Here we go!

Mike paced around the concrete floor of the house's garage. His truck and Megan's truck were both parked in the driveway, leaving the garage empty for him and his tools. He picked a clipboard up off the bench and skimmed a list of minor chores he had written for himself the night before after returning from the Gala and recovering from the teleportation back home. A radio was turned on, tuned to K-Colt. It was playing some nice background music from a band called the Rocking Beats and the occasional news bite.

A small black car pulled over in front of the house, catching his attention. It stopped and a young woman in a black suit stepped out. She had long, blond hair that fell almost to her hips, violet eyes that seemed to take in everything and a somewhat serious expression betrayed by a twinkle in said eyes. Her suit was conservative; a knee-length skirt, flats and a buttoned-up jacket. "Mister Richards?" she said, stopping at the foot of the driveway. "My name is Minerva Yamamoto. I'm with the State Department." She reached into her jacket and pulled out an ID.

Mike's Adam's apple bobbed up and down before he walked down the driveway to Minerva and extended a hand. "Hello," he croaked out, reaching out and taking the ID from her. He looked it over before handing it back with a slightly trembling, somewhat grease-stained hand. He looked over his shoulder and up at the Rainbow Bridge, barely visible from this angle. "Sorry, Megan's... not home at the moment," he said, extending his hand once more to her.

A smile graced Minerva's features as she grabbed Mike's hand and pumped it twice. "That's fine. This is for you as well as her." She spread her arms out. "First off, I'd like to apologize to you and your family on behalf of President Abernathy for not getting in contact with you before now concerning the Rainbow Bridge. Chip Chase had quite a bit of information for us to digest. This is also a somewhat unique first-contact scenario, as this isn't technically the 'first' meeting between our two worlds. Not to mention them being right in our backyard, figuratively and literally," she said, chuckling.

A shaky laugh came from Mike. "W-well, Megan just wanted to help her friends out when they were in trouble."

Minerva nodded as she slid her hand out of Mike's grasp. "An admirable goal." She held her hands up. "Mister Richards, I swear to you. None of your family is in trouble in any way. My bosses are quite keen at this running as smoothly as possible. And as far as we can tell, no laws were broken."

Mike let out a breath and his shoulders lowered. "Thank you, Miss Yamamoto. I'm sorry. This is a bit overwhelming for me."

Minerva nodded and clasped her hands together on her abdomen. "That's fine, and please call me Minerva."

"Then no 'Mister Richards' for me," Mike replied.

Minerva smiled. "Well then, Mike, President Abernathy and the head of the National Security Council, Philip Provost, would like me to extend an invitation to the Diarchs and Equestria for the opening of diplomatic relations and even trade. There are also a few things to discuss with you and your family, but that can wait for everyone to be gathered together."

Mike rubbed his chin. "Well, Danny, Molly and I were planning on heading over for dinner about four o'clock. It's a near certainty Princess Celestia will be there at least. Luna would probably show up, too. Can you come over, then?"

Minerva rubbed her chin, leaving a small smudge of grease there. "I can be there for that," she muttered. She smiled at Mike and nodded to him. "Thank you, Mike. I'll be back in a few hours." She nodded to him before turning and walking back to her car.

Mike waved to her. "Minerva!" he called out. He waited for her to turn around before motioning to his chin. "There's a little smudge from..." He held up his hand, showing the grease still there.

Minerva looked at the palm of her hand, then tossed Mike an informal salute. "I'll wipe up before heading back to Washington." And with that, she opened the door and stepped inside.

The young agent pulled out a cell phone from her pocket, dialing a number. After a minute of extensions and answering services, she finally connected. "Mister Provost, this is Agent Yamamoto. I'll be having a meeting with the Diarchs later this afternoon. Yes, yes. I'm cautiously optimistic about the meeting. I'll make the offer then. Thank you. I won't let you down."

Megan paced in front of her daughters, arms clasped behind her back while Celestia and Luna observed them. "You six will be all right?" she asked, stopping in front of Danielle and Michelle.

Danielle held up a hand. "I know saying not to worry is pretty fruitless, but we'll be careful." She looked to the fillies standing next to them. "Right?"

Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle, Applebloom and Dinky all smiled, the light playing a visual trick as a halo seemed to form around their ears.

Megan blinked and rubbed her eyes. "Right, right." She hugged Danielle, then Michelle before turning to the other four. "No tree sap this time?"

Applebloom let loose with a nervous chuckle. "Well, I cain't promise anything, Megan. But we'll sure as heck try!"

Scootaloo groaned and sat back on her haunches. "But we need to do something really cool to get our cutie marks!"

Megan stared at the pegasus for a moment before looking back to her daughters. "It's not too late to get Twilight back and have her teleport you back to the house."

"Even though she passed out after getting us here?" Danielle deadpanned.

Megan waved her off. "Spike and I will pump her full of coffee. We can, I don't know, look up some old episodes of Mister Rogers on Youtube!" she exclaimed, throwing her arms up into the air.

Celestia's ears perked up at that. "Mister Rogers?" she asked. A smile formed on her muzzle. "That brings back memories..."

Megan looked out at the dozen or so fillies and colts sitting down in front of the television and VCR set up before them. "You've all been good?' she asked, looking at each one of them. "Your chores are done?"

A chorus of affirmations rang out from the excited youngsters, their hooves waving in the air. Megan looked up at Wind Whistler, standing in the back. "I can assert that, yes, the young ones did indeed accomplish all tasks set out before them in an expeditious and efficient manner."

Megan blinked at her. "So... they're done. Good."

Wind Whistler flapped her wings and stomped on the ground. "I believe that's what I said, yes."

"Okay, then." Megan popped a VHS tape into the front of the VCR. "All ready?"



Megan stared daggers at Danny, sitting between Celestia and Luna. "Danny, what are you doing?"

Danny shrugged. "My chores and homework are all done." He pointed to the television. "Now, come on!"

Megan rolled her eyes and shook her head. She pressed the play button and the screen changed from one of static to a model town. The camera panned across tiny streets as an enchanting piano medley started up. The image changed to the interior of a house, the view sweeping across until focusing on a door that opened up...

"You brought over old tapes of 'Mister Rogers Neighborhood' for Celestia and Luna to watch?" Michelle asked.

Luna looked to her sister. "Do you still have any of them?"

Celestia tilted her head from side to side. "I think so... yes!" she said, expression brightening. "After the visit to the castle, I can get the television and VCR out and we can rewatch them!"

Scootaloo's brow furrowed. "What's a television?"

Michelle dropped to one knee besides the pegasus and pulled out her phone. "It's a big box that gets signals, like your radio, but it also shows pictures. It's... like a movie screen for your house."

Scootaloo stuck a tongue out in a gagging motion. "Ugh, I hope they show more than educational junk and newsreels. That's almost all Las Pegasus puts out!"

Dinky turned her head in Scootaloo's direction. "But they're doing new stuff all the time. I heard somepony's actually trying to adapt the Daring Do novels for some sort of... series." She scratched her head, right behind her horn. "I dunno how they'd do that, though."

Danielle glanced to her sister and friends, then looked to Megan. "I think we'll be all set, Mom." She looked Megan over, noting the Colt peacemakers tucked into hip holsters, the Marlin 1894 rifle slung over her shoulder, the bandoleers of ammo and the backpack full of emergency supplies. "I think you'll be all set if any of your old enemies show up. Or that dragon decides to cause trouble again."

Megan looked herself over, shrugging. "Never hurts to be prepared." She hugged Danielle, then walked over and hugged Michelle. "You two be careful, and remember. Dad, Aunt Molly and Uncle Danny will be over for dinner tonight. Be at Twilight's library by four."

Danielle and Michelle returned their hugs. "We'll be alright, Mom," Danielle said, waving to Megan as she walked off to the Everfree Forest, Luna and Celestia flanking her. She looked to her sister and the fillies standing beside her. "So, where to? The treehouse?"

Applebloom shook her head as the Crusaders began walking back to Ponyville proper. "Nah. I don't wanna go to Sweet Apple Acres, at least not yet. Applejack's gone plum loco with those contracts she got from tha Gala last night. And..." She paused, shaking her head. "Big Macintosh was at breakfast with Fluttershy of all ponies!" Her ears waggled around. "They were all giggly and stuff."

Danielle blinked as they passed by Sugarcube Corner. She waved absentmindedly at Pinkie Pie as she swept the front steps. "They... were together?" She slapped her forehead and dragged her hand down her face, groaning.

Michelle shrugged. "Well, they were all lovey-dovey last night at the Gala. They disappeared last night and didn't reappear until we left." She scratched her head. "So what was Fluttershy doing at Sweet Apple-"

"So, Dinky!" Danielle shouted, clapping her hands together, "did you get permission to go to the sleepover in two weeks?"

Dinky's head bobbed up and down. "Oh, yeah! Mommy and Daddy really want to meet you two, Daddy especially."

Danielle stopped in her tracks, but Michelle, looking to her right at Sweetie Belle, plowed into her, sending the two sisters stumbling and tumbling to the ground. Sweetie Belle's left foreleg clipped Michelle's right arm, sending her into the dirt. Scootaloo, Applebloom and Dinky each followed suit, Dinky sliding in the dirt and leaving a small furrow.

Danielle groaned, sliding her hands under her body and pushing herself up to one knee. The sound of laughter and snickering caught her attention and she looked to her right, spotting a pair of earth pony fillies pointing at her and the other Crusaders. "Problem?"

The fillies, Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon, focused on the Crusaders. "Sorry," Diamond Tiara said, biting her lip in a vain attempt to stop laughing. "It's just I'm wondering, what are the daughters of the Mag'ne doing with these three losers?"

Silver Spoon pointed to Dinky. "Sorry, but, like, there's four losers now."

Dinky swallowed and her eyes watered. "I'm not a loser!" she cried out.

Silver Spoon snorted. "Yes, you are." She looked to Danielle and Michelle. "Like, seriously, why are you hanging with these four blank flanks when-"

"Shut. Up," Danielle said through gritted teeth. She marched right up to the pair and jabbed a finger down at them. "First off, Dinky is not a loser. She's a good friend of mine. Second, I will not have my friends bullied by you two. I don't know who the hell you two are, and quite frankly I don't care. You're being complete jerks and I'd like you to leave." She pointed a finger down the street. "Now."

Diamond Tiara's face flushed red. "Why, how dare you! I'm Diamond Tiara, and my father is the richest pony in Ponyville!" She thrust her chin into the air. "Neigh, he's one of the richest in Canterlot Province itself!"

"And my daddy owns some of the largest silver mines in all of Equestria!" Silver Spoon added.

Michelle stepped over to Danielle's side. "Are they really trying that?"

Danielle shook her head and planted her hands on her hips. "I guess so, Michelle." She leaned forward. "For the record, our mother? She kinda sorta helped found Equestria!" She rolled her eyes. "Like you said, the Mag'ne's daughters?"

Applebloom rose to her hooves and trotted over to Danielle's side. "They always did have mouths that cantered faster than their brains, Danielle."

Diamond Tiara gasped. "Why, how dare you, you blank flanked hayseed!"

Michelle wrinkled her nose. "How dare you, you bully! Leave our friends alone and buzz off!"

Danielle blinked. "Wait, 'blank flanked'?" She leaned to the side, glancing at Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon's flanks and their own cutie marks. "Your cutie marks are... a tiara and silver spoon." She clamped a hand over her mouth to smother the sudden laughter. "Oh, wow. And you're making fun of their lack of cutie marks. What do those mean? What are your special talents, precisely?"

By now, a small crowd had gathered around the eight. A pair of unicorns and an earth pony stood right outside Doctor Whooves' shop, silently observing the altercation.

Diamond Tiara shuffled around to present her cutie mark to Danielle and Michelle. "This tiara represents my skill in leadership and destiny to inherit Daddy's company." She waved a foreleg at Silver Spoon. "And hers represents her family's silver mines and her eventual taking over ownership of the mines."

Danielle shrugged and shook her head. "Yeah, I'm not really seeing that."

Silver Spoon rolled her eyes. "Like, what's your problem?"

Scootaloo's wings buzzed, lifting her a half-foot into the air. "What's your problem? We weren't doing anything to you. We've never done anything to you. But you two just love bullying us." She dropped back to the ground. "Don't you have anything better to do?"

Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon glanced to each other before focusing on Scootaloo. "Not really, chicken," Diamond Tiara said, baring her teeth in a fairly malicious grin.

A low growl rolled out of Danielle's throat. She clutched her hands into tight fists. "Good lord you are stupid." She advanced upon the two, who at least had the good sense to back up a few steps. "Let me again state who our mother is, all right? Megan. You know, the Mag'ne? Why you're continuing to harass and bully us is leaving me quite confused, actually."

Silver Spoon waved her off. "We're not, like bullying you or Michelle. You're cool! It's just why are you, like, hanging with those four losers?"

Michelle walked over and stood beside her sister. "They're our friends. And they're cool, too. We have a lot of fun together. That's why we hang around them."

Danielle patted her younger sister on the shoulder, squeezing it slightly. "My sister's right, you two. Scootaloo, Applebloom, Sweetie Belle and Dinky are awesome to hang out with."

The four fillies, now flanking Michelle and Danielle, beamed at the two. "You're awesome to hang out with, too," Sweetie Belle said, standing at Michelle's side.

Michelle reached out and patted Sweetie Belle on the mane. "Thanks."

Diamond Tiara ground her teeth together. "Fine!" she shouted. "You don't want to hang with the coolest fillies in Ponyville-neigh, all of Canterlot Province-fine!"

Danielle snorted. "I already am hanging with the coolest." She dropped to one knee and held out her arms to the fillies standing by her. "I am a Cutie Mark Crusader, and I will help my friends find their cutie marks!" She thrust an arm into the air at the end, grinning.

Diamond Tiara thrust her muzzle into the air, turned and began trotting off. "Come on, Silver Spoon. Obviously Danielle and Michelle are not nearly as cool or awesome as we thought!" she said, her voice rising on the last few words.

Silver Spoon huffed and followed suit. "Maybe, like, we should tell our daddies about them?"

Danielle snorted. "Oh, yeah." She looked to Michelle. "Maybe we should tell our adoptive sisters about how bratty they are?"

Michelle's eyes narrowed as Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon stopped in their gait. "What sisters, Danielle?"

Danielle marched around to Diamond Tiara and knelt down. "Oh, Princesses Celestia and Luna. You know, the Diarchs of Equestria?" She leaned in close to the filly. "Mom hates bullies. Dad hates bullies. Michelle and I hate bullies and I'd bet my entire book collection that the two alicorns she raised hate bullies too."

A fine sheen of sweat covered Diamond Tiara's and Silver Spoon's foreheads, matting down their manes to their polls. "You wouldn't!"

Danielle nodded.

Diamond Tiara's muzzle scrunched up. "What do you want, my allowance?"

The young woman's jaw dropped. "I..." She slapped her forehead. "Good lord, you really don't get it. I want you two to stop bullying. No more. Leave my friends alone. Do you hear me?" She jabbed a finger at Diamond Tiara. "Leave. Them. Alone. And leave the rest of your classmates alone, too. Get it?"

The pair's heads bobbed up and down. "Got it!"

Danielle stood back up. "Good." She paused for a moment, but sighed and walked back to her friends. "So, what's up for today's Crusading?"

The Doctor let out a chuckle. He had exited his shop at the commotion and was standing beside the two unicorns and earth pony that had left his shop earlier. "Well, good to see Dinky's in good hands,so to say." He looked to the trio. "Wouldn't you agree, agents?"

The trio turned to him. "I don't know what you're talking about," one of the unicorns said.

The Doctor snorted. "Right, right." He waved them off and turned to reenter his shop. "Better hurry along! Your charges are wandering off and I don't think Celestia will be too pleased if they get hurt!"

Megan stepped over a tree root, her eyes darting all around. She clutched her rifle in a two-handed grip, safety disengaged but finger off the trigger. She jumped at every strange sound and cry that echoed through the Everfree Forest. "You live here," she said, looking down at the fourth member of the little group. "Damned, but that takes guts."

Zecora shook her head, chuckling. The zebra wore a brown cloak with hood and had a stick perfectly balanced over her left foreleg's shoulder. "The Everfree's mysteries are quite vast, but many of its dangers I've made past."

Megan chuckled slightly. "Yeah, otherwise you wouldn't be here guiding us. Thanks for this, by the way." She looked back to Celestia and Luna, trailing behind. "You two alright?"

Celestia nodded, letting out a breath. "The chaotic magic in the Everfree is playing havoc with my powers, but other than that I'm doing alright." She looked to her sister. "Luna?"

Luna's cheeks colored. "I am doing alright as well, sister." She looked around at the dense foliage that seemed to close in all around them. "All my fault," she muttered.

Celestia extended a wing and draped it over Luna's withers and back. "We can rebuild this," she said. "Together."

Megan looked to Zecora. "I hope your hut wasn't damaged by that dragon's antics or Spykoran's judgment."

Zecora shook her head. "The dragons did shake and roar, but I've been through worse before. My hut still stands, the walls all firm. Although the insides did shake and squirm."

Megan's eyes furrowed. "Okay..."

"About the way I talk, you have a question, but you balk?"

Megan's head drooped. "Sorry, sorry. Just the only other zebra I met during my original time here didn't speak in rhyme."

Zecora nodded. "In the Western Savannah, I was trained in mystical arts. The rhyming helps to remember the difficult parts."

Celestia spoke up. "Most zebras I've met don't rhyme," she said, her horn glowing as she telekinetically moved some branches out of the way.

The group entered a small clearing. A river blocked their path, along with a purple-scaled sea serpent lounging on some rocks. "Oh, hello!" Stephen Magnet exclaimed, stretching out and up. He spotted Celestia and Luna and bowed. "Your majesties, what an honor!" A hand snaked under a rock and pulled out a brush. "Oh, and my hair's such a mess!"

Zecora snorted and shook her head, her hoop earrings jangling about. "Stephen, your mane is fine. Could you please do a favor for some friends of mine?"

Stephen nodded. He swam about and extended his body from shore to shore, acting as a living bridge. "But of course!"

Luna's right eyebrow arched. She looked to Celestia. "Can't we just... fly them over?"

Celestia waved her off. "Oh, where's the fun in that?"

Megan looked over her shoulder, already halfway down Stephen's back. Her rifle was back over her shoulder, safety once again on. "Yeah, come on!" she shouted, waving the alicorns on. She finally reached the back of his neck and hopped onto the shore. She bowed before him. "Thanks, Stephen. And... sorry for almost killing you when we first met," she said, scratching the back of her head. "I thought you were trying to kill Applejack."

Stephen waited for Zecora, Celestia and Luna to finish crossing before standing back up. "Oh, not a problem, my dear. I know things didn't look so good from your perspective."

Megan smiled and waved to him.

Celestia lowered her head to Zecora's level. "Zecora, I thank you very much for your assistance in getting us this far. However, the journey to the Ancient Castle is a somewhat private one for us. And Luna and I should have no difficulties getting Megan there."

Zecora nodded to the alicorn. "If that is all, then I shall take my leave. But getting there shall be no breeze."

Luna's ears twitched. "Somewhat of a stretch for a rhyme, but I shall let it pass," she said, winking. "And I thank you as well."

Zecora pawed at the dirt. "I ask that you three take care, and to please be aware. The dangers in the Everfree are hidden, and can strike the unwary unbidden."

Megan pulled down her rifle and held it up. "We'll be careful, Zecora. Thanks for the help so far."

Zecora nodded as the three moved off. "They should be good, across this yard. I don't think Megan will let down her guard."

It was an uneventful trek the rest of the way to what was once Dream Castle, home of the ancient royal family and the place of the Last Stand of Queen Majesty against Tirac. Megan let out a whistle at the ancient edifice. A spire or two had crumbled, and the walls were showing wear and tear, but the majority of the fortress was still intact.

Celestia looked to Megan. "Megan, what are you looking for here, exactly?"

Megan opened her mouth, but her head drooped and she looked askance at a tree stump. "I... I don't know," she admitted. Her gaze swept over the castle and she stepped forward. "I'm not sure what I'm doing here at the castle or even in Equestria itself. It's not like you need me."

Luna stomped forward, her armored legs making deep imprints in the ground. "Megan Richards, never speak like that again," she said, spinning around to face her and dropped her neck down so the tip of her muzzle was inches from Megan's face. "Even in the highly unlikely event that there was nothing you could contribute to pony society – which is horse apples – you being around is more than enough. For all intents and purposes, you Danny and Molly were our parents." She stepped forward to Megan's right and leaned in close to her. "And we love you."

Megan bit her lip. She wiped her eyes, but tears still streaked down. She wrapped one arm around Luna's neck and the other around Celestia's. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry," she whispered. "I just... I don't know anymore. What do I do? Do I do nothing? Something? Anything?'

Celestia's mane wrapped around Megan's head and arm. "The Gala last night alone shows you can't sit by and do nothing, Megan. It's not who you are. And a nation is quite grateful for that."

Megan's entire body shuddered as she laughed. "Dammit, stop trying to defuse the tension," she muttered.

Celestia chuckled. "Sorry, old habits." She slid out of Megan's embrace and looked the woman in the eye. "Megan, no matter what you do or don't do or how you feel, know this. You are loved here. Even if we don't necessarily need you here, we want you here. All right?"

Megan nodded. "All right." Her mouth turned up slightly. "I guess you may be a silly pony, but I guess even now, I'm just a silly girl. The Mag'ne, Giver of Gifts, Defender of the Stable and Burner of Tuna Noodle Casserole!"

Luna leaned in over her shoulder. "And presenter of Mister Roger's Neighborhood. Can't forget that title to add to the overly long list." She leaned back and her eyes focused on one tower in the back. "While we're here, would you like to see where Twilight Sparkle and her friends saved my soul?"

Megan followed Luna's gaze. "Might be nice. And I can ask you some questions while we're going there, too."

The walk to the tower in the back where the final battle of the Nightmare War was fought was uneventful, save for constant back-and-forth questions and answers.

"They left?" Megan asked as she walked up a flight of stairs to the highest room in the tower.

Celestia nodded. "Under Wind Whistler's guidance, Luna and I cleared the smooze from their lands. But the grundles decided to set out for new land, far beyond even where our borders are now." She shook her head. "For all I know, they followed the Moochik to wherever he and Scorpan led the humans."

Megan shook her head. "Well, good for you two. What about the bushwoolies? Any of them not serving as the Princess Pony's honor guard?"

"Oh, yes," Celestia replied. "Just turn over a rock and you'll probably find at least a dozen or so."

Megan barked a laugh. She turned back just as she passed through a door and into a large room, taking up the entire floor. She looked around. "Wow."

Luna and Celestia stooped by her sides, flanking her. "This is where I was saved," Luna whispered.

Megan took a step forward, but Luna's wing shot forth, blocking her progress. "Luna?"

"There are sections of the floor that have weakened," she said, pointing to several patches where stones had begun to sink, the mortar no longer holding them fully in place.

Megan nodded. "Thanks, Luna," she said, patting her on the side of the head. She took one large step forward, looking around. "So Twilight and the others basically mastered the Rainbow of Light, here?"

Celestia nodded, smiling. "She did wonderfully. I had never been prouder."

Megan knelt down and picked up a handful of gravel, letting it dribble through her fingers. "I wish we could rebuild this. It was so beautiful back then." She looked herself over and barked a laugh. "Not that I can say the same for myself."

Celestia held a hoof up over Luna's mouth. "We've been slowly reclaiming the Everfree. An acre here, a copse of trees there. But it's been slow and quite difficult."

Megan stood back up. "Nothing worth doing is." She walked back to the alicorns and blew out a sigh. "Thanks..." She suddenly spun around, raising her rifle and aiming down the sights. "What was that?"

Celestia's ears pricked. "What was what?"

Megan brought her rifle back up and groaned. "Sorry, sorry. I just..." She shivered. "I felt something." She waved at the room. "I'm getting paranoid, that's all."

Luna nickered. "I believe being paranoid in Equestria and especially the Everfree Forest can only lengthen your lifespan, Megan." She stepped back and away from the door, allowing Megan clear access to it. "Are you ready?"

Megan nodded. "I am, and thanks for indulging me on this trip." She waved a hand in the air. "I guess I needed to see Dream Castle, maybe to say goodbye to it."

Celestia's eyes watered as the trio walked out of the room. "Maybe so long for now?"

Megan cocked her head to the side. "Works for me."

The shadows bled.

Steaming, slimy ichor bubbled up from the darkest corners of the room. It slid across the floor, leaving bubbling stone in its wake. A rat tried to scurry past it, only to be engulfed and, with a final squeak, be dissolved.

The slime converged on the center of the room, piling on top in a putrid, quavering mass. Gradually, a general shape began to form. A body bubbled up while four stick-like legs propped it up. At the front, the body of a humanoid grew. Two masses drooped down from the sides, turning red and forming arms, while a horned head emerged from the top. Details of clothing and hair formed as a red face jutted out of the head, eyes cruel and pitiless.

"Megan," Tirac the Abomination croaked out. He looked down at his hands and flexed his fingers. "I remember you, child. Oh, yes. You stopped my eternal night. I heard your name before you killed me so long ago."

Tirac trotted over to a wall. He placed a fist on it and pushed. For a moment, the hand held its shape, but it quickly lost cohesion, collapsing into the wrist.

Tirac's lips curled back. "Still not whole. Even with the power I stole from Luna, I still need flesh."

The sneer changed to a smirk. "Yes, yes. You owe me a new body, Megan, I shall take yours and be whole again. And then I shall conquer this planet and wipe out all that you hold dear." He raised his hands into the air, the tips of his horns crackling. "Come forth, Ursa Minor!"

Deep in a cave near the border of the Everfree, the Ursa Minor, still in his mothers arms, stirred. He slowly woke up, extricating itself from her grasp and lumbering to the entrance of the cave.

Tirac held a hand up. "No, not yet. The alicorns are still around." He waved a hand and a pair of vortices appeared over one of the windows, quickly widening. One showed the image of Megan, Celestia and Luna. While the other showed the star bear. "Wait for them to leave, then strike. Bring Megan back unharmed." He cocked his head to the side. "And on the off chance the unicorn who put you to sleep is around, stuff your ears full of gravel."

Tirac nodded in satisfaction as the Ursa clawed at the cave's rock wall, gouging out great streams of rock. "Soon, I shall be whole again. She who killed me shall let me live once more. And eternal night shall fall, never to rise again!"

Please read and review.

Time Traveler-Thank you. And I've seen that comic. Like it a lot. :D

JusSonic-Ah, a shame. Discord... not quite yet. ;)

Tito-Well, with Rarity and Blueblood... perhaps they could try again? ;) Thank you. :)