happened.

Over the past months, she was becoming more and more hostile to the hateful sort of ponies. It was very frightening the first time it happened. We were just out shopping for a dessert Angel wanted and a pony started calling Kat out as a monster and a devil. She slammed him against a building and threatened to Extinguish him too.

I kept seeing the signs that grandmother was holding back her anger. I knew that meant eventually she was going to explode on the nearest thing. I both hoped and feared that would be me. I hoped for it so I could help her get over these feelings, but feared it because nopony likes having their grandmother yell angrily at them. Leaves a pit in your stomach.

I was in thought for so long, I never even realized we had reached our destination and had already set ourselves at a large round table. All of my friends were there along with the Princesses. Even Shining Armor and Princess Cadance had come down from the Crystal Empire. I was still wondering though, why was this meeting called?

Princess Celestia stood from her seat. Her horn still wasn’t anywhere near it’s previous length, but it had grown back to about the size of a normal unicorn horn. It looked a little silly on her, to be honest. “Thank you all for coming here today. I know it takes away from all of your busy schedules, but I must thank you all for your assistance in the reconstruction efforts. It has been of great help. But now, we face a trying problem amongst the populace.”

“What’s the problem, Princess?” Twilight asked, looking concerned. She hadn’t left Princess Celestia’s side in all of these months, being her personal secretary.

Princess Luna answered. “We, err, I hate to say it, but the problem is… Kat.” That got the table muttering amongst themselves.

“What do you mean Kat’s the problem?!” Rainbow Dash burst out. “She’s the bucking hero who saved us all!”

“Pardoning Rainbow’s language, I must incline to agree,” Rarity added. “She lost so much, yet she still saved the day. We’re only alive because of her.”

Princess Celestia nodded. “I know this. We all know this, but the ponies are less inclined to agree. They were not there to witness the Battle for Equestria. The only Kat they know is the Gravity Queen that destroyed their homes and livelihoods. They see her as a threat to their very wellbeing.”

“Ah’m with Dash,” Applejack shouted. “That’s their problem that they need to work out. We just need to show ‘em the real Kat. The one who, while a little messed up in the noggin (no offense), is a hero of Equestria.”

“That could be difficult,” Princess Cadance admitted. “All of you were condemned as traitors of the crown. Even if it was a simple ploy by Raven, it’s ingrained into the citizens. They see you as doing anything to make Kat look better as either simple mind-control or treason.”

Several of us recoiled at the mention of treason. “B-but it’s not traitorous!” I argued. “It’s the truth!”

“That may be,” Celestia admitted. “But our citizens would not be so easily convinced. Gravity shifters have changed them, and not for the better. They are bitter and angry; they require something to blame. With Kat being the only surviving shifter, all the blame falls upon her. Whether it’s right or wrong.”

We were all silent after that. I hate to admit it, but in their position I would probably feel the same. How could we possibly try to convince them otherwise? There had to be a way.

“I’ve made my decision,” Kat said suddenly, shocking us out of our gloom.

“Grandmother?” I asked to myself.

“Oh?” Princess Celestia asked with a raised eyebrow. “And what decision is that?”

Grandmother sighed and looked right at her. “I’m leaving.”

In an instant, we were gobsmacked. “L-leaving?” I whimpered.

“Apologies dear, but what do you mean, ‘leaving’?”

Kat took in a breath before exhaling it out. “I think Equestria, and the world, needs to rebuild without the interference of the Displaced. I’ve caused so much damage and the longer I stay, the more I’m going to cause.” She held up a hand just as we were about to retort. “I am not saying that due to self-hatred. I’m saying that because the Displaced are dangerous. I’m dangerous. I just feel the world would be better off if I leave, if only for a while.”

There was a still silence around the table for a few moments, all of us trying to digest the message. Eventually, Princess Celestia spoke up. “Where will you go?” She sounded very sad.

Kat lifted up a gold coin and began to flip it. “Another Displaced has offered me a temporary home on his world. I figure it will be a good stepping stone to completing Gilgamesh’s mission.”

“Yer still goin’ through with that?” AJ asked.

“I probably should. Gilgamesh has always had his reasons for doing things. Might as well humor his just this once.”

“B-But… but I’ll miss you,” I cried, hugging my grandmother tightly around her waist. I felt her wrap her arms around me, rubbing my back soothingly.

“And I’ll miss you too, very much so. But, this world needs to return to it’s harmonic state. And I feel that would happen better and faster if I were no longer in the equation. I just have this gut feeling it’s what I should do.”

I sniffled a little, trying to be strong. “B-but what are we supposed to do without you?”

She smiled sweetly. “Be strong. Because I know you are. I’ve seen your strength and the strength of everypony in this room. You don’t need me to hold your hooves as you walk through life.”

“Of course not,” I admitted. “But it’s nice to have you by our side.”

She leaned in and gently kissed my forehead. “I know. But I won’t be gone forever. Just enough time for the other ponies to calm down on their hatred and disharmony. Then I’ll be back before you know it.”

“But how will you know?” asked Twilight. “Do you plan to stay in contact? Can you even stay in contact?”

“I don’t know,” Kat shrugged with a smile. “I just know I will. Just trust me for once, Twilight Sparkle. Trust in me.”

“I trust you,” I said. Even though I would miss her, Kat did need to live her own life too. Perhaps, when she come back, because I knew she would, she’d be better than ever. A mare could hope at least.

“Ah suppose Ah do too.”

“I’ll always support my friends!”

“I have faith in you, darling.”

“Yepper deppers!”

Twilight looked around the table for a minute before sighing and slouching. “... Alright, I guess I could trust you. Just this once.” She pointed a hoof at Kat. “Don’t get used to this, missy.”

We all chuckled, Kat included. “No promises, Twily.” Twilight pouted at being called such a childish nickname by her.

“Are you certain this is the best, Kat?” Princess Luna asked.

Kat nodded. “I am. I know it’s sudden, but when I come back, I’ll be ready to take on my life with everypony. I promise it.”

“Pinkie Promise it?” Pinkie asked with a very questioning look. Kat chuckled and proceeded through the motions of a Pinkie Promise. Pinkie smiled and nodded. “Then you’re clear for take off!”

“Thanks for that, Pinkie,” Kat laughed. “But, I do need to speak with the Princesses for a moment in private. Could you girls give us a few moments?”

We all nodded and proceeded to get up from the table. I stopped and looked back, rolling my eyes with a giggle. “That means you too, Twilight.”

“B-b-b-but!” Twilight looked at the royalty around her who nodded. She huffed and pouted as she too rose from the table. “So not fair.”

“Come on, girls!” Pinkie beamed. “Let’s go to the kitchen! I’ll make some cupcakes and milkshakes!”

“Does anypone else feel like that’s a reference to somethin’ sinister?” We all shook out heads, ‘no’. “Huh, must just be me. Ah call the one with the rainbow swirls!”

“Why did a chill go down my spine?” Rainbow asked.

I giggled, following my friends and worrying about the days to come.

*****Kat’s POV*****

As the doors closed behind my friends and granddaughter, I turned to Celestia, Luna, Cadance, and Shining Armor. “I have something for you.” I pulled out a manilla folder from my jacket and passed it to the solar diarch.

She took it in her renewed magic (still hard not to laugh at how tiny her horn is) and read over it. Her eyes had widened by the time she passed it to Luna. “You cannot be serious, Kat. There must be another way.”

I shook my head. “I trust Auric with my life. If he says it will work, then I’m inclined to believe him. I know it may seem drastic, but I truly believe it could work.”

Luna passed the folder to Shining and Cadance. “But it’s so risky. Perhaps too much risk for the reward.”

“The reward is having a true god on your side,” I countered. “His influence could be important someday. I just have this feeling.”

Cadance put the folder down, giving off a thousand yard stare. “It’s… it’s just too much to take. Discord’s our only hope for protecting this world from Displaced?!”

I nodded. “I know it’s a long shot, trust me I do. But if put in the care of the right pony, I know he could be changed for the better.”

“But who?” asked Celestia. “What pony could possibly reform the lord of chaos and disharmony?”

“Fluttershy.” They all looked at me like I was crazy. “I know it’s hard to believe. But she’s the perfect choice for this. Hell, she reformed me! She may not know it, but without her, I don’t think I ever could have fully given up on killing you both. So… yeah. She’s the reason I let you live.”

“Let us live?” Luna parroted. “Oh, so you believe you could truly take me on, Shifter?”

“Anywhere and anytime, Luna,” I said with a smirk. “I’ll whoop your ass up and down the block.”

Luna stood tall. “Challenge accepted! Upon your return to Equestria, we shall have a duel that will be remember for centuries to come!”

I chuckled a little. “I can agree to that.” I stood from my seat. “I should be going. I need to pack for my trip. I hope you’ll consider my idea, though.”

Celestia nodded. “I shall. The Displaced are a legitimate threat and we intended to take it as such.”

I nodded and opened a portal. “I’ll meet you at Fluttershy’s cottage in an hour. Tell the girls for me. Please and thank you.” I stepped through the portal after they agreed and reappeared in my room at the Castle of the Two Sisters.

I moved over to my dresser and began to rifle through my light belongings. I didn’t have much in the way of possessions, but I felt I should take what I could. Who knew how long I was going to be gone?

I packed up some of the more...ahem, personal items into a the portal, stowing it away. I personally loved being able to do that. The portals just made it so easy to hold anything and everything. It was also easier to open them now. It took practically no power to do so. I knew the reason for it, too: Raven and King. Both of them were powerful shifters. Extinguish has gifted those abilities and powers they had. It was because of them I knew about Restore, how my powers were so much easier to use now, and how much stronger I was.

At this level, I could easily level the planet. At this level, I knew I was too strong for this world. I was going to need to learn control over these powers. I may not be showing it, but there’s just so much that it’s getting hard to contain. As a wise alien once said: “Control, control! You must learn control!”

I packed away the dresses and spare clothes Rarity made for me in my new wardrobe dimension and made my way to the bedside table. Why here? I opened up the top drawer and pulled out my little book. I could still feel all of the Void energy within. So many worlds, so many Displaced.

Speaking of which…

Yep. Still there. Still watching, waiting in the shadows.’s time to fix that.

I located his exact position with my Gravity Sense and yanked. It came crashing through the wall and right into my grip. I love how these powers let me steal from Star Wars. Makes me feel like Vader. Oh don’t give me that, you know you wanted to be him at least once in your lives. I held it high above me, its metallic skin gleaming in the light of the setting sun.

“I knew you were watching,” I told the Rahkshi. “I knew you’ve were there, just watching me. Your ‘father’ wanted you to gage how much of a threat to him I was, didn’t he?” It only flailed as I continued to choke it. “Well, then you tell him this: I don’t care who he is, I don’t care how strong he thinks he is, or what he has done. That doesn’t matter to me. But, if he ever dares to harm my world, my family and friends, then I will hunt him down and destroy him.” I crushed even more, getting a nice little squeal for my efforts. “Tell Teridax, that if he fucks with me, then he will be destroyed.”

I dropped it down to the ground and moved back to my book. As it gasped out for breath, I quickly took Makuta Teridax’s summon totem out of my personal void, juggling the stone in my grasp. I moved over to the Rahkshi, forced its mouth open, and jammed it in. “And he can take back his curse of a totem. Now get the fuck off my planet.” I snapped my fingers, and the metal beast fell through a portal back to his cursed father.

And then… I gulped. I just then realized that I probably ticked off Teridax...bad. I shoved the book into my jacket, finishing my packing. “Ooh, I hope that doesn't came back to bite me in the ass.”

I teleported to Flutter’s cottage, finding Celestia, Luna, the Mane Six, Spike, Paco, and Garble. “Where are TK and Tiny?” I asked Garble.

“They wanted to come, but the Emperor had an mission for them.”

“The Emperor gave them a mission?”

“Yeah, after what we did in Canterlot, all of us have been getting a lot of respect. That’s what happens when we save a goddess, ya know?” He rubbed the back of his head, a little embarrassed.

I made it even worse by giving him a small kiss on the cheek. He stared at me in shock as I smiled. “And I thank you for doing that. Paco--”


I rolled my eyes. “Your grandfather told me how insistent you were on saving me. Thank you. I greatly appreciate it.”

He laughed nervously. “A-anytime. What are friends for after all?”

I moved over to Paco and Spike, who was sitting on the elder’s shoulder. “You keep an eye on him, got it? He means a lot to me.”

“What do you take me for?” Paco said, sounding offended. “I would never harm a youngling, let alone my new apprentice.”

“I was talking to Spike.” Everyone laughed as Paco gaped like a fish before giving me a deadpan.

“Always the jokes, Shifter.” We hugged it out, promising to see each other when I returned.

It was followed by a rushing hug from my pony friends, each of them crying over my leaving. I gave them all a big hug, giving Fluttershy a much greater one.

Luna and I said our goodbyes next. She expertly reminding that I owed her a proper duel the next time around.

And finally, I was saying goodbye to Celestia. We hugged, the longest hug out of them all. There were no words, just that. It was all we needed.

I moved off in front of all of them, smiling sadly. “There are so many words I could say to you all. So many things I wish I had said back then, and so few I have to say now. Over the years, you've all been there for me in one form or another. From giving me purpose and a home,” I indicated Luna and Celestia, “to giving me friendship and love,” I motioned at the ponies and dragons before looking at Fluttershy, “to giving me family. I couldn't ask for better friends. Hell, I wouldn't want any better. You all have a special place in my heart, and no matter what happens out there, I will always remember you.”

“Just come back soon!” Pinkie shouted. “That way, I can throw you a ‘Welcome Back Forever’ party!”

I smiled at her, a tear lining my eye. “Sure thing Pinkie. I wouldn't miss it for the world.” I waved one last time before turning and opening a portal.

“You will come back, right?”

I turned my head, seeing Celestia had stepped forward a little worry and sadness in her eyes. I smiled at her widely. “Of course I will. A child always returns to their mother every now and then.” Before she could responds, I jumped into the portal. “See y’all later. I love ya!”

Little did I know, Celestia was so stunned that she instantly teleported away after I jumped through the portal. When she reappeared, she was standing in her memory vault deep in Canterlot Castle. There she stood in front of a large plaque, tears of joy running down her cheek as she stared at a sheet of paper in the plaque. A paper with both of our signatures on it.

*****Deep Void Space*****

You wanna know something?

Flying through the Void is painfully brain numbing. You can’t see anything in front of you, you can’t really move, and it’s just so boring!

Now why can’t something just happ--

Lesson learned kids: Never. Tempt. The Universes.

I don’t know what I hit, all I know is that it hurt. A lot!

I groaned aloud, sitting up. Which was the first indication that I actually was on the floor of something.


I opened my eyes, seeing three ponies standing off a ways from me. One was an earth pony with a dark brown mane and a light brown coat with an hourglass cutie mark. The other was a grey pegasus with blonde hair and bubbles on her flank. I was so tempted to make a joke, but at the moment I wasn't too sure I should. The final was a ginger unicorn (I kid you not), with two cogs being his mark.

“How did she get in?” asked the pegasus, a light, cheery voice. “I thought that was impossible.”

“What?” I asked.

“Well, she talks,” the unicorn said with a monotone voice. He seems annoying already.

“What?” Of course I talk, why wouldn't I talk?

“How did you get in here?!” the earth pony asked, his voice hysterical, yet curious.

“Maybe the poor mare’s lost,” the pegasus suggested.

Mare? I rubbed my head with my hooves… wait, why did I have hooves?! I looked down where my hands should be and saw golden coated hooves instead.

“WHAT?!” I looked back at the ponies and did the only logical thing I could… I screamed.


View Online

Dear Diary,

Well, today’s the day. The girls and I are going to the Mansion to honor grandmother. I can’t believe it’s been fifty years since she left. It’s still difficult looking back on everything that happened. I wonder if she misses us?

Oh, who am I kidding? Of course she does! She wouldn’t be her if she didn’t.

I know I miss her. I miss her very much.

Even though it’s pretty childish, I still have my Kitty doll. It looks almost like her, if she was about the size of a stuffed animal anyway. It’s one of the very first ones that Princess Celestia put into production. When I heard about them, I just knew I needed to get one. I think it had the intended effect. I mean, who could be scared of such a plushy little toy?

Rainbow Dash is still doing fine. She’s slowing down in her old age, but I think she’s still got some odd years left in the Wonderbolts before retiring for good. She’s only seventy after all, still plenty of good years left. I spoke with Applejack yesterday, too. She said Big Macintosh ended up breaking his hip in the field; the poor dear. He’s getting up there in age, but AJ says he’s not gonna give in to death so easily.

“If Granny Smith was able to make it two hundred, then Big Mac’s gonna be just fine.”

That’s what she told me anyway. It still amazes me how much things have changed over the years. Even Pinkie’s not as energetic as she used to be. But yet, I still feel the same. It took me a long time to find out what being given Dusty’s life meant. You remember that day, right? I was so frantic about the possibility of immortality I almost wore a hole through your pages.

I’m sorry about that, by the way.

Thankfully, Twilight was able to calm me down. She’s been a good friend over the years, especially after we made up from the Year of the Shifters. We’ve been close ever since and even closer due to her own immortality. Of course, we don’t get to see her all that often anymore, being abroad and spreading the magic of friendship as her princess duties require. I still make sure to visit the castle whenever she’s back in town. Rarity and Spike always make sure that place is spotless.

“Hey Fluttershy!”

“Yipe!” the butter-yellow mare shrieked from the surprising voice. Looking up from her diary, she saw the form of a tall, slender, purple dragon standing at her window. “Oh, Spike. You scared me.”

“Sorry about that,” he apologized while rubbing his neck, embarrassed. “I just came by to tell you that we’re heading off for the Mansion in a few minutes. You still coming?”

“Oh yes!” Fluttershy nodded with a smile. “Just let me finish with this and I’ll be right there. I wouldn’t miss it for the world!”

“Great! I’ll go tell Twilight and the others!” the teenage dragon took off running, leaving her property in several large bounds.

Fluttershy smiled as she watched her friend go. She turned back to her diary and continued.

Spike looks so different from how he used to be. He went from that chubby, little dragon to the tall, sleek dragon we know now. Pacolytese (I still call him ‘Paco’. He hates it, but it’s just so much fun to see him so flustered. Does that make me a bad pony?) did wonders for our little dragon over the years. Celestia even assigned him as an ambassador between dragon and pony-kind. Though things didn’t work out with Rarity like he had hoped, they’ve stayed good friends. I’ve even heard through a certain princess that he has his eyes on a lovely dragoness back in the Dragon Lands. Teehee, he gets so flustered talking about her.

Oh and Rarity just hit big… again. Her designs are now even spreading out to Zebraica. Ever since the tribes united thirty years ago, the nation has been booming. Equestria and the Crystal Empire have been big supporters of the growing nation and more and more Zebras can be found in around the country. Remember my visit there? Rarity and I had so much fun. Zecora took us to her old tribe and we got to meet her family. They were lovely. But I’m straying again. Rarity’s fortune has really expanded because her new contracts. If it wasn’t for her assitant, Coco, managing most of her company, I don’t think she’d be able to put up with all the work.

I need to go. My friends are probably waiting on me.

With love,


Fluttershy closed her diary and replaced it in the night table by her bed. As she headed down the stairs, she stopped to give her pet bunny, Angel V, a loving nuzzle. “Momma’s going out for a while. You’ll watch the other animals for me, won’t you?” Angel gave her a military-style salute, even putting on his ancestor’s old play helmet. Fluttershy couldn’t help but giggle at his actions.

Before heading to the door, she reached out to the bookshelf nearby and grabbed a peculiar looking doll. It was relatively small and plush, having blonde fabric hair, and wearing a one piece black and gold outfit. The doll had a one line of string for a smile and dark red beads for the two eyes. Fluttershy put her kitty doll in her saddle bag, smiling happily as if her grandmother were going with her.

She locked up and took flight, landing near her friends at the entrance to the Everfree forest. “Hi girls,” she said cheerily.

“Hey Fluttershy,” Twilight greeted with a smile. “Are you ready to go to the Mansion?”

Fluttershy nodded, pulling out her kitty. “Yep. Got my kitty, too.” Each of the ponies and an embarrassed Spike pulled out their own. “I knew I wouldn’t be the only one.” They all shared a laugh, putting away the dolls as they started their trek.

“I certainly hope there won’t be a long line today. It doesn’t matter how much this road has changed over the years, the Everfree Forest is still icky,” Rarity complained she trotted at her own pace.

“Little mud ain’t gonna hurt ya, sugarcube,” Applejack laughed heartily, almost going into a coughing fit.

“Are you okay, Applejack?”

“Ah’m alright, Shy,” the mare waved off. “Just the effects of age is all. Gotta watch mahself a little more.”

“You’re just becoming a slowpoke,” Rainbow snarked as she hovered above them.

“Care to repeat that?” Applejack glared dangerously at Rainbow.

“You’re. Slowing. Down,” Rainbow said, emphasizing each word.

“Why don’t y’all come down here and Ah’ll show you how ‘slow’ Ah’ve gotten, ya old bat!”

“Make me, old timer!”

The two glared at each other for a moment before snickering. The others all rolled their eyes, knowing those two would go at it soon enough. Pinkie giggled at the happiness.

“I like it that my friends haven’t changed over the years,” she said happily. “We’re BFF Double A’s!” They all looked at her and Pinkie rolled her eyes. “‘Best Friends Forever and Always’, duh!” She giggled. “You all should know that by now.”

“That we should, darling, but it’s always nice to remember the way things used to be.”

“You know, save for the few bad parts,” Dash ‘tactfully’ added.

Twilight hung her head. “Those days still haunt me sometimes, but I do hope Kat has forgiven me.” She looked up into the endless sky. “Because I know I’ve forgiven her.”

Fluttershy put a hoof on her friend’s shoulder and smiled at her. “Somehow, I know she has. Grandmother maybe have some anger problems, but I know she would never be angry at a friend forever.”

“Thanks, Fluttershy,” Twilight sighed.

“Come on!” Spike shouted, having walked ahead sometime back. “If we don’t hurry, we’re going to miss the event!”

The ponies hurried as fast as they could, Twilight and Fluttershy pacing themselves with their old friends. After about another hour, they had made their way to their destination: Gravity Manor. Formerly known as the Castle of the Two Pony Sisters, it had undergone a major reconstruction since the time of the shifters. Kat had been able to restore the physical structure, but it was still required a lot of work.

Fluttershy still remembered the day Princess Celestia had enacted the project to restore her former castle as a tribute to the creature that had called it home forty years prior. It took five long years, but the castle had finally been refurbished. Over the several years after, the Manor slowly took form of a museum to teach the history of the gravity shifters to future generations. It painted neither Kat nor Raven in an awful light, but more as those that had gone through tragedy. Sure it was biased to an extent, but Fluttershy saw it more as trying to paint the true picture instead of one of hatred.

Of course, there was a lot of debate upon the museum’s creation, even an attempted bombing during its opening week. But over the months that followed, it quickly became a major tourist attraction. Ponies were awed by the true tale of Kat Shifter and Raven Masters and the experiences they went through. Fluttershy’s family as well as the princesses were all too happy to donate related artifacts to be displayed. Even Flitterbee’s journal was in the museum.

Fluttershy was still awed by the gleaming castle as she and her friends walked to the entrance. Though, she should have been watching where she was going, as she bumped into a pony. “Oof, oh I am so sorry.”

The pony picked itself off the ground, brushing off the dirt from it full body cloak. Even its head was covered. It regarded Fluttershy, though the pegasus couldn’t see the pony’s face. “It’s no trouble.” It looked up at the castle. “It is quite the sight to see.” It looked back at Fluttershy. “I hope you enjoy your day, miss.” It trotted off into the museum, leaving Fluttershy to wonder who that pony was.

She shrugged it off and joined her friends inside. They were many different sights to see within, even though they had seen it all before. It was their tradition to see the exhibits every ten years on the anniversary of Kat’s leaving, which was coincidentally exactly one year after she had returned, as a way of remembering their friend. One of the more popular ones was the only remaining piece of Kat’s shield, kept in a glass pedestal near the entrance. It was thought that Raven had sent off the shattered remains of the legendary shield to oblivion, but one piece had been found amongst the rubble of Canterlot Castle after the battle. Fluttershy stared at the piece in wonder, always remembering that shield on her grandmother’s back, always ready to defend anypony.

Looking around, a few of the girls were surprised to see a some griffins amongst the visitors. They had become a rare sight in Equestria after the war five years after the departure of the Gravity Queen. They thought that the recent defeat of the princesses meant it was their time. How wrong they were. Their armies were defeated within the year, but not without many casualties on both sides. Each of them remembered their time in the service during that war. Pinkie had been a cannonier, Twilight a strategist, Rarity was a member of the signal corps, Rainbow and Applejack were infantry soldiers (air and land respectively), and Fluttershy herself had been a battlefield medic.

Fluttershy and Rainbow were the only ones who stayed in the service of the Equestrian Military after the war, though Fluttershy signed up for the reserves while Rainbow was assigned to the Wonderbolts. To this day, they were military members, Fluttershy being an inactive reserve for the time being.

The girls split off to their own exhibits for a while, meeting up a few hours later for lunch. The museum offered a full buffet area from the original kitchens of the castle. “Anything new?” Fluttershy asked as she finished her lunch of a simple daisy sandwich and celery soup.

“Just a few more articles in Raven’s section,” Twilight said as she took a sip of her herbal tea. “More and more sightings in local papers are found every year about her. She did have free roam of the world for a thousand years.”

“Ooh! Ooh!” Pinkie said excitedly as she raised her hoof.

“Dear, you’re not a child anymore, you don’t have to raise your hoof as if you’re in elementary school.”

“But it’s fun!” That little refute made Rarity smile and roll her eyes. “Kat’s area has a new exhibit! A family tree! It shows Flitterbee and Fluttershy on it!”

Fluttershy blushed while the girls muttered excitedly. “We should go see it,” Applejack said. “Sounds like it would be interestin’ ta see Flutters’ whole family.”

“I think I’ll just go see the rare gems exhibit, if that’s alright,” Spike said as he munched on a ruby. “I’d like to see all the gems that the shifters created.”

“Alright, but don’t eat any of them. They’re historical treasures.”

“Yes ‘mom’,” Spike said with an eye roll to Twilight as he went off on his own.

The six mares made their way to the family tree exhibit Pinkie mentioned and we in awe at the thousand year legacy Kat had left behind.

“Oh wow, Fluttershy,” Rainbow said in awe as she spotted one of her relatives. “I didn’t know you were related to Captain Spitfire.”

Fluttershy nodded. “Oh yes, she’s one of my third cousins. We didn’t see each other all that often though. How is she doing nowadays?”

“Retired,” Rainbow shrugged. “Settled down in Cloudsdale about five years ago. Getting up in years and all. Still one of the fastest pegasi around.”

They mulled around the exhibit for a few more moments and then the very earth beneath them began to shake as ponies screamed from the main hall.

“What in tarnation?!”

“Sounds like trouble,” Twilight said.

“Then what are we standing around for?!” Rainbow huffed, activating her latent Harmony powers that they were all gifted with from the Tree of Harmony all those years ago. “Let’s go kick its ass!”

The girls followed the still reckless pegasus, activating their own transformations.

“I’m getting to old for this,” Rarity complained as she breathlessly followed.

“Gotta keep up them exercises of yers, Rares,” AJ snipped. Rarity hmmped at her, causing the farm mare to snicker.

As they entered the main hall, they were in awe at the sight of a massive minotaur slamming down a spiked club.

“What in Tartarus is that?!” Rarity shrieked unlady-like.

“Asterius,” a voice said from beside them. They all looked and saw Princess Celestia and Luna fly in from the skylight. “The original minotaur.”

“Nice to see y’all here, Tia and Lulu, but before we get to the reunion hugs, wus the deal wit’ the big bad bull?”

“Asterius is the ancestor to the minotaur race,” Luna explained. “He’s supposed to be locked in Tartarus serving a life-sentence for trampling several miles of Equestria’s fertile farmland. That and the destruction of several neighboring towns over a twelve hundred years ago.”

The monster minotaur let out a loud laugh. “So this is what has become of the Two Sisters’ Castle?! A simple collector’s hovel? This is pitiful, ponies!”

“Asetrius!” Celestia bellowed as she, her sister and the former bearers of the Elements of Harmony stood by her side. “You will return to Tartarus and continue your sentence or else!”

He laughed aloud again. “Return? To that torturous prison? I think not, Celestia! You have nothing to stop me!”

“Wrong!” Fluttershy shouted as she and her friends fired of a rainbow lazer.

Asterius shouted in pain as he took the blast, but all it did was scorch his chest. “Well now, that was some magic. But nothing to the mighty Asterius!” He slammed his club on several display cases, destroying them.

Twilight gasped in horror. “No! The history, gone forever!!” She growled dangerously at him. “No one gets away with destroying knowledge! Spike!!”

“Spike?” Asterius repeated just as a mighty dragon slammed into him from behind. “Gah!” he shouted as he went slamming into the far wall, where a lone pony was still looking over the exhibits.

Fluttershy gasped and took off flying as she shoved the equine out of the way. “You should get out of here,” she told the pony. “It’s not safe.” A scream went out as Asterius pulled himself out of the wall and was about to slam his club on a pony family. Fluttershy gasped again, but the cloaked pony took off running faster than she had seen anypony run before.

The pony stopped in front of the family just as the club came down.

Celestia gasped and growled. “You monster!”

Asterius let out an evil chuckle. “Now you’re catching… huh?” He looked down and saw through the dust that the cloaked pony was… holding his club?! “H-how can this be?! That shouldn’t be possible! No pony is stronger than me!”

“Au contraire, connard,” the pony spoke with a mare’s voice. “There was always one who bested you time and time again. One who you could never beat, no matter how hard you tried.”

“Blasphemy!” the minotaur shouted. “There is no such creature that could best me!”

“Please my little pony!” Celestia pleaded. “Get out of there!”

The mare laughed a little, turning to the cowering family behind her. “You four should get out of here. Things are going to get messy.” The father took the cue, ushering his wife and kids out of the museum with him. The pony turned back to Celestia. “I’m a little heartbroken, Tia.” Celestia’s eyes widened at such a informal use of her name by an ordinary pony. “I thought you would remember me. This is my house after all.”

Confusion was etched into the ponies’ faces, all except one whose eyes were wide with disbelief. “It can’t be…” Fluttershy stepped forward a little bit. “Is that you… grandmother?” The ponies’, and Spike’s, eyes widened and their jaws slacked.

The mare chuckled a little, grabbing the hem of her cloak. “As the old saying goes,” she ripped off the cloak, along with a green flash, revealing a tall, female human. Her blonde hair ran down just past her waist with a black head band. Her features were beautiful by human standards: her body was curvy in all the right places and bosom was perfectly well-endowed. She wore tight fitting black jeans that cut off above a few inches above her ankle, a simple pair of short, black with gold trim combat boots, a tight-fit white t-shirt that showed of a small bit of her midriff, and a short-cropped leather jacket with gold tinges here and there. Her fierce red eyes bore right through Asterius who backed up in fear. “I’m back, salopes!!”

The ponies stared in awe at Kat’s new appearance, but tears began to grow in their eyes at the sight. In the minotaur’s eyes, though, was only fear.

“No… no, no, NO!! You can’t be here!” he bellowed, beginning to shake. “You were banished! You were not supposed to return!!”

Kat smirked as she put her hands on her hips. “Oh please, Arty, as if I would ever leave this world completely unprotected. Of course I would return, duh.” She rolled her eyes as he began to fume. “Now, are you going to give up or am I going to have show you up, again.”

He roared at Kat and charged. “I will never be bested by you, Gravity Queen! DIE!!” He brought his club down on the human. She only smirked and put up a fist. The club impacted on her fist… and shattered into two pieces “WHAT?!” Arterius shouted in confusion. Kat didn’t answer, using her powers to grab the free piece of club and chuck it into the minotaur’s face. He gasped in pain as he went down on the floor.

“I thought you were stronger, Arty.” She tsked, walking over to the downed bull. “Pitiful.”

“Why you--”

He was interrupted as Kat struck the ground with her foot, blasting the monster into the air. She teleported above him and slapped him across the face with the back of her hand, sending him flying across the room. She warped again, slamming her two feet into his spine from behind. Again, Kat teleported in front of him and sent her left hook into his gut, making him bellow in pain. She cartwheeled up his front, grabbed his horns and slammed Arterius to the ground by throwing him over her shoulders.

Kat floated down in front of him, cold, blood red eyes present, and held out a hand in front of the monster. “Are you going to surrender Arterius or are you going to keep causing destruction.”

The monster groaned as he looked at Kat with a deadly expression. “I will destroy all who would oppose me,” he stated simply.

“So be it.” He hand lit and Arterius only had a quick moment to scream before he was Extinguished. His wisps flew into her palm and Kat looked through her new power. “Nothing much,” she muttered to herself. “Barely any improvement. He really was weak.”

“GRANDMOTHER!!” Kat only had a second before she was tackled by the over-excited pegasus known as Fluttershy. “Oh my gosh I missed you, I missed you, I missed you soooo much!!”

Kat chuckled happily as she wrapped Fluttershy in a hug. “I missed you too, my little Flutter.” She sighed upon hearing those words.

“Kat!” The human was tackled by even more mares, taking her to the ground.

She laughed heartily as she was hugged by all of her friends. “Okay! Okay! I get it, I was missed. Hahaha!! Just let me up, will ya? Ya crazy juments.”

Celestia slowly approached the human with happy tears in her eyes. “Kat…” she said simply staring down her.

Kat looked up and smiled. “Hey mom!” She smiled brightly as more tears escaped from the alicorn. “Where’s my hug?” Celestia launched herself at the girl, nuzzling her almost too much. Kat laughed happily as she hugged her adoptive mother. “I missed you too.”

“The years have been good to you it seems,” Luna said with a smile as she joined them all.

Kat laughed as she stood back up. “Well, for the most part yeah. A lot of things happened and I can’t wait to tell you all.” She looked around the castle, noting that there wasn’t too much destruction. “Seems like you made good use of my castle.”

“It’s been quite the attraction, darling,” Rarity said, just as posh as ever in Kat’s opinion.

“Although, we’ve left most of it untouched, such as the residential areas of the castle,” Celestia informed her. She smiled as she wiped away her tears. “Just in case you ever came home.”

Kat hugged Celestia’s head. “Of course I was going to come home. I said I would and you know I never go back on my word.” The solar princess didn’t say anything, just nuzzled Kat even more. “Now, how about some lunch and I tell you all about my journey, eh?”

The ponies all nodded, Fluttershy still clinging to her. “As long as you stay,” she whispered. She looked up at her grandmother. “You are staying, aren’t you?”

Kat smiled as she ran her fingers through her granddaughter’s mane. “Yes, I’m staying. This is my home after all.” Fluttershy squeed and hugged even more. Though, she noticed something glinting on Kat’s finger.

“Grandmother, why is there a ring on your finger?”

Kat blushed a little. “How about I just tell you all everything before I go into that, eh?” Fluttershy relented and fluttered alongside Kat as they walked further into the castle.

Kat looked around at all her friends and family, smiling brighter than she had in a long time. After many years of heartache and fighting and who knows what else, Kat Shifter, Gravity herself, had come home.

Over a thousand years ago, I, like many others, was taken to a land of magic and second chances. I did what I could with the gifts I was given to defend the new friends I had made, but even then my past came back to haunt me. I was sealed away and forgotten, or so I thought. When I returned a thousand years later, I was introduced to a family that hadn’t forgotten me, one that had been descended from one of those I had helped. They helped me try to fix my mistakes, but still I took revenge.

But that wasn’t the route I should have taken. My revenge caused more pain and suffering. My world collapsed around me, and if not for my friends and fellows, I would never have overcome them. I paid for my mistakes and took it upon myself to help others from making the same ones I did.

I traveled to worlds like mine, with similar inhabitants, and familiar faces, but always different. I made friends, fell in love, and reclaimed my past, because I wasn’t alone. We are never alone when our loved ones stay in our heart.

So that is the message I send to any other of those known as The Displaced who come upon my story. You are not alone and there are others who will help you. I urge you not to make the same mistakes I did, because it will not end how you would hope. It will only cause more pain. So please, stick to the right path and let the magic of friendship into your heart.

I am Kat Shifter, the incarnation of Gravity, and this was my story of pain, heartache, and redemption. And remember, we’re all stories in the end; it’s up to you to make it a good one. Because… there’s always more to tell.