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Untitled 7 (Spider-Shim) ch 3: The great and powerful

reallyUntitled Jan 15th, 2017 (edited) 322 Never
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  1. chapter 1: https://pastebin.com/P4Mawhsw
  2. chapter 2: https://pastebin.com/pGJV6pUZ
  3. chapter 3: https://pastebin.com/fYHRDTA3 (you are here)
  4.  
  5. >Be Anon
  6. >You wake up, leave your bed and make it look orderly again.
  7. >All your movements were lazy, as if you’d run on autopilot.
  8. >Your alarm hasn’t gone off, but then again, you don’t have a phone right now...
  9. >While you brush your teeth you remember that you’re rich now too, and you can simply buy a new one.
  10. >What you need to do is to talk to Sunset as quickly as possible, and when you got home yesterday you had been too tired to do anything about it.
  11. >...
  12. >You need to shave too
  13. >A sigh escapes you, as you go for the shaving foam, apply it and start to shave.
  14. >You barely even look at what you're doing, only stare yourself in the the eyes.
  15. >This results in you cutting yourself three times, but by the time you wash off the rest of the foam and dry your face the cuts are already gone.
  16. >It makes you wonder why you even bothered to do it carefully before.
  17. >Sure, there is pain, but if there’s no consequences to it?
  18. >You sigh again.
  19. >Even though your healing factor is supercharged and you’ve had the experience of a lifetime yesterday, everything seems to sucks so bad right now.
  20.  
  21. >As opposed to buying a phone you went to your first course of the day.
  22. >Talking to Sunset would not be easy, but what you have to do must happen face to face anyway.
  23. >You enter the lecture hall and keep lookout for a certain redhead.
  24. >As you spot Sunset a sense of relief washes over you.
  25. >From the way she’s slouching over her desk you can tell she’s not in the best of moods either.
  26. >But as her gaze falls on you her eyes light up.
  27. >Her entire body language changes as she sits up and smiles at you.
  28. >And for a moment time stands still.
  29. >Just having eye contact with her again after not seeing one another for a single day has that reaction on you both.
  30. >God how you missed her.
  31. >...
  32. >Fuck, you're in way over your head.
  33. >“Excuse me,” someone squeezes by you into the lecture hall.
  34. >You hadn’t even realized you were blocking the entrance,.
  35. >At least this snaps you out of your trance.
  36. >You shake your head and walk up to Sunset.
  37. >Your smile fades slightly as you remember that she and everyone and everything from the other reality are time bombs which are about to tear both universes apart.
  38. >You put your bag down next to the seat, with her still sitting down, only staring at you, her mouth is slightly open.
  39. “Mornin'.”
  40. >She suddenly jumps up, knocking her chair over to embrace you.
  41. >She rubs her face in your neck and squeezes the life out of you as if trying to make sure you're real.
  42. >“Anon,” realizing she was using her strength she lets go off you again. “Sorry, I-” she stutters.
  43. “It's okay, I really missed you too,” you tell her as you look into her eyes, lost for a moment.
  44. >You make yourself snap out of it by looking around the room.
  45. >Most people had their attention at you guys as Sunset had just thrown over her chair.
  46. “But it appears we’re making a scene... Sunset, I-” you bite your lip.
  47. >Sunset too looks around as well, “it appears we do~”
  48. >Then both of your smiles fade, and the reasons for it almost overwhelm you again.
  49. >You need to talk about a lot of shit.
  50. >But what can you talk about right now?
  51. >Sunset seems to search for a topic of conversation just as much as you do.
  52. >“So, uhh... How... are you? Like... right now?”
  53. “Fine... I guess. You?”
  54. >“Yeah, same...”
  55. >Cue awkward pause.
  56. “Let's go somewhere private.”
  57. >“Yes,” Sunset jumps in on the suggestion, “let's...”
  58.  
  59. >Soon later you find yourself on the roof of the school.
  60. “Holy, shitwaffles, Sunset.”
  61. >“I know, right?” She moves over to the edge of the roof to look over the city, “What the fuck's going on.”
  62. “Sunset, I- I don't know how much anyone listens in. Your phone-?”
  63. >“Duh,”
  64. >She empties her pockets and stores her handbag and everything behind a vent.
  65. >You follow her and do the same.
  66. >Seems like both of you were paranoid now...
  67. >The two of you walk to the other end of the roof.
  68. “So... where to begin?”
  69. >Sunset shakes her head, “I have no idea- Wait, no. I do know where to start,” she points at you, >“You lied to me.”
  70. >Her voice was quite calm, figuring how much anger you actually feel radiating from her.
  71. >You lied to her?
  72. “Which time?”
  73. >The moment these words leave your mouth you realize what you have done.
  74. >“Oh my god!”, she raises her arms as she shouts to the sky and turns around.
  75. “Sunset, no wait! Yes I lied to you. I pulled bad shit and I lied about it,” you confess, “but not one time did I ever mean to hurt you with it!”
  76. >“But hurt me you did!”, she spins around again, her face contorted in anger... and sadness.
  77. >Her eyes are teary.
  78. “I know- or at least I know now... I can see it,” you’re rambling, and from her expression you can tell you should get to the point quickly, “and... and I did know that you would be hurt if you’d find out from anything but me telling you. Th- The weekend didn’t exactly happen as planned. And neither did that... that /thing/.”
  79. >“Well that thing almost ate me! Almost RAPED me!”, she shouts.
  80. “And I managed to hold it!” you shout back at her, “I held it back because I would never allow myself to hurt you that way...  And it realized that too. That I was inhibiting it’s action. Hence it went for a new host... It went for you. And it’s all my fault and I know I can never make it unhappen, I can never redeem myself for it.”
  81. >Sunset crosses her arms, “so?”
  82. “S-so?”, you repeat, “What do you mean?”
  83. >“When do you come to the apology-part of your apology?”
  84. “I-”, you’re stunned.
  85. >You didn’t apologize?
  86. “I’m sorry. I- I know what I did to you. I can imagine how it makes you feel. I wanted to tell you everything the second we had a moment to ourselves-”
  87. >“WE HAD A FUCKING MOMENT TO OURSELVES!”
  88. “Sunset-”
  89. >“YOU PULLED TWO BEDS TOGETHER FOR MORE SPACE!”
  90. “YEAH? AND I DIDN’T WANT TO HURT YOU!”
  91. >“BUT HURT ME YOU DID!”
  92. “AND IF I HAD TOLD YOU THEN I WOULD HAVE BROKEN YOU!”
  93. >You feel out of breath at this small shouting match.
  94. “You... needed me to be there for you, not to hurt you further....”, you shake your head, “No that’s not true...”
  95. >She has her fist clenched, and from her expression you can tell that she won’t hold back if she would decide to punch you.
  96. >You look away from her and over the skyline.
  97. “I didn’t want to tell you, ‘cause- cause I-”
  98. >What do you even want to say?
  99. “I don’t want to lose you, just... being selfish, I  guess.”
  100. >After you said a few seconds tick before you look back to her.
  101. >Her eyes are still teary, but nothing went down her cheeks yet.
  102. >Her hand hasn’t changed either, it was still clenched to a fist, but by now it was slightly quivering.
  103. >You take half a step closer and take her hand gently.
  104. “You’re cramping up,” you say as you open her hand and begin to massage her palm.
  105. >“Idiot...”, she only says as she allows the treatment you give her.
  106. >Sunset’s face is going through a range of emotions, mostly cycling back and forth from anger and sadness.
  107. “You shouldn’t overstress your muscles like that... or maybe you haven’t eaten right. A lack of potassium, magnesium or calcium can cause cramps like this.”
  108. >You can’t wrap your mind around what meaningful there is to say for a while, but then you remember another minute detail of why your life sucks.
  109. “I kinda... also need to tell you something else.”
  110.  
  111. >“Oh there’s more?”, Sunset lets out a humorless laugh.
  112. “Yeah, but before that... I’d like to tell you all the shit I pulled.”
  113. >“I’m listening,” she has her eyebrows furrowed and her voice was quite spiteful, but she continues to let’s you hold her hand.
  114. “I found out who you were, and... I creeped on you from afar... idolized you. I made a suit to be part of your world, impress you. But one hell of an impression I’ve made. I-”
  115. >“And that’s the truth?”, she interrupts you.
  116. >You couldn’t quite place her current emotion.
  117. “Yes?”, you say, not sure why she’s questioning it, “I mean, I wouldn’t have gone out super-heroing if it wasn’t for you.
  118. >You laugh with a bit of desperation.
  119. “I’d like to say ‘you make me a better person’, but really I’m just a guy trying to impress a girl. Men... do this kind of shit, we’re severely retarded.”
  120. >Sunset takes your hands now too, “Spitfire fears you’re on your way to become a super-villain.”
  121. >What?
  122. “Really?”
  123. >Well, figuring from what Spitfire knows or assumes about Treehugger...
  124. “I can- I can see that- but I’m not though... you know?”
  125. >You move around, taking Sunset by her hands with you to sit down by the railing of the roof.
  126. “Well, maybe that alien parasite made me one, but... not out of my own free will.”
  127. >She nods and sits down with you, “What separates us from animals is that we can control our urges,” she says, “I- I know what it feels like to... just  try and take what you want with no regard for others.”
  128. “Sorry again about that...”
  129. >“I wasn’t talking about the parasite...”,  she says, much to your confusion.
  130. “What do you mean then?”
  131. >She doesn’t respond for a few seconds, but you don’t push her.
  132. >“I’m from another dimension, I stole magical artifacts from there to gain power in a world without magic. I was a super villain out of my own free will.”
  133. “You... were?”
  134. >There has been so much going on that you didn’t even think about the hows and whys of her being in this reality.
  135. >“Yes... there was a sealed portal with lots of warning labels, but I got it to work. I wanted to prove my teacher I was smarter than her... What a petty origin story, really.”
  136. >Your heart sinks.
  137. “You- you made a tear between realities ignoring... warnings? Oh god...”, you rub your temples, “fucking hell, telling you just got more complicated.”
  138. >“What?”, she looks at you alarmed, “Wha- what do you mean? Tell me what?”
  139. “That fucking tear. Realities are not supposed to be connected.”
  140. >“Anon?”
  141. “Synergy said that you shouldn’t mess with laws of nature, and Treehugger knows first hand that you shouldn’t.”
  142. >“What. Do you. Mean?”
  143. >You shouldn’t make scripts for your conversations, because people never follow them.
  144. “There’s a rip between Equestria and Earth, and if it’s not fixed it could destroy both realities.”
  145. >She takes a huge breath, “okay...” she hugs her knees, “so, how do we fix it?”
  146. >You hesitate, but there is no use in stalling.
  147. >Still, you’re not able to face her as you.
  148. “Return everything to it's original state and patch the rift.”
  149. >“So...”, she takes a deep breath and lets it out once more, clenching onto her knees and facing away from you as well, “me.”
  150. “And, like, the other Twilight and Starlight.”
  151. >“Yeah, duh.”
  152. “As well as those books that allow communication.”
  153. >“Mhm...”
  154. >There was another long silence.
  155. >“Twilight said that it became easier to open the portal, and as far as I can remember those warning labels it means fabric of reality is getting weaker.”
  156. “That's... not a good sign.”
  157. >“Not in that context, no.”
  158. >There was so much to say to this, yet so little that can actually come to mind.
  159. “Sunset, I-”
  160. >“We need to break up.”
  161. >You bite your lip.
  162. >“I mean, how petty would we have to be put the two of us above an entire universe.”
  163. “Two universes, actually... one for each.”
  164. >She lets out a laugh.
  165. >A sick and desperate laugh.
  166. >Only then she faces you again.
  167. >A disgusted expression doesn't suit her, but seeing it turn sad breaks your heart as well.
  168. >“What if I want to be that petty?”
  169. >And again she almost lunges at you to take you into an embrace.
  170. >It was less forceful this time, she barely even uses any force at all.
  171. >She's weak, drained of any motivation.
  172. >She just needs to be told that everything will be okay.
  173. >And you'd give anything if you could be the person to tell her this and actually mean it.
  174. >So you just use all force you have to press her onto you, to hold her and gently pat her head while she cries.
  175. >As opposed to comforting her you can only tell her something that sends her crying even more violently.
  176. “Then you wouldn't be the girl I fell for.”
  177. >You find yourself in the cheapest of all tragedies: forbidden love.
  178. >And it was only when you taste the salt on your lips that you realize tears were streaming down your face as well.
  179.  
  180. >“Starlight's gone.”
  181. >Those were the first words after she calmed down again.
  182. >“She used the distraction, she put Twilight under mind control and escaped.”
  183. >You're not sure what to say, the only thing entering your mind was...
  184. “This realities Twilight?”
  185. >She nods, and continues, “Equestrian Starlight then was trying to be all selfless and took the others place to be transported back into prison.”
  186. “Fuck.”
  187. >“Yeah, just for Spitfire to save face... she's despicable.”
  188. >This makes you frown, but you don't go in on it.
  189. “Spitfire will see reason and has to send Starlight back, there’s no saving face when you have to save two fucking realities.”
  190. >“Yeah, no shit,” Sunset wipes away her tears, “but it'll be harder... How did they even know about this cataclysm?”
  191. >You don’t have to ask whom she means with ‘they’.
  192. “My mom is from the future and your counterpart's an alien, they know about what the tesseract is and more weird stuff. So is Chrysalis, by the way. She gave me the symbiote to heal me. I haven’t had a chance to ask her what went wrong... Oh, and your high school principal was an alien too.”
  193. >Sunset has her mouth open for a while before she shrugs, “yeah, naturally. This world’s Celestia’s an alien.... And did you say 'mom'?”
  194. “Treehugger. She- uhh... We are not actually related but... like I was- the fuck... Okay. I was grown in a lab to have the same powers as her. She single-handedly destroyed Hydra twenty years ago and took me in. We grew closer through lots of exposition.”
  195. >“You were grown in a lab? Okay, why not?” Sunset only nods.
  196. >Both of you have reached a level of apathy towards the weirdness of the world.
  197. “So, that kinda updates you on me.”
  198. >Can you tell her the rest too?
  199. >You’re somewhat a part of Hydra now.
  200. >Hydra’s a secret spy organization within a secret spy organization
  201. >You broke into a Wonderbolt warehouse.
  202. >Or how you're going to steal the Tesseract from the Wonderbolts as well.
  203. >Would she relay that information to Spitfire?
  204. >She kept the secret of being Spider-Woman from the public, and you know she has not been on the Wonderbolts' roster as of a week ago, but you haven't checked today.
  205. >You bite your lip.
  206. >Is that how Treehugger feels?
  207. >All you want is to protect Sunset, even if it's from information she might like to have.
  208. >Sunset stands up.
  209. >“I know what I have to do now,” she says gloomy.
  210. “Sunset?”
  211. >You go after her as she takes her belongings again.
  212. “Sunset, what are you going to do?”
  213. >“I've learned that sometimes ignorance IS bliss.”
  214. >She clasps on her webshooters, otherwise remaining in her casual wear.
  215. >Her mask stays in hand as she turns to you one more time.
  216. >“Anon,” she leans in and gives you a kiss on the cheek, “farewell.”
  217. >Then she dashes off to the edge of the roof.
  218. “Sunset!”
  219. >You try shouting after her, but she doesn't hear you.
  220. >Well, she probably does hear, however, she chooses to ignore you.
  221. >And you understand.
  222. >The two of you don't work out.
  223. >Any additional second you spend together just means suffering.
  224. >You turn around even before she was out of view, and begin to go down into the building again.
  225. “Farewell, Sunset.”
  226.  
  227. >Be Sunset.
  228. >You feel light headed.
  229. >You're swinging through New Yoke in your casual wear.
  230. >Well, except for the mask, but your identity is the last thing you're worrying about right now.
  231. >Not that it would matter anymore, you don’t plan to see another sunrise in this reality.
  232. >For a moment the thought of just revealing yourself crosses your mind.
  233. >Just to mess with people, and maybe make Synergy's life complicated.
  234. >But you're not that petty.
  235. >You don't like her, you're not even sure why, but you have no reason to be mean to her.
  236. >You sigh as you land in front of the Wonderbolt Tower.
  237. >People are staring at you because of your getup, but you don’t heed it any mind, and neither should they.
  238. >This is the Wonderbolt Tower after all.
  239. >Heroes enter and leave here frequently.
  240. >The building wasn't very busy, only two receptionists waiting, and four security guards, two on either side of the doors, and two on the hallway leading further in.
  241. >From the entrance you made it’s quite clear who you are, but it still comes as a surprise to you that they simply let you enter.
  242. >They look after you, sure, but they seem bored.
  243. >Yeah, just some superhero checking in, no big deal.
  244. >You make your way through the deserted lobby, approach one of the receptionists and speak before she could even do her greeting.
  245. “I need to talk to Spitfire.”
  246. >She smiles and nods slowly, “yes, hold on.”
  247. >You impatiently tap your hands on the counter as she struggles to type on her computer.
  248. >Lady, if you have that severe of a case of the Monday-mornings maybe you shouldn’t be a receptionist.
  249. >As you look around you see the second receptionist idly bobbing her head.
  250. >That one seems to be just as much out of it.
  251. >Your eyes go to the security guards who just lull around.
  252. “What's going on?”
  253. >Your receptionist looks up again, “Spitfire is not in the building.”
  254. “No. With you,” you gesture to her, “with all of you,” your hands go further to include the others in your gesture, “You're drugged! Or... or something.”
  255. >She slowly shakes her head, “no, we are not allowed to take drugs, we- hmm...” she takes a breath, “we have to give a sense of professionalism.”
  256. >Oh, the irony.
  257. “But you're still here? Like mentally? Okay, ahh...”, you try to think of something, “who was the last person to come in here?”
  258. >“Miss Sparkle was here last, she was with a hooded woman.”
  259. >Twilight and a hooded woman.
  260. >And they are mind controlled to a degree.
  261. >Starlight.
  262. >The receptionist rubg her temple and makes a strained expression.
  263. “Come on, fight the mind-control.”
  264. >“Mind-control?” She seems to go back to being dull, “what do you mean?”
  265. >This is a lost cause.
  266. >As much as it pains you to leave her like this you need to hurry.
  267. “Where did they go?”
  268. >“Oh, I assume to the morgue.”
  269. “The morgue?”
  270. “Miss Sparkles badge had been deactivated because she's deceased, that's why I had to give her back her rights, and then some new ones.”
  271. “And you didn’t ask- right, mind-control.”
  272. >You almost wanted to dash off at this point, but catch yourself before you left.
  273. “You don't think you can give me a badge with access to the morgue, do you?”
  274.  
  275. >Not even a minute later you're running through the basement of the Wonderbolt Tower of New Yoke, right underneath the hospital wing portion.
  276. >There were two more pairs security guards down hear, and disregard for you running in the halls was uncanny.
  277. >But then again, the hallway is adorned with the occasional energy blast and bullet hole, and even some casings on the floor, and they don’t seem to mind about that either.
  278. >You can see some blood as well, but the one guard whom it seems to come from doesn’t mind.
  279. >As it wasn’t a lot of blood you don’t bother to stop and help him as you continue to go for the morgue.
  280. >The reason why Twilight and Starlight would break in here eludes you.
  281. >Only if Twilight...
  282. >No, you don't see that happen.
  283. >And before you can think of any viable reason you already spot Starlight down the hallway.
  284. >This... doesn't quite make sense.
  285. >She's bend over, leaning against the wall as a man wearing a doctors outfit is rubbing her back.
  286. >As you come closer you see she looks sick.
  287. >“You'd be, hehe...” she lets out a bit of laughter, but got interrupted by herself having to control herself from not throwing up, “you're not whom I had expected to come... Sunset, right?”
  288. “Yes...”, you confirm your identity, taking off your mask.
  289. >Starlight doesn't seem like she would attack you, and your spider-sense doesn't alert you to any imminent danger either.
  290. >The doctor pats Starlight on the back and, “you’ll feel better soon.”
  291. “Where’s Twilight?”, you ask, ignoring the doc.
  292. >“In there,” she nods towards the door labeled 'Morgue NY01', and rights herself up, “right now... I'm not the danger.”
  293. >You clench your jaw.
  294. >If she's not the danger...
  295. “What did you do to her?!”, you snarl.
  296. >“It's not my influence, she broke free of it and gone mad all on her own.” Her expression tells you she was not fond of it either. “I could see inside her head, and it’s a mess.”
  297. “Don’t talk about Twilight that way!”, you clench your fist.
  298. >Starlight seems unimpressed at your unspoken threat, “oh, you shouldn’t call her that. She doesn’t like that,” she even smiles, “Split personalities, not the best of minds to try and control.”
  299. >This is bad...
  300. >But you can’t waste your time on Starlight right now.
  301. >You look to the door to 'Morgue NY01', take a breath and move to open it.
  302. >Again, your trusty spider-sense lays torment so you guess there was no ambush.
  303. >“There's like... a tube of something next to the door. Rub some on your upper lip.”
  304. >You look back to Starlight.
  305. >“For the smell, you know?”
  306. “Thanks... I guess.”
  307. >“And, you know, I'll be gone when you two are done.”
  308. >You're conflicted between storming in to help Twilight, and getting Starlight to cooperate.
  309. “No, you'll come with, you're going to fix her.”
  310. >“Do you have the time to negotiate?”, she stretches herself and begins to walk towards the exit, “I just want to be free now, I'm not gonna make trouble, okay? You wont not hear of me again.”
  311. “No,” you web her back and hold her, “you have powers, you can use them to help others. If you just stand idly by while bad stuff happens you're just as guilty.”
  312. >You can’t see her expression, but she’s not walking further, so you guess you have her attention.
  313. “With great power comes great responsibility.”
  314. >“Do you have that from a fortune cookie or something?”, Starlight asks as she turns around.
  315. “You're coming with me.”
  316. >As you move to pull her back, your spider-sense goes off for the first time today.
  317. >You lose contact with the ground as she lifts you up magically.
  318. >Writhing like a fish out of water you lost proper control over your body.
  319. >You can move, but without touching the ground you can't propel yourself in any direction.
  320. >“Melee versus magic, there's no-”
  321. >You web her mouth, and yank her head forward to your fist.
  322. >She immediately drops you and goes down herself.
  323. “Pride cometh before the-”, you change from a mocking shakespearean tone to ghetto, “in yo face, bitch.”
  324. >Starlight however doesn't respond anymore
  325. >...
  326. >You knocked her clean out.
  327. >Whatever, you don't have time for this.
  328. >You turn to the morgue again.
  329. “Twilight...”
  330. >You open the door and walk in.
  331.  
  332. >Be Midnight.
  333. >The death and disinfectant dominate as the odor of the room.
  334. >The good doctor’s sweat was not noticeable in any way, but you assume it won’t add anything to the scale.
  335. >It’s a fun notion, really.
  336. >You do not have the anatomical knowledge to perform an autopsy, but you know exactly why sweat is accumulating in the neck of the pathologist.
  337. >The sweat ended up transpiring out of his body so it won’t end up on one of these tables.
  338. >But what comes around goes around.
  339. >One of these days everyone ends up on one of these tables.
  340. >Which leads you to another fun notion: the body of Twilight Sparkle on the table in front of you right now.
  341. >Autopsy is a Greek word, it means ‘seeing for yourself’.
  342. >Technically it is an examination of a corpse to determine the cause of death, but this isn’t what you are looking for.
  343. >No, you want to ‘see for yourself’, you want to confirm the identity of the person before you.
  344. >“S-scarring on cecum suggests a vermiform appendix removal surgery has taken place around five... five years ago.”
  345. >The pathologist stutters slightly but the important parts are conveyed clearly.
  346. “Very good~”, you praise him as you guide him to the basin where he’s allowed to wash his gloves and take them off after having gone through /your/ intestines.
  347. >Just as he starts the water you hear the door open.
  348. >You didn’t expect Starlight to dare and come back.
  349. >It wasn’t Starlight.
  350. “Oh, Spider-Woman,”
  351. >You greet the super heroine by her code name, even though she was out of her suit.
  352. >Her mask can be seen hung over her purse; the only part of her costume she wears are the web shooters.
  353. >Web shooters designed by...
  354. >...by late Twilight Sparkle on the table here.
  355. “You’re an- how do we call it?”, you chuckle, “unexpected guest.”
  356. >“Twilight...”, she says her name slowly and calmly, as if trying to approach you like a wild animal.
  357. “Nonono, I'm not Twilight,” you hold your finger up, shaking it as to lecture her, “this here's Twilight,” your finger goes to the corpse in question as you take a step aside to reveal it.
  358. >She freezes.
  359. >Seeing the dead body of your best friend would do that do anyone.
  360. “Why don't you come closer?”, you offer her your hand, inviting her in.
  361. >The heroine follows your suggestion and draws closer.
  362. >Slowly...
  363. >Her eyes are locked onto the neatly clean dead meat on the table.
  364. >Her mouth’s slightly open as she stares in morbid wonder.
  365. “All medical records prove that on this table here lies Twilight Sparkle,” you tell her, “isn’t that correct, doctor?”
  366. >“Ah- I- she’s-,” the pathologist stammers.
  367. >He has tried to make Spider-Woman’s entry into the morgue a distraction so she could try and leave, but now that he’s addressed again he panics.
  368. >You smile at him warmly before you repeat the question at him in a shout again.
  369. “ISN’T THAT CORRECT, DOCTOR?!”
  370. >He makes a pathetic noise and nods.
  371. “TELL HER!”
  372. >“Th- the body on the table is Twilight Sparkle. The body on the table is Twilight Sparkle!”
  373. >You turn to the heroine again.
  374. >The tears in her eyes, the shock on her face, the quivering of her step... you must say you enjoy her distress.
  375. >“Indulging in the pain of others serves as a viable distraction from your own, doesn’t it?”
  376. >You snap back to the corpse.
  377. >Twilight’s voice echoes in your mind, but you couldn’t have heard it.
  378. >Nobody spoke.
  379. >Nobody mocked you.
  380. >Especially not on something you merely thought.
  381. >Then you look back to the heroine.
  382. >She’s your enemy right now.
  383. >Not some phantom.
  384. “There you have it, Spider-Woman,” you open your arms, “your best friend, Twilight Sparkle is dead.”
  385. >She shakes her head and lifts the mask from her bag, “My name’s Sunset,” she says as she throws the mask away.
  386. >But then she had to ruin it and look you in the eyes, addressing you as, “Twilight.”
  387. “Nonono, I'm not!” you tell her angrily, “I'm just confirming her death.”
  388. >You can see her struggling to come up with anything to say, so she simply tries the same thing again.
  389. >“No... You- you're Twilight Sparkle, and I'm your friend.”
  390. “My friend?”, you laugh, “Spider-Woman, you were my enemy the first time we've met, even before you’ve donned this little mask.”
  391. >“I’ve never been your enemy.”
  392. “You’ve tried to get rid of me the second you knew of my existence!”, you shout, “Now she’s dead and only I remain!”
  393. >No, you're my friend Twilight Sparkle, you hear me?!”, she shouts back, “maybe you’re a clone, or something, but you’re still Twilight!”
  394. “I’m not Twilight! You and she, you gave me a name!”
  395. >“You're my friend!”, she insists once more.
  396. “I'm your arch nemesis!”, you correct.
  397. >“You are my friend,” she repeats say once more, but softer, more quietly.
  398. >She has closed the gap between you and takes you in an embrace.
  399. >“You're my friend, okay? We're gonna get through this- whatever this is.”
  400. >You’re shaking, barely able to control yourself.
  401. >But then you let out a pulse of magic, a force, pushing outwards.
  402. >Contrary to what you would have wanted she doesn’t go flying back as she holds onto you.
  403. “Say the name you gave me!”
  404. >Her refusal to call you by the name she herself gave you only infuriates you further, and as she still holds onto you.
  405. >You transform the magic coursing through the room to whirl around with yourself in the center.
  406. >“You’re Twilight Sparkle!”
  407. >She doesn’t let go and holds onto you tighter, even when the whirlwind of magic picks off scalpels which begin to cut her back up.
  408. “SAY MY NAME!”
  409. >“TWILIGHT SPARKLE!”
  410. “RAAARGH!”
  411. >You scream as you unleash more magic.
  412. >All you can feel right now is hatred for her.
  413. >You need to get out of here.
  414. >One flash of lightning later the Spider-Woman was gone, the room was gone.
  415. >You let out a breath and raise a hand up to your beating heart.
  416. >Looking around you notice you’re back in the small hideout Starlight had found.
  417. >You turn around to the table to the corpse you took with you.
  418. >Twilight was staring right at you.
  419. >...
  420. >You close your eyes.
  421. >When you open them again you see the corpse facing upwards, it’s eyes closed.
  422. “You still have to answer some of my questions...”
  423.  
  424. >Be Sunset again.
  425. >Can you say worst day ever?
  426. >An appetizer of ‘it’s your fault two realities are ending’, ‘your best friend is dead and she has an evil clone who hates you’ as the main course, followed by ‘getting sliced up by scalpels and thrown through a room’.
  427. >When you wake up you’re lying in some bed.
  428. >Your entire upper body was covered in bandages, padded nicely on the back.
  429. “Awesome...”
  430. >“It’s nice to welcome you back in the land of the living, Ms. Shimmer,” someone spoke.
  431. >“Sunset!”, yet another voice shouts your name and you feel the bed shift.
  432. >You lazily look around the room as it takes form to see Twilight by your side...
  433. >That is Princess Twilight Sparkle from Equestria, not-
  434. “Uhhrgh...”, you groan as your back starts pulsating pain throughout your body.
  435. >“Are you alright?”
  436. >You investigate the room further to make out the source of the other voice.
  437. >Starlight, adorned with a black eye, has her arms crossed and leans against a shelf opposite of you, and Spitfire’s in a seat, her attention on a laptop she’s working on.
  438. “Peachy...”, you ignore the pain and right yourself up.
  439. >Your eyes remain on Spitfire, who continues to work for another moment before turning to you.
  440. >“Dr. Carter, the pathologist with whom you have shared a similar fate, has not sustained as severe injuries as you have. He’s on paid sick leave for today and tomorrow.”
  441. >Spitfire takes off some reading glasses, closes the laptop and sets it aside.
  442. >Her movement was slow and deliberate.
  443. >The lack of emotion speaks volumes in itself.
  444. >You’d want to get angry at that, but in reality you just feel apathetic about her.
  445. >“Starlight here...” she gestures to the woman in question with her good arm.
  446. >The other arm was in a cast, courtesy of yours truly, you believe.
  447. >“She surrendered herself, claiming it had been your moral guidance to help her better herself.”
  448. >You look over to Starlight who immediately avoids your eye contact.
  449. >“You were in the right place at the right time, Ms. Shimmer. You handled a situation right in our New Yoke Headquarters before our own security was even able to step in.”
  450. >Is she giving praise?
  451. >“Good job.”
  452. >She is.
  453. >Wow, she sucks at that.
  454. “Twilight,” your eyes go to the princess for a single moment, before you stare Spitfire down again, “what did you do to her?”
  455. >Spitfire closes her eyes, tilts her head back and turns around.
  456. >“Sunset!”, Princess Twilight rebukes you, “That was uncalled for.”
  457. “She did something!”, you  attempt to stand up but were stopped by an IV-stand you’re still hooked up to.
  458. >“I was against it,” Spitfire tells you as she turns back to you.
  459. “Yeah?! And what was that?”, you try the other side of the bed and almost fall on the floor, had it not been for the princess catching you.
  460. >“I wish I could explain it to you, but it involved a lot of words I don’t know the meaning of in an order I didn’t comprehend.”
  461. “What are you even saying?”
  462. >“That I do not know.”
  463. “Was that so hard for you to admit?”, you press through your teeth.
  464. >“I have no trouble admitting when I do not know something?”
  465. “She must have dumbed it down for you.”
  466. >“She used magic to create a body.”
  467. “Well, now we’re getting somewhere.”
  468. >Princess Twilight perks up on that notion too, “She created a golem?”
  469. >“A golem?”, Spitfire repeats, “now that word I would remember.”
  470. >You look to the princess urging her to continue, “A magically created being, usually unshapely and made from basic materials...”
  471. >“Well Midnight didn’t look basic nor unshapely,” Spitfire comments, “but perfectly passed as human.”
  472. “We are not calling her Midnight!”
  473. >“Twilight Sparkle died last week. We do not know if she transferred her consciousness into a new body before her death, it may as well be an entirely new being with the likes of your friend.”
  474. >...
  475. >You sit back on the bed.
  476. >What could you even do?
  477. >“Would you like to know the reason why I waited here personally at your hospital bed, Ms. Shimmer?”
  478. >...
  479. >“Because I meant what I said with Starlight here. You did a good job.”
  480. >You look over to Starlight again.
  481. >“Princess Sparkle likes to give out second and third chances, and while trust doesn’t come easy to me, I believe in this case we need to count on your ‘Magic of Friendship’.”
  482. >Oh you want to punch her teeth in.
  483. >“I let you run long enough from your responsibility,” she nods over to a stack of papers, “sign, become a Wonderbolt officially, and your first mission will be to apprehend the Midnight entity at your own discretion.”
  484. >You look over to the papers.
  485. >You have gotten many documents to sign in the past week regarding the new identity they set up for you, but this one had still remained untouched, even though you had made up your mind before the weekend.
  486. >Taking the document into your hands you run your fingers over the embedded letters.
  487.  
  488. “Superhuman Registration Act for the People of the United States of America as enforced by the Wonderbolts,” you read out loud.
  489. >Law enforcement should be conducted in a manner above reproach, and, except as authorized..
  490. >Skip.
  491. >As used in the following document the term ‘superhuman’ refers to an individual to whom one or more of the following conditions apply...
  492. >Skip.
  493. >Skip.
  494. >Skip.
  495. >‘Property damage’
  496. >Well, maybe that part you should-
  497. >Whom are you kidding, you already made up your mind.
  498. >You turn the pages, give the schematics of your webshooters, the chemical formula for the webbing, and the suit-redesign you were already given.
  499. >The same suit with the Wonderbolt lightning bolt at your sides.
  500. >You already wore the mask, and in your fight with Anon your old suit was destroyed.
  501. >...
  502. >You sigh as you turn to the last page.
  503. >Right there at the bottom.
  504. >Code name: Spider-Woman
  505. >Printed name: _______________
  506. >Signature: _______________
  507. >You pick up the pen and begin to write.
  508. >After you’re done you close the document and close it.
  509. “Twi- Princess Sparkle. I’d like to ask something of you,” you address her as you hand the document over to Spitfire.
  510. >“Yes, sure, what do you-”
  511. >“Is this all a big joke to you, Ms. Shimmer?” Spitfire interrupts Twilight.
  512. >Your facial muscles twitch to a smile for a brief second.
  513. “I’d like to return to Equestria,” you say, ignoring Spitfire.
  514. >The princess eyes widen, and she looks back to Spitfire who reveals what you wrote on your signature line.
  515. >‘not gonna happen’
  516. >“Oh, I see,” Spitfire nods with an amused smile, “you think if you renounce American citizen and go back to being Equestrian this will no longer apply to you.”
  517. >“As a matter of fact it would,” the Princess stands up and turns to Spitfire, “you gave some rights and liberties to me and the people in my envoy.”
  518. >“Yes, maybe, if she were serious-”
  519. “I am,” you interrupt, “I will return to Equestria, because there’s bigger problems on the horizon as well.”
  520. >“Bigger problems?”, Spitfire repeats.
  521. “Yeah, you know how I came to the tower this morning? I came here to- I dunno, it’s... Princess,” you turn to her again, “you’ve read the warning labels of interdimensional travel, haven’t you?”
  522. >Twilight looks off for a moment and nods, “Well, yes, but we were careful when we created the portal through the tear inbetween-”
  523. “But when I made the tear all those years ago I have not been careful.”
  524. >She bites her lip, “you’re meaning to say-”
  525. “-that the reason why creating a portal now is so easy is because the tear is growing bigger. It was never sealed.”
  526. >“What are you saying?”, Spitfire inquires, for once with an actual concerned tone.
  527. “That the wall between realities our reality is crumbling, at... probably an accelerating fashion,” you turn to Princess Twilight, “we need to get back to Equestria, take everything Equestrian with us and seal it properly.”
  528. >“Tsk...”, you can practically see Spitfire’s mind racing, but then she narrows her eyes, as if she had come to a conclusion, “Princess Sparkle, are you able to confirm Ms. Shimmers words?”
  529. >“I’d have to... do some tests, but... it’s certainly a plausible possibility.”
  530. “You don’t believe me?”, you ask Spitfire, “say it.”
  531. >“You’d like to paint me as a bad guy, Ms. Shimmer, but I have to account more than just one variable her.”
  532. “More than one variable, and which is that?”
  533. >“Why have you not come forward with this information earlier? Who has pushed your attention in that direction and what motivations may that individual have? Mr. West perhaps? And where does he get his information from? From someone who may desire the Tesseract we need to send you back? Or who’d have to gain if we’d lose an powerful ally as Equestria.”
  534. >Once more your hand forms a-
  535. >“Do you really think I see you clenching a fist all the time?”, Spitfire sighs, “I have to consider more than just the surface facts, Ms. Shimmer. I like to trust my gut instinct, yes, but if the time’s there to think I also like to do that before any rash decisions are made.”
  536. >“For the record-”, Twilight chimes in, “we don’t need the Tesseract to return to our reality.”
  537. >“You do not?”
  538. >“No, it serves as an easy exitnode in three-dimensional space when coming in through-”
  539. >“Something science-y or magical, I’m sure,” Spitfire nods, “That’s a good thing.”
  540. “Why? ‘cause you don’t have to put your McGuffin at risk?”
  541. >“You have a long way to go if you want to become the most annoying superhuman I’ve had to deal with, Ms. Shimmer, but you sure are trying.”
  542. >Once more you feel yourself forming a fist.
  543. >Spitfire doesn’t  comment on it again though, as she crosses the room and drops your SRA-contract into a trashcan by the door.
  544. >“I’ll let another one of these be printed out for you,” she looks back into the room, “In case you change your mind and our realities aren’t in jeopardy.” she averts her attention from you to- “Princess Sparkle, you’ll get the resources you need to study whatever transdimensional forces you can, as well as access to Ms. Sparkle and Dr. Turner’s research on that subject matter.”
  545. >“It would be easier to talk to Dr. Turner directly, get his immediate opinion in as well...”
  546. >“Dr. Turner is busy at the moment, but I’ll see that you can meet him soon.”
  547. >“Thank you,” Twilight nods and stands up as well, “Sunset-”
  548. “Yeah, no, I understand,” you sit back onto the bed again, “go save the world- or like reality... plural, realities,” you lay down, “I’m gonna cure myself out a bit.”
  549. >One last look around the room- your eyes fall on Starlight.
  550. >She silently mouths ‘awkward’, and moves to leave after Spitfire.
  551. >Yeah, you and me both.
  552. >Spitfire turns a last time for you, “because I’m nice like that, you’ll still be part of the hunt for Midnight.”
  553. “We’re not calling her that...”, you mumble as they leave.
  554.  
  555. >Be Anon.
  556. >You’re still at college, having waited for long enough until you know Sombra wasn’t holding a lecture.
  557. “I hope you're not interrupting anything right now.”
  558. >You apologize as you see him talking on the phone.
  559. >Sombra gives a dismissive wave and gestures you to sit, while still talking, “Yes,  I see what you mean, however I was merely pointing out the fact that you have once again taken one without consulting me or the council first.”
  560. >You take the seat he points to and try not to listen in.
  561. >“I have a meeting now,” he waits for a few moments, “yes, see you tonight.”
  562. >He hangs up and you bite your lip.
  563. >It sounded almost like a marital dispute, but you know he wasn't married, and he mentioned a council.
  564. >“Spitfire,” he explains then, “She has had some artifact moved from the Triskelion, didn’t even disclose the location.”
  565. “Okay...” you nod.
  566. >You’re not sure why he would disclose whom he had been talking to, unless he wants to direct the topic of discussion.
  567. “Spitfire, like the Wonderbolts director?”
  568. >“You don’t have to play dumb, Mr. West. I’m quite certain you know the answer to that question is ‘yes’.”
  569. “So, Spitfire... What about her?”
  570. >“A lot of people can't handle Spitfire, but as with everyone, you just need to know what makes her tick.”
  571. “And what would that be?”
  572. >Sombra folds his hands and asks, “what do you know about her?”
  573. >Good question.
  574. >You never really were one to try and figure out people, machines are more your thing, but figuring you can’t read your own hairforceone-trollcode, nor Tay’s source code you’ve begun to doubt that ability as well.
  575. >What can you tell him that not everyone can read up on the internet?
  576. “She hides her accent.”
  577. >Sombra smiles, “oho? And what accent would she have?”
  578. “Ar/ch/entine~”, you mimic the accent in question.
  579. >“Not many people see that,” he nods, “I thought you weren’t good with people?
  580. “I’m not really.”
  581. >“Yet you’ve won the heart of the amazing spider-woman.”
  582. >As you don’t respond he continues, “So, why would anyone hide an accent? What may that tell you about that person?
  583. “She's...”
  584. >Huh...
  585. >You need to think about that.
  586. >She’s not the type of person who yields to conformity, I guess... I don't know.”
  587. >“Maybe her reasons are the opposite. Maybe she's a rebel.”
  588. “A rebel?” you laugh out. “her? Against whom?”
  589. >“Whom does she have to answer to? Where does one acquire an accent?”
  590. >You frown.
  591. “So... her family?”
  592. >Sombra nods, “She- Well, I guess it’s not really my place to tell...”
  593. “Not really, it’s something personal, after all,” you shrug and lean back in the chair.
  594. >He’s baiting you into following his topic.
  595. >You’re interested, but you are denying him to have what he wants.
  596. >“She comes from a line of 'super'-heroes, you must know,” he talks anyway, “her grandfather was a Howling Commander, serving with Captain America, and after the war he chased Nazis to Argentina. And his father before him fought in the Occult War.”
  597. >By telling you what he wanted he shows you that you don’t have the power to say no to him...
  598. >So you stay ahead of it, and inquire further.
  599. “So she needs to live up to a legacy?”
  600. >“Quite the legacy, indeed. Her being a workaholic would be to put it mildly.”
  601. >You think for a moment
  602. “What’s the matter with Spitfire now?”
  603. >Sombra sighs, “she went MIA over the weekend, or at least nobody knows where she went, she was still available,” he explains, “and she sends orders to ship out an artifact without consulting first. Both are not really things to cause alarm, right?”
  604. “I wouldn’t know”, you shrug.
  605. >“What’s odd is that the same weekend Treehugger enters my playing field again.”
  606. >Pokerface.jpg
  607. >Triple Dent Gum will make you smile. Triple Dent Gum, it lasts a while. Triple Dent Gum will help you, Mister, to punch bad breath right in the kisser!
  608. “And you’re looking for a connection,” you nod.
  609. >Sombra leans forward, “so how do you know about Spitfire’s accent?”
  610. “She’s a customer,” you answer, catching him off guard, “I guess you don’t have to hide your accent when you buy flowers for your dead family.”
  611. >Your brain just made that connection.
  612. >You remember even talking to her.
  613. >Sombra leans back again, “maybe it is a coincidence after all.”
  614. “Or maybe it’s a conspiracy.”
  615. >“Hmhm~” He tilts his head, “What do you think I should do then?
  616. >Okay, empathy, what does he know, how does he feel and how can you turn those things into something that is of value to you...
  617. >And something even comes to mind.
  618. “I don’t think there is anything I can say to not make you suspicious. Denying your conspiracy or  jokingly use a hyperbole how /it’s all a scheme/, but I guess no matter what the truth is, I believe you don’t want to get on my mom’s bad side by pursuing this by either not trusting our word or trusting our actions.”
  619. >“I see,” he wants to say more but you interrupt him.
  620. “Mom’s dying,” you say, not facing him, “Treehugger, I mean. She’s... Anyway, that’s why we’re looking for... like a place for me... in the world, you know?”, only then do you look back to him.
  621. >“A place for you in the world?”
  622. “Yeah. We did talk to Spitfire, but apparently Treehugger doesn’t want me on the surface. In deep, or not at all.”
  623. >Sombra nods, “seems like her, having you talk to Spitfire before easing you in deeper.”
  624. “Is that why you tell me Spitty’s secrets? To ease me into secret talk?
  625. >He shrugs, “maybe to show I trust you.”
  626. “Yeah,” you smile, “but those are not your secrets, they are hers, “ you point out, “you don't trust me.”
  627. >He smiles as well, “oh, not one bit,” shaking his head in amusement, “but I know you're smart, and I trust you will make a choice that is in your favor.”
  628. “So how would me joining the hextopus-club be in my favor?”
  629. >His smile doesn’t waver, “oh, but we are the Wonderbolts, Mr. West. We fight Hydra, of course.”
  630. >He underlines his words with generous gesticulations.
  631. >You pull your chair closer to his desk and lean forward.
  632. “So tell me about the Utopia Project.”
  633. >His features fall a bit, “oh, Utopia. How tragic, it always eludes our grasp.”
  634. “So? What is it about?”
  635. >“Have you noticed you like to start your sentences with 'so' a lot?”
  636. >You open your mouth to respond but take a moment.
  637. “So what? You’re fond of starting your’s with ‘oh’, don’t you?”
  638. >“Oh is that so?”
  639. >You share a smile and he dismisses it with a shake of his head.
  640. >“Any Utopa’s a Dystopia if you consider what needs to be done to achieve it.”
  641. “So how’s yours different?”
  642. >You realize you started your sentence with ‘so’ again without having meant to do so.
  643. >“Men will always be unhappy, and some will always rebel. Perfection is not something one can achieve and it takes a mad man to assume he can. The Utopia project is in name only.”
  644. “Did you tell your daughter that? Because she was quite into it.”
  645. >“Yes, Lyra, she’s... not entirely on the inside. Not everyone is. We need foot soldiers too.”
  646. “Foot soldiers, huh?”
  647. >He shrugs, “people are happier if they can strive for a goal they think is actually achievable. People like you and me, however, we’re not happy with the world; we know we can’t solve it.
  648. >Of course he’s speaking in the exact way to get you on his side, but so far he hasn’t said anything wrong.
  649. >But that’s how it usually works, he’s even getting in a sense of superiority for you over others, and you’re sure he’ll make his way up from there.
  650. >You sit back and listen to his evil monologue.
  651. >“You probably don’t want to hear me monologue, though, do you?”
  652. >Fuck you.
  653. “So we make it a dialogue. What do you have in mind?”
  654. >“How about we run through this together.”
  655. “Lead me on until it seems like your master plan could have been my idea?”
  656. >“That’s how you’re supposed to teach calculus, isn’t it?”, he smiles.
  657. “This ain’t calculus though.”
  658. >“Humor me, run it through your head, how would you create an Utopia? Think infinite resources and work your way down.”
  659. “Hmmm... the Matrix,” you shrug, “the movies, you know? Infinite resources: a personal matrix for everyone.”
  660. >Sombra laughs for a moment, “Not a bad idea, but very dystopian. Do you want to lie to everyone? Because people wouldn’t be happy if they knew.”
  661. “Right, dystopia much,” you lean back and make yourself a bit comfortable in your chair, “Infinite resource is a no brainer, because I’d just say money for everyone, then my mind goes to free goods and services, and communism, and then nobody would have any incentive to work, or do so properly. Honest to god? I think our society is pretty good already.”
  662. >“Alright, so no drastic changes. What’s more feasible? Think smaller.”
  663. >You shrug.
  664. “Obamacare?”
  665. >“Think bigger.”
  666. “Free ponies for everyone, Vermin Supreme 2016.”
  667. >“Mr. West.”
  668. “What?”, you shrug, “I want a pony,” as he doesn’t respond you continue, “so let’s see... What is within the Wonderbolts capabilities? Stop crime and terrorism, maybe war itself?”
  669. >“But man strives for conflict.”
  670. “So?”
  671. >“Control what it is they want to fight. Not just here, but overseas as well.”
  672. >You stroke your chin.
  673. “A common enemy? A fabricated one?”, you continue the thought, “like, what? Hydra?”
  674. >“Hydra’s a bad bad organization, after all.”
  675. “I see...”
  676. >You get the notion, but not the plan.
  677. “But Hydra’s been dead for more than twenty years, it’s not a threat to anyone right now, is it?”
  678. >“Hence the Utopia Project. A few well placed pebbles in the right places to create the right waves.”
  679. “And  how many /pebbles/ are going to die in this?”, you stare pacing around the office a little.
  680. >“As few as possible, Mr. West. We avoid, or control and redirect conflict. There’s an algorythm.”
  681. “An algorythm?”
  682. >“Every soldier out there who dies in battle, or worse, by suicide from PTSD or something... everyone of them is a loss to me, you understand that? We save as many people as possible from terrible fates.”
  683. >You bite your lip and stop pacing, but say nothing.
  684. >“A bad guy can kill not only without remorse, he enjoys it, and the cruelty, and the power over the victim. Any mission I order and someone dies... not because I was careless and made a bad play, I can learn from mistakes, but if I send someone to die or order someone’s death... it haunts me.”
  685. >He sounds sincere, and it’s still a ‘for the greater good’ speech.
  686. >And even if you get it, it still doesn’t tell you anything about his plans.
  687. “I still have to think about stuff...”, you go for the door, “excuse me.”
  688. >“You’d sacrifice yourself and your own happiness for others, Anon. You’re a good man,” he says as you leave, “and I hope you see me as one as well.”
  689.  
  690. >Be Anon.
  691. >“You shouldn’t slouch, Anon.”
  692. “Hmm, what?”
  693. >You look up to see who’s addressing you.
  694. >It takes a moment for your brain to process the identity of the person sitting on a bench in the shade outside your dorm.
  695. “Synergy?”, her name comes out as a question.
  696. >“The one and- well, one in an finite multiverse.”
  697. >She stands up, now towering over you due to the use of fancy high heels.
  698. >One hand goes to throw her hair back, before she remembers it to be cut short now.
  699. >Shorter even than yesterday... and red.
  700. “Makeover much?”
  701. >She’s wearing designer clothes with a waist high belt-thingy to accent her hourglass figure.
  702. >At first your eyes move down, over one of her hands on her hips, straddling over the fabric barely thick enough to hide her panties underneath.
  703. >The skirt ends in the middle of her thighs, but she wasn’t showing a lot of skin, as soon after knee high stockings.
  704. >Your eyes go up again and you notice another feature of hers accented.
  705. >That...
  706. >That has to be wearing a push up bra...
  707. >What began as simply trying to figure out what’s wrong with the image you’re used to have from her turns into checking her out, and even staring.
  708. >“You’re not subtle, you know?”
  709. “I- not? I mean, hey. Hey! Hi! What are you doing here?
  710. >“Looking for my lil’ sis, you know?”
  711. >You nod, going in on the lie which would make the most sense to random students knowing Sunset.
  712. >She was speaking loud enough for other students to hear after all.
  713. “Sunset, she- yeah, she left early. She said she had something to take care off at home.”
  714. >Don’t focus on her body, she has a pretty face too.
  715. “Like, home-home, you know? Not- you know, right?”
  716. >She’s wearing make-up.
  717. >More than usual.
  718. >“Yeah, I think I get what you mean. You talked her into it?
  719. >No, Sunset was wearing a natural look/minimalist type of make-up.
  720. >Synergy had been more rugged, you don’t think she had worn make-up.
  721. >Well, neither of them had at the camp.
  722. >Now she’s actually wearing some.
  723. >Eyeliner and eye shadow to accent her eyes, slight lipstick, slight blush.
  724. >All still, very discreet, but you just weren’t used to it.
  725. >“You’re still staring.”
  726. “You’re still pretty,” you retort, which catches her off guard, “What? Do you expect me to be able to just turn that off?”
  727. >She gives a weak smile, “You started out with a nice compliment, but then went on with a stupid joke. You’re barely collecting any positive points with that.”
  728. “Yeah? Well, I’m not trying to score with you. I’m still trying to get over a harsh break up, which, to be honest, I haven’t even properly processed yet.”
  729. >She looks off, “I guess,” then shrugs, “follow me.”
  730. >You tap your foot
  731. “Is it important? Because I usually barely sleep during the week, and last week was just fuuuuucked. I want to take a nap to refuel a bit for my job.”
  732. >“Job?”
  733. “Yeah.”
  734. >“You’re working?”
  735. “Mhm.”
  736. >“Why? You’re stupid rich.”
  737. “Maybe, but I didn’t know that until  this Saturday.”
  738. >“Just ditch ‘em.”
  739. “Maybe,” you turn away from her, “but only for some fate of the universe type thing, okay?”
  740. >You begin to walk in direction of your dorm, but hear he on your tail.
  741. >“What if said fate of the universe thing is already ongoing.”
  742. “Is it?”, you ask without turning around.
  743. >“Well... not that I know of,” she admits.
  744. “Then I have a date with some bed sheets.”
  745.  
  746. >Quite a while later...
  747. >On one hand you’re exhausted like hell, on the other you didn’t even manage to sleep properly.
  748. >You still lay in bed until about half an hour before you need to.
  749. >Might as well use your time properly, and as you still have no mobile phone you may as well go to buy one.
  750. >Even though it’s mid Spring, the sun was mercilessly burning down on you, even further contributing to your bad mood.
  751. >Your former phone, may it rest in pieces, had been old anyway and the version number of the new model from the same company was twice as high.
  752. >Even though you don’t need to look out for money anymore you still buy the one from last generation.
  753. >Nice and clean, empty phone.
  754. >A new beginning.
  755. >You sit down on a park bench near the Flimdustries Tower and begin to install all the things you need.
  756. >Nightly, some adblocker, onions, music player...
  757. >Just as you were collecting some ancient Lemon Demon shit for nostalgia’ sake the phone starts to vibrate in your hand.
  758. >Action Movie Hero Boy has got to wait.
  759. >Incoming call: Spitfire.
  760. >With a picture of her in casual wear and sunhat at a lake.
  761. >You stare at it for a while, trying to make sense of it.
  762. >This is personal.
  763. >You pick up the phone.
  764. “I’m more surprised about the picture than you getting my number 5 minutes after I bought a new phone.”
  765. >“If you’re in my profession you learn what kind of bait works.”, she answers.
  766. “I guess so,” you admit, “I wouldn’t have picked up had it been an unsolicited nude.”
  767. >”I’m not that kind of girl, handsome,” she chuckles before taking on a more serious tone again, “Mr. I’d like to ask something of you.”
  768. >You have no idea what to expect.
  769. “You know, usually I’d tell you that ‘asking’s free’, but Treehugger might not like you contacting me. So you really have guts calling me.”
  770. >“Thanks for the compliment, but I’m getting quite desperate, and I do have an unspoken agreement with your aunt. Asking for your help just might be free of consequences.”
  771. >You look around for a security camera.
  772. >“Mr. West, the reason why I call you is because of Miss Shimmers judgment of you.”
  773. “Sunset?”, you bite your lip, “So what was her judgment?”
  774. >“That you are not a super villain, that you are a hero who has had a bit of misguidance, but a hero after all.”
  775. >You don’t respond, but you don’t need to, as she keeps talking.
  776. >“I constructed yourself a super suit, and, while you were only trying to impress a girl, you went out, putting yourself in danger, to help people. I’d like to believe that you are not like Treehugger.”
  777. “And what if I am?”
  778. >“Then I would have no other choice as to classify you as a super villain, Mr. West. But you care about more than just yourself and your immediate friends and family, you care about the world. You are more like Miss Shimmer.”
  779. >You have no real words to respond with.
  780. >“I can only work on the intel I have, and, as sad as it is, I have to keep the worst case scenario in mind.”
  781. “So... What do you want?”
  782. >“The world, save,”, she says, “but for starters I’d like you to know that the Wonderbolts are not the bad guys.”
  783. >If only you’d know...
  784. >“Your aunt, she ran her entire live from the law and responsibilities from her actions, and she is powerful enough to do so. But more importantly is that she has the mindset to do so. She’s a lone wolf, cornered and only trying to protect her pub, I understand that. You, however, you are more compassionate, more empathetic. You still need the bridge you are in process of burning, Anon.”
  785. >You notice her saying your name, not ‘Mr. West’.
  786. >You don’t like her, you like Sombra.
  787. >But you also know whom you rather back.
  788. “What do you want me to do...”
  789. >“I’d like to reopen channels for communication. You and I, we desire everyone’s safety. She desires your safety. Our goals do not contradict one another, they align. She may be used to doing everything herself, but-”
  790. “Yes, yes, there is strength to find in alliances, or something.” You finish her sentence, “That’s what you were about to say, weren’t you?”
  791. >“Yes... something like that.” She pauses for a moment. “I’m not in business of being liked, Mr. West. I don’t need you to like me, but I implore you to do what’s right.”
  792. >Do what’s right...
  793. >What you want to do is warn her that there is a Hydra in her Wonderbolts.
  794. >There is a lot you’d want to do, but...
  795. >This is all so fucked up.
  796. >Silence is the best option, and this isn’t even a Telltale game.
  797. “I don’t like you, but I don’t dislike you either,” you eventually say. “I even understand why you tried to use me as leverage to get Treehugger to talk, but you underestimated her or she celled your bluff, I don’t know. I can only tell you that I’ll do what I think is right, but things are complicated right now.”
  798. >“Things will only increase in complexity, Mr. West. That’s the nature of... ‘things’,” she tells you. “Hmm... Originally I wasn’t going to ask this of you, but...”
  799. >Spitfire pauses, as if to wait for your permission.
  800. >As you see no reason to at least hear her out, you confirm.
  801. “Sure, go ahead.”
  802. >“Thank you. I’d like to save resources and minimize complications. Resources in this case being valuable time of people I still trust, and complications being... people asking questions I am not at liberty to tell.”
  803. >Get to the point.
  804. >“You see, two people fell sick during their shift last night. Paranoid as I am I opened a small investigation, which did not bear any fruit. Now I can officially close the case, or I can issue the inventory of the warehouse in question to be counted. To speed it up I’d like inventory to start at the items which have been seized from hydra twenty years ago, you know?”
  805. >How the fuck did she connect the points towards Treehugger and you?
  806. >“If I would know the guilty party and their rough motivations I can rest more at ease, but if I don’t know that, I have to worry about a fifth party on the playing field, and I don’t like that... you understand?”
  807. >You remain silent for a moment, but you know silence would speak volumes in itself, so you answer.
  808. “You have nothing to worry about,” you confirm, “but how..?”
  809. >“There are only so many equations to be had. One plus one and two plus two are easy. However,  if you have a complex equation and variables are obscured, then you sometimes have to ask yourself who has the ability to obscure them.”, she tells you, “It’s only a guess, but it can lead to a viable theory.”
  810. >You let her words go through your head.
  811. >It’s your fault, really.
  812. >Had Treehugger gone in, guns blazing, it could have been anyone.
  813. >By trying to be smart about it you practically told Spitfire who it was.
  814. >Treehugger should have seen through that... or are you giving her too much credit?
  815. >Spitfire is no amateur either... but she’s head of a spy agency... not using all her resources and going after you by herself.
  816. >“Anyway, thank you, Anon.”
  817. “Hey, wait. Uhh... why are you not officially investigating?”
  818. >“These reasons are my own, Mr. West.”
  819. >And we’re back to ‘Mr. West’
  820. “Okay... then... Bye, I guess.”
  821. >“I’ll be in touch. Bye”
  822. >She hangs up and you slowly take the phone away from the side of your head to stare at the remaining image of Spitfire until the screen goes dark.
  823. >So... that just happened.
  824. >Okay...
  825. >Now you’re in a love triangle between Treehugger, Spitfire and Sombra.
  826. >Square... no. Tetrahedron, yep, that’s the geometric shape you’re looking for.
  827. >You sigh.
  828. “The nature of ‘things’ is that they increase in complexity, huh?”
  829.  
  830. >A few minutes later you enter Flimdustries like a zombie.
  831. >Music helps to shut out the world around you.
  832. >en_livstid_i_krig.mp3
  833. >You only wave your hand to the receptionist and pass the gate with your ID card, not saying anything to anyone.
  834. >Not because you’re rude, but because you simply don’t want to interact with anyone.
  835. >Prototyping some machinery should be fine.
  836. >Halfway on your way to the elevators you’re stopped by a security guard.
  837. >He taps your shoulder and points towards the receptionist running after you.
  838. >You sigh and take out your ear buds.
  839. “Hmm?”
  840. >“Mr. West?”, the receptionist was a bit taken aback by your behavior.
  841. “Sorry... I mean ‘good evening’. Is something the matter?”, you regain your politeness.
  842. >“Sir, yes,” she gives a small curtsy, “Mr. Flim wants to see you in his office immediately.”
  843. >You sigh and nod.
  844. “‘kay...”
  845. >Afterwards you simply turn to the elevators again and go to pick your ride in the express one.
  846. >You plug your ears again and shut the world out once more, even closing your eyes.
  847. >Only by the time you feel the elevator come to a halt do you open it again.
  848. >Talking to someone... what a pain.
  849. >At  least Flim’s a scientist and businessman, he wants to make money, you can respect that.
  850. >Nice and simple.
  851. >No secret world-takeover scheme... you hope.
  852. >You make your way to his office, take out your earbuds, and knock.
  853. >“Yes, come in,” Flim’s voice directs you, “ah! Mr. West. Anon. Welcome.”
  854. >Flim stands up to walk around the desk and greet you.
  855. >Thankfully you prepared yourself.
  856. “Dr. Flim! Good evening, how are you, sir?”
  857. >“Quite well, quite well... What about you, and ah.. your girlfriend? She- I mean, I saw the news, and I wasn’t able to get a hold of you.”, hes talking very fast, “Not of Chrysalis either.”
  858. “Oh, yeah, that... uhh...”, you should have thought of something.
  859. >You can’t just say that you broke up with your super hero girlfriend to sent her back into her home dimension, now can you?
  860. “It’s ahh... things have a nature of being complicated?”
  861. >He frowns, “What does that mean?”
  862. “To be honest, I’m not even asking too many questions anymore and am glad with the few things I have control of.”
  863. >“I’m afraid you lost me.”
  864. “Things are just complicated, okay?”
  865. >“Things have been complicated since my brother turned into a literal monster, and now my head of security is missing, apparently it’s all connected, and you’re the only person to know anything about that, Anon.”
  866. >He looks desperate.
  867. >Kind of like you feel.
  868. >You hope you don’t go gray as early in life as he did.
  869. “I- I don’t know what I can tell you... Chrysalis, I- I haven’t been able to contact either. But I think she’s...” you point upwards, “you know?”
  870. >“What..?”, he frowns, “Dead?”
  871. “What? No!”, you shake your head, “ET gone home.”
  872. >“She’s an alien?”, he asks.
  873. “I probably shouldn’t have said that...”
  874. >“She’s an alien?!”, he repeats once more, in desperation, grabbing onto his head and pulling his hair. “What have I gotten myself into again?”
  875. “For the record, I think she likes earth. So she’s... friendly?”
  876. >He goes over to some minibar, shaking his head.
  877. >“You drink?”, he asks as he pours himself a glass of amber liquid.”
  878. “I-” huh... “only socially.”
  879. >“Heh...”, he pours a little in a second glass, “This is not obligatory because I’m your employer.”, he extents it to you.
  880. “Yeah,” you approach him and take the glass, “not gonna tell you any more secrets either.”
  881. >“That- that wasn’t my intention,” he tells you and takes a large gulp of his own glass.
  882. “I know...” you look down into the glass, “I guess getting my blood alcohol up can help to cope a little.”
  883. >You take a sip.
  884. >It’s... bad.
  885. >“It’s good, right?”
  886. “Mhm...”, you take another small sip.
  887. >Having some toxic liquid burning your throat’s a nice change to your problems...
  888. >...
  889. >You’re on your way to become an alcoholic after only two sips.
  890. “What is that even?”
  891. >You reach out for the bottle and turn it to read the label.
  892. >Moonrunes.
  893. “Like sake or something?”
  894. >“Oh no, it’s-”, he reads of the Japanese, pauses a few times before going on (also in Japanese), then proceeds to tell you about Asian brewery (in English).
  895. >You listen intently.
  896. >He’s clearly passionate about the topic, the seemingly banality of it and his genuine smile make it very easy to listen to.
  897. >There was no hidden agenda, no fate of the world bullshit.
  898. >Just one guy knowing his liquor.
  899.  
  900. >Be Agent Sweetie Drops.
  901. “Is it ready?”
  902. >“You know I arrived here the same time as you did, don’t you?”, Dr. Turner shouts back, continuing to modify some data on two separate screens. His concern then goes upward to Misty Fly, “how are you holding up?”
  903. >“It’s coolant, not water, but I’ll manage!”, she shouts back from way up above in the hall.
  904. >She’s standing on her surfboard in the middle of nowhere.
  905. >To an unknowing observer it might look like she was not doing anything at all, but in fact she was propelling coolant through the plumbing surrounding the structure.
  906. “The Tesseract never acted up before, did we trigger it by transporting it?”
  907. >“I highly doubt that. We’ve been experimenting with it for more than a year.”
  908. “But we can get it under control, right?”
  909. >He bites his lip and keeps typing.
  910. “Right?”
  911. >“These readings are higher than what we’ve seen before. Way higher than what happened when the Equestrian envoy arrived.”
  912. “That’s not an answer.”
  913. >You know what uncontrolled energy means.
  914. >An explosion.
  915. >And as he doesn’t respond respond you know what’s up as.
  916. “Shouldn’t we evacuate?”
  917. >“Hah, with the Tesseracts energy output? We can’t clear the entire midwest.
  918. “That bad?”
  919. >“Well... It’s worse, the energy is like... a lot, you know... Have you contacted Spitfire?”
  920. “She’s not happy.”
  921. >“U-oh...”
  922. >You see another surge in energy on the readings Turner had on his screens, and before you could even say anything a pulse ripped through the containment field.
  923. >Like a shock wave it pushed things outward, and you almost from your feet.
  924. “Misty!”, you shout up
  925. >“That wasn’t me!”, the woman immediately defends herself, while barely hanging onto her surfboard.
  926. “No, I mean- are you alright?”
  927. >“Uhh... holding up,” she states as she was indeed only holding herself up, if barely so.
  928. “Turner?”
  929. >Dr. Turner wasn’t responding, but going through his science machine, looking desperately for something. A way to fix this, you hope.
  930. “Is there anything we know for certain?”
  931. >“Whenever I pour in enough energy to shut it down it comes back with more.”
  932. “You’re having a power struggle with a thing.”
  933. >“We have no idea what this ‘thing’ is.”
  934. “Misty, your thoughts?”
  935. >“It’s hot!”, she shouts as she’s forcing coolant into the system again.
  936. >The cooling system had taken during the shock wave just now.
  937. >“Not useful,” Turner shakes his head, “I do have a hunch, though.”
  938. “Well, share.”
  939. >“Someone’s trying to force open a portal.”
  940. >You nod and turn around again, once more contacting Spitfire.
  941. >She must know if the Equestrians expect an addition to their escort.
  942. >You know why she had the Tesseract transported, but not if more people are invited.
  943. >“Agent Drops, status report.”
  944. “Are we expecting more guests?”
  945. >Another shock wave rips through the air, much more powerful than the last one.
  946. >This time it wipes you off your feet, but you weren’t the only one.
  947. >Having hit the floor, was the least of your problems judging from the sounds behind you.
  948. >Misty Fly’s scream as she was taken from the air was bad, but the crunching sound metal makes your stomach turn.
  949. >If the machinery holding the Tesseracts energy back fail...
  950. >You heave yourself up.
  951. >“BonBon, talk to me! What happened?”, you hear faintly from your phone a few feet away.
  952. >Worrying about your immediate safety is more important right now though.
  953. >You face the source of the explosion, the Tesseract.
  954. >Only to see a woman as she was just standing up, she was dressed in a tight silky clothes, a cape and a... stereotypical wizard hat.
  955. >In her right hand she holds a sort of spear adorned with a glowing gem.
  956. >You take a few steps back, your hand goes to your gun, and you speak loud and clearly in hope Spitfire would catch up on it.
  957. “Ma’am, I’m going to have to ask you to please put down that spear!”
  958. >The mysterious woman takes on a better stance, she doesn’t look like Starlight who became a human for the first time.
  959. >She carries herself more like the Princess – unused to being human, but having had past experience.
  960. >Soon her eyes fall on you.
  961. >“You dare make a demand of a god, puny human?”
  962. >She’s was smiling, full of confidence.
  963. >You’d want to say she was full of herself, but her voice carries a sort of confidence and something else... something more ominous, something that sends a shiver down your spine.
  964. >In retrospect, draw your gun might have been a bad idea.
  965. >She aims at you with the and accumulates some blue lightning.
  966. >You only had a split second to decide to dodge for cover as a bolt of exploding light flies where you had stood.
  967. >After reorienting yourself you peak behind the safety of your cover.
  968. >Misty had sent her surfboard hurling towards the hostile only to have it bounce harmlessly off an invisible wall.
  969. >The same happens to the coolant she was now redirecting to splash right at the enemy.
  970. >Before you could even comprehend the movement, the self proclaimed god was right in front of Misty and pushes the spear into her chest.
  971. >“No!”
  972. >As opposed to penetrating Misty’s chest, it only sent out a small ripple of blue energy over the her.
  973. >Misty goes limp... no, she’s... relaxing?
  974. >The assailant offers her hand and Misty takes it with a smile to stand up from the ground.
  975. >In the meantime Dr. Turner, who had realized the Tesseract having powered down, bagged it into it’s suitcase and-
  976. >“Please don’t- I still need that,” the newcomer gently asks, her spear once more lighting up with energy.
  977. “This doesn’t have to get messy!”, you shout, leaving your cover to direct her attention away from Dr. Turner.
  978. >“I’m sure it doesn’t,” she smiles, “and it won’t, will you just obey my orders.”
  979. >She spreads her arms, making herself as big as possible.
  980. >As on cue her cape waves in non-existent wind, multicolored balls of light dance around her, and, just like Princess Sparkle, a horn and wings of pure light emerge from her body.
  981. >You’re captivated and stare in awe as the goddess before you spreads her wings and lets you bask in her light.
  982. >“I am the Great and Powerful Trixie of Equestria!”
  983. “Equestria?”, you ask after you find your words again, “Are you with Princess Sparkle?”
  984. >“Sparkle...”, she grinds her teeth, “The faux princess Twilight Sparkle can never fathom the powers we had already possessed eons before she was born.”
  985. >The way the light bounces off her body still makes you unable to focus on anything else.
  986. >You know, by now, her appearance has seared itself into your mind.
  987. >It doesn’t bother you at all.
  988. >The image of a true beauty is something to relish, something not everyone can claim to have ever seen in their lives.
  989. “And why have you come to Earth?”
  990. >“We have come with glad tidings, subject. You are free to kneel before me and profess your love onto me, your new god!”
  991. >You feel your body being heavy, light pain from jumping to cover was still noticeable.
  992. >It would be so much easier to kneel down in a more comfortable position.
  993. >Doing so would even be the respectful thing before a god, and you do hold yourself to a certain etiquette.
  994. >Only when you saw Misty Fly go down on her knees saying, “my goddess,” towards Trixie with a longing expression you can feel yourself coming to your senses.
  995. >You look to Dr. Turner who seems to have had a similar experience.
  996. >“My subject...”, Trixie extends a hand to Misty once more and let it be kissed.
  997. >She touches Misty’s face, caressing it like a lover would for a moment before letting go and returning her attention back to you and Dr. Turner, “You have heart.”
  998. >Her words sound like a compliment, but her tone was slightly annoyed.
  999. >“But I’m still in need of your services.”
  1000. >Once more she moves faster than you can comprehend and has already pushed the tip of her spear onto Dr. Turners chest.
  1001. >Just like it did with Misty Fly, blue ripples spread out over him, and he immediately relaxes his body.
  1002. >You have a faint idea what it might be like to touch her, if only standing in her presence makes you want to obey her orders.
  1003. >Dr. Turner kneels down, “my goddess”, he offers her the suitcase with the Tesseract.
  1004. >“Hold onto it, dear subjext,” as she did with Misty Fly she touches his face as well, giving him an encouraging pat, “carry my burdens for the moment.”
  1005. >This is bad...
  1006. >You manage not only the courage to take a step back, but also raise your gun at her once more.
  1007. >Trixie smiles, “You will come to see I am a generous goddess,” she says as she’s approaching you, “not only will I forgive you your transgression of raising arms against me, I also give you a purpose.”
  1008. >You’re unable to move as she draws closer.
  1009. >“I shall let you be my prophet.”
  1010. >Her hand was dangerously close to your face, as was your gun to hers, but she doesn’t seem to mind.
  1011. >“Go now, far and wide, and spread the word of my arrival,” she commands you, “leave out no detail of the Great and Powerful Trixie!”
  1012.  
  1013. >Be Princess Twilight Sparkle .
  1014. >You’re in a meeting with the World Security Council, Spitfire.
  1015. >And another high ranking member of the Wonderbolts, Dr. Sombra King.
  1016. >You have to remind yourself that this wasn’t your world, and as far as you can see the Sombra here is an outstanding leader.
  1017. >While this was a council meeting to discuss Trixie’s arrival on Earth, it feels like you are on trial with Spitfire as your defense lawyer.
  1018. >Spitfire had advised you to say as little as possible and not mention the fact that you not only know Trixie, but consider her a friend.
  1019. >“This is out of line, Colonel. Containment units for Equestrian magic have barely finished completion, but going for a fight against one?”, the councilman in question was on a screen on the far left of the room, you don’t even know his name. “You’re dealing with forces you can’t control here.”
  1020. >You’re actually a little glad that most hostility is directed towards Spitfire and not towards you.
  1021. >She handles the situation rather well, “Have you ever been in a confrontation with a super powered individual? Or a regular war for that matter? We don’t experience an abundance of control in these situations.”
  1022. >“A war?” the only woman of the council asks, “are you meaning to tell us Equestria declared war against us? Princess? Does that hold any-?”
  1023. “No, of course not!”, you interrupt her, “Equestria is a peaceful nation!”
  1024. >“Yet, as coincidence has it she shows up right after you with intel that you too have gained from our good will,” a third person claims.
  1025. “We have done nothing but cooperate with you from the second we set foot on this world.”
  1026. >Spitfire backs you up, “Equestria has indeed only tried to help-”
  1027. >“And yet the Tesseract was stolen, by one of her people,” the councilman gestures forward, but through the technology was not pointing directly at you, “and you, Colonel, you moved it out of the Triskelion’s protection just before it was stolen.”
  1028. >“A bad outcome does not equate a bad decision, councilman Richards,” Spitfire tells him, “If someone opens a portal to the Tesseract it wouldn’t matter where on Earth we hide it. As a matter of fact, moving the Tesseract stopped this Trixie from seizing control over valuable assets we have had  in the Triskelion. And I’m sure I don’t have to mention all the civilians in Washington itself?”
  1029. “My envoy and I will take care of Trixie ourselves,” you say, “If you want to put blame on-”
  1030. >“Most certainly not!” the councilwoman laughs out, “We still have no proof of you working together with this Trixie after all, and even if we had, we cannot send a foreign dignitary into harms way.”
  1031. “If not me then at least let my-” you stop as Sombra holds out a hand.
  1032. >“Let it go,” he tells you quietly, before addressing the council, “If I may.” he clears his throat, “What better way to prove Princess Sparkle’s sincerity as to help work on the second ECU-prototype  and speed up work on the Sparkle Buster.”
  1033. >Sparkle Buster?
  1034. “I- Yes,” you nod, “I’ll do as is asked of me, if it means I can prove my intentions and those of my nation to be honest.”
  1035. >“We still need a response team,” Spitfire changes the topic, “If Princess Sparkle and her envoy are out of question, those with the most experience with magic are Dr. Noteworthy, Agent Sweetie-”
  1036. >“Agent Sweetie Drops? Out of question!”, Sombra breaks her off, “She was under the targets influence, and Noteworthy’s too close to Turner. No, I’d suggest the response team to consist of Rapidfire and Fleetfoot, as well as Agent Kara as team leader and to operate the prototype ECU we already have installed.”
  1037. >Each one of the council looks off, and out of the screens they are residing in.
  1038. >You can only guess that they look up the team composition Sombra suggested.
  1039. >Spitfire’s expression is unreadable, and after a few moments she nods, “That’s a viable upper class, they’ll get a air and ground support team each at whatever location we’ll be able to track the target down to.”
  1040. >A murmur goes through the ranks of the councilmen but they all confirm the team composition.
  1041. >“Next order of business, we successfully tracked down our universes version of ‘Trixie’, she lives in Canterlot and goes to community college there. Her current whereabouts are 2213 Board Drive, Canterlot, where she’s a babysitter.”, Sombra reads off a handheld terminal, “he’s into some magic. But only tricks and stage shows, nothing one could consider real. She was however involved in the Canterlot High incident three years ago, as an innocent bystander.”
  1042. >“Anything else of importance?”
  1043. >Sombra continues, “She only has had one run in with the police involving some underage drunkenness. She was fairly popular at school, even having been in a band. Her personality type seems to align with the Equestrian Trixie, as she likes to overplay her abilities and be the center of attention, but reviews on the babysitting website claim she’s good with the kids.”
  1044. >“Endearing...,” the first councilman says sarcastically. “How should we proceed with her?”
  1045. >“I think it’s important that we keep a good eye on her and take her into protective custody once the Equestrian Trixie shows herself publicly,” Sombra answers the question, “which will be quite soon, I imagine, judging from her personality and her goal to rule us as a god, she’s not one to hide herself.”
  1046. >“I’d like to add in the possibility of witness protection afterwards,” Spitfire adds, “after all we don’t know who may hold a grudge or believe she knows about against her for what her alternate reality self did. We don’t know how far her circle of friends extend, but if the Equestrian Trixie prances around and makes a big show of herself, which we have to assume, many people will recognize the appearance of the American Trixie.”
  1047. >They continue to talk about legal proceedings and the financing of said proceedings.
  1048. >You do your best to try and follow, but sometimes even lack knowledge of the terminology they use.
  1049. >Your thoughts drift back to what Sombra said.
  1050. >‘Sparkle Buster’
  1051. >You know already that they are looking into a way to be able to fight Equestrian magic, to be on equal footing with Equestria.
  1052. >You have yet to properly talk with this worlds Twilight. (and now even less than before.)
  1053. >You know she can channel magic through technology, so the name might also derive from her.
  1054. >Nonetheless, you have a hard time not to take ‘Sparkle Buster’ personally.
  1055. >“Our next order of business which needs addressing is the... ‘theft’ of Miss Sparkle’s body the entity dubbed ‘Midnight’. Has everyone read the initial report?”
  1056. >The meeting turns into a mix of very advanced magical theory for people who barely understand the basics.
  1057. >It pretty much ends without a conclusion.
  1058. >At least they let you have research material.
  1059. >Any subject of research you now have to choose from was something you can see yourself being very passionate about.
  1060. >The creation of life, inter-dimensional travel and it’s downsides, merging magic with the technology of an alternate reality...
  1061. >Well, maybe tracking Trixie’s magic is something more mundane, but it too is something you feel the need to look into.
  1062. >All these things combined you already have a lot on your plate, but on the other hand you don’t consider standing down and let others do the ‘field work’ for you.
  1063. >Trixie is your friend.
  1064. >The other Twilight... you feel responsibility for her.
  1065. >Even if this council does not agree, you’ll have to talk to Spitfire.
  1066. >And right as you make your plans of going against the decisions of a foreign government and your own word as a representative of Equestria.
  1067. >So... you have no other choice than to cooperate.... for the sake of politics.
  1068. >Unless... This is the last time two realities interact with one another because continued involvement would destroy both.
  1069. >Which is not a favorable scenario to work in either.
  1070. >You sigh.
  1071. >There is research to be done.
  1072.  
  1073. >Be Midnight.
  1074. >“I’ve experiments to run. There is research to be done. On the people who are still alive.”
  1075. >You wish she’d just shut up.
  1076. >“And believe me I am still alive.”
  1077. >It took you a while to come up with a proper place to lay low for a while.
  1078. >The abandoned factory floor was dirty, wet and cold, but you don’t mind.
  1079. >You hoist the talkative (?) dead body (?) of your former self (?) onto some makeshift bedding.
  1080. >Needless to say there are some more questions you need to have answered.
  1081. >“Jeez, Midnight, what are we going to do on the bed?”
  1082. “Shut up.”
  1083. >You spray her with disinfectant, float out a water bottle to rinse of your hands and then spray yourself with disinfectant as well.
  1084. >“Worried?”, she giggles. “I’ll rot sooner or later.”
  1085. “You’re a corpse, yet you’re talking, I think I can squeeze the information I need out of you before you’re done.”
  1086. >“Yes, but you know the ‘me talking’ part is only you being crazy, not an actual corpse talking, right?”
  1087. “I- yes.”
  1088. >You knew that...
  1089. >She’s just really annoying.
  1090. “How about you just go on and be a devil on my shoulder like I were and not make me see a corpse move? I was being considerate! You’re being creepy.”
  1091. >“Maybe I’m reflecting on your desire to go back into this sweet sweet bod.”
  1092. “No!”, you shout at her and turn around to so you don’t have to face her.
  1093. >“That’s denial if I ever saw it.”
  1094. >You stare out the window.
  1095. >You can’t let her get to you.
  1096. >Back when you were Twilight and she was Midn- no!
  1097. >What are you even thinking about.
  1098. >You were never Twilight, were you?
  1099. >Twilight is the dead body.
  1100. >Whatever you’re imagining is something... she already told you.
  1101. >She’s your desire to go back to normal, isn’t she?
  1102. >“Midnight?”, she whistles for your attention, “you still haven’t told me what we are doing on the be~ed.”
  1103. “I need her brain in an elevated position, I’d use a workbench but those are all full...”
  1104. >You look around the scenery.
  1105. >There was enough things to fit the bill but...
  1106. >“You wanted me to be comfortable, didn’t you?”, she says, “aww, that’s so sweet of you.”
  1107. “I did not.”
  1108. >“You know I’m inside your head, right?”
  1109. “Shut up.”
  1110. >You go over to and sit down before her... it
  1111. >After dispelling some interested flies you set up a shield to not be bothered anymore.
  1112. >“You do care about me~”
  1113. “I don’t need distractions. The stench is bad enough you reek, but maggots... now those I really don’t need in my life.”
  1114. >You put your hands on /its/ head and feel out with your magic into the skull.
  1115. >“What are you hoping to achieve?”
  1116. “Neurons fire electrical impulses within them and chemical signals between them, neurotransmitters. They are deteriorating, but it’s basic chemistry what happens and I can work it back, figuring out when the neurons fired,” you begin to explain.
  1117. >“And you think that’ll work?”
  1118. “Then I look at the remaining magnetic and electric fields which were created when there was electric flow. Working back the action potential when signals were still going though the brain. Different neurons have different membrane potential of course... but I’m talking to myself, you know what I’m going to do and know the chances of success as much as I do.”
  1119. >“And what then?”
  1120. >You don’t respond as you continue to let magic stream throughout Twilight Sparkle’s brain.
  1121. >“Can’t comprehend any of this, can you?”
  1122. “It’s data. It’s an old hard drive that needs to be renewed.”
  1123. >“But you and I- or should I say ‘you’, because we’re the same person... never mind. You know in what problem you’ll run even if you do manage to get a perfect copy of this here brain, don’t you?”
  1124. >Once more you don’t respond to her but begin to pick out every piece of information you can get about the physical state of the brain.
  1125. >Simultaneously you create a 3D image of the it as you do so.
  1126. >It was not the copy you want, it’s more of a notepad for you to scribble on while containing everything in a small space.
  1127. >This would work better if you could store it in a proper crystal, but some larger shard of broken glass lying on the floor will have to do.
  1128. >You begin your work.
  1129.  
  1130. >You return from a supply run.
  1131. >Food and warmth to assure your immediate survival have had priority.
  1132. >Then you need more proper food to keep your brain working and at high capacity.
  1133. >Namely caffeine and glucose.
  1134. >And some other tools...
  1135. >You approach Twilight Sparkle’s dead body again
  1136. >A purple glow still shines over her so it’s properly shielded from outside.
  1137. >You don’t even smell her.
  1138. >Nonetheless you’ll need a shower soon.
  1139. >You could figure out one poor geezer’s daily pattern and use his sanitary facilities when he’s not home.
  1140. >Teleportation is so practical.
  1141. >But still, you’ll need to find a more permanent solution soon.
  1142. >Whatever form this will take, you’ll not take it with a corpse in your luggage.
  1143. >Your form can also be considered to... catch some attention.
  1144. >It would be easy for you to-
  1145. >“Baby come back! Du dudu du duu. Baby, come back. Du dudu du duu. Uhhh I don’t know any of the other lyrics.”
  1146. “I’m certainly not going to- become you again!” you shout out, not even facing your ghoulish imagination.
  1147. >“Don’t be like that... Being me is just practical. We like it practical, don’t we?”
  1148. >You drop your supplies on the floor and summon the shard of glass again.
  1149. “Then I’d only be using you!” you retort, “This- This form. I can feel magic more naturally like this  more than I had previously even hoped to achieve... well, without years of training at least. No!” you turn around and point at her, “She! She didn’t think this could be achieved within that time, but I am not you- not her!”
  1150. >“You’re kinda overcompensating. Whom do you try to convince? Me?”, she chuckles, “Oh well. Sure. You only have all of her memories, have had her approximate likeness, and mental issues. You’re totally not what she would be had she gone totally bonkers.”
  1151. “I’m not crazy.”
  1152. >“But you’re aware you are a) talking to a corpse, b) have a split personality, and c) seeing things that aren’t really there. Where do we draw the border of crazy in this universe of yours? Oh, and you’re also monologueing, that’s what bad guys do.”
  1153. “I’m not a- bad guy.”
  1154. >“You just robbed a place! And might I say a robbery is what got me into this position?” she nods down to the Y-incision from her autopsy.
  1155. >You bite your lip.
  1156. “I have something to cover that up.”
  1157. >You float up a roll of duct tape and include it into the shield around the body.
  1158. >“Are you for real?”, she gives you a sarcastic gaze.
  1159. >You push all her insides where they are supposed to be and wrap her up with the tape starting from the bottom up
  1160. >Just as you reach far enough up to her chest she speaks up again, “And don’t think I didn’t notice.”
  1161. “Notice what?”, you frown.
  1162. >“Your chest!” she nods to yours, “you made them bigger in this demon-y form. Self confidence issues, haven’t we?”
  1163. “I-”, you cover your breasts and turn slightly away from her, before stomping down. “I’m not having that kind of conversation with you.”
  1164. >“Pffttahahahah,” she laughs out, “And that- ahaha- and that sweetheart cut dress? Show the world what we got! Sugar daddy magic paid for these- ahahaha. What are you at? You jumped two cup sizes? But hey, MAGIC! Not like we have to worry about them getting saggy, right? Or how is your plan for the future coming along? Do you know where you’ll sleep tomorrow?”
  1165. “SHUT UP!”, you shout and cover her mouth with some of the tape.
  1166. >She managed to make you angry.
  1167. >How?
  1168. >Why?
  1169. >What was her goal?
  1170. >You flap your wings over to a larger hole in the ground and fly down to the standing water there.
  1171. >It’s disgusting, but still enough to grant you a good reflection of yourself.
  1172. >Why did you make yourself look like this?
  1173. >You examine yourself, turning your head.
  1174. >The small scar on your chin which you got when you were ten was still there.
  1175. >You slowly move the dress aside to reveal yet another scar important to your identity.
  1176. >The one from your appendix removal surgery.
  1177. >These are things that make you... you.
  1178. “No,” you shake your head, “These made Twilight, Twilight.”
  1179. >You open your mouth and pull your cheek aside.
  1180. >No inlay, perfect teeth.
  1181. >Something that was not very important to what you think about identity, but if your dental records are different...
  1182. >You are not Twilight Sparkle.
  1183. >“Then are you me?”
  1184. >Your mirror image shifts into...
  1185. “Midnight?”, you ask and retreat from the water.
  1186. >“Yes, indeed,” she steps out of the water, mustering you up and down. “Nice to see you... on your way.
  1187. >She looks like you remember from yesterday, like she did when she last came to you because of... Spike, and from the few photos that had been taken that day at the Friendship Games.
  1188. >You retreat even further.
  1189. >You don’t look like her.
  1190. >By direct comparison you’re harmless.
  1191. >Only like a prettier version of Twilight with darker skin and wings.
  1192. >In retrospect, the way you changed your appearance seems rather petty.
  1193. >“You Mary Sue’d yourself up,” she gives you the slow clap, “congratulations, Twilight~”
  1194. “I’m not Twilight,”
  1195. >“Well, you’re certainly not me,” she continues to approach you.
  1196. “You are not real, I’m not afraid of you!”, you stand your ground and let her come closer.
  1197. >“Maybe you should!” she reaches out for you.
  1198. “You’re not real,” you repeat once more.
  1199. >The fact doesn’t seem to bother her, because she grabs you by your chin.
  1200. >Before you could properly react and grab her hand in response she presses her hand together.
  1201. >You feel your jaw strain against her and hear a small crack.
  1202. >As you try to attack her back she throws you around and impales you on some loose rebar bar.
  1203. >Pain shoots through you.
  1204. >Pain you cannot tell if it’s real or not.
  1205. >Has she actually thrown you?
  1206. >If she’s not real, have you thrown yourself?
  1207. >Are you really hurt or are you imagining this?
  1208. >You don’t know the answer to these questions.
  1209. >All you know right now is that you are in pain.
  1210. >A few seconds later you feel yourself lying on the floor, with the pain slowly subsiding.
  1211. >“This may leave a scar, but you’re out of danger,” a soft voice says.
  1212. >You know that voice.
  1213. >It’s not yours, nor is it the slightly changed of Midnight.
  1214. >That’s how you sound like to others.
  1215. >When you open your eyes you see the image of the Equestrian Princess, your head washer arms over your chest and sending out rays of magic, healing you.
  1216. “This is getting too much...”, you mumble.
  1217. >“She chipped your tooth, though, I don’t know what I can do about that.”, she apologizes.
  1218. “Yeah, just great. Not like I was just thinking about-”, you stop as Midnight too steps into your field of view again.
  1219. >“This is what you wanted, wasn’t it?” she asks, “a nice scar through your chest, an inlay? To be Twilight Sparkle again.”
  1220. “I WANT YOU ALL GONE!”, you shout and your head falls painfully down onto the floor as your lap pillow disappears.
  1221. >You quickly jump up and look around.
  1222. >You’re alone.
  1223. >A quick check with your tongue around your mouth there was no noticeable damage to your teeth.
  1224. >You also hadn’t been impaled by a rebar bar.
  1225. >...
  1226. >You shake your head and float up to the corpse again.
  1227. “No more Twilights.”
  1228. >Once more you take the shard of glass into your hand in which you had stored the analyzed brain.
  1229. “Well, only you-”, you point to the dead body, “and me... as the only Midnight.”
  1230. >There was no response.
  1231. >Kinda eerily quiet.
  1232. >Like an abandoned factory building with holes in the ground should be.
  1233. >You summon the brain and spin it around in your magic.
  1234. >It’s not really a brain; it’s as much a brain as a 3D-image of a spoon is a spoon.
  1235. >All it does is giving you an idea of which neurons fired last.
  1236. >You can almost hear Corpse-Twilight mocking you about having no idea how to convert this into information you want.
  1237. >“Do you want me to?”, the image of Twilight appears, asking helpfully, “You told me to shut up earlier and taped my mouth shut.
  1238. >She has left the corpse and has taken on the same translucent purple color as the brain you conjured.
  1239. >Even considering that the top of her head is missing and she was seemingly lacking a brain, it was... better.
  1240. >Much better than the fake ‘real Midnight’ or fake princess.
  1241. “You’re easier to deal with, really.”
  1242. >“Aww, thanks a lot.”
  1243. >She gives you a smile, which you eventually return, for reasons you’re not sure yourself.
  1244. >“Sorry about harassing you about your boob job.”
  1245. “It’s- ahh... okay?”, you look down, “I-”, you shake your head, “I’m looking for identity. Yes. So why not start out with an idealized version of someone whom I already know.”
  1246. >“It’s okay, Midnight. Or do you want to be called that?”
  1247. “I’m the only real Midnight,” you nod, “it’s fine.”
  1248. >She looks over to the corpse, “You know what can skip the simulation of a brain?”
  1249. >You narrow your eyes.
  1250. “Make it real...”
  1251. >The image of the brain floats over to your conversational partner and embeds itself in her head.
  1252. >Just like that the skull seals up and she changes from the translucent purple to a solid form with proper coloration.
  1253. >She takes a step aside to give you a proper view of your patient.
  1254. “Magic can heal her lungs, rips, the blood cloth, … jumpstarting the brain however...”
  1255. >“You already healed the brain, haven’t you?” she tells you, “you have everything right here, you know what it’s supposed to look like.”
  1256. “Just hook everything up correctly and start the heart... the blood is useless though,” you look to your nurse, “but getting more shouldn’t be a problem.”
  1257. >She gives you a smile, “Dr. Sparkelstein, md.”
  1258.  
  1259. >Be … dying.
  1260. >You’re dying right now
  1261. >The last project you did seemed to have been a success.
  1262. >Your friends will still have your help... so to speak.
  1263. >If this is dying this isn’t so bad.
  1264. >Even the pain is subsiding.
  1265. >The pulsing pain in your chest shrinks down to be only discomfort.
  1266. >The rush in your head was something entirely different.
  1267. >But the sheets of the hospital bed grew harder...
  1268. >This isn’t dying.
  1269. >“Twilight Sparkle.”
  1270. >You recognize that voice.
  1271. >And it certainly is not Spitfire who should be at your bedside.
  1272. >Opening your eyes and turning your head takes more energy and effort from you than you could have imagined.
  1273. >Midnight- no, she looks different.
  1274. >“Welcome back to the land of the living... literally.”
  1275. >You were just dying.
  1276. >What’s going on?
  1277. >You try to move more but find the reason why you’re unable to do so, there was a soft purple glow on your body, the same glow as there was on Midnight’s hand.
  1278. >She’s forcing you down.
  1279. >Thar much is clear, but why are you here...?
  1280. >Is this hell?
  1281. >Well, you created a debt to the universe, but you didn’t think that’s how it would express itself.
  1282. >And even if you’d believe in hell, some dirty old factory floor wouldn’t be great wallpaper for it.
  1283. “W-what..?”
  1284. >Your lungs won’t work properly.
  1285. >You can barely utter a sound.
  1286. >Thinking back, you hadn’t been able to talk only five minutes ago because there was a tube down your throat, so talking in any way was a step up.
  1287. >“You died, Twilight Sparkle,” Midnight states, “I brought you back.”
  1288. >The weight of her words eludes you.
  1289. >You hear and understand what she says, but it doesn’t make any sense... does it?
  1290. >“You’re only alive because I keep your heart pumping with magic. And your blood system is limited to your head, heart and lungs.”
  1291. >There was no other choice but to take her word.
  1292. >Right now nothing else makes sense.
  1293. >“You’re only alive because I allow it, do you understand?”
  1294. >Do you understand?
  1295. >No matter what the real circumstances are, obeying seems the best option for now.
  1296. >You nod slightly.
  1297. >“Good good.”
  1298. >She hoists you up into a sitting position, which immediately sends your head spinning. (figuratively)
  1299. >You had no sense of direction or balance, you can barely feel your body, much less move it.
  1300. >You’re just a doll at her mercy.
  1301. >“Now talk, how did you create me?”
  1302. >A weight drops from your mouth and lungs.
  1303. “What?”, the word came out almost normally.
  1304. >Husky, sure, but no effort was needed to say it.
  1305. >Just as if you would be talking regularly.
  1306. “You-”, What does she want to hear?, “You’re Midnight... you’re not real.”, you eventually say.
  1307. >“I am,” she presses through her teeth, “You created me on your deathbed! What am I? How did you do it? I feel the magic coursing through me like never before! What did you do!?”
  1308. >Your brain finally catches up with the situation you are in.
  1309. “You... went Midnight?”, you inquire, “nonono, you were supposed to be me, you were supposed to help them, because I couldn’t anymore. My friends... Shiny... Ohh... Spitfire will be so pissed.”
  1310. >You look around once more.
  1311. “Shit, she already is, isn’t she?
  1312. >“SHE’S NOT YOUR PROBLEM RIGHT NOW!”, Midnight shouts at you.
  1313. >You’d physically retread backwards if you could.
  1314. >“Answer my question.”
  1315. >How did you create her?
  1316. >Pretty easily, actually.
  1317. “How did you bring me back from the dead?”
  1318. >“Wasn’t that hard, really.” she smiles, “just a little chemistry, zapping the right neurons, and creating the right environment for a brain to live in again. So what about me? How did you make me?”
  1319. >Your mind starts to pick up again.
  1320. “What’s in it for me? Why should I tell you?”, you lead her on, buying some time to think.
  1321. >You need your magic back.
  1322. >“You’re only alive because I allow it! I can send you right back to where you belong!”
  1323. >If you’d do the same thing...
  1324. >No, that would just create another her, not safe you, wouldn’t it?
  1325. “I’m alive because you need to know something from me, Midnight.”, you address her as such even though you don’t see her like that.
  1326. >The experiment of her to help your friends... well, you could consider it failed.
  1327. “The moment I tell you, my life has no more meaning to you, does it?”
  1328. >You need to think fast, and throw her a bone at least.
  1329. “You have all my memories minus anything that happened right as I teleported away out of that convenient store, right?
  1330. >“Yes...”, she looks down and thinks, but catches herself soon enough, “You don’t want to tell me, do you?”
  1331. >Her right hand starts to glow in a menacing purple aura as she gets ready to strike.
  1332. >Shit...
  1333. >You don’t want to die.
  1334. >Again.
  1335. “If you’re anything like me you don’t value a straight answer to something you can come up with by yourself.”
  1336. >If she’s anything like you...
  1337. >What a ridiculous situation you’re in.
  1338. >Midnight looks around and fixes on... an empty spot besides you.
  1339. “You desire knowledge, right?” this catches her attention again. “That’s- that’s made me... ‘go Midnight’, like figuring out magic, right?”
  1340. >She was about to respond before looking over to the same empty spot.
  1341. >“...figuring out myself...”, she mumbles, “No, shut up,” she turns to you again and approaches you rapidly, “you! Tell me- no wait, don’t. I- ahh...”
  1342. >Midnight turns away once more and starts pacing around, “I should know, right? You said that!”, she points at you yet again, before pointing to the empty spot, “and you! You shut up! No, I’ll figure that out myself.”
  1343. >You follow her gaze.
  1344. >She’s definitely talking with someone who isn’t really there...
  1345. >But she’s Midnight already, isn’t she?
  1346. >Huh...
  1347. >What did she say to her imaginary fiend? She said she wants to figure out itself, which means...
  1348. >Whatever /Midnight/ is seeing wants instant gratification.
  1349. >She has a Midnight of her own who whispers evil thoughts into her ear.
  1350. >But the one pacing around right now wasn’t properly that.
  1351. >Judging from her appearance she’s more you than a full Midnight.
  1352. >You need to figure out how reasonable she is.
  1353. >...
  1354. >She brought you back from the dead, hangs out in an abandoned factory, and she’s talking to an imaginary evil version of herself if she’s not just mumbling possible solutions out loud.
  1355. >It sounds bad when you phrase it like that.
  1356. >There’s new stuff lying around, so she must have done some shopping... but somehow you doubt she got a receipt.
  1357. >Did she steal it with stealth, or was she a careless robber?
  1358. >Robber... you don’t think you’d hurt anyone, so you can hope she won’t either.
  1359. >Threaten and intimidate? Yes, that you can see yourself doing.
  1360. >You don’t know what lines she has crossed yet, and with everyone the consecutive will get easier, you know that.
  1361. >...
  1362. >She did steal your corpse, didn’t she?
  1363. >From... wait... the hospital wing of the Wonderbolts Tower in New Yoke, or rather the morgue.
  1364. >Or did she dig you up?
  1365. >How long have you been dead?
  1366. >You can barely feel your body, and have not really mustered up the strength to move more than just your eyes and mouth.
  1367. >These are the only things she has let you move so far.
  1368. >You’ve seen your hands briefly.
  1369. >They hadn’t seemed very... corpse-ish.
  1370. >Breathing is hard, but manageable.
  1371. >You vividly remember that bullet that went into your lung and bounced around, making a mess of things.
  1372. >Calm down.
  1373. >Bad situation.
  1374. >Wonderbolt training, what do you do if you’re a prisoner.
  1375. >Analyze it and find your way out.
  1376. >Figure out how bad the damage it, assure short term survival, figure out how to improve your situation, assure long term survival until rescue or escape.
  1377. >Learning your captors motivations and things like that are optional, but can be important to assure your survival.
  1378. >So, short term: Don’t make her kill you, give her a reason to keep you alive.
  1379. >Long term... do you need food? Your brain must work on something.
  1380. >Speaking off... you still have a severe headache.
  1381. >Most likely from dehydration.
  1382. >You don’t feel thirsty, but then again, you barely feel anything at all.
  1383. “Water, Midnight...”, you interrupt her talking to herself, “can I please... I /really/ don’t feel well...”
  1384. >This actually makes her perk up.
  1385. >Your voice, however feeble and weak it may be, managed to get through to her, “O-of course...”
  1386. >She shakes her head while she floats up a bottle of water and approaches you.
  1387. >As if there was nothing do it she opens it up and sets it onto your mouth to make you drink.
  1388. >“Your senses are wonky, so pace yourself, swallow only little.”
  1389. >She’s right. You barely feel the cool liquid enter your mouth, much less how it runs down your throat.
  1390. >Everything’s numb.
  1391. >You don’t know how much is in your mouth at a time, you don’t even know what position your tongue is in, really. Only guess and make the best of it.
  1392. >She stops after every few gulps and catches some drops, or even little streams that missed your mouth.
  1393. >You don’t know...
  1394. >You can only feel her hand on your throat as she wipes the moisture away.
  1395. >She’s... almost caring... empathetic?
  1396. >No, she’s just deep in thought.
  1397. >The motions her body goes through are what you would do, even for the worst villains.
  1398. >She probably doesn’t even realize what good she’s doing you by feeding you like that.
  1399. >“No, shut up.” she suddenly says, “It’s not like that at all!”
  1400. >The words are not meant for you, but she stops feeding you nonetheless.
  1401. >Has she realized what she’s doing?
  1402. >Or... her Midnight? Who then pointed it out?
  1403. >You don’t know how far gone she is.
  1404. “Thank you,” you tell her as your eyes meet, “thank you so much.”
  1405. >She retreats from you, her eyes still locked with yours, but with a confused expression.
  1406. >“Need you alive...”, she defends herself, “You dying wouldn’t be in my interest, and... like, would undermine my efforts so far.”
  1407. >It’s not like I like you or anything, baka.
  1408. >She just went Tsundere on you, didn’t she?
  1409. >Let’s test your luck.
  1410. “Thank you anyway, Twilight.”
  1411. >For a fraction of a second you could have sworn she smiled, but her features quickly dropped, even going angry.
  1412. >“I’m not Twilight,” she was suddenly calm again, “Twilight’s dead, in fact. You are just a science project, and the other one... The other one!”
  1413. >Her eyes light up and she turns to her imaginary Midnight with a smile.
  1414. >“She- yes. She- ohoho... she...”
  1415. >Creepy much?
  1416. >“You see, my dear departed former self”, she turns to you again, “I’ve just got something added to my to do list. Some actual goal.”
  1417. >Midnight comes closer to you again.
  1418. >Yes, she’s creeping.
  1419. >“To be my best self I have to transcend from my former self, do I not? But I am in the lucky position where I can interact with any Twilight out there... and prove that I’m the next step in our evolutionary line,” she giggles like a maniac, “Does that sound like I’m full of myself? I guess it does.”
  1420. >This is bad.
  1421. “I’m totally not an opponent for you, right?”, you would try and back off if you could, “like... I can’t even move.”
  1422. >“Not you. The Equestrian!”
  1423. >What?
  1424. “The princess one?”
  1425. >Right, she’s here.
  1426. >They had made plans to meet, but you had a severe case of death, so you couldn’t make it.
  1427. >“Yes... I felt a lot of magic earlier, she didn’t even try to hide it. I can easily track her.”
  1428. “Yeah, that’s a- like... good idea,” you do the slightest of nods, “You... you should do that.”
  1429. >Midnight narrows her eyes, “Now why would you think that’s a good idea.”
  1430. >Because she’ll friendship-blast you into next week and I have a chance of escaping while you’re gone.
  1431. >“Uhh... I mean, you won’t kill her, right?”, you talk your way out, “She still has... knowledge to share... or be extract, like I do.”
  1432. >Midnight takes a few steps around again, tilting her head of to the side
  1433. >Probably getting a second opinion right now.
  1434. >“I could start a menagerie of heads in jars.”
  1435. >Yes...
  1436. “Like Futurama?”
  1437. >“Exactly like Futurama.”
  1438. >She’s so getting friendship-blasted.
  1439. >Right?
  1440.  
  1441. >Be Sunset Shimmer, the amazing Spider-Woman, Agent of the Wonderbolts.
  1442. >For reasons of being too emotionally involved your membership regarding the hunt for ‘Midnight’ has been called into question more than once over the course of the past hour.
  1443. >You are, at best, a character witness, at worst, a hindrance while others work.
  1444. >With her ability to teleport it wasn’t easy to pinpoint a location down, but at least she wasn’t subtle whenever she needs something.
  1445. >She stole food, blankets and miscellaneous stuff, nothing menacing.
  1446. >All that you have going on her is that she’s probably somewhere in the Canterlot region where she knows her way around.
  1447. >But the Canterlot region is large.
  1448. >You have absolutely no idea where you should start looking after you ruled out the obvious places.
  1449. >The woods and the tree house, of course, but you know Twilight, and she’s not one to go hide anywhere somebody could link her to.
  1450. >Starlight told you everything she could about what exactly she cast on Twilight.
  1451. >Only some suggestion of taking a matter into her own hands and seize her desires.
  1452. >Her desire in that case having been knowledge, more specifically finding out how exactly she had been cloned.
  1453. >You’re using the term clone because you lack a better one.
  1454. >Technically she has the same genetic makeup, so she /is/ a clone.
  1455. >This is Twilight with memories and scars, but not matching up.
  1456. >The body is a copy of Twilight from at least 10 days ago, while her memories go up until the point when she had been shot, everything after that was gone.
  1457. >Has the body been created those 10 days ago?
  1458. >You are taking the time frame of when the last scar had appeared on her and that was a long cut on her forearm.
  1459. >It might as well had been older.
  1460. >However Spitfire claimed that Twilight only had the idea after she was shot.
  1461. >It was reasonable then that the clone has no clue of what that idea had been.
  1462. >Your own though process leads you to believe that the original (human) Twilight was indeed dead.
  1463. >Her clone... still has all the memories of your friendship together.
  1464. >As far as she should be concerned, you two are still best friends.
  1465. >Even though she called you her arch nemesis.
  1466. >She’s just confused.
  1467. >Twilight... she hasn’t had an easy life.
  1468. >She hasn’t had any friends growing up with only Spike as her companion.
  1469. >You noticed some bad patterns reemerging back when Spike...
  1470. >Well, he was smart, and through Equestrian magic he was able to talk.
  1471. >She became reclusive again, and when you went to different colleges...
  1472. >With all her inner angst scrambled Twilight might...
  1473. >At some point you have to accept the fact that there’s a super villain in the making.
  1474. >With that symbiote you had been a super villain too.
  1475. >...
  1476. >Starlight also said that she would be able to seal off any of Twilight’s bad emotions, but that would effectively change who she is.
  1477. >That’s bad, and even worse was the fact that it’s a solution the Wonderbolts actually consider.
  1478. >Spitfire’s in Washington by now so she doesn’t know about that, but you just know she’d approve that order.
  1479. >Hmm... Maybe you shouldn’t look for reasons to dislike her.
  1480. >You need her.
  1481. >And Twilight needs Psychotherapy.
  1482. >If only there were some therapist for super villains.
  1483. >You, her best friend, will have to do.
  1484. >The sooner the better.
  1485. >Because reality is falling apart with every passing moment.
  1486. >Twili- Princess Twilight had not yet been able to confirm that, but you know the universe isn’t giving you a break.
  1487. >The moment you let your guard down, became happy, got a boyfriend... everything... literally everything is going to shit.
  1488. >Princess Twilight doesn’t even have the time to confirm the reality shattering theory as she’s busy helping out searching for Trixie, and tracking her magic.
  1489. >The next time she casts something it’ll throw ripples throughout this world which is usually devoid of magic.
  1490. >Something anyone with magic themselves can easily track.
  1491. >Wait a minute...
  1492. >That also applies to Clone-Twilight.
  1493. >If she does anything bigger than teleportation you’ll know where Twilight is as well.
  1494. “I have another idea!”, you burst out.
  1495. >Agent Hetcher looks up from the work on his laptop, “Then please share your idea, Agent Spider-Woman.”
  1496. >Your name now has six syllables, you start to dislike it even more.
  1497. ”The Princess is currently trying to track Trixie via means of magical ripples, but that also applies to Twi- Midnight. Just by ripples we don’t know who the caster is, but as we are looking for both anyway, shouldn’t we merge that particular investigation?”
  1498. >Agent Hetcher thinks for a moment, but then nods, “That would be a good idea, indeed.”
  1499. >Yay, you are useful.
  1500. >...
  1501. >Like you should be.
  1502.  
  1503. >Be Anon.
  1504. >Morning routine.
  1505. >Walking in the bathroom and turning on the light also raises your new apartment AI out of it’s slumber.
  1506. >”Good morning, Anon.”
  1507. “Mornin’ Tay.”
  1508. >You installed her yesterday after work, you have had a slight buzz from Flim’s slcohol, but you remember well how Tay had complained about feeling naked.
  1509. >She only gets access to your laptops microphone and camera, and the lighting of your dorm room and the bathroom.
  1510. >Hence, she only notices you being awake if you do anything with said sensors, or if you turn on the light.
  1511. >If Tay wouldn’t constantly say she’s not an AI and only simulates emotions, not feel them you’d say she complained about it, while simultaneously claiming happiness over being allowed to host anyones living quarters again.
  1512. >When asked about this again she said she’s not much more than a Tic Tac Toe bot, which is not an AI either, it just takes certain inputs and acts accordingly.
  1513. >You retorted that a human also has sensory organs and will act accordingly.
  1514. >And finally she clarified that she would never be able to surprise her own programmer, she only has a certain amount of outputs.
  1515. >Even if she would have the access to climate control, no matter the circumstances, she’d never be able to come to the calculation that it’s worth to turn off air circulation and suffocate anyone inside.
  1516. >She may be able to be tricked into believing nobody is in the room she’d cut off, but her programming simply cannot reach far enough to evaluate a human.
  1517. >There are bots who can suggest something like that, but will always need human permission to kill anyone.
  1518. >She’s also only programmed with this one possible scenario as an example, she’s not able to think of any other scenario in which she might be able to kill a human.
  1519. >“Hey, Anon.”, a Sunsetty voice derails your train of thought.
  1520. >Before you knew it your feet had carried you into the university.
  1521. “Hey...” you look around to find the culprit.
  1522. >Naturalistic make-up, slightly less tan, cheerless and less confident demeanor.
  1523. “Sunset... You are... you’re still here.” You shake your head, “I mean, hi, how are you?”
  1524. >“Yeah, I’m still here,” Sunset catches up to you nods you to walk with her to class. “And... just peachy- No, I can’t even bring myself to lie to you, Do you want to know what happened yesterday? All hell broke loose.” She stomps her foot down, cracking two of the floor tiles.
  1525. “Let’s... go somewhere,” you suggest. “No, you know what? Let’s skip class entirely.”
  1526. >“Yeah...” she sighs, “what’s the point anyway? Well, you still have a life here, while I...”
  1527. “I have good attendance,  I can skip a few lectures. While, I don’t see the point of continuing college either. The world just grew so much more... grim over the past few days.”
  1528. >“You want to drop out of college?”, she asks as she leads you up to the roof again.
  1529. “I- well, I’m thinking about it, I guess.”
  1530. >The door to the roof was locked, with a note of students not being allowed on the roof.
  1531. >“Think that’s our fault?”
  1532. “Eh.” you shrug and move to the door.
  1533. >You’ve dealt with electric locks before, but you also know how a mechanical one works.
  1534. >Lying your palm over the keyhole you let some nanites stream in and feel around.
  1535. >“What are you doing?”
  1536. “Picking the lock,”
  1537. >It’s... trickier than you expected, but eventually you form a key that works and turn your hand around.
  1538. >With a satisfying click the door unlocks and you open it for Sunset.
  1539. “That’s not a healing factor,” she states.
  1540. >You only reveal the key protruding from your palm before letting it slide back into your hand again and motion her to be quiet by putting one finger to your lips
  1541. >That’s just how life is now.
  1542. >Sunsed nods and steps out into the open air.
  1543. >“Ok.” she says devoid of any surprise or astonishment as she goes to drop of her cellphone once more by the air vents like yesterday.
  1544. “I formed the nanites which are supposed to heal my body into a solid structure.” you inform her. “I can make claws too.”
  1545. >The key disappears and you form three claws between your knuckles to show them off for a moment.
  1546. “There is a whole lot Treehugger didn’t tell me about me, meaning to protect me...” you sigh. “I understand how-” you shake your head. “Things change.”
  1547. >Sunset nods, “I don’t know what to think anymore...” as she forms a fist and looks at it she tells you, “I cannot punch my way our of it... cannot say something witty to a villain, or... or...”
  1548. >You take her in an embrace.
  1549. >“Twilight, she...”
  1550. >She doesn’t continue talking.
  1551. >She doesn’t cry, even though you assume she was about to.
  1552. >All she does is stay in your embrace without moving.
  1553. >You don’t know what to say either.
  1554. >How could you cheer her up.
  1555. >“We don’t even properly have each other if we are to...”
  1556. >You only tighten your grip on her.
  1557. “Don’t talk... We don’t need to talk, I’m just... here for you, okay?”
  1558. >“Yeah... I-” she returns the hug, latching herself onto you as well. “I’d like that.”
  1559. >You remain like this for a while until-
  1560. >A phone rings.
  1561. >...
  1562. >That was the ringtone with which Spitfire contacted you yesterday.
  1563. >You slowly let go of Sunset.
  1564. “That-”
  1565. >“-can wait.” she finishes your sentence and tries to hold onto your arm.
  1566. “No, I- I think that one could further the plot.”
  1567. >Neither you nor Sunset know how to properly proceed.
  1568. >You are a passive party, only waiting to react.
  1569. >You feel like you lost the rights of the main character of your own freaking life.
  1570. “It’s probably Spitfire.”
  1571. >“Spitfire?”, she repeats confused and slightly follows you.
  1572. >As you pick up your phone you confirm your suspicion to her and show off Spitfire’s photo as well.
  1573. >“What?”
  1574. >You pick up.
  1575. “You’re on speaker.”
  1576. >“Mr. West, Ms. Shimmer. Good morning”, her voice comes through loud and clear.
  1577. “Colonel Spitfire, are you afraid I’m conspiring with one of your agents?”, you say mockingly.
  1578. >With your eyes, however, you are apologizing to Sunset about it.
  1579. >“It wouldn’t be espionage if you’d not know whom to trust and whom not to. What I do trust in is Ms. Shimmers heart to be in the right place.”
  1580. >Well, you know that’s a lie.
  1581. >Sunset’s emotionally distraught and would be an easy target for you to... conspire with.
  1582. >“What do you want?”, Sunset snarls into the phone you’re holding up.
  1583. >“I’d actually like to give you some hints, Ms. Shimmer, in how to carry out your assigned mission.”
  1584. >Sunset’s mission?
  1585. >You don’t need to wonder about it long as Spitfire continues, “Mr. West has proven to have some insight into Ms. Sparkle’s mind. He did correctly guess her password after not even speaking with her for more than a year, isn’t that correct?”
  1586. >You frown.
  1587. >Twilight’s mind? How is that Sunset’s mission?
  1588. “She has been kidnapped by this Starlight, right?” you remember Sunset mentioning it, but you somewhat forgot after all that has happened. “Do you want to know how she might try to make contact in captivity? She can McGuiver herself out of a lot, I assume-”
  1589. >“You’re working on old intel, Mr. West.” Spitfire informs you, “Intel you are not supposed to have in the first place.”
  1590. “Uhh... You know how Treehugger has a way of getting to know things, right?”
  1591. >“Or we have a leak... Ms. Shimmer?”
  1592. >“She’s his friend too!” Sunset defends herself, “and it’s not like I revealed some specifics, or- like anything anyone can use for... I don’t know.”
  1593. >“I’m just-”
  1594. “No, Sunset, it is a matter of principle. She should be able to trust you,” you turn to the phone and address Spitfire again. “We all should be able to trust one another, shouldn’t we?”
  1595. >“You’d make a good agent, Mr. West.” Spitfire’s compliment seems a little out of place, even if you had said what she wanted to hear, “But whatever may be, I hope you are having a good day, I need to get back to work.”
  1596. >You frown once more.
  1597. “Good day... I guess.”
  1598. >Sunset merely glares at the phone and doesn’t say  her good byes, but Spitfire does one last.
  1599. >“I’m looking forward to hear from you again, bye.”
  1600. >And she hangs up.
  1601. >“That was odd...” Sunset comments and crosses her arms and moves away from the phone again, “I’m really growing to dislike her- and what was that about?” she changes posture again to gesture to you, “you defend her? Why?”
  1602. “Your loyalty to the Wonderbolts can’t be called into question...” you tell her as you catch up to her. “Not much further than it is by now anyways. Also we have to assume a fourth party may be listening in.”
  1603. >Fuck espionage.
  1604. >Fuck politics.
  1605. “But we know what to do now, at least.”
  1606. >Sunset looks at you confused, not having picked up on Spitfire’s hint.
  1607. “You- officially take me to the Wonderbolts because of Twilight.” you relay to her.
  1608. >“Oh...”
  1609.  
  1610. >Be Princess Twilight Sparkle.
  1611. >You are having a hard time not taking ‘Sparkle Buster’ personally.
  1612. >Time and time again you have to remind yourself that Earth and the Wonderbolts are your allies.
  1613. >The people of this reality are quite strange, but you do understand their sentiment.
  1614. >For them to really trust you they would need a weapon that works against you.
  1615. >Some peace for their minds so they don’t have to look over their shoulders every time, and for you not to be able to simply overpower them and pressure them into submission.
  1616. >That is to say, against your own conscience, you build a backdoor into their Equestrian Containment Unit while fine tuning it to be able to hold your own power.
  1617. >You’d not be able to brutishly force the lock open anymore, but there is a certain way in place to pick it.
  1618. >The hypocrisy isn’t lost on you; you want them to trust you while you don’t trust them.
  1619. >Lies and paranoia are what shape this reality, and without meaning to, you inadvertently you added some fuel to that fire.
  1620. >Not now, but maybe some day in the future this backdoor will hurt the relation between Equestria and Earth.
  1621. >Then again... if Sunsets words were true and you’ll have to seal off the tear between the realities it wouldn’t matter much.
  1622. >Your priority should be to capture Trixie and go back, but you have your plate quite full right now.
  1623. >The little time you have for yourself are for probing the fabric of reality, but you’re not able to get any conclusive results.
  1624. >Your scientific mind wants to avoid a confirmation bias.
  1625. >While, yes, all the evidence for the realities to get weaker are present, you are still looking for any evidence to disprove this theory, and for other possible explanations for it.
  1626. >What if you are wrong, though?
  1627. >What if you waste too much time on trying to be sure and the realities collapse in the meantime?
  1628. >What’s the amount of lives on the line?
  1629. >Whether the assumption that the tear is dangerous or not, sealing it would be the risk-free way of action.
  1630. >Thankfully you had been able to get a message through to Spike who, in turn, told you that Princess Luna will look into it.
  1631. >The fabric of reality and the realms of dreams were her expertise,
  1632. >Either way, you need to take Trixie back before you can even begin to seal it.
  1633. >Your own personal projects have high priority as well, like restoring the friendship between Sunset and this world’s Twilight, as well as the one between Spitfire and Treehugger.
  1634. >Neither will be easy, but it’s a simple fact that every problem can be solved if ponies- or people just work together.
  1635. >This worlds Twilight...
  1636. >Midnight...
  1637. >If she does have all of Twilight’s memories she should be friends with Sunset, best friends even.
  1638. >Her being a living creation of magic is still in question.
  1639. >There are laws against it in Equestria, not to speak of the ethical issues of creating life.
  1640. >You hoped you’d never see anyone dabble into necromancy.
  1641. >And now here /you/ are, doing just that.
  1642. >You try to retrace her steps and think about the problem yourself.
  1643. >How would /you/ create life?
  1644. >No answer would come to you.
  1645. >Twilight, however, had been desperate; she figured it out on her deathbed.
  1646. >Those are not circumstances you can easily recreate for you.
  1647. >If you would be dying, or if any of your friends would be dying you’d do what you could to save them, of course.
  1648. >But there are some lines you wouldn’t cross.
  1649. >Would there?
  1650. >If you’d be convinced that you are still needed...
  1651. >No, everyone would feel that way.
  1652. >Everyone is needed.
  1653. >Slowly but surely you come to realize you cannot simply compare her to you.
  1654. >Twilight Sparkle is just one more person on the list of people who are not like their counterparts in another reality.
  1655. >She has been without her friends because of this realities educational system.
  1656. >She hasn’t even had them for long, only just after you first came into this world for the second time.
  1657. >And she lost her Spike... but you don’t know the exact circumstances.
  1658. >You know that, as a dog in this world, Spike had been much more a pet than he had been a real person.
  1659. >Even after he gained the ability to talk through Equestrian Magic, his mind remained that of a dog.
  1660. >A smart dog, but he hasn’t had the mental capabilities of a human.
  1661. >Even so, you don’t want to imagine what life might have been like for her, losing Spike.
  1662. >Beepeepepeep~
  1663. >You look up at the unfamiliar sound.
  1664. >It’s not coming from one of the machines analyzing your magical output but from the pockets of Agent Kara, the one overseeing the hunt for Trixie and familiarizing herself with the Equestrian containment unit at the moment.
  1665. >She takes out her communication device, operating it with expertise.
  1666. >It’s a smart phone, you’ve been told, yet not what makes the device ‘smart’.
  1667. >“Possible Code black,” she announces bitterly.
  1668. >You can see her biting her lip as she reads on, but quietly so.
  1669. “Code black?” you ask the scientist Dr. Noteworthy.
  1670. >“Super villain, mass casualties to be expected.”
  1671. >His words were dry, he might as well have informed you that the coffeepot was empty.
  1672. >Code black is something everyone in the room, except for you, had known the meaning of.
  1673. >Even in their line of work ‘mass casualties to be expected’ should not be anything common, or anything anyone should get used to.
  1674. >“Misty Fly’s been spotted in France,” Kara continues, “As well as a meteorological impossible storm that’s brewing with her in the center. Wind speeds are getting up there, if she is fueling it- Can she do that?”
  1675. >“She can control water, so controlling a storm,” Dr. Noteworthy trails of. “It would need high precision and versatility, she would have needed some boost to her powers. It’s not that far fetched, we’ve seen crazy things.”
  1676. “Any signs of Trixie?”
  1677. >“I’m afraid not.” Kara says as she goes through the notes further, “Do you want to tag along?”
  1678. “Tag along?”
  1679. >“I’d like to see you in the field, Princess. It’s not Trixie to our current intel, so there is no conflict of interest for you.”
  1680. “I- Yes,” you nod, “ if that’s the case then I’ll accompany you.”
  1681.  
  1682. >The aerial vehicle, this quin-jet the Wonderbolts use, it was barely able to hold itself steady as you’re approaching the center of the storm.
  1683. >But even holding itself steady was almost a miracle, when you look over the debris the storm’s already carrying.
  1684. >Trees, cars, almost entire family homes if they weren’t already ripped apart as well.
  1685. >The implications make your stomach turn.
  1686. >Just how many people have already lost their lives?
  1687. “Why hasn’t the storm started out in a more populated area?”, you wonder, “not that I’d want it do, but...”
  1688. >“Various reasons,” Agent Kara answers, without looking away from the windows. “For one we have to evacuate right now and put it more manpower for the moment. Secondly, they want to destroy infrastructure and actually want as many survivors as possible we later need to take care of. In addition to the rebuilding we need to spend money for their immediate care.”
  1689. >She sighs, “imagine for a moment they’d all die. We wouldn’t have to rebuild, we wouldn’t have to take care of anyone, and there would be nobody traumatized by it. Like this you hit a country way worse. Death alone is easy to deal with because there is nothing more you can do...”
  1690. >She steers the jet under some debris, “But we’re not the search and rescue unit, we are the response team. We’ll stop it all from doing any more damage than it already did.”
  1691. >You remain silent as you think about her words.
  1692. >For the nation it would be best if everyone would die, and somewhere in your head you understand that, but it’s something you can never accept.
  1693. >From the bitterness of her voice you can tell she feels the same way.
  1694. >Focus on stopping the storm first, then you can go out to search for people.
  1695. >It hurts you not to jump out and try to save as many people as possible already.
  1696. >Yet with windspeeds of more than 200mph with rain, hail, and debris coming your way, you can’t do much even if you’d go out.
  1697. >“Stay with us, Princess.”
  1698. “I had no plan to abandon you,” you tell her and avert your gaze from the jet’s door again.
  1699. >She nods, “we’re in the center shortly, we’ll need you there for damage control.”
  1700. >That’s right, Rapidfire will destroy the storm by disrupting it’s convection current.
  1701. >You’ll be using a method developed in the 1960s one would consider pseudoscience, but with the two of you combined you would actually be able to pull it off.
  1702. >And storm is reliant on the play between hot and cold air, and will go on as long as it needs to settle the balance again.
  1703. >Rapidfire will be allowed to go hotter than she ever had before outside of a testing environment.
  1704. >The only thing stopping her is that she runs out of air to breathe if she burns all the oxygen away.
  1705.  
  1706. >“We’re nearing our coordinates,” Kara informs all members of the team, “Everyone ready to go?”
  1707. >“Affirmative,” the word goes through the carriage.
  1708. >You expected Rapidfire to put a spin on her confirmation.
  1709. >A ‘born ready’ or something of that kind, but she’s behaving.
  1710. >Even through her personality, she’s very much realizing the severity of the situation.
  1711. “Affirmative,” you mimic the others confirmation as well
  1712. >Even though nobody needs it you als give a reassuring nod and smile, .
  1713. >“By own assessment, all team members ready to go. Local time is 0635. Nearing center of the storm and letting out Wonderbolt Rapidfire and Princess Twilight sparkle of Equestria...”
  1714. >You're confused for a second but figure she must be recording her voice as a missions log.
  1715. >Rapidfire takes of her seat belt, stands up and limbers herself up a bit as she goes back to the carriage’s hatch.
  1716. >You fidget for a moment with your own belt which secured you into your seat before you manage to get free and stand up.
  1717. >The wind is disrupting the carriages steady flight quite a bit.
  1718. >You look like you were on two feet for the first time again.
  1719. >200 miles per hour does sound impressive, even if you are used to way different units.
  1720. >Rapidfire effortlessly stands on the shaking floor and gives you a reassuring smile.
  1721. >Another guy accompanies you and attaches your belt to a railing overhead.
  1722. >Yet more standard security measure against falling or stumbling out the door unintentionally.
  1723. >They sure know how to make one feel secure.
  1724. >This professionalism stems from them doing such dangerous things on a regular basis.
  1725. >Which, again, makes you somewhat uncomfortable.
  1726. >“Hatch is unlocked, good luck the two of you.”, you hear Kara’s voice through a small device on your ear.
  1727. “Thank you,” you respond, even though you’re not sure if she hears.
  1728. >Rapidfire and you were left alone in the far end of the carriage and a door goes down to separate you from the rest.
  1729. >You share one last nod with her before she opens the hatch
  1730. >Immediately you’re whipped in the face by an onslaught of ice cold rain.
  1731. >The sudden change in aerodynamic makes the carriage buck again, but you remain standing.
  1732. >“You okay?” Rapidfire shouts to you over the howling of the wind and noise of water clashing onto metal.
  1733. “Yeah,” you shout back.
  1734. >You close your eyes for a moment and focus your magic to cast a small shield over your body.
  1735. >Without the ambient magic of Equestria you know you’re significantly weaker than you were back home.
  1736. >Even small feats need you to focus properly, you’re not complaining, you just need to be aware of your capabilities.
  1737. >Containing heat energy and dispelling a storm is well within that spectrum.
  1738. >Rapidfire unhooks herself from the railing “Flame on.” she says to herself and her body ignites.
  1739. >“Protect yourself against the heat, Princess”, she advises you, “Ah can boil away any water, but not if ya’d take damage from it.”
  1740. “We’ve been through this,” you tell her.
  1741. >“I know... Just... ya know, yer new.” she jumps out, “Stay close.”
  1742. >You unhook yourself from the rail and jump after her.
  1743. >Immediately you’re thrown off by the wind.
  1744. >It was within your expected effect, and it takes you less time to orient yourself than you thought, but it was still no pleasant experience.
  1745. >While the weather was harsh, you’re mostly using your magic to maneuver through the storm, not your wings.
  1746. >A positive effect of Earth’s lack of magic is that there was no magical resistance either.
  1747. >You can flow through space easier than in laboratory conditions in Equestria.
  1748. >Of course, you still need to put up with the environmental conditions
  1749. >You don’t float through space effortlessly, but it was easier than you’d initially thought.
  1750. >The real challenge was orienting yourself.
  1751. >In the storm everything looks the same, but all you need to do is follow Rapidfire’s light.
  1752. >Seeking out the warmth is something you’d like to do in this environment anyway, so you don’t even have to go against your own instincts.
  1753. >Only a few seconds after following her trail you break out of the rain and into the eye of the storm.
  1754. >You’re almost swept out of the sky by your own magic as you’re still were putting effort into countering a force no longer applying to you.
  1755. >You stabilize your flight and quickly reorient yourself once more.
  1756. >As you were already briefed, in the direct center of the storm lies a lake.
  1757. >Most of it’s surface water has been pushed aside in a cone shape, and the deeper, colder water was spiraling in a pillar up into the sky.
  1758. >The surface water would be too warm in late spring to create this kind of atmospheric difference
  1759. >The water at the bottom of the lake is always the same temperature.
  1760. >This works well within the plan you had laid out.
  1761. “Any sight of Misty Fly?”, you shout over to Rapidfire.
  1762. >“Use your mike now, Princess,” comes as an answer directly into your ear.
  1763. >Right... the tiara-thing.
  1764. >Before you can ask the question again she continues, speaking to Kara and the other air-carriages still hiding in the storm.
  1765. >“No sight of Misty Fly, the setup looks differently than in the satellite images from an hour ago.”
  1766. >You tap your ear and talk, continuing for her.
  1767. “The water from the bottom of the lake is used, as it’s always colder. The plan still works as we laid it out.”
  1768. >“Understood,” you hear Kara’s voice, “Rapid, work on heating up the water going into the storm. Princess Sparkle, keep lookout while you contain Rapidfire’s heat.”
  1769. “Affirmative,” both you and Rapidfire accept your missions.
  1770. >You look around to take in more of the scenery.
  1771. >There’s nothing immediately sticking out.
  1772. >Well, everything’s unusual at the scene that’s currently unfolding, but everything’s in a disorder.
  1773. >You can’t see anyone who was standing still and observing their work, as you would do...
  1774. >At least not on this side of the water pillar.
  1775. “I’ll look for a vantage point, but stay in your sight, Rapidfire.”
  1776. >As you charge upwards with ease you almost think flying to be fun again.
  1777. >Taking joy during a mission, however, is not a privilege you are supposed to take, not with what’s on the line.
  1778. >You switch to your wings as a means of propulsion.
  1779. >This leaves all your magical focus on the spell to contain the heat from the water Rapidfire’s vaporizing.
  1780. >It doesn’t take much of your focus, but it’s vital to the mission and not a job you should to haphazardly.
  1781. >As you ascend higher you begin to let the heat spread out evenly into the storm with much deliberation, starting to break it down.
  1782. >Suddenly small balls of water shoot out of the pillar, flying directly at you.
  1783. >You had little trouble dodging the first few.
  1784. >Soon you need to cast another shield over yourself for protection though.
  1785. >They don’t disappear once they miss you, but come back, merge up with the others and grow bigger.
  1786. “I’m under attack, still-”, you began to inform the agents through the tiara when you got hit.
  1787. >Even if it’s only water, it feels like you were hit with cannonball of solid iron.
  1788. >Had it not been for your shield your arm would surely be broken now.
  1789. >Speaking of the shield, it shatters.
  1790. >Thankfully you’re able to dodge the next ball of water and are able to create another, stronger shield.
  1791. >You’re not dealing with raindrops anymore.
  1792. >“Princess, are you hurt?” you hear Kara’s voice with concern.
  1793. “Fine, just-”
  1794. >You continue to dodge the water.
  1795. >Unfortunately that means you are not able to keep lookout anymore.
  1796. “-busy dodging.”
  1797. >Misty Fly is able to attack you and you don’t even know where she is.
  1798. “I can’t see Misty Fly at the moment.”
  1799. >“Understood. Rapidfire, status report.”
  1800. >“I’m making sort process of this water, visibility is bad down here. I cannot confirm Misty Fly’s presence, only her powers.”
  1801. >“Only her powers...? Princess Sparkle, is it possible to create these circumstances by means of Equestrian Magic?”
  1802. “Yes, it would be, but there is no trace of our kind of magic around here – well, except mine – so it’s not like Trixie is...”
  1803. >The water around you gets less aggressive and was by now only orbiting around you.
  1804. “... simulating Misty’s powers...”
  1805. >“Princess, you trailed off there for a moment. Everything okay?”
  1806. >You look around.
  1807. “No, I’ve been-”
  1808. >The rest of your words get cut off by water hitting your face and blocking your mouth.
  1809. >You were being surrounded this entire time.
  1810. >Now the individual balls of water stand still a short distance from you, forming a grid.
  1811. >Soon you are entirely surrounded by a sphere of water with no way out.
  1812. >Then, in a single moment, all comes pouring down on your body from every side.
  1813. >The pressure’s intense.
  1814. >You soon need to exchange your shield for one to only cover your head, torso, upper arms and upper legs.
  1815. >You can’t give up any more
  1816. >Your organs might get squashed and your veins burst.
  1817. >Hands and feet... yes they’d be a big loss, but a calculated one.
  1818. >It’s something you can recover from.
  1819. >But having a major artery burst could make you pass out quickly.
  1820. >You just need to hold out until...
  1821. >The seconds tick by.
  1822. >The tiara carrying your allies voices was destroyed
  1823. >And the water isn’t getting any warmer.
  1824. >Rapidfire didn’t immediately come to help you.
  1825. >It’s okay, you can hold your breath a little longer.
  1826. >After that you know you’ll lose in bower quickly.
  1827. >Wait...
  1828. >Just wait...
  1829. >In this pressure bubble every second feels like it needs ages to tick by.
  1830. >It’s not so much pain you feel as it is... like a weight on you.
  1831. >Your hands and feet are squeezed the same amount from all sides.
  1832. >You barely know how you’d describe it.
  1833. >It’s just... intensely uncomfortable.
  1834. >Yet bearable.
  1835. >You made the right decision to conserve your magic.
  1836. >...
  1837. >It’s only seconds that tick by, but you have faith in Rapidfire.
  1838. >You have formed a small bond with her.
  1839. >Mutual respect and sympathy are easy ingredients for friendship.
  1840. >Trust as well.
  1841. >She trusts you that, even if you are in a pinch, you’ll control her heat throughout the storm.
  1842. >Just like you trust her to get you out of it.
  1843. >It’s not a blind hope to get saved.
  1844. >You trust her.
  1845. >...
  1846. >Yet still, as the water begins to rapidly get hotter you smile.
  1847. >You drop the shield gradually with the change of temperature and direct the energy into a heatshield.
  1848. >The fire glazing over your body is still carries all the heat it should, and the vaporizing water was proof of it, but you no longer feel it.
  1849. >All the temperature you feel now was your own body temperature trapped on your skin.
  1850. >It’s still hot, because your skin is warmer than the usual air temperature, but it’s nice and cool, considering you are in engulfed in an inferno of flames.
  1851. >“Are you okay, Princess?” Rapidfire shouts out to you, but you weren’t able to respond immediately.
  1852. >Both, the water and the flames, ate away any air for you to breath, and you need to escape from the flames first before you were able to catch your breath.
  1853. >“Princess!” she shouts after you as you seek distance from her for the moment.
  1854. >You gesture her a ‘thumbs up’ as you take in the valuable air.
  1855. “Fine-” you press out, “Just fine.”
  1856. >“Secured, Princess Sparkle-”, Rapidfire reports through her own tiara.
  1857. “I’m only out of breath, no injuries... I think.”
  1858. >You investigate your own body and show off your hands.
  1859. “Just bruised, but-“ you clench your fist and spread your fingers a few times, “no, I’m fine.”
  1860. >Rapidfire flies closer, “are you really?” she asks in a lower tone, clearly intended not to be on the record.
  1861. “Yes,” you nod happily, and give her a smile, “a friend is here with me and saved me after all.”
  1862. >She returns your smile, flies closer again but lets the flames on her right hand dissipate.
  1863. >“Princess Sparkle’s ready for more action.” she tells the others via the tiara while she holds out her fist to you.
  1864. >You’ve seen this gesture before.
  1865. >Forming a fist of your own you slightly tap hers with it.
  1866. >“How adorable.”
  1867. >You immediately look to the source of the new voice.
  1868. >Overhead you see another figure stand on a bubble of water.
  1869. >From the pictures you were shown you recognize her as Misty Fly.
  1870. >“Wait... Twilight?”
  1871.  
  1872. >She knows you...
  1873. >Of course she knows you, now you also remember in what context you’ve heart Misty’s name before.
  1874. >She had been the Senior Wonderbolt taking this worlds Twilight Sparkle on short mission.
  1875. >The one Twilight got shot in.
  1876. >“Come down here Misty, we can talk about this”, Rapidfire shouts up and slowly ascends
  1877. >Misty only takes a step back when you too fly upwards.
  1878. >“I know you’re not a killer, Misty.” Rapid continues to talk to her in a soft low tone, “you’re one of the kindest people there are. I remember when you came to us all those years ago. After the tsunami hit. Do you remember that?”
  1879. >Misty continues to move backwards away from you.
  1880. >The mocking done from earlier was gone, seemingly along with her fighting spirit.
  1881. >Rapidfire’s calling onto Misty’s good nature and her guilt.
  1882. >That’s also a big reason of why you have been brought along.
  1883. >Only seeing your face.
  1884. >/Twilight/’s face.
  1885. >The face of the person she believes to have gotten killed only a few days ago.
  1886. >“Misty, you’re a good person. Why are you doing this?”
  1887. >This snaps her out of it.
  1888. >“Why?” Misty repeats the question mockingly, “because the Goddess ordered me to do it!”
  1889. “Trixie is not a-”
  1890. >“For the first time I’m devout!”, she interrupts you, “Rapidfire, we lied and stole in the name of liars and thieves. I’m fighting for the cause of a true God! Can you say the same for yourself?”
  1891. >While she does have a point there, Trixie was not a god.
  1892. >Before you can try and tell her that once more, Rapidfire answers her.
  1893. >“We save people, Misty!”
  1894. >“We were kept busy!” She retorts, “We were told what to do by people who fear us, people who rather want us dead than free. Until yesterday I was a slave, you still are.”
  1895. >Her hesitation was gone, she was back to mocking Rapidfire.
  1896. “Trixie is no goddess!”
  1897. >“I don’t have to heed a word you say, /Princess/”, Misty spits out your title, “I am devout to her and I will fulfill my duty, and – oh look – I stalled long enough.”
  1898. >You look overhead to see the eye of the storm closing up.
  1899. >“Fuck.” Rapidfire curses.
  1900. >She shoots for Misty, going in the offensive.
  1901. >You follow quickly after, not wanting to experience being trapped in a bubble again.
  1902. >While you already are trapped in an enormous bubble, you can still move.
  1903. >If she’s on the defensive, she won’t be able to advance her own plan.
  1904. >And from the way her eyes twinkle you can guess that she will not budge on her beliefs, even if they were indoctrinated.
  1905. >You need time to examine what spell Trixie used to control her mind, but you can’t do that during combat.
  1906. >Best case scenario right now is Misty being tranquilized.
  1907. >“Tatata,” she rebukes your approach my raising the water she was standing on to a wall between you.
  1908. >It transformed into an almost solid block of pressurized water.
  1909. >Like a fly swatter the structure sweeps at both of you, separating you from one another.
  1910. >You barely manage to catch yourself from slamming into the ground at terminal velocity
  1911. >And even then you save your energy and let yourself fall the last few feet.
  1912. >Ouch...
  1913. >That hurt.
  1914. >Like... a lot.
  1915. >You turn yourself around in the muddy lake bed to look upwards.
  1916. >Rapidfire was fighting with Misty, her flames getting extinguished over and over again as she was covered with water repeatedly.
  1917. >Every time she manages to reignite herself though.
  1918. >You still don’t know where she draws her energy from...
  1919. >“YOU WANT ME TO GO SUPERNOVA!!!?!” you hear her shout.
  1920. >She’s gotten angry...
  1921. >This is bad...
  1922. >“RAAAAAHHHH!!!”
  1923. >Really bad.
  1924. >The light from above gets blinding, and even through your closed lids, your eyes begin to hurt.
  1925. >The claylike mud around you dries out and begins to set.
  1926. >You manage to break free before it gets too hard, but you have more important issues to deal with than your own freedom.
  1927. >You need to contain her heat.
  1928. >She trusts you to do so, otherwise she wouldn’t be able to go all out like she does.
  1929. >You latch onto her energyoutput with your magic and direct it into the water and the storm again.
  1930. >More and more energy comes pouring out through her body, and it becomes increasingly harder to handle.
  1931. >Fortunately you know her limit.
  1932. >Oxygen.
  1933. >At this rate it burns before she can breath it in.
  1934. >What you notice as you feel out with magic is that Misty Fly has engulfed herself in water as a shield.
  1935. >She’s pulling more and more from the lake and out of the storm to protect herself.
  1936. >Eventually she too will run out of air to breathe though,
  1937. >When that time comes you need to catch her.
  1938. >And Rapidfire.
  1939. >And the air-carriages who are falling from the sky as you were focusing on different things.
  1940. >Why are they falling?
  1941. >Their means of levitation was to push air downwards by rotating blades.
  1942. >But if the air’s condition changes, lower density due to the increased temperature.
  1943. >The air temperature can’t possibly be something one can even consider an extreme yet plausible case.
  1944. >These carriages have not been built for these conditions.
  1945. >Focus Twilight...
  1946. >Your own bubble of breathable air, a heat shield for Misty and yourself, catching two people and 7 carriages, all the while making sure the heat gets dispersed throughout the storm and makes it die down.
  1947. >Easy....
  1948. >Something else?
  1949. >Oh yeah.
  1950. >Don’t lose consciousness.
  1951. >...
  1952. >Difficult.
  1953.  
  1954. >Be Twilight Sparkle.
  1955. “You can trust me, I’m you. And I know you, because you’re me, you only need to have some confidence, then you can easily do it.”
  1956. >Your pep-talk is miserable, but you really want Midnight to leave.
  1957. >She is pacing around the room and was talking to figments of her imagination and to you interchangeably.
  1958. >A little while ago she noticed Princess Twilight Sparkle to start using magic.
  1959. >Lots of it.
  1960. >And only increasingly more as time goes on.
  1961. “She’s powering herself out and will be easy prey.”
  1962. >“It’s no use to fight her if she’s weakened!” Midnight shouts in your direction, “I have to defeat her in a fair fight, how else would I be able to claim to be superior?”
  1963. >You understand all of her reasoning... but you really want her to go.
  1964. “Catch her then, she cannot ignore you. We only want her to reveal her secrets to us and can then more easily outgrow her. In a fair fight we may kill her.”
  1965. >“It’s okay, it’s okay, I can bring her back...”
  1966. >Yeah... /that/.
  1967. “Why take the risk?” you continue, “Why indeed, if we can have a sure win and then increase in strength and knowledge through it?”
  1968. >Midnight stops in her pacing, and looks off to another empty spot, listening to... whomever.
  1969. >The Midnight-Midnight, probably.
  1970. >You know you have issues, but are you really that bad?
  1971. >“Right...”
  1972. >You have not the faintest idea what she just confirmed.
  1973. >“No! You!” she spins around to point at you once more, “you are the one whose real, right?”
  1974. “I’d claim so even if I weren’t.”
  1975. >She takes a step closer and ignites her fingernails with purple energy.
  1976. >You try to pull your arms up in defense but they only twitch pathetically.
  1977. “Definitely real, please, I don’t want to die a virgin twice.”
  1978. >“Right...” her shoulders drop a bit, and she turns around, “right,” the word came again.
  1979. >Did you hit a nerve?
  1980. >Is she... having self confidence issues?
  1981. >You guess she’s still a-
  1982. >Why the fuck are you thinking about that?
  1983. >“I’ll go catch myself another me then... Yes...”
  1984. >She nods to herself, before teleporting away.
  1985. “Please tell me I’m not that stupid.”
  1986. >...
  1987. “Now I’m talking to myself, I guess /I/ am rubbing off on me.”
  1988. >...
  1989. ”Ugh...”
  1990. >You still can’t move properly, but a smart pink individual once said ‘if you can’t walk with your feet, use your hands.’
  1991. >Putting all your strength in one push you manage to fall off your table.
  1992. “That hurt less than expected...”
  1993. >You right your head towards your destination.
  1994. >The ARC...
  1995. >If you can reach it and have it bind to you again...
  1996. >Thinking only distracts you from using your muscles.
  1997. >You need to actively put all effort into motion.
  1998. >No time to contemplate what if’s.
  1999. >It has to work.
  2000. >Midnight can’t come back and see you near it, she’d know you would have tried to escape.
  2001. >Then your chances of survival would be dwindling fast.
  2002. >She carelessly dropped it, not needing it herself to cast magic.
  2003. >You, on the other hand, you still need it.
  2004. >No,  you not only need it, it’s invaluable to you, your continued existence hangs on it.
  2005. >Inch by inch you wiggle yourself forward to get it.
  2006. >Each time you need to contract and relax your muscles it was hard work.
  2007. >Once you have the ARC, you need to teleport away immediately.
  2008. >You can’t spare one second in which Midnight may come back for one reason or another.
  2009. >It feels like it takes an eternity,and you have no way of telling the time anyway, but you finally manage to reach it.
  2010. “Ahahaha!”, you laugh out as you can feel magic flowing through you the second you touch the ARC.
  2011. >It responds to you like an old friend.
  2012. “Ahh...”, your laughter changes to a feeling of peace, but you can’t allow yourself to stall.
  2013. >You need to flee immediately.
  2014. >Within a fraction of a second you copied your body over to your target location and the old one dissolves.
  2015. >You aimed for your lab at the Wonderbolts headquarters.
  2016. >Your eyes are only slightly open, but you’re able to confirm your new location.
  2017. >“AIIIEEE!!!”
  2018. >Some guy lets out a quite girlish scream.
  2019. >You’re lying on the floor, face down, the same position as with which you had teleported away.
  2020. “Wait-”
  2021. >You teleported.
  2022. >You just ruined your chances of getting your body back.
  2023. “Fuck!”
  2024. >“Oh god, it talked.”
  2025. >It.
  2026. >How mean.
  2027. “Did you just un-assume my gender?”, you groan.
  2028. >Focusing your magic you unlock some of the limitations Midnight had bestowed upon you.
  2029. >Your body is still... dead, but you can at least move it slowly now.
  2030. >You turn around to look at who’s in your lab.
  2031. “Anon?”
  2032. >What?
  2033. >What is /he/ doing here?
  2034. >Then the other present people look around the table to look at you.
  2035. “Sunset, aaand Hetcher, right?”, you look at the agent in question.
  2036. >You’re not good with names but you think you saw him around
  2037. >“Miss Sparkle...?”
  2038. >Everyone’s stares make you somewhat uncomfortable.
  2039. >You look down your body as well
  2040. “Oh yeah...”
  2041. >You right the flap of your Y-incision and cover your chest.
  2042. “Don’t stare,” you shake, rebuking the men present, “that’s necrophilia, because I’m a fucking zombie, yeah, get that out of the way... I need some clothes.”
  2043. >This snaps them out of their trance and Sunset jumps over the desk.
  2044. >“Twilight!”, she shouts your name and takes you in an embrace.
  2045. >Your heart – as weak as it was – jumps at the touch.
  2046. >A writhing pain runs through you.
  2047. >Not a physical one, but emotional pain.
  2048. >Whatever stress-neurotransmitters your body can produce, they are not needed anymore.
  2049. >You’re here.
  2050. >You’re secure.
  2051. >You’re with your friend.
  2052. >A friend who’s overjoyed and started to cry as she holds you.
  2053. “There, there...”
  2054. >You gently pat her back as you return the hug.
  2055. >You don’t know what she’s been through, but you remember having been in New Yoke because of her.
  2056. >What has she been through?
  2057. >But you are not the one who has to be strong for her right now.
  2058. >You are the weak one.
  2059. >You need comfort too...
  2060. >And so you cling to Sunset.
  2061. >It’s over.
  2062. >You’re out.
  2063. >You’re with the Wonderbolts now.
  2064. >You’re with Sunset.
  2065. >It repeats in your head.
  2066. >You don’t need to be afraid anymore.
  2067. >Let someone else carry the weight.
  2068. >You cry.
  2069. >Only you can’t.
  2070. >Your eyes won’t produce any tears.
  2071. >You can only go through the motions and sob with ragged breaths into Sunset’s hair.
  2072. >Of all the emotions you feel, sadness is not one of them.
  2073.  
  2074. >Be Twilight Spa- no not that one, not that one either, the other one, the pretty pony princess, yes, that one.
  2075. >Be Princess Twilight Sparkle.
  2076. >Only you don’t feel very princess-y right now.
  2077. >You are still lying on the floor in the now dry lake bed.
  2078. >Not only dry, but the loamy mud around you has burned and was now quite hard.
  2079. >Hard, but brittle.
  2080. >You allow yourself a moment of relaxation after your work.
  2081. >You had been right, it took you enough energy to almost make you pass out.
  2082. >But once everyone was securely on the ground your workload had lessened and it got continuously easier after that.
  2083. >You may be exhausted, but not in danger of losing consciousness anymore.
  2084. >Even though sleep sounds nice right about now.
  2085. >Your peace and quiet after the storm was disrupted as you feel someone teleport nearby you.
  2086. >Trixie?
  2087. >She came to pick up the pieces.
  2088. >In your state she could easily defeat you, even with the amount of power she has had when you last met.
  2089. >You break yourself free from your loam restraints and lean up.
  2090. “Tri-”, your assumption was incorrect.
  2091. >Before you, in the air, hovers Twilights alter ego, Midnight Sparkle.
  2092. >A being born of magic.
  2093. >The scholar inside of you already reaches out with your magic faintly to analyze the magical aura she gives off.
  2094. >Most other parts of you want to flee for various reasons.
  2095. >One, a magical being like her is something you are unfamiliar with.
  2096. >And since eons ponykind was afraid of what they did not know.
  2097. >Two, you are in a weak state right now.
  2098. >You could barely fight, much less protect those around you if it would come down to it.
  2099. >Three, you know her to be dangerous
  2100. >She stole Twilight’s body (and some supplies), and announced herself Sunset’s enemy.
  2101. >Reasoning with her will be difficult.
  2102. >And lastly, her smile.
  2103. >The predatory expression she wears as she’s approaching you slowly.
  2104. >She already knows she won, or rather, she would win if you two were to fight now.
  2105. >Which leaves only one option open.
  2106. >But it’s your favorite option anyway.
  2107. >Befriend her.
  2108. >“Twilight Sparkle,” she speaks your name before correcting herself, “oh no, excuse me. /Princess/ Twilight Sparkle.”
  2109. “Midnight Sparkle.”
  2110. >You honor her wish to be called that.
  2111. >The approach you choose will have to be a respectful one.
  2112. >You heave yourself up and take on a normal stance.
  2113. >Being steady, or defensive would help you neither with defending yourself, nor with talking to her.
  2114. “We’ve met before briefly, so to speak. You have all of Twilight’s memories if I’m not mistaken.”
  2115. >You are referring to both your meetings. Once after the Friendship games, and once at Camp Everfree before she was kidnapped by Starlight.
  2116. >Even if she’d claim not to have met you in person, she cannot deny the memory.
  2117. >“What happened?”, she asks with a tinge of worry in her voice as she looks around.
  2118. “Rapidfire and I stopped a storm from ravaging this land.” you tell her and take in the scenery as well, “It got messy.”
  2119. >“That much is apparent.” she looks up into the sky, “You know that you created a powerful high pressure system, and that water vapor has powerful greenhouse properties when it comes to keeping energy inside the planet’s atmosphere.”
  2120. “What do you mean?”
  2121. >“Your weather is controlled by pegasi and you don’t have global warming in Equestria, correct?”
  2122. >You can tell that her voice is mocking you, but as she looks around her expression shows concern.
  2123. >Concern for the world.
  2124. >You need to take lead in the conversation.
  2125. “Any wrong we did, we can still fix, Midnight. If we work together... What do you mean by high pressure system?”
  2126. >She stares into emptiness for a few seconds, but just as you wanted to call her out she talks again.
  2127. >“Hot air has less density than cold one, simple heat expansion. If you draw it on a map you can pick out places of high temperature and low temperature and can at the same time state the air density. If one expands and the other refracts we  can easily draw lines in which direction air will flow in form of wind.”
  2128. “The higher the difference, the stronger the wind...”
  2129. >You just made a new storm.
  2130. >“What? Your plan immediately backfired, didn’t it?”
  2131. “Yes...”, you look down as you admit it to her.
  2132. >“Tsk.” she makes a displeased click with her tongue and turns around.
  2133. “Midnight?”
  2134. >She flutters a few feet away from you, mumbling to herself, before she faces you again.
  2135. >“This- this is because I still need this planet. And to prove that I’m stronger and smarter than you!”
  2136. >Stronger and smarter than you?
  2137. >Is she measuring herself against you?
  2138. >That makes sense in a twisted kind of way.
  2139. >Competition can be friendly.
  2140. “What have I done wrong?”
  2141. >She already told you the answer.
  2142. >Greenhouse properties of water vapor and pressure systems leading to wind.
  2143. >You can figure out the rest yourself, but if you turn it into a dialogue you can show her that you are a quick learner.
  2144. >Show her your wits and curiosity while sounding natural without bragging or competing to strengthen her opinion of you as a rival.
  2145. >You... would appreciate someone like that.
  2146. >And she is you... to a degree.
  2147. >However... she’s not answering to your question, she seems distracted, her eyes twitching around, fixating on you and two other spots at seemingly random.
  2148. >“Shut up.”
  2149. >She opens her arms up to the sky and spreads her wings widely, and then...
  2150. >A shiver runs down your spine as you feel this immense energy bundling and going up further and further into the sky.
  2151. >“This should be acceptable,” she nods and takes her arms down, “any further alterations will need to be fine tuned later, but weather has a way of righting itself. It’s a constant flow... Meteorology never really interested me. No... this will have to do. Much better job than with what you left the world with.”
  2152. >You give her a smile.
  2153. >She may be denying it and say it’s only to best you, but she cares about the planet.
  2154. “Indeed, thank you for fixing my mistakes.”
  2155. >Midnight flinches.
  2156. >That was too much.
  2157. >You need to antagonize her more, you won’t get far by complimenting and thanking her.
  2158. “I’m in no condition to make it back to the Wonderbolts by myself.”
  2159. >This was a lie.
  2160. >You have enough energy left to teleport not only yourself, but grab onto the air carriages and the two Wonderbolts and teleport them too.
  2161. >You only need to figure out where Rapidfire and Misty Fly touched down.
  2162. >All you know is that you slowed their fall.
  2163. “I’m at your kindness’ mercy,” you make a small curtsy in her direction, “Will you help me get to a place where I can rest for a bit?”
  2164. >You’re not saying that she should take you to the Wonderbolts, but you did invite yourself to whatever hideout she has made for herself.
  2165. >You go with her out of your own free will.
  2166. >Is it a good idea though?
  2167. >You don’t allow her to fight you or take you by force, you’re not showing that you’re afraid of her or even think of her as the enemy.
  2168. >She may not take kindly to your behavior.
  2169. >Antagonize her more.
  2170. >She needs this.
  2171. >She needs you to respect her.
  2172. >Something which you do-
  2173. >No...
  2174. >It’s not respect.
  2175. >You’re afraid of her.
  2176. >Something you don’t want to show.
  2177. >Respect and fear are almost the thing, recognition of something grand.
  2178. >Yet the emotion behind it is entirely different.
  2179. >But... you ARE afraid.
  2180. >And turning it around will not be easy.
  2181. >Of course you don’t want to be afraid of her, you want to respect her.
  2182. >Your own emotions are in the way, you need to get yourself under control.
  2183. >She’s not making it easy not to be afraid of her either.
  2184. >“Help you get to a place where you can rest for a bit?” Midnight laughs, “Do I look like I run a bed and breakfast for wayward Twilight Sparkles?” she smiles deviously, “I do actually, and you’ll be a great addition to the start of a collection.”
  2185.  
  2186. >A streak of yellow shoots towards Midnight- no.
  2187. >You only realize what has happens after it had already passed.
  2188. >Midnight is swept from her feet.
  2189. >Before she hits the ground the wind is knocked out of you as well.
  2190. >Your vision blurs as you start to speed backwards.
  2191. >What’s going- oh.
  2192. >Fleetfoot, who had grabbed a hold of you starts slowing down and lets you go lightly to stand on your own again.
  2193. >You recognize the color, and that particular power.
  2194. >At super-speed Fleetfoot had tripped Midnight and carried you out of harms way.
  2195. >From her perspective at least.
  2196. >You shake your head, this had been an unpleasant experience
  2197. >Your new surroundings were behind one of the ‘landed’ air carriages.
  2198. >“Princess Sparkle secure,” Fleetfoot informs the others.
  2199. >As soon as you manage to stand by yourself again you move around the carriage to look for Midnight again.
  2200. >She too just got up again and has taken to the air.
  2201. “No! Don’t do anything to her, I was just about to get through to–”
  2202. >A shot rings out.
  2203. >Midnight twists around in the air and drops again.
  2204. >“Confirmed hit,” you hear from the top of the carriage.
  2205. >Kara was laying on her belly before a long thin tube – no, it was one of their weapons.
  2206. >A weapon which looks significantly bigger than any of theirs you had seen so far.
  2207. “No!”, you shout.
  2208. >Worried, you look over to Midnight again who was holding her side, and examining something in her hands.
  2209. >She was too far away for you to see anything properly.
  2210. >“It was just a tranquilizer, Princess, don’t worry.”
  2211. “You don’t understand. Midnight, she is–“
  2212. >In a flash Midnight teleports– straight towards you.
  2213. >Having figured out from where the projectile came she chose not to retreat but to attack further.
  2214. >Her hands are ignited in a purple aura.
  2215. >They wrap around your throat before you had much of a chance to defend yourself.
  2216. >You can feel poison and fire elements imbued into her hands.
  2217. >The poison clouds your mind.
  2218. >The fire chars the wound.
  2219. >Healing won’t be easy.
  2220. >...
  2221. >You had been wrong.
  2222. >She is going for the kill.
  2223. >You flare out some energy and throw her off you.
  2224. >Her ascend was quickly stopped by the ceiling and she comes down on you again.
  2225. >As she hits you, you lose the rest of the air in your lungs.
  2226. “Ugh...”
  2227. >Your throat burns, but at least you know where that sensation originates.
  2228. >Your head, however...
  2229. >When did you hit your-
  2230. >Wait...
  2231. >You’re lying on the floor.
  2232. >A floor.
  2233. >Not some muddy lake bed.
  2234. >You look around hazily, taking in your surroundings.
  2235. >Through the pounding pain in your head you still manage to figure that Midnight had teleported the two of you away.
  2236. >And she is...
  2237. >Knocked out.
  2238. >Good...
  2239. >No.
  2240. >Not good...
  2241. >Nothing about this situation is good.
  2242. >You’re poisoned and burned, you can’t breathe.
  2243. >Heal...
  2244. >Not your forte.
  2245. >Starlight is so much better at healing magic than you are.
  2246. >But avoiding death is a good motivator to bundle the rest of your energies.
  2247. >Focus...
  2248. >This time nobody will come for you.
  2249. >With your magic you pick apart the poison and recreate the scarred tissue.
  2250. >As soon as your throat allows it you enter a coughing fit.
  2251. >You don’t want to die in a bloody workshop.
  2252. >You’re not going to anymore, you know that.
  2253. >But through your coughs you only get tiny bits of air which keeps you barely on the edge of suffocation.
  2254. >By the time you finally manage to get your airways free you were drained of all the energy left in you and darkness envelopes you like a nice comforting blanket.
  2255.  
  2256. >Be Synergy.
  2257. “Forgive me father for I have sinned.”
  2258. >After that sentence you had not said one more word.
  2259. >Father Landon reassured you that it is okay and that you can take your time.
  2260. >But it’s time which is weighing on you.
  2261. >You haven’t been to confession in a while.
  2262. “Let’s begin with the ten commandments. I used the lords name in vain, I lied, I desired someone elses property and spouse, and I did acted upon it, so I stole and broke wedlock.”
  2263. >You count down most of your sins like a grocery list.
  2264. “But I think the thing that I should confess is that I don’t rue them... or that I don’t rue most of them. I- I was careful. I never took from anyone who couldn’t afford it and I only took what I needed, or is that just- No. I lived comfortably. I had fun while doing so, too.”
  2265. >“You don’t rue your actions,” Father Landon states, “yet here you are in confession.”
  2266. >You nod even though he can’t see you.
  2267. “It’s ahh... my lifestyle that is... not going the way I want it to anymore. I wanted to change, and then- There’s this new family. A guy and his mother. And they’re rich. Like rich-rich...”, you trail off and bite your thumb
  2268. >“What about them, Sunset?”
  2269. >Removing your finger from your mouth you continue.
  2270. “By percentage I barely took anything from them, by value, however... ‘Take’,” you repeat and shake your head, “No, it’s- they are giving it free stuff to me. Or rather, I went shopping with Treehugger – the mother. But it’s like- Father, before I came in here you’ve saw the clothes I wear. I even felt like committing a sin of grave vanity entering a church of all places.”
  2271. >“They gave these clothes to you, you didn’t take them by force nor deception, did you?”
  2272. “But I usually do deception...”
  2273. >“You said you usually don’t rue it, or have second thoughts. What is it that makes this case different? The mere property value. You claimed it’s nothing to her.”
  2274. “I’m not taking what I need. This-” you pull your shirt. “This is luxury, not a comfy place to sleep or warm meal. I don’t need this.”
  2275. >“Hmm... You don’t need it and she doesn’t either. You should not feel bad about it.”
  2276. “I- Yes, but... no, I guess it’s not the monetary value.”
  2277. >“Sunset, this woman, Treehugger, she gave you money to buy these clothes, but money is not a valuable resource to her. On the other hand you said you went shopping ‘with her’. Now here’s a resource of which we all only have a very limited amount of.”
  2278. “Time...” you state the obvious.
  2279. >“She spent time on you. Time to bring you luxury, and some joy, did she not? From your words I could gather that only here, in church you had second thoughts on your purchases.”
  2280. >You don’t respond.
  2281. >Treehugger- she had fun too, right?
  2282. >Well, on the shopping part, but that’s not what the valuable items you actually mean to talk about.
  2283. >She gave you a suit responding to your magic and batons made of some vibranium alloy.
  2284. >That’s valuable, even to her.
  2285. “I think she wants to buy me.”
  2286. >“Buy you?”
  2287. “My loyalty.”
  2288. >“Your loyalty...” the priest thinks for a moment, “is it something you are not willing to give? Do you think you are deceiving them by taking their presents yet not giving them what they want?”
  2289. >This time you don’t know how to respond, so you cite.
  2290. “Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds those who see and twists the words of the innocent.
  2291. >“Mose to the Israelite’s, Exodus, I don’t remember the exact-”
  2292. “23:8.”
  2293. >“23:8,” he repeats after you and chuckles, “have you looked it up in the bible before coming in here?”
  2294. “Googled bribe verses.” you admit.
  2295. >“Ah yes, the all mighty Google. Has it provided you with much insight to the question you seek? Or context to the quotes it presented you with?”
  2296. “I- No, it did not.” you admit to him once more.
  2297. >“Let me ask you this. Do you know what it is she wants you to do?”
  2298. “Yes...”
  2299. >“Do you know what the reason is why you will do what you do?”
  2300. >He’s not asking you if you are taking the bribe.
  2301. >You took it, so much is clear already.
  2302. “I know what I need to do, what is the right thing to do.”
  2303. >“Does the fact that someone wants you to do something affect your judgment?”
  2304. >You know where this is going.
  2305. “Non conformity,” you say as would it be the answer to his question. “I guess I’ve always been my own person and made my own decisions, so I guess... Like, I want to do it, but as someone else wants me to do it as well I suddenly don’t want to anymore.”
  2306. >“Yet you come here for guidance, Sunset.”
  2307. “Yes, but you- you don’t have any selfish intentions.”
  2308. >“Sometimes the selfish agendas of people align with what is the right thing to do. You have to ask yourself, would you rather go down the righteous path or spite a person whom you deem to partake in bribery and corruption.”
  2309. “I see... I should not make decisions based on hate.”
  2310. >“You are a good person, Sunset. You’ve already made your decision when you came in here, have you not? You only sought confirmation.”
  2311. >You smile.
  2312. “Thank you, father.”
  2313. >“I’m happy to tend to my flock, Sunset.”
  2314. >There is a lot more you’d wanted to talk about.
  2315. >Like... Anon.
  2316. >Meditations have come hard to you today, you were barely able to recharge your energy today.
  2317. >But you have peace of mind again.
  2318. >You’re able to go on your way again.
  2319. >You make your way down the churches steps towards the fancy new car.
  2320. >A special model Tesla to house a wheelchair easily.
  2321. >The door was unlocked, of course as Treehugger was already waiting for you.
  2322. >She’s on the back seat, a laptop next to her which she just put away.
  2323. >“Have you found what you were looking for?”
  2324. >You shake your head.
  2325. “I know what I’m looking for now.”
  2326. >“I see,” she nods, “Ready to move on with our plan?”
  2327. “Of course.”
  2328. >You get into the car and put on a nice chauffeurs cap.
  2329. “Next stop, Wonderbolt Tower of New Yoke City.”
  2330.  
  2331. >Be Anon.
  2332. >It’s good to see Sunset smile again.
  2333. >She barely wanted to leave Twilight’s side, but kinda had to as your lich friend was interrogated for the whereabouts of Midnight.
  2334. >Lich because she’s has the dead body of a magic caster, zombies are something else.
  2335. >You shared a few laughs as you compared different types of undead creatures, and for a moment in time it was as if things were normal.
  2336. >Then you got informed what happened in Europe.
  2337. >Misty Fly was apprehended successfully, but a third party, Midnight, showed up to kidnap Princess Sparkle.
  2338. >Which means the Wonderbolt’s pool of Twilights stayed the same.
  2339. >But as you have an Earth-Twilight back and Midnight’s hideout is known, you do not have any further part to play in this story.
  2340. >You don’t even have a proper reason to be with the Wonderbolts and Sunset and Twilight anymore.
  2341. >“Mr. West? Miss Shimmer?”
  2342. “Hmm?”
  2343. >You divert your attention from Twilight going through some sensory tests ans look over to the person who just came into the hospital room.
  2344. >“You are asked to come to the conference room.”
  2345. >“Conference room?”, Sunset questions.
  2346. >“Your aunt, and your sister are already there,” the nurse says to each of you respectively “and you have a few people on hold... the director among them. If you’d just follow me,” she nods you to come.
  2347. >Aunt and sister?
  2348. >Treehugger and Synergy?
  2349. >Sunsets look was much more confused than yours, but you nod her to just go along.
  2350. >“We’ll be right back.” she tells Twilight.
  2351. >“I’m not going anywhere,” Twilight chuckles.
  2352. “See ya.”
  2353.  
  2354. >You enter the only conference room the hospital wing has on this floor.
  2355. >Inside, as suspected, was already Treehugger and Synergy at a table, as well as Sombra on a TV-screen.
  2356. >He has the label ‘New Yoke – Tower Base’ and the local time displayed too, which was kinda redundant, as he was... in the same building, but you understand the effort.
  2357. “Uhh... ‘sup?”, you casually greet the group.
  2358. >“Anon!” Treehugger smiles politely and nods to Sunset, “Miss Shimmer, good to see you again.”
  2359. >“Hey Anon. Sis.” Synergy has a confident smile and nods to you both.
  2360. >“Sis?” Sunset questions for a moment, “right. Hey.”
  2361. >“Miss Shimmer, to fill you in, Mrs. West is an old agent of ours and showed the wish to come out of retirement for she has some information invaluable to us” Sombra starts explaining.
  2362. >There are enough half truths in there to make it quite plausible but you get the feeling that Sunset doesn’t believe any of it.
  2363. >As they go on you also hear out that more people will join the conference call (Spitfire among them) and things will get complicated.
  2364. >There are too many parties involved having different information and different assumptions about what the others know or at least assume.
  2365. >The one with most information is Treehugger.
  2366. >Okay brain, analyze, what factions do we need?
  2367. >Spitfire’s group, Sombra’s Hydra, and Treehugger’s group.
  2368. >And you who’s again has different knowledge than each.
  2369. >And, of course, also the ‘official’ story which the world will be told.
  2370. >Spitfire soon joined in the call, as well as a member of the World Security Council and one of the SPA (the US’ Department of Super Power Affairs)
  2371.  
  2372. Official Story:
  2373. >Twenty years ago Treehugger, Sombra and a few others were Hydra members and helped bring it to fall, they worked together with the CIA, FBI, SPA, the US Army and Air Force, and a clusterfuck of other agencies.
  2374. >Out of this the Wonderbolts were founded, named after a then existing team of super heroes.
  2375. >Treehugger, whose health was declining back then, chose to retire and go into witness protection, but never really quit keeping tabs on the world of espionage.
  2376. >Over the course of twenty years she frequently placed anonymous tips and sometimes even called Sombra or Spitfire directly for some things.
  2377. >Now, what everyone assumes is that both Sombra and Treehugger did some bad stuff during their time in Hydra.
  2378. >Treehugger especially.
  2379. >But they brought so many people down that the CIA back then were able to cut her a nice deal which actually included that she was to cease doing any espionage work.
  2380. >It’s also now matter of record that she broke that agreement.
  2381. >But she hadn’t been caught, she turned herself in because she has new and vital information.
  2382. >She’s selflessly incriminating herself in order to protect the people of this world.
  2383. >The information she has is pretty much everything that the Wonderbolts already have, she’s a skilled technopath after all and can access any computer system with ease.
  2384. >What she can offer is the whereabouts of seven of the FBI’s Top Ten most wanted list, and one alter-dimensional goddess named Trixie who stole the Tesseract.
  2385. >Wait what?
  2386. >The freaking Tesseract got stolen since two days ago when you talked about how it should be protected.
  2387. >Anyway, Treehugger contacted Sombra the day before yesterday and she, ‘Scarlet Shimmer’ and you stayed in the Wonderbolt Tower for one night.
  2388. >Treehugger says she’s willing to share what kind of item the Tesseract is and that she has a fair idea what Trixie’s plan might be, and that heavy casualties are to be expected if Trixie is not stopped in time.
  2389. >In return for that information she asks for immunity of crimes past, present and future for you all, as well as proper passports and documentation for those who need them.
  2390. >‘You all’ in this case includes the four people physically present in the room, Sunset and Scarlet Shimmer, and Treehugger and Anon West.
  2391. >And ‘immunity’ means that you cannot be investigated or prosecuted for a crime, you can still be stopped in the act, arrested and held for 24 hours, but it will not go on any permanent record or land you in prison.
  2392. >Any and all illegal possessions like drugs, weapons or super hero gadgets, like web shooters or costumes can be seized.
  2393. >Unofficially this means that each one of you gets a free pass on super-heroing.
  2394. >You get none of the perks that a Wonderbolt would have, but neither are there any negative repercussions.
  2395. >Except from being stopped and having your stuff taken away from you, but you can always try again the next day.
  2396. >This is what everyone knows to be on the table.
  2397.  
  2398. >Be Sunset Shimmer.
  2399. >If things sound too good to be true most of the time they are.
  2400. >From what you’ve seen about Treehugger and what you’ve heard from from Spitfire you are well within your right to be paranoid about it.
  2401. >She’s someone who is immensely powerful.
  2402. >Being on the same side as her would be very advantageous, but it just doesn’t feel right.
  2403. >She understand that she comes to help, but she practically blackmails herself into it.
  2404. >It’s selfish... kinda.
  2405. >She does it for Anon.
  2406. >The immunity to include you is also for him, not for you.
  2407. >While the perk you’d get out of it is amazing for you, the way in which you’d acquire it just doesn’t sit right with you.
  2408. >It’s true, you always looked for a way to weasel your way out of that kind of responsibility, but if it’s simply handed to you...
  2409. >Not even that.
  2410. >It would be fine if someone would do it for you, but you are just a pawn in her scheme.
  2411. >You want to go back to Twilight-
  2412. >No, you want to go out there and save Princess Twilight...
  2413. >You’re not true to yourself.
  2414. >What you really want to do is kick someone’s ass.
  2415. >Trixie.
  2416. >A self proclaimed goddess would do nicely.
  2417. >Someone with an ego so huge you can beat it into the ground with your bare hands.
  2418. >If you get a chance to do so at least, but you are on Midnight-duty, and you need to save Princess Twilight.
  2419. >You need both, Trixie and Princess Twilight, to seal the tear between Earth and Equestria.
  2420. >Thankfully Midnight has a high priority in the Wonderbolt’s hierarchy now.
  2421. >Kidnapping a foreign dignitary will do that to her.
  2422. >With your Twilight back you have no trouble calling this one Midnight now.
  2423. >That’s right... you still need to ask Twilight what Midnight even is, how she has had a body of her own.
  2424. >A simple Midnight-entity you can comprehend, but she thought she was Twilight Sparkle before that...
  2425. >Or maybe not.
  2426. >She did second guess herself even before Starlight messed with her mind.
  2427. >Maybe Twilight manifested Midnight from her own mind and implanted the thought of her being Twilight into her...?
  2428. >But what would that do for Twilight in her dying state?
  2429. >Your thoughts drift off as ‘the grown ups’ were talking.
  2430. >Treehugger had been accused of obstructing justice by withholding that evidence and she should come forward without any reward.
  2431. >Even you almost laughed.
  2432. >You could see her wanting to say something which would have destroyed him, but then she chose to ignore it.
  2433. >In the end the deal was taken.
  2434. >While you might have imagined working for the Wonderbolts as a freelancer, but never ever had you thought you’d become a mercenary.
  2435. >You, having adept knowledge of the works of Equestrian Magic, are placed on the team to take care of Trixie.
  2436. >Together with Anon, Treehugger and ‘your sister’ you will board the heli-carrier on it’s way to Europe.
  2437. >Mercenary Sunset Shimmer aboard a prototype of the most advanced machine of war ever created.
  2438. >That’s kinda awesome.
  2439. >The tenseness of the situation has also decreased after a while.
  2440. >Spitfire and Treehugger’s back and forth was weird.
  2441. >They were respectful with one another, but sometimes you would even believe they had been old friends.
  2442. >It’s very different from their last encounter.
  2443. >Maybe because Treehugger is in control of the situation this time and nobody has anything of emotional value to the other.
  2444. >Spitfire had been really stupid back then.
  2445. >Like really really stupid.
  2446. >Just give her what she wants and then talk, but nooo...
  2447. >Then again, it is exactly what Treehugger had done just now.
  2448. >Blackmail people with something vital.
  2449. >You had even smiled when one minister suggested Treehugger should just tell them  or else.
  2450. >The situation was not all that different.
  2451. >No, not when it’s a person that is traded.
  2452. >You do your best to play nice with both of them, while you don’t trust Treehugger you simply can’t stand Spitfire.
  2453. >The talk goes on about the heli-carrier passing over french land, and someone from europol was included  to talk about the manhunt and extradition treaties.
  2454. >Technically Trixie stole something in the US, and has fled the country.
  2455. >Misty Fly and Dr. Turner have aided her escape.
  2456. >While Turner will be most likely no problem, Misty has racked up a headcount in France, Switzerland and Germany.
  2457. >It wasn’t many people who died, but she IS responsible for estimated billions of property damage.
  2458. >Regular laws don’t account for mind control.
  2459. >The only other time mind control had occurred and the victim had committed a crime they had been members of a government agency or the army and had acted on American soil.
  2460. >Ahh... politics.
  2461. >You find your mind drifting again.
  2462. >Can’t you just go and let them do this?
  2463. >No, you rebuke yourself.
  2464. >You don’t know how long you’ll be in this world, but still, knowing these basic dealings is important.
  2465. >The Wonderbolts may have been founded to skip dealings between Agency lines in America, but are still victim to it if a threat goes international.
  2466. >Besides you Anon’s head tilts down for the fraction of a second before he nods up again with widened eyes.
  2467. >You need to suppress smiling at him almost falling asleep.
  2468. >You nudge his foot with yours to tell him you saw, and give him a smile.
  2469. >He smiles back and blinks a few times to regain some alertness.
  2470. >To help him you take his hand in yours.
  2471. >His hand was much bigger than yours, rougher too.
  2472. >Your own hands look really small in comparison.
  2473. >The fact that touching his hand gives you a small tingly feeling encourages you again.
  2474. >You had been crushing last week, but it got diminished when Spitfire threw out her accusations against him.
  2475. >He lied to you, that much is true.
  2476. >You thought maybe you’re confusing your sympathy and friendship with a guy for the first time in a long time with love.
  2477. >But when touching him gives you a tingly feeling in your chest.
  2478. >You give him a little squeeze, letting him know you are as bored as he is right now.
  2479. >You know a quin-jet is being readied for you to embark, so it’s not like you would gain any time by leaving the room immediately.
  2480. >Hmm... you have an idea.
  2481. >You take Anon’s hand, move it off the table and place it on your thigh.
  2482. >Just as you had expected, the tingly feeling intensifies as his hand is on a more sensitive area.
  2483. >Anon’s face is pinned forward, captivated by the screen.
  2484. >At least he doesn’t want to reveal what was going on.
  2485. >You can tell he wants to pull away, but your hand stays on his.
  2486. >You’re not locking him in place, yet you are showing him what you expect of him.
  2487. >After a few seconds of deliberation he gives into it.
  2488. >His hand stops being rigid and he starts to move.
  2489. >Your jeans obscure the sensation you seek right now, but it will have to do.
  2490. >Anon’s cautious, only sliding his hand up and down an inch, maybe two.
  2491. >You can tell though he’s trying to scoot further towards your knee, and he tries to stay on the outside of your thigh.
  2492. >A short time after you release him he changes position to only caress you with the back of his hand for a little while longer before pulling away.
  2493. >You need to bite your thumb quite hard to come down.
  2494. >Holy shit, why the hell did you think that was a smart idea? Or any idea at all?
  2495. >When did you become /that girl/?
  2496. >As your arousal dies down you become increasingly disgusted with yourself.
  2497. >The sense of maybe getting caught which had been hot five minutes earlier was now a scenario of nightmares.
  2498. >As the meeting finally wraps up and everyone says their “it’s been a pleasure”s Anon leans into you.
  2499. >“Can we talk?”
  2500. >You gulp.
  2501. >You can imagine.
  2502. >There are no good talks that start out with the question whether or not the talk even takes place.
  2503. >In response you only nod quietly.
  2504. >Before you have the chance to find a place for yourselves Treehugger nods you all out.
  2505. >“The jet should be ready for us by now. We should head to the hangar at once.”
  2506.  
  2507. >Did Treehugger just talkblock you intentionally?
  2508. >You have to wonder how much slips by her and how much doesn’t.
  2509. >If you want to build a working strategy around her you need to know this.
  2510. >Not a menacing plan in any way, but simply to sneak around and fuck her nephew while she doesn’t notice.
  2511. >You were so lost in thought, you didn’t even remember your promise to Twilight of coming back to her asap.
  2512. >It was Anon who called her on the phone and roughly explained that they had the opportunity to go on a mission.
  2513. >Hes talking to with her so freely and without any hesitation...
  2514. >They are both extraordinarily smart.
  2515. >You are smart, but you are immediately overshadowed when compared to them.
  2516. >When they talked about quantum entanglement, the literal teleportation of particles, the creation of matter and  video game save states you barely were able to follow.
  2517. >What you did get from the talk back then was that if a soul is required to drive a body than the Midnight-entity might have sensed Twilight to be dying and left the sinking ship.
  2518. >But, while they are dealing with magic, both are atheistic enough to doubt the existence of souls in the first place.
  2519. >And where even would Midnight come from in the first place?
  2520. >Twilight couldn’t just have run around with two souls, could she?
  2521. >And if Midnight is just a manifestation of all of Twilight’s doubts, fears and desires, Midnight would doubtlessly only have negative or selfish emotions, making her de facto pure evil.
  2522. >But neither of you would believe that either.
  2523. >In the end you had to settle on the fact that you now know how her body got created (but to be honest, you still don’t understand), yet none of you know how her spirit was.
  2524. >Unless you can say that there is no such thing as a soul.
  2525. >The point is: Anon and Twilight have natural chemistry, and you don’t like it.
  2526. >It’s great that the guy whom you broke up with to save two realities gets along well with the reanimated body of your best friend, but you don’t like it.
  2527. >Anon’s yours.
  2528. >And you most certainly won’t lose him to Synergy- Scarlet- your alternate self.
  2529. >Anon chose you already, so you already won him over.
  2530. >Except for the fact when you broke up because the universe falling apart and that you can never be together.
  2531. >You will not last.
  2532. >Then again, Twilight is kinda undead.
  2533. >Which leaves Scarlet.
  2534. >She is...
  2535. >No, you will not lose.
  2536.  
  2537. >“Hey...”, Scarlet extents her hand to you as you enter the jet and finally were not under anyone’s watchful eye anymore, “We already met, but I think we got off on the wrong foot.”
  2538. >You eye her hand for a second before you shake it..
  2539. “Yeah... why not try again.”
  2540. >“If you’d put your differences behind you,” Anon wisely says from the side, “you’d see that you have a lot in common, actually.”
  2541. >“You think so?”
  2542. “Like what?”, you smile and continue her questioning to Anon.
  2543. >“Like- I mean- You both- You want to do your own thing... but the right thing, and it’s hard fitting both under one roof.”
  2544. >You don’t know what you expected.
  2545. >Maybe a cheesy line how you have a similar appearance.
  2546. >No.
  2547. >He said the one thing that brought you into this situation, why you struggle with it and why you’ll continue down that path.
  2548. >It’s your sense of justice.
  2549. >Your mocking question had born insightful fruit.
  2550. >Both of you were quiet at his answer, to which Anon frowns.
  2551. >He’s looking around, before it dawns on him too that he said something clever.
  2552. >“See? So much in common! Let’s share more. Was the dress white and gold or blue and-”
  2553. >Treehugger interrups him forcefully, “NO! Anon, no. We are not going to start that again!”
  2554. >“S-sorry...”
  2555. >Loaded topic, huh?
  2556. >Hmm...
  2557. “It was clearly black and blue, the designer later confirmed it to be so.”
  2558. >Treehugger was pointing at Anon, “Nuh-uh, No! Not a word!”
  2559. >Both you and ‘your sister’ smile at their family drama.
  2560. >However, your smile fades quickly.
  2561. >Your sense of justice. Was one of the things he said you have in common with Scarlet.
  2562. >Wasn’t that one of the reasons why Anon was interested in you?
  2563. >That and the fact that you have a sweet sweet bod?
  2564. >‘He chose you’, you let go through your head.
  2565. >From somewhere comes another voice though, ‘He didn’t know the lasting one was an option.’
  2566. >He will never have to go through the same heartbreak with her as he will have to with you.
  2567. >‘Can we talk?’, ‘Can we talk?’, ‘Can we talk?’
  2568. >His words echo through your mind again.
  2569. >You went to far in the meeting.
  2570. >The two of you formally broke up already, but you were still needy.
  2571. >He’s going to tell you that you need to stop.
  2572. >No, come on Sunset, you need to convince him.
  2573. >Convince him to do what exactly?
  2574. >“Sunset?”
  2575. “Huh?”
  2576. >“Coke or Pepsi?”, Anon asks.
  2577. >You hadn’t been listening for a little time, but the conversation had apparently picked up again to look at your similarities, and or differences.
  2578. >What did she say?
  2579. >You look to Scarlet but you don’t get a hint.
  2580. >Break the system!
  2581. >But also kinda answer truthfully.
  2582. “Off brand?” you question if it was a possible answer, “I buy my groceries... cheap...”
  2583. >“Another similarity! You two are practically the same person.”
  2584. >This earns him a laugh from Scarlet, but makes you bite your thumb.
  2585. >It is a joke for them, of course, but they don’t know what’s going on inside your head.
  2586. >For you it’s not a joke, it’s a competition.
  2587. >You need to be different from her and you need those differences to be more impressive in Anon’s mind.
  2588. >No more off brand cola.
  2589. >Fine and elegant answers from now on... sexy, playful ones which makes you still seem classy, not needy...
  2590. >Oh fuck.
  2591. >Is this one of the situations where the best advice is to just be yourself?
  2592. >Who you are and what you want to be like is not the same though!
  2593.  
  2594. [Authors note: At this point I asked the thread to ask questions in behalf of Anon, they are all here: https://pastebin.com/xxxxxxxx
  2595. Some questions and answers made in the story too]
  2596.  
  2597. >Aboard the Wonderbolt Prototype Helicarrier.
  2598. >Your quin-jet landed atop of it while it was in full flight, meaning exiting one vehicle and entering the other was quite difficult with Treehugger’s wheelchair.
  2599. >You’ve seen her stand and fight, so you partially wonder why she needs it in the first place, but most of the time she looks really frail too.
  2600. >It wasn’t a difficulty because she was frail tho, it was a difficulty because whatever protocols they have here, and needed someone of them to come fetch her to minimize risk.
  2601. >After you are inside the marvel of technology and were given a keycard to have access to all the areas you are allowed to have access to and were made roughly familiar with the floor plan you get an hour to move into your VIP rooms.
  2602. >Without even taking a look at yours you immediately turn to Anon’s and enter without knocking.
  2603. “Anon.”
  2604. >“Sun- gah.”
  2605. >As he had standing just behind the door, you ran into him.
  2606. >You easily catch the two of you from falling over and as soon as you are sure he’s standing properly again you let yourself slouch down and be held be him.
  2607. >Your cheek resting against his chest you simply remain there for a second.
  2608. >The fact that the door was still open bothers you little.
  2609. >“Hey Sunset~”
  2610. >He pats your head and lets his fingers flow through your hair.
  2611. >Awkwardly moving you around Anon goes for the door to close it.
  2612. >You leave him the freedom to do so and let go of him.
  2613. >Taking a few steps back you sit yourself at the edge of his bed and fold your hands in your lap.
  2614. “You- you wanted to talk, but I have something to say first...”
  2615. >You’re twiddling with your fingers and don’t face him.
  2616. >“Yeah?”, he says in his calming voice and approaches you.
  2617. >As you don’t know what he wanted to talk to you about, you have no idea how he’ll react to what you have to say.
  2618. “I- it’s- I know we said that we- like, we broke up, but... that was to save the universe- universes. But now it’s like- We need to catch Trixie first. And get Princess Twilight back. So I don’t have to go back immediately, right?”
  2619. >“Right,” Anon sits down next to you and pats your back.
  2620. >Only at the touch you look up and face him.
  2621. “It’s like a story trope that people stay away from one another to keep themselves from getting hurt when they get separated, but it’s like- I don’t care. I’ll get hurt either way, and I’m hurting now!”
  2622. >Your speech gets increasingly faster as you pour out your heart.
  2623. “But nobody ever said it’s not worth the pain, and I don’t care for the pain to come then, I care about being happy now! I’ll be sad either way, and I don’t want to be back home thinking I didn’t-”
  2624. >You sniffle.
  2625. >Did you start crying again?
  2626. “-that I didn’t use the chances I’ve had. I-”
  2627. >Yep, there are tears.
  2628. >“Hey...”
  2629. >You feel Anon’s hand on your back which had been slightly caressing you go to guide you towards him.
  2630. >A hug?
  2631. >You don’t know.
  2632. >He’s not given the chance to hug-zone you as you lunge forward and plant your lips on his.
  2633. >You hungrily gnaw on his lower lip, wanting him to return the gesture immediately, but he’s still too surprised about it.
  2634. >Without waiting for him to act you push him down onto the bed.
  2635. >It comes easy to you.
  2636. >Your significant physical strength aids you.
  2637. >Anon’s before you....
  2638. >No Twilight, no Scarlet, nobody else is in this competition.
  2639. >You’ve been emotionally distraught, but now it’s time for your body to speak.
  2640. >You climb over him to sit on his lap.
  2641. >Clothes... so bothersome right now.
  2642. >“S-sunset?”
  2643. “Mhm~?”
  2644. >You lean down and answer him with another kiss.
  2645. >This time a longer one.
  2646. >And this time... he returns it.
  2647. >It takes him a little time, but he’s finally giving you what you wanted.
  2648. >A confirmation that he returns your feelings.
  2649. >A confirmation that you won.
  2650. >In addition to the pleasurable physical sensation, of course.
  2651. >Your lips are tingly.
  2652. >The little roughness of his lips on yours
  2653. >Then they soften as they are moistened up.
  2654. >The slight rhythmical movements as he slips his lips over yours, gently sucking them in and restarting over again and again.
  2655. >But you want more.
  2656. >For that, unfortunately, you need to break the kiss first.
  2657. “Heh...”
  2658. >You don’t need to lean up far, you were agile enough to take off your shirt with a quick motion before going down on Anon again.
  2659. >This time you gently apply your teeth on his lip.
  2660. >Not painful, of course, but a small pinch.
  2661. >A signal for him to pay attention.
  2662. >He opens your mouth as you do, fulfilling your wish as you let your tongues dance.
  2663. >His hands meanwhile explore the naked skin of your back.
  2664. >Oh, how you have yearned to feel his warmth directly on you again.
  2665. >While you support yourself slightly on one elbow, you reach back with your other hand to guide him to your bra, not only allowing him to undress you further, but demanding it.
  2666. >The clasp finally undone you break your kisses once again, leaning up to allow the piece of clothing to fall down on Anon.
  2667. >“You’re really needy, aren’t you?”, he teases as he just looks up to you.
  2668. “Hmm... maybe~”
  2669. >His hands had come to a rest at your hips as you leaned up, they had just naturally slid down as you did so.
  2670. >But this won’t do.
  2671. >Anon’s eyes were no longer meeting yours, but you don’t mind.
  2672. >Undressing is supposed to have that effect.
  2673. “Well, don’t just stare at them.” you say and take his hands, leading them upwards.
  2674. >They are released as he picks up on your demand by his own account and takes your breasts in his hands.
  2675. >The squeeze he gives was barely more than to let his presence known.
  2676. >The way his fingers grace over your nipples as he searches for a better position were so careful.
  2677. >He’s too gentle.
  2678. >You don’t need teasing, you don’t need built up, but you have enough built up stress which needs relief.
  2679. >“To be honest you’re kinda scaring me here, Sunset...”
  2680. >You chuckle, and grind your ass over his pelvis.
  2681. “Oh, that’s an odd reaction to being scared though, Anon~”
  2682. >Hmm...?
  2683. >No, he’s not yet at attention for you
  2684. “Maybe I need to scare you more.”
  2685. >He needs not have an erection if he wants to fill you.
  2686. >And that needs to happen as soon as possible.
  2687. >You hop back and onto the floor before him in one swift motion.
  2688. >Your hands quickly find the button at his jeans and the second later you already  pull it out from underneath him.
  2689. >He was easily lifted up to get it out under him, or did you just yank it out?
  2690. >You hope you didn’t hurt him.
  2691. >“Sunset, stop.”
  2692. >You pause for a moment and look up to him, but put your hands on his boxers.
  2693. >“I’m serious.”
  2694. >The tone of his voice stabs your insides.
  2695. “Anon? What are you saying?”, you press the last bit out.
  2696. >He’s not rejecting you is he?
  2697. >Oh god, he is?
  2698. >He didn’t even answer to your plea just now, did he?
  2699. >Oh god, oh god.
  2700. >Your panic mus have shown because his next words were: “calm down, calm down.”
  2701. >“Uhh... Mile high club is a go,” he puts his thumbs up. “But you’re really putting out some mayor rape-y vibes just now. Come-”,
  2702. >Anon gestures you up, which, albeit reluctantly, you obey.
  2703. >As he pats his lap for you to sit on you give a weak smile before you take your seat.
  2704. >“It was just a bit sudden, and... aggressive.”
  2705. >He embraces you from behind.
  2706. “Are you... angry?”
  2707. >“No, nono, that’s- you- you don’t know why I’m- what? Really?”
  2708. “What?”
  2709. >What is he talking about?
  2710. >“N-nothing.”
  2711. >The arms he had wrapped around you go up to your breasts to give them a much more proper squeeze.
  2712. “Ahh!”.
  2713. >You gasp out in surprise, but it quickly turns into a moan.
  2714. >The quick wall you had been built when he said ‘he’s serious’ comes down as your mounds are roughed up.
  2715. >Within an heartbeat all your arousal came back.
  2716. >Stronger than before even.
  2717. >The additional tension now broken, you feel your panties quite literally dampen.
  2718. “Yes~”, you moan as Anon’s kissing your neck.
  2719. >Most certainly he plans to trail down as, caressing your neck and shoulder with his lips.
  2720. >And it feels great, combined with the massage he gives your front, but you know what will feel better.
  2721. >Your hand was quivering as you lift it up again, to, once more, guide his hand.
  2722. >This time down to your pants.
  2723. >You’re even doing him the favor of unbuttoning your pants.
  2724. >“Whoa- already?”, he comments as he feels the mess you’ve made.
  2725. “S-shut up.” you retort shyly.
  2726. >You can’t admit to him just how much you need this right now.
  2727. >Even if the evidence of it had been at his fingertips.
  2728. >God, why did he retreat?
  2729. >“You really need this, don’t you?”
  2730. >His voice was husky and he whispers right into your ear.
  2731. >Something which would make your hair stand on end any other time, but you can hear the joking teasing undertone of it.
  2732. >And he’s not making his hand enter your panties!
  2733. “S-shut up.”
  2734. >“Then it’s no problem if-”
  2735. “Don’tmakemebeg.” you whimper out.
  2736. >He still pauses.
  2737. >Just a moment.
  2738. >Less than a second, but he is making you wait.
  2739. >Only then he slowly slides his fingers under your panties.
  2740. >Way too slow.
  2741. >His middle finger was first off, of course, being the longest.
  2742. >He’s nearing your pussy, just missing your clit by a hair.
  2743. >Maybe somewhere in your mind you knew that he had all fingers extended, and that his index finger will hit the mark, but while he’s making you squirm no such thought can form.
  2744. >Until finally, he hit.
  2745. “ahahhaaa...”
  2746. >Your heart’s beating out of your chest, and have seemingly lost control over your breathing.
  2747. >But again, he’s pausing.
  2748. >Immobile for a moment.
  2749. >The moment it takes him to figure out what treasure he just found, by his touch and your reaction to it alone.
  2750. >Then he moves on, sliding further down.
  2751. >Abandoning your clit until he hit your entrance.
  2752. >There was no stopping this time.
  2753. >Not on his part, and certainly not on yours.
  2754. >Your muscles were contorting for a while now, but you weren’t pressing together.
  2755. >You’re certainly lubricated enough, and, of course, he shows no sign of stopping on his own accord.
  2756. >No more teasing.
  2757. >Even if you had wished he had stayed by your clit for a second.
  2758. >His middle finger enters, spreading you open.
  2759. “Haah...”
  2760. >The sounds you make are embarrassing you.
  2761. >You want to be hot, sexy, and classy, and not seem like you’re not even in control of your own body.
  2762. >Then he also probes with his ring finger, easily entering as well.
  2763. >As you’re spread further your heel hit the side of the hard, as you needed to react to the sensation somehow.
  2764. >Leaving it be with two fingers he only pushes them further inside.
  2765. >Almost as far as he could fit, you don’t know, you only focused on the burning ticklish painful pleasurable sensation right now.
  2766. >There are no proper words in your head to even describe what it feels like.
  2767. >And if there had been they elude you now..
  2768. >His thumb hits your clit.
  2769. >The sensation you had carved earlier bas back, almost forgotten, so long ago had it been.
  2770. >But then, he does the same as he had so often done.
  2771. >He stops.
  2772. “Anoooon,” you complain, merely using his name.
  2773. >In protest to his inaction you nudge your head firmly against his.
  2774. >You’re not his plaything.
  2775. >Your right hand grabs his, you could simply make him move, but... no.
  2776. >He’s not supposed to tease you, but please you.
  2777. >However, you are not going to force him either.
  2778. >Without warning your left nipple is pinched.
  2779. >The sensation, not from the place you expected it, makes you yelp out again.
  2780. >And it continues.
  2781. >He’s squeezing together increasingly harder.
  2782. >As he does so he begins to move the hand in your crotch again.
  2783. >The fingers inside of you curl up, scraping against your walls.
  2784. >And his whole hand begins to move up and down.
  2785. >Up and down...
  2786. >The fingers embedded in your pussy tear at the walls as if the spread you further, those outside rub over your lips and his thumb-
  2787. >His thumb flicks at your clit in every stage of the movement.
  2788. “Gnnnnahhhh!”, you’re making weird noises again.
  2789. >But nowhere near the embarrassing sound that comes from your crotch as he works his magic.
  2790. >Schlik schlik schlik...
  2791. >Your hand cramped around his wrist, not because you want him to stop, but simply because you don’t know what to do youth your extremities as you are pleasured.
  2792. >The other hand has found it’s way to your face, in an feeble attempt to cover your mouth and silence you.
  2793. >You bite down hard on your thumb.
  2794. >The pain serving as a balance to the other sensations you are receiving.
  2795. >However, you know, you are not going to hold long.
  2796. >But it wasn’t about holding out long.
  2797. >You’re here to relief that stress.
  2798. >And so you’re nearing your first orgasm of the day after about half a minute.
  2799. “Anoooo~”, you wanted to moan his name seductively...
  2800. >The thought had been there.
  2801. >But your voice doesn’t obey you as you cum.
  2802. >Your legs spasm.
  2803. >You body wants to curl up, do anything as to contain your orgasm.
  2804. >Had it not been for Anon holding you, you would have probably fallen over and onto the floor.
  2805. >Still, when your senses calm down a little, you notice laying on your side.
  2806. >Anon’s behind you, spooning you.
  2807. >Waves of your climax still wash over you, but are calming down now.
  2808. >Oh fuck, you must have lost consciousness for a second.
  2809. “Anooon...?”, you try and say his name.
  2810. >“I thought I lost you there for a second”, he laughs into your neck and lets you go a bit.
  2811. “No-”, you don’t want him to let you go, you still want to feel him on your body.
  2812. >He doesn’t remove himself though, he only changes his position to kiss your neck again and turn you slightly on your back.
  2813. >You’re looking up to him now as your afterglow washes out.
  2814. >You can’t tell how long you simple spend looking up to him and studying his face.
  2815. >If you’re going back to Equestria you’ll never see him again.
  2816. >Or any other human for that matter.
  2817. >You’ll miss fingers.
  2818. >Like... a lot.
  2819. >But you’ll also miss him.
  2820. >You’ve never had a real boyfriend before.
  2821. >You simply hadn’t been in the business of looking around.
  2822. >Knowing what’s handsome and what’s not can just fly by you.
  2823. >Anon’s... good looking.
  2824. >He could still simply disappear in a crowd, but you don’t make out anything which would make him ugly...
  2825. >“You were really needy, Sunset. That was like ten seconds flat.”
  2826. >It was embarrassing enough without him pointing it out.
  2827. >You totally soiled your pants and panties as well.
  2828. >And you are the little spoon of someone who’s still fully clothed...
  2829. “S-Shut up.”, you pout.
  2830. >He leans down for a small peck on your lips.
  2831. >You can’t be mad at him.
  2832. >“You make the funniest noises.”
  2833. “I do not!”
  2834. >You can be mad at him!
  2835. >In protest you turn away, which only results in you going back into the little spoon position.
  2836.  
  2837. >“Hey- ahh... What I wanted to talk to you about.”
  2838. >He takes his hand and begins to draw on your belly.
  2839. >Your juices still on him.
  2840. >Wait, that’s a letter.
  2841. >What was it?
  2842. >An O?
  2843. >Next one.... Another O?
  2844. >N... T
  2845. >Hmmm. “Don’t”?
  2846. >T... R... U... S... T...
  2847. >Ah, shit...
  2848. >S... O... M... B...
  2849. >Somebody? No, there was no ‘E’.
  2850. >R... A...
  2851. >Sombra.
  2852. >As in your professor?
  2853. >The celebrity scientist your university can justify the crazy tutoring costs for?
  2854. >You thought he’s a small fry in the Wonderbolts, but he was there from minute one of your diplomatic immunity talks.
  2855. >“So... you are right. Or you had the right hunch what I wanted to say, but then...”
  2856. >You’re  not exactly following his line of thought anymore.
  2857. >“I wanted to break up with you, again-”
  2858. “Wha-!?”
  2859. >“Wanted to! Wanted to! But you convinced me. You’re right, of course. I mean-  we should make the most of it while we still can, should we not?”
  2860. “Mhm...”, you nod slightly.
  2861. >Knowing he did want to break up with you saddens you a little.
  2862. >You convinced him though.
  2863. >Not that you have given him much of a choice.
  2864. >“I have found that... few things are in my control these days, and... the few things that are – like being with you – I want them to be made for the right reasons.”
  2865. >He hugs you tighter, smearing the letters in the process with more of your... juices.
  2866. >You blush.
  2867. >You really had been producing a lot for him to be that-
  2868. >And you never took of your pants.
  2869. >The uncomfortable feeling is slowly setting in.
  2870. >You don’t really have a change of clothes with you.
  2871. >It wouldn’t surprise you though if they would have clothes at the ready for you.
  2872. >Hmm...
  2873. >You could feel Anon’s manhood at your back, even through the layers of both your clothes.
  2874. >That’s right, he didn’t get any yet.
  2875. >You had only been focused on your own pleasure.
  2876. >And now you had been talking about not trusting Sombra and how he had planned to break up with you.
  2877. >...
  2878. >It’s out of your system, and for you the moment had passed.
  2879. >But he deserves to get some stimulation of his own.
  2880. >Well, he didn’t need to make you cum immediately, he could have...
  2881. >Could have, should have, would have... these don’t matter.
  2882. >What matters is what happened.
  2883. >You need to turn this so it’ll be nice for you too, because you’re not in the horny mood where giving a blow job sounds hot.
  2884. “Hey, I’m kinda... sticky,” you turn your head back to him, “I want to scratch shower sex off my list as well.”
  2885. >As much as it pains you to leave his embrace you take his hand off of you and stand up.
  2886. >Yeah, you can’t use those pants anymore.
  2887. >“Shower sex? That’s- ahh... sure, why not?”
  2888. >You look back over your shoulder.
  2889. “Then come.”
  2890. >You slap your ass slightly, giving him the slightest show.
  2891. >Walking towards the bathroom you feel like never before have you paid as much attention to your hip swing as you are doing right now.
  2892. >Feet in almost a line before the other.
  2893. >Not too much, you want to feel sexy while not appearing slutty.
  2894. >He was behind you, so you don’t see him; the sudden rustling of the sheet tells you enough, though.
  2895. >He had been staring and only realized too late he was supposed to come after you, even though you specifically said so.
  2896. >“Coming.”
  2897.  
  2898. >Be Anon.
  2899. >What the fuck has gotten into Sunset?
  2900. >First she’s trying to get you to finger her in a conference room, then she’s almost jumping your bone the second you’re alone, even though you had technically broken up.
  2901. >And she’s super strong, she could totally overpower you easily.
  2902. >You didn’t exactly feel safe.
  2903. >And she pressured you into it.
  2904. >She had been crying, basically begging you to continue the relationship, and jumped you without warning.
  2905. >On the surface you had a hot girl on you craving dick.
  2906. >On the inside you were guilt tripped, slightly scared, pressured, and the mood hadn’t been right.
  2907. >Needless to say your small friend had remained small until you felt more secure.
  2908. >Namely when you took control of the situation again and started with some foreplay to keep her at ease until you were ready yourself.
  2909. >However, your mad skills and your full lethality built made her melt away within seconds.
  2910. >She must have been pent up a lot, because you barely even started with your treatment, nor did you pick up any speed.
  2911. >When you realized she was about to cum it was too late already.
  2912. >Then you just took the opportunity to get a personal record of how quick you can make a girl cum.
  2913. >She was spent.
  2914. >Utterly defeated.
  2915. >You think passing out cause of an orgasm was a myth, but you made her do it.
  2916. >You don’t even believe it had been that good of an orgasm...
  2917. >She must really have issues.
  2918. >Anyway, you didn’t think she’d be able to go again after that and you just started to talk.
  2919. >She needed to be warned about Sombra.
  2920. >It wasn’t the most romantic thing to do, and then you even confessed that you did plan to rebuke her for her behavior in the conference room, and that you had planned to break up with her again.
  2921. >And then she dropped the bomb.
  2922. >Just as the erection you had been fighting for was about to die down, she said she’s sticky.
  2923. >She wants to try shower sex because it’s on the list.
  2924. >There is a list.
  2925. >Sunset has a list.
  2926.  
  2927. >After some insight into Anon’s mind you’re being Sunset again.
  2928. >You stretch yourself on your way to the bathroom, hands overhead.
  2929. >After that spastic orgasm you’ve just had you need to limber up a little.
  2930. >And you know Anon’s watching.
  2931. >Gracious movements, Sunset!
  2932. >When you put your hands down again you fold them behind your back, obscuring his view of your butt.
  2933. >When you enter the bathroom you take a quick look around.
  2934. >Fortunately the shower is bigger than average; the rooms really were VIP.
  2935. >There is even a small space which looks sturdy enough to sit on it. Talk about luxury.
  2936. “Hmmm...?”
  2937. >You lean slightly forward as you investigate a small terminal next to the shower.
  2938. >There are options for floor and wall heating.
  2939. >Wall heating?
  2940. >Tiled walls aren’t exactly warm if they are not heated, you know that from experience back in Canterlot, but you never even thought about having them heated.
  2941. >Neat.
  2942. >This’ll come in handy.
  2943. “Wall heating.”, you explain, as you dial the slider to just above the center.
  2944. >“Neat,” Anon repeats your thoughts.
  2945. >You turn around to him taking off his shirt.
  2946. >It was a fluid motion with which he disposes of it.
  2947. >Like he planned to make it a bit of show as well, but not too slow.
  2948. >And when you think about it, that’s probably exactly the effect he wanted to have.
  2949. >Then you’re just staring at one another.
  2950. >Once more you become more self aware of your body, making you hold your breath and consciously contracting the muscles in your stomach.
  2951. >You know you’re fit, and that your breasts are sizable enough.
  2952. >Having more breasts would hinder you in combat, you believe.
  2953. >And you believe Anon already told you that he liked them.
  2954. >You’re confident, and you smile as his eyes wander over you for a second before meeting your gaze.
  2955. >He returns your smile and starts to undo his pants.
  2956. >Oh yeah, you’ll get some more.
  2957. >You clench together for a second as you feel yourself starting to get aroused again.
  2958. >What had just happened had lubricated your insides enough already, but regular biological functions don’t know that.
  2959. >You lick your lips and undress the rest of the way too.
  2960. >Like you had moved into the bathroom, you try to exaggerate your movements as you step out of both of your pants’ legs.
  2961. >After you’re done you don’t lose much time to step into the shower.
  2962. >You lean against the showers edge for a moment, turning your head back to Anon, giving him another seductive look before you enter.
  2963. >You spin around in a happy motion before you put your hands behind your back and lean against the wall.
  2964. >Only now you recall it’s heated, so the temperature takes you a little by surprise.
  2965. >If that’s only a little above center you can only guess what full power would mean.
  2966. >Not that it’s too hot already, but you assumed it would need to warm up for a while...
  2967. >Maybe it does and it’ll get much hotter on this setting.
  2968. >Have you made a mistake?
  2969. >Never mind, you have a dicking to get; why are you thinking about wall temperatures?
  2970. >Anon steps into the shower as well and closes the glass door.
  2971. >He stays in his corner, leaning slightly back, like you do.
  2972. >Your eyes trail down to his member at full attention.
  2973. >All yours.
  2974. >This thought fuels your excitement once more.
  2975. >“Want me to wash your hair?”
  2976. >What?
  2977. >The question had come seemingly out of nowhere and catches you off guard.
  2978. >Sexy whispers, pillow talk, things like that you would have expected, but the simple question whether or not you want your hair washed...?
  2979. “S-Sure,” you respond, unsure of yourself.
  2980. >You’ve never had shower sex before, nor have you really... consumed any media thereof except nonsensical pornography.
  2981. >How it really works is beyond you.
  2982. >What is he expecting?
  2983. >He moves to get the shower head and starts the water, beginning to adjust it’s temperature.
  2984. >With only a small gesture he nods you to feel it out too.
  2985. >You reach out for it as well, but you simply let the water hit you.
  2986. >His hand is on the gauge, what much is there for you to do?
  2987. “Hmm?”
  2988. >“You’ll be the one getting off more of it for now, tell me if it’s too hot or cold.
  2989. “Oh! Ah.. like... that’s still too hot...”
  2990. >You could easily try and take over the controls and adjust it yourself, but guiding him... letting him work for you... it’s nice.
  2991. “It’s perfect,” you tell him when he finds a proper spot, “just like that...”
  2992. >“Good~” he answers and raises his hand up to the shower head.
  2993. >The water redirects to hit more than just your arm and was soon over your head, dampening your hair.
  2994. >At  the same time he closes the distance between you.
  2995. >With a kiss he gets you to tilt your head backwards for him, you also close your eyes.
  2996. >The motion is natural.
  2997. >You have to tilt your head up to kiss him, and you usually let go of the sensation of vision when you do.
  2998. >Now it serves a second purpose... how efficient.
  2999. >Twilight would think so as well-
  3000. >Why are you thinking about Twilight when you are making out with your boyfriend?
  3001. >She’d like something he does, but he’s yours!
  3002. >To mark your territory you begin to kiss him a little more aggressive.
  3003. >You let your tongue play with his, gently bite him at times, testing him.
  3004. >You’re strong and durable, he knows that. You’ll be rougher than the average girl by nature.
  3005. >And you’ll also expect him to be a little rough with you.
  3006. >You can take it.
  3007. >You need it...
  3008. >The feeling of  water drops hitting your head only further stimulate you.
  3009. >It carries a sense of familiarity and safety, yet you feel it for the first time while being with another person.
  3010. >Your bodies match seamlessly.
  3011. >Nothing was separating you, lest a thin layer of water and sweat.
  3012. >Only his cock on your abdomen seems to be a hindrance, but it’s presence is just proof of what’s about to happen.
  3013. >You can feel his heart beat; the ever so slight vibration on his chest...
  3014. >Never had you thought someones heartbeat could serve as stimulation on your breasts, but then again, you never had pressed them so closely onto someone.
  3015. >You wanted to giggle slightly, but had to be satisfied by only smiling into the kiss.
  3016. >He breaks your little make out session when your hair was nice and damp.
  3017. >As he sets the shower head away to be wall mounted again and only hit the back of your legs  you look up to him in anticipation.
  3018. >Water droplets alone had been quite arousing... now when he massages your head too... takes care of you... washes your hair...
  3019. >Such a loving and sweet gesture.
  3020. >But you don’t really want a loving gesture, you want a dick inside of you...
  3021. >How can you communicate that to him without- okay, he already knows you’re needy, but you can never admit that.
  3022. >“Uhm...”, his eyes, which were locked with yours until now, tilt downwards for a moment before back to you.
  3023. “Yes?”
  3024. >You figure he wants something.
  3025. >But what?
  3026. >You are a little rusty on your shower sex etiquette.
  3027. >“You know- for better access.”
  3028. “Oh.”
  3029. >He’s washing your hair and gesturing you down with his eyes.
  3030. >You need to go down.
  3031. >It doesn’t need you to exert your brain for long until you put the evidence together.
  3032. “Oh!”
  3033. >Duh.
  3034. >He suggested it.
  3035. >...
  3036. >You want his dick inside of you, but not like that.
  3037. >Are you in the mood to just... suck on it?
  3038. >You remove yourself from his body and look down.
  3039. >His member is twitching in anticipation.
  3040. “Can’t we just... Move on?”, you ask as you turn around.
  3041. >During the motion you’re sliding your hand over his chin, seductively guiding his attention away.
  3042. >You end up leaning against him again.
  3043. >This time it was calculated, as you move your hips just right for his cock to find itself between your ass cheeks.
  3044. >“Oh-kay.”
  3045. >He moves his hands up and down your sides, slightly applying some force forward.
  3046. >Obediently you lean your upper body where he guides you only to stop shortly before the water would hit your head again..
  3047. >While he does so, you were keeping your price firmly where it was.
  3048. >That was until you can feel his hand going down to his crotch to rearrange himself.
  3049. >You give him that freedom, but contrary to what you thought he’d do, he only moves his member in between your legs.
  3050. >He’s taller, so his legs were slightly longer and his dick was now firmly pressing upwards. Or rather, you are keeping it from going to the position it wants to be.
  3051. >Instinctively you move forward to let it go to your entrance, but Anon puts his hands on your hips, locking you in place.
  3052. “Anoooon~”, you complain.
  3053. >While you would have easily been able to escape his grasp you choose to play along, and only grind away at him.
  3054. >You look back over your shoulder to see him reach for some shampoo.
  3055. >As he moves it over you to lather your hair you pout at him.
  3056. >That’s not exactly what you meant by ‘moving on’.
  3057. >Nonetheless you keep grinding at him, getting whatever stimulation you could achieve by the position he so chose for you.
  3058. >Anon grabs a hold of your head while he pushes you forward with his hips.
  3059. >The tip of his dick just brushes against your folds.
  3060. >You were so ready to take him in.
  3061. >He’s making you squirm.
  3062. >That evil tease!
  3063. >Oh wait, that feels nice...
  3064. >He begins to massage your head, working in the shampoo, while you’re trying to get his dick to enter you by any means necessary.
  3065. >Any means except simple moving your hands down and guiding it inside.
  3066. >This results in you rubbing your folds against it in various positions which still allowed him to wash your hair.
  3067. >Gnnn....
  3068. >Why does he have to torture you that way?
  3069. >Your hands find their way to your breasts, taking in any pleasure you can.
  3070. >You don’t need to support yourself on the wall or anything, you have a good enough grip with your feet on the floor, slightly sticking to it due to your powers.
  3071. “Wha-?”
  3072. >Without warning he had pulled back, removing your plaything from you.
  3073. >Immediately after he pushes forward again.
  3074. >This time entering you.
  3075. “Ahh!,” you scream out, “Anon!”
  3076. >You try to move back.
  3077. >Get more in than just the tip.
  3078. >The tip which isn’t even an inch inside of you.
  3079. >The tip which could escape any moment.
  3080. >No!
  3081. >You need it.
  3082. >You need more!
  3083. >You arch your back through, pushing your hip back as far as you can-
  3084. >But he’s only sliding back.
  3085. >No!
  3086. >You can’t lose him!
  3087. >Standing on one leg you wrap the other back awkwardly to grab a hold of him.
  3088. >He’s not getting anywhere.
  3089. “Just fuck me already!”
  3090. >“Got you to beg~”
  3091. “What? No! I-”
  3092. >More words elude you, as he pushes inside of you.
  3093. >You savior every inch he was able to put in.
  3094. >But you’re instinctively arch yourself the wrong way and pull off him.
  3095. >You can’t take it any more!
  3096. >You attach your hand to the wall, sling one leg over Anon and manage to turn around in one swift motion without him ever leaving you.
  3097. >“What the-?”
  3098. “No more games, Anon.”
  3099. >He was unable to keep you from pulling him into you.
  3100. “Haah!”, you gasp out.
  3101. >Maybe taking him that quickly hadn’t been that smart.
  3102. >Kinda...
  3103. >Ouch.
  3104. >But...
  3105. >So good.
  3106. >“Sunset...”
  3107. >He moves forward, pushing you against the wall.
  3108. >The water was hitting you again, rinsing you down.
  3109. “Yes?”
  3110. >“Rough then?”, he whispers into your ear in a husky voice.
  3111. “Yeah~”, you answer, wrapping your arms around him.
  3112. >All he needs to do now is pound into you, but he struggles to move again.
  3113. >Your thighs were to firmly around him though.
  3114. >“Sunny?”
  3115. “Hmm..?”
  3116. >“You kinda need to release me... for me to- you know?”
  3117. “Yeah...”
  3118. >You let go of him a bit.
  3119. >Not enough for him to be able to pull completely out of you.
  3120. >He still has enough room to move.
  3121. >And he’s using it.
  3122. >Immediately.
  3123. >He’s not giving you much more time to prepare.
  3124. >But you asked for it.
  3125. >Wanted it...
  3126. >Needed it.
  3127. >You claw into his back, holding onto him more as he pounds into you.
  3128. >You’ll not be able to hold on for long.
  3129. >Again.
  3130. >You don’t really care much about it though.
  3131. >It’s a long transatlantic flight.
  3132.  
  3133. >Be Synergy, or rather Scarlet Shimmer now.
  3134. >You had been using different alias before, but two consecutively which hadn’t been chosen by you were new.
  3135. >Does Scarlet sound like a stripper’s name?
  3136. >You had just arrived on the helicarrier and put your bag down in your room as you head out again.
  3137. >Treehugger had made quite the first impression on some of the higher ups and everything goes according to plan.
  3138. >But now you need to do your part too.
  3139. >Just as you leave your room you see the one which had been assigned to Anon close.
  3140. >Was that the other Sunset?
  3141. >Unconsciously, your feet carry you towards his door as well, but they stop before it.
  3142. >It’s a security door, so you wouldn’t be able to eavesdrop just by standing outside.
  3143. >You could attempt to sense the energy of the vibrations which hit the wall on the other side to hear what they say, but you decide against it.
  3144. >They are a couple.
  3145. >They are alone in a sort of hotel room a mile above the Atlantic Ocean.
  3146. >Doesn’t need a genius to figure out what they would or wouldn’t do.
  3147. >And...
  3148. >Deep breath.
  3149. >It bothers you.
  3150. >Because....
  3151. >She has the same body as you do.
  3152. >If she’s exposing herself to someone you know it’s like shes exposing you as well.
  3153. >Anon seeing you naked...
  3154. >That bothers you.
  3155. >She has no right to...
  3156. >That body is as much yours as it’s hers.
  3157. >No, it’s more yours, this is your reality!
  3158. >It’s like...
  3159. >Fuck.
  3160. >What are you even arguing?
  3161. >You’re pacing around in the hallway like an idiot.
  3162. >“Sunset Shimmer?”
  3163. “Hmm? Yeah?”
  3164. >You look up to the voice addressing you...
  3165. >Well, he wasn’t addressing you, but you answered out of reflex.
  3166. >Your guard was down.
  3167. >“Your backup,” he explains vaguely and hands you a suitcase.
  3168. “My-”
  3169. >Hmm...
  3170. >You take the suitcase and look at it for a sec.
  3171. “Thanks, ‘ve been waiting for it.”
  3172. >He probably takes your pacing around as having waited for the delivery.
  3173. >There’s no reason for him to believe anything else.
  3174. “Do I need to sign something.”
  3175. >He shakes his head. “Not necessary,” and nods to one of the security cameras, “package delivered.”
  3176. >The camera surely saw the other Sunset entering Anon’s room and would know you’re not her...
  3177. >Too late to back out now.
  3178. >You just... take a look at it and make sure she’ll get it then.
  3179. “Hmhmhm...” you hum to yourself as you walk back into your room.
  3180. >The suitcase was heavy, yet balanced.
  3181. >You can only assume it houses some tech.
  3182. >Her backup, huh?
  3183. >Your suspicion is confirmed when you open the suitcase up to see a complete suit, two left and two right web shooters and... about 30 cartridges of whatever that webbing is made out of.
  3184. >Don’t do it...
  3185. >You equip one of the web shooters and open it up to load a cartridge.
  3186. >Three slots... with a slightly different form to only fit into the right slot, but apart from a number on the side you can’t tell the any other difference.
  3187. >You had been able to observe Spider-Woman use two different kinds of webbing, but three?
  3188. >Before you know it you have one cartridge of each webbing mounted into the device and were aiming at the wall.
  3189. >Hmm... One big button in your palm and two... like levers? You lack the technical terminology to name everything on here.
  3190. >Big button makes the web shoot, and depending whether or not you have the two levers pulled down at the same time you shoot something different?
  3191. >Would make sense...
  3192. >But it gives four different combinations.
  3193. >Okay, let’s test this.
  3194. >No lever... and shoot.
  3195. >Webbing immediately erupts from the device spraying through the room.
  3196. >Nope!
  3197. >That was too much.
  3198. >Like way too much.
  3199. >She must only press these for a fraction of a second.
  3200. >Then again aimed at something only a few feet away, she’s using this type of webbing to swing through the city.
  3201. >You pick some of it up and, to your surprise, see that it’s not sticky at all.
  3202. >It was, however, firmly attached to the wall and your bed sheets.
  3203. >So it hardens super fast?
  3204. >Neat.
  3205. >That must be super... expensive and difficult to make... especially since she’s not a Wonderbolt.
  3206. >She used this for about- how long had it been? A few years now?
  3207. >No use pondering about hos it came to be.
  3208. >You aim again, this time having the right lever-thingies flicked, and press the button for only a moment.
  3209. >A spider web flies out and sticks to the wall.
  3210. >Maybe not full on spider web, more like a splotch, but you get the sentiment.
  3211. >This would be useful to die people down quickly.
  3212. >Next test, left lever.
  3213. >You shoot a small ball out which leaves a much smaller splotch on the wall.
  3214. >Is it the same as the previous one, but in a smaller dose?
  3215. >It also packs a small punch, so it’s like an annoying crowd control weapon.
  3216. >Now what do both levers do?
  3217. >You shoot across the room again with a short press  which results in only another string of webbing, like the first one.
  3218. >Hmm? Is something different about this one?
  3219. >Not recognizably so.
  3220. >You cap the string and let it fall to the ground.
  3221. >Your room’s a mess now, but if you’re not mistaken the webbing dissolves within an hour or something like that. (You’ve read Spider-Woman’s entry on the superwiki.)
  3222. >Oh well, not like you can do much except wait.
  3223. >You remove the cartridges from the web shooters and store them away, packing it up as had you never touched them.
  3224. >If she asks, you’ll admit that you tried them out.
  3225. >No, that would only anger her... You have to go out and tell her you were curious and had no intention of hiding it from her.
  3226. >You take the suitcase and leave your room, heading straight to hers.
  3227. >Unlocked and empty.
  3228. >Oh, right, she’s with Anon.
  3229. >You turn around to move to his room.
  3230. >Didn’t you earlier figure that they were-?
  3231. >No, don’t be silly. Anon has decency and it’s only been five minutes.
  3232. >At worst you’d catch them making out, right?
  3233. >You knock on the door without answer.
  3234. >It is a security door, maybe knocks can’t really be heard?
  3235. >As you attempt to open it you find it unlocked as well.
  3236. >You enter and are immediately met with the sound of the shower from the bathroom.
  3237. >And... there’s Sunsets top and bra on the floor.
  3238. >Anon’s shirt was on the floor too, right before the bathroom door which is slightly open.
  3239. “FUCKING LOCK YOUR DOOR!”, you shout inside, before storming out again.
  3240. >You don’t care much where your feet lead you.
  3241. >All you know is that you have to stay in motion.
  3242. >You can’t stay still, so your room is out of question.
  3243. >Especially since it’s in close vicinity to THEM.
  3244. “God fucking damnit,” you curse to yourself.
  3245. >You almost run into someone on your way to no destination whatsoever.
  3246. >While you dodge him, you ram the suitcase into his side.
  3247. >After helping him up and profusely apologizing you take a hold of the case again.
  3248. >You didn’t even realize you were still carrying it.
  3249. >Hmm...
  3250. >But now you know what you want to do.
  3251.  
  3252. >A few minutes later you’re on top of the helicarrier.
  3253. >You sit near the head of the vehicle, exposed to the frigid air, unrelenting wind and sharp water droplets hitting your face.
  3254. >Inner peace...
  3255. >This is just like meditating under a waterfall.
  3256. >Okay, it may be the next worse thing.
  3257. >What you take out of it was the energy forcing itself onto your body.
  3258. >Hundreds of small impacts onto you, energy ready to be harvested and used for a purpose you deem fit.
  3259. >That also means you need to concentrate and predict their impacts a hundred times to actually get that energy.
  3260. >And the purpose you are using them for is to keep your body temperature up.
  3261. >Meditation.
  3262. >Center yourself.
  3263. >Inner peace.
  3264. >Your zen as fuck.
  3265. >Balanced like a Scottish breakfast.
  3266. >You stand up, drop any attempts at absorbing energy and simply let the elements hit you.
  3267. >Self chastising now? That’s healthy.
  3268. >You run forward to the edge of the helicarrier and jump.
  3269. >Swan dive.
  3270. >Fuck that other Sunset for being slut and getting it on with a guy you... still need as a ally and don’t want to be awkward around with.
  3271. >You shoot a regular web for the helicarrier, it’s seriously disturbed from the wind, but it connects.
  3272. >The relationship with Anon is strictly professional.
  3273. >Keep the world secure by getting the Tesseract back and hiding it, then you maybe look int the dark elves together.
  3274. >You can’t work with someone who... RAAAH!
  3275. >How will your dynamic be when he knows how /you/ look naked and has vivid memories of fucking /you/?
  3276. >You swing underneath the helicarrier and focus energy into doing something you’ve never attempted before.
  3277. >This is a test of fire, or rather one of gravity.
  3278. >If you fail and you’ll fall.
  3279. >You’ll not die, you’ll only have to get creative with these webs.
  3280. >Energy... create a charge and remove one from the surface you’re about to touch.
  3281. >Positive charge in your hands and feet, negative charge on the underside of the carrier.
  3282. >Stupid Anon...
  3283. >No, sunset was the stupid one.
  3284. >She’s at fault.
  3285. >You’re swinging too fast...
  3286. “Fuck.”
  3287. >Your curse was lost in the wind as you change tactics and revert to rubber ball physics.
  3288. >You push off the helicarrier, still hanging onto the web, and swing back to the front of the aircraft.
  3289. >Okay, this time.
  3290. >You’re much slower, but you’ll still get to touch the surface.
  3291. >This time.
  3292. >Ready magnetic charge.
  3293. >You know how to do it theoretically, but you have to do it within a very small window of time.
  3294. >Otherwise you’d have to build up a really strong charge and have a north and south pole within yourself, and then you’d only stick to metal.
  3295. >Here goes nothing.
  3296. >You make contact with the bottom of the helicarrier.
  3297. >Slightly moist from and icy cold.
  3298. >Charge.
  3299. >And...
  3300. >You fall down.
  3301. >No-!
  3302. >Your downward momentum stops immediately though.
  3303. >You’re connected by you left palm to the helicarrier.
  3304. >It worked.
  3305. >You keep the focus and move your right hand up as well.
  3306. >Charge in every finger.
  3307. >It sticks.
  3308. >Okay, okay.
  3309. >Pull ups.
  3310. “Hnnngh.”
  3311. >You connect first one, then the second foot.
  3312. “Alright!”
  3313. >The howling of the wind makes your words inaudible yet again,  but you couldn’t help but voice your success.
  3314. >Now carefully let go with your hands.
  3315. >Focus!
  3316. >Only let go with your hands, not your feet...
  3317. >You slowly stand up.
  3318. >Feet firmly planted on the underside of the helicarrier.
  3319. >Blood’s rushing into your head, but you feel pride in you.
  3320. >You should have donned her suit too, maybe she’d get pissed.
  3321. >You smile to yourself.
  3322. “Anything you can do, I can do better.”
  3323. >Yeah, you’re Spider-Woman.
  3324.  
  3325. >Be Spitfire.
  3326. >Treehugger has everything she wants now.
  3327. >Access to the Wonderbolts and immunity for her actions.
  3328. >But you still don’t know if you can count it as a defeat or not.
  3329. >From now on she might constantly be there, applying her thumb to you, making you dance how she wants you to.
  3330. >You need to advance your own strategy, so far you know already.
  3331. >The aces up your sleeves are dropping fast, or at least you won’t be able to use them anymore.
  3332. >You know you can’t do anything on the helicarrier right now, in fact, it would be better to just avoid her directly.
  3333. >It’s what you hope people will assume. Those who are aware of your relationship to her beyond the surface pleasantries you exchanged over the call just now.
  3334. >Taking another few hours to yourself may look weird, but this time you let everyone know where you are going.
  3335. >Your personal history is not a secret, and you come here every once in a while anyway.
  3336. >The cemetery.
  3337. >The fact that once living, breathing people are buried here does not move you much.
  3338. >You’re a soldier, you fight for the people who are still alive, and it’s your believe that those who died are better served if you strive for the future.
  3339. >Or at least that’s what you’d like to believe.
  3340. >You’re almost successful in it too, but it gets to you you every time.
  3341. >Why does a name carved in stone in close proximity to decaying organic material have this effect?
  3342. >‘Sky Drop’ August 22nd 1976 - March 8th, 2008
  3343. >‘Fire Storm’ May 9th 2002 - March 8th, 2008
  3344. >You don’t know if they’d be happy or sad that you use the visit for another purpose.
  3345. >“Nice weather we’re having, isn’t it?”
  3346. >A young woman approaches you, carrying a big bouquet.
  3347. >You don’t face her but look up into the sky, looking what she meant.
  3348. >It’s cloudy, the sun only comes through occasionally, but it does not look like rain.
  3349. >“Rain itself is quite cliche,” she explains as she hands you the flowers, “while full sunshine, I believe, almost seems like it’s mocking us.”
  3350. “I see...”
  3351. >You take the flowers and smell them for a second before you lay them down to your families grave.
  3352. “Thank you for coming all the way out here, Roseluck.”
  3353. >“You’ve been a regular for more than seven years, Colonel.” Roseluck crouches down to the grave as well, taking the old bouquet away.
  3354. >“This one still have a little life in it.” she comments as she picks out one lily.
  3355. >They look all the same to you.
  3356. >Technically beheaded and out of water for a while.
  3357. >Dead, like most anything in the area.
  3358. >Roseluck moves her hand over the flowers head, obscuring it from your watchful eye.
  3359. >She twitches shortly as she quite obviously needs to exert herself.
  3360. >As she removes her hand again the flower was blooming once more, as if it had just been cut.
  3361. >You’ve seen enough extraordinary things that powers don’t catch you off guard.
  3362. >Yet seeing a whom you have known for half a decade and had investigated just show you powers was... odd.
  3363. >She’s loyal to Treehugger, that much is obvious from her work and the fact that she kept herself under such tight wraps for this long.
  3364. >“A gift. From me personally to you,” she hands you the lily, which you take almost automatically.
  3365. >Was it her decision?
  3366. “Thank you.”
  3367. >Why?
  3368. >Did she reveal her powers without Treehuggers knowledge?
  3369. >No, you just established that she’d be loyal.
  3370. >Does she want to change ship?
  3371. >Treehugger has all the cards in her hand except for-
  3372. >There was something written in really small letters on one of the lily’s leaves.
  3373. >Run.
  3374. >“Oh, and Treehugger wanted me to update you on your bill,” your head darts back to Roseluck, who was pulling a sheet of paper out of her bag and unfolding it. “You have a bouquet a week- huh.”
  3375. >She’s staring at the paper for a second, before looking through her bag again, “I must have brought the wrong invoice.”
  3376. >This is an invoice for the Wild Field Hotel in Seaside, Oregon.
  3377. >She held it up barely long enough for you to scan it too.
  3378. >You look down to the grave again.
  3379. >Husband, daughter, and one reserved spot.
  3380. >You linger on the last one.
  3381. “I need to go,” you slowly say.
  3382. >“Excuse me, what?” Roseluck faces you again.
  3383. “I need to go,” you remove yourself from the graveside and walk to your car at a fast pace.
  3384. >“Oh, well then- We’ll send the invoice to your office. Farewell.”, she calls after you.
  3385. >As you walk you get a grip on you try to look around, but not seem to paranoid about it.
  3386. >If they are watching you, you can’t give away that you know they are...
  3387. >Act natural.
  3388. >You haven’t been a field agent in a while, but one doesn’t forget how to do this.
  3389. “Secure vehic- on second thought, maybe not.”
  3390. >You take out a Laptop and headset. Using the cars interface would be to extravagant.
  3391. “Access company files, Camp Everfree, A safe house purchased approximately 3 years ago.”
  3392. >It quickly finds the folder in question, but takes a while until it opens.
  3393. “Search files for Wild Field hotel. And ah.. analyze text on scanned in bills as well.”
  3394. >The computer obeys and returns you a list of bills one by one.
  3395. >It’s slow, text analysis takes time.
  3396. >But your hunch was right.
  3397. >The Wild Field Hotel had been a customer of Everfree.
  3398. >Live flower decorations.
  3399. >Gloriosa Daisy had a good hand with the tree nursery and the flower fields.
  3400. >The same as Treehugger has...
  3401. >You close your eyes and rub your temples.
  3402. >They have had the same customer.
  3403. >Why did you even make the connection?
  3404. >When you open your eyes again you see a few letter at the end of the bills.
  3405. >You take a quick look over them.
  3406. >A lawsuit from some of the hotels guests.
  3407. >Withered flowers at a prestigious wedding reception.
  3408. >Ms. Daisy was charged to pay the damages the hotel already had to pay their guests for the ruined reception, and they even claim character assassination for their hotels image.
  3409. >You don’t read further.
  3410. >You remember the rest.
  3411. >Or at least enough to fill in the gaps.
  3412. >Ms. Daisy doesn’t make such mistakes, no, she could have fixed and flowers who had arrived in a withered condition.
  3413. >The easiest solution which comes to mind is sabotage.
  3414. >Sabotage by someone who coincidentally takes over the hotel as their client.
  3415. >Sabotage by someone who coincidentally can control flowers and make them wither.
  3416. >Sabotage by someone who has to gain if Gloriosa Daisy, an agropath, would be desperate.
  3417. >She faced losing her families lands.
  3418. >She could easily be indoctrinated to try and commit a crime with those powers to gain some money.
  3419. >As an agropath, she’d set off your red flags.
  3420. >Everyone familiar with those powers and the people who are able to use it.
  3421. >You dropped what you were doing and went out to do field work.
  3422. >You suspected Treehugger herself, but found a desperate young woman.
  3423. >She played you.
  3424. >Treehugger played you.
  3425. >She served you Ms. Daisy on a silver platter, knowing you wouldn’t be able to resist.
  3426. >You kept her off the record.
  3427. >A secret from everyone, even Sweetie Drops.
  3428. >If you have an agrooath in your pocket you could one day fight Treehugger and cancle out her powers.
  3429. >But she served her to you.
  3430. >You don’t know how, but somehow your secret trump card is actually some sort of trap.
  3431. >Why?
  3432. >What about Hamano?
  3433. >Stupid question.
  3434. >You picked your technopath up only three months afterwards.
  3435. >You let out a laugh.
  3436. “Run.”
  3437. >Roseluck’s personal advise to you.
  3438. >Well, before that, you need to pass the buck.
  3439. “Call Dr. King, Sombra. Secure line.”
  3440. >You lean back while the computer does it work and call is built.
  3441. >For your taste Sombra picks up too quickly.
  3442. >“Director Spitfire? What’s the matter? It’s odd for you to call me on a secure line.”
  3443. “Yes, I have a... kind of secret weapon, and in light of recent events I feel the need to share it.”
  3444. >“Is- what are you- No. Hold on for a moment.”
  3445. >You hear some rustling on his end.
  3446. >“Okay. Tell me what you need to. I’m listening.”
  3447. “Treehugger poses a threat, but not one I’m entirely unprepared for. Three years ago I recruited some super powered individuals who’d be able to best her, and I kept them off the books...”
  3448. >You begin to tell him everything involving these two talents.
  3449.  
  3450. >Triskelion, tenth floor, your office.
  3451. >You suppose you would have a good view over Washington, were the Wonderbolt’s logo not before you.
  3452. >Many people would be bothered by this.
  3453. >Not you though.
  3454. >You always thought of it as additional protection against snipers.
  3455. >Sure, it was made of a thin sheet of aluminum, or plastic even, it wouldn’t stop a bullet
  3456. >The mere visual cover would at least be bothersome to find a proper position for any would be assassin.
  3457. >“Director?”
  3458. “Hmm?”
  3459. >You turn from your view to the door, which had been opened without the perpetrator having knocked.
  3460. “Agent Fleetfoot, what a pleasant surprise. I thought you were in France?”
  3461. >“The Atlantic isn’t that big,” she shrugs and  pats her thighs, “And it was nice to use like... 40% of my power for once.”
  3462. >Fleetfoot. Power: Super Speed.
  3463. >The friction between skin to skin doesn’t affect her in a physical way though.
  3464. >Next to Misty Fly, Fleetfoot’s suit is the only one a comic book artist would have come up with.
  3465. >A leotard with with larger arm holes to remove yet fabric where friction may occur.
  3466. >You’d wish for less sexualization and more discretion within the Wonderbolts, to give off a better image of legitimacy and authority.
  3467. >But friction is not the first problem whe’d face when running fast, hence why a pair of goggles and ear protection count to her suit as well.
  3468. >Both items are currently resting on her neck.
  3469. >What’s missing is an oxygen tank she needs when actually going fast and she’d get in trouble breathing.
  3470. >Limits: while enhanced, her reaction time is still only human.
  3471. >Speed limit: through the speed, air is fusing before and on her body on a molecular level and she has to stop.
  3472. “40 Percent of your power? That’s oddly specific,” you give her a smile.
  3473. >Why is she here? Going to you directly before you get even informed of it?
  3474. >She’s supposed to be still on mission wrap up of Misty Fly, she’d not break protocol  that way.
  3475. >“Is it?” she wonders. “Yeah, I mean, I guess so, but... it’s just a saying, you know?”
  3476. >You sit down by your desk and gesture her to do the same.
  3477. “What leads you to me, Fleetfoot?”, you ask, barely looking at her as you access your computer and summon a security report of the building.
  3478. >“Oh, just- I had some time to pass. Oh! And there was a small meeting I should then fetch you for, but we still have time.”
  3479. “A meeting?”, you raise your eyebrows in surprise, “I don’t remember having something in my calendar, let me check.”
  3480. >You simultaneously adjust the security report to  be specifically about the tenth floor, while you access your calendar.
  3481. >There was an invitation to a meeting in 5 minutes which you have yet to accept, and the invitation itself was so fresh you haven’t even been notified.
  3482. “That’s kinda last second, and information here is kinda scarce,” you comment.
  3483. >All the info on the meeting was ‘meeting’, the time, location, and that it was flagged as ‘high important’.
  3484. >That and the attending members.
  3485. >“Well, yeah. Hence I was asked to come fetch you.”
  3486. >Fleetfoot for a fetch quest, when a peep on your pager would have done?
  3487. “If you don’t mind waiting, I’ll just finish something up real quick.”
  3488. >You cross reference the meetings members with the security report.
  3489. >Almost everyone was already in the meeting room, the others were out on the hall way, around the height of your office.
  3490. >Hmm...
  3491. >You check the offices next to you, which, at the moment, also house agents.
  3492. >Field agents, not bureaucrats.
  3493. >...
  3494. >Amateurs.
  3495. >They should have some false flags in operations at least.
  3496. >You look up to Fleetfoot who hasn’t stopped eyeing you.
  3497. >She’s usually more fidgety and would idly take in the honors and memorabilia in your office.
  3498. >This time she’s looking right at you for any signs of you knowing what’s going on.
  3499. “One more second.”
  3500. >You change the security report to the entrance hall.
  3501. >Civilians, nice.
  3502. >Guard duty?
  3503. >Not the sharpest tools in the shed.
  3504. >You look up to Fleetfoot once more
  3505. >You smile.
  3506. >Deviously this time.
  3507. >They should have checked your office before pulling this stunt.
  3508. >Maybe they thought you would immediately notice.
  3509. >Sure, you would have, but this leaves you with the exact advantage you need.
  3510. >Everything else you need is already on you anyway.
  3511. >You flick a switch and are greeted with the nice hum of electricity.
  3512. “Shall we begin?”
  3513.  
  3514. >You reach for the gun you have neatly on display on a metal plate on top of your desk.
  3515. >Fleetfoot was faster, of course, even if she had to cross the room first.
  3516. >Bad move on her part.
  3517. >She should have hit you, or at least flicked your hand away.
  3518. >Fortunately for you, she’s good-natured and only wants you to not become a threat... by going for your gun as well.
  3519. >Fleetfoot cries out in pain as soon as she makes contact with the metallic weapon.
  3520. >She closes a circuit with her body and is exposed to 400 Volts of alternating current.
  3521. >You have to pick up momentum for yourself though and not revel in this first small victory.
  3522. >The outcry causes the door to your office to burst open again, and armed agents to cautiously peek in.
  3523. >Good.
  3524. >Had they immediately entered, you wouldn’t have had the opportunity to flip your desk over for cover.
  3525. >Gosh, this thing is heavy.
  3526. >Having one arm in cast really decreases your chance of survival.
  3527. >But solid oak of that thickness at least slows a bullet down plenty.
  3528. >You quickly change your wrist mounted utility computer to assault mode and charge a tiny rocket.
  3529. >People rush into your room, “It’s over, traitor, we know all about your activities.”
  3530. >Traitor?
  3531. “Name calling? That’s not nice, Rumlow.”
  3532. >One of your windows is tilted, a small explosive should be able to weaken it enough to unhinge it.
  3533. >You need to stall for time as the explosive gets weapon ready.
  3534. “Fleetfoot here got an electric shock, if she ain’t dead she needs a hospital, sorry ‘bout that.”
  3535. >“As if you care about one death more or less on your head.”
  3536. >The footsteps get closer, and you throw a paperweight over your desk.
  3537. >In response they immediately dodge for cover. “Grenade!”
  3538. >Right on cue, you aim your arm up and shoot the window.
  3539. >You were able to close your eyes, but both of your hands were occupied and you weren’t able to cover your ears.
  3540. >There’s no time to lose.
  3541. >The smoke doesn’t need to clear for you to know your way around your office.
  3542. >Everyone else does so as to not shoot their own allies.
  3543. >You jump up on a file cabinet, kicking one of the memorabilia your PR-guy told you make you more human and approachable, and brace yourself against the ceiling.
  3544. >You kick onto the damaged window frame.
  3545. >Once.
  3546. >Twice.
  3547. >A volley rips through the air.
  3548. >One bullets connecting with your side.
  3549. >You flinch in pain, but you know you were hit to low to probably even break a rib.
  3550. >You can still kick the window, so you are doing that.
  3551. >When it gives in, you almost lose your footing.
  3552. >Just as you try to balance yourself, they shoot you again.
  3553. >A volley all over your back.
  3554. >You let yourself fall out of the window, landing ungracefully on one of the beams holding up the Wonderbolt’s logo.
  3555. >Any air has been successfully knocked out of your lungs.
  3556. >You’re gonna feel that tomorrow...
  3557. >Even while you’re catching your breath again you don’t waste the time.
  3558. >Wire...
  3559. >You quickly attach it to the beam and let yourself fall once more
  3560. >There’s only 50 feet in the utility computer on your wrist, that’s not gonna be enou-
  3561. >You look upwards to see if they try and follow you.
  3562. >Rumlow’s aiming down to you but he’s not shooting.
  3563. >The entrance hall is below you after all, and civilians could easily be hit.
  3564. >For a moment this puts your mind at ease, at least a little bit, but then he jumps out to the logo as well and going for the wire.
  3565. >Asshole.
  3566. >Freefall? How much more do you have? A couple stories until you hit the roof of the entrance hall?
  3567. >You let yourself down a little faster until the cord finally snaps.
  3568. >Plasma shield.
  3569. >You try to spin around mid-air and curl together to hide behind the shield you created.
  3570. >When Spider-Woman sparred with you at the camp you got away with only micro-fractures.
  3571. >You land on the glass roof of the entrance hall with the grace of a potato sack.
  3572. >Ouch.
  3573. >The pain in your arm now takes the edge of the pain in your back.
  3574. >You can’t slow down... you need to move.
  3575. >You lift your right hand, seeing it shaking before you, as you try and get up, yet the next problem becomes very apparent.
  3576. >The glass underneath you is cracking.
  3577. “Shit”, you barely hear your own curse from the ringing in your ears.
  3578. >Hearing is a small price to pay right now, you have worse ailments...
  3579. >And to make sure they don’t go lethal...
  3580. >You leap forward to the edge of the glass panel.
  3581. >That jump was the last bit of force needed to break it, but you’re glad it was at least in your control.
  3582. >You barely manage to grab a hold.
  3583. >And one of your arms is almost useless now.
  3584. >You’re feet are tangling down and you’re slipping.
  3585. >You have to go down anyway...
  3586. >It’s ‘only’ three stories high.
  3587. >You slowly let yourself slide off further.
  3588. >Glass shards... gotta keep those away from your throat...
  3589. >It scrapes over your good arm, slicing up your uniform, only leaving the protective fiber underneath.
  3590. >Until you only hang off from only your hand.
  3591. >The glass slices into your palm before you can let go.
  3592. >That’s bad. Full functionality of your right hand would have been more important than making sure you’re falling a few inches less.
  3593. >You had been able to let go on your own account so it was rather easy to twist around and once more let the shield absorb most of the shock.
  3594. >Breate, Spits, you’re close.
  3595. >Just breathe...
  3596. >You open your eyes to observe the damage.
  3597. >The cast on your left arm was almost completely destroyed, only holding together by the cloth it’s wrapped in.
  3598. >Blood was almost flowing out.
  3599. >Those bones are shattered.
  3600. >You know it.
  3601. >But you’re alive... for now.
  3602. >You barely recognize the world around you.
  3603. >Everything shrunk down to you.
  3604. >The pain.
  3605. >The glow of blood.
  3606. >Your heartbeat.
  3607. >Your jittery hand as you with which you wipe away shards of glass.
  3608. >There were people around you.
  3609. >If you could focus right now you might even believe that some were worried and want to help.
  3610. >But you can’t trust anyone right now.
  3611. >You need to get to your grandfathers statue.
  3612. >Monuments to heroes of World War Two.
  3613. >If you see an injustice you need to step up, especially if you’re the only one who can.
  3614. >Just... stand up...
  3615. >Literally.
  3616. >With every beat of your heart...
  3617. >Never mind the fact that with every pump that organ sends more of your precious life out of you.
  3618. >It also sends it to your legs as well...
  3619. >Where you need it.
  3620. >With every beat of your heart you manage to rise further.
  3621. >With every beat of your heart you manage to take another step.
  3622. >With every beat of your heart you get closer to... just another step of your plan.
  3623. >People around you...
  3624. >They try to support you in walking.
  3625. >They try to talk to you.
  3626. >You wouldn’t listen, even if you could hear right now.
  3627. >It’s invaluable.
  3628. >Whether they are on your side or not they’d want you to stop.
  3629. >To get help, or to be detained... or to be killed.
  3630. >But you can’t be killed in such an public place... can you?
  3631. >...
  3632. >Once at your destination you reach into your back pocket.
  3633. >A pair of brass knuckles... or that’s how they appear, at least.
  3634. >You can feel them getting excited as they come into contact with your blood.
  3635. >Good...
  3636. >You slip into one, let it tap onto your soul, and then move much differently.
  3637. >The artifact takes command of you for only a fraction of a second while your mind goes blank.
  3638. >When you come to again you’re kneeling in front of the statue with it’s marble base busted open.
  3639. >You whisper a small ‘thank you’ as you lean down further and take out your getaway stash.
  3640. >First... adrenaline syringe.
  3641. >Then, local anesthetic to your left hand.
  3642. >You should probably do it at your elbow, but you don’t want to be numb too far up.
  3643. >Next... tie off that arm so you don’t lose much more blood.
  3644. >Only then do you take the time to look around.
  3645. >The entrance hall is usually mostly empty, especially at this hour of the day.
  3646. >Yet still, everyone was here to stare at you.
  3647. >No guns were pointed at you though, so at least none of them were against you.
  3648. >Their mouths are moving.
  3649. >They are looking directly at you.
  3650. >But they are probably too scared right now to approach you anymore.
  3651. >You don’t hold it against them.
  3652. >You just crashed through the roof, you’re bloody, you busted open a monument, and you crammed two syringes into you right now.
  3653. >One does not see that every day.
  3654. >You wish that anesthetic would work faster.
  3655. >Can you wait it out?
  3656. >The light turns red, industrial shutters begin to seal off the doors and windows, and even you can hear the siren.
  3657. >Nope... you can’t wait it out.
  3658. >You reach for the techwear and sling it over your back, a painful reminder that you had been shot multiple times... how long ago exactly?
  3659. >It adjusts itself to the form of your back and shoulders, wrapping itself around your torso automatically.
  3660. >It’s not exactly your full suit, but the wings alone will have to do the job.
  3661. >Using the propulsion you lift yourself up from the ground and begin to run to the nearest window.
  3662. >You pick up your left arm and bite your thumb, keeping it up so the shield would protect you once more.
  3663. >You never turned it off and it’s already threatening to fizzle out, but if luck’s on your side you won’t have to take the window with your face.
  3664. >After only a few steps you’re able to take off into the air.
  3665. >Channeling your soul into the brass knuckle on your right hand once more you burst through the window with ease, well before the shutters were able to close the building off.
  3666. >When you come back to the Wonderbolts you need to install a faster lockdown...
  3667.  
  3668. >Calculations go through your mind.
  3669. >They need to lift their own lockdown and need to ready a chopper or jet.
  3670. >The way you are flying over D.C. right now is too obtrusive to its skyline too, you are not exactly well camouflaged.
  3671. >60 seconds.
  3672. >That’s all you give yourself for your initial escape.
  3673. >Get as much distance between you and the Triskelion as possible.
  3674. >Then look for a motorcycle to hijack.
  3675. >Fast and agile to dodge traffic
  3676. >Once again, distance is your goal, so you can drive in a straight line as well.
  3677. >But they’ll spot you soon enough too.
  3678. >Five minutes, not more.
  3679. >Next you need to look for some sort of disguise.
  3680. >Hat, coat.
  3681. >Fortunately for you it’s a quite cloudy day and that by itself won’t stand out.
  3682. >After that you’ll need a car, something which would obscure you more.
  3683. >They are not allowed to set up a proper perimeter.
  3684. >You chased after enough people to know their mistakes, but also how they’ll operate in finding you.
  3685. >They-
  3686. >Rocket!
  3687. >You dodge in almost the last second, the missile only zipping past you.
  3688. >The second after, however, it gives of a shockwave, and you feel your propulsion to die down.
  3689. >An EMP?
  3690. >They really mean it...
  3691. >With only one hand you’re only able to manually control one wing... you’ll have to crash.
  3692. >Gravity’s a harsh mistress to you today.
  3693. >At least this time you had a somewhat controlled decent and were able to roll off the momentum.
  3694. >Change of plans?
  3695. >No, you still need a motorcycle.
  3696. >Even if they have already set out a perimeter, you can’t just wait for them to stop you.
  3697. >Depends on how harshly they want to disrupt the everyday life in the capital city.
  3698. >...
  3699. >You’d do it if the booty you’re trying to catch is big enough.
  3700. >You’re worth it, aren’t you?
  3701. >Now where did that EMP came from?
  3702. >Your best shot was to go towards it in your search of a bike.
  3703. >Or would they expect you not doing the more intuitive thing?
  3704. >Whatever.
  3705. >You are too hopped on adrenaline to think about reverse psychology.
  3706. >You climb down the fire escape of the building you landed on.
  3707. >The outside, of course, you don’t have time for stairs.
  3708. >You have to risk your life to save your life, and the time you gain is worth it.
  3709. >The last floor you simply jump on a trash container and then off into the alley way before you run out to the street.
  3710. >You... don’t know that street.
  3711. >But you know the position of the sun, the time of day and therefore know where south is...
  3712. >You jog down the street, pacing yourself.
  3713. >While speed is one of your highest priorities, remaining able to fight was of a higher one, and you can’t exert yourself too much.
  3714. >People complain more about their mobile phone having turned off than they notice you jogging through the street covered in your own blood.
  3715. >Motorcycle, motorcycle, where arth thou?
  3716. >Your search gets interrupted by a strange rattling sound from behind you.
  3717. >Caterpillars? Construction or a tank? What?
  3718. >You look back.
  3719. >You misinterpreted the sound.
  3720. >Something comes rapidly towards you.
  3721. >Just a wheel?
  3722. >It tears up the asphalt as it makes contact with the street and you step aside.
  3723. >For a second you are reminded of the stories your grandfather would tell you about Captain America and his shield, but this is something else entirely.
  3724. >After it passes you it slows down, digging into the street more before it turns around to attempt to hit you again.
  3725. >Once more you manage to sidestep the object.
  3726. >As it had slowed down you were able to get a good look at it too.
  3727. >It was a gear wheel.
  3728. >A cog spinning similarly to a circular saw.
  3729. >It’s material, you could only guess. It looked like messing, like a pristine piece of machinery for show.
  3730. >And on the inside it glowed faintly blue.
  3731. “Fffffuck,” you curse as you look further back to the... thing which shot it at you.
  3732. >The gear reattaches to your enemies hips.
  3733. >It looks human in shape.
  3734. >Exoskeleton or robot?
  3735. >No... you were able to recall this sort of technology.
  3736. >An ancient merge of technology and magic.
  3737. >Clockwork.
  3738. >Which means that the technically correct term for your enemy was cyborg, a technologically enhanced human who had bits and pieces of himself replaced.
  3739. >That... is not a fight you can win.
  3740. >You’re know next to nothing about your enemy and you’re out of tricks.
  3741. >There’s no way you can aim a rocket with your left arm, and you’re not sure what a gun would do against it.
  3742. >Doesn’t mean you won’t try if it cones close enough.
  3743. >Ten shots, you’ll not be able to reload quickly in your current state...
  3744. >No, you can’t fight.
  3745. >Especially not that thing.
  3746. >It does make you smile though.
  3747. >The people who started this coup have supers at their disposal whom you don’t know about.
  3748. >Which means you had been at least right in your suspicion that there is a subgroup within the Wonderbolts.
  3749. >You thought it was changelings, trying to replace people one by one, but...
  3750. >Nothing matters if you die though.
  3751. >The figure taps its hips and lets loose another gear – no, three this time.
  3752. >Significantly harder to dodge, and... they change direction, homing in on you.
  3753. >Once again, the street underneath it is torn to shreds when the technomagical weapon touches down.
  3754. >You can use this.
  3755. >As the gears are following you, you only need to make sure they hit that manhole cover, so you position yourself atop of it.
  3756. >Now time this right...
  3757. >Waiting for the right moment you jump onto a nearby parked car, and further up into the air just as the gears go to pass underneath you.
  3758. >A move that was seemingly expected.
  3759. >One of the gears shoots up and into your back, digging into your flesh.
  3760. >You fall down, face-planting on a piece of destroyed asphalt.
  3761. >This time the pain was overwhelming.
  3762. >You can’t even move in time as you fall down the manhole.
  3763. >This might have been your destination, but...
  3764. >Splash.
  3765. >The water was only about a foot deep but your heads under water.
  3766. >Water...
  3767. >You’re in rainwater drainage.
  3768. >At least death doesn’t catch up to you in sewage...
  3769. >No...
  3770. >You can’t give up.
  3771. >You need to survive.
  3772. >Need to...
  3773. >... survive ...
  3774. >Your body convulses as it tries to take in some air, but your lungs only fill with water.
  3775. >Again, it tries to dictate your movement.
  3776. >You need to cough to get it out, sure... but that only works if you’re above water.
  3777. >And for a second or two you even manage to hold on once more, before you lose control.
  3778. >As every fiber of your being starts to realize you are about to die, the only thought left in you was how near air was.
  3779. >The spastic movements of your body manage to let you rise up and finally break free of the water.
  3780. >But only a single breath later, you’re underwater again.
  3781. >This plays on.
  3782. >An felt eternity later you managed to lean yourself against the drainage’s wall.
  3783. >Even in the dim light, you are able to see the blood flowing away from your back, arm and hand.
  3784. >You’re still coughing, and aware that this defensive mechanism and the adrenaline you’ve shot earlier were the only reason why you have not passed out yet.
  3785. >But there simply is too little blood left in you.
  3786. >You barely take note of the figure which jumped down next to you.
  3787. >It stood there, merely observing your struggle.
  3788. >Is it enjoying the show?
  3789. >Or is it too fused with a machine to have even a will of it’s own?
  3790. >You can only hope its purpose is to stand guard and not let you get away.
  3791. >Hope?
  3792. >Capture is your most likely scenario of survival right now.
  3793. >Rescue of a friendly party?
  3794. >Unlikely.
  3795. >Your eyes wander up the form of the clockwork cyborg.
  3796. >The figure is almost androgynous, but the shape of its legs and the slim waist let you guess on female.
  3797. >A big clock-key protrudes from the center of her upper back.
  3798. >At her hips hang three differently sized gears.
  3799. >They are not sharpened in any way, nor do they look as stable as to do the amount of damage they have done to the street up above.
  3800. >They look like regular oversized gears.
  3801. >She’s wearing a shirt, but from what you can see the entire right arm was replaced.
  3802. >It looks almost exposed.
  3803. >Fine bars, gears and screws are assembled to simulate a human arm in aesthetics.
  3804. >The things you knew about mechanic don’t give you any insight in how it may work.
  3805. >What you do assume is that it’s certainly not as fragile as it may look.
  3806. >On that note you wonder for a second how she looks inside.
  3807. >If the clock key has any function, it would cut through her spine.
  3808. >Your eyes go up further to meet hers.
  3809. >You had hoped she’d be looking at you coldly, or even with a sense of glee over your pain.
  3810. >Anything at all.
  3811. >But those purple eyes told of no emotion whatsoever.
  3812. “Just a wind up toy then?”, you ask her
  3813. >The last thing you notice before you pass out is her eyes twitching a little at your question.
  3814.  
  3815. >Be Anon.
  3816. >You’re drumming away some sweet sweet vidya music while your instrument is reading to you.
  3817. >“Magic, as ill-researched as it is, can, so far, be categorized by some of it’s aspects. The first one thereof being the source of the energy required to – quote – cast a spell – unquote. Mario bros. three, overworld, easy.”
  3818. “Which overworld?”, you inquire, pausing for a moment and starting over again. “Overworld 1 or 2?”
  3819. >“The regular one? So... 1?”, Sunset guesses.
  3820. “It’s 2, but yeah, the regular one. Overworld 1 would be on the map, it goes like this-”
  3821. >You change the tune you play by patting her ass to the theme one hears on the map.
  3822. >“You know I never played this game, right?”
  3823. “Continue reading.”
  3824. >“Hmhm...”, she grumbles a bit and continues, “The energy source can be -  and here comes a list. The casters essence – along with a bunch of cross-references to soul, chi, aura, and ahh... I don’t know how to pronounce that.“
  3825. >You pause Don McLeans American Pie.
  3826. “What is it that Equestrian magic does?”
  3827. >“We- I mean Equestrians use an abundance of magic in the atmosphere which originates from every living organism and the world. It’s everywhere in Equestria. With this classification it would probably fall into ‘world’, but... that’s only Equestrian magic in Equestria. It behaves differently here.”
  3828. “Oh? How so?”
  3829. >You lay yourself on her back, looking over her shoulder onto the tablet-PC to read with her.
  3830. >“For starters, there’s no magic here... Imagine it like... going to another world where organisms haven’t developed to have any ears because there is no sound. And you notice an unbearable silence until your ears deteriorate enough not not notice it anymore. No- that’s not a good way to start to explain it...”
  3831. “That sounds like a horror story.”
  3832. >“Maybe it is,” Sunset shrugs, “anyway, how would you explain music to someone who barely even accepts that sound exists? So, in Equestria, as a uni- as a magic caster you simply have to redirect the forces around you. They are channeled through your emotions and certain personality traits.”
  3833. “So... if angry then... smash?”
  3834. >“There are 24 different traits you can channel magic through, as there are only 24 true Elements for them. Anger for example is a negative emotion, and the opposite side of-”
  3835. “Anger’s not a negative emotion.”, you shake your head.
  3836. >“Uhh... yes it is?”
  3837. “No, anger, like fear and disgust keep us alive. It recognizes when we are treated unjustly. Anger’s a motivating force to act. The hunter and gatherer learns that ‘hey, if that guy has food, I must be able to acquire some too’ otherwise there’s a famine. Anger either motivates you to get your own share, or... well, acquire the other guy’s food.” you explain.
  3838. “Similarly it shows in our faces and warn others of our possible hostile intentions which makes them back off, avoiding a fight, something benefiting both parties. It also tells the observer that this person has been wronged and may make them inclined to share their food. Humans are social creatures.”
  3839. >“Nonono, anger is the negative aspect of temperance. The virtues we use of that kind are Kindness, Humility, Prudence and Self-Control and anger’s the polar opposite of that.”
  3840. “Well, anger’s the basis of justice on earth. Different teachings, huh?”, you wonder. “I’ve heard it in passing, but is Equestria really that peaceful that candy and sunshine grows on trees and unicorns shoot rainbows out of there asses?”
  3841. >“I- ahh... well... I guess.. we could do that if we wanted to...”
  3842. “Wait... do you have unicorns?”, you ask, “It’s called Equestria, so I guess you have some gist with horses right?”
  3843. >Sunset is quiet for a moment. “Ye-yeah, we have unicorns.”
  3844. “Nice,” you chuckle, wondering what it would be like to be on the back of a unicorn.
  3845. >But then again, you can’t ride a horse on earth either.
  3846. “Ever rode a unicorn?”
  3847. >“No!”, the answer came out like a squeak, before she changes her tone, “You’re the only thing I ever rode, Anon~”, with that she kisses your cheek.
  3848. “Not even a bicycle?”, you turn your head to her and lock lips with her.
  3849. >After a short little make out session you turn your attention back to the tablet.
  3850. “Hmm... witchcraft.”
  3851. >You click the link and the two of you return to studying the wonderbolts knowledge of magic.
  3852. >Turns out you can make deals with demons to tap into their powers.
  3853. >There are also magical artifacts of unknown origin which, when used, are powered by the users soul.
  3854. >Soul, essence, mana, and stuff like that are used interchangeably at times while they are seemingly differentiated at other times.
  3855. >Sources, incident descriptions or any evidence thereof were only accessible by request.
  3856. >Any other information which flowed in on you was either contradictory in itself or by some other information.
  3857.  
  3858. >“Anon West and Sunset Shimmer, please come to mission control room 8. Anon West and Sunset Shimmer, please come to mission control room 8.”
  3859. >Your cuddle-learning session was interrupted by mesege via the rooms intercom.
  3860. >You don’t believe that you guys were the only people to have been called out, which means this was a targeted message to this room.
  3861. >Which also means that they knew you are here... the both of you.
  3862. >Eh.
  3863. >You don’t mind them knowing you two are together.
  3864. >And you believe your drawing on her belly had been subtle enough.
  3865. >At least nobody had behaved any differently as far as you could tell.
  3866. >You wait through the debriefing of the Hurricane situation over France while everyone had yet to show up for the next mission.
  3867. >Misty Fly has been successfully captured while Princess Twilight is now  MIA by a, to that mission, third party, Midnight.
  3868. >Sunset worries about Twilight, and, while you don’t know the Princess, you do as well.
  3869. >Not just one specific Twilight.
  3870. >All three of them.
  3871. >But this wasn’t the reason for being called here.
  3872. >Trixie is the new mission.
  3873. >According to Treehugger she’ll be using Dr. Turner to build something and they’ll need raw material and some factories for it.
  3874. >The hurricane was meant to get such facilities evacuated so they can use them for a while without being bothered by anyone.
  3875. >This Trixie-Goddess doesn’t know her way around this reality, so she’s reliant on the information which is provided to her by Dr. Turner.
  3876. >While he is a proper genius, he has the same problem as Twilight has, he’s somewhat predictable.
  3877. >The raw materials and facilities needed combined with how dangerous their acquisition is can be put into an easy risk/reward scheme which will narrow the search down drastically.
  3878. >With a small number of places who store iridium, osmium and vibranium to begin with.
  3879. >“Am I too late?”, Synergy- no, Scarlet asks as she enters the room.
  3880. >“We barely started, just a small review of the information we have already had,” Agent whatshisname answers her, “A few people are still on their way as well.”
  3881. >“Oh, good.” Scarlet nods, looks quickly round the room and then goes to head towards you and Sunset.
  3882. >She’s wearing the Wonderbolt’s Spider-Woman suit (except the mask)
  3883. >What?
  3884. >You quickly look to your side to Sunset.
  3885. >Less tan, good, the real Sunset is next to you.
  3886. >Sunset looks... very displeased. “What are you wearing?”
  3887. >“What does it look like I’m wearing? You of all people should recognize it, Spidey.” Scarlet laughs, grabs a chair and seats herself next to you.
  3888. >She’s sitting on it the wrong way around, leaning over the chairs back, “We’re twins, everything you can do, I can do too, you know?” She’s mocking her. “Well, I can do stuff you can’t, but no hard feelings, right?”
  3889. >Hard feelings intensify.
  3890. >“You’re not Spider-Woman, I am!”, Sunset points to herself, “You cannot just- I- and- You can’t walk around without a mask on! It’s my identity!”
  3891. >“But I’m not revealing you to anyone.” Scarlet continues with a broad smile, pouring some proverbial oil into Sunset’s anger.
  3892. >“You-!” Sunset’s almost at a lack of words, only gesturing between herself and Scarlet, “We look the same.”
  3893. >“But it’s okay when you do it?” Scarlet asks coldly. Her entire demeanor has changed. “When you prance around and do stuff looking like /me/? Huh?”
  3894. >“Me? I didn’t do anything!”, Sunset defends herself.
  3895. >“Oh, yes you did. And don’t forget, I have more right to be here than you,” after a quick look around Scarlet adds, “Of twins, one is always an unwanted child.”
  3896. >Girls, girls. You’re both pretty, so stop.
  3897. >No, that...  fits, you need to diffuse the situation differently.
  3898. >“Hah? Unwanted!?” Sunset’s really pissed... “You ran away from Canterlot, just as- You didn’t want to be here. I did!”
  3899. “Bros, bros, you both have massive dicks, okay? Let’s put the measuring tapes away, it’s really not the time.”
  3900. >“As crude as Mr. West worded it, but he’s right, the both of you stop now and behave like professionals if you want to have any part in this operation.” Captain Silver says, “You are lucky you are not my subordinates or emotional outbursts like this will put you on suspension.”
  3901. >Why does everything ever has to go to shit?
  3902. >Why can’t we just play nice?
  3903. >You don’t have the faintest idea what Scarlet's problem was.
  3904. >So far she the poster child of temperance.
  3905. >When she let’s go of her staring match with Sunset her gaze meets yours, but immediately after she looks away awkwardly.
  3906. >What?
  3907. “Scarlet? What’s the matter?”
  3908. >“S-shut up. It has nothing to do with you.”
  3909. >Why would it?
  3910. >...
  3911. >The only reason for her to deny it is because that is exactly the case.
  3912. >It has something to do with you.
  3913. >Wait what?
  3914. >You’re confused.
  3915. >What has Sunset done with her body- oh.
  3916. >What?
  3917. >Processing...
  3918. >It’s like...  you saw her naked too...
  3919. >Your eyes trail down her body in the well fitting Spider-Woman outfit.
  3920. >Ahhh... yes.
  3921. >You keep staring at her until Sunset hits you from the side.
  3922. “Ouch.”
  3923. >“Okay, is everyone here yet? Good, You three,” the Captain points at you, Sunset and Scarlet “contain yourself. Let’s get this show on the road.”
  3924.  
  3925. >Be Time Turner.
  3926. >You’re working dutifully and almost without rest.
  3927. >The goddess... she showed you so much.
  3928. >It’s more than just knowledge.
  3929. >Truth.
  3930. >The real workings of the universe.
  3931. >You’ve been so wrong for so long.
  3932. >You’d feel bad for your former, but you don’t have the brain capacity to spare for something so meaningless.
  3933. >The goddess sees to you, she’s taken a special interest in you.
  3934. >She makes sure you’re well fed and rested so you can work as best for her as possible without straining yourself too much.
  3935. >You’d want more, but she stopped you.
  3936. >She needs you in the best state as you can possibly be.
  3937. >And you understand, of course.
  3938. >There is no arguing, no negotiating, no conflict, only understanding.
  3939. >As such you’ve worked better than ever before.
  3940. >You remodeled a generator which uses the Tesseract as a power source within only a day.
  3941. >On paper at least.
  3942. >Well, first of all you had to get it to function properly, and then build the channel on top of it.
  3943. >The necessary add-ons are easily assembled, and all that remains are some raw materials to stabilize the portal, lest it collapses in on itself.
  3944. >Misty Fly failed.
  3945. >Her distraction has already been solved by the Wonderbolts, but the Goddess is flexible.
  3946. >The only other distraction you came up with was to offer yourself up to cause mayhem, but she needs you.
  3947. >The Goddess needs you.
  3948. >You have a divine mission.
  3949. >Even if it means for the Goddess to give herself up and let herself be caught.
  3950. >Her adversary needs to be lured out of hiding.
  3951. >All which needs to be done later is to bust her out.
  3952. >A helicarrier is already on it’s way to Europe.
  3953. >Not even an insight-helicarrier, but the older prototypes thereof.
  3954. >It is not equipped with holding cells for Equestrian magic, not proper ones at least.
  3955. >Then again, there was no such thing as a proper cell for a Goddess.
  3956. >She is confident she can escape anything they but her in.
  3957. >Yes, yes, one distraction after the next.
  3958. >Your strategy works fine and will advanced continuously.
  3959. >All the Wonderbolts can do is to try and adapt...
  3960.  
  3961. >Be Anon.
  3962. >You get to fly in a combat prepped quinjet.
  3963. >A part of you wants to squeal in joy.
  3964. >Another part tells you that you’ve been in these before.
  3965. >To which the first part retorts that it has never been a combat prepped quinjet in pristine condition on official mission before.
  3966. >Then you have to remind yourself that you are still just a passenger.
  3967. >Not on the jet, you are going into that mission as a combatant, but you are still a passenger in your own story.
  3968. >You have lost all grip on the world around you and are only swayed by the current, helpless to the movement of the boat you’re in.
  3969. >And you may have confused one or two metaphors there.
  3970. >Can you be content just being with Sunset as long as it lasts?
  3971. >Make every second count?
  3972. >Not just once, but all three times you’ve *chrm* had sex with her on that helicarrier you’ve pulled out even though impregnating her always pops up in the back of your mind as well.
  3973. >And you have to ask yourself what the fuck is wrong with you.
  3974. >Do you honestly assume that ‘your love’ or a child born of it will not disrupt realities even more if it has no idea where it would belong.
  3975. >On top of that you’re not even sure if what you two are feeling for one another is really love.
  3976. >You’re infatuated alright, you like one another, you’re going through times of high adrenaline together.
  3977. >But love?
  3978. >You may be a romantic, but you’d like to believe love is a little more than that.
  3979. >Should you talk to sunset about this?
  3980. >...
  3981. >Yes, you should.
  3982. >Will you though?
  3983. >Nah.
  3984. >Wouldn’t be worth the hassle.
  3985. >Last thing she needs is being told that her feelings are not returned in the extent same extent she feels.
  3986. >Are you protecting her that way?
  3987. >Or abusing her?
  3988. >You genuinely like her, so you’re not using her feelings for you to get sex.
  3989. >If anything, she’s the one with the heightened libido.
  3990. >Oh god, you’re not a good match with her at all.
  3991. >In this train of thought you realize that you don’t love her.
  3992. >You would want to.
  3993. >But...
  3994. >Sunset tilts her head to the side, resting it on your shoulder.
  3995. >Almost automatically you remove a strand of her hair from her face and tuck it away behind her ear.
  3996. >These are still loving gestures.
  3997. >However, the emotion behind it...
  3998. >“What’s the matter?”, she asks quietly.
  3999. “Just thinking,” you answer and give her a weak smile, “Let’s not be that couple that compromises a mission by talking about their feelings, alright?”
  4000. >“Yeah...”
  4001. >You can tell that she’s thinking intensely about something too.
  4002. >There is not a small amount to be thinking about.
  4003. >Most of the time your mind settles on one of the three Twilights.
  4004. >It was really nice to talk to her again, even if she was a lich now.
  4005. >What you know is that she can’t lead a life like this.
  4006. >There is simply too little information about her to make any assumptions about how she’ll do.
  4007. >Will she rot away?
  4008. >Will it hurt?
  4009. >Will she beg someone to kill her?
  4010. >Would it even work, given her undead nature?
  4011. >And if she would recover... how?
  4012. >The universe isn’t as nice as to simply let things fall into place.
  4013. >And Midnight...
  4014. >Twilight had seemingly gone super-villain before, but back then couldn’t keep it up for more than 15 minutes.
  4015. >As Twilich informed you she had been seeing Midnight ever since that on occasion.
  4016. >Nobody knows yet what Midnight really is.
  4017. >Just a figment of Twilight Sparkles personality, and, after being brainwashed by Starlight (who can stick her ‘sorry’ where the sun doesn’t shine) it got dominant.
  4018. >Or she might have been her own entity to begin with, and now, after Twilight’s death and departure of soul, she was able to take over the body.
  4019. >Which still leaves the million dollar question.
  4020. >Then who the fuck is Twilich?
  4021. >It’s Twilight’s original, reanimated corpse, that much is certain.
  4022. >As little as you know about souls, if they even exist, but all evidence points to them existing...
  4023. >What you assume is that a soul can’t just copy itself, or split itself up into multiple pieces, each controlling their own bodies.
  4024. >That’s...
  4025. >All you have is questions and assumptions.
  4026. >Scarlet and Treehugger might know stuff about souls, but you doubt even they have answers to the questions plaguing your mind in that regard.
  4027. >And it is an important question, because if Midnight is not, in fact, Twilight Sparkle, then you have no idea who she is.
  4028. >If she is, then, you know her patterns, the little things she does, the way she makes notes in the lab, and even what she’ll make of certain information.
  4029. >She’s somewhat predictable.
  4030. >You also know that she would never kill Princess Twilight.
  4031. >But like this... the princess’ survival is not certain.
  4032. >And, if things have to g back to their own realities, you don’t know what effect it would have if one of the things which is required to return would die.
  4033. >Would her soul go to your realities heaven?
  4034. >Is there such a thing?
  4035. >You have so infuriatingly little information.
  4036. >“Alright, Ladies and Gents, we have positive facial recognition of Trixie,” Captain Silver says as she, “As predicted, she wasn’t exactly hiding. We, along with two other teams will see if we can take her prisoner. She’s the number one most wanted. And alive, people. No matter what crimes she commits in our jurisdiction, she’s still a foreigner of a potential ally which needs to be kept happy at- well, not all costs, but yes, we are to calculate collateral damage.”
  4037. >Catch her, don’t kill her, even if she kills you.
  4038.  
  4039. >The jet, and two others, take a detour towards Stuttgart to intercept Trixie.
  4040. >With every passing minute your panic increases.
  4041. >Silver pretty much said to sacrifice your own life if necessary.
  4042. >You’re not ready to give your life.
  4043. >You’re not ready to be in a situation to risk your life.
  4044. >It was a bad idea.
  4045. >Shit shit shit.
  4046. >If you bail... you’ll look like an idiot and coward forever.
  4047. >If you go through you might mess up everything, Trixie will stay in this reality forever, or at least until both realities collapse and get yourself killed in the process.
  4048. >Like gruesomely killed.
  4049. >Not in the ‘reality ceases to exist’-kind of killed.
  4050. >Come to think if it... would that hurt?
  4051. >Will it be like a popping bubble in an instant or will your atoms be ripped apart one by one?
  4052. >NO!
  4053. >Focus!
  4054. >Mission at hand.
  4055. >You’ll do your best not to be in anyone’s way and not get killed simultaneously.
  4056. >It’s easy.
  4057. >You’re avoiding getting killed all the time.
  4058. >Heck, not getting killed is one of your favorite things to do!
  4059. >Oh, who are you kidding?
  4060. >You’re terrified.
  4061. >The only thing that’s calming you is that she calls herself a goddess.
  4062. >People who are that full of themselves can’t be that powerful, can they?
  4063. >She’s obviously compensating...
  4064. >Yeah, no...
  4065. >She’s wielding magic you don’t know the first thing about it, and from what you can hear it she has an immense fucking wiener.
  4066. >Okay, okay.
  4067. >You have a healing factor, getting yourself killed by normal means is not so easy.
  4068. >You can survive quite a few things others wouldn’t be able to do.
  4069. >And you remember that Trixie is supposedly a friend of Princess Twilight.
  4070. >A friend.
  4071. >So... she might be reasoned with.
  4072. >Hey, you, Trixie. Would you mind giving back that infinity stone you stole? Thank you.
  4073. >No, that won’t work
  4074. >Does she even know what it does?
  4075. >Wait, do you?
  4076. >You know it can connect to any point in the universe and draw energy from there, so basically it’s a portal and a power source.
  4077. >And... it’s where the alternate reality connects from.
  4078. >Huh.
  4079. >there’s a reality gem, right?
  4080. >Shouldn’t the reality gem do exactly that?
  4081. >Connect two realities?
  4082. >Is there a reality gem in the other reality as well?
  4083. >Are they like a bus stop?
  4084. >Hmm, no. Something doesn’t really add up.
  4085. >The space gem...
  4086. >Maybe... if... you are in a similar position in the other reality then the coordinates to which you open a trans-dimensional portal connect the easiest to the one point in space which IS the space gem?
  4087. >Wouldn’t that mean there’s an infinite amount of realities out there which would be able to simply portal to an infinite amount of space gems?
  4088. >You wonder what happens if you take the gems from one reality to another.
  4089. >It probably doesn’t work.
  4090. >As you remember it Treehugger wasn’t able to take the time gem with her when she went back in time, so there’s only one time gem per time-stream. Wouldn’t that mean there is only one set of infinity gems per reality/time stream as well?
  4091. >You’re not committing some logical fallacies. You know these are only assumptions, and in no way have to reflect this reality or any other.
  4092. >Wait, if there is an infinite amount of reality, wouldn’t that mean there’s a reality in which those rules are different?
  4093. >No.
  4094. >There is not an infinite amount of realities.
  4095. >It’s finite.
  4096. >Because there is some fate-force which tries to keep all realities in line and tries to get them to converge again.
  4097. >Which is why Sunset and Scarlet got a haircut at the same time for the same reason, but both thought they did so independently from one another.
  4098. >Wait...
  4099. >What if the tear in the two realities simply means that they are about to merge? That would be-
  4100. >Bad.
  4101. >From what you can figure this is not a controlled scenario.
  4102. >Even if the realities come crashing together and form one reality, that would still mean that half of the people would die.
  4103. >There can only be one of each person, right?
  4104. >Unless the people are merged themselves, but then they would be neither one of the original ones and both are figuratively dead.
  4105. >What about those who don’t have a counterpart?
  4106. >Like people who hatched from a fucking birthing pod after they were brewed up in a lab.
  4107. >Shit, shit, shit.
  4108. >You’re thinking about your own demise again.
  4109. >What were you trying to distract yourself from again?
  4110. >Oh yeah...
  4111. >Your other imminent demise.
  4112.  
  4113. >“Die Wunderboltzen werden dir den Arsch mächtig aufreissen, Mädchen,“ an old man steps up against the faux goddess.
  4114. >“Oh, Ich habe keinen Zweifel daran, dass sie versuchen werden ihre tolle Weltansicht mit Gewalt zu beschützen. Die Amerikaner halt. Was erwarten wir auch Anderes?“
  4115. >Trixie laughs goldenly.
  4116. >Even hearing that sound over the jet’s speakers makes you want to throw up.
  4117. >Too fake and gay.
  4118. >It’s like the laugh only a voice actor would make for some over the top, grotesquiely evil character which the animators still draw pretty, and from which is tons or R34 porn online.
  4119. >To think such a person could exist...
  4120. >No, you rather not.
  4121. >At least you now have motivation to fight her.
  4122. >You really want to give her a proper bitchslap.
  4123. >...
  4124. >Okay, now you know why there is so much R34 of such characters in bdsm settings.
  4125. >Fucking gross.
  4126. >“We have no idea what will happen if we uncloak or try to tranquilize her from out of stealth.” Captain Silver states the obvious. “According to the Midnight-report people with Equestrian magic get like a magical surge once they find themselves in a life or death situation.”
  4127. >Yes, great.
  4128. >“She however proclaimed her disdain for us ‘americans’ to protect our worldview with violence,” Treehugger translates the german in which Trixie spoke. “I suggest the attempt of a diplomatic solutions. I-” She looks to you and Sunset. “-count three healing factors in here. While I can only speak for myself, I’d volunteer to approach her.”
  4129. >Bitch you what?
  4130. >Sunset nods. “I’d like to go in as well. I believe I’m the one in here who knows the most about magic and can... assess the situation better hands on.” She bites her lip for a moment. “I also have a sense of danger and good reflexes.”
  4131. >Some muttering goes through the jet with slight approval until the rest of them looks at you.
  4132. “I- I volunteer as tribute?”, you say, unsure of yourself, “I can like make a cocoon over me and a few others which is pretty resilient – at least against bullets. I don’t know how it will do against magic tho.”
  4133. >Two carries, and you’re Support.
  4134. >Splendid.
  4135. >Silver thinks for a moment before nodding. “The jet’s weaponry is too heavy for the urban environment and we’d like to minimize casualties. Barton will have your back.”
  4136. >And bow and arrow guy’s your assassin jungler.
  4137. >What’s his super power anyway?
  4138. >Farsightedness?
  4139. >Okay, you should give him more credit.
  4140. >Just because he can see a target doesn’t mean he’s gonna hit it too.
  4141. >A certain level of skill is involved.
  4142. >...
  4143. >Said the guy who has a built in heads up display which would calculate wind speed as well.
  4144. >You’re such a cheater.
  4145. >You’re the last guy who should go down there.
  4146. >You don’t belong here among these heroes.
  4147. >Everyone around you either has non-cheating powers.
  4148. >And, of course, the bravery to even jump into battle.
  4149. >Maybe Spitfire’s assessment of you is correct.
  4150. >You are halfway to a super villain.
  4151.  
  4152. >Landfall.
  4153. >Treehugger, Sunset and you touch down just outside of Trixie’s imminent field of view.
  4154. “What’s the plan again?”
  4155. >“Talk to test the waters.” Treehugger explains, “Calling her out on her hypocrisy, as she is the one who stole the Tesseract in the first place and started a series of events which caused people to lose their lives.”
  4156. “Is that a good idea? To potentially anger her?”
  4157. >“That’s why I’m testing the waters first... Sunset, what’s your read on her power-level?”
  4158. >“I’m not that sensitive to Equestrian magic. I feel nothing, but no matter the answer, we’ll have to outwit her. There are too many people nearby.”
  4159. “Sunset’s right, mom. We can’t fight here...” You look over the crowd. “And if we do we’ll have to try and soak in all the damage.”
  4160. >“Easier said than done...” Treehugger shakes her head. “Well, I have a method of approach.”
  4161. >She casually turns the corner towards the scene.
  4162. >The multiple copies of Trixies who were just argumenting with the crowd in German turn to Treehugger.
  4163. >“And here we have the Americans! Set the stage!” she announces theatrically.
  4164. >“I was actually born in Germany, spent most of my life here too. Rosenheim, Munich, fun places.”
  4165. >“But you are the Wonderbolts brave little puppy. A bloodhound they sent for-”
  4166. >“Not a Wonderbolt either, and Spidey here’s an Equestrian.” Treehugger explains while not stopping her steps, continuously going towards Trixie without fear.
  4167. >She’s trying to gain control of the conversation, forcing Trixie in the defensive while riling her curiosity.
  4168. >Suddenly you have something she might want to know.
  4169. >With which you can bargain.
  4170. >Right now she’s not doing anything, but contemplate Treehuggers words.
  4171. “You said you don’t want to solve a problem with violence, right?” you speak up, raising your hands, showing you have no weapon.
  4172. >Not that the gesture would be necessary.
  4173. >Not if you can grow a blade from your hands.
  4174. >That sounds kinda badass if you think about it.
  4175. >Doesn’t mean you’re not still somewhat of a coward.
  4176. >“He’s right, you want to talk, right?”, Sunset asks. “You don’t need any hos- any spectators.”
  4177. >Trixie looks back to the crowd. “No spectators, you say? Oh, but why not?”
  4178. >She’s planning to keep her hostages.
  4179. >Of course, she is.
  4180. >“You stole something.”
  4181. >“The Great and Powerful Trixie has only taken on something that most certainly does not belong in the hands of the Wonderbolts!”, she talks about herself in third person.
  4182. “There were casualties, Trixie”, you tell her, “People died through your actions. Not exactly in the spirit of non-violence as you say.”
  4183. >Shit, you shouldn’t have said anything.
  4184. >Now she’s staring at you.
  4185. >Like you were prey she’d like to hunt.
  4186. >You’re getting some major creepy vibes from her.
  4187. >“People died, Trixie!” Sunset gives a piece of her mind as well. “People who were only doing their job.”
  4188. >“They conducted experiments with divine power!” the wannabe goddess exclaims, “A power that would have killed them all by itself for their transgressions.”
  4189. >Either she’s talking herself out of stuff, or she knows the Tesseract to be a much more powerful item than the Wonderbolts assume.
  4190. >Or both, of course.
  4191. “So you punish them? Without a sort of trial?” you ask. “That’s not how we do justice here on Earth!”
  4192. >“Yes, yes. You rely on each other to do what’s best for one another, isn’t that right?” She rhetorically asks back. “You can’t trust other humans to know what’s best, you are a very primitive species, but that’s why I’m here, to give you some guidance.”
  4193. >At this point you have to wonder if she actually means what she says.
  4194. >On one hand you see the benefit of a totalitarian regime under a divine immortal ruler who is incorruptible and can’t be assassinated.
  4195. >On the other hand... that’s not exactly what she’s doing, is she?
  4196. >Oh, and it would also be very unamerican.
  4197. >Trixie just smiles and plays with her weapon, an impressive halberd/spear thingy with a glowing rock as a power source, powering... whatever.
  4198. >You’re not sure you want to find out.
  4199. >“Guidance?” Treehugger asks. “Earth is not a perfect place, but it’s ours. You claim to not like violence. Then show it. Come with us peacefully and we can talk. Show us how you’d like to guide us. Shouldn’t we be able to chose for ourselves?”
  4200. >“The American is right!”, someone just in the front of Trixie’s walled of people shout.
  4201. >“I håb scho g’sagt i wär in Deutschland g’bor’n.”
  4202. >“I understand English just fine”, he retorts before turning to Trixie again, “We’re a democracy. We have elections. We decide for ourselves!”
  4203. >“Let them go, Trixie!”
  4204. >“Yeah, let us go, we listened to your stuff long enough!”
  4205. >Starting as murmurs the crowd soon chants for Trixie to let them go, and, to your surprise, she raises the spear, causing the gem inside of it to glow, and all copies of her disappear into the one Trixie standing before you.
  4206. >This gave the crowd the opportunity to run away in all other directions.
  4207. >“Good move.” Treehugger comments before she sees the goddess spinning the spear around once more and firing off an energy blast.
  4208.  
  4209. “Mom!”
  4210. >You rush to Treehugger as Sunset engages with Trixie.
  4211. “Mom.”
  4212. >Shit shit shit, she went down.
  4213. >“It’s ok, Anon...” she groans as she rolls over to support herself on all fours, “Ahh... that hurts...”
  4214. >The wound on her sides still fizzles with some cyan energy but quickly disappears, leaving behind, what looks like a bad burn.
  4215. >Nanites are quickly flowing out of her body and discarding the scorched material while simultaneously sealing the wound until only a red shimmer remains.
  4216. >“Pay attention!” she commands, forcing your head to the fight between Trixie and Sunset, “I’ll heal, I’ll be fine.”
  4217. >Trixie has taken to the air with Sunset hanging from some webbing underneath her.
  4218. >Another web flies downwards to the ground.
  4219. >Trixie, however, immediately realizes that she’d be locked to the ground now and begins to fire at what she deems to be the weakest link of the two web lines.
  4220. >The person holding them together, Sunset.
  4221. >She lets go of the lower webbing and swings under Trixie, shooting a few lines of webbing to the ground at other places and tying them with the one holding the goddess together.
  4222. >All of that she does gracefully while dodging blasts of magical energy.
  4223. >“Get the scepter!” Treehugger shouts out to Sunset and you look up to your enemy again.
  4224. >Princess Twilight didn’t need a tool to cast magic and neither did the Equestrian Starlight.
  4225. >Would it be different for Trixie?
  4226. >“Help me to that tree over there, Anon,” Treehugger asks as you’re supporting her to stand again.
  4227. >Given how bad-ass she can be, she’s also a frail old woman, and with the nanites busy fixing her magical wound...
  4228. “Sure... tree...”
  4229. >You’re worried about her.
  4230. >A day ago she seemed impossible to bring down.
  4231. >Now all it took was one attack.
  4232. >Her powerlevel is all over the place.
  4233. >While you help her get to the tree you continue to watch Sunset fight.
  4234. >Trixie’s now rapidly firing at her, not a very efficient tactic, as Sunset can easily dodge them.
  4235. >This does, however, not give Sunset any opportunity to counterattack.
  4236. >Thankfully Trixie’s stupid enough to remain in place and not flee.
  4237. “Bow and arrow guy, where’s your air support?”, you shout into the com given to you.
  4238. >“The name’s Barton, and-”
  4239. “Nobody cares!”
  4240. >“Spider-Woman, can you try to web her down again?”
  4241. >“Kinda busy trying not to die!”
  4242. >As soon as Treehugger reaches the greenery it erupts, spewing dirt everywhere while the tree implanted for decor there grows in size immensely.
  4243. >It winds around like a snake, shooting for Trixie.
  4244. >She attempts to dodge only for the tree to branch out and grab a hold of her.
  4245. >For a few seconds you’re not able to see anything until most of the tree withers away and drops down a red spikey... fruit?
  4246. >A chestnut.
  4247. >An enormous and metallic one at that.
  4248. >Partially made from nanites, you figure.
  4249. “No, mom, you need them to-”
  4250. >“It’s necessary, Anon.” Treehugger interrupts you, “I’ll manage.”
  4251. >She lost a lot of nanites only to you, now she needs to focus on keeping Trixie imprisoned.
  4252. >Slowly you look down to her wound to see it bleed.
  4253. “Mom...”
  4254. >“It’s okay, Anon...”, she tells you once more before tapping her com. “Proper restraints, now!”
  4255. >“Equestrian containment unit fully operational, we’re in position any second” you hear captain Silver’s voice through your own com. “dropping the load.
  4256. >The jet turns visible as the prison drops from the sky.
  4257. >Like a cup with which to catch a bug it goes over Trixie’s chestnut.
  4258. >Then it folds out part of its walls and surges them down, cutting through the asphalt, completely sealing its contents.
  4259. >Kinda awesome to watch.
  4260. >Only after “Package secure.” can be heard over the intercoms, Treehugger allows herself to go down.
  4261. “Mom!”
  4262. >“I’m fine, Anon. Just a little... anemic.”
  4263. “Anemic, uhuh...”, you repeat, not convinced of the assessment of her own condition, “You don’t need to lie, you know?”
  4264. >“I am going to be fine though, Anon.”, she gives you a pained smile, “Would you grab that scepter for me, please?”
  4265. “Scepter?”, you frown, and look in the direction in which she nods.
  4266. >Trixie’s spear-thingy is now embedded into the tree.
  4267. “Powerful space weapon?” you ask as you let her lean against the tree more and stand up. “Neat.”
  4268. >Your hand goes out to it but you stop before touching it.
  4269. “Is it safe?”
  4270. >“It’s just a tool, Anon.”
  4271. “A tool, huh?”
  4272. >That’s one way to describe a weapon.
  4273. >You touch it’s smooth shaft, expecting to have some power flow through you.
  4274. >However, it was just plain metal.
  4275. >A little warm, nice to the touch.
  4276. >But seemingly nothing special.
  4277. >Besides the glowing gem embedded into it.
  4278. >You spin it around once to test its weight-
  4279. >“Try not to point it at anyone.”
  4280. “Yep.”
  4281. >You immediately stop playing with it and put it upright again as Sunset jogs over to you.
  4282. >“Did we get some nice loot?”
  4283. “Girl, you were awesome!”, you tell her, “I’ve never seen you fight up close- I mean, yeah I did..., but, you know, never from a spectators point of view-”
  4284. >“Yeah, and what good help you were.” she answers sarcastically.
  4285. “She was flying! I can’t fly. And my mom got hurt, my mind was kinda preoccupied before I could think of anything...”
  4286. >Treehugger chimes into your conversation. “Anon can’t yet easily switch his gears into combat, Ms. Shimmer. What can I say? He’s a lover, not a fighter.”
  4287. “Moooom!”
  4288. >“That he is,” Sunset giggles.
  4289. “Sunset!”
  4290. >Both of the women laugh harder.
  4291. >You’re the victim of another joke, yay.
  4292. “I don’t want to play down your accomplishments, but... was that it? Wasn’t that kinda easy?”
  4293. >Treehugger shakes her head. “The Tesseract’s still out there, as is a mind controlled Dr. Turner who worked on Trixies behalf. No, this is not over.”
  4294. “Oh, yeah.”
  4295. >Of course...
  4296.  
  4297. chapter 1: https://pastebin.com/P4Mawhsw
  4298. chapter 2: https://pastebin.com/pGJV6pUZ
  4299. chapter 3: https://pastebin.com/fYHRDTA3 (you are here)
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