Losing Myself in You (Sunset x Sci-Twi,)

Mar 28th, 2018
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  1. >"-set?"
  2. >"Sunset, dear?"
  3. >A warm, pressure grabs a hold of her arm.
  4. >She snaps out of her daydream with a jolt.
  5. >"Yesyes, I'm here what's the issue?"
  6. >Sunset shakes her head back and forth, aware of her surroundings again.
  7. >Her eyes fall onto the girl with royal purple curls, Rarity, who is beside her.
  8. >"The issue is you Sunset, darling."
  9. >Rarity drew her hand back slowly and a look of concern appeared
  10. >Her eyebrows slightly curved downward and her smile went crooked.
  11. >"This is about the fifth time I've had to break you out of your own little world."
  12. >Sunset look downwards slightly and recalled four other times where the world just seemed to drown itself out.
  13. >Everything looked blurred and mixed together. Faces became unrecognizable and colors just drained out of the environments as Sunset's thoughts continued.
  14. >The only thing left in this void of nothingness was what appeared to be a purple dot.
  15. >"What does it mean...?" Sunset's thoughts thought.
  16. >The void suddenly begins to quake as her eyes refocus.
  17. >The girl with the purple curls has her hands on Sunset's cheeks and is wearing a panicked expression.
  18. >"Sunset?"
  19. >"Sunset please, you're really scaring me"
  20. >Her eyes darted around, but she realized she was back in CHS and out of her head.
  21. >Grabbing the girl's hand from her cheek she tries to calm her down.
  22. >"Rarity, I"m fine."
  23. >With both of her hands she calmly set's Rarity's back to her.
  24. >"I've just had a lot on my mind" Sunset chuckled nervously
  25. >Turning around she see one of Sunset's best friends, Twilight Sparkle walking down the hall.
  26. >Sunset lowers her her voice and grabs the side of her arm with her hand.
  27. >"...A lot on my mind"
  28. >Rarity glances over to where Sunset's gaze stopped.
  29. >It was their universe's Twilight Sparkle.
  30. >"Just like the last four times" Rarity said to herself
  31. >Awkwardly they stood while minutes ticked by which seemed like hours.
  32. >Rarity reached out and rested her hand on Sunset's slightly trembling shoulder.
  33. >"Darling" she began
  34. >"You know you can talk to me about anything right?" her hand starting to gently rub Sunset's shoulder in a circular motion.
  35. >"I worry when you get like this" she softly said.
  36. >This only made Sunset retreat back behind her emotional wall even more
  37. >She still can't believe the very person she blackmailed and whose life she made a living hell for years was honestly caring about her wellbeing.
  38. >Without looking at Rarity, Sunset replies "Yeah, I know, I'm fine really"
  39. >This answer is disappointing to hear.
  40. >Rarity sighs to herself.
  41. >"Alright dear, if you say s-" Her words trailed off as she looked at the clock.
  42. >"Oh my goodness, I'm going to be late for my Geography test!"
  43. >Gathering up her things she bolts down the hallway
  44. >"LaterSunsetSeeyouInABit!"
  45. >After she is gone your mind drifts back to that purple dot.
  46. >It felt...right to imagine it.
  47. >Sunset's heart thumped in her chest.
  48. >The dot sprouted arms and legs.
  49. >Skinny, smooth, and slender.
  50. >A head popped up from out of it.
  51. >Her hair tied back in a ponytail and her glasses slightly crooked
  52. >It was her dear friend Twilight Sparkle.
  53. >"Sunset?" she spoke.
  54. >The world dissolved back into reality slowly as Twilight tried her best to get Sunset's attention.
  55. >"Sunset, hello?"
  56. >"You're going to be tardy"
  57. >Was Sunset dreaming?
  58. >"C'mon, if you get another tardy Mr. Doodle is going to kick you off the fencing team for sure!"
  59. >Without thinking she grabbed Sunset's wrist and unknowingly set off an unseen chemical reaction.
  60. >Sunset.exe has stopped working.
  61. >"What the hell is going on with me?" Sunset tried to understand, but...
  62. >Sunset had never noticed how soft Twilight's hand were...
  63. >"Nope, stay focused Sunset. You can't space out now." through clenched teeth and a forced smile she tried to keep up with Twilight.
  64. >Awkwardly stumbling over herself a few times
  65. >Sunset had never noticed how soft and bouncy Twilight's hair looked...
  66. >"Goddammit Sunset, pull yourself together" Sunset snapped at herself.
  67. >Finally they reach their destination and Twilight lets go of Sunset's wrist.
  68. >"I know you might be nervous about today's lesson Sunset, but don't worry we can have a study session tonight with the girls"
  69. >Twilight smiled warmly.
  70. >Sunset's cheeks felt red hot.
  71. >"Y-Yeah, that sounds..." Sunset cleared her throat.
  72. >"Sounds like a blast Twilight."
  73. >Sunset's hand gripped the side of her pants and only then did she realize how sweaty they felt.
  74. >This in turn only caused her body to shiver like someone had just walked over her grave.
  75. >Sunset ducks into the classroom shielding her face from all her classmates.
  76. >Twilight walks in slightly confused, but figures it can wait until after school today to talk about.
  77. >Today was going to be a weird day.
  79. >Her head slumps against the cold desktop.
  80. >"Smooth Sunset"
  81. >A full body sigh escapes her chest.
  82. >"Smooth."
  83. >Students start to pile into the classroom.
  84. >Twilight approaches the seat right next to Sunset wearing a worried expression.
  85. >Sunset forgot about that.
  86. >Nervously, she averted her eyes down to her notebook.
  87. >She wasn't even sure if she grabbed the right one, but it wasn't like she was going to pay attention to much else anyway
  88. >Opening the pages the familiar letters and numbers of pre-calculus filled Sunset's vision.
  89. >Alongside the numbers were doodles.
  90. >Usually a crude sketch of one of Sunset friends or dragons.
  91. >Mr. Doodle's lesson about whatever the hell droned on and on.
  92. >Twilight was very studious about her note taking and was keeping track of multiple notebooks.
  93. >Sunset swears she's part octopus.
  94. >Taking a glance at her sketch, Sunset sees it's starting to take on a sight she knows all too well.
  95. >Wavy bangs up front with a simple ponytail in the back
  96. >Sunset's neck and forehead begin to sweat.
  97. >"Just stop thinking about this"
  98. >"Just stop thinking about this and just...just..."
  99. >It was at that point Sunset noticed things had become eerily silent.
  100. >Looking up from her notebook she sees pure white.
  101. >Every direction, no matter where her head turns, is white
  102. >An uneasy feeling crept into Shimmer's stomach as she tried to figure what the hell was happening.
  103. >The hairs on the back of her neck stand on edge.
  104. >Someone was there with her, watching, and waiting.
  105. >Slowly, she cocks her head to the right.
  106. >What she sees causes her heart to pound in her ears.
  107. >That same purple dot except this time it's already taken shape.
  108. >"Twi-Twilight?" sweat dripped from Sunset's face as she grimaced.
  109. >Twilight looked...normal.
  110. >Same hair, same clothes, but for some odd reason the reflection off her glasses hid her eyes.
  111. >Then without warning, she slowly started to make her way towards you.
  112. >Each step was soundless, but it was like they were marching along to the beat of Sunset's heart.
  113. >A million of things came to Sunset's mind, but not a single one made it out of her mouth.
  114. >Twilight was closing in.
  115. >She stopped right in front of Sunset just an arm's length away.
  116. >Sunset's teeth clenched and she tried to look for a way out of here.
  117. >She felt a warmth wrap around her back.
  118. >Stunned she turned her gaze back in front.
  119. >Twilight had her arms wrapped around Sunset's back and her cheek was nuzzling her jacket's leather shoulder.
  120. >"...She's hugging you" Sunset's thoughts stated
  121. >"...She's hugging you and it actually feels...nice."
  122. >Sunset's guard began to lower. Her hands no longer trembled.
  123. >She instead wrapped them around Twilight in a similar fashion.
  124. >Everything about Twilight is so soft.
  125. >Sunset embraces Twilight in a firm hug and to feel her softness all over.
  126. >The butterflies in Sunset's stomach were doing aero-ballet, but she didn't care.
  127. >Her gut told her this was the right thing.
  128. >And her heart felt the same way.
  129. >"Slosh"
  130. >Drawn out of her thoughts by something she touched.
  131. >Sunset brought her hand close to her face while still around Twilight.
  132. >Her was covered in what looked like purple paint
  133. >Confused she was about to ask Twilight what was going on.
  134. >Grabbing her shoulders she breaks the hug gently and faces Twilight.
  135. >"Twili-" she couldn't even get her name out before the words were stolen from her lips.
  136. >Twilight's face looked like it was rippling.
  137. >Cascading waves just traveling downwards.
  138. >Still wearing that same warm smile.
  139. >"What the fu-" Sunset said as she tried to turn and run, but found she couldn't lift her leg up.
  140. >Come to think of it she couldn't feel her legs anymore either.
  141. >She looked down and nearly had a panic attack at what she saw.
  142. >Her leather boots looked exactly like Twilight's face, they were oozing and cascading downwards into a puddle on the floor.
  143. >Defying what she saw, Sunset tried to lift her legs to run, but it was no use.
  144. >She tried to pry her legs up with both her arms, but it was useless.
  145. >For her arms had begun to drip and fade from sight.
  146. >Pretty soon she felt both her arms fade and combine with the mess that was once her legs.
  147. >Sunset was in panic mode.
  148. >She opened her mouth to scream, but no sound came out.
  149. >"Mmmm!?" tilting her head downwards she saw the goopy remains of her mouth sliding off her body.
  150. >"Mmmmph!"
  151. >"Mmm-Mmmph!?!" soon she was nothing but a head floating on a puddle that was once her body.
  152. >All hope was lost for Sunset.
  153. >She opened her eyes one last time, but she wished she didn't
  154. >Twilight's almost full melted face was just staring at you.
  155. >Still, Sunset couldn't see her eyes. They were hidden behind those glasses.
  156. >This sight haunted Sunset more than the whole melting thing.
  157. >Sunset tried to scream, but no sound came out.
  158. >The last thing she saw before fading into the puddle was the warm smile of Twilight.
  159. >"Please no, Twilight help me!"
  160. >"Twilight, please don't let me go!
  161. >"Twilight!"
  162. >A sharp object pokes Sunset in the side.
  163. >She erratically comes to.
  164. >Her eyes refocus on the light from above and the blurriness of everything shortly wears off.
  165. >She's back in Pre-Calc.
  166. >"Ms. Shimmer!" Mr. Doodle barked.
  167. >"I know Pre-Calculus isn't the most exciting subject, but that doesn't give you the excuse to cause such a disturbance in class!"
  168. >"What is all the commotion about?"
  169. >All eyes were on Sunset.
  170. >And her eyes were on everyone.
  171. >Just darting around while sweat falls from her brow
  172. >All the prying eyes was making Sunset extremely uncomfortable.
  173. >She felt her chest heave in and out as she tried to catch her breath.
  174. >Her hands clenched and fidgeting with themselves.
  175. >She bit her bottom lip.
  176. >"Well?" Mr. Doodle prodded.
  177. >No matter what she thought the words would just not come out.
  178. >Her eyes drifted over to Twilight.
  179. >Worry doesn't even describe it.
  180. >If it were any other context Sunset was sure Twilight would show off that big heart of hers.
  181. >Twilight's the sweetest girl Sunset knows
  182. >"Oh god, I need to get out of here" invasive thoughts entered Sunset's head
  183. >With a sudden movement she wiped all her school stuff into her backpack.
  184. >"I-I don't, uhh feel well"
  185. >Sunset nearly galloped out the door
  186. >"Ms. Shimmer!" Mr. Doodle called after her
  187. >Sunset didn't look back.
  188. >She ran because that's what her brain told her to do.
  189. >Thinking on her feet she tries to find a place to hide out until the end of the day at least.
  190. >That's when she notices the girl's restroom
  191. >"No one really uses the one down this way anyway" Sunset thought.
  192. >Running through the door, Sunset checks underneath each stall before her adrenaline wears off.
  193. >No one in sight.
  194. >Sunset gets in and locks the stall door as she sits on the toilet lid.
  195. >She brings her knees up to her chest as her instincts are finally wearing down.
  196. >A sob gets caught in her chest.
  197. >Every time she closes her eyes all she can see is Twilight's smile melting away.
  198. >Today was going to be a very long day.
  200. >Tears were welling up in Sunset's eyes as her mind replayed her nightmare.
  201. >Nearly beat for beat.
  202. >A tightness grabbed a hold of her chest as she felt her throat close up.
  203. >"What is happening to you Sunset?" was the only thought to come to her mind.
  204. >More images flashed in her mind.
  205. >As if her own brain was answering her plea.
  206. >Important moments in Sunset and Twilight's life.
  207. >Saving her from Midnight Sparkle (Herself)
  208. >How she grasped Twilight's hand.
  209. >How that sent a tingle through Sunset's palm and down the base of her back.
  210. >Sunset remembers afterwards how Twilight looked at Sunset like she was this amazing hero.
  211. >Some shining beacon of friendship and hope.
  212. >That warm smile...
  213. >Sure, she was already in well with the girls and the rest of the school.
  214. >But this was different.
  215. >Twilight was pure.
  216. >Well, she wasn't biased against Sunset anyway.
  217. >At least not that she knew of.
  218. >All she did to this Twilight was kinda sorta yell at her, a lot.
  219. >But, Sunset made up for it with friendship and care.
  220. >The sound of footsteps approaching the bathroom door drew Sunset's attention.
  221. >She didn't want anyone to find her like this.
  222. >Hugging her knees tighter she ducked her head between them.
  223. >Trying to minimize her presence.
  224. >Sunset hears the door turn and open
  225. >"...is great. So, so gre-eat!"
  226. >That shrill, but girly voice.
  227. >And that smug tone.
  228. >It could only be one person.
  229. >Sunset leaned over as much as she could on the toilet lid.
  230. >Through a small crack in the stall door she saw a bit of grey-ish blue.
  231. >This confirmed Sunset's suspicions
  232. >It was Trixie, former bitch just like Sunset.
  233. >Well, not as much as she used to be.
  234. >Slowly she approached Sunset's hiding stall and tried to open it.
  235. >No dice.
  236. >"Stupid, cheap bathroom door" Sunset heard Trixie mumble.
  237. >Her fist knocked on the door.
  238. >"Hey, is someone in there?" Sunset saw Trixie's shadow darken as she crouched to peek under the stall.
  239. >She started to tightly hug her knees to her chest in hopes of maybe making herself unnoticable.
  240. >Her breathing stopped.
  241. >She was going to get caught she just knew it.
  242. >A few seconds go by and Sunset hears Trixie get to her feet.
  243. >"You may have bested Trixie this time stall door, but she will have her revenge!" Trixie says as Sunset hears her stumble.
  244. >"Stupid trash can!"
  245. >"Getting in Trixie's way like that!" Sunset hears another loud thump and hears Trixie yelp in pain.
  246. >"Goddamn she's as dense as a pile of bricks" Sunset rolled her eyes.
  247. >Without warning, you hear footsteps away from the stall and out the door.
  248. >"Is...she gone?"
  249. >Sunset's hands jittered slightly as she knelt down and took a peek from under the stall.
  250. >No sign of Trixie.
  252. >"Phew" Sunset let out a sigh of relief.
  253. >"I am really not in the mood to deal with her right no-" she stops in her tracks as she hears rapid footsteps heading back towards her.
  254. >The door swings wide open before she can react.
  255. >Trixie walks inside with a furrowed brow
  256. >"Where did Trixie leave her-"
  257. >"Oh, there it is" she calmly said as she grabbed a small bag off the sink
  258. >Her face relaxed as she put the bag to her side.
  259. >Sunset was frozen in place.
  260. >Eyes were wider than dinner plates.
  261. >Maybe by some sheer dumb luck Trixie wouldn't notice her.
  262. >"Sunset?" she cocked an eyebrow.
  263. >Luck wasn't on Sunset's side apparently.
  264. >Trixie looked from her to the bathroom stall she was trying to open earlier.
  265. >She opened her mouth to say something.
  266. >"Were you..."
  267. >Trixie's purple eyes were trained on Sunset's face.
  268. >Tears were still shimmering in Sunset's eyes.
  269. >Her legs felt like stone.
  270. >They wouldn't move.
  271. >Just like in her nightmare.
  272. >Suddenly the room felt like it was shrinking.
  273. >Sunset's heart pounded in her ears.
  274. >"Sunset?"
  275. >Trixie's voice was slightly smug, but her growing concern was new.
  276. >Sunset looked to her hands and saw they were shivering.
  277. >Shivering and trembling.
  278. >She felt a chill go up her spine.
  279. >A cold sweat dripped down her forehead.
  280. >She looked back over at Trixie, but she wished she hadn't.
  281. >Instead of Trixie's overzealous grin.
  282. >She was met by a horrific sight.
  283. >What appeared to be an amalgamation of Trixie and Twilight looked back at her.
  284. >Trixie's smokey grey hair tied back into Twilight's bun.
  285. >The same kind of baby blue top Twilight wears.
  286. >The pinkish-purple sparkle emblem that adorns her skirt was on the bag Trixie had grabbed.
  287. >Even down to her favorite pair of Mary Janes.
  288. >Sunset felt the vice around her heart tighten.
  289. >Her body shook violently.
  290. >She hugged herself in some desperate attempt to stop it.
  291. >"Sunset?" what sounded like Twilight's voice over top of Trixie's drew your attention.
  292. >Nervously, Sunset's eyes traveled up to Trixie's face.
  293. >A scream filled her lungs, but her mouth refused to let it out.
  294. >There on Trixie's face were Twilight's glasses.
  295. >Obscuring her eyes.
  296. >Sunset felt like she was close to a mental break.
  297. >However, she felt her legs finally give.
  298. >As she collapsed to the floor.
  299. >With quick speed Trixielite stepped forward to hopefully help.
  300. >Her hands tried to wrap onto her shoulder.
  301. >But Sunset wasn't having it.
  302. >"Don't touch me!" she yelled and pulled her arm away.
  303. >Trixie flinched back slightly.
  304. >Sunset's face was glued to the floor.
  305. >She was too frightened to look back up.
  306. >Trixie shifted around as her eyes looked from Sunset to the bathroom door.
  307. >"Uhh, Trixie can clearly see you're having a...moment"
  308. >"So she'll just walk the other way and pretend this didn't happen" the great and uncomfortable Trixie said.
  309. >Before she could take her second step however.
  310. >Sunset heard Trixie's voice.
  311. >Just Trixie's annoying voice.
  312. >Her eyes unglued from the floor and traveled upwards to see Trixie's normal everything walking away from her.
  313. >"Wait!"
  314. >Trixie stopped cold in her retreat.
  315. >"I...I have a...-" Sunset's throughts were barreling through themselves at a mile a minute.
  316. >Trixie turned around and saw the unsure look on Sunset's face.
  317. >Her face looked ghostly white, and pale.
  319. >"...a quest-question to ask.." Sunset finally found the nerve to get her voice heard.
  320. >Trixie rubbed the back of her head nervously.
  321. >"Uhh, sure go ahead" her voice not faltering in confidence, but her expression would lead Sunset believe otherwise.
  322. >Sunset wasn't prepared for Trixie to say yes so quickly.
  323. >The right words just wouldn't come to mind.
  324. >Her hand held the side of her arm as she felt her cheeks flush red-hot from embarrassment.
  325. >"...Trixie doesn't know if she wants to hear this question anymore" her slightly shrill voice rang in Sunset's head.
  326. >Her arms were folded on top of each other as she gazed with concern at Sunset.
  327. >Sunset closed her eyes and took a deep breath.
  328. >This time she started off calmer than she began.
  329. >"How would you...
  330. >"Let me put it like this actually" Sunset's face felt like it was boiling lava hot at this point.
  331. >"If...someone had a...cr-cr-cr...
  332. >The only way to get it out is to treat it like a band-aid.
  333. >Rip it off like a bra at Mardi Gras.
  334. >"If someone loved you...how would you want them to...tell you?"
  335. >Looking up, Sunset saw Trixie's pupils shrink as a look of raw surprise came over her face.
  336. >But, as quickly as it came it vanished back into that "Couldn't care less" attitude.
  337. >"Look Sunset, the Great and Powerful Trixie is flattered and all, but she's not interested"
  338. >"She's perfectly fine being a solo act at the moment"
  339. >Sunset's face somehow grew redder
  340. >"I-It's not you" she sputtered out.
  341. >Trixie's eyes lit up again.
  342. >She just stares at Sunset with a comprehensive look.
  343. >As if she was trying to see if Sunset was lying.
  344. >"It's not that one guy you used to date is it?"
  345. >"Brash or whatever?"
  346. >"Because honestly Sunset you could do way, wayyyyyy better than him."
  347. >Sunset's brow furrowed as the tears pooling in her eyes started to turn bitter.
  348. >"It's not him either..." her tone harsh.
  349. >Trixie cocked her head askew at Sunset.
  350. >"...Then Trixie has no idea who you are talking about"
  351. >"But, she totally gets it if you want keep it underwraps for now" she yawned.
  352. >"As for some advice."
  353. >Sunset looked up at Trixie's determined but tired face.
  354. >"Be bold, and don't fear rejection!" Trixie practically shouted.
  355. >"Because the worst thing that can happen is that they'll say no" she shrugged.
  356. >"Just remember that"
  357. >And although Sunset was still feeling a pit of pressure in her stomach.
  358. >Trixie's advice somewhat helped make it not so terrible.
  359. >Sunset rubbed the palms of her hands on her cheeks and sighed.
  360. >"Thanks Trixie"
  361. >Carefully Sunset pushed herself up off the cold bathroom tile.
  362. >It took a minute for her legs to readjust, and uncramp, but other than that she was feeling fine.
  363. >Physically anyway.
  364. >Sunset walked past Trixie and out the bathroom door
  367. >Sunset was feeling up to going to her next class.
  368. > A slight surge of confidence traveled throughout her body from her encounter with Trixie.
  369. >And all she had to do was hold onto that until the study session with Twilight and the girls later.
  370. >Casually she headed inside Ms. Cheerilee's room and sat down in her usual desk.
  371. >Everyone else piled in all murmuring to each other.
  372. >Sunset pulled out her lime-green notebook and opened it up to the middle.
  373. >The bell rang and Ms. Cheerilee shut the classroom door.
  374. >With her usual overly-chipper voice.
  375. >"Alrighty class, let's pick up where we left off yesterday with the Roman empire!"
  376. >This is where Sunset stopped listening.
  377. >History was another class where she didn't really need to pay attention much to get an A.
  378. >It just came naturally to her.
  379. >But the study sessions with Twilight and the girls always helped too.
  380. >Especially with Twilight's help.
  381. >Her and Sunset were practically queens of the school when it came to grade point averages at least.
  382. >Sunset looked through some of her recent doodles.
  383. >Trixie's advice echoed in her mind when she saw the drawing of Twilight's sparkle emblem she drew all over a page.
  384. >"The worst thing they'll say is no"
  385. >"Be bold!"
  386. >That pit in her stomach felt like it was swirling around itself.
  387. >She grabbed a pencil and started to shade the sparkly pretty star.
  388. >Sunset found herself thinking of Twilight's skirt.
  389. >How well it adorned her form.
  390. >How the color brought out the beauty in her...eyes.
  391. >Sunset blinked and looked around.
  392. >Students were looking towards the front at Ms. Cheerilee.
  393. >Who was still teaching a class.
  394. >Shaking her head her eyes drifted back down to her notebook.
  395. >Her breathing came to a halt.
  396. >Under what seemed like a haze Sunset had drawn an almost photorealistic portrayal of Twilight's eyes.
  397. >Plum-colored orbs that just seem to draw you in
  398. >A familiarity was present in them.
  399. >They felt like they belonged to someone warm and inviting.
  400. >A hissing silence brought Sunset's thoughts back to focus.
  401. >She again looked around, but was stunned to see nothing or no one.
  402. >Just an empty white void.
  403. >"Like earlier" Sunset's heart beat quickened.
  404. >Her gaze returned back down to her notebook and saw her entire desk had vanished.
  405. >She was standing in the middle of nowhere.
  406. >Scared, terrified, and on the verge of unease.
  407. >Her mind raced as she was preparing for anything at this point.
  408. >A chill traveled down her head and rode along her spine.
  409. >The instincts in Sunset's gut were telling her to turn around.
  410. >And she did, while her heart thumped loudly.
  411. >Each beat seemed to make the space vibrate.
  412. >Sunset's eyes met with a sight she remembered from the last time.
  413. >Twilight Sparkle.
  414. >Wearing that offputting, but warm grin.
  415. >Flashes of what happened to Sunset the last time caused her throat to constrict.
  416. >She slowly began to hyperventilate.
  417. >She rubbed her eyes vigorously with the palms of her hands.
  418. >Hoping to wake up from this nightmare.
  419. >The low hiss returned traveling on the coat tails of silence.
  420. >Sunset's body froze as she did something she probably shouldn't.
  421. >She began to lower her hands from her eyes.
  422. >Purple was all she saw.
  423. >Twilight had somehow teleported right in front of Sunset.
  424. >Sunset gasped and practically jumped out of her skin
  425. >Twilight didn't budge or react one bit.
  426. >She just kept smiling.
  427. >Sunset still couldn't see behind Twilight's glasses.
  428. >A bead of sweat rolled down her cheek.
  429. >Twilight's hand carefully rested on the side of Sunset's face and wiped the sweat off.
  430. >Sunset was still frozen in place.
  431. >Twilight's hand caressed the side of Sunset's face.
  432. >Inside of Sunset the pit began to stop whirling slowly but surely.
  433. >Her hand comforting Sunset like the best safety blanket.
  434. >Sunset found her hand moving up to rest on the side of Twilight's face.
  436. >Comforting her just as Twilight was.
  437. >Words escape Sunset, but she feels the sides of her mouth curve into a smile.
  438. >Why was she afraid of Twilight's smile?
  439. >She's fought magical creatures with the magic of friendship just to see her smile.
  440. >Seeing Twilight happy was what gave Sunset meaning.
  441. >And that thought warms her insides.
  442. >Twilight's hand moved down Sunset's face, to her shoulder, and landed palm first on her chest.
  443. >Sunset looked to Twilight still with joy in her eyes.
  444. >A pressure built up in Sunset's chest.
  445. >It felt like someone was grabbing for something.
  446. >Sunset's eyes looked down from Twilight as she saw her hand push past her chest and inside herself.
  447. >She screamed, or she tried to anyway.
  448. >Just as soon as Twilight pushed her hand in she pulled it back out.
  449. >Sunset's eyes widened from panic as she saw her still beating heart in Twilight's hand.
  450. >Without warning, Sunset crumpled to the floor.
  451. >It was like everything on her just completely failed all at once.
  452. >Legs wouldn't move, arms couldn't work, mouth wouldn't open, nothing.
  453. >Only her eyes could move and they just focused on Twilight standing over Sunset.
  454. >Her heart in hand.
  455. >All of a sudden, Twilight crumpled right beside her.
  456. >In a similar manner.
  457. >Sunset's eyes nearly bulged out of her head.
  458. >Her throat hurt as if she were screaming bloody murder, but still no sound came out.
  459. >-Squish-
  460. >A wetness appeared in Sunset's hand.
  461. >She strained her eyes downwards.
  462. >Numbness went throughout her body.
  463. >In her hand was a heart still beating.
  464. >Sunset's eyes looked back to Twilight.
  465. >There was a black empty hole in her chest
  466. >But Twilight's grin appeared wider.
  468. >The two hearts were still beating.
  469. >However the one in Twilight's hand was beating erratically.
  470. >Faster and faster, each thump shaking the foundation of this void.
  471. >Each beat making the hiss louder and louder until it was all Sunset could hear.
  472. >"N-No, please Twilight"
  473. >"Mmph"
  474. >"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to..."
  475. >But her mouth refused to form the words.
  476. >The shine off of Twilight's glasses the only thing Sunset could focus on.
  477. >She felt a poke on her shoulder.
  478. >"Please don't go Twilight!"
  479. >The poke turned into a shake.
  480. >The void disappeared.
  481. >But the world that came into view was blurry.
  482. >As Sunset's vision readjusted she realized that all eyes were on her, again.
  483. >Ms Cheerilee looked at her concerned.
  484. >"Is everything okay Sunset?"
  485. >Sunset looked down at her notebook and saw Twilight's eyes.
  486. >With a sudden movement she held her hand up to her chest and felt her heart beating.
  487. >She let out a sigh.
  488. >"Uhh, y-yeah just...had the wrong notebook out...is all" she flashed Cheerilee a big, fake smile.
  489. >Cheerilee didn't look convinced.
  490. >"Alrighty then, just keep the noise to a minimum please."
  491. >"Others are trying to work"
  492. >Sunset slumped down in her seat.
  493. >"Heh...right...sorry" she squeaked.
  494. >She rested her head on her desk.
  495. >Eyes half closed she felt exhausted.
  496. >And all she's been doing today is sleep it seems like.
  497. >Sunset looked up at the clock on the wall.
  498. >A half hour until the group study session would meet.
  499. >She was beginning to half second thoughts about the whole bold and confidence thing.
  501. >The ringing of final bell got everyone's attention.
  502. >"And remember class, your papers on ancient roman architecture is due next week!" Cheerilee reminded the students shuffling out the door.
  503. >A few groaners, but most just kept on walking and talking.
  504. >Cheerliee turned her head when she heard a noise.
  505. >It was Sunset Shimmer, still putting her stuff away into her bag.
  506. >Her expression read emotionally wrought like a used sponge.
  507. >She stood up from her desk.
  508. >She felt like a weight was dropped on her shoulders.
  509. >Her head leaned forward as she shut her eyes and slightly frowned.
  510. >"...Sunset?" came Cheerilee's concerned voice.
  511. >Sunset turned to look in Cheerilee's direction, but she couldn't look her in the eye.
  512. >"Is...everything alright?"
  513. >It took every ounce of energy she had left to push another fake smile on her face.
  514. >The bags under eyes were still noticable however.
  515. >"N-Never better." a false tone of cheeriness coated Sunset's words.
  516. >Cheerilee's expression remained.
  517. >Her eyebrows were taut together, and her mouth stayed neutral.
  518. >"It's just, this is fourth time this month where you've nodded off during one of my lectures"
  519. >Sunset's left eye twitched.
  520. >"Not to mention how..."alarming" your sleep talking has become"
  521. >Sunset felt like she was facing down a speeding bullet train.
  522. >"...I guess what I'm trying to say is, do you need to talk to someone?"
  523. >Biting her lip, Sunset's anxiety pooled in her stomach as she thought of a way out of this situation.
  524. >"N-No, Ms. Cheerilee." stammered out Sunset.
  525. >She began to inch herself towards the door.
  526. >Her palms becoming moist and clammy.
  527. >"I'll just...I'll just try to get more sleep"
  528. >Sunset spun around facing the exit of the door.
  529. >But before she could leave she felt a warm pressure wrap on her shoulder.
  530. >Her head moved to see Cheerilee still looking distressed from not being able to help.
  531. >"Sunset" her voice calm, but anxious.
  532. >"You know you can talk to me about whatever is bothering you right?"
  533. >"Nothing you say will leave this room" she tried to reassure Sunset.
  534. >But all Sunset could feel was the stringing pangs of guilt stabbing her insides.
  535. >Memories of how she blackmailed Cheerilee to do the dumbest stuff just because could could.
  536. >Treating her like she was beneath Sunset.
  537. >All for the stupidest reason.
  538. >She didn't feel like she deserved her sympathy.
  539. >Her head hung low and she let out a sigh.
  540. >"Thank you, but...like I said I just need to sleep more"
  541. >Sunset wasn't even convinced by her own lie.
  542. >Cheerilee, disraught with not getting through to Sunset, bows her head and sighs as well.
  543. >"I understand Sunset"
  544. >"Go home, and get a good night's sleep then" she smiled at Sunset.
  545. >It warmed up Sunset's mood just a little, but not by much.
  546. >She waved and ran off towards the library.
  547. >It was time to face her fears.
  549. >Every Friday after school the girls all meet up in the library to catch up, study, do homework, and generally have a fun time.
  550. >This time it was to study for a big pre-calc exam.
  551. >But Sunset had more things on her mind than numbers and tests.
  552. >She was wondering how she was going to deal with being close to Twilight for a long period of time.
  553. >For the last month she's become an expert at keeping those feelings inside.
  554. >But lately they seem to be slipping out.
  555. >So she'll have to be on her guard.
  556. >Pushing open the door to the library, Sunset looks around at all the different tables.
  557. >A student reading, and a few friends meeting for an after school club.
  558. >But no sign of her friends.
  559. >"Pssst, Sunnnnset." she heard her name whisper yelled.
  560. >Turning her head back and forth she saw Twilight's overly enthusiastic waving hand, and beaming face.
  561. >She was sitting at a table.
  562. >All by herself.
  563. >A bad feeling sprung up from the bottom of Sunset's gut.
  564. >But she swallowed that doubt and pushed forward.
  565. >She walked to the table Twilight was at, and sat her stuff in a chair across from her.
  566. >Twilight was still flashing a small, dorky smile at Sunset as she had books, notebooks, and other accessories laid out before her.
  567. "Sooooo...where is everyone?" Sunset finally asked.
  568. >Twilight's eyes went wide for a second and then she lightly bumped her forehead.
  569. >"Oh right, I forgot to text you earlier"
  570. >"Turns out the soccer team decided to have emergency practice tonight so Dash couldn't come."
  571. >"Then Big Mac threw his shoulder out of whack trying to fix Applejack's tractor so she's at the hospital with him"
  572. >"Pinkie wanted to go support Maud at the local comedy club"
  573. >"Zephyr accidentally burnt a hole in Fluttershy's favorite dress so she's having that taken care of"
  574. >"And Rarity is how she's taking care of that so that's why she isn't here"
  575. >Sunset paused and took in everything Twilight just said.
  576. >It seemed like the universe was trying to make something happen.
  577. >Coincidences upon coincidences.
  578. >But she shook those thoughts away.
  579. >"Oh, well that's too bad"
  580. >Sunset's disappointed expression didn't cause Twilight's grin to waver.
  581. >"I like it when we all get together and just, you know, hang out."
  582. >Twilight nodded
  583. >"But, they all said they would make it up to us tenfold tomorrow." she expressed with glee.
  584. >"And besides, just because it's just the two of us doesn't mean we can't have any fun"
  585. >Sunset felt her cheeks flush red slightly at Twilight's last sentence.
  586. >The universe was a cruel mistress.
  588. >The universe was a cruel mistress.
  589. >"R-Right!" Sunset let out a nervous giggle.
  590. >Sunset drummed her fingers on the table.
  591. >"To be honest Sunset, I was surprised to see you here"
  592. >Sunset felt her eyes widen.
  593. >"I didn't see you at all after pre-calc, and..." her gaze turned downwards.
  594. >"Anyway, I"m just glad to see you're okay" she looked back up at Sunset with a comforting smile.
  595. >A little voice in the back of Sunset's head was screaming like a banshee.
  596. >Her heart felt like it was being smothered by thick wooly pillows and fire.
  597. >Twilight was genuninely caring about Sunset's wellbeing and as sad as it sounds that felt foreign to Sunset still.
  598. >"I-I-uhh, am glad I'm okay too!" Sunset forced a grin on her face.
  599. >Twilight raised an eyebrow at Sunset's answer.
  600. >Sunset's teeth clenched harder than an aligator eating its prey.
  601. >Her eyes darted around the table looking for something to change the conversation to.
  602. >A twinkle in her eyes occurred when she saw Twilight's study guide.
  604. >"So!"
  605. >"That looks like a hard problem on that there!" Sunset's voice was a little louder than normal.
  606. >She pointed over to Twilight's notebook and study guide.
  607. Twilight looked down at the paper to the one Sunset was pointing to.
  608. >"This one?" she asked.
  609. >Sunset vigorously nodded her head.
  610. >Twilight adjusted her glasses and focused on the problem.
  611. >"Hmmm, I'm sure if we both work on it we'll get it solved in no time!" Twilight triumphantly declared.
  612. >Sunset let out an internal sigh.
  613. >Her distraction had worked.
  614. >"I'd like that very much"
  615. >So Sunset pulled out a notebook and her and Twilight went hard into the world of math.
  616. >Nothing but the sound of scribbling, and calculator button pushing for a good five minutes.
  617. >"So if you subtract both sides by thirteen..." Sunset began.
  618. >"Then you multiply the numerator by its inverse..." returned Twilight.
  619. >"That would leave you with the square of x to the second power" Sunset was getting a bit excited.
  620. >"With that you would just plug it in to the original equation and it would result innnnn..." Twilight was getting a bit more excited.
  621. >"22!" Sunset practically shouted.
  622. >"45!" Twilight shouted at the same time as Sunset.
  623. >Twilight's expression grew worried.
  624. >"Wait, what?" Twilight sounded dumbstruck.
  625. >She chewed on her pencil as she made anxious wimpering noises through her hastening breaths.
  626. >"...That's right" her tone was cold.
  627. >"Easy Twilig-" before Sunset could finish Twilight practically jolted from her seat and came over to Sunset's side of the table.
  628. >She was getting really, really close into Sunset's personal bubble.
  629. >Twilight's ponytail was nearly resting in Sunset's face.
  630. >Her back was to Sunset.
  631. >Sunset felt like she should avert her eyes, move her chair further back, or something.
  632. >But she felt something inside of her that wanted to stay put.
  633. >Her thoughts were soon overtaken by a lovely aroma.
  634. >It reminded her of the smell of the royal kitchen in Canterlot.
  635. >Nearly every time she walked by there on her way to class the chefs were always baking something delicious.
  636. >Well, they smelled delicious anyway.
  637. >Sunset's heart was pounding in her chest as her eyes went half-lidded.
  638. >It was intoxicating.
  639. >So much so she found herself leaning forward until her face made contact with Twilight's ponytail.
  640. >The silkiness was indescribable.
  641. >What Sunset would give to run her fingers through it night after night.
  642. >"Did you hear me Sunset?" Twilight's restless voice fell on deaf ears.
  643. >"Sunse- Ah!" whipping her head over to Sunset she accidentally launched her glasses over on the library floor.
  644. >Hearing Twilight's scream, Sunset snapped out of her scent stupor.
  645. >"Twilight, what's wrong?" Sunset's motherly tone seeping through.
  646. >"My glasses flew off somewhere" Twilight squinted at Sunset.
  647. >"I think I saw them fly near your feet " she pointed to the left of Sunset.
  648. >"I think..." her answer didn't sound confident as she tried to sit back down without falling down.
  649. >Sunset carefully kneeled down and scanned the underside of the table.
  650. >She found her target right underneathe her chair.
  651. >"Found em!" Sunset happyily declared.
  652. >Picking them up before she gave them back to Twilight she held them up to lights in the library.
  653. >"Jeez Twilight, how can you see out of these things?" Sunset gave them an inspection.
  654. >Twilight's glasses were dusty and had light smudges on the lens.
  655. >For an overly organized girl Twilight was lacking in the "Care for your eyewear department"
  656. >"Hehe, I can usually see out of them just fine...sometimes." this time she nervously chuckled.
  657. >Sunset stifled a laugh.
  658. >"Probably because you're so used to them looking like this I bet."
  659. >"Here" Sunset lightly breathed on each lense letting them fog up.
  660. >She then rubbed each lens using her top as a cloth.
  661. >"Sunsettttttttt, that's just going to make them streak" Twilight whined.
  663. >"Trust me, they're going to be 200% better than what they used to look like" Sunset's determined expression not winning over Twilight.
  664. >She held them up to the light again and tried them on.
  665. >"Woah!"
  666. >"I can actually see stuff with these now" Twilight rolled her eyes and smirked a little at Sunset's joke.
  667. >Sunset gently placed them back on Twilight's face.
  668. >She blinked a few times and looked around as if she was seeing the world for the first time.
  669. >"...Wow" was all Twilight could say.
  670. >"You never thought to clean your glasses Twilight?" Sunset asked.
  671. >"Well...not like how you did it" Twilight shrank with embarrasmment.
  672. >It was Sunset's turn to smirk now.
  673. >"Aren't you glad you have me around?" Sunset did a fake courtesy at Twilight.
  674. >With a giggle, Twilight replied with:
  675. >"Of course Sunset, you're like the big sister I never had" Twilight expressed with the utmost glee
  676. >Twilight's sentence echoed in Sunset's mind like a haunting melody
  677. >Constantly on repeat.
  678. >Each time through just causing the light inside of Sunset to grow dimmer and dimmer.
  679. >"...Thanks Twilight" Sunset felt her heart beginning to dip inside the whirling miasma of anxiety and fear.
  680. >An involuntary tremble went up her body.
  681. >Twilight's concerned face returned.
  682. >"Sunset...?"
  683. >A buzzing sound grabbed Twilight's attention.
  684. >She reached into her backpack on the floor and got her phone.
  685. >She looked down at the screen.
  686. >"Oh my gosh, the girls are all having a slumber party at Pinkie's tonight!" Twilight's enthusiasm beginning to return.
  687. >Her beaming face looked over to Sunset.
  688. >"Do you want to come?" she politely asked.
  689. >Sunset was feeling like her night was over anyway.
  690. >"...No thanks Twi."
  691. >Twilight's bombastic mood deflated slightly.
  692. >"Maybe next time" sighed Sunset.
  693. >Twilight's eyes drifted down to her stuff.
  694. >"Oh, alright, that's okay"
  695. >"You look tired anyway why don't you go home and get some sleep" Twilight suggested.
  696. >"Yeah...I'll go do that" Sunset said in a deadpan tone.
  697. >Sunset grabbed all her stuff and shoved it in her backpack haphazardly.
  698. >"See ya later Twi" Sunset waved.
  699. >"...Sunset?" she turned around towards Twilight.
  700. >In a flash, Twilight was wrapped around Sunset.
  701. >Giving her a soft, light hug.
  702. >Sunset's hands were afraid to touch Twilight anywhere.
  703. >They were each shivering and shaking.
  704. >From the warm, and brightening Twilight making her body feel like it was melting.
  705. >The burn in her cheeks returned.
  706. >She just patted Twilight on the back and clenched her eyes shut until she stopped.
  707. >When she opened them Twilight was standing before her, hands behind her back, and wearing that innocent smile like a badge of honor.
  708. >Sunset smiled back at her.
  709. >Twilight was too much for her own good sometimes.
  712. >The ceiling of Sunset's room was an average looking white tile.
  713. >Each had their own divots, creases, bumps, and general wear n tear from exposure to the elements.
  714. >Sunset would know because she's done nothing but lose herself in them ever since returning home.
  715. >"You're like the big sister I never had!" Twilight's words felt like they circled around Sunset's neck.
  716. >Her stomach was stuck doing a never ending backflip it seems.
  717. >She rolled over on her side.
  718. >The sight of her alarm clock filled her vision.
  719. >10:44PM
  720. >Exhaustion hit Sunset like a burning truck running her over.
  721. >But sleep still eluded her grasp.
  722. >For countless more minutes all she did was toss and turn in her bed.
  723. >Her body just feeling uncomfortable in any position.
  724. >She brought her hands up over her eyes and groaned.
  725. >Sunset let her arms limply fall over to her sides.
  726. >So she did the only thing she knew how to do well.
  727. >She tried to force herself to sleep.
  728. >Her eyes were clenched down firmly.
  729. >Sunset turned over a few more times as she flipped over her pillow.
  730. >Soon her thoughts were drifting.
  731. >Images of Twilight's embrace played in Sunset's head.
  732. >How her body enveloped Sunset in a loving glow.
  733. >She found she didn't need to clench her eyes that tight now.
  734. >Her eyelids just drooped naturally.
  735. >Sunset finally felt like she could sleep.
  737. >However, a hissing sound in the silence made her heart skip a beat.
  738. >Opening her eyes to see what the noise was she found herself in an unbelievable situation.
  739. >She was back in the CHS library.
  740. >Sitting in the same seat.
  741. >Which was sitting across from the same Twilight Sparkle as before
  742. >Sunset should have been in full-blown panic mode, but a familiar smell calmed her nerves.
  743. >The fresh scent of the finest bakeries filled her nose.
  744. >It smelled just like when Twilight was...really close to her.
  745. >As soon as she thought that the hiss noise sounded again.
  746. >She looked up from her blurry notebook and saw Twilight had vanished.
  747. >Something then grabbed a hold of Sunset's hand.
  748. >Her head slowly moved to the side and saw the loving smile of Twilight Sparkle.
  749. >She was absolutely beaming.
  750. >Sunset looked down and saw that Twilights' hand was wrapped in a tender hold around her own.
  751. >Blood pumped quickly into Sunset's face as she felt her entire body turn into mush.
  752. >Her thoughts focused on Twilight.
  753. >Why was she afraid of feeling cared for and loved by her?
  754. >Why did she avoid how she really felt?
  755. >Questions like those became silly the more Twilight's hand held onto Sunset's.
  756. >All her cares seemed to melt away.
  757. >Their hearts were beating as one.
  758. >The air hissed again.
  759. >A little louder this time.
  760. >It went through Sunset like an arrow through a balloon.
  761. >A panicked gasp caused her head to turn in a hurry.
  762. >Twilight looked like she had just seen a ghost.
  763. >She fell backwards out of her chair as she scooted too far back.
  764. >"Twilight!?" Sunset hurried to Twilight's side and offered her a hand up.
  765. >Twilight looked to her hand as if it were a loaded gun.
  767. >Her eyes went wide as she started to hyperventilate.
  768. >"G-Get away from me!" she yelled through bated breath
  769. >A cold warmth spread throughout Sunset's heart.
  770. >"What?"
  771. >"Twilight, it's me, Sunset" Sunset stretched out her hand again to help her up.
  772. >However, Twilight just pushed herself backwards through clenched teeth and a frightened expression.
  773. >Her back hit a nearby bookcase.
  774. >"I-Is this some kind of cruel joke?"
  775. >Twilight hugged her knees tightly.
  776. >"Twilight...I don't understand..." Sunset felt her hope slowly drain.
  777. >Twilight let out a small growl.
  778. >As if she was sick of some game the two of you were playing.
  779. >"You're not Sunset" her brow furrowed
  780. >"I don't know who you are, and I don't know what you did with the real Sunset Shimmer" Twilight looked downwards at her necklace.
  781. >"But I won't have some monster going around trying to claim to be half the person she is" her conviction sounded strong.
  782. >Sunset felt her eye twitch and her mouth quiver.
  783. >"...A monster?"
  784. >"I'm...I'm not a monster Twilight"
  785. >"I'm...me" Sunset's eyelids drooped as she held her hands to her chest.
  786. >Trying to keep her heart from stopping.
  787. >Twilight picked herself up off the floor.
  788. >Her stance was aggressive, but Sunset knew Twilight would never hit her.
  789. >"Quit acting like you care about me!"
  790. >"Quit calling me Twilight!"
  791. >"and quit acting like...her." a sob was caught in Twilight's throat.
  792. >But her conviction stood firm.
  793. >"The real Sunset Shimmer cares about me, she cares about all of her friends"
  794. >"What do you care about?" she pointed accusingly at Sunset.
  795. >Sunset felt a balloon swell inside her chest.
  796. >Liquid desperation was flowing through her.
  797. >"You Twilight..."
  798. >"And my friends" she sniffled.
  800. >Twilight's glare only thickened with each word Sunset spoke.
  801. >"No you don't!" she stomped down hard.
  802. >"All you care about is yourself."
  803. >"N-no" Sunset was baffled.
  804. >"Your lust for power is the only thing you've ever truly cared about" Twilight shook her head solemly.
  805. >"You would use and step on anyone to get what you really desire."
  806. >Sunset couldn't believe the words coming out of Twilight's mouth.
  807. >Words were of no use to her right now.
  808. >Each one of Twilight's new points carving out more and more pieces of her insides.
  809. >Sunset looked to Twilight.
  810. >She stood with her arms crossed against her chest.
  811. >Her glare ice cold.
  812. >Each second fueling Sunset's panic even further.
  813. >She held the sides of her head with her hands and shut her eyes.
  814. >"See, even you're starting to see that's the truth." Twilight callously stated.
  815. >"Now...tell me where the real Sunset Shimmer is."
  816. >Sunset stood there dumbfounded and on the verge of a breakdown.
  817. >"Tw-Twilight...please" she stretched her trembling arm out towards Twilight.
  818. >"I...I lo-love you" and the feeling of an 400lb weight lifted off of Sunset's shoulders.
  819. >However, Twilight's expression didn't change a bit.
  820. >"You don't love me"
  821. >"All you can do is lust, and all you can do is let it consume you"
  822. >"You can never truly love anyone"
  823. >Twilight wasn't budging an inch.
  824. >Sunset found herself slowly inching herself forward.
  825. >Twilight was standing as still as a statue.
  826. >Waiting for Sunset's approach.
  827. >Each step was beating alongside the beat of Sunset's heart.
  829. >She suddenly met with some resistence.
  830. >Her body pushed up against a large, rectangular surface.
  831. >"...What?" Sunset said confused.
  832. >In the background a small hiss could be heard this time it was like static.
  833. >Sunset quickly looked around to see the source, but instead saw her surroundings had changed.
  834. >Nothing but the pitch black void.
  835. >Blackness.
  836. >She looked back towards Twilight, but instead is met by something much more alarming.
  837. >Wide, midnight black colored, bat-like wings.
  838. >Pale red skin all over.
  839. >Wearing clothes that looked like they were made of pure fire.
  840. >The hair was done up in the same way.
  841. >It looked like Sunset did when she was corrupted by the element of magic.
  842. >Sunset gasped and flinched back.
  843. >As did the monster.
  844. >Sunset tilted her head to the left with a quizzical look.
  845. >The monster tilted her head to the left with a quizzical look.
  846. >What sounded like the drums of war played to the beat of Sunset's heart inside her head.
  847. >"N-No"
  848. >"I'm not..."
  849. >"That's not me"
  850. >Every word, and facial action were copied perfectly by the beast across from her.
  851. >Sunset was getting past the point of no return.
  852. >She felt a small spark light up in her stomach.
  853. >All the anxiety, fear, lust, anger, everything.
  854. >It all felt like it was moving up Sunset's stomach and moving towards her hands.
  855. >Her fists clenched until the whites of her knuckles were showing.
  856. >In a fit of rage she swiped her hand at the demon before her.
  857. >"Grragh!" a ball of magical energy broke the monster in front of Sunset into shards of glass.
  858. >Sunset was breathing heavily and still red hot to the touch.
  860. >The noise of heavy static returned.
  861. >Piercing her ears.
  862. >She fell to her knees.
  863. >The inside of her ears felt like they were going to rupture.
  864. >Then the static stopped.
  865. >As quick as it began.
  866. >Sunset was panting now.
  867. >She noticed a piece of glass before her.
  868. >Feeling curious she picked it up and looked into it to see her reflection.
  869. >She really wished she hadn't.
  870. >On her reflected demonic face her eyes were missing.
  871. >Triangular slits with nothing but blackness residing.
  872. >And so, Sunset screamed.
  873. >Her head jolted upwards as her lungs felt like they were on fire.
  874. >Her screaming stopped when she looked around and saw she was in her room.
  875. >She hunched over and drooped her head.
  876. >A full body shudder traveled throughout her body.
  877. >Her pillow was coated in sweat.
  878. >She knew because she was beating the living hell out of it.
  879. >Each punch just aggravating the extreme feelings Sunset was experiencing.
  880. >Her vision nearly turned red.
  881. >She just wanted the nightmares to end.
  882. >It wasn't fair to her or anyone else who had to deal with her.
  883. >Why her?
  884. >Taking several deep breaths she glanced over at her alarm clock.
  885. >1:40AM
  886. >She let out a heavy sigh.
  887. >Another sleepness night.
  890. >Beep, beep, beep.
  891. >Sunset's alarm was blaring at her to wake up.
  892. >But all Sunset did was barely open her eyes.
  893. >Her bed was a mess.
  894. >The muscles in her back felt stiff.
  895. >And her back was still soaked in sweat from the nightmare.
  896. >All of this however didn't phase Sunset one bit.
  897. >She had a heart beat, and she was breathing.
  898. >But other than that it was like the lights were on but no one was home.
  899. >Still staring at the ceiling tiles while her alarm still beeps.
  900. >She tried to find a reason to get out of bed and try today.
  901. >Curling up into a ball on her bed a million things flowed into her thoughts.
  902. >None were giving her the courage to face the day though.
  903. >Her mind stopped on Twilight, and the rest of her friends.
  904. >She rolled over on her other side.
  905. >Sunset's heart was already pumping hard and it wasn't even 7AM yet.
  906. >A combination of guilt, and not wanting to worry Twilight anymore than she already was caused her to slump out of bed.
  907. >The bags under her eyes were heavier and darker.
  908. >A haze clouded her mind.
  909. >So she was relying on auto-pilot to get herself to school.
  910. >The noises of the school all blended together and became an indistinguishable drone.
  911. >And this was only from Sunset opening the front door.
  912. >A nagging sensation in her head was already telling her to turn back.
  913. >But she made it this far.
  914. >As long as she didn't run into Twilight she could handle the day.
  916. >Sunset tried to be the master of her thoughts as she walked down the hall to her locker.
  917. >She felt vulnerable.
  918. >Like all eyes could see past her.
  919. >They could see how fragile and dark her heart felt.
  920. >"Maybe I should just head ho-" her thought train was derailed by a pressure pulling on her arm.
  921. >Sunset found herself practically dragged into an empty classroom.
  922. >All the chairs were still placed on top of desks.
  923. >Even the curtains on the windows were closed.
  924. >Confused, Sunset looked behind her when she heard the sound of a door shutting.
  925. >Surprise capture her as she looked to see Rarity who looked extremely unamused.
  926. >Dressed to the nines as always.
  927. >Rarity always turned heads wherever she was.
  928. >Not always due to how she dressed though.
  929. >"You. Me. Talk. Now" she puncuated each word with precise emphasis.
  930. >A harsh exhale came from her nose.
  931. >Almost sounding like a "Hurumph"
  932. >Sunset was taken aback by the sudden harsh words
  933. >"What's going on Rarit-"
  934. >"You know very much as I do why we're having this discussion, Sunset" Rarity scolded Sunset like a child.
  935. >The room felt like it was spinning to Sunset.
  936. >She was feeling like a cornered animal.
  937. >"If this is about the sleepover..." Sunset rubbed her arm and averted her eyes to a nearby table.
  938. >"I was just...tired"
  939. >Rarity raised her eyebrow and gave Sunset a decisive stare.
  940. >"Darling, you've been tired for months" Rarity's voice grew worried.
  941. >She let out a sigh.
  943. >"Look, Twilight told me about what happened in pre-calc yesterday."
  944. >Sunset felt her pupils shrink.
  945. >Her heartbeat was thudding against her ribs.
  946. >Rarity began to step closer to Sunset.
  947. >"I know..." Rarity carefully placed her hand on Sunset's arm.
  948. >Sunset's body froze to her touch.
  949. >"Wh-What do you know?" sweat was beginning to drip down Sunset's neck.
  950. >Rarity frowned.
  951. >"I've seen how you look at her dear"
  952. >Sunset shifted herself away from Rarity's sad look.
  953. >"I-I don't know what you're talking about..."
  954. >Rarity closed her eyes and sighed again.
  955. >"You love her Sunset"
  956. >Rarity saying the l-word caused Sunset to slowly start to hyperventilate.
  957. >"And you know the "her" I'm talking about"
  958. >"You've been avoiding her, and us for a while now."
  959. >"Not well mind you."
  960. >"I know how much you enjoy our company so it would be foolish to completely isolate yourself" Rarity rambled a bit.
  961. >"Nevertheless, a lady notices things when around people for long periods of time"
  962. >Sunset was slightly shivering as she felt conflicting emotions battling inside herself.
  963. >"Stares in particular"
  964. >This felt like another nightmare to Sunset.
  965. >She was waiting to her the hissing noise as she gently pinched her bare skin.
  966. >But the only sound was the sound of Rarity talking and Sunset's anxiety-ridden breaths.
  967. >"You love Twilight, Sunset"
  968. >The words chilled Sunset's soul.
  969. >"Don't you?"
  970. >Sunset turned her head and met Rarity's eyes.
  971. >Concern filled Rarity's eyes to the point they shimmered under the light..
  972. >Sunset's limbs felt like they were floating.
  973. >She was cornered and saw no way of escape.
  974. >So, she accepted her fate.
  975. >Sunset gently nodded her head and stared to the floor.
  977. >Rarity's bone white hand gently cupped Sunset's chin
  978. >She lifted it up so Sunset's gaze was level with hers.
  979. >"That's perfectly fine darling" Rarity's words were soothing, and her touch was comforting.
  980. >She removed her hand from Sunset's chin.
  981. >"What isn't fine is bottling these feelings inside yourself dear"
  982. >"That is why I think it is imperative you talk to Twilight as soon as possible" Rarity's motherly tone came back.
  983. >"She looks up to you Sunset, and right now she thinks you don't like being around her"
  984. >"But if you two would just talk then things will be okay"
  985. >Each word Rarity spoke made another brick around Sunset's heart.
  986. >Every word causing her to block her feelings off more and more.
  987. >Sunset's body felt numb.
  988. >"...You make it sound so easy Rarity
  989. >Sunset wrapped her arms around herself in a hug.
  990. >Even though she wasn't shivering.
  991. >Sunset felt the bitter tears starting to pool in the bottom of her exhausted eyes
  992. >"What if...she hates me?" Sunset glumly asked.
  993. >"For loving her?" Rarity responded nervously.
  994. >Sunset swallowed a great sob.
  995. >And sniffled.
  996. >"For getting to know the real me"
  997. >Sunset's heart was on full display to Rarity.
  998. >She closed her eyes and tried to think of nothing.
  999. >Anything but how she was feeling.
  1000. >An affectionate glow blanketed around Sunset.
  1001. >Opening her eyes suddenly she recognized the familiar royal purple curls inches from her face.
  1002. >"The real you is amazing dear"
  1003. >Rarity firmly hugged Sunset.
  1004. >"It doesn't take someone with a keen eye to see that"
  1005. >Dumbstruck, Sunset stood there in Rarity's embrace for what seemed like ages.
  1006. >The tears still welling in her eyes.
  1007. >With trembling hands she moved them around Rarity's back.
  1008. >And returned the hug.
  1009. >Her heart feeling that cold warmth again.
  1010. >Gradually, Rarity broke off the hug and looked at Sunset.
  1011. >A small smile was on her face.
  1012. >It was a slight comfort to Sunset's plight.
  1013. >"I know you two will be so happy together" Rarity cupped Sunset's hand and gently squeezed.
  1014. >Rarity looked up at the clock on the wall.
  1015. >She turned and walked to the door.
  1016. >Turning the handle and opening it she took one quick look back at Sunset.
  1017. >Rarity nodded to her, and Sunset nodded back.
  1018. >And with that she made her way to her own class.
  1019. >Leaving Sunset behind with just her thoughts.
  1020. >But more assured of herself.
  1021. >At least she hoped she was.
  1023. >Surprisingly, Sunset's first half of the day went off without any major issues.
  1024. >Fluttershy meekly waved at her before history.
  1025. >Rainbow Dash gave her a quick thumbs up in between passing periods after science.
  1026. >But no sign of Twilight.
  1027. >Sunset spent all her classes barely paying attention to anything.
  1028. >She put all her focus into what she would say to Twilight.
  1029. >How she was going to profess her love.
  1030. >Every method she thought of just didn't rub her the right way.
  1031. >Each idea causing more frustration than the last.
  1032. >Before she knew it, it was time for lunch.
  1033. >A less than ideal time to talk to Twilight.
  1034. >Noisy environments
  1035. >Not much room for one-on-one conversation.
  1036. >Plus Sunset was still not feeling 100%.
  1037. >She didn't even feel up to sit by her friends.
  1038. >Sunset decided to spend her lunch by herself at an empty table.
  1039. >Heading down to the cafeteria she sneakily ducked in line.
  1040. >Grabbed a light snack and something to drink.
  1041. >Then she scanned the area for any sign of her friends.
  1042. >Not a rainbow or stetson in sight.
  1043. >She let out a sigh of relief.
  1044. >And found a lone table where she could eat in peace.
  1045. >Carefully sitting down and taking a bit of her apple.
  1046. >She finds her eyes wandering the cafeteria.
  1047. >A recognizable hue of pinkish-purple caught her eye.
  1048. >A few tables across from her there sat her friends.
  1049. >Laughing, talking, enjoying each other's company.
  1050. >Sunset's stomach felt queasy as she quickly averted her eyes down to the red tabletop.
  1051. >She hoped they wouldn't notice her.
  1052. >Taking another bite of her apple she heard the sound of someone approaching her.
  1054. >A tray landed on the table with a slight thud.
  1055. >And the person who put that tray there was none other than the Great and Uninvited Trixie.
  1056. >Sunset failed to hide the annoyed look on her face.
  1057. >"You are not mistaken."
  1058. >"The Great and Powerful Trixie has chosen you, Sunset Shimmer, to be her new lunch time sitting buddy"
  1059. >Trixie pointed her finger at Sunset and gave a smug grin.
  1060. >"Feel free to feel honored if you want, I know it must be a welcomed surprise"
  1061. >Sunset was still chewing her apple.
  1062. >Giving Trixie no reply or response whatsoever.
  1063. >Trixie's smile deflated.
  1064. >"Don't get too excited now" she stabbed at her jello with a bored expression.
  1065. >Swallowing her apple, Sunset took in a deep breath.
  1066. >"Trixie, I kind of just want to sit by myself today."
  1067. >"No offense to you, but I'm just not feeling up to dealing with people right now" Sunset looked across to the table with her friends.
  1068. >Her mood dampened slightly.
  1069. >"Well, Trixie really has no where else to go at the moment." Trixie sighed.
  1070. >"Honestly, Trixie's friends kicked her out of the table."
  1071. >"You accidentally cause someone's eyebrows to combust one too many times suddenly they turn on you" Trixie was exasperated.
  1072. >"Can you believe that?!" angrily she crossed her arms and let out a small "Hmph."
  1073. >Her eyelids dropped slightly.
  1074. >"And...Trixie saw you sitting all by yourself and she thought...you were kicked out of your table too."
  1075. >Concern was still so weird to hear come out of Trixie's arrogant mouth.
  1076. >But in a weird way it was actually sweet to hear her say that.
  1077. >A small smirk appeared on Sunset's face.
  1079. >"Are you amused by Trixie's woes?" an unamused look formed on her face.
  1080. >"No just...thinking about a funny joke" Sunset lied with a smile.
  1081. >Trixie cocked an eyebrow at Sunset.
  1082. >"If you say so" Trixie went back to absentmindly stabbing at her food.
  1083. >"So, what did you do?"
  1084. >Sunset looked over at Trixie mouth agape slightly.
  1085. >"To get kicked out to loner island over here I mean"
  1086. >Sunsets hands gripped the edge of the table tight.
  1087. >"I wasn't kicked out." Sunset spoke softly.
  1088. >"I just..." Sunset trailed off.
  1089. >Trixie looked up from her tray with a curious expression.
  1090. >"I just needed some space to think"
  1091. >Sunset's heart felt heavy again.
  1092. >Her thoughts were still disorganized.
  1093. >And still no plan on what to say to Twilight.
  1094. >Trixie looked over to the table with all Sunset's friends.
  1095. >...Is this still about your whole crush problem or whatever?"
  1096. >A cold chill took Sunset's whole body by force.
  1097. >"N-No!" Sunset unintentionally yelled at Trixie.
  1098. >Sunset swore she saw a glint in Trixie's eye as she went deep into thought.
  1099. >"Is...is your crush on one of your fri-" before Trixie could point Sunset interjected.
  1100. >"Wh-Why would I..." Sunset shook her head.
  1101. >"No, just no Trixie" her tone was curt.
  1102. >In response Trixie just shrugged.
  1103. >"I'm just asking"
  1104. >"No need to get all defensive on me"
  1105. >Sunset held her hands up and let out a calm breath.
  1106. >She took her drink and took a sip.
  1107. >"...Is it Rainbow Dash?"
  1109. >Trixie's question almost made Sunset choke on her water.
  1110. >She coughed and sputtered as her face grew red from a combination of embarrassment and from almost dying.
  1111. >Trixie recoiled from the debris coming from Sunset.
  1112. >"Alright, not Rainbow." she rubbed her chin and looked back over at the table.
  1113. >"Hmmm, is it Rarity?" Trixie's smug smile returned.
  1114. >Sunset looked extremely unamused.
  1115. >"I thought you didn't care about this?"
  1116. >"Trixie said she knew you wanted to keep it underwraps, but Trixie never said she wouldn't try to guess who it is"
  1117. >She shut her eyes with a self-assured expression.
  1118. >"Especially when I have a good feeling I know who it is..."
  1119. >Sunset's face was growing hotter, and redder.
  1120. >Like lava.
  1121. >Her hands were becoming slick and fidgety.
  1122. >"W-Well it's not Rarity..." Sunset's heart thumped into her throat.
  1123. >Trixie snapped her fingers.
  1124. >"Shoot, I thought for sure it was her."
  1125. >Trixie's eyebrows furrowed greatly as she concentrated.
  1126. >Sunset was sweating bullets at this point.
  1127. >Her hand was shaking terribly as she grabbed for her water again.
  1128. >"Eh, Trixie doesn't know then" she shrugged
  1129. >Sunset's insides untangled slightly from what Trixie said.
  1130. >She decided to just forget about what just happened and to just work on studying for whatever test she had coming up.
  1131. >With her hands still shaking she reached into her bag and grabbed her lime-green notebook.
  1132. >She began to open it, but it slipped out of her hands and landed in front of Trixie.
  1134. >Drawings of Twilight and various things associated with Twilight filled her vision.
  1135. >Sparkles, her eyes, her hair, rough sketches of Twilight embracing what appeared to be Sunset.
  1136. >"What?"
  1137. >Sunset was in full-blown panic mode.
  1138. >Trixie's eyes darted back and forth between the pages and Sunset.
  1139. >She found herself beginning to stand up.
  1140. >Her body hunched over the table taking in everything on the candid notebook pages.
  1142. >Trixie's voice rang out with enough volume to cause nearly every head in the cafeteria to turn towards Sunset's table.
  1143. >Silence swept through like a whisper through the night.
  1144. >All eyes were practically looking to Sunset to see what was going on.
  1145. >Including Trixie's nearly bulging eyeballs.
  1146. >Sunset felt her soul beginning to exit her body.
  1147. >She felt like she was having an out of body experience.
  1148. >Or she just very much wished something would come along and whisk her away from all the prying eyes.
  1149. >Sunset saw Trixie look past her with a frightened expression.
  1150. >Why Sunset would turn is something she would kick herself later for.
  1151. >For she came face to face with a very confused, and very concerned Twilight Sparkle
  1152. >A wave of nausea punched Sunset's gut rapid fire.
  1153. >Her face went full on scarlet.
  1154. >She felt the stinging pain of tears welling up in her eyes.
  1156. >...Sunset?" Twilight said in a way that made a tear roll down Sunset's cheek.
  1157. >Everyone was gawking at her it seemed like.
  1158. >She couldn't breathe.
  1159. >Every breath she tried to take just felt like she was trying to swallow cactus needles.
  1160. >Her legs wobbled like a newborn calf.
  1161. >Flight or Fight mode was trying to activate in her head.
  1162. >With tears pouring down her face Sunset launched herself off her seat and ran.
  1163. >She ran and ran and when she felt like stopping.
  1164. >She ran some more.
  1165. >She kept on running until her legs refused to move another step.
  1166. >Sunset panted and sobbed.
  1167. >Salty tears dripped down from her chin.
  1168. >Her hair was windswept and messy.
  1169. >Sunset didn't care.
  1170. >She collapsed against a locker.
  1171. >A complete joke.
  1173. >There were no inhumane tortures, or indescribable agony to accurately express the war inside Sunset's body.
  1174. >She was broken.
  1175. >And inside herself she was continuing to break.
  1176. >The eyes of Twilight Sparkle the only thing her troubled mind could focus on.
  1177. >Her eyes surrounded by the sea of judgemental stares did nothing but strengthen the anxiety circling Sunset's heart.
  1178. >The cold steel of the locker only serving to remind Sunset how dead she felt inside.
  1179. >She waited and waited to her any kind of hissing noise.
  1180. >But the truth was all too real to Sunset.
  1181. >This wasn't a nightmare, this was real life.
  1182. >Everyone knows her secret and there is nothing she can do to change that except listen to her heart.
  1183. >But her gut was screaming over her heart and telling her to run.
  1184. >"Sunset?" a voice echoed down the hall.
  1185. >Resisting the urge to vomit then and there, Sunset looked in the direction the voice came.
  1186. >"Sunset?" came the voice again.
  1187. >It sounded dorky, but distressed.
  1188. >Like the sound of a teacher giving a lecture.
  1189. >Or a concerned mother searching for their lost child.
  1190. >All Sunset knew was she had to hide.
  1191. >Panicking, her eyes wandered around the hallway looking for an ideal spot to lay low.
  1192. >Footsteps were inching closer to Sunset.
  1193. >The clock was ticking.
  1194. >A saving grace appeared before Sunset however in the form of the girl's bathroom.
  1195. >Without hesitation she charged through the door and pushed herself up against the wall.
  1196. >She wrapped her hands around her mouth to quiet her restless breathing.
  1198. >The footsteps came closer.
  1199. >Each one louder than the last.
  1200. >Sunset curled up on the slightly damp bathroom floor and clenched her eyes shut.
  1201. >Hoping that maybe she would just disappear from existence if she tried hard enough.
  1202. >They sounded like they were right outside the bathroom door.
  1203. >An involuntary whimper came out of Sunset's shivering form.
  1204. >This felt like the end.
  1205. >Like all of reality would just crumble when those footsteps crossed the threshold of no return.
  1206. >But, they didn't.
  1207. >A minute passed by.
  1208. >Then without warning the footsteps marched off away.
  1209. >Becoming quieter, and quieter until Sunset could barely feel the vibration through the floor.
  1210. >Then nothing.
  1211. >The sound of running water the only thing left to listen to.
  1212. >Sunset laid on the floor for quite some time.
  1213. >Her arm getting tired from lying on her side.
  1214. >But, it didn't matter.
  1215. >It hurt to care right now.
  1216. >The thought of going through a routine like this for the rest of Sunset's life caused a rough sob to escape her throat.
  1217. >It felt like sandpaper scraping her throat.
  1218. >She just wanted things to go back to how they used to be.
  1219. >Her, Twilight, and her friends all being friendly and kind to one another.
  1220. >No nightmares, no stress, and no...feelings.
  1221. >Just obliviousness.
  1222. >"Oh wow, I knew things were bad, but I didn't know they were this bad." a voice caused Sunset's eyes to open.
  1224. >With great unease she clumsily picked herself off the floor.
  1225. >She leaned against a nearby wall for support.
  1226. >The strange thing being was no one else was in the bathroom with her.
  1227. >The door was still shut and all the stalls were empty.
  1228. >"Over here" the familiar voice said.
  1229. >It came from over by the bathroom sink.
  1230. >Nervously, Sunset stepped over by the sink and looked into it.
  1231. >Not sure what she expected to find.
  1232. >"In the mirror you dumbass" sighed the voice.
  1233. >Her heart stopped for what seemed like the hundredth time today.
  1234. >Swallowing her stomach's attempt to evacuate its contents out of Sunset's mouth again.
  1235. >Sunset followed the sound of the voice upwards.
  1236. >Into the mirror it said it was occupying.
  1237. >And there looking back at Sunset instead of her reflection, was herself.
  1238. >"Did you miss me?" the mirrored Sunset smugly asked.
  1239. >Same red and yellow hair but slightly brighter.
  1240. >Oily black leather jacket with a purple top with her sun cutie mark as a logo.
  1241. >But what was different was the glint in her eye.
  1242. >The aura of passion radiating from her very form.
  1243. >It made the real Sunset sick just looking at her.
  1244. >"Oh great, now I'm going crazy" Sunset brought her hands up to the sides of her head and massaged her temples.
  1245. >MirrorSet's expression didn't change.
  1246. >"I'd say this is more of a wake-up call"
  1247. >The way she spoke was giving Sunset a throbbing headache.
  1248. >"I'm really not interested tell it to a me who cares." Sunset slowly began to turn from the mirror.
  1250. >"Something tells me you are interested or why would I be here?" MirrorSet asked.
  1251. >"Don't know, don't care" Sunset's expression hardened as she went neutral.
  1252. >As her hand reached for the bathroom door handle she heard the sickening sounds of herself cackling.
  1253. >"Oh-Oh my god, you're being serious right now?" Sunset's hand was frozen on the handle.
  1254. >"This is who you've become?"
  1255. >"Some angsty little child running away from everything?
  1256. >Sunset's grip on the door tightened as she felt a small little fire light up inside her.
  1257. >"Sweet Celestia, do you even remember being me at all anymore?"
  1258. >Sunset's head drooped forward.
  1259. >"You had everything in the palm of your hands"
  1260. >"Money, power, and the adoration of countless followers"
  1261. >Mirrorset sighed.
  1262. >"Now look at you."
  1263. >"Everyone sees you as a joke."
  1264. >"No one fears the name "Sunset Shimmer" anymore"
  1265. >Both Sunsets went silence.
  1266. >"And no one respects it either" the mirrored Sunset finished.
  1267. >Sunset took her hand off the bathroom handle.
  1268. >She turned her palms towards herself.
  1269. >Petite, slender fingers, but calloused from dedication.
  1270. >"You're wrong" Sunset whispered.
  1271. >"What?" Mirrorset sounded surprised.
  1272. >Sunset paced back over to the mirror to meet her reflection.
  1273. >"Those "countless followers" didn't adore us...me." Sunset pulled her fists towards her heart.
  1274. >"They feared me..."
  1275. >Sunset met Mirrorset's gaze and saw the smug expression beginning to turn sour.
  1276. >"I was consumed by that lust for power, but I was more consumed by my lust to be loved"
  1277. >"I forced people and ponies to like me by being a monster" the fire in Sunset's belly was growing brighter.
  1278. >"After my time here and actually forging real bonds and connections I realized I was wrong for nearly all my life"
  1279. >Sunset's sullen expression returned as her head dipped.
  1280. >"And I've helped others see what I saw"
  1281. >"Feel what I felt"
  1282. >"But..." Sunset sighed.
  1283. >"Deep down I guess I'll never be able to be free of my desires"
  1285. >Mirrorset crossed her arms and slightly smirked.
  1286. >"I'll still have you as a reminder for that time in my life" Sunset gestured to her reflection.
  1287. >If mirrors could ooze smug then this one would be coated twice over.
  1288. >"Well look who finally found her backbone" she sarcastically clapped.
  1289. >"What are you going to do now that you have achieved this level of introspection oh enlightened one?" Mirrorset made big puppy dog eyes at Sunset.
  1290. >Another brick wall presented itself.
  1291. >Another hurdle to climb over.
  1292. >Before Sunset could answer she heard the frantic sounds of footsteps outside the bathroom.
  1293. >"Aww, what's the matter dweeb?"
  1294. >"Your dyke girlfriend hiding from you?"
  1295. >The fire burning inside Sunset grew hotter as she instinctively clenched her fists.
  1296. >She knew that conceited, anger filled voice anywhere.
  1297. >Gilda.
  1298. >Sunset carefully pushed the door open justa little bit so she could see who she was talking to.
  1299. >Through a crack in the door she saw the backside of the heavy brown coat Gilda wore.
  1300. >Sunset knew she wore it to look larger than she actually was.
  1301. >"P-Please, I just want to find her" came an anxious mousey voice.
  1302. >"I'll help you find the flaming dyke, for a price" Gilda's words were as sleazy as she looked.
  1303. >Sunset felt the start of adrenaline circulating through her bloodstream.
  1304. >"Sounds like she's talking about you" Sunset's mirror self joked.
  1305. >And with that crack, the pieces began to fall into place.
  1306. >The voice, Gilda's comments, and finally Mirrorset made Sunset realize that Gilda was threatening Twilight
  1307. >"But I already gave you all the money I had this week..."
  1308. >"I d-don't have anything else" Twilight pleaded desperately.
  1309. >"You look like you got stuff to me" Sunset saw Gilda point to her backpack.
  1310. >Gilda took another step closer, intimidating Twilight.
  1312. >Twilight looked behind her as she hugged her backpack tight.
  1313. >"Don't even think about running or I'll be taking more than just a backpack"
  1314. >Sunset found herself looking onwards at the scene before her.
  1315. >The words Gilda hissed circling her brain.
  1316. >Before they settled inside her stomach stroking the flames.
  1317. >"Well?" came a voice from behind Sunset.
  1318. >"Do you know who you are?" she asked?
  1319. >Determination put Sunset into overdrive.
  1320. >Her righteous fury was the wheel and the gas.
  1321. >Sunset stood up straight and confidentally strutted out the door.
  1322. >"Hmph...go get her then"
  1323. >Before she left she could have swore she heard her mirrored self say something.
  1324. >But all sounds were blocked out as she focused on Gilda and Twilight.
  1325. >Twilight was still backing away slowly as Gilda looked ready to pounce.
  1326. >"C'mon dork, you really don't want to make me mad"
  1327. >"I'll make that clam-slamming girlfriend of yours seem like a pussy compared to what I can do"
  1328. >And with that, Twilight quickly tried to turn and run, but Gilda was prepared for that.
  1329. >She sadly was faster than Twilight.
  1330. >Gilda held Twilight in a headlock.
  1331. >Her arm squeezing on Twilight's brittle neck.
  1332. >Twilight tried to scream her lungs out, but Gilda clamped her mouth shut with her hand.
  1333. >She thrashed and struggled against Gilda's body, but Twilight was out of her weight class.
  1334. >"Now you've really gone and pissed me off you stupid carpet munching dyke." She angrily spat in Twilight's face.
  1335. >Sunset's vision went a shade darker than red.
  1336. >Gilda pulled her hand back and balled it into a fist.
  1337. >Ready to let loose on Twilight.
  1338. >Twilight closed her eyes as she prepared for the blow.
  1339. >"HEY!"
  1340. >Gilda and Twilight both turned towards the booming shout of Sunset Shimmer.
  1342. >She felt the fire still burning in her stomach as it began to burn everywhere else.
  1343. >Gilda looked surprised for a moment, but her cocky grin soon replaced it.
  1344. >"Well, look who finally decided to show herself."
  1345. >"Are you here to save your little girlfriend?" she noogied Twilight's hair viciously.
  1346. >Sunset remained stone faced.
  1347. >She took a step forward and didn't say a word.
  1348. >Her expression said everything.
  1349. >Sunset could see beads of sweat falling down Gilda's brow.
  1350. >Panicking, she tightened her grip around Twilight.
  1351. >A pained, muffled scream only fueled Sunset even more.
  1352. >"Stay back or I'll-
  1353. >"I'll..."
  1354. >"I'll ruin her pretty face!"
  1355. >Gilda's threats didn't stop Sunset.
  1356. >She kept marching forward.
  1357. >Taking her time to draw each step out as much as she could.
  1358. >"I-I'm warning you dyke!"
  1359. >Gilda reached in her back pocket and pulled out a small switchblade.
  1360. >Sunset stopped mid-step.
  1361. >Her expression unyielding to Gilda's cowardly ways.
  1362. >She held the blade up to Twilight's face who was trying to do anything to avoid it.
  1363. >Lightly running the tip of blade down Twilight's cheek.
  1364. >Twilight whimpered in response.
  1365. >A drop of blood dripped out of the fresh cut.
  1366. >On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the angriest it was safe to say Sunset's readings were off the scale.
  1368. >The veins in her neck pulsed and throbbed.
  1369. >Her fists were shaking with pure rage.
  1370. >Her glare could turn Medusa to a burning stone..
  1371. >"I warned you" Gilda's voice feeling like ice cubes down her back to Sunset.
  1372. >"Now, if you want her so badly then you gotta have something to trade dontcha?"
  1373. >Without breaking eye contact with Gilda, Sunset reached into the pocket of her jeans.
  1374. >And slowly pulled out her wallet.
  1375. >Gilda's cruel, sadastic grin just made Sunset even more pissed.
  1376. >"Let her go." Sunset spoke with an almost silent furor.
  1377. >In response Gilda pressed the tip of the blade against Twilight's cheek again.
  1378. >"How about you give me what I want first?
  1379. >Or else" she put great emphasis on the "else"
  1380. >Sunset looked from Gilda to Twilight.
  1381. >She didn't see another option that didn't involve Twilight getting hurt.
  1382. >And that wasn't a risk she was willing to take.
  1383. >Slowly, she began to kneel down.
  1384. >Keeping eye contact with Gilda so she doesn't pull any funny business.
  1385. >"Good, glad to see you've learned your place you dumb dyke"
  1386. >Sunset's calm, but furious scowl was all Gilda got back from her.
  1387. >She set her wallet on the floor and placed her hand on top of it.
  1388. >On the count of three in her head she was going to slide it over
  1390. >One.
  1391. >Two.
  1392. >Thr-
  1393. >"OW, SHIT YOU CRAZY BITCH!" Gilda screamed as Sunset swears she hears the sound of bones breaking.
  1394. >Sunset glances over at the Twilight in her grasp and sees she's biting down hard on Gilda's finger.
  1395. >Her eyes were shut hard as she held on for dear life.
  1396. >Gilda was punching Twilight in the side trying to loosen her grip.
  1397. >But Twilight stuck firmly on Gilda.
  1398. >In that moment Sunset witnessed time slowing down.
  1399. >Her breathing became calm as she took hold of the opportunity fate had just delivered her.
  1400. >Like a track star, Sunset sprinted towards Gilda.
  1401. >Almost in a horselike gallop.
  1402. >Gilda shook Twilight off and flung her into a nearby locker face first.
  1403. >She spat towards her.
  1404. >"Fucking psych-"
  1405. >Gilda's sentence was interrupted by the pure, unbridled rage that was Sunset Shimmer.
  1406. >Gritting her teeth, Sunset drew her hand back into a fist.
  1407. >And let she let it fly towards Gilda's shocked face.
  1408. >With the speed she gathered, Sunset's punch collided square into Gilda's jaw.
  1409. >Sending her spiraling back onto the slick hallway floor.
  1410. >Groaning in pain.
  1412. >Sunset's fist was still raised in front of her.
  1413. >Her eyes still focused and combat ready.
  1414. >But surprisingly Gilda stayed floored.
  1415. >She let out a breath she didn't even know she was holding.
  1416. >"Twilight!"
  1417. >But she wasn't out of the woods yet.
  1418. >She rushed over by Twilight's side she had collapsed against the locker Gilda threw her against.
  1419. >To Sunset's dismay it looked like she was out cold.
  1420. >Throwing caution to the wind she put her ear up against her chest.
  1421. >The light thumping of a heartbeat put Sunset's nerves at ease.
  1422. >She grabbed a hold of Twilight's shoulders and shook her gently.
  1423. >"Twilight?"
  1424. >Sunset lifted her head off the hard locker door and rested it against her hand.
  1425. >She could feel Twilight's breath wash against her face, but she still wouldn't come to.
  1426. >"Twilight please..." she hugged Twilight tight and rocked her gently.
  1427. >"What is all the commotion out her-"
  1428. >Sunset's head slowly tilted up and saw someone she wasn't prepared to see.
  1429. >Ms. Cheerilee, her eyes moving back and forth between Sunset and Gilda with an expression of awe.
  1430. >Sunset looked up into her comforting green eyes to find worry, and doubt.
  1431. >Her adrenaline was wearing off.
  1432. >Tears were glistening in her eyes under the pale hallway lights.
  1433. >All she could say without bursting into a crying mess was
  1434. >"Help, please" Sunset held back a sniffle as Cheerilee power jogged over to the other side of Twilight.
  1435. >She checked Twilight's pulse and felt her breathing.
  1436. >"C'mon" she ordered as she carefully wrapped Twilight's body up in her jacket.
  1437. >Sunset took in what Ms. Cheerliee was doing and nodded as she cleared her eyes of tears.
  1438. >And they both proceeded to Nurse Redheart's office determined to save a life.
  1440. >Even though Sunset knew Twilight was alive and kicking she was still stuck in guilt's close grasp.
  1441. >Maybe if she had acted sooner Twilight wouldn't have been hurt.
  1442. >But it was no time to play the blame game.
  1443. >Keeping up with Cheerilee's distressed pace, Sunset finally recognized the hallway they were in.
  1444. >Nurse Redheart's office was just up a little further right by Principal Celestia's office.
  1445. >Cheerilee elbowed open the door with enough force to scare Nurse Redheart out of her skin.
  1446. >She was standing in the middle of the average sized room.
  1447. >Clipboard in hand.
  1448. >Standard medical professional outfit.
  1449. >The works.
  1450. >She was good for being a high school nurse.
  1451. >"What's the ma-" Redheart looked in Cheerilee's arms and saw the still passed out Twilight.
  1452. >Her eyes widened as she moved over to one of the empty cots.
  1453. >She cleared it off and laid a fresh layer of what looked like wax paper on top as a cover.
  1454. >She pointed to it.
  1455. >"Right here" now she was the one ordering Cheerilee around.
  1456. >Without hesitation, Cheerilee carried Twilight over to the cot and then eased her onto it as best she could.
  1457. >"Easy...eeasy" Nurse Redheart spoke as they both put Twilight, back first, on the cot.
  1458. >"There we go" she wiped her forehead and walked over to a nearby drawer.
  1459. >Sunset just stood off to the side watching Nurse Redheart do her thing.
  1460. >She dabbed a bit of liquid on a cloth and carefully began to apply it to the cut on Twilight's cheek.
  1461. >"...Can I ask what happened?" Sunset was broken from her trance by Nurse Redheart's question.
  1462. >Sunset was afraid this might happen.
  1463. >Before she could speak up though Cheerilee began talking.
  1464. >"Well, I heard some loud noises out in the hall as I was trying to give a lecture"
  1465. >"And I find her on the floor with an unconcious student, and nearby was another student moaning in pain"
  1466. >Sunset felt like she was being stared at.
  1467. >And she looked up to find her assumption was true.
  1468. >Both Nurse Redheart and Cheerilee were looking to her for answers.
  1470. >Sunset let out a heavy sigh.
  1471. >"Alright, here's what happened." Sunset began as Redheart placed a bandage on Twilight's cheek.
  1472. >And so, Sunset recounted all the events beginning in the hallway.
  1473. >From Gilda threatening Twilight to Sunset knocking her lights out.
  1474. >Cheerilee put her hand in front of her mouth.
  1475. >Shocked to even hear such a thing happening at this school.
  1476. >But they both seemed to believe it.
  1477. >Nurse Redheart was doing some last minute inspections on Twilight.
  1478. >"Well...sounds like you've both been through quite the ordeal."
  1479. >"But, luckily it looks like only some minor bruises and scratches are what you're walking away with"
  1480. >"Well, her anyway" Nurse Redheart rambled a bit.
  1481. >Sunset stood at the foot of the cot Twilight was still passed out in.
  1482. >"She should wake up any time now." Nurse Redheart placed her hand on Sunset's back and gently patted.
  1483. >Moving to where Nurse Redheart was sitting, Sunset's eyes traveled up and down Twilight's still form.
  1484. >A weight was still resting on her heart.
  1485. >But Sunset didn't understand why.
  1486. >Twilight was okay, and she was going to wake up soon and everything will be fine.
  1487. >Sunset saw Twilight's lone hand off to her side.
  1488. >A tugging sensation in her stomach was telling her to hold it.
  1489. >So she did.
  1490. >Ms. Cheerilee had gotten up and was over talking to Nurse Redheart.
  1491. >Sunset's fingers were wrapped around Twilight's.
  1492. >Her hands were soft, kinda sweaty, but soft.
  1493. >It felt right holding her hand.
  1494. >Sunset's mind raced through the entire last few months in a blur.
  1495. >All leading up to here.
  1496. >Being in love with her best friend.
  1497. >And you know what?
  1498. >That was perfectly okay.
  1499. >Sunset leaned forward, hand still locked in Twilight's, and wrapped her arms around her in a hug.
  1500. >She nuzzled Twilight's shoulder with her cheek and smiled.
  1501. >Feeling perfectly content, Sunset let out a calm breath.
  1502. >"I love y-"
  1503. >"Sunset Shimmer" before she could finish her thought a voice grabbed her attention.
  1505. >Looking over to where the voice came from she saw the stern expression of Principal Celestia.
  1506. >She was standing in the doorway in her traditional tan jacket and purple bellbottoms.
  1507. >"Come with me please" her tone was slightly dismal.
  1508. >It gave Sunset a sinking feeling in her stomach.
  1509. >Sunset caressed the side of Twilight's face and looked at her sleeping peacefully.
  1510. >"I'll be back Twilight don't worry." and with one more squeeze Sunset let go of Twilight's hand.
  1511. >She walked over to the door and stopped for a second.
  1512. >She glanced at Twilight, and then back out into the hallway.
  1513. >And with that, she walked through the door.
  1514. >Principal Celestia was waiting just right outside the door near a set of lockers.
  1515. >"Please follow me, Ms. Shimmer"
  1516. >She began down the hall to her office.
  1517. >Sunset matched her pace and tagged along behind her.
  1518. >The creeping feeling that something was terribly wrong became stronger.
  1519. >Celestia walked into her office and had a seat at the desk with her name plaque sitting on top of it.
  1520. >"Have a seat." she gestured to the chair in front of her desk.
  1521. >Sunset swallowed her fear and obliged.
  1522. >Nervously, she sat before Principal Celestia.
  1523. >She tried to keep cool, but felt her authortative presence all around her.
  1524. >Celestia placed her hands together in front of her.
  1525. >Hand wrapped in hand.
  1526. >Sunset saw her shoulders raise up and down lower.
  1527. >As if what she was about to say was burdening her in some way.
  1528. >"Can you explain to me what happened between you, Twilight Sparkle, and Gilda?"
  1529. >Sunset grabbed the side of her arm as she looked away from Celestia's eyes.
  1530. >"Y-Yeah, I...I can"
  1531. >"Proceed" Celestia sat waiting to hear the full story.
  1532. >For the second time, Sunset recalled the events that had transpired nearly an hour ago.
  1533. >Not leaving any of the details out.
  1534. >Principal Celestia's reaction was more tame than Ms. Cheerilee's and Nurse Redheart's.
  1535. >But Sunset could feel a tinge of worry in those eyes.
  1537. >Celestia stood up from her desk and looked out the window behind her.
  1538. >It was a view into the hallway
  1539. >"...And you are positive on all that, Sunset Shimmer?"
  1540. >A lump formed in Sunset's throat.
  1541. >"Y-Yes, m'am" she nervously squeaked out.
  1542. >Principal Celestia turned back around to face Sunset.
  1543. >"Good, because your story matches closer to the security footage than Gilda's did"
  1544. >"She tried to say you assaulted her and Twilight" she did a small eye roll.
  1545. >Sunset felt a strange tingle in her heart.
  1546. >It felt like hope.
  1547. >A small smile formed on her face.
  1548. >"Between you and me" Celestia leaned in close to Sunset and whispered.
  1549. >"I didn't believe her for a second"
  1550. >The light at the end of the tunnel was approaching.
  1551. >Sunset felt it.
  1552. >She was in the clear.
  1553. >Principal Celestia's face frowned slightly.
  1554. >"But"
  1555. >"You know, as well as I, CHS has a no-tolerance policy when it comes to physical violence"
  1556. >The light was getting dimmer.
  1557. >The path was veering away into the dark abyss.
  1558. >"...So I'm getting suspended?" Sunset's tone didn't hide her disappointment.
  1559. >Principal Celestia let out a wistful sigh as she pulled out a folder from in her desk.
  1560. >"Actually, you're not."
  1561. >Sunset cocked an eyebrow at Celestia, but what she saw didn't instill hope in her.
  1563. >Her frown was deepening.
  1564. >"The school board recently passed a new rule stating any student involved in three or more physical altercations..."
  1565. >Sunset was on the edge of her seat.
  1566. >Her heart was beating so fast she could feel it throughout her body.
  1567. >The vice around her lungs was tightening as she could hardly breathe.
  1568. >Principal Celestia looked to Sunset with somber eyes
  1569. >"...they be recommended for expulsion.
  1570. >Sunset felt more tears beginning to form in her eyes.
  1571. >She couldn't believe what she was hearing.
  1572. >It wasn't fair.
  1573. >"And...sadly, this is your third one Sunset Shimmer"
  1574. >"The other two happened during your freshmen year" Principal Celestia explained as she looked through the folder in front of her.
  1575. >This triggered a flashback to when Sunset first arrived in this world.
  1576. >She remembered getting into it with the posh, preppy jerks pretty bad.
  1577. >But it only ended in fighting just the two times.
  1578. >The first was some pompous, fashion model wannabe and the other was her meat-head jerk boyfriend.
  1579. >Sunset leaned forward and held her hands by the sides of her head.
  1580. >Clenching them as she had to resist the urge to completely lose it then and there.
  1581. >"I'm being punished for saving Twilight's life?" was the only thing to come to her mind.
  1582. >It lacked the raw anger, but it was still bitter to hear.
  1583. >She looked up to Principal Celestia with tears nearly pouring down her face.
  1584. >Celestia averted her eyes away from Sunset.
  1585. >She looked crestfallen and nodded.
  1587. >"If it were up to me Sunset..."
  1588. >"You'd get a slap on the wrist, and nothing more."
  1589. >She crossed her arms against her chest.
  1590. >"But, the school board would have my head as well as my sister's if I just..looked the other way on this one."
  1591. >Sunset felt like her life was over.
  1592. >There were times when she felt at the end of her rope, but none of them compared to this.
  1593. >She'd rather take on all the magical nonsense this world had to offer single-handedly than to be punished for caring.
  1594. >Punished for showing her love, and punished for being a good friend.
  1595. >Thats how it felt to Sunset.
  1596. >"The hearing for it will probably be held in a week or so..."
  1597. >"I'll let you know more as new information is passed along to me."
  1598. >Sunset's hands were trembling as she just stared at the floor of Celestia's office.
  1599. >Still reeling in from the horrible news Principal Celestia had just given her.
  1600. >She heard the sound of a chair scooting in..
  1601. >Then footsteps over to her.
  1602. >Yellow heels appeared off to the side in her vision.
  1603. >Sunset felt Principal Celestia gently place her hand on her back.
  1604. >She lifted her heavy, bagged eyes off the floor to meet Principal Celestia's
  1605. >And Celestia encased her in a comforting embrace.
  1606. >"Can I at least say goodbye to Twilight?" Sunset sobbed into Principal Celestia's jacket
  1607. >In a sympathetic voice, Celestia replied
  1608. >"Of course" she smiled.
  1609. >Sunset at least had that
  1611. >"Things will be okay, I promise" Celestia soothingly whispered to Sunset.
  1612. >Sunset broke off the hug and wiped her eyes on her own jacket sleeve.
  1613. >She bowed her head forward slightly.
  1614. >"...Thanks"
  1615. >And with that, she walked out of her office with a great weight upon her shoulders.
  1616. >She thought she saw Celestia drying her eyes on her jacket as well, but Sunset really didn't care at this point.
  1617. >Her life here at Canterlot High.
  1618. >Her friends.
  1619. >Everything.
  1620. >It was over.
  1621. >The door was slowly, but surely closing on any hope she had left.
  1622. >She made the short trip back down to Nurse Redheart's, but it felt like she was walking to her death.
  1623. >She wanted to run away.
  1624. >Just go back through the portal and just go live in some far off land where no one and no pony could find her.
  1625. >But
  1626. >As much as this whole situation wasn't fair to Sunset.
  1627. >Leaving now without so much as a goodbye wouldn't be fair to Twilight or any of her friends.
  1628. >So she had to put on a brave face, for their sakes.
  1629. >Stopping just outside the door.
  1630. >Sunset took a deep breath and put on the biggest grin she could muster up.
  1631. >And headed into the room.
  1632. >The first thing she noticed was Twilight was awake.
  1633. >Her eyes were half-lidded and she looked exhausted.
  1634. >But as soon as she caught sight of Sunset she raised her head up towards her.
  1635. >A relieved smile soon appeared on her face.
  1636. >"I'm so glad you're okay" Twilight sheepishly said.
  1637. >This caused Sunset to smirk.
  1638. >"I should be saying that to you"
  1639. >Sunset took her seat by the side of Twilight's cot.
  1641. >In the corner Ms.Cheerilee and Nurse Redheart were still talking, but Sunset saw Ms. Cheerilee steal a glance over at Sunset walking back in.
  1642. >"How are you feeling?" Twilight's still weak voice drew Sunset's focus.
  1643. >She was feeling hollow.
  1644. >"Oh, you know."
  1645. >"Really happy you're okay" Sunset had a hard time keeping eye contact with Twilight.
  1646. >She knew she was lying, but she had to.
  1647. >"H-How are you feeling?"
  1648. >Twilight remained silent for a second as she looked at Sunset with a light bit of concern.
  1649. >"Sore, and exhausted"
  1650. >"Mainly sore" she sighed as she rubbed her side.
  1651. >It was so good just to hear Twilight speak.
  1652. >It made Sunset feel like everything would be okay.
  1653. >"I woke up and didn't see you."
  1654. >Sunset realized that as soon as she went down to Principal Celestia's office Twilight must have came to.
  1655. >"You-You didn't happen to hear anything before waking up...did you?" Sunset's nerves were getting fired up.
  1656. >Twilight closed her eyes and concentrated.
  1657. >"I...thought I heard something, but I think it was in a dream I was having"
  1658. >Sunset let out an internal sigh of relief
  1659. >"Why did you want to know?" Sunset felt the blood rush to her cheeks.
  1660. >"Hehe, no reason just...didn't want anything to wake you up.
  1661. >Without warning Twilight placed her hand on Sunset's leg.
  1662. >Fireworks were going off in Sunset's head.
  1663. >She looked from Twilight's hand to Twilight's bright and shining face.
  1664. >"...What?" Sunset was beyond dumbfounded.
  1665. >"I was trying to find you earlier...after the whole thing at lunch"
  1666. >The memory of Trixie blurting out her biggest secret caused a bubble of anger to form in her chest.
  1667. >"Because...well, I was touched honestly."
  1668. >"Ever since those games you've made me feel so cared for."
  1669. >"You looked out for me like...like I was your family."
  1670. >Sunset's face was blushing lightly.
  1671. >"Then I come to find that your feelings go even deeper than that."
  1672. >Twilight looked towards Sunset.
  1673. >Their eyes met.
  1674. >A spark exchanged between their gazes.
  1676. >They stared deep into each other's eyes for what seemed like enternity.
  1677. >As if to note each little, small, gorgeous detail in them.
  1678. >Twilight's face was flushed as red as the red cross on Nurse Redheart's heart.
  1679. >Before she could open her mouth however.
  1680. >They were disrupted by Ms.Cheerilee butting into their conversation.
  1681. >"How's everything holding up girls?" she said in her usual cheery tone
  1682. >Twilight beamed up at her.
  1683. >"Good."
  1684. >"Oh, and thanks for helping Sunset bring me here Ms. Cheerilee you're a livesaver"
  1685. >Now it was Ms. Cheerilee's turn to blush.
  1686. She waved her hand away from Twilight.
  1687. >"Not a problem!"
  1688. >As if she just recalled something extremely important her expression changed.
  1689. >"Oh!"
  1690. >"Sunset, can I ask how your meeting with Principal Celestia went?"
  1691. >And just like that, the room became twenty degrees colder.
  1692. >Sweat began to drip down Sunset's face.
  1693. >"Ummm..."
  1694. >It went...alright" Sunset started to pinch the side of her jacket.
  1695. >Neither one was convinced by Sunset's fib.
  1696. >"Alright?"
  1697. >"What did she say to you? Ms. Cheerilee sounded concerned.
  1698. >Sunset's eyes drifted over to Twilight.
  1699. >She looked twice as concerned.
  1700. >Sunset felt so weak not being able to keep a brave face.
  1701. >But, better hear it from her than from Principal Celestia.
  1702. >Her eyebrows drooped, and her mouth curved downwards.
  1703. >"...There's a possibility I will be expelled" a sentence that even Sunset was saying with disbelief.
  1704. >"What?" both Twilight and Ms. Cheerilee said in unison.
  1705. >Sunset nodded towards them both.
  1706. >"It's some new rule the school board added this year..."
  1707. >"Get into three fights and you're out of here" Sunset felt the tears in her eyes, but she had grown sick of crying.
  1708. >"The three strike rule" Ms. Cheerilee said.
  1710. >Sunset looked up at her and saw her shake her head in amazement.
  1711. >Her eyes drifted back to the floor.
  1712. >The sound of someone quickly getting off the cot caught Sunset's attention.
  1713. >She turned her head and saw to her surprise Twilight marching with her hand on her side out of the room.
  1714. >Sunset jumped out of her seat.
  1715. >"Twilight, what are you doing?"
  1716. >But Twilight kept walking and headed right out of the room.
  1717. >Full-blown panic alarms went off in Sunset's head.
  1718. >Running after her, she exits the room and sees Twilight heading down the hall in that limping strut.
  1719. >"Twilight, please!" she hollered down the hall.
  1720. >But still no response.
  1721. >She was starting to scare Sunset.
  1722. >A chill went up her spine.
  1723. >"Twilight!" she kept yelling at her as she headed for Principal Celestia's office.
  1724. >Heads were turning Sunset's way, but she had more important things to worry about.
  1725. >Sunset was still exhausted from earlier so she couldn't keep up with Twilight.
  1726. >She turned and headed into Principal Celestia's office.
  1727. >"Twilight!" her hand outstretched as she ran to her.
  1728. >She looked down a nearby hallway and saw her group of friends stopping and staring at Sunset.
  1729. >Applejack, Fluttershy, Rarity, Pinkie Pie, and Rainbow Dash.
  1730. >All with confused expressions on their face.
  1731. >But Sunset's heart was tugging her attention back to the front.
  1732. >Without saying a word she left her friends behind.
  1733. >But she had to make sure Twilight was okay.
  1734. >"Hey!" came what Sunset was pretty sure was Dash's brash voice.
  1735. >That didn't stop her though.
  1736. >She slowed down and carefully walked through the door of Principal Celestia's office, again.
  1737. >To find Twilight Sparkle standing before a surprised Principal.
  1739. >"Twilig-"
  1740. >"You're expelling her?!" Twilight didn't let her even get a confused greeting out.
  1741. >Sunset flinched back from Twilight's outburst.
  1742. >She had never seen Twilight this upset.
  1743. >Her hair was still messy and her clothes were still full of dirt and scuffs.
  1744. >But Twilight had her eyes on what really mattered.
  1745. >Principal Celestia's eyes widened for a second.
  1746. >"She saved my life and you're expelling her?!"
  1747. >"Twilight please, calm down" Sunset tried to put her hand on Twilight's shoulder.
  1748. >But without even turning her head she pulled her arm away with almost violent resentment.
  1749. >"I'll calm down when when you get treated like the hero you are!" she practically screamed.
  1750. >Out of the corner of Sunset's eye she saw that outside the office there were her friends crowded around the door.
  1751. >Looking at the scene before them deeply concerned.
  1752. >"What's going on?" Sunset had no doubts that was Rarity's posh accent.
  1753. >Sunset opened her mouth to reply, but was beaten by Twilight's outburst.
  1754. >"Sunset is going to be expelled!"
  1755. >A collective gasp goes throughout the girls.
  1756. >"What?" Rainbow Dash was getting as fired up as Twilight.
  1757. >"Why?!"
  1758. >Principal Celestia was taking everything on the chin.
  1759. >Her professional demeanor didn't falter a second.
  1760. >"Yes it is true that Sunset will be appearing before the school board."
  1761. >"And yes there will be a discussion on whether or not Sunset be expelled at this meeting"
  1762. >She took a quick breath.
  1763. >"Things are not set in stone on this."
  1764. >"It's just a possibility"
  1766. >Sunset looked at all the girls.
  1767. >Applejack and Rainbow Dash were still fuming.
  1768. >Fluttershy was holding Pinkie they both looked like they were trying not to cry.
  1769. >Rarity was looking to Principal Celestia with a deep, worried look.
  1770. >Twilight's fists were clenched.
  1771. >Her stare was still serious.
  1772. >"There shouldn't even need to be a meeting!"
  1773. >Principal Celestia's frown returned.
  1774. >"I'm so so sorry Twilight, but...this is out of my hands."
  1775. >Twilight's body was shaking and shivering.
  1776. >Her face was red with fury.
  1777. >Sunset never knew Twilight's anger could get this far.
  1778. >The most upset she's remembered seeing Twilight was when a teacher incorrectly handed her back the wrong paper.
  1779. >So she thought she had earned her first F ever and promptly threw a fit the likes of which even Sunset was afraid of.
  1780. >All the teachers afterwards triple check names so such an event never happens again.
  1781. >But this was different.
  1782. >This wasn't complaining about a low grade.
  1783. >No, Twilight's voice was that of someone who had enough.
  1784. >Why couldn't real life have happy endings?
  1785. >Why does the knight get the girl and live happily ever after in all those dumb fairytales Princess Celestia used to tell her?
  1786. >When in real life the dragon seems to always find a way to win.
  1787. >Sunset and Twilight were finding things out the hard way.
  1788. >"Then I should be expelled with her"
  1789. >You could hear the tinest pin drop in that room with how quiet it became.
  1791. >Everyone was flabberghasted at Twilight's remark.
  1792. >Sunset looked to her expecting to see any ounce of guilt or fear.
  1793. >But instead she was met with a fierce stare chock full of conviction.
  1794. >She was serious.
  1795. >"I was as much as involved as in that fight as Sunset."
  1796. >"If she goes, I go" Twilight said in a cold whisper-like voice.
  1797. >Here was the girl whose whole life revolved around learning who was willing to throw that all away just for someone she cared about..
  1798. >Sunset didn't know what to even say.
  1799. >Her heart felt warm and fuzzy.
  1800. >"Twilight...that's...you..." the right words escaped Sunset.
  1801. >She looked down towards the floor and rubbed her shoulder slowly.
  1802. >"Think about your future"
  1803. >"None of those prestigous schools you always talk about attending would even look in your direction if you were expelled!"
  1804. >Sunset didn't mean to shout, but she thought what Twilight was saying was just too much.
  1805. >She looked up into Twilight's eyes.
  1806. >A tinge of worry was present.
  1807. >"Don't throw away your life for me Twilight"
  1808. >Sunset held her hands close to her heart.
  1809. >"I'm not worth it" she said with a bitter half-smile.
  1810. >Twilight's eyes stayed stern as she looked deep in thought.
  1811. >Sunset could see Twilight's eyes dimly shimmer under the lighting in the office.
  1812. >Maybe she was starting to understand what was important to her.
  1813. >And Sunset hoped she would make the right decision.
  1814. >Looking around with a heavy heart Sunset began to think about what she was going to do.
  1815. >Thinking about how she could stay in contact with everyone if she did get expelled.
  1816. >About whether or not she'd stay over in this world or home.
  1817. >It was too much to think about.
  1818. >Sunset looked down at the floor.
  1819. >A pair of pretty, purple Mary Janes came into view.
  1820. >Surprised, Sunset quickly brought her head up.
  1821. >"Twilig-"
  1822. >But was cut off by Twilight's lips giving her a loving kiss.
  1824. >It felt like the wind was knocked out of Sunset.
  1825. >Twilight's lips met hers in a tender seal.
  1826. >Her arms were draped around Sunset in a soft hug.
  1827. >The feeling of pure magic traveling throughout her body caused Sunset's heart to tingle.
  1828. >And just as soon as the kiss began.
  1829. >Twilight broke it off.
  1830. >Each girl just passionately stared into each other's eyes.
  1831. >Sunset's heart was threatening to beat straight out of her chest.
  1832. >The sparkle in Twilight's eyes and her shining smile made Sunset's legs wobble.
  1833. >"You're worth it to me" Twilight's tone was as soft as her hands.
  1834. >Sunset pulled Twilight closer.
  1835. >Her cheek resting against the shoulder of Sunset's jacket.
  1836. >Sunset looked around the room.
  1837. >Everyone was in shock.
  1838. >Rarity's hands were brought up to her cheeks as she smooshed them together.
  1839. >With an expression of pure girlish glee.
  1840. >The rest of the girls were stunned.
  1841. >Then again, so was Sunset.
  1842. >Butterflies were swarming her stomach.
  1843. >The sound of a drawer opening caught her off guard.
  1844. >She looked over at Principal Celestia who was in the middle of grabbing what appeared to be tissues.
  1845. >Drying her eyes before she began to speak again.
  1846. >"As touching as that was Twilight" Celestia sniffled.
  1847. >"I couldn't expel you even if I wanted to"
  1848. >Twilight's euphoric state drifted and was replaced with meleancholy.
  1850. >Still in Sunset's arms she let out a bitter sigh.
  1851. >"Being that this would have been your first strike it would have just resulted in out of school suspension" Celestia continued.
  1852. >"Wait, what do y'all mean by "would have"?" Applejack spoke up from the side.
  1853. >Principal Celestia nodded to her.
  1854. >"Correct, with how the situation is currently Twilight will not be punished."
  1855. >"From the security footage we have anyway"
  1856. >Celestia shut her eyes and pinched the bridge of her nose.
  1857. >"It's just...it's how the rules are written"
  1858. >The slight bit of joyous news turned the butterflies in Sunset's stomach sour.
  1859. >She should be happy Twilight won't be punished too.
  1860. >But, it feels like a hollow victory.
  1861. >Twilight scraped by and only won because they rules said she did.
  1862. >Meanwhile those same rules painted Sunset with the same brush as Gilda.
  1863. >"So...there's nothing any of us can do?" Fluttershy's meek voice spoke up.
  1864. >Sunset felt Twilight's body shiver lightly.
  1865. >She hugged her a little tighter.
  1866. >"No...I'm afraid there isn't."
  1867. >"The most we can do right now is prepare for anything to happen"
  1868. >Slowly, the girls began to surround Sunset and Twilight.
  1869. >They all joined in on the hug adding in their warmth.
  1870. >Adding in their love.
  1871. >"...And be there for one another" Principal Celestia murmured as she wiped the side of her eyes again.
  1872. >Maybe Sunset's life wasn't over quite yet.
  1874. >The girls all gave their hugs and kind words to Sunset and Twilight.
  1875. >But sadly they had to be off for it was getting late.
  1876. >Rarity gave Sunset a proud smile and patted her on the shoulder.
  1877. >The group left Principal Celestia's office.
  1878. >Applejack and Dash waved and left.
  1879. >Then next was Pinkie and Fluttershy.
  1880. >Lastly, Rarity gave Twilight one last hug and gave Sunset one last warm smile before saying farewell.
  1881. >Leaving the two in the hallway, alone.
  1882. >Sunset took a seat on a nearby bench.
  1883. >She leaned forward with her head facing her knees.
  1884. >Just sitting there and taking in everything.
  1885. >Sunset heard the sound of someone sitting down beside her.
  1886. >Her eyes peeked to her left.
  1887. >There was Twilight, the girl who Sunset had shared a truly passionate kiss with earlier.
  1888. >Trying to comfort her.
  1889. >She scooted over until she was a breath away from Sunset.
  1890. >"...How was I?"
  1891. >Sunset's face went bright red.
  1892. >She wasn't prepared for such a question.
  1893. >"Could you tell it was my first time?"
  1894. >Sunset's cheeks felt like they were burning.
  1895. >Twilight held her hand in front of her mouth as she giggled.
  1896. >A small smile formed on her face.
  1897. >She nuzzled Sunset's shoulder closely.
  1898. >As Sunset was still reeling in from all the new experiences and sensations in her body.
  1899. >"...You're amazing Twilight" Sunset's wide eyes stared at the lockers in front of them.
  1900. >Twilight snuggled in closer.
  1901. >Without thinking twice, Sunset manuvered her arm around Twilight's shoulder.
  1902. >Life seemed easy when Sunset had someone to hold onto.
  1904. >"Sunset?"
  1905. >"Can I ask you a question?"
  1906. >Sunset looked down at the comfy looking Twilight resting against her.
  1907. >"Of course, Twilight."
  1908. >Pausing for a moment, Twilight took a breath and started to speak again.
  1909. >"How long have you felt this way about me?" Twilight's innocent voice sweeter than candy to Sunset's ears.
  1910. >Thinking back to after the Friendship Games, Sunset remembered how Twilight looked to her.
  1911. >With a warm glow in her eyes.
  1912. >It planted the seeds that have begun to sprout.
  1913. >"Since the end of the Friendship Games I suppose." Sunset was caressing Twilight's shoulder.
  1914. >Silence passed between them.
  1915. >They both just lost themselves in the nearby lockers.
  1916. >Twilight took Sunset's arm and placed it back to her side.
  1917. >She sat right straight up and looked into Sunset's eyes.
  1918. >And she started in on something that Sunset had been dreading in the back of her head for ages now.
  1919. >"Sunset...you held that in for that long?" Twilight spoke with a worried tone.
  1920. >Like how a doctor would scold a patient for poor health..
  1921. >With a dejected nod, Sunset confirmed Twilight's nagging suspicions.
  1922. >Her heart felt like it was constricting around itself.
  1923. >She felt the gentle touch of Twilight's hand on her knee
  1924. >Sunset's throat went dry as she tried to think of the right thing to say.
  1925. >"Why didn't you tell me sooner?" Twilight's hand rubbing Sunset's knee.
  1926. >Twilight's way of saying how she wasn't mad, just concerned.
  1927. >With half-lidded eyes and a stomach full of knots, Sunset decided now would be the best time for the truth.
  1928. >"Because, I...I was scared." a solemness grabbed hold of her heart.
  1930. >Sunset grimaced as she swallowed the vitrol pooling in her stomach.
  1931. >Twilight was swinging in a cradle of uneasiness.
  1932. >She moved her hand over Sunset's and grasped it tenderly.
  1933. >"...Scared?" Twilight knew that was not a smart question to ask.
  1934. >Sunset's heart trembled as she nodded back.
  1935. >She knew this day would come.
  1936. >It was inveitable.
  1937. >"Twilight...how much did you about me before you transferred here?"
  1938. >Sunset's eyes were stuck on the hallway floor.
  1939. >Her question lingered in the air and in Twilight's thoughts.
  1940. >Twilight shook her head slowly.
  1941. >"Not a whole lot"
  1942. >"Mainly just rumors the other Crystal Prep girls were spreading"
  1943. >She shuffled her feet against the floor.
  1944. >"And well...you were at the games too"
  1945. >"I at least knew you cared about your friends an awful lot."
  1946. >Twilight's tone turned slightly sorrowful on that last sentence.
  1947. >The scene where Sunset verbally assaulted Twilight at the Friendship Games popped into Sunset's head
  1948. >Her eyes were still somberly staring away from Twilight.
  1949. >"...I wasn't always like that.
  1950. >Twilight's almost appalled stare was visible out of the corner of Sunset's eye.
  1951. >"I didn't care about anything except being number one"
  1952. >"And not like Rainbow Dash either."
  1953. >"Whoever I had to use or step on to get what I wanted..." Sunset sighed as her voice trailed off
  1954. >Her voice was showing signs of a sob trying to break through.
  1955. >"I just...I just wanted to be loved" she swallowed down another sob but a sniffle fell through.
  1957. >"My teacher, and my close mentor, made me think...she didn't see me as her equal"
  1958. >"Like I was just some commoner drifting in from off the street way out of her league"
  1959. >Sunset's tone was becoming more bitter as her rant continued.
  1960. >"I thought, "I'll show her!" and so I threw myself into that mindset"
  1961. >"Ambition was my heart's desire for the longest time." Sunset placed her hands over her eyes.
  1962. >"All because I wanted her to show me one, little shred of respect, but..." she sighed.
  1963. >"My mind was too clouded by anger and jealously to see she did, she always did"
  1964. >Sunset closed her eyes tight and choked back a heavy sob once more.
  1965. >"She always loved me, but I just...never loved myself" Sunset's shoulders were heaving from her more shallow sounding breaths.
  1966. >She shut her eyes as a lone tear dripped down her cheek.
  1967. >"I thought my desire was love and I thought my desire would finally fill that aching hole in my heart"
  1968. >"Instead, I was consumed by it."
  1969. >"It turned me into someone I didn't even recognize."
  1970. >Sunset glanced over to Twilight.
  1971. >She looked to be on the verge of tears as well.
  1972. >Her mouth was quivering as she stifled back sobs.
  1973. >"That's why I was terrified to tell you Twilight"
  1974. >"You're too...amazing to drag through something like that" anxiety bubbles were gathering in Sunset's heart.
  1975. >"I didn't want to hurt you or our friendship"
  1976. >Sunset was lightly pushed to the side as Twilight swiftly wrapped Sunset in a bittersweet hug
  1977. >Her arms locking behind Sunset's back
  1978. >Quiet sobs were all that came out of her mouth.
  1979. >She nuzzled the shoulder of Sunset's jacket once more and moved in close.
  1980. >Sunset returned the embrace as she leaned in to give Twilight a small, comforting kiss on her cheek.
  1981. >Feeling sad, but light as a feather.
  1983. >Sunset's thoughts drifted.
  1984. >It seemed like all lately she's been doing is crying.
  1985. >Crying, and feeling sorry for herself.
  1986. >Just wanting to hide from the rest of the world.
  1987. >She hated feeling vulnerable and opening herself up.
  1988. >But it's what good friends would do.
  1989. >Twilight was one of Sunset's best friends.
  1990. >So to get that all off her chest without the burning urge to run as far as she could away.
  1991. >It was something special that's for sure.
  1992. >She was something special.
  1993. >Twilight turned her head so she was looking into Sunset's eyes.
  1994. >In them Sunset felt not anger, betrayal, or judgement.
  1995. >But love, sympathy, and understanding.
  1996. >Something she had only truly felt when she finally stopped trying to be someone she wasn't.
  1997. >For the first time in what seemed like years.
  1998. >Sunset finally felt the same about herself as her friends felt about her.
  1999. >Closing her eyes she leaned forward and locked lips with Twilight.
  2000. >Finally feeling home.
  2001. >Despite everything still hanging over them.
  2002. >They had each other.
  2003. >Pulling away from Twilight, Sunset beamed a heartfelt grin to her.
  2004. >"Sunset Shimmer?" a voice to her side caught Sunset off guard.
  2005. >Without hesistation, she jerked her head to the side and came face to face with the, equally as stern as her sister, Vice Principal Luna.
  2006. >Sunset saw her eyes go from herself and then over to Twilight who was blushing beet red.
  2007. >"Is this a bad time?" her voice still commanded respect even in a casual tone.
  2008. >Sunset's mind went blank as she stuttered out
  2009. >"O-Oh, n-no this is a good time for whatever you wanted to talk about"
  2010. >She was mentally hitting herself.
  2012. >It wasn't that she disliked Vice Principal Luna.
  2013. >They just never really got along that well.
  2014. >"Alright" Vice Principal Luna began.
  2015. >For a moment, Sunset saw a brief glimpse of uncertainity on her face.
  2016. >"Sunset" her voice softened.
  2017. >"When you first came to CHS, I'm going to be quite frank" Luna's head dipped downwards slightly as she sighed.
  2018. >"I didn't like you"
  2019. >Sunset's heart began to lower into her stomach.
  2020. >"You were an arrogant, and manipulative coward who made countless lives, including mine and my sister's, a waking nightmare.
  2021. >Sunset's head sank lower as Luna's harsh comments were making her re-live all those bad memories.
  2022. >A small silence passed between them.
  2023. >Twilight was holding Sunset's hand tight.
  2024. >"But...in these last few months" a spark of hope was in Luna's voice.
  2025. >"I've seen you transform into one the finest students I've had the pleasure to know at CHS in years"
  2026. >Stunned, Sunset instinctively raised her head and looked towards Vice Principal Luna.
  2027. >Her face was brimming with pride.
  2028. >"Rest assured Sunset Shimmer, that as long as me and my sister are around."
  2029. >"We will fight tooth and nail to keep you here at CHS" Luna kneeled down after saying that.
  2030. >She stretched out her hand and placed it on Sunset's shoulder.
  2031. >Sunset tensed somewhat, but the combination of Luna's warm words, and Twilight's comforting hand, she almost instantly relaxed.
  2032. >Vice Principal Luna stood straight back up after a few minutes.
  2033. >She waved goodbye to the two girls on the bench and started to walk away.
  2034. >But before she could get two steps in she stopped and turned back around.
  2035. >Nervously rubbing the back of her head.
  2036. >"Oh, umm, also congratulations on...you two" she gestured to Sunset and Twilight.
  2037. >"But, uhh, just remember to keep it hands only okay?"
  2038. >She wore a big nervous grin.
  2039. >Sunset could tell she never had to give a heartwarming pep talk and then turn around to tell them to keep their mouths to each other.
  2040. >It was enough to make her and Twilight giggle.
  2042. >She gave a thumbs up to the increasingly awkward feeling Vice Principal.
  2043. >And she gave one in return as she smirked at the absurdity..
  2044. >Shaking her head she turned back around and stepped down the hall.
  2045. >With a slight skip in her gait.
  2046. >Twilight huddled closer to Sunset's side.
  2047. >And with that.
  2048. >Both girls sighed and relaxed.
  2049. >"Hey Twilight?"
  2050. >Twilight perked her head up from Sunset's shoulder.
  2051. >"Wanna go back to my place and watch a movie or something?"
  2052. >Sunset gently stroked Twilight's hair.
  2053. >She let out cute sigh of contentment.
  2054. >"I'd love to"
  2055. >She nuzzled back against Sunset.
  2056. >"Five more minutes though" she said with a smile
  2057. >Sunset's heart tingled again.
  2058. >Causing a light giggle to escape her lips.
  2059. >She hugged Twilight closer and rested her head on top of hers.
  2060. >"Five more minutes"
  2061. >Sunset kissed the top of Twilight's head.
  2062. >Hope burned bright in her heart that these five minutes will last forever.
  2063. >Even if they didn't.
  2064. >They will always have them close.
  2065. >Despite everything.
  2066. >Despite the future being murky.
  2067. >Despite the hardships in the past.
  2068. >They will always remember these five minutes.
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