Three Sisters

by Cryohawk

First published

Once three sisters were united in harmony, they ended wars, disasters, and brought peace and harmony to the nation of Equestria. But after one mistake it all comes crumbling down. The sisters were separated and broken...until one day that all changed

For millennia Princess Celestia had ruled over the lands of Equestria in peace and harmony, and in doing so the ponies of Equestria have lived a thousand years of peace and prosperity with their mighty Princess being a beacon of harmony and peace. Now Celestia's reign nears a millennia and ponies look forward to another millennium of prosperity. That is until one event that would change Equestria forever bringing back ancient dark evils and terrible secrets that could reveal a hidden dark history of Equestria and their mighty Princess.

But it may also bring hope for one ancient alicorn...


Chapter Types
Normal Chapters: These are just normal chapters and are the main core of the story, and will progress the story.
Lore Chapters: These chapters will mainly go over concepts in more detail or concepts that I want to go over more. These chapters are completely OPTIONAL, you can skip these chapters and still understand what the story is about.
Flashback Chapters: These chapters will dive into the past of the three sisters and sometimes there will be large time jumps. While these chapters are optional, I would recommend them as they will really dive into the world, help define the sisters, and explore certain events.


Hello there! so just wanted to say that this story is more than likely going to have a very infrequent update schedule (if you could even call it that) and that I am sorry if there are long pauses. I am doing this for fun and with school, my laziness, and just getting distracted by everything I see there are going to be gaps between updates. BUT I will try my hardest to work on and hopefully finish this story as I know the feeling of a story that never gets completed. So some final thoughts are well leave comments if I screwed up anywhere and your opinions and well I hope you enjoy this!... Oh also this is my first story so I'm trying :twilightsmile:

Prologue: Just another day in Equestria...

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In the land of Equestria, another day rose. The newly emerged sun peaked over the sharp mountain range in the distance and the day was calm and peaceful like many days in the land of Equestria.

The Grand capital of Equestria, Canterlot, overlooked large swaths of land that were shadowed by the large mountain of Mt. Canterhorn and slowly the city began to wake up as many ponies began to prepare for the day.

Stood on a balcony, of a large castle, was a mighty and majestic being with a coat of pure white, a long floating ethereal-like mane and tail, a pair of marvelous wings, and a long spiral horn. There stood the ruler of Equestria, Princess Celestia.

As Celestia finished raising the sun and lowering the moon she looked at the disfigured moon as it slowly descends out of sight past the mountain range. Her face contorted into one of great guilt and shame. Ohh... Luna. Why did you have to suffer for my arrogance? Please... forgive me.

Celestia sat on the balcony for a few moments as her eyes began to shine with barely held back tears as the memories of the past began to haunt her again. Eventually, she was able to regain some of her strength and headed back through the balcony doors to her bedroom, shutting them shortly after.

Celestia took in a deep breath, still shaken up about her recent incident before she looked around her private chambers and saw her massive canopy bed that could probably hold three alicorns her size. It had pure white transparent drapes, red covers, and blankets, also imprinted on the sheets was her cutie mark.

On either side of her bed were nightstands, both of which also had her cutie mark emblazed on them, they were also outlined with gold trimming.

On the opposite side of the room from where she stood were a pair of double doors that lead to her, frankly, oversized bathroom with its equally ridiculously sized bath, that covered half of the room which also had a miniature waterfall of all things.

On the right side of the room, opposite to her bed, were another pair of doors that lead down a set of stairs to her office/lounge/nap room/tearo… well she liked to call it her “everything room”.

The only other things of note were a few windows with their curtains opened which let in her sunlight, as well as a room divider that blocked the view of her large custom wardrobe which held some of her dresses for events and her royal regalia.

As Celestia looked at the room divider she remembered why she had to close off her wardrobe from the rest of the world. Many years ago some... overeager paparazzi managed to take some unwanted photos of her while she was preparing for the day. The news, like it, always does, completely blew the whole affaire out of proportion, the whole thing became the talk of Canterlot and for a few weeks there were hundreds of rumors, conspiracy theories, and the trial and well... she decided to get a room divider a few days later.

Celestia then made her way to the wardrobe she used her magic to open a secure glass case embedded in the center of the wardrobe. She brought out her golden crown with a diamond-shaped amethyst in the center, a golden peytral with another identical gem in the center, and her golden slippers all of which previously sat neatly on a few pillows at the bottom of the case.

Celestia then began the process of putting on her regalia, applying her makeup, and making sure she was properly groomed before she stood before her mirror in full glory. She then made her way to the doors that led out of her bedroom, down the stairs, and to her “everything room”.

When Celestia entered her “everything room” she looked around in likely the one room she spent most of her time in, while not on her throne.

When she looked at the right side of the room she saw her, very much overused, large mahogany desk and the once bright golden trimmings were now dull and worn-out. On of the desk was an awaiting avalanche full of pending documents, personal letters, and royal requests from brownnosers, most of which were likely about personal gain. It waited sadistically there almost like it was waiting for her to spend untold hours reading and signing them all.

Celestia politely ignored her coming responsibility as she looked at either side of her desk and at the two large windows that allowed her gentle sun to illuminate the room.

In one of the corners of the room sat a grand fireplace with a blazing fire roaring in it, likely lit by one of the castle maids, and sat next to it was a low cabinet that held many of her knick-knacks that she had collected over her lifetime.

Sat in front of the fireplace was an oval-shaped cushioned rug with a small sitting table at the center and on the table was one of her many tea sets ready for use.

On the opposite side of her desk stood a pair of grand polished wooden doors, this was the entrance to her little fortress of solitude.

The few other things of note in her “everything room” were a few exotic plants that may or may not have been late-night snacks for when she had those particularly rough nights. There were also some small portraits or boxes that held a few pictures and mementos of old friends that had long since passed away.

One of those pictures, one of her most cherished ones, sat at the head of her desk. It was a photo of a young Cadence snuggled up next to her at the center of the maze in the royal gardens, they were sat underneath a large oak tree. It was one of the few times she was able to simply enjoy being in another's company without having to worry about Equestria or some disaster.

Celestia sighed as she knew she was stalling but with one last aggravated grunt, she headed to possibly her oldest "friend", her desk as well as the horrible fate that her "friend" carried paperwork.

As she reached her desk she put one of her hooves on the old worn surface before she smiled down at it, “Well, I suppose we meet again old friend... *sigh* It seems we have yet another long day ahead of us,” after the princess finished she proceeded to get into the worn-out cushioned seat she had used for who knows how many years.

She then prepared herself for the monotony of paperwork, nobles, paperwork, sitting, and even more paperwork.

But, just as Celestia started to shift through the papers, there was a knock at the door, “Your Highness, it is Raven. May I come in?” Raven dutifully announced.

"Yes, you may enter,” Celestia announced, the doors shortly after were pushed open and the pony who slipped in was none other than Raven Inkwell, her assistant.

Raven was a unicorn mare with a snow-white coat and a black mane and tail, both of which were in an adorable bun. Around her neck was her cute little collar with its red cloth necktie, she also had on a big pair of glasses, finally, her cutie mark was, ironically, an inkwell with a quill above it.

As Celestia looked at her dutiful assistant, she couldn't help but reminisce about how much Raven had changed since she first became her personal assistant. Oh, how nervous she first was and how stiff she was around her; but now Raven is one of her closest friends and most trusted adviser.

“Ahh, Raven. It is so good to see you. So how is the schedule today?” Celestia asked as she hoped she had one of her few “light” days.

“Hello, your majesty. Let's see… for today you have morning court from eight to ten. Then you have a meeting with your general cabinet at twelve-thirty… Ah! Then the School for Gifted Unicorns has its entry tests for the next school year. They wanted to know if you wished to observe the student potentials. Finally, you have evening court from four to six,” Raven finished as she looked up from her trusty clipboard, which was held in her red magical aura.

“I see. Thank you for informing me, Raven” - to which Raven nodded - “Now, could you please send a letter to the school and inform them that I do wish to observe the potential students,” Celestia didn't know why but she had a feeling something big was going to happen at the school.

“Of course, your Majesty. I will inform them immediately,” after Raven finished she gave a small bow.

Celestia nodded in appreciation at her assistant before she began to go through the mountain of paperwork she had been avoiding.

Raven quietly left the room, dutifully going to complete her duties.


Celestia quickly opened the doors from one of the many conference rooms in the castle and as the chatter of ponies from the conference room become more distant Celestia slightly drops her princess mask. With a sigh, she quickened her pace through the halls of the castle as she, hopefully, would be able to make it to at least see some of the new students.

As Celestia made her way through the halls she can’t help but be aggravated as to why she was late in the first place. Why did that meeting have to go on for so long!? Just because somepony calls you a mule face DOESN'T give you the right to bring back executions, JUST so you can properly deal with them! AND IT DOESN'T NEED TO BE ARGUED FOR OVER AN HOUR THAT THEY'RE AN EXCEPTION!

Celestia stopped and proceed to do her breathing exercise, after a few moments she managed to calm herself down and reacquire her princess mask. Those kinds of meetings always seem to affect me, *sigh* I love my little ponies, but sometimes they can be so…infuriating.

After a few more moments she continued her way down the hall and as she made her way to the tests her worry for being late increased. I hope I'm not too late. I love to see what the next generation can bring to Equestria.

After a few minutes, Celestia had made it to the royal gardens where she could now see her goal. One of the castles towers that the school was using for the test. Once she saw her goal Celestia quickened her pace to tower, at least that was until there was a sudden boom.

Celestia jumped slightly and instantly lit her horn in a bright golden glow as she prepared herself for any dangers. As she looked up she saw a massive rainbow... pulse? Fly through the sky and as it passed over her she felt a strong concertation of harmony magic accompany it.

But as the rainbow passed over Celestia she can’t help but freeze in place as she felt one of her runes, a very old rune, go off in a place that nopony should ever be able to get to. What! But that’s impossible for that rune to go off!?... The only reason it would go off is if-. Celestia was pulled out of her thoughts when a huge purple dragon crashed through the roof of a nearby tower, the same tower that the school was using for the student's tests.

Celestia pushed the thoughts about the rune to the back of her mind, for now. The rune can be checked later. I need to help my little ponies! Celestia’s horn began to glow brighter as she charged up a teleportation spell and as soon as she finished she disappeared in a bright flash.

A few moments later Celestia appeared in a room and the first thing she noticed was an eerie black "mist" with almost miniature purple lightning going off in it. But what worried Celestia more was how this "mist" started to destroy the room and even worse it was spreading! Fast! Celestia's eyes began to widen in terror as she realized how bad this situation was. This is very bad! Whatever caused this mist is destroying the room! I need to stop this before it reaches the rest of the CASTLE! Celestia looked around the room for any ponies that could be in danger.

Celestia saw a few teachers huddled together in a corner as they desperately powered a shield to try and hold off the black "mist", they were not doing well as their shield was flickering. She also noticed that on a stand was the large purple dragon she saw earlier, though only the bottom half, around the dragon was what looked like eggshells. But what caught Celestia's eye was a small unicorn filly with a black-purple mane and tail, an almost pitch black fur, and a space-themed cutie mark, if she had to guess a black hole. She was also in the middle of one of the most powerful surges that Celestia had seen in centuries.

Celestia shook off her shock and made her way toward the filly. Luckily the "mist" that the filly was producing during her surge wasn't as effective on her thanks to her alicornhood, but even still it stung quite a bit and caused her to slow down. After a few agonizing moments, she had finally made it to the surging filly. Celestia quickly put her horn on the fillies and began to contain the young unicorn's surge.

After a few moments, the surge started to end and the "mist" slowly dissipated until finally it fully dispursed. Soon after the dragon started to shrink down to the size of a foal until he was no bigger than the shell fragments around him. Meanwhile, the teachers dropped their shields and ran out of the room, likely leaving before anything worse could happen.

Celestia let out a sigh of relief and looked over at the filly that was exhausted on the ground, she then laid down next to the drained foal. Once there she began to check the foal over with a few scanning and healing spells, to see if she was hurt during her surge.

Shortly after the filly started to wake up from her surge and when she opened her eyes she looked blankly around the room until she caught the large form of the Celestia laid down next to her.

A pregnant silence shortly followed until the filly blurted out.

"OHMYGOSHPRINCESSI’MSOSORRYIWASDOINGMYMAGICTHENEVERYTHI-,” Celestia stopped the filly as she put one of her hooves over her mouth, the filly looked down at her hoof before her adorable eyes looked up at her.

“It is all right, my little pony. None of this was your fault, the only thing I’m worried about is if you're alright. You did have quite a big surge there,” Celestia looked down at the foal with concern.

“Oh... yes. Yes, I’m alright, Princess... sorry” the foal mumbled.

“It’s alright little one, but that was quite an impressive surge. What is your name, my little pony?” Celestia asked with a motherly smile. She is quite powerful for her magic to have such a powerful surge... maybe even powerful enough to be a bearer.

“Oh! I'm so sorry, Princess! My name's Centa Void,” the newly named Centa Void answered.

“Well Centa, that was a remarkable display of magic. Now, where are your parents? They should know you're safe now,” As soon as Celestia finished the filly’s expression changed from her adorable sheepish excitement to a very pained look, Celestia immediately regretted her question.

“Umm… Princess I-II don-t have paren-*sniff*-ts they, they…..” Centa’s mumbles became incoherent as her eyes began to water.

Celestia quickly unfurled one of her wings and wrapped it around the sad little filly, before she pulled her close to her chest, Oh you poor foal.

“Shh. Shh, it's alright,” and so the two ponies sat in the damaged room in silence.

After a few moments, Centa had calmed down enough that Celestia could ask her another question, hopefully not one so... disastrous. “If it's not too tough. Could you tell me where you've been living?” Celestia asked as she hoped that Centa at least had somewhere to sleep.

Centa had finally calmed down enough to answer her question, “Well, Princess. I've been staying at the Canterlot Orphanage for as long as I could remember. I... uh, I've always wanted to go to your School for Gifted Unicorns. So I decided to try and pass the test, but I guess I messed that up now,” Centa once again began to tear up again, Celestia was gonna have none of that.

She quickly brought out her other wing up to wipe away the newly formed tears under Centa’s lilac eyes. She then said, “There's no need to cry Centa, and as I said, from what I saw it was quite impressive for a pony so young to have such a powerful surge. I see much potential in you Centa. How would you like to become my personal student?”

Centa was flabbergasted by Celestia’s offer, but before she could say anything Celestia held up a hoof, “Before you choose, you would also be able to live in my castle with me and have access to the royal archives to help with your studies. So, what do you say?” she finished with a warm grin.

Centa’s body went rigid from shock and Celestia was a little worried that she may have gone a little far, but that quickly changed when Centa's face was overwhelmed with happiness. Centa then quickly jumped onto Celestia as she tried in vain to wrap her tiny hooves around Celestia's barrel, at the same time she began to feverishly nuzzle Celestia as tears of joy ran down her cheeks.

YES! YES! YES! YES! PLEASE! I PROMISE TO BE THE BEST STUDENT THERE EVER WAS!” Centa shouted, Celestia, laughed at her new student’s enthusiasm before she returned the little fillies nuzzle.

She couldn't wait to start her student's training. It had been centuries since her last student and Celestia had a feeling this one would be very special. Even with this joy Celestia couldn't help but feel like she was missing something else important.


The rest of Celestia’s day was a flurry of activity with her getting her new student moved out of the orphanage and into one of the rooms of the castle, having to figure out what to do with the baby dragon, and trying to fix the other magical anomalies that were caused by that magic rainbow pulse, and whatever caused it.

To put it simply, today was not one of her “light” days as she had hoped. Celestia worked on these projects long into the day and was forced to cancel evening court.

When everything was finished Celestia was exhausted and as she brought her head up from her desk after she completed the last of her work, she looked at a clock on the wall and saw that it was time to set the sun and raise the moon.

After Celestia completed her celestial duties she had planned to lay on her bed and read that story she had been into for the last few days, but she had a nagging feeling at the back of her mind. That was when she realized that she had forgotten something, The Rune.

Celestia's body went rigid at the realization and a mental battle started in her mind. It’s impossible for her to be free! Right?! But why did the rune go off? It would only go off if somepony got in or... if she really was released... Celestia bit her lip as she desperately tried to come up with a solution. I suppose it wouldn't hurt to check on the rune and it has been a while since I last visited her. With Celestia's mind made up, she lit her horn and the room was filled with a flash of light before she disappeared from her quarters.

She soon reappeared in a room that was only accessible through teleportation, she made sure that there was no other way in.

As Celestia looked around the room she didn't notice anything new with the cobwebs and dust everywhere, the only thing of true interest was the large old stone door with the... familiar mark engraved onto it. It was a six-pointed star with three smaller stars around it, once Celestia saw the image her heart ached at the memory of her.

To the naked eye, it would seem like an ancient forgotten room that was abandoned long ago, but this door and the room beyond had some of the most powerful and dangerous runes Celestia knew.

Celestia steadied her nerves and made her way to the stone door, her horn began to glow as she deactivated the hidden runes placed on it. As soon as she was sure that the runes were deactivated she wrapped her magic around the stone and began to move it, but even with her alicorn magic she partially struggled to move the stone behemoth. After she moved the ancient door, with a few moments for her to catch her breath, she looked into the room ready for the pain to follow. But what she saw caused her to become petrified and for the blood to drain from her face.

The room was mostly empty and very clean, she did come here every year to clean the tomb. There were also many burnt-out candles throughout the room, each one was for a year that had passed.

On the walls, there were carvings of an alicorn in different positions and each one told a story.

Finally, there were glowing purple crystals that hung throughout the room some were from the walls while others were from the ceiling, they easily lit the room in a purple glow.

At the center of the room was a pedestal with dark venomous purple crystal fragments scattered around it. While at the center of the pedestal lay a pony that Celestia hadn't ever thought she'd see again, somepony Celestia loved with all her heart.

On the pedestal layed a purple pony with a pink, purple, and dark blue mane and tail, she also had both wings and a horn, and the pony was adorned in old armor though it looked considerably damaged. Her cutie mark meanwhile was exactly like the one on the stone door but there was a smaller white star overshadowed by the main magenta star, the three little stars were also white.

Before Celestia the Mighty Princess of the Sun, the Sole Ruler of Equestria, and one of the only alicorns on Equis. Was Celestia’s younger sister, Twilight. The same Twilight that had been imprisoned in a crystal tomb for over a thousand years.

As her shock faded away her body was flooded with happiness, concern, fear, hope, and dread for her now released sister and at that moment there was only one thing that she could think to say.


To put it simply Celestia’s night wasen't over.

Chapter 1: The Return of a Sister

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When Canterlot Castle was completely renovated it was redesigned to be a perfect mixture of utility and luxury.

The castle had many different features throughout it, such as the many luxurious rooms for important individuals of the crown. The castle also had an up-to-date spa, that was recently added by a certain white princess. There were also the world-famous royal gardens which housed some of the most exotic flora and fauna in the world.

Besides the more extravagant parts of the castle, there were also some more utilitarian sections. Such as the Royal Medical Wing, or RMW for short. The RMW held some of the most advanced healthcare equipment in Equestria. There was also a small section of the RMW reserved for royalty, as well as a private medical room for Celestia.

Now, today like most days in the RMW was slow and boring. Not much happened in the RMW and any time a pony actually got hurt it was only minor cuts, bruises, or maybe at worst a broken bone from a few overzealous recruits. So a bored receptionist sat at her desk as she absentmindedly picked through a few papers. The receptionist was a unicorn with a light blue coat, a mane and tail with multiple shades of green, blue eyes, and a white overcoat with a blue undershirt.

This peace was quickly shattered when a bright flash of light engulfed the main lobby, which caused the previously bored receptionist to almost fall out of her chair. After a few short moments, the receptionist got out of her chair as she tried to get the spots out of her vision. When she tried to look at what caused the flash, she was instead met with a large white tuff fur.

As the receptionist looked up her eyes widened as she retreated in shock when she saw the frantic form of Princess Celestia. The princess's horn shimmered in her infamous golden hue and next to the princess floated a slightly larger-sized mare.

The mare had a purple coat, a pink, purple, and dark blue mane and tail, and a star-themed cutie mark with three smaller white stars around the large magenta one. But what caused the receptionist's mind to short circuit was that the pony had BOTH wings and a horn!

Before she could comprehend the possible existence of another alicorn she suddenly felt herself wrapped in an alicorn's aura. She was then pulled up in front of a certain panicked princess's face.

I NEED EVERY DOCTOR IN THE WARD TO COME HERE RIGHT NOW! MY LITTLE SISTER NEEDS HELP! TAKE HER TO MY MEDICAL ROOM THIS INSTANT! THIS IS AN EMERGENCY!!” Celestia screamed out in the Royal Canterlot Voice, directly into the receptionist’s face.

Celestia then hastily released the mare, the receptionist meanwhile had practically gone limp during the princesses orders as she now laid on the floor overwhelmed. At least that was until she heard the word emergency, which allowed the receptionist to shake off her shock.

After a few moments, where the receptionist desperately tried to get up and failed a few times, until she finally got up and quickly made her way to her desk. She then opened the cover for the RMW's panic button and preceded to slam it. Suddenly around the RMW alarm and red light runes began to go off as the RMW began to awaken with activity.

Moments later, the doors on either side of the receptionist's desk flung opened as a plethora of medical staff rushed through the doors, not far behind them was a stretcher. Celestia quickly placed Twilight on the stretcher, the medical staff then began to rush her to the medical room. But as Celestia began to follow them through the door she was stopped when a matching pair of brown-haired stallions stopped her.

“Your Highness, please you can’t come with us. You need to stay out here in the lobby until the patient's stabili-” the doctor on the left tried to say until he was interrupted by a furious Celestia.

YOU WILL LET ME THROUGH RIGHT NOW! SO I CAN SEE MY SISTER! NOW MOVE!” Celestia yelled at the impudent doctor.

Her horn began to glow a dark yellow as small bits of bright orange began to flake off. Celestia was about to force her way through the idiotic stallions that blocked her way to her sister. But before she could do anything the doctor on the right side of the door quickly used his magic to levitate her head towards his.

“Princess Celestia, you must trust us to care for the patient. Please, wait here. Because if you come with us you could hinder our ability to help her and possibly even harm her. So please, your highness. Stay here!” The doctor sternly told the princess before he let her head go.

The room was silent as everypony, even Celestia was shocked that some doctor would order, Princess Celestia, to wait in the room. After a tense silence, with everypony waiting with bated breath for the Princess to eviscerate the foolish pony, Celestia snapped out of her shock before she began to do her breathing exercise. Once Celestia was sure she was calm she looked at the doctors with much more control over herself.

“Yes, my apologies doctor for my… *sigh* for that. I'm just worried about my sister, I want her to be well. I... understand that I need to stay here, but tell me the moment her condition changes,” Celestia replied as she forced herself to remain calm.

“Of-f course, your Majesty. We'll tell you the moment if anything changes,” the doctor on the right replied as he gave a small bow before he turned to leave, with a little shake in his step.

His partner on the other hoof still shook like a leaf and took an extra second to catch up to the other doctor. As Celestia made her way back to the lobby, where she looked for a place to rest, she caught one of the doctors say something just out of earshot.

"I ca-n’t b-beliv-e you sto-od up to Pri-ncess Celest-ia,” when she heard that, her ears flattened to her skull as she hung her head low in shame.


As the night dragged on the medical staff worked hard to improve Twilight's condition, meanwhile, the rest of the castle was a mess as the news of the incident in the RMW quickly spread through the grapevine, and soon most of the castle heard about the event. Luckily, Celestia was able to contain the rumors to the castle for now, and not long after she planned a quick announcement, with the help of Raven.

In the announcement, Celestia was able to rectify some of the more... outlandish rumors and alleviate some of the fears ponies had. Celestia then announced that she would cancel all court sessions and take a temporary leave of absence from governance for the next couple of days. This came much to the shock of the staff and Raven, who had frantically started to rework Celestia's entire schedule.

Celestia then made her way back to the RMW and made herself a place to rest for the night in the lobby. When Celestia finished she decided that she would try to get some rest after her incredibly stressful day, unfortunately just as she closed her eyes she felt a very familiar feeling in her. It was time to set the moon and raise the sun.


Celestia sat in a chair with glazed-over eyes as she was stuck in her own mind, her mind had decided to replay the events of that horrible day. The day that everything changed… “We art almost there sisters. We can free the crystal empire and cease this tyra-” “SISTERS WATCH OUT!” “TWIIIILLLIIIGGGHHHT!”

Celestia was suddenly jolted out of her current state when she felt somepony prod her shoulder. She shook her head to clear her mind from those terrible memories.

When she looked over at who helped her she saw that it was her dear niece, Cadence. Celestia couldn't help but look over the cute little pink alicorn with her lovely pink, purple, and yellow mane and tail that naturally curled up at the ends. She also seemed to have decided to tie her mane into a ponytail with an adorable blue bow tied around her ponytail and tail. Then as she looked into her niece's eyes she saw her beautiful amethyst eyes as they looked at her. Finally, Celestia looked down at her flank and at the crystal heart that had interested Celestia since she met her. If only you knew how truly special your mark was, Cadence.

“Hello, Cadence. I’m sorry, I didn't see you there. How are you?” Celestia asked as she tried to put on a motherly smile.

“Auntie, are you alright? You're crying?” Cadence asked as she looked at her with palpable concern.

Celestia’s smile fell as she blinked a few times and brought a hoof up to wipe her eyes and as she looked down at her hoof she saw a few teardrops. She then proceeded to clear her eyes from any remaining tears before she looked back over at her concerned niece with a much more genuine and slightly tired smile.

“ *sigh* Thank you, Cadence. But I'm fine. Nothing to worry about," before Cadence could respond they heard the doors to the RMW open.

Celestia saw that the same brave doctor from before had come through. I should give him a raise for his help last night... and an apology, Celestia thought as he approached.

When the doctor got close Celestia dawned her infamous smile as she hoped for some good news. Cadence looked at her aunt for a few more moments longer before she also looked over at the doctor with a smile, she also shifted next to Celestia.

“Hello again, doctor. I would once again like to apologize for how I acted earlier. I can see now that my actions were... quite rash,” Celestia apologized with a bow, the doctor was shocked by the princess as he took a few steps back.

“I-It’s al-alright *cough*, your highness. It was late and everypony was stressed,” the doctor quickly stammered as he tried to regain his composure.

“Yes, well thank you for accepting my apology… -” Celestia racked her brain for the doctor's name “- …Doctor Gusty Shine is it not?” Celestia asked.

The now named Gusty seemed quite surprised that she recalled his name.

“Yes, Princess. That’s my name. I’m honestly surprised that you know me,” Gusty said under his breath.

“I take it upon myself to know as many of my little ponies as I can. Now, why are you here... is she alright?” Celestia asked as she grew deeply concerned for her sister's wellbeing.

“Oh, Um yes, I’m sorry... I got distracted. Ahem, Princess Celestia, we have done everything we can for the patent you've brought us,” as the doctor spoke he motioned for the two alicorns to follow him to the RMW.

“We've been able to stabilize her condition, but there seems to be some sort of dark magic embedded deep inside her. Unfortunately, the magic is too deep inside of her body for us to properly scan, and any spells we've tried to use to purge it have failed. One final note is that the patient seems to be in some kind of coma. We don't know exactly when she'll wake up, but from our estimates, we believe a week at most.”

When Gusty finished they had arrived at her sister's room. The doors to the hospital room were ornate with gold trimmings on the edge of the doors and imprinted at the center was her cutie mark, it was her room after all. On either side of the doors were solar guards, standing stoically like her guard seemed to love to do. They both had on the guards iconic gold armor they also both had snow-white fur and a blue mane and tail, just like how the enchantments on the armor were supposed to work.

Celestia knew she was stalling so she pushed those thoughts to the back of her mind and then made her way to the door. But right before her hoof touched the door handle she froze as she started to have doubt. She couldn't help but worry about the situation.

What if she blames me?! What if she doesn't wake up?! Can I take that? What if... What if she-. No. she would not allow her fear to control her. She let out a determined huff before she looked back at the doors with narrowed eyes and with a sudden wave of determination she pushed open the doors.

The medical room was larger than a normal patient's room, roughly double the size. On the left side of the room was a large window that gave a perfect view of the royal gardens. There was also a plethora of medical equipment and the largest congregation of equipment was around a bed at the back of the room, attached to a pony that Celestia hadn't seen in over a millennium.

Celestia saw her younger sister, Twilight laid in bed with a myriad of bandages wrapped around her. Also attached to her were IVs, there were also a few IV bags around her. Finally, the only noise at that moment was the subtle beat of a rune heart monitor.

Celestia quickly rushed over to her sister, Cadence following shortly after. Behind the princesses Gusty silently closed the doors, leaving the two alicorns in the room. Cadence soon came to the side of Celestia and sat next to her.

Celestia sat there as she looked at the slumbering form of her sister. She laid motionless on the bed with the only indication that she was alive was the slow rise and fall of her chest. Celestia watched the horrible state that her sister was in for what felt like hours, she would have watched her longer if it weren't for Cadence's intervention. When she looked over to her niece she felt something wet on her face and as she wiped her face she saw that she had begun to cry again.

"Ha, *sniff* I think this is the most I've cried in years," Celestia tried to make light of the situation, but she was starting to lose control.

“Auntie, who is she?” Celestia looked over at Cadence and saw the overwhelming worry on her face, Celestia knew she had to tell her.

Celestia looked back over to Twilight, a strand of her hair covered her face. She brought out one of her wings and pushed it out of her face, There perfect.

She knew she was stalling so she steeled her resolve, “Cadence, this is a very special pony. In my opinion one of the best ponies I've ever met. A pony that this world was unfortunately starved from for over a thousand years. -" Celestia looked over at Cadence as she kept her voice as steady as possible. "- Cadence, this is my dear sister, Twilight," Celestia finally finished.

Cadence was absolutely stunned as her mouth hung open and her eyes widened. Celestia couldn't help but smile at her niece's reaction, despite her internal emotions.

“WHAT!? YOU HAVE A SISTER!” Cadence screeched.

Celestia put her hoof on her niece, to calm her. This lucky, seemed to have help as Cadence stopped and looked at her, incredibly shocked and confused.

“I know you probably have many questions, but please calm yourself. You may disrupt other ponies. Yes, Twilight is my sister. She's been..." Celestia's already wavering smile died away as memories of her failure began to flood her mind. "Gone for some time and had only just returned from her... crystal tomb," at that moment Celestia thought of something, what if Twilight remembered her imprisonment.

Celestia had believed, not with any want, that Twilight had... died after the creature's spell. But the thought that she could have lived for over a millennium alone... she wasn't sure what was worse. It would be another one of her failures, she would have hurt the ones she loved again. The thought brought another flood of guilt and nearly turned her into a sobbing mess.

Before her mind could think on the horrible idea anymore she heard her niece, "Auntie! Are you alright?! Your starting to worry me!" Celestia was snapped out of her thoughts when she looked over at Cadence.

Celestia shook her head and brought her hooves to wipe her eyes from the many tears she had made. She then began her breathing exercise in an attempt to regain control of her emotions, it didn't work very well.

Cadence sadly looked at her, "Auntie, you don't have to talk about this if you don't want to. I don't want you to force yourself to do this," Cadence pledged, Celestia looked over at her niece before she frowned and then sighed.

"I'm sorry, Cadence. It's just this is a... tough subject to talk about. But you should know about this. Especially if... When she wakes up," Celestia tried to reassure her.

"But I don't want you to have to go through this pa-" Celestia interrupted Cadence when she extended one of her wings and put a feather over her muzzle.

"No, you should know what happened that dark day. Out of anypony, you deserve to know," Celestia said as she attempted to give a motherly smile, though in her opinion it felt far too broken.

Celestia took in a deep breath before she began, “As you know, the early days of Equestria were far more... chaotic. Me and my sis-" Celestia shortly paused as she realized she hadn't told Cadence about Luna, She only needs to know about one tragedy today. "-ter once again went to stop an evil force that wished to destroy Equestria. That threat was the Vile Tyrant Sombra," venom practically dripped out of her mouth when she uttered that monster's name.

“The tyrant murdered the previous ruler of the ancient Crystal Empire, Princess Amore. She-" Celestia's eyes began to moisturize at ancient memories before she steeled herself and continued, "-was a personal friend of ours and we couldn't, wouldn't let her innocent ponies wither under his iron hoof. So we prepared to fight the tyrant and flew to the Crystal Empire as fast as possible.

"Once we arrived at the Crystal Empire, it was a shadow of its former self. The entire empire was in a massive state of disrepair and dark magic permeated through everything. After a couple of days of dealing with mind-controlled ponies and deadly traps, we had finally made it to the Tyrant. A fierce battle ensued."

As Celestia continued she didn't notice the seamlessly endless stream of tears that went down her face, "The fight was far harder than we thought it would be. The entire empire was tainted with the tyrant's dark magic and they were more prepared for us than we expected. The battle was long and grueling... and right before we were about to defeat them... th-they set off their last trap."

Celestia looked over at her sister again and moved closer to her before she began to pet her with her hooves. Cadence was nearly forgotten by Celestia as she was consumed by her memories. How could I have not seen that trap... I should have been more focused. I should have-.

Celestia then continued the story, "The... spell they used on our friend... entombed its target in a c-crystal tomb. We-I was meant to be h-hit by that spell but T-Twilight she... sacrificed herself instead. She... she," Celestia finally broke as she planted her face on her Twilight's chest and tightened her grip on her.

Celestia spoke shakily through the purple fur, "I-I'm so so-sorry, T-Twilight. If it w-weren't for me you would b-be... free. I'm a terrible sister! I-" Celestia felt another pony hug her.

She heard the faint voice of her niece, "Auntie, I'm so sorry for what happened to you. But you are the best pony I've ever met. So please don't blame yourself," Celestia didn't reply but she opened up one of her wings and brought in Cadence.

So the two alicorns stayed like this for what felt like hours, one attempted to consoled her aunt while the other let out a millennia worth of emotions that she built up for so long. After some time, Celestia was finally able to regain some of her composure and release her sister. She then looked over at Cadence, which was still clung to her; the display of love warmed her heart.

"Cadence," her niece looked up at her with slightly bloodshot eyes, she attempted to give her a smile. "Thank you, I needed that. I believe that's enough for today. I promise that I'll tell you more later. Ok?" Celestia asked as she looked at her with tired eyes.

"Ok, it can wait. I... can see how hard it is for you... " Cadence then wiped her eyes, but as she was doing this she seemed to realize something. "I guess I have another aunt now," Cadence said as a smile formed on her muzzle and she looked over at the sleeping form of Twilight.

Celestia let out a little laugh, Of course, Cadence would find a way to spin this optimistically. She then looked over at her sister and a smile also grew on her muzzle.

"Yes, I suppose she would be your aunt. Knowing her, she'll be overjoyed to have more family... and likely freak out a little. But I have no doubt you two will become best friends in no time," Celestia said as she wrapped one of her wings
around Cadence and pulled her close.

“What is she like?” Cadence asked

“ *sigh* She's a wonderful mare. She's by far the smartest pony I've ever met and one of the most powerful mages in Equis. She's also one of the most dedicated ponies in Equestria and will stop at nothing until she's fixed your problem. She has such a kind heart, just like you. I know you'll love her," Celestia reminisced as she tightened her hold over her niece.

As Celestia looked at her sister the smile on her muzzle grew, "The best sister you could ask for."


As the days passed by in the RMW Celestia continued to visit her sister, even late into the night. Celestia also discovered where Twilight's armor was, she had unintentionally teleported it to her room. But anyways as each day passed Celestia was forced to spend less and less time with her sister.

Unfortunately, even after her declaration, she knew her ponies needed her so she was forced back to her duties. Luckily, the seventh day was when everything changed.


Celestia sat at her normal spot next to her sister's bed. She was relieved that the doctors had taken off many of the bandages and removed the IV's a few days ago. It allowed her to see her sister's beautiful coat again, unblemished. But even still she couldn't help but worry about her sister's well-being.

"Please be okay, Twilight. I don't know what I'd do if I lost you again," Celestia leaned down to nuzzle her sister softly before she let out a sigh.

As she brought her head back up she looked over at the window and saw that it was time to accomplish her celestial duties.

Celestia looked down at her sister one last time before she got up and made her way to the exit. At least that was until she heard a soft noise and she quickly realized what it was, mumbling. Celestia froze as a thousand different thoughts swirled through her mind. Was, was that... before she could finish that thought she found her answer.

Sister, is art thee?” came barely a whisper.

As Celestia slowly looked over her shoulder she saw something she hadn't seen in over a thousand years, the purple eyes of her sister. Celestia's eyes were locked with those purple jewels and as she turned around joyful tears began to roll down her cheeks as well as a smile that nearly engulfed her face. There was only one thing she could say.

“Yes, Twilight. Yes, it's me,” tears now began to freely flow down her face and at that moment Celestia was certain of one thing.

This was one of the happiest moments of her entire life.

Chapter 2: Not in the Everfree Anymore Part 1

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Twilight's entire body ached. Ugh, wherefore doest everything hurt. It felt like she hadn't moved in years. She also felt something strangely soft underneath her and next to her was a muffled noise. She couldn't tell what it was but it sounded strangely familiar. Wait, was it a... voice? Yes, it was. Why did it sound so familiar? Unfortunately, she couldn't do much in her current state, she couldn't even move.

Twilight quickly became annoyed at her inability to do anything and in her frustration she weakly growled. This is so aggravating, we can not doth anything! We can do not but hear this infernal noi-... wait doth the voice nuzzle us? There are only two other ponies that would nuzzle us. Twilight first attempted to see what was going on but she couldn't see anything. So she then gathered as much strength as she could muster and asked.

Sister, is art thee?” it was barely audible, but it was all she could muster.

Twilight waited with bated breath for the pony's response.

“Yes, Twilight. Yes, it's me,” came the voice of her oldest sister, Celestia.

Twilight was overjoyed to hear her sister’s voice. Oh! Thank the gods there safe, we did think both of ye were hit too. Just as Twilight finished that thought she felt something latch onto her, shortly followed by whimpers and something wet hitting her coat. She quickly realized that it was her sister’s tears.

“Oh, Twilight. I’m so so so sorry! I let this happen to you! If I had just tried harder, you wouldn't have had to sacrifice yourself and be trapped in that infernal prison! I’m a terrible sister! I'm s-so sor-” before Celestia could continue her hysterical speech she was stopped by Twilight when she squeezed her forearms around her big sister, or at least as much as she could in her current state.

Sister, we may not knoweth what is going on or what exactly ye art declaring. But there is one thing we knoweth for certain and that is ye art the most wondrous sister a mare couldst asketh for. So cease this right now,” even though her voice was only just a whisper, it had enough strength to end her sister's hysterics.

The two sisters held each other in a tight embrace, neither was willing to let go as they wanted to let this moment last just a bit longer. But slowly the two eventually loosened their grip on each other and when Twilight looked at her sister she could hazily make her out.

Tia, I'm so joyous ye art alright. And *yawn* we would love evermore to continue. Though we *yawn* art suddenly quite tire, mine most humble apologies. Goodnight sister, we love thou,” Twilight said as a sudden wave of exhaustion came over her.

Celestia leaned down and lightly kissed Twilight on the forehead under her horn. Before she got up with a smile on her face and walked to the door with a spring in her step.

Oh. And bringeth Luna next time. We miss her too,” Twilight barely asked before she entered the dream realm.

What Twilight didn't see was Celestia suddenly halt and for all of her previous joy to be sucked out. It was replaced with a massive pang of guilt that pierced her heart at the unintentional reminder of Luna's fate. But it also planted another thought in her mind, she would have to tell Twilight about what happened to Luna. Celestia slowly made her way to the door and quietly left the room for her blissfully ignorant sister to rest.


The next couple of days were a mess for Twilight, because she found out one outstanding fact... how long she was truly gone for. For a totally unrelated reason, on the same day, all the windows in the castle were shattered systematically and the floor was covered in hundreds of unrelated shards of glass.

After a day where the castle staff cleaned up all the broken glass, Twilight began to have doctors do checkups on her. They even began physical therapy on her legs and wings to try and test how well they worked after their thousand-year nap, unfortunately, it was a slow progress. Twilight meanwhile began to use all of her free time to try and catch up on the new modern world, which also included changing her outdated dialect which was one of her main focuses.

But soon everything began to become monotonous for Twilight as every day she would do the same thing: Wake up, eat breakfast, read a bit, do physical therapy, have lunch, read some more, do magic exercises, read even more, get ready for dinner, squeeze in a bit of pre-bed reading, and finally sleep. Luckily, for Twilight this monotony was occasionally broken when her sister decided to visit her, but this upcoming visit was going to be the most different out of them all.


Today is going to be the best day ever! Cadence squealed in her head. She was currently walking beside Auntie Celestia to finally properly meet her new Aunt Twilight.

Cadence had a spring in her step, she was so happy to finally meet Auntie Celestia's sister... while she was conscious. Her aunt had raved about her for the last few days straight. Ooo... I wonder what she's like? Does she love cake as much as Celestia? Or maybe she'd like to go to the spa with me? Or may-.

Before Cadence could continue her internal tirade, she was stopped by her auntie. As she looked up at her auntie she saw that she was looking at her sternly. Cadence began to get worried but before she could ask her if there was anything wrong, she spoke.

“Now Cadence, please remember that my sister hasn't fully recovered yet from her... incident. She's still trying to adapt to the modern world... as well as working on modernizing her dialect. So, she may be a bit hard to understand. Just, please don't ask too many questions too fast," Celestia asked, Cadence was relieved that she didn't do anything wrong and happily agreed to Auntie Celestia.

With her acknowledgment, the two of them walked up to the pair of doors that led to Twilight’s room. Celestia knocked on the door and called out to Twilight, they didn't have to wait long as they heard a faint “Come in!” from the other side of the door. Celestia lit her horn and enveloped the doors with her magic and pushed them open. As Cadence walked inside the room she was shocked.

Now Cadence knew that Twilight liked books, her auntie had made that very clear, but even she didn't expect to see books piled in stacks around the room and lining the walls like bricks, it was more like a library than a hospital room. But by far the largest congregation of books in the booktopia was around a familiar lavender alicorn.

Sat there was her newest aunt, Twilight the Alicorn of Magic. And in her hooves was a book titled “Emerald’s Guide to Modern Equish”.

“Hello, sister. It's good to see you again. I’ve brought a guest this time, I'm sure you two will love each other,” Celestia said as she maneuvered her way to the side of Twilight's bed and sat down.

Twilight meanwhile reluctantly put down her book and looked over at Celestia with a curious expression.

“And who pray tell art they?” Twilight asked as she raised an eyebrow.

“Sister, you're falling back into old equish again - ” Twilight only humphed at Celestia when they saw her cheeky expression “ - but that isn't important right now.”

Celestia cleared her throat before she continued, “Sister, I would like to introduce to you a very special pony… my-our niece, Cadence,” Twilight looked over at her, apparently only having just noticed her.

Her eyes widened and her mouth hung open as she saw her.

“H-Hello Pri-um… Twilight, it's good to finally meet you,” Cadence mumbled as she was suddenly overtaken by a wave of nervousness.

Come on, Cadence. You wanted to meet, Twilight. Don’t embarrass yourself now!

“ *Ahem* Sorry about that. I just can’t wait to finally get to know you. I… hope we can be best friends,” Cadence finished with the brightest smile she could muster, unfortunately, it faltered a bit when Twilight’s expression didn't change.

This continued for a few moments before Twilight shook her head and seemed to regain control of herself, she then looked her up and down like she was examining her. Cadence tried to stay firm during her new aunt’s inspection, but she couldn't help but get a tad nervous. Once Twilight stopped she looked back at Celestia with a thoughtful look.

“We-I see thee hath found another… alicorn, we art shocked ye had found one after the many time we had tryeth to look for others. *cough* Anyways, I assume thee adopted her?” Twilight wondered before she grinned. “Unless there is something thee hath been hiding from us?” she finished.

Celestia looked at Twilight with a deadpan expression, “No I haven’t been hiding anything,” Celestia then rolled her eyes while Twilight giggled, she then continued.

“Anyways to answer your question. I’ve had Cadence with me for the last couple of years. I found her right after she ascended and gained her cutie mark. After her ascension, I wanted to see her in person… I don’t think I need to tell you why, sister. Anyways, it was there that I learned Cadence was an orphan and after I got to know this bundle of joy” - Cadence couldn't help but blush at Celestia’s words - “I knew I just had to adopt her as my niece,” Celestia said before she looked over at her with a wide smile.

“Ever since then she’s been the brightest and most incredible pony an aunt could ask for. I know one day you’ll be a wonderful princess,” Cadence’s blush intensified at the bombardment of praise her auntie gave her.

Twilight seemed to mull over Celestia’s story until she finally looked over at her and smiled.

“Well, then this is most wondrous news. Tis wonderful to meeteth my new niece. I hope I can be a good aunt to thee,” Twilight said before her smile quickly became inquisitive and she asked her a question. “Cadence, if it isn't too forthcoming to asketh. How did thou becometh an alicorn,” Cadence blinked, surprised at Twilight’s sudden question.

Cadence bit her lip, “Ohh… that’s a good question. Well you see, before I ascended I was a pegasus, and well… '' Cadence paused as she let out a sigh, from the corner of her eye she saw a worried Twilight look at her. “Ok, let’s get this over with,” Cadence mumbled before she straightened herself up and began.

“When I was still in the orphanage a strange and frankly creepy mare would come every now and again. At first, I thought maybe she was adopting some of us… but then she would always come back for more and more. This went on for a couple of weeks, I can’t remember how long exactly. I didn't know at the time but apparently, she was friends with the owner, so she never bothered to check where we were going. Not that she’d care anyway.

“Anyways, one day as she took another one of us I had enough of the constant fear of being next and decided to sneak out and follow her. You may think it was stupid, but I wanted to know where she was taking everypony, to see if they were ok.

“It took a few hours to get to where she was taking everypony. It was some word cave in the middle of nowhere. When I entered her lair I was honestly shocked. The entire cavern was full of alchemical equipment and concoctions, at the center of the room was an operating table with a strange glistening stone on top of it.

“A few moments later she ordered the orphan to sit in front of the stone and to not take their eyes off the stone. She then grabbed a nearby potion that had a strange dark pink smokey liquid? Anyways she opened the orphan’s mouth and forced them to drink it. I didn't know at the time but she used a vile form of magic known as love poison. Once they were forced to drink it they were obsessed with the rock and refused to let it go.

“Even though I didn't completely understand what was going on I was disgusted at what she did to them. Now you may think this was… well, even more, stupid but I just felt like I had to stop her… so I rushed inside. At first, she was surprised, but then a horrible smile spread across her muzzle as she stared at me. Then I tried to s-stop h-her,” before Cadence was overwhelmed by those memories she felt the comforting presence of her Auntie Celestia.

Cadence looked at her auntie and saw her reassuring smile. Cadence calmed down before she looked back at an increasingly worried Twilight.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t really remember the battle very well, it’s all just kind of a blur. But what I do remember is that I was losing, hard. Even though she was older she was stronger than me, luckily she wasn't faster. But eventually, she got a knife and… and threatened that if I didn't give up she would k-kill the orphan. Even though I was terrified, I was so angry at what thi-this witch was doing to that orphan. It was at that moment that I felt something strange in my chest. I wasn't able to think about that anymore as the entire room was enveloped with light blue and pink magic.

“When I woke up I was in a strange place with glowing floating orbs everywhere. I now know that I had managed to enter the Aether or the realm of magic. That was also where I finally met, Auntie Celestia,” Cadence said as she subconsciously moved over to nuzzle the aforementioned Auntie Celestia.

She then looked back over at Twilight where she looked like she was… disturbed. Before she could ask Twilight if she was alright, she looked over at Celestia.

“As much as it was good to knoweth how young Cadence did meet thee. What did ye do to thy witch and the poor orphan?” Twilight asked as she said witch with clear disgust, Celestia then continued the story.

Well, when I felt Cadence enter the Aether during her ascension I was… shocked, to say the least. I still remember when I first met her, she was so adorable I could have… Oh! Uh, sorry I got lost in thought. Anyways, after a little while, I asked her where she was and that was when she told me what happened. I… tried to comfort her before I left.

“After her ascension, I gathered as many guards as I could and teleported to the cave she told me about. Luckily, Cadence’s ascension caused a massive spike of magic, so it was quite easy to pinpoint where it was. When we arrived everypony was unconscious, during which we locked up that witch and I purged the curse from the orphan. After everything was taken care of I was finally able to meet Cadence… properly. I initially asked her where she lived and where her parents were, but when I found out she was an orphan I decided to adopt this adorable filly as my niece. That was one of the best decisions in my entire life,” Celestia said as she finished her tale, Cadence meanwhile blushed.

Cadence got over her embarrassment and looked over at Twilight. She seemed like she was in thought as she stared at a nearby wall, at least that was until she began to get out of bed. Both she and Celestia’s eyes widened as they tried to stop her from getting out of bed. But they were stopped when she raised a hoof to stop them, she then gingerly got out of bed and onto unsteady hooves. She then shakily walked toward her and wrapped her wings and arms around her into a hug.

“I am so sorry that thee had to go through that, especially for one so young. I wilt try to be the most wondrous of aunt’s or at least as much as this old mare couldst be,” Twilight said as she gave her a weak but gentle smile.

Cadence returned the favor with one of her own.

The next few hours were filled with laughter, joy, and wonderful memories from everypony involved, there were also many stories exchanged. A story that Celestia told was the time Twilight accidentally turned her man and coat neon pink and so was forced to go to the royal court as a pink monstrosity for a week until she was able to fix it. Twilight, in response, told another story where she found Celestia flat out drunk and kissing a five-tier cake she just married, which she later “divorced” by way of her stomach.

Before long things began to calm down, after a ton of wonderful stories from her aunties.

Cadence sat next to her aunties, extremely happy at how everything went and that she finally got to meet Twilight.

Twilight meanwhile laughed after one of Auntie Celestia’s stories, “Oh, sister. This wast truly wonderful, thee must bringeth Luna next time -” Twilight’s smile diminished a bit “- I miss her. I knoweth she’s been busy, but I wish she would at least visit,” Cadence noticed from the corner of her eye that Celestia visibly stiffened and somehow managed to get her white coat to become paler.

Cadence was confused why Twilight would ask something like that. What does she mean by “Luna coming to visit”? Cadence then realized something, Wait! Did she not…

“Twilight, you do know what happened to Luna, right?” Cadence saw Twilight’s face become one of confusion as she looked over at Celestia, presumably for answers.

But when Cadence looked over at Celestia she saw she began to sweat and shake slightly. Oh no! Auntie Celestia, why didn't you tell her?


Twilight continued to stare at her new niece in confusion. What doest she mean? She then looked over at her sister for answers but she was surprised to see her shaking slightly and covered in sweat. Slowly worry and dread began to fill Twilight as she narrowed her eyes at her sisters. Her words also gained a slight edge.

“Sister, what doest our niece mean? What has happened to Luna?” right as Twilight finished Celestia shaking increased and tears began to fall down her cheeks.

Twilight’s glare softened when she saw the state her sister was in, she felt guilty for doing this to her sister. But before she could apologize, Celestia looked up at her and the only thing she could see was intense guilt, sadness, and regret.

“Tw-Twilight, I-I made a horrible mistake. Luna she, she’s…” whatever Celestia said became an incoherent mess.

Twilight was now even more worried about Luna.

“Tia, what happened to Luna,” Twilight impatiently and firmly asked.

But she almost dreaded her question as it left her lips. Celestia meanwhile seemed to have refocused and took a deep breath as she looked at her.

“I-I was forced to… banish Luna to the moon for a thousand years. It was all my fault,” Celestia shakily said as the words looked like it physically hurt her to say.

Twilight paled at what her sister said as she finally began to understand why Luna never visited her. She couldn't.

A thousand different thoughts and feelings swirled inside of her as her mind tried to comprehend what had happened. Part of her was furious at what her sister did to Luna and wanted to get revenge. Another side of her refused to accept reality and purge what Celestia said. One part of her even wanted to go back to that infernal crystal tomb and never come out. But before Twilight could act on any of those thoughts she looked up at Celestia and saw so much pain, sadness, and regret on her face.

At that moment all those thoughts were abandoned, as tears began to rapidly roll down her cheeks. Not long after Twilight felt a pair of legs and wings wrap around her. She also began to vividly hear the voice of her sister trying to comfort her, unfortunately, it had little effect.

During this time, the sisters failed to notice the absence of a certain pink alicorn as she quietly left the room. To let the two grieving sisters mourn the loss of a wonderful mare.


After Twilight learned of the horrible tragedy that befell Luna she became more reclusive and unmotivated. Even to the point where the doctors had a hard time getting her to do the tests they needed her to do. Luckily, after a couple of weeks with Celestia and Cadence, Twilight began to come to terms with the Nightmare Incident.

Soon after, the routine that Twilight had become accustomed to had returned, with more reading, medical tests, and the now traditional visits from her sister and niece, which she looked forward to every day. It all helped liven up her time in the RMW.

During another one of Twilight’s magic tests, she once again tried to fully access her magic. But after repeated failure, it began to grate on her more and more…


Come on, Twilight. Thee can doth it! Just a little MORE! Twilight mentally screamed as she pushed herself as much as possible. Her horn glowed a lukewarm purple as sweat poured down her face and onto the floor.

“That’s enough, your highness,” A blue-furred unicorn stallion said as he pulled off the magic reader that was on her horn.

Twilight meanwhile was annoyed briefly by the doctor before she huffed from exhaustion, closed her eyes, and sat down on the tiled floor. She then brought her hooves up to her head and massaged her quickly approaching headache. God’s, why must I always receiveth a headache after this… Twilight thought before she frowned, it used to beest so easy.

After that thought, Twilight heard the sound of approaching hooves behind her and shortly after felt two wings wrap around her. As Twilight opened her eyes she saw the familiar sight of Celestia’s magenta eyes looking back at her. She gave her a comforting smile before she nuzzled her. Twilight weakly smirked before she returned the favor.

“It’s okay, sister. You’ll get better in no time. Let’s remember you were gone for a thousand years. Your body simply isn't ready yet. Also, your magic has been returning at an amazing rate. And let’s not even start at how fast you’ve been able to modernize your language. I'm even surprised at how fast you’ve been able to adapt!” Celestia praised her in a vain attempt to cheer her up.

Twilight though was still a bit skeptical about her progress, but she did feel a bit better. The sister’s musings were interrupted when they heard the doctor cough in front of them.

As Twilight looked over at the unicorn doctor she saw that he held his clipboard in his magic cyan aura in front of him. As the stallion approached she decided to look over him again, she noted that he had the aforementioned blue coat with a slick black mane and tail. He also had dull grey eyes and a typical white doctor’s coat that concealed his cutie mark.

“Well, your highness. As far as I can tell your magic reserves have increased as well as your output. And from the results from your physical therapy, I have little doubt that you’ll be able to leave in a few weeks’ time,” he finished with a slight smile, Twilight though took the news with some doubt.

She knew something was wrong with her magic. She should have been able to output two times her current magic flow by now. It wasn't like this was the first time she had ever been petrified, please don’t ask, and before it didn't take nearly as long. Maybe her sister was right though, maybe it was because she was imprisoned for so long… but still…

Twilight looked back over at her sister and saw how excited she was about the doctor's good news. At that moment, Twilight decided to let go of her anxieties and worries and accept what they told her.

Mine sister is right. It must just be for how long I wast in there. Soon everything wilt be back to normal. Twilight told herself as she hugged her big sister with a hopeful smile on her muzzle. But in the back of her mind, she still felt like something was wrong, very wrong…


After the tests were finished the two sisters returned to Twilight’s room and for the rest of the day they talked about the past from when they were younger, from all the adventures they went on. Celestia then told Twilight what she had done while Twilight was gone and even answered some of the questions that Twilight had about events that happened during her absence.

Eventually, though, that time came to an end. The two alicorns wished each other goodnight before Celestia left the room.


“Good night, sister. Sweet dreams,” Celestia said softly before she quietly closed the doors behind her.

She faintly heard a muffled “good night” from her sister which brought a smile to her muzzle.

Even after all this time, it’s still heartwarming to hear her voice. I’m so glad you're back, Twilight. Celestia thought as her smile grew from all the memories she and her sister had been able to make.

With that wonderful thought, she turned to head back to her chambers with a spring in her step. But she stopped when she saw the head doctor, Gusty Shine, walk around the corner. He was the pony who was in charge of taking care of Twilight. Celestia also noticed that he was distracted with his clipboard and by the time he noticed her he nearly walked into her.

“Hello, Doctor Gusty. How are you doing on this wonderful night?” Celestia asked as she put on her “princess mask”.

“Oh! Um, your highness -” Gusty quickly did a bow as he shook off his surprise “- I’m doing fine. Actually, I was just about to come and see you. There’s… something we need to discuss,” that caught Celestia’s attention.

“Oh! What would that be doctor?” on the inside she began to feel worried, she had a feeling that this wasn't to be good news.

“It relates to Princess Twilight and her… condition. Unfortunately, there’s bad news,” Why did I have to be right, Celestia thought as she prepared herself for more bad news. “From what we’ve found from our scans on the princess. There seems to be some kind of magical presence inside of Princess Twilight that has something to do with her condition. It seems to be “blocking” her magic somehow. To be a bit more specific it’s impeding her magic from fully restoring.

“We’ve done everything in our power to remove it and while we have been able to purge some of it, there’s still so much inside her. Unfortunately, most of the magic is too “deep” inside her, too ingrained. And if we attempt to remove anymore we fear we could permanently damage her layways. Crippling her ability to use all but the most basic forms of magic.”

As the doctor explained the true magnitude of the situation, Celestia’s eyes widened in shock as she began to feel terror well up inside her for the wellbeing of her sister. At least that was until that terror was replaced with hatred. Before long, Celestia began to hatefully glare and bare her teeth, if anypony listened closely they could hear her growl.

Of course, that monster couldn't leave my family alone! He continues to torment us, even past the void! Celestia’s thoughts then started to turn darker. I should’ve killed him! incinerated him with the SUN! Make him see how it FEELS TO BE ALONE FOR A THOUS-

“Y-Your Highness, are *gulp* are you alright?” Celestia looked down at the shivering form of Doctor Gusty.

This snapped her out of her rage and allowed her to regain control over herself. She shook her head as she tried to regain her composure. What the princess didn't notice was that her eyes had become that of a demon’s. Her scleras turned into a shade of dark red, her irises meanwhile changed into an intense orange, and the bottom of her pupils forked in half.

“I’m sorry, doctor. That just brought back some… unpleasant memories,” the doctor seemed to have calmed down a bit, but he still looked wary at her as if she was about to explode again.

This caused her heart to hurt a little but she pushed past that for the moment, “Is there anything else that I should know about my sister’s condition?” Celestia tentatively asked as she gave him an, albeit strained, smile.

“That’s about everything, your highness! Now, I really must go! Many other patients still need my help! Goodbye!” Gusty announced as he gave her a sloppy bow and quickly trotted away before he disappeared around a corner.

Celestia sighed, she felt awful at how she scared the doctor… it felt even worse that he was now wary of her. But then she remembered who caused that and her glare returned with a vengeance.

I won’t let you take her from me again, tyrant. I will save my sister from whatever curse you placed on her and so help me if you ever return. I’ll make you wish you died all those years ago. With that declaration, Celestia made her way to her room with a newfound resolve to protect her baby sister.

Chapter 3: Not in the Everfree Anymore Part 2

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As a pair of doors opened from the RMW, two regal alicorns exited. Princess Celestia and the thought lost, Princess Twilight. Shortly after they entered one of the many identical halls in Canterlot Castle.

As they exited the RMW the latter of the two, Twilight, was incredibly relieved.

“Finally, I thought I'd never get out of that sanitized nightmare,” Twilight exaggeratedly bemoaned, although her grin clearly gave her away.

Twilight saw Celestia roll her eyes at her before a grin also grew on her muzzle, “You know it wasn't that bad. You were only there for two months. And we both know that ponies in a… similar position as yours would have recovered far slower.”

“I know, sister. I was just trying to lighten up the mood… especially after all the drama in the hospital,” a short silence followed as the two walked through the halls of the castle, at least that was until Twilight continued.

“Though it does feel good to finally be able to move around again… I would also be lying if I said I wasn't grateful for those two months in the hospital. It really helped me adjust to the world and modify my dialect. Thanks again for helping me with that by the way,” Twilight finished as she smiled at her sister.

“No problem, I was happy to help. Besides, I can already see the difference. You haven’t spoken a single word of old equish since I saw you this morning. I’m so proud of you, Twilight!” Celestia said as she turned around and gave her a wing hug and a nuzzle.

Twilight smiled at Celestia’s praise and gladly returned the gesture.

After a few moments, Celestia gave her one last smile before she let her go and continued down the hall. Twilight followed her shortly after.

As they walked down the hall a comfortable silence grew and so Twilight’s mind began to wander to bleaker thoughts. It’s still hard to believe so much has happened since… then. *sigh* And to think that Tia has had to rule all of Equestria by herself, for almost a thousand years.

Twilight looked over at her sister, she felt horrible and even a little guilty, that she forced her to be alone for so long. But slowly that feeling morphed into determination. I promise, sister. I’ll make up for my absence… I won’t leave you again.

Twilight was surprised when Celestia suddenly stopped. As she turned around she had a wide and slightly embarrassed smile. As she sat down she clapped her front hooves together.

“Oh! I uh, almost forgot. Later tonight I planned a… celebration of sorts for your return to Equestria and your reinstatement as princess. The plan is to have a short speech where we will have a ceremonial “coronation” of sorts. To show Equestria that one of their princesses has returned,” Celestia finished with an excited smile, Twilight meanwhile wasn't happy at all as she was petrified in place.

She slowly began to fall to her haunches as she brought up her hooves to her head to massage her quickly approaching panic attack.

“So thou art telling me, that thee went and planned a celebration for me AND art going to reinstate me into the politics of Equestria. WITHOUT telling ME berforehoof!” Twilight glared at Celestia, whose smile turned sheepish and who found a nearby window very interesting.

“Yes, I can see how you'd be upset,” Celestia said as she faced Twilight, she was surprised when she looked sorrowful.

Twilight began to feel slightly guilty

“I’m sorry, Twilight. I just… *sigh* I had attended to tell you while you were in the hospital, but I always forgot when we talked. No matter how many times I tried to make myself remember, it always just slipped my mind,” Celestia sighed again before she looked down at her hooves.

“I truly am sorry for springing this on you, sister. I was just so excited to have you back that… I may have been a bit too hasty. If you wish, I’ll cancel the celebration, simply tell me,” Celestia then looked up at her with big puppy dog eyes, flattened ears, and a slightly tilted head which made her look like a lost puppy.

Twilight’s guilt from earlier skyrocketed. She instantly knew she couldn't say no to her now. Darn you, Tia! How do you still make the best puppy dog eyes?

“Ugg! No, it’s fine. But next time you plan something this big, tell me,” Twilight ordered, Celestia, smiled and immediately nodded.

Twilight shook her head at her sister’s antics as a grin slowly spread across her muzzle.

Twilight then thought of something, “I assume you’ve got some sort of plan for my reinstatement as a princess,” Celestia in response got up and motioned her to follow, which Twilight complied with as they continued down the hall.

“Yes, in fact, I do. But don’t worry about that right now, we can talk about that later” - Twilight was slightly annoyed but accepted her sister’s reasoning, for now - “Anyways, I had the castle forges create a new set of regalia for you and a proper throne. So we can rule together… properly this time,” Celestia said under their breath, Twilight didn't quite hear the last part.

Twilight waited for her to continue but Celestia didn't continue. The silence dragged on for so long that Twilight began to get worried about her sister so she nudged her. That seemed to get her out of that mood as she looked back over at her.

“ *cough* Sorry, I was just thinking about… something. Anyways, as for your legitimacy for the throne. Well, you won’t have to worry about that. I evoked a few old edicts and laws that I prepared over a millennia ago, just for your return. I can promise you there won’t be any trouble in making you a princess again.

“Now for your celebration. It works twofold, I get to welcome my little sister back to Equestria as well as allow the nobles to meet you so they can “approve of you”. This in turn will appease some of the more… rowdy nobles,” Celestia then slowed down and leaned in closer to Twilight. “Some of them acted like foals during a temper tantrum when they learned they didn't have any say in your reinstatement.”

Celestia whispered as she nudged her with her wing and with a cocky grin. Twilight matched her grin as the two ancient alicorns laughed.

Once Twilight got control over herself she noticed that they were about to reach something new. Ahead of them were a pair of large doors and flanked on either side were two magically infused blue flamed torches.

The doors themselves were far more ornate than anything else in the hall, they both had designs that made it look like magic was swirling and dancing along the surface of the door. They were also in a variety of shades of violet, purple, and lavender with a few hints of dark blue. Finally, on either side of the door were two royal guards.

As they approached the two guards quickly opened the doors which revealed a section of the castle she had never seen before.

As the two sisters entered the new section of the castle, Twilight immediately noticed how different it was. Instead of the typical light purple and white that dominated the castle, this section was entirely different. Even though it still had the same general architecture as the rest of the castle it was still distinct.

The halls were lit up with the same blue torches that were at the entrance. The carpets were also the same hue of colors as the doors, but instead, the dark blue outlined the carpet. Finally, along the center of the carpet was her cutie mar, excluding the white stars, that repeated along the carpet.

As they walked through the hall, Twilight also noticed that there were a lot of sitting areas with bookshelves embedded into the walls. It made them look more like a study than anything. Finally, hung from the ceiling on thick chains were large purple crystals that radiated a faint blue glow.

As they continued, Twilight began to remember something her sister said about the castle. Celestia said that when the capital was moved from Canterlot she wanted to honor both of their memories. She eventually decided to devote sections of the castle to the three of them.

She made three “districts” and each one would represent one of them. The eastern district would represent the night and Luna. The central district would represent the day and Celestia. Finally, the western district would represent magic and her.

Each section was respectively called the Lunar District, the Solar District, and the Magic district. Though Celestia also told her that her district got a nickname the Lavender district, to be honest, she kinda liked the name.

Twilight also remembered that as Celestia told her that she dedicated an entire section of the castle to her, she was incredibly embarrassed and by the time she finished her entire face was beat red.

Twilight suddenly felt someone nudge her side, as she looked over she saw that Celestia had stopped and sat in front of a pair of doors with a grin. She blushed briefly before she quickly trotted over next to Celestia.

“I see, I’m not the only one that gets lost in thought,” the blush from before returned with a vengeance as she glared at her sister, this only caused Celestia to grin wider.

“Yes, well… Why did we stop here!? Or are you just going to continue to tease me?” Twilight pouted as her glare intensified.

Celestia meanwhile had to stifle her laughter with a hoof. After a few moments she seemed to have gotten control over herself as her grin turned into a smile, but Twilight could see in her eyes that she was still playful.

“Yes, we have arrived,” Celestia announced as she unceremoniously opened the doors with a flick of her magic.

Once Twilight looked into the room she immediately noticed that it had the same color scheme as the rest of the Lavender District.

On the right side of the room was a large four-poster bed against the wall with a purple star in the center, the same one on her flank. On either side of the bed were nightstands, one had a lap on it while the other had an “alarm clock” or at least that's what she believed her sister called it.

On the adjacent wall was a set of glass doors that led to a balcony that overlooked Canterlot. The left side of the room was dominated by a huge bookshelf, full of hundreds of glorious books.

Also in one of the corners of the room was a low table with a couple of candles and small glowing purple crystals, around the table there were also a few sitting pillows. In another corner was a blazing fireplace with another table in front of it.

Twilight also noticed that there were two doors, she presumed that one of them led to the was- *cough* restroom while the other one was a mystery. Finally at the center of the room was a large carpet that had her cutie mark on it and on the ceiling was another one of those hanging glowing purple crystals.

Once Twilight finished her inspection of the room, she entered and immediately made her way to the bookshelf with a childlike smile that slowly grew larger on her muzzle as she approached. Unfortunately, before she could make it to the book promised land she was stopped as her leg was frozen in place by a familiar golden aura.

“Ah, ah, ah, sister. Not quite, yet,” Twilight looked over at Celestia with a slight glare, before she looked up at her infernal horn that was the source of her heretical anti-book powers.

“Now, sister. Before you enter your prolonged hibernation-” Twilight puffed out her now red cheeks “-there are a few things you need to know first. One, this room is only temporary. Your permanent one is taking a little longer than I expected. I know when it’s done you’ll love it,” Celestia said with a proud smile.

“Secondly, please do remember about the celebration. It starts at seven and I would very much like to not have to drag you out of some book in the last couple of minutes before the celebration. Thirdly, I commissioned a dress and some other attire to be made for you. They should be waiting for you in the walk-in closet over there,” Celestia said as she pointed to the previously mysterious door.

“If you need anything else, please don’t hesitate to ask one of the staff or me,” Celestia then let go of her leg and made her way toward the exit.

But before she left she turned around with one of the happiest smiles that Twilight had seen since before her imprisonment.

“I can’t wait for our subjects to meet you again, sister. And for us to rule together again… it’s going to be nice to have you at my side again, Twilight,” she said before she turned back around and closed the doors behind her.

A smile also wormed its way onto her muzzle, “I can’t wait either, sister… maybe I can squeeze in a few hours of reading before the celebration,” Twilight said to herself as her eyes drifted over to the bookshelf.

Her childlike smile from before also returned in full force as she continued her journey to book heaven.


After a couple of hours, the sun eventually gave way to the moon. Unlike many other nights in the castle, this time was different. Many different kinds of ponies began to arrive at the castle, servants prepared for a celebration as big as the Grand Galloping Gala, and guards made sure everything was as safe as possible.

But, two alicorns in particular also prepared for the celebration, though one was far more nervous than the other. When the time came the sisters waited outside a pair of doors that led to the royal ballroom, the room where the celebration would take place. It was minutes away before they were supposed to appear…


Next to a pair of large doors, which had the symbol of Equestria emblazoned onto it, were two alicorn sisters.

Twilight was very nervous, on the other side of those pristine doors was possibly the largest party of the entire year. She shuffled on her hooves and used her magic to fix her dress countless times. As Twilight once again looked down at her dress she saw another speck of dust, her horn quickly lit up as she hushed her magic to get rid of the pesky piece of grime. But before she could do anything else she was stopped by her sister when she placed a hoof on her shoulder.

“Twilight, don’t worry everything is going to be alright. You can stop fretting about your dress, you look beautiful,” Twilight blushed at Celestia’s compliment.

Twilight looked at her sister, who was giggling at her, she couldn't help but be mesmerized by her dress.

The way the front section of the dress almost seemed to merge into her white coat and how it slowly turned into a warm orange by the end, it almost felt like a setting sun. Lined along the edge of the dress was a gold trimming and on her chest was a gold wire outline of her cutie mark. She also had a different set of gold slippers that faded into the same warm orange at the tips, they also seemed to sparkle whenever she took a step. Finally, she had a shrunk-down version of her original crown sat down nicely on top of her head, it helped complete her look.

She then looked down at her own dress that Celestia made for her. It was a purple dress that had a mixture of tiny enchantments and microcrystals weaved into it that created a mesmerizing shimmer effect. The end of the dress also faded into a dark blue, the same color as her mane. Her slippers were made out of a purple-hued metal that had diamond-shaped amethyst’s embedded into the front of each of them, the amethyst’s also glowed slightly. She also wore a pair of purple metal dot earrings, she put them at the tip of her ears. Finally, most of her mane was done up in a ponytail while the front of her mane stayed mostly intact, just the way she liked it.

Twilight remembered when she first saw her dress she was awed, shocked, and even slightly embarrassed at how beautiful it was. She immediately went to see her sister about it and after an argument about it, where Celestia practically begged her to wear it, she finally agreed to wear it during the celebration.

But even after she agreed to wear it she couldn't help but blush from embarrassment at how over the top her sister made it. Twilight was knocked out of her thoughts when she felt a wing slide its way along her back, she quickly deduced it was Celestia.

“Twilight, you're lost in thought again,” Celestia said teasingly as that malevolent grin returned.

At that point, Twilight’s blush spread across her face to the point where some may be mistaken that her coat was red.

Before Twilight could say anything back at her sister, the doors to the ballroom opened which revealed a white unicorn. If Twilight could remember correctly the unicorn was Celestia’s assistant, Raven Inkwell.

She was in a relatively bland red dress compared to the two of them. In front of them was a clipboard that floated in their pink-red magic.

“Your highness, everything has been prepared and we’re read… dy?” silence grew between the three ponies for a few moments before Raven continued. “Do… you wish for me to return later, your highness?” Raven asked, quite confused.

The sisters looked at each other for a few moments before they separated, which Twilight used to regain her composure.

Celestia cleared her throat as she put on her princess mask, “No, that won’t be necessary. I believe it's time to start this celebration,” Celestia announced as she walked to the ballroom, Twilight quickly made her way to the side of her sister.

As the sisters entered the room Twilight immediately saw that it was filled with some of the stuffiest, arrogant, and richest ponies in Equestria.

As they made their way to a small balcony that overlooked the ballroom, Twilight was finally able to get a proper look at the ballroom.

Hung from the ceiling were golden chandeliers that looked like they were worth more than a house, there were also large marble pillars along the walls. On the pillars were large red ornate banners with the symbol stitched into them. In between the windows were giant glass windows that were as big as the walls. Outside the moon shone brightly high in the sky, through the windows.

It would have been beautiful if it weren't for the blemish that was the Mare in the Moon. Twilight quickly looked away and focused back on the room.

Throughout the room were tables full of food and drink, enough to feed a small army. Off to the side of the room was a stage that had a group of dressed-up ponies that were ready to play music for the gala. Finally, in the center of the room was a black and white tiled marble floor that is used for formal dances.

Celestia cleared her throat as she prepared for the announcement, this cut Twilight out of her musings. Ugg! I really need to stop getting distracted! She thought as her sister walked up to the edge of the balcony.

“Welcome all my little ponies! I would like to welcome all of you to my humble home! Now, some of you may be wondering why you're here! Well, I would like to make a very important announcement!” her sister stopped for dramatic effect.

Twilight swallowed her worries and she forced herself to take a step forward, next to her sister. She also put on her, albeit rusty and less experienced, princess mask which gave an expression of confidence and determination.

“I would like to announce the return of my wonderful sister after so long! Also before the night’s end, she will be reinstated as one of your Princesses of Equestria!” Celestia announced.

The ballroom was filled with murmurs and some shocked faces before it was filled with clapping and cheers. Celestia raised her hoof which quickly calmed down the crowd, she then continued.

“Now, I know that many of you may have questions for me and my sister! We will gladly answer any questions you may have after this announcement! With that said, I would like to announce the start of this celebration for the return of my sister and your princess, Princess Twilight!”

After the announcement, the two sisters began to make their way to the ballroom floor. The rest of the room came alive as the music started and some of the ponies made their way to the nearby table to begin small talk or eat some of the food.

Most of the ponies, though, began to get in line to meet them, which created quite a long line. As for the sisters they made it down to the lower part of the ballroom, they made their way to a small dais that had two large cushions waiting for them.

As Twilight and Celestia neared the dais she saw Raven waiting next to it for them. As the two sisters sat down on the pillows, Raven immediately stepped forward and cast, from what Twilight could see, a voice amplification spell.

“Mares and gentlecolts. The royal highnesses are now ready to meet you. Please stay in an organized line. If anypony disturbs the peace or disrespects this celebration you will be evicted. Now, the first pony may approach the princesses!” once Raven finished she returned to her previous position and sat down.

Twilight meanwhile prepared herself for a long night of suck-ups and flank kissers. Even after a thousand years the nobles never change. Twilight thought as she gave the approaching pony a fake smile.

Twilight saw the first pony approach; they were a unicorn stallion and from what she could tell he looked like he was a young adult, just barely out of their teens. They had a white coat, slicked back blue mane and tail, as well as blue hooves. She also noticed that they had blue eyes with a keen intelligence behind them. Twilight could barely see their cutie mark but it looked like a set of three crowns.

Finally, they wore a black suit with golden buttons, a blue undershirt, and a purple tie.

If she was honest, she was never the best at reading ponies, that was more of her sister’s forte. Celestia could read ponies like an open book sometimes, from the moment she saw somepony she could instantly tell what personality was to what their motives were. But even though she wasn't as scarcely good as her sister, she was still good enough at it.

As she looked over the stallion she could tell that something was… different about him from the other nobles. She could tell by the way he carried himself. Instead of the normal air of superiority and arrogance nobles had, he carried himself with sincerity and humility.

Twilight was honestly surprised, even before her imprisonment it was a long time since she had met a good noble. Well, this is certainly going to be interesting. She thought as the stallion approached them before he bowed.

“Good evening, your highnesses. My name is Fancy Pants. I would like to give you a warm welcome back to Equestria, Princess Twilight. I hope you’ve been doing well since your return?” the now-named Fancy Pants asked with a comfortable smile.

Twilight meanwhile was mildly surprised again. Even after her initial valuation, she was sure he would have some kind of ulterior motive. But she didn't detect a single lie or motive behind his words. He was completely genuine.

“Thank you, Fancy Pants. For your kind words. Yes, I have been doing well since my return, thank you again for asking. I’m also quite happy to finally be back, hopefully, I’ll be able to help my sister with ruling Equestria again,” Twilight finished diplomatically.

“I don’t doubt that you’ll be a wonderful princess for this fine nation. Now I must apologize for my hasty departure. I had a few friends I intended to meet right now, but when I heard Princess Celestia’s announcement I simply had to meet you. Again I must express my apologies. I wish both of you a fair night and I hope we can meet each other again in the near future,” Fancy expressed as he bowed.

“I wouldn't want to keep you from your friends, now would I. It was wonderful to meet you. I also hope we can meet again. Have a good night, Fancy Pants,” Twilight said as Fancy nodded his head at her before he made his way to the food tables.

Twilight was pleasantly surprised to have met such a nice noble and a part of her actually hoped that they would meet again. Well, that was more pleasant than I thought it would be… maybe this won’t be as bad as I thought. Maybe some of the nobles actually changed for the better after a thousand years. After that hopeful thought, Twilight’s smile became a little more genuine.


Unfortunately, Twilight’s hope was crushed as it was worse than she thought, as almost all of the nobles she met tried to suck up to her. So for the next few hours, she had to sit there while ponies fawned over her and her sister while they tried to gain her favor. One even had the audacity to, not so subtly, bribe her! He was quickly kicked out afterward.

Twilight’s only saving grace was the short thirty-minute recess period for her and Celestia to rest and eat. Sadly, the break was far too short as not long after they were forced to head back to that seemingly endless line of torment. Or at least that was until something different happened…


As Twilight sat through another noble that, metaphorically, kissed her flank she was startled when the doors to the ballroom were slammed open. Almost all the ponies in the room, including the sisters, stopped what they were doing and looked over to the entrance. Shortly after a red-furred unicorn came through as trumpets blared, floating in front of him in his yellow-tinted magic was also a parchment.

“Hear ye! Hear ye! All good pony folk! His majesty, Prince Blueblood, has arrived here tonight to meet the recently returned, Princess Twilight!” the unicorn announced as another colt entered the room.

Even from where she was, Twilight could practically see the white colt radiate with arrogance and contempt.

Twilight then finally realized what the announcer said. She was both dumbfounded by this colt’s rude entrance and the fact that he was a prince?! She looked over at her sister for answers but when she saw Celestia she had brought her hooves up to her face, closed her eyes, and began to mutter words.

From what Twilight could make out she kept saying, “Not again.”

Twilight was slightly confused and worried about her sister but before she asked her if she was alright she noticed that the offending colt was close, so she used the opportunity to get a better look at him. She saw that he was a slightly larger than average colt, at least for his age. If she had to guess he was an adolescent, around sixteen to seventeen. He had a pale white coat and a long and slightly messy blonde mane and tail. He also had light blue eyes and a yellow-blue compass rose cutie mark.

The colt also had on an expensive-looking white suit with gold trimmings. Underneath he wore a royal blue undershirt with golden buttons as well as a rose for some reason, which was tucked in between his suit and undershirt. Finally, tied around his neck was a blue bowtie, which had a blue and golden compass stitched onto one side of the tie.

Once she finished her observation of the pompous colt she mentally prepared herself for him. He even began to pass the line as if it weren't even there, which got him a few shouts of protest and a lot of anger murmuring. But eventually, he reached them.

Blueblood we talked about this!” Twilight vaguely heard Celestia harshly hiss, though if the words affected the now named Blueblood he didn’t show it.

Twilight began to get annoyed at this flamboyant colt, not even five minutes after he arrived did she already get the impression that he had done this many times in the past. He also pissed off her sister and that’s inexcusable.

But before she could demand anything of Blueblood, he spoke first.

“Yes, I know auntie. But as a Prince of Equestria, it should be our right to make these peasants know that we are above them!” Blueblood announced as he flared his nostrils.

Twilight meanwhile didn't register anything past “auntie” as she was in the middle of a small meltdown. WHAT!? WHAT DOES HE MEAN BY AUNTIE!?

On the outside, though, her only reaction to the news was her eyes widened and she brought up a hoof to her chest. This was only thanks to the muscle memory of over a thousand years of controlling her emotions.

“Besides, I wished to meet this new alicorn that everypony was talking about also the fact that she’s, supposedly, your sister,” Blueblood said as he looked over at her.

His gaze then changed into one of a predator as he almost looked like he was inspecting his prey for any imperfections. But soon after his demeanor changed as he seemingly finished his inspection with a wide smile.

“Well, you must be, Princess Twilight. It’s good to finally be able to meet another royal. It’s also good to meet my auntie’s long-lost sister. I hope I’ll be able to learn more about you… Auntie Twilight,” Blueblood said, surprisingly kindly, as Twilight’s mind was still rebooting.

In her dazed state, she automatically responded, “You… too… Blueblood?” Twilight almost seemed to ask in a slow, wary tone as she still wasn't entirely sure what was happening.

With her response, Blueblood curtly nodded. She vaguely remembered him saying goodbye to her before he left and went… somewhere in the ballroom. Though she wasn't entirely sure if that really happened.

Once Twilight was able to reboot, she was finally able to think clearly and analyze her conversion with Blueblood. It was then that she realized that, to her shock, Blueblood was completely sincere during the entire conversation. Either that or she really had gotten rusty.

For the moment she pushed aside that thought as she looked over at her sister, who now smiled sheepishly. She gave her a hidden glare while her horn glowed softly as she cast a telepathy spell between them.

What in the name of the gods, just happened sister!?” Twilight yelled over the spell, Celestia flinched slightly at the tone.

I may have forgotten to tell you about something… again,” Celestia practically whimpered as she actively avoided her gaze.

As Twilight saw her sister she let go of her justified anger and sighed, which helped her calm down a bit.

Celestia, I need to know these things. Forgetting to tell me about some party is one thing, but forgetting to tell me about… family is something else entirely. Also, sister, we are going to talk about his behavior toward the citizenry,” Twilight told her sister.

Yes, sister. But not right now, please. I promise I’ll answer any question that you have, just later please?” Celestia asked as she looked at her with her infernal weapon, Darn those puppy eyes to Tartarus.

Fine, sister… for now,” Twilight said as she ended the spell and prepared herself for the rest of the pony flood.


The rest of the celebration was alright after they were able to get through all of the nobles as well as after the Blueblood incident. Once the sisters were freed from their prison they were finally able to spend some quality time together. They even talked to some of the less annoying nobles, such as Fancy Pants.

But eventually, the celebration ended as everypony began to prepare for the main special for the night, the “coronation” of Twilight.


In a modest room of Canterlot Castle stood a familiar purple alicorn on the verge of a full-blown panic attack. She was taking rapid breaths of air while beads of sweat dripped down her face.

“Twilight, please calm down. You don’t have anything to worry about, everything is going to go perfectly,” luckily for Twilight she had her sister to help her calm down.

Twilight sighed as she leaned more into her sister’s fluffy coat. At that moment Twilight was glad to finally get rid of those dresses as she could now lay on her sister’s wonderful fur. She then closed her eyes and relaxed as her anxiety began to evaporate while wonderful old memories began to flood her mind.

After a little while, she began to feel herself drift off to sleep, but she suddenly felt something nudge her. It was at that moment that she realized that Celestia had placed her wing around her. When she looked up at her sister, she saw she had a warm smile on her muzzle.

“So are you better now?” Twilight nodded at Celestia’s question, as a smile wormed its way on her muzzle.

Celestia’s smile suddenly changed into a mischievous grin as she used her other wing to engulf Twilight in a feathery cocoon. Celestia then pulled her closer into a hug where her sister wildly muzzled her, which caused Twilight to laugh.

“Oh! I can’t wait to have my baby sister rule with me again!” Twilight blushed at her sister’s announcement and she decided to finally break free from her feathery prison.

“Let go of me, you oversized fur ball! I’m going to be a princess! This isn't a dignified position I can be in!” - Twilight then gasped loudly as her eyes widened - “What will the peasants think about this humiliation!” Twilight screamed in mock terror.

Celestia began to giggle, which prompted Twilight to also giggle, which then caused Celestia to laugh, which Twilight joined in shortly after. This continued until the two sisters were on the ground laying on each other as they laughed hysterically. Their laugh dissolved the anxiety, worry, and guilt that had built up over the last two months, for the first time in a long time they both felt calm.

Unfortunately for the two sisters, the time for the “coronation” was about to arrive so they got off of each other and prepared themselves for the event. Celestia put on her regalia, which was sat down on a nearby pillow. While Twilight took off the rest of her attire and mentally prepared herself for what was about to happen.

Not long after the doors opened and as Twilight turned around she saw it was Celestia’s assistant, Raven.

“Your highnesses, everything is ready for Princess Twilight’s coronation, her highness's regalia has also been set out on the balcony,” Raven dutifully announced as she bowed.

“Thank you, Raven. Once again I don’t know what I’d do without you,” Raven stoically accepted her sister’s praise, but Twilight could see her cheeks slightly blush.

The two sisters then walked toward the balcony. As they got close Twilight began to feel anxious again. But then she felt her sister pull her into a comforting wing hug, which calmed her worries and allowed her to walk confidently onto the balcony. Soon the two sisters walked out into the spotlight.

Once Twilight left the room she was shocked at the sheer amount of ponies that came to her “coronation”. As far as she could see were ponies that filled the streets, some ponies looked out windows, and even some pegasi got clouds to sit on.

Twilight froze at the sight of how many ponies attended and even began to feel some fear. But she, mentally, kicked herself and forced her way next to her sister, who was sitting down and was waiting for her to get over her shock. Once she settled down next to her sister, Celestia gave her one last comforting look before she got up and walked up to the edge of the balcony.

Once her sister reached the edge she picked up a crystal ball, which was laid down on a pillow, with her magic and levitated it in front of her. Twilight noticed that the ball had an enchantment etched into it that allowed her to amplify her voice, from what she could tell it was powerful enough that most of Canterlot could probably hear her sister.

“Good evening, my little ponies! I am so happy to see so many wonderful faces here tonight to come see my sister’s coronation! Soon, Equestria will have another princess again to help watch over it!” her sister paused as she waited for the clapping to stop.

”Now, I can imagine that many of you are confused about where my dear sister had gone. Tonight, I would like to expel all of those rumors about her. My sister had to, unfortunately, retire as a Princess of Equestria to stop a life-threatening matter that threatened all of Equestria. Sadly, there was no other alternative, the threat had to be dealt with immediately.

“Because of this threat she had slowly been forgotten in history and it was only until now that she was finally able to return. It’s with a heavy heart that I could not help her, but tonight is when everything changes. For, tonight my sister has returned not only as a hero but as a princess again! Now, let up begin!” Celestia finished as the crowd cheered and clapped that could be heard for miles.

Celestia looked over at her and signaled her to approach. Twilight got up and walked over next to her sister. As the crowd quieted down Celestia turned to Twilight and began the “coronation”. Twilight meanwhile got into position for the “coronation” and got onto a knee before she bowed slightly to Celestia.

“Now, Twilight Aurora Magus. Do you swear to be honorable, fair, and harmonious with the title of Princess of Equestria?” Celestia asked in a strict tone.

“I do,” Twilight curtly responded.

“Do you also swear to keep the day, night, and the magic that flows through Equis in check, if need be?”

“I do.”

“And that you’ll defend the Kingdom of Equestria with your life if need be?”

“I do.”

“Then with the power invested in me, Celestia Aurora Solaris. I hereby crown you Princess Twilight Aurora Magus as my equal in status and power. As well as the reinstatement of Equestria back into a diarchy!” once Celestia finished she levitated Twilight’s new regalia in front of them as she put them on her, the crowd meanwhile cheered.

Twilight looked down at her new regalia for the first time, she admired the purple metal it was made out of as it shimmered in the moonlight. The metal also had very tiny dots of obsidian spread throughout it. Etched at the center of her hoof guards was the outline of the purple star on her cutie mark. There was also a second layer of obsidian that lined the purple metal. Her peytral also had an obsidian outline, but at the center was a star-shaped pink-purple gem embedded into the metal. Around the gem was a carved design that also looked like a star.

Finally, was her crown, which unlike her sister’s, only ended in one wide point, the crown was also lined with obsidian. Embedded at the center of the crown were three oval-shaped crystals that were next to each other, they were also the same color as the crystal on her peytral

Once Twilight finished ogling over her new regalia she looked up at her sister, who had a proud smile before she turned to the crowd with the crystal sphere. She cleared her throat as she began her speech.

“I would like to thank you all for accepting me and for giving me a chance to be your princess again. I hope I can fill that role again after so long and make Equestria a better place. I promise that I’ll help my sister make Equestria into a shining example of harmony for the rest of Equis!” the crowd cheered loudly as she finished.

That night, history was made as one of Equestria’s lost princesses returned. Some ponies say that you could hear the cheers that night all the way from Manehatten if you listened closely.


A couple of hours after Twilight’s coronation, she was in her temporary room. She had just said goodnight to Celestia a few minutes ago. Her new regalia also sat on a pillow next to her bed. Twilight meanwhile walked over to a pair of doors that lead to her balcony and with a flick of her horn she opened the doors

Once Twilight was outside she sat down at the edge of the balcony and looked up at the moon. Her face was blank, but on the inside, she was overwhelmed with sadness at the reminder that Luna was gone. Every time she looked up at the Mare in the Moon she couldn't help but feel like she'd failed her.

I wish you were there, Luna… Why did I have to be imprisoned by that tyrant? Maybe I could have helped you sister, stop whatever was happening. Before you were consumed by that Nightmare. Twilight thought as her ears flattened to her skull.

A lone tear gently went down her face as she looked back up at the Mare in the Moon. But instead of sadness, she felt intense determination to free her sister from her corruption.

I promise you, Luna. I’ll free you from the Nightmare and we'll all be reunited again. With that hopeful thought, she turned around and headed back to her room, at least that was until she stopped just outside the door. She looked back at the moon one last time before she entered the room and closed the doors.

As the silence of the night once again reigned the balcony, the only thing left was a lone tear on the cold stone that shimmered in the pale moonlight.

Lore: Canterlot Castle Explored and Its Rise to Prominence

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By: Ember Comet

Chapter 1: A Brief History of Canterlot Castle

For most of Equestrian history, the now ruined Everfree city was the capital of Equestria, with the Castle of the Three Sisters being the main political body of the kingdom.

After the disappearance of a “Princess Twilight”, some sources indicate that she had some relation to Princess Celestia, the Kingdom of Equestria experienced a decline. With this decline, Equestria’s Golden Age ended and the brief period of the Nightmare Era began.

The Nightmare Era was filled with fear and paranoia of the night itself, the creatures that dwelled in it, and the Princess of the Night, “Princess Luna”. Which in some sources also has some kind of relation to Princess Celestia. With this spread of hysteria, violent incidents started to become far more common to those who supported or were related to the night, especially with ponies of the secretive Thestral Tribe. This also caused “Princess Luna” to become more reclusive from the public as the crimes and hatred for the night grew. Though there are also contradictory accounts of “Princess Luna’s” reluctance starting as soon as the fall of “Princess Twilight”.

This vicious cycle of hatred was broken one night when “Princess Luna” began an uprising known as The Lunar Rebellion. Sources claim that “Princess Luna'' was corrupted by dark magic and transformed into the legend known as Nightmare Moon.

Thankfully, the Lunar Rebellion was relatively short with Nightmare Moon and her thestral army’s assault on the Everfree failed. The Castle of the Three Sisters was where Nightmare Moon and Princess Celestia fought their legendary duel.

During their fight, it is stated that Princess Celestia used the mythical Elements of Harmony to banish Nightmare Moon to the moon for a thousand years. Which subsequently made the thestrials flee and end the Lunar Rebellion as fast as it started.

With the defeat of Nightmare Moon, a new era dawned as the Nightmare Era ended and the Celestial Era began.

Not everything survived the titanic battle of the two alicorns as the entire Everfree city was decimated, the Castle of the Three Sisters was in ruin, and the Everfree Forest became unlivable. Princess Celestia decided that the ruins of Everfree city couldn't function as the capital anymore and decided to move the capital to a nearby fortified mountain city, Canterlot.

Canterlot before it was chosen to be the next capital was, relatively, unimportant to the overall scale of Equestria. Canterlot could barely be called a city at the time, with its population being more akin to a fortified town than a capital, and compared to the now-famous architecture it was far more simple and bland.

When Princess Celestia decided that Canterlot would become the new Equestrian capital it was dramatically changed. The old Duke of Canterlot, Crimsonblood, gave ownership of his castle to Princess Celestia, as a gift for the Princess’s new home. As a reward for helping the crown, Princess Celestia granted Crimsonblood the title of “Prince of Canterlot”. This was a semi-legitimate royal house and was unofficially adopted into the House of Solaris, later renamed to the current House of Blueblood.

With Canterlot decided to be the new capital of Equestria the process of making the town able to administrate the country began, with Canterlot Castle being completely remodeled to reflect this.

Canterlot rapidly changed, with the castle being massively expanded and the once fortified town of Canterlot becoming the central hub of Equestria, mainly because of the massive surge of survivors from the ruins of the Everfree.

Not long after Canterlot’s ascension a new era of peace and prosperity dawned in Equestria and with Princess Celestia as its sole ruler. To this day Canterlot is still the beacon of Equestrian, culture, society, and power.

The only question is where will Canterlot go from here? Will Canterlot remain the center of Equestria? Or will another city rise to prominence and dethrone the mountain city?

Where will we go from here?

Chapter 2: The “Normal” Section of Canterlot Castle

Canterlot Castle is considered one of the wonders of the world, with its elegant architecture which is fashionable and functional, the hall of memories which has recorded Equestria’s most significant events in history, and with the world-famous Canterlot royal gardens. Canterlot Castle is the pride of Equestria, but what is in this ancient structure?

This chapter will go over what is considered the “Normal Section” of the castle which is mostly the public section of the castle and a little in the private section. Most of Canterlot Castle is dominated by offices, guest rooms, and meeting rooms for the many ponies that help run the government, but some more interesting locations that are noteworthy.

To start off this journey is the grand entrance hall, which is in the castle’s typical color palette of white, purple, and reds. The entrance hall is also the main crossroads that could lead to many different areas of the castle.

The floor is made up of the familiar black and white marble checked pattern design that dominates most of the castle. Also, helping lead visitors around are exquisite red carpets with many of them having detailed artwork stitched onto them.

On the light purple walls of the entrance hall hang many different banners of major cities in Equestria from Manehattan, to Cloudsdale, to even the ancient banner of the Everfree.

On the walls adjacent to the entranceway are three unique stained glass windows, each depicting a different design. The one on the left is blue and depicts the night, the middle is magenta with it depicting magic swirling around in the air, and the right one is yellow and depicting the day.

Finally, on the domed ceiling was the crest of Equestria with the purple, blue, and white alicorns going around the sun and moon with the little magenta stars around the two celestial bodies.

Moving onto another famous room in the castle, the royal ballroom. The ballroom is, probably, one of the most well-known rooms in Canterlot Castle as many events are held here from the Galloping Gala to the Summer Sun Celebration Parties.

The ballroom is dominated by a large round elevated section with marble black and white tiles surrounding an alicorn statue at its center, this is used for dances. The rest of the room is also filled with the same type of tiles and scattered around the ballroom are multiple tables and chairs for any number of ponies to relax and socialize.

Holding up the room are multiple ornate pillars that line the walls, each pillar hangs a banner with the Equestrian symbol stitched into them. Lining the purple walls of the ballroom are large tall glass windows that give the viewer a perfect view of the royal gardens and/or Canterlot proper.

Finally, the large domed ceiling of the ballroom has large majestic chandeliers that hang from the center of the domes.

Some other noteworthy features of the room are the small balcony that overlooks the ballroom, this is traditionally used for announcements to the guests by royalty or the host, there is also a staircase that leads down to the main floor.

Another feature of the room is a stage off to the side of the ballroom that can be used for a variety of things, such as the band or any other need that may arise.

Moving on from the ballroom and to the royal wedding hall. This hall has been used countless times over the years, from some of the most important and unimportant weddings, from rulers to nations to a lucky couple that had gained the Princesses blessing to use such a historic structure.

The floor had the typical black and white marble tiles, with the end of the hall having an incline which is used for the couple during the wedding. There is one long red carpet that leads to the incline with rows of chairs on either side of it and a couple of tables to the side of the room.

Keeping the room up are a few marble pillars that are on either side of the room and in between the pillars are large windows that overlook Canterlot.

Finally, on the ceiling hangs a large ornate chandelier that, from records, came from the mythical Crystal Empire, as a gift of friendship to the Princess.

The only other noteworthy addition to the wedding hall is a balcony that’s connected to the incline with two crystal glass doors leading outside. For tradition the couple, after they had married, would go to the balcony and give a short speech before the mare would throw a flower bouquet to the crowd below.

The next stage of our journey in Canterlot Castle is its spa. The castle’s spa is one of its newer additions in the castle, with it only being built a few decades ago. When the spa was built it became quite the destination for the many employees and dignitaries that stayed at the castle, it is even rumored that the Princess herself commonly takes trips there.

Besides that, not much is of real noteworthy with the spa, besides it having the normal castle color palate and black and white marble tiles. There is also a waiting room with a typical canterlotion design. The spa also has multiple different types of relaxation methods such as a mud bath, massage chamber, sauna, or hot tubs.

There is also a special section of the spa that was built to accommodate Princess Celestia’s unique size and is said to be truly luxurious.

The next destination is quite different. Instead of the fancy and clean spa, the next location is the dirty and murky dungeons. The Castle Dungeons were once a large labyrinth of tunnels that would go on for miles and hold some of the worst criminals in Equestrian history. Some records even indicate that some of the tunnels were connected to the now-abandoned crystal mines that once flourished under Canterlot.

Now though the dungeons are a mere shadow of their former self, with the dawn of Equestria’s new era of peace large parts of the dungeons were abandoned and sealed up. This was done because the crime rate had rapidly decreased and to symbolize that Equestria was beyond petty crime and war.

Speaking of crime the next step of our journey is the Castle Barracks. The barracks houses one of the last true military institutions in the entirety of Equestria, it is the home of the ancient royal guard that has served Equestria since its founding.

During Equestria’s era of peace large parts of the royal guard had been cut down and the organization as a whole has been given very little funding. So the royal guards today have been brought to a far more ceremonial role, with them being peacekeepers around Canterlot. Other settlements have made their own local security forces to enforce the law.

To get back on track, with the downsizing of the Equestrian Military the Canterlot barracks were also shrunk by half.

The barracks are located to the side of the main castle. The barracks contain a small courtyard that is used mainly for training royal guards. The building surrounding the courtyard is made up of the proper barracks for the guard, a military intelligence center that is used as a central command, multiple offices for the higher ranking members, and an emergency wartime room. That room is supposed to be used in case Equestria was ever to be attacked by another nation, though the room has not been used in centuries.

Some may ask “What will happen if any ponies in the guard were to get hurt?” Well, the answer to that question would be to take the guard to the Royal Medical Wing, or RMW for short. The RMW has some of the most advanced medical equipment and trained staff in the entire nation. The facility is equipped to help with almost any ailment that could befall a pony, it is even equipped to help Princess Celestia if anything were to happen to her.

The RMW has many rooms to take patients to, as well as many different types of rooms to help ponies with any advanced issues. Such as physical therapy, magical therapy, to even extensive surgery if need be.

Canterlot Castle doesn't just boast one of the most advanced medical facilities in the kingdom, but also one of the most famous locations in the entirety of Equestria, the Royal Gardens. The Royal Gardens is considered one of the greatest wonders in Equestria as it became a symbol of harmony and peace.

The Royal Gardens are typically divided into two sections, the public, and private sectors.

Out of these two, the public sector is bigger with its few acres large hedge maze, and its many secrets are hidden within it waiting to be discovered. At the mazes, center is an oak tree that was planted by Princess Celestia herself when Canterlot became Equestria’s new capital.

There are also many different lifelike statues populating the gardens. Such as, a statue of General Horse Shoe a hero of the Lunar Rebellion, or a statue of the Great Star Swirl the Bearded one of the greatest archmages in Equestrian history, or even a depiction of the mad tyrant Discord that plunged Equestria into an age of Chaos.

Some other facts about the Royal Gardens are that they hold some of the most exotic flowers in the world, with many of the flower species that call the garden home being imported from far-off lands.

The garden was also turned into an animal sanctuary, with many of the animals that live there being endangered and are considered protected by Equestria.

Leading the way to the seat of power in Equestria is the Hall of Memories. The Hall of Memories is an honored part of the castle, as it not only leads to the Throne Room but also has stained glass windows that have been created to record critical historical events in Equestrian history.

A few historical events that have been recorded in the hall are the rise and subsequent fall of Discord which has a gray-colored discord in the center with three alicorns around it. Another event is the founding of the Celestial age with Princess Celestia standing in front of Canterlot castle with her wings extended and the sun dawning over the castle and ponies surrounding the Princess.

Besides the windows, the hall itself is not too special with it having a marble floor and pillars that hold it up a vaulted ceiling. On either side of the hall are large ornately crafted doors that were salvaged from the old Castle of the Three Sisters in the Everfree ruins.

The final destination of this journey is the long-awaited Throne Room. The Canterlot Throne Room is considered the most important location in the entirety of Equestria, with it being the seat of power of Princess Celestia. If ponies are troubled they can go to an open court to have their case heard by Princess Celestia herself.

Once you step into the throne room the floor is made of marble with matching marble walls and pillars. In between the pillars are large stained glass windows and leading to the throne is a red finely crafted carpet which at the end of the path is a double tier Dias with the throne placed on top.

The throne is cushioned with red velvet, gold trimmings, and on top is a golden ornate sun that is based on her majesty's sun cutie mark.

On either side of the throne on the first tier of the dias are two smaller chairs with one being for the personal assistant of the princess and the other being for any guest of the princess.

On the wall behind the throne hangs two large Equestrian banners and an oval stained glass window in between the banners and above the throne.

Behind the throne are a set of doors that lead to the private section of the castle, this is typically used by the princess to enter the room.

These are all of the important locations that are noteworthy in the castle. Many of these locations and the castle itself are considered the greatest in all of Equestria, but the question is what other locations will be added to the castle in time?

Chapter 3: The Three Districts of Canterlot Castle

One of the strangest features of Canterlot Castle is what is known as the “Three Districts” that make up the private section of the castle. When Canterlot Castle was completely remodeled Princess Celestia was oddly adamant about the private section of the castle being divided into three districts.

There are many rumors about why Princess Celestia decided to create the districts, the only recorded explanation from Princess Celestia is that “They are supposed to represent very important ponies”.

One theory says that the Lunar and Magic districts because the Solar district is supposed to represent Princess Celestia, are supposed to represent the alleged “sisters” of the Princess, Princess Luna, and Princess Twilight. To this day Princess Celestia hasn't commented on any theories, so we may never know.

There are three districts with the western Magic district, or it's popular name the Lavender district, the central Solar district, and the eastern Lunar district.

The Solar District like its sister districts has a distinct style and color palate. Its halls are unique as the floors are made of white marble infused with veins of gold and the edges of the floor are trimmed in a dark red. Leading ponies through the halls is an orange-yellow carpet with the orange lining the edge and the yellow dominating the center, also spaced throughout the carpet is Princess Celestia’s cutie mark with a darker yellow surrounding it.

The walls are dominated from the bottom up with orange while the curved ceiling changes from a yellow to a softer shade near the center.

The doors follow a similar design as the rest of the distinct, with there being very angular designs depicting the sun rising over the crest of a hill.

Hanging on the walls helping light the room are these very peculiar devices that look like ornately crafted lanterns with gold designs on them. Inside the lanterns is a pulsating sphere of fire with jets of said fire coming out the top and bottom of the sphere and eventually re-entering the sphere, creating an endless loop.

Lighting the curved ceiling however were large oval-shaped glass tubes that had runes placed in them to replicate the look and feel of the sun, besides the sunspots, so that anypony could feel like they were walking outside.

So a few interesting locations in the Solar distract are the few solariums that dot around the distinct. Most of these solariums are small as they are only able to hold a couple of ponies. Inside of the solariums are a few sitting pillows and low tables so ponies can have a meal, also the glass is enchanted so you could only see it one way.

One of the most significant additions that were added to the Solar district is the Great Sundial, which while not located in the district directly it is still rather close. Before the modern clock, the Great Sundial was used to tell the time in Canterlot and at every hour a pony would ring a bell the number of times of what hour it was.

The sundial is located in a secluded part of the royal gardens where it is surrounded by tall trimmed shrubbery and exotic foreign flowers. The sundial itself is quite large and is made of gold plating as well as trimmed with orange metal. The bottom part of the sundial has the design of a rising sun with its rays coming off of it.

The centerpiece of the Solar district is Princess Celestia’s tower. While her tower was, strangely, the smallest of the three district towers, with it only being two floors high. Even still it is quite an impressive building with the walls being made of white marble with black veins and gold trimming. On the second floor is a balcony that overlooks the valley below Canterlot. The roof has the same swirl design as the rest of the castle, but instead of purple there is bright orange and on top is a golden statue outline of the sun.

Now some ponies might be curious about what’s inside the solar tower and its sister towers, but for respect and privacy to the princess and her wishes, we will not be going to explain what’s inside.

Moving on from the Solar district and to its eastern neighbor is the Lunar District. The Lunar distinct is quite the opposite of the Solar district, instead of warm colors, the Lunar district is bathed in cool colors with black, blues, and some purple making up the distinct.

What you would typically find in the halls of the Lunar district is the floor being made of cool obsidian with the edges being in dark blue marble. Leading through the halls is a dark blue carpet with a light blue interior and on the carpets are, possibly, a cutie mark with what looks like black ink splotches and a white crescent moon in the center.

The walls meanwhile are also dark blue with the top of the walls, which curves onto the ceiling, suddenly fading into black. Also placed seemingly randomly on the walls are silver stars.

The doors in the Lunar distinct have lots of details on them with silver trimmings and beautiful designs on the black wooden doors that are simply mesmerizing, with the final accessory being a small white crescent moon stamped on the top of the door.

Unlike its sister districts, the Lunar distinct is considered the darkest of the three with the only light on the walls being the occasional steel lantern with silver trimmings that glows with a magically enchanted white fire.

But while the walls are mostly bare of light that is not true with the ceiling. With its curved black ceilings having tons of magical white pulsating rocks scattered along it, shaped like stars. Were a creature to look up at the ceiling they would see a wonderful recreation of the night sky to marvel at, some of these “stars” even recreate famous constellations.

Some other features that are noteworthy in the Lunar distinct is a small special area in the distinct that is located in the main intersection. The intersection is circular with benches built in around the edge and it has purple cushions.

But the most significant feature is in the center of the intersection which has a small scale of Equis, with the moon revolving around it, and more of those little white stone stars dangling around the celestial bodies. The recreations of Equis and the moon are in fine detail with accurate geographic features to even miniature scale cities, though strangely enough there is a noticeable lack of the mare in the moon.

One of the most popular and interesting locations in the Lunar distinct by far is the royal observatory. The royal observatory is located not in the district itself but is jutted out the side of the building where it is attached to the mountainside so it can get a better view of the sky without the castle blocking it. The observatory has the same color palette as the rest of the district and etched above the entrance in old Equestrian is a quote saying “Beyond the Feared Night is Untold Beauty”.

Inside the observatory is a library/study filled with astronomy equipment, books, sitting pillows, and low tables. At the center of the room is possibly the most advanced telescope in Equestria, it is expertly maintained and up to date with the newest astronomical technology there is.

Finally, leading out to the upper catwalk around the outside of the observatory is one of the best views in the entirety of Canterlot, with ponies being able to look miles below the valley underneath Mt. Canterhorn to even a little past the mountains of the valley to the land beyond.

The final location of the Lunar distinct is the Lunar tower which is located at the end of the Lunar distinct. The tower is three floors tall, made up of obsidian walls with silver trimmings, and has a balcony on the third floor with a silver telescope attached to the edge.

The roof keeps the Canterlotion dommed swirl, but instead of the castle’s traditional colors, it is instead two different shades of blue, one darker and one lighter. The final touch of the tower is a silver crescent moon at the top with one of those white pulsating crystals in the center.

Last but certainly not least of the districts is the Magic district. The western district is also distinct with the colors dominating it being violets, purple, lavender, and even some dark blue.

The Magic District’s style that somepony may find is the floor being a lavender marble and the edges being in a dark purple. Throughout the halls is a carpet with its edges being a dark blue and the interior part of the carpet is a mixture of pink, lavender, and purple. Finally, repeated through the middle is a six-pointed pink star that runs through the carpet.

The walls were mostly purple with vertical blue stripes, the curved ceiling became a dark purple.

The doors had various little details in them with a purple metal that made it look like magic was being used across the surface, the center of the door had a six-pointed purple star stamped into it.

Helping light the district were mesmerizing magically infused blue flamed torches that hung on the walls, these torches have also been made so they give off no heat and couldn't burn anything. Hanging on the ceiling with thick chains are these large purple crystals, that were mined from the ancient crystal mines underneath Canterlot, that gave off a faint blue glow.

Now a few interesting characteristics of the Magic distinct is that it's not uncommon to find small studies throughout the halls. What you would find in these alcoves typically were a few sitting pillows and a low table, with smaller versions of the purple crystals giving off some light. Filling the walls of these alcoves are bookshelves stocked to the brim with books of all kinds.

Now while the Magic distinct may not have such unique locations like in its sister districts it still has one unique feature. It is the only district that has a direct pathway to the royal archives, though this pathway can only be used by personal guests of the Princess.

Finally, onto the Magic tower, which is located at the end of the Magic district. Like the Lunar tower, the Magic tower is also three floors tall with the walls being made up of purple marble, and violet metal detailing the walls making it look like the tower is made of magic. On the third floor is a balcony with a few older-looking sitting pillows and a low table. The domed roof is made up of, once again, purple, lavender, and pink, the three colors meet at the top. The very top of the tower has a purple metal six-pointed star with the tips of the points holding a little of the purple crystals at the end.

Epilogue: Finishing Details and Rumors of Canterlot Castle

With that, this mostly wraps up our tour of the ancient Canterlot Castle, but as one final goodbye gift for getting this far, we will go over some rumors about the castle.

One interesting fact is that there are unconfirmed rumors that when Canterlot Castle was remodeled that the original architects had designed and later built tons of secret passages, rooms, and tunnels. There are even rumors that a room was built to be completely disconnected from the rest of the castle and the only way to access the room is through teleportation, but as we said these are unconfirmed.

Well, that’s all we have, but we would like to say goodbye and if you have not visited Canterlot Castle to do so, as it is truly a marvel of engineering and pride of Equestria.

Property of the Royal Crown of the Secret Archives

Book Produced: CA (Celestial Age) 972

If this book isn't in the Secret Archives then whoever finds this book WILL be returned to the head librarian of Canterlot Archives and you will forget the existence of the book

Flashback 1: A Time Long Forgotten

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It was a clear day with the sun beaming down on a cozy little village with tiny cottages spread out through the clearing. The village was filled with earth ponies of all different sizes, some were on walls enjoying the beautiful nature that surrounded them while others were working on their fields. There were also foals running around and playing with their friends to their heart's content.

One particular pair of foals stood out more than the others, with all of the foals being earth ponies, besides this one. This pair had, strangely, a unicorn filly playing with them. She had what would have been pure a white coat, if not for the patches of dirt that cling to her, a long and tangled pink mane and tail as well as piercing magenta eyes. The unicorn filly was running after a brown earth pony filly with a lighter mane and tail. The two were laughing and playing with youth energy.

“No matter how fast you run Marble! You won’t get away from me!” the white filly yelled, her voice filled with exaggerated annoyed glee.

The unicorn chased after her friend, intent on making her pay for saying CAKE NOT being the best thing in existence!

“I will never admit that cake is better than donuts! All hail to the Mighty Donut! Down with the tyrannical Cake Queen Celestia!” the now-named Marble yelled as she pushed herself to get away from the mad queen.

With Marble’s announcement of heresy, Cake Queen Celestia was filled with righteous fury and determination to catch this heretic by any means necessary, with this new sense of determination she pushed herself to the limit to get Marble.

Unfortunately, for the foolish earth pony, she stumbled on a rock and tripped over herself which gave the mad queen enough time to rush forward and tackle Marble to the ground.

As the two fillies slowed down from their roll, Celestia eventually came out on top, quite literally and figuratively, on Marble and as she looked down at the heretic a manic grin spread across her muzzle and a look of retribution flashed across her eyes. Marble meanwhile looked up at Celestia quite sheepishly with a nervous smile, her coat started to gleam with sweat from exhaustion and rising fear. She desperately tried to struggle out of Celestia’s hold.

“Maybe I w-was being a little harsh on cake. You w-wouldn't hurt your friend...right?” Marble whimpered as she looked like she wanted to phase through the ground.

“Why I would never hurt my friend?” Celestia said to her friend, her voice reflecting sadness and a feigned look of shock, which let Marble let out a premature sigh of relief. “I was just going to punish you and enlighten you to the truth,” Celestia finished as she dropped her mask and her maniac grin returned in full force, which quickly turned Marble’s relief into pure terror.

Before Marble could do anything Celestia commenced her ticklish attack on her friend. Marble’s unprepared defenses quickly fell at the consistent onslaught, not long after she was reduced to writhing around on the ground laughing hysterically while making half-hearted attempts at stopping the unicorn. After a few minutes, Celestia’s assault ended and the laughter slowly died down as Marble was able to get back her breathing.

Celestia looked down at the mess that was her friend with a grin plastered on her muzzle and her snout held in the air.

“So my foolish Marble, do you now see why cake is the superior dessert?” Celestia asked her friend mockingly, challenging her to go against her ruling. Marble in response looked up at Celestia with a dazed look in her eyes and crawled over to her and bowed.

“Yes oh mighty Cake Queen, I now see the light!” The two fillies stayed like this for a few minutes before they couldn’t hold back anymore and fell over laughing.

After they got a hold of themselves they got up and leaned against each other, as they enjoyed each other's presence on such a nice day.

Celestia was so happy to be with her best friend again, though she couldn’t help but think about her life and how she met Marble. As far back as she could remember she’s always lived in this little earth pony village, Graycolt. She still remembers the first time she went to the schoolhouse and how out of place she felt, being the only unicorn in the room. It was thanks to her now, best friend Marble who helped her make friends with all the other students and even helped her in class. Ever since then they've been stuck together.

She also remembered all the times she and her parents would go down to the local bakery and if they were lucky they could have the gods sent that was cake. Celestia giggled at a particular memory of when she and her mother scarfed down THREE cakes in one sitting.

But out of all of those wonderful times, one memory stuck out more than the rest. Her personal favorite memory was when she got to meet her little sister, Luna for the first time. She still remembers when she first held Luna two years ago and when she looked at those brilliant cyan eyes, everytime she thinks about that moment it brings a smile to her face.

Celestia was jolted out of her memories when she felt a nudge come from her side, as she looked over she saw her best friend had a deadpan expression with narrowed eyes as she looked pointedly at her.

“You didn't hear a single thing I said, did you?” Marble said in a monotone voice. Celestia looked away sheepishly as she found the clouds in the sky very interesting.

“Hehe sorry. I guess I just got lost in thought. What were you saying?” Celestia somewhat mumbled as she looked over at Marble again. Marble rolled her eyes and asked again.

“I was asking how have you been? It’s been a while since we've last seen each other,” Marble repeated.

“Oh, well everything has been good. Luna’s birthday was three weeks ago and it was amazing. I still remember that adorable look on her face when I gave her the doll I made for her. She was so cute!” -Celestia practically squealed before she calmed down- “Besides that, well things have been a bit hectic the last week with my mom and dad trying to get everything ready.”

Before Marble could open her mouth to reply the two fillies heard a squeaky voice, as they looked toward the source of the sound they saw a blue blur quickly approaching. As Celestia squinted trying to make out what the blur was she realized that it was getting closer very quickly. When the blur was just a few feet away she was finally able to make out what the blur was saying.

Tia mummy and daddy say they almost here, THEY ALMOST HERE!!” Celestia had in that split second realized that the blue blur was her sister before she was tackled with a surprising amount of force for a two-year-old filly unicorn and was sent back a few feet.

As Celestia tried to get her bearings she suddenly let out a gasp as the blue filly started to jump up and down on her barrel, which caused her to lose her breath. After a few seconds of the fillies unintentional torture, Celestia was finally able to concentrate enough to pick up her sister with her magic.

Celestia sat there for a good minute trying to get her breathing back in order, while the blue filly which was covered in Celestia’s golden hue magic, floated there with a massive smile completely oblivious to what she did to her sister.

“Ohh Luna, what is it? And why did you just try to break my rib cage?” Celestia wheezed.


Celestia wasn't even sure if Luna was talking in equish throughout her “explanation” and it was safe to say that she didn't understand anything Luna said.

With a sigh, Celestia sat down and looked over her beloved little sister for any injuries she may have gotten as Luna continued on her nonsensical rant. While Celestia looked her over she saw, with a frown, that Luna had gotten some sticks in her light blue mane and tail while her blue coat had some quickly drying mud stains in it. She was especially happy that there were no injuries on her little growing horn, that is one of the worst places a unicorn could get hurt as it could hamper their magic, sometimes permanently.

Celestia shuttered at the idea of no longer being able to do magic, but before she could dwell on that idea she was mesmerized as she looked into those two wonderful cyan eyes that were filled with so much happiness and joy.

Celestia’s mind started to wander a bit again as she recalled how excited she was when she was told she was going to have a sibling. And all those times she would teach her magic or go to play in the forest together, all of these memories brought a smile to her face.

Celestia was once again pulled out of her thoughts when she heard a familiar voice, as she looked behind Luna she saw none other than her father. Celestia's smile only grew when she saw her father with his brown coat, blue mane, and tail. She also saw his long narrow horn on his forehead, as well as his bushy beard that he loved to have on his face. Finally, she looked into those familiar bright red eyes that belonged to the best dad anypony could ask for.

“Luna, slow down. I’m not as fast as I once was *sigh*,” her father mumbled the last part. Celestia didn't hear the last part though as she ran over to her father, with Luna still in her magic grip, and gave him her best hug.

“Dad!” Celestia yelled as she nuzzled her father, which he gratefully returned. Celestia then looked up at her father “What are you two doing here? And what is Luna all excited about?”

“I’ll tell you only if you drop your sister,” Celestia blushed from embarrassment, she forgot she was still holding Luna, and let her sister down.

Sorry,” Celestia mumbled, as she looked down in embarrassment. Though her shame didn't last long as she felt a hoof bring her chin up to look at her father's reassuring warm smile.

“Don’t worry my little sunflower, it’s alright,” Celestia’s smile returned in full force at her father's comment before he continued.

“Now as for what got your sister so excited -” her father stopped which only made Celestia antsy “- well, it seems your new sibling is going to be coming soon” he finished with a cheeky smile as Celestia’s eyes widened.

“Yo-you mean that they are almost here?” Celestia asked as a big smile slowly engulfed her muzzle and her eyes widened to the size of saucers.

“Yes Celly, your new sibling is almost here. Now we need to hurry befo-” as fate would have it he would never be able to finish as he was cut off when Celestia squealed at a volume that no creature should be able to reach.

“OH MY GOD’S THERE ALMOST HERE! THERE ALMOST HERE! YES, YES, YES, YES, YES!!” Celestia screeched as she grabbed Luna and hugged her with all her might. She then looked at her sister, which still had a massive smile on her face, dead in the eyes before continuing. “LUNA, WE HAVE TO GO SEE THEM! LET’S GO HOME AND MEET OUR NEW SIBLING!” Celestia then put Luna on her back and sprinted in the direction of their home as fast as she could possibly go.

“Wha? Who?... Ugg! WAIT FOR ME YOU TWO!” He yelled before he also galloped after them, though at a much slower pace.

With all the shock at learning of the arrival of their new sibling, everypony forgot about the earth pony that was sitting there still trying to process what just happened.

“I’ll just stay here...waiting...for you...yeah…” so Marble just sat there, very confused at what just happened a few moments ago.


Celestia galloped as fast as she could with her little sister’s hooves wrapped around her neck and both wearing a matching wide smile on each of their muzzles. Celestia’s only thought was getting home as fast as possible so she could finally meet her new sibling.

I can’t wait to see them! I can show them the wonderful world of sweets, we can all go on adventures, I CAN HELP TEACH THEM MAGIC as Celestia’s thoughts continued to go wild with all the possible things she could do with her new sibling, she almost didn't notice her house. As the two sisters neared their house, Celestia skidded to a stop and used her magic to open the door. Celestia quickly entered the room exhausted with her sister still on her back full of energy.

As the two entered the house, Celestia quickly shut the door behind her using her hind leg, while Luna jumped off her back. Celestia sat on her haunches while she tried to catch her breath, meanwhile, Luna started to excitedly gallop around the house looking for her mother and hopefully their new sibling.

Celestia meanwhile sat in the entranceway trying to cool off and get rid of all the sweat that she had accumulated during her sprint, after around five minutes she got up to join her sister in her search.

But before she could she heard the unmistakable sound of magic being used behind her, when she looked behind her she saw her father dragging himself inside. He was drenched in sweat, making him look like he just came out of a lake. There was also mud covering his legs and hooves.

Celestia's eyes widened. She was shocked at the state that her father was in and quickly made her way to his side. Celestia was very worried about her father’s wellbeing.

“DAD are you alright!? What happened?” she pressed her body to his which allowed her father to lean against her for support.

“Nev-never run *gasp* that fast again *gasp* please!” her father grunted as he tried to keep himself up while breathing deeply. Celestia’s only response was a rather sheepish smile as she continued to try to help her father in any way.

After a couple of minutes, her father was able to recuperate, and the two got up to try and look for Luna. They were surprised as suddenly barreling through a nearby hallway was that specific filly.

“Tia, I can’t find mummy anywh-DADDY! You here! You know where mummy is!” Luna yelled as she ran over to her father and nuzzled him, completely ignoring the fact of how sweaty he was.

“Well, my little nightshade. That’s because I put on a silence and lock charm on the door. So we don’t disturb the neighbors, -” their father said before he urged them both closer, which Celestia did a little reluctantly just now realizing how sweaty their father smelled. “- Now before we can go and see your mother, we are going to have to wait for a nice mare that is helping your mother to tell us that we can come in. Ok,” - To which the two sisters nodded in agreement - “Also when we go past this door you are going to hear her sounding...uncomfortable, but everything is ok. Do you understand?” their father received another pair of nods from the siblings.

After their acknowledgment, their father walked with the sisters to the outside of their parent’s room and their father lessened the strength of the charms. As soon as the charms were weakened on the door the two fillies could hear their mother screaming which caused them both too tense up.

While Celestia had experienced this before, with Luna’s birth, it still caused her to worry for her mother. Celestia then felt her sister lean on her and hold one of her forelegs with her tiny hooves. As Celestia looked down at her sister she saw that Luna was shivering and looked very concerned.

“Tia, is mummy ok? she sounds like she hurt,” her sister said while looking up at her with big tear-filled eyes.

“It’s alright Lulu, just like dad said she is going to be alright. Mom is just...doing a really tiring exercise. It’s alright,” Celestia tried to reassure her sister and hugged her with her hooves for extra measure. Though there was a part of her that worried just as much about their mother.

So the trio sat in the adjacent room and waited for any response from the apothecary and their mother, until.

DAYBEAM GET YOUR FURRY HIDE IN HERE! RIGHT!! NOW!!” Celestia’s mother suddenly yelled from the other side of the door.

As Celestia looked to where her father was he was shaking a lot and somehow he seemed like he was far wetter than he was a few minutes ago.

“We-well it loo-look like your mother wants me. I’ll...berightback!” The last part of what their father was going to say was cut off, as suddenly the door slammed open and he was yanked inside by their mother’s magic.

The door just as quickly slammed shut, with no evidence that their father was there a moment ago beside a small pool of sweat. The two sisters sat there shocked and confused trying to understand what just happened before Luna looked up pointedly at Celestia.

Celestia smiled sheepishly. “It’s a very tiring exercise,” Celestia finished lamely.

After...that the two fillies sat in the room in relative silence with the only noise being from their mother’s “exercise”, and so the two waited for what felt like hours.

After Celestia finished playing twenty-four hoof skip with her sister she tried to think of other games that they could play to pass the time. Maybe we could play stone, parchment, and we already played that, maybe salmon say-no we did that too. Uggghh we've played everything, when is mother going to be done I’m runn- Celestia was suddenly kicked out of her thoughts when she heard the doors to her parent’s room open.

As Celestia looked over at the aforementioned doors she saw the apothecary that her father mentioned came out. As soon as she left the doorway Celestia and Luna ran up to the mare ready to bombard her with questions, but before they could even start the mare held up her hoof stopping both of them.

“I know that you two are worried about your parents, but everything is alright. You can come in now,'' as the mare finished she moved out the way allowing the two siblings to look into the room.

As Celestia and Luna looked into the room they saw their father standing to the side of the bed which their mother was lying on, but what caught Celestia’s attention was the little bundle of cloth that her mother was holding and that was making foal noises.

As the two walked inside, Celestia couldn't help but look at the state her mother was in. Her light purple almost pink coat glistened in sweat, her striped purple and pink mane were full of knots with some parts sticking to her fur and horn while her tail was hidden by the blanket that was over her. Finally, as Celestia looked into her mother’s dark blue eyes she saw that while she was extremely tired she also looked equally happy. When the two fully entered the room, Celestia overheard her parents talking.

“Selene, she's beautiful. Look she has a combination of our eye color,” her father whispered to her mother.

“Yes she does Day, she's a little bit of both of us,” her mother added before she looked up at the approaching Celestia and Luna. “Oh, there are my little sweethearts. Come over here you two, me and your father have somepony very special we would like you to meet,” now with their mother’s encouragement Celestia and her sister quickly made their way to the side of their mother’s bed.

When Celestia reached the side of her mother she felt her sister jump on her back, likely to get a better view of their mother and the little bundle. Her father cleared his throat getting their undivided attention.

“Now as you two know, me and your mother named each of you ourselves with Celestia coming from me and Luna from your mother. Well, this time we have decided to do things a little differently,” her father stopped and looked at her mother to continue.

“Yes, instead this time we have come to a compromise. We would like for you to meet your new sister...Twilight,” her mother finished as she unwrapped the bundle a little so they could see their new sister.

As Celestia looked at her new sister, with Luna looking around her and still on her back, she saw that her sister had a slightly darker tone of purple fur than her mother, her mane was dominated with dark blue with a stripe of pink and purple. What made Celestia particularly happy was a tiny stub on her forehead that would one day become a proud horn. As Celestia continued to look over her new sister, Twilight, the little filly slowly opened her eyes until she was looking at her. Celestia looked into her sister’s dark purple eyes and in response, the foal started to giggle and reached out to her, this caused Celestia’s already big smile to grow.

There was only one thing that Celestia could think to say, and as Luna looked at her new sister in wonder on her back, Celestia said.

“Hello, Twilight. I’m Celestia, your sister,” as she greeted Twilight a few joyful tears started to roll down her cheeks, Celestia decided that this was one of her favorite moments in her entire life.


And so for the next seven months, Celestia and her family lived in relative peace, as much as you could get during a time where raiders were practically everywhere.

Celestia decided to try and help her mother in raising and caring for Twilight, her newest sister. While Luna attempted to be more mature so she could act just like her big sister Celestia. It took no time for the three sisters to become inseparable, it wasn't uncommon to see what great adventures/disasters they would get into. But for Celestia, these were some of her best and most favored memories….before it all went wrong.


High Queen Celestia of all Cakes sat at the round table of sisterly order with two of her fellow pony rulers. She wore her sponge cake regalia with its pink frosting highlighting exquisite details on the regalia.

To the left of Queen Celestia sat one of her fellow sister rulers, Queen Luna of the Great Candy Cane Forest. She wore her royal blue and white-colored candy cane regalia with dark blue candy rocks decorating the candy cane.

To her right sat the newly appointed Queen Twilight of the Cookie Clans. She had on her cookie peytral, while her crown had three long chocolate points with a cookie base.

High Queen Celestia hammered down her cake mallet, which proceeded to splatter all over the table and caused cake to fly everywhere, to get her sister's attention.

“Now that the rulers of the sisterly order have been assembled to this very important meeting. I will start with the first problem that plagues our great land of Sweetopolis,” Celestia’s announcement caused both of her sisters to pay close attention. “Now my cake scouts have been looking into the disturbance at the Rock Candy Cliffs and we have come to the conclusion that a vile band of beetroot raiders has formed, calling themselves “The Beetrot”,” as Celestia said the word “beetroot” both of her fellow rulers faces twisted in disgust.

This quickly changed for Queen Luna as her disgust quickly turned to anger as she slammed her forelegs on the table.

“This is unacceptable! We can not allow these beets” - Luna said the word as if it was acidic - “to continue to exist! I will personally bring a contingent of my best Candy Cane Rangers to hunt down this menace, once and for all!” Luna looked like she was about to say more, but was cut off as High Queen Celestia once again used the already abused cake mallet to get her fellow ruler under control.

“ORDER! Order! Queen Luna while I agree with you that this beetroot menace needs to be dealt with. I will have us be calm and orderly while handling this situation. Now, do you Queen Twilight have any comment with this newest development,” Celestia finished.

Queen Luna sat back on her throne, looked away from the rulers, and started to pout. Queen Twilight, meanwhile perked up at Celestia’s question.

“Well, while the Cookie Clans can’t send such a force as Queen Luna. I could send some of our best Cookie Shamans to help locate these beetroot vagabonds.” Queen Twilight offered.

High Queen Celestia sat on her throne and pondered her fellow ruler's suggestion, but as she was about to come to a conclusion she was suddenly started when she heard a loud sound come from her side.

“CAW!” as Celestia looked over she saw a slightly larger than an average crow. For some reason, Celestia’s eyes almost seemed to be glued to the crow as it continued to caw and kraa at her. As she was about to tear her eyes away from the mysterious crow it said something that made her freeze.

“CELESTIA!” The aforementioned pony quickly jerked her head back at the crow, but instead of the slightly larger-sized crow that she expected. Instead in front of her was a massive crow easily the size of a castle.

Celestia started to panic as the now titanic crow continued to say her name like a broken record and as Celestia looked around for her sisters she realized that she was no longer in the chamber of sisterly order. Instead, an inky black abyss that stretched on as far as the eye could see.

“CELESTIA GET UP!” Celestia quickly turned around to face the crow as something was different about the crow’s voice, it started to sound familiar. Then suddenly she realized who it was.

“Dad?” with Celestia’s realization the entire world started to ripple and evenly everything seemed to fade away.

When Celestia started to get her senses back she felt somepony shaking her and the muffled voice of her father. She was very confused about why her father was shaking her. Did I sleep in school or maybe mom needs some help with Twilight? Her confusion didn't last long though as she was finally able to make out what her father was saying.

“CELESTIA, GET UP RIGHT NOW! WE DON’T HAVE MUCH TIME!” Celestia opened her eyes to see her father.

Instead of his usual warm smile greeting her, instead, she was met with a very panicked look as he was drenched in sweat and he was looking from her to somewhere else. Before Celestia could ask her father what was wrong he suddenly pulled her up and brought her head to look at him. “CELESTIA, LISTEN TO ME! GET YOUR CLOAK AND SADDLEBAGS AND DON’T LEAVE THIS ROOM! OK!” Celestia was shocked. Her father never yelled at her and so in her shock, she didn’t immediately respond. “OK!” her father said more forcefully. This time Celestia quickly responded as she fearfully nodded. Right after her confirmation her father quickly galloped out of her room.

Celestia meanwhile was still in a state of shock. After a few short moments, she started to get out of her bed, but suddenly she heard a loud explosion come from outside and at the same time her room was shortly covered with a menacing flash of orange.

When Celestia turned around to look through her window what she saw froze and horrified her.

Outside she saw what could only be described as Tartarus itself; the home she had come to love was burning, from houses, trees, to...Celestia quickly looked away at the horrifying sight as her eyes desperately tried to latch onto something else. They landed on a foreign banner that was planted into the ground. Its emblem depicted what looked like a half-jagged sun and moon with the two sides making one celestial body, the sun side of the flag was bright orange with the moon side being a dull blue.

As she was transfixed on the banner a figure walked past it, but they were no resident. They had on some kind of dark plated armor that covered their entire body. Their helmet encased their entire face with the only distortion that there was a pony underneath was a strip of hair that came out of a large slit on the top of the helmet, which allowed their hair to come out of. There was a thin horizontal slit for the visor that stretched to either side of the helmet which allowed the pony to see.

The rest of their armor was a mixture of plate and chain mail, all entirely covering the pony in metal. As she looked down at their chest plate, what she saw only confirmed her worries, emblazoned on their chest was the same mixed sun/moon symbol.

When she looked out for anymore she spotted other ponies with the same type of armor. Some of them were even pegasi with their wings being armored also, but instead of a normal muzzle piece they had on one with a sharpened edge, making it almost look like a beak, and at the end of each of their hooves were two sharp blades.

There were also some unicorns, but apart from the addition of an armored horn, nothing else was different.

They all were burning her home and...killing ponies. As Celestia’s eyes continued to roam through the carnage, her eyes dilated as she saw something different standing in one of the streets.

There stood a large unicorn stallion. But instead of the near-black armor, the ponies had on him was a dull white. The armor also seemed to be more elegant and elaborate with multiple strange foreign designs etched throughout it, but what caught her attention and caused a large knot in her stomach were the dull almost glowing red eyes that came out of it. Celestia stared at those red eyes almost transfixed, suddenly the pon...creature turned his head and almost seemed to look right back at her. For a short time, she and the creature seemed to have a staring contest; she could have sworn that those eyes were filled with evil.

Celestia quickly ran out of bed, away from the window and the horrible scene outside. And so she laid there on the floor where she started to hyperventilate with tears streaming down her face.

Before she could completely freak out she heard hoofsteps coming from behind her door. Afraid that they were the demons outside in pony form she quickly backpedaled in fear trying to squeeze herself into the corner of the room. Instead of those creatures standing in the doorway was her father with a scared cloaked Luna behind him, she had her saddlebags and the doll she made for her was sticking out a little in her saddlebags.


This allowed Celestia to temporarily block out what she saw outside and quickly grab her cloak and saddlebag. Her father took her saddlebag and prepared her saddlebag while Celestia put on her cloak.

“COME WITH ME! WE HAVE TO SEE YOUR MOTHER! BOTH OF YOU!” As their father finished he turned around and started heading to her parent’s room, Celestia and Luna scampered after their father.

It didn't take long for the trio to make it to her parent’s room and as they turned the corner Celestia saw her mother come out with a crying bundled up Twilight levitating in her magic. Once her mother noticed them she seemed relieved and brought Twilight into her hooves.

“Thank the gods that you two are alright. Come over here you two,” her mother said in a hushed tone. While Celestia and Luna listened to their mother and came closer, their father went back and galloped as fast as he could while he shouted over his shoulder.

“You two stay with your mother! I'm going to get the supplies!” not long after their father disappeared around the corner. As Celestia and Luna came up to their mother Luna quickly latched onto their mother’s leg and cried, their mother sat down on her haunches and put her free foreleg around the shivering form of her sister.

“There, there. Calm down. It's ok, I’m here. Shhhh,” their mother calmly consoled Luna while lightly nuzzling her.

Celestia was also growing more worried as the sounds of fighting started to get closer, she subconsciously moved closer to her mother.

“M-mom, what are we going to do?” Celestia asked as her teeth chattered because she couldn't stop herself from shaking out of fear.

Her mother brought her head up from Luna and started to nuzzle Celestia, which allowed her to stop shaking and be comforted by her mother’s presence. Unfortunately for Celestia that nuzzle ended far too soon for her liking, this forced her to look at her mother’s worried face.

“Celestia I need you to be brave for me, ok?” - to which Celestia nodded - “I need you to promise me you will stay with your sisters and protect them no matter what. Help them when they need you and be that wonderful young mare I know you always are,” tears started to go down Celestia’s cheeks as her mother continued and with a choked sob she nodded.

Her mother smiled at this and nuzzled her again “I am so proud of you my little sunflower. Of all three of you,” they sat there and enjoyed each other's company. They were startled when they heard hoofsteps coming from the hall.

Coming into view of the group was Celestia's father with her now stuffed saddlebag in his levitation.

“I’m back, I got all of the stuff you’ll need! Come over here Celestia let me put this on,” Celestia’s eyes widened at what her father said, she looked at her mother with a pained/terrified look.

“WHAT! You're not coming with us!” Celestia’s outburst caused her parents to cringe and for Luna to look up at her parents pleadingly.

Her mother moved her free foreleg to Celestia’s shoulder while she looked at her with tear-filled eyes.

“Celestia, me and your father can’t come with you,” while she said this her father put on her saddlebag. Celestia didn't even notice. “We aren't nearly as fast as you and if we all try to leave it is far more likely that they'll notice us,” even as Celestia listened to her mother she couldn't accept that they were staying behind.

Suddenly she heard her mother’s horn glow and before she could ask her what she was doing she felt a pair of hooves wrap around her. “I love you, Celestia. I love all of you and I wish -” her mother started to choke up as she sobbed “- I wish we could be with you. I wish we could see you three grow up into beautiful, strong, and wonderful mares that we know you three will be, but we can’t and I'm so sorry for that,” Celestia broke after hearing her mother, she couldn't hold back her tears and bawled into her mother.

Not long after she felt more pairs of hooves. Celestia struggled to look around through her tear-stricken eyes she saw her father and sister quickly joining in, even her youngest sister Twilight tried to do her best in comforting her as she was being levitated by her mother.

“Just like your mother, I am so proud of the young mares you two have become. I am the proudest father that will ever live. I love all of you,” despite what has happened Celestia couldn't help but smile at her parent’s words.

Unfortunately, for Celestia, this tender moment couldn't last as the family pulled apart. Before anypony could say anything more they suddenly heard a loud thump coming from the entranceway. Celestia’s parents looked at each other and in no time at all her father galloped to the door with his horn fiercely ablaze with magic and a cold hardened determination.

“Celestia, I need you to take Twilight,” this caught her attention as she looked over at her mother and levitated her now sleeping youngest sister in front of her. Celestia quickly took over her mother’s levitation and brought Twilight to her chest while she put a foreleg protectively over her. “Now Celestia, the spell I used on Twilight should keep her asleep for a few hours, but be careful. Now please listen, take the backdoor and run as fast as you can to the forest edge. Don’t stop, just run. If you can get to Klipstone, there should be a good inn you can stay at with the bits we gave you,” during her mother’s explanation Luna went over to her side.

“Mom, please there has to be a way for all of us to get out of here,” Celestia pleaded to her mother, but before her mother could respond they heard a loud crash shortly followed by sounds of magic blasts.

“GO! I LOVE YOU THREE! RUN!” compelled by her mother’s order Celestia turned around, took a hold onto Luna’s hoof, and tightened her hold on her magic around Twilight while securely pushing her deep into her chest fur and ran out the door.

She heard her mother gallop down the hall in the direction of the battle that was slowly consuming their home.

As Celestia exited her home there was black smoke slowly consuming the sky and roaring orange fires taking over her home and many others. The only sounds that she could hear were the screams, battle, and the roaring of fires. Celestia didn't notice any of this, the only goal in her mind was to get to the edge of the forest as fast as possible. Unfortunately because of Luna's smaller body, she was forced to cast another levitation spell and place her on her back, where Luna crouched down.

As the three sisters continued to escape the hellscape that was now Graycolt they passed debris, bodies, and more of those sinister sun and moon flags. Celestia was forced to hide when one of the invaders would impede their path, but she would eventually be able to get by with her sisters.

Celestia was unsure how long it took for them to escape the now ruins of her old home, maybe only a few minutes or hours she couldn't have known. But when she finally saw the edge of the forest she thought she was going to pass out from relief.

As Celestia went up the last incline to the forest’s edge she almost collapsed from exhaustion as all of her adrenaline that kept her going started to fade.

Her once near pristine white coat was covered in sticky smut and ash from all of her accumulated sweat, her pink hair looked tan, her eyes were red with dark bags under them, and remnants of tear stains were on her face. Her sisters were not much better, though Twilight was probably the best with her being bundled up with them only being covered in a thin layer of ash. When Celestia regained her breath, she realized that Luna had jumped off her back. She swiftly pushed past her exhaustion and tried to look for her sister.

Tia, our home,” Celestia barely heard her sister from behind her.

“Luna, come back here we hav…” Celestia started to say before she turned around and saw the horrible sight that had enthralled her sister.

Down the hill were the burning remains of Graycolt, the entire village looked like one huge bonfire with its deceivingly soothing orange flames roaring high in the sky. From there she could see the invaders walking around the destroyed village like ants and the large black billowing columns of smoke that came from the fire which blocked out the stars and moon only leaving behind an inky black abyss in its wake.

Celestia couldn't help but sit there and reminisce about all of those amazing memories that she had in that village. Like when she and her mother went to the bakery and she showed her the wonderful world of cake or when she and her sisters went to the park to play all of those pranks on the villagers. As the memories flooded into her mind she barely noticed streams of tears coming down her cheeks. Then the memory of their parents' sacrifice came, which caused her to double over and desperately hold Twilight close to her chest as she bawled.

“Find any more of those infidels! They may have tried going into the forest!” Celestia was interrupted from her grieving as she heard the horrible voice of one of those monsters.

Celestia got up not bothering to wipe her tears and grabbed onto Luna’s hoof and ran into the forest. As she ran deep into the forest she brought Twilight closer while she looked into the sky. I love you, mom and dad. She looked down at Twilight and narrowed her eyes into slits while she looked forward again with a newfound determination. I promise I will protect you matter what!

Chapter 4: Time to be a Princess Again

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The days following the announcement of the new Princess of Equestria were…interesting to say the least, the majority of Equestria has seamlessly accepted with some even being supportive of the arrival of the returned princess. Though even with all of this support there are some that fear Twilight. They are afraid of who she really is as a pony or what she could do to Equestria. There is even one group of ponies that have tried to discount her of even being a princess, they’ve cited that there’s been little evidence of her even existing or ruling back then and that she should have to earn her place in royalty. As you can imagine these ponies were typically shut down fast by Princess Celestia herself.

As for Princess Twilight herself, she has been busy for the last few days, she’s done a few stressful all-nighters worried that she won’t be prepared for the inevitable day she’ll become fully reintegrated back into Equestria. To put it simply, Twilight hasn't had the best night’s sleep for the past few days or sometimes sleep in general.

This vicious attack on Twilight’s sleeping schedule would be saved when Celestia took her so she could give her a little surprise...


Deep in the halls of the magic district stood Princess Celestia and the newly reappointed Princess Twilight.

The two alicorns stood in front of a pair of large purple wooden doors with the surface of it being decorated with purple metal in different patterns of swirls which made it look like magic was being used on them, in the center of the doors was a large magenta six-pointed star. Finally, framing the doors was a thin layer of obsidian while two blue flamed torches hung on either side of it.

Twilight stood anxiously next to her sister. She was a bit worried about what exactly Celestia’s “gift” would look like.

“Are you sure I need a new room? My current room is good enough for me. It also reminds me of my old room in the Everfree,” Twilight muttered the last part under her breath, though Celestia looked like she still heard it.

“Twilight, that room is far too small for you, and if I remember correctly your old room was so packed full of your contraptions that it was practically unsleepable. Remember the time when one of your machines broke that your room became so unbearable that you had to sleep in my room, with me. For the last week” Twilight blushed slightly as she remembered that particularly embarrassing moment.

Well, I guess when you put it that way,” Twilight muttered as she looked to her side. This uneasy silence lingered until she heard her sister sigh before she continued.

“Twilight, I know you've always been...intimidated by all of this extravagance. Imagine this as my welcome back gift to you. I know you’ll love this, I took special care to make sure that only the latest and most advanced equipment was installed for you,” Twilight, even as she heard this, was still a little worried. Before she could reply to her sister, Celestia pushed open the large pair of doors.

Any response Twilight had died in her throat when she looked inside the room. The floor was filled with marble tiles in a checkered pattern of dark purple and lavender. While the walls were made of reinforced purple metal with tons of protection and reinforcement runes etched into them that faintly pulsed with magic. Helping light the room was the same glowing purple crystals that helped light the rest of the magic district, some hung from the walls or the ceiling.

But what drew her attention was the entire room was filled with magical machines, beakers, test tubes, magic analyzers, bookshelves, magically reinforced metal tables, plasma resistant metal chairs, it even had an M.A.P.S.A (Multi-Arm Particle Separator and Analyzer). It could separate individual particles and scan them in amazing detail!

Twilight stood there in amazement, mesmerized by all of these astounding machines and contraptions. Before she snapped out of it and sprinted over to the machines with childlike glee and a huge smile on her muzzle.

“OH, MY GODS! IS THAT A MAGI OPTI-SENSOR! EHHH! IT’S A MASS PULSE CRYPTA GENERATOR! OH, MY GODS! OH, MY GODS! AHHHH!” Twilight screeched to the heavens as she jumped in circles with overwhelming excitement.

Twilight would have continued if it weren't for the sounds of laughter and a sudden flash that had come from her completely forgotten sister, the same sister that had sat there during Twilight’s little “celebration”.

As Twilight looked over at her sister she saw that something was held in her magic. It was a strangely familiar box-like device with what looked like a lens attached to it. It took Twilight a moment to remember what the device was before it suddenly clicked, it was a camera, as soon as she realized that a huge blush enveloped her entire face.

“Oh gods, it’s been ages since you’ve done something like that. Hehe,” Celestia remarked as she smugly gazed at the offending image.

“You're never going to let this down are you,” Twilight said as she glared at the incriminating photo.

“Nope,” Celestia curtly replied as she teleported the photo and camera away, likely somewhere secure. “Anyways, welcome Twilight to your personal laboratory. I know your old room in the Everfree was too small for you and that you had a tendency to try and cram as much stuff into it as possible. So I had the entire first floor of your tower turned into a laboratory, and as I said before, every piece of equipment you see is state-of-the-art and considered the best in all of Equestria.

“The walls and furniture have hundreds of runes carved into them making everything near indestructible, so you can experiment to your heart's content. To your right you’ll also see a secured bookshelf” - Twilight looked over to where her sister pointed and indeed saw a tall bookshelf with reinforced glass doors that kept the books inside safe. - “inside them are all of the manuals and guidelines for the equipment as well as a few other interesting related books. Now if there were to be any fires then there's a water station a little down the hall that you could use. Finally, the stairs to the next floor are right next to the main entrance so if you have any couriers or guests they can go upstairs instantly and skip your evil laboratory,” Celestia finished with a smirk.

Twilight deadpanned at her sister's last comment, but this was short-lived as her nervousness from earlier returned.

“I...don’t know. I love all of this, but don't you think that all of this is a little...much,” Twilight scuffed the floor with her hoof as she started to feel a bit overwhelmed.

Twilight suddenly felt a wing slide its way along her back and as she looked up she saw her sister had moved next to her and cradled her with her wing.

“ *sigh* Twilight, I know you're not completely comfortable with all of this, but you deserve this. Not only for your accomplishments for Equestria but also for being a wonderful sister -” Celestia’s smile dimmed a bit “- Also for sacrificing yourself for me and Luna,” Celestia whispered the last part.

Twilight frowned before she replied “And I would do it again in a heartbeat for either of you. Thank you, for this and everything,” Twilight's reply warmed up the sad atmosphere that had begun to dominate the room. It also brought back Celestia’s smile which quickly became more playful.

“Also, I haven't been able to spoil my little sister in over a thousand years. I have some major making up to do,” the two sisters shared a laugh before Celestia got up and motioned for Twilight to follow. “Let’s continue our tour, shall we?” Celestia suggested. Twilight frowned faintly before her sister rolled her eyes and reassured her “Don’t worry, the rest of your room is less extravagant” with her sister’s reassurance the two continued onward.

As the two sisters made it up to the next floor, Twilight saw that it was vastly different from the first floor. Instead of marble, the floor was made of wood and at the center of the room was a circular purple and magenta ringed rug with her cutie mark at the center. Completely dominating the walls were tall bookshelves, each of them was stuffed with books. The only part of the walls that wasn't made up of a wall of books was a small quaint fireplace, there was already a blue fire started in it, and in front of the fireplace were a few sitting pillows.

On the ceiling hung a large purple metal chandelier with glowing crystals attached to it, there were also other simpler versions such as a simple chain that hung from the ceiling with a glowing crystal attached to the end.

That last noteworthy thing in the room was a pristine purpleheart wood desk with purple metal trimmings, there was also a purpleheart wood chair with the same type of trimmings and magenta cushions for the backrest and seat. On the desk were some quills, inkwells, blank parchment, purple wax, a wax seal stamp, and another glowing crystal desk light.

By the time Twilight finished her observation of the room a huge smile engulfed her muzzle. Before Twilight could go on another excited rant she was stopped by her sister as she caught her shoulder with her magic.

“Before I lose you Twilight. This is your office and/or study, I’ve made sure that there is a wide variety of books here for you. Also if you wish to keep any books for long periods of time from any of the archives in the castle you simply have to ask. I've already gotten confirmation from the archivists,” Celestia finished and Twilight was able to calm herself down from her book overload.

“Thank you, sister. But before I get distracted again can I see the rest of my room?” Twilight asked as she forced herself to move on before she fell to the temptation that was books, once again.

Celestia rolled her eyes but listened to Twilight’s request. “Very well, we'll leave before you get tempted again. Come on,” Celestia motioned for Twilight to follow up the stairs.

Once Twilight made it up to the final row of steps, she was able to look around at what she assumed was her chambers. Twilight saw that the floor was made out of the same wood as on the second floor with a few rugs scattered around the room. Transitioning the floor to the wall was a thin layer of obsidian and as Twilight looked up she saw that the same was true for the ceiling.

The walls themselves were striped in finely crafted purple and magenta wallpaper. There was also a pair of balcony doors that lead to, well, a balcony with an amazing view of the valley below the mountain, and on the balcony were some sitting pillows and a low table. There was also another door and if Twilight had to guess they led to a bathroom.

As Twilight looked up at the ceiling she was briefly memorized by the spectacle, on the ceiling hung tons of glowing crystals that were connected to chains. At the center of the field of crystals was a larger one that was shaped like a six-pointed star. What struck Twilight deeply was a giant six-pointed crystal but instead of the crystal looking like her cutie mark; it was shaped like her beloved Element of Magic. The giant crystal was shined to perfection with the core of the gem glowing and pulsating much brighter than all the other crystals.

When Twilight was finally able to tear her eyes away from the field of crystals and the replica of her beloved friend, she looked around the rest of the room. To the left side of her was a small private study with two bookshelves on either side of a desk with parchment, quills, and inkwells on it, there was also a chair. Past the small study was a little relaxation area that had a low table with a small glowing crystal light stand on it and a few sitting cushions scattered around.

Something else caught Twilight’s attention as she noticed next to the balcony entrance was a telescope with multiple different attachments connected to it. The telescope was plated in purple metal with intricate designs engraved into the metal, this made it look like magic was dancing in the air.

As Twilight continued looking over her new room she finally noticed her bed, it was a large canopy bed with purple curtains with dark blue, magenta, and lavender bed sheets that also had her cutie mark stitched on the center. Next to the bed were two mahogany nightstands, one of them even had a glowing crystal nightstand on top.

Helping divide her little sleeping area from the rest of the room was a simple room divider. On the other side of the room divider was a large towering modified dresser and embedded into the center of it was a glass case. Inside of the glass case was a comfy purple pillow, it didn't take Twilight too long to figure out that it was supposed to be where she put her regalia.

When Twilight finished her examination of the room she looked over to her sister and nodded, acknowledging that she was finished, this prompted Celestia to start.

“As you can likely guess, this is your bedroom. Now with your bedroom you also have your own bathroom,” Celestia said as she walked over to the door leading to the bathroom, Twilight quickly followed.

As the two arrived, Celestia opened the door with her magic. Twilight leaned forward to look inside and saw that it was quite a large room with lavender and dark purple marble tiles and cool amethyst-colored walls. The ceiling also had more of those hanging glowing crystals attached to it which helped light the room.

A huge tub dominated one-fourth of the bathroom, there was also a sink, countertops, mirrors, and a few small windows. All of these objects were decorated in engraved purple metal.

As Twilight continued to stare at her bathroom her eyes slowly widened as she realized how truly big the room was.

“Don’t you think that this is a little much? I mean look how big it is!” Twilight yelled as she looked over the huge bathroom. Twilight heard a snort come from her side and as she looked over she caught her sister midway through rolling her eyes.

“Wait until you see my bathroom,” Celestia grumbly hissed? Or at least that's what Twilight thought her sister did.

Twilight looked at her sister confused by her odd behavior before she pushed that comment away for later.

“So what are we doing now, because I just want to go somewhere quiet and try to process all of this,” this seemed to snap her sister out of her mood as she smiled at her.

“Well, that sounds like a wonderful idea. We can go to one of the tea rooms and have a break. There are also some matters that I would like to discuss with you once we get there. If you’ll follow me,” Celestia motioned for Twilight to follow.

The two sisters made their way down to the hallway which led to Twilight’s new tower. So Twilight and her sister walked down the halls of the Magic district while they talked about mundane things, like how the court sessions have been going or Celestia going over some of the new inventions that were created while Twilight was gone.

As the two sisters made it out of the Magic district, Twilight heard the sounds of hoofsteps. But before she could do anything she was surprised when she felt something small knock into her, which caused her to stumble a bit.

As she looked down she saw a black-furred filly with a black-purple mane and tail, she also saw that the filly had a blackhole cutie mark. But what caught her by surprise was the small purple baby dragon that was on her back. He had an olive green underbelly, bright green fins that start from the top of his head and end at his little stubby tail. Finally, he had bright emerald draconic eyes though instead of greed and anger that were normally seen in a dragon's eyes his were filled with curiosity and wonder.

Before Twilight could do anything she heard another set of hoofsteps rapidly approaching, Twilight braced herself this time just in case there was going to be another round of slamming the filly and baby dragon into the millennia-old princess. Instead what came around the corner was none other than her niece, Cadence.

“Wait! Slow down yo-” Cadence’s words died in her throat as she came to a stop in front of the two sisters. “Oh my gosh, are you alright! Centa, I told yo-” Cadence was interrupted when Twilight raised her hoof.

“It alright Cadence, I’m more worried about the filly and her...dragon?” Twilight asked as she wondered why a filly would have a baby dragon with her. Twilight then heard a cough come from her sister and as she looked over she saw that she had just lowered her hoof to get everyponies attention.

“If I may. Twilight may I introduce you to my newest student, Centa Void -” Celestia was suddenly interrupted as the newly introduced Centa Void jumped back up onto her hooves, with the purple dragon still precariously on her back.

“And this is Spike the Mighty Dragon! My bestest Friend and Companion!” Centa suddenly declared as she gripped Spike in her flickering magic and lifted him in the air for a few moments, Spike seemed undisturbed as he greedily sucked on his thumb while drool went down his lips. Before he suddenly dropped back down on her back. Centa’s adorable display caused all of the mares to laugh and for Centa herself to become confused.

After a few moments, Celestia cleared her throat, which regained all of the pony’s attention before she continued.

“Yes, how could I forget the Mighty Dragon Spike. Now Centa this is my sister, Twilight,” As Celestia finished, Centa's eyes almost seemed to become the size of saucers as she excitedly jumped over to Twilight with a massive smile on her little muzzle.

“Oh my gosh, your Princess Celestia’s sister! *Gasp* Does that mean you're a Princess too!” Centa stood in front of Twilight as she pranced in place with stars in her eyes.

Twilight laughed at Centa’s overeagerness before she laid down on the floor so she could be at eye level with her.

“Yes Centa, I’m a princess just like Celestia. And it’s wonderful to meet you,” Twilight finished as she put on her best warmest smile.

“I can't believe I’m meeting another princess! Not just any princess but Princess Celestia’s sister! I have so many questions I want to ask you!” Before Twilight could respond to anything Centa said, Celestia interrupted them.

“Before we continue this. Cadence and Centa would you two like to join me and my sister for an afternoon break with tea and cakes,” Cadence and Centa nodded their head in agreement, though Centa nodded with extreme intensity. “Excellent and Centa I believe that my sister would love to answer any question you have on our way there,” Celestia looked at Twilight for confirmation, which she gladly confirmed.

So with everything agreed on the group made their way to the tea room. Celestia moved ahead of Twilight and Centa to lead the way and talk to Cadence while the latter two were a little ways behind them having their own conversation.

“So Centa, what type of questions did you want to ask me?” Twilight asked Centa as she looked ready to explode from anticipation.

Centa took a deep breath “How old are you!? Where did you come from!? What type of alicorn are you!? What’s your favorite color!? Do you have a favorite book!? What does your cutie mark mean!? What’s your favorite vegetable!?” Centa slowed down to a stop as she panted from exhaustion, Twilight used this time to answer her questions.

“Well I’m two thousand seven hundred and forty-one years old, me and my sisters were born in a small earth pony village called Graycolt, I’m the Alicorn of Magic, my favorite color would have to be purple or dark blue, the best book ever made is Night Nebula’s Arcanum of Magic and Enchantments X Edition, my cutie mark means magic itself, and my favorite vegetable is beetroot,”

As Twilight finished she couldn't help, but giggle at a little secret. So she leaned in next to Canta as she gave away that terrible secret. “Centa, did you know Celestia hates beetroot?” Twilight whispered into Centa’s ear.

“What why?” Centa asked, confused.

“Well, the specific way she wonderfully puts it is “Those beetroots are a sin to ponykind and should be incinerated in cleansing solar fire. And any creature that dares to say they like them should be branded heretics and forced to eat cake until their sinful tastes are purified” so you could say that I’m a heretic,” by the time Twilight finished the two ponies and baby dragon laughed. Once Twilight was able to get a hold of herself she looked back down at Centa. “Anyways do you have any other questions?” Twilight asked her.

“ *Gasp* Oh I got another one, where have you been all this time!?” Twilight faintly cringed as she was slightly caught off guard with that question. Twilight's action caused Centa to wilt and rapidly try to fix her mistake. “I’m sorry! That was mean, you don’t have to answ-” but before Centa could finish her apology, Twilight held up her hoof as she calmed Centa.

“It’s fine Centa, you just caught me a little off guard. Now to answer your question I was...well, how do I put this? I didn't want to leave and I wish I could have stayed, but what I was doing was very important and if that life-threatening thing happened again I would do it in a heartbeat. *sigh* I’m sorry if that didn't really make any sense and didn't really answer your question, it's just not really something I like to think about. Is there anything else you’d like to ask me,” Twilight attempted to smile, but it came off more forced.

Even with Twilight’s efforts Centa still looked ashamed, Twilight signed before she moved next to Centa and put a wing around her and wing hugged her “Centa, it’s fine you didn't know, really. Now is there anything else you'd like to ask” Twilight smiled much more convincingly and this time Centa looked much better.

“Can you teach me some things about magic?” Centa asked in a normal tone. This brought a huge grin to Twilight’s face as she let go of Centa and returned to her previous position.

“Now that is a question I can answer full-heartedly,” Twilight declared.

As Twilight prepared to give Centa the best lecture on magic in existence, they realized that they had arrived at the tea room where Cadence and Celestia were waiting for them. Twilight smiled sheepishly as she realized she'd lost track of where she was, so she and Centa walked into the room. But as Twilight walked past her sister she saw that Celestia had her infamous playful grin.

“You two are adorable together. It's so nice to see you two become fast friends,” Twilight blushed slightly at her sister's comment before she soldiered on to where Centa was sitting, which was near a fireplace. As Twilight reached Centa she sat in front of the fireplace and began her lecture on magic.

“Now Centa, as you know the fundamentals of magic are…”


Celestia smiled as she watched her sister begin her lecture on magic to her student. She was happy to see Twilight take up to Centa Void so well, she was also glad to see Twilight interacting with ponies again.

Celestia turned to face Cadence, which sat across from her. Each of them had a cup of tea sitting in front of them on the table.

“I’m so glad that Centa and Twilight have become such fast friends, as much as I hate to admit it I was a little worried they would be...well more reserved. But I see now that it was simply my worries,” Celestia remarked to Cadence. Instead of a reply like Celestia expected, Cadence sat on her pillow uneasily as she looked uncomfortable. Celestia frowned with worry before she asked.

“Cadence, are you alright?” there was a tingle of concern in her voice.

This seemed to knock Cadence out of her mood as she looked over at Celestia while she bit her lip before she sighed.

“Auntie Celestia, I...we need to talk about something,” Cadence stumbled on her own words almost as if she was worried about what she was going to say.

“Cadence, you can tell me anything. What is it?” Celestia's voice was full of worry, but also warmth as she tried to calm Cadence. This seemed to have worked as Cadence took another breath before she began.

“Auntie Celestia, we need to talk about your...neglect of your duties, all of your duties” - Celestia frowned slightly as Cadence began - “look I understand. Your sister just returned and you want to see her, if something like that happened to me I’d do the same exact thing. But *sigh* I’ve noticed that ever since Twilight returned you’ve been cutting court short or skimming over documents and even if I’m not a princess I can see things are starting to slow down.

“But more importantly is, Centa. You’ve been pushing Centa on me more and more and while I’m completely fine with that, as I love her to bits. She still needs you, she constantly talks about how great you are and how much she wants to be like you. She needs someone to show her magic, what is right and wrong, and how to act in the world. She needs you right now,” Cadence breathed heavily for a few moments before she continued “I’m sorry, it’s just. I’m worried about you. About both of you,” Cadence finished.

By the end of Cadence’s speech, Celestia looked at her with a blank expression before suddenly Celestia let out a hollow laugh as she looked to the side “Your right.”

There was a part of Celestia that knew she was slowly paying less attention and effort into the runnings of Equestria as well as...Centa, but she had always willfully ignored it as she tried to push in more time with her sister. With a heavy sigh, she looked back at Cadence, which looked at her with growing worry.

“You're absolutely right, Cadence. About everything. I have been neglecting my duties, I...Oh, gods,” - Celestia brought up one of her forehooves and covered her face in realized shame - “it’s been two months and I haven't even had a single lesson with her,” Celestia started to feel guilty.

As she looked to the side again she saw her student run around and laugh in joy as she played with her sister. That caused a mountain of guilt to instantly flood her, so much so that it caused her to visibly cringe and look away in immense shame.

For a few moments, Celestia sat there as she tried to regain her composure. How could I do that to a filly!? As Celestia mentally berated herself for doing that to an innocent filly she saw that Cadence looked like she was about to freak out. So before she could Celestia brought up a hoof and looked at her.

“Cadence, like I said you're absolutely right. I shouldn't have done that to you or Centa no matter what my reasons were. I promise that I’ll spend more time with Centa and give her the proper training and support she deserves. As well as return my focus to ruling Equestria. I know this wasn't easy for you, so thank you,” Celestia made her best attempt of a warm smile, but it was shaky at best.

Even still Cadence returned her smile with her own before she began again “Well, how's Auntie Twilight been doing since the hospital?” Cadence asked. Celestia could see that she was trying to change the subject and agreed that it was best to move on.

“She has been doing alright. The medical staff has looked over the dark magic inside of her countless times, but no matter what they do they can’t find out what the magic is supposed to do or how to get it out. I’ve even looked at the magic myself and I can’t figure out what it's meant to do. All that we know is that the dark magic has somehow put up some kind of barrier in my sister that stops her magic regeneration to a certain point,” Celestia looked over at Cadence and saw that she looked confused so she decided to elaborate a bit more.

“To be a little more specific. My sister now has a maximum amount of magic she could hold, but what’s strange about this is that there are no other negative effects. She can still regenerate her magic to that point. And while it's good to know that she isn't getting worse it’s still not getting any better. *sigh* I’m just worried about her, she’s already been through so much and she doesn't deserve any of this,” Celestia finished as she looked over at her sister again.

“I see, I didn't know it was like that for Auntie powerful was she? Before all of this happened to her,” Cadence asked. Celestia hummed in thought for a moment before she replied, though she still watched Twilight and her student.

“She was by far the most powerful of the three of us. She could do amazing feats of magic that no other being could possibly recreate” - Celestia’s smile that had been slowly growing as she talked suddenly disappeared and was replaced with a saddened frown. - “Now, she is a mere shadow of her former self and while she has been slowly improving it's unlikely, in her current condition, she’ll return to the same level she was at. Not while that dark magic is still inside her,” Celestia finished in a whisper.

“Does, does she know about her condition? About her limit?” Cadence asked. This time Celestia turned to face Cadence again before she replied.

“I’ve told her about the basics, but I wouldn't be surprised if at this point she knew more about this than we do,” Celestia finished as she brought up her slightly cold tea to her lips and took a sip.

Cadence sat on her pillow in thought as she too took a sip of her tea. As she brought her cup down she looked at Celestia and asked another question.

“So umm, when do you plan to reintegrate Auntie Twilight back into Equestria?” Cadence asked. This time Cadence's question brought a smile to Celestia’s muzzle as she gladly replied.

“Well, I was hoping to start the progress soon. Starting with Twilight joining me in day court so she could understand how modern politics are in action. Though this is likely going to take many years before she’ll be fully reintegrated into Equestria and becomes my equal in station,” as Celestia finished they were both startled as they suddenly heard another voice join the conversation.

“WHAT! What do you mean your equal!” as Celestia looked over she saw her sister had a panicked expression.

Celestia was surprised that her sister was here and heard her. I was hoping to tell her a little later, but it seems fate has pushed that ahead...What? Where are Centa Void and her dragon? As Celestia looked past her sister she saw that Centa was concentrated on a spell and above her was a small light show of magic that flew through the air like fireworks. Spike seemed to be wonderstruck by Centa’s spell. Celestia smiled at the display. Of course Twilight showed her that one, Celestia then remembered that Twilight was still in front of her so she looked back over at her.

“What I mean is that we can rule together, with you having a more active role in government. Like we always should have done,” Celestia told her sister.

“But the way we ruled before was perfectly fine. It worked for over a thousand years just fine,” Twilight argued back, though there was a slight quiver in her voice. Celestia flared her nostrils and snorted, she had prepared for her sister to fight back against this.

“Twilight, you know as well as I do that our old system was broken, abusive, and unfair,” Celestia stated as if it were a fact.

“But...but it did work. It helped bring prosperity to Equestria,” Twilight weakly replied with much of her earlier fire diminished.

“Umm, what are you talking about? What’s the old system?” both of the sisters looked over to Cadence at her meek question. Celestia remembered she hadn't told Cadence of this yet, so she cleared her throat to get the other two alicorns’ attention.

“Cadence, in the past, when Equestria was first created, me, Twilight, and...Luna became the sole rulers of Equestria. Back then we had no experience of what was expected of us or how to rule a nation. Most of the time we didn't even know what we were doing. Anyways we decided that the three of us would rule together in a triarchy with each of us having equal power.

“In the beginning, this worked and each of us was involved in different roles. I was in charge of the foreign relations, public relations, and much of the more mundane work of the kingdom, like court requests. Twilight, was in charge of any magic-related events and the administration of the government. She created most of the core policies and doctrines that are still used today” - Twilight blushed at Celestia’s praise - “And Luna was in charge of the military and intelligence,” Celestia looked over at Twilight to continue.

“We even had a system for how we’d do court. Celestia would rule over court during the day while Luna would rule over it at night. Now since I didn't want to only join one of my sisters in court during our rule. I would swap back and forth from attending night and day court. For example, say this time I would stay with Celestia. I would stay up during the day to help rule with her for a week. Then for the next week, I would stay up at night and rule with Luna. I even created a sleep management spell that helped me adjust faster to the sleep schedules,” Twilight finished.

“So you would go to court with Celestia and Luna whenever you were staying with them?” Cadence asked which Twilight nodded her head. Celestia then continued.

“For centuries this system of governance worked with us being able to run Equestria effectively. Unfortunately, like all things, this system eventually started to break down. Over time our power changed with each of us becoming more or less important and it eventually got to the point where the triarchy became nothing more than a fabrication.

“Even before the failing of our system, Twilight was still out of the three of us the least powerful with her commonly advising us. But that became even worse when Twilight became nothing more than a glorified secretary and adviser. And while Luna was more of an equal to me I still had the ability to overrule her decisions if I chose. Which I sadly did quite often. I became the center of Equestria and to make it worse I was so enamored by all of the attention and praise that I was getting that I didn't even care about the flaws our system created,” Celestia’s tone by the end became saddened. As soon as Celestia finished Twilight jumped into the conversation.

“That’s not true! I’m also to blame. During that time I slowly started to lose...interest, so I started to disconnect myself from being a princess” - Twilight looked over at Cadence - “Cadence, while I was a Princess of Equestria I was also its Archmage so I started to focus more on that title. Because of this I also started to isolate myself from the public, so it was far easier for them to lower my power,” Twilight finished as she looked back at Celestia.

Celestia sighed and gave her sister a little smile “That may be so Twilight, but even still it was wrong of me to do that to the two of you. That’s why I want to make up for all of that. I want us to rule together like we always should have,” Celestia pleaded with her sister.

Twilight looked conflicted as she bit her lip and a tense silence followed before she looked back up at Celestia “I don’t know. I don’t think I could rule,” Twilight mumbled

“Twilight, I know that you’ll be a wonderful ruler. I won’t make you do everything at once we can slowly bring you into this. Ok?” Celestia asked her sister again. Twilight looked at Celestia obviously in deep thought before she slowly nodded her head.

“When do you plan to do this?” Twilight asked.

“I was hoping we could start today during evening court -'' Twilight's eyes widened in shock before Celestia reassured her “- don’t worry for this first one you can sit back and watch how it works. I would like it if you could add in your thoughts or advice, but that's it. It could be like the old way we did things,” Celestia finished with a smile. Twilight also smiled as she nodded her head more confidently this time.

After their agreement, the conversation moved onto more mundane subjects. Unfortunately, the, formally hot, tea was long forgotten at this point as the alicorns soon learned the hard way.


It had been a few hours since Twilight was in the tearoom with her sister, her sister’s student, niece, and the baby dragon. During those hours Twilight had done everything she could think of to calm herself down. She read the many manuals to all of the new contraptions she had, reorganizing her personal library/study while she read one of the books, to even setting up her telescope on her balcony while...she read another book...she really liked books, it helped her relax. But even as she did all of these activities she could only relax a little and by the time she was expected in court she was still stressed and had quite a few doubts.

When the time finally came, Twilight looked down at herself and felt incredibly unqualified and, for the first time since the hospital, alienated from everypony.

As Twilight pushed those feelings aside for a moment she anxiously looked in front of her at the pair of intimidating doors that would lead to the throne room. The pair of doors had the crest of Equestria on them. The doors were made out of marble, and were lined in gold.

Twilight suddenly felt something prod her shoulder. As she looked over she saw that it was her sister, who was in her golden regalia.

“Twilight, calm yourself. Everything is going to be alright. Remember that all you have to do is watch how the preceding in court is going to be. I’m not expecting you to immediately make life-threatening decisions” - Celestia then started to smile at her - “Also, you look wonderful in your new regalia,” Celestia finished.

Twilight blushed slightly at her sister's praise. She looked down at the purple metal and obsidian regalia she wore.

“I know. I know -” Twilight did her sister's breathing exercise and by the time she exhaled she felt better. “- I’m alright. I think I’m ready. Thank you, Tia,” Twilight looked over at her sister with a smile.

Celestia matched her smile and walked over to the pair of doors where she knocked on them and signaled for the guards that they were ready for court.

It didn't take long for the doors to be widely opened which allowed the two of them through. Celestia regally stepped through the doors with her princess mask securely put on and her signature motherly smile on her muzzle.

Twilight took a moment longer than her sister. She was still a little concerned before she pushed through her worries and followed her sister through the doors with her own regal stride if only a little more shaky, and her own princess mask.

As Twilight walked past the throne she was finally able to get a good look around the throne room. She saw that the floor was dominated with white marble and a long red velvet carpet which led from the doors on the opposite side of the room to the base of the throne. Like the floor, the walls were made of marble as well with tall stained-glass windows spread out evenly along them.

Long exquisitely chiseled marble pillars held up the domed roof and painted on the surface was a beautiful mural that stretched from one side of the room to the other. The mural from above the throne was a beautifully smooth and curved depiction of the day, the colors reigned from yellows, orange, and tiny amounts of red, with the sun being its centerpiece. On the other side of the mural was its opposite, a depiction of the night, and while it also had the same design instead it was made out of different shades of blue, dark purple, and touches of black, its centerpiece was a crescent moon. Finally, in the center transitioning the two sides of the mural was a section that was colored in different shades of purple and magenta, also throughout it were six-pointed white stars, while at the center there was a larger light purple star.

It looked just like her cutie mark.

Once Twilight was able to look away from the amazing mural she looked at the object that had made her worried sick, the throne.

Twilight saw that there was a two-tier dias with two long banners on either side of it. To the left side of the dias was a relatively simple chair with red velvet cushions and on the chair was none other than her sister's personal assistant, Raven. Next to Raven on the second tier of the dias was her sister’s throne, the throne itself was mostly made out of gold, with matching red velvet cushions, and at the top was a detailed miniature golden sun, which looked like her sister’s cutie mark. Finally, Twilight looked to the right side of her sister’s throne and saw what she assumed was hers. Unlike Celestia’s throne, her throne was made out of purple metal, with the edges trimmed in obsidian, magenta velvet cushions, and at the top, there was a purple metal six-pointed star.

While Twilight was slightly relieved that her sister hadn't gone overboard with her throne, as she had done with her room, she was still worried about her being adequate. What if I mess this up? What if I make a wrong decision and ponies get hurt!? What if- Twilight stopped herself and forced herself to do the breathing exercise again. As she finished she felt her sister’s wing slide onto her back.

Celestia looked at Twilight with a warm smile, her princess mask having been discarded for the moment, and nodded her head to the throne encouraging Twilight to take it. Twilight nodded her head in acknowledgment and Celestia let go of Twilight and the two headed to their respective places.

As Twilight took her tentative last step to her throne she took a deep breath before she turned around and sat into her new seat of power. The first thing that Twilight noticed was how heavenly soft the cushions were and she couldn't help but lean into the seat a bit more, she distantly heard a soft giggle come from her side.

“I assume you like your seat,” Twilight was snapped out of her half-trance when she heard Celestia’s cheeky tone, as she looked over she saw that she was also on her throne now.

“Yes. And thank you for making these new ones so much more comfortable than the last ones,” Twilight remarked.

“These certainly are an improvement. Now” - Celestia’s tone turned into a much more formal one as she looked over to Raven - “that we are all settled in, we can now begin Evening Court. Raven, shall you alert the guard,” Celestia asked Raven, to which she nodded and used a spell to tell the guards that they were ready.

Twilight took in one last deep breath before she too put on her princess mask again Welp, It’s time to be a princess again. Twilight mentally commented before the doors on the opposite side of the room opened, which signaled the start of evening court.

Two ponies walked through the pair of doors, Twilight could immediately tell that these two ponies despised each other with the way they glared at one another on a regular basis. The pony to the left was an earth pony stallion with a combed-back black mane and straightened tail, coal gray coat, light gray eyes, and a crushed up coal cutie mark. He also wore a buttoned-up light gray shirt with a black bowtie.

The pony on the right was also an earth pony stallion, but instead had an orange and golden colored mane and tail both of which were poorly attempted to be straightened, they also had a tan coat, orange eyes, and a cutie mark where there was a pile of embers that are being put out by an...axe? Twilight was understandably confused by this. They also wore blue overalls.

When the two ponies arrived at the steps of the dias everypony waited for Celestia to begin, but instead, there was a short pause until Raven got everypony's attention and asked the two attendants a question.

“Who are you two ponies? And what problem would you like to address to the Princesses of Equestria?” Raven commanded.

The pony on the left started “I am Coal Stomp and I am the owner of Coal Stomper Emporium. I would like to make a complaint,” Coal Stomp finished as he glared at the pony next to him.

“I’m Ember Chop your majesty’s, I'm the owner of Ember’s Away Mine and I’m here for a complaint as well for this fine gentleman next to me,” Ember said with a poorly concealed venom.

At least I’m wearing a suit instead of some workstallion's clothes in front of their highnesses,” Coal said under their breath.

Ember glared at Coal “What you say, colt.”

Twilight started to get worried and looked over at her sister to see if she would intervene. As she looked over, her sister looked as if she were in rapt attention. But Twilight knew better as she noticed her eyes were glazed over slightly and her ears were folded to the back of her skull, this meant that Celestia was in her own head.

Twilight’s horn softly glowed as she started up a telepathy spell while Raven tried to get the two under control.

Sister, are you alright?” Twilight asked her sister worryingly.

To every god in Equis, why in the hells of Tartarus did these ponies have to be the first things I had to deal with,” Celestia mentally barked, she almost sounded like she was grinding her teeth together.

Sister?” Twilight almost asked meekly, this seemed to bring Celestia out of her mood.

Oh! Twilight, I’m sorry! I didn't know you started a link. It’s just these two ponies have been squabbling with each other and coming to complain about it during one of my court sessions every day for the last five months. It’s tiring,” Celestia finished as she sounded exhausted.

I see, even still. Shouldn't we be listening to what they wanted to say?” Twilight asked tentatively, her response was disregarded.

Heh. Don’t worry these two typically berate each other for the first couple of minutes before they start. No matter how many times I’ve tried to stop them they always continue anyways,” Twilight was slightly confused by her sister's response. So she looked over at the two ponies and indeed saw that they were still bickering and arguing like an old married couple.

Still, if I remember correctly, our job as princesses is to listen to all of the concerns of the citizens of Equestria no matter how big, small, insignificant, or major they are,” Twilight recited to Celestia.

*sigh* Yes I know and your right. Very well let’s hear what complai-concern these two have,” Celestia caught herself. She then gathered everyone's attention in the room as she loudly cleared her throat. This stopped their bickering for the moment.

“Now that I have your undivided attention. What brings you to evening court?” Celestia asked in a perfect warm mothery tone and picturesque smile, though Twilight could see that it was entirely forced.

The two stallions looked at each other for a moment before Coal stepped forward and bowed.

“Your majesty’s. I would like to put a complaint about Ember Chop and his mine for violation of using a part of our property on Wilting Cliffs here on Mt. Canterhorn,” Coal stated. Ember evidently disliked what Coal said as he stepped forward.

“That’s not true, your highness. Ember’s Away Mine has owned and used this set of land for years. In fact, Coal’s emporium has been using their “supposed” land for mining when it’s clearly ours!” Ember declared as he glared at Coal.

“That is a clear lie. When I bought that land it clearly stated that the Wilting Cliffs was part of the property deed!” Coal walked right into the face of Ember in an attempt to intimidate him.

“That’s the biggest pile of manure I’ve ever heard!” Ember angrily shouted as he butted heads with the other stallion.

Twilight started to get worried that they were going to start a fight and evidently the guards in the room, as well as they, began to get into position to stop them. This never came to be as suddenly there was a loud slam which caused all of the occupants to stagger.

ENOUGH!” Celestia bellowed as she stood up from her seat and widely spread out her wings, this stopped the two stallions who looked up fearfully at her.

Twilight looked back and forth between the two, she worried how this could end very badly. So against her better judgment, she inserted herself into the conversation.

“Umm I may have a solution to your problem -” Everypony looked over at Twilight, having forgotten that she was there. Celestia in particular was surprised before a smile worked its way on her muzzle, she nodded for Twilight to continue. “- well maybe instead of arguing who controls that land instead you two can create a duel owned partnership together where the two of you own half of the cliffs.

“Doing this you could share your profits and in time have a larger supply of coal in total, which would allow you to gain even more bits, specifically to the train companies. This is because in the recent decade’s trains have become more fundamental and crucial to Equestria as it allows long-distance travel between different points in Equestria. This allows Equestria to easily manage its lands efficiently and for the common the...wonders of...Equestria…” Twilight slowed down as she realized that everypony was looking at her in slight confusion also that she had started to ramble.

Twilight heard a pair of hooves clap to the side of her and as she looked over it was from her sister.

“That’s an excellent idea, Twilight. Raven, may you hand me a map of the Wilting Cliffs,” while Raven was still confused she handed over a map. “Now like my sister said the best action to take would be for the two of you to have a partnership over this land. So to accomplish this goal, from this day forth the lands of the Wilting Cliffs are divided in half between Coal Stompers Emporium and Ember’s Away Mine,” Celestia declared as she drew a line through the middle of the map.

The two stallions looked at each other hesitantly for a moment before they walked up and took the map. They then both bowed and said their thanks.

“Thank you, your majesty’s,” both of the stallions said together before they walked out the throne room.

Twilight sat back into her throne as she recommenced her telepathic conversation with her sister.

Well, that was certainly...something. Do you think that’ll fix their problems?” Twilight asked her sister.

No. Most likely they’ll come back tomorrow with another mundane problem,” even if her sister wasn't talking Twilight could almost hear how tired she sounded.

Is this what you’ve had to deal with since I was gone?” Twilight tentatively asked, there was a short pause before Celestia replied.

Yes,” Even only with that one word Twilight felt immense pity for her sister, but before she could say anything the doors to the throne room opened again which let in another pony. Twilight mentally told herself to bring this up later with her sister before she steeled herself for what would lay ahead.


As evening court went on it seemed like Twilight’s concerns were unfounded as most of the pensions that were given were petty or simple concerns, though none were as aggressive as the first one. Even still there were a few pensions that were legitimate in their concern and for these ones Twilight gave the best advice she could think of, but eventually, evening court ended.


The doors closed behind the last pensioner and when they left Twilight got up from her throne and stretched all of her limbs.

“By the god’s, that was long,” as Twilight finished her stretches she looked over to her sister, who had also gotten up from her throne, and saw her chuckle.

“How would you like it if I said that this was a light day,” Twilight almost paled and stood there as her mouth hung open at Celestia’s horrible revelation which caused her sister to laugh.

“Ignoring that little fact. I have to say that this wasn't as bad as I thought it would be,” Twilight commented. Celestia motioned for Twilight to follow her as they made their way to the pair of doors leading out of the throne room.

“See, I told you it wouldn't be as bad as you thought. You also made some excellent suggestions in there” - Twilight once again blushed at Celestia’s praise - “Now I have a wonderful meal planned for us and as an added surprise I’ve had the chief create a three-tiered chocolate cake with molten chocolate fondue,” Celestia salivated as she continued.

Twilight rolled her eyes at her sister’s antics, but as they left the throne room she couldn't help but wonder what her sister planned for them.


Twilight had just put away her crown into the glass case at the center of her dresser. She then groggily used her magic to close the door and lock it. Twilight wobbled a bit and shook her head to try and focus herself. She looked down at herself and remembered that she had just finished taking off and putting away her regalia for the night. She then looked around her new bedroom and made her way to the heavenly object that was her bed. Before she reached her bed she couldn't help but sleepy think about what had just happened.

I still can’t believe how good the food the royal chefs made for us was, Celestia definitely wasn't lying. I’m just glad that we were able to begin to plan out how I would be reinstated as princess. *sigh* But these thoughts can wait for the morning. I'm sooo tired...I guess all of that stress has finally caught up to me.

With those final thoughts, Twilight got into her bed and almost immediately fell asleep. So the silence of the night dominated the room with the only light being from the glowing crystals which hung from the ceiling and the soft glow of the moon outside.

But, after a couple of minutes, there suddenly was a bright blindly white flash before it just as suddenly disappeared. This failed to awaken or even stir the slumbering princess, but something happened. Sitting on Twilight’s desk was a magenta six-pointed crystal star that softly pulsed with harmonious magic. Sitting on the desk was none other than the previously thought-lost Element of Magic.

Chapter 5: Old Faithful

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Twilight peacefully slept in her new bed while her blankets partially covered her, this was until Twilight suddenly felt an annoyingly bright light on her eyelids. She tried in vain to move out of the malicious rays but failed. So she grumbly admitted defeat as she opened her tired eyes and saw that her conniving opponent was her sister’s sun, which had found a way past her impenetrable canopy defense.

Twilight sighed as she cursed her sister's big ball of gas until she reluctantly got up onto her haunches where she stretched her forearms and wings. Twilight then attempted to rub the sleepiness away from her eyes and then moved a part of the canopy so she could jump off her bed. As Twilight landed on the hardwood floor she yawned before she started to walk mechanically to the bathroom, so she could freshen herself up for the impending day.

But just as she passed her work desk she suddenly had some other ray of light shine into her eye. I swear to the god’s sister if you are playing a stupid prank at this hour. I will strangle you! As Twilight glared over at the source of her sister’s presumed prank ready to obliterate whatever it was, instead, what she saw caused her eyes to widen and jaw to drop.

Sat on her desk was something that Twilight hadn't seen since her imprisonment, on the desk was a six-pointed magenta crystal star that was none other than her best friend, the lost Element of Magic.

Twilight stood there in shock for a moment until the full reality of her discovery dawned on her and she screamed in joy as loud as she could.

"OH MY GOD’S! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" Twilight promptly awakened the entire castle.


Princess Celestia was on her balcony, having just awakened a few minutes ago. Where she lowered the moon and raised the sun as part of her celestial duties.

Like many of the other times, she used this moment to mentally go over what she had to do for the day ...Then if I remember correctly, I have a meeting with Meadow Gale about the current state of the royal gardens at five in the evening. Then, let’s see...Ah! I have one final meeting with Captain Iron Sights at six-thirty to oversee the new recruits. Then finally I’ll be free. As Celestia finished she bathed in her newly arrived sunlight and the cool breeze that followed allowing it to flow through her mane and feathers.

Ah, I should get Twilight and do this with me sometime. Once Celestia finished that thought she let herself relax briefly in the soothing quiet of the morning, where the only noise was the chirping of birds or the rustle of leaves.

Suddenly, this peaceful setting was shattered when there was a deafening screech, which caused Celestia’s blood to run cold. This was because the direction of the scream came from none other than Twilight’s tower.

TWILIGHT! She’s in danger! Whatever is attacking my sister be ready to face the FULL WRATH OF THE SUN! Celestia instantly began to cast a teleport spell to her sister’s tower. She was ready to eviscerate any creature that would dare threaten Twilight, to put it simply she went into full overprotective sister mode.

Celestia appeared in Twilight’s bedroom already in a battle stance with her wings spread wide open and horn ablaze with golden magic, her eyes surveyed the room for any threats. As Celestia scanned the room her eyes widened as they fell upon the lying form of her sister on the ground.

What caused her eyes to widen in shock was the familiar form of the Element of Magic, which was rapidly pulsating in its core, clutched to Twilight’s chest while joyful tears flowed down her cheeks.

What!? Magic returned!? But it disappeared when Nightmare Moon was banished! During Celestia’s confusion, her battle stance slackened, as she stood there Twilight looked through her tear-filled eyes and noticed that Celestia stood above her.

“Sister tis is wonderful! Magic has returned! Mine friend hath returned!” Twilight remarked in broken equish as she tightened her hold on Magic, which caused the crystal to glow just a bit brighter.

“I...can see...that. How-how did you find it?” Celestia asked while the remains of her battle stance fully vanished as she tried to process everything.

“We don’t know. We-I mean, I found them on my desk this morning,” Twilight told Celestia as she began to nuzzle Magic.

Why did you return now? Wait if Magic has returned then that may mean that Twilight could… Before Celestia could finish that thought she suddenly realized that Twilight had screamed in the RCV (Royal Canterlot Voice), and had likely alerted every guard in the castle. Just as she finished that thought she heard a faint thumping sound and distant shouts come from downstairs.

Celestia sighed before she looked back at her sister and told her, “Twilight, can you please compose yourself? We have a lot to talk about with this new development. Now I will be right back. I need to calm down the guards that are currently trying to batter down your door. Not that I think they can actually break them down,” Celestia said the last part under her breath.

“Sure, sure,” Twilight absentmindedly said as she continued to nuzzle Magic.

Celestia rolled her eyes at her sister before she proceeded to walk down to the first floor, where she could hear the guards as they attempted to break down the doors. Celestia shook her head, but was still warmed by their devotion to protect her sister, she then walked over to the doors and used her magic to unlock and open them.

When Celestia opened the doors she saw that the guards had somehow gotten a marble pedestal and were using it as a makeshift battering ram, which was currently flying toward her. Celestia quickly used her magic to catch the pedestal mid-swing which caused the guards holding it to stumble.

As the guards regained their balance one of them looked up and saw Princess Celestia in the doorway. “Your Majesty! Were sorry, we didn't know you were there. We were just trying to get into Princess Twilight’s room when we heard a scream come from inside,” the guard dutifully reported as he quickly composed himself with the others following shortly after.

“It’s alright, I’m fine. I am here for the same reason and I would like to state that Princess Twilight is perfectly safe. As for the scream she was...excited about something and got a little carried away,” Celestia stated to the guards.

The guards nodded their heads in acknowledgment, if only a little hesitant by Celestia’s vague explanation, before Celestia continued, “If you could tell my assistant, Raven Inkwell, that something important has come to my attention and because of that court is postponed for today. Also alert the rest of the castle that everything is alright and the situation has been handled-” to which the guards nodded again before Celestia smirked “- Also if you could return this pedestal to where you found it, that would be perfect,” the guards blushed slightly as she showed their overreaction before they saluted to her and picked up the pedestal as they walked away.

That was until everypony heard rapid hoofsteps come from down the hall, the pony who was responsible for the noise charged around the corner and was none other than Cadence. The guards saluted when they recognized Cadence as she passed them. Cadence ran up to Celestia and as soon as she saw her she noticed how worried Cadence looked.

“Auntie Celestia, what happened?! Is Twilight ok?” Cadence hysterically asked, which Celestia calmed her and motioned for Cadence to follow her inside.

“Cadence, calm down. Everything is alright. Twilight is completely fine. In fact, I believe she is extremely happy,” As Celestia told Cadence that she started to walk back up to Twilight’s bedroom, to which Cadence followed her.

“Well, that’s good. I was worried that when I heard the scream, something bad happened. I got even more worried when I heard the scream came from Auntie Twilight’s tower. Centa was especially worried,” Cadence finished as an afterthought.

“Speaking of Centa. Where is she? Weren't you looking over her today?” Celestia questioned as she looked over at Cadence.

“Well after we heard the scream, I helped console Centa into calming down. Then I had some of the nearby maids look after her. I didn't want to give Centa off to somepony else, but I still wanted to see if there was anything wrong and if I could help in any way,” Cadence admitted, as she felt a little guilty for leaving Centa behind.

Celestia brought a wing around Cadence’s back, as she comforted her, “It’s alright, Cadence. You were responsible and helped Centa when she needed it. You also had the foresight to give her to ponies that could take care of her. But next time I would prefer that you stay with Centa. As even though this was a false alarm, it still could have been a dangerous situation that you could have gotten hurt in,” Cadence looked down as more guilt flooded her.

This didn't last long though, as Celestia opened up her other wing and brought up Cadence’s head with its tip. “But you are also still young and I don’t expect you to know how to handle every situation. That also doesn't mean that I’m not proud of you for taking such diligent action. Also when you get older I’ll teach you how to handle situations like this and how to deal with them, so you could help any pony that could be in danger,” Celestia finished with a motherly smile.

Cadence smiled back as the two wing hugged for a moment.

Soon after the two separated they continued their way up to where Twilight waited for them. As Celestia and Cadence made it up to Twilight’s room, Celestia noticed that Twilight had set up a table for them with a freshly prepared set of tea waiting for her. Twilight herself was sat on a sitting pillow with a cup of tea held up in her magic and next to her, on its own pillow, was the Element of Magic, which was faintly pulsating. Twilight seemed to be distracted with something as she only noticed them when they were right in front of the table.

“Oh! Cadence, I didn't know you were going to join us. Here’s a seat,” As Twilight finished a sitting pillow was levitated over in front of Cadence.

As the pair of alicorns sat down, where they got their own respective cups of tea, they relaxed for a moment as they enjoyed the serenity. Until Cadence broke this silence when she asked the glaring question in the room.

“Umm, so I was wondering Auntie Twilight. Why did you scream so loudly and why is there a six-stared crystal next to you?” Celestia wondered when Cadence would ask those questions.

“This is my best friend The Element of Magic or simply Magic and for why I screamed. Well, I may have gotten a bit...over-excited at being reunited with them,” Twilight answered as she faintly blushed with a sheepish smile.

“Ok, but well. What exactly is The Element of Magic and why do you call the crystal your best friend?” Cadence asked again.

Before Twilight could answer Celestia jumped into the conversation, as she attempted to stop Twilight from lecturing them for the next hour.

“Magic is one of the six Elements of Harmony and the reason Twilight calls Magic her best friend is that they have a very close bond,” Twilight softly glared at her before Celestia looked over at her sister apologetically. “I’m sorry, Twilight. I love your famous lectures, but there are some things we still have to talk about” - Celestia then looked back over to Cadence “But before we go into that, let me go into a little more detail on the elements. As I said there are six elements of harmony and they are Honesty, Generosity, Kindness, Loyalty, Laughter, and the aforementioned Magic. Each of the elements represents a part of Equestrian society and are powerful relics that can be used to defeat evil. As to where we found them…” Celestia looked over at her sister to continue.

To which she snorted but continued nonetheless.

“As my sister was saying. We found the elements hidden deep in the Everfree Forest, where they were held by a...object called The Tree of Harmony. The reason we needed the elements was to defeat an insane creature known as Discord, the self-proclaimed Spirit of Chaos. Discord kept true to his word as he caused chaos to run rampant in not only Equestria but the entirety of Equis and no matter how hard we tried we couldn’t beat him. So we searched for relics to help us, like the aforementioned elements. Once we used them we were able to beat him, where we sealed him in stone for eternity. As for who the elements belonged to...,” Twilight finished as she looked back over to Celestia with a smug smirk.

Celestia rolled her eyes at her sister’s antics.

Well played, sister. Yes, as for which of us bore each element. I had the Elements of Kindness and Generosity, Twilight as you can see has Magic but she also has Honesty, while...Luna held Loyalty and Laughter. One other thing you should know is that we didn't choose which element we wielded, they chose us. Now how they did this or why we aren't quite sure. You see the elements are semi-intelligent beings and work in mysterious ways, so they could have a variety of reasons for why they chose us. We simply don’t know,” when Celestia finished a pregnant silence followed, where Cadence sat on her pillow as she digested the mountain of information she acquired during the sister’s little “story time”.

This silence ended when Cadence looked back up at the sister’s “I think I understand. *sigh* So these were the relics you were talking about, Auntie Celestia,” Cadence weakly replied as she looked back over at Celestia.

Celestia smiled apologetically to Cadence “I’m sorry we jumped this on you, Cadence. I had planned to tell you this when you were older, but fate forced my hooves with Magic’s return,” As Celestia finished she looked over at her sister. “Let’s move onto the subject I would like to discuss. Twilight now that Magic has returned, there’s now the possibility that you could use the Elements of Harmony, instead of young Centa,” Celestia offered, to which both of the alicorns looked at her in surprise.

This didn't last long as Cadence slammed her forelegs onto the table's surface, which caused it to wobble and spill a little tea. “Wait! Auntie Twilight if you could use these elements, then Centa could be put out of harm's way!” Cadence excitedly yelled.

Celestia could understand why Cadence was so excited about this. After she told Cadence about Luna, which was a few days into Twilight’s coma. She also decided that it was best to tell Cadence about her plan to have Centa free Luna from the nightmare using powerful relics. Initially, Cadence was very against this plan and they argued over it for hours, but eventually, she was able to convince Cadence that this was the only way and if another solution presented itself she’d take it.

Celestia was knocked out of that memory when she heard her sister reply, “I agree. If I could replace Centra so she could be put out of danger, then I would gladly do it. Also with me already having a connection to the elements, I may be able to get them to work. And I’d like to try and help Luna myself.”

“Then it’s decided. Twilight will attempt to reactivate the elements, so she could use them instead of Centa. I’ll go gather the elements, which are in the ruins of the Castle of the Three Sisters,” As Celestia finished she stood up and prepared a teleportation spell.

Before she could leave Twilight looked at her confused “Wait the elements are still at our old castle? Why would you keep them there? I would have thought that you would have relocated them to Canterlot Castle,” Twilight asked Celestia.

“You’ll see why soon, Twilight. The elements you remember from before are...different,” Celestia cryptically replied.

Before she finished her teleportation spell and disappeared in a bright yellow flash.

When Celestia disappeared she had one final thought: I hope you can do it, sister. I hope you can use the elements so Centa doesn't have to be put in danger because of my mistake. As Celestia finished she disappeared from Canterlot and reappeared in a place she hoped she wouldn't have to come back to for a very long time...


*sigh* I hate it when she does that. Twilight sat on her pillow slightly annoyed at her recently departed sister’s cryptic answer. She pushed aside her frustration as she looked back over at Cadence, who had still not moved or picked up her, now cold, tea.

Twilight attempted to start the conversation again “Well since Celestia needs to grab the elements, I think it’s best that I set up some preparations for it. Also, you can bring your tea, but you may want to warm it up,” Twilight said as she finished her own tea, got up, and walked to the entrance downstairs, Twilight levitated Magic closely behind her.

Cadence blushed at Twilight’s comment before she followed Twilight, with her tea following shortly after her. Cadence took Twilight’s advice and heated up her tea with a quick spell.

The two mares walked down the steps in relative silence until Cadence asked a question “Um, there was another question I was wondering about. That didn't really get answered. Why do you care so much about Magic?”

“Ah, I was wondering when you were going to ask about that again. Celestia was quite...brief about Magic. Sorry about how Celestia acted, she just wanted to get to the matter at hoof,” Twilight apologized for her sister.

“No, it’s alright. It was quite an important question,” Cadence reassured her, as she took a small sip of her now reheated tea.

“Now, to answer your question. My relationship with Magic is a bit difficult to explain. You see, ever since we first found the elements I’ve always felt a special connection to Magic, something I didn't have with Honesty. Because of this, I started to work with Magic more and slowly learn more about them. Eventually, we became best friends and I decided to...integrate Magic into my old regalia,” As Twilight looked over at Cadence to make sure she had understood, she saw that she looked confused so Twilight decided to clarify a bit more.

“To be a bit more specific. The regalia that I wear now, the same set that I wore when I was reintegrated into Equestria, is not the same one that I used to own. I asked Celestia where it was, but she didn't know where it went. Anyways, to get back on track. My old regalia, specifically my crown, had The Element of Magic attached to it, where they helped me and we could be together,” Twilight recalled as the two alicorns reached the lab.

As they entered Twilight walked over to one of the tables, where she grabbed a multitude of equipment for the elements experiment. Twilight also securely placed Magic down onto another table.

As Twilight gathered the needed equipment she heard Cadence ask another question, “So, does that mean Celestia and Luna had a special connection to their elements as well?”

“No...not really. I think they considered them more like a partner or comrade than a best friend. I was really the only one that went so far, at least with Magic,” Twilight replied as she began to set up the lab for the elements.

“I see,” Cadence muttered as she took another sip of her tea.

“Anyways, now that Celestia is gone. Do you want to hear about some of her most embarrassing moments,” Twilight asked as she looked over at Cadence with a self-satisfied grin.

The grin seemed to be infectious, as one slowly spread on Cadence’s own muzzle, “Auntie Twilight, I’d love to hear about that.”


It had been about half an hour since Celestia had left for their old home and in that time Twilight had prepared her lab for the use of the elements. As well as telling Cadence many different compromising stories about her sister, that will likely plague Celestia for the next few months.

As Twilight finished another incriminating tale of her older sister, she suddenly felt the familiar buildup of Celestia’s magic, “It seems Celestia has gotten the elements,” Twilight commented.

Cadence was momentarily confused until a bright flash of light filled the room and just as quickly disappeared.

In its place was Celestia, but she was not alone as five spherical stones floated above her.

Celestia looked around the lab for a moment, before she looked over at Twilight with a smile, “I should have known that you would have prepared for this,” Twilight didn't pay attention to what Celestia said, as she was more focused on what was left of the Elements of Harmony.

“I see what you mean by different now. They're practically unrecognizable and I can barely sense the magic within them,” Twilight worryingly commented, as she gazed at the petrified remains of the elements.

“Yes, I know. After I used the elements to banish...Nightmare Moon, Magic disappeared and the rest of them turned into these stones. Because the elements became inactive, I decided that it would be best to keep the elements at the old castle. As they looked nothing like what they used to. And more personal reasons,” Celestia muttered the last part.

Twilight looked curiously at her sister, as she wondered what she meant, but decided to let it slide for now as there was a more pressing matter.

“Well, I think that it would be best if we moved on to what we wanted to do. Celestia, can you please place the elements in the designated spots that I’ve assigned on the ground, while I place Magic in front of me,” Twilight directed to her sister, to which nodded as she started to place the elements.

Twilight got into her position at the center of the pentagon matrix that she had created while Celestia was away. Twilight’s plan was to have Magic in front of her, where she would use them as a focal point to the rest of the elements. Which would be equally around her at each point of the pentagram. This would, hopefully, be the best chance for her to reactivate the elements, so she could face her corrupted sister instead of Centa. And also possibly help with the dark magic lingering inside of her.

As Twilight layed down and brought Magic in front of her, she looked up at Celestia and Cadence where both of them stood just outside the pentagram. Twilight noticed her sister’s worried expression.

“Twilight, are you sure that this is safe. Maybe we should wait and do some tests first before we start,” Celestia suggested, Twilight shook her head.

“Tia, we have a chance to get Centa out of this and maybe this could help with the dark magic. I’ll be as safe as possible,” Twilight reassured her sister, to which gave a shaky nod.

With Celestia’s confirmation, Twilight began. She started as she connected her own magic to Element of Magic and then she attempted to do the same for the other petrified elements. Twilight immediately felt resistance as the elements almost seemed to fight back, which caused her to start losing her grip on them. NO! Why are they pushing back! Come on Twilight concentrate, as Twilight added more magic into the elements she slowly started to link to them.

Even with this slow progress the amount of magic that Twilight was putting into this had started to have an effect on her, she began to breathe more heavily, sweat started to pour down her face, and her horn glared with blinding purple light. But Twilight endured and she began to feel the connection solidify between her and the elements Yes! I’m almost there!

Unfortunately, this was never meant to be. As suddenly venomous purple lighting started to arc out of Twilight while she screamed in agony at the sudden assault, which caused her connection to the elements to sever.

“AHHHHHHHHHHHH!” Twilight hadn’t felt this kind of pain since before her banishment and no matter what she did she couldn't stop the lightning from erupting out of her.

Twilight!” Twilight faintly heard her sister and Cadence scream, she also barely felt her sister’s magic being used around her.

Suddenly, Twilight was freed from her torture, as she fell onto something soft. For what felt like hours passed until Twilight was finally able to become responsive again. The first thing she noticed was her face engulfed by white fur and as she took a deep breath she smelled her sister's familiar scent. Twilight laid there as she let her body recover from that...experience until she regained her hearing where she started to hear her sister mutter.

Twilight, please be okay. I’m sorry. I failed you again. You got hurt because of my carelessness,” Even in Twilight’s state, she wasn't going to let her sister blame herself for this.

“Tia, it’s not your fault,” This seemed to jumpstart Celestia, who brought Twilight out of her embrace.

Twilight was able to get a good look at her sister. She saw that her entire face was a mess, tears matted her fur, her mane was in knots, sweat-drenched her face, and a bit of snot covered her nose.

“TWILIGHT! You're awake -” unfortunately, Twilight couldn't look at anything else, as she was smashed back into Celestia’s embrace “-I thought you were unconscious! Are you alright?! Where does it hurt?!” Celestia frantically screeched at her, as she started to feverishly nuzzle her.

Twilight took in a deep breath as she began to scan her body. Which she was thankfully able to do with only an uncomfortable horn ache but she was able to push past the discomfort, for any injuries. Ok, checking for injuries. Magic: functional, how would I be able to scan myself if it wasn't working. Internal organs: working. Skin: undamaged. Brain: operational. Burn marks: none. I seem to be completely fine other than this ache Twilight noted as she finished her examination, she then attempted to tell her sister.

“Celestia, I’m fine. I just scanned myself and nothing is wrong,” Twilight reassurance seemed to have the opposite effect on Celestia.

“FINE! Twilight, dark magic lightning was coming out of you! Your magic must be affected,” When Celestia finished, she commenced her own scan spell and as she finished her face was filled with shock. “What?! But dark magic was launching out of you! How are you not hurt?! What if he put up a cloaking spell on you to hide the effects! We need to get you to a-,” Celestia was silenced when Twilight grabbed her face and moved it in front of hers.

“I’m fine, Celestia. I checked myself over with my best scan spell. I don’t know what happened, but I’m fine. Ok?” Twilight told her sister.

Celestia continued to look at Twilight worriedly, until she finally nodded her head “If that is what you believe, then alright,” Celestia conceded as Twilight released her sister’s head.

“Can you tell me what happened? All I remember is that dark magic lighting coming out of me and then that’s it,” Twilight asked as she looked past her sister and at the battlefield that was her lab.

All around the lab were these jagged venomous purple crystal shards that were attached to the ground and surrounding them were small blast marks. Sadly, quite a bit of the equipment in her lab seemed to be damaged, though thanks to her preparations most of it looked repairable. She also noted that the petrified elements were still unchanged, which caused a pang of despair to fill her. As Twilight’s eyes roamed the rest of the room she caught the sight of a shell-shocked Cadence which, thankfully, was unharmed. Before Twilight could do anymore, Celestia began to talk.

Unnoticed by the alicorns was the Element of Magic, which had rapidly increased in its pulsating and glowed a bright purple. Before it returned to its dim steady pattern

“When you were attempting to connect with the elements, you suddenly began to scream as dark magic bolts of lighting started to come off your body. Once that started, I immediately cast a shield spell over Cadence before I rushed in and tried to stop the uncontrolled magic. I destroyed any of those dark magic shards that got in my way and when I reached you, I began to cast a containment and purification spell. But before either could come into effect the dark magic suddenly stopped. When I caught you I tried to talk to you, but...but you didn't respond. So, I thought...I thought,” Twilight silenced her sister, she didn't need her to remember that.

“I’m okay,” Twilight gave her best smile, which Celestia replied with her own.

The sisters' private moment was interrupted when they heard Cadence slowly approach through the crystal debris.

“Auntie Twilight, are-are you alright,” Cadence meekly asked, as she looked at Twilight like a lost puppy.

Twilight smiled at Cadence before she replied, “I’m fine, Cadence,” as soon as she finished, Cadence slammed into Twilight with a hug.

“Oh thank Celestia and every other god that you're alright! I thought you were…” Cadence whimpered at the end as she couldn't finish her sentence.

“For the last time you two, I’m alright, if only sore. Now as much as I like being held and hugged to death. Can I be let down,” Twilight’s comment made the two alicorns realize that Twilight was being held by them.

So they mercifully let her down and allowed themselves to be next to her, in case Twilight needed further help.

As Twilight was finally able to walk on her four hooves again she initially wobbled a bit, which caused Cadence and Celestia to come closer in an attempt to help. They were stopped when Twilight held up a hoof and signaled to them that she was alright. As Twilight moved forward a couple of steps it felt like her entire body simultaneously spasmed so was still very achy, but besides that she was alright. Twilight began to walk over to a nearby table, which didn't have any crystal shards attached to it, while she levitated Magic back over to her and onto the table.

“Well, that was just the first test. I can figure out better ways to defend myself against that for the next test,” Twilight nonchalantly commented as she reached the table.

“WHAT?!” Twilight turned her head around as she heard both Celestia and Cadence say that at the same time.

“Twilight Aurora Magus, you are not going to do that experiment ever again. It could seriously harm you. I’m not going to let my sister hurt herself,” Celestia demanded as she brought her hoof down.

“We need to keep trying this. If we can find a way for me to use the elements then we can stop Centa from having to face the Nightmare at all and we may be able to purge this curse in me” - Twilight took a deep breath as she looked straight at Celestia - “And until we are certain that I can’t use the elements, then Centa will be our backup plan,” Twilight stated as she stared at her sister with unbridled determination to which Celestia attempted to match.

The sister’s impromptu standoff ended when Celestia relented with a sigh, “You're not going to give this up are you -” to which Twilight shook her head “- That’s what I admire about you -” Celestia said under her breath before she looked at Twilight “- Fine, you may continue BUT you will only do any further experiments with me around AND after this, you are immediately going to the hospital,” Celestia demanded, to which Twilight happily, if only a little reluctantly, agreed.

“Now there is one more thing -” Twilight turned back over to Magic as she placed one of her hooves on them “-Magic, can you please shrink down to the size of a medallion and add a loop on the top,” Magic happily complied.

“Why are you doing that?” Cadence asked as she reentered the conversation.

“Well, I just had an idea. You see, I still want to take Magic with me wherever I go. But I can't do the same thing as I did before, because Centa can’t know about the elements yet. So, I’m gonna make Magic my -” As Twilight talked she grabbed a length of string and tied it around the loop before she levitated her new creation in front of her “-new necklace! This way I can take them wherever I go and no pony is any the wiser,” Twilight proudly showed off her idea.

Celestia chucked “Absolutely brilliant. It only took a thousand years to come up with it,” Celestia finished with a smirk, Twilight pouted and glared at her sister.

Before the sisters could continue their battle of wits, Cadence nudged Celestia “Auntie Celestia, this may not be the best time, but can I ask you a few things,” Cadence asked, to which Celestia smiled at her.

“Of course Cadence, you can ask me anything,” Celestia brought a wing around Cadence as they walked away for a bit of privacy.

Twilight continued to smile a tad longer until it dropped into a frown, she turned back around and placed the newly Element of Magic necklace on the table.

Now away from Celestia’s eyes, Twilight’s face was engulfed with extreme worry and a tad of fear. Because in truth, she was scared of the result of the experiment. How could his spell break through my defenses? I prepared numerous defense wards, charms, and runes throughout the lab. I even cast various detention and alarm spells in case anything happened with the dark magic and none of them went off. What type of magic did you put inside of me? How did he create such an advanced spell?

Twilight looked down at herself because for the first time in a long time she didn't know what a spell did and that terrified her.

What did Sombra do to me?

Chapter 6: Exploring the Great Beyond...Of the Castle

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It had been about a month since, what has been dubbed, by the three alicorns as the Element Incident took place. In that time Twilight had slowly taken up some of the more minor paperwork and activities that Celestia originally did as well as becoming slightly more active in court. Twilight’s increased activity in the government as well as her continued research into modern times have caused her already poor sleeping schedule to worsen.

As a result of this Cadence and Centa, mostly Centa, have almost begged Twilight to take a break and go out with them to see Canterlot proper. Twilight was initially reluctant to go, but eventually, she accepted their proposal with the encouragement of Celestia.

So on the long-awaited day, two ponies waited for a certain purple princess at the entrance hall of Canterlot Castle.


Cadence looked down at her black cloak, she moved her wings a bit in an attempt to make the subtle bulge they caused less noticeable. Once Cadence was satisfied she breathed out a sigh before she looked around for an energetic Centa.

As she looked around the entrance hall she noticed that the black and white checkered marble floor was recently waxed. As she moved up she saw the pristine light purple wallpaper that made up the walls and the many city flags that hung along the walls, there were also a few mosaic windows embedded onto the wall. Cadence's eyes drifted to the domed ceiling which had the crest of Equestria emblazoned onto it.

She was startled out of her musings when she heard the rapid hoofsteps of a certain little filly that ran around the corner from a nearby hallway. It took no time at all for little Centa to run up to her, with the unchanged eager smile she still had on since she woke up this morning.

“Oh, Celestia! I can’t wait to go out to Canterlot with Princess Twilight! This is going to be absolutely amazing!” Centa enthusiastically shouted to which Cadence giggled at Centa’s over-the-top excitement.

Though if Cadence was honest she too looked forward to being able to spend some more time with Auntie Twilight and learn...certain things about her.

“I know. Me too, Centa. But calm down, I’m sure Auntie Twilight will be here any moment,” Cadence explained. Though if she takes any longer, I’m pretty sure Centa will explode from anticipation, Cadence playfully thought.

“I just wish she was here alrea-” Centa was interrupted when they heard a pair of open, which was shortly followed by hoofsteps.

When they looked over they saw what looked like the form of Twilight, Cadence smiled and whispered, “Speak of Tartarus,” Yet as the figure got closer her smile suddenly became a confused frown as she noticed a noticeable lack of...accessories that Auntie Twilight had.

As, who she thought was Twilight, walked over Cadence noticed that she had no regalia on, however, Cadence wasn't too surprised she knew that Twilight preferred to not wear them when she didn't have to. She also noticed that she wore the Magic pendant, what they had decided to call the Element of Magic when it was in its necklace state. No, what caused her to be surprised was the apparent lack of wings that was normally on Twilight also her slightly smaller frame, but mostly the wings. Cadence even looked over at her cutie mark which only confused her even more as the core of the cutie mark was the same, but rather than the three white stars around the big magenta star there were instead six.

Confused and curious Cadence decided to ask the glaring question to the quickly approaching mare, “Auntie Twilight, is that you?”

“Yes, Cadence. It’s me, Twilight. Even with some missing parts,” the now confirmed Twilight replied.

“What did you do with your wings? Did you use some sorta spell?” Cadence asked as she approached her changed aunt and looked her over.

Twilight meanwhile stopped in front of the two ponies as she raised her eyebrow with a confused look, “I’m surprised that Celestia hadn't shown these spells yet. Though I suppose these are some hard spells to cast,” Twilight looked down in thought for a moment before she seamlessly remembered their existence. “Sorry, I got lost in thought again. Ahem! To answer your question. Yes, I used a few spells. The first one was a transmorph spell that temporarily removed my wings. Then I cast a size swap spell which changed my size to an average mare, even if that one didn't change much. Finally, to complete my transformation I cast a simple localized illusion spell that modified my cutie mark slightly. You may now clap,” Twilight did a little bow at the end as Centa in response proceeded to rapidly clap her hooves, Cadence smirked at her aunt's performance.

When Twilight got up she looked back over at Cadence, “I see that you’ve decided to use a...cloak to disguise you?” Cadence blushed slightly, thankfully her coat hid her embarrassment well, at her admittedly pathetic disguise attempt compared to Twilight’s.

“Well, it works most of the time,” Cadence pitifully replied as she insecurely pulled her cloak closer.

“If you want, I could cast the spells on you too. So you don’t have to use that cloak,” Twilight kindly offered her with a smile.

Cadence looked away conflicted as she thought about Twilight’s offer. While it would be better for me to have...well anything’s better than this. I don’t want Twilight to strain herself again. What if when she casts those spells it is too much for her?! I don’t want to see her get hurt again! Cadence shivered at the horrible memory of Twilight’s painful scream during the Element Incident.

“No, it’s alright. This will work just fine,” Cadence replied as she forced herself to give a reassuring smile.

“Are you sure? It's no problem, really,” Twilight frowned as she looked at her in confusion.

“Really, it’s fine,” Cadence reassured her once again as she tried to find a way to change the subject before Twilight kept pushing.

Before the two alicorns could continue any further a very agitated Centa jumped up in between them and yelled, “COME ON! CAN WE GO NOW!”

A moment of silence followed until both alicorns laughed at Centa’s impatience, Cadence silently thanked Centa for the distraction and mentally promised to get her something special later.

“I suppose we have been keeping Centa waiting long enough. Let’s go explore Canterlot!” Twilight announced as she marched toward the large castle doors.

Centa, ecstatic at this news, ran over to Twilight. Cadence shortly followed after, but at a much more calm pace. That was until Twilight suddenly turned around as she suddenly remembered something.

“Oh! Also, while we are in Canterlot proper my name is Twilight Sparkle so please only call me Twilight or Sparkle,” Twilight told them before she looked over at Cadence and asked. “Cadence, what should I call you?”

“Cadence should be fine while we're out. I’m not too well known yet,” Cadence sheepishly replied.

“Very well then. Then let’s continue!” Twilight announced as she turned back around and proceeded to Canterlot.

Cadence followed shortly after Twilight. She couldn't wait to show Twilight around to some of the best places in the city, but she also couldn't wait to start her secondary goal of this trip. To find out Twilight’s romantic interests!


The city looks so much different up close...It’s changed so much, Twilight thought as she walked through the streets of Canterlot for the first time since her return with Cadence next to her and Centa up ahead as she ran around with youthful stamina. As Twilight looked around at the purple, white, and yellow’s that dominated the city, the elaborate architecture, and domed roofs which finished the look.

Twilight could recall the last time she was in Canterlot, before her imprisonment, and they might as well have been different cities. The last time she saw Canterlot it was...well far more akin to a drab, dull, utilitarian fortified town than the grand glistening city in now was. The city was also relatively unimportant to the whole of Equestria with its only features being its fortified position, central location in Equestria, and its once prosperous crystal mines which are now abandoned, though that was only discovered after it became Equestria’s new capital.

Twilight was knocked out of memory lane when she heard Cadence ask something, “Why did you choose Twilight Sparkle for your name?” Cadence asked in a hushed tone, as to avoid attention.

“We have always made up names for our disguises with everyone in a while making new ones up, I’ve just personally always liked Twilight just feels like it fits. My sisters also made up their own. Celestia thought of one of the most ridiculous ones, Sunny Sunshine,” Twilight finished with a big grin.

“Really?! I can’t believe that she would have thought of something like that,” Cadence snickered as she tried to keep herself quiet.

“Anyways, what are some places that you had in mind for our little group to visit,” Twilight asked as she changed the subject.

“Oh! We can go to the Grand Central Park, Donut Joe’s, Cherry Plumb’s Memorial Botanical Gardens, or even the Canterlot Royal Museum,” Cadence replied before she looked away and whispered, “And maybe Love Junction.”

“What was that last part?” Twilight asked as she strained to hear what Cadence said near the end.

“Um, nothing!” Cadence hastily answered as she faced her again.

Before Twilight could even think of Cadence's suspicious response, she was interrupted by an ecstatic Centa.

“NO WAY! I can’t believe that it’s here!” the two alicorns looked over at Centa as she ran toward a curious blue building.

“Centa, wait for us!” Cadence yelled as she ran after the little filly which had just entered the shop.

Twilight meanwhile calmly approached and observed the odd structure. As she got closer she noticed that the entire building was painted in dark blue with white stars appearing near the top of the walls. There were also the classic spiral domed roofs with lighter and darker shades of blue mixed into them. Twilight also noticed that there were glass displays out with multitude different types of astronomy equipment, which ranged from multiple models of telescopes, astronomical clocks, or books about the workings of astronomy.

As Twilight pushed the door open she walked into the little homely shop and as she passed through a sign swung above her that read “The Astronomer’s Workshop”.

Right as Twilight entered the store she immediately found Centa as she ran around the store and raved about absolutely everything she found.

“Oh, Celestia! They have the latest updated star maps! Ehhh! Is that the new Galaxy Series Telescope IV! YES! Yes! Yes!” Twilight smirked as Centa continued to ramble/scream and nerd out about her love of astronomy.

Twilight looked around the rest of the shop, which indeed had a large variety of astronomy equipment, and saw Cadence off to the side as she watched Centa with a smile. Twilight walked over next to her.

“I take it that Centa likes astronomy?” Twilight rhetorically asked Cadence.

“Oh, you have no idea. Centa probably loves astronomy more than magic. She often talks to me about all of this stuff, which most of the time goes over my head. Also, she tends to visit the observatory a lot when I look after her. Heh, we even laid until the night sky one time and Centa was able to name multiple consolations as well as individual stars,” Cadence commented as she warmly smiled at the still excited Centa.

Twilight stood there as she thought about what Cadence said and couldn’t help but think about somepony very similar. She really loves astronomy. She almost sounds like Lu- Twilight stopped herself before that thought could dampen her mood.

Twilight looked back up to Centa as she tried to distract herself, “Centa, you may want to calm down a bit,” that seemed to calm her down from her high as she stopped and blushed when she noticed Twilight.

“I’m sorry, Prin-I mean Twilight,” Centa said as she restrained herself to calmly walk over to the two alicorns.

Twilight lowered herself to eye level of Centa as she approached, “It’s fine, but just go easy on the staff. I don’t think they're ready for your enthusiasm,” Twilight softly asked Centa as she bobbed her head to the staff which had also admired Centa’s display, her blush deepened before she nodded and started to use her sister’s breathing technique.

Twilight couldn't help but giggle, Of course, Cadence taught her Celestia’s infamous calming exercise, “So I take it you know this place,” Twilight warmly commended.

“Yes! I’ve been here a LOAD of time! Before I became know who's student. I always loved coming in here and looking at all this amazing stuff, but I could never buy anything,” Centa sadly remarked as she scuffed her hoof against the ground.

Twilight frowned before she got up and walked past Centa, “Well that won’t do. So if I’m right, you wanted to have this specific telescope?” Twilight asked as she looked over her shoulder at a shocked Centa.

“Wait, what?! You don’t have to do that!” Centa quickly said as she rushed over to the side of her.

“But, I want to. I can see how much you love astronomy. Also” - Twilight smirked - “I love astronomy too. We could even go out and stargaze together,” Twilight said as she grabbed the telescope that had entranced Centa with her magic.

“Really?” Centa whispered in a hushed awed tone and with a twinge of hope in her eyes.

“Really. We can even do it in the gardens,” Twilight then moved down next to Centa and whispered, “I can make it so the night’s perfectly clear, we may even be able to sleep under the stars afterward.”

“YES!” was the only thing Centa said as she jumped onto Twilight and clung to her in an overjoyed hug.

Twilight gladly returned the surprise hug with a warm smile before the two separated, “We can do it in a few weeks,” Centa rapidly nodded her head in agreement.

After their little exchange Twilight and Centa walked up to the counter where a previously absent Cadence waited for the two of them. It took little time for them to buy the telescope, with Twilight being a princess which gave her access to a very large store of money. Eventually, the three left the shop, Twilight had also teleported the new telescope to Centa’s room. Cadence ran out of the shop shortly followed by the pair of Twilight and Centa.

“Now that we're done with that, I know the next place we should go!” Cadence yelled as she ran off with a happy Centa shortly following her.

Twilight snorted as she watched the larger and smaller filly runoff. I'm starting to wonder who is supposed to be watching who, Twilight thought as she caught up to them.


The three ponies continued their little adventure around Canterlot and went to some...interesting locations such as the Canterlot Weather Team HQ. Twilight had continued to be amazed at the advancements of weather magic and other technology that the pegasi had been able to make as they went through the facility.

Another place they went to was a section of the city called the Kirin District, which was a district in the city dominated by Kirin and their culture. They went to various locations such as multiple different shops. There were clothing shops, bakeries, general markets, and especially restaurants. One particular restaurant called Kalica’s Noodle Bar was exceptionally good with its combination of Equestrian and Kirin dishes.

They also went to a special memorial in Canterlot that commemorated the Rise of Canterlot and the Fall of the Everfree City. Twilight had asked to be alone during that time so she could properly say goodbye and mourn the loss of all the ponies that died in the ancient city. Eventually, when Twilight was finished the three of them continued forward with only a slightly somber mood that took hold of them, which was thankfully extinguished when Centa helped Twilight recover with her being her adorable self.

While the three had explored the city Cadence worked on her other goal that she planned, even with her secondary goal Cadence still loved to spend time with Twilight, to figure out Twilight’s romantic interests. Unfortunately, for Cadence she had absolutely no luck as each place they went to and every hidden question she asked Twilight gave no indication of what she liked. Cadence had one last idea on how to find out something about Twilight’s interests.


How could there have been nothing! He was practically begging her to go out on a date with him! Cadence silently fumed as she thought about how Twilight showed no signs of interest for the poor stallion.

During this entire trip, Cadence had found nothing on Twilight's special interests. She had tried to get her to meet some nice stallions that she thought would be good matches for her, she had even tried mares! She went to some of the most romantic places in the city and Twilight still gave Cadence nothing to work with. Even Auntie Celestia was easier than this. It only took me a couple of weeks to figure out who would be best for her, even if she never took them. It was true even after she found some good matches for Celestia she never pursued them. She even asked her to stop after a while, not that she actually did; she only took it underground.

Cadence was knocked out of her thoughts when she heard Twilight ask, “So I take it this is the place you ranted about how we had to go to?”

Cadence looked around and realized that they had arrived at what was commonly known as Love Junction. After all of her failures, this was her last chance to get something on Twilight. Love Junction itself looked like nothing special, but Cadence knew better, this junction of Canterlot was famous for being a popular dating spot and it grew a reputation of being where future couples would meet. There were multiple different types of shops from stores, hotels, and restaurants and one thing that each one had in common was a very romantic and open atmosphere.

Cadence had asked if they could go to a particular restaurant in Love Junction. This restaurant, called Crystal Cavern Cafe, was the most famous in the entire junction and was commonplace for couples to first meet. Hopefully, Cadence will get some hint on how to proceed with Twilight.

Luckily, Cadence’s thoughts only lasted a few moments as she swiftly responded to her aunt, “Yes, that is the restaurant. I know that you’ll love the food there.”

“Mmhmm well more than likely I’ll have something light, we did just eat,” Twilight commented as they got closer to the cafe.

“I don’t think I’ll get anything,” Centa expressed as she innocently walked beside them.

“W-Well I still think that their food is great. I'm sure you’ll find something you'll like,” Cadence nervously assured them as she attempted to keep Twilight off of her half-baked plan.

As the three approached the cafe, Cadence looked over the building and saw the familiar pink walls with the lavender crystal formation that dominated the bottom half of the wall, the purple and pink spiral roof, an elegant outside dining area for anypony that wanted to dine there instead, and two large crystal glass windows that gave a perfect view of the bustling cafe.

Cadence quickly smiled as she hastily opened the pair of crystal doors for her little party. As the two proceeded to go in Twilight looked at her suspiciously before she entered.

Cadence breathed out a sigh of relief before she too walked in. As Cadence entered she saw that the cafe looked like it always had. There were tables, booths, a bar counter with stools behind them, and a lot of ponies, quite a bit of them were couples or possible ones as far as Cadence could tell. Like outside the inside was designed to mimic a crystal cavern with purple and pink colored crystals as well as multiple different crystal formations.

As Cadence walked up to try and get a table she heard Twilight say, “I can tell you this, this is certainly one of the more interesting cafes I’ve been to.”

Cadence smiled as she walked to the waiting hostess, she was hopeful that she would get some insight into Twilight’s interests. It was a little difficult to get them a table on such short notice but with Cadence’s amazing negotiation skills, she gave them a lot of bits, she was able to secure them a table. With Cadence’s mission complete she turned around and returned to her little group.

“Thanks,” Cadence said as the hostess quickly departed to get their table and likely stash away her princess’s ransom. She triumphantly walked over to her group and sat next to Twilight.

As Cadence looked over at Centa she saw that she had decided to press her face up to the window, “Centa, why are you pressing your face against the glass,” Cadence asked which caused Centa to turn around with a blush.

“Oh! I’m sorry. I just saw those fillies over there playing and…” Centa mumbled the rest as she looked away with an even larger blush of embarrassment, Cadence and Twilight frown in worry at this.

“Centa, what is it?” Cadence then thought of a possible reason, “ want to go out there and play with them?” Cadence tentatively asked, Centa’s response was a small nod.

Cadence smiled widely at Centa’s reply and jovially said, “Of course you can go out and play with them!”

Centa looked up hopefully at Cadence’s smiling face before her face too was filled with an excited smile and she ran outside and yelled, “THANK YOU, YOU’RE THE BEST FOALSITTER EVER!

Cadence watched as Centa ran excitingly to the other fillies. She was so happy that Centa had wanted to go play with them because she was Auntie Celestia’s student she sometimes had some problems just being able to be a filly and that always worried her.

Cadence looked over and saw Auntie Twilight look conflicted, “Are you sure that we should just leave Centa alone? Not that I don’t believe she’ll behave,” Twilight quickly clarified.

Cadence smiled as she reassured her aunt, “Don’t worry, Twilight. I’ll make sure she’ll be perfectly safe with this! -” Cadence used her magic to pop out a small crystal-like orb from her...magic space? She wasn't entirely sure where she stored the orb...oh well she’ll figure that out later. “-This is a special scrying orb that Cel-erm my aunt gave me so I can keep an eye on where Centa is,” Cadence proudly exclaimed as she held out her orb.

Twilight looked at the orb in interest briefly, before she looked back at Cadence with a raised eyebrow, “Not that I’m blaming you, but when we first met why didn't you use this orb to see where Centa was or when you sent her away during the incident?” Twilight asked.

Cadence looked over sheepishly, “Yeah about that. You see, that's why I have this in the first place. My aunt gave it to me so I can keep a better eye on her,” Cadence grinned abashedly at Twilight.

Twilight smirked, “Of course she did.”

Their conversation moved onto more mundane subjects, with Cadence teleporting the orb back to...wherever it goes. As the two talked they were eventually notified that their table was done and was led to it. As the two sat down they were given menus and ordered.

“...and I’ll get steamed lettuce on the side,” Twilight said to the waitress.

“I see and is that everything?” the waitress asked to which both of the disguised alicorn’s nodded. “Excellent, your food will be ready soon. We hope you enjoy your time in the crystal cavern,” the waitress announced before she left.

Cadence watched the mare leave before she looked back over at Twilight, Ok this is the perfect time to try and figure out what Auntie Twilight’s interests are, but I need to be...subtle.

“So, Twilight. How do you think the trip has been so far?” Cadence passed off as innocently as possible.

“It’s been wonderful. You all were right, I did need some kind of break. Thank you both you and Centa for going out to Canterlot with me,” Twilight finished with a warm smile.

Cadence’s plan was momentarily forgotten as she too smiled at Twilight's thoughtful comment.

“It was no problem. I’ve loved this and I know for certain Centa’s loved this too,” Cadence replied before Twilight snicked.

“Do you remember when we were in the Kirin District and Centa ate the bowl of spicy noodles? She was running around the restaurant screaming about how her mouth was as hot as the sun,” Twilight laughed as she finished, Cadence couldn't hold hers back either as she remembered that fond moment.

“Yeah that was adorable, it took me a couple of minutes to stop laughing when she was running around. Speaking of that restaurant do you remember that really nice kirin waiter that served us,” Cadence expertly switched the subject.

“Yes, that kirin was nice when he got Centa some milk,” Twilight replied, Cadence faltered a bit at Twilight’s complete evasion of the point.

“Yeah, he was really nice to do that. But before that he was really friendly, he even joked around when we gave him our orders,” Cadence tried again to get something from her aunt.

“His jokes did help put Centa at ease after her first time meeting a kirin,” Twilight dutifully replied.

Cadence had to hold back her frustration as she continued to get nothing from Twilight’s responses. She decided that it was best to move on and, hopefully, get something new.

“Yeah, that was very nice. Anyway, do you remember when that stallion opened that door for us when we went to Magical House of Magic,” Cadence asked.

“I do, that was very courteous of him. Though that “Magical House of Magic” was incredibly underwhelming,” Twilight pouted as she frowned slightly.

“Y-Yeah,” Cadence faltered a bit more.

Why, Twilight?! How do you expect me to be able to get you a perfect match when you give me absolutely nothing! I’m starting to think that you're intentionally avoiding my questions. Cadence looked up at Twilight determined to give it one last shot, maybe she had to be a little more blunt.

“You know I’ve always wondered what type of relationships you had before your imprisonment. I mean I always did wonder how close you and Luna real-” Cadence shut her stupid mouth when she said Luna’s name.

As Cadence looked over she saw that Twilight physically flinched which only caused Cadence’s growing guilt to spike, but before she could attempt to apologize the waitress had returned.

“You two are lucky. The chefs decided to do your order first. Hope you enjoy the food. Is there anything else I can get for you two?” the waitress asked.

“No, thank you. We’re alright, that will be all,” Twilight calmly replied as she gave a polite smile, with Twilight’s reply the waitress said her goodbyes and left.

Now to everypony else Twilight’s reply would seem perfectly normal, but Cadence knew better. She had put on her princess mask. Twilight sighed as her smile became a neutral frown, Cadence noticed that her horn glowed very dimly before a sphere of silence was cast over them.

Cadence felt horrible about hurting Twilight so she tried to rectify it, “Auntie Twilight, I’m so sorry for doing that I-” Cadence was interrupted when Twilight brought up her hoof to silence her.

“This sphere should allow us to speak freely, though I suppose you already know that. *sigh* Cadence it’s not your fault. I can tell it was an accident, but you still should know more about her. Especially when she...returns. How much has Celestia told you about...Luna,” Twilight weakly asked her.

“N-not much. She only told me that she was her younger sister, that you and Luna were really close, and that she became...Nightmare Moon after you were imprisoned,” Cadence mumbled as she started to pick at her food, she kinda lost her appetite.

“I see. Well to me she was always my wonderful big sister” - Twilight’s started to sadly smile - “and Celestia was right we were really close, we were only two years apart. When we were younger our life was quite...tough to put it simply. We could only really rely on each other. Me and Luna would do everything together we worked on magic, we played together, we kept each other warm on the cold nights. We were inseparable, even as we got older we still tried to do everything together. Some of our favorite things to do were to watch the stars and see what Luna could conjure up on her majestic night sky or we would spar sometimes, that one she particularly loved to do. We would even do some late-night studying for something or the other at times. We did everything together.”

Twilight paused as she wiped away the happy tears that had built up before she frowned, “But like all things that couldn't last. When that tyrant took the Crystal Empire we charged into there ready for revenge and well I think you know the rest…” a depressing silence hung over both of the alicorns as they looked miserable and neither were able to continue the conversation so they both started to pick at their food.

Cadence sat there as she mulled over what Twilight said. She didn't know that they were that close, but even after learning about Twilight more she couldn’t help but feel awful for making her amazing aunt go through such sad memories.

Cadence noticed that Twilight looked up at her and saw that she had on a weak smile, “Don’t blame yourself. I knew I had to talk about her some time and even if it was only for a little bit, reliving those memories of our time together was wonderful. It’s just hard sometimes, to think about it,” even after Twilight’s reassurance Cadence still felt like she hurt Twilight, but before Cadence could say anything she continued. “But, I see you're still torn up over this. So how about as a way to make up for that, I can choose where we go next after we eat of course,” Twilight offered with a stronger smile.

Cadence nodded as she felt that was the least she could do for her blunder, she also decided to drop the whole “Figure out Twilight’s love interests” for now and simply enjoy the rest of the day. As Twilight dropped her spell the two began to try and eat their meal.

As Cadence ate she had a thought, I wonder where she’ll want to go.


“We're going to the Grand Canterlot Library!” Twilight announced as they stood under the shadow of the Canterlot Library. I wonder what new advancements they made to the libraries. What great academic strides have we made?! Twilight questioned in her head. She looked over at Centa and Cadence in anticipation.

“Of course you’d want to go to the library. Why am I not surprised,” Cadence remarked as she shook her head.

Twilight playfully pouted, “Well I’ll have you know that I have been holding myself back from suggesting the library. I knew you two would want to go to so many more inferior places than the awesome power that is academia,” Twilight proudly exclaimed as she began to ascend the steps to greater education.

“Of course, how could I be led so far astray,” Twilight could practically hear Cadence roll her eyes as she spoke in a sarcastic tone, they then walked up to the library while Centa hopped up the steps.

As Twilight made her way to the entrance of the library she couldn't help, but marvel at the architecture. The two imposing unicorn statues that stood on either side of the stairs, the large gray stone walls with tall windows carved into them, the grand entrance with its castles like design, its long pillars, and the pure white battlements on top of them, and finally the large mosaic glass dome on the top.

Soon Twilight’s little party made it to the top of the stairs and she was able to look inside and marvel at its grace. The inside of the library was more beautiful than the outside. The walls were dominated with shelves upon shelves of books with only a small part of the wall on the first floor dedicated for a checkout. To make it even better there were THREE floors of shelves filled with books, it took every ounce of Twilight’s willpower not to faint at this magnificent display. The rest of the room was filled with tables, chairs, potted plants, more books, statues, banners, and ponies.

It warmed Twilight’s heart to see so many ponies at the library, it almost made her cry. Back before her imprisonment libraries were far more scarce and the literacy of the common pony was...meager at best, that was one change that Twilight was enthusiastic about upon her return.

Twilight took in a deep breath, delighted at the familiar smell of paper and ink, “Now this is familiar territory, I wonder what type of books the normal citizens have,” Twilight practically squealed.

“Centa you may want to try and find some books you like. I think Twilight will be in a book-induced coma at this rate,” Twilight turned around and glared lightly at Cadence before she looked down at Centa.

“Even if what Cadence said was ridiculous, she is right. I’m going to be looking at some of the more...complicated books. I would run off and try to find something you like,” Twilight finished with a smile.

“Oh, ok. I’ll see you later then Pri-I mean Twilight. Bye Twilight! Bye Cadence!” Centa yelled as she ran off to a section of the library more to her interests.

“Centa, don’t forget if you're lost or you need us, to return to the center here!” Cadence yelled at Centa before she was shushed by a few annoyed readers. “Hehe sorry,” Cadence sheepishly whispered to them.

Twilight smirked at Cadence’s blunder before they walked over to the non-fiction side of the library. As they walked Twilight scanned the shelves to try and find something that would catch her attention, as she looked through them Cadence asked something.

“So I take it you like the Canterlot Library?” Cadence asked.

“The architecture’s beautiful and there’s a massive selection of literature, it’s honestly awe-inspiring,” Twilight praised as she found a book that caught her interest, a book named “The Greater World of Eqis and the Species that Inhabit it” Twilight brought the book in front of her with her magic.

“Well I mean Equestria is one of the most peaceful nations on Equis, so I guess that would explain how we’ve been able to innovate so much. Well, I guess besides the Crystal Empire incident now...we should probably add that to the history books,” Cadence muttered, Twilight meanwhile almost dropped her book at how hard she snickered.

“Hehe. Oh by the god’s Cadence I didn't know you could joke like that, though to be fair we did try to be as peaceful as possible and most of those conflicts were defensive wars,” Twilight commented, as she looked over at Cadence she saw that she looked confused.

“What do you mean, Twilight? The only war Equestria has ever fought in was the Crystal Empire and from what I remember from what Ce-ugh my auntie said there were very few casualties. And before she told me about the Crystal Empire I thought it was just an old’s mare’s tale,” Twilight looked at Cadence in shock as her mind started to think of the multiple different possibilities of this new information.

She wouldn't. I knew she hated that time but… Twilight decided to try and prove her theory, she desperately hoped that it was wrong. “Do-do you mean that you haven't heard of the First Griffin Incursion?” Twilight hoped she would say yes, her heart sunk when a confused Cadence shook her head.

Twilight’s breath grew heavy as she took a step closer to Cadence, “Wh-what ab-out the Invasion of the Triumvirate?” Twilight asked again in a slightly higher pitch and stranded voice, Cadence shook her head again more confused and now worried. The pit in Twilight’s stomach grew.

Twilight subconsciously walked up directly in front of Cadence almost muzzle to muzzle, the book she held a moment ago long forgotten. Twilight’s legs felt wobbly and her breathing was frantic as she asked Cadence a question she hoped to every god on Equis she knew, “THE WAR OF THE GOAT?!” Twilight screeched in Cadence’s face, Cadence by this point had cowered under Twilight and once again hesitantly shook her head with extreme confusion and a bit of fear.

That was the last straw for Twilight as she quickly backpedaled and a myriad of emotions flowed through her as she desperately tried to think of some reasonable explanation. I knew she hated that time but she couldn't have erased EVERYTHING! Maybe, Cadence wasn't educated on that period of history, maybe she hasn't learned about it. The history books! They’ll clear everything! Twilight clung to that desperate notion as she turned around and sprinted to the history section.

Twilight vividly heard Cadence yell her name but Twilight was focused on getting to those history books. Thousands of thoughts went through Twilight's mind as she desperately moved forward, some of them continued to deny what her sister did, some already made up their mind and thought of ways to confront her, and some truly didn't know what to do yet.

Twilight eventually made it to the history section where she quickly looked through the shelves for the books she wanted. As she found them Twilight ran over to a nearby table and used her levitation to bring every book about Equestrian history before her imprisonment to the table.

As Twilight quickly skimmed through each book that shallow pit in her stomach became a bottomless pit as book after book had the more violent parts of Equestrian history erased and replaced by fabricated docile fakes. After each book, Twilight’s frantic expression slowly became more and more emotionless as well as cold. Until finally Twilight was finished and slammed the last book closed, she was completely convinced. I know you hated that time, but this. This is too far, Celestia. Twilight got up and turned around intending to leave.

As she turned around she saw two familiar ponies a little down the aisle, there was an incredibly worried Cadence and, slightly cowering, Centa. Twilight felt a tinge of guilt over Centa’s fear of her, but that was drowned out by righteous anger.

She looked at Cadence, “I’m sorry, Cadence. But it seems that our trip has to be cut short. I need to talk to my sister,” Twilight said in a cold tone before she proceeded to walk past them and to the central area of the library.

As Twilight walked she prepared a teleportation spell to the castle. As she walked she almost seemed to radiate power, so much so that ponies she passed cowered before her and the Magic Pendant glowed a fierce purple.

This lasted a few moments before Twilight finished her spell and teleported with one final thought, We have a lot to talk about sister and you better have a good reason for erasing half of Equestrian history.


Celestia sat at her desk as she toiled away at the wonders of paperwork. Celestia sighed as she laid back in her chair, she had just finished a document about some noble that wanted to expand his winery or something. Of course to do that they would have to destroy some ponies’ home, so it was an easy decision to deny.

As Celestia gave herself an impromptu break, she couldn't help but think about how her sister was doing. I wonder what Twilight’s doing right now? I hope she’s been able to relax and take a break, with all the work she’s been trying to make up for recently. Hopefully, Cadence and Centa can help her. Celestia cleared her head, she could ask her sister how it went later. So she forced herself to return to the mountain of work that she still had to do.

Fortunately, for Celestia, her work would have to be delayed. Unfortunately, for Celestia, she was going to have to deal with something far worse. Celestia was suddenly started when she heard a loud flash of magic shortly followed by her door being slammed open.

As Celestia looked up at the intruder she was surprised to see that it was none other than her sister, Twilight. Now normally Celestia would be delighted to see her, but that joy was cut short when she saw the cold emotionless look on her sister’s face. This immediately caused worry to fill her at Twilight’s cold stare as well as a tinge of fear at what the outcome could be.

“Twilight, are you alright? What’s wrong?” Celestia tentatively asked her sister as she got up and walked around her desk.

Twilight gave no immediate response, all she did was slam the door shut behind her. Celestia grew increasingly worried at Twilight’s silence, that was until Twilight broke the uneasy stillness.

“Why did you erase so much?” Twilight asked in a restrained tone, Celestia was worried and confused at what Twilight meant.

“What do you mean sister?” Celestia asked.

“I understand when you have to get rid of small bits of history, we did it rarely but when it was necessary. I even understand having to hide something as big as the Crystal Empire. I may not have been as close to honesty, BUT I was still the bearer of the Element of Honesty and this...this is too far. Erasing HALF of Equestrian history because of your…beliefs. So why? Why did you do it?” Celestia was silent after Twilight finished her little speech.

I had hoped you wouldn't find out this way, Celestia commented in her head before she tried to justify herself. “I know what I did could be seen as a little much” - Twilight started to glare at her - “I know, that’s putting it mildly but. *sigh* After Luna’s fall ponies started to blame all the conflicts that Equestria had fought in on Luna, because of her role of Commander of all Equestrian forces, and that...I couldn't allow that to stand, after all the work she did for them,” Celestia said as she looked back at Twilight, she noted that her stance had lighted up a bit but was still aggressive.

Celestia sighed once again as she faltered a bit under her sister’s stern look, “Your right that isn't the full reason. You know I’ve always hated war since what happened to our parents. I’ll fully admit that did help me push for such a...drastic change, but I also did this to try and make Equestria the perfect nation we envisioned. An Equestria that did away with conflict, racism, speciesism, and stagnation. One that could embrace the tenets of harmony fully. Also if it’s any consideration I hadn't completely destroyed all of that history, merely...moved it,” Celestia’s remark seemed to catch Twilight off guard.

“Wait, what?,” Twilight’s stern expression suddenly changed into one of shock.

“I couldn't destroy everything. You are right I shouldn't destroy the records of the ponies that sacrificed themselves for Equestria. They should still be remembered in some way. So I established a special section of the archives to keep and document any records of that time. It’s called, uncreatively, the Secret Archives. The only ponies that know and can enter the archives are me, Raven, the head librarian, the captain of the guard, and now you,” Celestia answered Twilight’s question.

Twilight sat there in thought for a moment before she looked back up at her with a conflicted look, “Why didn't you tell me this?” Twilight asked with a tinge of...betrayal? Celestia hoped not.

“I had planned to tell you this...later. When you were more integrated into Equestria, but I see now that was a mistake. I’m sorry, Twilight,” Celestia brought down her head in a bow.

A few more moments of silence passed and Celestia feared she had made another massive mistake and broke her sister’s trust. Thankfully, Twilight began again, “I...forgive you, sister. Just please don’t do this again. I’m getting tired of finding things out this way,” Celestia looked up at her and nodded her head in agreement. “ *sigh* I don’t like any of this, but I can see where you're coming from. You know that this conversation isn't over yet. We are going to be talking about this again,” Twilight stated, to which Celestia nodded as she understood that her sister wouldn't let this down that easily.

“Yes, I figured that this wouldn’t be the end of that subject,” Celestia conceded as she walked over to get some tea.

“But -” Celestia stopped as she looked back over at her sister “- you are going to tell Cadence about this. We are not leaving her in the dark,” Twilight demanded, Celestia gave a small smile as she alleviated her sister’s worry.

“Don’t worry, I do plan to tell her when she is older. Likely after her coronation,” Celestia commented as she made her way to her tea set and began to make the wonderful thing that was tea.

“Thank you for that. Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to lock myself in my room and try to process everything. And plan out how to fix it,” Twilight said under her breath as Celestia heard her walk out of the room.

That was until she heard Twilight stop, “Oh sister,” Celestia looked over at Twilight and saw an almost sadistic smirk on her face.

Celestia wearily asked, “Yes?”

“You may want to speed up your plans on telling Cadence about that little secret. I may have given her a few hints that something isn't quite right with the history books. Expect her to come by later and demand some answers,” Twilight smugly said as she sauntered out the door.

Celestia was annoyed at her plans being derailed again. Of course, that happens again. I had hoped to give Cadence some respite, but it seems fate has other plans for her...though I suppose it is fair that I tell her sooner rather than later. Celestia noticed that her tea was done so she poured herself a cup and began to drink some while she planned how to tell Cadence that a large part of Equestrian history was fabricated.

Flashback 2: The New Normal

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It had been around five years since the unprovoked attack and subsequent destruction of Graycolt and the sisters were one of the only survivors that had been able to flee the destroyed settlement. The sisters were then able to escape Graycolt and eventually reach Klipstone, unfortunately, that’s when the sister’s luck ended. As it only took a few short weeks for them to exhaust their supplies and bits.

Because of this, the sisters were forced to move from one settlement to the next to just scrounge up enough supplies. So now the sisters, like most days, enter another city to try and get more necessary supplies to make ends meet.


Celestia wearily looked around at the cramped and dirty city that she and her sisters had just entered. In truth it wasn't the city itself that she was worried about, it was all the ponies that glared and sneered at them that caused her to go on guard, the vast majority of them were earth ponies.

Celestia looked behind her to check on her sisters to make sure they were alright and that no pony tried to do anything to them. As she looked over her younger sister’s she was reminded by how much they had grown in the last couple of years.

Her younger sister Luna, who was now seven, had grown up so much in both her mind and body, almost too much in her opinion. She has had to step up and help take care of Twilight when she’s not around, especially during the early years of their new life. She had also grown a bit more...quiet around crowds or random ponies and only really came out of her shell when it was her or Twilight, this worried Celestia but she didn't know what to do about that.

Also in that time, she had definitely grown, with her coat having darkened a bit, her mane and tail lengthening to her shoulders, and her horn growing a few more centimeters. She would have been beautiful too if it weren’t for all the dirt and grime that covered her. As well as the old ragged cloaks and torn saddlebags that they still had since there...escape from their old home.

Before she could get stuck in the past, Luna noticed that she was staring at her and gave Celestia a small smile. Celestia returned the smile and mentally thanked her sister for distracting her, then she turned her attention to her youngest sister, Twilight.

As she looked over Twilight she was like Luna also covered in far too much dirt and forced to wear makeshift rags and a poorly built saddlebag, but even surrounded by grime she was very...carefree...about how she acts. That was one thing that she thanked, out of the three of them Twilight, by far, was able to retain quite a bit of her foalhood behavior, thanks mainly to Luna who worked so hard for her little sister.

She had also physically changed so much from that little foal from so long ago. She was a little smaller than Luna, her fur also like Luna had darkened quite a bit, and her mane seemed to have stubbornly developed so that the front of her hair hung just above her face, in a straight line so less and no matter what she did it refused to change. But most surprisingly by far was how well her horn had developed, with the shape of the horn being perfectly shaped and developed to cast spells, even possibly some more advanced ones.

If Celestia had to guess that trait came from their...mother, she always did love magic, and it seems that their...late mother had given Twilight one last gift. It was also especially special with Twilight’s love for magic, also something she probably got from their mother.

Celestia smiled as she remembered when Twilight first learned about magic and how to cast it, it took her and Luna several hours to calm her down. As soon as she was able to, Twilight had practically begged her to teach her magic, to which Celestia was ecstatic to do, and she tried to teach her everything she knew. Unfortunately, she was never able to finish her education in magic. So Twilight had at best second hoof knowledge on most subjects in magic and any spellbook or any other books that were related to magic that they were able to find was old and torn up, so in the end, she was only able to teach Twilight so much.

Even with these hooficaps, she worked hard on learning as much as she could about magic and Luna has helped her so much whenever she could, and ever since then the two had been practically inseparable. Celestia was glad that they were at least able to rely on each other if something happened.

As for her...well she knew how much she’d grown during these five years and to be honest sometimes it felt like her old life was from an entirely different lifetime. Mentally she’s far different from the little filly from Graycolt, she’s far more cautious, cynical, and suspicious of really everything now. She’s also far more grown-up from having to take care of Luna and Twilight as well as having to find any kind of work so they can have some bits, it’s been rough, to say the least. But around her younger sisters she continues to try and be the best big sister she could from helping them with their magic to just listening to them, she tries to be there for them.

As for physically. Oh, she’s changed quite a bit as well. She was now roughly the size of an average mare, maybe even a little taller. Her coat, if it was clean, was the same pure white that she had since she was a filly. Her pink mane and tail had definitely grown with it now past her shoulders. Her horn had also grown taller and slimmer, which did help her cast magic. Finally, she, like her sisters, also had rags and saddlebags, she carried a few more than her sisters.

Celestia was knocked out of her thoughts when she felt something hit her chest, as she looked over at her chest she saw a decent-sized rock hit the ground. When she looked around for who threw it at her she noticed an angry earth pony colt glared at them.

“Get out of our city, hornheads!” the malicious colt yelled as he continued to give them a death glare and started to pick up another rock.

Celestia’s mood dropped when she heard the colt, she had vainly hoped that the city would at least be tolerant of other ponies but it seemed like that was wishful thinking. This also caused her momentarily slackened guard to harden as she held back her sisters and proceeded to move them to the edge of the crowd and near the less crowded area.

As she turned around though she noticed that both Twilight and Luna looked concerned for her. It warmed her heart that they were worried for her but she pushed that aside for now and guided them to the side of the road. As Celestia was sure that they were relatively safe she reassured her sisters that she was alright and kissed both of them on the top of their heads.

After that little incident, they continued to make their way through the city as Celestia began to search through many different alleyways in the city to try and find one that they could use for shelter for the day. Many of the backstreets were decrepit, dark, or uninviting to say the least, but after some time she was eventually able to find one that at least looked safe.

The dead-end alleyway was relatively clean, at least compared to most alleys, and near the end of the pathway, there was a plethora of wooden planks, large discarded rocks, and sizable pieces of scrap metal. This helped create the illusion that the end of the backstreet was piled with junk while at the same time creating a small hidden area near the back of the alleyway where she could have her sisters stay while she was gone.

As she finished her inspection of the alleyway she called over her sisters, “Twilight! Luna! This looks like a good place for you to stay today,” Celestia finished as she looked over to check on her sisters.

What she saw caused her to be saddened as both her sisters stood together sad and dejected, Twilight even ran up to her and gave her a heart-wrenching look, “Do you have to go, Tia! Can’t you stay with us?”

Celestia brought Twilight into a hug, “Twilight, you know if I could I would in a heartbeat. I truly wish I could. *sigh* But I need to do some very important things,” Celestia nuzzled the top of Twilight’s head before she noticed Luna standing awkwardly alone, so she smiled at her and signaled for her to join in the hug, to which she gladly did.

Celestia tightened her hug with her little sisters before she eventually had to let go, she then between the both of them, “Now can you two promise me that you'll be quiet and safe while I’m gone?” both of her sisters nodded their heads in agreement, she then looked at Luna. “And Luna, will you look after your little sister and protect her from anything while I’m gone?” Celestia asked Luna to which she gave a determined nod and even saluted.

She laughed and was proud of Luna's dedication to protecting her sister, but she noted that it was starting to get late so with a sad smile she hugged both of them one last time before she let go and said, “Ok, I’ll be back later in the evening. Once I get everything we need, I’ll come back as soon as I can. I love you both and please be safe.”

“We love you too sister!” her sisters said in unison.

As she made her way to the city she stopped and looked back at her sisters and gave them one last smile before she once again began to make her way out of the little sanctuary. As she left the sanctuary she started to pile up some debris with her magic so it would be harder for anypony to find it. After she finished and she made her way to the city proper her mind, like every time she has to leave them, went into overdrive with worry and fear over the thought of leaving her sisters defenseless.

AGH! I wish I didn't have to keep doing this. But we need supplies and bits and were barely surviving as it is. Celestia looked back at the wall of junk that separated her from her sisters. Please, by every god that’s out there. Keep them safe...please you too, be alright when I get back. Celestia stood there for a few more moments before she turned around and began her way into the city ready to find any work.


Luna stood there as she watched her big sister leave their temporary home, at least that was until she felt her little sister lean into her.

“I wish she didn't always have to leave,” Twilight glumly muttered, Luna, wrapped one of her forelegs around Twilight.

“I know, I miss her too. But there is a lot of stuff we need to do today like...MAGIC TRAINING!” Luna loudly proclaimed as she almost immediately forgot about Celestia’s warning, but excluding that her announcement seemed to have the intended effect of cheering Twilight up.

“Really!” Twilight excitedly asked.

“Yes, but before we start we should probably set up the area for later tonight,” after Luna finished the two sisters began to make their area at least a little more livable.

They started with the sleeping area for the three of them such as setting up old sleeping rolls, ragged blankets, and even a few dolls that they had collected, such as the one Celestia made for Luna when she was younger. They then moved onto a more...durable area for them to practice magic at, they laid out a few more old blankets for them to sit on, scattered some random junk they found around to practice on, and finally got out the few “spellbooks” they had.

As they finished Luna and her little sister began to prepare for each other's self-taught magic lesson. As Luna got comfortable next to Twilight, also by this time they had taken off their cloaks and saddlebags, she looked at the well...crumbling spellbook that they used for their lessons.

Luna grabbed the spellbook in her telekinesis and opened up to the page they had left off on, “Ok, so if I remember correctly, last time we went over pyro…”, and so Luna and Twilight began their next lesson in magic.

Thankfully, Luna was taught, at least the basics, by her older sister when she was younger, so she was able to help Twilight with her limited magical education. At least that’s what it was like in the beginning, because they soon discovered that Twilight had an affinity with magic as she was able to learn spells and cast them incredibly fast. It even got to a point where Twilight started to help her in specific subjects in magic or certain spells.

To be honest, she was a tad jealous when she first saw how fast her little sister was able to learn spells, but she quickly stomped that feeling to eradication when she noticed it. But what overshadowed that pathetic jealousy was the massive amount of pride she felt for Twilight’s magical talent.

But this time Luna had a secret she’d been practicing, to surprise her little sister with. As Luna and Twilight finished another session, Luna suddenly closed the book which caused Twilight to jump and look up at her curiously.

“Twilight, I have a little surprise for you,” as she finished Twilight happily hopped up onto her hooves with an ecstatic smile.

“Really! Is it a new book! Did you find another spellbook!” Twilight exclaimed as she began to adorably hop in place.

Luna had to suppress her laughter, she always loved it when Twilight did that, but she calmed herself down and replied to her little sister, “Not exactly. I have a new spell that I wanted to show you. I think you’ll like it,” Luna announced as she got up and sat in front of Twilight.

Twilight’s eyes widened in excitement and she began to more intensely jump in place with increased anticipation.

Luna smiled again at Twilight’s excitement before she closed her eyes and began to breathe in and out to focus her mind. After a few moments, Luna began her spell as she pumped magic into her horn and mentally pictured the idea of what she wanted from the spell. Her horn began to glow a bright blue as sweat started to drip down her face before the spell suddenly burst out of her horn.

A blue and purple blob of magic flew above Luna and Twilight before multiple tiny blobs of the spell broke away. Shortly after, all of the blobs exploded almost like fireworks with tiny purple or blue sparkles that gently floated to the ground. The central blob started to vaguely morph into the shape of a tiny unicorn with the “fur”, “eyes”, and “mouth” of the unicorn being in purple while the “mane” and “tail” were mainly in blue with a single solid purple stripe through the both of them, she made it to resembled Twilight. After the little firework pony was complete it began to hop around onto the other “fireworks” with a big smile.

During the light show, Luna was sat down on her haunches as she tried to regain her breath and sweated profusely. Once she was able to cool down she looked over at her sister and the sight caused a smile to spread on her muzzle. Twilight watched the display above her with awestruck eyes and a jaw-dropped muzzle, she didn't even notice when some of the sparkles started to land on her.

Twilight then muttered, “It’s beautiful,” Luna’s smile widened when she heard this as happiness overwhelmed her for being able to make Twilight happy as well as a sense of pride for being able to accomplish her spell.

“I made this spell specifically for you, sister,” Luna said to her, Twilight looked up at her with an astonished expression.

“You...made this spell? For me?” Twilight asked as her eyes began to glisten, Luna nodded.

Luna was surprised when Twilight suddenly got up and ran toward her and into a hug. It took a few seconds for her to realize what Twilight was doing before she gladly returned the hug. As she hugged Twilight she began to feel wet spots on her chest fur and as she looked down she noticed that Twilight had begun to cry. Worried, Luna was about to ask her younger sister if she was alright, but before she could ask her Twilight spoke.

“Thank you, so so much. I love you, Woona. You're the bestest sister ever,” Twilight finished as she looked up at her with tear-stricken eyes.

Now, Luna knew full well that Twilight could say her name correctly but when they were younger she would always call her Woona and after a while, it just kinda stuck between them. It was Twilight’s special little nickname for her.

Luna blushed before she brought Twilight into a deeper hug which allowed her to nuzzle the top of Twilight’s head, “I love you too, Twilly,” Of course in response, Luna had also created a nickname for her adorkable little sister.

At that moment while Luna held her sister she reaffirmed a promise in her head, I promise you, Twilight. That I’ll be the best big sister possible like Celestia and that nothing will happen to you. I promise that I’ll protect you from anything, no matter what. As Luna finished her mental promise she once again tightened her hold on Twilight.

As the two sisters enjoyed each other's embrace, tiny sparkly fragments from Luna’s spell began to fall all onto and around them as Luna’s spell finally ended with one bright star in its place.


Meanwhile, Celestia had, for the last few hours, completed a multitude of odd jobs around the city from back-breaking manual laborer, to being a chimney sweeper, and even some more...undesirable tasks. Unfortunately for her, it was hard to find any kind of work that wasn't unsavory, especially a decent-paying one. This was mainly due to the massive amount of racism toward all other races that weren't earth ponies and because of this Celestia had to be...generous with her options.

Luckily, she seemed to have found a break at a famous local tavern called “The Ever Garden Tavern”. It was, at least, more tolerable than most of the city and it paid better than any other job she has had to do so far, so she decided to take up the available position for a waitress.


Celestia looked down at herself, specifically the outfit she was forced to wear while she worked at the tavern. The outfit was quite bland as she wore a white undershirt, with a green shirt over it with flowers sewn onto it, she also wore a dark green skirt with more flowers sewn on it, and on her head, she wore a...flower bouquet? She wasn't quite sure if that was right, but it was close enough. The owner also wanted her to clean herself up before she started, that was one demand she happily complied with.

After she was sure that everything fits correctly she turned around and made her way out of the tiny changing room and out to the dining hall. As she walked down the plain hallway she thought, I can’t believe I have to wear this ridiculous outfit. Celestia breathed in a deep breath before she let it out, Keep it together, Celestia. This place pays better than any other place so far. Just go in, do your job, collect your bits, and get back to Twilight and Luna.

As she finished her mental speech she realized that she reached the door that led to the dining hall in the tavern. She stopped momentarily as she tried to get rid of the slowly building exhaustion she started to feel ever since this morning, she barely got much sleep for the past week.

Celestia let out a sigh before she steeled herself and pushed open the door. As she looked around she got another look at the tavern, the central part of the tavern had a big long roaring fireplace, and around that fireplace were tons of tables, chairs, and ragged green carpets. Around that central area as well as near the walls of the tavern were thick sturdy wooden beams that held up the entire tavern. On the walls hung torches, weapons, tattered banners, old paintings, and other miscellaneous things.

But by far the most interesting aspect about the tavern was how many vines were strewn around the building from the walls, ceiling, pillars, and even some of the seats and flooring had them. It sorta made the building feel like it was being in harmony with nature, somehow. The only other thing to note about the tavern was a bar with a myriad of bottles and barrels of more beer, rum, or ale that a pony could drink and the pony that worked at the bar was an old stallion. Specifically, the owner of the tavern and her temporary boss, Mug.

His full name was Mug Stone and he was, unsurprisingly, an earth pony. He wore a green apron that, in her opinion, completely clashed with his ragged gray coat; he also had a white mane and tail. He had dark brown eyes and his cutie mark was a petrified mug with beer head foam overflowing the top.

Celestia wasn't sure how to feel about him so far. From what she could tell he was at least tolerant of other races as she’s never heard him call her a slur...yet. Also considering he allowed her to have this job, so far he was an enigma to her.

Celestia was cut out of her thoughts when she realized that everypony in the tavern was focused on her and they were not...friendly to say the least. Most of the ponies ranged from annoyed to even disgusted and some of them were quite visual about their opinion.

Celestia uncomfortably stood there as the hostile tension lingered in the tavern, she was ready to defend herself if need be; so she took a cautious step forward as she made her way to the bar. Luckily, the violence never came to pass because as soon as she began to make her way to the front of the bar the tension slowly dissipated as the earth ponies began their conversations up again. Although the atmosphere was far more subdued now and some ponies even decided that they didn't want to be there anymore as they got up and left.

Celestia let out a sigh of relief as she was thankful that a fight didn't start, but as she made her way to the bar to ask Mug if there were any orders she suddenly stopped when she heard a pony call her over and quite forcefully.

“Hey, hornhead! Get over here! We want something!” Celestia paused as she looked over at the scornful earth ponies, she then gave them her best fake smile and walked over to them.

“Yes, how may I serve you,” she said in an overly sweet tone.

One of the earth ponies, he had a muddy brown coat, a ragged gray mane and tail, dull gray eyes, and a...single rock cutie mark; she could just tell he was the life of the party, snorted at her as he narrowed his eyes.

“We want some water now. Can you do that, or is it too much for a unicorn,” the earth pony rudely demanded of her.

Celestia forced down her feelings as she walked over to get them some water, but as she began to levitate the tray with their water on it the same earth pony yelled at her.

“And we don’t want any of your horn piss with that,” Celestia clamped down on her desire to smash the tray into the laughing earth ponies’ face.

She then turned around with an even more forced smile as she put the tray on her back and walked back over to the insufferable dimwits. “Here are your drinks. I hope you’ll enjoy the rest of your meal,” she sweetly said before she walked back to the bar and whispered under her breath, “I hope you choke on it.”

Although most of the customers reluctantly accepted her service she mostly had the same experience throughout her time there as she was continually bombarded by hostile ponies and many creative insults. Although there were the rare few ponies who were at least tolerable of her, those few times she cherished. But as this continued she was able to ignore most of the insults, she even got pretty decent at lying. She also started to hate the job all the more and the only thing that kept her from walking out was the thought of her sisters who needed the bits.

Celestia just returned to the front of the bar from another horrible customer, she sighed again in frustration at her situation. Just a little more, Celestia. You're almost done. Then you can leave, never return, and get back to your sisters. Then you can see what wonderful adventures they got into this time while you were gone. Celestia smiled at the thought of what her sisters had gotten into.

But she was knocked out of her thoughts when she heard somepony come into the tavern. Celestia sighed as she mustered up her strength before she turned toward the door and welcomed the new customers.

“Welcome to The Ever Gr-” Celestia immediately stopped as her pupils dilated and she began to sweat profusely as her heart started to beat a mile a minute at WHAT saw came in through those doors.

The two wolves in pony skin that came through those doors were a unicorn and an earth pony, both of which were covered from head to hoof in black metal plated armor, with a slitted visor helmet, and a chest plate with a sun and moon emblem emblazoned onto it; these were the same creatures that burned down her village.

As the two cultists entered, the entire tavern was immediately silenced as a wave of fear engulfed the building, some ponies even trembled and began to sweat. But this was ignored by the two cultists as they made their way to the bar as their target seemed to be the bartender and owner, Mug. By the time the two reached the bar, Mug had also begun to sweat as he seemed to rummage around for something under the bar.

The unicorn cultist then asked, “Hello, Mr. Mug. The order has come to see if you are still faithful in the true belief,” the unicorn cultist coldly demanded to Mug.

Mug meanwhile suddenly brought out a, rather pristine, leather book with a very familiar sun and moon insignia on the cover, “R-Right here. I study it every day and k-keep it in perfect condition,” Mug replied to the cultist with only a slight quiver in his voice.

The unicorn cultist stared at him for a moment before he said, “Then recite the tenets of the Celestial Bodies.”

While Mug was forced to recite those tenets, multiple patrons of the tavern had already made a quick getaway and Celestia had moved behind one of the larger pillars on the other side of the tavern.

Celestia had pushed herself completely against the pillar as she continued to sweat profusely and had a bit of a panic attack. WHAT ARE THOSE THINGS DOING HERE?! Out of anywhere, they had to be here! WHY?! What if they're here for Luna and Twilight! WHAT IF THEY ALREADY FOUND THEM AND THEY ARE TORTURING THEM?! I need to leave n-.

Celestia forced herself to stop and take deep breaths in and out, she also brought up her hoof to her chest, and as she exhaled she would bring out her hoof. After a few moments of doing her breathing exercise, she was able to breathe somewhat normally again and stop her panic attack.

Ok, Celestia. Think. If those things got Luna and Twilight...let’s not think about that, because they didn't. I refuse to believe that. They are safe...This isn't worth it anymore, not that those things are here now. I have to check on Twilight and Luna. *sigh* I’ll just have to hope to find some other job in the city that's willing to take a unicorn.

As she finished she began to make her way to the backroom door, the same one she first arrived in when she started this horrible job. But as she began to stealthily make her way to the door she suddenly heard Mug say something that caused her blood to run cold, “...And I have the perfect pony that could serve you for today. Celestia, would you kindly attend to our special guests.”

Celestia looked towards Mug and saw the two creatures in black make their way to a newly vacated table. She then gave Mug a death glare, to which he at least had the decency to look a little ashamed. She then got up to her full height and with the remains of her willpower forced herself to walk towards her parent’s murders. When she reached the two things she gave them both a hollow smile as she buried her emotion deep in herself.

“How may I help you...gentleponies,” Celestia forced herself to say in a pleasant tone.

The two cultists looked at her for a moment before they took off their helmets and placed them on the table, this allowed her to get a good look at their faces for the first time. The unicorn had a brown mane and tail, light blue fur, amber eyes, and a scar that ran from their horn to his forehead, she would have felt some pity for him if he weren't part of a murder cult. The other cultist, which was an earth pony, had a dirty green mane and tail, light gray fur, and green eyes.

The unicorn cultist then looked over at her, “Me and my comrade would simply like some water,” they commented, as they finished she hastily went to get the water, not out of any want to help them, no; just because she wanted to spend as little time around them as possible.

As she collected their water she looked over and gave Mug another death glare and as she passed him she hissed into his ear, “Next time, don’t make other ponies fix your problems,” as she passed him she barely noticed Mug’s ears pin to the back of his head.

As she returned to the cultist’s table she gave them their drinks, but before she could leave, the unicorn started to talk again, “You know. I’m honestly surprised that you managed to find a job in an earth pony tavern. Especially considering the city’s...segregationist policies,” they finished coolly.

Celestia forced her smile to be even wider, “Yes. I suppose I am quite lucky. But, if you’ll excuse me. I’ll give you some space to think about what you want,” she said as she hastily made her way back to the bar.

Unfortunately, it seemed that the unicorn had other ideas, “That won’t be necessary. We already know what we want,” Celestia held back her frustration before she got out a piece of parchment and a stick of charcoal to write down their order. She started to do this when some of the customers got “smart” with her and ordered ridiculously long orders. “We’ll both have beetroot soup with a side of salted roasted radish and a small waffle cake for dessert. Also, don’t worry about telling Mug our order, he should just about be done by now.”

Celestia’s eyes widened a bit as she stopped writing down their order and looked over at Mug and was surprised when she saw that their orders were already waiting for them on the counter.

She was so shocked by his declaration that she subconsciously began to levitate the food over to her. It was only when the food was halfway to the table that she realized that she had just used her magic, but as she looked over to the cultist she noticed that they looked at her expectantly. So in response, she decided to finish her impromptu spell and placed the food in front of them.

The unicorn looked down at his food before he cast a spell on it and after a few moments he looked back up at her with a...impressed look? She hoped not “So, you know the basics of magic, you were able to subconsciously cast a spell on an object without putting any magic residue on it, you know how to read and write, and you managed to get a job in a completely racist city. You have definitely piqued my interest, Celestia. My name is Cobalt Dawn...You know the order could always use more acolytes...especially talented ones.”

Celestia’s eyes were practically the size of dinner plates and her muzzle was hanging open by the time he finished. That shock quickly turned into anger at the arrogant...creature that would dare recommend she join the same psychotic cult that killed their parents for no reason and ruined their lives!

But, she forced down that righteous anger and gave the thing a strained smile, “While I appreciate the offer. I would have to decline your kind suggestion.”

Celestia noticed that the unicorn frowned a bit, “A shame. You would make a wonderful paladin. *sigh* Very well, that will be all. We don’t require your assistance any longer,” he finished as he began to eat his meal.

Celestia immediately turned around and made her way back to the bar, during her trip back she continuously pushed down that righteous anger that threatened to surface, I would rather die before I join your cult.

The two cultists ate their meal with little more interruption or comment and for Celestia, she continued to work around the tavern to serve any other remaining customers that decided to stay. Eventually, though, the two cultists finished with little fanfare and left without a word. Not long after the tavern closed for the day and Celestia walked over to Mug to get her hard-earned pay.

As Celestia walked over to Mug she noticed that Mug was in the middle of cleaning a well...mug and next to him was a small pile of bits. As she levitated the bits into her saddlebag, Mug suddenly put down his mug and grabbed something else out from under the bar, and placed it in front of her.

She looked down at the package, confused. Before she looked back up at Mug but this time he had a small smile, “It’s a few leftover meals from today. Imagine it as...uh “extra compensation” for going above and beyond today as well as for the extra stress,” Celestia fairly returned the smile before she levitated the meal into her saddlebag.

She then turned around and made her way out of the tavern, but before she could leave she heard Mug say something again, “I’m sorry for making you have to deal with those cultists,” this caused her to pause at the unintentional reminder of that horrific day. So they stood there in silence for what felt like hours before he started again, “They...did something to you, didn't they. The cult, I mean.”

Celestia tilted her head to the side and replied, “Thank you, Mug. Have a nice evening,” when she finished she opened the door to the tavern and made her way to the market to get the necessary supplies for her sisters.

As she left, Mug sighed as he grabbed the discarded mug and prepared the tavern for the next day…


After her...experience in the Ever Garden Tavern, she made her way to the market to try and see if there were any stalls still open. Luckily, it seemed that something went right for her today as most of the stalls were still taking customers. So she spent the rest of the day buying essential supplies for her and her sisters such as food, water, new blankets, etc.

By the time she finished, it was around sunset with most shops now closing. Even though she would have preferred to return to her sisters earlier, she was still happy to finally be able to see them again. So it took her little time to get back to the two ponies she loved more than anything.


As Celestia walked down the familiar ally, she was relieved that the cover over the sanctuary was still intact. Once she reached their sanctuary she pulled back the barrier just enough to allow herself through, before she quickly put it back.


She was surprised by the sudden announcement and just as she turned around she was double tackled by two little fillies, as the laws of physics dictate, this caused her to trip over and fall onto the ground. As she looked down at the cause of the accident a smile began to spread on her muzzle when she saw her little sisters hugging her. She gladly returned the gesture.

“Tia! I’m so happy you're back!” Twilight squealed as she began to nuzzle her like she hadn't seen her in over a week, Celestia smiled at Twilight’s enthusiasm before she looked over at Luna who seemed to be more interested in just laying in her fur.

“I’m happy to see you both as well. You have no idea how much I missed you two,” Celestia said as she tightened her hug around her sisters.

“What did you do today?” Twilight curiously asked, Celestia was used to this question Twilight always was curious as to where she went.

“I’ll tell you during dinner. And as much as I love hugging you both, I think it’s time that we prepare for dinner before it gets too late,” both of her sisters reluctantly disconnected themselves from the hug.

So the three sisters began to set up a little area for dinner, which only took a few minutes with her sisters having already prepared a small area for them to eat. Once they were finished Celestia gave each of them a moderate amount of food, with her obviously giving her sisters more food than her.

Eventually, Celestia laid down for dinner but before she could enjoy her hard-earned meal, Twilight immediately asked her the question again, “So. What did you do when you were out?” Twilight asked again with a big anticipated smile.

Celestia returned her smile and rolled her eyes before she finally answered her little sister’s question, “Fine I suppose if you want to know so badly. I went and did a few...tasks around town. Then I went to the market and bought a few supplies for us for tomorrow,” she finished.

Twilight frowned a bit at her answer, “Come on. Isn't there anything else you did?” Twilight pressed.

“Well, I suppose there’s one more thing that’s interesting. I was able to work in a tavern for a little bit,” this seemed to sate Twilight’s curiosity as she looked to be happily lost in thought if she had to guess what it would be like to be in a tavern. But as she looked over at Luna she noticed that she looked worried.

“Were you okay when you were out in the city?” Luna asked, Celestia was always surprised when Luna would ask something like that, given her age, so in response, she gave Luna a reassuring smile.

“Everything went perfectly fine. I was safe,” she always hated when she had to lie to her sisters, but she didn't want them to worry about her whenever she left. Luckily, this seemed to have alleviated her worries, “But enough about me. What did you two do while I was gone? What spells did you two master?” she asked as she levitated a peach up to her muzzle and took a bite out of it.

Twilight gasped as she jumped up onto her hooves with a massive smile, “Oh! Luna showed me the most awesome spell ever!” Twilight announced, seemingly snapped out of her imagination.

“Oh, really, and what’s this “most awesome spell” ever, Luna?” Celestia asked as she looked over to a blushing Luna.

“Oh, um. It was nothing. Just something I cobbled together,” Luna timidly replied, at least that was until Twilight jumped into the conversation again.

“What! What do you mean you cobbled it together she…” and so Twilight gave a very lengthy description of the spell and thorough reasoning for why it was the “best spell ever created in the history of magic”, Celestia absolutely enjoyed it.

Afterward, the sisters moved onto other things about their day, though it was mainly Celestia listening about what Twilight and Luna did together as well as how much they had accomplished in their studies. Not that she minded it at all as she laid there and listened to all the tiny details her little sisters gave, and she cherished every moment of it. But like all things their time had to end when Celestia looked up and saw that it was starting to get late.

“As much as I would love to keep this conversation going. I think it’s time to get some sleep” as she finished both of her sisters groaned before their bodies betrayed them as they yawned. “See. Now come on you two. We have to get up bright and early tomorrow. It's time for bed,” both of her sisters gave up their attempt to prevent the inevitable and simply made their way to the sleeping area they set up earlier.

Celestia watched as Twilight and Luna walked over to their pillows and as they reached them Twilight immediately laid down onto them with Luna quickly moving beside her and snuggled up next to her, she also had the doll that she made for her in her little hooves. Celestia loved it when they would sleep together, but she pushed past the adorable display and walked up behind them before she wrapped herself around both of them to try and keep them warm. Finally, she grabbed the blankets with her magic and wrapped them around the three of them.

Celestia let out a breath when she finished before she nuzzled each of her sisters and gave both of them a kiss on the top of their head, “I love you two. Sweet dreams.”

“We love you too,” both of her sisters sleepy mumbled back.

So the three sisters drifted off to the dream realm, under the gorgeous night sky with its bright full moon and twinkling stars which hung above them, ready to face whatever challenges they would have to confront for the coming days.

And they truly were going to face some challenges...

Chapter 7: A Special Lesson

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Centa eagerly ran down the now semi-familiar halls of Canterlot Castle with a massive smile on her muzzle. As for why she was excited well…

I can’t wait for the lesson today! Now, while she was normally excited about her magic lessons with Princess Celestia, this time she was extra excited because of the attendance of another pony.

Centa could barely control her excitement as she jumped up in the air and yelled, “I can’t wait to practice magic with Princess Twilight!” When she landed she continued to make her way to the royal gardens, which was where she had her lessons with Celestia.

She then began to imagine all the awesome spells that Twilight could teach her, but as she started to fantasize about it she couldn't help but remember when Twilight was...scary back when they went to the Canterlot library a few months ago. That memory caused Centa to slow down as she remembered how, for a moment, she was slightly afraid of the princess.

Centa slowed to a stop as she remembered how… cold Twilight’s face looked. She stopped herself before she could go any further, she then forced herself to recall that after a few days the princess seemed to be back to normal. She even smiled when she remembered when Twilight took her to go stargazing in the royal gardens, she even got to sleep under them afterward!

With that pleasant memory now in the forefront of mind Centa redoubled her efforts to reach the royal gardens and get to practice magic with the TWO princesses of Equestria!

A short time later she finally reached the decorated double doors that lead to the royal gardens and with a burst of magic, she flung the doors open and jumped outside.

When she landed she searched the gardens for the princesses and after a few moments, she spotted them sitting together in front of a fountain. As she ran up to the princesses she noticed that they both had their regalia on and that she had accidentally interrupted whatever conversation they were in the middle of, but before she could slow down and let them finish they noticed her.

She sheepishly made it the rest of the way to them as Celestia looked down at her with a warm smile, “Ah, Centa. It’s nice to see you made it here yourself” - Celestia’s smile then dimmed - “I’m sorry again, that Cadence couldn't be here with you for the last week. She’s been very busy,” she finished with a slight frown.

Centa’s guilt of interrupting the princesses was overshadowed by the reminder of Cadence’s absence. A week ago Cadence said that she was going to be busy for a while to plan out some kind of party. But, when she first heard this she was devastated that she wouldn't be able to see her anymore.

She had been able to stay with Cadence since she became Princess Celestia’s student and in her opinion, she was the best foalsitter ever… not that she’s a foal; she’s a big mare. Eventually, she had to accept that Cadence had to leave to do her planning, but Centa knew that Cadence would plan the best party ever, and once she was done they could do all sorts of cool stuff again.

Centa was knocked out of her thoughts when she heard Celestia continue, “Although from what I’ve heard, Cadence was almost done with her task and could return soon,” she finished with a smirk.

Centa’s eyes widened as a big smile grew on her muzzle when she heard of Cadence’s return, “Really! Cadence could come back?!” The princess nodded.

Centa began to run around in joy at the wonderful news, I can’t wait for her to return! We can go down to Canterlot and go to Donut Joe’s! Or we could play together again! Or even- But, before she could begin to celebrate she suddenly felt the familiar aura of Celestia’s magic surround her. As she looked back towards the princesses she saw that both of them had smiles on their muzzles and Princess Twilight was even chuckling at her!

“As much as I would love to watch you adorably run and jump around like a little someone I know” - she looked over at Twilight, which strangely stopped her laughter and caused her to blush? - “I think it would be best to start your lesson, we're already slightly late,” the princess finished as she put down a red-faced Centa back onto the ground.

“Anyways as you know we have a special guest for our lesson today. My little sister, Twilight,” At that moment Centa remembered that Twilight was there as well.

Centa slightly more embarrassed but also with a renewed excitement about the reminder of her lesson looked over at the princess.

Twilight coughed into her hoof as the remains of her blush disappeared before she looked over at her, “Thank you for allowing me to be here. Hopefully, I can teach you a few more things about magic,” she finished with a pleasant smile.

“I’m sure you’ll be able to teach Centa many things, sister. But, now I believe it’s time to start -” Centa eagerly sat down ready for whatever the princesses would teach her. “- Let’s start with the basics. To start off every creature has a magic core, from earth pony to griffins. Now Centa, what allows magic to flow throughout creatures?” Celestia inquired.

Centa quickly raised her hoof as she answered Celestia’s question, “That would be the magic lanes in the creature's body!” she yelled out.

Celestia smiled at her, “Correct. The magic lanes, or layways for short, are connected to the magic core and are spread out throughout the body. The layways support the body and lead to points of the body called endpoints. These allow a creature to use their magic, for instance, a unicorn’s central endpoint, like you, is your horn; on earth ponies, it would be their hooves. There are also other minor endpoints throughout your body, but we'll go over that another time. Centa, can you tell me what happens when your magic core completely depletes?” The princess asked.

Centa brought a hoof to her chin as she thought about the question, “Um… when you use your magic you start to feel tired and if you keep using your magic you’ll eventually fall asleep?” she uncertainly responded.

“Mostly correct. When a pony uses their magic, it will slowly use up the magic in their core. You must NEVER allow yourself to completely use up your magic in your core, even in emergencies, because you will get tired and eventually fall asleep… forever. And while there are some ways to help...wake you up, it’s still not safe to do it. Centa, do you understand what I mean?” Celestia questioned her to which she immediately nodded her head. “And do you promise to never do this?” she pressed, Centa once again nodded her head but this time a little nervous.

Celestia looked at her for a few moments more before an apologetic smile spread on her muzzle and she wrapped one of her puffy wings around her, “I’m sorry if I scared you for a moment. I just wanted to make sure you understand the magnitude of this,” the princesses' words comforted her as the two stayed there for a moment longer before Celestia brought back her wing and they continued the lesson.

“Moving on. As you've likely been able to figure out, unicorns have an interesting connection to magic. Unlike their other pony kin, unicorns have the ability to project and manipulate their magic into spells. Now, where and how does a unicorn use their magic?” the princess asked once again.

Centa confidently answered, certain that she knew the correct answer, tapped her horn with her hoof, “That would be from my horn as it’s my only...uh, Ah! Endpoint! And I try to imagine what I want to happen and cast it into a spell!”

Before Celestia could respond the silent Twilight responded, “Well, not exactly,” Centa’s confidence quickly vanished as she was shocked that her answer was wrong.

“WHAT!” she instinctively yelled out.

Twilight seemed to have realized her mistake as she looked at her, “Oh! No, no, no! You were partially correct, the horn is the central endpoint of a unicorn. But, it’s not the only one” - she then looked over to Celestia - “Is it fine if I take over,” she asked.

“Please do, this is why I wanted you to be here. We mostly finished the warm-up anyways,” Celestia reassured her before Twilight looked back at her.

“Very well, I suppose I’ll start. Like you said the horn is the central endpoint for a unicorn, but there are other ways a unicorn could perform magic. All pony races have endpoints in their hooves, for earth ponies, their hooves are their central endpoints, but for unicorns, their hooves are generally minor endpoints. If a unicorn were to try hard enough they could learn to cast spells with only their hooves,” when she finished, Twilight got up and brought up one of her hooves and then pointed it at a pebble.

Centa was still a bit shocked about what the princess meant and while she watched her she noticed that her hoof began to glow with her familiar purple aura. Centa’s mouth hung open and as she looked up at her horn she was even more shocked when she saw that her horn was not even glowing! She then looked back at the pebble and saw it surrounded in the princesses' aura which shortly after began to float, her shock quickly turned into excitement.

“That’s so cool! You can cast magic with your hooves! Can I do that!” Centa eagerly asked as she watched the pebble float in the air in astonishment.

Unfortunately, the amazing scene couldn’t last as the princess soon ended her spell.

Centa was slightly disappointed when the spell concluded but that soon also ended when Twilight began again, “Yes, you can and I would love to teach you. Though we should wait until you're older and your magic core is more developed. Also, another thing to keep in mind is that I may have made that look easier than it was, with me being more experienced and an alicorn with multiple central endpoints,” Twilight said offhoofedly.

While Centa was excited about the news of possibly learning a new way to use magic, she also had a question for the princess, “But I haven't seen any other unicorns use this sort of magic...uh method?”

Her question seemed to make the princess sad as her smile diminished a little, “That would be because, at least from what I can tell, this method of performing magic is almost entirely dead in the modern age. To be fair even back during my time it was incredibly uncommon. *sigh* This method is incredibly inefficient and magically costly compared to using your horn, as your horn has special organs in it that simply make it more efficient, useful, and easier to cast spells than your hooves.”

Centa thought about what the princess said before she suddenly realized something that Twilight mentioned earlier, “WAIT! You said that alicorns have multiple central endpoints! I thought ponies only had one?”

Her question seemed to make Twilight happy again as the smile from before returned in full force, “I’m glad you caught that. Yes, normally you would be right, ponies usually only have one central endpoint. But because alicorns are a combination of all the pony races we have multiple central endpoints.

“We have endpoints in our hooves -” she held both of her front legs and allowed her hooves to glow in her magic “- wings -” she spread out her wings and like her hooves began to glow “- And horn -” to which also glowed before they stopped and she returned her limbs to her side “- it gives us some unique advantages.”

Centa was mesmerized by the display of skill that the princess just showed off and with a big smile on her muzzle, she excitedly asked, “That’s amazing. What other things can alicorn do?”

Twilight’s smile turned into a grin, “Well besides multiple central endpoints, alicorns also have...special abilities of sorts. These special abilities are different for every alicorn, and from what I've seen we generally get two. One of my special abilities actually allows me to see the layways and magic core in creatures, plants, or even in the world itself. As well as being able to see the magic in things it also has made me more… sensitive to magic buildups, such as when a creature casts a spell. Here let me show you,” when Twilight finished she closed her eyes and took a deep breath.

As she let out a breath, she opened her eyes, and what Centa saw shocked her. Her sclera was now a bright cyan and while her iris stayed the same color it was now glowing. The princess then smiled at her, but in Centa’s opinion, she looked a bit… weird with the whole eye glowy thing.

“As you can see this...isn't exactly a subtle ability. Though what it lacks in subtlety it makes up for in the ability to see the world in an entirely different manner. In fact, as I said earlier, this ability allows me to see layways. Approximately, I can see about 25% more in fine detail than a unicorn’s spell version of the ability. Also-” Twilight was suddenly stopped when Celestia placed a hoof on her shoulder.

Though Centa didn't quite notice this as she was currently in the middle of an information overload and by the time she was able to recover and rejoin her interrupted lesson the princesses seemed to be nearly done with their conversation.

“...Anyways, all I’m saying is make it a little easier for her to understand,” Celestia finished and as Centa looked over at Twilight she saw that her face was red and her magic eye thing was gone.

“You're right, sister. I’m sorry, Centa. I got a bit carried away there. Um, anyways the only other… uh feature of that ability is that it’s incredibly magic efficient, for the amount of information I get out of it anyhow,” the princess uncertainly finished as her blush slowly faded away and by the end, she was back to normal.

“It’s okay, Princess Twilight. But, you said that alicorns usually have two abilities. What’s your other one?” Once again Twilight’s smile dimmed and she even looked uncomfortable this time! Centa really started to feel awful at the number of times she made the princess frown.

But before she could get a word in, the princess began, “It’s fine, Centa. It’s just that this ability is very… different. Here let me show you,” when Twilight finished she got up and began to walk to the middle of a field.

Centa was confused for a moment before she also got up and followed the princess. They only walked for a few moments before Twilight stopped in front of a flower and sat down. The princess then looked back at her for only a moment before she took a deep breath and lit her horn shortly after the flower was enveloped in her aura before it was plucked from the ground.

Centa was even more confused by what the princess was doing and as she watched a plethora of thoughts swirled in her head. Why is she floating that flower in her face? Is this her special ability? Does it have something to do with plants? All of her thoughts died as her eyes widened in shock.

When Twilight brought the flower in front of her she closed her eyes as the aura around the flower began to intensify before a stream of bluish-purple magic flame came out of the flower. The magic flame then began to dance along the princesses body before it started to absorb into her? But what also shocked her was when the magic flame left the flower it began to wilt and slowly become brown and dry before eventually, it started to crumble away.

Centa was surprised at what Twilight just did and there was only one thing she could think to say, “What… was that?”

The princess opened her eyes as she looked over at Centa, “That was my second ability. I call it magic drain, excuse the uncreative name” - Twilight let out a dry laugh before she sighed - “What you just saw was the magic being drained out of a flower...,” The princess was silent for a few moments before she began again.

“Sorry, I just don’t like using this ability that often. Anyways this ability allows me to temporarily gain a boost to my magic reserves, but as a consequence the magic I gained drains far faster and it will slowly dissolve from me overtime if I don’t use it. This is unlike naturally generated magic from our cores, which can be stored inside us when we aren’t using it.

“Another way of understanding this is… when you throw a bunch of dry leaves into a fire, it will initially burn incredibly hot and large but then the fire will die out just as fast. Do you understand what I mean, Centa?”

Centa slowly nodded her head as she tried to comprehend what the princess said, but a part of her was still partially distracted at the thought of Twilight draining the magic out of that flower.

“Good, because it’s going to get a bit more complicated. You see I can also drain magic from the environment such as from the sky, ground, or even sea. Though it’s considerably less efficient” - Centa began to get a little tired of all the surprises today - “Anyways that’s not important. Because when I use this ability on… let’s say this field it causes the magic to slowly drain from the field. Luckily, if I don’t take too much of the magic it can usually return to normal,” Twilight finished.

But, Centa had another question in mind for the princess, “What if you take too much magic?”

The princess looked a little grim before she replied, “Well if I take too much magic then this field could become… wrong or empty. These magicless areas aren’t… good for you when any species of ponies go into these magicless areas they wouldn’t be able to use any magic and they would start to feel incredibly weak,” Centa was flabbergasted when she heard this and a shiver ran up her spine.

“I-I won’t be able to use my magic,” Centa asked in a quiet tone, out of everything she heard or saw today this was what scared her the most. Not being able to use any magic was a horrifying thought!

Centa began to shiver at the thought of never being able to use magic again. But suddenly she felt a wing around her and pulled her close to something warm.

When she looked at who the wing belonged to she saw that Twilight was the culprit, “It’s ok, Centa. I’m sorry, I shouldn't have told you about this. Just calm down you’re not losing your ma-,” Twilight stopped herself from saying anything further.

They were shortly joined by another wing and as Centa looked over she saw that it was from Celestia, Centa weakly blushed as she forgot that Celestia was also here.

“So Centa, what about other alicorn abilities? There are two other alicorns you know about?” Celestia asked innocently.

Centa stared at the princess for a few moments before she began to think about what powers, the best foalsitter ever, Cadence could have and the more she began to think about it the more excited she got about the possibilities.

Unknown to Centa, Celestia’s plan to distract her from Twilight’s over-explanation worked as her mind began to go into overdrive at all the ideas she had for abilities.

“If all alicorns have special abilities then what about Cadence? What cool abilities does she have?!” As Centa spoke she progressively got more excited until by the end she was practically back to her normal self as she jumped out of the princesses’ wing hugs in pure excitement.

Twilight looked confused for a moment before she smiled and laughed, “Well, while I can’t say for sure I think Cadence’s first ability would have to be something to do with love magic. I’ve seen her… rekindle strained lovers before, though I did warn her to use that ability carefully.

“But, besides that… I have to admit I don’t actually know what her other ability is supposed to be. If I’m going, to be honest, I don’t think Cadence’s second ability has developed yet. It did take some time for it to develop for us,” Twilight finished with an apologetic smile.

Centa was a little disappointed that Cadence didn't have a second ability but when she looked over at Celestia she realized that she didn't know what hers were.

She quickly fixed her oversight and excitedly asked, “What about you, Princess Celestia?!”

Before Celestia could respond, a smirking Twilight spoke first, “You know Celestia found out that lava pools aren't the best places to swim in. You don’t want to know how we found that out,” Centa was slightly taken aback by Twilight’s bluntness.

Celestia then snorted before she rolled her eyes as she looked over at Twilight, “Sister, that was horrible,” she sighed before she looked over at Centa, “Sorry about, Twilight. Anyway, what she meant is that I’m practically immune to fire. To be honest, it’s nothing too special, nothing compared to Twilight’s abilities that is, but it has been useful sometimes,” the princess finished with a smile.

“What about your other one?” Centa asked

Right before Celestia was going to answer Centa’s question they were interrupted as another pony joined in, “I’m sorry to intrude on your little lesson, Auntie’s. But this is of grave importance… do you think this suit looks good on me,” Blueblood asked as he cut into the conversation.

Centa’s mood dropped when he got here. He even interrupted her lesson with the princesses! She didn’t like Blueblood, when they first met Blueblood was a jerk to her and said “Royal blood and can’t be associated with peasants” he acted just like all those bullies at the orphanage. Ever since then he’s called her a common pony and has just been an all-around jerk. Luckily, she doesn’t see him very often, and even when they do Cadence usually deals with him.

Also when she looked at his outfit she just thought it looked stale and boring, obviously something Blueblood would pick.

Centa then heard Celestia speak, “Blueblood your outfit looks great. Don’t worry,” she said in her familiar motherly tone, Centa didn't know how she could be so nice to him.

Blueblood then looked over at her, slightly annoyed, “Auntie Celestia, I hope your student isn't giving you any… trouble,” Blueblood baselessly accused.

That seemed to get Twilight’s attention as she intensely looked at him, “No, she’s been perfectly well behaved. In fact, she’s been making wonderful progress with her magic,” Twilight’s tone seemed to have stopped Blueblood’s accusations before they could even start.

“Well… good. Anyways thank you Auntie’s for allowing me to take a moment of your time, I’ll be off now. Have a nice afternoon,” Blueblood then bowed to the princesses before he looked at her emotionlessly.

“Centa,” that was his only acknowledgment of her existence before he turned around and walked back to the castle.

Unheard by Centa, Twilight said under her breath, “We really need to work on his manners.”

By the time he was gone Celestia let out a sigh before she looked over at Centa, “I'm sorry about Blueblood, Centa. He can just be a bit… protective at times. Anyways, I think it’s best we begin the lesson again. Right, Twilight?”

The two looked over at Twilight but after a few short moments of silence, an impish smile grew on her muzzle as she looked at them.

“Yes, I think we should begin the lesson again, but this time I think we should have Centa use her magic in a more… practical setting,” this confused the two of them before Celestia narrowed her eyes in suspicion.

“And what would this “practical setting” be,” The smile on Twilight’s muzzle grew when she answered.

“Well Centa will eventually have to use her magic on living subjects and as our dear nephew was so worried about Centa's training I’m sure he will be more than happy to let her practice on him.”

“WHAT!” Both of them cried out in shock at Twilight’s suggestion.

“Sister! You know we can’t do that to him. Even with the way he acted,” Centa meanwhile was still shocked by the suggestion but interested about what Twilight meant.

Twilight quickly defended herself, “But think about it! This can be an excellent educational lesson for Centa on how magic can affect living creatures and using spells on actual subjects is far better than inanimate ones. Besides Blueblood could also have a lesson in humility and learn to be nicer to ponies,” the more Centa heard about this idea the more she found herself liking it and a part of her was even excited to start.

Twilight’s points even staggered Celestia when she stopped and actually looked like she was considering the idea.

Twilight then walked up next to her and whispered into her ear, Centa strained to hear what she said, “Anyways, you know I wouldn't do anything that would actually hurt him. Just something to teach him to be better,” she finished with a more friendly smile.

That seemed to have convinced Celestia as she sighed and looked over at Twilight, “Fine. But nothing too dangerous.”

Twilight brought a hoof up in victory before she hugged Celestia, “Yes! don’t worry sister I’m sure you’ll love it. Now come here you two here’s my plan,” she signaled the two of them closer before she began to explain her plan.

Centa began to really like this plan.


“Why am I starting to have second thoughts?” Celestia asked as the three of them were invisible and sat in a dome of silence, courtesy of Twilight.

The three of them sat near the end of a hallway in the castle, at the end of the hall was none other than Blueblood’s room, their target’s nest.

Centa meanwhile had become incredibly excited to “practice” her magic on Blueblood, Finally, Blueblood you can be on the other side and know what it feels like! Centa maliciously thought.

She was suddenly knocked out of her thoughts when she heard Twilight, “Come on, sister. Remember this is for Centa’s education. Also we haven’t done something like this since my return,” she smiled at Celestia before she abruptly coughed in her hoof. “ *cough* *cough* Also discipline *cough*,” Centa didn't quite hear her but Celestia slightly deadpanned.

Before they could continue their debate the three of them heard the front doors of Bluebloods room click open and when they looked over they saw Blueblood, with his head held high and an aura of arrogance that surrounded him, begin to walk down the hall.

Centa felt a hoof being placed on her shoulder, “Centa, it’s time. I know you can do it,” she heard Twilight whisper next to her ear.

Centa let out a breath before she stood up and narrowed her eyes at her foe before she closed them. She then concentrated on the spells that Twilight taught her, during this process Centa’s horn began to glow.

The floor that Blueblood walked on slowly started to coat with a thin layer of ice and at the same time Centa began to levitate a small bucket full of a weird shiny liquid, she then levitated the bucket above the now iced floor right in the path of Blueblood.

The bucket that was full of the strange elixir was also courtesy of Twilight, though Centa doesn't know what the elixir was, the princess refused to say what it was and instead said that it was a surprise.

Shortly after Blueblood set off their trap when he began to slip on the ice, he soon lost his balance and began to slide down the hall, “AHHHHHH!”

As soon as Blueblood passed under the bucket Centa released it which caused the liquid to fall all over him. By the time he reached the end of the ice layer, he was drenched in the mystery liquid. When he pushed himself up onto his hooves he was breathing heavily.

Centa started to get annoyed at the lack of… anything happening to him! What’s going on? Why didn't anything happen? Did Princess Twilight’s elixir not work? But before she could ask the princesses if anything went wrong, suddenly the elixir began to absorb into Blueblood.

First the coat he was wearing began to turn purple, while his undershirt instead changed into a bright green, and then his fur started to turn pink with green polka dots that dotted around his body. His mane and tail then puffed up into an afro style and changed into a variety of colors, finally, his nose turned into a bright red to finish his new look.

Blueblood’s prank wasn't over yet as while he screamed to the heavens when he slid down the hall he caught the attention of any pony in the nearby area. Not long after they heard the thunderous sound of hooves as a few dozen ponies went to investigate the scream. In no time the hallway began to be filled with stunned ponies, what stunned them? That would be the new clown prince that was before them.

The tension slowly began to fill the room as everypony, even Centa and the princesses, waited for somepony to break the silence.

This tension was broken when Blueblood angrily looked at everypony and yelled, “Which one of you peasants did this?!” This also broke the crowd.

Everypony in the room began to laugh hysterically at Blueblood, especially Centa, though the princesses were able to control themselves better.

Centa barely noticed when Blueblood looked confused before he suddenly looked down at himself and screeched, “Wh-what happened to me?! What have you done to me -” The crowd ignored him as they continued to laugh “- Shut, you peasants!” Blueblood’s face was now completely beet red.

He then closed his eyes and shortly after the entire room was filled with a bright light and by the time anypony could see again the prince was gone.

The culprits meanwhile were still trying to recover from their prank but eventually, they were able to get a hold of themselves, though it took Centa a little longer.

Centa then jumped back onto her hooves before she turned around to the princesses, “That was the best prank ever! Princess Twilight, that was incredible!” Centa said with one of the biggest smiles on her muzzle.

“Yes, I suppose that was quite a lot of fun. Thank you, sister. I needed that,” Celestia admitted as she looked over at Twilight.

Twilight's smile grew on her muzzle as she wrapped one of her wings around Celestia, “Now that’s my sister! I’m glad to see you again. I started to get worried when you never once tried to prank me. Especially, considering how much we used to prank each other and ponies. It’s good to see your pranking days aren’t over,” as Twilight finished she returned her wing to her side.

Celestia smiled down at her, “Thank you, sister. Truly,”

Twilight, with the faintest of blushes, looked back over at where Blueblood was, “You know I’m impressed that he could teleport, especially at how fast he was able to cast it,” Centa wasn't really sure it was that impressive.

Celestia looked over at Twilight before she replied, “He may have a… bad behavior. But he has been very studious about his magic lessons. He told me that “As a prince, he should master all arts of magic” so his behavior isn’t completely harmful.”

When Celestia finished she looked thoughtful for a moment before she asked, “What exactly was that elixir?”

Twilight looked back at her before she waved one of her hooves as she dismissed her worries, “It was just something I cobbled together, it’s nothing special. Also, don’t worry about Blueblood, the effects of the potion should wear off in a few hours,” Twilight summarized.

Centa continued to listen to the princesses before she suddenly remembered something, “Wait!” This caused both of the princesses to look over at her, “Princess Celestia, you never told me what your second ability was!” They both looked at her confused for a few moments, before Celestia realized what she said.

Celestia then briefly looked thoughtful before she grinned, “Well Centa, I have a task for you. While you are my student I want you to try and figure out what my other ability is. If you can figure it out, I’ll give you a reward.”

Centa was a bit disappointed that Celestia wouldn't tell her what her other ability was, especially because it was all Blueblood’s fault! But the idea of figuring it out and getting a prize in the end also filled her with hope.

Celestia seemed to notice her slight disappointment and reassured her, “Don’t worry about that right now. Besides, we have more important things to do, such as your lessons. You could still use more “practice” with your magic. What do you think, sister?” A smile began to grow on Centa’s muzzle at the idea of doing more pran- “practice” of course.

Twilight returned her grin in full, “Of course, sister and I’m sure plenty of ponies would be more than willing to help Centa with their magic.”

And so the three schemed more pranks for the many ponies that lived in the castle. May the gods help them.


So the three ponies continued to “practice” Centa’s magic on a myriad of different ponies from guards, which had the least reaction, to even some of the more higher nobles and they enjoyed every moment of that. Although besides the fun the princesses did teach Centa new spells and forms of magic during these pranks, while they continued these pranks Centa got a better understanding of certain spells.

But after a long day of wonderful fun, the three began to wind down as they pranked their last victim.


Twilight laughed with her accomplices as their latest victim ran back to the castle, more than likely to hide from their embarrassment.

After a few moments, they managed to calm themselves down and as Twilight looked over at Centa she couldn't help but smile. I can’t believe how well she’s been able to get a hoof at these spells. I suppose this was educational.

“That was awesome! I can’t believe that a pony could even do that! Who are we gonna prank next!” Centa quickly and loudly yelled as she began to jump in place with anticipation.

Her sister spoke first, “Unfortunately, that was the last one. It’s starting to get late and we’ve already extended your lesson by an hour. Sorry, Centa,” Centa's expression and mood dropped at the news.

Twilight looked behind Centa and noticed a familiar pony hide in a nearby bush. Twilight couldn’t help but grin, Well I guess she’s done. Centa will certainly be happy.

Celestia soon matched her grin when she noticed the pony begin to sneak up behind Centa, “Besides I think there’s somepony here that wants to see you,” their guest stopped when Celestia revealed her.

Centa looked confused until she turned around and as soon as she saw who their guest was she immediately became overjoyed, “CADENCE!” Centa sprinted over to her.

Cadence briefly glared at Celestia before she smiled at an incoming Centa, she quickly sat down and let out her two front legs for the oncoming hug. Centa slammed into her in full force before they both hugged each other.

“It’s so good to see you again, Centa. I’m so sorry I had to go for so long,” Cadence tightened her hold on Centa.

This lasted for a few moments before they let each other go, Centa suddenly gasped, “Oh! Cadence, we did so many cool things today! Princess Twilight taught me how to…” Centa then began to go on a rant about what they did today, during which Cadence sat back down and listened to her.

Twilight meanwhile walked over to her sister and sat down next to her, “ *sigh*... Thank you, sister. This was… probably the most fun I’ve had in quite a while. I… Is. Celestia, would you be willing to let me help you teach Centa about magic? Not that I plan to take over your job or be too intrusive in th-” Twilight was stopped from her tirade when her sister put a hoof on her mouth.

“Twilight, I would love it if you could help Centa learn magic. In fact, I was hoping you’d ask and I’m sure Centa will love it too,” when she finished she let go of her mouth.

Twilight laughed sheepishly as she blushed a little before she coughed into her hoof in an attempt to clear her embarrassment.

“Uh. Thank you, sister,” Twilight said pitifully, her sister even had the audacity to laugh at her.

“You're welcome. Oh! Also, I wanted to remind you that in a few weeks there’s going to be the Grand Galloping Gala,” Twilight was unfortunately reminded about that dreaded “celebration”.

“Yes, I saw that. *sigh* Why out of all the things you kept it had to be that infernal gala?” Twilight asked in an annoyed tone as she rubbed her temple with one of her hooves.

“You know as well as I do that this is an important holiday for the unicorn nobility. It was one of the demands that the unicorns made for their support to join Equestria,” Twilight grumbled at the reminder of that little detail.

“I know, I know. I still wished you had tried to get rid of it,” Twilight grumbled out, but before the two princesses could continue they heard Centa call them over.

With their conversation seamlessly ended they both got up and made their way to them, but as they walked to the duo Twilight barely heard her sister mumble.

Who said I didn't,” her sister grumbled under her breath, Twilight smirked before she jumped into the conversation Centa and Cadence were in the middle of.

Chapter 8: Another Typical Gala

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Twilight looked over her dress in the mirror one last time as she scanned for any imperfections or problems with it. The dress she currently had on was the same one that she wore during her return celebration, she even managed to get her mane in the same style; not that it didn't try to resist.

The only differences from before were her new crown on top of her head and her magic amulet, which was the shrunk-down version of the Element of Magic.

Even though Twilight disagreed with her sister over the needless excessiveness of this dress she had to admit it was quite beautiful, and that she liked it.

Once she was sure that her dress was in perfect order she let out a sigh before she quickly made her way out of her room, before she left she scowled at a book that lay next to her mirror. Once she entered the halls of the castle she was nearly in a gallop, though she still kept in mind to not damage her dress.

As she hastily made her way to the gala she couldn't help but be frustrated at herself.

I can't believe how long that paperwork took! And then to make matters worse, there was that infernal book I just had to get sucked into! Ugh! Celestia isn't going to let this go…

By the time Twilight finished that thought she realized that she had left the Magic district and was in a much more active part of the castle. There were a few ponies, mostly servants, trying to make sure the gala was in perfect working order.

Twilight felt slightly more frustrated with herself for having lost track of where she was. Before any pony could notice her current situation she slowed down to a normal speed and put on her princess mask.

Luckily, for Twilight it only took a few more moments before she reached a pair of doors that led to the ballroom, the same room that her sister had used for her return celebration. When she entered the ballroom she noticed that it was mostly the same as before, besides a few more decorations and more… purple. Twilight was impressed that this was the first gala that Cadence had organized, just more evidence that you’ll make a perfect princess.

As she walked inside she noticed that there were, thankfully, only a few ponies there at the moment.

Twilight made her way through the gala, more specifically to where Tia told her to meet before the gala. As she made her way through the newly emerging crowd she could tell that, just like before her return, almost all of the ponies were nobles. She had naively hoped that the gala had become at least a little less socially restrictive, but it seemed some things never changed.

Twilight pushed aside her slight disappointment when she noticed the massive line that led to none other than her sister, Celestia.

Celestia also had on a dress, though it was new to Twilight, she also had on her crown and golden slippers. The pink gown she had on changed to different shades of pink with the bottom a dark pink and eventually the color changed to a light pink around the top. On her back rested a pink-red section of the dress that had bright recreations of her sun cutie mark sewn into the fabric. Pinned to her gown were two golden suns, which were also recreations of her cutie mark. Twilight rolled her eyes at that, Very creative, Tia.

Around her barrel was a silk orange belt with some white wavy line designs stitched into it. Finally, around her neck was a dull pink cloth with a golden star pin that kept it around her neck.

Twilight began her journey up the steps past the many ponies that came for the gala. Soon the ponies began to notice her and while a few paid their respects the vast majority seemed to be surprised that she was even there.

When Twilight nearly reached her sister, Celestia seemed to have noticed her as her fabricated smile became just a bit more sincere.

“Ah! Sister, it’s good to see you’ve arrived,” Celestia said as she shook her hoof.

“You too, Celestia. I’m sorry I was late. I had some important matters to attend to before the gala,” Twilight replied as she moved over next to her sister.

Celestia’s smile for a moment became a grin, “Of course,” before it quickly turned back to normal.

After a little while, everything returned to normal as the two sisters began to greet the guests, at least that was until Celestia established a telepathic link between the two of them.

“So what took you so long really. Hm… let me guess, a book?” Celestia smugly asked over the spell.

Twilight wished she was surprised by her sister’s behavior, unfortunately, this is just what she expected from Celestia.

A short silence persisted between them before Twilight reluctantly responded to her sister, “Partially.”

“Of course. Why am I not surprised you became obsessed with a book,” Celestia replied as she mentally rolled her eyes while at the same time greeted a little colt.

“I also had to do other things, you know! Ugh! Can we please stop talking about this?” Twilight, totally didn't plead as she wished to move on.

Celestia was silent for a moment before she responded, “Very well. You're lucky we’re in the middle of something. But, please try to be on time for the next gala,” her sister said as she lightly scolded her.

“Fine, I’m sorry about being late again. *sigh* This is going to be a long tedious night isn't it,” Twilight remarked as she greeted another noble.

“You have no idea. But this is the responsibility of the crown… though I do wish it didn't have to be so dull,” Celestia said absentmindedly.

With no response from Twilight, Celestia cut the spell and the two sisters began to focus, at least a bit more, on the guests.

At least that was the plan, but Twilight couldn't help but think about her sister’s last remark. It was at that moment that she had an epiphany and at the same time a genuine smile grew on her muzzle as she thought of something that would definitely make the gala much more “exciting” for her dear sister.


Cadence walked through the crowds of the gala all the while she gave them her best princess mask. As she made her way through the crowds her new golden slippers clicked on the marble floor, her Auntie Celestia had given her a pair to wear so it would complete her look. And it did fit surprisingly well with her favorite pink dress, a dress she personally liked to wear whenever she had to go to some official festival.

She had on a pink gown where the bottom of it faded into a light purple. Around her barrel was a purple belt with golden string stitched into it with multiple different designs, many of which had hearts in them. On the front of her dress were two lines of purple that started from her shoulders and ended at the center of her chest. At the center of her chest was a blue heart-shaped crystal with gold trimmings surrounding it.

While her mane style was done in the same way she normally liked it, instead of her normal bowties she replaced them with silk ones, which was a gift Auntie Twilight got her before the gala. She loved them. Finally, she had on a pair of blue crystal dot earrings.

She then looked next to her to check on a little pony that she was looking after during the gala, Centa. Centa was also in an adorable dress, though not nearly as… complicated as her dress. She was in a simple dark purple dress with a cute purple bow tie around her barrel. Finally, she had a pin in her hair that was a replica of her cutie mark.

Auntie Celestia had asked her to look after Centa during the gala. Which she was perfectly happy to do, as she hoped that Centa could help fight the boredom of the gala… also it was an excuse she could use to avoid the nobles.

Cadence soon got lost in thought as her body went on autopilot and she looked away from Centa. Even though she helped plan this gala, though to be honest Raven did most of the hard work, she always hated this gala. Ever since she learned the truth about the gala from her, the first gala she had hated this event.

All that the gala was ever for was for nobles to have an exclusive private party to brag about and to discuss their plans with veiled words. She couldn't fathom why normal ponies, outside of Canterlot, thought this was the best celebration in all of Equestria! The nobles probably spread rumors that this was some amazing party just to make the common pony jealous, Cadence cynically thought.

Cadence realized that she was having an internal rant so she stopped and calmed herself down, the gala had tended to do this to her. Cadence also remembered that Centa was with her and she began to worry that her internal anger may have shown and scared her. But when she looked over at Centa to make sure she hadn't scared her she noticed something terrified her. Centa wasn't next to her!

Understandably, Cadence began to freak out. Where did Centa go?! OH no! She must have wandered off when I was distracted! She could be lost or HURT! I have to find her NOW! Before she had completely panicked she forced herself to remain calm. WAIT! Calm down, Cadence. I’m sure she’s perfectly fine. We're still in the castle. She's probably just… playing somewhere around here. Yeah, she’s fine. Once Cadence sorted out her near panic she began her search for her little bundle of joy.

“Centa, please come back here,” Cadence as calmly as she could ask as she combed through the crowd.

Unfortunately, no matter where she looked she couldn't find any hide nor hair of her no matter how hard she searched. After a while Cadence considered if she should get her aunties to help search for her. Before she could enact that plan she suddenly bumped into somepony, which caused both of them to fall.

When Cadence got her bearings she looked over at the pony that she accidentally hit. He was a slightly larger than average-sized unicorn stallion for his age, at least as far as she could tell. He had pure white fur, like her auntie, and a multi-shaded blue mane and tail. He also had blue eyes and a dark blue shield cutie mark with three lighter blue stars above it. Finally, she noticed that he had a surprisingly developed horn, she also noticed that she was quite… handsome.

Cadence blushed lightly before she quickly averted her gaze to the suit he wore. He had on a very well-made black tux that went down his barrel, underneath his tux he wore a simple white shirt. Finally, he had a, somewhat cute, dark blue tie that matched the color of his cutie mark.

From the outfit alone Cadence could tell that he had to be some kind of noble. Common ponies normally couldn't afford a tux like that and normal ponies were practically non-existent at the gala.

Before Cadence could say anything to the white stallion he groaned, “Ow! Watch where your goi-” his frustration was cut off when he saw her.

The two of them stared at each other in tense silence until the stallion's eyes moved to her back and then to her forehead. Soon after his eyes slowly began to grow until they were practically the size of dinner plates. He then attempted to get onto his hooves, which resulted in much stumbling, but he eventually succeeded.

“I-I'm so sorry, princess! I mean! Uh… I mean, uh. My lady? *cough* I didn't see you there, my lady. Are… you alright?” the stallion nervously asked as he brought out a hoof to help her up.

Cadence looked at the stallion for a moment before she took his hoof, “It’s fine and to be honest it was really my fault. *sigh* I should have looked where I was going. Also if you’d like you can call me, Cadence,” she said as she got up onto her hooves.

Now that Cadence got a better look at the stallion she was surprised, she didn't recognize him. Which was odd because she knew every young stallion noble in Canterlot and some outside. Especially, considering practically every one of them had flirted with her or asked her out on a date

*sigh* No doubt he’ll try at some point too. But even after that cynical thought, she was still oddly curious about the stallion.

“I’m sorry again… Cadence,” Cadence was surprised when he actually used her name, even if he was a little reluctant.

“It’s fine, really. I should have seen you standing there. Now as much as I would like to continue this conversation, I need to go. I’m sorry I have to cut this short,” Cadence said as she forced herself to end her conversation with the surprisingly… different noble.

“Oh! I understand Prin- um… I mean, Cadence,” Shining said as he began to apprehensively walk away.

With their conversation effectively done they both began to walk away. But as Cadence left she couldn't help but want to know more about that noble. He was so different from any other noble she met.

Her aunties always said that you could tell who a pony was just by the way they talked, acted, moved, and… the “aura” around them, at least that was how her aunties put it. Even though she was nowhere nearly as skilled as her aunties she could tell that he was different, more genuine. And that made her want to get to know more about him.

Right before she was about to leave she gave in to her curiosity for a moment and looked over her shoulder and asked the stallion a question.

“Before I go” - the stallion stopped with a surprised face, and possibly a tinge of worry before he turned around - “what's your name?” Cadence asked as she also turned around.

The stallion looked blankly at her for a moment, “Oh,” before he proceeded to slap himself. “I can’t believe I forgot to tell her my name. *cough* I’m sorry, again. My name's Shining Armor. You probably haven’t heard about me before. My family is barely lesser nobles,” the newly named Shining said as he gave a little embarrassed laugh and a cu- *cough* gentle smile.

“Well. Then it’s good to meet you, Shining Armor. I would introduce myself as well, but I think we already went over that,” A smile grew on her muzzle as she thought of something.

“Ha! With a name like that you almost sound like your part of the guard” - Cadence realized that what she said could be considered rude - “Oh! I’m sorry, I didn't mean to imply that about your name,” Cadence knew some nobles hated to be compared to guards, some of them believed they were barbaric and subservient to other ponies. It was a completely ridiculous thought process in her opinion.

But Cadence’s worries were unfounded as Shining laughed and waved to hoof, “Don’t worry about it, In fact, I hope I can join the guard soon,” Cadence's eyes widened as she was shocked by his answer.

“Wait! What?! You want to be part of the guard,” Cadence said, completely dumbfounded.

A noble wants to be part of the guard! But… no noble has ever wanted to join the guard! Cadence continued to be surprised by Shining Armor, at every moment he showed that he was so different from any other noble. From the way, he talked to her, to how he treated her, and now he wanted to join the guard. Cadence began to doubt he was actually a noble.

“Yeah, I want to be a guard. I’ve wanted to join so I can help any pony in need. I’ve wanted to ever since I got my cutie mark -” He showed her his cutie mark before he backed at her with a sigh “-Unfortunately, I can’t join until after I graduate from high school,” Cadence’s heart warmed at Shining’s selflessness.

“That’s wonderful! I’m sure you’ll make it into the guard no problem. You also said you were in high school? Which one do you go to?” Cadence asked as she sat next to Shining.

Shining blushed at how close she was but after a moment he continued, “Oh! Uh, you’ve probably haven’t heard of it. It’s just some small high school in lower Canterlot, nothing fancy,” Shining avoided the question.

Cadence meanwhile wasn't going to let go and nudged him, “Come on, tell me. I don’t care if it’s not some fancy school,” Cadence said as she rolled her eyes.

“Uh, Fine. It’s a small school called Willow High. It’s actually more like a guard transfer school, to be honest. It helps ponies get used to working in the guard and makes it easier to transfer to the guard afterward. It’s nowhere near as big or fancy as some of the upper Canterlot high schools though,” Shining said as he adjusted his bow, suddenly a bit more nervous.

“Really? Well, I for one think that’s a wonderful school” - Shining looked at her surprised - “Yes, I know about your school. My auntie took me there once. I think she wanted to teach me how to deal with the guard when I became a princess. Anyways, from what I can tell it’s a very good school. Besides all those other fancy schools are… let’s just say most of them are more focused on “teaching” ponies about useless skills.”

Shining meanwhile was still in shock, “Honestly, I’m still shocked that you even knew about my school,” for some reason Shining’s comment caused Cadence to laugh, and initially Shining looked more confused before he joined her.

After Shining’s impromptu joke Cadence looked back over at Shining with a smile, “Oh, that's the most I’ve laughed today! Thank you, Shining.”

“Uh, sure. No problem,” Shining murmured as he blushed again.

Cadence then had a wonderful idea, “So, Shining. Want to hear a story about my aunts,” Cadence asked as a playful smile formed on her muzzle.


*sigh* Why does this always have to take so long? Celestia thought as she once again greeted another guest from the seemingly endless line of ponies. Why didn't I push harder to remove this stupid holiday? Yes, it would lower some of my political power, but at least I wouldn't have to suffer through this every year!

She knew she was overexpressing, a little. But, it did help that she had her sister here with her this time, even though she still had to endure the torture. She helped make it slightly more bearable as now the both of them could suffe- erm... enjoy this gala together.

I hope after we're done greeting ponies, if that ever ends, we can have some time to talk to each other, without a telepathic link. Celestia hoped as she noticed another pony approach them.

Celestia reentered reality as she prepared to welcome another guest. Unknown to her was when she held out her hoof to hoofshake the guest, the sole of her hoof glowed a faint but familiar hue of purple.

“Hello, my little pony. Welcome to the Grand Galloping Gala,” Celestia said in her motherly tone as she shook the guest’s hoof.

But when she tried to let go of her guest’s hoof she realized something, she couldn't let go. Celestia was confused before she looked over at the guest.

“You… can let go now,” but when she said this she noticed that the guest looked like they were also struggling to let go.

“I’m sorry, your majesty. But I can’t seem to let go,” Celestia grew even more confused before she looked back down at their hooves.

By now other ponies began to notice their extended hoofshake and some even began to mutter between each other.

Celestia didn't focus on that though as she began to try and release their hooves. She first tried to tap into some of her alicorn strength to pull them apart forcefully but all that accomplished was pulling her guest closer. Celestia then tried to use her magic to pull their hooves apart and, unlike before, there was some progress! Slowly Celestia was able to pull their hooves apart and for a moment she was able to see some kind of purple magic in between their hooves, it looked quite familiar.

But, before she could get a closer look there was suddenly a wave of purple magic that washed over both of them and shocked their bodies. Thankfully, Celestia could tell that the shock was nowhere lethal, it simply startled them.

Celestia first looked over her guest for any injuries, but she instead noticed that their mane was puffed out, as well as their fur. Before she could ask if her guest was alright their eyes widened and they gasped, as well as every nearby pony.

“Yo-Your Majesty. Your mane!” Celestia blinked in confusion before she teleported a mirror from her room and looked at herself.

She was quickly able to see what they meant. Like her guest, her mane and fur were puffed out, though her mane looked a bit silly as it still had an ethereal nature to it. Celestia probably would have laughed at how her mane kinda looked like rainbow cotton candy if she weren't in the middle of the gala, surrounded by her ponies.

At that moment she realized who caused their little scene and when she quickly looked over at Twilight she saw for a brief moment a smirk as well as the faint glow of her horn before it also disappeared.

Celestia knew her sister was involved in this and she glared at her lightly before she returned her attention to her disheveled guest with her signature smile.

“Thank you, for telling me. But it seems we were both affected by this… event. Here, let me fix that,” Celestia said before she powered up her horn and cast a spell that fixed their manes and fur.

After a few moments the mess was fixed and they both looked as good as new, “They're all finished. I’m sorry, that happened. It seems there was simply some magical interference. Likely, some magic that managed to slip out of my core. Again, I’m sorry that this happened,” Celestia sweetly said as she made up a lie on the spot.

The guest seemed to be flustered, likely a mixture of surprise from her spell and her apology, but the pony eventually got some of their nerves back.

“Um. O-Of course, your majesty. It was simply an accident. It happens to the best of us,” the guest waved off as they began to make their way to the gala.

The rest of the guests seemed to have accepted her answer as everything returned to normal.

Once she was sure everything was under control, Celestia started a telepathic link between her and Twilight.

“Sister, what by the gods was that?” Celestia demanded as she welcomed the next guest, normally this time.

“Pray tell, whatever do you mean, Tia?” Twilight innocently asked, but Celestia could hear the lingering pride in her sister.

“Don’t, Tia me. Twilight. I know full well that you caused that to happen,” the smile on Twilight’s muzzle widened a bit when she finished.

“And what exactly just happened right now, sister?” Celestia’s eye twitched a bit after her sister’s response.

“Do you really expect me to believe that? You cast a spell on my hoof before I shook hooves with the guest,” Celestia told her conniving sister.

“Ah, that. I thought you said that was caused by… how did you put it? Some kind of magical interference with the magic that slipped managed to slip out of your core. *gasp* Did you lie to your own subject! I can’t believe you, sister! I thought you were supposed to be a role model to ponies!” Celestia faintly frowned as her sister continued but before she could get a metaphorical word in her sister continued.

“As much as we need to have a conversion about lying to our subject and accusing sisters of things they clearly didn't do. We should focus on our little ponies. It is the responsibility of the crown,” Twilight echoed her words before she forcefully cut the telepathic link.

Celestia now glared at her sister before she knew exactly how to get revenge. I see what you’re up to, Twilight. Know that you have just started a war of the likes you’ve never experienced before. You’re going down. With her declaration, she began to think up hundreds of different pranks she could spring on her sister. As a servant walked past them with a tray of drinks a mischievous smile spread across her muzzle.

As she powered her horn she began one of the many pranks that she planned for her foolish sister.


For the next couple hours, the sisters began their Great Prank War and while at first, it was only at each other, they even made a game out of it as they tried to prank each other without any other pony noticing. But, soon other ponies started to become casualties as the sisters grew more ambitious in their quickly growing game. Eventually, everypony became a target for their war.

Meanwhile, Cadence and her new friend, Shining Armor, continued their conversation. For the last few hours, they talked about a lot of different subjects, from possible state secrets to the princess's private lives. They also talked about more mundane subjects such as Shining's time at his school and other personal interests. Unfortunately, for Cadence, she will have to face one of her most terrible misdeeds…


“Wait, the princess did what!?” Shining asked flabbergasted.

Cadence couldn't help but laugh at Shining’s reaction, “They pranked my cousin, Blueblood. In the middle of the castle, in front of a whole crowd of ponies,” Cadence said again as a pleased smile was plastered across her muzzle.

“I can’t believe the princesses prank ponies. Including their own nephew. That’s… wow,” Shining said, still astounded.

“Oh, please! He had it coming to him. He needed it… and probably some more,” Cadence muttered under her breath.

It had been a few hours since she first met Shining Armor. And to be honest, it was the most fun she’s ever had at a gala. Unlike every other pony, Shining treated her like a normal pony. Even though for the first hour he was timid around her, he got over that fear quickly once she showed who she was. It was truly a refreshing experience to have a normal conversation with just some pony for a change. No hidden motive or veiled words, just a good time between two friends.

“Still, it’s hard for me to see the princesses do… well something like that,” Cadence realized that her mind had drifted off, so she rejoined their conversation.

“My aunties like to keep a certain… appearance in public,” Cadence tried to say tactfully.

“I suppose that makes sense,” Shining replied.

Before they could continue their conversation. Suddenly, something black and purple jumped in between them. Soon after, Cadence heard a very familiar voice.

“Oh! Cadence, there you are! I was looking everywhere for you! Don’t worry, I wasn't scared! I'm a big mare!” the now revealed Centa said as she began to jump in place.

Cadence didn't respond as she was in shock at how she FORGOT about Centa! She was also stunned at the state she was in, she looked like she played in a pig pen!

Her hooves were covered in mud and… what she believed was chocolate? She hoped. Her dress was also a mess with tons of stains and tears all over it, she didn't even want to know how much that dress cost. Her fur was also matted and her mane was completely disheveled. Thankfully, her pin was still in place, if only a little dirty.

It was only after her shock passed that she realized that Centa had talked the whole time.

“...And then I found this HUGE chocolate fountain and I just had to have some. Oh! And then-” Cadence stopped Centa when she regained her senses.

“Centa, what happened to you? Where did you run off to? Ugh, you're a mess. How am I going to clean you up?” Cadence asked herself as other guests around them began to notice Centa’s commotion.

Even with her tone, Cadence felt incredibly guilty that she actually forgot about Centa. She mentally berated herself and silently swore to never let this happen again.

Cadence looked apologetically to Shining while she attempted to conceal Centa from the newly forming crowd, “I’m sorry, Shining. I completely forgot about Centa. I just started talking with you and I just completely forgot what I was doing. Now I need to go and clean her up,” Cadence sighed as she began to think of ways to clean Centa up.

Shining surprised her once again when he didn't look concerned, “No problem, Cadence. And to be honest I also kinda caused this. How about I help you? We can go clean her up at that table,” Shining suggested as he pointed to a secluded table near the back of the gala.

Cadence reluctantly decided to accept his help and so the three of them made their way to the table, while both Shining and Cadence conceded a slightly confused Centa.

But, as they made their way to the table Cadence realized something as she smashed herself in the face, “I’m an idiot,” she said under her breath.

Shining looked at her confused and slightly concerned, “Um… Cadence are you alright?” he asked.

Cadence looked over a Shining and for a moment she thought about not telling him until she decided to let him in on her mistake, “I… forgot that I had a magic orb from Auntie Celestia that showed me where Centa was. It was literally made to prevent this!” Shining actually had the audacity to chuckle at her, Cadence very much disapproved of this action.

Eventually, they made it to the secluded table where Shining gathered some towels while Cadence got a couple of glasses of water and prepared a few cleaning spells for the harder-to-clean areas. Centa meanwhile nabbed a few treats off of the table and began to eat them while they were gone. When they gathered everything they needed they began to clean Centa.

While they cleaned up the little filly Shining asked a question, “So… if you don’t mind? Who exactly is Centa?” Cadence realized she hadn't even told Shining who Centa was, Cadence was able to resist the urge to smack herself again.

Ugh! Why am I so scatterbrained today? Sorry… again, this is Centa Void, Princess Celestia’s student. I was supposed to look after her during the gala, but well… I suppose you can see how that went,” Cadence muttered dejectedly as she cleaned one of Centa’s hooves.

Before Shining could say anything that could cheer her up, Centa gave her a surprise boop on her nose. The only evidence of this heinous crime was a little bit of chocolate on the tip of her nose.

“Don’t be sad, Cadence. You're the best foalsitter ever!” A short silence followed until a smile wormed its way on her muzzle before she snickered at Centa’s random act of kindness.

“Ha… Thank you, Centa. I needed that” - she said before a mischievous smile spread across her muzzle - “But, you should know the crime of such an action!” Cadence wickedly said before she launched her own attack, a tickle attack!

Cadence began to tickle Centa crazily. Unfortunately, for poor Centa she never had a chance and was soon laughing hysterically on the floor. During her assault, she heard a noise come from her side and when she investigated it she saw Shining laugh at them. A slight blush enveloped her cheeks.

“You two act like your sisters,” the blush on Cadence’s face grew a bit brighter as she stopped her assault on Centa.

“Oh! Uh… really that’s… certainly interesting,” Cadence awkwardly said as she thought, Not that I’m entirely opposed to that idea.

After Shining’s question, a peaceful silence followed as the two continued to clean Centa. But as they worked a thought crossed her mind.

“Shining?” the aforementioned Shining looked over at her. “I… was wondering. Do you have any siblings?” For the first time since she’s met Shining he frowned as he slumped forward and looked a bit crestfallen, Cadence began to regret her question.

“No, unfortunately. I’ve always wanted a little sibling though. Not that my parents didn't try but well… they were unlucky you could say,” Cadence felt bad for Shining.

“I’m sorry,” was the only thing Cadence could think to say as she attempted to give him a reassuring smile.

“It’s fine. I got over it a long time ago,” Shining waved away her concern as he finished picking out the last twig in Centa’s mane.

Before Cadence could say anything to try and help him she heard a faint voice call out Shining’s name, “Shining, it’s time to leave, come on!

When Cadence looked to where the voice had come from she noticed that everypony had begun to leave, the gala was over.

Shining looked over at where the voice came from and got up, “Oh, that’s my parent’s. Sorry, I have to go. It was wonderful to meet you, Cadence. I hope we can see each other again. Hehe, maybe you can tell me more stories about the princesses,” Shining said as he gave a short bow before he ran off into the crowd to find his parents.

Cadence yelled out, “Yeah we’ll find a way to meet again!” as he ran away Cadence once again noticed how he… looked as the blush from before returned in full.

Next to her a mostly clean Centa also yelled goodbye, “Bye nice stallion!” Centa said as she waved one of her hooves before she noticed there was chocolate on it and began to lick it off.

As Shining disappeared into the crowd Cadence waved goodbye to him while her mind began to think. I really hope we can find a way to see each other again. Maybe we can hang out tomorrow… wait. He didn't tell me where he lived. *sigh* I’m going to have to find out where he lives don’t I? She thought before she began to think of ways to gather that specific information.


Celestia layed next to Twilight as they laughed hysterically at the state of their latest poor victim.

She and her sister had pranked each other and any pony they could find for the last couple of hours in the gala. At first, it was while they greeted ponies but once they were free from that prison they began to slowly spread out their pranks to other ponies. Until, finally, they decided to do away with the charade and created advanced illusions of themselves that could “deal” with the guests. While they were in a secluded area above the gala where they were in a dome of silence and invisible playing pranks on any pony they wished.

Sometimes, it was fun to be a millennia-old alicorn that can move celestial bodies.

“Thank you, sister. I missed this. Being able to do things with you like in the past. This is by far the best gala I’ve had in… well forever,” Celestia said as she moved closer to Twilight and brought a wing around her.

“My pleasure, Tia. Besides, if I didn't do something to fight the boredom. I think I would have lost my mind, “ Twilight said as she laid on her, or at least that was until Twilight saw another target.

“But the gala isn't over yet and until the gala truly ends it is our duty to keep going,” Twilight said as she got up and prepared another spell.

Celestia meanwhile levitated a nearby bottle of wine to her and poured herself another glass. She then got comfortable and watched her sister’s next victim with keen interest, at least that was until something caught her eyes.

She saw her niece and her student, which she was happy to see as she hadn't seen either of them since before the gala. But what caught her attention was her barely visible blush and her waving to somepony. Celestia was confused until she noticed who Cadence was looking at.

A, quite handsome, stallion walked away from her and it took little time for her to figure out what her niece had done during the gala.

A happy and slightly proud grin spread across her muzzle. So it seems little Cadence has finally grown up and found somepony. Haha, I wonder where this will go? Celestia thought before she turned back to her sister’s victim while she took a sip of her wine with a gratified smile.

Flashback 3: Even in Disaster There's Hope

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Celestia looked around the, seemingly, deserted town that she and her sisters were about to enter. As far as she could tell the town looked like it was deserted only a few moments ago and that didn't help Celesia at all. But she knew there weren't any other towns nearby, so she had little choice.

It had been a few years since her brief time at the Ever Garden Tavern and since then not much had changed. They continued to migrate from one town getting supplies at any opportunity she could. Until you have today where Celestia’s forced to enter this sketchy town.

Celestia looked over at her sisters and saw them both next to each other looking at the town, Luna looked as suspicious as her about the town while Twilight looked more curious than worried.

Luna was a little over ten now and she had grown up a fair bit. Her fur had darkened some more, to the point where she began to wonder how dark it would get. The only other thing that had changed was her mane and tail had grown as well as her horn, but besides that, she was still her same little Lulu.

Twilight meanwhile had a little more growth… at least in certain areas. Twilight had only just recently turned eight and was nearly as big as Luna. Also, like Luna, her mane and tail had grown some more. Her fur had also darkened to nearly a shade of magenta.

But by far what changed the most was her horn, which had grown longer and slimmer, it was nearly as big as Luna’s! Like her horn, her magic had also sharply grown, to the point where she wouldn’t be too surprised if she nearly had the same amount of magic as she did.

Celestia was both happy and slightly worried about this development. She was happy that Twilight had such an advanced horn and magic core. On the other hoof though she was also worried about a potential surge because if she had one now it was going to be big. Even though she taught her about surges and how to handle them she was still worried if she experienced one because she wasn't sure if she could stop it.

But Celestia pushed those thoughts aside for now as she focused on something else. She was twenty-two now and well… there's not much to say about her. She’s still the same mare from the Ever Garden Tavern, though a small part of her felt like she had maybe gotten a little more suspicious of ponies… especially with the rumors of that infernal cult attacking more settlements.

At that moment Celestia realized that her sisters were looking at her, so she stopped her train of thought and looked at them.

“Come on you two. Let’s… keep going,” Celestia reluctantly said as she motioned for her sisters to follow.

As Celestia made her way through the abandoned town she quickly found that every house was either locked or… blocked up. She also noticed multiple broken crates, carriages, and even some overturned stalls, with every step she took she began to get more and more worried for her sister's safety. But right before she was about to abandon this town and camp out somewhere else, she noticed something that made her pupils shrink to pinpricks.

In front of her was another typical house she saw throughout the town but unlike the others, this one’s door was open or more accurately smashed open with hundreds of splinters of wood all over the ground. There were also two ponies inside the house, one was an earth pony while the other was a unicorn. But what caused her heart to skip a beat was the armor they wore… it was the same armor that the monsters wore when they destroyed her home, Graycolt.

Celestia nearly froze in place as she stared as those things picked through the house. But then she felt her sisters next to her which gave her the strength to try to get her sisters out of danger. She took a step back and looked over at her sisters, who both looked curiously at the house; though Luna also looked worried.

Run,” Celestia whispered to them as she tried to get them to follow.

But before she could repeat herself, the monsters noticed them.

“You three! Stop there!” Celestia’s eyes widened as she quickly looked over at the house and saw the cultists run toward them, the unicorn’s horn also began to glow.

She looked back over at her sisters, while she prepared a spell to deal with the cultists, “I SAID RUN! NOW!” Celestia yelled as she grabbed her sisters and ran.

Celestia moved her sisters next to her and covered them before she looked behind her and cast her spell. Suddenly, a bright fast ball of light flew out of her horn and hit the ground in front of the cultists. As soon as Celestia cast her spell she looked away.

Behind them, a massive flash of light engulfed the streets as Celestia’s flash spell went off. That should stop them for a little while! But we need to get out of this town! Celestia thought as she looked for an exit.

Luckily, her spell worked as behind her she didn't hear the cultists' hoofsteps anymore and as she looked around for an exit, she actually began to feel a little hopeful. But that hope was shattered when she noticed a bright red-light flash from behind her. As she looked up, she saw a bright red light in the sky and she immediately knew what it was, a flair.

She redoubled her efforts to escape the town as she began to faintly hear hoofsteps around her, she also noticed the distant figure of pegasi approach. She also realized that she was starting to outpace her sisters so she activated her horn and lifted both of her sisters onto her back.

Unknown, to the sisters, Luna's doll fell out of her pack during the process and fell onto the side of the street under some rubble.

As Celestia spirited through the occupied town she faintly heard Twilight, “Tia! What’s happening?! Why are they chasing us?!” Celestia could hear the fear in her voice, which only caused her to push herself harder.

“There… bad ponies! Don’t focus on them! We need to find a way out of here!” Celestia yelled as she ran around a corner.

Suddenly, Twilight yelled, “Over there, Tia! There’s a forest!” Celestia looked over at where Twilight pointed and her hope from earlier returned as she galloped toward the edge of the forest.

Right as she reached the edge of the woods, she saw multiple armored cultists run out of the town. Also, behind her were a few pegasi that were about to dive-bomb for her.

Celestia cursed her luck as she entered the woods and ran through the thick foliage. She then powered up her horn again and prepared another spell, she knew after this spell her horn was going to hurt like Tartarus. She turned around and unleashed a thin golden beam of magic from the tip of her horn, which she aimed toward the trees. Unfortunately, she could only cast the spell for a short time as she soon had to end the spell, but the spell did its job.

Behind her, she heard several trees crash onto the forest floor and as she briefly looked at her hoof work, she saw the cultists stopped in front of several fallen trees. Celestia smirked with satisfaction from her small victory before she ran deep into the woods away from the occupied cultist’s town.


Celestia began to slow down as she panted from exhaustion, she felt like she ran for hours. She looked around and the only thing she saw that wasn't trees was a small pond with a few boulders around it. With unstable legs, she gingerly made her way to the pond. Once she reached the edge of the pond she finally succumbed to her exhaustion and collapsed.

“Celestia!” she heard her sisters yell at her as they jumped off her back and hugged her.

Even in her exhausted state, a smile managed to worm its way on her muzzle as she gladly returned their hug. But soon after, they separated as Celestia made herself comfortable on the grass and regained her breath. Luna and Twilight meanwhile sat in front of her with worried and slightly scared expressions, unfortunately, Celestia wasn't surprised by this.

“Tia, are you alright?” Luna asked her with her adorable little face, Celestia gave Luna an exhausted smile.

“I’m… fine, Luna. If only… a little exhausted,” Celestia panted as she answered.

She then looked into the pond to see her reflection. She looked, and felt, exhausted. Her pink mane was matted and covered parts of her face, her white fur was slick with sweat, and there were dark rings around her eyes. All in all, she looked like a mess.

When she tried to use her horn to move some of her mane out of her face, she got a small stab of pain from her horn when she activated her magic.

Celestia groaned as she knew she overdid her magic. Great, there goes my magic for the day. Let’s just hope we can manage without it for now. Celestia bemoaned in her head.

“Celestia” - she looked over and saw Twilight - “who… were those ponies? Why did they run after us?” Celestia frowned slightly at the reminder of how close her sisters were to… them.

Celestia looked at her sisters for a moment before she sighed, “All you need to know is that there… bad. They don’t want to do good things to ponies. So, promise me if you ever see them, hide until I find you, ok?” Celestia emphasized, her sisters nodded.

She then smiled as she reassured them, “They're not important right now, anyways. Are you two alright? Did either of you get hurt while we were running?” Celestia asked as she silently hoped not, it would crush her if she ever harmed her sisters, even accidentally.

Thankfully they both shook their heads, which allowed Celestia to let out a sigh of relief. She then got up onto her shaky legs, her sisters moved to help her but she raised a hoof to stop them. Once she was sure she was stable she began to look around to get an idea of where they were, she grimaced at what she saw.

All she could see was dense forest, the pond, and… well, that’s just about it. As she tried to look past the thick canopy all could see was the sun began to go down.

Celestia stopped and brought her hooves up to massage her head. Great, just great. Were lost in the middle of nowhere. Celestia frustratingly thought as she tried to think of a plan. *sigh* Ok, let’s take this one step at a time. First, we need to find somewhere to sleep. Then we need to- Celestia’s thoughts were cut short when she heard Luna scream.

Celestia immediately got onto her hooves and looked over at Luna with her already exhausted horn glowing with magic. But when she saw Luna, she didn't see some monster attack her, instead, she was frantically searching her bags.

“NO! It’s gone!” Luna yelled as she rummaged through her bags.

Celestia deactivated her horn, with another spike of pain which caused her to wince, and walked over to Luna to see what was wrong.

“Luna, what’s wrong?” she looked up at her with a mixture of worry, guilt, and sadness.

“I-I’m sorry, Tia. I… I lost the doll you made for me. It must have fallen out of my bag, when we were running,” Luna began to mumble as her eyes became glossy.

But Celestia stopped Luna as she put a hoof under her head before she brought it up to face her, “It’s fine, Luna. All that matters is that we’re together. Besides I can make you a better one, with better materials this time,” Celestia smiled as she tried to cheer her sister up.

Unfortunately, her words didn’t seem to sway Luna.

“But I still lost it. You made it for me before we lost our parents,” Luna whimpered as she forced herself to look away from her, but Celestia wasn't going to let her sister wallow in misery.

So Celestia surprised her sister with a hug, which Twilight immediately joined as she also wanted to cheer Luna up.

“It’s said it’s fine, Luna. You're special to me and you're here with me. That’s all I care about,” Celestia emphasized as she tightened her hold on Luna.

Luckily, this time Luna finally accepted what she said as she graciously returned the hug, which both Celestia and Twilight loved. The three sisters' hug lasted for what felt like hours before eventually, they let go.

Celestia looked over at Luna and asked, “Are you alright now?” to which Luna softly smiled and nodded.

With Luna alright now, Celestia continued to try and figure out where she can find some shelter for her sisters, and possibly food as they were also low on that.

She then looked over at her sisters, “Ok, so we need to find somewhere to sleep. That means we need to walk through this forest, possibly for a few hours. So, I need you two to stay with me at all times. Please don’t walk by yourself out here. I just… don’t want either of you to get lost, ok?” Celestia asked her sisters, which both nodded in agreement.

Celestia smiled and nodded, “Good, now come along you two,” she said as she picked a direction and made her way through the woods, with her sisters on either side of her.


So, the sisters journeyed through the dense woods… well the more accurate word would be wander.

They traveled through the woods for what felt like hours where Celestia searched high and low for somewhere they could stay the night. But no matter where she looked, she couldn’t find anywhere that was safe for her sisters to stay. Every time she thought she found someplace for them to stay she’d always find some danger soon after.

Such as the time she found a bear in a cave, luckily it was hibernating. Or the time she accidentally angered a hornet’s nest and had to run nearly a mile to get away. Or even the time a BOULDER nearly fell on them. No matter how hard she looked she couldn’t find anywhere safe for her sisters.

By the time the sun was about to set she ran out of options… at least until she noticed a small clearing ahead and the faint smoke that came out above it…


Celestia crept up to the clearing with narrowed eyes, her sisters were also behind her in a similar, albeit far more amateur, position.

Celestia was immediately suspicious of the smoke as soon as she saw it and her suspicions were confirmed when she saw the smoke come from a small cottage in the clearing.

It was a two-story cottage with a forge built into the side of it, around the forge was a plethora of tools, a large metal bucket with water in it, and an anvil sat in front of the forge. There was also a small garden near the cottage with a variety of different vegetables, also next to the garden was a small pond. But by far what caught her attention was the vivid shape of a pony working the forge.

She could barely make out the pony but she thought he looked like a stallion. He also had a black coat, a gray mane, and tail, and was an earth pony. He also looked a little larger than an average stallion.

Celestia grimaced as she knew they were already low on food as it is, but now that they were stuck in this forest it was going to get worse, fast. Ok, Celestia. All you need to do is sneak up there and take a few veggies for your sisters. Then get out of there as soon as possible. That’s all you need to do… Why did he have to be outside right now? Celestia thought as she knew what she had to do.

She then looked over at her sisters, “I need you two to stay here while I… uh “barrow” some food for us to eat tonight. So, I need you two to stay here and be quiet, ok?” Celestia whispered to them, to which Luna nodded while Twilight looked conflicted.

Wait! You're just going to take it from them? Why don’t you ask if we can have some or even if we could stay the night?” Twilight asked as she looked at her innocently.

Celestia sighed before she answered her sister, “Twilight, we don’t know him. He could be part of the bad ponies for all we knew. It’s not safe. I’m sorry, Twilight,” Twilight stared at her for a moment before she finally nodded.

Celestia looked back over at the cottage and took in a breath before she silently made her way to the stallion’s garden. Unfortunately, she still couldn’t use her magic, at least safely, so she was forced to do this by hoof. As she approached the garden, she was able to get a better view of the stallion.

Now that she had a better view, she could tell that the stallion looked old as she could see a few strands of white hair in his mane. She also confirmed her suspicions of him being a blacksmith. Around his chest was a blacksmith’s apron and he had on a metal hoof which he used to work a hot piece of metal.

She also began to get worried as he looked like he could beat her in a fight if things got violent, her only saving grace was she could, hopefully, run away before he could do anything to her.

But Celestia pushed those thoughts out of her mind as she focused on her goal, the crops.

Right as she was about to grab a carrot everything went wrong, “You know, It’s rude to steal somepony’s crops,” the stallion said in a gravelly voice as she was caught.

Celestia looked up and saw the blacksmith stare at her, she quickly straightened up. She then turned her momentary surprise and fear into determination as she stared down the stallion.

“Do you mind explaining why you're stealing my crops? And why you’re out here in the first place?” the stallion concisely asked.

She didn't answer his questions as she tried to figure out how to escape and get back to her sisters.

But before she could do anything she, and the blacksmith, were surprised when Twilight and Luna jumped out in front of Celestia, “You won’t hurt our sister!” they both yelled as they stood in front of her.

Once Celestia realized what her sisters did she quickly activated her horn, which caused another spike of pain in her horn, and levitated them behind her. Her sisters were about to protest but Celestia quickly shushed them before she turned around and glared at the stallion as she almost challenged him to do anything.

But all he did was look surprised before he silently muttered, “So you have siblings.”

So, she and the blacksmith stared at each other as a tense silence enveloped the clearing, at least until the blacksmith sighed.

“You know I’m not going to hurt any of you, right? Especially now that I know why you needed those crops. The name’s Onyx. What’s yours?” the newly named Onyx asked.

Onyx’s actions didn't alleviate any of Celestia’s suspicions as she continued to stonewall him.

“I… see. No answer… *sigh* Look, I don’t know how to say this nicely so I’ll be blunt. From the way you look and how you act, your orphans aren’t you. I’d assume from that cult. The ones that have been raiding villages and murdering ponies for the last couple of years,” Onyx asked as he sat down and looked over at the pond.

Celestia was slightly shocked at how… well… blunt he was about their situation as well as his knowledge of that infernal cult, and the fact he told her sisters about them! But she pushed him out of her head as she noticed Onyx wasn’t looking, so she took the opportunity for them to escape. So, she took a step back and prepared to grab her sisters so they could run back into the woods.

“Cult? Wait! Do you mean the ponies who attacked the village and ran after us?” Celestia looked over at Twilight, surprised and slightly annoyed that she’d talk to this complete stranger when she told her not to. He could be part of the cult for all they knew?!

“That sounds like them, yes. They’re called The Cult of the Celestial Sovereigns. They… believe that all of ponykind should be “unified under the majesty of the Sun and Moon” so we would all “purge the hidden enemy that festers among our kind”. Though that’s all I know about their philosophy. All of this doesn’t matter at the end of the day as all of this is simply a justification for their mass murder and continued occupation of “infested” villages and cities. *sigh* And nopony’s doing a bucking thing about it,” Onyx hissed before he frowned.

This time Celestia truly was shocked. While she knew a… bit about the infernal cult she had never really gone out of her way to learn about them, not that she cared too anyways. And while Onyx’s, seemingly extensive, knowledge of the cult made her more suspicious of him, she had to admit she was intrigued at how much more he knew… maybe he even…

“What!” both Twilight and Luna exclaimed.

Celestia was surprised by her sisters and as she looked over, she saw Luna step forward, “Hasn't anypony tried to stop them! They're hurting ponies!” Luna cried out as she looked at Onyx.

Onyx didn’t immediately respond as he stared at the ground before he sighed and slouched, “Some have… tried, but they were in vain. And those who can stop them are more interested in destroying each other than stopping a, relatively, minor nuisance. Besides, the cult never attacks any major or strategic locations of the three tribes, so they don’t bother the cult, at least in any serious way,” Onyx stated as he got up and walked over to his forge, presumably to turn it off.

After Onyx’s speech, a somewhat dower silence took hold of the four of them as each contemplated what Onyx said.

At least until Celestia broke her silence, “Who leads the cult?”

Onyx looked surprised as he looked over at her right after he turned off the forge, “Well… if nothing’s changed then I believe it’d be, Lord Draven. From memory he’s always been the leader of the cult and if true then he’s also very successful. There are many different rumors about him, such as him being an exiled unicorn nobility too… well some kind of unicorn hybrid.

“I don’t know much about him, but rumor has it he has fangs, blood-red eyes, pure white fur, mane, and tail, and is incredibly strong both physically and magically. Though I wouldn’t put too much weight on those claims, much of it is likely exaggerated,” once Onyx finished Celestia began to contemplate what he said.

Unfortunately, silence once again reigned over the clearing as nopony attempted to restart the conversation. And as it began to look like the tension from before was going to return, Onyx loudly sighed and looked over at the sisters.

“Can we please stop this infernal silence? Considering you three are orphans and seem to be in need of food, considering you tried to steal from me. Would you… I can’t believe I’m about to say this. Would you three like to stay with me?” Onyx offered as he looked a bit exhausted.

The sister’s eyes widened after Onyx’s offer, Celestia specifically was caught off guard as she returned her full attention to Onyx. She was about to instinctively deny his request, but she caught herself as she thought about her options, or more accurately the lack of. She knew it would be dangerous to stay with Onyx, he could still be a spy! But at the same time, she knew that the forest was possibly even more dangerous for her sisters.

As she looked over at her sisters, she saw them wait for her answer, though she could tell Twilight wanted to stay with him with how impatient she was. Celestia knew what she had to do, even if it was against her better judgment.

“... Fine, Onyx. We’ll… stay with you,” Celestia reluctantly said, For now, she silently added in her head.

“Yes!” Twilight yelled out as she jumped in place.

“Well then. Come with me, you three. I suppose I’ll have to make some more dinner for tonight,” Onyx said as he motioned for them to follow him inside the cottage.

Celestia contemplated running back into the forest one last time before she discarded that idea and followed Onyx, with her sisters right behind her. As they made their way into the cottage Celestia kept a hawk-like focus on Onyx in case he tried anything on them.


While Onyx made dinner Twilight and Luna began to talk to him, much to Celestia’s annoyance as she continued to stonewall Onyx at every opportunity. While there was some tension between them, Luna and Twilight slowly began to warm up to him, especially Twilight who began to act like her normal self again.

The dinner was also mostly enjoyable between them… well besides Celestia insisting for her to “check” the food to “make sure it was safe for her sisters” thankfully her fears were unfounded. Besides that, all went well and for the sisters, it was the first real meal they had in years.

Eventually, though, it was time for them to rest. So, Onyx showed them to their room, it was a spare room he had on the second floor. While it wasn't perfect the sisters took it, after they said goodnight to Onyx, excluding Celestia, they prepared to go to sleep.


Celestia watched the door as Onyx closed it behind him, shortly after she listened for his hoofsteps as they became faint before they finally disappeared. She then let out a sigh of relief as she turned her attention to her sisters.

As she turned around, she saw her sisters on the bed, Luna was laid down while Twilight was happily jumping on the mattress. The sight brought a faint smile on her muzzle.

“I can’t believe it! We have a real bed! Yay!” Twilight yelled as she continued to bounce in place.

Celestia used the opportunity to get a better look around the room. It was an admittedly small room with white plaster walls, a wooden ceiling and floor, and a small window that gave a good view of the clearing outside. There were also a couple of pieces of furniture around such as a table with a few chairs around it, a small wardrobe, and the bed her sisters were on.

What surprised her was that this was a real bed, not like anything they slept on before, the only problem was well… it wasn't that big as her sisters already took up most of the space. But if they squeezed then they may fit.

Once she finished her inspection of the room she heard Twilight yell at her, “Come on, Tia! Get on the bed!”

Celestia raised an eyebrow and smirked, “Fine. But if you want me to join you then you need to stop jumping,” she said as she walked toward her sisters.

Twilight listened and stopped before she laid next to Luna. Celestia used the now open space to lay next to them. But once she got comfortable, she noticed that Twilight looked worried, which caused her to frown.

“Twilight, are you alright?” she asked, which seemed to have surprised Twilight.

“Oh! Um, yes! I’m fine,” Twilight quickly replied as she looked away from her.

Celestia began to get more worried, so she tried to reassure her sister, “Twilight, please don’t be afraid to tell me something. It’s alright,” Twilight looked at her before she finally cracked.

“I well, um… *sigh* It’s just that… when we were with Onyx you didn't really talk much, and you were kinda mean to him… why?” Twilight asked as Celestia’s frown grew a bit.

Celestia contemplated avoiding the question but chose against it and told Twilight the truth, “It’s because… *sigh* Onyx. I don’t trust him. We don’t know him, for all we know he could be… a bad pony. Look, I’m just worried about you two, I don’t want anything to happen to either of you,” Celestia admitted as she looked out the window and saw a pale crescent moon in the sky.

Twilight jumped onto her hooves, “But he hasn’t done anything mean to us! He gave us food, let us stay with him, and promised me I could look at some of his books! I trust him, he’s a good pony. I know it,” Twilight confidently said as she brought a hoof up to her chest.

Before Celestia could reply to Twilight's argument Luna intervened.

“I… agree with both of you. I don’t think we can quite trust him yet, like Tia said we don’t know him yet. But also… Celestia, you aren’t really giving him a fair chance, you haven’t even tried to talk to him or get to know him at all. I think we should wait and see what happens,” Luna admitted as the room went silent.

Celestia was honestly shocked, she didn't expect Luna to say that. But even with Luna’s suggestion, she couldn't shake the feeling that Onyx was hiding something. But she could see her sisters were tired, so she decided to end the discussion.

“Maybe, we'll see. Anyways, I think that’s enough for tonight. I’m sure we’re all tired so how about we get some sleep,” both of her sisters yawned as she finished.

Her sisters agreed so the three curled up together. Her sisters laid next to each other while Celestia curled up behind them, so she could keep them warm. So soon the sisters began to enter the dream world in a new home and possibly a new life… well besides Celestia who watched over her sisters.

Maybe you're right, Luna. But I’ll still keep my eye on him, for you two. She kissed the top of their heads before she stared at the door. My sisters may think you're good, Onyx. But I don’t trust you and if you do anything to them. Then I’ll make you wish you were burning in Tartarus. She silently declared as she watched over the door like a hawk, faintly she heard crickets outside and the pale light of the moon drench the room.


He stared at the pale crescent moon as the light bounced off his dull white armor. He sighed in frustration as he waited on the edge of the recently ransacked town for one of his scouts to return.

“Harbinger!” He looked away from the moon and toward the forest, he saw a pegasus in dark plate armor fly out of the woods.

The pegasus quickly passed her fellow comrades before she landed in front of him. The pegasus took off her helmet which revealed a pony with an ocean green mane and tail, sandy tan fur, and a pair of bright blue eyes.

“Ocean Currents ready to report! I… unfortunately wasn't able to find the three “unicorns” that escaped from us earlier, Lord Draven. But I’m sure if we get more members here we could…” Draven noticed something as Ocean babbled on.

So he made his way to the strange oddity, the first thing he noticed was it was covered by a piece of rubble. So he activated his horn, surrounded the rubble in his red aura, and threw it off to the side. Finally, he was able to get a good look at what caught his attention.

How interesting? He thought as he levitated a unicorn doll up to his face. The doll was mainly blue beside the mane and tail which was light blue, finally in the place of eyes were two black buttons. What’s a unicorn doll doing all the way out here? He thought as he furthered his investigation.

But he was interrupted by the pegasus, “Sir, if I may… uh, inquire? What exactly are you doing?” she meekly asked.

Draven huffed in annoyance before he turned around, with the unicorn doll moved next to him. He then lightly glared at her with his piercing red eyes.

Ocean shrunk back a bit in slight fear, Draven eventually looked away and began to walk down the road deeper into the occupied town.

“Forget about them. We have far more important things to do than search for some unicorns,” he declared as he marched down the road.

Ocean quickly caught up, thanks to her wings, and followed behind him, “Not to… question your decision, Harbinger. But they could be Hidden Enemies, they did flee when they saw us,” Ocean replied.

Draven was silent for a moment before he replied, “No, I don’t believe they are Hidden Enemies.”

There’s more to this story than meets the eye, he thought as a smile slowly spread across his muzzle which revealed his sharp fangs.

“Very well, sir. I’ll call off the rest of the searches. But sir -” Draven stopped and looked over at Ocean “- What do you wish for us to do with the villagers?” she asked.

“Eliminate any suspected Hidden Enemies and help remind the rest of our mission to hunt down this plague that’s infested our kind,” he answered as he turned back around and continued through the town.

As he turned around he saw his cultists lined on either side of the street saluting him and on the buildings proudly flew the Celestial Sovereign banners. Finally, in the night sky, the moon shone down on them as Draven was one step closer to eliminating the worst threat to ponykind.

Chapter 9: A Day with the Sun

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Centa had a big smile on her muzzle as she and Spike the Mighty Dragon, which was on her back, followed Cadence down the hall. As each moment passed, she progressively got more and more excited as she, and Spike was about to spend the day with Princess Celestia!

Even though she was thrilled to spend time with the princess, a part of her still felt sad that Cadence couldn't come with them.

She began to slow down as she remembered what Cadence had told her last night. When she had said that she was going to stay with Celestia for the day she was exhilarated but she was saddened to know that she wasn't able to come because she had “personal things to do” whatever that was.

She was even a little worried that she was the reason Cadence didn't want to stay. She even asked if she was the reason why Cadence didn't want to go with them. Thankfully her worry was immediately dismissed and Cadence reassured her that she wasn't the problem. She even got to stay up with Cadence to look at the night sky together and she loved every second of it.

Centa was back to reality when they rounded a corner and saw Princess Celestia sat down, in her regalia, with a motherly smile.

When she saw the princess her slightly diminished smile returned in full force as she ran toward the princess and yelled, “Princess Celestia!”

Celestia laughed slightly, “It’s good to see you too, Centa,” she said as she leaned down to hug her, with a forgotten Spike which clung to her back.

After a few moments, they let each other go as Centa took a step back, which Spike used to return to his previous position. She then looked up at the princess with excitement.

Behind her, she heard the hoofsteps of her foalsitter and as she looked behind her she saw Cadence approach with a slightly worried expression.

“I’m sorry again, Auntie. For asking you to look after Centa and Spike on such short notice,” Cadence apologized as she reached them.

Celestia though waved away her concern, “And once again, It’s fine. I would love to spend the day with Centa” - Centa blushed slightly at the princess’s comment - “Besides, you’ve done a wonderful job taking care of her by yourself. So it’s only fair that I also help. Besides, I’ve been meaning to spend some quality time with my student,” Celestia reassured Cadence, which seemed to work as there was now a faint smile on her muzzle.

Cadence then looked over at her as she lowered herself to the ground, “ *sigh* Goodbye, Centa. I’m really sorry I have to go. But I promise when I get back I’ll make it up to you,” she then brought her into a hug of her own, which she gladly returned. “Have a wonderful time with Auntie Celestia, Centa. I love you,” Cadence tightened her hold on her.

Spike also decided to join in the hug as he wrapped his tiny claws around Cadence’s horn… and slightly drooled on them.

Which caused all the ponies in the hall to laugh, “Of course. I love you too, Spike,” Cadence lovingly added

Unfortunately, they all eventually had to end the hug. Which required a bit of effort when Spike refused to let go. But eventually, after one last goodbye from the three, they went their separate ways.

As Centa began to walk down the hall beside Celestia, she looked back over at Cadence and saw her waving at her.

“Have fun, Centa, and Spike! I’ll see you two later tonight!” Centa in return excitedly waved back until she rounded a corner, one which she definitely didn't nearly hit.

Once Centa lost sight of Cadence she began to feel a little sad and almost homesick? Now that she was gone. Come on, Centa! It’s fine! Besides, you're going to see her later tonight. Imagine all of the cool things you're going to be able to do with the princess today! Centa told herself as she indeed began to imagine what was in store for her and Spike.

We could go prank some more ponies! Or we could have dessert all day! Or maybe she could even fly me and Spike around Canterlot! Centa thought before a more immediate thought quickly took over.

“Princess? Where exactly are we going?” Centa excitedly, and curiously asked.

“Oh, well we're headed towards the throne room. You see, unfortunately, I wasn't able to completely clear my day. So we’re going to have to do afternoon court for a few hours. Sorry again for this,” Celestia apologized as Centa moved to reassure her.

But before she could say anything she felt Spike jump on her back.

As Centa looked over at Spike her eyes widened and her jaw dropped when she saw him try to eat Princess Celestia’s tail! She freaked out when she saw Spike try to grasp and play with the princesses' tail. She failed to notice that Celestia had intentionally moved her tail toward Spike.

“No! Spike! stop! You can’t do that to the Princess's tail!” Centa yelled at her dragon companion as she attempted to stop him.

But before she could do anything Celestia stopped her, “Centa, it’s alright. Remember he’s still only a baby dragon. Besides, I allowed him to play with it.”

Centa stopped and looked confused at Celestia before she looked back at Spike. Who had ignored them and continued to try and grab the princess’s ethereal tail, with little success. Centa realized that Celestia let Spike mess with her tail, her cheeks blushed with embarrassment as she let Spike be.

Silence reigned as the group continued down the hall, during which Centa began to grow worried that she made a mistake.

“I’m sorry… princess. I should hav-” but Centa was cut off by Celestia.

“Centa, you don’t have to apologize. I understand you were only worried about me. Besides, you have to admit it’s cute,” Centa looked over at Spike and laughed when he tried to eat the ethereal tail.

As she watched Spike she realized something, “Um, princess?” Centa asked timidly as she looked at Celestia.

“Yes?” Celestia asked.

“What… what do you think Cadence is doing right now?” Celestia looked up thoughtfully for a moment.

“Well, if I know my little Caddy” - Centa laughed at Cadence’s cute nickname - “I’m sure she’s off on one of her misadventures. Doing something important, I’m sure,” Celestia replied as she looked out the window.

“Yeah! You're right. She is the best foalsitter ever after all… though I can’t wait to see her again,” Centa said as she remembered her time with Cadence.

Celestia’s smile meanwhile suddenly turned slightly sinister as she brought a hoof up to her chest and acted as if she were injured.

“Oh! I have been wounded. My own student doesn't want to be with her poor mentor. I see how it is!” Celestia dramatically bemoaned as she turned away from Centa.

An oblivious Centa gasped from shock and quickly grew terrified that she offended Celestia, “Princess, that’s not what I meant at all! Of course I… care about… you…” Centa’s words died in her throat when she saw the princess begin to laugh, which only caused her to grow confused and worried.

After a few moments, Celestia finally was able to catch her breath, “Oh, by the gods. Centa. I love you so much,” Celestia then took a deep breath. “I was joking. I know you didn't mean anything by that. I’m sorry I couldn't help myself,” Celestia then coughed before she smiled at her.

“To be serious for a moment. Cadence loves you. More than anything in the world and I know for a fact that she misses you right now. I’m sure once you two reunite she’ll spoil you and Spike for the next week. So don’t worry. Besides you still have the princess of the sun to keep you company,” during Celestia’s short speech Centa’s confusion quickly turned to happiness and joy at knowing how much Cadence cared about her.

She also realized how far ahead the princess was and so she quickly tried to catch up, “Wait for me, princess!”


Once Centa and her group turned a corner she saw a somewhat familiar pair of large doors with two identical unicorns in gold armor on each side. As they approached the two guards quickly activated their horns and opened the doors. As they passed Celestia nodded her head toward them, which Centa mimicked.

No matter how many times she was in the throne room she couldn't help but be amazed at how beautiful it looked. From the big fluffy carpet that was along the room that she loved the feel of. To the large dazzling mosaic windows that dominated the walls. But by far her favorite thing about the room was the gorgeous mural on the ceiling, which didn't disappoint as she stared at it.

Unfortunately, she wasn't able to look at it for long as she heard Celestia, “Centa, could you please come over here?”

As she looked over at the princess she saw she was already next to her golden throne, with Princess Twilight’s empty throne beside her’s. She also saw in place of Raven’s normal chair, a large pillow. But what caught her attention was the weird magic… thing? Next to the princess.

As she walked toward the princess her eyes were locked on the strange object. It was rectangular, besides the top, which was open. It also looked almost as if it were made out of a light blue semi-transparent mist. What made the thing even more strange was that it looked like there were toys inside it? That confused Centa immensely.

Once she reached the base of the dias she was surprised when she suddenly didn't feel Spike anymore on her back. She then saw Spike float past her in the princess’s magic until he was placed inside the magic box. Centa looked at the princess confused as she began to get slightly worried about Spike.

“Um, princess? What are you putting Spike in?” Centa worryingly asked as she made her way beside the princess.

“Oh, it’s something I had commissioned for Spike. It’s a place for him to play, without having to worry about one of his “fire accidents”. As well as a place to keep him safe. The walls are specifically designed so only Spike can touch them. While for us it’s as if they don’t exist,” Celestia demonstrated as she walked through the walls and inside the “play area” to make sure Spike was comfortable.

Centa was surprised and reached out a hoof to touch the walls. But as soon as her hoof touched the walls it phased through like it was nothing. Centa smiled as her eyes widened before she looked over at Spike and saw him lying on the “play areas” ground while playing with a ring toy.

Her smile grew as she looked over at the princess, “That’s really cool, Princess Celestia!” the princess laughed as she passed her and sat on her throne.

“Yes, I suppose it is quite an interesting device. It’s also a very useful one, especially for the future. Anyways, Centa. I’m going to need you to look after Spike while I’m running court. Can I trust a reliable pony like you to do this momentous task?” Celestia delivered as momentously as possible.

Centa’s eyes widened as she did a poor salute, “You can trust me, princess. I’ll make sure he doesn't do anything wrong and take care of him,” Centa declared as she dropped the salute.

Celestia grinned as she did a small bow, “I knew I got the right mare for the job,” she said before she looked out toward the throne room.

With Centa’s new task she looked over at Spike to make sure he was alright. Once she saw they were still playing with his toy she walked over to the pillow beside the princess and sat down.

Once Centa was comfortable she looked at the rest of the room and saw a ton of different ponies working or running around as they presumably prepared for court.

She even saw a somewhat familiar pony she believed was named Raven Inkwell. Centa had only met Raven a few times but she always thought she was a good pony, she works for the princess so she obviously is. As if to support her statement Raven quickly walked over to the side of the princess before they began to talk.

Centa looked back over at the entrance as she saw more ponies enter. But her pony watching was cut short when she heard the princess.

“Oh, Centa” - Centa looked over at the princess - “I should warn you. This may be a bit boring. There’s usually a lot of talking, so I just want you to be prepared,” Celestia warned, but she waved away her concern as she confidently smiled.

“Don’t worry about me, princess. Whatever happens, I can take,” Centa stated as she reassured the princess

As she finished all Celestia gave her was a strange grin before she returned to her conversation with Raven. But Centa ignored that as she began to imagine all the cool things the princess was probably going to do during court!

No doubt she’s going to bring bad ponies to justice! Or maybe she’s going to stop a war starting between two nations! Oh! I can’t wait! Centa was filled to the brim with excitement as she watched court finally begin.


Unfortunately, Centa’s foolish hopes were quickly shattered as she learned what court was truly like. She quickly grew bored, she attempted to fight her crushing boredom by looking after and keeping Spike entertained.

And for a time it worked as she began to have fun with Spike as they played a multitude of different games, many of which she creatively utilized Spike’s play area. Sadly, after what felt like a few hours her cruel boredom returned in full force, but this time it was also accommodated with some exhaustion.

What made matters worse was that no matter how many times she thought the princess was finally done, more ponies just kept coming to talk to the princess. Eventually, Centa gave up as she couldn't think of anything else to do and so she laid on her pillow and simply waited for the endless court to finally end…


Centa was bored out of her mind as she lay idly on her pillow and watched another pony enter. Ugg! How many ponies want to see Princess Celestia! I know she’s incredible, but why do so many ponies have to come while I’m here! Centa frustratingly yelled in her head as she tried to think of something to distract her.

She then began to imagine what they could do after this awful punishment. Maybe we can go out to Canterlot and get some Ice Cream. I wonder what Princess Celestia’s favorite flavor is? Probably strawberry or something. Centa casually thought before she began to silently snicker as she remembered something Twilight told her. I should try to find a beetroot flavored ice cream… wait, that could actually be a good- Centa was interrupted from her malicious thoughts when she felt something tap her shoulder.

As she looked up she saw a smiling Celestia above her, “Welcome back to Equestria, Centa,” she said as Centa blinked.

She then looked around and saw that the throne room was empty. She had apparently zoned out so long that she never realized that she was finally free. She immediately jumped up onto her hooves, which was a terrible mistake when she realized how sore her body was.

After a few moments of stretches, Centa looked over at the princess and saw her inspect Spike. Once she was apparently satisfied she smiled at him before she levitated him onto her back.

Centa looked over at Spike, who had just woken up as he yawned, and smiled at him, “Welcome back Spike! It’s good to see you! Are you ready to go?!” this seemed to have woken up her dragon companion as he looked at her and clapped his little claws.

With Spike’s enthusiasm, Centa followed Celestia down the dais before they made their way out of the throne room. Once she was beside the princess, the alicorn looked over at her.

“I must say, Centa. I’m incredibly impressed at how mature you were during court. Especially, with how well you looked after Spike… Perhaps I should take you with me again,” as Celestia wondered with a wide grin, Centa stared at her in silent horror.

Suddenly, Celestia stopped as she began to laugh out loud, Centa’s fear turned to worry… again.

After a few moments, Celestia finally seemed to have regained control over herself, “Oh! Centa. I’m sorry for tricking you again, it was far, far too tempting. I could see you were clearly bored. Don’t worry, I won’t make you go to any more court sessions,” Centa let out a sigh of relief from the princesses’ promise, though she was a tad annoyed that she was tricked by Celestia again.

As they continued down the hall, Centa began to wonder where they were going so she looked over at the princess, “Princess? Where are we going this time?”

“Well, you shouldn't have to worry about being bored this time. We're going to the dining hall. I imagine that we’re all a little hungry after court,” before Centa could happily agree her stomach acted first as it loudly growled.

Centa blushed lightly as she saw a grin spread on the princess’s muzzle.

Centa quickly rattled off a question to distract them, “Um. What kind of food are we going to eat?”

“Well, I was thinking as a reward for acting so well and keeping your promise to look after Spike, that you can order anything you want for lunch… within reason,” Centa’s blush disappeared as an excited smile grew on her muzzle.

“Anything!? Thank you so much, princess!” Centa yelled as she hugged one of Celestia’s legs, much to Spike’s surprise and discomfort.

“What are you so happy about?” Centa was surprised to hear such a familiar voice and as she looked over at the source her suspicions were confirmed.

In front of them was Princess Twilight, which was also in her purple royal regalia. Centa quickly let go of Celestia’s leg and sprinted toward Twilight.

“Princess Twilight!” Centa yelled with excitement as she jumped into a hug with Twilight, Spike didn't like this moment one bit.

Twilight activated her horn and stopped the flying Centa before she brought her into a hug, she also levitated Spike beside them.

“Ha. It’s good to see you too, Centa,” Twilight replied as they hugged each other for a few moments before they eventually had to let go, Twilight also put Spike back on Centa’s back.

“It’s also good to see you, sister,” Celestia said as she walked beside them.

“Hey, Tia. of course It’s good to see you too,” Twilight replied as she moved up to nuzzle Celestia.

After they separated, Celestia asked, “So what are you doing out here?”

“Oh, nothing special. Simply some work. Not all of us can get the day off, you know,” Twilight exaggeratedly said, Centa saw Celestia’s face look a little… guilty?

Apparently, Twilight had also noticed, “I’m joking, sister. It’s fine really. Besides, I don't have to be at court and that’s always good. Anyways, enough about me. Centa, how much progress have you made on those spells? Are you having any problems?” Twilight asked as she looked over at her.

Centa was surprised by the sudden change of subject as well as the focus now being placed on her. She also recalled that at the end of her last magic lesson with the princesses. Princess Twilight gave her some homework to do, in way of a few spells she wanted her to learn for next time. Centa smiled and nodded confidently as she knew she was going to impress the princesses with how much she learned.

“I haven’t had any problems, princess! In fact, I’ve been studying every day and made a ton of progress. Oh! Here let me show you!” she excitedly said as she activated her horn and prepared to impress the princesses.

But she was stopped when Twilight placed a hoof on her shoulder, “Wait a second, Centa,” Centa was surprised and depowered her horn before she looked at Twilight.

“First, it’s alright if you're not ready yet. I don’t want you to push yourself if you aren’t confident yet. Are you sure you want to do this?” Centa had no doubt in her mind and nodded.

Twilight smiled as she took her hoof off her shoulder, “Well then I suppose good luck. I can't wait to see how well you cast the spell. Me and Celestia will cheer you on,” Centa smiled, and slightly blushed when Twilight said they would cheer for her.

The princesses then moved over to the side of the room and, as Twilight promised, began to cheer for her, Twilight also lifted Spike off her back and placed him in front of them.

Centa meanwhile returned to her stance and reactivated her horn as she began to concentrate on her spell, during which sparks of magic began to fly out of her horn.

Come on, Centa. You can do it! Do it for the princesses!

With that prevailing thought, she released her spell, and shortly after a super-powerful gust of wind shook the entire castle! Or at least that’s what Centa thought would happen. Instead, there was barely a light breeze that blew through the hall, it felt more like somepony opened a window!

Centa fell on her flank as she frowned in disappointment. Why didn't it work? She sadly asked herself as she moped.

Suddenly, she presumably felt one of the princesses tab her and as she looked up her theory was confirmed when she saw the princesses smile at her. Spike also used the opportunity to reclaim his seat on her back before she vaguely felt him hug her.

“It’s okay, Centa. If I’m going, to be honest, I… hadn't expected you to have mastered the spell quite yet. Nevertheless, that was still a great form and you still managed to cast a lesser form of the spell. I’m sure if you keep it up you’ll master the spell in no time,” Twilight tried to cheer her up, which worked as a bit of her smile returned to her muzzle.

Well if Princess Twilight thinks I can do it, then… but their moment would be ruined as her stomach betrayed her… again! As it growled.

Twilight smirked as Centa’s blushed returned, “Besides it sounds like somepony is hungry.”

Celestia joined in the conversation as she looked over at Twilight, “Actually, me and Centa were just headed over to the dining hall for some lunch. Would you care to join us?” she offered as Centa began to get excited at the prospect of Twilight coming with them.

Unfortunately, her wish wouldn’t come true, “Thanks for the offer, but I already ate. Besides, I still have some more work I need to finish. Maybe next time though,” Twilight replied before she looked over at Centa.

“Sorry I can’t come, Centa. Have fun with Tia while I’m gone. Oh, also If you need any help with those spells come ask me, my door is always open. Have a wonderful day Centa. Goodbye,” Twilight said as they nuzzled each other.

She then looked over at Celestia, “Goodbye, sister. Have fun with them,” Celestia nodded to her before Twilight continued down the hall.

Centa ran next to Celestia and waved goodbye, “Bye, Princess Twilight!” Twilight waved back before she continued on her way.

Centa then saw Celestia get up and walk down the hall before she looked back at her, “Come along, Centa. We wouldn't want to keep those chefs waiting now would we now,” Centa agreed as she made her way beside the princess

As they made their way down the hall a comfortable silence grew as Centa began to think about what Twilight said. I promise you, Princess Twilight. I’ll master that wind spell and make you proud. She then began to try to think about what she did wrong with the spell and what she would study tonight.

Centa suddenly realized that they had finally arrived at the dining hall. In front of her were a familiar pair of golden plate doors, which were opened by Celestia as she walked inside. Centa quickly followed the princess inside, as she entered she looked around. Even though she’d been in the dining room numerous times, though usually with Cadence, she was still amazed at how majestic it looked, like everything else in this castle.

It was a large long room with a checkered black and white marble floor. Along the walls of the room are towering white pillars that stretch from the floor to the ceiling and between the pillars are tall stained-glass windows. There was also a domed ceiling with a large golden chandelier that hung from the center. Throughout the room, there were multiple doors that led to the kitchen, restrooms, and other hallways. Scattered around the room were a plethora of different furniture such as Equestrian banners, side tables, cushioned benches, and other things.

But what caught her attention was the big and long table that dominated the room, there were probably enough chairs to fill half of Canterlot! As she looked at the end of the tables near the kitchen she saw a different set of chairs.

There she saw both of the princesses' chairs, though the more accurate term would have been throne. Twilight’s “chair” was made out of the same purple metal her regalia and throne were made out of, there were velvet magenta cushions, and a large purple crystal star attached to the top of the chair surrounded by the purple metal.

Celestia’s “chair” was generally the same but instead was made out of gold, had red velvet cushions, and an orange crystal star which was also surrounded by gold.

Beside the dinner thrones were, what she thought was, a high chair. Though it looked a bit weird as it was really shiny.

Centa again felt Spike being lifted off her back and as she looked over at Celestia she saw her walk toward the table with Spike next to her in her aura. Centa quickly followed after the princess and as they arrived Celestia put Spike in the high chair before she began to strap him in. Centa meanwhile looked around for a seat and walked over to one of the normal chairs, but before she could grab one Celestia stopped her.

“You know, if you want to you could sit in Twilight’s chair,” Centa’s eyes widened in shock at the mere suggestion of sitting in Princess Twilight’s chair!

“What?! I can’t take Princess Twilight’s seat! What if I get it dirty! Or maybe she doesn't even want me to sit in it!” Centa worried as she looked at the princess as if she was insane.

But Celestia waved away her accusation, “Calm down. I’m sure Twilight would be fine if you took her chair, which she isn't using right now. Come on, it’s extra comfy,” the princess tempted her as she winked.

Centa hesitated as she looked at the chair and insanely began to actually think about Celestia’s offer. Well, it does look really soft… and the princess isn't using it. Centa thought as she bit her lip and slowly began to walk toward the chair.

As she neared the seat it was suddenly covered in a golden aura before it was pulled open for her. Centa looked over at Celestia and saw her smile warmly at her as she pointed her head over at the chair.

Centa finally gave into Celestia’s offer as she jumped onto Twilight’s seat. As she landed she immediately was entranced at how soft the chair was, it felt like she was laying on clouds! She soon leaned into the seat. But her trance was broken when she heard Celestia laugh at her, which caused her to sit upright and for her to plush softly.

“By the gods. You're just like her,” Celestia exclaimed as she finished strapping Spike in, she then sat on her dinner throne.

The princess then activated her horn and popped a bell into existence before she shook it. Centa was a little confused before a pair of waiters rushed out of the kitchen and stood dutifully in front of them.

“Yes, your, majesty!” they yelled at the same time in perfect synchrony.

“Me and my student would like a pair of menus, please,” Celestia requested, and not a moment later the waiters had a menu each ready for the princess.

Centa began to get creeped out by them. Why are they so weird right now. Whenever it’s just me and Cadence there more… normal? Centa wondered as the princess took their menus.

Centa grabbed one of the menus from Celestia before she began to look through it. As she looked she couldn't decide what to get so she looked over at the princess as she tried to decide.

Celestia hummed for a moment before she handed her menu to one of the waiters, “I’ll have the cooked parsnips with the grated carrots on top. Also please put the olive oil on the side. And for Spike could we have a bowl of yogurt with crushed up crystals on top, please,” Celestia ordered before she looked over at her.

Centa quickly looked back at her menu now worried that she was keeping the princess waiting. Come on, Centa. Choose something! She rushed herself before she finally found something.

“I’ll have the vegetable pot pie and the uh… whatever a “sunset martini” is!” she announced as she pointed her hoof at the martini.

Both of the waiters looked at her with confusion and some worry as they looked over at the princess. Celestia meanwhile slapped her face with her hoof before she began to laugh. After a few moments, during which the princess tried multiple times to say something but failed as she continued to laugh. She was finally able to say what she wanted.

“Centa, when I said you could have anything you want. I didn't think… don’t include the martini please,” Celestia asked the waiters as she levitated Centa’s menu back to the confused waiters before they left to relay their orders to the kitchen.

When they left Celestia looked at her with a tired smile, “Centa, you can’t keep doing this to me. I’m going to die from laughter at this rate,” the princess exaggerated as she leaned back into her chair.

Centa’s cheeks grew a bit redder but even still she had a nagging question in her mind, “Um, princess? What’s a “martini”,” Centa struggled to say the word.

“I’ll tell you when you're older,” Celestia quickly replied before the two grew silent.

The silence continued, besides the baby noises Spike made as Celestia played with him. At least until Centa decided to ask another question.

“Um, princess?” Centa asked as Celestia looked over at her with a smile.

“Yes, Centa.”

“Why, can’t Spike come with me more often. I only get to take him with me every now and again,” Centa asked as she wanted to take Spike wherever she went, especially to her magic lessons!

Celestia sighed before she answered, “Centa, you have to remember that Spike’s still only a baby dragon. He needs his rest if he’s going to be able to grow up big and strong. Besides, I’m sure once he grows up you two will be able to do whatever you want together,” Centa smiled as she imagined what Spike would be like as a fully-grown dragon.

Before the silence between them could return, Centa asked another question.

“Princess, would it be ok if I asked you a few more questions?” Celestia seemed to be surprised for a moment by her question before she smiled.

“Of course, Centa. I’m always open if you have any questions. So what’s your first question?” Celestia asked as she smirked and gave Centa her full attention.

“Well…” Centa thought for a moment about something she wondered about the princess until she had something. “Oh! How did your mane and tail get all… wavy? Princess Twilight’s hair isn't like yours?” she asked as she stared at the princess’s ethereal mane.

“Well, I suppose that’s a good first question to ask out of any. Hmm, unfortunately, it may not be too much of an exciting answer. You see, alicorns produce quite a lot of magic, so much so that our bodies can’t contain all of it inside us. So as a way to deal with the excess magic it infuses our mane and tails with the excess magic, thus making them more… mist-like. Before you ask, Cadence’s magic hasn't developed enough for her mane and tail to turn ethereal, yet,” Celestia answered as she passed a hoof through her mane.

“Whoa, that’s so cool! But what about Twilight? Shouldn't she also have a magic mane and tail?” Celestia frowned as Centa asked her question, but before Centa could say anything it was replaced by a weak smile.

“Well, you see she would normally but… *sigh* Because my sister had to deal with a terrible threat she hasn't been able to fully recover yet and we don’t know when she will,” Celestia glumly muttered under her breath.

Centa began to look worried after hearing about Twilight's condition, Celestia noticed.

“Don’t worry, Centa. My sister will be fine. We just have to wait for her magic to recover. You needn't worry. Anyways do you have any other questions,” Centa felt a little better knowing that Twilight was going to get better.

“Um… let’s see. Oh! Have you had any other student before me,” Centa excitedly asked as her curiosity returned as she leaned forward.

“Well, Isn't that a good question. You're the first student I’ve had in… well centuries, if I remember correctly. Though if I’m going, to be honest, I really haven’t had many students in the past. You’re asking the wrong pony that question. Twilight was by far much more of a “magic teacher” than me.

“In fact, she’s likely trained hundreds of students back in the day. I would ask her if you want to know how many. *sigh* She always did love to teach ponies magic. Did you know she was the original founder of, what is known today as, the School of Gifted Unicorns,” Centa’s eyes widened as her mouth dropped at the bombshell Celestia dropped.

“Wait! What?! I thought that was your school?!” Centa yelled out as she stood up on her seat.

“Well, sorta. You see, Twilight was the original founder of the school. Which was known as The Everfree Academy of Arcane Arts, quite a mouthful. She was the head principal of the school… as well as the Archmage of Equestria. For many years she was wonderful as principal and the school prospered but eventually after certain… events she began to become less… focused on the school. And eventually when she was forced to leave she had to forfeit her title as principal.

“I saw how much Twilight loved her school and I couldn't watch as it was wasted away so I decided to… take charge of the school and continue its legacy. At least until Twilight returned. As time went on I had the school moved to Canterlot and because the name no longer made sense the school was renamed to The School for Gifted Unicorns. Now as for why ponies call it my school well… ponies simply started attributing the founding of the school to me and unfortunately I was never able to fix that misunderstanding,” as Celestia finished Centa was silent as she thought about what she said.

“Does Princess Twilight know?” as soon as those words left her mouth she immediately regretted them but before she could say anything the princess answered.

“Don’t worry, Centa. That’s also a good question. She does and we have… talked about it. But you don’t have to worry about that,” Celestia briefly answered before a smile grew on her muzzle.

“You know you’ve asked me a few questions. I was wondering if I could ask a few of my own?” Centa was momentarily surprised before she came to her senses, smiled, and nodded.

“Well, then I suppose what I’d like to ask is. What are some things you do with Cadence? And what are some places you go with her?” Centa blinked as she sat back down on her chair before she began to think.

“Hmm… let’s see, Oh! Well, we usually play some games around the castle or the royal gardens. Or we go to the Royal Observatory sometimes and look at the night sky! Uh, outside of the castle we sometimes go to one of the parks… though most of the other ponies don’t want to play with Spike,” Centa huffed as she crossed her forelegs before she continued.

“We also go to a ton of places in Canterlot. Like the bestest ice cream place in the city, Ice Cream Dave’s! We also go to the Canterlot library for fun sometimes, Cadence knows where all the good books are. Oh! How could I forget! We’ve been going to an amazing store called The Astronomer’s Workshop that has so many star maps and telescopes. Uh… I think that’s it,” Centa said unsurely as she tried to think of anywhere she missed.

Celestia looked up at the ceiling as she was thinking about what she said before she looked back over at her.

“Thank you, Centa. That’s very helpful to know,” Centa was confused but before she could ask the princess what she meant the doors to the kitchen opened.

As Centa looked over she saw the same waiters quickly make their way out of the kitchen with platers in her hooves. Once they reached the table they placed the platers in front of them. Centa watched as the waiter lifted the… she actually didn't know what it was called but the metal bowl that she definitely didn't use to hold ice cream in before.

In front of her was by far the most beautiful and delicious-looking pot pie she had ever seen. The moment the smell hit her nose she began to salivate, but she stopped herself from eating the beautiful pie and waited for the princess.

As she looked over at the princess she saw her meal, which also looked delicious, be unveiled. As well as Spike’s, though he didn't have her etiquette as he immediately began to dig into his meal.

She also noticed the waiter's bow before they left back to the kitchen, Centa grimmest and began to wonder if they really were ponies.

She put her suspicions aside when she noticed Celestia look at her, “You know you're free to eat. We’ll continue our conversation later. For now, let’s eat shall we,” Celestia said before she began to eat her meal.

Centa meanwhile smiled and silently thanked the princess before she looked back at the gorgeous pot pie and dug in.


For the next few hours the ponies, and baby dragon, enjoyed each of their meals. Especially Centa who, once she got a bite of her pot pie, proceeded to devour her entire meal. She then quickly ordered another, much to Celestia’s amusement, and another… and another. Eventually, it got to the point where Celestia was forced to stop Centa before she was too plump to even walk.

But after that… escapade things returned to normal as the two ponies asked each other a few more questions before a comfortable silence took hold.


Centa laid on Twilight’s chair as she rubbed her belly and relaxed after that wonderful lunch. Mmm, that pot pie was the best thing ever! I definitely have to get that again. Centa thought as she looked over at the princess and saw her give Spike another spoonful of yogurt and crystals before she wiped his mouth.

Centa smiled as she remembered what she and the princess talked about. It was so cool to ask the princess so many questions! Who knew she could make so many different types of cakes! I hope we can talk a little more today. Centa wished before she heard the princess.

“Centa” - she looked over at the princess and saw her stretch before she got up from her chair - “I think it’s a good idea to finally get out of this cramped castle and get a little sunshine. What do you say?” Celestia asked with a grin before Centa nodded.

“Well, come along then,” Celestia said as Centa jumped off her chair and walked next to the princess.

Once Centa reached the princess she saw her horn activate before she felt a familiar weight on her back. As she looked she smiled as she saw Spike firmly on her back.

“You ready, Spike!” she said before she followed the princess out of the dining hall.

As they walked Centa looked up at Celestia with a thankful smile, “Princess?” - Celestia looked down at her - “I just wanted to say thank you for lunch. And also for helping Spike with his food,” she thanked the princess.

“It was no problem at all, Centa. Though next time, I suppose I need to warn the kitchen to prepare more pot pies. Considering how many of those you ate,” Centa blushed lightly as they left the castle.

By the time her blush disappeared she realized they were in the royal garden. As they walked through the garden they passed a plethora of orange, brown, and red leaves scattered throughout the ground. Thankfully, most of them were cleared from the paths from the gardeners, Centa saw a few more clearing paths as she and the princess passed. As she looked up at the trees she saw that many leaves still stubbornly clung to their branches.

It had only recently turned to Autumn and now ponies had to start picking the leaves off of them. Centa smiled as she also knew of a certain holiday that was about to happen, she was excited to finally spend it with the princesses.

As they walked Centa also noticed a few statues a little bit away. Most of them were statues of ponies in a multitude of different poses, but one of them caught her eye at how… weird it looked.

Unlike the other statues, this one was definitely not a pony, it looked like an amalgamation of different animals.

It had a lion paw, a weird claw of a hawk, a donkey’s hoof, a dragon claw, and a long pony body? She also saw that it had a long dragon tail that wrapped around the pillar it stood on. On its back were two wings that she thought wouldn't hold their own weight. One was a batwing while the other was a pegasus wing?

By far the strangest thing was its head. It had a mane with two horns at the top of its head. One was an antler while the other was… wobbly? She couldn't think of anything that had a horn like that. Anyways it had one long tooth that stuck out of its mouth, two puffy eyebrows, and a long bushy goatee. Finally, the creature stood and looked like it was almost laughing?

Centa was very much confused at the strange statue. Who in Equestria would want to build that thing? Centa wondered as she lost sight of the statue. For some reason, though as she looked at the statue she had a weird feeling like it was… wrong? Almost as if it was… alive? She wasn't sure she wanted to know. She shuddered as she tried to think of something else.

At that moment she realized one thing, she had absolutely no idea where she was. She looked over at the princess confused.

“Um, Princess? I think we passed our usual spot,” Centa commented as Celestia looked down at her.

“Yes. I know, Centa. I was thinking this time we could go somewhere a bit more special,” Centa was now interested in where the princess was taking her.

“Oh! Where are we going, princess!?” Centa excitedly asked with great curiosity.

Celestia grinned, “We’re headed to a special section of the gardens that is cut off from the rest of the castle. More specifically my section of the gardens,” the princess answered as Centa saw them approach an overgrown gate.

Celestia activated her horn and opened the gate for them, Centa hopped through before the princess followed behind her and closed the gate. As they turned a corner her eyes widened as she saw a part of the gardens she had never seen before.

It was a somewhat large closed-off area of the garden that was lined with tall hedges. Throughout the princess's gardens were neatly planted warm-colored flowers and plants. There was also plenty of furniture for the three of them. Nearby there was also a door that Centa thought connected to the castle, maybe the solar district?

But by far what caught her attention was the giant golden… thing! At the center of the garden! It was surrounded by trimmed shrubbery and more exotic flowers that Centa had never seen before. Four tiled paths led to the golden device.

As for the device, it was surrounded by a giant circular golden plate. The plate was elaborate and designed to look like a rising sun with the rays coming out of the sun with numbers at the end.

At the center was a long angled pole, which was very fancy-looking. She noticed the pole cast a shadow on the plate and as she looked she noticed that it pointed to one of the numbers.

Centa was even more confused now. What is this thing and why is it pointing at a number? Why would the princess get this thing? She wondered before she felt Spike be lifted off of her back again.

As she looked over she saw the princess sit under a tree before she placed Spike next to her. Celestia then looked over at her and urged her over.

As she approached Celestia looked around her garden, “You know, Centa. I had always attended to take you here before so we could have some alone time. *sigh* But unfortunately, I just never seemed to find the right time, well until now I suppose,” the princess said as Centa reached them and sat next to her.

Suddenly, a tray full of food and drinks materialized in front of them before the princess caught them in her magic. She then levitated it down between them.

“Here are a few snacks or drinks, in case we get a little hungry,” Celestia said as Centa looked at the tray.

But she couldn't really think about the food as her mind was still preoccupied with that golden device, “Um, Princess? What is the giant golden thing?” she asked the princess as she pointed to it.

“Oh, well that is a sundial. Specifically, the Great Sundial. You see, before the invention of the clock ponies used other methods of telling time, Canterlot used the Great Sundial. As the sun changes position in the sky the shadow from the pole will cover one of the numbers.

“For instance when the sun is at its height the shadow will cover the number twelve, thus it’s noon. Back in the day when Canterlot still used the Great Sundial, there would be a pony who would declare the time and ring a bell a certain number of times for whatever time it is. Do you understand,” Celestia explained as she looked back at her.

Centa nodded as she was amazed by the cool device, “I think I understand, princess. That’s really cool. But I was wondering. Where did you get the Great Sundial?” Centa asked, but as she looked over at the princess she looked… wistful?

“It’s from a very… close pony. In fact, it was a gift to me from a very special stallion for a… particularly special occasion -” Celestia then sadly laughed “- You would have really liked him. But that was a very long time ago,” Celestia finished with a more happy smile.

Centa was silent for a moment before she asked another question, “Princess, I… I was actually wondering about something. What was Equestria like back then? When you and Princess Twilight ruled together? Before she had to leave.”

Celestia looked surprised before she was silent and looked like she was thinking.

She then sighed, “Centa that’s quite a… big question. Let’s see… first of all, back then it was drastically different from today. Ponies had just recently united and there were some problems that we had to help overcome. Me and Twilight had a lot of work on our hooves. We had to keep the nation together, travel to other nations to deal with issues or try to make deals, and defend Equestria from… dangerous threats. But even if that time could be… hard sometimes I still miss it occasionally.

“I’m sorry, Centa. If I’m being a bit vague. It’s just a complicated question. Hmm… there is one thing you might find interesting though. Did you know that Canterlot wasn't always Equestria’s capital,” Centa’s eyes widened in surprise.

“Wait really?! But Canterlot’s been the capital forever!” Centa yelled as she stood up.

“Yes, many other ponies also believe Canterlot always has been the capital. But the original capital used to be a city at the heart of the Everfree Forest. It was uncreatively named The Everfree City. Though there’s not much there these days, all that’s left are ruins,” Celestia sorrowfully said, though Centa didn't notice through her excitement.

“Really! Can you take me there, princess!” Centa asked as she could barely contain her excitement.

Celestia looked conflicted, “Maybe one day, Centa. But certainly not today. Besides there’s not much left there to see, so it may be a bit boring,” the princess replied before she smiled.

“But that can wait for now. You’ve asked me quite a few questions. I believe it’s time for another one of my own,” Celestia said as Centa prepared and sat back down.

“Centa, there’s been a question I’ve wanted to ask you since we first met. Why did you want to join the school,” Centa’s excitement deflated a bit when she heard Celestia’s question.

Come on, Centa! The princess has answered all your questions. I’d be rude to not answer hers. Centa told herself as she prepared herself to answer the question, though her hesitation caused the princess to frown.

“Um, well. I guess I… sorta always wanted to go, kinda. I was hoping that I could learn a few spells that could help me with certain… problems. But the orphanage mare was always busy so she couldn't take me, so I may have… ranawaytotheschooltotryandgetin,” Centa quickly said as she blushed from embarrassment.

Celestia reassured her, “That’s alright, Centa. While I would have liked it if you had waited for your caretaker to take you. I also wouldn't have probably met you and asked you to be my student. So I suppose I can’t be too angry. Also, you talked about your time in the orphanage. How was it? Were you taken care of?” Celestia asked as Centa tried to hide her discomfort.

Centa had a feeling Celestia was going to ask about that but she tried to answer it, “Um, well it was… good, sometimes. The orphanage mare was nice, she always tried to help me when I asked… even if she always had something to do. But besides that.. well…” Centa began to get quiet as she tried to figure out how to answer.

She suddenly felt something warm on her shoulder. As she looked up she saw the princess had taken off one of her hoof guards and placed a bare hoof on her shoulder.

“Centa, I don’t want you to feel like you have to tell me something just because I’m a princess. I want you to tell me when you're comfortable too. How about we end this for now. Besides I think Spike’s starting to get bored without his big sister to play with,” Celestia with a smile.

Centa looked at the princess for a moment before she smiled lightly, “Thank you… Celestia” she said before she ran over to Spike.

Behind her, she left a surprised yet happy Celestia as she poured a cup of tea for herself and watched Centa play with Spike.


For the rest of the day, the three of them stayed and played in Celestia’s private section of the royal gardens. Centa and Spike played a plethora of different games, many of which the princess happily joined in. Overall they all had a fun time.

Eventually, though, their fun and games had to come to an end. Once Celestia completed her celestial duties she was forced to tell them they had to leave. And while Centa and Spike were reluctant they eventually complied and followed the princess back into the castle.

So the three of them made their way through the castle until they were outside Celestia’s tower…


Centa walked through the doorway, with an exhausted Spike laying on her back. Behind her, she heard the door slam closed before the princess walked past her.

She used the opportunity to look around the room, in front of her was a large desk with a similarly large chair. In one of the corners of the room was a large fireplace, which was lit, and a wooden sitting table with a large run underneath. There was also a plethora of different things scattered around the room such as picture frames, plants, pillows, and other knick-knacks.

Once she was finished she looked over at the princess, “Now, Centa. Don't worry about Spike having one of his fire incidents in here. I’ve already fireproofed the entire room. Though still keep an eye on him, if you could. I’ve also left a bowl of sweets for you two on my desk” - Centa looked over at the desk and saw a bowl of candy appear on the desk - “but please eat it in moderation, I don’t want either of you to get sick,” Celestia said but Centa was fixated on the candy that was waiting for her.

Before she could run off and get her hooves on that candy the princess stopped her, “Centa wait.”

She stopped and looked over at Celestia, during which she also felt Spike being lifted off her back and placed next to her.

“I’m going to need you to look after Spike again while I’m gone,” Celestia asked of a confused Centa.

“Wait, where are you going?” as soon as she asked her question Celestia booped her nose with her hoof.

“To get Cadence silly,” the princess playfully said before her tone turned slightly more serious.

“Before I go I just wanted to say that it’s been wonderful to spend the day with you two. I very much hope we can do this again soon,” Celestia finished with a warm smile, one which Centa matched.

“This has been amazing too, princess! I hope I can stay with you again too… though maybe next time Cadence could as well,” Centa hoped as Celestia laughed.

“Maybe she can too. See you soon, Centa. You too, Spike,” Celestia said as she brought them in a hug.

As they hugged Celestia leaned next to Centa, “And thank you for trusting me earlier, Centa,” she was surprised but smiled wider and hugged the princess tighter.

After a few moments, they let go and Celestia made her way out of the room, during which Centa waved her goodbye.

In her mind she was ecstatic. This was awesome, Princess. I really hope we can do this again… maybe next time we can also have Princess Twilight join in! Then I can have the best three ponies in the world spend the day with me! Centa excitedly thought as Celestia left the room.

But before she could do anything she heard something behind her and as she looked back her eyes widened when she saw Spike going through the candy, their candy!

“Wait, Spike! STOP! That’s our candy!” Centa ran toward Spike to try and stop him.

“At least save some for me!” she desperately yelled out as she saw Spike devour the candy.

Chapter 10: The Long Hunt for Love

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Cadence waves at Centa, Spike, which rode on her back, and her Auntie Celestia as they made their way down the hall. Cadence smiled sadly as she saw the three of them make their way around a corner, of which Centa nearly hit before she finally lost sight of them.

She sighed as her hoof fell to the floor, she felt the guilt she held back finally crash into her. *sigh* I’m really sorry, Centa. I wish you could come with me but I’ve been waiting far too long for this. I promise once I’m done, I’ll make it up to you. Cadence told herself as she turned around and made her way down the hall

She then focused on her plan. Ok, it’s time to start. I’ve been planning this for months and after multiple delays, it’s finally time to start. It’s time to figure out what Auntie Twilight’s love interests are! And I won’t stop until I find out something! Cadence declared in her head as she was more determined than ever to get some answers… after she grabbed a few things from her room first.


Cadence looked over her equipment one last time before she arrived, “Ok. Let’s see. Telescope? Check. Multiple different potions for unforeseen problems? Check. Extra rations? Check. Magic reserves? Full and ready. Am I missing anything… Oh! Of course, how could I forget,” Cadence asked herself as she tapped her head before she cast a spell on herself that connected to her target.

“There! Now I should be able to hear anything Auntie Twilight says. Even if there’s a wall in the way!” Cadence confidently said as she repacked her gear back into her trusty saddle bag, as she repacked a small part of her began to feel that maybe she was going too far.

But before she could question the morality of this she began to hear some ponies nearby. She quickly levitated on her pack and jumped behind a nearby bush. Shortly after a pair of guards walked by as they continued their patrol throughout the royal gardens, completely unaware.

Once they passed Cadence let out a sigh of relief before she crouched below a castle window. As she got into position she looked out the window carefully, inside was a seemingly normal hallway. A hallway that her Auntie Twilight was, supposedly, about to walk down.

As she scanned the hall she began to reiterate the plan. From her limited knowledge Twilight was supposed to walk down this hall, after some meeting or another. So her master plan was to sneakily sto- follow her Auntie around for the day, and hopefully night if she could convince Celestia. Until she finally found out about Twilight’s love interests! Her plan was foalproof.

As if on cue she saw Twilight make her way out of a pair of doors. As soon as she exited she began to stretch. Cadence meanwhile ducked back under the window as Twilight finished. Ok, Cadence. Don’t. Mess. This. Up. It’s time to finally get some answers. She silently told herself as she looked back through the window and saw Twilight had already made a bit of ground. Cadence silently began to follow her as she crouched just below the window that allowed her to still see her aunt.

Unfortunately, Cadence’s hopes for a quick answer were dashed as she mindlessly tailed Twilight through the winding halls. What made it worse was nothing happened besides a few occasional formal greets as her auntie passed ponies. She began to zone out as she kept an eye out for any more guards that were on patrol.

She was suddenly caught off guard when she heard her Auntie finally say something else.

“What are you so happy about?” Cadence was momentarily surprised before she remembered to duck back under the window.

Finally, I felt like I was about to die from boredom if something didn't happen. Time to finally begin my work. Cadence happily thought as she failed to notice another familiar voice. As she looked through the window she was shocked to see her Auntie Twilight hugging Centa!

As fast as possible Cadence ducked back below the window as she silently hoped nopony, or dragon, noticed her. She lay under the window as still as possible, as she began to freak out. What’s Centa doing here?! If she’s here then Spike and Auntie Celestia have to be inside too. Cadence then forced herself to take a deep breath before she began to try and figure out what to do.

Ok, I just need to calm down and think. Obviously, I can’t let them see me… *sigh* Of course this happens to me. Should I… hide a bit further away until they're gone or- Cadence wasn't able to finish that thought as she heard Twilight say something.

“...I suppose good luck. I can’t wait to see how well you cast the spell. Me and Celestia will cheer you on,” Cadence stopped as she processed what her Auntie Twilight just said.

Wait. She couldn't mean… Cadence pushed past her uncertainty and looked back through the window to satisfy her suspicion. When she looked through she nearly abandoned her half-baked suspicion when she saw that her Aunties and Spike had sat in front of her window. But she stopped when she saw Centa focusing as her little horn was enveloped by her magic.

At that moment she realized that Centa was trying to cast that wind spell she had studied for the past week. Cadence had seen her practice the spell while she foalsitted her, she even asked for her help a few times. Not that she was much help. She never truly was interested in magic before, even after she first got her horn. But even with some of the areas of magic that she did learn about, spells and such, she wasn't very good at it. Besides her love magic of course, but that was more of her alicorn ability than any real magic.

Cadence noticed that Centa looked stressed out as she tried to cast the spell. So, unintentionally, she joined the others and began to silently cheer Centa on. Come on, Centa. I know you can do it. She was so caught up that when Centa finally released her spell, which sadly failed, she nearly blew her cover when she was about to reassure Centa.

After her near blunder, she lowered herself back just below the windowsill and berated herself for nearly being caught. Eventually, Centa, Spike, and her Aunties went their separate ways as Twilight continued down the hall.

Before Cadence walked away she looked back at Centa. Don’t worry, Centa. I know you’ll get that spell down soon… maybe I should brush on my wind magic again. I mean I used to be a pegasus after all so that should count for something. Cadence thought to herself as she followed Twilight.

Unfortunately, for Cadence, the silence returned in full force and she began to fear a repeat of before. Thankfully for her, after a few moments, she noticed a familiar pony approach her Auntie. As they got closer Cadence saw that her suspicions were confirmed as the pony was Celestia’s assistant, Raven Inkwell.

She didn't know that much about Raven if she was going, to be honest. She had talked to her in the past and while she knew a few of Raven’s interests, most of her knowledge was surface level. Even still she was very much interested to see how she would act around her Auntie, especially when Raven looked past her trusty clipboard and noticed Twilight.

“Oh! Princess, would you mind if I accompanied you? There were a few things I'd like to discuss with you,” Cadence heard Raven say over the spell.

Her Auntie smiled, “Of course, Raven. Though I’m surprised to see you. I thought you'd want to see my sister?” Twilight asked as Raven followed beside her.

“Yes, well. I did but… *sigh* Princess Celestia said she was taking the rest of the day off and asked me to accompany and help you, your highness. Not that she told me where you were,” Raven said under her breath as she looked a little annoyed.

As they talked Cadence looked over Raven. Although Cadence didn't know Raven that well she still knew she was a kind, dutiful, and hard-working pony. She was also quite an attractive young mare. So if her Auntie had any interests in mares she was sure that would show.

So Cadence watched the two unsuspecting mares for any signs.

“I’ll accept any help I can get, Raven. Besides I’ve heard from my sister that you're quite a talented assistant,” her Auntie praised Raven as she blushed ever so faintly.

Raven coughed behind her clipboard before she looked back at Twilight, “Yes, I um… thank you, your highness. Shall I begin?” Raven asked as she regained her decorum.

Twilight nodded, “Very well. Would you mind if… By Celestia, I can’t believe I’m asking this. Would you… mind if you could recall what you’ve done today? Just so I can understand where you are?” Raven reluctantly asked as she looked a little embarrassed.

Her Auntie reassured her with a smile before she responded, “Well if you want to know everything… Let's see. I’ve looked over the supply manifests and some requests from the guard, finished a few of the court requests Tia didn't get to, replied to several ambassador’s letters, looked over Equestria’s finances report for this quarter, reviewed the new applicants for the School of Gifted Unicorns as well as making a few recommendations, and held a meeting for some of the high nobles. Oh! Also, I finished reading Egger’s Guide to Transic Magic during lunch. The last one was a personal book I was reading for the last couple of days,” Twilight casually answered as she turned around to the shocked and slightly paler Raven who had dropped her clipboard.

But she wasn't the only pony who was frozen solid, Cadence stopped her investigation and stared at her Auntie with widened eyes. How in the…

After a few moments Raven, and Cadence, recovered as Raven shook her head and wearily asked, “And you finished all of this before… lunch?” to which her Auntie smirked and simply nodded.

“I… that’s incredibly fast. I think it would have taken Princess Celestia all day to finish all of that,” Raven whispered to herself.

“Well, my sister did always hate that part of being a princess. She always preferred to deal with ponies’ problems face to face, that’s why she created the court. I on the other hoof always loved to do the paperwork, even if it could be a tad boring at times,” Twilight replied as Raven’s face was once again filled with shock but also terror this time.

“I’m so sorry, princess! I never meant to disrespect your-” but Raven was cut off by Twilight.

“It’s fine, Raven. I know you never meant any disrespect by that. I was only teasing a little,” Twilight reassured Raven who tentatively nodded but still looked away from her Auntie.

Twilight also seemed to notice this change in attitude, “Anyways, Raven. Can we go over what other things I have to finish today? I just want to make sure I’m remembering everything correctly,” this seemed to kickstart Raven as she dutifully nodded and listed everything else Twilight had to finish after she grabbed her clipboard off the ground first.

Cadence meanwhile stopped listening to the pair as she concluded her observation. Unfortunately, even after her extensive inspection, which she prepared for by reading a book on body language, she couldn't see any signs that her Auntie was interested in Raven, or vice versa.

A part of her thought that maybe Twilight could still be interested in mares but simply wasn't interested in Raven. But her Auntie didn't show any attraction whatsoever so, for now, she decided to rule out mares. Maybe she’s just interested in stallions. That’s fine. It just… limits my options, somewhat. In fact, I may just get my answer…

Cadence thought as she smirked slightly when she noticed a small group of ponies ahead of them.

As they approached Cadence was able to make out the group as a trio of guardponies. Two of which were normal guardponies, a stallion unicorn, and a mare pegasus respectively. In front of them was another pony, a pony she was all too happy to see.

The last pony was a large, strong-looking stallion earth pony. He had dull gray fur and a lighter gray mane and tail, with a few occasional white strands of hair. Even though his cutie mark was covered by his armor, Cadence knew it was a simple black crossbow sight. Finally, across his body were multiple different types of scars that told a long and weathered history.

While his armor looked similar to the other guards, his was made out of steel with gold highlights. Mainly around his torso, hoof guards, and helmet. Also attached to his chest plate was a curved diamond-shaped piece of steel with his cutie mark emblazoned on it. Finally, what caught most pony’s attention was the massive crossbow slung across his back, though to her it might as well have been a miniature ballista.

The large pony was none other than Captain Iron Sights, the captain of the solar guard as well as one of the first ponies Cadence had met when she first arrived at Canterlot, besides her Auntie Celestia of course.

For as long as she could remember Iron Sights had always been captain and a very good one at that. Ever since she was little he had always been in her life, he always helped her when she asked and even played with her on occasions when he wasn't busy. In her mind, there was no other pony more worthy to be the captain of the solar guard.

She also remembered a rumor that Iron Sight was thinking of retiring soon. Though Cadence didn't put much weight on those rumors, it’s impossible.

Cadence shook her head and returned back to her mission as she began to gain some hope now that Iron was here. Even though the captain was of a more… advanced age, she was still certain she would find him attractive. Especially, considering her auntie is over two and a half thousand years old. It also helped that he was still quite fit for his age and had a wonderful personality to boot. So Cadence watched her auntie for any changes as they approached the captain.

As Raven and Twilight were within earshot of the guard’s Cadence heard something odd from one of them, “- mysterious, Captain. I don’t know if it’s really from those critters. Some of those holes seem a little too new,” the unicorn reported as her auntie stopped and looked toward the guardponies.

Twilight stood there for a moment longer before she walked toward them with an intrigued expression, “Would you care to elaborate more on that guardponies?” she asked as the two guards were surprised before they quickly saluted, meanwhile Iron simply calmly saluted.

Iron Sights then took a step forward, “Good afternoon, your highness. I’m sorry if we were interrupting you. About your question, it’s nothing really. A couple of my guards found a few holes in the old walled-off entrances to the crystal mines. It’s likely just some animals that managed to bore some holes into the old walls. I plan to station a few guards to watch the entrances,” As he finished Twilight raised an eyebrow.

“Do you think that there’s something more to this?” the captain replied with a shrug.

“I don’t rightly know, princess. But I’d rather be safe than sorry. Besides if it is just some critters then my guard can catch and relocate them to a better home,” as Iron finished Twilight looked thoughtful for a moment before she looked back at the captain.

“If this situation changes please report it to me or my sister,” As her auntie finished, Iron saluted, quickly followed up by the two other guards.

As Cadence watched and listened to her auntie's conversation with Iron she was a bit disappointed that her auntie showed no attraction toward him, she really hoped that she’d fall for him.

Cadence sighed as she began to get worried that her entire plan could fail, especially since two of the more promising candidates failed to get any sort of reaction. What on Equis could Twilight be attracted to?! Does she just have really high standards? Or maybe she’s… No, that's ridiculous, Cadence. Of course not.

Cadence thought to herself before she realized that Twilight and Raven had finished their conversation with Iron and were already ways down the hall. She also noticed that Raven looked embarrassed?

Apparently, her Auntie noticed this too, “Is there a problem, Raven?” Raven initially looked a little away from Twilight before she relented.

“I… don't believe you require my help, your highness,” Raven admitted as she looked glum.

“Of course, you’ve helped, Raven. You helped me schedule the rest of my day,” Twilight replied, Cadence figured this happened when she wasn't listening.

“It’s fine, your highness. I suppose I just need to… “One up my game” as they say. Besides it’s been nice to get to know a bit more about you, princess,” Twilight was silent for a moment before she smiled.

“Then how about you take the rest of the day off, Raven? Also, you can just call me Twilight in private,” Raven smiled in response as Cadence was happy to see the beginning of a new friendship.

Unfortunately, Cadence’s happiness was ruined when another pony joined the conversation, one that Cadence hoped to avoid.

“Am I… interrupting anything, your highness?” the noble Fancy Pants asked as he joined the conversation.

Cadence frowned as she stared at Fancy as he ruined Raven and Twilight’s moment. Even though she prepared for this possibility she only hoped that he'd leave soon.

Before anypony could respond Raven stepped forward and bowed toward Twilight, “No, not at all. In fact, I was just about to leave. Good day, your highness. You too Sir Fancy,” Raven announced as she bowed toward Twilight and nodded at Fancy before she left.

Cadence was slightly annoyed that the moment was truly gone and the fact that she now had to wait for this noble to leave. So with an impatient sigh, she half-heartedly watched the interaction.

Once Raven left Twilight turned to look over at Fancy with a pleasant smile, “I suppose now that it’s just us. What did you need, Sir Fancy?”

Fancy somewhat awkwardly responded as he tried to regain his composure, “Oh! *cough* Well. Firstly, you don’t need to be so formal. Fancy is perfectly alright. Secondly, I was wondering if you would like to join me in one of my little house parties later tonight?” He asked as he straightened his purple bowtie.

Her auntie shook her head, “No. Unfortunately, I’ll have to decline. I still have quite a bit of work to finish. Thank you for the offer though,” Twilight answered with a saddened smile.

“Then would it be… acceptable if I were to accompany you, your highness? At least until you reach your destination,” Fancy asked again as he began to sweat.

Cadence was surprised by the offer and silently hoped that her auntie would shoot him down.

Twilight thought about it for a moment before she smiled, “Very well. It’ll be nice to talk to somepony at least. Come along, Fancy,” her auntie said as she continued down the wall, with Fancy close behind.

Cadence cursed her luck before she followed behind the duo. She also began to get suspicious of Fancy. Why would he want to be with Auntie Twilight? What do you really want, Fancy Pants… She thought as she tried to uncover whatever ulterior motives he had.

Eventually, Fancy caught up with her auntie, “Firstly. Thank you, your highness, for allowing me to accompany you today,” the stallion said with a kind smile. “And may I add that you look quite beautiful this today,” He complimented.

Twilight laughed slightly, “Thank you, Fancy. You aren’t bad yourself,” Twilight replied as ever so slightly Cadence saw Fancy blush which only caused her to glare a bit more at him, as well as give her a strange pit in her stomach.

A slight pause occurred after Twilight’s compliment before Fancy regained his senses back.

He then smiled nervously, “Princess, if it isn't… inappropriate. How have you taken to becoming a princess, again? *cough* sorry. Especially after you've been gone for so long?”

If Cadence didn't know her auntie she would have thought the question unfazed her but she could tell that it made her uncomfortable, another reason for her to not like this Fancy.

“Well. It’s… gone about as well as you may expect. A few bumps in the road but I’m making steady progress back. Though I’m not going to sugarcoat it, it’s been a lot of… adjusting. But I suppose not everything is so bad,” Twilight vaguely answered.

Fancy seemed to be a bit worried for her but continued nonetheless.

“I suppose I shouldn't have expected any less. Still, I must say I’m quite impressed with how well you’ve adjusted. I’m not sure I could do it as well as you. But I suppose you don’t wish to hear any more of that. Now princess, have you heard of the new Wonderbolts game here in Canterlot?” Fancy asked as he moved onto softer topics.

Cadence meanwhile couldn't deny the dreadful news any longer. Somehow, someway. Fancy Pants had a crush on her Auntie Twilight. Even as she thought this it still felt… wrong. Out of anypony, a noble had to have a crush on her auntie and no matter how many times she tried to find some ulterior motive she could find none. It was pure love.

But what nearly infuriated her more was the fact that Twilight STILL showed no interest in him. How can you NOT show anything!? Not even any hints of interest or rejection! Which both relieved her and confounded her at how… oblivious she was. He practically told her he had a crush on her.

After Cadence finished her internal rant she looked back over at Fancy and Twilight and saw that they had nearly reached the entrance to the royal gardens. So what was by now routine she snooped on her auntie’s conversation.

The pair had finished laughing after an apparent joke she missed before Fancy wiped a tear away, “That was quite good, princess. *sigh* I suppose this is your stop,” Fancy said as he looked a little sad.

He then glumly smiled, “It’s been wonderful talking to you, princess. I only wish it could have lasted a while longer. If you're ever free please tell me… if you so wish. So I can invite you to one of my house parties, I’d be happy to host you,” Fancy said with a more jolly smile.

Twilight returned the smile as she looked off to the side, “I can’t make any promises, but if my schedule opens up I’ll let you know,” Twilight replied as she faced him again.

That was all Fancy needed to hear as he straightened up with a hopeful look.

“Thank you, your highness! I can’t wait. Have a pleasant rest of your day,” he said as he bowed, which Twilight returned before he practically skipped away down the hall.

Twilight meanwhile laughed at Fancy before she turned around and walked into the royal gardens, with Cadence close behind her.

Now that Twilight had left the castle proper she had to change strategies so she jumped behind a bush.

Eventually, Twilight walked toward a large oak tree that sat on a small hill, one which she had been to many times. Before she laid down, Cadence began to get a little confused before she saw her auntie’s horn light up and a small desk was teleported in front of her with an ink well, quill, and a stack of parchment next to it. She then levitated a piece of parchment, placed it on the desk, and began to work.

Cadence once entranced was sorely disappointed that she wouldn't get any new information on her love life… not that she had any. But even still she stubbornly refused to give up and began to set up her own little camp as she silently declared she’d wait until her auntie was done. I’m sure this won’t take long. I mean how long could she lay there? She would learn to never challenge fate.

She then pulled out a granola bar from her pack and took a bite out of it as she got comfortable.


Unfortunately, for Cadence, she waited for hours but no matter how long she sat there Twilight refused to leave. What made it worse was that she had, somehow, run out of food which only caused her to grow more bored.

What cruel god she had apparently awoken seemed to have some sense of humor as for but a moment she began to get excited when she saw her auntie finish the rest of her work. But as Cadence began to pack up Twilight teleported her work away and brought out a pile of books from her library before she began to read them.

Cadence was devastated and cursed her bad luck before she miserably sat back down bored out of her mind.


Cadence laid on her side as she was both immensely bored and annoyed at the same time at how useless this whole endeavor seemed to be. She hadn't learned a single new thing about Twilight’s romantic interests, the whole purpose of this! Another part of her also missed Centa and wished she had never created this hair-brained scheme so she could be with her again.

Cadence was pulled out of her thoughts when she was surprised by the one pony she never expected.

“You know, Cadence. You can come out anytime you want,” Twilight nonchalantly asked as she turned a page in her book.

Cadence though doesn’t listen as she got onto her hooves and crouched as far down as possible under the bush. She silently hoped that her mind was simply playing tricks on her.

Her auntie sighed as she lowered her book and looked toward her, past the bush.

“Cadence, it’s getting late and I don’t want you laying under a bush for another hour and possibly getting sick. So please, come out of the bush,” Twilight scolded her like Celestia did when she was a foal.

Cadence grimaced as she finally got up, picked up her pack, and walked out from behind the bush, slightly crestfallen. As she walked into the line of sight of Twilight she looked away and blushed from embarrassment.

How did you know I was there?” she quietly asked, clearly embarrassed.

Twilight then smiled as she set her book down, “Firstly, I detected your magic before I even entered that hall you were waiting for me at. Even past some of those magic dampener spells you put on yourself. Also if you want I could show you some more powerful ones that I know,” Twilight replied with a smirk as Cadence’s face turned pale.

“Secondly, when you cast that Listen-On-Them spell I was able to tell it was from you just by your magic signature alone and because of that, I could have easily counter spelled it. Next time try to focus on not putting so much magic into the spell it’ll cause your target to more easily locate the source, try to only put as much magic as you need to give your target as little information as possible,” Cadence’s jaw continued to drop as her auntie continued.

“Thirdly, if you're going to tail somepony you should learn how to properly muffle your hooves, the hooves can make quite a bit of noise even when you try not to. That’s why we ponies were never predators.”

“Finally, It’s probably not a very good idea to ask about your target's routine from their sister. Especially older sisters, who are notorious for loose lips,” Twilight finished with a proud smile.

Cadence was flabbergasted, not only was she found out before she was even able to start! But the fact that her auntie had offered her advice about how to better stalk her… she never even had a chance.

Before she could respond Twilight simply patted a spot next to her and indicated for her to sit. To which Cadence mechanically followed as she made her way toward her auntie.

“The only thing I still haven’t figured out yet is well, why? Why did you stalk me? If you wanted to join me all you had to do was ask,” Twilight asked as looked a little confused, this relieved Cadence immensely.

Phew, at least Auntie Twilight doesn't know what I was doing… that’s something at least. Cadence thought to herself before she realized Twilight was expecting some sort of answer.

Cadence began to get flustered as her cheeks grew brighter, “Oh! Uhh… No real reason,” she mumbled quietly.

Wow really smooth, Cadence, she thought to herself as she mentally berated herself on that horrible lie.

But before she let Twilight do anything she asked a question, “Um, Auntie Twilight. Could I ask a question? Real quick, I… know it’s getting late,” Cadence quickly asked as she tried to distract her aunt and try one last time to salvage this horrible plan.

Twilight paused and stared at her for a moment before she laughed and smiled, “I suppose I can answer a quick question though I do need to leave soon. Celestia needed help with some things,” Twilight agreed as Cadence sat next to her auntie.

Once Cadence got comfortable she asked her last question, “So I know this may be a bit… strong but. Were there any ponies you deeply cared about before you left? Besides Celestia of course,” Cadence asked as she emphasized cared, at this point she had throughout most of her subtlety.

Twilight looked surprised for a moment before she began to think, “Well that’s certainly a… strong question. Well, there were plenty of ponies that I cared about. I’ve had many different students in the past, of which I love them all dearly… but I suspect you want something closer. There was one pony that was particularly close too. A stallion,” Cadence began to get excited as the thought of finally getting a break nearly broke her.

Though she didn't want to lose her cool so she calmly asked what the pony was to her, “What was the stallion to you!” apparently she wasn't very calm after all.

Twilight laughed again, “He was the father I never had” - Cadence’s excitement died - “His name was Onyx. He was the best father you could have asked for, he took us in even though he had no real reason to. Even after what Celestia did… I’ll never forget what he did,” Twilight said as she fondly remembered that time before she grew a pained frown. “I just wish he hadn't… That’s a story for another time,” Twilight cut herself off as she shook her head.

Before Cadence could ask anything more or protest her auntie looked over and saw that Celestia had set the sun and risen the moon, but Twilight looked away before the moon could rise.

“Well I suppose that’s where we have to stop for now,” Twilight said as she teleported her book away, stood up, and stretched.

Cadence frowned as she hoped for a bit more time to question her aunt but she too stood up.

Twilight looked at her apologetic, “Sorry, Cadence that I have to leave so soon. But this is what it means to be a princess,” her auntie said tiredly with a sigh before she nodded at her and began to walk away. Before she left she stopped and looked back at her, “As much fun as it was to watch you stalking me around all day I’d prefer if you don’t do that. I’d rather have my niece next to me instead of behind me,” Cadence blushed as she agreed to Twilight’s fair demand.

“Thank you, Cadence. Have a good rest of your evening,” Twilight said before she made her way back into the castle.

Cadence awkwardly smiled as she waved at her auntie until she disappeared into the castle. Once she was gone Cadence sighed and collapsed onto the grass under the oak tree.

She was frustrated with herself. No matter what she did or the questions she asked she got nothing, this entire thing was a waste of time. But she didn't allow herself to mope for long as she begrudgingly made her way back to her room.


As Cadence entered her room she practically slammed the door behind her and placed her pack onto the floor with her wing. She sighed again as she looked around her room.

Her room was larger than the average castle apartment, it was also specially designed by Celestia for her. The walls were painted pink while the floor was made of lighter wood planks. At the center of the floor was a large pink, purple, and yellow designed rug with a gold heart in the center.

On the opposite wall from her was a large bay window with a seat built in under it and around the window was a plethora of different toys, paper, pencils, and other foal toys.

Cadence smiled, that was the spot she and Centa usually played in while she stayed in her room. That thought caused her to grow a little wistful as she missed Centa.

To the right of her and Centa’s play area was her four-post pink bed with a big heart in the center. On either side of the bed were a pair of nightstands with an alarm clock on one.

Next to her bed was the doorway to her bathroom which while higher quality than most of the other guest bathrooms in the castle it wasn't by that much, it also, of course, had pink tile! It was her favorite color after all.

To her right, she saw her pink couch with a low coffee table, which had a silver tea set sitting in the middle. Her Auntie Celestia had gotten a little addicted to tea ever since she was a foal.

To her left, there was another door that led to her walk-in closet which had a plethora of different dresses and accessories for any sort of party or celebration she had to attend.

Next to her walk-in closet was her desk she used for school work, personal projects, or any other thing she wanted, it was also pink. Also on the desk was a small expertly crafted music box that her Auntie Celestia had given her when she was adopted by her, she said it was her “adoption present” and she’s kept it ever since.

Finally, on the ceiling was a pink crystal chandelier, probably one of the most expensive things in the room.

Besides that, there were pictures of her family, Centa, and Spike scattered around the room as well as other furniture.

Once she was finished she looked back over at her and Centa’s play area before she forced her gaze away. She then made her way toward her walk-in closet. As she opened the door she walked to the back of the closet, past the multitude of dresses, until she found what she was looking for.

Behind some particularly old dresses was an old cork board. One which she dragged out of her walk-in closet with her magic and placed in the middle of her room. As she looked at the board it was a mess of different notes, string, and highlighter, at the top it said Cadence’s Shipping Board.

On it was a multitude of different ponies with different possible matches, Celestia and Twilight’s section had paragraphs of different information pinned under them with a few possible matches connected by red string, mainly on Celestia’s side. Also in a corner was a blank section that had a picture of Centa with a card pinned to it that said: “For the Future” written on the bottom.

Cadence meanwhile was focused on Twilight’s section as she began to remove and add pins to the board while she muttered to herself, “Well that can’t be there now and… I suppose I should put him there now…” Cadence was so distracted by her work that she was surprised when she heard somepony cough behind her.

As she turned around her eyes widened when she saw her Auntie Celestia leaning on her door frame!

Before Cadence could do anything Celestia began, “You know I knocked before I entered. When you didn't respond I decided to see if you were here. But now I see that you were just busy,” Celestia finished with a cat-like grin.

Cadence immediately spun the board which caused it to start flipping as she tried to distract her aunt, “This isn't what it looks like!” she yelled out as the board simply stopped exactly where it started which caused Cadence to grimace and blush as she knew she was caught red hoofed.

Celestia, unfazed, walked into the room and used her magic to straighten the board before she began to read. Cadence meanwhile merely sat there embarrassed.

Celestia laughed, “Oh, Cadence. Of course, you’d do something like this. Why am I not surprised? You are the little cupid of the family. Though it seems like you missed Sir Hooflock on my “interests” section,” Cadence blushed as an unabashed part of her kept a note to update that later.

Celestia then looked at her with that smug smile, “Though I think you shouldn’t worry about other pony’s love lives while you're trying to be with Shining Armor,” Celestia nonchalantly said as Cadence was again shocked, mouth agape.

“What?!” Cadence yelled out as she was shocked that her Auntie Celestia knew about that, she had done such a good job keeping that a secret!

She began to get flustered as her entire face turned red, “W-we're just friends… how did you find out… about HIM!” Cadence quickly added.

Celestia laughed before she grinned, “Well this is my castle after all. I wouldn’t be a very good princess if I didn't know what was going on inside here, would I? Besides I think I’d like to know about the stallion that plans to date my little Caddy,” Celestia finished as Cadence’s cheeks burned even brighter as she looked away.

Under her breath she whispered, “Not that he even knows,” a small silence grew as Celestia continued to read the board as Cadence continued to try and hide behind her mane.

She had failed utterly not only had she not gotten anything new from Twilight but now her other aunt knew about her Secret Shipping Board. But now that she had nothing left to lose, she finally relented and did the one thing she thought she’d never do.

“Auntie Celestia?” Cadence asked as Celestia looked over at her and once Celestia saw the state she was in her grin disappeared.

“Oh! Cadence, was I going too far? I’m sorry,” Celestia apologized as Cadence shook her head.

“No, it’s no… well I guess It’s kind of because of that -” Cadence then shook her head as she refocused “- Anyways, Auntie Celestia. I… what kind of pony or creature does Auntie Twilight like? What are her love interests!? Please tell me! I’m the Alicorn of Love and no matter what I do I can’t find anything! Please, Celestia!” Cadence practically begged Celestia as her desperation finally broke her.

Once Cadence finished silence enveloped the room as Celestia’s face became neutral before finally, she sighed.

“Cadence, normally I wouldn't tell ponies about this. But… I can see if I don’t tell you, you’ll just continue this. *sigh* For as long as I’ve known Twilight she’s, well, never been romantically interested in anypony before,” Cadence was surprised by this new information as she stood up.

“What?! But that’s impossible. She’s over a thousand years old. Surely she found somepony interesting in that time,” Cadence practically yelled out as she grew even more confused.

Celestia shook her head, “If I’m going, to be honest. I don’t quite understand it myself. Though this isn't from a lack of trying. Back before any of this me and… Luna tried to find some pony or creature that she might have liked. But no matter how many times we tried she was never interested in anypony. After a while we simply stopped trying, Twilight admitted that she wasn't interested in that sort of relationship,” the silence returned as Cadence began to think about this new information.

Cadence suddenly felt her auntie’s hoof pull her head up to look at hers, “Cadence I know this may seem… odd, especially to someone like you. But I want you to know that my sister can still love ponies, just not romantically. For instance, I know she loves you and Centa dearly -” Celestia then booped her nose “- There are also other ponies that I’ve met with the same… feelings,” Celestia finished as Cadence remained silent.

Even though she trusted what her aunt said it was still a little hard for Cadence to wrap her mind around the fact that a pony could not feel romantic love. I can’t even imagine if I couldn't feel that kind of love. Cadence thought as she frowned at the thought.

But before she could do anything she felt her auntie kiss her forehead. Cadence backed up and looked up at Celestia as she regained her grin.

“Forget about that for now, Cadence. I’m here to collect you~” Cadence was confused again as she watched her auntie walk out of her room.

“Wait! Who?” Cadence asked as Celestia looked behind her.

“Why Centa of course. She’s been talking about you all day you know. She’s waiting in my office for you,” Celestia said before she continued out of her room.

Cadence remembered her promise to Centa and began to smile as she couldn't wait to see Centa again. But before she forgot she took a step forward and stopped her aunt before she disappeared down the hall.

“Wait, Auntie Celestia,” Celestia stopped one more time and looked back through the door frame with a smile.

“Hmm,” Celestia hummed.

“Have… have you ever had a partner before?” Cadence asked as she watched Celestia think.

Her aunt then smirked knowingly, winked, and left without saying another word. All Cadence could do was stand there alone and confused as she tried to figure out what her aunt had meant by that.

Flashback 4: A Sweet Summer Day

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Twilight was focused on the log sitting in front of her, she glared at it as her horn glowed with purple magic. As magic began to build up in her horn she recited the spell in her head. Twilight was so focused on her spell and stance that she barely heard two ponies cheering her on beside her.

“Come on, Twilly! I know you can do it!” her sister, Luna, yelled as she used her nickname.

“Just focus, Twilight. Remember to breathe,” another voice that she grew to love, their caretaker Onyx.

But even with their support Twilight began to feel herself lose her grip on the spell. She tried to reign in the spell but she could feel herself lose control so with a heavy heart she released the spell before it could hurt her and collapsed to the ground.

Before she hit the ground she heard those her two companions run up to her. Once she was able to open her eyes she was able to see the worried faces of Luna and Onyx looking at her.

“Twilight! Are you alright!” Twilight felt her sister grab her and pull her closer, shortly after Luna began to look her over for any injuries

“Luna! Stop, I'm fine. Your starting to act like Tia! Besides, I stopped the spell before it was dangerous. *sigh* Again,” Twilight dejectedly said as she pulled away from her sister’s grip.

“Twilight,” she heard Onyx say as she looked over at him. “Don’t be sad. You're only twelve and you were nearly able to cast a spell designed for twice your age. I’d say that’s mighty impressive,” Onyx praised with a warm smile.

Twilight blushed as she looked down at herself, both giddy and embarrassed at Onyx’s praise. She had turned twelve about a month ago.

She, at least in her opinion, hasn't really changed much in that time. Of course, she’s a little taller, her hair’s grown out, and her horn grew a bit longer. The only area that had substantial growth was her magic, which is now greater than Luna’s. All thanks to the help of Onyx, who managed to get some non-destroyed spell books for them, she was also able to develop a more efficient training routine. Which she has eagerly followed after the last few years, with Luna of course.

As she looked up she saw that Onyx had offered a hoof for her which she gladly took.

As she got back on her hooves Onyx let out a sigh, “Well I think that’s enough practice for today. Let’s head back home,” this caught both Luna and Twilight off guard as they began to pout.

They were stopped by Onyx, “Now, now you two. I think that’s enough magic training for today. Let’s get back to the hou-” Onyx stopped as he began to cough suddenly which caused both sisters to begin to grow worried.

“Onyx! Are you alright!” both of the sisters yelled out as they moved to either side of him.

It took a moment for Onyx to stop before he looked at them, “Y-yes I’m fine, don’t worry. Something… just got stuck in my throat,” even with Onyx’s explanation Twilight still looked worried

“Are you sure?” Twilight innocently asked as Onyx smiled at her and rubbed her head.

“Yes, Twilight. I’m ok. Let’s go home shall we?” both of the sisters eventually agreed and made their way home.

Twilight looked worryingly at Onyx for a moment more before she shook her head and pushed on. He said he’s fine, Twilight. Trust him. She thought before she followed Onyx and Luna to the house but as they walked she looked at their training field.

They were walking through a dirt field with a plethora of different equipment of training equipment that Onyx uses to train them in body and magic. Different objects are strewn around the field from logs, shards of metal, training gear, and stones which are used to target their magic, she always loved that part of her training. Onyx also made them do a ton of exercises like athletics, weights, and even some self-defense tricks. Which Celestia seemed very focused on.

Included with this were a few benches and other outlined areas, she even winced when she saw two small craters from when she and Luna flared when Celestia taught them some advanced magic.

Twilight looked over at her sister. Like her, Luna only grew a bit since they began to live with Onyx. She had grown a bit taller, her mane and tail had grown out some more, and even her horn grew longer, though not as long as hers.

Twilight honestly felt a little bad, her magic had continuously grown on an amazing scale since she learned her first spell, but Luna and even Celestia had only grown a little. She really wanted Luna’s magic to be on par with hers. She can only imagine all the sort of spells and pranks they could pull on Celestia and Onyx, imagine the magic! She even began to laugh a little at the idea before she sighed when she realized that more than likely that was a dream, a truly tempting dream.

Even still she still smiled because no matter what she and Luna would always be together, even if it was just to prank their older sister for the rest of their lives! This caused Twilight’s laughter to grow louder.

As they left the field, Twilight's gaze moved to Onyx as her smile grew. She and her sisters had been living with Onyx for a little over four years now and these had been some of the best years in her life, not that she never enjoyed her time with her sisters before; not one bit. But a part of her was so happy they stopped having to go from one town to another just to get bits. She didn’t know how she lived without a bed for so long.

She is and will always be so grateful for what Onyx did for her and her sisters, in her mind he’s the greatest stallion ever.

Twilight suddenly felt herself being prodded on the shoulder. Surprised, she looked over and saw her smirking sister.

“Welcome back to Equis, sister,” Luna said before she began to laugh.

Twilight’s cheeks began to turn red before she heard a deep laugh and her eyes shrunk as she turned around and her fears were realized. Onyx had joined in on her sisters’s horrendous laughter. Twilight’s cheeks grew a bit redder as she looked at the ground.

Luckily Twilight’s torment ended when the three ponies reached home, both Luna and Twilight saw Celestia working in a fenced garden attached to the house, now more organized than several years ago.

The moment the sisters saw Celestia they called out to her and made a beeline.

“Celestia!” Luna and Twilight called out.

Celestia turned around and smiled as she saw them. On top of Celestia’s head was a simple tan sun hat with a beautiful sunflower attached to it. In her yellow aura was a big basket filled with multiple different vegetables.

Celestia was a little bigger than the average mare; she also kept her beautiful pure white fur, excluding a few dirk marks at the moment, her pink mane and tail had also grown out a bit more. She always wished she would become as beautiful as Celestia.

After they began to live with Onyx more permanently her sister had started to take on more responsibilities like shopping in the nearby villages, which her sister always seemed nervous to do. Checking the perimeter every morning and night and gardening, which her sister seemed to have happily taken up considering her sister does this nearly every day. Twilight grew sad as she was reminded of Celestia’s treatment of Onyx.

Even though they've lived with Onyx for the past few years her sister still treats him like a stranger and no matter what she or Luna do Celestia makes excuses or outright refuses to spend time with him. Twilight couldn't understand why her sister treated Onyx like he was a threat, it always hurt her to see them so distant.

Twilight was so lost in her thoughts that she realized that she and Luna were about to give their sister an impromptu hug. Shortly after she and Luna practically crashed into Celestia which caused her to drop all of the veggies. Twilight began to feel her sister's soft fur as all her thoughts disappeared at that moment.

As she layed in haven she heard her pillow laugh as she looked at her and Luna with a surprised but happy look, “Twilight! Lulu! It’s so good to see you two! If I may ask, why the sudden need for a hug?” Celestia asked with a warm smile.

They both tightened their hug as Twilight replied, “Because we love you of course. We both missed you,” her response got a grin from Tia.

“I suppose that's as good of a reason as any. So how’s your lessons going?” Celestia asked as she grabbed her basket from the ground and Twilight and Luna got off her.

Twilight began to get a tad embarrassed as she looked away, “Oh! Uh, well I… wasn't able to cast the spell,” Twilight said quite downtrodden.

She then felt a pair of legs wrap around her, “Twilight, don’t worry. We knew the spell was going to be hard. Especially, for a filly your age. The fact you got so close was impressive in itself. I and everypony is very proud of you,” that lifted Twilight’s spirits as she hugged Celestia again.

After a few moments they separated and Twilight looked over and saw both Onyx and Luna giving her a supportive look, which helped soothe her concerns.

Luna seemed to have realized something as she began to jump up and down and blurt out, “Oh! Tia, I was finally able to cast that frost spell!” Luna said excitedly, Twilight smiled, she knew Luna had been stuck on that spell for the last few weeks, and she was so happy she was finally able to master it.

Celestia almost squealed as she clapped her hooves, “Oh, Luna! I’m so proud of you. I knew you could do it,” Luna puffed out her chest in pride at Celestia’s praise.

Twilight smirked, she knew that Luna always loved getting praise from Celestia.

Unfortunately, Celestia’s happy expression disappeared as she looked over at Onyx and she gained a familiar neutral look, “Oh… Hello, Onyx,” she said in a dull tone as she began picking up her veggies and putting them back in her basket.

Tension grew in the air as Luna and Twilight saw Onyx look away from their sister, “Yes uh… Hello to you too, Celestia. I see you’ve gathered the vegetables. Thanks,” Onyx tried to finish with a sincere smile.

Celestia only responded with a slight nod which caused the three ponies to feel the tension grow before Onyx decided to speak up.

“Good. Well let’s head inside, shall we? I need to start making dinner,” he said as he made his way inside, which the three sisters followed, Celestia was trailing from behind.

As they entered Twilight looked around the now familiar place she now called home. The house truthfully was quite small, especially for the four of them. The entire building was made out of plaster with wood beam supports, excluding a few areas such as parts of the kitchen and the outdoor smithery that Onyx loved to work at, it was represented by his cutie mark after all.

The first floor was not that big with a very small entrance room that led to the living room, kitchen/dining room, and stairway that led to the second floor, there was also a hatch around back which was where Onyx stored the food and extra storage. Calling the living room a “room” was generous, it was more of a small extension of the original building with some chairs, benches, and tables. Even still what made the room special was the many different memorabilia that Onyx had collected during their time together such as small portraits of the three of them, metal figures she and Luna had tried to forge with Onyx’s help, and even some past presents that she and Luna were able to make.

Twilight looked over at the kitchen, which took up most of the first floor. Connected to one of the walls was the stove with multiple different cupboards and drawers filled with a plethora of different herbs, utensils, dishes, and the like. In front of the stove was a large and long stone block that Onyx would use to cut food and prepare food, connected to the stone was a table with a few chairs around it. Finally next to the stove was a small window that showed a perfect view of the clearing.

Once Twilight finished she saw Onyx make his way to the stove before he pulled out a few utensils. Twilight and Luna then ran over to Onyx while Celestia put down her basket of vegetables on the stone and sat in one of the chairs.

After a moment, Onyx looked at them, “So, have you three done your chores?” Onyx asked as he began to take the vegetables out of the basket.

Luna responded, “Yes, me and Twilight cleaned our rooms and washed all of the dishes. As you asked,” she replied with a big smile.

Onyx smiled, “Wonderful. I knew I could count on you two,” he said before his smile dropped a little when he looked at Celestia, “So… what about you, Celestia?”

Celestia continued to look at Onyx with indifference as she responded, “Done,” they all sat in silence for a moment before Onyx continued.

“Um, well. Thank you, Celestia. So, Twilight, Luna, have you been able to get your self-defense training finished? Were you able to cast that flash stun spell?” Onyx asked as he started to cut up the vegetables.

This time Twilight spoke first as she began to hop in place with a large smile, “Oh! Yes, we did! In my opinion, Luna was able to cast it wonderfully. The flash was bright enough that it made it hard for me to see but at the same time was low enough that she was able to get away. I’m so proud of her!” Twilight said before she gave Luna a hug which caused her to blush profusely.

Onyx meanwhile laughed at the display as he pulled out a pot and put it on the table before he walked over to grab a water jug. As he returned he looked over at Twilight and Luna with a smile.

“Well Luna, it’s good to hear you were able to cast the stun spell. It looks like I’ll have to find another spell for you two to study,” Onyx said before he looked over at Celestia with a more serious expression.

“Celestia, I need to talk to you about something serious for a moment,” Celestia raised an eyebrow and looked as if she were going to disregard Onyx before she sighed and got up.

“What is it?” Celestia said as she walked over to him.

Twilight suddenly felt Luna tap her shoulder and as she looked over she saw Luna wave her over. Twilight knew what Luna meant and huddled up.

“Ok Twilly I’ll distract them. You get the thing,” Twilight smirked and nodded as she began to make her way upstairs while Luna walked over to distract the two adults.

Celestia and Onyx looked confused as they saw Twilight run upstairs, Celestia then looked at Luna, “Um… sister, where's Twilight off to?” Luna smiled a little nervously but waved off her worries.

“Oh nowhere sister, she just forgot something. Oh! Hey what are you making Onyx,” Luna tried to change the subject as both of the adults still looked confused but ignored it.

Meanwhile Twilight ran past all the portraits of her, her sisters, and Onyx. When she reached her and Luna’s room she excitedly opened the door and as she looked around for the thing. But as she looked around she was flooded by many memories of their time with Onyx.

The room she shared with Luna was the same room the three of them had stayed in when they first arrived at Onyx’s house, though Celestia now had her own room. She and Luna had done some redecorating since then, the room was now divided in half between her and Luna’s side. The walls were now half, blue starry sky for Luna and purple with swirling magic for her, Onyx painted it for them. On her side, she had shelves full of a plethora of different types of books, a few paintings of her that Celestia made, and magical trinkets they were able to find. Her bed was also covered by simple purple sheets underneath which definitely DIDN’T have some of her favorite books… which she absolutely doesn’t read late at night, nope. On Luna’s side she had a few books on stars, and a few fighting manuals, and next to her bed was a crude telescope that she and Celestia had been working on. Her bed was covered in deep blue sheets on top of which was the grey item.

Twilight grabbed it in her telekinesis and ran out the door where she shortly joined her sisters. As she reached the bottom she saw Onyx start up the stove and boiling the pot, he was currently cutting the veggies as Luna distracted both of them.

“And that’s why-” Luna was interrupted when Twilight jumped down the last few steps and ran toward them.

“I got it!” Twilight yelled out as the three ponies looked at her, Luna who began to grin widely.

Twilight and Luna moved beside each other and hid the object behind them as both Celestia and Onyx looked confused.

Twilight cleared her throat before she looked at them, “Onyx… we are all really happy that you took us in, especially since you didn’t need to… and since Celestia almost stole your crops-” Twilight grimaced for a moment and Celestia gave a hint of a blush, “- So that’s why me and Luna decided that we wanted to give you something as our… thanks for everything. We hope you like it.”

In that moment Twilight revealed the gift which was a rough black Onyx crystal with the words “We love you, Dad!” etched into it.

Onyx was shocked for a moment as he stared at the gift and even began to shed a few tears before he gave a massive smile and hugged Twilight and Luna, both of whom were happy.

“Of course. Thank you both… I love you too, so much. I’m so glad to have two beautiful, smart, and amazing daughters. You both make this old stallion so happy,” As Onyx finished he began to openly cry which Luna and Twilight quickly joined in as they declared their love to him.

Unseen by the three was Celestia who was shocked but unlike the others held a slight frown and for a moment a grimise before she gave a neutral expression with a look of contempt.

After a few minutes, after Onyx cleared his tears, “Where did you two get this beautiful rock anyways?”

Luna blurted out, “We found it in the forest when we were studying,” Onyx looked worried.

“You two shouldn’t go that deep in the forest alone,” his worry quickly changed to one of happiness, “But for today, I’ll let it go… what do you think of helping your old stallion with dinner.”

Both Luna and Twilight happily agreed as the three got ready to make dinner. During this Celestia silently left the house and returned to her garden with conflicted feelings.


For the rest of the day and later night, Luna and Twilight helped Onyx cook food which they later all ate together where they played many different games for the next few hours until late that night. Onyx forced a very tired Twilight and Luna to bed which a silent Celestia helped with.


“Good night you two… I love you both so much,” Onyx closed the door as he heard Twilight and Luna reply with ”Love you too”. After he closed the door he heard hoofsteps go down the stairs and as he looked over he saw Celestia walk down them. After a moment he followed her downstairs and out onto the porch where he saw her sitting down and looking up at the stars.

He hesitated for a moment but walked up behind her and sat down before he too looked up at the stars. A few moments passed as the silence became dominating until Celestia sharply stated.

“What do you want,” Celestia didn’t look at him.

Onyx frowned slightly for a moment, “Just wondering… how you’re feeling right now,” he said as gently as he could.

She quickly replied,” I’m fine.”

After her reply, the silence returned until Onyx sighed, “I’m sorry… I know how much you hate them calling me Dad. I wasn’t trying to replace them,” Celestia’s silence continued until.

“... I know,” Onyx barely heard her as she sighed and finally looked at him with a tired and hurt look, which instantly caused Onyx’s heart to hurt.

Before he could say anything Celestia continued, “I remember when it was just us three before we met you, before we had to live off the streets, before our village was destroyed by that monster… I… I wanted them to meet Mom and Dad so, so bad-” at this point Celestia was tearing up, “-but it seems that fate had other plans,” she let out a spiteful laugh.

Onyx looked guilty and looked away for a moment, Celestia continued, “But… no matter my feelings… they both love you. I can’t deny that and I won’t take that away from them. They need you right now,” She suddenly looks intensely straight at him, “But if you do anything to them.”

Onyx meets her eyes with certainty, “I would never.”

There stare goes on for what feels like forever before her eyes soften, “I know,” Celestia then got up and began to walk back inside, Onyx moved out of the way for her. Before she looked back at him, “I assume you already know but you’ll never replace him… no matter what.”

Onyx got up and quickly replied, “I would never… I never wanted to replace him. Just know Celestia… that you three make me so happy and no matter what happens… remember I… I, love you too.”

Celestia gives an unreadable look but he swore he saw a shadow of a smile. After a few moments, she sighed and said, “Goodnight," but after a few steps she stopped and continued. “... Thank you, Onyx. For everything… you're a good stallion,” she then makes her way inside to her room.

Onyx smiled as she left before he looked back up at the night sky, I promise you, Celestia. I’ll protect them and you… No matter what. Perhaps, I should dust off my old adventuring gear. As he finished a peaceful silence enveloped the night.

The silence broke when Onyx started to cough quite violently for a good few minutes until he was able to regain his composure as he breathed deeply, "That… was worse… than usual… Buck,” He caught his breath as he looked at his hoof and saw crimson.
He pushed his worries aside and walked back inside… Even if it kills me.