Sweetie Belle's horn sparked, and the flower Rarity gave her wilted. It might as well have been raining, as it seemed like those moments in cartoons' emotions got ahead of them, and rain suddenly started falling to set the mood. She gritted her teeth and sat down heavily. The little waves in her tail curled all sorts of funny ways underneath her. I can't do any magic! When I try it just all goes wrong! she thought in dismay. The filly's mouth curved into a small frown. Every other unicorn my age can do magic, or at least something small with their horn. I don't even have a cutie mark in wilting flowers, I'm just that bad.
Meanwhile, Trixie wheeled her traveling cart into Ponyville. Maybe if she showed them that she changed, if she was not as much of a boaster, if she was less mean, they'd like her. That plan would probably work, right? As she pushed it farther, she noticed a white filly sitting near a wilted flower. The filly's mane was lavender and soft pink, and while they weren't Trixie's favorite colors, she thought how cute they looked together, especially on a pony that young.
The blue mare walked over to Sweetie Belle and lifted off her magician's hat. "Are you okay?" she asked.
Sweetie Belle looked up, examined the caped pony standing over her, and commented, "Aren't you that Trixie pony who made a show for us the first time you came? What are you doing here again?" Her mane bristled. "Wait, did you come to pick a fight with Twilight?"
"No. I've changed. I want to make friends. Now, please, let me help you. Are you okay?"
"Not really. I can't do magic! It's hard," she admitted. Then an idea blossomed in the filly's mind. "Will you help me?"
"Why would you want me to help you? I thought Twilight was your friend. She can do magic!"
"But she's not a good teacher! Well, she is, but, well, not the best for me."
"What do you mean, not the best for you? She's a genius and look at me. I'm unliked."
"I like you, I guess. You seem nice. That's a start."
Trixie stepped back. "Okay, then, come to my stage with me. Err, my house. Well, you know what I mean." She checked behind her to make sure Sweetie Belle was following. "What's your name?"
"Would you like to be my apprentice?"
"You mean- Yes! Sure! Totally! I need to tell all my friends! Well, that's a lot. Apple Bloom!"
"Well then, Sweetie Belle, welcome to the world of show magic!"
Excited, Sweetie Belle made her way over to a yellow filly with a light red mane and a big bow. "Apple Bloom! Apple Bloom! Guess what!" she panted, out of breath from running as fast as her little legs could take her.
The yellow filly looked over to her best friend. "Sweetie Belle, what?"
"I'm an apprentice!"
"Yeah! Apprentice! Y'know, like I'm being trained?"
Apple Bloom grabbed Sweetie Belle and hugged her tight. "Ah knew Twilight would teach you everything there is ta know about magic!"
Sweetie Belle pulled away. She scuffled her front left hoof in the apple farm's dirt. "Well, it's not exactly Twilight..."
"Well, I've got nothing."
"it starts with a T."
"Ooh, ooh! Tapioca Pudding!"
"Uhh, who's that? A friend of yours?"
"Never heard of her, either. I just like the name. Oh, maybe Twist?"
"Why would Twist mentor me?"
"Yeah, I got no one."
"It's Trixie." Sweetie Belle said, nervous to what Apple Bloom might think about her new friend.
Apple Bloom screeched. "The Trixie?" She had remembered that Trixie was not the friendliest mare. "She's not even nice! Oh, Sweetie, what have ya done?"
"No, no! It's not like that. She was really nice to me. She said she changed!"
"Hruumph. Ah'll believe it when ah see it."
"I promise you, you'll see it." Sweetie Belle turned and pranced away.
Trixie looked down at the small filly. "Well, I knew deep down that your friend wouldn't believe you that I was nice. No matter how hard you tried to explain to her. Sometimes it's hard to forgive others for things they have done." Her face got a sad look. "How could she, with what I've done here. But," she said, regaining her signature confident look. "I'll do my best. You'll be the best filly there is with magic."
The mare's new apprentice giggled. "Well, maybe." She frowned, thinking, then brightened up with an idea. "Oh, Trixie, can I have a hat? Like you?"
Trixie's horn glowed, and a starry gray hat poofed into existence. It landed gently on Sweetie Belle's head. To her, it felt like feathers, and pretty much everything else soft that she could think of. Wow, she thought. Rarity would love this. Maybe Twilight, too! But, it's for me!
"Thank you Trixie! This is the best accessory ever!" That was a lot, coming from someone living with Rarity.
Her mentor smiled, and nodded. Even without words, Sweetie Belle could tell this meant 'You're Welcome."
Sweetie Belle smiled back, ready for her first lesson. Anything could happen, and she'd be prepared. Maybe she'd even become Great and Powerful like Trixie. She wouldn't mind. It would be fun.Or so she thought, until it actually began.