Wings of the Heart

by gundamexia34

First published

A man and his cat. Sounds ordinary enough right? Now add Personas and Dial Fighters from Super Sentai, and throw them all into Equestria! Yeah, now we're talking! Time for some- Darn it Gil! Get away from that!

Sorry about him. That was my cat Gilgamesh. And while he may have hit the nail on the head, he certainly left out a hell of a lot of fucking important details! Like the fact that-

Hey! Get on with it already!

Can it, you glutton! Anyway-Gah!

Look if, you wanna know more, just read! No need to bore you with the details!

Almost forgot to mention this (And I feel rather silly for it) but this is a collab between me and Way Big! He's in charge of the Persona aspects and Gilgamesh's actions! Check out his profile Here!


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A sigh echoed through the dark hallway as the door on one end opened and shut.

“What. A. Day.” A voice said tiredly as he turned on a light, revealing his features.

He appeared to be in his mid-20’s, though his spiked hair had been turned white prematurely from stress. Bags sat firmly under his green eyes that contrasted against his pale skin. A black business suit hung loosely off of his rather skinny frame.

A meow was heard from a different doorway down the hall and a golden orange streak suddenly leaped up and ‘gracefully’ landed on the man’s shoulder, revealing a golden orange cat with a black ‘mask’ and black ‘socks’. The cat then flopped onto its belly and began pawing at the man’s loosened tie.

“Gilgamesh!” The man scolded, though he was laughing even as he stumbled a bit to compensate for the addition of his pet and friend’s weight, “Come on, you know better than this!”

He looked into the cat’s eyes and sighed again, scratching him under the chin, “Ah, who am I kidding. I’d never be able to stay mad at you.”

As if to jokingly tease him and test his limits, Gilgamesh began pawing his owner’s ear, causing the cartilage appendage to bend and ‘snap’ back repeatedly.

“Hey, enough of that!” He picked the cat off of his shoulder and cradled him like a baby, “You are so troublesome, sometimes. I know you’re hungry, just give me a minute.”

So saying, he walked into the kitchen and poured some dry cat food into his pet’s bowl before putting him down and washing his hands. He pulled out a TV dinner for himself and set it cooking as he poured a drink, watching his beloved pet paw his bowl closer to the table and eat.

“Why you can never leave the bowl over there is beyond me.” The man said as he shook his head.

Gilgamesh slapped his tail ‘harshly’ on his owner’s shoe, as if being annoyed that his loyalty should be obvious, but his owner wasn’t noticing or caring.

“Oh wait, now I remember, it’s because my sister taught you to come over here for scraps.” The man laughed, pulling his meal from the microwave and eating it.

Gilgamesh’s tail gave another slap to the man’s shoe before the cat briefly laid on its back and wiggled a bit then went back to eating.

“Okay, seriously, I wish I could understand you sometimes, buddy. You would definitely be a better conversationalist than the idiot I got assigned a week ago.” The man sighed, “Seriously, the guy went and fiddled around with a valuable and delicate bit of equipment with no idea what he was doing, and it’s thanks to that that I’m home 5 hours late. I had to spend all that unpaid overtime just to fix his stupid mistake!”

Gilgamesh gave a grumbling meow in agreement.

“Seriously, I dunno what those guys did to you in the lab that mom and dad’s foundation rescued you from, but you are way too smart to be normal.” The man sighed and reached down, rubbing between Gilgamesh’s ears, “But I guess I should just be grateful that you’re okay and that I get to know you.”

Gilgamesh leaned into the rubbing, and even lifted his paws up to hold the man’s hand against his head.

The man just laughed, gently working his hand free and finishing the last of his meal and drink before throwing the trash away. Gilgamesh even helped when a stray piece of plastic fell to the floor. Before he could do anything else, his phone went off.

“Oh dear god. I swear that if this is my boss again…” The man snarled as he checked the number and failed to recognize it, “Unknown number? Probably a telemarketer. They can rot in hell.”

With that, he hit the reject button and sat down in his computer chair. He failed to notice the installation of a new app.

“Now, I’m almost ready for bed.” He muttered as he opened his web browser and went to Amazon to look longingly at a pair of items he had wanted for a long time but could never get, “I just wish that these weren’t so expensive, there’s just no room in the budget for them!”

Gilgamesh jumped onto the desk before placing a paw on the screen and moving it a few times, as if inspecting the objects on the screen.

“Easy there, buddy.” The man said with a chuckle, “Man, I wish I had a little extra cash...”

As if responding to what the man was talking about, Gilgamesh ‘stood up’ and grabbed an object from a shelf above the desk. The cat then moved it to his owner’s lap and then gave a squeak-like meow.

“What the...?” The man asked in confusion, looking at the object for a moment, “Wait a minute...This is a gift card I thought I’d lost months ago! Gil, you’re a godsend!”

Gilgamesh closed his eyes, looking smug and happy from the compliment.

“Now I can pay for these, even if I’ll be going without junk food for a while, it’s worth it!” The man grinned and placed his order, then yawned as he closed the program.

“Alright, it’s getting real late. Come on Gil, bedtime.” He said sleepily as he stood and walked to his bed.

Gilgamesh followed by jumping from the desk to the bed, doing a ‘tumble’ upon landing. The cat then looked up at the man, almost as if expecting a compliment on the landing.

“Yeah, yeah, I know, you’re sooo graceful…” The man drawled as he got under the covers.

Gilgamesh walked onto the man’s chest before laying down and closing his eyes.

“Good night, buddy. Sweet Dreams.” The man said with a smile.

Gilgamesh gave a few short meows that mimicked, “Good Night.”

The man woke up in the middle of the night, feeling absolutely parched. He looked and saw that Gilgamesh was off to the side of him rather than on his chest, so he didn’t feel any guilt in getting up to head to the kitchen for a drink. Gilgamesh woke up regardless and followed his owner to the kitchen.

“Sorry, pal. Didn’t mean to wake you.” The man said with a yawn as he patted his cat’s head.

Gilgamesh mewed and rubbed his head on the man’s leg, showing that he wasn’t bothered by it.

The man simply smiled and walked back to his room, blinking at the shut door.

“Huh. I thought I left that open.” He said, then shrugged it off and walked through.

As soon as he did, a flash of light blinded him, and when his vision cleared he was wide awake from shock. This was most certainly not his room! The carpet had been replaced with tatami mats, and there were paper sliding doors along the wall opposite to him. The walls to either side seemed to be made of bamboo, or at least lined with it. Though the room was tinted blue by the light of the moon from the window.

“Ah, greetings. I am Igor, and Welcome to my Velvet Room,” said a hunched-over old man with a very long nose, bulging beady eyes, and a creepy grin. Said man was sitting on the floor in front of a short table.

“...Well, shit. I must be dreaming, this can’t be real…” The man said in disbelief.

“You are not wrong, but neither are you right,” the odd man commented. “This place exists between Dream and Reality, Mind and Matter. You are dreaming in a sense, but you are fully aware.”

“Okay, I seriously need to lay off the Persona let’s plays. What do you think Gil-Gilgamesh?!” The man did a double-take and yelped his pet’s name as he looked upon his new form.

Said form seemed to resemble Morgana from Persona 5 in shape, but his ‘mask’ became an actual mask, and his collar changed into a bandana that was tied around his neck. Gilgamesh was just finishing inspecting himself when his owner noticed him. “Well, I’d say it's about time I had a way to communicate properly with you,” the now chibi cat said. “You don’t know how refreshing good fish is until that dry food makes you parched enough to drain three bowls of water in one sitting.”

“Well, excuuusee me, princess! You were getting too chubby! The vet said to put you on a diet!” The man countered, simply deciding to embrace this as a dream until it could be proven otherwise.

“Then try feeding me with some fish and a slightly reduced amount of dry food. I don’t see why I have to have only ‘one’ food at a time when you humans get to have several per plate,” Gilgamesh complained. The man looked as if he was going to respond to that, but the cat kept talking. “By the way, I can tell you think this is a dream, but it isn’t. After all, I’m seeing this as well.”

“You could just be a figment of my mind.” The man began to object before Igor chuckled and drew their attention.

“I can see your confusion and I believe you may need some ‘proof’ that this isn’t a dream,” Igor stated, as he pulled a Tarot deck out of his jacket. “Three cards of the Tarot and their interpretation thereof should do so.”

Three cards were laid out on the table. “Take a seat and flip the cards, one at a time,” Igor offered.

The man stared for a moment before sighing.

“What the hell, why not.” He said, kneeling before the table and flipping the first card.

“Ah, the Tower in the upright position. A chaotic event happened before your arrival here.”

“Heh. I dunno which one that could refer to. My life is pretty chaotic in general.” The man said with a chuckle before flipping the next card.

“Death in reverse. You doubt that what you see is real, and you resist.”

“Most definitely. Though that is starting to fade.” The man flipped the final card.

“The Fool in the upright position. A symbol of beginnings and spontaneity. Your future will be new for both of you, depending on what you choose,” Igor stated before placing the deck back into his jacket, leaving the three cards on the table.

“Alright, so considering that I know nothing about reading Tarot cards, I guess this can’t be a dream. You can only dream about what you know, after all.” The man said simply, “So what do you mean by choosing?”

“An old friend of mine asked me to browse around the Sea of Souls, both of the living and dead, to find one or more that could save her world from a fate of Ruin,” Igor stated, giving the man a ‘knowing’ look.

“Ah. And you chose us? Kind of an odd decision.” The man said bluntly.

“Gods, Cosmic beings, and their servants choose on potential. They look to possible futures, rather than be blinded by present looks,” Igor explained. “You may not be a Wildcard, and your companion is of the Tower Arcana, but you both hold the potential to defy fate, and provide said potential in aid to the world fated for Ruin.”

“And what are we supposed to do about it? I’m only human, and Gilgamesh is a cat, even if he is changed in this place.” The man said with a raised brow.

“Then perhaps, a few items and power to aid you,” Igor stated. “You have a liking for certain tools and weapons among the Super Sentai, am I correct?”

“No way. You can’t seriously be offering…” The man said in shock, watching as Igor pulled out two items from under the table, “Those are…”

“The Scissors and Magic Dial Fighters from Lupinranger vs Patranger? Indeed.” Igor smirked, waving his hand over them. The two merged to become a watch with a raised face, “This will allow you to access both of their weapons, depending on the code you enter.”

“As for your feline companion-” Igor simply snapped his fingers and one of the paper doors opened revealing what looked to be a ‘man’ in a red trench coat and ‘ninja’ gear, and was carrying a strange spear with the blade planted into the ground.

“No way!” Gilgamesh exclaimed in shock. “Is that…?”

“Yes, it is,” Igor stated. “A standard awakening is too much for you to bear, so from among the Sea of Souls, this Shadow shall accompany you as your Persona.”

“And I shall serve you as loyally as you have been to your master. Let us form a contract,” the being said, extending his free hand towards the cat. “I am Thou, Thou art I.”

Gilgamesh nodded and said, “I accept, Magatsu Izanagi.” He took the Shadow’s hand and shook it. The Shadow then vanished in a sparkling light and the bits of light entered the cat.

“Heh, Well then, it looks like we’re ready to go. Thank you, Igor. To be honest, I might have seemed reluctant, but I’m actually glad to be away from that world with how things were starting to go.” The man said, watching as a paper unrolled on the table, “A standard contract, then?”

“Very well,” Igor stated, pulling out a Japanese writing brush and bottle of ink. “Save my friend’s world from Ruin and even stay there to ‘spice’ up the life there, and the Velvet Room will be open for your use.”

“Agreed.” The man said, taking the brush and gently writing out his name, Timmothy Pestarosa.

“Enjoy your rest before your arrival.” Igor said cheerfully.

Before either of them could question what he meant, their minds went blank as their vision faded to black.

Ch 1

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“Hey! Hey!” a young male voice sounded at the edge of Tim’s hearing as he started to feel consciousness return to him. “Tim! Wake up!”

“Ugh…Dammit, who the hell is calling me at this time of the morning?” Tim said groggily as he reached out for his phone, not quite realizing what had woken him. When his hand grasped nothing but grass, he blearily blinked and propped himself up on one elbow, “What the hell?”

“Shh!” he heard the voice shush. “Keep quiet and get behind that tree!”

Tim slowly got to his feet, doing as he was told as he tried to wake the hell up. He was most certainly not a morning person.

“You have a death wish or a secret fetish of being eaten?” the voice mocked.

What the hell are you-” Tim was cut off by a loud roar, which startled him into being fully awake, “What the fuck?!” He whisper-shouted.

“Crap! It heard you!” the voice exclaimed. “Quick! Up here!”

Tim started to climb frantically, making it into the higher branches relatively quickly now that he was awake. He saw Gilgamesh, and his memories started to come back.

“Crap, crap, crap! Can’t you deal with this thing with your Persona?” He asked.

“We’re too close to the forest edge, and there is a village of some kind a short distance from said edge!” Gilgamesh shot back. “We don’t want any unwanted attention on ourselves!”

“...You’re being an idiot.” Tim deadpanned as he flicked his cat on the nose, “It’s better to be upfront and friendly with the locals, so why are we hiding from them? If Igor wants us to save them, they can’t be all bad.”

“That’s not the point!” Gilgamesh yelled back. “I have plenty of reason to not want to go all out on that Manticore! The two that most stand out is that if I revealed that I have a never-before-seen power, they’d take me away from you to try to find out what it is...and I’m still a bit tired. Forming that contract took a big chunk of my energy!”

“I doubt that they would do that. And if they tried then they’re gonna get a Blade Boomerang up their...Well, you get the idea.” Tim was firm in his declaration as he turned the dial of his watch a certain way.

“Tell that doubt to those mad scientists your parents saved me from,” Gilgamesh mumbled, barely loud enough for Tim to hear.

Tim stopped fiddling with his watch and wrapped his cat in a hug.

“I swear, I will do whatever it takes to keep that from happening to you again!” Tim gave a solemn vow as he went back to his watch after returning Gilgamesh to his ‘perch’, “Now, I’m going to get this thing taken care of, and we’re going to go and make you some more friends.”

“9! 6! 3!” A voice announced, making Tim grin.

“Got it. Watch and learn!” With that, he dropped down, the large Scissors Shield and enormous Blade Boomerang forming in his hands in a flash of light.

The manticore saw him and charged, which Tim deflected with his shield and then he used the sharp edge of the boomerang to pin it down by its throat.

“Alright, fuzzball, are we gonna have a problem?” He asked with a mad grin.

The manticore whimpered and shook its head.

“Good. Now get outta here!” Tim picked the boomerang back up and attached it to his back where it faded from view along with the shield, watching the massive predator run away into the bushes.

“I’ll be honest, that was cool,” Gilgamesh said as he leaped down from his perch. “So, were you serious about helping me get more friends?”

“Come on, Gil, you’ve known me for how long now? And when have I ever broken a promise outside of extenuating circumstances?” Tim jokingly scolded, “And even if you don’t get any more, you have me as a friend...No, as a brother, if you need me.”

Gilgamesh looked up at Tim with ‘teary’ eyes. “ the way, the one broken promise involved your brief-”

“I said outside of extenuating circumstances!” Tim said as a reminder with a light blush, “That means when it was my own fault and not the fault of outside influences!”

Gilgamesh giggled a bit. “Gotcha,” he said with a smile. “Anyway, we should get out of here. If that Manticore was any indication, there’s bound to be-” He stopped talking and began sniffing the air. “Wait a that? ...Fresh Trout!” The cat then began running towards the forest’s edge.

“Oi, oi! Wait up, you damn glutton!” Tim called as he ran after his friend.

Rarity was trying desperately to get her cat to eat.

“Oh, come now, Opal!” She said exasperatedly, “I went and bought this just for you, so why won’t you eat it?!”

She held out the trout again, and once more Opal turned her head away with distaste.

{Yoink!} And the trout was suddenly gone from her hand and a golden orange cat with black accents was a short distance away with the fish in question.

“Ah, you brute!” Rarity called after the new cat, “Can’t you see that I was trying to feed my dear Opal!”

{She obviously didn’t want it, which I can understand, based on her offense meant.} The cat called out.

{No, no, you’re right. I’m getting fat, and I need to cut back, but she refuses to listen to the veterinarian who told her that!} Opal responded, though Rarity just saw her shaking her head and heard nothing but a few meows.

“Gilgamesh, get back here!” Tim called as he ran up, “I told you, you need to eat less!”

{Tell that to the strange pony girl concerning her fat cat...again no offense!} Gilgamesh called out to Opal.

{And again, none was taken.} Opal responded amusedly, which Tim blinked at understanding before putting it down to being able to understand Gil, who spoke the same language.

“You know, he has a point.” Tim said simply as he looked at Rarity, “She does look a wee bit chubby, maybe feed her a little less often or in smaller portions?”

“How dare you!” Rarity said, going to slap him, only for Tim to catch her arm and glare.

{Uh-oh.} Gilgamesh ‘sang’ as he dug into the trout.

{What’s wrong?} Opal asked, concerned, {I know she was out of line there, but the way you said that gives me a bad feeling.}

{Let’s just say, attempting to use violence to defend being an idiot around him is not a good idea.} Gilgamesh explained. {By the way, you have some pretty thick skin...and that isn’t a fat joke.}

“Now listen here, little miss priss…” Tim said slowly, an aura of dark energy forming a demonic mask behind him as he looked up with a scowl, “You need to take a good long look at what you were about to do, and then think long and hard about what the consequences would be...Capische?”

{Ohhh, that’s what you meant.} Opal said, shaking in terror.

Rarity had it far worse though, she was about ready to wet herself.

“R-r-right, I...I think I’ll go inside…” She said as she was released before leaving a dust cloud behind as she ran into her shop.

{Well, that was fun...In a morbid sense.} Gilgamesh said as he finished up the last few scraps of the fish. {So, we’re new around here. Anyone who we can go to so we can get our bearings?} He then asked Opal.

{I would suggest Twilight Sparkle. She’s a friend of my owner’s. Incredibly smart, a little close-minded, but she has a good heart.} The white female cat said with a smile, {Follow me, I’ll lead you to her house. Oh, and my name is Opal, if you didn’t catch it.}

“Timmothy Pestarosa, though friends call me Tempest or Tim.” The lone human said as he patted her on the head, “And the glutton over there is Gilgamesh.”

{Said the sugar cookie addict.} Gilgamesh snarked.

“Oi, at least I know when to quit!” Tim protested

{For a month at least.} The tom whispered to Opal.

“Oh, can it with the flirting, you two!” Tim teased back, having heard the comment and deciding to embarrass his cat.

{Worth it!}

{Oh my…} Opal looked over Gilgamesh slowly, {I could do worse...Far worse…} Those words caused Gilgamesh to ‘blush’.

As she said that, she pondered on the mysterious duo.

Tim was an oddity, being calm one second, then an icy glacier of fury the next before falling back into playful banter. Gilgamesh gave as good as he got, and seemed to know just what to say to make the journey interesting.

{Is this a literal treehouse?} Gilgamesh asked as they finished passing through the town.

“...It does appear so…” Tim began deadpan, “Alright, I guess we should knock.”

And so saying, he walked up and did just that.

The door was opened by a purple and green ‘reptile’ that was dressed like a casual mid-teen. “Hello, this is meant to be a library, so knocking isn’t fully necessary,” The ‘reptile’ said with a bored voice, not really paying attention to who was there.

“Oh. We’re new, here, so we didn’t know that…” Tim said simply, “You alright dude? You look exhausted.”

“Just the average day of Spike the Dragon, adopted younger brother of the town bibliophile and madpony,” he said, still bored in his voice.

“Alright, seriously, Opal? That’s the kinda person you lead us to?!” Tim asked incredulously.

{This must be one of her bad days. She’s usually not too crazy, but when she’s trying to understand something…} Opal gave the feline version of a shrug.

“Why are you talking to Rarity’s cat...and whose cat is that next to her?” Spike asked, taking a glance at the group. “Come to think of it, who and what are you?”

“Oi, that was pretty rude there, brat.” Tim said flatly, “And to answer your questions, in order: I can understand her, that’s my cat Gilgamesh, the name’s Tim, and I’m a human.”

“What I asked about you shouldn’t have been,” Spike said, a slight bit of confusion on his face for a moment. “Either I unintentionally picked up on some of Twilight’s old antisocial behavior, or your species isn’t around here often enough for many to know about.”

{I could have told him that.} Gilgamesh said, looking at Tim nervously.

“Well, the way you phrased it sure was. And I would think they wouldn’t. I was sent here from my homeworld of Earth after all.” Tim pointed out.

“Your homeworld?” Spike asked in confusion. “Was it banishment for a crime or something else?”

“Else. I was sent here to help against some kind of threat, but I don’t know what that threat is yet.” Tim explained.

“Well, I can honestly say that some sort of trouble will go down...eventually,” Spike said. “There was a week or two of ‘calm’ before Nightmare Moon showed up, and a similar case with Discord’s escape. Today marks day 10 of this most recent ‘calm’, so....”

{Talk about a literal calm before the storm.} Gilgamesh commented quietly.

“Sounds like the town is under a Chinese curse.” Tim said, shaking his head, “May you live in interesting times.”

“Anyway, from what I heard when you were talking a bit with Opal, you wanted to meet Twilight?” Spike asked.

“Heh, smart. Yeah, Opal said she could help us get settled in.” Tim stated.

“Well, she’s getting ready to go figure out some surge of energy or whatnot; I didn’t fully pay attention to what she was saying,” Spike said. “But I’ll see if she can at least spare a glance. So find a seat, get comfortable?”

“Surge of energy? I have a bad feeling about this…” Tim began as he followed the teen inside before a flash of light blinded him for a moment.

“Spike! I’m done researching! Now put these away while I go and get- OOF!” The feminine voice was cut off as the speaker ran straight into Tim and scattered the massive stack of books she was carrying.

When the dust cleared, the duo were covered in books. The pile shifted as someone got to their hands and knees, revealing Twilight Sparkle. From below her, Tim sat up and then locked eyes with her as the duo blushed.

“Omigosh! I’m so sorry!” Twilight said as she jumped up.

“Meh, it’s fine. Accidents happen.” Tim said, still a light shade of pink.

{5, 4, 3, 2, 1…} Gilgamesh counted before Twilight’s embarrassed blush changed to excitement.

“Oh, wow! What are you?! I’ve never seen anything like you before!” Twilight said eagerly as she flitted around Tim at high speed, making him blink.

“Oi, oi, oi! Calm down, lass!” He said as he tried to follow her movements, his light Scottish accent coming through more clearly with his stress.

“I agree. Calm down, Twilight,” Spike said. “You’re starting to act like Pinkie...again.”

Twilight blinked.

“Wait, seriously?! I’ve never been that bad!” Twilight objected.

“Your first week here, you discovered that this library has more works of Starswirl the Bearded than Canterlot ever had; then managing to perform 90% of spells in said works; getting excited about having the ‘Unofficial’ History of the Discordian Era brought here; and now right now,” Spike listed off. “And the last one included your voice changing pitches, almost matching her voice.”

“...I take it that this ‘Pinkie’ is random, hyper, and seemingly unable to be explained? Because that sums up her behavior rather well.” Tim deadpanned.

{Oh, you have no idea. At least Gummy, her pet, is rather calm in comparison.} Opal said simply.

{When you say ‘calm’, are we talking about a ‘sleepy’ calm, or just ‘high’ calm?} Gilgamesh asked.

{More of the latter, but not that bad. He just doesn’t talk much, or really care about anything. He’s simply the type to relax in a nice pond while the sun is on his back while his owner does her own thing.} Opal explained.

“So, like a cat, but I’m guessing he’s an aquatic animal of some sort from the ‘pond’ bit?” Tim asked.

{Yes, he’s an alligator, though he doesn’t have any teeth at first glance. They’re actually retractable, though don’t ask me how that works as I have no idea.} Opal said.

“Is she saying anything interesting?” Spike asked Tim, catching Twilight’s attention.

“Just explaining a bit about ‘Pinkie’ and her pet alligator ‘Gummy’.” Tim said.

“Who are you talking about? Or even to?” Twilight asked incredulously.

“Opal.” Tim said simply.

“And...You can understand her?” Twilight started to look a little doubtful.

{Oh! Oh! Don’t forget me!} Gilgamesh said excitedly, sitting up on his hind legs and doing a ‘paw paw’ motion with his front legs.

“Yeah, yeah, whatever you glory hound.” Tim said with a smirk, before turning back to Twilight.

{Do I look canine to you!?} Gilgamesh shot back.

“No, with that motion you just did, you look like a kangaroo.” Tim snarked.

{I’m not a marsupial either!}

“Oh wow, you really can understand cats! I have to get the others and show them!” Twilight said, running over to a mirror and touching a few specific spots, “Girls, meet me by the lake in White Tail woods, I have something amazing to show you and we can have a nice picnic at the same time!”

“Wait, who are you talking to? That’s just a mirror.” Tim pointed out.

“A communication mirror! Don’t you have those where you’re from?” Twilight asked excitedly.

“Nope. The closest we have is something called a telephone...Speaking of which…” Here Tim pulled out his own cell phone and blinked at finding it undamaged, “Huh, neat.”

He powered it up and blinked at the sight of both a new app and a new message.

“Hello, Tim.” The message began, “This is Igor. You can use this new app to get around faster. Time flows a bit differently in the Metaverse, so if you spend an hour in there, half that time will have passed in the ‘real’ world. Also, I’ve hidden several surprises in there for you to find. I believe you know them as Dial Fighters. For each one you find, its code will be added to your watch and you can access its abilities. Have fun searching!”

{What’s with the surprise?} Gilgamesh asked, carefully jumping onto Tim’s shoulder.

“Well, I suppose I am rather weak at the moment.” Tim sighed, “I only have two weapons. Admittedly somewhat powerful weapons, but they’re still only weapons. I’m guessing that having more weapons will give me more to choose from in bad situations.”

“Weapons?” Spike asked. “What’s this about weapons?”

“I have access to a couple of special weapons granted to me from some artifacts. I managed to adjust them to work with my watch, but there are other artifacts out there like the ones I found. I can find them, but it’ll take time.” Tim explained simply.

“What an interesting device.” Twilight said, looking over Tim’s shoulder, “Wait, what does that do?” She asked as she pointed at the Metaverse app. Unfortunately, she put her finger too close and touched the screen.

Suddenly, the world began to warp and shift around them all, and then they were in a red-tinted version of the library.

“Oh my Celestia! What happened?! Where are we?!” She asked in a panic.

“In order, you won the ‘Stupidest Smart’ award for activating something you knew next to nothing about; and we are in what is called the Metaverse, a parallel world that reflects the collective unconscious.” Gilgamesh said, as he jumped from Tim’s shoulder to a nearby table, revealing his chibi form.

“Gil, relax, she didn’t mean to.” Tim scolded, slapping him upside the head, “And calm down, Twilight. Everyone gather ‘round, I’ll bring us back.”

When everyone was close enough, Tim pressed the app again and the world returned to normal.

“See, we’re fine. Though you’ll be able to understand Gil and possibly Opal and other housecats now.” Tim said calmly.

“Fascinating!” Twilight exclaimed.

{Don’t get too excited...yet.} Gilgamesh warned the lavender unicorn. {Save some of that excitement for that sudden picnic you spontaneously requested.}

“Omigosh! You’re right! Come on, Spike, we need to make some sandwiches or something!” Twilight exclaimed as she dragged her ‘brother’ into the kitchen.

“Welp, this is going to be...Interesting? Yeah, let’s go with that.” Tim deadpanned.

“Come on, it’s not much farther!” Twilight exclaimed, leading Spike, Gilgamesh, and Tim toward the picnic spot. Opal had left to go back to the Boutique where Rarity and her sister lived. Despite her issues with Rarity, Opal rather liked her sister Sweetie Belle.

{You said that almost two kilometers ago!} Gilgamesh complained. {Why do I get the feeling that distance is about as messed up as that Mementos in that game I watched you watch.}

“Well, it wouldn’t be so hard on you if you slimmed down a bit, fatso!” Tim teased, not even being out of breath.

{Not exactly the point I was trying to get at. She made it sound like a ‘short’ distance, as in a kilometer at worst...not nearly 5!} Gilgamesh shot back.

“This is nothing! You’re just outta shape!” Tim shook his head as he finally took pity on his pet and picked him up, “Seriously, you need to eat less, and work out more. We are putting you through a tough physical regime soon.”

{Yeah, yeah, you’ve got endurance on me, but I could outrun you in a dead sprint anytime.} Gilgamesh said, relaxing into Tim’s arms.

“In this form, yeah. In chibi form? Not a chance in hell.” Tim countered, scratching Gil’s ears.

“Even though I can understand him now, it’s still weird that you talk to him as if he is about as smart as...well, us,” Spike said.

Tim winced and shared a look with Gilgamesh, silently asking for permission to explain what happened to him. Gilgamesh simply nodded in approval and jumped out of Tim’s arms and moved closer to Twilight.

“The thing is, Gil’s always been smart. As long as I’ve known him, he’s been able to understand me perfectly.” Tim began, “But that’s because of what happened to him before we met. See, my parents were part of an animal rescue group, and we got Gilgamesh from a lab where he was experimented on.”

As Twilight gasped, Tim sighed.

“From what little I understand now that I’m older and looking back, they were trying to increase his intelligence with genetic modification while making sure his brain kept a similar structure. Back then, I was just a kid and it all went over my head, so I might have misunderstood.” Here, Tim looked at Gilgamesh for confirmation.

{You pretty much hit the nail on the head.} Gilgamesh confirmed. {And let me tell you, genetic modification to the brain is like several migraines concentrated to one millimeter cubed...and think how big a cat brain is, and multiply that starting pain by how many cubic millimeters that is.}

Twilight’s eyes widened and started to water as she lashed out and scooped the golden cat into her arms in a tight bear hug.

“I’m so sorry that that happened to you! Nobody deserves that!” She declared solemnly.

“See buddy? I told you, not everyone is like those scientists.” Tim smiled, “Looks like you’ve already made some more friends.”

{I can feel that!} Gilgamesh strained to say. {But if I’m not let go, I don’t think I’ll live to enjoy them!}

“Oops!” Twilight loosened her grip to something more comfortable and started to run her hand along his back, “Sorry, I forget my own strength sometimes.”

{Why…} Gilgamesh looked like he was ready to cuss her out, but began to relax. {Mrrooow...That feels good…….}

Tim just chuckled as he watched his pet bond with his new friends, and speaking of friends…

“Hey, are those your friends up ahead?” He asked Twilight as he pointed to the top of the hill.

“Oh, yes! Come on, you have to meet them!” Twilight smiled as she started to run with one arm holding Gilgamesh and the other dragging Tim along.

Ch 2

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'Geez, this girl is strong!' Tim thought to himself as Twilight all but dragged him up the hill, 'How is she doing this?!'

Meanwhile, Twilight's mind was racing as she eagerly planned out the introduction of her latest discovery. She didn't even notice that she was treating them as objects rather than people.

"Hi, girls!" The purple unicorn called with glee, "I want you to meet-"

"YOU?!" Rarity shouted, her face a rictus of rage as she looked at Tim, "What have you done to Twilight, you foul ruffian?! And where is Opal!?"

{Away from you, if it wasn’t clear enough.} Gilgamesh taunted, despite her not being able to understand him.

“I haven’t done a damn thing to her, you…” Tim took a deep breath, barely keeping from using a very nasty word that would likely get him lynched, “Look, just because I defended myself when you tried to slap me because I made a casual comment about your cat being overweight does not make me a ‘ruffian’ as you so irksomely put it.”

{Also, if you are gonna call me a ‘brute’, phrase it properly, like ‘gentlemanly brute’.} Gilgamesh added.

“Preeety sure that’s an oxymoron, there, buddy.” Tim commented.

“Has he lost his mind or can he understand that cat?” The rainbow maned pegasus blurted out to no one in particular, stopping the argument.

“The latter. I can understand most cats, haven’t tried anything bigger than a housecat, though.” Tim said with a shrug as he pointedly ignored the seething white unicorn, “Where are my manners...Timmothy Pestarosa, also called Tim by friends or Tempest by foes. And this is my friend Gilgamesh.”

Gilgamesh didn’t say anything, instead he ‘stood up’ on his hind legs and did the ‘paw paw’ motion...which instantly got the attention of a butter yellow pegasus with a pink mane and tail.

“And there you go imitating a Kangaroo again! Why can’t you just learn to wave properly?” Tim snarked.

{Shaddup! We can do Zoo Accuracy Tests later, hairless ape!} Gilgamesh snarked back.

“Oh my!” The yellow pegasus exclaimed, blushing, “He’s rather foul-mouthed, isn’t he?”

“Eh? He didn’t curse or anything.” Tim said in confusion as he scratched his head.

“R-really? Oh, I’m sorry. It’s hard to understand him, it’s like he has a heavy accent of some kind to me.” She explained.

{Bug off.} Gilgamesh said to no one in particular and jumped out of Twilight’s arms and onto a tree branch overlooking the group.

“I think he’s at a bit of a limit,” Spike commented, giving a slightly uneasy look at Gilgamesh before turning to Tim. “Did he have moments like this back...wherever you used to live?”

“Eh, they were rare, And I can’t tell what’s set him off, even now. It was an honest mistake.” Tim shrugged.

“Serves him right! Stealing my dear Opal’s fish, after I spent hard-earned bits on it…” Rarity said, making Tim freeze and glare again as the dark aura and mask reappeared.

{Twilight, can you intervene before this goes too far?} Gilgamesh asked. {And while you’re at it, wash her mouth or something. Her stupidity leaves her mouth faster than her common sense.}

Unfortunately, Twilight was too busy muttering to herself while writing about this new development in a notebook she pulled from...Somewhere.


“I...I…” Rarity was looking pale, even for her.

{Seriously!?} Gilgamesh loudly questioned. He quickly jumped from his branch and landed on Tim’s face, obscuring his vision and taking him by surprise. {Get a hold of yourself! I haven't seen you this mad since one of your idiot coworkers blew up the building you worked at!}

Tim stumbled a bit as he pulled his cat off by the scruff of his neck, taking panting breaths as he tried to recover from the near suffocation. This forced him to calm down, as did the look in Gil’s eyes.

“Sorry, buddy.” He said as he hugged his pet loosely, “You know how protective I get of my friends, and you’re my closest friend, a brother in all but blood and species. I’m not the type to just stand there and let someone insult you like that.”

“I, umm, I hate to be rude, but I really hope I misunderstood him there.” The yellow pegasus said as she blushed, “I thought he mentioned something about...well...Blowing…”

Gilgamesh suddenly had steam blowing out his ears before he jumped out of Tim’s hug and began running around the picnic area, and swearing in a thick Scottish accent enough to make a sailor blush.

Speaking of blushing, Tim was as red as a fire engine as he spluttered.

“W-Wrong type of blow! He said one of my coworkers blew up our building, as in he made it explode!” He managed to get out, barely being understood as his accent came out in full force.

“O-Oh! Oh my goodness, I’m so sorry!” The yellow pegasus had her face in her hands, her hair hanging over them, and her wings crossed over that from embarrassment.

Both the rainbow pegasus and a farmer-looking mare looked at each other briefly as they struggled to decide whether to laugh at the situation, or feel bad for both the man and cat being misinterpreted. “I’m seriously wanting to know how to understand him, just to know the context of what he said versus what Fluttershy heard,” the rainbow pegasus said.

“Basically, he told me to calm down and said he hadn’t seen me that mad since the incident I mentioned.” Tim said simply, avoiding looking at the white unicorn to avoid his temper flaring again.

“And what’s he saying now?” The farmer pony asked as she briefly glanced at Gilgamesh as he made another lap around the area.

“Trust me, you don’t wanna know.” Tim deadpanned as he pulled out a tin from his pocket and opened it to reveal some leaves, which he took a pinch of before shutting the tin and holding out the leaves to his cat.

As soon as Gil smelled the leaves he collapsed onto the ground with slightly glazed eyes. {Suddenly feeling like I can hear the colors of the wind.} He drunkenly said.

“Catnip. For use in emergencies only to calm him down.” Tim explained when the yellow pegasus looked at the cat with concern. She sighed in relief.

“Oh, good. I didn’t know what happened.” She said simply.

“You have a good heart, to worry about an animal you just met and thought was acting inappropriately.” Tim smirked and winked to show he was kidding.

“Eep!” The pegasus sounded like a mouse as she re-covered her face in all 3 layers.

{Is that a lemon chocolate bar, or a flower of feathers?} Gilgamesh rambled as he stumbled towards her and attempted to bat at her ‘moving’ tail.

“Alright, that’s enough. Anyone got a bit of water?” Tim asked, being handed a pitcher by the pink mare, he then poured a small amount into a glass before dumping it on Gilgamesh to snap him out of his trance.

{ACK!!! COLD! COLD! COLD!} Gilgamesh shouted as he then jumped through the yellow pegasus’s wings and into her arms.

“Sorry, bro. Had to bust out the catnip to calm you down, and you know the quickest way to snap you out of it is a bit of water.” Tim said as Fluttershy squeaked again before her instincts kicked in and she started to pet Gilgamesh, turning him into a lump of cat putty. Gilgamesh looked at Tim with an angry expression, but could only purr and gargle as his senses were overstimulated to the point of losing control of speaking.

“Alright, now that that mess is over with, can we get some names?” Tim asked as curtly as possible since he didn’t want anything else to go wrong.

After the pleasantries were taken care of (though things were still a little tense between Rarity and Tim) the picnic turned out to be rather enjoyable. It was as they were about to pack up and head back that they were approached by a pony in golden armor with a sword on his hip. Tim tensed a bit at the sight of the weapon and subtly started reaching for his watch.

{Hold on, Tim.} Gilgamesh said as he left Fluttershy’s arms. {Let’s listen to what he has to say, or whatever...You know, gauge his intentions.}

“Guy approaches with a sword on his hip, his hand on the hilt? I don’t like it…” Tim said suspiciously.

{And you said I was paranoid.} Gilgamesh muttered, watching both his owner and the armored pony so nothing would happen.

“A hand on the hilt usually implies it’s ready to be drawn.” Tim pointed out, watching carefully as the pony approached Twilight.

“Twilight Sparkle?” The new guy asked, “I have a message from your brother.”

“My brother? What could he want that needs a guard to deliver it...” The mare took the letter and opened it before her face became a rictus of rage, “A WEDDING INVITATION?! AND NOT ONCE HAS HE MENTIONED HE WAS DATING ANYONE BEFORE NOW?!”

“Uh-oh…” Tim said as he backed away.

{And I think the hand on his sword is for reflexively putting something sharp and pointy between himself and an angry unicorn.} Gilgamesh agreed, before he smelled something and clumsily covered his nose. {That is, if his bladder had more control.}

“Along with his bowels, ugh!” Tim staggered back as he pulled his shirt over his lower face.

All the rest of Twilight’s friends reacted in kind to the horrible smell of the scared stallion, ranging from flying out of smelling range, to pulling out half a dozen bottles of perfume and replacing the local oxygen with it.

“Seriously, who trained these guys?” Rainbow asked, not sure whether to gag or laugh. “They were no use against Nightmare Moon, they weren’t even seen during Discord’s brief time out of stone, and now they are pee and poop scared of Twilight of all ponies?”

“Well, it seems my brother was more focused on his secret love life than doing his bucking job!” Twilight said lividly, “I will be having words with him about that and telling Princess Celestia!”

Tim gave a low whistle, knowing that she must be seriously pissed off to drop what he could only guess was the local equivalent to the F-bomb.

{Oh! Can we come too?} Gilgamesh asked, before quickly covering his nose again. {Urgh, I think he’s scared so bad, I think I smell blood in both his pee and poop……...urgh.}

Twilight paused at that moment and blinked as her mood shifted from pissed to thoughtful fast enough to give someone whiplash.

“Actually…” She began, “That might not be a bad idea. With you being from another dimension, it might be best to introduce you to Celesti-Ugh!” The smell finally hit Twilight now that her temper had simmered down, “Gah! Dismissed soldier, go change, or something!”

“Y-yes ma’am!” The guard said before his horn glowed and he teleported away, leaving his armor behind in his haste to escape.

“Ugh, well, who’s gonna check that to see if it’s clean?” Tim asked, “Not it!”

A bunch of ‘not it’s’ were sounded off, leaving Gilgamesh as the last one. {And of course, leave it to the bloody feline to sniff things out like a dog!} Gilgamesh carefully moved closer to the armor, sniffing occasionally before he carefully batted at some of the pieces. {I think it should be clean, I’m only smelling what smell he left behind. Must have been using adult diapers or something...though, I CALL DIBS ON THE HELMET!!!} He then pounced the helmet and began playing with it as if it was a paper bag or an empty box.

Tim sighed and translated, getting sighs of relief all around.

Ch 3

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After everyone had gone back to their homes, with Tim and Gilgamesh following Twilight since they had nowhere to stay, the former decided to ask their host something.

“So, is there any particular reason that your friend Rarity is so uptight?” He asked, honestly wondering just what the deal was with that mare.

“I honestly have no idea,” Twilight shrugged, “I feel like she’s just always been that way.”

{At best, she took lessons. At worst, a strong desire to be like that, that it’s bleeding into reality.} Gilgamesh guessed.

“Bleeding into reality?” Twilight asked.

“In the Metaverse, you are represented by your inner desires. The ones you don’t want to acknowledge. That representation is known as a Shadow, and usually, it’s not something nice or pretty.” Tim said, shaking his head, “Has she mentioned wanting to be nobility or anything in the past?”

“...There was that time she tried getting close to Prince Blueblood.” Twilight explained hesitantly, “He treated her like utter garbage though.”

{That sounds bad, but we can investigate if she has a Palace later.} Gilgamesh advised.

“Yeah, for now, we have a trip to prepare for. Luckily, you and I don’t have any luggage to pack.” Tim half-joked.

“Oh, yes! You’re right!” With that, Twilight dashed up the stairs, nearly running over Spike as he came down.

{She seems to have a combination of scatterbrains and single-mindedness.} Gilgamesh commented as Spike picked himself back up.

“Tell me about it,” Spike said with sarcasm.

“I could’ve said the same about you when we first met.” Tim joked to Gil, “I remember how you were so curious about everything, but so skittish that if anything you didn’t expect happened, you darted away faster than a cheetah.”

{Don’t even think of bringing up those ugly, green things!} Gilgamesh said in combined anger and fear.

“Oh, you mean one of...These?” Here, Tim pulled out a picture of a cucumber, making Spike blink.

With a meowing shriek, Gilgamesh jumped away from the picture, transforming into his Chibi form in a puff of smoke, before yelling out, “PERSONA!!!” Magatsu Izanagi then appeared and took a fast swipe at the picture. The room practically froze for a few seconds before the picture fell apart practically into confetti.

Magatsu Izanagi blinked at what he had just done, having lashed out at what his contractor had viewed as a threat. He then turned to Gilgamesh with a flat look that all but screamed ‘Really?’ without verbalizing a single syllable. He wasn’t the only one, as Tim was giving his cat a similar look.

“Don’t look at me like that!” Gilgamesh shot at the both of them. “I’m sure you’d both have a scream and an overreaction to your own fears!”

“What in Celestia’s name!?” Spike finally said, having found his voice after the shock.

“Persona. Usually, they’re essentially purified versions of Shadows that form when you learn to accept those parts of you that you deny. For some reason, they tend to take on forms from mythology and the like.” Tim began, “I say normally because Magatsu Izanagi here actually bonded to someone else at one point, but that person is...Gone, and the normal Persona Awakening method would have killed Gilgamesh, so the two made a new contract.”

“Fascinating!” A voice declared, making them all jump as they turned to see Twilight back from her room with a suitcase on the ground beside her and her notebook and pen in hand.

“I wanna ask how you got packed so quickly, but I’m just gonna guess ‘magic’ and move on.” Tim deadpanned.

“You’d be right!” Twilight said with a tilted head, closed eyes, and a wide smile.

“If I am no longer needed, I shall return to the Velvet Room,” Magatsu Izanagi said before vanishing.

“Velvet Room?” Twilight blinked, then sighed as he had already left.

“Some kind of border-dimension. It straddles the line between the Metaverse and Reality, and maybe a few other places too. From what I can tell, it’s something of a safe haven or last resort for if things are about to go tits up on a scale of universal levels at least.” Tim shrugged, “I don’t know much more beyond that.”

“And I’m sure you’re curious about it, but only those with a ‘contract’ can enter. In Tim’s case, it’s between him and its master. In my case, it’s between me and Magatsu Izanagi, my Persona,” Gilgamesh added.

Now then, if we’re gonna catch the train, we might want to hurry.” Tim said, taking Twilight’s suitcase, then holding up a hand before she could speak, “A gentleman does not leave a lady to carry a bag or do other menial tasks if he can help it.”

“Takes a load off my plate,” Spike muttered as he led the way to the train station.

Tim sat with Gilgamesh in his lap as he watched the girls discussing why Twilight never mentioned her brother on the train ride to Canterlot. The name of the place had him mentally snorting, though he kept an especially close eye on Rarity. He was actually worried now that he knew she possibly had a Palace, and he knew that if she did, then they needed to deal with it ASAP before she really got herself into trouble.

{If I may interject, Twilight...And please translate so Miss Butters can understand and hopefully learn to work through my accent.} Gilgamesh spoke up. {From what I can tell, you say that his love life is part of “forgetting” to train the guards and soldiers and also forgetting to inform you sooner on his wedding plans, am I right?}

“Yes, that’s what I’m saying!” Twilight responded after Tim translated word for word.

{Well, I have a bit of a suggestion that might spare him of your wrath...Or at least direct the wrath at the correct problem. There could have been more or other things that may have occupied his time in such a way that caused a decrease in guard quality and forget wedding invitations to you. Like that giant bubble I think I’m seeing over the mountain city.}

Tim paused midway through when he heard the word ‘bubble’, leaving Twilight to finish translating as he looked at Gilgamesh with a raised brow. He then looked out the window and his jaw dropped.

“I was gonna ask if you sneaked some catnip out of the case...But that would mean that it affects me as well since I see it too.” He deadpanned.

“Huh?” Twilight turned in her seat and her eyes widened in shock at the sight of the force field, “Oh my gosh! That has my brother’s magical signature! What in the world could possibly require him to shield all of Canterlot Mountain?!”

Her voice was fraught with worry now rather than rage.

“Okay, not to cause a panic, but is it just me or does that shield run across the tracks?” Tim asked, looking toward the front of the train as they approached it.

{Heads between your knees! I think we’re on a collision course!} Gilgamesh screeched as he dived under Tim’s seat.

Just as it looked like there was about to be a wreck for the history books, a hole opened in the shield and let the train through, though there were a few seconds where its edge scraped along the roof.

{Are we dead yet?} Gilgamesh asked while shivering under the seat.

“Nope, looks like whoever is in control of the shield is on the ball...Barely. A second or two later though…” Tim said, taking a few deep breaths with his hand on his chest.

{This shield is handled by one individual?} Gilgamesh asked, getting a nod from Twilight. {Then it’s more than just love life taking up his mind...and that’s affecting more than just your wedding invite. It’s almost like he’s drunk or high on something to be barely on time like that.}

“Or he could be utterly exhausted.” Tim suggested, “Lack of sleep or overworking and stress can really take its toll on you. I should know.”

“He phrased it to point out that it could have been those too,” Spike said flatly. “And I’m sure that Shining doesn’t drink, or if he does, he’s really careful in his spirit intake.”

“Well, I guess we’ll find out.” Tim said as the train finally slowed to a stop, “Come on, let’s get out there.”

“Brother!” Twilight said, her rage fully replaced with horror and worry when she saw how ragged Shining Armor had become since she last saw him, “Oh my goodness, are you alright?! I can’t believe I wanted to be angry with you, you’re obviously not healthy!”

“You don’t need to sugarcoat it, I’m haggard, you’re angry, let’s just skip past that and…” Shining said blearily.

“Just tell us!” Spike shouted, interrupting the tired stallion.

Shining shook his head in defeat and fatigue before speaking. “A threat was made to Canterlot about a week ago, and I’ve had to maintain the shield from the train station since then.”

Tim sighed, looking at Shining with sympathy as he put a hand on his shoulder.

“I feel your pain. Maybe not as bad, but I’ve been there. Working 24/7 just to make ends meet and ensure those that you care about are safe.” The man said, “But just remember, you are important to them too.”

Shining chuckled lightly at Tim’s words. “I know that. It’s just, I’m the only one capable, outside of the Princesses, to be able to make and maintain a shield like this. Not much of a choice to begin with.”

“Look, what do you know about this threat? If you know any specifics, maybe you can lighten the load by having smaller shields around the targets.” Tim suggested.

“Heh, you sound like one of my kinder commanding officers from when I was back in Basic,” Shining said with a laugh. “And outside of the threat being made, the only thing we know is that they are brutal. Along with the threat, we received someone’s skull with it. Stripped clean of flesh and the bone gnawed a bit into certain parts.”

{Sheesh! Way to send a message.} Gilgamesh commented.

“...I know this may sound bad, but do you still have that skull somewhere? I have a hunch.” Tim asked as gently as he could.

“You’d have to ask Princess Celestia for it, it’s not my say if a civilian can see it or not,” Shining answered.

“Understandable. Though I will say that I know a good bit about bones. My father was a doctor, a mortician to be exact. As much as he hated to do it, he sometimes had to bring me to work on the times he couldn’t afford a babysitter when I was out of school. I can tell a lot about how someone died by just a glance.” Tim explained.

“Still not my say, but good to know,” Shining said, smiling. He then motioned for one of the nearby guards. “In the meantime, I think you all should get up to the castle, if not to rest, then at least to handle the last bits of wedding preparations that I can’t do. It’s really been a big stressor for Cadence.”

“Wait, you’re marrying Cadance?! As in the best babysitter ever?!” Twilight said excitedly, then blinked, “But the name on the letter…”

“Celestia’s insistence to have her formal name on the invites,” Shining explained. “And I’m sure she’ll be glad to see you too, so hurry up and get some of that stress off her plate.”

“Well, that solves a few problems at once.” Tim said, before blinking, “Shit, I never introduced myself. I’ll do so when we meet again, for now, you just keep up the good work.”

Shining simply smiled and then gestured for the guard he summoned to lead the group to the castle.