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My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive


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Hello and welcome, Comedies forumgoers! Today I present to you a crossover between my Legend Trilogy of Bionicle comedies (links can be found in my library, which is linked in my sig below) and My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.

I wrote this as a "what if" version of Equestria Girls. What if Twilight and Spike ended up in the Legendverse instead of the human world? How would they react to a universe that is basically a nonstop action movie without a fourth wall? In return, how would Mata Nui and his friends react to the sudden appearance of Twilight and Spike in their world?

So I decided to sit my butt down and actually write the thing because the idea seemed too juicy to pass up. The result is this comedy, which I have graciously (or not-so-graciously, depending on your tastes) decided to share on BZP with y'all. Very kind of me, I know.

Like most crossovers, this comedy is best appreciated by people familiar with the source material. In this case, if you are a fan of MLP:FiM and of my Legend Trilogy comedies, then you will have no trouble appreciating this fic. If you are not familiar with either, then you probably won't get many -- if any at all -- of the references in this story.

On a final note, each chapter is headed by a quote from a random person. These quotes don't really have anything to do with the story. They're just there to make you laugh at their ridiculousness.

Table of Contents:


Chapter One: Why Ponies and Bionicles Should Never Mix (Unless it's Bingo Night)

Chapter Two: In Which Twilight Learns More about the World (and why She, like You, should Fear it)

Chapter Three: Spike's Adventure (It's like a Filler!)

Chapter Four: Everybody hates Bucket-head (Yes, including You)

Chapter Five: Stuff Happens (I think)

Chapter Six: A new challenger approaches! (It's not Captain Falcon, sorry)

Chapter Seven: Crazy Ponies are Funny Ponies (Meghan McCarthy, eat your heart out)

Chapter Eight: My Name isn't Pinkie Pie, but Thanks for Asking! (The Plot Thickens. Like Maple Syrup. Yum.)

Chapter Nine: Continuity Attacks! (AKA Confusing the new readers)

Chapter Ten: The City of Action ([insert witty comment here])

Chapter Eleven: Ponynapped! (Puns for everyone!)

Chapter Twelve: The Evil Plan Revealed (Attack on Exposition!)
Chapter Thirteen: Apotheosis (and Other Big, Pretentious Words)
Chapter Fourteen: Nothingness (Deep or Pretentious? You decide!)
Chapter Fifteen: Friendship IS Magic! (It is Also Explosive)
Epilogue (Party's over. Everyone can go home now)

Now that I have sufficiently bored y'all with my rambling, let's get onto the comedy itself:

Chapter One: Why Ponies and Bionicles Should Never Mix (Unless it's Bingo Night)

Crossovers suck. They're usually just a poor excuse for an author to have his favorite characters from different franchises meet. I'd never write one, not in a million years.

-TNTOS, circa 2010

Twilight Sparkle ran. She ran with all of her might, never looking back, never even slowing down. She ran through a field of tall grass, leaped over a huge, bottomless gorge with spikes jutting from the bottom, using her wings to help her glide safely to the other side. She didn't even think. There was no time to think when Spike was dead.

How could things have gone so wrong so quickly? Twilight thought as she ran. We didn't mean any harm. We aren't evil invaders. Sure, I guess we look kind of out of place, but that doesn't mean we're bad. We're just different. If only I could have explained, then maybe Spike would still be alive.

She would have happily explained this to the person who killed Spike, a yellow biped armed with some kind of slim mini-cannon. But after seeing how, well, crazy he was, Twilight thought it better and wiser to run. Better to run and remember Equestria, her home, where nothing as terrible as this ever happened. She closed her eyes, remembering the events leading up to this terrible catastrophe of a day, and wishing she had never mentioned Sunset Shimmer. . . .


Earlier that day in another universe. . . .

The sound of Twilight's hooves clopping against the floor echoed off the high walls of the Crystal Castle as she and her friend, a baby dragon named Spike, walked through the castle's corridors. A large, thick old book, titled History of the Crystal Empire Volume 1, by Crystal Spire, floated by her side, thanks to her magic.

“I can't believe I haven't read this book yet,” said Twilight. “I should really order a copy for myself so I don't have to keep coming back to the Crystal Empire just to get this one book.”

Spike nodded his scaly head as he walked beside her. “But don't you have other books you want to read first? You're reading at least ten others right now, right?”

“Eleven, actually,” said Twilight, glancing at the floating book. “But I can always make room in my schedule for one more book.”

“If you say so,” Spike muttered. “I just don't see why you couldn't wait until Princess Celestia arrived before going down to the library.”

“Well, we did get here a little early,” said Twilight. “So I thought I had enough time to zip down to the library, find this book, and take it out. And it looks like I was right, because Celestia doesn't seem to be here yet.”

“Why'd you drag me along, though?” said Spike. “Not that I'm complaining or anything, but I'm not even carrying your book, so I don't see why I couldn't stay with your friends.”

“Because I'm a Princess now,” Twilight explained as they turned a corner. “I need a bodyguard, so I brought you along to protect me.”

“That seems kind of silly,” said Spike. “You're so much more powerful than me that I think I am the one who needs protecting.”

Twilight chuckled. “Good one, Spike.”

The two friends passed a couple of guards, who saluted her as she and Spike passed. Twilight merely nodded in their direction, although she didn't bother to stop and talk. After all, she had an important meeting to attend and she couldn't waste any time talking to random guards. Even if the guards in question were rather good-looking, Twilight reminded herself that she preferred girls anyway.

The Crystal Castle's architecture still took away her breath every time she looked up at its high arches, open hallways, and shiny floors and ceiling. She glanced out a window as she and Spike walked up the stairs and saw the entirety of the Crystal Empire sprawled out before her. How this one city counted as an 'empire' by itself, Twilight wasn't quite sure, but seeing as her brother and his wife hadn't bothered to rename it when they took over, Twilight saw no reason to argue with the name, no matter how unfitting it seemed.

Eventually, after walking up what seemed like an endless flight of stairs (causing her to wonder, for the hundredth time, whether King Sombra, the former ruler of the Crystal Empire, had had some kind of disturbing fascination with stairs), Twilight reached the big double doors of the throne room, which opened with a simple application of her magic. She and Spike entered the chamber, where a strange scene was playing out before their eyes.

Pinkie Pie -- one of Twilight's friends, a rather hyperactive pink pony who sometimes seemed incapable of grasping the concept of personal space -- was hopping up and down, apologizing over and over again to Rarity, another friend of Twilight's. Twilight wasn't quite sure what Pinkie was apologizing for until she noticed Rarity's mane, which was normally a fabulous purple but was now a solid neon pink, similar in color to Pinkie's fur, in fact. Rarity was moaning about how this pink completely ruined her mane and how it was going to take weeks for her to get it out.

In addition, Twilight noticed Applejack, another friend, stuck to the ceiling with what looked like pink spider's web. Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy -- her two pegasus friends -- were trying their hardest to get AJ down. Or rather, Rainbow Dash was, as Fluttershy had somehow gotten her wings stuck in the pink goo, too, and was hanging helplessly off the ceiling like a fly caught in ointment.

In the middle of all this was Princess Mi Amore Cadenza -- or, as she preferred to be called, Cadance -- and her husband, Prince Shining Armor, who was also Twilight's older brother. As soon as they spotted Twilight and Spike, they immediately walked over to them.

“Twily!” said Shining Armor, giving her an affectionate noogie. “Glad to see you're back. As you can see, your friend Pinkie Pie got a bit bored waiting for you.”

“What happened?” said Twilight, glancing between the capture Applejack and the distressed Rarity. “Did one of Pinkie's pranks go wrong again?”

“Yeah,” said Cadance, nodding. “Shining and I weren't here to see it happen. All we know is that it involves Pinkie's party cannon, a huge wad of gum, and the Crystal Heart.”

Twilight looked around the throne room in confusion. “But I don't see the Crystal Heart anywhere. Isn't it safe in the royal treasury?”

“Well, they said the Crystal Heart had something to do with it,” said Cadance with a shrug. “At least, we think so. They've been so busy trying to fix the situation that they really haven't given us a coherent story.”

Before Twilight could respond to that, Pinkie Pie popped out of nowhere and said, “Hi, Twilight! Whatcha doing?” and gave her alicorn friend a big hug before letting go. Puzzled, Twilight looked over and saw Rarity approaching, still looking put-off by her pink mane but otherwise not whining anymore.

“Hi, Rarity,” said Twilight. “I see your mane is, um. . . .”

“RUINED!” Rarity cried. “It's absolutely terrible and it's all Pinkie's fault!”

“I said I was sorry,” said Pinkie, hopping up and down. “The Crystal Heart told me you'd like it better that way.”

“Did the 'Crystal Heart' also tell you that pink is one of my least favorite hair colors in the world?” Rarity asked, annoyed. “No offense, Pinkie. It just doesn't usually look as good on me as it does on you.”

Pinkie stopped bouncing and appeared to float in midair for a moment, as if seriously considering Rarity's question. “Hmm, Crystie didn't say anything about if it was your favorite color or not. I should ask her.”

“Wait, 'Crystie'?” Shining Armor inquired. “Who's Crystie?”

“The Crystal Heart, of course!” said Pinkie, looking at Shining as if he was a bit slow. “Who else?”

“Of course,” said Shining sardonically. “How could I forget about Crystie?”

“Yeah, how could you?” said Pinkie in a scathing voice . . . or as scathing a voice as the near-perpetually happy Pinkie Pie could muster, anyway. “And people say you're the Prince of the Crystal Empire. Well, I'm not buying it, not one bit.”

“But he is the Prince of the Crystal Empire,” said Spike, looking confused. “Isn't he?”

“I don't know, Spike,” said Pinkie as she resumed her hopping. “I think . . . gasp! He must be a spy!”

“A spy?” Shining repeated. “I'm not a spy.”

“You're right!” said Pinkie, slapping her forehead. “How could I be so stupid? You must be a changeling!”

“Pinkie, I think I'd know if my husband was a changeling or not,” said Cadance in annoyance. “He's just Shining Armor.”

“That's what you said when that ugly queen bug lady pretended to be you,” Pinkie pointed out. “And we all know how that turned out, don't we?”

Before this conversation could take a turn for the worse, Twilight said to Rarity, “Do you want to help me get Applejack and Fluttershy down from the ceiling? Looks like Rainbow Dash is having a bit of trouble there.”

Though Rarity at first looked like she was going to say no (she had her mane to moan about, after all), one look at Shining, Cadance, Pinkie, and Spike -- who were now all arguing about whether Shining was a changeling in disguise or not -- caused her to follow Twilight to the left side of the room. They stopped just beneath AJ and Fluttershy. Rainbow Dash had a crowbar, which she was using to attempt to pry Applejack off the ceiling.

“Need any help?” Twilight asked.

“No, I got this,” said Rainbow, pushing down hard on the crowbar. “It's . . . just . . . some . . . stupid . . . gum!”

“We could use a little help,” said Fluttershy, her voice so low that Twilight almost didn't hear her. “If, um, that's not a problem.”

“I agree with Fluttershy,” said Applejack, nodding as much as she could in her current position. “Rainbow, I appreciate the effort, but sometimes brute strength really don't cut it.”

“Says the pony who uses brute strength to buck apple trees,” said Rainbow, still struggling with the crowbar. “Besides, I never give up. I wouldn't be the coolest pony in Equestria if I gave up trying to save my friends, would I?”

“Can't we help a little?” Twilight asked. “Our magic might make it easier to pry them off.”

“No . . .” Rainbow said through clenched teeth. “I . . . got . . . this!”

Without warning, the gum snapped and both Applejack and Fluttershy fell from the ceiling like rocks, while Rainbow Dash spiraled out of control from the effort she had put into freeing them. The two ponies, still covered with gum, collided with Twilight and Rarity, creating a confused tumble of limbs and manes and wings that ended with all four of them lying in a heap on the floor. Due to the thick gum, it was nearly impossible for any of them to move independently.

“Oh Celestia!” said Rarity, feeling her coat with her only free hoof. “Now I've got gum all over my coat! This is the worst. Possible. Thing!”

“I'm so sorry, Rarity,” said Fluttershy. “We didn't mean to get gum all over your coat, right, Applejack?”

“Right, Fluttershy,” said Applejack, nodding as much as she could in her position atop Twilight's back. “If ya should be blaming anyone, it's Rainbow Dash. Or maybe Pinkie Pie. She's the one that got us caught in this darn mess in the first place.”

Twilight groaned underneath Applejack's weight. “How's about we put off blaming each other until we get out of this mess? Rarity, we're gonna have to use our magic to get out of this one. Are you thinking of the spell I'm thinking of?”

“Twilight, this isn't the time for ribbons, no matter how fabulous they may be!”

“. . . I was actually thinking of the Clean and Sheen Spell,” said Twilight.

“Oh! But of course,” said Rarity, somewhat sheepishly. “I, too, was thinking of the Clean and Sheen Spell. I was just . . . testing you! Yes, I always test you, don't I, Twilight?”

Yes, you do, Twilight thought, but said aloud, “All right, Rarity, on three, we'll both use our magic. One . . . two . . . three!”

Both of their horns glowed in unison and a bright light engulfed the four ponies, causing Fluttershy to emit a small yelp, even though it wasn't painful. When the light faded, the gum was completely gone and all four of the ponies were free. (In addition, Rarity's mane was no longer pink but it's original purple.)

“Thanks, Twilight, Rarity,” said Applejack as she got to her hooves and shook her mane. “That's mighty kind of y'all to help us like that.”

“Yes, thanks,” said Fluttershy with a subdued smile.

Then Rainbow Dash flew out of nowhere and landed beside them, looking quite pleased with herself. “Well, that's just another job well done, thanks to your friendly neighborhood Rainbow Dash!”

“Where were you?” Rarity asked. “You didn't get the gum off them.”

“I was listening to Pinkie arguing with Shining over there,” said Rainbow, nodding toward the entrance. “Do you guys think Shining's really a changeling? I don't think so, but Pinkie does have some good arguments.”

“Oh, no,” said Twilight, grimacing. “Come on. Let's stop Pinkie before she gets too carried away.”

It took them at least five minutes to convince Pinkie that Shining was not, in fact, a changeling. They had to force Shining to sing along with one of Pinkie's songs before she was finally convinced, as no changeling had ever sang with Pinkie and in fact the only time one did . . . well, that was a rather bizarre tale for another day.

After getting that figured out, Twilight, Spike, and her friends sat around the throne, upon which Cadance and Shining Armor sat. Twilight sat at the foot of throne, with Spike by her side, looking at the rulers of the Crystal Empire.

“So glad we can get this over with,” said Twilight with a sigh. “So, what's this meeting all about? Is there another changeling attack? Or maybe it's manticores this time? Or does the Empire have yet another evil deposed king we don't know about?”

“Actually,” said Shining, glancing out a nearby window, “before we can talk about it, we're still waiting for Princess-”

A boom and a flash of light startled all nine of the assembled ponies (well, technically eight, because Spike is a dragon and all). Fluttershy in particular shrieked and fell over onto her back like a startled goat, while Pinkie had somehow jumped high enough to hit her head against the ceiling.

When Twilight looked around, she saw a new pony had appeared in the room. She was taller than the rest of them, wearing a beautiful white coat and a perpetually flowing mane of many colors. Her unicorn horn was longer than that of many unicorns and her wings, when she stretched them, looked big enough to wrap around two foals each.

In spite of her imposing size and appearance, the new arrival didn't scare any of them. Even Fluttershy, when she saw who it was, relaxed.

“Princess Celestia!” said Twilight, running over to her mentor. “Oh, I'm so excited to see you! How have you been?”

“I have been well, Twilight,” said Celestia with a motherly smile. “I'm glad to see you and your friends have all assembled here. I assume Cadance and Shining Armor have already told you about the situation?”

“Nope!” said Pinkie, who appeared out of thin air next to Twilight. “Crystie did, though. She saw that your crown had been stolen by someone named Sunset Shimmer and that she'd taken it through a dimensional portal straight out of Equestria to another universe entirely! But you know that already, right, Twilight?”

Twilight blinked. “No. I actually didn't know about any of that. At all.”

“Well, now you do,” said Pinkie cheerfully. “And knowing is half the battle!”

Then she leaned in closer to Celestia and whispered, “Hey, Princess, between you and me, I'd keep an eye on Shining Armor over there.”

Celestia raised an eyebrow after glancing at Shining. “Why?”

“Because Crystie say he's a changeling,” Pinkie whispered conspiratorially. “Everyone else doesn't think so, though, and maybe they have a point, but I dunno. Better to be safe than sorry, right?”

Now Celestia just looked confused, but before she could ask what the heck Pinkie was talking about, Twilight's horn glowed and Pinkie disappeared. The pink pony reappeared back with the others.

“That's just Pinkie,” said Twilight with a nervous laugh, “just being . . . Pinkie.”

“Right,” said Celestia, still confused. “Well, she got the basics right. A former student of mine, Sunset Shimmer, stole your crown and escaped with it out of Equestria.”

“But how can that be possible?” Twilight said. She gestured at the crown on her head. “I'm wearing it right now and I haven't seen anypony try to steal it off me.”

“That's because the one you're wearing is a fake,” said Celestia. “Made entirely out of chocolate, in fact. Look.”

Celestia's horn glowed and a bit of the crown broke off. It floated in front of Twilight's shocked eyes for a moment before flying into Celestia's open mouth.

“Tasty,” said Celestia as she licked her lips.

“But . . . I don't understand,” said Twilight, levitating her apparently chocolate crown off her head to look at it more closely. “You gave me and my friends the Elements of Harmony back when you asked us to reform Discord. I've only removed them from their secret place once since that day.”

“I am as at a loss for explanation as you are, Twilight,” said Celestia. “I only became aware of the switch and theft when Sunset broke into Canterlot Castle and escaped into another universe.”

“Another universe?” Twilight said. “I didn't know there were others. I thought they were just theoretical.”

“They're as real as this one,” said Celestia. “The only known bridge between our universe and the other is a magical mirror, one I have normally kept in the treasury to prevent evil beings from using it. I can only speculate as to how Sunset bypassed security and used it.”

“Do you want me to go after her, Princess?” Twilight asked.

“Yes,” said Celestia. “Your job, if you choose to accept it, is to chase Sunset Shimmer through the magical mirror and retrieve the crown. Do you accept?"

“I do,” said Twilight. “But where does that mirror lead?”

“For once, I don't know,” said Celestia with a shrug. “It's an old, old mirror, possibly even older than Discord. I've never used it because I've never had to use it. It's been collecting dust in the Canterlot Castle treasury even before Luna and I came to power.”

That sounded ominous to Twilight, but she didn't show those feelings. “Can I bring my friends with me? I'm going to need all the help I can get if I'm going to a dangerous new world nopony has ever been to before.”

“I'm sorry, Twilight, but you will have to do this on your own,” said Celestia. “It's a risky mission and I can't risk losing all six of the bearers of the Elements of Harmony in one go.”

“But they're my friends,” said Twilight. “They've been with me through all kinds of dangerous adventures. As a matter of fact, we wouldn't even be friends if you hadn't me sent to Ponyville in the first place.”

“I know,” said Celestia. “But I do not want the inhabitants of that other universe knowing about us. Six danger-prone ponies traveling together would surely attract attention, and not the good kind, either.”

“But what if the inhabitants in that universe are good?” said Twilight.

“It's still too dangerous,” Celestia insisted. “Consider, Twilight, that you may not even be able to communicate with the inhabitants of that world. And even if you can, there is a good chance you or your friends may accidentally offend them and thus jeopardize your lives or the mission. Do you understand?”

Twilight glanced over her shoulder at her friends, racking her brain for an argument good enough to persuade Celestia, but nothing came to mind. The Princess had a point.

So she said, “Okay, I understand. Can I at least bring Spike with me? I'll make sure to keep him from causing too much trouble.”

“Spike is fine,” said Celestia. “He may attract less attention than the others.”

“Good,” said Twilight. “So where is this magical mirror, anyway?”

“Right here,” said Celestia as her horn glowed.

A moment later, the magical mirror appeared right in front of Twilight. She looked up at the tall mirror, which at first looked like a normal mirror until she noticed the way the surface flowed like water in a river. She had never seen a dimensional portal before and was eager to touch it before she remembered that the others needed to be informed about her mission first.

Then Celestia called over everypony else and explained to them what Twilight's mission was. Rainbow Dash, predictably, argued that all five of them should go with Twilight and Spike, as they were friends and friends stuck with each other wherever they went. Twilight appreciated the effort, however, even though Celestia shot down the argument almost immediately with the same counterargument from before.

While Spike seemed bummed that Rarity wasn't going with them, he was nonetheless excited. He even started wondering when they should pack when Celestia announced that he and Twilight would be leaving immediately for the new world.

“Leaving immediately?” Twilight repeated in shock. “But Princess, we aren't prepared. What about food? Water? Medicine? You know, things we probably won't be able to easily get in the new world?”

“You think I didn't plan this out?” Celestia said. “I had my guards prepare a special traveling bag for you that contains everything you will need and then some. Here they come now, in fact.”

Two guards entered the room carrying a small traveling bag. They ran up to Twilight, secured it around her body, bowed respectfully, and then left the room before Twilight could even thank them. The bag didn't feel too heavy around her body, but a quick glimpse under the flap told her that it was well-stocked with basic traveling provisions.

“I have no idea how long you're going to be over there,” said Celestia. “You might spend days, weeks, months, or even years in that other world. My only hope is that the magic of friendship will lead you to finding friends in that world who will show you the way.”

“I know it will,” said Twilight. “Well, bye, everypony. Spike and I will be back as soon as we can.”

“Can we throw a party when you get back?” Pinkie asked. “I'll call it the 'Welcome-Back-From-Another-Dimension-Twilight-And-Spike' party!”

“Sure, Pinkie,” said Twilight, somewhat amused. “Now let's go, Spike. We've got a crown to retrieve.”

After saying their farewells to everypony, Twilight and Spike stepped in front of the mirror. Having no idea what dimension-hopping was going to feel like (how could she, when she hadn't read a book about it yet?), Twilight had Spike hold tightly onto one of her wings so they wouldn't be separated during the journey. She felt extremely nervous about stepping through this portal into a new world, but she had experienced worse in the past. She just had to have confidence and remember her friends, who would undoubtedly send their support even when she and Spike were long gone.

And so they stepped through the portal and emerged onto what appeared to be a long, flat plain in the middle of nowhere.

Twilight blinked. “Wow . . . that was abrupt.”

“Yeah,” said Spike, nodding as he looked around. “I thought we were going to see weird colors and stuff. But it's like we just walked outside.”

Twilight looked down at her body. It still looked the same. “Do you feel any different, Spike? Any different at all?”

“No,” said Spike, shaking his head. “I feel like I always have. Why do you ask?”

“I . . . I don't know,” said Twilight with a shrug. “I just had this weird urge, like I'm supposed to point out things we normally take for granted. It's weird.”

“Weird?” Spike repeated. “You're a talking, magical, candy-colored pony. What's so normal about you?”

Twilight looked at Spike in shock. “Spike, why would you say that?”

“I didn't mean it!” said Spike, his hands covering his mouth. “It just . . . came out of nowhere. Like a ghost was possessing me or something. I can't explain it.”

“Maybe there's some strange power in this universe that affects our judgment,” said Twilight, looking around the area cautiously. “We'll have to be careful.”

“Maybe,” said Spike, scratching his chin. “Or maybe . . . maybe we're both really changelings in disguise!”

“You've been listening to Pinkie too much.”

“I'm just saying that we both have been acting a bit strange,” Spike said. “But if we're both changelings, would we know? How do we know for certain whether we are or aren't? I just want to be me!”

“Spike, calm down,” said Twilight, patting him reassuringly on the back with one of her wings. “Neither of us are changelings. We're both us.”

“If you say so, Twilight,” said Spike. “Hey . . . what's that sound?”

Twilight listened hard for a moment. At first, she heard nothing but the wind, until she realized it wasn't the wind at all. In fact, it sounded like the growl of a full-grown dragon, but that was weird because as far as Twilight could see, there were no dragons in the area save for Spike and he certainly wasn't big enough to make that kind of noise yet.

“I don't know,” said Twilight, tilting her head to the side. “Maybe it's a-”

She was cut off rather rudely when out of nowhere a weird two-wheeled vehicle fell out of the sky and landed on Spike. It didn't just land on him, though. It crashed on him, like a meteor, and created a giant explosion sent Twilight flying. She crashed several feet away, rolling over and over until she crashed into a boulder that had apparently appeared out of nowhere.

Dazed, Twilight shook her head, looked up, and gasped. “Spike!”

The baby dragon was trapped underneath the vehicle and wasn't moving at all. Twilight's heart raced at the thought of his death, but that wasn't the worst of it. The worst of it was the two beings riding the vehicle, two beings she had never seen before yet had an ominous feeling about just the same.

For one, they weren't ponies. They were bipedal, with two arms and two legs, just like poor Spike, in fact. One of them was clad in yellow armor and had some kind of strange mini cannon attached to his back, while the other was blue and carried a trident in her hands. Both appeared to be biomechanical.

They looked unlike anything Twilight had ever seen in Equestria. None of her books had talked about creatures like these, and Twilight should know, as she had read nearly every book in the Canterlot and Ponyville libraries at least three times.

The yellow being scratched his head. “Man, that was a crazy fall. I almost cried like a little kid. Almost.”

“Jumping off the moon was great,” said the blue one. “We should do it again sometime. It was romantic.”

“Yeah, we should,” said the yellow being in agreement. “Actually, I think we should go to the sun instead. It's as hot as you are, which is to say that you are ten million degrees hot.”

“I'm not that hot,” said the blue being, blushing. “You're such a flirt.”

While the two beings kept flirting with each other, Twilight struggled to her hooves. That explosion had taken more out of her than she'd like to admit; however, she felt her strength recovering fairly rapidly. Another strange occurrence; back home, surely such a blow would have required constant bed rest for at least a few days. Here, though, she could already feel the pain fading.

And that, to say the least, was disturbing, because it left her with a lot of unanswered questions. And if there was one thing that Twilight hated, it was unanswered questions.

Not that those questions mattered at the moment, however, when Spike was in danger. Her rational side told her plainly to observe the newcomers a little longer and then act from there. But the sight of Spike crushed underneath that machine, badly injured and hurt, and the two beings apparently not giving a flying feather about his condition, made her too angry to listen to her rational side.

She fired a magical energy bolt at the two beings. The yellow one apparently noticed the energy bolt coming, because he backhanded it without even looking at it. The backhanded bolt flew into the sky and struck a nearby cloud, shattering the cloud into pieces as though it were made of glass.

And the worst part of that? Twilight had not cast a shattering spell. Which meant she was dealing with very, very powerful magicians here if they could alter her spell simply by hitting it. And suddenly she understood how Fluttershy felt whenever she met ponies who were stronger than her.

But she couldn't run. She had to get their attention somehow. So she decided to do the obvious: Call them out.

“Hey, you two!” Twilight yelled, flapping her wings rapidly to increase the noise. “Get off my friend!”

The two biomechs stopped flirting immediately and looked at Twilight in curiosity. Somehow, their nonchalance at her appearance scared Twilight more than if they had been angry or scared.

“Hey, Kiina, look,” said the yellow one, pointing at Twilight. “A magical, candy-colored pony with a horn and wings. It can even talk.”

“And?” said the blue one, apparently named Kiina. “Considering all the weird stuff we see on a daily basis, this pony is positively normal.”

“Eh, true,” said the yellow one, stroking his chin. “Especially that zombie robot break-dancing weasel. I still have no idea where it came from.”

Twilight didn't know what they were talking about, so she said, “I don't care if I'm 'normal' or not. I just want you guys to get off my friend, Spike. You're crushing him.”

“Oh, isn't that cute?” said the yellow one with a condescending laugh. “It's asking us to move.”

“Wait a minute, Mata Nui,” said Kiina, peering closely at Twilight. “This pony looks like that other pony, the one that banished us to the moon with that weird crown.”

“Oh, you mean that one with the weird mane?” said the yellow one whose name was Mata Nui. “Now that you mention it, the two do look awfully similar. Maybe they're friends.”

“Are you talking Sunset Shimmer?” Twilight said. “Because I know who she is, if that's who you're talking about.”

That was probably the dumbest thing Twilight had said so far, because Mata Nui ripped his mini-cannon off his back and growled, “Darn stupid pony! You're going down!”

While Twilight was no coward, her rational mind told her that she really didn't stand a chance against beings who could redirect and reform spells that they didn't cast. There was also the fact that these two apparently survived a direct fall from the moon, so. . . .

“Hey, I think I see Princess Celestia over there!” said Twilight, pointing over their heads. “And is that Princess Luna, too?”

“Princesses?” said Mata Nui, looking in the direction Twilight had pointed. “Where?”

Taking advantage of their distraction, Twilight turned and ran as fast as her hooves would carry her across the field. She heard the roaring of the machine's engine behind her, forcing her to run even faster. Her heart broke at the thought of those two beings having Spike's body, but for now there was nothing she could do to help him without getting killed herself.


A few hours later. . . .

Somehow, perhaps through luck, Twilight managed to lose her pursuers. By now, her legs were so weak that they felt ready to give out underneath her any moment, so she had to find some place to lay for a while. Especially with the sun setting, which puzzled her as it had felt like morning just a couple of hours ago. Did time move differently in this universe? Or had more time passed than she had noticed?

Twilight came across a gathering of boulders. Carefully looking around the area, Twilight saw no other living beings nearby. She took a deep breath and flew into the crevice between the boulders. This seemed like a safe place to spend the night. Tomorrow morning she would think about her next move. For now, she had to rest.

Twilight sighed as she rested her head on her front hooves. “If I had only been stronger, faster . . . then maybe Spike. . . .”

Her voice trailed off, as she didn't know idea what she could have done to save Spike back there. How could she have known to lookout for falling machines? Even if she did, how could she have known they would run into one almost the second they stepped into this new world? There was nothing she could do about Spike, which just made her feel worse.

At least she was safe here. She would close her eyes and rest until morning. That's what she really needed after all of this madness; just some nice, quiet, peaceful rest in a secure place, where nopony knew where she was save for herself. . . .

Something firmly seized her by the horn, causing Twilight to cast a heat spell involuntarily. She heard a loud grunt of pain, but the thing still lifted her up out of the crevice. And then she found herself face-to-face with Mata Nui, who wore an expression of pure anger and hate.

She thought about flailing her limbs, kicking him with her hooves or flapping her wings in his face. She thought about wriggling her body about, slipping out of his grasp. She even considered casting a more powerful spell than the last. But somehow, she doubted any of that would save her from this maniac, because his blue eyes clearly reflected his murderous intent.

“Before you kill me,” said Twilight, in a resigned voice, “can I take a moment to remember my friends?”

Mata Nui's expression didn't change at all. “Why do you think I'm going to kill you?”

Twilight would have cocked her head to the side, but seeing as Mata Nui still held her by the horn, she only managed to shake her body awkwardly. “Well, you did say 'you're going down' back there while waving your mini-cannon around, so-”

“It's not a mini-cannon,” said Mata Nui. “It's the 40k Mighty Grandma Assault rifle. Learn the difference, pony.”

“Yes, sir,” said Twilight, shrinking back in fear. “I'm good at learning.”

“Mata Nui?” said a voice below, a high-pitched male voice that Twilight recognized immediately. “Did you find her?”

“Yeah, I found her,” said Mata Nui, without looking over his shoulder. “Found the pony, all right. She was hiding in these boulders all along, just as my magical detection senses told me.”

“Mata Nui, you don't have 'magical' detection senses,” said a female voice, this one belonging to Kiina. “It was just a lucky guess on your part.”

“No, it's magic,” Mata Nui snapped. “Right, pony?”

But Twilight was too distracted by the first voice to pay attention to Mata Nui's question. It couldn't be. He was dead. She had seen the machine land on him. And even if he wasn't, what was he doing hanging out with these two freaks? They weren't his friends, after all. It was illogical. And yet. . . .

“Spike?” said Twilight uncertainly.

“Twilight?” the voice said. “It's me, Spike. I'm down here with Kiina.”

Twilight broke into a huge grin. “Spike! I can't believe you're alive! I thought these two weir- er . . .” upon seeing Mata Nui's unchanging expression, “. . . these two guys had killed you!”

“Nah, they're cool,” said Spike. “It's just a big misunderstanding. Come on down and I'll explain it to you.”

“All right,” said Twilight. She looked at Mata Nui and said, “Um, Mr. Yellow Guy with the Rifle, will you please let me down?”

“Okay,” said Mata Nui.He extended his arm over the side of the boulder and unceremoniously dropped her. Twilight tried to use her wings to soften the fall, but as they weren't high enough above the ground for that, she ended up landing hard on her rump.

“Ouch,” said Twilight, rubbing her flank. “That was rude.”

Mata Nui jumped down beside her, his expression still one of hate, and said, “Oops. I'm sorry.”

Twilight rolled her eyes, but before she could respond, Spike tackled her with a big hug. Twilight wrapped her forelegs around Spike and said, “Oh, Spike! I thought for sure you were dead!”

“Me, too,” said Spike, looking up at her. “It was really scary, being stuck under that motorcycle like that.”


“Motorcycle,” Spike repeated. “That's what they call that vehicle they ride on.”

“Okay,” said Twilight. “Well, how did you survive? That crash looked pretty brutal.”

“I don't know,” said Spike with a shrug. “I really thought I was going to die, but when I opened my eyes, not a single scale on my body was scratched or broken. In fact, I'd say I feel even stronger than ever. Watch.”

Spike pushed himself out of Twilight's embrace and walked over to the nearby boulders. He took a deep breath and then unleashed a gigantic magical green flame that engulfed all of the boulders. When the fire passed, all that was left of the boulders was a singled blackened spot on the earth.

“Amazing,” said Twilight. “I've never seen you use such powerful fire before, Spike.”

“I know!” said Spike, nodding eagerly. “By the way, I don't think you've formerly met Mata Nui and Kiina yet.”

He gestured at the two biomechanical beings, who stood near the motorcycle that Spike had been crushed underneath. While Kiina looked friendlier than before, Mata Nui still didn't look happy. In fact, he looked so angry that a fly that had been buzzing around nearby spontaneously burst into flames and fell to the ground like a downed pegasus.

“Um,” said Twilight. “Thanks for . . . um. . . .”

“They saved me,” said Spike, walking up to Twilight. “When they found me underneath their motorcycle, they got me out. I told them you aren't a bad guy, so they agreed to help me find you. They're good guys, Twilight, even though they're kind of weird.”

“Then why does Mata Nui look so, er, angry?” Twilight asked. “And how come he was so sarcastic back there?”

“I'm not angry,” said Mata Nui, his expression completely contradicting his face. “Nor do I hate you, if that's what you think.”

“He's telling the truth,” said Kiina. “His expression is stuck again. Let me see if I can fix that.”

Abruptly, Kiina reared back and punched Mata Nui in the face. The blow sent him flying until he crashed into the ground, creating a deep trench in the earth that sent huge clumps of dirt flying, which Twilight and Spike just barely managed to dodge.

“Hey!” said Twilight in shock. “Why'd you hit your friend like that?”

“He's going to be fine,” said Kiina, shaking her thing (her hoof? Twilight wasn't sure what it was called) as she lowered it. “He's been hit with worse.”

A minute later, Mata Nui burst from the ground at their feet, covering Twilight and Spike in dirt. He landed on the ground so hard he created a small tremor that knocked Twilight and Spike off their feet. And when he rose to his full height, he wore a rather sickeningly sweet expression, with the biggest, brightest smile, and shining eyes that made Twilight want to barf rainbows.

“Hi, everybody!” said Mata Nui, waving at them all happily. “Isn't everything so kawaii? Let's go skip through fields of flowers and play games with Mister Sunshine!”

Mata Nui gestured at the sun, which had appeared out of nowhere. The sun was smiling and giggling like a little kid. The mere fact that the sun had an expression at all made Twilight's brain twist itself into knots trying to explain it logically, which it utterly failed to do.

“Oops,” said Kiina, as though this was a regular occurrence. “Hit him too hard. Let's try again.”

Kiina bonked him on the head with her trident. Then Mata Nui's expression returned to normal and he shook his head and said, “Whoa, what happened?”

“Mister Sunshine happened,” said Kiina, pointing up at the bizarre sun.

“Oh, he did, did he?” said Mata Nui, punching one of his hooves (maybe? Twilight didn't know else to call those appendages on the ends of their arms) into the other. “Hang on a minute.”

Mata Nui reached into the sky and plucked 'Mister Sunshine' from among the clouds like it was an apple. Then he drop-kicked it so hard it went flying out of the atmosphere. Mister Sunshine screamed in despair as it flew out of the planet and struck the moon, causing Mister Sunshine to explode and the moon itself to split in two, a stream of lava connecting the two halves together like a thin rope.

“There we go,” said Mata Nui.Twilight and Spike just watched the proceedings with twitching eyes.

“Spike,” said Twilight, without looking at him, “do you think maybe Celestia's magic mirror broke and sent us deep into Pinkie's subconscious?”

“No,” said Spike, shaking his head. “I think we're in Discord's subconscious.”

“Did someone say Subway?” Mata Nui asked. “Because if so, we should really go there 'cause I'm really hungry.”

Twilight shook her head. “Look, thanks for not really killing Spike and all, but we really gotta go. We have an important mission to complete, so we can't stick around and chat.”

“Wait, did you say . . . mission?” Mata Nui repeated. “Like, an adventure?”

Twilight cocked her head. “Well, I guess it might be an adventure, but-”

“Then count me in,” said Mata Nui, gesturing at himself with his fifth claw (that was what Twilight assumed the little digits on his hoof-like appendage was, even though it was more rounded than Spike's claws). “It's been a long time since I went on an adventure. Even though I don't like frilly girly ponies-”

“Mata Nui,” Kiina said, looking at him seriously, “what did we say about using that kind of language?”

“Um,” said Mata Nui, scratching the top of his head. “Don't talk that way in front of you?”

“Exactly,” said Kiina. “It's all about being secret.”

“That doesn't seem like the recipe for a healthy relationship to me,” Twilight said.

“It's worked for us,” said Mata Nui. “What do you know? I bet you haven't even had one boyfriend. Nerd.”

Before Twilight could correct Mata Nui, Spike said, “Why do you two want to come along? It's not like our mission has anything to do with you two.”

“That's where you're wrong,” said Kiina. “Your pony friend-”

“Twilight Sparkle,” Twilight corrected. “That's my name.”

“Yeah, sure, whatever,” said Kiina. “Anyway, your rude pony friend mentioned someone named Sunset Shimmer. We know a pony like that.”

“You do?” said Twilight. “Where did you see her?”

Mata Nui looked around in confusion. “Well, we were in Atero, but then she banished us to the moon and we had to jump off. Now I don't even know where we are.”

“A-tear-oh?” Twilight repeated. “What's that?”

“An awesome city,” Mata Nui replied. “It's like all those cities you see in action movies. There's always terrorists, aliens, foreigners, zombies, ninjas, or some combination of those things attacking the city at any time of day. You should really go sometime. It's got great hotels.”

“Let's get back on topic,” said Kiina. “So anyway, Mata Nui and I were just cruising around Atero, fighting terrorist alien zombie foreigner ninjas and whatnot, when we ran into Sunset. She declared that she was going to rule the world, so naturally we tried to stop her. Then she used her freaky horn to banish us to the moon, as we've already said a billion times.”

“So you guys want to tag along with us because you want revenge?” said Twilight. “Is that a logical deduction?”

“Logical deduction?” Mata Nui repeated. “What is that? Some kind of pony slang?”

“No, it's basic English,” said Twilight.

Mata Nui laughed. “How cute. She thinks she can speak basic English.”

Twilight felt a powerful urge to throttle Mata Nui, but she restrained it as Kiina said, “Spot on, kiddo. We want to teach Sunset a lesson. Right, Mata Nui?”

“Of course,” said Mata Nui. “No one banishes Mata Nui to the moon and gets away with it with their life in any meaningful condition.”

“And we're trying to get something back from her that she stole from us,” said Twilight. “I guess we have pretty similar objectives, so. . . .”

She felt a tug of her wings and, looking down, saw that it was Spike. “Um, Twilight? Can I speak to you in private for a sec?”

“Sure,” said Twilight, bending down low enough that neither Mata Nui nor Kiina could hear her if she talked. “What's up?”

“Those two,” said Spike, not-so-subtly gesturing toward them. “I mean, they're really cool, but they seem really violent and scary.”

“Why do you think I want them on our side?” Twilight whispered back. “They might buck us to the moon if we reject them. Better to be safe than sorry, as Celestia always says.”

“But didn't Celestia also say that you weren't supposed to interact with the inhabitants of this dimension?” Spike asked. “Traveling with these two would break that rule into pieces.”

Twilight bit her lower lip. “Well, I don't think it was an ironclad rule. I mean, the rules sometimes need to be changed, you know? It's too late to be worrying about breaking that rule, anyway, as Mata Nui and Kiina already know about us. We'll just have to be a bit more careful from now on. I'm sure Celestia will understand.”

“If you say so,” Spike muttered.

Then Twilight sat up and looked at Mata Nui and Kiina. “Well, you guys said Sunset was in Atero, right? In what direction does that city lie?”

Mata Nui stepped forward and said, “I'll lead the way. My infallible sense of direction will take us back there.”

“Infallible sense of direction?” Twilight repeated. “Is that magic, just like everything else you've done so far?”

“You think that's magic?” Mata Nui said with a laugh. “Pony, please. Punting the sun into the moon is all me, baby. You've got a lot to learn.”

With that, Mata Nui went walking off in a random direction, with Kiina following behind. Twilight and Spike exchanged a look that said, Yeah, we're screwed, before they ran after their two new allies.


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Chapter Two: In Which Twilight Learns More about the World (and why She, like You, should Fear it)

Ha ha, Mr. Narrator. I get it. Irony and all that. Hilarious. Thanks for making me look like a hypocrite.

-TNTOS, circa 2013

Now that they had two natives of this world as their companions, Twilight felt safer. Not only that, but her curiosity, which she had so far kept to a minimum, had fired up like crazy. She wanted to learn everything about this world that she could. And with Mata Nui and Kiina traveling with her, she could ask as many questions as she wanted and get just as many answers. It was like Hearth's Warming Day, except even better because there were no silly wrapping paper or boxes to open.

“What are those weird hooves on the ends of your arms?” said Twilight, pointing at them.

“Um,” said Mata Nui. “They're called hands.”

“Hands,” said Twilight, cocking her head. “Are those like claws? What's the point of them if they are rounded and not sharp?”

“Um. . . .”

“And what's a rifle, anyway?” said Twilight, looking at Mata Nui's weapon. “I've never see anything like it before. It kind of resembles Pinkie's party cannon, but it's a lot smaller.”

“It's a gun,” said Mata Nui. “I can shoot people with it. Because it's a gun.”

“And is that a helmet or a mask you're wearing?” Twilight asked. “Why do you even wear a mask, anyway? Are you a superhero?”

“Because I like it,” said Mata Nui. “And besides, I'm not a superhero. If I was, I would be running around with my underwear on the outside fighting crime. As you can clearly see, I am not doing either.”

Twilight nodded with understanding and said, “And why do you wear armor all over your body? Are you guys really part mechanical? Because if so, I want to know how that even works.”

“Kiina,” Mata Nui whined, like a little kid. “Twilight's asking too many obnoxious questions. Can I banish her to another dimension?”

“No, Mata Nui,” said Kiina, shaking her head. “Just ignore her.”

“I'm not being obnoxious, am I?” said Twilight. “I'm sorry if I am. It's just . . . this is a new world to me and I want to know everything about it that I can.”

“There's not much to learn about this world,” said Mata Nui. “Except everything can and will kill you if you let it.”

“What are you talking about?” Twilight replied, trotting along happily. “Nothing has tried to kill me ye-”

Without warning, a huge hole in the ground opened up and a giant clawed hand reached out of it and tried to seize Twilight. Just as abruptly, Mata Nui pulled out his rifle and fired off several rounds at the hand. The clawed hand screeched “Curses! Not again!” and disappeared back into the hole, which soon disappeared as though it hadn't been there at all.

“The heck was that?” said Twilight, staring at the spot where the hole had been moments ago.

“Most likely Bargloth, King of the Dead and one of the Last Ones,” said Mata Nui. “He tries to steal people from the surface world every now and then, but it seems like no matter how many times I shoot his hand he just keeps trying. What a silly ancient entity whose true form our puny mortal minds cannot even comprehend.”

“You know, I think I'm going to have to stick close to you from now on,” said Twilight, walking closer to Mata Nui as they continued their journey. “Because I'm not sure I want to deal with ancient entities that rule the underworld.”

“That was so cool!” said Spike. “Mata Nui, you gotta teach me how to use your gun sometime. Then I can be as cool as you.”

Mata Nui laughed a fatherly laugh. “What a funny little dragon you are, Spike. But don't delude yourself. You won't ever be even half as cool as me.”

“I can try, though,” said Spike. “As long as I put my mind to it and as long as I have friends, I can do anything.”

“That's right, Spike,” said Twilight in agreement. “Friendship is magic, after all.”

Mata Nui stopped and stared at Twilight in horror. “What . . . did you say?”

“Friendship is magic,” Twilight replied. “Why? What's so wrong about that?”

“It's just so . . . cheesy,” said Kiina. “Like this cheese wheel.”

Seemingly out of nowhere, Kiina pulled out a huge wheel of cheese. “See how cheesy this is?”

Utterly bemused, Twilight shook her head and said, “I don't get it.”

“Come on,” said Kiina. “Don't you ponies have cheese back in your world?”

“Well, yes,” said Twilight, “I just meant I don't understand the joke.”

“What joke?” said Mata Nui, suddenly grabbing Twilight and pulling her up to his face. “You think this is a joke? You think that any of this is a joke? Tell me, do you think this is a joke?”

Cowering in fear, Twilight said, “N-No. I just meant-”

“Good,” said Mata Nui, dropping Twilight to the ground rather roughly. “Because if this is a joke, I'm not laughing.”

With that, Mata Nui continued on his way with Kiina at his side. Spike helped Twilight back to her feet and soon the entire group was on their way again. Now, however, Twilight was beginning to reconsider the wisdom of teaming up with these two. Maybe Celestia had been right about keeping away from this universe's inhabitants.

Eventually, the group came to a fork on the road. Mata Nui picked up the fork and said, “That's funny. Who would leave a perfectly good fork lying on the road like that? It's silly.”

And then they traveled a little further down the road and came upon a fork in the road, which is to say a place where the road split into two different paths. Unfortunately, there was no sign telling them where each path lead. Even looking down each path failed to show them anything useful, as the two paths appeared to spiral into the distance forever.

“Which path should we take?” said Spike, looking down both paths. “Left or right?”

“My infallible sense of direction says left,” said Mata Nui, pointing down the left path.

“Does he really have an infallible sense of direction?” Twilight whispered to Kiina. “Or is he just making things up?”

Kiina shrugged. “I just find it's better to humor him. But don't tell him I said that.”

“Why does your infallible sense of direction say we go left?” Spike asked.

“Because it's infallible,” said Mata Nui, as though that answered everything. “Why does an infallible sense of direction need reasons?”

“Okay,” said Spike brightly. “You should really teach Twilight how to get an infallible sense of direction. Would be useful if we ever got lost.”

“Don't be stupid,” said Mata Nui, patting Spike on the head. “Why do you need to know that when you can always count on me?”

So the party of four went down the left path, just as Mata Nui said they should. It was a long, winding path that seemed to zigzag for no reason Twilight could see other than whoever designed the road was incompetent. Once the zigzags were so close to each other that they could have simply walked across both of them like a normal road, but Mata Nui insisted that they follow the path exactly as it was laid out, even if that didn't make any sense. Not that Twilight argued with him. After all, anyone who could dropkick the sun into the moon was not someone you wanted to argue with.

While they walked, Twilight observed how strange their environment really was. Though it was night, she could still see about as well as she could during the day time. For that matter, the destruction of the moon didn't appear to have any negative effect on the environment that she could see. She wondered if this world's tides were suddenly whacked up or not.

What was strangest, though, was a cloud she spotted floating in the sky all on its own.

“Hey,” said Twilight to nopony in particular. “Is that cloud . . . moving on its own?”

“Yep,” said Kiina, nodding. “Why?”

“Well, isn't that strange?” said Twilight, pointing at the cloud. “Where are your pegasi? It's their job to control the weather.”

“What are you talking about?” said Kiina. “The weather just moves on its own here. Well, to be fair, I'm pretty sure the environment is liable to come to life and kill anyone at any time, but most of time it works on its own without any outside help.”

“Just like the Everfree Forest. . . .” Twilight said in horror. “What kind of hellhole is this world?”

“Geez, it's not that scary,” said Kiina, rolling her eyes. “Ooh, look at me, I'm a cloud . . . and I'm moving of my own accord!”

Twilight shuddered. “Stop that. It's not funny.”

“On the contrary, it's hilarious,” said Kiina. “But seriously, get a hold of yourself. There's really nothing scary or unnatural about independent clouds. At all.”

“No, there definitely is,” Twilight insisted. “Have you just grown callous to this horror or what?”

Kiina sighed. “Would you just-”

Without warning, the ground at their feet trembled. The trembling almost threw Twilight and Spike off their feet, while Mata Nui and Kiina somehow kept their ground.

“What was that?” Twilight asked upon regaining her balance. “An earthquake?”

Mata Nui shook his head. “No. It's far worse than that, I'm afraid.”

“It wasn't Bargloth, King of the Dead and one of the Last Ones, was it?” said Spike, shaking in his scales. “Because I don't want to die, at least not yet. I've got a lot of thing I want to do, like kiss Rarity and . . . well, okay, that's about it. But I still want to do it and I can't do it if-”

“Bargloth knows better than to hunt me,” said Mata Nui. “No, it's something far worse.”

“Worse than Bargloth?” Twilight repeated. “What-”

Without warning, a portal exploded out of nowhere and what appeared to be hundreds of small spheres rolled out. The spheres came to a halt several feet away from Twilight and her allies and then transformed. Legs and arms folded out from the body, revealing that each of these sphere robot things (Twilight wasn't sure what they were) held strange-looking shields in their hands. One of them, for example, had shields stylized like flames.

That definitely wasn't the strangest part, though. The strangest part was the glowing brains you could see through their glass helmets. At least, they looked like brains. All Twilight knew was that these things were some of the creepiest monsters she'd ever seen and she'd seen quite a few scary monsters in her time.

“What are those?” Twilight asked, looking up at Mata Nui. “Robots?”

“Bohrok,” said Mata Nui. “Big, spherical robots obsessed with cleaning.”

Twilight gulped. “'Cleaning' wouldn't happen to be a euphemism for 'killing,' would it?”

“No,” said Mata Nui, looking down at her surprise. “Why would you think that?”

“Oh,” said Twilight, somewhat awkwardly. “Well, it's just that you said they were worse than Bargloth, so I assumed-”

“Geez, you have a sick mind,” said Mata Nui. “What a sicko. Get away from me. You're so weird. God.”

Twilight just cocked her head at him in confusion. “Um, what?”

Without warning, one of the Bohrok -- a red one -- launched itself through the air toward the gang. Twilight stepped up and said, “Don't worry, everyone, I got this covered!”

Her horn glowed with energy, but she was shoved out of the way by Mata Nui, who cranked the bolt on his gun, aimed, and fired in one swift motion. The bullet struck the incoming Bohrok directly in the face, causing it to explode in a magnificent explosion of flames and agony. At least, that's the only way Twilight could describe it. How else was she to account for the terrified screams of the Bohrok as it burned to pieces?

As soon as the other Bohrok noticed the way their comrade died horribly, they pulled out cleaning supplies: mops, bottles of soap and vinegar, brushes, wash rags, sponges, rubber gloves, and buckets of soapy water. Then they started advancing on the gang; slowly, true, but menacingly enough that Twilight was both freaked out and puzzled.

“What are they going to do?” said Twilight, glancing at her friends. “Soap us to death?”

She was surprised when she saw Mata Nui, Kiina, and, oddly enough, Spike actually shaking in their boots (metaphorically, of course, as none of them wore boots). Mata Nui looked close to passing out even.

“This may be our toughest battle yet,” said Mata Nui. “They want to clean us!”

“So?” said Twilight. “What's so bad about-”

Without warning, a large water-filled sponge slapped her in the face. Shaking her head and wiping her face with one of her wings, Twilight looked around and noticed one of the brown Bohrok carrying a bucketful of sponges in its arms.

“Hey!” said Twilight reproachfully. “That wasn't very nice.”

“That's how the Bohrok roll, Twilight,” said Mata Nui seriously. “They throw sponges filled with water in people's faces . . . without first asking for your consent!”

“Well, that's certainly rude,” said Twilight. “But I don't think violence is the most constructive response to that.”

“Violence is the most constructive response to everything,” said Mata Nui as he pumped the crank on his gun. “Now get out of my way, 'cause I'm going Bohrok hunting! Come on, Kiina. Between you and me, it'll be just like Dark Mirror!”

Kiina laughed gleefully as she followed Mata Nui into the approaching Bohrok army. Spike tried to join them, but Twilight teleported him to her side and said, “No, Spike. I don't want you fighting alongside those two.”

“But Twilight,” Spike said, looking up at her, “they're our friends, aren't they? Sure, they're a little violent, but aren't you the one who is always talking about the magic of friendship and whatnot? Don't friends help each other and stand by each other's side?”

“Depends on your definition of the word 'friend,'” said Twilight, watching Mata Nui and Kiina battle the Bohrok. “And besides, weren't you the one telling me we shouldn't ally with them earlier?”

“Yeah, well, I think I may have jumped the gun back there,” said Spike, scratching the back of his head sheepishly. “I just didn't realize how awesome they are.”

“Awesome?” Twilight said. “I'd say they're more rude and violent than awesome.”

“Just give 'em a chance.”

Twilight sighed. “Well, okay, maybe you have a point. Maybe I am too- HOLY CELESTIA!”

While they had been talking, Mata Nui and Kiina had been tearing apart the Bohrok. Literally. Mata Nui grabbed a Bohrok, roared incomprehensibly and ripped apart the machine above his head. He then hurled both halves of the monster at its fellows, creating an explosion that engulfed Mata Nui.

But unless Twilight's eyes deceived her, it looked like Mata Nui was now wearing the explosion like armor. He slammed his fist into one Bohrok's head plate, causing the Bohrok to explode into flames and death. And somehow he grabbed the exploding Bohrok and hurled it into the atmosphere, where it was never seen again.

As for Kiina, she was in some ways even more savage. She smashed open a Bohrok's head plate with her trident and speared its weird brain thingy. She then did a back flip onto another Bohrok and slammed her trident down on its head plate so hard that it exploded, sending the female warrior flying through the air out of control.

And then several of the Bohrok flew into the air after Kiina. Twilight readied her wings to help, but as it turned out, Kiina didn't need help. She somehow righted herself in midair just as the dozens of Bohrok surrounded her, cleaning supplies at the ready.

Then Kiina, somehow floating in midair, swung her trident around in a circle, slamming it into all of the Bohrok with the force of a volcano. She sent all the Bohrok flying into the horizon, which they actually slammed into, as if it were a wall, and then, of course, exploded.

Meanwhile, dozens of Bohrok had dog-piled Mata Nui, crushing him underneath their collective weight. Again, Twilight prepared to help, but Mata Nui, like Kiina, evidently didn't need her help. A massive explosion sent all of the Bohrok on top of him flying, disintegrating the closest ones and melting into slag the others.

Still wearing his explosion armor, Mata Nui pulled out his 40k MGA and yelled, “Eat this!”

Mata Nui shot off hundreds of bullets, taking down millions of Bohrok with each bullet. The Bohrok army fell in droves, some screaming in agony, others dying in silence, but all of them equally terrified as Mata Nui slaughtered them.

When the smoke cleared, only six Bohrok still stood. They seemed to represent one of every color: a red one, a green one, a blue one, a white one, a brown one, and a black one. They huddled together as Mata Nui and Kiina regrouped.

“Stupid Bohrok,” said Mata Nui. “You think you six can defeat us? If I were you, I'd give up and run home to mommy.”

Without warning, the six Bohrok started glowing. Their glowing bodies meshed together like slime, mixing until their shining forms faded, revealing a tall titan that towered above everyone in the vicinity.

The titan essentially looked like a giant Bohrok, except that its color scheme reflected all of the different colored Bohrok used to make it. In addition, it appeared to have twelve arms and legs, representing all of the powers that had been used to make it. Just to add to the bizarre picture, it wore a cleaning apron in which were held several bottles of different cleaners, making it smell like a freshly scrubbed bathroom.

“I am Bohrokticus!” the Bohrok monster fusion yelled. “King of the Bohrok!”

“Wait, I thought the Bohrok only had queens,” said Kiina.

“Well, yes, but they can have kings, too,” said Bohrokticus defensively.

“No, they can't,” said Kiina, shaking her head. “That's just stupid.”

“You are stupid,” Bohrokticus snapped. “Now die!”

The Bohrok King unleashed a combined blast of all six of the Bohrok's powers at Mata Nui and Kiina. Twilight was more certain than ever that those two were going to die, but Mata Nui jumped into air toward the oncoming blast, holding his 40k MGA directly in front of him as he did so.

“Mata Nui!” Twilight called out, shocked. “Stop that! You're gonna get yourself killed!”

Mata Nui didn't appear to heed her worries, however. And, as it turned out, they were misplaced anyway. She really should have been warning Bohrokticus.

When the barrel of Mata Nui's gun met the oncoming blast, the rifle somehow absorbed the entire thing into itself. When it did, the rifle started glowing with suppressed energy and looked close to exploding.

“Now, Bohrokticus,” said Mata Nui, somehow floating in midair. “Time to take a bath! Of death!”

With a simple pull of the trigger, Mata Nui unleashed the same combined blast that the Bohrok King had thrown at him. Except this time, it appeared more powerful than the Bohrok King's, because it was even taller than Bohrokticus himself.

“No!” the Bohrok King squealed as the oncoming blast approached. “This cannot be the end of me!”

The next moment, the wave of fire, acid, water, stone, earth, and ice crashed into the Bohrok King like the ocean. Bohrokticus's agonized scream pierced Twilight's ears (not literally, of course), but soon ended abruptly. And when the wave passed, the Bohrok King was nowhere to be seen.

Mata Nui landed onto the ground and walked with Kiina back over to Twilight and Spike. Twilight just looked at the two dumbfounded, while Spike was grinning widely.

“That was so awesome!” said Spike, running up to Mata Nui and Kiina. “First you were like, 'Take this, you dumb Bohrok!' and then they were like 'Oh, no, we're gonna clean you' and then boom!”

“Don't get too excited now, kid,” said Mata Nui, patting him on the head. “I mean, sure, I'm the awesomest guy in the world-”

“Ahem?” Kiina said, not-so-subtly.“Oh, and Kiina is the awesomest girlfriend in the world,” Mata Nui added. “But that's no reason to praise me excessively. Well, okay, maybe it is, but I'm modest.”

Twilight shook her head. “I just . . . I just don't understand how you can do all of that. I mean, how did your gun absorb the Bohrok King's powers and redirect them like that? Your gun isn't big enough to hold all of that matter inside.”

“But that's what the 40k MGA does,” said Mata Nui, lifting his gun up. “It can absorb any attack and fire it back at the enemy at 1000 times its original strength.”

“Cool!” said Spike. “I want one of those. Where do you buy 'em?”

“You can't buy a 40k MGA, silly little dragon,” said Mata Nui. “It comes from the heart.”

“The heart?” Spike repeated, disappointed. “That's lame.”

“But it's also true,” said Mata Nui wisely. “With that out of the way, I think we ought to get going.”

“But . . .” Twilight looked around at all of the destroyed Bohrok. “Where did they come from? Why did they attack us? How did they know where we are? And what the heck is a Bohrok King, anyway?”

“You're just like Bucket-head,” said Mata Nui, rolling his eyes. “Except female. And a pony. But otherwise the same.”

“Who's Bucket-head?” Twilight asked.

“The worst person in the world, that's who,” said Mata Nui. “Anyway, I bet Sunset Shimmer sicced those Bohrok on us. She's the only pony I know who would do such a horrible thing.”

“That still doesn't explain how she knows we're here,” said Twilight. “I certainly haven't gone prancing around announcing my arrival in this world.”

“Um . . .” Mata Nui looked down at his feet. “Well, I guess you could say I got a wee bit cocky back there.”

Twilight cocked her head. “What does that mean?”

Mata Nui pointed up at the sky, prompting Twilight to look up. Her jaw dropped at what she saw.

It was a short message written in the sky, apparently made entirely of clouds. It read thus:

Hey, Sunset Shimmer! You're stupid and I hate you. Also me and my friends are over here, hundreds of miles away from Atero, but you'll never find us, not even if you send an army of Bohrok to the Wastelands; specifically, the southern end. Even more specifically, just a few miles down from those boulders with the hiding place. You can probably find it on Google Maps if those directions aren't clear enough.

But you'll never find us. Ever.

From, Mata Nui.

This impressive display of sheer idiocy stole the words right from Twilight's mouth. No, literally. When she opened her mouth to speak, the clouds used to make the message reached down and took the words from her mouth. They then added her words to the message:


“Well, sorry,” said Mata Nui, putting his hands on his hips. “Don't I have the right to boast?”

Twilight really wanted to hit her head against a table now, but she restrained herself, as she didn't want to get on Mata Nui's bad side.

So she said, in as calm a voice as she could muster, “Okay, okay, this isn't bad. It's not like the situation is completely unsalvagable, right?”

“Right-o,” said Mata Nui, nodding. “This just makes things more challenging. And I am always up to a good challenge.”

“That's why you threw your Wii-mote at the TV when you lost that challenging game you were playing, right?” said Kiina.

“Tabuu had it coming,” Mata Nui snapped. “Anyway, that's not the point. The point is that we must continue our journey, even if we have lost the element of surprise.”

“You mean because of you?” Twilight said.

“For a pony, you sure do talk an awful lot,” Mata Nui replied.

“You mean like, um . . . um . . .” Spike struggled to think of something to say, but in the end he shrugged. “I got nothing.”

“Yes, well, whatever,” said Mata Nui as he turned toward the south. “Let us continue our journey. We still have much ground to cover and we can't do that if you guys are just going to sit around and make snarky comments about me all day.”

“It's hard not to,” Twilight said. “You just make it so easy.”

Kiina whipped out her trident and said, “Hey, you lay off my man. Only I get to make snarky comments about him.”

“Yeah, only Kiina does,” said Mata Nui, nodding. “Wait, what?”

Twilight just shrugged. “Okay, then. I'll just keep all of my snarky comments to myself.”

“You better,” said Mata Nui. “Or I'll rip out your eyeballs and shove them down your-”

“That's enough, Mata Nui,” said Kiina, patting him on the shoulder. “Don't beat up the pony until we don't need her anymore.”

“I know that,” said Mata Nui, shrugging her hand off. “But sometimes it's so hard. . . .”

And so the party of four continued down the road, although they had to wade through the knee-deep pile of Bohrok corpses in order to do so, much to Twilight's disgust and horror.


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Chapter Three: Spike's Adventure (It's like a Filler!)

Um, hello? Help? I'm lost. Anybody out there?

-Random guy standing outside the author's house

After the battle with the Bohrok, the party decided to set up camp for the night. The strangest thing about nights here, from what Twilight had experienced, was how long they seemed. She was certain that night should have ended a while ago, but the moon in the sky hadn't moved an inch since she last saw it. Maybe the fact that the moon was split in half like a broken cookie had something to do with it.

As a matter of fact, without Princess Celestia and Princess Luna guiding the sun and moon, Twilight wondered how time worked here at all. She supposed it was for the same reason the clouds could move on their own; in other words, a mystery she didn't have the time to solve (though she certainly had the interest).

They had no tents or camping supplies of any kind (apparently Celestia didn't think Twilight and Spike would need that sort of thing). Mata Nui somehow found some wood, even though there didn't appear to be any trees for miles, while Spike created the fire. The gang gathered around the campfire, which burned brightly.

“All right,” said Mata Nui, speaking up after a few minutes of silence. “Someone is gonna have to stay up so we don't get ambushed by demon vampire hairdressers.”

“Demon vampire hairdressers?” Spike asked. “What are those?”

“You don't want to know,” said Mata Nui. “Anyway, since I'm too important to stay up and because Kiina can be a pain in the butt when she doesn't get her beauty sleep, I say one of you two can keep guard tonight.”

“Hey, that's not fair,” said Twilight. “We should set up a rotating schedule. There are four of us, so assuming there's twelve hours left in the night, then that means three hour shifts for each of us.”

“I got a better idea,” said Mata Nui. “Why not two six hour shifts done by you two?”

“Because we're all in this together,” Twilight responded. “So no one gets to opt out, no matter how 'important' they may be.”

“You make a valid point,” said Mata Nui. “But no.”

With that, Mata Nui close his eyes and fell backwards with a crash. He then started snoring like a baby and even cuddled with a teddy bear that, like the wood, had appeared seemingly out of nowhere.

“Have fun!” said Kiina. Then she, too, fell asleep in a similar position to Mata Nui (minus the teddy bear, however).

Twilight sighed and looked at Spike. “I guess I'll take the first watch, then.”

“No, Twilight,” said Spike, shaking his head. “As your number one assistant, I will take the first watch. You should get some rest so you'll be in a better mood tomorrow. You've been very sarcastic today, more so than usual.”

“Thanks, Spike,” said Twilight with a smile. Then she frowned. “But what do you mean by 'more so than usual'?”

“Uh, nothing,” said Spike hurriedly. “You just get some shut eye and I'll make sure the demon vampire hairdressers don't get anyone.”

Twilight nodded and curled up on the ground next to the fire. She closed her eyes and soon was fast asleep, hoping that when she woke up all of this would turn out to be some kind of horrible nightmare. Because it was the only rational way she could explain this world.


Spike's eyes drooped. He tried to keep them open, even tried pinching himself to stay awake (as he had thick scales, it didn't really work). He had forgotten that it was his bedtime and that if he didn't get his sleep he would probably sleep all of next day, which would definitely slow down everyone else. And if that happened to get Mata Nui angry . . . Spike shuddered at the thought.

He looked at Mata Nui and Kiina. They were two of the awesomest beings he had ever met or seen in his whole life. They even put Rainbow Dash to shame in terms of sheer awesomeness. As a matter of fact, Spike began wondering what would happen if Mata Nui fought Rainbow Dash. It would be a tough fight, maybe even a tie, but he had a feeling one of them would end up on top. The only question was, who?

Let's see, Spike thought. Mata Nui can punt the sun into the moon, but Rainbow Dash can do a Sonic Rainboom. What would happen if Rainbow performed a Sonic Rainboom on the sun as Mata Nui punted it at her?

Lost in visions of awesomeness, Spike almost didn't notice the glowing white orb of light floating nearby. Only when the orb smacked him on the head did he break out of his reverie.

“Ow!” said Spike, rubbing the top of his head where the orb had hit him. “What was that for?”

He looked up and saw the white orb floating several feet away. It seemed to be beckoning him to follow it. Or maybe his tired eyes were playing tricks on him. Then again, considering all of the other crazy stuff he'd seen today, perhaps a white orb wanting him to follow it wasn't as crazy as he thought.

But I can't just leave Twilight and the others, Spike thought. Who will protect them from the demon vampire hairdressers that Mata Nui warned us about? No. I must stay here. I can't just go running off like that.

So Spike folded his arms and sat on the ground. The white orb shook wildly in the air for a moment, as if annoyed at his resistance, and then it shone brightly before being replaced by a familiar white unicorn with a purple mane.

Spike blinked several times to make sure his eyes were working. “Rarity? Is that you?”

Rarity -- if that really was her -- threw her mane to the side in the way Spike liked and went prancing off into the darkness of the night. It was clear she wanted him to follow her, but Spike had no idea if that really was Rarity or not. She didn't come with them to this world. She was still back in Equestria, awaiting his and Twilight's return. This had to be an illusion.

On the other hand, this Rarity looked extremely real. If it was indeed her, then Spike's choice was made well before he even made it (that makes sense, right?).

Spike looked at the sleeping Twilight and whispered, “I'll be back in a minute.”

The young dragon got up and ran after Rarity's retreating form. It seemed like he was running in the darkness forever, trying to catch a glimpse of her, but every time he thought he spotted her, she faded away from his vision again. He still wasn't sure it was her, but in this world, it seemed like anything was possible, no matter how ridiculous or illogical.

After what felt like hours of running, Spike saw Rarity stop. She turned around to face him and seemed to be waiting for him expectantly, as though he were late for a meeting.

“Rarity!” Spike said. “I'm almost there, don't worry!”In order to make the last few feet, Spike launched himself toward Rarity. He went flying surprisingly high and crashed into the ground at her hooves face-first. That didn't hurt him too badly, seeing as he was a dragon, but the impact still dazed him.

Sitting up and shaking his head, Spike looked at Rarity and said, “Rarity, how did you get here? I thought you were back in Equestria. Are the others with you or are you-”

Rarity smiled at Spike, a beautiful expression, but it lasted only a second. The next moment, she exploded, causing Spike to cover his face with his arms to avoid getting his eyes melted off, because the explosion created such powerful heat that it hurt even him. And he was a dragon and dragons were immune to fire and extreme heat and that is a fact you needed to know and I like waffles and this is a run-on sentence and it's kind of messing up the flow of the story and I'll just shut up now.

When Spike lowered his arms, he saw nothing but a pile of ash where Rarity had been standing. He gasped and said, “Rarity, no! Why did you have to explode? Why do the good always die young? Why?”

Before Spike could break down sobbing, a ring of fire suddenly surrounded the area. Spike looked around in shock as the green flames cut off all avenues of escape. The flames roared high, so he couldn't jump over them.

“Then I'll just walk through them,” said Spike to himself. “I'm a dragon. They can't hurt me.”

Yelling for no reason, Spike ran at the flames. He performed a flying jump at them, sure he would pass through the fire with ease.But to his shock, the flames somehow caught him like a net and threw him back into the circle. He crashed into the pile of ash that had once been Rarity, causing him to choke on the residue. Spitting it out, Spike looked up at the fire with confusion.

“What kind of magic is this?” Spike said as he got to his feet. “It can't be normal fire, otherwise I would have passed right through it no problem.”

Then he heard it. The sound of chanting, of beings walking around the ring. He squinted through the flames and saw several small, mask-wearing biomechanical beings doing weird dances around the ring of fire. Some of them wore loincloths, while others wore hula necklaces. At least one of the little beings was rocking out on a guitar, although clearly it was only for looks, as the rocker didn't have any skill as a guitarist at all.

What the heck is going on here? Spike thought, watching the procession march around the fire. Who are these people? And why is that guy playing a guitar when he obviously doesn't know how to?

Spike decided to see if he could find a weak spot in the ring. He didn't like what he saw and he didn't want to get caught up in something dangerous.

So he turned around and immediately found himself staring at a bright orb of light floating before him.

“Hey!” said Spike, pointing at the orb. “I saw you earlier. You impersonated Rarity, didn't you?”

The orb bounced up and down a couple of times, which Spike took as a yes.

“You tricked me,” said Spike. “You made me think Rarity exploded. For that, you must pay.”

Spike breathed fire at the orb, but it swiftly dodged the flames. Then it flew in and knocked him on the skull, causing Spike to rub his head as he said, “Ow! That hurt.”

Before Spike could snatch the orb, however, it flew away out of his reach and fluttered in the air a few moments before it expanded. The size of the orb soon reached at least the same height as Mata Nui, possibly even taller, and it continued to expand until it was dozens of feet taller than Spike, who felt even smaller than usual in its presence.

“Wh-who are you?” Spike demanded, taking a step back as he tried to take in its full form. “What are you?”

“I am the Orb,” said the Orb, a light flashing from within as it spoke. “As the Orb, I know all and all know I.”

“Well, I don't know you,” said Spike. “So obviously, all does not know you.”

“You miss the point,” said the Orb. “Anyway, as I am the Orb, I therefore need a sacrifice.”

“Wait, wait,” said Spike, holding up his hands. “Back up there a minute. Sacrifice? What the heck does that mean?”

“Excuse me,” said the Orb politely. “I thought you already knew.”

Spike shook his head. “No, I'm pretty lost.”

“All right,” said the Orb. “Well, you see, I'm an entity without a body. I used to have a body a long time ago, but I lost it.”

“I'm sorry to hear that,” said Spike. “Was death . . . painful?”

“Death? No, don't be silly,” said the Orb. “Death is actually a friend of mine. Anyway, I didn't die. I said I lost my body. I mean, if I were dead, would I be here talking to you?”

Spike blinked. “Okay. But how did you lose your body? I didn't think that was possible.”

“Well, I don't know how,” said the Orb with a shrug. “I went to sleep one day and when I woke up, I was an orb, like you see today. It bummed me out for the first few hundred thousand years, but I got used to it.”

“I can't even imagine losing my body,” said Spike, scratching the back of his head. “I mean, if I did, I wouldn't be able to help Twilight or spy on Rarity or do anything.”

“That is precisely why I have decided I want a new body,” said the Orb. “I can't do much, even when I shape-shift and take on a different form. So I studied the ancient tomes of the black mages-”

“The who?”

“Not the Who,” said the Orb irritably. “The black mages. Geez, don't you read?”

“You're just like Twilight,” Spike muttered.

“What was that?”

“Nothing. Continue.”

“Well, after discovering the method for a soul to regain its body, I decided to do it,” said the Orb. “So I brainwashed some Agori -- you know, those villagers marching outside the ring -- into becoming my servants, as the enchantment requires chanting servants. And then I needed a sacrifice, one who is willing to die in order to give me a body.”

“Cool,” said Spike. “Who's your sacrifice?”

“You are, my little dragon,” said the Orb. “Weren't you paying attention earlier?”

Spike gasped. “Me? A sacrifice? No way. I got so many things I want to do before I die and I haven't even done half of them. Like get and keep an awesome mustache, for example.”

“I don't care,” said the Orb. “Now you just lie down like a good sacrifice and let me devour your soul whole. I promise to be quick and painless.”

“That's not very reassuring,” said Spike. “At all.”

“No, I'm pretty sure it is,” said the Orb. “Now die!”

The Orb launched itself at Spike at the speed of stupidity. There was no way for Spike to dodge it; indeed, for a moment, Spike thought he was going to die.

But then he remembered how Mata Nui and Kiina slaughtered all of those Bohrok back there. Why couldn't he do all of the same awesome things as them? Sure, he wasn't a native of this universe, but ever since arriving here Spike had felt a kind of power building up inside his bones that he had never felt back home. And now it was roaring to be unleashed like the dragon he was.

So Spike leaped into the air toward the Orb, performing a flying kick. As he flew through the air, electricity wrapped around Spike's foot, charging up until he looked like a thunderbolt. He pierced the Orb's shiny white surface and went straight through to the other side as the entity roared in pain.

Spike created a giant crater when he crashed into the ground, although he was hardly dazed. The Orb turned around, now with a Spike-shaped hole in its center. It made a strange buzzing noise, like a cricket, and then transformed into a wave of white glowy stuff that was big enough to engulf all of Canterlot. And it was coming straight toward Spike.

As if that would scare Spike. The baby dragon roared, “I am SPIKEZILLA, hear me roar!” and transformed into a gigantic dragon with huge freaking wings and everything. Spikezilla punched straight through the wave like glass, shattering it into billions of pieces. As the Orb's shards fell, screams of agony and shock could be head intermingling with the tinkling of glass.

To Spikezilla, it looked like the Orb was dead. Until, that is, the Orb's shards reformed around him, attempting to suffocate him in its grasp.

“Die, sacrifice!” the Orb growled as its shards covered every inch of Spikezilla's body. “I, the Orb, will rise again!”

“Rise this!” said Spikezilla.He flexed his muscles like the Deity himself. That simple gesture alone was enough to shatter the body cast the Orb was trying to envelop him in, but Spikezilla didn't stop there. He immediately raised his outer body temperature 1,000,000,000 degrees, unleashing a blast of heat that incinerated all of the Orb's shards. The resulting heat blast destroyed a nearby mountain and probably melted the polar ice caps, too, or at least made climate change worse.

“Are you dead yet?” Spikezilla snarled, looking around.

As it turned out, no, the Orb wasn't dead yet. The last particle in its body had somehow survived the heat blast and hurled itself into Spikezilla's open mouth. It went through his throat and somehow found its way through the arteries right into Spikezilla's heart, which was pumping pure awesomeness and hot justice through the giant dragon's veins.

“All I need to do is kill your heart and you will die,” the Orb's particle cackled evilly. “And then I will rise once again to destroy all that exists!”

Uh oh, Spikezilla thought. I can't go inside myself and kill the Orb. Or can I?

As it turned out, Spikezilla didn't need to do that. For you see, the heart is the center of love for all living beings. It is from the heart that love flows. Or maybe that was blood. The author didn't pay attention in science class.

Anyway, Spikezilla's love for Rarity manifested itself in his heart just as the Orb was about to kill it. A shining red version of Rarity, her mane aflame and her eyes glowing like the heart of the sun, appeared in front of the Orb, the love and justice radiating from it like the power of creation itself or something. I don't know. I think the author's running out of ideas.

“What the heck?” said the Orb. “What's going on?”

“Love is going on in your face!” said the Love-Rarity. “Now get out of my Spikey-wikey's heart or I will give you shoulder pads, which would absolutely clash with your rounded style you've got going on.”

“NOOOOOO!!!” the Orb screeched. “Not my fashion! Anything but that!”

“Too late,” said the Love-Rarity as she whirled around. “Have a taste of my fabulous hooves, which so totally go with my awesome style!”

The Love-Rarity bucked the Orb with all of Spikezilla's love running through her; which is to say, quite a lot.

The resulting blow sent the Orb flying out of Spikezilla's mouth. As it exited his mouth, Spikezilla unleashed a pure blast of reddish-black flame (instead of the usual green) that completely and utterly annihilated the Orb from existence. And I mean it was totally dead now. As in, the matter used to make it no longer existed in the universe. Which I'm pretty sure should have some catastrophic consequences for the entire universe, but science was clearly never the author's strong suit, as this fight scene proves.

Unfortunately for Spikezilla, that final burst of flame had taken too much of his energy. He gasped briefly, as if he were a fish out of water, and then suddenly shrunk back to his original size (minus the wings, obviously, as they were too awesome to remain on his back).

Spike then landed on the ground. While he hadn't been intending it, the resulting impact created a small tremor that sent all of the Agori running away in fear, while the fire ring went out like it had been doused with water.

“Whoa,” said Spike, shaking his head. “That was weird. But awesome. I can't wait to tell Twilight, Mata Nui, and Kiina.”

He stopped for a moment to stare at the scattered ashes on the ground. He almost cried before remembering that the Orb had been merely pretending to be Rarity and that the real Rarity was still in Equestria. That meant that someday he would see her again. And when he did, he would be able to tell her all about his awesome adventures with Mata Nui and Kiina. Surely that had to be an accomplishment all on its own, considering how crazy those two were.


Spike returned to camp faster than he expected to. He found the others still sleeping and tried to wake Twilight to tell her about his adventure (he didn't dare try to wake Mata Nui or Kiina, as he figured those two would throw him into outer space if he woke them early).

Unfortunately, Twilight slept like a rock, even after he hit her on the head with one. So he decided to stay up all night, instead of taking turns with Twilight. He wanted to remember every bit of that awesome battle with the Orb so he could relate it to the others in the morning.

Maybe Mata Nui will even think I'm cool, Spike thought. Yep, tomorrow sure is gonna be-

And then, without warning, Spike fell asleep.


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Chapter Four: Everybody hates Bucket-head (Yes, including You)

It is said that every story, at its core, is of the author's creation. I have no idea where I was going with that.

-J. R. R. Tolkien, after being asked a question by someone who didn't write The Lord of the Rings

In the morning, Twilight awoke bright and early, well before anyone else. That was when she discovered that Spike had fallen asleep and had apparently forgotten to switch with her last night. Because everyone seemed okay, however, she saw no reason to get angry about it. Still, she made a mental note to talk to Spike about that later, when she had the chance.

She woke the others up as gently as she could, but despite that, Mata Nui still freaked out. When she nudged him with her horn, Mata Nui grabbed her and pinned her to the ground with his legs, twisting one of her wings behind her back and threatening to deep fry her before he recognized who she was. Then Mata Nui got off her and apologized, saying that he had thought Twilight was Fred the Evil Chicken trying to steal his soul. Twilight just wrote off that apology as more meaningless but harmless gibberish.

For breakfast, Spike and Twilight ate from the supply bags that Celestia had provided them with prior to their journey. Spike had gems while Twilight ate some hay, which caught strange looks from Kiina and Mata Nui.

“Are you eating . . . hay?” said Mata Nui, wrinkling his non-existent nose.

Twilight nodded, a smile on her face as her hunger disappeared. “Yeah. You want some?”

“What do I look like, a horse?” said Mata Nui. “No. I'm getting the kind of food real men eat: Raw meat.”

“Raw meat?” Twilight repeated. “Where are you going to get that? I don't see a lot of animals around here for you to hunt.”

Mata Nui slowly raised his gun and aimed it at Twilight. “Then I guess we'll have to improvise.”

Just before Twilight could comprehend what he was about to do, Mata Nui jerked his arm upwards and shot a single bullet into the air. The next moment, a hawk fell out of the sky and landed at Mata Nui's feet. The hawk was rather large and had a large balloon attached to its head.

“A balloon?” Twilight said.

“Don't hawks in your world have balloons on their heads?” said Mata Nui as he picked up the dead bird.

“No . . . no, they don't.”

“What a weird place you come from,” said Mata Nui. “What is your world called, anyway?”

“Equestria,” Twilight replied. “And yours?”

“Spherus Magna,” said Mata Nui. “See, it's not a stupid pun on the word 'equestrian.' It's a stupid pun on the word 'sphere.' Therefore it's better.”

“Uh huh,” said Twilight, rolling her eyes. “Right. Well, I would appreciate it if you didn't prepare your meal in front of me.”

“Why not?” said Mata Nui. “You ponies need to man up if you're going to survive in this world. Therefore, I need to show you the manliest thing in existence: Preparing a full-sized hawk for breakfast.”

The sight that followed was one Twilight would never forget, no matter how hard she tried, due to its horribleness. Even when she tried to close her eyes, Mata Nui forced them open and said, “Nuh huh, you gotta watch the whole thing. The fate of the universe may someday depend on it!”

And so, three hours later, Twilight sat, her eye twitching, watching Mata Nui and Kiina finish eating the fried hawk.

“There,” said Mata Nui, looking at Twilight. “Now that wasn't so hard, was it?”

“Wheelbarrow . . .” Twilight said, her eye still twitching. “Crayons . . . beach towels. . . .”

“That was cool,” said Spike. “But what was the shovel for?”

“It was for the screwdriver,” Mata Nui explained. “Weren't you watching?”

“Oh, now I remember!” said Spike, snapping his claws. “Mata Nui, you gotta teach me how to do that sometime.”

“I dunno,” said Mata Nui, scratching his chin. “It requires a master's in quantum physics in order to understand correctly. And seeing as I don't have one, I don't think I can teach it to you.”

“Aw, man,” said Spike. “Anyway, who wants to hear about my adventure last night?”

“No one,” said Mata Nui as he stood up. “We should get going. That Sunset cow isn't going to murder herself, after all.”

“Murder?” Twilight repeated. “No one said anything about murder.”

“Oh, you're right,” said Mata Nui. “Let me correct myself: That Sunset cow isn't going to punt herself into the sun, after all.”

“That's really not much better.”

“You're really not much better,” said Mata Nui, folding his arms and pouting.

Twilight rolled her eyes as she, Spike, and Kiina stood up. “Whatever. Let's just get going already. The sooner we capture Sunset Shimmer, the sooner we can go back home, where everything makes sense.”


A few more hours of travel later brought the gang to a small village, which according to a nearby sign was called 'Nowhere.' It reminded Twilight of Ponyville back home, except for the fact that all of the villagers (who were called Agori, according to Spike, although how he knew that she didn't know) seemed to glare daggers at them as they passed.

“I don't get it,” said Twilight, looking at the Agori villagers. “Why are they looking at us like that?”

“Dunno,” said Mata Nui. “Maybe their girlfriends dumped them and ran off with their best friends.”

“Not all of them are male,” Twilight observed.

“You think that's gonna stop their girlfriends from running off with their best friends?” Mata Nui countered. “Are you really that naïve?”

“I know,” said Twilight. “It's just I thought . . . oh, never mind.”

“I'm not afraid of a couple of angry Agori,” said Spike. “I can take on anything after last night.”

“Sounds like someone slept better than me,” Kiina remarked. “When I woke up, I felt like killing the world. Twice.”

“Honey, you always feel that way,” said Mata Nui.

“Oh yeah,” said Kiina. “Thanks for reminding, Mata Nui.”

Ignoring her friends' conversation, Twilight said, “Let's just pass on through, don't make any eye contact with the villagers, and not get involved in any unnecessary events or problems. Simple.”

Mata Nui came to a screeching halt. “Simple? Aw, heck no! I desire unnecessary detours and subplots! Therefore, we shall find a bar in which to brawl! Come, Kiina!”

Mata Nui and Kiina walked over to a building unimaginatively named 'the Bar.' They kicked a few Agori out of their path as they went without apologizing or even acknowledging what they did.

“Should we follow them?” Spike asked. “I mean, we are on the same team after all.”

“No,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “Those two have been getting on my nerves ever since we started traveling with them. If they want to go and get themselves drunk, then that's their prerogative. For us, we have an important mission to fulfill that Princess Celestia herself gave us. We have no time to waste.”

“Aw, okay,” said Spike with a sigh. “It's just that they're so cool. I want to be just like Mata Nui when I grow up.”

“I hope you grow up to be nothing like Mata Nui,” said Twilight as she turned her attention back to the road. “Now let's-”

She paused when she saw that an entire crowd of Agori, armed with pitchforks, torches, and shovels, had gathered before them. All of the Agori looked extremely angry, but Twilight tried to convince herself that they weren't going to kill her and Spike. No, these Agori were likely farmers, perhaps going to a farmers' market that was happening today that she didn't know about. As for why they were angry, well, maybe a recent drought had killed all their crops. This definitely wasn't a lynching.

“Lynch the pony and dragon!” one of the Agori said, pointing at her and Spike. “Lynch them both!”

“Spike,” said Twilight, without looking at him. “Run.”

“Run? Run where?”

“Wherever I go,” said Twilight. “Now run!”

Twilight's horn shone briefly and a burst of smoke flew out of it. The smoke temporarily blinded the angry mob, causing them to shriek in shock and lose what little cohesion they had. This gave Twilight and Spike the opportunity to race toward the Bar, where Mata Nui and Kiina were, without looking back even once.

Maybe we do need Mata Nui and Kiina after all, Twilight thought.

That idea didn't reassure her in the slightest.


The Bar was surprisingly quiet today, Bucket-head the Skrall thought as he sipped his juice. There were a few other patrons in the bar beside himself. In the corner, the jukebox played Beat It over and over again, as the Bar's owner, a Krekka-like being named Barc, loved that song. Bucket-head hated it, but the last time he complained about it he was kicked out of the Bar for a week, so he decided to tolerate it today.

Not that Bucket-head minded the peace, of course. The whole reason he had come to Nowhere was to escape the crazy dangerous antics of his former friends. He had never liked them; the whole reason he had had any adventures with them at all was because they'd forced him to come along with them. After Makuta Teridax's death, though, Bucket-head saw an opportunity to disappear, which he took advantage of (although that was only after his friends played 'Hit the Skrall' with him).

When Bucket-head wasn't visiting the Bar, he lived by himself in a little house on the outskirts of the village. He had taken up painting as a hobby, but so far all of his drawings were of his living room wall, because he did all of his painting inside. Despite that, it was still better than hanging out with Mata Nui and friends.

It's a simple life, Bucket-head thought as he took another sip from his cup. But at least Mata Nui isn't around.

He heard the bell from the door opening behind him. Wondering who might be at the Bar this early in the morning, Bucket-head glanced over his shoulder and promptly wished that he had never been born.

His two least favorite people in the world had just strolled in: Mata Nui and Kiina. There was no mistaking that yellow armor, nor could he have taken Kiina's sharp trident for that of any other woman. The two didn't appear to have noticed him yet, but that didn't make Bucket-head feel better at all. If anything, it made him feel worse, as he doubted it would take them long to figure out who he was.

Just gotta take this easy, Bucket-head thought, returning his attention to his juice. Finish your drink, keep your head low, and ask Barc if you can leave through the back entrance. No, don't ask him that. Just go go through the normal exit like everyone else, but act inconspicuous. The minute those two notice you, Bucket-head, your life is over, man, your life is over!

Finishing the rest of his juice in one swig, Bucket-head tossed some coins onto the counter, stood up, and turned around to leave.

Big mistake. Mata Nui was standing right behind him.

“Hey, Bucket-head,” said Mata Nui, his arms folded across his chest. “I didn't expect to see you here.”

Mata Nui's voice was full of condescension, but Bucket-head tried to respond rationally. And by 'rationally,' I meant sucker-punching Mata Nui in the face and dashing toward the exit while our hero fell to his knees.

At least, in Bucket-head's mind, that is what would have happened. In reality, his punch merely glanced off Mata Nui's apparently rock solid face, causing Mata Nui to look at him in disgust. Kiina stood by his side, looking equally disgusted at Bucket-head's move.

“How cute,” said Mata Nui. “You thought you could hurt me. Let me show you what real pain is all about.”

Mata Nui grabbed Bucket-head and, in one swift motion, whirled around and smashed him into the floor. The blow made Bucket-head's skull feel like it had been smashed against the floorboards, which it had, in fact. So it was kind of a useless thing to mention.

“Hey!” said Barc the bartender, shaking his fist. “Why are you messing up my bar, you yellow freak?”

“It was Bucket-head, sir,” said Mata Nui, gesturing at the beaten Skrall. “He had it coming.”

“He did?” said Barc. “Well, never mind, then. Carry on. Anyone who had their beating coming obviously deserved it.”

“You don't even know him,” Bucket-head said. “So why do you believe him?”

The bartender shrugged. “Hey, I'm not a hero. Just a bartender. It's in the name that the author gave me, see?”

Mata Nui turned back to Bucket-head, lifted him off the floor, and stood him on his feet. “Well, Bucket-head, I'm glad to see you're still around. I've been missing my favorite punching bag for quite a while now.”

“How did you survive?” Bucket-head asked, rubbing the top of his head. “I thought you died fighting Teridax.”

Mata Nui laughed. “Did you hear that, Kiina? Bucket-head thought I died fighting a planet-sized robot. What an id-”

Mata Nui was cut off by the sound of two voices screaming; the next moment, the front door of the Bar burst open. Bucket-head looked over Mata Nui's shoulder and spotted two of the strangest beings he had ever seen, although when he thought about it they actually looked quite normal in comparison to some people.

One was a type of horse, perhaps a pony, but with weird purple fur and a multi-colored mane of different shades of purple. She looked like a unicorn, but when Bucket-head spotted the wings tucked at her sides, he had no idea what kind of mythological creature she might be. Her organic body and her bright colors made her look very out of place, as if she were from a children's cartoon.

The other was possibly a baby dragon, as he had scales and a spiny tail. Like the pony, the dragon was purple, although it had green spikes to accent its appearance rather than more shades of purple. And, unlike the pony, the dragon walked upright on two legs.

The two new arrivals ran up to Mata Nui as the pony said, “Mata Nui! There's a crowd of Agori outside who want to lynch us!”

“So?” said Mata Nui, looking down at the pony and her companion. “That's probably just how they say hello in these parts.”

“I don't think so,” said the dragon, glancing over his shoulder. “They said they wanted to kill us.”

“My little ponies,” said Mata Nui, “I thought you two have been in this world long enough to know the difference between a friendly greeting and a death threat.”

“You mean there's a difference?” said the pony sardonically.

“Um, Mata Nui?” said Bucket-head, using his most pacifying voice. “Just . . . who are these two and why are they hanging out with you?”

“Oh, these two?” said Mata Nui, gesturing at the pony and dragon. “Meet Twilight Twinkle and Spike Spiegel.”

“Uh, it's Twilight Sparkle,” the pony corrected. “And his name is just Spike, not Spike Spiegel.”

“Whatever,” said Mata Nui. “Anyway, they're from a magical land where talking candy-colored ponies sing songs and defeat Eldritch Abominations with the magic of friendship. Aren't they just the cutest?”

“What was that last thing you said they did?” Bucket-head asked, although as usual his question was ignored.

“Twilight and Spike, meet Bucket-head,” said Mata Nui, pointing at the Skrall. “If you ever feel the urge to beat up a living being but don't want to consider the moral implications of that, then you can take out your frustrations on Bucket-head. He'll understand.”

“No, I won't,” said Bucket-head shortly.

Twilight just looked between Mata Nui and Bucket-head for a moment before shaking her head and saying, “Well, whatever. The point is, we need to get out of this town before those lynchers get us.”

“But we just got here,” said Mata Nui, pouting. “And I make a point not to leave a new place until I'm drunk out of my mind. Right, Kiina?”

“Right,” said Kiina, nodding. “You guys don't even want to know about all the crazy adventures we've been through because of that little policy of his.”

“Like the time we went to Metru Nui,” said Mata Nui. “I don't think the city has recovered from the nuclear fallout yet.”

To Bucket-head's amazement, Twilight actually looked annoyed. “This conversation is clearly getting us nowhere. I know you can kick the sun into the moon and everything, Mata Nui, but for Celestia's sake Spike and I are not on the same power level as you. So if you will please let us-”

Without warning, the front door was knocked down and hundreds of Agori carrying torches, whips, pitchforks, and other standard lynching crowd equipment flooded in like rats. Twilight and Spike yelped and hid behind Bucket-head, which told Bucket-head right off the bat that these two definitely weren't from this universe; otherwise, they would have started slaughtering their enemies instead of hiding behind him.

Mata Nui just sat down at the bar and snapped his fingers. The bartender gave Mata Nui a small glass of wine, which Mata Nui sipped Kiina sat down next to Mata Nui and did the same thing and soon was sipping wine at Mata Nui's side as the mob leader -- an Agori in black armor wielding twin swords – stepped forward.

“You,” said the Agori, pointing at Mata Nui with one of his swords. “Give up the pony and dragon and we will let you and your girlfriend live.”

“Why?” said Mata Nui casually, without looking at the Agori. “I mean, I'm always up for a good lynching, but today I'm not feeling up to it. Why don't you all go home and try again tomorrow?”

“How's about you all go home and try again never?” Twilight suggested. “Like, let us live so we can leave the village peacefully?”

“That would be too simple,” said the Agori leader. “Now give us the pony and dragon.”

“Tempting,” said Mata Nui. “But no. What if I traded the pony and dragon for a Skrall? I mean, look at how ugly he is.”

“I'm not that ugly,” Bucket-head muttered. “At least, not any more ugly than other Skrall are.”

The Agori leader stroked his chin as though deep in thought. “You have a point. But the answer's still no. We must destroy all sunshine and rainbows. It is the Law of our village.”

“If you say so,” said Mata Nui with a shrug. “Guess I'll have to introduce you to the Law of my wineglass!”

Without hesitation, Mata Nui tossed his wineglass over his shoulder at the Agori. The sheer force of the blow sent the Agori flying backwards out of the Bar, smashing through the walls even as the mob surged forward in response.

Before the mob could reach Mata Nui and the gang, however, Kiina hurled the last of her wine onto the lynchers, pulled out a small lighter, and hurled it into the crowd. All of a sudden, the entire crowd burst into flame, yelling and shrieking in agony as the fire ate at their skin and armor. More than one Agori just stood there, staring into the emptiness of nothing as the flames slowly melted their skin right before their eyes, as if resigned to the pain of death that will one day consume us all or something emo like that.

“Well,” said Mata Nui, slapping a couple of dollars onto the counter as he stood up. “We should leave now, I think. Nothing else to do here.”

Bucket-head looked down at Twilight and Spike. The pony and the dragon just stared at the scene before them with horror. That told Bucket-head another thing about them: They had not been traveling for very long with Mata Nui. Otherwise they would have become numb to these kind of situations by now, just like Bucket-head was.

“But what about those Agori?” Twilight said. “Shouldn't we try to ease their suffering?”

“Nah,” said Mata Nui, without even pretending to care. “Why should we? They'll all be fine, anyway. Death is kind of lazy, so I imagine most of them will get off scot-free.”

“What does that even mean?” said Twilight. “When people die, they're gone forever.”

“How cute,” said Mata Nui. “Anyway, bartender, is there a back exit or something we can use to get out of here?”

The bartender pointed at the kitchen door without hesitation. “Just go through the kitchen. You'll find a door that leads out back. Please don't set me on fire.”

“I won't,” said Mata Nui. “That wine was pretty good, so I think I'll spare your life today. Maybe next time I drop by I'll kill you.”

Mata Nui stood up and punched the bartender in the face, knocking him flat off his feet.

“Why'd you punch him out?” Twilight asked.

“I didn't say I wouldn't punch him out,” Mata Nui said. “Just not kill him. There's a difference between the two that is as big as my fist.”

Without another word, Mata Nui and Kiina went to the kitchen door. Twilight, Spike, and Bucket-head followed, though reluctantly, as going with those two was only marginally better than staying and watching all of those Agori burn to death.


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog

The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness

(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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Chapter Five: Stuff Happens (I think)

Ben Affleck as Batman? Hulk smash!

-Dr. Bruce Banner, PHD, on the news of the casting of Batman in the upcoming sequel to Man of Steel

At Mata Nui's insistence, Bucket-head took the others to his home, where they began explaining their situation to him. It was a simple hut with a bed in one corner (which Mata Nui had taken over), a bookshelf against the wall, and a wooden chest filled with Bucket-head's paintings and painting supplies (which Mata Nui had thankfully not yet noticed).

After they finished explaining what they were going to do, Bucket-head said, “So you four are going to Atero to kill some pony named Sunset Shimmer?”

Twilight, who sat near the door, shifted uncomfortably on her hooves. “Not kill her. Spike and I are just trying to take her back to our world.”

“If she resists, though. . . .” said Spike threateningly.

“Spike!” said Twilight, looking at the dragon angrily.

“Sorry,” said Spike, lowering his head. “I think I've been hanging around Mata Nui too much.”

“You're going to be a great dragon someday, Spike,” said Mata Nui, folding his arms behind his head. “Not as great as me, obviously, but I bet you'll be devouring whole continents of unsuspecting fools one day. Just like me, actually.”

“Right,” said Bucket-head. “Well, I don't see any reason I have to be a part of this. Seems like a poor excuse for a crossover to me.”

“Sorry, but according to your contract, you signed on for four comedies,” said Mata Nui, pulling a sheet of paper out of nowhere. “See?”

Mata Nui handed the paper to Bucket-head, who took it and read it over quickly.

“I don't remember signing this,” said Bucket-head, looking up from the contract. “In fact, I don't think I signed this contract at all.”

“Oh yeah? Why do you say that?” said Mata Nui.

“Because my name isn't 'Roonil Wazlib,'” said Bucket-head, pointing at the signature at the bottom of the contract. “I don't even know how you got that from 'Bucket-head.'”

“Um. . . .” said Mata Nui, apparently struggling to think of a comeback. “So changing your name is out of the question?”

Bucket-head rolled his eyes and the contract, which he tossed over his shoulder. Unfortunately for him, the contract was made out of rubber paper, which bounced off the wall behind Bucket-head and smacked into the back of his head.

“Ow,” said Bucket-head, rubbing the back of his head. “Anyway, no, I'm not going with you. There's a reason I disappeared off the face of the earth after Teridax's death.”

“It's okay,” said Twilight. “Really. We're fine on our own. If you don't want to come, we won't force you.”

“Hey,” said Mata Nui, looking at Twilight. “Who's this 'we' you're speaking of? What if I want to force him to come along with us?”

“Why would you want to bring him along if you hate him so much?” Twilight said.

“Because he needs a punching bag,” said Bucket-head. “You're lucky he hasn't made you into one yet.”

“No, it's because I'm a nice guy,” said Mata Nui. “Right, Kiina?”

“Right,” said Kiina, nodding in agreement. “Mata Nui is the nicest guy I know. Well, he can be a bit rough sometimes, but it's all in good fun.”

Twilight looked at Kiina in disbelief. “Setting a crowd of Agori ablaze is far from what I'd call 'good fun.'”

“Finally, someone is showing basic decency around here!” said Bucket-head, throwing up his hands.

“Well, it's just common sense, isn't it?” said Twilight. “I'm getting pretty sick and tired of seeing Mata Nui and Kiina act like, well, donkeys. I don't even know why I decided to travel with them in the first place.”

“Same here,” said Bucket-head. “They're just a couple of psychos without any redeeming features whatsoever.”

“Hey, they're not that bad,” said Spike. “I mean, have you seen all the awesome stuff Mata Nui does? He can break reality without using magic.”

“Yeah,” said Mata Nui. “See, Spike knows where it's at. Unlike you two. You guys are spoilsports.”

“We're not spoilsports,” said Twilight. “Just two beings trying to make sense of a world that apparently doesn't.”

Mata Nui jumped off the bed and dusted himself off. “Well, if that's the case, then you can just stay here. I hate you and have never liked magical pretty ponies, anyway.”

“Neither have I,” said Kiina. “Honestly, Twilight, I've never liked how you've been homing in on my man.”

“What?” said Twilight. “I have no interest in Mata Nui at all. I barely even tolerate him as an ally, much less as a potential romantic partner!”

“Hey, girls, cool down,” said Mata Nui. “Only we guys are allowed to get incoherently angry and shouty. It's in our blood.”

“I'm not incoherently angry,” said Bucket-head. “Nor do I want to be.”

“You're Bucket-head,” Mata Nui reminded him. “That makes you less male than you might ordinarily be.”

At this, Bucket-head did the only logical course of action: He walked over to one of his walls, looked for the thickest, most solid spot, and, after finding it, bashed his head against it with all of his might. The blow was enough to make his head ring, but unfortunately it didn't knock him out, as he had hoped it would.

“How come nothing ever works the way I want it to?” Bucket-head muttered, rubbing his forehead.

“The air in here is starting to smell like lame,” said Mata Nui. “I'm going to Atero by myself. With Kiina.”

“But if you're with Kiina, then you're technically not by yourself,” Twilight pointed out.

“Oh, are you the Goddess of Logic now or something?” said Mata Nui, glaring at her. “Yeah, right. Peace out, losers.”

Mata Nui walked over to a nearby wall and kicked a hole in it. He stepped aside to allow Kiina to leave first and then followed, but not before giving Bucket-head, Twilight, and Spike two very rude gestures with his hands (although only Bucket-head recognized the gestures for what they were, as Twilight and Spike had never seen them before, so they weren't as insulting as they could be).

“Well, he's gone now,” said Bucket-head. “Finally. Now I just need to fix that hole in the wall and I can get back to drawing paintings of it.”

“What do we do now, Twilight?” Spike asked. “Without Mata Nui's help, how will we find Atero?”

“I don't know, Spike,” said Twilight, perhaps somewhat harsher than she intended. “Right now, I'm so angry I feel like bucking down a tree.”

Bucket-head looked at them sympathetically. He remembered what it was like to travel with Mata Nui, being the only sane man in a band of psychos, escaped asylum inmates, ex-war veterans who clearly need therapy, and hipster punks who thought they were all that. While he still wasn't exactly clear about what Twilight and Spike were or where they had came from, he still thought he should help them in some way.

“Hey,” said Bucket-head. “I've got a map of the area. You can borrow it if you like.”

“Really?” said Twilight, her ears perking up. “No fooling?”

“Yep,” said Bucket-head. “It's around here somewhere. I'll give it to you once I find it.”

“I don't know, Twilight,” said Spike suspiciously. “I don't trust this Bucket-head guy. I mean, his name is Bucket-head but he doesn't even wear a bucket.”

“That's because it's a stupid nickname one of Mata Nui's friends gave me when I first met him,” said Bucket-head. “I tried to have it legally changed a while back, but . . . well, I honestly had no idea that a government official's spine could bend that way.”

Twilight looked slightly put off by that, but she said, “Well, it doesn't matter who you are. You seem like a nice guy. Nicer than Mata Nui, at any rate.”

Bucket-head rummaged through his chest and found the map he was looking for. He held it out to Twilight before remembering she had no hands. Before he could correct his mistake, however, Spike grabbed the map and ran up to Twilight, unfolding it as he did so.

Twilight glanced over the map, was apparently satisfied with it, and said, “Thanks, Mr. Bucket-head. You know, you can tag along with us if you want.”

“I'm done with adventuring,” said Bucket-head. “The whole reason I disappeared in the first place was to get away from Mata Nui and his entourage of maniacs. I'm quite happy here in Nowhere.”

“Okay,” said Twilight. “But if you ever decide to change your mind, just come looking for us.”

With that, Twilight went trotting out the hole Mata Nui had made in the wall, followed closely by Spike, who still looked at Bucket-head suspiciously for some reason. Not that it bothered Bucket-head. He had endured far worse than mere suspicious looks before.

Now Bucket-head was alone in his hut. He sat down on his bed and stared at the hole Mata Nui had made in the wall, trying to think how he was going to fix it, when without warning he felt a small rumble in the earth.

“A tremor?” Bucket-head muttered, glancing at the ground. “That's strange. This place isn't prone to earthquakes.”And it wasn't. So Bucket-head just sat there, wondering what the heck that had to do with anything.

The short answer: It had nothing to do with anything at all. It was simply a random event in a life full of them, which did Bucket-head no good to dwell on.

Or did it?


Outside, Twilight was beginning to reconsider separating from Mata Nui and Kiina. Yes, the two were clearly arrogant bullies who could benefit from a little therapy, but they were very powerful arrogant bullies who could benefit from a little therapy. They understood how this world worked better than she or Spike did, at least.

This became especially obvious to her when she and Spike found themselves surrounded by a huge army of banana dogs (a stupid concept, I know, but roll with me, okay?) that barked like cats. She wasn't sure where they came from or why they were here. All she knew was that there were too many for her and Spike to take on in a straight fight.

“Um, Twilight?” Spike said with a gulp. “Do you think we're gonna die?”

“No, Spike,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “We just gotta keep our cool. These banana dogs look reasonable. I'm sure we can talk with them.”

“But I don't even know where their heads are,” said Spike. “Maybe I should try setting them on fire. Burning stuff always solves our problems.”

Twilight rolled her eyes. “No, it doesn-”

One of the banana dogs leaped at Twilight. She ducked to avoid its snarling, frothing banana mouth, causing the dog to crash into some of its fellows behind her. They did not explode, but they did get bruised, apparently. Because, you know, they're bananas. That act like dogs. Or something. I don't know. I'm just narrating the story.

“If only Fluttershy were here with us,” said Twilight. “She could talk to them. She knows how to calm down raging beasts.”

“Like I said, I think we should burn them,” said Spike. “Fire is awesome.”

“Wait a minute,” said Twilight. “I can just teleport us out of here. Hang on, Spike!”

Twilight's horn glowed and the next moment they disappeared and reappeared just outside the circle of banana dogs. The army of banana dogs quickly re-surrounded our heroes, snarling and growling like angry kittens.

“Why did you teleport us just outside the banana dog army?” Spike said. “Instead of, you know, several miles away?”

“Sorry,” said Twilight sheepishly. “Guess my calculations were a bit off.”

Just before the banana dog army could attack, however, a buzz-saw shield came flying out of nowhere and beheaded several banana dogs that were unlucky enough to be in its way. Surprised, Twilight and Spike looked up and saw Bucket-head standing on a nearby hill. He caught his shield as it returned to him, Captain America-style.

“Run!” Bucket-head called to them. “I'll hold these guys off. You guys just get the heck out of here!”

Without bothering to ask him why he was saving them, Twilight and Spike ran away from the army. But then a hundred banana dogs appeared out of nowhere before them, blocking their escape (again).

“Oh, great,” said Spike with a groan. “They can teleport now? What else can they do?”

Spit acid, apparently, Twilight thought, because one of the dogs spat something hot and sizzling that ate through the dirt at their feet. This caused the two to retreat, but they couldn't retreat very far back, as the rest of the banana dog army was still behind them.

Bucket-head jumped from the hill all the way over to them. He landed on the ground and stood up, unsheathing his sword as he did so.

“I felt a tremor in my hut,” said Bucket-head. “When I realized there weren't earthquakes in this area, I figured it had to be the hordes of banana dogs that roam the plains around this village.”

“You mean these are a natural part of the environment?” Twilight asked in disbelief.

“Yes,” said Bucket-head. “Knowing how dangerous these banana dogs are, I left my house to find and help you two.”

“Well, thanks for coming to save us,” said Twilight. “So how are we going to defeat them?”

Bucket-head opened his mouth, but then closed it. “Well, do you have the potential to destroy the universe if you get angry enough?”

“No,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “But I can turn apples into oranges.”

Bucket-head sighed. “All right, then let me do it. I can defeat them. Watch.”

The Skrall raised his shield, but at that exact moment a giant anvil fell out of nowhere and crushed him underneath it's enormous weight. Spike looked up at the sky quizzically as Twilight said, “Oh my gosh, Bucket-head, are you okay?”

“I'm fine,” came Bucket-head's voice from underneath the anvil. “This has happened to me before. I should be fine in a few paragraphs or pages.”

“Paragraphs or pages?” Twilight repeated. “What does that mean?”

Bucket-head did not answer, however, because the next moment the banana dogs leaped at Twilight and Spike with frightening speed. Blasts of magic and laser beams exploded from Twilight's horn at the banana dogs, but there were so many of them and they came so fast that it was impossible to hit them all. Spike tried burning them with his fire, but as with Twilight's magic, the sheer numbers of the banana dogs made it next to impossible to defeat the entire army.

How could things go so wrong so quickly? Twilight thought. Spike and I are going to die at the hands of banana dogs. Banana dogs! Oh Celestia, why did things have to end this way? Is this the end?

At that moment . . . oh, you know what? I quit. I, the Narrator, quit. I'm tired of narrating this silly, silly story. I've been narrating it for three whole comedies. The contract said I was doing a 'possible trilogy,' but you know what happened? The author watched My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and thought, “Gee whiz, that sure would be fun to crossover with my demented version of Mata Nui and friends!” and somehow I got roped into all of this.

Well, too bad. I am going to go narrate a better story now, like a Shakespearean play or something. You know, a story that actually has consistency, logic, and drama? I mean, banana dogs, seriously?

But before I go, I would like to say one thing to the author:


. . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . .

Hey, guys! It's me, Berix. The Narrator just rage-quit and went to go live in his cardboard box outside the studio. So the producers called me up and asked me to narrate, even though I'm not supposed to be in this comedy yet.

I had to deliberate about this decision for a very long time, and by 'very long time' I mean five minutes. So I accepted the job and, after a wild adventure of awesomeness, I found the studio, kicked down the door, and said, “Pizza, anyone?” I didn't have pizza, by the way. That was just me quoting a movie trailer I saw once on TV but I can't remember what it was about except for that line, which was hilarious.

Anyway, the director is pointing at the script. Maybe he wants me to eat it. Oh, wait! He wants me to narrate it. Maybe after I narrate it I will be allowed to eat it. Yes. One should always read a story before eating it. I learned that the hard way after I ate Twilight. The cover looked so good -- I mean, it had an apple on it for Pete's sake -- but when I ate it, it tasted like paper and gave me stomach pains. Therefore, I will not eat this story until I find out what kind of story it is and therefore what it tastes like, as all genres have different tastes, you know. Westerns taste like spaghetti, for example.

So anyway, let's see, the pretty purple pony who ponders about the possibilities of perfection and her dangerously dumb dragon companion who desires dramatic divas have been dog-piled by banana dogs. I wonder what those taste like. Probably like fried chicken.

Looks like they're gonna die, but that can't be true because the script still has a couple hundred pages left. Then again, maybe the rest of the script is blank. I once wrote a book like that. The fifth sentence in that book is cut off halfway through page nine and is finished at the bottom of page three hundred ninety-seven. Everything in between is just blank. Blank, blank, blank, blank, blank.

Oh, what's this? Mata Nui has arrived! So has Kiina. I know those two. They're my best friends. I wondered what they were up to since I went to become a doctor at the asylum. Hey, guys! It's me, Berix! I'm over here. Why don't they notice me? I'm jumping up and down here. I even knocked the microphone over.

Hold on. The director is telling me that the characters can't hear me because they're in a script. Well, that doesn't make any sense. We used to converse with the Narrator all the time during the trilogy. I bet the director turned off my mike so I can't communicate with them. And that makes me angry, angry enough to punch a bag of sugar until it explodes. In fact, I will go off to do that right now. Good bye.

. . . . . . .

. . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . .

Hey, everyone! It's me, Gresh. Apparently, the last guy ran off to punch a bag of sugar a few hours ago and hasn't been seen since, so the director called me up and asked me if I'd like to do some narrating. Since I need the money, I said, “Well, of course, Mr. Director!” and I zipped on down to the studio before the director could even regret asking me to come!

Now let's see, what's the scenario for this scene? 'Twilight Sparkle and Spike are attacked by banana dogs and are saved by Mata Nui and Kiina in the end. Bucket-head attempts to (ineffectually) help.' Sounds awesome! Now if only I were in it so I could spread smiles and rainbows.

Okay, now it looks like Mata Nui is shooting banana dogs dead while Kiina is ripping them apart with her bare hands. Those two are so funny. They're two of the best friends I've ever had; in fact, they're even more awesome than me! Mata Nui and Kiina go together like peanut butter and jelly. Separate, they're delicious, but when you put them together, you get an explosion of taste your mouth that you can't even imagine! Well, okay, you don't put Mata Nui and Kiina in your mouth, but the analogy still works, in my opinion.

The director is waving at me to continue and I will in a minute, but I just want to talk about how awesome life is. I mean, just think about it. According to scientists, a great big explosion happened at the beginning of time billions of years ago and that created the universe. A few billion years after that, our world came into being. And then the first cells appeared in the earth's oceans. And billions of years later, look at where we are today and where we're going in the future! It's awesome, man, let me tell you.

I bet most of you are pretty cynical. I mean, this is satire, after all. Satire is pretty cynical and I guess that's okay. But let me tell you that cynicism is not a good way to live your life, bro. If you do, you might end up like Bucket-head: Pessimistic, constantly depressed, hated by everyone, and on the verge of drowning your sorrows in chocolate milk. Trust me. I see this kind of behavior all the time at my Happy Smiles company.

Why is cynicism not a good way to live? Well, it's obvious. Cynics are too passive to get anything done. Walk up to an optimist and say, “Hey, I want you to hug that kitten,” and the optimist will say, “Well sure!”

But if you walk up to a cynic and say, “Hey, I want you to hug that kitten,” the cynic will say, “There's no point in hugging that kitten. Life is pointless.”

Now which do you want to be? The cynic or the optimist? I think the optimist looks a lot better here, much better than the cynic. I mean, would you trust someone who didn't want to hug a kitten? Yeah, I didn't think so.

If you think about it, life is optimistic. It says to the universe, “Screw you, I can do what I want!” and it goes ahead and does just that. I mean, life can exist almost anywhere, even if only in microscopic form. Even the deepest, darkest trenches in the ocean contain microscopic life. Life can exist anywhere and be anything at any time. It's awesome!

And you know what? I want to experience life. I'm going to go outside right now and smell a flower or hug a tree or give someone a high five for no reason other than that they exist. This script looks interesting, but life is calling and I can't just sit by and let it go! Namaste!

. . . . . .

. . . . . . .

. . . . . . .

Okay. I'm back. I, the Narrator, have returned.

This isn't because I couldn't find work elsewhere, mind you. I could find work anywhere I want; in fact, I have a rather impressive resume listing all of the plays, TV shows, movies, books, and comics I have worked on. If any auditioning directors doubt my experience, I can whip out my resume, slam it on the table, and say, “Read it and be enlightened, you barbaric fools who have no taste in art.” Which I did once, but that one time didn't result in me working on the Legend Trilogy because the auditioning directors have no sense of humor. Why do you ask?

Anyway, I saw what a terrible job the last two narrators did in my place. I guess the director must have been getting pretty desperate if he was hiring those two morons to do my job. At least the script is still readable. I was sure that Berix would spill chocolate milk all over it or even eat it.

So I strutted back into the studio and offered to take my job back. The director seemed eager to hire me again and now I am back to being paid below minimum wage to narrate a poorly written crossover. Go me.

Now back to the story:

Twilight Sparkle surveyed the battlefield from atop the hill she stood upon. The ground was strewn with mutilated banana dogs, their gooey remains stinking in the hot sun. The air was still and silent, with nary a sound save for the moaning of Bucket-head, who was still trapped underneath that large anvil that had fallen out of nowhere. Twilight had considered helping Bucket-head out from underneath there, but seeing as this had apparently happened to him before, she figured he'd be okay.

Turning around, Twilight saw Spike thanking Mata Nui and Kiina for rescuing them. He was going on about how he had thought they were all goners, how his life had flashed before his eyes, and how he had regretted using up all of Ponyville's hot water that one time but now was incredibly grateful to be alive and it was all thanks to Mata Nui and Kiina.

For Twilight's part, she was glad that they hadn't been killed, but was unsure of why Mata Nui and Kiina had saved them. Knowing those two, it probably wasn't for any heroic or noble reason, but her more idealistic side told her to give them a chance.

So, trotting up to them, Twilight said, “Thanks for saving us and all, but why did you come back? I thought you hated us.”

Mata Nui folded his arms and said, “I do. However, I hate banana dogs even more. So I decided to make a heroic entrance while simultaneously slaughtering my enemies. Two stones with one bird, you know?”

Twilight wanted to say, 'I think you got that phrase wrong,' but instead shook her head and said, “Well, thanks again. Not that we need you guys anymore. We'll be just fine on our own from now on.”

“Okay,” said Mata Nui, turning around. “We don't need you two. You guys aren't really our friends, anyway.”

Before they could go their separate ways again, Spike grabbed Twilight's wing and said, “But Twilight, they saved us. Isn't that what friends do for each other?”

“Didn't you hear what Mata Nui said?” said Twilight. “Mata Nui and Kiina aren't our friends. They saved us, yes, but-”

“But you know,” said Mata Nui, turning around. “We're both going to the same place. Sure, we might not like each other, but wouldn't it be more practical for us to travel together? It would also make it easier for the author to keep track of us all.”

“Yeah, it would,” said Kiina. “Besides, Twilight, you're too goody-two shoes to survive in this world on your own. I mean, look at what happened the one time we leave you two alone: You get attacked and nearly killed by banana dogs. Next time it might be rabid businessmen, or worse, bronies. You'd be safer with us.”

Twilight wanted to argue with Kiina's logic, but unfortunately it seemed airtight (and the thought that anyone from this world could have airtight logic frightened Twilight more than she'd like to admit). Spherus Magna was far more dangerous than Equestria. And, though Twilight would never characterize herself as a 'goody-two shoes,' she had to admit that she and Spike were nowhere near powerful enough to take on the hordes of random monsters that seemed to stalk this world's wastelands.

So Twilight said through gritted teeth, “All right. We'll travel together until we reach Atero. But we're still not friends.”

“Of course,” said Mata Nui. “I'm too manly to be friends with a pretty purple pony anyway.”

“Me, too,” said Kiina, puffing out her chest. “I'm super manly.”

“But aren't you a girl?” said Twilight.

“And?” said Kiina. “You got a problem with manly women?”

“No,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “It's just . . . oh, never mind.”

“That reminds me,” said Mata Nui. “Excuse me for a moment, ladies and Spike.”

Mata Nui walked over to the anvil atop Bucket-head and pulled the Skrall out from underneath it. Bucket-head was as flat as a pancake, but a brief though rough shake from Mata Nui made the Skrall pop back to his normal width. He looked surprisingly good for someone who had just been crushed by an anvil.

“You're coming with us, too,” said Mata Nui.

Bucket-head looked at Mata Nui weakly. “Why?”

“Because I might need a meat shield,” said Mata Nui. “And you have already proven yourself to be pretty good at that, so you're coming with us.”

“What if I refuse?”

Mata Nui pointed up at the sky. “Then I'll punt you to the edge of space.”

“But space is infinite.”

“Exactly.”“Okay,” said Bucket-head reluctantly. “I'll come along. At least I'll have someone sane to talk to.”

“Wait a minute,” said Mata Nui. “You talking to Twilight actually gives you pleasure. Can't have that, now can we?”

“What are you going to do?” said Bucket-head. “Brainwash Twilight to make her hate me?”

“Nope,” said Mata Nui. “I'm gonna spread nasty rumors about you and Hahli. That will make Twilight hate you.”


“Then again,” said Mata Nui, “everyone knows Hahli is dating Jaller, so perhaps I'll just settle for punching you in the face every time I think you're happy.”

“I have no idea what you're going on about anymore,” said Bucket-head. “And that's quite the accomplishment, seeing as I have already concluded that nothing you say makes a lick of sense.”

“I don't like long sentences,” said Mata Nui. “Argh!”

Mata Nui dropped Bucket-head. And by 'dropped,' I mean he slammed Bucket-head face first into the dirt, turned around, and walked back over to the others. Twilight and Spike looked apprehensively at Bucket-head, who pulled his head out of the ground and shook it.

“We've wasted enough time here as is,” said Mata Nui. “We need to stop procrastinating. I don't know how much longer I can wait to kick Sunset's butt to the next dimension.”


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Chapter Six: A new challenger approaches! (It's not Captain Falcon, sorry)

Don't tell me what I can't do.

-John Locke, after being told what he can't do, from LOST

The next leg of their journey took Twilight and the gang further east (or was it west? Twilight wasn't sure anymore, as the sun appeared to move from one end of the sky to the other rather inconsistently). They came upon a land where candy canes apparently grew out of the ground, making a candy cane forest (which Twilight thought that Pinkie Pie might like), but thankfully they were not assaulted by an army of candy cane monsters or anything stupid like that. Spike did get a tummy ache when he tried to eat one of the candy cane trees, but he got better when Mata Nui gave him a kick in the wooza ('wooza': a nonsense word designed specifically by the author to not get him in trouble with the censors or BZP administration').

The next two days were rather unexciting in comparison to the beginning of their journey. They were not attacked by any monsters or enemies and actually managed to avoid getting into serious arguments with one another. At least, whenever Mata Nui said something stupid or illogical, Twilight learned to let it slide, as she didn't want to burn out her brain correcting his every mistake. She let Bucket-head do that.

The best thing about the journey now was probably Bucket-head, who seemed far more rational than Mata Nui and Kiina put together. Twilight learned the hard way not to say that aloud, however, because when she did Mata Nui strung Bucket-head upside down a tree for six hours while playing 'break the Skrall pinata' using his 40k MGA. So she kept her thoughts mostly to herself.

As for Spike, he seemed eager to do all the awesome things Mata Nui could do. Once he picked up a rock and bragged that he could throw it into the atmosphere. What happened when he tried to do that was still unclear to Twilight even now. All she remembered was a tentacle bursting out of the ground, which would have kidnapped Spike had Mata Nui not wrestled it to the ground and killed it.

This is just a weird world, Twilight thought. There's no logic, no coherency, nothing rational about it at all. Even Bucket-head isn't entirely rational. I saw him attack a tree once, which he claimed was really a ninja in disguise, even though it turned out to just be a tree. I really want to go home as soon as possible, where things make sense at least some of the time.

The gang soon found themselves standing at the edge of a huge desert that appeared to stretch on for miles in every direction. When Twilight suggested that they go around it, Mata Nui shot the suggestion down, pointing out that it was too huge to walk around, at least without wasting several days. He said would it be quicker to go straight through it. Indeed, the map bore out Mata Nui's assertion, though that didn't do away with all of Twilight's doubts.

“Do we have enough water to get through?” said Twilight. “Spike, check our water bottles. I don't want any of us to die of thirst out there.”

“Water is for the weak,” said Mata Nui. “Once I was stranded in the desert for months without a single drop of water and I came out a-okay if I do say so myself.”

“Yeah, well, I'm not you,” said Twilight as Spike dug through their supply bags. “I'm me and I know I can't survive in a hot desert for Celestia knows how many days without water.”

“Fine,” said Mata Nui. “Then I'll scout ahead and take out any bad guys who might randomly appear to attack us.”

Before Mata Nui could walk into the desert, however, the sand before them rumbled and exploded. A gigantic scorpion emerged from the hole in the sand, snapping its claws as it hissed and spit. Twilight and the others took battle positions, ready to take the thing out, when the scorpion suddenly hissed, “Wait! Do not attack me! Otherwise, you will never enter the desert!”

“Wait, it can talk?” said Bucket-head.

“Of course I can talk,” said the scorpion. “I am the Scorpion of the Desert, guardian of mysteries and friend of riddles. To get into the desert, you must answer a riddle.”

“A riddle?” said Mata Nui. “Why can't I just shot you in the face and we call it even?”

“Shooting me will not work, traveler,” said the Scorpion, shaking its head. “For if you kill me, a magical barrier will enclose the entire desert, making it impossible for you to cross!”

“How do we know you're telling the truth?” Mata Nui demanded.

“Can you risk that, traveler?” the Scorpion asked. “Will you risk your journey jeopardizing your journey simply to satisfy your base instincts?”

“Okay, fine,” said Mata Nui. “You win. What's the riddle?”

“Wait, a riddle?” Twilight said, raising her head. “I love riddles. They require you to think rationally. Hit me.”

Mata Nui slapped Twilight across the face hard, knocking her off her hooves. Spike gasped.

“Ow,” said Twilight, rubbing the slapped spot with her wing. “What was that for?”

“You said 'hit me,'” said Mata Nui innocently. “So I hit you with my hand.”

“That's not what I meant,” said Twilight. “At all.”

“Well, maybe next time you should be more specific,” said Mata Nui.

“Enough with the banter,” said the Scorpion, raising it claws into the air. “Allow me to tell you the riddle. Listen carefully, brave travelers:

What tastes like sand
yet resembles sand not in the slightest
save for its flavor
and texture?

Everyone waited for the Scorpion to continue, but it just looked at them expectantly.

Twilight cocked her head. “Is that it?”

“Yes, that is it,” said the Scorpion. “Now answer the riddle or I'll eat you all for lunch.”

“Huddle!” said Mata Nui.

The entire group gathered around Mata Nui, with their backs turned to the Scorpion. The Scorpion pulled out a pocket watch from nowhere and looked at it, wondering how long it was going to have to wait for them to answer.

“All right,” said Twilight, “I think I should be the one to answer the riddle.”

“And steal all the glory for yourself?” said Mata Nui. “Not on my watch you don't.”

“I'm not trying to steal anyone's glory,” said Twilight. “It's just that I am clearly the most logical person here. Riddles require clear thinking, which the rest of you guys really haven't displayed a knack for, except maybe Bucket-head.”

“She has a point,” said Bucket-head.

“Shut up, Bucket-head,” Kiina snapped. “No one cares what you think.”

“Yeah, no one does,” said Spike.

“Spike,” said Twilight, “why are you going along with them like that?”

“I dunno,” said Spike with a shrug. “I just feel this powerful urge deep in the pit of my stomach that makes me want to hate him. Is that wrong?”

Twilight sighed. “Never mind. Look, I'll answer the riddle. You guys just stand back and try not to be stupid.”

“Well, I didn't want to answer a stupid riddle anyway,” said Mata Nui. “I only solve my problems with my gun. And if I can't solve it with my gun, then it's a problem that I don't need to deal with.”

“Whatever,” said Twilight. “All right, break!”

The team broke the huddle. At the same time, the Scorpion put away its pocket watch and said, “Are you ready to answer the riddle?”

“Just give me a minute,” said Twilight, confidently striding up to the Scorpion. “I need to think about the answer. But don't you worry, I will definitely figure it out.”

“Don't be too arrogant, my little pony,” the Scorpion warned. “The last traveler who bragged about his ability to answer the riddle got it wrong. So I ate him.”

“Well, he wasn't Twilight Sparkle, alicorn Princess and personal protege of Princess Celestia, now was he?” Twilight said, flicking her mane back.

“You sound just like Mata Nui,” said Spike.

Twilight froze. “Oh my god.”

“What's so bad about that?” said Mata Nui. “I'm pretty awesome. Like, the most awesome guy in the entire world.”

“If only you understood how we see you,” said Bucket-head, shaking his head sadly.

Twilight flapped her wings and said, “Well, whether I sound like him or not, I'll answer this riddle. Now let's see. . . .”

She could picture the words of the riddle in her mind's eye. Tastes like sand, but doesn't resemble it except in texture and flavor . . . that was difficult, she had to admit, but having successfully solved all two hundred and ninety-six riddles in The Big Book of Equestrian Riddles, by Question Mark, she knew she would figure out the answer eventually.


Five hours later. . . .

“Are you ready to give up yet?” the Scorpion asked, bored, as it watched Twilight.

Twilight lay splayed on the ground, her eyes wide and her mane ruffled. Behind her the others sat on the ground, looking bored and tired, save for Spike, who had actually fallen asleep. Mata Nui was fingering the trigger on his gun, while Bucket-head just spun his shield over his head like a pizza. As for Kiina, she was just hitting the ground over and over again with her trident, for no reason at all other than she was bored.

“No . . .” said Twilight. “I got this . . . I know I do.”

The Scorpion pulled out its pocket watch again and looked at it. “Well, I think you've had plenty of time to figure it out. So I'm gonna eat you now.”

“NO!” Twilight shouted, her voice so loud it actually knocked the Scorpion back. “I can do this! I'm the smartest mare ever. I know the answer. I just need more time.”

The Scorpion got back to its feet and said, “Well, too bad. Five hours was plenty of time. Now that you're out of time, I say it's time for you and your friends to die.”

“But why?” said Twilight. “They didn't have anything to do with it.”

“Because I'm feeling extra hungry after sitting around for five hours waiting for you to answer,” the Scorpion answered.

Twilight got to her hooves and, making her eyes as big and round as possible, said, “Please, Mr. Scorpion? Will you not kill me and my friends so I can have more time to answer to the riddle?”

“Ah!” the Scorpion hissed, holding up its claws over its eyes. “The cuteness! It burns!”

Now Twilight was confused. “Um, how does cuteness burn?”

“It just does!” the Scorpion hissed as smoke started rising from its body. “Stop making your eyes so big and stop making your voice so innocent!”

Twilight cocked her head to the side. “Well, I wasn't intending to burn you. I was just hoping to persuade you.”

“Your innocence! I cannot take it!” the Scorpion screeched. “Good bye, cruel world! I never thought I would die at the hands of a pretty purple pony who ponders perplexing puzzles! AHHHHHHHHHH!!”

And -- just like that -- the Scorpion's body grew three times larger that day and exploded, spraying Twilight with its stinky, smelly, horrible guts. She looked far less cute now with Scorpion guts covering her mane, fur, and wings.

“Ew,” said Twilight, shaking the guts off her body. “What was that all about?”

“You blew up a giant scorpion with your cuteness,” said Mata Nui, who had magically appeared next to her. “Maybe you aren't such an egghead after all.”

“Wait, I killed him?” said Twilight in horror. “I didn't mean to. I mean, I wasn't intending to do that at all.”

“We all do things we didn't mean, Twilight,” said Mata Nui, patting her on the head. “Like me pre-ordering the Xbox One, for example. That's five hundred dollars down the drain for a box I can't even use. Don't beat up yourself over it; well, okay, maybe you can, but if you do I want to watch.”

Twilight just looked at her hooves. “What is this world turning me into? Some kind of monster that kills other monsters with cuteness? Is this what I will become if I stay here much longer?”

“I dunno,” said Mata Nui. “Killing monsters with cuteness isn't quite as awesome as killing them with a gun, but I admit it gets the job done and that's what counts.”

Twilight shook her head. “Don't you understand? I've never killed anything before. At least, not intentionally. I mean, sure, I've stepped on insects and bugs and stuff before, but anything bigger than that I have usually succeeded in driving away or defeating or converting. But killing? Never.”

“The first kill is always the hardest,” said Mata Nui solemnly, “because you don't know the proper way to kill someone, so it's always messy. The second one, though, is usually easier and cleaner because you have some experience on your belt from the last one. The third time is even easier, although don't get too cocky as the third kill will sometimes exploit your inexperience if they know about it.”

Twilight stared at Mata Nui. “You really aren't helping at all, you know that?”

“Well sorry,” said Mata Nui. “I was just offering some friendly advice. Geez. No need to use that tone on me.”

Twilight rolled her eyes as Mata Nui stomped off into the desert, followed by Kiina, Bucket-head, and Spike. Spike slowed down before following the others, however, and said to Twilight, “That was awesome! You exploded a monster with your cuteness! I thought only Fluttershy maybe could do something like that, but I guess any pony can do it if they try hard enough.”

“Spike . . .” said Twilight with a sigh. “You're really not helping me right now.”

“Okay, Twilight,” said Spike brightly. “We'd better catch up with the others, though, before they leave us behind. Don't want to get eaten by randomly wandering Kaiju!”

“A what now?” said Twilight.

Spike ran off after the others without answering. Twilight looked at her body, which still smelled horribly of Scorpion guts. She wished she could have at least learned the riddle's answer before the Scorpion's death. All this showed her was that the situation was a lot more dire than she had originally believed.

We can't stay in this world any longer than we have to, Twilight thought. Something about this world makes everyone uncontrollably violent and irrational. I can see Spike is being affected by it. I thought I could resist it, but if even my cuteness is capable of killing others, then maybe I'm not as strong-willed as I thought I was.

The idea sent shivers down her spine even as she entered the hot desert, trotting across the sand after the others as fast as her hooves could carry her. She still couldn't get the image of the Scorpion exploding out of her mind. It was both horrifying and funny at the same time.

Oh god, Twilight thought. Now I think death is funny. Have I already gone over the deep end? Is there any redemption for me? What will happen when we return to Equestria?

Whatever would happen, Twilight tried hard not to worry too much about it. She told herself to take things one step at a time. Right now, they still had to defeat Sunset Shimmer, who was hundreds of miles away in Atero. And when that was all over, then she could worry freely about her descent into darkness.


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Chapter Seven: Crazy Ponies are Funny Ponies (Meghan McCarthy, eat your heart out)

For he's a jolly good fellow
For he's a jolly good fellow
For he's a jolly good fellow
That nobody can deny.

-Translated excerpt from the Necromicon

The hot desert sun beat down on the gang as they traveled through the sandy wastes. Mata Nui, Kiina, and Bucket-head seemed unaffected by the heat. So was Spike, though that was most likely because he was a dragon; after all, if he could swim in lava, then the sun was probably nothing to him.

Only Twilight was really affected by the heat. Her mane was covered in sweat, she was panting hard, and it seemed like every step she took burned her hooves on the sand. She considered flying, but as that would just take her closer to the sun, she opted to stick to the ground for now. At least she had water, although the heat made it hard for her to think straight long enough to open her bottle and get a drink.

“What's your problem?” Mata Nui asked, looking down at Twilight, who was just barely managing to keep up with him. “Don't you have water stored in your hump?”

“I'm . . . a . . . pony,” Twilight said, wiping the sweat off her brow with her wing. “Not . . . a . . . camel. . . .”

“You are?” said Mata Nui in amazement. “Gosh, that completely turns my entire universe upside down and inside out. What other terrible secrets do I not know about the world?”

“It . . . wasn't . . . a secret,” said Twilight. “You're . . . just . . . stupid.”

“I think the heat's getting to Twilight, guys,” said Spike, looking concerned. “Do we have anything we can shade her with? Like an umbrella or something?”

“She should just suck it up,” said Kiina. “Like a real woman. You don't see me sweating and dying of thirst, do you?”

“Well, you aren't a pony,” said Spike. “So that might explain why you aren't dying of thirst like she is.”

“Water . . .” Twilight gasped. “I need water!”

She used her magic to float her thermos up to her mouth. The lid popped off, but when she tried to guzzle it, there was not a single drop of water left in her flask.

Twilight peered into it with one eye. “Where'd all the water go? I thought this thing was full.”

“I might have borrowed it a little,” said Mata Nui.

“A little?” Twilight said, looking at Mata Nui. “Or a lot?”

“A lot,” Mata Nui admitted. “But it was for a good cause. You see, Kiina was getting sand all over her armor, so I thought giving her your water would clean it off and make her armor look pretty again.”

Kiina gestured at her shiny armor. “And it worked, too. There's no more sand over it and I look fantastic.”

Twilight's eye twitched as she dropped her thermos. “But I need water. I'll die without it.”

“Stop being so melodramatic,” said Mata Nui. “I mean, geez, it's just water. It's not like it's a necessity or anything, right?”

“She does look rather hot,” said Bucket-head. “I mean, as in warm. Not like, hot attractive or anything. Just wanted to make that clear. Because I don't find ponies attractive. At all.”

Seeing as no one cares about what Bucket-head says, they all ignored him.

“Hey, Kiina, you have water powers, don't you?” said Spike. “Why don't you make some water for Twilight? Seems like a good idea to me.”

“That would be too easy,” said Kiina. “So no. We'll see how long she can go before she snaps.”

“You really don't want to see Twilight when she goes crazy,” said Spike. “She gets . . . creepy. Like, serial killer creepy.”

“And that's what will be so funny,” said Mata Nui. “I mean, what's funnier than a pony going insane? Nothing! Well, okay, some things are, but the point stands. This is good comedy and will make the ratings go through the roof!”

“What ratings?” said Spike. “What roof?”

“I'll explain it to you when you're older, Spike,” said Mata Nui, patting the dragon on the head. “For now, just sit back and enjoy the show.”

Meanwhile, Twilight apparently hadn't been paying attention to any of this. She was just staring into the distance intently, as if she saw something no one else did. In fact, she was staring so intently that it was starting to creep Spike out.

“Hey, Bucket-head,” said Spike to the Skrall. “Could I borrow your shield and use it as a umbrella to hold over Twilight's head? I know it's not much, but it's the only way I can help her right now.”

“Okay,” said Bucket-head, handing his shield to Spike. “Can you even lift it?”

Spike heaved the heavy shield over his head and promptly sank into the sand. “Yeah, I can lift it. I lift all the time, you know.”

Bucket-head pulled Spike out of the sand and took his shield back. “Yeah, sure. I could hold it over her instead, if you want.”

“Really?” said Spike.

“Yes, really,” said Bucket-head.Then Spike kicked him in the shin.

“Ow!” said Bucket-head, jumping back and forth on one foot. “What was that for?”

“I just don't like you and I don't want your help,” said Spike, turning away and following Twilight.

Bucket-head cursed a thousand different curses under his breath, most of which are not family-friendly. Therefore, I will leave it up to your imagination to figure out what he said. That way we can still aim for a PG rating for the comedy, instead of PG-13, which would be a bit too extreme for younger readers. After all, this is a family comedy, isn't it?

The gang walked around for what seemed like hours. Twilight became more and more visibly overheated. Anytime anyone asked her a question -- even a simple, innocent one, like “What time is it?” -- she would either take forever to respond or would snap harshly and make some snide comment about the questioner's intelligence. Once she even kicked sand in Mata Nui's face, which would have earned her a beating had Spike not managed to convince Mata Nui that Twilight wasn't in her right mind.

Aside from that, however, the journey went well until Twilight abruptly stopped. At first, the gang did not notice her absence until Spike realized she wasn't walking with them. When they turned around to find her, they saw her pawing at the ground while wearing a crazy grin on her face, her eyes locked onto something in the distance.

“Um, Twilight?” said Spike. “Twilight, you okay over there?”

“Just fine, Spike,” said Twilight, her voice higher than normal. “Just fine . . . fine, fine, fine, fine, fun, fine.”

“Ooo, boy. Here it comes,” said Mata Nui, producing a bag of popcorn out of nowhere.

“Here comes what?” said Spike, looking over his shoulder at Mata Nui. “What's going to-”


Moving so fast she was a purple blur, Twilight bowled over all four of her companions like bowling pins. Shaking his head, Spike looked up and saw Twilight galloping away across the sand while babbling incoherently.

“Uh, oh, guys!” said Spike as he got to his tiny feet. “We've got to catch Twilight before she hurts herself.”

“But it's so fun watching the pony go insane,” said Mata Nui, still holding his popcorn bag. “Crazy ponies are funny.”

Spike shrugged. “Well, I guess it is kind of funny seeing Twilight go crazy, but we really should go help her. She doesn't know where she's going or what she's doing. She might get hurt.”

“Spike does have a point,” said Bucket-head. “I bet Twilight is hallucinating. Don't know what she thinks she sees, though.”

As if by magic, Mata Nui pulled a hunting cap out of nowhere, pulled it over his head, and said, “I do declare that it's pony-hunting season. And Twilight is going to be our first capture!”


In some small corner of Twilight's mind, her rational self knew that she was acting illogically because of a lack of water. If one were to compare her thought process to a computer, it might look something like this:

ERROR. File name 'WATER.exe' could not be found.

Click 'troubleshooting.'

You can fix your computer by turning it off and then turning it back on again. If you proceed with this action, you may want to save and close whatever programs you have up in order to save your data from being lost.

Second option: Unplug your computer from its modem, wait for ten seconds, and then plug it back in again. If that doesn't work, please send a report to Microsoft Tech Support and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

I think the author took this analogy a little too far.

Anyway, as Twilight ran across the scorching desert, she thought she saw a beautiful oasis in the distance. In fact, it wasn't just an oasis she saw, but a huge freaking ocean, bigger than any that Twilight had ever seen in her whole life (which admittedly wasn't much, seeing as Twilight had never been to the ocean before). And somehow she knew it was a fresh water ocean, rather than a saltwater ocean, even though she had no way of knowing that for sure.

The rational part of her was trying to tell her that she was hallucinating, that she should stop and think about this carefully, but her irrational side sucker-punched her rational side in the face, allowing Twilight to freely ignore its concerns. All she could think about was swimming in the ocean, about drinking all of the ocean's water, about getting her mane all wet, about using her wings to help her paddle through the ocean's depths. It was like her entire universe had become about water.

Water. . . . Twilight thought as she galloped. Water, water, water, water! I need it. I need H2O. If I don't get water, I'll die. Water!

Her rational side meekly tried reminding her that she had left behind her friends, but then her irrational side grabbed it in a headlock, thus allowing Twilight to continue safely ignoring it.

Just before Twilight could jump into the ocean, however, she tripped and fell onto the hot sand face first. Spitting the sand out of her mouth, Twilight looked over her shoulder and saw Mata Nui standing several feet behind her, holding onto the end of a rope that had somehow tied itself around Twilight's legs. Spike, Bucket-head, and Kiina stood behind him, watching as Mata Nui started dragging Twilight back to them.

“Okay, Twilight,” said Mata Nui as he pulled her closer and closer. “Enough of the craziness. You've got to come back with us.”

“But the ocean is that way!” Twilight said, pointing with one of her wings in that direction. “There's so much water, it's like a water WORLD!”

“I hated that movie,” said Mata Nui under his breath.Twilight struggled to break free of the rope, but it was thick and tied too tightly around her legs to shake off. It reminded her of Applejack's lasso, the one she always used when she was trying to catch stray barnyard animals.

I am not a stray barnyard animal, Twilight thought. And Mata Nui is about to learn that the hard way.

Her horn glowed and the roped snapped. This caused Mata Nui to stumbled backwards into Kiina as the rope flew toward him. The flying rope smacked Bucket-head in the face; in fact, it hit him so hard that he crashed into a huge sand dune, which covered him with hot, burning sand that made him smell oddly like barbecue.

“Hey!” said Mata Nui. “That was my favorite rope!”

“See you later, losers,” said Twilight as she wriggled out of the remaining rope. “I'm going into the ocean and nopony is gonna stop me!”

She scrambled to her hooves and took off into the air. Now Twilight wasn't as good a flyer as Rainbow Dash or even Fluttershy; after all, she hadn't been an alicorn very long and hadn't had much practice since her transformation. She still preferred to walk everywhere, but for the moment flying was probably faster than walking.

Unfortunately for her, flying brought her closer to the sun, making her wings start to fry. She thought she smelled fried chicken nearby, but upon glancing at her wings, noticed that they were actually smoking.

“Gah!” said Twilight, her wings locking involuntarily into her body. “What the Tartarus?”

Even more unfortunately for her, Twilight needed wings in order to fly. So without her wings, she dropped like a rock and landed hooves first on the sand. Now this wouldn't be much of a problem for her, except that she had somehow flew about a million feet into the air and so when she landed, it created a gigantic earthquake in southern China that toppled several factories. This earthquake would later be remembered as the Great Pony Earthquake, as scientific evidence would indisputably point to it being the work of a water-deprived pony from a popular children's cartoon.

Anyway, Twilight survived the fall okay. She now began blowing on her wings, vainly trying to cool them down, although it didn't work. In fact, her wings actually seemed to be getting hotter, which made no sense to Twilight.

“Ow!” said Twilight as more smoke rose off her wings. “Ow, ow, ow! How does Celestia always fly into the sun without burning her wings off? Maybe it's a spell I don't know yet?”

Without warning, a large, thick net flew overhead and snatched her. Struggling to break free of the net, Twilight saw that it was Mata Nui who had thrown it, who stood several feet away holding the other end in his hands.

“Okay, Twilight, this is starting to get really old,” said Mata Nui. “I mean really old. So just sit still for one darn minute so I can capture you and eat you.”

“Hey, I didn't say anything about eating Twilight,” said Spike, looking at Mata Nui in horror. “I just said we should capture her so she doesn't hurt herself.”

“Can I hurt her, then?” said Mata Nui, striving to pull Twilight closer. “Dang she's wriggly. Why are ponies so wriggly? They're like worms. Except with legs.”

Twilight was indeed wriggling against the netting. Her large purple eyes were focused almost entirely on the ocean ahead of her. It seemed to be beckoning her to come closer. She could feel the cool wind blowing in from the coast, which gave her the strength to stand up in the net and dig her hooves into the sand, preventing Mata Nui from pulling her back any further.

“Hey,” said Mata Nui angrily, tugging on the rope. “Now she feels like she weighs a ton. I hate fat chicks.”

“Ocean, I'm coming for you!” Twilight yelled. “You, and you alone, are my one, true love!”

With that, Twilight ran full speed toward the ocean. She ran so fast that she actually dragged Mata Nui behind her, much to his surprise. Kiina managed to grab Mata Nui's feet before he got too far away, but she, too, was dragged along the sand. But not before she grabbed Bucket-head's arm, who in turn seized Spike, thus causing all four of them to be dragged along behind Twilight like they were on tubes being dragged by a speed boat.

The closer Twilight came to the ocean, the more beautiful it looked. She could see seagulls flying overhead, saw dolphins doing back-flips out of the water, saw the waves pulling in and out on the beach, and even saw her friends playing nearby. She saw Rarity lying on the beach getting a tan; saw Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie splashing each other with water; saw Fluttershy standing at the edge of the beach, trying to gather the courage to go in deeper; and saw Applejack bucking coconut trees, perhaps trying to figure out what the strange hard fruit growing on them was.

She didn't bother question why all five of her friends were here. All she knew was that she was going to get wet and cool and nopony was going to stop her. Even if Princess Celestia herself showed up, Twilight would just bowl her over to reach the ocean (admittedly, the thought did make her feel a little guilty, but it was small enough for her to ignore, which she did).

“Hey, everypony!” said Twilight as she drew closer and closer to the ocean. “Watch out! Cannon ball!”

Twilight flung herself off the ground and into the air, still dragging everyone else behind her. She flew until she found herself flying over the ocean. Below, Rarity pushed up her shades to look at Twilight better; Pinkie and Rainbow ceased splashing each other as Twilight soared over them; Fluttershy shrieked in terror as Twilight flew a little too close to her; and Applejack ceased bucking the trees just long enough to wave at the flying Twilight.

Once Twilight was certain she was a safe distance above the ocean to fall into it without crashing into the bottom, she dropped straight down. She expected any minute to feel the cool ocean water wash over her coat and rejuvenate her sweaty skin. She imagined playing with Rainbow and Pinkie, helping Fluttershy get over her fears of the water, studying the coconuts with Applejack, and hanging out with Rarity on the beach. Hanging out with her friends would make the cold water feel even better, she thought.

All of those visions abruptly vanished when she collided with something hard and smooth, like a rock. The blow jogged her head so much that the ocean disappeared, causing her to gasp momentarily before the thing she landed on heaved upward, throwing her and the others off it onto the ground.Shaking her head and spitting sand out of her mouth, Twilight looked around as she said, “What? Where did the ocean go?”

She immediately forgot about that question, however, as she beheld what appeared to be a giant monster crab standing before her. Unlike most crabs, this one was as tan as the sand itself. It had large pincers that looked more than capable of cutting a pony in two; in fact, unless Twilight's eyes were playing tricks on her, it appeared that the crab had swords embedded within its pincers. The crab had turned to look at her and the others with beady little eyes, looking quite annoyed at Twilight for crashing into it as hard as she did.

“Where did that thing come from?” said Twilight. “I-”

“Giant enemy crab!” said Mata Nui, appearing out of nowhere next to her and pointing at it. “Just like in ancient Japan!”

“Giant enemy what?” said Twilight, looking up at Mata Nui. “What's Japan?”

Before Mata Nui could answer her question, the giant enemy crab lunged at the two of them. Mata Nui dashed at it and easily dodged its pincers, moving in and out of them like a dancer at a concert. Soon he was face-to-face with the ugly beast, which he sucker-punched, sending its skittering backwards across the sand.

The giant enemy crab, however, recovered quickly. It then burrowed underneath the sand and started digging toward Mata Nui. The only clue to the giant enemy crab's presence was the line of pushed up sand it made as it tunneled, which Mata Nui aligned himself in front of.

When the giant enemy crab got close enough, it burst out of the sand, hissing and spitting like a cobra. At the same time, Mata Nui jumped into the air, narrowly avoiding the crab's huge pincers, and slammed both of his feet down onto the giant enemy crab's shell with the force of a volcanic eruption.

The resulting blow sent the giant enemy crab crashing all the way into the planet's core, where it exploded. The planet itself would soon have followed had Mata Nui not jumped into the core and threatened to tell its mother if it blew itself up, causing Spherus Magna to panic at the thought of punishment and thus not to explode.

All the while Twilight just lay there in the sand, looking at the spot where the ocean had been. She reached out with a hoof experimentally, hoping that maybe the ocean had somehow turned invisible, but she felt nothing but sand and crab guts (which felt rather icky).

Tears welled in Twilight's eyes as she realized what had happened. “I hallucinated, didn't I?”

She felt someone tearing through her netting and, looking to the right, saw that it was Spike. Kiina and Bucket-head were standing up and dusting themselves off, apparently recovering from having been dragged by Twilight.

When Spike finished cutting the net, Twilight got to her feet and shook her mane, trying to get the sand out of it. She was still too hot, but she managed to retain her sanity anyway.

“You okay, Twilight?” said Spike. “You look sad.”

“I'm sorry,” said Twilight, turning to face Spike. “I just thought . . . well, I thought there was an ocean over here. I'm just really, really thirsty.”

“Yeah, I get it,” said Spike. “I think all you need is some water. Here you go.”

Spike handed her a thermos full of clear, cold water. Twilight used her magic to snatch the thermos from Spike's hand and immediately started guzzling the cold liquid. It felt good on her parched throat, so good that she kept drinking it until the entire flask was empty.

With a sigh of relief, Twilight handed the thermos back to Spike and said, “Thanks, Spike, but where did you get this water from? I thought we were all out.”

“Oh, I got it from that oasis over there,” said Spike, pointing east.

Twilight looked and saw a large oasis just a few feet away from where they stood. It had tropical palm trees, clear water in the center, and shady rock formations on the other side. In addition, there was soft green grass surrounding the water, which looked good enough to eat and sleep on.

“What?” said Twilight. “Where did that come from?”

“It's always been there,” said Spike. “Didn't you notice it?”

Twilight facehoofed. “No, Spike, I didn't. And how come it took me this long to notice, anyway?”

“It's part of a joke,” said Mata Nui, appearing seemingly out of nowhere. “Isn't it hilarious?”

“Joke?” said Twilight, looking up at Mata Nui. “What joke? What are you even talking about?”

“You'll understand when you're older,” said Mata Nui, patting her on the head.

“I'm an adult,” said Twilight flatly.

“Really?” said Mata Nui. “I can't judge ponies' ages very well. Since you acted so stupid, I thought you might be a kid, but since you're an adult I'll just assume you're stupid.”

“What are you babbling about?” said Twilight. “It's like every word that spews from your mouth is incoherent gibberish.”

“That's exactly what I think,” said Bucket-head as he and Kiina approached. “Thank the Great Beings you haven't met Berix yet. If you think Mata Nui is bad . . . well, you don't want to meet Berix.”

“Berix was cool,” said Mata Nui. “Unlike you. You don't even lift.”

“How do you know?” said Bucket-head. “Just look at these muscles. I work out all the time at the gym.”

Bucket-head raised his arms and started flexing his muscles. It was hardly impressive, in Twilight's opinion, and she didn't quite see the point of it.

“How cute,” said Mata Nui. “You may lift, but I am ripped.”

Mata Nui flexed his muscles, which bulged so much that a nearby rock exploded into pieces. The rock shards flew into Bucket-head's body, causing him to fall to the ground and scream in pain as the embedded shards dug deeply into his skin.

“Oops,” said Mata Nui. “And by 'oops,' I mean 'Mission accomplished.”

“Hey, you want to see real muscles?” said Spike. “Then take a look at these guns!”

Spike tried to flex his arms like Mata Nui, but unfortunately for him, his muscles barely bulged at all. In fact, to Twilight, his arms looked exactly the same as always, although privately she debated whether to tell him that or not. If he asked, she would just have to lie. She wasn't the Element of Honesty, after all, so she was under no compulsion to be honest all the time, right?

“Spike, I think you need to lift,” said Mata Nui, pointing at Spike's lack of muscles. “Just look at those pathetic baby arms. You can't pick up any chicks like that.”

“Chicks?” said Spike, tilting his head to the side. “But I don't like chickens.”

“Who said anything about chickens?” said Mata Nui. “I was talking about chicks. Like Kiina. Or Twilight.”

Spike glanced at Kiina and Twilight before saying, “Um, I don't think either of them are baby chickens.”

“You're amazingly dense,” said Mata Nui with a sigh. “Come here, buddy. Let Uncle Mata Nui teach you the secrets to getting the babes and striking gold.”

“Wait . . .” said Spike, the gears in his head ticking. “Does that mean you'll help me get Rarity?”

“Dunno who Rarity is,” said Mata Nui. “But I'll help you get the girls, yeah.”

“All right!” said Spike, punching the air. “What do I do?”

“First . . .” Mata Nui turned to Kiina and Twilight. “Sorry, but we can't talk about secret guy stuff in front of you girls. Otherwise, it wouldn't be secret guy stuff anymore.”

“Excuse me?” said Twilight. “What's so bad about letting us girls know about your 'secret guy stuff' if you're going to be using it on us anyway?”

“No one is going to use it on you,” said Mata Nui. “Besides, secret guy stuff has been passed down for generations, from father to son, uncle to nephew, drunk best friend to other drunk best friend, and so forth. It is only natural that I pass this information onto the next generation, of which Spike is the first.”

“Yeah,” said Spike, nodding. “I'm part of the next generation of manly men. Hooha!”

“Every man must know this secret guy stuff,” Mata Nui continued. “Except Bucket-head. He's a loser, so he doesn't get to know about any of it. Also I don't like him.”

Bucket-head, who had by now managed to pry out all of the rock shards from his body, rolled his eyes. “Yeah, I don't care.”

“Let's stay here at this oasis for a while,” said Twilight, trotting over to it. “We need to refill our water supplies, anyway, and rest.”

“This is the perfect opportunity to have our secret guy talk,” said Mata Nui to Spike. “Come with me, Spike, and I will teach you the ways of Man.”

Spike eagerly followed Mata Nui to the other side of the oasis. Twilight watched them go with a concerned look on her face.

“Tell me, Kiina, do you have any idea what Mata Nui is going to teach Spike?” said Twilight, looking up at the blue warrior. “Any idea at all?”

Kiina smiled. “How to be awesome.”

“'Being awesome' wouldn't happen to have anything to do with turning Spike into a mindless, one-line spouting killing machine, would it?” Twilight asked.

“It might,” said Kiina. “Why does it matter? I think Spike would be a lot cooler if he was more like Mata Nui. One reason I fell in love with Mata Nui in the first place was because he is so awesome.”

“Define 'awesome,'” said Twilight as she seated herself on the grass, next to the edge of the water. “Because all I see is an arrogant man-child who thinks the entire world revolves around him.”

“Hey,” said Kiina, glaring at her. “The world revolves around him and me.”

“Oh, of course,” said Twilight as she filled her thermos with water. “How could I forget? Yes, you and Mata Nui are truly the center of the universe, aren't you?”

“Yes, we are,” said Kiina brightly.

Nearby, Bucket-head had somehow managed to drag himself to the edge of the oasis pool. He reached toward the water, but then a giant shark burst out, grabbed Bucket-head, shook him violently in its mouth, and then hurled him into a nearby palm tree. The shark then went back under the water, although despite the pool's clearness Twilight couldn't see where it had gone.

Twilight rested her head on her front hooves and said, “I just can't wait to go home. I feel like I'm becoming every bit as bad as Mata Nui, if not even worse.”

“Mata Nui's not bad,” said Kiina. “He's cool. If you're becoming like him, then maybe there's hope for you after all.”

“Cool? Hope?” said Twilight in exasperation. “Were you even listening to what I was saying? I don't like this. It's terrible. Where I come from, Mata Nui would be a villain, worse than Queen Chrysalis or Discord or even King Sombra.”

“I have no idea who those people are,” said Kiina. “I have a feeling Mata Nui could kick their collective butts, though, if they got in his way.”

Twilight sighed heavily. “That's not the point. The point is that Mata Nui is a class A jer-”

She was interrupted by Bucket-head's moaning in pain. She glanced over in his direction and saw that the Skrall was being kicked over and over again by what looked like a tree giant. He seemed incapable of getting up and fighting back.

“Help!” Bucket-head cried out. “Twilight, Mata Nui, Kiina, Spike, anyone! I'm being beaten up by a tree!”

After a moment of watching the tree beat up Bucket-head, Twilight returned her attention to Kiina and said casually, “You know, while I think Bucket-head may be one of the saner people in this universe, he really is quite the complainer, isn't he?”

“Exactly,” said Kiina. “I mean, he complains about everything. Once I said I was going to take a walk to the moon and he argued that that didn't make sense. So I punted him to Uranus and he hasn't given me any troubles about 'making sense' since.”

“Um . . .” Twilight wanted to point out that Bucket-head had a point, but she had a feeling Kiina would punt her to Uranus if she said that aloud. “Well, that's . . . interesting.”

“Yes, it is,” said Kiina. “Now if you'll excuse me, I am going to swim. It's been a long time since I've done any swimming, what with me and Mata Nui always traveling. It's not like we can bring along a portable pool or something.”

“Of course,” said Twilight sarcastically. “Because a portable pool would just be silly, am I right?”

“Actually, you may be wrong,” said Kiina thoughtfully. “Mata Nui and I never actually discussed bringing along a portable pool. I should talk to him about it once he's done explaining secret guy stuff to Spike.”

Twilight was unsure how a portable pool would work, but then again, she found it amazing that this universe worked in the first place. Questioning that was probably just useless.It appeared they were going to stay in this oasis for a while, so Twilight decided to take a nap. As Kiina jumped into the water, Twilight closed her eyes and drifted off to sleep, hoping that when she awoke she wouldn't find something stupid had happened. Knowing how this world worked, that was probably a vain hope.


All right, guys. We're at the pre-hacking point now, I think, so we're going back to the "once-a-week" schedule. Next chapter is on Sunday, so see you then!


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Oops. Forgot to post it on Sunday. I'll try not to slip up again.

Chapter Eight: My Name isn't Pinkie Pie, but Thanks for Asking! (The Plot Thickens. Like Maple Syrup. Yum)

Hyaat kyeeh!

-Link, protagonist of The Legend of Zelda games, revealing the meaning of life

In Twilight's dream, she found herself sitting at her desk in her library home back in Ponyville. It looked exactly as she remembered it; walls covered with books, a large table in the middle covered with various books, quills, and other assorted things, and a staircase nearby that led to the second floor and to her own room. It even smelled like the real thing; parchment and ink, an aroma that pleased Twilight more than any other scent in the world.

The strangest part, however, was that she was aware she was in a dream. Twilight wasn't much of a lucid dreamer. Most dreams, after all, were just a bunch of meaningless nonsense designed by the brain to help it process the events of the previous day. As a logical pony, Twilight had no reason even to want to experience her dreams consciously. It wasn't like she could learn anything from them, after all, at least not anything she could find in a book.

She raised her right hoof and waved it back and forth. In the dream, her hoof felt really slow for some reason. In addition, the book on the desk in front of her was open, but its pages were completely blank. And it wasn't a diary or journal, either.

“What's going on here?” said Twilight, squinting at the text-less book. “I don't own any books without words.”

“But those are my favorite,” said a snarky, far too familiar voice behind her.

Twilight whirled around -- in slow-motion, it felt like, even though she turned as quickly as ever -- and spotted a strange, yet familiar creature floating in the air behind her. In some ways, the strange creature resembled a snake, because he had a long, thin body that as flexible as a serpent's. He looked like a mishmash of various creatures; the head of a pony, the left claw of an eagle, the right arm of a lion, the left leg of a goat, and the right leg of a lizard, in addition to the pegasus wing and bat wing extending from his back.

He was floating in midair, flipping through a book that, like the one before Twilight, had no text or pictures in it at all. If the way he looked at Twilight meant anything, then she appeared to have interrupted him in the middle of reading a good novel. It was an expression Twilight knew well, because she wore it whenever Spike or someone else interrupted her book reading.

“Discord,” said Twilight, not without a hint of disgust in her voice. “What are you doing here? How do I know you're not just a dream?”

Discord closed his book, which then burst into flames for no apparent reason. “Well, Twilight Sparkle, ask yourself this: Would you ever dream about me, even now that you and I are on the same side?”

“Okay, you're real,” said Twilight. “But that still doesn't explain what you're doing here. You didn't come with me to this dimension. You weren't even there when I left Equestria for Spherus Magna a few days ago.”

“True,” said Discord with a yawn. “And until just a few hours ago I hadn't even known you had left Equestria. I was too busy protecting Equestria's borders with my chaos magic to care much about what was going on internally.”

A part of Twilight was curious about Discord's methods of 'protection.' It had been a subject she had thought about ever since Fluttershy succeeded in reforming the draconequus; after all, Celestia hadn't been specific about what she meant by using Discord's magic for good.

Whatever he did, it was irrelevant to the current discussion, so Twilight chose to ask a different question. “Well, what, did Princess Celestia send you here or something?”

“Bingo,” said Discord. “I get to play the messenger. So if you don't like my message, I suggest not shooting me.”

As if to illustrate his point, Discord summoned a gun out of nowhere and shot himself in the face. The loud gun shot caused Twilight to jump as Discord's head rolled away from his body before magically reappearing atop his neck.

“Don't do that,” said Twilight.

“All right,” said Discord, rolling his eyes (not literally this time). “I forgot how boring you were, Twilight. You should be more like your friend Pinkie Pie or even Fluttershy. Perhaps you would be more popular if you weren't quite so . . . cold.”

Twilight shivered and looked at her mane, which was covered in a thin sheet of ice.

“Ha, ha, Discord,” said Twilight, returning her attention to the chaos spirit. “Very funny. Well, shoot. What did Celestia send you for? Did you go through the mirror, too?”

“Mirror? Of course not,” said Discord, shaking his head. “I simply managed to use my chaos magic to dimension-hop. I would explain it to you, except that it makes no sense whatsoever, so I doubt you would understand it.”

“Oh, I think I understand a bit of chaos magic,” said Twilight. “This entire universe is like what would happen if you had succeeded in defeating me and my friends the first time we met. Except even worse.”

“Well, I thought I sensed an immense amount of chaos at work in this world,” said Discord with a wistful sigh. “Perhaps I should convince Celestia to let me move here. I'm sure the people here are just wonderful, disregarding the laws of physics, morality, and other things that try to bind we chaos lovers.”

“You have no idea how true that is,” Twilight muttered. Then she said aloud, “You still haven't explained why you're here, Discord.”

“Oh, yeah,” said Discord, snapping his fingers. “Almost forgot. Yes, Twilight, the situation is truly dire, according to Celestia. It is a problem of dimension-spanning proportions, one that could potentially destroy both this universe and Equestria.”

“Speak plainly,” said Twilight. “What are you talking about? Equestria is safe, isn't it?”

“Not anymore, it isn't,” said Discord, shaking his head. “When you left Equestria to go after Sunset Shimmer -- by the way, how is that going? -- you accidentally unbalanced the equilibrium between the universes.”Twilight cocked her head to the side. “Unbalanced? I don't understand.”

“Let me see if I can make it clearer,” said Discord. “Imagine the multiverse is a giant set of scales. Normally, these scales are perfectly balanced and everything is fine and dandy, which is how things are supposed to be. This balance is achieved by people remaining within their own universes. Dimension-hopping, however, can unbalance the multiverse and unleash chaos and destruction like no one has ever seen before. Even I cannot imagine the absolute destruction that is about to happen.”

“Wait,” said Twilight. “Are you saying, because Spike and I are in Spherus Magna, that means we're-”

“Oh, it's not just you,” said Discord with a yawn. “Sunset Shimmer is a part of the problem, too. As is her theft of your crown. According to Celestia, both this universe and Equestria are going to cease to exist very soon, unless you, Spike, Sunset, and your crown return home soon.”

“That can't be true,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “That's impossible. Celestia must be wrong.”

“But it is,” said Discord. “You really haven't seen Equestria since you got here, have you? I guess that's why you haven't seen the earthquakes that shake the sky or the inverted mountains or even the polka-dotted rain. It's causing so much chaos that I feel quite at home in Equestria perhaps for the first time in my life.”

“If you like it so much, then why'd Celestia send you to tell me about it?” said Twilight. “And how do I know you aren't behind it all, anyway?"

Discord frowned. “Twilight Sparkle, I would never destroy Equestria. After all, it's where my only friend, Fluttershy, lives. Besides, I am a spirit of chaos, not destruction. I can sense that Equestria is slowly unraveling even as we speak. And if it is destroyed, well, that would be worse than chaos; after all, chaos can't exist in a void.”

“I guess that makes sense,” said Twilight reluctantly.

“It does?” said Discord in surprise. “My, my, I think the situation is far more dire than even I believed. If I'm starting to make sense to other people, then I think that is proof enough that both universes are in peril.”

“Did Celestia say how I am supposed to restore balance to the universes?” Twilight asked.

“She wanted you to bring Sunset Shimmer and your crown back,” said Discord. “If you can succeed in bringing them both back to Equestria, the multiverse will be balanced once again and I will be able to spread chaos like before. I mean. . . .”

“No, I understand exactly what you mean,” said Twilight. “If what you say is true, then maybe that's why this universe is so broken. I must be seeing the world in its very last stages as the unequal equilibrium of the multiverse crushes it beneath its weight.”

“No, I think this universe is always insane,” said Discord. “Trust me. I'm a spirit of chaos.”

“Whatever the reason, it looks like my mission is more urgent than ever,” said Twilight. “Discord, are you going to help me?”

“No,” said Discord, shaking his head. “Celestia needs me back home to keep the universe from getting too chaotic. Besides, why would I ever want to travel with you? I may be friends with Fluttershy, but that doesn't mean I am friends with her friends.”

“True enough,” said Twilight. “Now is that all Celestia asked you to tell me or is there more?”

“That's about it, Twilight,” said Discord. “To summarize: Get Sunset Shimmer and your crown, return to Equestria, and save the multiverse. Easy enough to understand, right?”

“Yeah,” said Twilight. “But tell me, are my friends safe?”

“They're doing fine,” said Discord. “Except poor Rainbow Dash. A time-space anomaly has given her a strange green ring that allows her to manipulate things with her mind. She doesn't yet know how to control it, so it's hilarious watching her create a hammer and smash Rarity with it. Accidentally, of course.”

The glee in Discord's voice made Twilight suspicious, but she said, “If you have nothing else of importance to tell me, then go away. I need to tell my companions about this. If the situation really is as bad as you say it is, then everyone needs to know about it.”

Discord bowed mockingly. “As you wish, Princess. By the way, I think those wings look terrible on you. Have you even learned to fly yet?”

“Yes, I have,” said Twilight irritably. “Not as well as a pegasus, maybe, but I can fly without crashing into buildings now.”

“You were crashing into buildings while learning to fly? Why didn't Fluttershy tell me about that?”

“Because she's a good friend and it's none of your business,” Twilight said. “Now go away. I'm trying to get some sleep.”

Discord scooped up the ashes of his book, which reformed into the novel from before. “All right, Twilight. I'll just go back to reading my favorite book. It's called _ written by the famous novelist, _.”

Twilight cocked her head again. “Excuse me? I didn't catch that.”

“Oh, you would never understand if I repeated it,” said Discord. “_ was a revolutionary writer and his breakout novel, _, is well known among Equestria's literary circles for its profound religious symbolism and biting political satire. I just read it for the pictures, myself.”

Twilight got a glimpse at the book's blank pages. “But there aren't any words or pictures in it.”

“Simpleton,” said Discord with a snort. “And you call yourself a book-lover.”

Before Twilight could argue with him that he wasn't reading a real book, Discord disappeared in a flash of white light, leaving her standing all alone in her dream library.

If what Discord said is true, then that makes this mission even more urgent than before, Twilight thought. Poor Rainbow Dash. I have no idea what that green ring is, but it sounds terrible. When I wake up, I am going to get Spike and the others, tell them what I learned, and continue our journey once again. The fates of both Equestria and Spherus Magna hangsin the balance.


As well and good as those words were, when Twilight awoke, she was kind of groggy and wanted to go back to sleep. That Pinkie Pie was standing before her, hopping up and down with that same crazy grin she always wore, babbling on about something Twilight at first wasn't listening to, didn't make her feel more energetic.Wait . . . Pinkie Pie?

Twilight rubbed her eyes, then looked up. No, it wasn't Pinkie Pie who was before her. It was a little blue Agori, hopping up and down in front of her like he was trying to impersonate Pinkie. Twilight just watched him for a moment, her brain only half-awake at the moment.

“Hi!” said the Agori in a high-pitched voice. “I'm Berix. What's your name?”

“Twilight Sparkle,” said Twilight, without thinking. “And where did you come from?”

“That's a question I keep asking everyone else,” said Berix as he stuffed some sand into his mouth. “Some people say the stork, some people say my mother, but I think I came from a spaceship that crashed in a Kansas cornfield, where I was raised by my human parents until I became Henry Cavill and saved the world from Michael Shannon.”

Twilight blinked. “What?”

“What what?” said Berix.


“What what what?”

“Wha-” Twilight shook her head. “Okay, this is getting nowhere. Mata Nui,” she called, looking over her shoulder, “there's a crazy Agori here who thinks he's some guy called Henry Cavill or whatever. Can you get rid of him?”

Mata Nui -- who had been sitting next to Spike, explaining something to him with a stick -- looked up and said, “Oh, it's okay, Twilight. It's just Berix. He's one of my best friends. He's cool.”

“Cool?” Twilight repeated, turning to face Berix again. “I don't even know where to start.”

“You can start here,” said Berix, pointing at a board game that had appeared out of nowhere. “Then I go next!”

Twilight stared at the board game and said, “And where did this come from?”

“I think it came with me to Kansas,” said Berix. “That's when I became Henry Cavill, you know.”

“Stop being so confusing,” said Twilight. “You're even worse than Mata Nui and I've only known you for less than five minutes.”

“You're even better than Bucket-head and I've only known you for less than five minutes,” said Berix happily. “By the way, is your name Twilight? I loved those books. Sometimes, I like to imagine myself in Jacob's big, strong arms while we sit on a moonlit beach, drinking French wine while discussing the weather.”

“Maybe Discord was right,” said Twilight, tapping her chin with one hoof. “Maybe the universes really are falling apart and this poor Agori was caught in some inter-dimensional rift that tore apart his sanity.”

Berix stopped jumping. He was now floating in midair, apparently without anything supporting him at all. “Are you my mommy?”

“No, don't be stupid,” said Twilight.“Okay,” said Berix, sounding depressed. “I bet you're my dad, anyway. We should go to a baseball game sometime and bond, like father and daughter.”

Twilight peered at him closely. “You wouldn't happen to know a draconequus named Discord, would you?”

“No,” said Berix. “But I do know a cord you don't want to diss.”

Twilight sighed heavily. “Look, Berix, can you gather the others around here? I just learned something really, really important and they all need to know it right away.”

Berix gasped. “Kate had a boy?”

“Who's Kate?” said Twilight. Then she shook her head again. “Whatever! Just go get them, please?”

“Yes, ma'am,” said Berix, bowing in midair in a way eerily reminiscent of Discord. “I'll be back in a jiffy and a half.

”When Twilight blinked, everyone else was suddenly around her, but Berix hadn't appeared to move from his place at all.

“Okay!” said Berix cheerfully. “I got everyone, just as you asked! Do I win the lottery?”

Twilight scratched her ear. “Um. . . .”

Mata Nui handed Berix a slip of paper and said, “Scratch it off, Berix, we need to see if you won!”

“Okay!” said Berix, scratching something off the paper quickly. “Okay, what are the winning lottery numbers?”

Mata Nui pulled out a large notebook from nowhere and began reading. “Four . . .”


“Eight . . .”


“Fifteen . . .”


“Sixteen . . .”


“Twenty-three . . .”


“And forty-two,” Mata Nu finished. “So, Berix? Did you win?”

Berix looked up at Mata Nui with serious eyes. “No. It was forty-one, not forty-two.”

“Aw, darn it,” said Mata Nui, slapping his knee. “And here I thought I was going to be best friends with a millionaire. I guess you can't have everything you want in life, you know?”

“Yeah,” said Berix, nodding wisely. “Maybe next time.”

“Enough non-sequitors!” Twilight roared. “Even Discord is more logical than you two and he's the freaking embodiment of chaos itself!”

“Geez, no need to get your pants in a twist,” said Mata Nui. “Metaphorically, of course, seeing as you don't wear any pants.”

“She doesn't?” Berix gasped. “Doesn't that count as public indecency?”

“None of us wear pants, Berix,” Twilight pointed out. “Not even you.”

Berix looked down at the lower half of his body and gasped. “Oh my gosh, you're right! Okay, continue.”

“All right. Well, I just had a dream, everypony, and I learned that Equestria and Spherus Magna are both in danger of being destroyed. Here's why.”

So Twilight explained, as best as she could remember, everything Discord had told her in her dream. Thankfully, no one interrupted her with stupid questions. Even Berix stayed still long enough to listen to her tale, although Twilight had a feeling that he was thinking about something else completely.

By the time she finished, the mood in the group had actually grown grim, much to her astonishment. She thought the others might just blow off the news, but for once they seemed to be taking the situation seriously.

“This is not good,” said Spike. “I don't want Equestria or Spherus Magna destroyed. What would happen to us if both worlds died?”

“We'd all die,” said Bucket-head, staring at the ground with hollow eyes. “Every last one of us.”

Even Mata Nui looked disturbed for a moment before puffing out his chest and saying, “Well, I won't die. I'm so awesome that even if the universe was destroyed, I'd survive through sheer awesomeness alone.”

“And I'd be with him,” Kiina added. “So I don't really see what this has to do with us.”

“You two are just . . .” Twilight shook her head. “Look, whether you care or not, we still have to take down Sunset Shimmer. I don't know if she knew this would happen, but either way we have to stop her in order to bring harmony to the multiverse.”

“Yeah, let's take her down,” said Berix, punching his fist into his other hand. “Who is she, anyway? Your girlfriend?”

“No,” said Twilight harshly. “I haven't even met her. She's a bad pony who stole my crown. That's why I'm here.”

“Oh,” said Berix. “I get it. You can't be a real pretty purple princess pony who ponders the probability of propulsion without your crown, right?”

“Uh, right?” said Twilight, looking at Mata Nui. “Do you understand a word he said?”

“Nope,” said Mata Nui. “But I'm sure it was nothing offensive or inappropriate.”

“What are you-?” Twilight said, but just shook her head. “Never mind. I don't even want to know anymore.”

“But I do,” said Berix. “I want to know everything. Everybody wants to rule the world, after all.”

“The situation sounds pretty serious,” said Spike. “We don't have any time to waste. We gotta get going now.”

“Spike is absolutely right,” said Twilight, rising to her hooves. “We're going to save both our worlds. Right, everypony?”

“Ooo, I'm a pony now?” said Berix. “Let's see, I think I want to be an earth pony with blue fur and a green mane. Oh, and my cutie mark would be a question mark because I don't know what my special talent is, which paradoxically is my special talent, which means my special talent can be anything. And I'd have green eyes, too.”

“How do you know what a cutie mark is?” Twilight said. “I haven't even told Mata Nui, Kiina, or Bucket-head about that yet.”

“Just a hunch,” said Berix. “Also pretzels.”


“Yes, Twilight, pretzels,” said Mata Nui, nodding. “It all makes sense now, doesn't it?”

“No, it doesn't,” said Twilight.

“Well, who cares?” said Mata Nui. “If that draco-whatever thingy-mabob in your dream is right, then we have a huge quest ahead of us. Looks like I'm gonna have to save the world for the fourth time!”

“The fourth time?” said Twilight. “You mean you've done this thing before?”

“Yes,” said Mata Nui. “Saving the world is kind of my thing. I bet if I was a pony and had a cutie mark, it would be a planet with me saving it from evil. Not that I want to be a pony, of course, because ponies are cute, not awesome, and I am awesome.”

Twilight rolled her eyes. “Whatever. Let's just go.”


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog

The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness

(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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For the love of Mata Nui, how has nobody commented on this yet? This comedy is hilarious! I feel like this is what Equestria Girls should have been, and even though I found that movie decent enough, this is where it's at! Seriously, man, keep up the good work!

"Whether that is right or not...I also...as a Rider...have a wish that I want to fulfill."

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For the love of Mata Nui, how has nobody commented on this yet? This comedy is hilarious! I feel like this is what Equestria Girls should have been, and even though I found that movie decent enough, this is where it's at! Seriously, man, keep up the good work!

Thank you :) . Glad you enjoy it so far.Anyway, it's Sunday, so that means another new chapter:


Chapter Nine: Continuity Attacks! (AKA Confusing the new readers)

Follow the story and find out.


-Greg Farshtey, deciding to troll Bionicle fans one day after being asked the same unanswerable question for the millionth time


After Twilight filled her water bottle to the brim with the cool oasis water (and making sure it wasn't within Mata Nui or Kiina's reach), the party of six continued their journey into the desert.For some reason, the sun didn't seem quite as hot as before. Perhaps it was because the sun was setting or maybe Twilight's body was just adapting to the heat. Either way, she appreciated it greatly, as she had a feeling she was going to need her wits about her the further they traveled into the desert. Especially with Berix around, who she decided was probably some sort of demigod of chaos, as he seemed even crazier than Mata Nui and Kiina combined. And that was saying something.


Thankfully, their trip through the dunes was mostly uneventful. Aside from the destruction of the city of the rat people, the gang saw nothing else while in the desert. Soon they came upon a mountain that seemed to appear out of nowhere. Twilight had to check their map twice to make sure they hadn't made a wrong turn, but they hadn't. It was strange because she hadn't seen the mountains until they actually reached them. It was either the natural weirdness of this universe at work once again or it was a result of the lack of balance between the universes. Either way it was weird.


According to the map, they would have to travel over or around the mountain in order to reach Atero. Because this mountain range -- called the Rocking Mountains, an odd name, although not as strange some names Twilight had heard -- appeared to stretch all the way around the planet, the gang agreed to go through it. There was a good possibility of being ambushed in the Mountains, but Twilight felt confident that they could handle whatever these Mountains had to throw at them.


Climbing the Mountains was the most difficult part. The clouds rained fire (almost hitting Twilight once), the grass seemed sentient (it tried to eat Bucket-head more than once), and the wind felt as cold as ice. The mountainside itself occasionally opened a hole beneath their feet, as if trying to eat them. It was like Mother Nature herself had designed this place solely to torture anyone who came there, including unfortunate ponies.


For once, Twilight was thankful for Mata Nui's ability to break physics. He would hit the fire back into the clouds with a simple punch, stomped on the grass like it was an insect, and would beat up the wind whenever it got too cold. As for the mountain's holes, he would force them close again with something he called 'duck tape,' a substance Twilight had never seen before but found intriguing, as it apparently was a tool that could be used to fix literally anything. She made a note to learn how it was made so she could duplicate it back home.


“Hey, Mata Nui,” said Spike as they emerged onto a plateau on the mountains. “I got a question.”


“Yeah?” said Mata Nui, looking down at the little dragon. “What is it?”


“Are there dragons in Spherus Magna?” Spike asked. “Because so far I haven't seen any besides myself, obviously, so I was wondering if there were.”


“Oh, sure,” said Mata Nui. “Two of my friends fought a dragon once, actually.”


“Really? What happened to it?”


“It exploded,” said a slow, measured voice somewhere above them. “And that hurt me. A lot.”


The entire gang stopped and looked around. Berix peered underneath a pebble, Bucket-head looked among a nearby group of rocks, Kiina looked underneath her feet, Spike looked in a crack in the ground, and Mata Nui peered into another dimension (or he was just standing there staring into nothingness). Only Twilight appeared to have enough sense to look up a nearby cliff, where she saw yet another strange being in a world that was full of them.


This one was tall and lanky, perhaps a head shorter than Mata Nui. He had a shiny silver skull, with a big, white grin that reminded Twilight far too much of Pinkie Pie, and not in a good way, either. The being wore black and silver armor, as well as a long, dark cape with tattered edges running down his back. His right hand carried a spear, while his left hand had been replaced entirely with what looked like a fusion of a shield and battle ax.


“Who the Karzahni are you?” Mata Nui said. “You're ugly.”


“How mean,” said the newcomer, sounding genuinely hurt. “My name is Vezon. Your friends killed my pet dragon, Kardas, and I have now come to avenge his death, as any good friend would.”


“But we had nothing to do with it,” said Kiina. “Well, sure, I bet any of us would have killed your dragon if we'd been in that situation, but seriously, why not go hunt Tera and Likus? They're the ones who did that.”


Vezon shook his head sadly. “Maybe I should explain. You see, when Tera and Likus defeated Kardas, I was sent flying all the way out here. I have been stewing in my rage ever since, but have been too frightened to leave these mountains until recently.”


“I still don't get it,” said Twilight. “Why attack us if-”


“Shut up,” said Vezon. “Anyway, I have a new employer now. She asked me to ambush you six if you ended up coming through my home. So when I saw you, I saw an opportunity to fulfill my duty. She said if I bring your heads on a silver platter to her, then she will bring Kardas back to life.”


“You can't bring someone back to life when they're dead,” said Mata Nui. “When someone dies, they're dead. In order to gain something, something of equal value must be given in return and there is nothing equivalent to life. It's called the Law of Equivalent Exchange. Learn it.”


“You have no idea if that is true or not,” said Vezon. “Besides, if I recall correctly, you yourself died and came back to life, Mata Nui. So you are in no position to be telling me what is or isn't possible.”


“That was different,” said Mata Nui, folding his arms. “I'm the main character. So I never die and when I do the author always provides a way for me to come back.”


“Author?” said Twilight. “What author?”


Ignoring Twilight, Vezon shook his head and said, “Whatever the case may be, I have a job to do and you guys are the targets of that job. If you would please stand still and let me ruthlessly murder you, then that will make everything much easier for me.”


“Easy this!” said Mata Nui, whipping out his 40k MGA and firing off a hundred shots.


Vezon disappeared immediately, causing the bullets to fly past him and strike the rock wall behind where he had been standing, creating an exact portrait of Mata Nui's face.


“Where'd he go?” said Mata Nui as he and the others looked around in alarm. “He could be anywhere. But he isn't going to get the drop on Mata Nui, the biggest bad-”


Without warning, a miniature explosion erupted in the middle of the group. The explosion sent them all flying through the air in different directions, Twilight and Spike screaming in shock from the blow. Twilight crashed into a boulder and fell to the ground with a thump. She recovered quickly, however, and was back on her hooves in an instant.


Standing right where the gang had previously been was Vezon, his grin wider than before, if that were possible. His cape fluttered in the wind as he slowly looked around at the scattered heroes, hefting his spear in his hand as though trying to decide who to stab first.


“That wasn't teleportation, if that's what you were thinking,” said Vezon. “My boss gave me the power to dimension-hop. It also works for moving around in this dimension.”


“That doesn't explain the explosion, though,” said Twilight. “Where did that come from?”


“Explosions happen all the time in this universe, my little pony,” said Vezon. “Are you really that surprised? Then again, I have heard that where you come from, the land is one of light and color and happiness and candy. Perhaps you don't even know what explosions are.”


“Oh, I know what explosions are, all right,” said Twilight as she focused on the ground at Vezon's feet. “Why don't you taste one!”


Twilight's horn flashed and the next moment the ground underneath Vezon blew up. The resulting explosion sent Vezon flying high into the sky. Without waiting, Twilight ran over to Bucket-head and said, “Throw me!”


Bucket-head, who was lying on the ground still trying to recover from the explosion, looked up at her and said, “What?”


“Throw me at Vezon!” said Twilight, pointing up at the flying Skakdi. “Like a spear.”


“Will that even work?” said Bucket-head doubtfully.


“I saw my brother do it with his wife once,” said Twilight. “And, since my universe is far less crazy than this one, I think it'll work here. So do it.”


Bucket-head shrugged, but stood up and hefted Twilight above his head anyway. He took aim as best as he could and then hurled Twilight through the air. She used her wings to glide, flying straight and true toward the hurtling-out-of-control Vezon, her horn glowing brighter than ever.


Somehow Vezon got control of himself, however, and pulled his shield in front of his chest before Twilight could impale him. But when Twilight's horn collided with his shield, the barrier weapon cracked and shattered into trillions of pieces, causing Vezon to yell, “No! Not my shield!”


Then Twilight did a flip in midair and landed on Vezon's chest even as they continued to fly into the sky. She began beating hard on his chest with all four of her hooves, moving so fast that she was like a jackhammer.


Every blow of her hooves created another huge crack in Vezon's armor until his chest armor shattered completely. And with his chest exposed (thankfully it wasn't hairy), Twilight slammed her glowing horn into it and shouted, “Eat this, you big moron!”


A huge flash of lightning followed that one-liner, which sent Vezon crashing back into the earth below. He screamed like a little child as he smashed through cloud after cloud on his way down until he crashed into the earth, creating a crater so huge that it actually shook the Mountains.


As for Twilight herself, she rolled into a ball and shot toward the ground at the speed of light. She slammed into Vezon's chest, rebounded off it, and landed on her hooves at the edge of the crater. She blew her bangs out of her eyes as she peered into the crater at Vezon's prone form. He did not rise again.


“That's what you get for getting in my way,” said Twilight. “I hope you take this time to think very hard about trying to kill me and my friends. You understand me?”


Vezon didn't respond, so Twilight took his silence as a yes.


She turned around and saw everyone else standing behind her. They wore varying expressions of shock and amazement. Spike in particular looked like his eyes would fall out if they got any bigger.


“Oh my gosh, Twilight, did you see what you just-” said Spike as the ground trembled beneath their feet.


“What was that?” said Twilight, looking around in alarm. “Another attack?”


“How did you guess?” said a familiar voice behind her, although it sounded slightly muffled as though encased in stone.


Twilight whirled around just in time to see Vezon's face peering at her from one of the nearby mountain peaks. His eyes glowed with the lava that flowed through the veins of the hills, while two gigantic stone arms with thick rock hands reached out toward her.


“What the heck?” said Twilight, backing up in surprise. “What's going on here?”


“I suppose I forgot to mention my Spear of Fusion to you,” said Vezon, pebbles spewing out of his mouth every time he opened it. “When you defeated me, I had just enough life left in me to fuse myself with the Rocking Mountains.”


“No . . .” said Twilight, shaking her head. “Then that means. . . .”


“I and the Mountains are one,” said Vezon. “There is nowhere within the Mountains you can run to now. Where you are, I will be; and where I am, there you are. You shall all die today, despite your most valiant efforts to survive.”


As Vezon spoke, more hands grew out of the mountainside. These ones snapped up the rest of Twilight's friends. Twilight herself managed to avoid being captured by flying, but then she was swatted out of the air and snatched by another hand, which held her so tightly she felt like her head was going to explode (which in this universe was a very real possibility).


“You cannot escape the Mountains,” said Vezon as he held them all up. “I suggest you cease your struggling. Accept your fate. Accept your death!”


The hands' grip on their bodies began tightening. Twilight could barely breathe, because all of the air was being squeezed out of her lungs. She tried to focus her magic, but her body was too busy keeping her head from exploding that she couldn't manage even the simplest of spells.


Trying not to panic, Twilight looked over at the others. Was this the end? Were they going to be crushed between the fingers of a giant stone monster? Twilight couldn't believe it. She knew that if they died, the entire multiverse would go with them. And more importantly, her friends would die, both the ones she had made here and the ones back home in Equestria.


I must survive, Twilight thought. We all must survive. I . . . will . . . not . . . die!


Summoning a kind of strength she had never known before, Twilight forced Vezon's gigantic stone fingers apart. The pressure on her body ceased and she could now breathe normally, taking in the clear mountain air as though it were a wonderful drink.


“What's this?” said Vezon, his eyes widening. “How did you break out of my stone grip? I was crushing you with the force of two mountains!”


Twilight hovered in the air with her wings, her horn charging with even more magic than before. “Well, I know something that's a bit more powerful than two mountains.”


“And what could that be?” said Vezon mockingly. “A bluff by a pretty little pony whose days are numbered?”


“Hardly,” said Twilight. “The magic of friendship is stronger than the crushing power of all the mountains in the world! Hi-ya!”


Twilight's horn exploded with tendrils of energy that went everywhere. More specifically, the tendrils sliced through the huge hands that held her friends captive. All of them immediately broke out of their bonds and flew to join Twilight, even though none of them could fly besides her and she wasn't using her magic to make it possible for them to fly but if you're still questioning this stuff by now then I ask that you to stop reading this comedy and never come back because you're just a party pooper.


“Impossible,” said Vezon in horror. “This cannot be. You cannot destroy the Mountains themselves. It is impossible.”


“This whole universe is impossible,” said Twilight. “But I guess that hasn't stopped it from existing and that won't stop you from no longer existing!”


As one, Twilight and her friends flew through the air directly toward Vezon's face. Panicking, Vezon summoned thick stone walls to block their progress, but their energy-charged bodies allowed them to smash through the rock walls with ease. Nothing Vezon did could halt them even temporarily. This fact appeared to dawn on Vezon's face, because his eyes contracted in horror and his perpetual grin turned into a grimace.


“If stone can't stop you, then eat lava!” Vezon roared.


Opening his mouth, Vezon spewed a long stream of lava directly at Twilight and friends. Of course, Vezon was VERY naïve if he thought that would slow down their progress any. He probably hadn't read the last few comedies, where pretty much nothing could kill any of these guys. He will be missed.


Mata Nui took the lead and started punching through the oncoming lava stream with his bare fists, the same way you might punch a punching bag. The sight enraged Vezon, who doubled the amount of lava he spewed, but this just inspired Mata Nui to punch harder and faster. Every blow of his fist literally shattered the lava into glass, clearing the way for everyone else.


And with the force of a nuclear bomb, Twilight and her friends stuck Vezon's giant rock forehead as one. The blow was so powerful that it shattered the Mountains themselves, causing the entire mountain range (which, may I remind you, wraps around Spherus Magna itself) to crumble into dust. It left Vezon's original form floating in the air, beaten and weakened, barely functioning from the beating it had taken from Twilight earlier.


“No . . .” Vezon coughed, hacking like a smoker. “You . . . will not . . . be able to defeat . . . Sunset Shimmer. . . .”


“Oh, I don't know about that,” said Twilight. “But I think we will. Good bye.”


With that, Twilight fired a blast of energy at Vezon. The blast struck Vezon and caused his molecules to separate. The molecules scattered all over the known universe even as Vezon screamed in agony, his terrible yell echoing throughout the world until it was no more.Twilight and the gang landed on the remains of the Rocking Mountains.


As soon as they did so, Spike pumped his fist and said, “That was awesome! Vezon was like, 'I'm gonna crush you to death!' and Twilight was like, 'No way, Jose!' and then he became a mountain and we broke it and Twilight killed him and it was so awesome I think I'm going to pass out now.”


With that, Spike did indeed pass out, but Mata Nui slapped him in the face, immediately waking him.


“It was indeed awesome, Spike,” said Mata Nui. “Not the awesomest fight I've ever been in, but I would put it up there with some of them. This isn't the first time I've destroyed a mountain range, though, so I take awesomeness points off for repetition.”


“Boom!” said Berix, clapping his hands together happily. “The Mountain Man went boom, all thanks to our little pony. The moral of this story is that you should never mess with a pony, no matter how pretty it may be.”


“Agreed,” said Mata Nui. “Except if you're me. Then you can mess with whoever you want because you're Mata monkeyfighting Nui!”


Twilight shook her head. She looked at her surroundings for a moment in confusion before her eyes widened. “Did I do that?”


“No,” said Mata Nui, patting her on the head. “We did that. Together. As a team.”


“I . . . “ Twilight looked down at her hooves again. “I killed another person.”


“I'm so proud of you right now,” said Mata Nui. “You know, when we first met, I thought maybe you were just a socially awkward bookworm with no friends. But now I know that you can be every bit as vicious and bloodthirsty as me. Maybe this 'magic of friendship' you keep blabbing on about really does exist.”


“Mercilessly killing people isn't what the magic of friendship is about,” said Twilight, shaking her head wildly. “This is the magic of your messed-up universe. This has nothing to do with friendship of any sort.”


“I dunno,” said Mata Nui. “And I don't care. The fact is we destroyed an entire mountain range, which is pretty impressive. Not as impressive as shattering a planet, but it's a good start.”


“A good start?” said Twilight. “You assume I'm going to be doing crazier things before this is all over.”


“Well, yeah,” said Mata Nui. “This is how all legendary badbutts got their start. First they were breaking mountains, then continents, then planets, and eventually anything else they didn't like, up to and including the universe itself.”


“I don't want to destroy the universe, though,” said Twilight. “I want to save it. That's what my mission is all about.”


“Excuse me, Princess,” said Mata Nui. “I was just saying that's what you could do. For the record, I'm pretty sure I haven't destroyed a universe yet, although it's only a matter of time before I do so.”


Twilight took a few steps back. “You're insane. All of you. Completely insane.”


“We are not insane,” said Berix, clearly offended. “Only I can see Alfred the Blue Monkey, so that means I'm crazy, not the rest of you.”


“I . . . I need some time by myself,” said Twilight, her voice trembling. “Just gotta think, okay? I'll be back. Sometime. Maybe. Eventually.”


Before any of them could respond, Twilight turned tail and ran down the huge pile of pebbles they stood upon. Right now, she didn't want to be around anyone, not even Spike.




It took her a while to find some place where she could be alone, as the lack of a mountain made it difficult to hide anywhere. She eventually found a particularly large pile of shattered rock that the others couldn't see around, allowing her to sit down and take in a deep breath for a moment before tears welled in her eyes, tears she tried to fight but couldn't.


I'm becoming just like Mata Nui, Kiina, Berix, and yes, even like Bucket-head, Twilight thought. Maybe it's the fact that the universes are collapsing or maybe there's just something about this universe, but it seems like I'm getting closer and closer to the edge of no return with every passing day.


She tried to remind herself that she was different from Mata Nui. After all, unlike Mata Nui, she saw her friends as people, not either as punching bags or as reflections of his own awesomeness or objects to be destroyed if she didn't like them. Still, when she saw how ruthlessly she treated Vezon and how snarky she had been with Mata Nui and the others so far, it made her doubt her own goodness.


More than ever, Twilight wished that her friends back home had come with her. She knew, of course, that Equestria needed them, but she still wished her friends were here to support her. Right now, it felt like the entire weight of two universes was on her shoulders and she was just about to collapse from the weight.


With a sigh, Twilight rested her head on her hooves. She knew she still had a job to do. She still had to go to Atero and confront Sunset Shimmer. She really shouldn't have run off like that, even if she did need the alone time. Still, she couldn't help but wonder just how different she was going to be by the end of this journey. Would her friends even recognize her as the same pony who left Equestria when she returned?


In particular, Twilight was afraid she'd grow to love the fighting and chaos that seemed to be woven into the fabric of this universe. That fight with Vezon had awakened a vicious pleasure in her that she had never noticed before. If she liked fighting enough, she might bring this attitude back with her to Equestria, which would be problematic as Equestria was a fairly peaceful land, at least in comparison to Spherus Magna.


I could harm my friends, Twilight thought. I could become like Mata Nui, seeing my friends as nothing more than meat shields or reflections to be discarded at will. And if I became arrogant enough, what's to stop me from trying to overthrow Celestia and Luna?


All of these thoughts seemed to chase themselves around in her head and there was no answer, at least no answer Twilight could see. Maybe there was no answer at all. Maybe the answer was that she was going to end up exactly like Mata Nui: egotistical, arrogant, unkind, cruel, and very rude.


“Twilight?”Twilight looked around and saw Spike walking around the pebble pile toward her. He looked concerned.


“What are you doing here, Spike?” said Twilight, somewhat more harshly than she intended. “I said I wanted to be alone.”


“I know,” said Spike. “It's just, well, I wanted to make sure you were okay. Besides, Mata Nui was getting bored and wanted to use me as a bat to beat up Bucket-head with, so I had to bail. Think Berix volunteered to take my place.”


“Okay,” said Twilight, putting her head down on her hooves again. “Whatever. Those guys are freaks.”


She expected Spike to argue with her, but instead he said, “Yeah, they are.”


Puzzled, Twilight looked over her shoulder at him and asked, “Wait, I thought you thought they were awesome.”


“It's kind of complicated,” said Spike, scraping his foot across the ground. “On one hand, they do all kinds of awesome things all the time. I mean, Mata Nui punted the sun into the moon. How can that not be awesome? They're like the personification of all my daydreams where I save Rarity from bad guys. And I really want to be like that.”


“What's so complicated about-”


“On the other hand,” Spike continued, “they're all colossal meanies. Mata Nui only cares about himself, Kiina is just as cruel, Bucket-head is pretty cynical, and Berix . . . well, okay, he can be nice, but he's still pretty freaky and doesn't seem to care that his friends are all mean. And I definitely don't want to be mean.”


“Yeah, I get that,” said Twilight. “They've been useful allies so far, but they're so different from us in just about every way. And what's worse, I think they're rubbing off on us. At least on me, if my killing Vezon means anything.”


“Nuh uh, Twilight,” said Spike, shaking his head. “You're not anything like them. You're smart; Mata Nui flunked preschool. You're nice; Kiina kicked a puppy. You're optimistic; Bucket-head thinks everything is out to get him. You're sane; Berix can't distinguish between reality and fiction. You're nothing like them at all.”


“Thanks, Spike, but I don't know,” said Twilight. “I feel like I am starting to like viciously killing my enemies. If I take this attitude back with me to Equestria, what kind of chaos do you think that will create?”


“Then maybe you should leave your violent attitude here when you go home,” said Spike. “Tell it to take a hike. I mean, in this universe, pretty much anything is possible, so. . . .”


Twilight stared at Spike. “Are you being literal? As in, I literally leave behind a part of myself here?”


Spike shrugged. “Um, yes?”


Twilight actually chuckled. “Okay, that was pretty funny, but I don't think leaving behind a part of myself is possible even in this universe. Thanks for the suggestion, though.”


“Well, I got nothing,” said Spike. “I'm going back to the others to see if they're done beating up Bucket-head.”


Twilight rose to her hooves. “I'm coming with you. My mind is just running in circles now. Until I can figure out an answer to it, I'm going to try not to think about it.”


So Spike and Twilight returned to the rest of the gang. Twilight tried her best to hide her own fears and doubts, but as they saw Bucket-head lying on the ground in a fetal position with Mata Nui, Kiina, and Berix kicking him over and over again, it was hard to ignore them truly. It was even harder to deny the desire to join the beating, which she only managed to do with great effort.


There is no telling what will happen to me from this point on, Twilight thought. The only way to know is to go forward. And right now, I'm too afraid to do that.



Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Another great chapter! Seeing Twilight starting to act like the others is pretty funny, and actually kind of interesting. Can't wait to see what happens next!

Thanks again :) .Yeah, I liked dealing with how the Legendverse might affect Twilight and Spike. I thought it would add some humor and even drama to the story if I showed them both -- especially Twilight -- becoming as violent and deranged as everyone else, much to Twilight's horror. Whether they will or not . . . well, as Greg Farshtey always said, "Follow the story and find out."


Anyway, it's Sunday, so that means it's new chapter day. Here it is:


Chapter Ten: The City of Action ([insert witty comment here])

Your toes will never betray you.


-J.K. Rowling (may not be an actual quote)


After destroying the Rocking Mountains, it took the gang sometime to find the path they had been taking earlier. Mata Nui had invoked his 'infallible sense of direction' again, although that only succeeded in getting them quite lost before they found the pathway once again through sheer luck.


“Let's see,” said Twilight, holding the map before her as they walked. “According to the map, Atero should be coming up any minute now.”


“Oh, I love Atero,” said Berix. “It's a great place where you can kill people and no one will care.”


“That doesn't sound like a very good place to me,” said Twilight.


“You're right,” said Berix. “That's why I said it's a great place. Geez, can't you tell the difference?”


Twilight sighed heavily. “Oh, forgive me for failing to notice the subtle linguistic differences between 'good' and 'great.'”


“Stop making up words,” said Mata Nui. “It's annoying.”


“I'm not making up any words,” said Twilight. “I'm just using the ones that already exist. You can find them in any dictionary.”


Berix pulled a gigantic book out of nowhere and busily sifted through its pages. “Let's see . . . nope, don't see 'linguistic' there.”


“Did you check under 'L'?” Twilight asked.


Berix looked up at her in astonishment. “'L'? I thought it was under 'X.'”


Twilight wanted to bash her head against a wall, but as there were no walls nearby, she had to settle for rolling her eyes. “Gee. Don't feel so bad. It's a mistake anyone could make.”


“Not me,” said Mata Nui, puffing out his chest. “I never make mistakes. Ever.”


“Of course you don't,” said Bucket-head. “Because you're just about the most perfect being who has ever walked the face of Spherus Magna, right?”


“Yes,” said Mata Nui in a completely serious tone. “And?”


Bucket-head sighed. “Oh, never mind. You completely missed the joke.”


“On the contrary,” said Mata Nui, “I believe it is you who completely missed the joke.”


“Me? How?”


“I don't know,” said Mata Nui with a shrug. “But I bet you did.”


“I think our interactions are starting to get repetitive,” said Bucket-head. “Seems like all we ever do is react to whatever you say, Mata Nui. You say something stupid and Twilight or I make some sarcastic comment about it.”


“But this city is built on repetition,” said Mata Nui. “If the author wasn't so repetitive, he wouldn't have written four comedies about me.”


“I still have no idea what you guys are talking about when you mention some 'author' writing a 'comedy,'” said Twilight as she furled the map back up and put it in her bag. “For that matter, I'm not sure I want to know, either.”


“It's a magical thing called the fourth wall,” said Mata Nui. “And we break it all the time. In fact, we break it so often that the Fourth Wall Repairman has just given up trying to fix it.”


“Yeah,” said Berix, who was eating a sandwich, “he has.”


“Where did you get that sandwich?” said Twilight. “We don't have sandwich fixings in our packs.”


“Stole it from the author,” Berix replied. “He's probably really angry right now, so if something really bad happens to us later on, it's because he's angry at me and not at anything you guys did.”


“Oh,” said Twilight, although in reality she wasn't sure if she believed him. “That's . . . interesting, to say the least.”


Soon the gang came upon a large green sign that read as follows:


WECLOME TO ATERO, CITY OF ACTION AND AWESOME!Pop. 3,846,234,298,902,193,930.3


“Wait a minute,” said Twilight, looking at the sign closely. “How can one city have over three sextillion people living in it? That makes no sense. It would have be as big as a planet -- no, scratch that, several universes -- to come even close to holding that many people.”


“Well, it is a pretty big city,” said Mata Nui. “Like, bigger than New York.”


“I bet they just inflated the population count in order to make it sound impressive,” said Spike. “I do that all the time whenever Rarity asks me how much I lift. I say, 'Oh, one hundred pounds' and then flex my muscles like this.”


Spike began flexing his muscles, but was interrupted by Mata Nui holding a hand up.


“You're not doing it right,” said Mata Nui. “Remember the secret guy stuff talk we had back in the oasis? You're only supposed to flex your muscles to impress girls or kill innocents, not to illustrate a point.”


“Oh, sorry,” said Spike sheepishly. “I forgot.”


“It's okay,” said Mata Nui. “We were all once like you, Spike. Except for Bucket-head, who is stupid.”


“And how is my stupidity relevant to that sentence?” said Bucket-head.


Mata Nui glared at him. “It's completely relevant. You're just too stupid to understand that.”


“Do you keep forgetting about my Harvard degree?” said Bucket-head. “I graduated at the top of the class. At the very top. So calling me stupid just shows how stupid you are.”


Mata Nui put his fingers in his non-existent ears and started yelling, “LALALALA, I can't hear you over the sound of my own awesomeness!”


“Look, we're getting nowhere with this,” said Twilight. “I bet Atero is just a few miles ahead, so we'd better get going. We don't have much time. I think the universes are getting worse.”


As she said that, a nearby cloud fell from the sky like cardboard and a demonic beast of epic proportions came from within the Void. It suddenly died, however, as its body was not adapted to the strange conditions of Spherus Magna. In particular, the air had killed it, as the Void has no air, you see, so how could the demonic beast have survived? That wouldn't have made any sense whatsoever. Stop being so silly.


“Twilight is right,” Mata Nui concluded. “Even though Bucket-head is stupid, Sunset Shimmer is currently a bigger priority for me. Gonna teach that pony a lesson for banishing me and Kiina to the moon.”


“You know,” said Bucket-head, glancing over his shoulder. “I really have no beef with Sunset Shimmer. I could probably just go home now and-”


“But Bucket, Sunset Shimmer destroyed your home,” Berix said. “She slaughtered your people and your mentor, who in his dying breath gave you one last cryptic message to 'follow the Light.'”


“I don't remember any of that happening,” said Bucket-head, shaking his head. “Besides, how do you know she attacked my home earlier, anyway? You weren't even there.”


“I read the script,” Berix explained. “You see, the Narrator rage-quit his job earlier, so they brought me in to record some lines. I decided I wanted to be part of the action, so I jumped into the manuscript and voila, here I am.”


“Berix, you've said a lot of really stupid, really weird things in all the time that I've known you,” said Bucket-head. “But that has to take the cake for absolute insanity. Who would hire you to narrate this story?”


“But it's true,” said Berix. “If you don't believe me, though, that's okay. I'm the Supreme Emperor of the Monkey Empire, anyway, so I'm going to be fine.”


With that, Berix began hopping away in a manner that reminded Twilight of Pinkie Pie. In fact, unless Twilight's eyes were messing with her again, Berix sometimes faded in and out of reality; at times looking like Pinkie, other times looking like himself.


Huh, Twilight thought. Either this universe is just trying to screw with me . . . or something is else going on. If the universes are collapsing, then why do I sometimes see Pinkie Pie and other times see Berix?


“Spike,” Twilight muttered, “does Berix sometimes look like Pinkie Pie to you?”


“No,” said Spike, shaking his head. “Why would you say that, Twilight? The two are clearly different people. Berix is hyper, often makes no sense, and is fun to be around. So is Pinkie, but she's a pony, so she's different.”


“Hmmm . . .” Twilight scratched her chin. “I wonder if the destruction of the universes is causing the multiverse to misplace people. Not sure why it hasn't happened before, though.”


“Maybe as the universes collapse, things just keep getting worse and worse,” said Spike. “Do you think we'll see someone explode twice?”


“In this universe, I'm pretty sure anything is possible,” said Twilight. “Including someone exploding twice.”




Sunset Shimmer sat upon her throne in the city at the top of the tallest building, which was known as the Coliseum. This view allowed her to see the entirety of Atero -- and beyond -- and thus to see all of the fighting and explosions that were occurring below. Those did not disturb her, as she had been informed that Atero was well-known as a city of action, so it was considered unusual for a day to go by without terrorists kidnapping the President or aliens invading to destroy/assimilate anyone who got in their way. Not that Sunset minded; after all, this universe was so much more interesting than Equestria. After she had deposed the last mayor, a cranky old geezer named Dume, Sunset had seen no reason to change the city's basic form of governance. The only change now was that she got first dibs on Subway sandwiches at lunch. Other than that, it was the same as before.


She was perfectly aware of the arrival of Twilight Sparkle and her dragon slave, Spike, into this world. No one had told her; the knowledge had simply found its way into her mind. According to the inhabitants of Spherus Magna, that was called a 'plot hole,' a rather inappropriate term in her opinion, but one she took advantage of just the same to give her almost unlimited knowledge about her enemies and their whereabouts.


I wonder if this is what being a god feels like, Sunset thought. Knowing where your enemies are at all times, what they're doing, thinking, planning, and feeling. It is . . . irresistible. Like chocolate ice cream.


Then she frowned and clapped her front hooves together.


A moment later, a brown Po-Matoran wearing a tuxedo and sunglasses entered the room. Despite the cool getup, he came over to her throne with a subdued, docile step, probably because she kept beating him every time he spoke up when she didn't give him permission to.


“Ahkmou,” said Sunset, sounding bored. “Tell me, what do you think of my rule? Am I a good ruler of Atero?”


Ahkmou nodded. “Yes, Your Majesty. Of course you are. Why wouldn't you be?”


“My sarcasm senses are tingling,” said Sunset as her eyes narrowed. “And you remember what happened to Tiribomba when my sarcasm senses tingled.”


Ahkmou gulped and glanced over his shoulder at the duct-taped hole in the window. “Yes, ma'am, I do remember. We're still trying to find all his parts and his house still hasn't recovered from the nuclear fallout.”


“So don't be sarcastic,” said Sunset. “Get straight to the point. Am I a good ruler or not?”


Ahkmou took a deep breath, as if steeling himself for Sunset's reaction. “. . . Yes.”


“Good,” said Sunset. “Anyway, have you seen any unusual visitors to Atero recently? Any reports of purple alicorns entering the city limits or anything?”


“No, ma'am,” said Ahkmou, shaking his head. “There was a zombie pirate ninja from the future, but that's about as interesting as it gets around here.”


Sunset sighed. “This is a rather useless scene, in my opinion. The author just doesn't know what to do, so he's showing the villain talking with her evil servant who will inevitably betray her when the time comes.”


“You are absolutely correct,” said Ahkmou. “Writer's block strikes again, it appears.”


“Amazing how it strikes two times in one story,” Sunset marveled. “Perhaps this is a sign of things to come. Maybe the author is losing his touch.”


“That is a very astute observation, ma'am,” said Ahkmou. “Indeed, I'd say it's the most astute observation I have ever heard ever.”


“Anyway, time to get onto my evil plans,” said Sunset. “Come with me, Ahkmou. I am bored.”




Berix looked up at the sky. “Huh? What happened?”


“What are you talking about?” said Twilight. “We've just been walking on the road for a few minutes. What's so strange about that?”


“I thought a scene break just happened,” said Berix. “Could be wrong, of course, but I doubt that.”


Twilight didn't bother respond to that at all. It seemed like everyone was convinced they were in a story. That was silly, obviously, as this was real life. If this was a story, well, Twilight thought she'd know, seeing as she had read so many novels that she could analyze life itself from a literary point of view quite well if she had to.


There was nothing to analyze in this adventure, so Twilight doubted it was a story. Besides, how could characters in a story be aware of their fictional nature, anyway? It didn't make any sense. Unless this was a meta story, but as she had seen no evidence of that, she decided to file that theory under 'Theories that are interesting but unprovable,' alongside other theories like 'The universe is actually a pimple on the face of some filly somewhere' and 'Chocolate rain is the foundational substance of everything in existence' (a theory promoted by Pinkie Pie).


After climbing a large hill, Twilight's mouth dropped open when she saw the huge city of Atero for the first time.Gigantic, towering skyscrapers -- so huge they made Canterlot Castle look like a rundown hut -- loomed before them, with bridges and chains connecting them that had no practical use she could see. The city seemed to sprawl in every direction for miles around, so long that she thought she saw some of the buildings floating in the sky. Perhaps that was just a trick of the eyes, but ever since landing in this universe, Twilight had learned to stop second-guessing whatever she saw, as it didn't make things any simpler or easier to understand.


Huge factories belched out black smoke from gigantic smokestacks, although Twilight had no idea what these factories might produce (aside from pollution, obviously). Most of them looked rundown and abandoned, yet they still produced smoke, as if someone were still using them. At least one of the factories blew up, sending debris crashing into some nearby buildings, although no one seemed to notice.


She saw strange airships flying across the sky, apparently in combat with what appeared to be flying disks. Sometimes the airships, using their superior mobility, would get the upper hand; other times, it was the flying disks with their superiority in firepower. Once she saw an airship collide with a disk, creating a massive fireball that fell into the city and took out an entire city block when it hit the street.


On the tops of the buildings, she saw tiny figures doing battle with each other. From her current vantage point it was impossible to tell exactly who was fighting who, but none of them appeared to be soldiers or even police ponies. Maybe it was a turf war between rival gangs. She had heard about that happening in some places in Equestria, even though it was rather rare.


Disturbingly enough, large, metal vehicles with treads and cannons attached to the cockpit were making their way into the city. One Matoran jumped down in front of one the vehicles only to get blasted into a billion pieces by a blast, but that turned out to be a distraction, because the next moment his companion fell out of nowhere onto the top of the tank, kicked open its cockpit, threw something into it, and then bailed almost immediately. The next moment, the tank exploded, its debris getting caught in the treads of its allies, causing them to screech to a halt as a result.


“Is Atero under attack?” said Twilight, looking up at Mata Nui. “'Cause it looks like we just walked into the middle of a full-on war.”


“Nah,” said Mata Nui, waving off her concerns. “This is what Atero is always like.”


“But how does the city survive such intense fighting all the time?” Twilight questioned. “The infrastructure must need constant repair. I doubt any business would want to set up there; after all, if your business is going to be destroyed every day, why bother?”


“Actually,” said Kiina, “Atero is basically the center of the economic world. It boosts at least three million different types of businesses. Admittedly, they all sell weapons or ammunition for weapons, but there's this really nice shwarma place on Fifth Street. We should check it out after we kick Sunset's butt.”


Twilight blinked. “Maybe business works differently in this world, as does everything else. It's the only reason I can think of why a city that is under constant attack would manage to have any businesses at all operating within its limits.”


“You can actually make good money in Atero if you know what you're doing,” said Mata Nui. “This guy named Nuparu started out selling broken, abandoned tanks and eventually rose to be the most successful used tank salesman in the history of everything. He is so powerful that his money can influence elections, as used tanks are a very important industry in Atero.”


“There was a big scandal about that years ago,” said Kiina thoughtfully. “Mayor Dume had to leave office when it was revealed he had been taking trillions of dollars in bribes from Nuparu's used tank company. No one knows what he did with the money, but I always thought he wasted it on video games and root beer.”


At this point, Twilight didn't even think that that deserved a sarcastic reply. Considering all of the other crazy stuff this world had, learning about a mayoral scandal involving bribery was perhaps the most normal thing she had heard about yet.


“I think Sunset Shimmer is probably in the largest building right there in the center of the city,” said Mata Nui, pointing at Atero. “The Coliseum.”


Even from a distance, the Coliseum looked huge. It towered over all the other skyscrapers -- which was saying something, as they were all quite large in their own right -- and was tall enough to go above the clouds. Oddly enough, the Coliseum appeared completely calm, as if the web of violence that snared the rest of the city somehow avoided that building.


“I get it,” said Twilight with a satisfied smile. “You think Sunset Shimmer is hiding there because it lacks violence. I bet Sunset doesn't want to be drawn into some conflict that has nothing to do with her, so she had obviously set up guards around the Coliseum's perimeter to keep the fighting away. Or maybe she cast a spell that did that. Either way, a good deduction, Mata Nui.”


“What?” said Mata Nui. “No, I just said that because it's the biggest building in Atero and we all know that villains choose the biggest buildings as their bases. I think it's to compensate for something.”


Twilight just sighed. “Well, either way, it's worth checking out. How do we get into the city without getting drawn into some unnecessary conflict?”


Mata Nui pulled his 40k MGA out of nowhere, pumped it, and said, “What a naïve thought. What we do is charge directly into the city's limits, beat back anyone stupid enough to stand in our way, and then break into the Coliseum guns blazing and stuff. There's no entrance for wimps like you into Atero.”


“Hey, I'm not a wimp,” said Twilight. “Just because I think there are better ways to solve one's problems than through mindless, primitive violence does not mean I am a wimp.”


“Yeah, Mata Nui,” said Berix, rolling his eyes. “Twilight's a pony, not a wimp. How could you forget that?”


“Oh, excuse me, Berix,” said Mata Nui. “I did not notice that. Silly me. Bucket-head is the wimp, not Twilight.”


“Yeah, I- hey!” said Bucket-head. “I'm standing right here, you know.”


“When has that ever stopped me before?” asked Mata Nui.


“Good point,” said Bucket-head with a sigh. “Carry on, then.”


Twilight looked around in confusion for a moment before saying, “Hey, Mata Nui, didn't you have a motorcycle?”


“Yeah? So?”


“Well, what happened to it?” said Twilight. “It can't have just up and disappeared.”


“I dunno,” said Mata Nui. “Maybe it did just up and disappeared, Twilight. Or is that not 'logical' enough for your oh-so-smart pony brain?”


“No need for the tone,” said Twilight. “I was just saying that your motorcycle might be useful for helping us get into the city. That's all.”


“But it's bad for the environment,” said Mata Nui. “Not that I care about the environment, obviously, but I'm just pulling excuses out of my butt to avoid having to acknowledge the validity of your point.”


This time, Twilight didn't roll her eyes. She just said, “At least you're being honest.”


Then she turned her attention back to the city below and said, “All right, we'll have to carefully think through our entry method into Atero. We're going to need to study the major roads leading in and out the city, figure out how many fighters there, where the major conflicts are, and then proceed to make our way as quickly, quietly, and carefully into the city as we can, avoiding any unnecessary confrontations or conflicts. As long as no one does anything stupid, we should-”




The loud shout made Twilight jump. She looked and saw Mata Nui had started running down the hill toward Atero, with Berix and Kiina at his heels. They were all yelling and swinging their weapons and generally looking like morons. They didn't look quite as idiotic, however, when they utterly smashed a tank that unwisely got in their way into pieces.


Twilight sighed. “How did I know that Mata Nui would do that?”


As planning would be useless at this point, Twilight, Spike, and Bucket-head ran through the battlefield after their friends, avoiding trenches, destroyed tanks, and corpses, but due to the flames and explosions it was hard to tell where Mata Nui, Kiina, and Berix were. Still, Twilight wasn't worried. As long as they faced no unexpected delays, she knew they would all meet up at the Coliseum eventually.


Without warning, a tall, powerful being burst out of the flames with the screech of an eagle. Out of the corner of her eye, Twilight saw a huge flaming ax come flying toward them, prompting her to teleport her, Bucket-head, and Spike out of the way of the oncoming blade. They reappeared only a few feet away from the giant and paused to look at him as he ripped his ax out of the ground.


Upon closer inspection, the giant wasn't actually that big. Though incredibly bulky, his size appeared to be an optical illusion created by the thick silver and red armor he wore. In height, he was somewhere between Bucket-head and Mata Nui, although the gigantic ax he swung and the huge fists that gripped that ax made him look far larger than either of them.


“My name is Axonn,” said the warrior, raising his ax above his head. “And you are Twilight Sparkle, are you not?”


Ducking to avoid a flaming piece of rock that came out of nowhere, Twilight gasped. “How do you know my name? I've never met you before.”


“I am a servant of the beautiful and amazing Sunset Shimmer,” said Axonn. “She tasked me with capturing a purple alicorn princess and her traveling companions.”


“She's not my friend,” said Bucket-head immediately. “It's just a coincidence that we happened to be traveling together. Really. You can take her and her dragon friend and I'll just go home and not bother anyone ever again, especially Sunset Shimmer.”


“Bucket-head!” said Twilight, looking at him in disbelief. “You know, I'm now starting to understand why everyone hates you.”


“I do not care if you are her friend or not,” said Axonn as he placed the head of his ax into the nearby flames. “What matters is following the dictates of my leader. So prepare to eat the flames and taste the steel edge of the blade!”


Axonn pulled his ax out of the flames and slammed it into the ground, sending a fiery line through the earth toward them. Our three heroes tried to dodge it, but when the fire hit the gas line that was not-so-conveniently placed under their feet, it created a massive explosion that sent all three of them flying in different directions.


Twilight crashed into the ground, but somehow managed to recover and get to her hooves. Her mane was covered in dirt, her fur was slightly singed by the flames, and she was starting to feel overheated again, but at least she appeared to have been blown far away from Axonn.


The next moment, however, Axonn jumped out of the fire yet again and landed in front of her. A wicked grin crossed his face as he held his ax in front of his chest.


“You cannot escape me now, my little pony,” said Axonn. “Give up and I might take you to Mistress Shimmer with only one broken leg, rather than four.”


Twilight's horn glowed. “Sorry, but I like my legs just the way they are, thank you very much.”


“Then prepare for breakage,” said Axonn, taking a battle stance. “I will make it quick and to the point.”



Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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Chapter Eleven: Ponynapped! (Puns for everyone!)

Toes! Why did you betray me?

-J. K. Rowling, being proved wrong

Twilight shot a burst of lightning at Axonn, but the electricity just bounced off his chest and hit a poor bird, causing it to explode. Which Twilight would have felt bad about if her own safety hadn't been in danger at this particular moment.

“None of your attacks will work on me,” said Axonn, flexing his muscles. “I am so manly that I make the Great Beings look like wimpy nerds!”

“Okay, no,” said Twilight, taking a step back. “I got an idea. You seem like a reasonable guy. Why don't you let me go free?”


“Because it's the right thing to do,” said Twilight. “And if you don't, all of reality will collapse on you, killing everyone you know and love.”

“That's a stupid threat,” said Axonn. “You may be powerful, pony, but you're nowhere near powerful enough to destroy reality itself.”

“I'm not going to destroy reality,” said Twilight. “But Sunset Shimmer -- you know, your boss -- is.”

“You cannot deceive me!” said Axonn, gesturing at his mask. “I wear the Mask of Truth. I can verify whether you spoke the truth or spoke lies!”

“So . . . was I telling the truth?”

“Yes, but that doesn't change the facts,” said Axonn. “Now come quietly, pony, or I will be forced to take you in by force. Forcefully.”

Twilight was far from a coward, but when she saw how big and powerful and unreasonable Axonn was, she felt justified in running away. Or she would have, had a wall of fire not cut off her quickest escape route. She had no idea whether Axonn created that or not, but either way she decided that she didn't like fire at the moment.

Just as Axonn took a step toward her, Spike jumped from out of nowhere and tackled Axonn. Well, perhaps 'tackled' wasn't the right word, but Twilight didn't know a better word to describe the way Spike clutched onto Axonn's head tightly while repeatedly clawing at his eyes.

“Ow!” said Axonn, dropping his ax and waving his arms about wildly. “Get off me, you stupid baby dragon!”

“Never,” said Spike. “Twilight, run! I'll take care of Axonn.”

“But what about you?” said Twilight. “I can't just abandon you.”

“It doesn't matter!” Spike shouted, barely clinging to Axonn's head. “I can take him. Go!”

At that moment, Bucket-head appeared and seized Axonn's fallen ax. He swung the weapon with all of his might at the warrior's body, but succeeded only in breaking the ax against Axonn's mighty abs.

The crack of Axonn's ax caused the warrior to stand still even as Spike continued to claw at his eyes. “Wait . . . did someone break my favorite ax?”

Bucket-head gulped and took a step back. “Well, um, you see. . . .”

In one smooth motion, Axonn seized Bucket-head with one hand and Spike with the other. He lifted the up two in his massive fists, crushing them in his grip like tin cans.

“You two make me sick,” said Axonn. “What kind of freaks are you, breaking a person's favorite ax like that? That's just wrong. Die!”

Axonn slammed their heads together and then dropped Spike and Bucket-head to the ground. He raised his foot, as if to squish them like bugs.

“No, Spike!” Twilight yelled in horror. “And Bucket-head!”

“Why do you show concern for those two when they broke my favorite ax?” Axonn asked, gesturing at the ax pieces scattered around his feet. “It is I who you should be showing concern to.”

Twilight began pawing the ground, snorting loudly.

“Oh, what's this?” said Axonn. “Going to charge me? How stupid. You do realize you'll just end up damaging your horn, right?”

Twilight didn't respond to that. She was so consumed with rage at the sight of the unconscious and possibly dead Spike (oh, and Bucket-head, too, I guess) that she could barely think straight. In her mind's eye, she could see Axonn exploding into billions of pieces as her horn penetrated his armor. The thought gave her a savage pleasure, which prompted her to charge Axonn as fast as she could.

Unfortunately, Twilight, for all of her time spent in this universe, still hadn't quite developed the kind of neigh invulnerability that people like Mata Nui had. So when she launched herself toward Axonn, the warrior just smashed her out of the air with one punch from his massive fist. The blow sent her crashing to the ground, knocking her out cold.


In Atero, Mata Nui found himself caught between two ninja dinosaurs. He stood in a dark alley, illuminated solely by the sparks created by chainsaws that the ninja dinosaurs dragged across the pavement. Even if they hadn't, Mata Nui was used to fighting in the dark due to having spent a considerable portion of the great war with a blanket wrapped around his head (long story).

One of the ninja dinosaurs swung its chainsaw at him, which Mata Nui blocked with his 40k MGA. This caused the chainsaw to break down and explode, as it was incapable of cutting through the 40k MGA, which was made out of stupidium, the strongest substance in the whole universe.

The resulting explosion sent the ninja dinosaur flying into a nearby skyscraper, causing the huge building to collapse on him, abruptly cutting off his screeches of agony. There were probably people in that skyscraper, but they knew what they were getting into when they moved to Atero, so they had it coming.

The other ninja dinosaur displayed hesitation for only a fraction of a second before running at Mata Nui with chainsaw swinging. Undaunted, Mata Nui slammed the butt of his gun into the ninja dinosaur's face and then grabbed his enemy and hurled it into the atmosphere, from which it was never seen again.

At that moment, Berix and Kiina jumped down from a nearby building and landed near Mata Nui. They looked quite fine, despite having been directly involved in several violent battles in the last hour alone.

“Mata Nui, you know what I did?” said Berix. “I got bored of fighting the shaman space marines from the future, so I broke open the sewers and unleashed the sewer people upon them. It was awesome.”

“And I threw a tank into another tank,” said Kiina. “The awesomeness happened when the resulting double explosion opened a vortex into another universe that I'm pretty sure is gonna devour the whole city sooner or later.”

“Excellent,” said Mata Nui. “Sounds like I'm really far behind, though. I've only killed two ninja dinosaurs so far, although in my defense I did manage to collapse an entire skyscraper with one of them. That has to count for something, doesn't it?”

“You're doing great, Mata Nui,” said Kiina, giving him the thumbs up. “By the way, have you seen Twilight, Spike, or Bucket-head anywhere?”

“No,” said Mata Nui, shaking his head. “I thought they were with you.”

Berix gasped. “Oh no. You don't think they never really existed and were merely figments of our imagination brought to life to help us deal with the horrors of our own existence, do you?”

“Nah,” said Mata Nui. “I bet they just hung back to let us do all the dirty work. Lazy, good-for-nothings, that's what they are.”

“I thought I saw them following us, though,” said Kiina. “I mean, yeah, I can see Bucket-head lazing around, since he's so stupid and everything, but Twilight and Spike were really starting to get somewhere. Maybe we should look for them.”

“Look for them?” said Mata Nui. “But that would require showing interest in their well-being, which you know I lack. I say we just go to the Coliseum. That's where Sunset Shimmer is, probably, and that's the whole reason we came here in the first place.”

“No idea who Sunset Shimmer is, but I'm willing to beat her up if you guys are,” said Berix. “That's what friends do, isn't it?”

And then Mata Nui had an epiphany. “You're absolutely right, Berix. Killing Sunset Shimmer wouldn't be even half as fun without my friends. It just wouldn't be . . . magical. Is that what Twilight meant when she said 'friendship is magic' back when we first met her?”

“You know, I think you're right,” said Kiina, snapping her fingers. “Maybe even back then Twilight wasn't such a wimp. Maybe she was actually giving us a clue to killing Sunset Shimmer. It's only logical.”

“I wish she was here so I could thank her, but I guess we don't have time to look for her,” said Mata Nui. “The Coliseum is over that way, so we'd better get going.”

“Yeah, we should,” said Berix, nodding. “Only one problem.”

“And what's that?” said Mata Nui.

Berix pointed up. “There's a huge meteor falling down toward us. And there's nowhere we can dodge it.”

Mata Nui and Kiina looked up and saw that Berix was right. A continent-sized meteor was falling down onto Atero. It was so huge that it blocked out the sun. There truly was no way to dodge it, but Mata Nui knew how to deal with it.

“Kiina, give me a lift,” said Mata Nui.

Kiina nodded and got down on one knee. Mata Nui stepped onto her hands and allowed her to launch him into the air toward the meteor at the speed of light.

As Mata Nui drew closer to the meteor, he realized his gun wouldn't help him destroy it. Putting away the 40k MGA, Mata Nui calculated he had only 3.4 seconds before he collided with the gigantic meteor. That gave him more than enough time to come up with a plan of action, as well as order a pizza for later. He was hungry, after all, and with lunch coming up soon, he thought he should have something to eat when this was all over.

Then Mata Nui's fists began charging with energy, so much so that they started shaking. He reared back in midair -- still flying at the speed of stupidity -- and slammed both his fists and his head into the rocky surface of the burning meteor.

The resulting explosion shattered the meteor into a googol amount of pieces, causing it to rain burning rock onto the city of action. The explosion also propelled Mata Nui backward into the streets below, but he was thankfully caught by Kiina, thus saving him from either becoming a pancake or crashing into the earth's core.

“Thanks, Kiina,” said Mata Nui as they landed on the street. “But you know, I could have saved myself easily.”

“I know,” said Kiina, rolling her eyes. “Would it kill you to say 'thanks' for once?”

“It might,” said Mata Nui. “My doctor said so.”

“I didn't know you had a doctor,” said Kiina. “Who is he and how come I've never seen him before?”

“Eh, some British guy with a screwdriver who lives in a police box,” said Mata Nui. “There's a good chance he might have been being sarcastic when he told me that, though.”

“Pop culture references make the world go round,” said Berix, who had literally appeared out of nowhere just then.

“Yes, they do, Berix,” said Mata Nui, nodding in agreement. “Now let us go to the Coliseum. The end is nigh, though it is not night.”


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog

The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness

(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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Chapter Twelve: The Evil Plan Revealed (Attack on Exposition!)

My evil plan was better.

-Makuta Teridax, pouting, after being asked about Sunset Shimmer's evil plan

“Poke, poke, poke, poke. . . .”

“Stop poking her, Ahkmou. I, Sunset Shimmer, Supreme Ruler of the World, demand that you stop.”

“Yes, Your Majesty.”

“Then why are you still poking her?”

“It's some kind of psychosomatic disorder, according to my doctor. From the war, you know.”

“You don't have a doctor.”

“Darn it. How'd you know?”

“Plot holes. They're magic.”

It took Twilight's groggy, half-asleep brain a long time to make the connection between the voice of the female and the name Sunset Shimmer. Right now, her head felt like it had been bashed in by a pile driver and she couldn't remember why.

But when Twilight realized just who one of the people talking was, her eyes snapped open and she tried to jump to her hooves, only to realize with horror that she was tied up with Spike and Bucket-head. That by itself wouldn't have been so bad, had they not also been suspended above a tank of green acid by a very flimsy, very old rope that felt like it was about to break any second now.

Shaking her head to clear her thoughts, Twilight saw two beings standing on the floor below. One was a brown Matoran carrying a long stick, which he was using to poke Twilight.

The other was a yellow unicorn with a red mane that had a yellow streak running down it. Though she had never seen her before, Twilight knew who the pony was.

“Sunset Shimmer,” said Twilight. “Am I correct?”

Sunset smirked. “I see you're awake, Twilight Sparkle. Excellent. Having my enemies witness my upcoming glory will make it that much more glorious.”

Beside Twilight, Spike stirred and shook his head. “Whoa . . . Twilight, where are we?”

“You are about to die,” said Sunset. “I am going to lower you three into that pit of acid below. Rather simple, isn't it?”

“I suppose in comparison to ways past villains have tried to kill me, it is,” said Bucket-head, who had also apparently awaken. “Although I don't see why you didn't just shoot us.”

“It's more dramatic this way,” Sunset insisted. “Not that you dirty Skrall would know anything about drama, of course.”

“Hey!” said Spike. “Only we get to insult Bucket-head. Not you.”

“Shut up, dragon lips,” said Sunset, flicking her mane to one side. “Or I'll have Ahkmou here lower you into the acid, ah, 'accidentally' too fast.”

The Matoran, whose name apparently was Ahkmou, had one hand on a lever that was attached to a pulley which held their rope. Considering how weak the rope looked, however, Twilight doubted that Ahkmou would need to lower them in at all.

“Did Celestia send you after me, Twilight?” said Sunset. “Surely she didn't think you could defeat me.”

“Yes, Celestia did send Spike and me to retrieve the crown you stole from the castle treasury,” Twilight said. “I'm also supposed to bring you back to Equestria so you can face justice.”

“Justice? What a joke,” said Sunset with a laugh. “I guess Celestia must be getting senile, that old hag. Not that it matters. Soon enough, not even Celestia will be able to stop me.”

“Hey, I just thought of something,” said Bucket-head. “If Twilight can teleport, what's to stop her from escaping these bindings right now?”

“Magic,” said Sunset. “The magic of this universe . . . if it can indeed be called that, as chaotic as it is . . . works in ways even I, in my amazing power, do not understand. I understand it well enough to know how to block Twilight's magic with it, however, making her as useless as a Skrall.”

“I resent that,” said Bucket-head.

Spike's eyes lit up. “I got an idea, guys! I'll use my fire to burn our rope and-”

“And kill us all,” said Bucket-head, gesturing at the acid below them with his foot. “Yeah, no.”

Ignoring those two, Twilight said to Sunset, “You can't stay here. Neither can I or Spike. The universes are collapsing. Spherus Magna and Equestria will both be no more very soon. If that happens, then even you will die.”

Sunset smirked. “The universes, collapsing? That may be what it looks like in Equestria, but I can assure you that appearances can be quite deceiving, especially on a cosmic scale.”

“What do you mean?”

Sunset's horn glowed and Twilight's crown appeared on her head out of nowhere. “The universes aren't collapsing. Instead . . . they are merging.”

Those three words were enough to silence everyone in the room. It took only a second for the implications of that to sink in for Twilight. And when they did, she was horrified beyond words.

“No way . . .” said Twilight. “You're lying. You're the bad guy. That's what bad guys do.”

“I am being completely honest,” said Sunset, looking at Twilight coldly. “What I speak is the truth. Tell me, haven't you noticed, during your travels, the ways in which this universe and Equestria appear to be overlapping? Have you not met some people who reminded you of your friends back home?”

Twilight remembered seeing Berix as Pinkie Pie, but she had just assumed that was this universe being illogical again, as usual. But if there was an actual reason behind it . . .

“Let me tell you a little story,” said Sunset as she started pacing back and forth in front of the acid pit. “Many years ago, there was a simple unicorn who was discovered to have a great aptitude for magic. In order to train this young one up so she might someday become a great Princess, Princess Celestia took her under her wing -- not literally, mind you, but figuratively -- and trained her. This pony seemed to have a bright future; in fact, there were even rumors that she would one day take over the throne from Celestia herself.”

There was a wistfulness and bitterness in Sunset's tale that captured Twilight's attention. She had an idea where it was going, although she refrained from stating her theories aloud.

“But then this student began experimenting with and studying magic Celestia didn't want her to study,” Sunset continued. “Eventually, Celestia decided her student had gone mad with power and no longer could be in the running for future ruler of Equestria. The student, angered by this, escaped through a certain magic mirror to this world, where Celestia decided to let her be, as the world to which the student had escaped to was unknown, meaning any rescue party was doomed to failure. It was believed by all that the student would never return and so everypony forgot about her.

“The student, however, survived. She found a new world on the other side of the mirror, a world unlike Equestria, yet in some ways very similar. She devoted herself to studying this world, learning how to control its physical laws, so she may one day return to Equestria to get her revenge on Celestia, that old hag who had tried to limit the student's potential.”

“That's a sad story,” said Spike. “I wonder who it was about. Whoever it was must be pretty terrible.”

I am that student,” said Sunset, stopping and looking up at her prisoners. “I, Sunset Shimmer, was once Celestia's personal student, just as you are, Twilight. I was the one who tried to study magic Celestia did not approve of. And it was I who escaped through the mirror into this world, where I have lived ever since.”

“Why didn't Celestia ever tell me about this?” Twilight wondered.

“Isn't it obvious?” said Sunset. “For being Celestia's top student, you really are quite the dim one. She never told you the story in order to keep you from repeating my actions.”

“Even if your story is true, I don't see how you're going to get revenge on Celestia,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “She's an alicorn and you're still a unicorn. Even if you are a powerful unicorn, you still can't take her in a fight.”

“You're assuming I plan to stay in this puny pony form forever,” said Sunset. “That is a terrible assumption to make. Terribly inaccurate, that is.”

“So you plan to get a power boost?” said Twilight. “How? Gathering the Elements of Harmony and using their power to boost your own? That might work, assuming you can somehow convince my friends to work with you, of course.”

“I don't need the Elements of Harmony for the power I seek,” said Sunset. “Compared to the power I will soon receive, the Elements of Harmony are but children's toys designed for nothing more than to entertain. No, the power I seek is greater than all six of the Elements of Harmony combined. It surpasses the combined powers of Celestia and Luna. It even dwarfs the abilities of the inhabitants of Spherus Magna . . . and I do not say that lightly, considering the feats that these people are capable of.”

“Then tell us,” said Bucket-head, “what your plan is. How do you intend to get that much power? However much it may be, it can't be that more than Teridax's. I mean, he was a freaking planet-sized robot. I'm pretty sure you're going to be smaller than that.”

Again, Sunset smirked (she must like smirking, Twilight thought). “Teridax was cunning, but a fool. He limited his vision to only conquering universes. Even if he had sought more, he would have failed, as he did not have sufficient power to accomplish more. No, I seek power above and beyond his.”

“Above and beyond the power of a planet-sized robot?” said Bucket-head. “Okay, I'm lost.”

“It's simple, the power that I seek,” said Sunset. “It is the combined power of two universes: Spherus Magna and Equestria. When the two universes finish their merge, it will result in a new world, one unlike anything anyone has ever seen before. Ponies and biomechanical beings will exist side-by-side, yet that is but one of the new features of the New World and not even the most important one, either.”

“Even if the universes do merge, I don't see how that is supposed to help you, personally,” said Twilight.

“How silly you are, Twilight,” said Sunset. “And stupid. Has your slow mind really failed to understand my goal? Or, rather, the method by which I intend to get the power of the universes flowing through my beautiful body? Think. Prove yourself as Celestia's protege.”

Twilight frowned. She had always liked pop quizzes (a fact which had horrified Rainbow Dash, who apparently hated them). But this was a question she hadn't hadn't prepared for at all. It required some unknown variables that she couldn't access right now, no matter how hard she thought. And yet at the same time, the answer seemed maddeningly obvious, as if it were floating right there in front of her face and she just couldn't see it.

Finally, something clicked in Twilight's mind and it all made sense. Of course, she had no idea if it was true or not; yet it was the only answer that accounted for all the facts. But if it was true. . . .

“Apotheosis,” Twilight muttered under her breath. “That is your ultimate goal.”

“Apotheo-what?” said Spike. “Why does Sunset want to become a veterinarian?”

“Not an apothecary, you stupid dragon,” said Sunset, shaking her head. “Apotheosis. I am going to ascend to godhood. That is my ultimate goal.”

“You want to become a god?” said Spike. “That's stupid. Nopony can become a god.”

“That's what you think,” said Sunset. “But it is quite possible, I have discovered. You see, when I came to this universe, I too panicked at the thought of the merge when I learned of it via my own research. Who was to say I would survive? What if I died? I almost returned to Equestria, thinking I would rather take my chances with Celestia rather than the merging of two universes, but then it occurred to me what a silly thought that was.”

“You should have gone back,” said Twilight. “What you're doing now is reprehensible. We like our universes just the way they are, thanks. We don't need your interference.”

Ignoring Twilight, Sunset continued, “So I stayed and studied. And I finally learned that I was not the only one who was aware of what happens when beings travel between dimensions. A long time ago in this universe, another civilization discovered the same thing. This discovery allowed them to rise to the height of their power, a global empire that spanned the entire planet, but unfortunately the civilization ended after a certain incident involving milk drank directly from the carton.

“But this people left behind many artifacts built by them. The Coliseum itself is built upon one of these artifacts, a chamber deep beneath the earth, close to Karzahni itself. That chamber -- known as the Apotheosis Chamber -- was designed to allow the civilization's Emperor to rise to godhood on his thirty-fourth birthday.”

“Why thirty-fourth?” Twilight asked.

“No one knows,” said Sunset. “Anyway, after much digging I discovered this chamber, but I have not been able to use it because I am not yet thirty-four-years-old. But in a few hours, the clock will strike midnight, at which point I will become thirty-four-years-old (tomorrow is my birthday, after all), enter the chamber, perform the necessary spell, and then become Goddess of the New World, as that is the hour I have calculated when the universes will complete the merging process.”

“That's impossible,” said Twilight. “Impossible, impossible, impossible. You're bluffing. You're just trying to shake us up.”

“Actually, the mistress is telling the truth,” said Ahkmou. “I have seen with mine eyes the power that lies beneath the Coliseum and it is enormous. Sunset Shimmer promised me dominion over my planet when her plan succeeds, hence why I am her faithful servant who will never betray-”

A bolt of energy from Sunset's horn struck Ahkmou in the back and he exploded, leaving behind nothing but a pile of ash that smelled strangely like orange soda.

“What . . . why did you do that?” said Twilight in alarm. “I thought he was your loyal servant.”

“You mean you really didn't see how traitorous he actually was?” said Sunset. “Ahkmou is a snake. Unlike some villains, I am not going to spare my obviously traitorous minions. Anyone who even jokes about betraying me will immediately find that their life coming to an abrupt end.”

“You truly are a monster,” said Twilight.

Sunset laughed again. “A monster? No. But I will be a god, higher and more powerful than the rest of you puny mortals put together. And then Celestia -- no, the entire multiverse -- shall tremble at my might.”

Twilight struggled to break free of her bonds, but they were too tight. “We'll stop you. Even if you kill us, Mata Nui, Kiina, and Berix are still out there. They'll defeat you.”

Sunset smirked. “I doubt it. Those three buffoons may boast great power, but they have no brains with which to use it. Axonn and my other guardians will slay them long before they ever-”

The chamber door at the other end of the room exploded open, like it had been blown apart with a bomb. Sunset whirled around just in time to see Axonn -- who now more closely resembled a ball of scrap metal than anything -- fly over her head and through the opposite wall into the city below. Axonn's screams of pain lingered in the air just long enough to cause Sunset's expression to change from smugness to fear.

“What . . . who is there?” said Sunset, trying to see through the smoking doorway. “Show yourself.”

From out of the smoke walked Mata Nui, Kiina, and Berix. Mata Nui held his gun on his shoulder, Kiina was spinning her trident around as she walked, and Berix's pistols were spinning in his hands like crazy. None of them looked like they had fought their way through an entire city to get here. They merely looked like they were ready to kick butt and take names, as they were always prepared to do.

“Impossible,” said Sunset. “How did you defeat Axonn? I granted him invulnerability. He should have crushed you beneath his fists.”

“That only works onscreen, Sunset Shimmer,” said Mata Nui as he and the others stopped. “And since that battle took place off-screen, Axonn didn't stand a chance.”

“Darn it,” said Sunset, stomping one of her hooves. “How did I not take that into account? Curse you, fourth wall!”

Then Berix pointed at Twilight and the others and said, “Hey, guys! We didn't know you were here. How'd you get up there? Is it a game? Can I play?”

“No, Berix, it's not a game,” said Bucket-head. “We were kidnapped. Didn't you guys know that?”

“Nope,” said Mata Nui, shaking his head. “We just came here to kick Sunset's butt.”

“Well, at least they're here,” said Twilight. “I thought we were goners for a second.”

Sunset looked up at them with an evil smile. “But you still are.”

She pushed the lever forward and Twilight, Spike, and Bucket-head started dropping toward the lava pit at a million miles an hour. Their friends were not close enough to save them. Was this the end of three of our heroes? Will the bronies get angry if Twilight and Spike die? Will the author get hate mail for killing them off rather lamely?

Wanting to avoid the wrath of the bronies, Mata Nui picked up Berix and hurled him like a spear straight at the falling captives. Berix knocked them out of the way of the lava pit and they landed on the floor in a confused heap. Twilight breathed a sigh of relief, even though she was currently being crushed underneath Bucket-head's weight.

“No!” Sunset hissed. “They were supposed to die. That is impossible!”

“I don't even know what the word 'impossible' means,” said Mata Nui. “No, seriously, I don't. What does it mean?”

“It doesn't matter,” said Sunset. “Soon, I will ascend to godhood and crush you mortals beneath my cute little hooves. And then the multiverse itself will be mine.”

“I have no idea what's going on here,” said Mata Nui. “But I do see the butt of a certain stuck-up pony that needs to be kicked. Kiina, let's double-team her.”

“Way ahead of you, Mata Nui,” said Kiina, raising her trident in a battle position. “I'm already thinking of all the ways I'm going to rip her apart.”

“I may not yet be a god,” said Sunset as her horn glowed with energy, “but I understand the physics of this universe well enough to be able to harness the same kind of power you two wield.”

By this time, Berix had untied Twilight and the others, setting them all free. Pushing Bucket-head off her, Twilight immediately got to her hooves and said, “You're gonna have to take on all six of us if you want to ascend to godhood, Sunset.”

“Sorry, Twilight, but I'm not stupid enough to take on all six of you in a fight,” said Sunset. “You stay out of it.”

A gigantic bubble of magical energy erupted around Sunset, Mata Nui, and Kiina, completely cutting off the others from them. Spike, Berix, Bucket-head, and Twilight immediately began attacking the barrier, trying to pierce it, but none of their attacks did any good.

“Now,” said Sunset, returning her attention to Mata Nui and Kiina. “Let's have some fun, shall we?”

“Indeed,” said Mata Nui, “it will be fun kicking your butt straight to the moon and back. Hi-ya!”


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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Chapter Thirteen: Apotheosis (and Other Big, Pretentious Words)

Never gonna give you up/Never gonna let you down/Never gonna turn around and desert you.

-Rick Astley, rickrolling some poor sap

In the blink of an eye, Sunset whirled around and bucked the air with her hind legs. A chunk of solid air went flying toward Mata Nui and Kiina, forcing the two to separate to avoid being hit. The air chunk crashed into the floor and exploded, which Mata Nui grabbed and stuffed into his 40k MGA and fired back at Sunset.

The unicorn, however, easily teleported out of the way of the oncoming explosion. She accidentally ended up in front of Kiina, however, who grabbed the pony by the tail and smashed her against the floor again and again. Kiina did it so ferociously that Twilight was sure Sunset wouldn't survive.

But Sunset, apparently, was far stronger than she looked, because she lashed out with all four of her hooves and struck Kiina. The resulting blow sent Kiina flying through the air, but not before letting go of Sunset, who again teleported away to a safer distance.

It looked like Kiina was going to crash into the barrier, but she did some flips in midair and landed on the shield with both her feet. Then she launched herself through the air toward Sunset, but the unicorn unleashed a burst of electricity that sent Kiina flying backwards again. This time, Mata Nui caught Kiina before she could slam into the shield, did a front-flip in midair, and landed on the floor with a flourish.

After depositing Kiina on the floor, Mata Nui turned to face Sunset and said, “You meanie! How dare you hit my girlfriend! Take this! Triple finish!”

Somehow Mata Nui began firing bullets at the speed of a machine gun, even though his gun was a rifle. With a smirk on her face that would make Loki proud, Sunset teleported several times to avoid the oncoming bullets, which bounced off the barrier and landed harmlessly on the floor.

Mata Nui would have kept shooting, but Sunset activated a spell that locked his gun's trigger. Then her horn flared and the next moment all of the fallen bullets rose up into the air and aimed themselves at Mata Nui and Kiina.

“I think these are yours,” said Sunset. “Since I'm such a nice person, I'll return them to you without expecting anything in return.”

The bullets shot toward Mata Nui and Kiina with the speed of bullets (obviously). The couple swung their weapons, however, and created a massive burst of wind that knocked all of the bullets out of the air, which clattered to the floor. And with a single snap of Mata Nui's fingers, all of the bullets rolled toward Sunset as though remote controlled.

“What's this?” said Sunset, taking a step back from the bullets. “What are you trying to do, trip me up?”

“Nope,” said Mata Nui. “You gonna explode good.”

Sunset's puzzled expression was visible for only a split second before all of the bullets exploded. The resulting explosion was so huge that it cracked the barrier, completely enveloping all three of the combatants in flames. Yet even through the fire, Twilight could see Mata Nui and Kiina standing their ground, apparently not at all bothered by the intensity of the heat.

“No way she could have survived that,” said Spike, pumping his fist. “Mata Nui and Kiina won, right?”

“I wouldn't celebrate too soon,” said Bucket-head. “Bad guys here have a bad habit of recovering from supposedly fatal attacks.”

When the explosion dissipated, Sunset Shimmer looked terrible. Her mane and coat were burnt black, her horn was smoking, and she looked like she was using all of her willpower just to remain standing.

“Ready to give up?” said Mata Nui. “Because if you do, I might think about sparing your life. Might.”

“You are much stronger than I anticipated,” said Sunset, shaking visibly. “Much, much stronger. It looks like I will have to reveal my true form, then. Hi-ya!”

With that, a pillar of green and black fire enveloped Sunset. Tendrils of green energy shot out from it toward Mata Nui and Kiina, but our two heroes just smacked the tendrils away.

“Oh, no!” said Berix. “She's killing herself!”

“Don't be stupid,” said Bucket-head. “Didn't you hear what she said? She's going to reveal her true form.”

“Oh,” said Berix. Then his expression changed to horror. “You mean she's a zombie?”

Bucket-head sighed. “No, Berix, that's not what I-”

A loud screeching sound cut off Bucket-head's (stupid and unnecessary, I might add) explanation. It was coming from the pillar of green and black fire, which immediately dissipated. Now there was no pony standing there at all; instead, it was a tall, humanoid creature, similar to Mata Nui and the others, except it was completely organic rather than biomechanical.

Its hair, dress, and tail were the same colors as Sunset's mane had been, but that was where the similarities ended. The new creature had long, dark, bat-like wings that extended from its back, the insides which were as red as its skin. In addition, it had really long, sharp clawed fingernails, which made it look really ugly and stuff.

“Holy me,” said Mata Nui. “What the Karzahni is that?”

The demon creature looked at its hands and body, as if admiring its new form. “My, I look sexy.”

“Your body makes me want to tear out my eyeballs and eat them,” said Mata Nui. “But I won't because I need my eyeballs. After all, how can I kill you if I can't see you?”

Then the demon looked up and smirked just like Sunset. “Now you see my true form. I am Sunset Shimmer, Queen of the Demons!”

“But I thought you were a pony,” said Mata Nui. “How can that be your true form?”

“It just is,” Sunset insisted. “Now die!”

Sunset unleashed lightning bolts at Mata Nui and Kiina, but Mata Nui just punched them out of the air.

“Lightning bolts are so last year,” said Mata Nui. “Try something original for once.”

Sunset snarled and stomped her foot, sending a tremor through the floor that almost knocked over Mata Nui and Kiina. But the two managed to jump into the air and deliver a devastating flying kick to Sunset, knocking her flat off her feet. Our two heroes back-flipped off of nothing and landed several feet away from the demon just as Sunset scrambled awkwardly back to her feet.

“She's not used to her demon form,” said Twilight in realization. “She's so used to being a pony that she doesn't know how to handle the body of a biped. It makes perfect sense.”

“Biped?” said Berix. “I didn't know she swung both ways.”

“That's not what it means, Berix,” said Bucket-head.

“What does Berix mean?” said Spike. “How can Sunset swing both ways? I don't see a swing set anywhere.”

“It's an expression,” said Bucket-head. “Ask Twilight about it.”

“Twilight, what does 'swings both ways' mean?” Spike asked.

“Ask Bucket-head about it,” said Twilight, her eyes focused solely on the fight.

While Spike was confused, Sunset Shimmer had summoned a sword made of green flames from nowhere and was now sword-fighting with Mata Nui and Kiina. Well, okay, technically it wasn't an actual sword-fight, as Kiina had a trident and Mata Nui a rifle, but they used them like swords and it looked really cool and stuff, so I think it counts. Besides, I'm just the Narrator, so if you want to complain about it, go to the author. He's the one who is writing this stuff, not me.

Mata Nui and Kiina swung their weapons at Sunset at exactly the same time, but Sunset blocked them both with her overly long sword. She pushed back, staggering them both, and attacked with frightful speed. She tried to knock their weapons out of their hands, but Mata Nui and Kiina held onto them tightly.

Kiina spotted an opening in Sunset's defense and stabbed, but the demon managed to dodge her attack. Unfortunately for her, however, she merely ended up putting herself in Mata Nui's way, earning a Falcon Punch from our hero, sending her flying all the way to the other side of the barrier. She crashed into it so hard that she created dozens more cracks in the shield, although it still held despite that.

Sunset leaped to her feet even as Mata Nui and Kiina ran at her. She tossed her fire sword to the side and, doing complicated hand movements that Twilight couldn't follow, created a massive wall of flame whose heat even the people outside the barrier could feel.

“Fry!” Sunset bellowed. “Fry like fish! Mwahahaha!”

But then Mata Nui and Kiina did the unexpected. They leaped straight through the wall of fire, smashing through it as though it were made of solid brick. Surprised, Sunset just barely managed to duck to avoid the two heroes crashing into her. She rolled away and was back on her feet instantly, watching Mata Nui and Kiina prepare their weapons again.

“You will never defeat me,” said Sunset. “Even in this form, I am all-powerful. With but a simple flick of my wrist, I could end all your lives right now.”

“Funny,” said Mata Nui. “With a simple flick of my wrist, I could kill you dead.”

To prove his point, Mata Nui flicked his wrist, sending a powerful gust of wind at Sunset. The gust of wind transformed into a tornado halfway there, striking Sunset so hard in the chest that it sent her bouncing around the barrier like a pinball. Everywhere she hit created another crack until finally the barrier could not take the beating anymore and shattered into trillions of pieces.

Sunset hit the floor hard, but she didn't get a chance to do much else, because Kiina grabbed her and hurled the villain at the ceiling. Mata Nui leaped into the air at the same moment and smashed the butt of his gun into Sunset's face, sending the demon crashing through the floor. She just kept going, crashing through floor after floor after floor until she reached the Coliseum's base with an explosion, from which she was unlikely to ever return.

Mata Nui landed next to Kiina and fist-bumped her as the others ran over to them.

“Man, that was the awesomest thing I've ever seen ever!” said Spike. “First she was like, 'You can't defeat me!' and then you were like 'POW!' and she was like 'I am going to become a demon now!' and-”

“Okay, Spike, we get it,” said Bucket-head, bored. “You were very excited.”

“Barney's right,” said Berix, nodding. “It was so cool. I wish I could have been part of it. Then I could have ripped out Sunset's spleen and eated it like cake!”

“Well, it wasn't that awesome,” said Mata Nui, blushing. “Well, okay, it was, but I already knew that. If you want to keep feeding my ego, however, I'm happy to listen.”

Twilight peered into the hole Mata Nui had punched Sunset into. “I don't think that's the last we've seen of her.”

“Nonsense,” said Mata Nui, shaking his head. “She's dead. There's no way she could have survived that. And even if she did, I'm sure we could take her down. She's probably so weak at this point that even Bucket-head could beat her.”

“Thanks a lot,” Bucket-head grumbled.

Twilight looked over her shoulder at Mata Nui and Kiina with a fearful expression. “Oh, that's right. You guys didn't hear Sunset's plan about apotheosis.”

“I don't see what veterinarians have to do with this, Twilight,” said Mata Nui.

Twilight rolled her eyes. “I mean her ascension into godhood. She mentioned a chamber beneath the Coliseum that would allow her to do that. And I am afraid you may have just hit her into it.”

“But she said it wouldn't active for several more hours,” said Bucket-head. “So we probably have more than enough time to go down there and retrieve her body before-”

The Coliseum shook and a nearby grandfather clock started chiming dramatically, causing everyone to look at it.

“That pony,” said Bucket-head. “Either she lied to us or even abstract concepts like time want to prove me wrong now.”

“What's going to happen?” said Mata Nui. “So what if she becomes a god? We've beaten worse.”

“Problem is, she's going to get her power from both Spherus Magna and Equestria,” said Twilight. “Our universes are going to merge. And when they do. . . .”

“Power shall be mine!”

A voice echoed throughout the room; in fact, echoed throughout the entire universe; no, the entire multiverse. It was as though the very fabric of reality itself had gained the ability to speak, because Twilight could even hear it in her mind as clearly as she could in her ears. It was so powerful that she was nearly brought to her knees because of it.

The worst part of it all, however, was the familiarity of the voice. Though slightly deeper and grander now, there was no mistaking that for the voice of anyone but Sunset Shimmer.

“You fools!” Sunset roared, echoing like a gun shot in a cramped place. “You've given me exactly what I wanted! I win! I WIN!”

And on that depressing note, everything ceased to exist.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog

The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness

(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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Chapter Fourteen: Nothingness (Deep or Pretentious? You decide!)

Nothingness . . . is eternal.

-Xemnas, from Kingdom Hearts II, making a statement that is either profound or stupid, depending on your point of view

Non-existence felt strange to Twilight. It was so different that she couldn't describe it with words. She tried to, but found that every comparison she thought of utterly failed to capture the reality of what she was experiencing.

Am I dead? Twilight thought. Is this what our world is like now? Is there nothing from here to the end of creation? What does that even mean, anyway? How can nothing exist? It makes no sense.

Recreating her memories of what had happened before -- if 'before' was even a plausible concept anymore -- was nigh impossible. She dimly remembered Sunset Shimmer's ascension to godhood, but beyond that everything was a blank. A huge, ugly, colorless blank. And it frustrated Twilight immensely, as she had always prided herself on her great memory.

Wait . . . frustration. That was a genuine emotion. She grasped tightly onto it, her only proof that she still existed. She followed her frustration to its source: Mata Nui.

God that guy was stupid, Twilight thought. Condescending, arrogant, ignorant, stupid, and bigoted in every way. He's like if Rainbow Dash didn't have any friends to curb her vices.

Even now that she knew she existed, even remembered a couple of people, it didn't really help her. As far as she could tell, she was the only thing in existence. She felt lonely. She wished her friends -- most of whom she couldn't even remember -- still existed, but alas, they did not. She was on her own and would likely remain that way for all eternity (although she wondered if the concept of 'eternity' even still made sense in a world of nothingness).

Still, a small part of her insisted on existing. It was the small, defiant part of herself, a part of her personality that showed itself whenever her friends or herself were in danger. It was thanks to this small part of her personality that she ever managed to convince herself to keep going even when logic made it clear that struggling was useless at this point.

And so, with a blink of her eyes, Twilight found herself standing in what appeared to be an endless sea of nothingness. Or maybe it was a room. Either way, Twilight saw nothing but whiteness for miles around in every direction. She glanced at her hooves and flapped her wings; her body was apparently okay.

What do I do now? Twilight thought. I'm completely on my own. No one from either Spherus Magna or Equestria survived Sunset's destruction of all reality. Am I doomed to wander the endlessness of nothingness for as long as I live? Or will I simply cease to exist again at some point? How can I exist in nothingness, anyway?

With a sigh, Twilight lowered her head onto her hooves. No matter how insistent Twilight's defiant half was, her cautious, logical half told her that she had simply came back into existence for no reason. It was not as though there was anything she could do to bring back her friends or either world, after all. She was no goddess.

Just as Twilight closed her eyes -- whether to take a nap or prepare for non-existence again, even she wasn't sure -- a familiar female voice said, “Chin up, Twilight.”

Twilight's eyes snapped open and she was back on her feet in an instant. She whirled around and saw Sunset Shimmer, back in her pony form, standing not far behind her. The unicorn looked different, however, because she wore a black and white robe with an intricate checker design stitched into it.

“I thought you were dead,” said Twilight. “Didn't you destroy Spherus Magna and Equestria?”

Sunset smirked. “I didn't destroy Spherus Magna and Equestria. What happened was that the two universes merged at the same point that I achieved godhood. Or, at least they tried to. I am not sure what went wrong, but when they tried to merge, it resulted in . . . nothing.”

Sunset gestured at their environment with one hoof. “I only managed to survive thanks to my godhood. The real question is, how did you survive, Twilight Sparkle? You're just an ordinary pony. An alicorn, true, but a mortal nonetheless.”

“I don't know,” said Twilight with a shrug. “I think it's because I remembered how frustrated I felt toward Mata Nui. That feeling helped me justify my own existence.”

“Justify? To whom? I certainly didn't bring you back.”

“I can't say for certain,” said Twilight. “But I think that whoever or whatever I was justifying myself to, thought my justification for continuing my existence made sense. So I returned, even though you and me appear to be the only two beings left in existence.”

Sunset Shimmer cocked her head. “Well, it doesn't matter. I am still a god. I can use my immense power to take this nothingness and organize it into a new world, a world I will rule with an iron hoof. It will be greater than Equestria, greater than Spherus Magna, and I will be its god. And you will not be able to stop me.”

Twilight's heart told her that Sunset spoke the truth, but she ignored that. “Oh, yeah? What if I stop you?”

“You can't,” said Sunset simply. “I am a god and you are a simple mortal, as I said before. If you try, I will simply erase you from existence as simply as though you were a word on a blackboard. Besides, what will you gain from defying me? It's not like fighting me will bring back your friends, who are all dead.”

Twilight began pawing the ground. “Maybe they are dead. Maybe I am delusional, thinking I can take on a god. But that doesn't mean I have to give up and let you ruin a new world that hasn't even had the chance to not be ruined. That would be wrong.”

Sunset shook her head. “And here I was thinking of possibly sparing you, perhaps making you my avatar in the new world, who would enforce my rule and punish any dissenters. Alas, I was too naïve to realize the stupidity of that theory. Prepare for non-existence, Twilight Sparkle, for its sweet embrace is the eventual end of all things.”

Sunset's horn began glowing brightly. While Twilight wasn't sure what kind of spell the goddess was going to use, she bet it would be enough to kill her in one hit. She contemplated teleporting out of the way at the last minute, but realized that would accomplish nothing more than putting off her death. She had to face Sunset right here, right now. Running was no longer an option, especially because she had nowhere to run to.

Just as Sunset's horn was about to fire, a refrigerator fell from nowhere and landed next to her. Before either pony could properly react to this new arrival, the door blew open and a fist flew out of it, hitting Sunset directly in the face.

The punch sent Sunset flying far away, crashing into the ground with enough force to cause a small tremor that nearly knocked Twilight off her hooves. Regaining her composure, Twilight looked at the fridge, wondering who was inside it or where it had come from, when a familiar yellow biomechanical being climbed out of it.

Twilight's jaw dropped. “Mata . . . Nui? No way. It can't be you.”

The yellow being dusted off his armor and then looked at Twilight. “Of course it's me, Twilight. Who else could I be? Michael Dorn?”

“I have no idea who that is,” said Twilight. “But how did you survive the merging of Equestria and Spherus Magna? I thought everyone was dead.”

Mata Nui jerked a thumb over his shoulder at the fridge he had climbed out of. “I managed to hide inside that fridge at the last possible minute. I saw it in a movie.”

“How the heck is that even possible?” said Twilight. “I don't think you understand, Mata Nui, but all of reality was destroyed. All of it. We're literally standing in nothingness right now. That fridge should have been destroyed along with everything else.”

“I see you have no appreciation for the wonders of modern technology,” said Mata Nui, folding his arms. “Hmph.”

At this point, Twilight's brain broke. “Okay, you know what? You've done enough insane things over the past few days that I don't think I am going to question them anymore. Nope. Just accept that there are certain things you can do that no ordinary, sane person could ever hope to pull off without dying horribly or completely and utterly annihilating the laws of physics and logic.”

“Well, duh,” said Mata Nui. “I'm the awesomest guy ever. How could I not survive the destruction of reality? Only a wimp would get killed by that.”

“Did anyone else survive?” Twilight asked. “Anyone fit in that fridge with you?”

“Nope,” said Mata Nui, shaking his head. “Wasn't enough time. I just barely managed to find a plot hole big enough to pull this fridge from before everything stopped existing.”

Twilight's ears fell. “So everyone really is gone.”

Mata Nui's fridge had been her last hope. So she let herself cry, tears welling up in her eyes, tears that she no longer had any desire to control. If everyone was truly dead . . . if she, Sunset, and Mata Nui were the only beings left in existence . . . then maybe she had no further reason to continue existing anymore.

A slap to the face brought her back to reality. Blinking hard from the blow, Twilight looked up and realized Mata Nui stood before her. How he had gotten so close to her so quickly, she wasn't sure. Perhaps space and time didn't work the same way in nothingness, if they worked here at all.

“Why did you hit me?” Twilight asked, rubbing the aching spot on her face with one hoof. “That wasn't very nice.”

“'Cause I hate it when people cry,” said Mata Nui. “Liquid pride is okay, but crying is not. You just gotta man up sometimes, Twilight, or maybe pony up for you. I don't know. All I know is that crying never brought anyone back to life.”

Mata Nui had a point, she realized. Though her feelings of sadness were by no means wrong, she couldn't sit here and grieve her friends as long as the one who killed them -- Sunset Shimmer -- was still alive and kicking. She had to act.

“All right, Mata Nui,” said Twilight, standing up straight and wiping the tears out of her eyes with one wing. “I'm ready to save both worlds. We have to stop Sunset Shimmer.”

“Oh, I think I already took care of her with that sexy punch,” said Mata Nui, glancing over at where Sunset had fallen. “She's probably- dang it she's still alive.”

Mata Nui was right. Sunset had staggered back to her hooves, shaking her head and readjusting her cloak. The mere fact that Mata Nui had been able to harm Sunset at all impressed Twilight. And if Mata Nui could do it, then maybe there was hope for their worlds, after all.

“You got a lucky shot,” said Sunset, wiping some blood from the edge of her mouth. “Just one. I wasn't expecting that. But now I am going to destroy you both. You two are the final test standing between me and my new world. And I always ace my tests. Always.”

Mata Nui pulled his 40k MGA out of nowhere and said, “Well what a coincidence, so do I. Since we can't both kill each other, however, that means you're going down, Sunset.”

“I fight for my friends,” said Twilight, taking a battle position. “For Spike, Princess Celestia, Rarity, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Fluttershy, Applejack, and everyone else you destroyed. Even if they no longer exist, their friendship will continue to fuel my very soul no matter what you throw at me.”

Sunset smirked. “What a cute, sentimental little speech. Prepare for oblivion.”


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog

The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness

(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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Chapter Fifteen: Friendship IS Magic! (It is Also Explosive)

Tahiti. It's a magical place.

-Agent Phillip Coulson, after no one asked him about Tahiti

With a twirl of her cape, Sunset Shimmer disappeared, only to reappear right behind Twilight and Mata Nui. Twilight, however, had been expecting that, and bucked Sunset in the face with the power of the volcano coursing through her back hooves.

The blow sent Sunset staggering backwards, but Mata Nui gave her no time to recover, running at her and slamming the butt of his gun into her face. That sent Sunset flying, but she immediately righted herself in midair and floated there, looking displeased and angry.

“Your existence displeases me,” said Sunset. “So begone, mortals!”

She waved one hoof through the air and Mata Nui and Twilight were suddenly surrounded by trillions of laser beams. The lasers immediately started flying at the two, but our heroes managed to block every single one using a combination of Mata Nui's gun and Twilight's horn. They moved extremely fast, almost teleporting, not allowing a single laser beam to pass them in their quest to survive.

When the lasers were finally gone, Twilight and Mata Nui stood triumphant, neither of them even panting from the physical exertion of having blocked so many lasers.

Shocked, Sunset said, “How did you block all those lasers? That is impossible. I designed them to be impossible to block or dodge.”

“Nothing is impossible as long as you believe,” said Mata Nui. “And seeing as we believe in your death, there's nothing you can throw at us that we can't take. Eat this!”

Without warning, Mata Nui seized Twilight, stuffed her into his gun's barrel, and fired her at Sunset like a bullet. The goddess pony created a thick magical barrier around her body, which Twilight slammed into with her horn. She immediately charged a powerful energy burst into the barrier, causing it to shatter into billions of pieces as Sunset went flying away screaming.

As Sunset flew through the air, Mata Nui dashed along the ground below her at the speed of light. He leaped into the air until he was above Sunset, then slammed both his feet into her chest, sending her crashing into nothingness with a loud boom. Twilight and Mata Nui landed near the crater together, but before they could act, Sunset flew out of the crater and snarled.

“I will crush you both!” she cried as her horn glowed briefly.

The next moment, a full-sized planet appeared above her head, which she hurled at Mata Nui and Twilight. Twilight tried using her magic to slow it down, but it was ineffective. So Mata Nui launched himself into the air and, channeling just a portion of his might, punched the planet directly in the center, causing it to split in half neatly down the middle. The two planet halves fell through the ground and disappeared into nothingness once more.

Mata Nui, however, was still flying through the air, his fist aiming directly for Sunset's smug mug. But she ducked to avoid it and slammed her head into Mata Nui's abdomen, sending our hero flying away out of control. Twilight jumped into the air, however, and caught Mata Nui before he vanished into nothingness.

“Thanks,” said Mata Nui as Twilight lowered him to the ground.

“No problem,” said Twilight. “Now if you'll excuse me. . . .”

Flapping her wings, Twilight rocketed into the air at the speed of impossible. She went so fast that when she struck Sunset, it was like the goddess had been hit by a supernova, creating a massive explosion that engulfed both ponies before dissipating.

Before Sunset could recover from the supernova, Twilight smashed their skulls together, sending the goddess flying even higher into the sky. Without hesitation, Mata Nui jumped onto Twilight and then jumped off her after Sunset. When he got close enough, Mata Nui started pummeling Sunset with both of his fists, punching her so fast and so hard that it looked like he was hitting her with a cosmic hurricane of fists.

And with a final kick, Mata Nui sent her crashing to the ground once again. This time, however, Sunset was prepared, because she created a springy sponge to catch her fall, thus saving her from a devastating fall.

Rising to her hooves, Sunset fired an energy blast from her horn at Mata Nui, but Twilight intercepted it with a magical blast of her own. Mata Nui, seeing an opportunity, grabbed both magical blasts and absorbed them into his being, causing his armor to turn from yellow to gold in an instant.

“I am gold!” Mata Nui roared, sending shock waves from his body.

The shock waves struck Sunset, sending her tumbling off her sponge. Twilight took advantage of this to rush at the goddess pony, but as soon as she got close, Sunset stood up and bucked Twilight with her back hooves, sending the alicorn spiraling out of control through the air until she crashed hard into the ground.

But Twilight wasn't out just yet. She immediately jumped to her hooves and charged at Sunset. The goddess likewise charged at her even as both of their horns began glowing with repressed energy. And when their horns collided, it created a massive explosion of energy and color that would have destroyed Mata Nui had he not created a massive energy shield around his body that took the brunt of the blast.

When the explosion cleared, it revealed Twilight and Sunset's horns were locked together, the two ponies pushing against each other, growling and snarling more like feral cats than ponies. Twilight wasn't budging even slightly under the pressure of Sunset's goddess powers, like they were equals rather than a goddess and mortal clashing.

“Why do you insist on your own destruction?” Sunset demanded, pushing hard against Twilight. “I am a goddess; in fact, I am the Goddess, the soon-to-be creator of all. As long as you stand against me, you have no hope of survival, neither you nor your friend.”

“Shut up, Sunset,” said Twilight through gritted teeth. “You don't understand. Friendship is greater than any other force in the universe. Even the gods themselves must bow to it . . . and that includes you.”

Sunset laughed. “The Goddess does not need to bow to your silly little abstract concepts. You will fall, you and Mata Nui, and there is nothing either of you can do about it.”

Just then, Mata Nui landed behind Sunset and seized her tail. With a yelp of pain, Sunset stopped pushing against Twilight, causing the alicorn to stumble forward as Mata Nui lifted the goddess above his head. He began spinning her in a circle, slowly picking up speed, until they were going so fast that he and Sunset were nothing more than a blur of red and gold in a sea of nothingness.

Then Mata Nui let go of her, saying as he did so, “So long, Sunset Shimmer!”

The goddess went flying so fast that she couldn't stop herself even if she wanted to. Twilight calculated the exact distance and speed at which Sunset was flying and immediately teleported herself in her path. With a burst of magical energy, Twilight created a brick wall which Sunset crashed into. She crashed into it so hard that a huge shock wave exploded from the impact, knocking Twilight out of the air. She managed to right herself fast enough to land on the ground safely, however.

Sunset ripped her face out of the brick wall and shook her head as Mata Nui and Twilight gathered together underneath her.

“Darn you,” she hissed. “Darn you both to heck. Enough fooling around. This fight has dragged on far enough. It ends NOW!”

With a roar of power, Sunset grew bigger and bigger until she was at least as tall as Canterlot Castle, if not bigger. Twilight and Mata Nui looked up her huge legs at Sunset's face, which was smirking quite evilly.

“Now I will crush you both like insects, just as I promised,” said Sunset. “Welcome to die!”

She raised one hoof and brought it down on them as fast as lightning bolt. In fact, when it struck them, it sounded like a thunderbolt had struck the ground and electricity shot out in every direction. There was no particular reason for that, other than Sunset thought it looked cool.

“Looks like I win,” said Sunset, her smirk now so big that it would have been illegal had there been any legislature to pass laws. “Now nothing can-”

She was rudely interrupted when her hoof began rising of its own accord. In actuality, it was Mata Nui and Twilight underneath her gigantic hoof who were pushing back against it, Mata Nui with his hands, Twilight with her front hooves. They were putting all of their physical strength together to avoid getting crushed to death, pushing up so hard that Sunset could not keep them down.

“You mortals have such spirit,” said Sunset. “It will be a pleasure to crush it like an ant.”

But Sunset's threat was shown to be nothing more than the vain boasting of a cliched villain, because with one last burst of energy Mata Nui and Twilight pushed the giant pony over. This caused Sunset to fall to her side hard, so hard that her body shattered into millions of little pieces, revealing Sunset's smaller form.

Sunset staggered to her feet as Twilight and Mata Nui landed on the ground before her. She looked at them with hate in her eyes as she growled deeply in her throat.

“You will not succeed,” she gasped. “I, Sunset Shimmer, am the Goddess of All. You shall bow before me! Kneel before Sunset!”

“Sorry, but I don't kneel before anyone,” said Mata Nui. “Except myself.”

“The only pony worthy of being knelt before is Princess Celestia,” said Twilight. “And, I'm sorry, but you don't look anything like her.”

“Foolish fools,” said Sunset. “You have both put up a good fight, but you must realize that it is hopeless. Whereas I am eternal, you are both temporal. Eventually, your bodies will give out and then I will strike and win once and for all.”

Twilight bit her lip and said to Mata Nui, “I think she's right. I can already feel myself getting weaker, losing energy. We very well might not be able to beat her after all.”

“In that case,” said Mata Nui, “we need backup.”

“But Mata Nui, we're the only two beings in existence, besides Sunset,” said Twilight, shaking her head sadly. “We are on our own.”

“Not unless we have this!” said Mata Nui, whipping out a very familiar-looking crown from nowhere.

Twilight gasped. “Mata Nui, that's my crown. Where did you get it from?”

“Sunset dropped it when me and Kiina kicked her butt earlier,” said Mata Nui. “I picked it up because I thought I could sell it on eBay to some bronies and make millions of dollars. Since the universe got destroyed, though, I haven't been able to do much with it.”

Without responding to Mata Nui's babbling, Twilight ripped the crown out of his hands and placed it on her head. “Mata Nui, with that single act of greed, you may have just saved the entire multiverse.”

“Really?” said Mata Nui. “Well, I guess that makes sense. After all, I am the awesomest hero who has ever lived.”

“So you have your pretty little crown,” said Sunset with a sneer. “So what? It is useless without the other Elements of Harmony, good only for appearances, if even that, as I have seen prettier crowns in my time.”

The crown on Twilight's head began sparking and glowing with energy. At the same time, Twilight's eyes glowed until they were nothing but twin white lights. She could feel the magic of friendship flowing through her veins even as she tapped deeper and deeper into its essence until she could feel nothing but pure friendship all around her.

“You're wrong, Sunset Shimmer,” said Twilight as energy swirled around her and Mata Nui. “This crown is not useless. As long as the magic of friendship exists, it will always give me power. The magic of friendship dwarfs that of any other power in the universe, even that of a goddess.”

“Impossible,” said Sunset. “Stop speaking such stupid sayings. You are nothing more than a mortal deluded by a placebo.”

“No,” said Twilight, shaking her head. “You are the one who is deluded, Sunset, if you think you can defeat the magic of friendship. Friends! Come to me!”

Twenty bolts of white lightning fired out from her crown. Each white lightning bolt hit the ground and left in its place one being; Spike, Fluttershy, Rarity, Pinkie Pie, Applejack, Rainbow Dash, Shining Armor, Cadence, Discord, and Princess Celestia, all of whom looked ready to fight.

But they weren't the only ones brought back by Twilight's crown. The other ten lightning bolts left behind Kiina, Berix, and Bucket-head, in addition to Gresh, Tahu, Oris, Tera, Likus, Ackar, and Takanuva. They looked just as shocked to make an appearance in this story as everyone else did, but due to their unimportance we shall ignore them for now.

“What?” said Sunset, taking a step back as she looked upon all of the assembled friends. “No way. You are all dead. Equestria and Spherus Magna are no more.”

“You still don't understand, do you, Sunset?” said Twilight. “Absolute, raw power is useless without friends. Because Mata Nui and I have such strong bonds with our friends, I was able to bring them all back to help us defeat you once and for all and save both our universes.”

“They must all be illusions,” said Sunset, although she sounded unconvinced in her panicky state. “You're using your magic to make me think you have brought back your friends. I know the truth. You can't fool me.”

“They're all as real as you, Sunset,” said Twilight. “But I understand wanting empirical proof of a phenomenon before you're willing to believe it. So let us give it to you!”

Acting as one, every assembled being -- pony and biomech alike -- raised their hands and front hooves and unleashed a blast of energy. When the ponies' energy beams combined, it created a rainbow of friendship, while the biomechs' combination beam created a stream of protodermis. Both beams combined in midair to create what could only be described as the personification of Friendship itself, an entity who was a perfect blend of biomech and pony, radiating such powerful energy that even Sunset looked wimpy in comparison.

“What . . .?” said Sunset, actually stumbling backwards in a weak attempt to flee. “I don't understand. What is this?”

Friendship looked down at Sunset with disproving eyes. “Sunset Shimmer, you have never been a good friend to anybody. You treated your servants as trash, you consistently harmed anyone who got in your way, and you were rather rude. For these crimes, We, the Spirit of Friendship, the One that Transcends all Bonds and Time, The One Who Gathers Together, The Great Unifying Principle, the Ground of All Being, The One Who Ascends and Yet Exists in All, The One Made from All, the Multiverse Itself, do hereby banish you into the Great Unknown, from which you shall never return!”

Friendship pointed a single finger at Sunset and unleashed a laser beam at her. The goddess tried to fight back, shooting a powerful beam of energy at Friendship that was probably strong enough to destroy an entire universe a hundred times over.

But Friendship's own laser beam cut through Sunset's like butter and struck the unicorn goddess directly in the horn. Sunset had time enough to let out one last scream of agony before she abruptly disappeared, like a chalk drawing that had been erased by a child. And thus Sunset Shimmer was no more.

As soon as Sunset disappeared, Twilight's eyes returned to normal and everyone stopped glowing (they had been glowing because of the magic of Friendship, by the way). She almost collapsed, but before she did, she was mobbed by her pony friends, who gathered around her and gave her a big group hug. Even Discord partook of the group hug, which was kind of awkward but Twilight decided it was okay for now.

Nearby, Mata Nui's friends had gathered around him, giving him high-fives or fist bumps. Only Kiina hugged Mata Nui, but even Bucket-head shook Mata Nui's hand, saying as he did so, “You know, I never realized just how much I missed existence, even though everyone hates me.”

Then the two groups stopped congratulating among themselves and looked at each other. There was a dead silence in the air for what felt like an eternity and Twilight was afraid, for some reason, that things were about to get violent and messy.

But then Friendship floated down to the ground and said, “What are you all waiting for? The only reason we exist is because of the amount of friendship coursing through your veins like giant rubber pants. When we exist, there is no such thing as stranger or enemy.”

The first to heed Friendship's words were Pinkie Pie and Berix. The hyper pony and the hyper biomech hopped over to each other and immediately began hitting it off like old friends.

“Hi, I'm Berix.”

“I'm Pinkie Pie. What kind of pony are you, anyway?”

“Oh, I'm not a pony. My psychiatrist says I am a sociopath, though.”

“What's a sociopath? Is that a fun person?”

“Well, I think so. Are you fun?”

“You bet. I'm the funnest pony in all of Equestria. You know what we should do, now that everyone here is friends and everything?”


“Throw a huge, multiverse-wide PAR-TAY!”

“OMG that sounds awesome! I'll get the streamers and lampshades!”

That single conversation broke the ice, causing everyone from both groups to come forward and talk to one another. While their friends mingled, Twilight and Mata Nui walked over to Friendship, who stood watching the intermingling of the two groups with a wide smile on their face.

“It is wonderful to see two different groups of people learning to mingle and appreciate one another's differences,” said Friendship with a sigh. “We have not seen such friendship since the beginning of Time itself.”

“Yeah, that's nice and all,” said Mata Nui as he waved off the entity's words, “but what about our homes? I'm going to miss the next episode of my soaps. How else will I learn if Becky really is Veronica's twice removed stepmother?”

“I, too, would like to return home,” said Twilight. “But is that even possible? Didn't Sunset Shimmer say that the universes have merged or tried to, at least? Do we even have homes to return to?”

“Twilight Sparkle, Mata Nui,” said Friendship gently. “Do you think that we forgot about that? Of course not. Your sense of friendship is so strong that both universes have been resurrected, as well as all of their inhabitants. Go through these doors to return home.”

Friendship waved their hand and two doors appeared. One was labeled 'Equestria.' The other, 'Spherus Magna.'

“Once you and your friends pass through those doors, you will be back in your homes,” said Friendship. “But you will never forgot each other. You will always treasure these memories in your hearts, even after you die. For the magic of friendship can transcend even death.”

“Okay,” said Twilight. “I guess that makes sense.”

“It does,” said Mata Nui in agreement. “So now we just have to get everyone else to come with us. Which means this is pretty much good bye.”

“Oh, yeah, it is,” said Twilight, somewhat awkwardly. “Well, um. . . .”

The two just stood there awkwardly for a while. Friendship's presence didn't really help, especially because they was smiling so wide that they made Pinkie Pie look like a perpetual frowner. Twilight really wanted to hoof them in the face, but as she understood that to be wrong, she refrained from doing so.

“Well, I might as well leave, now that you know what to do,” said Friendship brightly. “Good bye, my friends. Remember that I exist everywhere and am everything and am above everything. So if you ever need me, remember: Friendship is magic!”

And with that, Friendship disappeared. That made the situation slightly less awkward, although it didn't help Twilight figure out what to say to Mata Nui. What was she supposed to say to someone she had never really liked? Yeah, she could just say, “Good bye” and be done with it, but after everything they'd been through together, somehow that didn't seem enough.

Yet it didn't seem like Mata Nui was going to make the first move. For all his bravado and boasting, he certainly didn't seem like an overly-confident hero to her now. He looked just as uncomfortable as anyone else would be in this kind of situation. And it was that realization that gave Twilight the words she needed to say to him.

Twilight sat down, wrapped her tail around her hooves, and looked up at Mata Nui. “Mata Nui, you and I never really got along. I mean, like, ever. We've always gotten on each other's nerves and have never really understood each other. It's led to a lot of conflicts between us.”

“Yeah, I know,” said Mata Nui, folding his arms. “What of it?”

“Well, I just wanted to say that I'm sorry,” said Twilight. “Sorry that I constantly belittled you, that I never sat down to understand you, and that I was never really a good friend. Because that's what we are: Friends. I mean, if we weren't, how could we have summoned the embodiment of Friendship itself?”

“You make . . . a good point,” said Mata Nui reluctantly. “I accept your apology. And . . . I'm sorry for not always being exactly a perfect friend to you, either.”

Twilight gasped. “Did you . . . did you just apologize?”

“Yeah, I did. So?”

“It's just . . .” Twilight shook her head, smiling. “Maybe there is hope for you after all, Mata Nui.”

“I'm already good enough the way I am,” said Mata Nui. “Which is to say, I am pretty much near perfection. I'd say you're the one who has hope; after all, you kicked Sunset's butt just as much as I did. Someday, maybe you will be a kick-butt warrior like me. Not exactly like me, obviously, because no one is, but more like me than you are now.”

Twilight hoped that she would never become like Mata Nui someday, but she nodded politely anyway. “Thanks, I guess.”

Then Mata Nui looked over at Twilight's friends and cocked his head. “So . . . I didn't realize there were so many of you.”

“Well, of course there are,” said Twilight. “There's an entire universe of ponies just like me, in fact. Why does that surprise you?”

“I dunno,” said Mata Nui with a shrug. “'Cause I was hoping there wasn't really a universe full of pansy ponies, I guess.”

Twilight rolled her eyes. “Well, how's about we get our friends and go home now? Remember, the universes need to be balanced.”

“Wait . . .” said Mata Nui, stroking his chin, as if deep in thought. “If the universes must remain balanced at all times . . . then that means we may never see each other again.”

“Oh, yeah,” said Twilight. “I never thought of that. So this might be the last time we see each other.”

“Yeah,” said Mata Nui, still stroking his chin. “You still have that magic mirror, though, don't you?”

“I think so,” said Twilight. “But I was thinking of smashing it to bits when I got home. 'Cause, you know, of all the craziness that happened and stuff.”

“Sounds good to me,” said Mata Nui. “I don't want any girly ponies coming over to visit me anyway. I'm too manly for that.”

“Are you sure?” said Twilight. “I mean, the magic mirror is, as far as I know, the only link between our worlds. If it's shattered, then it may be impossible for us to see each other ever again.”

“Don't you worry your absurdly large pony head, Twilight,” said Mata Nui, ruffling her mane. “If I ever want a word with you, I can probably find a way to Equestria myself.”

“Because the magic of friendship will lead you back to me?” Twilight said.

“Nope,” said Mata Nui. “Because I'm awesome and can ignore the laws of physics. That's what makes me so awesome.”

Twilight sighed. “Shouldn't have expected anything different from you, I suppose.”

“What was that?”

“Nothing,” said Twilight. “So . . . I'm just going to gather all of my friends and go home now. Really starting to miss Equestria.”

“Same here,” said Mata Nui. “I'm tired of standing in nothingness. I mean, it's really boring. Seriously, there's not even a pizza place around here. What's up with that?”

Twilight shrugged. “Maybe it's because this is a place of nothingness?”

“Nah,” said Mata Nui, shaking his head. “Doesn't make any sense. Maybe I'll open my own chain of pizza parlors. They'll be called 'Pizza Mask' and I'll open the first one right here. I'll make millions.”

“Sure,” said Twilight with a sigh. “Good luck with that.”

It took them a while to get everyone together, as the two groups had intermingled and had become quite fond of each other in the short time they had gotten to know each other. In particular, Berix and Pinkie Pie seemed to have become inseparable friends who promised to send each other letters to keep up with what was going on in the other's world, although Twilight wasn't sure how trans-dimensional postal services were supposed to work. Perhaps she would ask Derpy about that back in Equestria.

So the two groups waved good bye to each other as they returned to their worlds. The last two to step through the doors that led back home were Mata Nui and Twilight. As Twilight didn't have any hands, she had to use her hoof to 'fist bump' Mata Nui, as he called it, which closely resembled the 'bro hoof' gesture back home, generally made among ponies who were close friends.

“Bye, Mata Nui,” said Twilight, waving at him as she stood before the Equestria door. “May we meet again someday.”

“Bye, Twilight,” said Mata Nui, waving back at her. “May you someday become as awesome as me, although if you don't . . . I suppose that's okay, too.”

And so they both stepped through their doors at exactly the same time, knowing they may never see each other again. Yet they would always remember each other; after all, when you team up with someone to summon the physical embodiment of Friendship itself to defeat a goddess and bring back two universes, it's rather hard to forget about that person.


Edited by TNTOS

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

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(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

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Epilogue (Party's over. Everyone can go home now)

You are reading words.

-TNTOS, after running out of funny/irrelevant quotes to put at the beginning of each chapter

Six months later. . . .

Dear Princess Celestia,

You may be surprised to be receiving this letter from me; after all, now that I am a Princess, I generally record my lessons in the friendship journal I keep with my friends instead of sending you a letter. This isn't even my research paper on the mating rituals of paraspites, either (although that's coming along swiftly, don't worry!).

Instead, I am sending you a report about my adventures in Spherus Magna and what I learned from the experience.

Yes, I know that that was six months ago, but it was such a bizarre experience that I needed some time to digest it fully. Besides, I thought that your interaction with the biomechs in the realm of nothingness had already given you a good glimpse of the sheer, well, oddness of the Spherus Magnans, so I felt a report wasn't necessary right away.

Having said that, I have been working on this particular report on and off ever since I returned. I wrote the first sentence as soon as I returned to my room in the Crystal Castle, but I wrote the second sentence a week later. This is largely because of my new duties as Princess, but also because it's hard to find the words to describe the things I saw and experienced in Spherus Magna. (In addition, I am unsure whether this counts as tipping the balance of the multiverse, although I don't think it does.)

I've talked with my friends about it, although their knowledge is as limited as yours. None of them were of much help. The only two who seemed to understand were Pinkie Pie, who has been depressed on and off ever since we got back (I think she likes Berix, although I'm not sure), and Rarity, who apparently got some fashion tips from the one called Oris. I'm not sure that biomechs have very good fashion taste, seeing as they don't wear clothes, but Rarity tells me she has a new line of clothes in the works that are based on his advice, so what do I know?

Spike is the only other person who has experienced the same things I have. He's been a bit depressed, too, but unlike Pinkie Pie, it has nothing to do with missing anybody. Back in Spherus Magna he was getting rather powerful, but here his power is limited once again. I think that made him sad. (Also, those boulders that magically appeared above your head six months ago? Those were from Spike. It was an accident. We didn't know his magical fire could send objects trans-dimensionally. Spike apologizes.)

I won't bore you with all the details of that other world, Princess. Most of it was largely incomprehensible. There was no coherency or consistency to the laws of physics. The only consistent rule, from my observation and experience, was that anything is possible as long as you either A) do not know it is impossible or B) know, but do not care. I mean, when Spike and I first arrived, we saw Mata Nui punt the sun into the moon. That should give you an idea of the craziness we experienced.

In spite of all that, Spike and I managed to win the trust of four natives of that world: Mata Nui, Kiina, Bucket-head, and Berix. Their goal -- defeating Sunset Shimmer -- was similar to ours, so they agreed to travel with us until we defeated her.

I'll be honest, Princess: I didn't really like any of them at first. Mata Nui had an ego the size of the multiverse, Kiina beat up anyone who dared to criticize Mata Nui, Bucket-head was too cynical, and even Berix, who was probably the nicest one, was still too crazy for my tastes. Mata Nui in particular seemed to think that the universe revolved around him (though to be fair, I think he may not have been entirely inaccurate about that).

Yet, despite their obvious flaws, there was something endearing about them. Mata Nui did save me and Spike several times on our journey. In spite of his incredible selfishness and gigantic ego, I think there is a good pony inside of him. It's really, really, really, REALLY deep down inside, and probably drunk more than half the time, but I think it's there. I just wish he would show it more often, as it makes him a lot more pleasant to be around.

Regardless, I think you were correct to destroy the magic mirror when we got home. We can't risk another pony like Sunset Shimmer using it to become a goddess or destroy the universes again or do something worse. Where did that mirror even come from, anyway? I've checked out all my books in the Golden Oaks Library and not a single one mentions anything about a magic mirror that links two different worlds. I want to go to the Canterlot Library sometime and see if any of the books there talk about the mirror's origin. Or do you happen to know it, Princess? If so, could you tell me in your response?

In addition, everyone on Spherus Magna insisted that they were in a 'comedy' and made several references to some kind 'author.' To this day I still do not know if they were being literal or if everyone there uses the story metaphor as a way to explain life. I think it's the latter, although based on my experiences there I can't say that with any kind of confidence.

Now you probably want to know the friendship lesson I learned while over there, Princess. That was probably the hardest part about this letter to write, seeing as I am not sure I learned anything over there that I hadn't already learned here.

But after much deliberation, I have discovered the lesson I have learned. So here it is:

I learned that you have to dig really deep in someponies in order to find the goodness within. This can be a hard and sometimes even scary process and there's no guarantee you'll always find that inner goodness, even if you try your hardest.

Yet you should always strive for it, because by looking for the best in others, you will ultimately find the best in yourself.

Your Faithful Student,

Twilight Sparkle

P. S. I have heard reports of a yellow-armored biped spotted in the Everfree Forest. I'm going in there with Zecora soon to check it out. Do you think it might be him?


And that's the end. I hope you all enjoyed reading this bizarre crossover as much as I enjoyed writing it. It is probably the last comedy I will write and post on BZP and I think it's a good way to end my comedy career. (Then again, I said that TLI was going to be the last one, too, and then I wrote this, so what the heck do I know?)

If you are interested in reading more of my works, you can find links to them all in my library here, including links to the original Legend Trilogy, which this comedy takes place after. I hope you find something in there to your liking :) .


See ya,



"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." - Theodore Roosevelt

A Writerly Blog

The Tasty Library of Sugary Goodness

(My Little BIONICLE: Friendship is Explosive Completed 01/05/14)

{The Shika Trilogy Omnibus Completed 03/31/14) (Review Topic)

(In the End Completed 09/01/14) (Review Topic)

The Biological Chronicle: (2001) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) (2006) (2007) (2008) (2009) (2010)

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