There is a secret that Celestia has kept from everypony, even from her sister and student, one that everypony that knows the truth about have kept quiet about for eight years. However the truth will be discovered soon enough, and all will change.
Celestia has a secret child that she's kept from everypony around her because she wanted to make sure that the Ponies that would try to use the child for their own ends. As such, she put a pony she believed would be able to keep the child safe in charge of her protection and sent them to a small town so they'd be away from Canterlot.
However after 8 years, things in Equestria are changing, and Ponies that Celestia would have rather not found out discover the truth. Now this secret heir must be protected from the darker side of Equestria's society.
I took a deep breath as I slid my armor on, I was barely out of basic training with the guards and had been assigned to the Solar Guard. I was nervous, I was still a rookie in the guard, so I had a lot to prove around here.
I still had a hard time believing that I was here, when I had left Basic Training I hadn't expected to be put in the Solar Guard. I looked at myself in the mirror, the golden armor wasn't exactly the most comfortable thing I had ever worn. I brushed my rainbow colored mane back and took a deep breath.
"Okay Rainbow, this is your first day on the job, don't freak out, you'll do just fine," I said to myself, trying to reassure myself. "What's the worst that could happen?"
I jumped when there was the sound of a Pony knocking at my door, I went and answered it to find the guard Captain Steel Horn waiting for me.
"Private Rainbow Dash?" The Captain asked.
"Yes sir, that's me, Private Dash!" I said, trying not to sound nervous as he looked at me closely. "Uh, what can I do for you sir?"
"Private, I know you're new to the guard, but we have a special assignment for you," Steel Horn said, that just made me tense up more. "I'll have to take you to talk with the Princess."
"The Princess?" I asked, that really didn't make sense, why would the Princess want me for a special assignment. "Yes sir, I'll follow you."
"Good, please keep in mind that this mission is of the utmost secrecy," Steel Horn said as he started down the hall.
I didn't hesitate for a moment, I followed him close behind, I just had to hope that whatever the assignment was it wasn't too dangerous.
I tried not to look nervous as I looked around the extravagant private rooms of Princess Celestia. I was just a guardspony, so I wasn't even sure why I was here, I was so out of my element right now.
"Private Rainbow Dash?" A kind, feminine voice said and I turned to see the white Alicorn Princess of the sun looking at me.
"Yes ma'am, reporting as requested," I said with a bow. "The, Captain said you wanted to give me a special assignment?"
"That's right, and you don't have to stand on ceremony," Celestia said. "I know this situation is very unusual, but you're in a unique position to be able to help."
A unique position? What exactly did that mean, I wasn't from Canterlot and I had only recently become part of the guard, exactly what about my position was unique enough that it warranted a special assignment?
"I, don't understand what you mean, your majesty," I said. "I'm just a guardspony, what can I do to help the Princess?"
"I'm worried about an element within the nobility, maybe even in the guard," Celestia said. "You're young, not from Canterlot, and you're new to the guard, so you're one of the few Ponies I think we can trust with this mission."
"What is the nature of the mission?" I asked. "And, what is this element you're worried about?"
"I have an infant daughter," Celestia said bluntly, that caught me off guard, why hadn't I heard about this before? "I understand your confusion, I used magic to keep it hidden, but now that she's been born, I'm worried that she will be discovered by Ponies who will use her to get at me."
Now I understood, she needed a Pony with guard training that she could trust in order to keep the foal safe. I just hoped that she was making the right choice by picking me.
"I'm going to send her to Ponyville with another Pony I can trust," Celestia continued. "I want you to go to Ponyville, you're still unknown enough in Canterlot that you won't arouse suspicion if you suddenly leave. I'm not going to force you to do it, but she needs a protector and I believe you're the best Pony for the job."
I thought about it, whether or not I was going to do this was all up to me, and it wasn't an easy decision to make. I had worked my tail off to get through Basic Training so I could become part of the guard, but the Princess was now asking me to give that up.
The princess wanted me to do this, so how could I refuse? I was being asked to sacrifice the life I had made for myself, for a Princess. That was my job as part of the guard of course, and the decision was easy.
"I'll do it, your majesty, I'll be her guard," I said with a salute.
"Very good Private, I'm glad you agreed," Celestia said with a smile. "Now come, you should meet your charge."
I nodded and followed her into the next room.
In the next room there was a Pegasus mare with a light orange coat and a purple mane and tail that is holding a bundle in her forelegs. She looks up at us with a smile and held her hoof to her lips in a shushing motion.
"Orange Swirl, this is Private Rainbow Dash, she'll be joining you and Sunbeam in Ponyville," Celestia said quietly so she didn't disturb the sleeping foal.
"Its nice to meet you, Private Dash," Orange Swirl said with a smile. "You will be Sunbeam's protection detail?"
"Yes ma'am," I said, moving forward quietly. "I know I'm young, but I want to do my best to help the young Princess."
"We'll be glad to have you there," Orange said with a smile. "Here, come meet the filly you'll be protecting."
I moved in close and looked down at the bundle, I couldn't help but smile a little at the small filly who's life I had been charged with protecting. I just hoped that I could do it.
"Thank you Private Dash, this means a lot to me," Celestia said with a smile. "I'll arrange for you to have a nice house in Ponyville near Orange and Sunbeam's."
"Thank you, your majesty," I said with a nod.
A few days passed as we arrived at Ponyville, I landed on the cloud surrounding the cloud mansion that Celestia had arranged for me. I didn't actually think she'd have gone all out like this, I mean it wasn't exactly the biggest cloud mansion I had seen, but it was certainly nicer than my small guard quarters.
I looked down towards the house where Orange Swirl or Dizzy Twister as apparently she was calling herself now was now living and took a deep breath.
I had been given a duty by the Princess of the Sun, one that I didn't want to fail at.
After all, it was my duty to protect the new Princess, the secret heir.
I sighed as I lowered the sun beneath the horizon to end another day, it had just been another long and boring day in the Day Court. It had been 8 years to the day since I had sent Orange Swirl, Sunbeam, and Rainbow Dash to Ponyville, and right now I just wanted to be able to lay in bed and sleep for a week.
"Are you okay, Celestia?" Luna asked as she finished raising the moon and came up to me. "Something seems to be bothering you today."
I paused, I admitted that I wasn't sure what I should tell Luna, maybe I should tell her the truth.
"I'll tell you in private," I said as I walked towards my quarters and Luna followed close behind.
I took a deep breath, I had to hope that she'd understand, telling her wasn't going to be easy, telling anypony would really. I just had to hope that Luna would be more understanding than anypony else would be.
"Okay Celestia, tell me what's bothering you," Luna said as I closed and locked the door. "The nobles said you've been acting distracted all day."
"Luna, what I have to tell you needs to stay between us," I said and Luna nodded in agreement, that was enough for me. "8 years ago, I had a daughter named Sunbeam."
"You have a daughter?" Luna asked, looking at me shocked.
"Yes, her father was a noblestallion who I allowed to get close to me," I said shaking my head. "When she was born though, I started to get wind of an element within the nobility and the guard that was starting to believe that I shouldn't rule. I didn't want her to get caught up in it, so I sent her away, to Ponyville along with a mare I could trust and a guard to keep her safe."
Luna paused at that for a moment, I don't think that's what she expected me to say, she stood there for a long moment before responding.
"I have a niece? Why didn't you tell me?" She asked finally.
"I didn't want word to get out, I'm sorry Luna," I said. "This is one of the most closely guarded secrets in Equestria, I didn't even tell Twilight."
"I see," Luna said. "I will keep your secret sister, but I have to know, do you know who she is in Ponyville?"
"Yes, she's somepony you know," I said, ruffling my wings nervously as I started to tell her who she was.
I knew that the truth would come as a shock to my sister.
Rainbow Dash's POV.
I landed outside of my Cloud Mansion, I couldn't believe that it had been 8 years since I had come to Ponyville already. I had to admit that I had made a lot of friends, more than I had really expected, heck I had an honorary little sister in Scootaloo, it had been a good 8 years for me. I hadn't really expected it to be the most thrilling job, but I had my share of excitement when I became the bearer of the Element of Loyalty. But still, I had done my job keeping the kid safe, after all that's what Celestia had tasked me with.
"Hey Rainbow Dash, I've got a letter for you," Derpy says, taking out an envelope. "Looks really official too."
"Thanks Derpy," I said with a nod as I took it and headed inside, it had a seal on it that looked official alright, I didn't recognize it, but it looked like it might have been from one of the noble families back in Canterlot. It was of an outline of a bird with its wings outstretched. I opened it carefully and took out the letter inside.
We know you're in Ponyville to protect the Princess' dirty little secret, if you don't want to put the child's life at risk, I suggest that you convince her majesty to come clean within a week. This will be your only warning, Private Rainbow Dash.
"What the heck? Who in Celestia's name sent this?" I wondered out loud as I looked at the seal again, it wasn't something that I recognized, but I knew a pony that would recognize it.
I took off and headed towards the Castle with the envelope in my bag.
"You're saying you got this in the mail?" Twilight asked as she examined the envelope.
"That's right," I said nervously, I didn't want to show her the letter, but I felt that if anypony knew who might have sent it it was her. "Do you recognize the seal?"
"Honestly, no, it doesn't look like anything I've seen before," Twilight said regretfully. "I'm sorry Rainbow."
I sighed, I knew it was a long shot, but I had hoped that Twilight would at least know something. She's still looking at it carefully, like she's trying to figure something out.
"What was in the envelope?" She asked, looking at me. "That could be a clue as to who sent it."
"It was nothing, just a, uh..." I said, trying to come up with a plausible lie. "About the Wonderbolts, you know how it is, always getting fan mail and stuff."
"I see," Twilight said, she looked at me strangely, like she wasn't sure whether or not to believe me. "Is there anything else I can help you with Rainbow Dash?"
"Can I have Spike send a message to Celestia for me?" I asked, that got another look from the lavender Alicorn. "Its, private."
"Uh sure, he's in the kitchen now, I think," she said, nodding down the long hallways.
"Thanks Twi, I owe you one," I said and headed towards the kitchen.
If this letter was telling the truth, then Celestia was going to have to be informed, we couldn't put the Princess' life at risk.
Even if it meant that we'd have to tell everypony the truth.
Twilight Sparkle's POV.
"So what did Rainbow Dash want?" Starlight asked as she came into the castle, she had been out visiting with Trixie who was visiting in town.
"Strangest thing, she wanted me to look at an envelope," I said, I was still confused why she had been asking me about it. "It had some sort of seal on it, like a bird of some sort with its wings outstretched, does that mean anything to you?"
"Not really," Starlight said with a shrug.
"Me neither, its weird though, whatever it was seemed to shake her, and I tried to ask what was in the envelope, and she said it was fan mail."
While fan mail itself wasn't weird, why would she want to keep it secret? Rainbow Dash wasn't exactly humble, she'd honestly be more likely to try and show it off, so she was probably lying to me when she said that.
So now the question was, why did she lie and what did the letter really say?
Spike came in a minute later looking confused. "Hey, uh, Twilight, I just sent a message for Rainbow Dash to Celestia, she then flew off after getting an answer, do you know what that was about?"
"Honestly, I don't know, did you see what she wrote?" I asked, Spike shook his head. "Great..."
"I'm sorry Twilight," Spike said.
"Its okay, we'll figure this out," I said, and went to the library, maybe I could find some answers in a book.
Rainbow Dash's POV.
I knocked on the door to Dizzy Twister's house, looking around nervously for a moment before the other Pegasus mare answered.
"Oh hey Rainbow Dash, I'm sorry I just put..." Dizzy started to say.
"I'm not here about that, I need to talk to you," I said, getting a look from Dizzy, I leaned in and whispered a word in her ear. "Eclipse."
"Come inside, quickly," Dizzy said and ushered me inside, she knew the code word well enough. She shut the door and locked it quickly before turning to talk to me again. "Are you sure?"
"Its from Celestia herself," I said.
Eclipse was the code word for a breach of security in the operation, even though the note didn't seem to indicate that they knew the Princess' identity.
"What are her orders?" Dizzy asked.
"She's going to tell a few select Ponies, starting with Twilight," I said. "And she's going to be coming tomorrow, to help us tell Sunbeam."
"But, we weren't supposed to tell her until she reached maturity," Dizzy said confused. "Why the change?"
I had a hard time understanding the sudden change too, I had given Celestia all the information that I knew, and I just had to hope that she knew what she was doing. I had dedicated the last 8 years of my life to keeping that filly safe, and I wasn't about to change that.
"We don't have a choice, if Celestia has to go public with this, she'll find out," I said and shook my head. "Dizzy... we knew we'd have to tell her eventually..."
"I know, but, I just always hoped it would be later," Dizzy said, I knew how she felt, we'd both come to care for the filly, this was more than just an assignment now. "Rainbow, what are we going to do?"
"The only thing we can do," I said. "We're going to tell her the truth and hope that she can handle it."
This was going to be one of the hardest things I've ever had to do, and then I'd have to tell my friends the truth too.
I was having a hard time believing what Celestia had told me, she had a daughter and hadn't told me or anypony about it before now? She had even surprised me when she told me the filly's identity, I knew her... how did I never put two and two together?
I understood why she didn't want to tell anypony, I had just hoped that Celestia was doing the right thing by keeping the child's identity secret.
"Your majesty, there's a Pony here that wants to talk to you," one of the guards said, that was odd, things were usually quiet this time of night.
"Very well, let them in," I said, leaning back on my throne as the guards ushered in a Unicorn Stallion with dark green fur that bowed politely.
"Your majesty, it's an honor," he said. "There is, something I believe that we should bring to your attention, a secret that your sister has kept from all of Equestria."
I looked at him strangely, but there was a sudden sense of dread, I was pretty sure that he wasn't one of the Ponies Celestia had trusted with the information that she had a daughter. So either that meant there was another secret she was keeping from everypony, or this pony knew something that he shouldn't.
"I'm listening," I said. "But this had better be important."
"It is your majesty," the Unicorn said. "8 years ago, your sister had a child who she sent into hiding in Ponyville. We don't know the identity of the child yet, but we can still go public with the information."
"No," I said with a tone of finality in my voice, the stallion looked up at me surprised. "If Celestia kept this secret, then she must've had a very good reason. If she decides to come clean about her child, then that's her choice, not ours."
"Very well... I will, defer to your judgement..." The Unicorn said and turned around, that's when I noticed that emblazoned on the side of his outfit was a symbol of a bird with extended wings. "Thank you for your time, your majesty."
"You're welcome," I said, I wanted to have him arrested, but I couldn't give a reason why without exposing the secret that I was trying to keep hidden. I'd have to talk to Celestia about it in the morning.
"Your majesty, should we just let him go?" One of the guards asked.
"We do not have a choice, what was said here tonight, does not leave this room," I said, getting a nod from the guards.
I took a deep breath, I felt like I should go into the dreamscape, maybe even check on my niece, but I wasn't sure I should until Celestia told her the truth tomorrow.
I just had to hope that she'd be able to handle it.
Twilight Sparkle's POV.
I yawned and stretched out as I got out of bed, it had been another late night studying, but I hadn't found anything on what Rainbow Dash's mysterious symbol. It was almost as if whoever used it didn't even exist.
I went downstairs where Spike was already awake and making breakfast, he looked up at me and waved.
"Hey Twilight, there's a message for you from the Princess on the table," he said, nodding to the letter that was sitting on the table.
"That's weird," I said as I unrolled the scroll, reading it curiously.
I need you to be at Dizzy Twister's house at 10 o'clock today, its imperative that you make it there on time. There is something important that I need to tell you and can only tell you there.
"What time is it now?" I asked Spike.
"Uh, almost 9:30," he said, checking the time. "Is everything okay?"
"Honestly, I'm not sure," I admitted, looking at the letter puzzled. "Why does she want me to meet her at Dizzy Twister's house instead of her coming here?"
"I don't know, but I'm sure she has some kind of reason," Spike said. "Maybe Rainbow Dash knows something, she was acting really weird last night about that envelope."
"That envelope as a whole was weird," I said. "I can't find anything on that symbol at all, its not part of a noble family or any known organizations in Equestria or any of the surrounding countries. Something about all this is really weird, why would they send a message to Rainbow Dash?"
"I don't know," Spike said with a shrug.
I quickly ate breakfast and headed out towards Dizzy Twister's house. Actually now that I thought about it, she didn't live too far from Rainbow Dash, and despite being a Pegasus she had always lived on the ground even when...
Wait... is it possible that this could be about... but that wasn't possible was it? Why would Celestia be so secretive about her?
I didn't have time to think about this, I was going to need to get there as fast as I could if I wanted to get answers.
I just had to hope that I could handle the answers.
Rainbow Dash's POV.
I couldn't sleep, I spent all night going over everything in my mind, it couldn't be possible, who knew about Sunbeam and how did they find out about her?
The only Ponies that knew about it were me, Dizzy Twister, Celestia, and Steel Horn. Steel Horn had died during the Changeling invasion, so he was out, that just left three of us, Sunbeam didn't even know who she really was.
"Tank, what should I do?" I asked looking at my pet Tortoise who just looked at me. "Yeah, I don't know either."
What were my friends going to think? What was Fluttershy going to think? We had been getting closer in the last few months, and even though we had been friends as fillies, she didn't even know I was really part of the Royal Guard.
It was getting late, I had to be at Dizzy Twister's house in 10 minutes. I headed out the door and flew down, spotting Twilight on her way to the house too so I landed next to her.
"Hey Rainbow, you don't look too good," Twilight said. "Is everything okay?"
"Yeah, just, couldn't sleep last night is all," I said with a shrug. "Did you find anything about that symbol?"
"No, I didn't," Twilight said with a shake of her head. "Its the weirdest thing, its like it doesn't even exist. Are you sure you don't know anything more about it?"
"No, I've never seen it in my life," I said, it was true, I hadn't ever seen it before.
"Maybe Celestia will know, I'm going to see her now," Twilight said, then looks at me strangely. "Why are you here anyway?"
"Oh, you know, its a Saturday, so I thought I'd come by and you know, visit," I said. "I haven't really gotten to know Dizzy that much." Twilight just looked at me strangely, but nodded in understanding. "Okay Rainbow, but I think Celestia wants to talk to her, so you'll have to wait."
"That's fine," I said with a nod. "I can wait."
Twilight nodded as she knocks on the door and Dizzy opened it with a smile.
"Princess Twilight, Rainbow Dash, its good to see you both," she said. "Come on in, Princess Celestia is waiting for us."
"For us?" Twilight asked, looking perplexed as we walked inside. "Rainbow Dash was expected too?"
"Yeah, she didn't tell you?" Dizzy asked, Twilight just looked at me with a shrug as we went inside and found Celestia waiting for us.
"Twilight, Rainbow, its so good to see you both again," Celestia said with a smile. "I'm sorry for springing this on you both, but there's something that you should know, Twilight."
"What's that?" Twilight asked, but Celestia shook her head.
"You're not the only Pony who needs to know," Dizzy said. "She'll get here very soon."
Twilight just looked perplexed and looked at me strangely, I just stood there and shrugged. I had kept this lie up for eight years, I might as well let Celestia tell her.
There was a sound of the front door opening and small hooves walking inside.
"Mom, I'm home," a filly's voice said from the hallway.
I had just left Carousel Boutique after having a sleepover with Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom. We hadn't really had much luck lately in the crusading department, it felt like most ponies we met had already figured out what their cutie mark meant.
But still, it was always good to be able to hang out with my friends, they were the best friends I had ever had. We had been through a lot, and I was just glad to be able to spend time with them.
When I got back home, I unlocked and opened the door, I didn't have to knock, mom knew I'd be home.
"Mom, I'm home," I said as I came inside, I started to head to my room when I stopped in the living room and stared in shock.
In the living room was my mom, Twilight, Rainbow Dash, and Princess Celestia! What were the princesses doing here? Rainbow Dash sure, she and I were going to meet today for flying practice, but the princesses?
"Hey Squirt," Rainbow Dash said with a smile and gestured over for me to sit next to her.
"Hey Rainbow dash, uh, what's Princess Celestia doing here?" I asked, looking at the white Alicorn Princess. "What's going on?"
"Twilight, Scootaloo, there's something I should tell you both," Celestia said, this made me tilt my head a little in confusion, why would she want to tell me something? "Over 8 years ago, I was in a relationship with a Noblestallion, and I got pregnant. I used magic to keep it hidden, and after the child was born, I became aware of an element within the Nobility that wanted to remove me from the throne. I was afraid that they would use the child against me, so I sent her to Ponyville with two trusted Ponies."
"That, would be me and Rainbow Dash," mom said.
"You and Rainbow Dash?" I asked, I was kind of confused, then I looked at Rainbow Dash, that meant she was what, part of the Royal Guard? "Where's the foal?"
Twilight's eyes went wide, she must've realized exactly what was going on. "Wait, you mean..." She said, her sentence trailed off.
Celestia got up and walked forward towards me, looking down at me sadly. That's when it finally clicked in my mind, and I couldn't believe it.
"Scootaloo... the truth is, you're my daughter," she said. "Your real name is Sunbeam, and you're a Princess."
I just stared in shock, I wasn't even sure what to say to that.
"Your real name is Sunbeam, you are a Princess," Celestia had said, honestly I wasn't sure what to make of that at all.
"Scootaloo, are you okay?" Rainbow Dash asked, I shook my head to clear my mind.
"I, don't know what to say," I admitted and looked at Celestia, trying to wrap my mind around this. "You're, really my mom? And you two knew about this?"
"Yeah," Rainbow said, suddenly looking a little nervous. "I'm sorry I couldn't tell you before, I'm Private Rainbow Dash, I joined the Royal Guard after Flight School, and Celestia asked me to watch over you."
"You're really..." Twilight said, I could practically hear the gears grinding in her head as she tried to figure it out, at least I wasn't the only one who was confused by this. "Why didn't you tell me?"
"Twilight, I have had many children over the centuries," Celestia said sadly. "Scootaloo... Sunbeam is just the most recent. If I had a choice, I'd have gladly raised her myself, but she was in danger because of members of the nobility that wanted to remove me from power and would use her to their advantage."
I couldn't believe what I was hearing, my mother was Princess Celestia? That alone was going to take a lot of getting used to, and honestly I didn't know what to expect anymore. That basically meant my whole life was a lie.
What was going to happen now?
"I'm sorry... I can't talk about this right now..." I said and galloped up the stairs, heading for my room.
Right now I just wanted to bury my face in my pillow and pretend nothing had changed. But I knew that everything was going to change now that I knew who my mother really was.
I had no idea what to do.
Rainbow Dash's POV.
I frowned sadly as I watched Scootaloo run up the stairs. I had no idea what to do to be honest, I had just been sent here as a guard, but Scootaloo had become so much more since then.
How was I going to do this? She had become like a little sister to me, but now she knew that I had just been a guard to protect her, what was she going to think of me?
"Rainbow Dash, you should go talk to her," Celestia said, I looked at her for a long moment.
"Me? What about Dizzy?" I asked, I wasn't sure what I should do honestly. "I mean we're close, but she raised her."
"Rainbow, you're the one she's bonded with the most," Celestia said. "You should be the one to talk to her."
I looked at Dizzy and Twilight, they just nodded in agreement, that figured really. Of course they were right, but honestly I was nervous about how she'd react more than anything else.
"Its okay Rainbow, you can talk to her," Dizzy said with a reassuring smile. "Just do your best."
I nodded and trotted upstairs, I stopped in front of Scootaloo's door, pausing for a long moment. I had to do this, they were right, my bond with her was going to be what helped her the most, so I knocked on the door with my hoof.
"Go away..." Scootaloo said from inside. "I don't want to talk to anypony right now."
"Scootaloo, its me," I said. "Please, let me in, I just want to talk with you."
"Why, so you can lie to me some more?" Scootaloo asked, that stung at my heart. "Go away, I don't want to see you right now."
"Scootaloo, I'm sorry," I said. "It was hard to lie to you all these years, I wanted to tell you the truth so many times but I couldn't because I had orders. But what we had together, that wasn't a lie, I came to care about you like a little sister and that was the truth, I swear. That wasn't part of my mission, you have to believe me."
There was a long moment of silence, Scootaloo didn't say anything it was like she was trying to decide what to do next.
"Scootaloo?" I asked, I was worried about her sudden silence.
That's when the door slid open, she looked like she had been crying as she looked up at me sadly but with a weak smile on her face.
"Do you really mean that?" She asked. "Do you really still think of me like a sister even though you were sent to protect me?"
"I do," I said with a smile and hugged her gently. "That's something that won't ever change, I care about you more than anything in Equestria. So does Dizzy and Celestia, we all did this to make sure you were safe."
"Why didn't Celestia tell me though?" Scootaloo asked. "I could've kept it a secret if I had to."
"I know you could," I said, ruffling her mane. "You're a good kid, but Celestia didn't think we should until you were grown. I'm sorry that we didn't trust you with this before, but now you have to keep it secret until we're ready to reveal it to Equestria, can you handle that?"
Scootaloo paused for a moment before nodding in agreement. "I can do it... I just, don't know what to do."
"You're going to be just fine," I said. "Don't worry, we're all going to be here for you and you won't have to keep it secret for too much longer I'm sure. I promise that I'll be here for you, we all will be."
Scootaloo smiled and let go of the hug. "Okay Rainbow Dash, I trust you, if you say that you're going to help, I'm sure you will. Just promise me that I won't have to lie to Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom, they're my best friends and I don't want to lie to them."
"You'd have to ask your mom... err, I mean Celestia about that," I said, that was going to take some getting used to. "But I'm sure she'll understand since they are your friends."
"Well, okay, I'll ask her," Scootaloo said. "This is weird... I can't believe I'm really a Princess..."
"Don't worry Scootaloo, you're a great filly, that's not going to change just because you found out you're a princess," I said with a smile.
Scootaloo smiled and hugged me again, somehow I felt like that had helped her a lot.
Twilight Sparkle's POV.
I watched Rainbow Dash head upstairs to talk with Scootaloo, honestly my mind was still reeling over this. I had known Scootaloo since not long after I had arrived in Ponyville, and I hadn't known much about Dizzy Twister, but this isn't what I expected at all.
I looked at Celestia for a long moment, it was starting to dawn on me what was going on. While it wasn't a huge surprise that she had children, it was inevitable really, but that one of them was Scootaloo?
That's when I realized what this meant and looked at Celestia.
"That envelope Rainbow showed me, that was from the nobles wasn't it?" I asked, Dizzy and Celestia exchanged glances. "Why would they reveal their existence now?"
"The Order of the Black Phoenix," Celestia said. "There have been rumors of its existence for years, but they didn't really make their existence known until after Luna returned. They've occasionally petitioned for her to take over rulership of the country from me."
"Why would they do that? You've been doing a good job for centuries," I said, I couldn't believe that anypony would want something like that.
"They believe that I should be removed for their own purposes, but what they are is beyond me," Celestia admitted. "They haven't actually committed any crimes so we can't arrest them."
I nodded in understanding, if she did that then she would be no better than they were. I had to hope that they wouldn't do anything to threaten Scootaloo, but I had a bad feeling about all of this.
"What are we going to do now?" I asked.
"I am going to have to come clean about all of this," Celestia said. "Luna already knows and she told me this morning that an unknown Unicorn Stallion approached her that seemed to know about it as well."
"I'm not sure we should," Dizzy said. "If you tell everypony about Scootaloo, then she'll become a target. Not only the Order, but also Nobles and the fact is that many Ponies might lose their trust in you as a leader."
I nodded, Dizzy was right of course, but I wasn't sure exactly how we were going to control the situation.
"There is another option," Celestia said as she looked thoughtfully for a long moment. "It will be tricky, but it may be her best option."
I wasn't quite sure what she meant by that, but if she had an idea maybe it would work. I just had to hope that whatever it was it would be able to keep Scootaloo safe.
There was the sound of hooves coming downstairs and we turned to see Scootaloo and Rainbow Dash coming downstairs.
"Princess Celestia... mom," Scootaloo said as she looked up at me, she looked like she was unsure of what to say. "There's, something I want to say."
"Yes Sunbeam?" I asked.
"Please, call me Scootaloo, that's my name as far as I'm concerned," she said, I smiled a little at that and nodded in agreement.
"Okay Scootaloo, what can I do for you?" I asked with a smile.
"I, don't really know about all of this," she said, rubbing her foreleg. "I understand why you kept it from me, but... I'm not sure what to do now that you've told me."
"Scootaloo, we're going to have to tell others," Dizzy said. "Things are about to change a lot for you, but we're all here for you."
I smiled a little down at my daughter who nodded in understanding.
"There is one thing," Scootaloo said, I looked at her for a moment. "I want to tell Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom myself before anypony else. They're my best friends and they deserve to know."
"Okay Scootaloo, you can tell them," I said. "Just as long as they don't tell anypony until the time is right."
"Okay," Scootaloo said. "Can I go see them?"
I looked at Dizzy who nodded, and Scootaloo headed out the door to go find her friends. I sighed a little, I had to admit that I wasn't sure what to do now, but I at least had an idea that would hopefully keep her safe.
Honestly, I was at a loss as to what I was going to tell Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom as I climbed on my scooter and headed towards Carousel Boutique. Apple Bloom had stayed there to help Rarity out with her newest project, but I had to get home.
Not that I was really complaining, I wasn't into that whole fashion thing, but I missed at least being able to spend time with my friends. I just wished that I'd be able to tell them something better than I was about to, I was still kind of processing the whole thing, but I couldn't possibly lie to my best friends.
I paused a moment at the front door to Carousel Boutique and knocked, after a minute Rarity came to the door.
"Hello Scootaloo darling, I thought you had to get home," Rarity said a little confused to see me again. "Is everything okay?"
"Oh, yeah, everything's fine," I lied, I didn't like having to lie to Rarity, but it was necessary, at least for now. "I want to talk with Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom, are they still here?"
"Oh of course, they're just inside," Rarity said and let me enter. "Is everything alright?"
"Yeah, everything is okay, I just want to talk to them about something," I said and then added. "In private."
Rarity nodded as I walked over to where my friends were helping work. Sweetie Belle looked up at me with a smile.
"Hey Scootaloo, what brings you back?" She asked.
"Lets go up to your room, I'd like to talk to the two of you about something, kinda private," I said, they nodded and we headed up to Sweetie's room and closed the door, they looked at me confused.
"What's wrong, Scoots?" Apple Bloom asked as they looked at me a bit strangely. "Yer actin' a bit strange."
"You have to promise me that you won't tell anypony what I'm going to tell you," I said with a nod. "This is super secret, and if you tell anypony I might be in big trouble, so pinkie promise?"
"Cross our hearts and hope to fly, stick a cupcake in our eyes," they said in unison, I just hoped that they'd keep their word.
"I found out today that..." I started to say then trailed off for a moment, how was I going to tell them? Maybe it was best to just say it, I just hoped that they wouldn't hate me for it. "Dizzy Twister isn't really my mom... Princess Celestia is, apparently my real name is Sunbeam."
Sweetie Belle and Apple bloom blinked at that, I looked uncomfortable for a long moment, I honestly wasn't sure what to expect. Were they going to hate me? I hoped not, they were still my best friends in Equestria, what would I do if they didn't want to be my friend anymore just because I was a Princess?
"Scootaloo, yer not kiddin' are yah?" Apple Bloom asked in surprise, Sweetie Belle was still processing it, not that I blamed her.
"No, I'm not," I said with a sigh. "It surprised me too, apparently Rainbow Dash is really a guard pony that was sent to keep me safe, this whole thing is crazy."
"Tell me about it," Sweetie Belle said as she finally snapped out of it. "Honestly, I don't know what to say... you're, a princess then?"
"Yeah, I am, but I'm still me really," I said with a sigh. "I couldn't believe it either, I mean, me a princess? It sounds so..."
"Unbelievable," Apple Bloom finished, I was then surprised when they hugged me. "Scootaloo, Ah don't care if yer Celestia's daughter or not, yer our friend and that doesn't change."
"Yeah, so don't worry about it, we'll get through this," Sweetie Belle said with a nod.
I smiled and hugged back, I really did have the best friends in all of Equestria.
Rainbow Dash's POV.
"So, now that we don't have a choice, exactly what are we going to do with Scootaloo?" Dizzy asked as she looked at Celestia. "She's still too young to have this whole thing go public."
"I agree," I said. "But it seems that we don't have a choice."
"Honestly, there is only one real solution," Celestia admitted. "We will have to consider revealing her identity, and then getting her somewhere that they can't get to her."
"Oh, you mean the human world," Twilight said in realization. "Is that such a good idea? I mean, there's a Scootaloo over there and it could get confusing."
"We will figure something out, we can speak with Sunset and see if she can help us out," Celestia said and shook her head. "I know this is difficult, but its going to be temporary until we can figure something out."
I frowned a little at that, it was a strange idea to send Scootaloo to some entirely different world in order to keep her safe. It honestly did seem like the best option, I just wished that there was a different way.
"Both of you will have to go with her," Celestia said as she looked at me and Dizzy. "I know this is going to be strange, but it is her best chance at avoiding trouble."
"I'll send a message to Sunset," Twilight said with a nod. "This is going to take a lot of explaining though. Do you really think she'll be willing to agree to this? I mean, even I'm having a hard time accepting this whole thing."
Honestly I understood where she was coming from, if I hadn't been tasked with protecting Scootaloo I probably wouldn't believe it either. I wondered if this really was the best plan, though we didn't really have much of a choice at this point.
"I will announce it publicly within the week, we can only hope that the fallout is minimized if she's not here," Celestia said.
"Yeah, we can only hope," I said.
I was going to hate having to explain this to Scootaloo.
Twilight Sparkle's POV.
We didn't talk much longer, Rainbow had to go find Scootaloo and Celestia needed to get back to Canterlot, so I just wound up heading back to my castle. I was still processing this whole thing, it had been a shock to find out of course, and I honestly had never thought about the idea of Celestia being a mother.
I had to wonder if there was any others out there, not just her but Luna too. Honestly now that I thought about it, I didn't know a whole lot about either of their pasts. Celestia had been less than forthcoming about all the details of her history.
"Hey Twilight, how'd things go at Dizzy's house?" Spike asked as I came into the library.
"It went, okay," I said, I honestly hated to have to lie to Spike but I had to make sure that everything was ready. "I need to send a message to Sunset, then how about I get you a nice gem for lunch?"
"Okay!" Spike said and went back to reading his comic book.
I went over and picked up the journal and held a pen telekinetically, honestly I wasn't quite sure what to say yet. This was a strange request from Celestia, and if I was in Sunset's horseshoes, I wasn't really sure what I'd do.
Sunset, I know this is an unusual request, but its important that I make it. There's a pony here who is in danger because of a group within the Canterlot nobility. Princess Celestia wants me to see if you could help keep them safe in the human world.
I know this is a lot to ask, but until we can uncover the truth behind what's going on, you might be our only chance to keep her safe. Because the ponies in question also have counterparts in Canterlot High, we might need to take extra precautions to avoid any confusion. Send a message back as soon as you can.
I finished writing and leaned back, I just had to hope that Sunset would be able to help. This was a weird situation to say the least, and honestly it made her a little nervous, Sunset was a good pony, err, person anyway, she'd hopefully be willing to at least hear her out. At least, I hoped she would.
Finally after a few minutes the book started to glow signaling that Sunset had sent a message back. I opened up the book and started reading in hopes that whatever it was, it was at least good news.
That's quite an unusual request, Twilight, but I'll see what I can do. Maybe I can get Rarity to help give them a makeover or something so that they don't stand out as much. Where they'll be staying might be a little trickier, but I'm going to talk to Principal Celestia, I'm sure she'll be able to help out.
Before I talk to them though, what's going on? Who are you going to be sending and why? I'm willing to help, but I'm going to need more information than this.
Twilight paused a moment, well Sunset was going to have to find out eventually, she just had to hope that she'd know to be careful. This was going to be a weird message, and she had to hope that Sunset would take it seriously.
I learned today that our world's Scootaloo is really Princess Celestia's daughter, she's in danger from some nobles that want to use her against Celestia. She'll be going there along with Rainbow Dash who will be helping keep her safe. I know this is a, strange situation, but we need your help, are you still willing to help?
There was a long pause before the book finally glowed again with Sunset's answer.
That, will complicate matters but I'll talk to Celestia and Rarity. I'll get back to you as soon as I can, stay safe out there.
I breathed a sigh of relief, at least she was willing to help, although she had to wonder what Sunset meant by it complicating matters. I just had to hope that it wasn't going to make hings harder.
Thank you Sunset, I'm glad you could help us out.
I closed the journal and breathed a sigh of relief, that really took a load off of my shoulders that she was going to help.
I just had to wait and see what would happen next.
Had I made the right call?
I had returned to Canterlot and was currently in the throne room going over what had happened. I was making a difficult choice, and just the fact that I had kept it a secret might be enough for this group of nobles.
I sighed a little, it was times like this I wish there was another way to do things. She was my daughter, but I was having to abandon her even temporarily. Rainbow Dash agreed that it was for the best and her judgment was sound in this matter, but it had problems.
Especially given that it meant she'd have to leave her friends behind for now.
"Your majesty, are you okay?" The pony who had been giving her a briefing on the Changeling situation asked. "You seem distracted."
"It is nothing," I said with a shake of my head. "What were you saying?"
I had to sit through more meetings like this, honestly I was starting to wonder if maybe I should go to the human world too, it would certainly help avoid all these boring briefings and paperwork that came with running a country.
After awhile the day court was over so I was meeting up with Luna for dinner. Luna looked at me for a moment as I sighed.
"Are you okay, Celestia?" She asked as I took a bite of food. "I know that it has been hard for you lately."
"I am trying to figure out what to do honestly," I admit with a sigh. "This will be hard for everypony to understand. I have to go public at this point, but it is hard to tell what the consequences are going to be."
"I am still trying to learn more things about modern day Equestria," Luna said. "We both have had children in the past without issue."
"This time its different," I said with a sigh. "Her father is... difficult to deal with because of his position in the Nobility. Our relationship was more one of political convenience to him."
"So you are worried that he will hurt Scootaloo," Luna said as she nodded in understanding. "Does he know about her?"
"I do not know, I thought he didn't, but it is hard to tell now," I admitted. "But now everypony is going to know, I just have to hope that she will be safely hidden away again before it is too late."
"Wait, you want me to do what?" I asked in shock as I looked at Rainbow Dash and mom, were they really asking what I thought they were asking?
"I know this isn't easy for you, but it would only be temporary," Rainbow Dash said. "We're going to take you through the mirror, at least until things can be dealt with here."
"It'll be okay Scootaloo, me and Rainbow dash will be going with you," mom said as she tried to reassure me.
"What about my friends? I'd have to leave them behind, even if only temporarily..." I said, I couldn't believe that they were really asking this of me.
"I know Scootaloo... but the alternative is your life might be in danger," Rainbow said as she gently hugged me. "I want to keep you safe, but there's only so much I can do. Please Scootaloo, I promise that you'll be back with your friends as soon as possible."
I looked at her and then at mom, this was going to be a hard decision to make. I knew that they would make sure I was safe and could get home soon, but to go to a completely different world and have to leave my best friends behind?
Maybe they were right and it was the best option... I still had a lot to get used to, and things weren't going to get any easier from here.
"Okay, I'll go I just want to say goodbye to my friends first," I said and mom and Rainbow both nodded. "So what's the plan?"
I sighed as I made sure that my saddlebags were secure as we got ready to go through the portal. Twilight had done some research and found a spell that might be able to help us keep disguised, at least to most people.
Which is how I wound up staring at the unfamiliar sight of a gold Pegasus filly with a messy red mane in the mirror.
"Geez, I look like Apple Bloom if she was a Pegasus," I said with a groan as I facehooved a little.
"Hey, at least you're not pink," Rainbow Dash said with a chuckle, she looked pink with a blue mane.
"Well sorry, I was in a rush, I didn't have time to ask you two what you wanted to look like," Twilight said with a groan. "Look, if anyone on the other side asks, Scootaloo you're Serenity, Rainbow Dash is Firefly, and Dizzy is Winter Breeze, okay?"
"Okay," I said with a nod as we turned and looked at the mirror portal.
"Are you ready?" Mom asked as she put a hoof on my withers.
"Honestly? I don't know..." I admitted.
"Don't worry, we'll be here with you," Rainbow said and we walked forward into the mirror portal.