Twilight Velvet has a heart attack, then her family has to keep one BIG change from her that happened during her coma.
This was inspired by the movie Goodbye, Lenin.
Twilight Velvet, avid supporter of the Equestrian monarch, has a near-fatal heart attack from seeing her daughter beaten and arrested during a protest that should've never come to be. She falls into a coma, and Princess Luna returns to the throne during her sleep. With the doctors saying "No Surprises," it is up to her family to prevent her from finding out that Equestria is now a diarchy, so she doesn't have a second, possibly fatal, attack.
Twilight and her family had spent every summer at their Holiday Home since she was a year old. Shining Armor, her brother, always enjoyed the time he spent with her. Their mother Twilight Velvet held several high-standing places in the monarchy, along with the side job of being a music teacher at Canterlot Yearling’s Music School. She taught the patriotic pieces.
Velvet would teach Equestria’s Hymn and Risen from Ruins, just to name a few songs, to every foal that would come through her class. She oversaw nationwide involvement activities, head of Foal Support Services, and, above all, loving mother of two young, gifted, talented children.
Equal rights for all creatures in Equestria was moving rather slowly, despite Princess Celestia’s efforts. The head of the EEA, Chancellor Neighsay; Princess Celestia’s Nephew (and biggest soon-to-be-problem), Prince Blueblood; and several other ponies, some of the royal guard.
All seemed to be going well until one day...
“Neighsay, Althena, Dr Turret,” Blueblood said to the other three ponies in the basement, “We just need Celestia knocked off of her hooves for about a week.”
“I agree with Blueblood,” Neighsay said, “Nonpony creatures could take what is being taught in our schools and use it against us!”
“I went to medical school to treat ponies! NOT Yaks and Dragons!”
“Wait,” Althena said, “Doesn’t she have that daughter? And what about that Velvet woman?”
“I can sign a decree. Besides, Velvet won’t stand in our way. She does too much to give a shit. Plus, Sunset Shimmer’s only eighteen years old,” he looked to Turret, “You got the ‘ingredient’, Doctor?”
“Crushed Cyanide, all ready.”
“Althena, I need you to make some special tea.”
By lunchtime, the trap was set. Blueblood just had to give the tea to her. The PERFECT plan.
“Auntie?” he said, wheeling in the cart to her throne room, “I thought you might be thirsty.”
“Thanks,” Celestia said, “I’ll drink some of it later.”
Walking out, he noticed Twilight Velvet being escorted to the throne room by Sunset Shimmer.
“I’m sorry, but the princess is busy right now, Mrs Velvet.”
“It’ll only take a second.”
“Can it wait, say, thirty minutes?”
“I suppose so,” she said releasing a breath, then both mares turned and walked away.
Meanwhile, Celestia had drank a few cups of the cyanide tea, and was feeling queasy. Putting a hand over her stomach, she got up and began to go to the door. Halfway there, she covered her mouth with her other hand, then began stumbling before she passed out moments later.
Blueblood turned and went back into the throne room, only to find a drugged Princess on the floor, out cold.
“GET THE MEDICS!!! THE PRINCESS IS OUT COLD!!! SOMEPONY DO SOMETHING!!!” he said, attracting the attention of everypony within the vicinity.
He was holding his façade perfectly.
Over the course of the next thirty minutes, Blueblood had taken the throne, bringing his other conspirators with him.
“You didn’t go too far, Dr Turret, did you?”
“No. Besides, cyanide versus an eons-old alicorn goddess? She’d definitely win. Keep in mind, though, she’ll be back in about a week, tops.”
Over the course of the next hour, non-pony creatures were up shit creek, barely being allowed to exist in Equestria, let alone with rights. Word got out, but Velvet was held up at the music school for reasons unknown to her for several hours before she was let go.
Her daughter, Twilight Sparkle, caught wind of this, along with most of Canterlot and her friends from Ponyville, from when she went with her mother for recitals.
That evening, on the main streets of Canterlot, a huge gathering of Ponies were protesting the change. With them were Yaks, Changelings, Griffons, Hypogryphs, Dragons, and Kirin.
“Rights for all! We’re made equally!” they chanted as the Royal Guard formed a chain, though Twilight was having a hayburger at the same time, then got choked for a minute until a yak hit her between the shoulder blades.
“Pony need to cough harder!” she hit again, “Spit food out!” she hit again, dislodging the piece of fast food dinner from her throat, “Pony okay?” Twilight caught her breath, “Is pony okay?”
“Yeah!” she replied, “Thank you! What’s your name?”
“Yo-” but she was cut off as vehicles were driven that forced the protesters back.
“No violence!” they chanted, prompting the royal guard to beat and arrest the protestors, though only the ponies were sent to jail. The other creatures were either deported or fled from the authorities to haven cities and towns such as Ponyville.
Meanwhile, Twilight Velvet, who was finally getting to see the princess after several hours, was being driven to the castle via Zogo.
“Great,” the driver said, “More guards. Why?”
“Don’t worry,” Velvet replied, “I’ll figure this out.”
“I heard the princess is incapacitated.”
“That’s what I found out, too. If that’s the truth, we’ll take over until she’s well.”
After a minute, the driver accepted defeat to the crowd, “Mrs Velvet, you might make it if you take the subway. And don’t worry about paying me. I don’t charge anypony who’s in the monarch. They’re too kind to the rest of us.”
“I insist,” she said, procuring a twenty-bit note from her wallet and giving it to the driver, “For your troubles.”
But Velvet was already gone.
“Watch out, ma’am,” a guard said, not knowing it was one of the mares to arrest.
The area was cleared out, compared to earlier, now, and Velvet could see Twilight being arrested and beaten.
The younger Twilight looked her mother helplessly in the eyes, but was beaten, causing Velvet to collapse from shock.
“Get your damn... hands... off of me!” Twilight said, resisting the guard and running to her unconscious mother, but one grabbed her by her tail and pulled her on her back, cuffed her, and threw her in a police van, hit her again, but stunning her this time.
In the jail, one of the guards pulled Twilight aside and handed her a note.
Twilight ran out of the jail and found the domestic train for Canterlot in several minutes. She didn't have her scooter, or time to run back to her house, so this would have to do.
She got to the station the same time it did.
Don't worry, Mom! I'm coming! I won't let you down!
"Miss!" the attendant said, "Miss, you need a ticket."
"Sorry, one to Canterlot Hospital," she said, giving him a five-bit note.
"Twilight Sparkle?" he said, noticing the mare's license, "Don't, you needn't pay," he said, giving her a ticket, "I'm sorry about your mom."
"I hope I'm not too late," she said, running to the train before anypony else, leaving the money.
It wasn't for a few minutes, though before everypony else began bording the train, especially seeing as how she'd plowed straight through the ropes. Waiting for the train to even get moving, didn't help her any. In fact, what happened next scared her out of her own, terrifying thoughts.
"Twilight?" a voice from her class said.
"Ah!" she snapped around, noticing other ponies boarding the train, "Sunset Shimmer?"
"What happened to you back there?"
"I was thrown in the stockade."
"How did you get the black eye?"
"I... don't really remember. How did you not get taken in?"
"A guard hid me in a dumpster until the others went away. They wouldn't dare arrest the princess's daughter. Besides, we technically weren't doing anything wrong," she noticed Twilight's fidgeting, "I'm sorry to hear about your mom."
The train started moving with a heavy jerk.
"Have you heard anything about her?"
"I had them send the note to the prison, but I don't know anything about her condition, other than you should be there."
"We should both go. She's my mom and she's been there for both of us."
Sunset took the seat next to Twilight and put her hand on the somewhat-beaten girl's lap, "It'll be okay. I promise."
"I hope so," she said, the rumbling of the train growing louder until it made it up to speed, "I hope so."
When they got to the hospital, Sunset explained to Twilight that her mom was in the ER, but intentionally left a few... shall we say sensitive... details out.
"So here's the thing, Twilight. Your mom had a heart attack, a good chunk of Canterlot should know by now. She's, as far as I know, in the ER, so you should probably be careful around her."
"We would always watch the channel from Ponyville together," Twilight interrupted, recalling another memory they all had with their mother, "It was always fuzzy, but we were always inspired by the last program before they killed the transmitter for the night."
One low-power station at 8:30? Bringing a family together? She must've really been a fan of The Angel Foal . I hope she's alright, but how do I break the coma to her. She saw her collapse, but I don't-
"Always reminded us of us."
That stung Sunset.
No breaking that-
They ran into Shining, Cadence, and Flurry.
And the doctor.
"It's Mom, Twiley."
"Twilight," the doctor said, "You're mom's in a coma."
"I want to talk to her."
"Twilight..." the doctor replied, annoyed.
"I want to talk to her!"
"Twilight!" her brother said, grabbing her by the shoulders and shaking her a little, "Mom's in a coma."
The realization hit her just like one of her failed pranks on her brother when they were younger.
"Can we see her?"
Walking in the room, while the realization didn't make it to them, the mother/grandmother was receiving sub-par care. Her IVs were glass bottles with the tubes stuck in them, she was hooked up to a rather aged ventilator, and the "transfusions" had previously come loose (they had tape on them).
"Frankly, we don't know if she'll wake up," Turret said, leaving and hiding a smirk, "I can't give you much hope."
How that bitch isn't in the big house is beyond me.
Velvet was in a coma, a rather long one. Eight months.
She missed Nightmare Moon coming back and being reformed, she missed Blueblood and his crew almost getting found out several times, and her anniversary. She slept through her birthday. The music school couldn't operate without her and Foal Support Services were at a standstill.
Anything that relied on her either changed drastically, stagnated, hit a standstill, or just fell apart.
Every day, Twilight would come and visit. Shining and Cadence did, but less frequently. Sunset had the least time because she wanted to find out what was going on with Velvet not getting decent medical care, or why she felt the doctor couldn't have given a shit for Velvet to live that day.
The woman was too nice for anyone to have that thought without reason.
Every week, Twilight would have the Pioneer Foals come in to sing for their teacher, providing relief for everyone who was awake. They would talk to her, and Twilight even bought a TV and antenna with a cable long enough to stretch out the window, just so "they" could watch the Ponyville channel every night.
Anything to bring relief to her family.
Some days, Twilight would sit next to her mother's bed, filled up with coffee to keep her from sleeping and having a repetitive and rather terrifying nightmare. Others saw the nurses playing recordings that her children made, had she woken while they couldn't be there.
Cadence and Shining weren't doing any better, really. They were having the same problems on top of Cadence having to control the heavens now.
One day, though, after Sunset had been poking through some rather confident papers, she was walking through the hospital with a pair of headphones around her neck, connected to her Zune.
She was supposed to drive Twilight home later, so she decided she'd listen to one of her playlists until she walked by a certain door on the way to the waiting at the ER unit...
"Turret! You can't just jerry-rig a couple of glass bottles, tape, and a tube together for a transfusion! You know that!"
Sunset opened the voice recorder on her phone, set it to record, then put it in her pocket, microphone facing out, along with pretending to be listening to Don't Stop Believin', and really getting into it.
"Nurse Rose, all that woman ever DOES is bark out orders!"
"Oh yes, her and the princess both, I'm assuming. I've never ONCE heard of anypony in the monarch making our lives miserable, just because!"
When she noticed their hoofsteps coming to the door, she quickly turned on her playlist so her lie would be believable.
It had been about two-and-a-half months since Velvet had fallen comatose, and all of Twilight's worrying was beginning to scare the doctors, especially around the one-month mark when she began to show signs of exhaustion and other sicknesses, rather prolonged much more than should be.
Now, it was close to 11:30 at night and one of the best-known nurses had been assigned to Velvet. The TV in her room was running, still tuned to the (now shut-down for the evening) Ponyville station, showing pan-and-scan style shots of the small town with light, gentle music behind it and, in a bar at the top of the screen, showed the time, date, and the words 'Ponyville TV'. Velvet's ventilator had been keeping it's rhythm since day one, thankfully, but the gray mare still showed no signs of improvement. Twilight also seemed to be falling ill, having turned noticeably more pale than before, plus a few vile-smelling stains on her shirt and face.
"Twilight?" Nurse Redheart said, coming in and finding a rather sickly mare in the chair that Twilight occupied, "Twilight, can you hear me?"
She shook the sleeping mare slightly.
"No! Don't die!" she said, snapping awake, "What time is it?"
"11:30 at night, Twilight," Redheart said, giving her a cup of iced tea, "Drink this."
"What is it?" she replied, groggily.
"Iced tea. I came in earlier, and you felt like you were burning up."
She slowly drank the cold liquid, but soon felt like someone was sending a magic beam through her torso for a few moments.
"When was the last time you ate?"
"What day is it?"
"Three days ago."
"Listen, sweetie," Redheart said, getting a pack of crackers from the vending machine from her pocket, "What I want you to do is go home, go to bed, and don't worry about anything for a few days. It's taking a toll on your health, and a worrying one at that."
"No! What if Mom wakes up!? What if-"
"I'll let you know or come get you."
"I don't have a ride home to-"
"Sunset should be here any second. She'll stay with you."
Twilight felt like her body was going to dispose of what she just ate from both ends in a rather unforgiving manner.
"Sorry I couldn't get here sooner," Sunset said, coming into the room, a set of keys in her hand with the ring around her middle finger, "I couldn't find a set of car keys," she noticed Twilight, "Oh, sweet Celestia."
"Hi, Sunset," Twilight said with a dry throat.
"You need to get home as soon as possible."
"Twilight may be fine," Sunset said, going over to her and picking her up, "But Twilight still needs a bed and something to eat."
Accepting defeat, she succumbed to sleep as Sunset walked her out of the hospital.
The following morning, Twilight woke up in her bed with her Smarty Pants doll. The things about her room that were different were that there was a fan osculating on medium and a mostly-empty glass of water.
Where am I?
She looked to her bedside table, where her alarm clock read 9:35 in purple numbers.
"When did I come home!?"
She heard hoofsteps running to her bedroom door as she noticed she smelled vile and felt sticky and hungry.
"Twilight?" Sunset said, knocking on her bedroom door, "Twilight, are you okay?"
"Yeah," she replied as Sunset came in the room with a thermometer and a cold drink, "I'm fine. Do you know why I'm here?" she rubbed the gunk out of her eyes.
"You were running a fever," she said, pulling a chair over to her, "among other things, according to Nurse Redheart," she took Twilight's temperature, then put her a change of clothes in said chair, "She said it's due to stress and exhaustion," the thermometer beeped, so Sunset checked it, earning a curious look from Twilight, "It's lower than what Nurse Redheart said when I left with you last night-"
"What did she say and what is it now?"
"Last night... they were debating on keeping you there for a few days for observation. She said it was around 106. Right now, you're at 99," she gave her the water, "You had a dry throat, so you went through a few glasses of water in a short amount of time, and to took me a while to find your pajamas."
"Anything else?" she said upon finishing the glass of water.
"You need to take your mind off of that. It's not good for you. I know she's your mom, but you still have your life to live. Don't give that up, too."
"You're right," she replied, cracking her back, "I don't need to put myself at stake here. Is the cable place hiring?"
"I think so."
"I could give that a try."
"Just don't exhaust yourself."
Twilight took her time getting to the bathroom and getting herself cleaned up while Sunset made some breakfast for them. When she came out, Sunset had a breakfast of eggs, eggos, oatmeal, orange juice, and toast.
"Where did you learn to do this?" Twilight asked, still a little hoarse.
"I took up a little bit of cooking. I can't do much more than this, really."
"Now, if it's the cable place you wanna look into, I can help you there."
"It would help. Mom's gonna wanna see the news and whatnot, but since Princess Luna's return..."
"You're in luck if you get a certain stallion there to work with," she said, just remembering an important detail, "Just, he doesn't really... talk."
"What do you mean?"
Later, Twilight pulled into the Canterlot Cable TV office, everything she needed. Her fever had broken, putting her back at a steady 96.5, and she walked in, ready for what would come, or so she thought.
"Ms Twilight?" the director said, "You'll be working with a stallion, Seth."
"Just, he's... anxious."
She followed the director to a station where a brown stallion with a messy, midnight-blue mane and tail (with what looked like terribly-done dyed-black strips), dark-midnight-blue eyes, glasses, a blue-gray button-up shirt open, revealing a black shirt, blue jeans that were torn at the back of the legs as if he had been walking on them, a watch, a pencil in his mane, and shoes, not unlike a stallion from Hooflyn.
She almost freaked out at how messy the setup was overall, moreso noticing a bucket of what looked like the stuff a pony would use to get ready in the morning, assuming they had to do it at work.
"Seth, this is your partner, Twilight Sparkle."
He turned and, upon noticing she was a mare, froze up, looking her up and down a time, "Uh..."
"I'll let you two get to know each other," he said, taking his leave.
"Are you alright?"
"Uh..." he said again, this time taking a drink from a thermos, "I..."
She sat down, causing him to move over, away from her.
It was a few minutes before anything actually happened, so she asked again.
"Are you okay, or should I get somepony?"
"I'm... ahright," he said with a prominent Hooflynian accent.
Over the next few months, Twilight worked with Seth's anxiety, but seemed to be getting nowhere at all. Every day, it was mostly stammering and worrying noises in a conversation with maybe ten words from him, assuming she was rather lucky. It went over, day in and day out. Sunset tried to help, but that seemed to do a little more harm than good, seeing as she was the Princess's daughter. He could talk to her brother, or any other stallion, but if there was a mare around, it didn't work.
Finally, the day came where something broke in her. Whether it was because of her comatose mother, Seth's lack of progress, Blueblood still being a jackass, or how to keep Princess Luna's return a secret, nopony would ever know.
"Alright," she said, breathing sharply, "If you somehow manage to say twenty-five words WITHOUT stammering, I'll buy lunch. Wherever you want," he looked at her, then looked away, "Dammit!" she said, slapping him hard enough to leave a swollen handprint on his face and knocking his glasses off.
"Ow!" he said, "What the tartarus did ya do dat for!? You coulda broke my jaw! Not ta mention ya knocked my glasses off! Shit, dat hurts!" he found his glasses and put them on, "I'm glad dese are still together, 'cause I'm half-blind, ya know!"
"It's okay. I know how ya feel."
Something clicked in Twilight's head, "Fourty-three."
Seth was visibly concerned for the mental state of his partner, "Are you-"
"How do you feel?" she said enthusiastically, hoping something worked.
"Concerned by your sanity?"
"No, not that!" she sat down, "About talking!"
"That was forty-three words, earlier."
"It... wait, what?"
"Just then, you said more to me than the last two weeks combined! Can you talk to Sunset now?"
"We'll work up to that," she said, texting Sunset the news.
Me: You'll never guess what happened! Sunset: What? Me: That anxiety, he may be getting over it. He says it'll take time before he can talk to you, though. Sunset: That's good, but how are we going to keep Aunt Luna from your mom?
Seth was peering over Twilight's shoulder, "I can help. Plus, I don't think your mom's ever met me."
"She'll probably want to see news first so she can get a grasp on what's going on."
"Not a problem," he said, pulling a laptop from a drawer and showing her several folders labeled Current Camera, Information Program «TIME», amongst others, "Which does she prefer?"
She scrolled through the list, then decided on the first two that she noticed, "Current Camera and TIME. Now, where do you want to eat lunch at," she said, closing the laptop.
"There's this new Yakyakistanian place that opened a week ago."
"Let's try it," she remembered she didn't have her keys, "No keys. Guess we're walking."
"I have a 2008 Yakaha WR250R. It's like a motorbike."
"Do you have a helmet?"
He pulled one from the same drawer, "I bought it from a unicorn in 2012 before I moved to Canterlot."
A few minutes later, they were speeding down the streets of Canterlot, eventually finding a restaurant that seemed to already be closed.
"Worth a shot," he said, pulling into the lot to turn around, "It's okay. I expected as much."
A few days later, she was back in the hospital, visiting her comatose mother. Seth had decided to come and support her. Sunset, Shining, Cadence, and a newborn Flurry were all there.
"Just how long has it been," he said.
"Wow. Dat hit hard."
They had only been there for a few minutes when...
Twilight had been called in to see the doctor alone with her brother, Cadence, and niece.
"We don't know how much longer your mother will live, but we can't give you much hope beyond a few weeks. Due to her condition, she needs no surprises, whatsoever. It runs the risk of another heart attack, most likely a fatal one. We'll keep her here in go-"
"I want to take her home," Twilight said, noticing this week's edition of The Canterlot Journal, which had an article on Princess Luna, straight on the front of it."
"She can't have any surprises."
"Cadence," Twilight said, about to lose it, "Shiny. Get. Flurry. Out. Now."
Both knowing that tone, they left and went to the waiting room so Twilight could explain to the doctor.
"Twilight, your mother can't-"
"Be surprised! I KNOW!! You fucking SAID that!" she beat her fist on the desk, picking up the paper with her magic and shoving the headline into the other mare's face, "But THIS is okay‽‽ How in Celestia's name do you think she'll react when she sees the paper or turns the television on and the headline is 'Princess Luna x'‽"
Defeated, he sighed, "Okay," he slid a waiver to her, "Sign here, then get on the bed."
"Why?" she asked, finishing the signature.
"Get on the bed."
Reluctantly, she complied.
"In the event of cardiac arrest," he gripped her wrist's pulse enough to feel it prominently, "Check for a pulse," he demonstrated CPR on her, "and CPR. Have someone call Emergency."
"Okay," she said, getting up, "But she should be taken back to our house in an ambulance. Canterlot's changed, now that Princess Luna's back."
"Yes, ma'am," was all he could say, "We'll have her ready to be taken home at ten o'clock tomorrow morning."
Going back into the waiting room with the others, she explained the deal.
"Mom can't have any surprises, so she's going to come home tomorrow morning at ten. We need to rebuild the monarchy in there."
"Are you insane?" Cadence asked, "Do you know how hard that's going to be?"
"The guy from the cable place that I work with can take care of the harder parts. That aside, we just have to redecorate the house."
Seth walked in the waiting room, carrying drinks for everypony, "I thought you could use these."
"How much do you know about electronics and wiring?" Twilight said to Seth.
"I know everything about electronics and wiring."
"Can you mess with some of the cable outlets in our house and take out the Internet?"
At the house, they took down the decorations that referenced Luna to keep Velvet from the possibly shocking reality. It involved breaking Velvet's radio, turning off the cable feed to her room, messing up the wireless, and cleaning everything, just so it would be fresh for her.
All-in-all, they were up until three o'clock the next morning, seven hours before Velvet would be discharged, making absolute sure that the house was "Luna-proofed".
"Earlier," Seth said, "I took old recordings from Analytical Program «TIME» and Current Camera, spliced segments together, and burned them ta DVD. Thirty-two editions of TIME and eighteen of Current Camera. Ya gonna have ta wait until she gets back before ya go and connect the reader to the TV. I also put in there close to ninety episodes of those shows ya said she likes," he gave her a box, "Everything time-specific is labelled for when it should start. Just tell ya mom that ya went an antenna. Got an antenna."
When the ambulance backed into the driveway, Twilight and Shining were ready to get her back inside. Seth stayed back with Cadence, but left out the back when the ambulance came into the driveway.
"Mom," Shining said, "Mom just lean on us."
She complied, seeing as how she didn't have a choice after having slept for eight months.
"Nothing's changed," Velvet said.
"Of course not," Twilight said, her and Shining putting Velvet in bed, "What is there to change?"
"Thanks for coming and visiting me."
"You're welcome," Shining said, "If you're bored, you can watch a DVD or listen to some of your CDs," he picked up the radio and swapped on the disconnected TV, "The radio fell the other day and the TV's been touchy."
"You two don't need to take care of me," she said, "You have your own lives, Shining, you have Cadence, too. I can't even go to the bathroom by myself."
"Don't say that," Cadence said, coming into the room, "Oh, I'm also not sure how exactly to say this, but the other day, you became a grandmother."
"I'm happy for you. Could I see the foal?"
Cadence sat Flurry down in Velvet's lap, "Her name's Flurry Heart."
She held the filly, "I'm your grammy, little Flurry!" Flurry just laughed as she looked up, "I wish Night Light were here for this."
"Could we get you anything, Mom?"
"No," she said with a warm smile, "I'm okay."
"Are you sure?"
"Well, I guess I have a craving for some sliced carrots, if you insist."
"I'll be right back," Twilight said.
When she got to the refrigerator, her phone rang.
"Hello?" she answered, not looking to see who was calling.
"Did ya mom buy the DVDs I made as real?"
"We just said the TV was on the fritz."
"...What part of it do ya need help with?"
"I don't know that I can pull it off."
"I'll stop by later and 'look at it'. I should've told you when I was there with everyone."
She hung up the phone, grabbed a pack of carrot sticks, poured a glass of sweet tea, and took it to her mom.
"The cable guy's coming out later to check on things and maybe take a look at the box in the living room. You shouldn't be cut off for much longer."
"You two are the best kids a mother could ever ask for, and I love you all."
An hour later, the doorbell rang.
"I got it," Twilight said, answering it.
It was Seth, holding what looked like a box from the cable office.
"It also didn't cross my mind that you'd need this," he went in and opened the box on the couch, revealing a DVD player, small monitor, and more-than-long-enough cables so Twilight could run the "broadcast" from her room.
A few minutes later, and the setup was ready.
"And there... you... are!" Seth said, finishing the new link and turning to Velvet, "You should have television again now."
"You're too kind."
"It's just my job," he said, sincerely, "I hope ya get better soon," he switched on the set, hoping that he got the timing right for the 2:30 session of Current Camera.
It was the ending credits to an episode of The Big Bang Theory, followed by a clock that ticked to 2:30, then spun around to reveal a blue, bold CC.
A few days later, Velvet's room had everypony, Twilight, her Ponyville friends, Sunset, Shining and Cadence, a few Pioneers, and Seth (out of respect and moral support), with everypony giving her gifts as her now-former students sang.
"Don't worry, Mom," Twilight said, "We'll still celebrate your birthday, as every year."
"It's okay, you don't have to."
"No, you deserve it."
"Oh alright," she said with a chuckle, "But only because I know there's no stopping you."
"There's the Mom I know."
Building the nation is our goal, Learn and work as ne'er before, A free world for every foal, Faith in its own strength is born!
Velvet began to conduct at the march of the third.
Pony youth, for whom the striving, Of our Ponies is at one!
For the sake of reviving, and over Equestria, There is radiant Sun! There is radiant Moon!
They still saw her as Ms Velvet, despite the circumstances.
"I'm sorry we can't go to Doughnut Joe's like every year because of your health," Twilight said, holding her drink, "But my mom, she's been one of, if not the most, caring and understanding mares ever, apart from Princess Celestia."
"I'd like to say that, of all of the things you do," Sunset said, "my mom is not only proud, but my aunt, too. Thanks for -"
"Thank you, Sunset."
"Ahem, thanks for being there for me-"
"Thank you, Sunset."
Velvet noticed a banner being hung from a building from her window.
"Everything we all go through aside,"
"and everything we'll face in th-"
Everypony looked out the window, then everypony looked at each other in shock.
"Shit," Seth mouthed to Twilight, who was panicking internally.
A while later, the party was over. Sunset decided to stay back with Velvet while the others tried to think of something outside.
"Okay," Twilight said, "What do we know?"
"Da recorded newscasts were shot straight to Tartarus," Seth said, "Any self-respecting pony is gonna be automatically interested inna banner depictin' royalty."
"Wait!" Applejack said, "The five of you were feeding her crap that's happened already, sayin' nothing's changed!?" she turned to Twilight and Shining, "An' she's yer ma, fer Celestia's sake!!"
Shining went for a drive, feeling like he might pummel the mare's face into the ground.
"Oh, Mom, while you were in your eight-months-long-coma, despite the fact that the doctors saying another surprise would lead to an almost-certainly fatal heart attack, Nightmare moon came back and Princess Luna's on the throne again. I hope you live through the next five seconds!!!" Twilight said, inches away from her friend's face.
"Oh, Celestia," Seth said under his breath before looking up, "Listen, Velvet needs to be kept calm. No surprises, no screaming, no any of that stuff. Both of you, we need to think of something."
"Ah'm sorry," Applejack said, hanging her head in defeat.
"Me, too," Twilight mirrored.
"Darlings, Applejack is right. Ms Velvet most certainly will see through this lie eventually."
"I have a camera and printer," Seth said.
"Darling, if you're going that route, we'll need to work on your..." Rarity, upon looking at Seth, started to turn a little paler than usual, "Well the whole thing."
"What... do you mean?"
"Well, you are the only one suited to making something like this, considering she's seen you, by far, the least of anypony there, so I could pull something off follow me!!" she said, dragging him to her Canterlot boutique.
A few hours later, after Twilight learned to work the camera and Seth tried to adopt a "natural" Canterlot accent (that is used very loosely around a Hooflyn accent), they were in front of the building.
"Good thing I have several spares of glasses."
"Three, two, one," Twilight said before pointing a finger at Current Event (Seth in Rarity's elaborate disguise).
"Canterlot. Many ponies here are feeling as'ough da night -"
"Cut, cut, cut cut cut!"
"We worked on this earlier. Your accent."
"In terms-a etiquette, Canterlot and Hooflyn ah beyahnd pola-ropposites."
"Can you do a Trotan one?"
"Let's try. Cyantuhlyat, Noo Joisey... Gaht it!"
"Three, two, one."
"Canterlot: As the nightlife in the city bustles and grows as it has over the past few years, more and more ponies have been-"
"What are you doing‽" a stallion said, going over to the two.
"I thought you asked Sunbeam if we could film here."
"His name started wit an 'S'."
After a few minutes of drama, the two discussed what they were gonna do, finally coming to the conclusion of "Just do it".
"Three, two, one."
Twilight started the set, a little stressed, as a clock was ticking to 9:00:00PM, wondering what could go wrong.
Various shots of Equestria with the text ANALYTICAL PROGRAM scrolling across the bottom of the screen shown before settling at the castle and displaying the word TIME over the end of the text when it stopped scrolling before moving to a shot in front of the building with the banner.
"Canterlot. As the nightlife in the city bustles and grows as it has over the past few years, more and more ponies have been worried of not giving enough thanks to the moon. Clubs, DJs, and even entire towns and cities across Equestria have shared this mutual feeling, and as such, have decided to put on display, their gratitude. This show of harmony was initiated by the population of ponies that suffer insomnia, but make the decision to embrace, rather than treat or cure it, stating that it is a gift that allows them to enjoy the day and night equally, rather than one or the other. I'm Current Event, Analytical Program TIME."
A week later, they were all back at the hospital with Velvet, who was on her deathbed. This time, they were trying to figure out what to do next, since their lie was getting more and more difficult to carry.
"Twilight, Darling, we can't keep this together for very much longer."
"We have to," she responded, "I know you all love her, but I also know that you have your own lives to lead."
"Twilie," Shining said, "I'm with Rarity. I almost feel like we nearly made her go into another coma."
"I have it," Seth said, "We kill da monarchy."
"Kill the princesses!?" Twilight said.
The only one who wasn't shocked was Princess Celestia, who picked up somewhat on what his idea was.
"No, tune in [and] hear me out," he said, "We've been faking da monarchy through fake broadcasts. Equestria is a diarchy, so no killing anypony. I'm saying dat we put an end to dis, once and for all," he turned to Sunset, "Is ya mom and Aunt okay with making a tape?"
"Actually," the princess said as Sunset pulled a book that was titled To Die with Dignity from her bag, "They told me how you want to be a writer. I would like to broadcast this all across the world, and for you to script it."
"You want me... to write a news segment... main anchor it... involving you...? Ta be broadcasted...? Globally...?"
"Oh," he said, sitting down, "Okay, but you'll have to write your own speeches. You're Equestria's rulers, for your sake."
"I'll get to work on that with my sister."
Dr Arzt came out of Velvet's room, "She's awake. You may go in, now."
One by one, they went in the room, Sunset giving the book to Velvet.
"To Die with Dignity, by TwiPON3?" she said, "It sounds good."
"It's large print, Ms Velvet," Seth said, "Da only copy in existence."
"Pushed out, just for you, Mom," Twilight said as the bedridden mare's family went to hug her.
"What have you got planned, Seth?" Sunset asked.
"Well, I'll be anchor of TIME, an' I want you to be wit ya mom and aunt when dey make their speeches. It's gonna have Risen from Ruins playing behind it for theirs, den I want you to come forward and welcome everycreature into Equestria, wit Equestria's Hymn behind ya speech. Da shot's gonna go back to me so I can announce the barriers falling and the guards returning, and then da Elements will speak in their shot, with A Heart Carol."
"This may be your greatest work yet."
That night at 9:25, Night Light was finally able to get to Velvet, but they both noticed Ponyville hadn't killed their transmitter yet. All of the channels were still broadcasting with none on standby, so she tuned to channel sixty-seven.
This had only happened once, but that was a long time ago. Little did they know that everypony everycreature in all countries had aerials, dishes, receiving television pylons, you name it. From the small towns like Ponyville to the bustling Manehattan to the backwoods Appleloosa. Every television in Las Pegasus, was set, even the casino having turned into a theater-type deal. All countries: Yakyakistan, Kirin Country, the Changling hive, Mt Aries, Griffonstone, and the Dragonlands, just to name a few.
In short, this was big.
They were greeted with a clock, ticking to 9:30; something standard for Current Camera and TIME to do a few minutes before they started, although this one was CGI with some extra scenery.
At the broadcast office, Seth was anxiously waiting until the startup began.
In Velvet's hospital room, the television showed a CGI clock that, somewhat dramatically, ticked 9:30, then moved out of the way for a pendulum to swing across the screen, showing gears similar to the inside of a mechanical clock, then swung back to change the scene to a world map made with dots, then swung back across to a spinning globe with rings that were made up of video clips.
Next, the globe moved to the center of the screen before the Princesses' cutie marks moved from behind said globe to either side as the video-clip rings turned to beams that were aimed at a satellite, that projected a world map into a PIP-square.
A moment later, the PIP filled the screen, showing a blue map with all of the video clips from their native lands as they zoomed to Canterlot's place on said map as the image zoomed into its place on the map as a few buildings stood up and the words «TIME» SPECIAL WORLD BROADCAST
"Honey, do you know what's going on?" the bedbound mare asked her husband.
"I... really don't have an idea."
A moment later, Seth appeared onscreen as his anchor persona.
"Hello, and thank you for tuning in tonight, as there are quite a few announcements," as he named the cities, recent shots of them appeared onscreen, "Manehattan: Rarity For You breaks top sales in the Northeast Manehattan area. Hooflyn: Infrastructures are increasing in quality and quantity for creatures willing to move. Appleloosa: High-speed Internet Access will arrive in the coming months," his tone changed to an enthusiastic one, Canterlot: The Princess implements changes that will better the creatures of Equestria in many ways," it swapped back to him at the desk.
"What?" the couple said at the line for Canterlot.
The picture swapped to the princesses and Sunset in the throneroom, Celestia standing.
"My subjects, we have all been through hard times in the past, we may be experiencing challenges now, and we will experience challenges in the future, all of which require adaptation. My sister, absent for a millennium, has rejoined us and will now be ruling alongside myself on the throne."
"The Princess justified her decision in a statement of Harmony and her purpose," Seth said, voicing over as Luna made her way over and Celestia returned to her throne.
"Creatures of the world, I have been lost, wandering for a thousand years, separated from my sister. If you've been lost and on your own before, then you may already know how easy it is to lose trust in your strengths, as I near made that... terrible mistake all of those years foregone. I wish all fair health and prosperous lives as your new Princess."
Sunset moved forward as Princess Luna sat down.
"The Daughter of the Sun and Niece of the Moon, Sunset Shimmer, has decided with the elder princess for rights."
"Creatures of the world, from all reaches, these recent times have been hard for you, especially trying to enter into Equestria, you have been needlessly pushed back and denied. During a time of incapacitation of Princess Celestia, your trouble only grew. When you're around other creatures, naturally you'd become curious, then proceed to interact with them. When you do, you know that it's only on the surface that separates us. The only differences are what we are, which makes no creature evil. It's who you are that defines good or evil. With that, we wish to open Equestrian borders for all to enter."
Seth did a voiceover as various shots of walls fell because at the hands of guards and civilians working together and going into Equestria as fast as the could, "As the walls and barriers came down, thousands seized the opportunity to enter into our kingdom, we as ponies live among each other as friends, hand-in-hand, but these creatures may not have this luxury in their own homes and nations," the shot returned to him at the desk, "Our Nation's six elements have personally welcomed a few creatures in already."
The picture swapped to Twilight and her Ponyville friends standing next to a Yak, Dragon, Hypogriff, Changeling, Kirin, and Griffon.
Velvet and Night Light's smiles grew as they heard and saw what was in front of them.
"We decided 'at the Element o' Honesty oughta speak first," Applejack said, walking forward with the Griffon, "So, while Ah ain't one for formalities an' such, Ah promised 'at these here creatures won't run into a pony 'at'll straight-up lie to 'em. Ah want all y'all ta keep it, ya hear?"
Next was Pinkie Pie, coming forth with the Hypogriff.
"It took a lot to lift their spirits after the trouble we had put them through, so whenever you see somecreature who's down, lift 'em up, and that's coming from the Element of Laughter!"
Fluttershy with the Changeling.
"I embody the Element of Kindness, so I ask that you always lend a helping hand."
And Rarity with the Kirin.
"I embody the Element of Generosity, so, to be brief, my request is for you to give to these creatures, especially if they're in need. They are like you and I, after all."
Rainbow Dash with the Dragon.
"I'm the Element of Loyalty, and I just gotta ask that you stand up for 'em, you know? Loyalty is both ways, not just one."
And finally, Twilight, who came forth with the Yak that dislodged the hayburger from her throat that night.
"I embody the Element of Magic, and I would like to say that, for what it's worth, I may not be here today if it weren't for this Yak. We all need to share the true magic of friendship with them."
All twelve creatures gave a simultaneous welcome as the shot, once more, turned to the newsroom.
"All creatures may now enter and exit Equestria, freely!" he said with much-needed enthusiasm, opening his wings slightly, "Canterlot 67 and the crew for TIME would like to extend a welcome to you all as well!"
Everyone who saw the broadcast cheered in glee. Rather than the usual message about being quiet for the ponies who were already resting for the evening, the whole world was celebrating. Families and friends were partying, streets were crowded with creatures who were cheering and celebrating, and music was being played. Bars and restaurants served all on the house for the rest of the night, and ponies who had known about the cast and had been anticipating it had proposed to their significant others. Enemies and ponies who had burnt bridges with each other were brought close again.
Fireworks lit up the skies across the world to celebrate as thousands were both entering and leaving Equestria.
Everywhere, you could hear a song being sung by enormous groups of all creatures alike, whether they could sing or not.
When the march begins And the trumpets are heard The people will shout And the walls will fall
When the walls fall, when the walls fall Sing (dance) with all the joy in your heart
When the comrades on the wall Raise their hammers to strike The people will dance and sing Until the walls crumble in
When the walls fall, when the walls fall Sing (dance) with all the joy in your heart
When the love has left their eyes And your lovers ceased to be Give voice there may be a key Maybe these walls don't need to be
When the walls fall, when the walls fall Sing (dance) with all the joy in your heart
The non-pony creatures that had been arrested for being in Equestria those months ago were released with a full pardon and clean slate, even the ponies who were locked up for legitimate reasons were let out for the night to celebrate.
It would come to be known as a holiday around the world.
Velvet's wish had come true.
A few hours later, everycreature from the newscast came to the hospital.
"You may have to take turns," the receptionist said.
"Good work," Twilight said to Seth.
"Forget about it."
Making their way to Velvet's room, nobody could decide who to go first, so she ended up being pushed out in a wheelchair.
"I'm so happy for all of you, and I hope you lead good lives," was all she could say before she began to run out of energy.
Two days later, she died, but left a legacy that spread to every end of the world: her children and their friends. The funeral was massive to the point that Canterlot Gardens could barely hold everycreature that showed up.
During the coming time, Twilight and Seth would leave the cable company, she would return to being a full-time student, Seth would join the TIME crew as a part-time anchor and get his book published, the elements would continue to protect Equestria, Flurry Heart would grow to be the Princess of Joy, and Night Light would dedicate his days to honoring his wife's memory and life.
"I raised a good family," she said from above the clouds, a tear falling from her eye, "I couldn't be more proud."