1. Reunion

15 years later...

Applejack sat happily in the train to Canterlot, smiling at her family. "It's quite an honor to be summoned to the palace, you know," she said happily. "I wonder what it's about, though."

Fang shook his head, still unused to a pony body after all this time. Although the same dark purple he always had been with a white mane and tail, he never felt fully comfortable with this form. He missed having hands to hold tools and weapons with. "Who knows? You never can tell what royalty are up to. ...Snap! What do you think you're doing?"

Their son Snaplock stepped down from the bench he'd been standing on, shaking out his white mane. His pale purple coat shone with health, although the roughness of his facial features often caused ponies to think he was older than he was, at only 14. "Just checking to see if there were any dangers on the train car. The summons wasn't exactly standard, with no signature. Wanted to make sure it wasn't a trap." He took the mercenary skills he'd learned from his father seriously, as they were bound up in the talent his cutie mark - a sniper scope crosshairs - symbolized.

Applejack laughed. "Oh, Snap, relax, will you? Nothing's gonna hurt us in Equestria. Sides..." Applejack glanced down at herself. "You really think I'd risk your little sister if I thought there was any danger?"

Snap nodded. "You're right Mom. Sorry, I'm just a little edgy. I've never seen a dragon upclose before, though."

Applejack blinked at him. "And where you seen one now?"

Snap pointed out the window. "Out there. He's flying alongside the train. There's a white unicorn on the roof yelling at him."

"Eh?" Applejack glanced out the window. A purple dragon - young, more of a drakeling - with green spike's all along his back and tail flew alongside the train. She lowered the window. "Spike?" she called out, surprised.

"Applejack?" a voice from above the train asked.

She looked up and saw two familiar figures on top of the train, although it had been a long time since she'd seen them. "Spike! Rarity! Come in, why don'tcha!" Then she glanced at the dragon. "Who's that?"

Rarity smiled at AJ, then glared at the flying dragon. "Jemediah! You get back on this train right this instant! Or...no sapphires for dessert when we get to Canterlot!"

"Aww, Mom!" the dragon whined. "Just five more minutes?"

"Gem," Spike said, "if your mom says right now, it's right now! Don't make me bring you back on board by force!"

"Alright," Gem said with a sigh. Gaining a bit of altitude, he folded his wings and dove in through the open window, changing into a unicorn with similar coloring as he landed. A dragon was emblazoned on his flank. He shook himself off. "By Celestia, I love flying." He blinked at the car occupants. "Who are all of you?"

As Rarity and Spike entered the car, introductions were made all around. Aj and Rarity were glad to see each other after so long, as the only contact they'd had since everypony went their seperate ways had been the occasional letter. They began to chat about their lives and everything that had happened to them - with apologies both ways about missing the weddings and other big events - while Snap and Gen sized each other up...until Gem leapt on Snap in a tackle, leading to a rather fierce mock tussle as they played. Fang and Spike laughed as they watched.

After a time, they arrived at Canterlot and disembarked. Before they could approach the castle, however, a strange portal appeared in the air, and more ponies stepped out who were strangely familiar.

Fluttershy had changed overtime. Becoming the Preistqueen of all Mobius had given her newfound confidence in herself. While still somewhat shy amongst strangers, she now carried herself with an air of confidence, knowing herself for who she was. She was garbed in a flowing white robe which seemed to add an air of power to her walk. Stepping out behind her - though not too far - was a young filly who was obviously her daughter, as she looked just like Fluttershy did in her younger days.

With them was Pinkie Pie, who - other than seeming a bit tired - hadn't changed a bit. With her was a strange brown pony with white mane...and two tails. He, too, looked somewhat harried. The reason for this became plain as a much smaller pony - at most 2 years old - shot out of the portal wearing a jetpack and squealing happily.

"Terramina Cosmo Prower!" the brown pony with Pinkie Pie shouted. "Get down here right this instant and give me that jetpack!"

The filly landed and handed over the jetpack. Not moving, one could see she was a bright pink all over, with two tails. Her cutie mark was not easily recognizable to most Equestria ponies, being a circuit board. She handed the jetpack over.

The bronw pony - Tails in an Equestrian form - took it. "Twisty," he said calmly, "you can't go flying around like crazy. What if you hit somepony?"

"Lol!" the filly replied. She skipped around her parents happily.

As greetings and stories were exchanged happily by the old friends, the various children eyed each other. "So who are you two?" Snap asked.

"I'm Twisty!" the pink filly replied. Suddenly, her nose twitched, and she started chasing her tail. Then she chased the other one. Then she paused and glanced up at Gem. "Hey, Gem, what was I doing?"

Gem blinked. "How'd you know my name?"

Twisty giggled. "If I knew that, I wouldn't be Twisty!" She began spinning around, laughing and making funny noises.

The yellow filly coughed quietly. "I...I'm Chery Blossom..." she said quietly.

Snap nodded. "Looks like our folks are all friends."

"That mean we're gonna be hanging out a lot together?" Twisty asked. "Oh, Snap!"

Snap lock seemed to appear behind her. "Did you want something?" he said in her ear.

Twisty leaped into the air with a shriek. Then she laughed as she hung in the air while her tails spun. "AGAIN!"

"Ahem," a young voice said from the castle entrance as they approached. They all turned to look. A black unicorn colt Cherry Blossom's age with a purple mane and a cutie mark of a shield with a wand on it watched them with red eyes. He wore a uniform of palace service. "Her Highness waits for all of you in the Throne Room. If you'll follow me, please?" He turned to lead them in.

Everyone followed. Applejack was the first to address the colt. "So what's your name, little fella?"

"My name is Stardust Mail," he said seriously. "Her Highness has made all of you known to me."

Rarity blinked. "Somehow, that seems rather unnerving, the way you say it."

"No need for such concern," he replied. "Her Highness speaks highly of you." At that moment, he paused, seeing another pony down the hall. "Maria?" he asked kindly.

A filly the exact same size as Stardust stood there, her violet eyes wide. She had a purple coat with a black and red striped mane and tail. Suddenly, she turned and ran into the palace, screaming, "MAMA! MAMA! Visitors!"

Stardust sighed. "Forigve my sister's rudeness. She is unused to strangers."

Fluttershy nodded. "Nothing to worry about, Your Highness," she said, having put together the clues. "I hope your mother won't mind."

Stardust smiled. "Mother said you were the timid one, not the clever one." He led them into the throne room.

Out a window they could see the sun was just setting, and the stars were coming out. A purple alicorn stood there, garbed in royal regalia, her back to them as she watched the stars come out.

Suddenly, from behind the group, a familiar voice shouted, "Aurora! Watch out!"

A rainbow colored blur flashed over their heads, slamming into the alicorn from behind and knocking her head over hooves. As she came to a halt, she glanced down at the dark blue filly with rainbow mane and tail that had slammed into her. As the filly shyed back a bit, she saw her cutie mark, a rainbow colored wind. The princess smiled. "Well doesn't this bring deja vu," she said, her voice quite familiar. "Your mother first greeted me the same way."

As Rainbow Dash and Sonic had caught up with everyone as this statement was made, it was five voices that shouted in shock, "TWILIGHT?"

Twilight Sparkle - Princess Twilight Sparkle - stood, folding her wings against her flanks. "It's good to see all of you again after so long," she said, smiling. "And to finally meet your children."

As everyone ran forward happily, rejoicing in the reunion of old friends, the seven foals glanced towards each other. As introductions had been made, they were lacking something to say to start a conversation, and felt somewhat awkward.

Twisty broke the silence by addressing Aurora. "Bet I can beat you to the top of those stairs!" she said with a grin.

"You're on!" Aurora shouted, taking off quite fast. Twisty pulled out a strange device and pointed it at the top of the stairs. In a flash of light she was there. "No fair!" Aurora shouted as she arrived just behind.

"Stfu, n00b!" Twisty said with a laugh.

"Why I oughta-" Aurora lunged for Twisty, but she danced out of the way. The ice broken, the young ones ran off to play and explore.

Back with the grownups, stories of everything that had happened to them were exchanged as they talked, although much of the marvel was for Twilight's new wings, as she hadn't written any of them about that.

"Say, Rainbow Dash," Twilight asked suddenly, trying to change the subject, "how come I ahven't heard from you for nearly ten years? Weren't you going to start your family here?"

RD glared at Sonic. "Blame him. He's the one who dropped us in a world out of range of the chaos emeralds before we could even schedule the wedding!"

Sonic winced. "I said I was sorry..."

"I know, I know...I just can't believe you all wound up missing my wedding. Or that I missed all of yours." There was a long, uncomfortable silence. She looked at her friends. "I did miss the weddings, right?"

Applejack shifted on her hooves. "Well, ah..."

Fang spoke up. "It was a quiet affair, since Snap Lock was already on the way."

As Applejack hung her head, she was surprised as Rarity spoke up. "You too, huh?"

Pinkie Pie shook her head. "We always meant to get married...things just kept coming up, and it kept getting delayed...and then we forgot we hadn't." She blushed. "And Mobius has this thing called a 'common law marraige'..." Tails wouldn't meet Sonic's eyes.

Fluttershy shrugged her shoulders. "I'm...kind of a holy figure on Mobius," she said, blushing. "It's kind of hard to find someone to perform a wedding for you when you're seen as holy. And I could never find time to come back to Equestria for the wedding..."

Twilight nodded sadly. "While Shadow is officially my consort, I didn't want to have the wedding if all my friends weren't there, and..." She blushed. "I forgot to refresh the charm..."

Rainbow Dash blinked. "Wow," she said at last. "So I'm the only one of us who was a virgin bride. That's...disturbing." She blinked for a bit. "Wait a minute! We were talking about your wings, Twilight! Why would you keep that secret from everyone? Just how long ahve you had them?"

She sighed. "Fifteen years..."

Rarity blinked. "You know, Twilight, now that I look closer at you, I must say, you don't look a day older than you did when I last saw you. What's your secret?"

Twilight looked up at them all sadly. "As an alicorn...I'm now immortal."

Fluttershy smiled. "That's wonderful...isn't it?"

Twilight shook her head. "It means, what with my new duties helping to mantain the realm of Equestria...I'm going to outlive all of you by centuries!" Tears fell freely from her eyes. "And maybe my children, too..."

As shock settled over the six friends, they drew close to Twilight, comforting her as she wept into their embrace.