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By Cereal Velocity

Your heart is my piñata.

Chuck Palahniuk



Asking for help was not something the Great and Powerful Trixie was used to doing. Well, that and brushing her mane in the morning. It was always in perfect condition, of course, but nopony believed her when she tried to tell them that.

It had been fun cavorting around Equestria for a few months, surely. She had had her fair share of fun, her fair share of adventure, and her fair share of pretty fillies claiming that they had never been so attracted to another mare in their life. She had performed for all manner of audiences; large and small, crowds of few and throngs of many. She had entertained entire cities and crowded bars, swarming parks and huge stadiums. She had done her dazzling magic for every type, from the most humble earth pony to powerful government officials and the greatest unicorn magicians- though, clearly, they were not as great as herself. She had truly seen it all in the eventful months since her failed show at Ponyville.

And, yet, during her travels, something always nagged her from the back of her mind. Something that wouldn’t go away, no matter how many other mares she slept with or tricks she performed. It was something that she had never experienced in her life, and thought she never would. The problem was purple, had a star for a cutie mark, and had simply delicious lavender eyes.

Trixie blinked at the stray thought. They were most certainly not delicious. How ridiculous.

Nevertheless, her encounter with Twilight had most definitely irked her. In her one, rare moment of weakness, she had been shown up. Unthinkable.

At first, she had been depressed about the whole affair. After that, she had tried to ignore it. When that didn’t work, she tried to distract herself with her performances. She put on the most impressive shows she had ever come up with since she had become a performer- shows that would have impressed the god queen rulers of Equestria themselves- and yet despite her brilliance, there still remained that nagging doubt that refused to leave her alone. She had even, after a few too many drinks one particular night, though about having a child with the preposterously pretty pony. She still wasn’t sure where that idea had come from, nor if it was even physically possible.

It was her insatiable desire to rid herself of this nuisance that had led Trixie to the very doors of the Canterlot Royal Castle.

Everypony had heard about Nightmare Moon’s defeat at the hooves of Twilight and the five ponies in her company. Trixie had been surprised that none of them had drawn the obvious conclusion about the encounter- that perhaps Luna wasn’t so thrilled to have been brought down so easily. She couldn’t prove it, but it was all she had to go on.

Getting past the perimeter guards to her castle hadn’t been easy, nor had the trip up to Canterlot been trivial, but she knew that there was at least one pony that could help her, and that she lay inside these walls. She was her only hope- and Trixie hoped she could convince her to help.

Taking a deep, dramatic breath, she knocked on the massive doors with a hoof.


Luna tossed aside another crumpled piece of parchment into the growing pile next to her. Who would have thought getting revenge on your enemies could be so much work?

And it was, of course, revenge that she wanted. Strangely, it had not occurred to her to begin planning such a thing during her imprisonment on the moon. It was only after she had returned to Equestria that she had begun to consider such things, and it was turning out to be far more difficult than she had anticipated. Perhaps, she thought, looking past her mountain of ill-formed plans at the moon outside, I shouldn’t have spent all that time dancing.

To tell the truth, the whole Nightmare Moon thing had been a last-minute effort. It had almost worked, too, except for that insufferable purple unicorn and her little gaggle ruining everything with their magic tricks. Just thinking about her made Luna’s blood boil. That whole escapade had just been embarrassing. Only her quick thinking and fake tears when her sister had shown up had salvaged the situation and made her look like a victim instead of a laughingstock.

Luna looked at the paper in front of her, entitled The Celestia-pult. She lidded her eyes. This was hopeless. Maybe it was time to turn her attention to getting rid of Celestia’s prized student instead of her- go for a psychological blow instead of a physical one. Surely that would make things easier.

And yet, still, nothing came to mind. For all Luna’s taunting and all her posturing during her attempted takeover, the small unicorn she had fell to was indeed very powerful- and she had been tutored by her sister, no less. Even taking that into account, if it were discovered that Luna had been the one responsible for the unicorn’s untimely death, she wouldn’t just be banished to the moon this time. At the very least, she would end up with egg on her face again, and she couldn’t afford that. Not again.

She would clearly need help to pull this off. The trouble was there was no one she could trust. A thousand years away from home tends to leave ones former acquaintances quite dead. That meant she would have to get social and buddy-buddy with somepony, and that was something she loathed to do- but she knew it would be a necessary chore. At the very least, they could end up slightly useful and absorb some magic before it hit her.

The only problem was who to choose to embark with her on this epic adventure.

At that moment, there came a small knock at the front door to her throne room.

Luna looked up at the guards in front of the massive slabs of wood, nodding to them to indicate they should let whoever had knocked through. The guards silently complied, pulling the doors open. Standing in the moonlight of the garden outside was a small blue mare, wearing a purple cloak and hat studded with colorful star and moon patterns. Without waiting to be invited in, the mare entered the throne room with a purpose to her stride. The guards looked on at her warily, but did not stop her. As the stranger approached Luna, the god queen could see a fire and a drive in her eyes. The mare did not bow or prostrate herself before her when she was close enough, as Luna was used to. These things alone made Luna very interested in what she had to say before she had even begun to speak. And speak she did.

“Princess Luna,” the mare said loudly, her voice echoing in the nearly empty throne room. “I require your assistance and partnership in ridding Equestria of a thorn in her side.”

Luna had an inkling as to the mare’s identity, but her response was almost automatic. She lifted her head regally. “One does not ask for a princesses’ assistance in such a manner.”

The blue mare sighed. “For the love of- do you even know who I am?

Luna did her best to sound annoyed, though in truth she was delightfully amused at her frankness. “You will address me properly, or I will have the guards escort you away.” The pegasus guards moved a step closer to the stranger at Luna’s words.

The mare continued unperturbed in the same confident voice. “That would be unwise, your majesty. I seek to help bring you the sweet taste of victory you have sought for so long.”

Luna blinked. Could it be? “What do you speak of? Who are you?”

The blue mare donned a wide, manic grin, as if she had been waiting for that question. Her purple eyes glistened in the moonlight. “I am the Great and Powerful Trixie, and I want what you want- revenge on Twilight Sparkle.”

Luna smiled the tiniest of smiles. Her prayers had been answered.


The two unicorns retreated into the nearby library. Luna instructed all of the guards that had followed them to vacate the area, lest her sister become suspicious about a set of guards guarding a supposedly empty room. With the doors to the massive hall closed and securely locked, Luna could finally breathe easy. Her plan was going to come to fruition at last. She had feigned ignorance before, but she had recognized the small blue mare immediately. It was difficult not to hear of her escapades throughout Equestria, and she had been impressed more than once by a recounted tale of her performances. She had also heard of her show in Ponyville- and why this magician shared her hatred for Twilight. She glanced at the mare, who was poking around the books. She could not have found a more perfect partner to help her enact her revenge.

“You have an impressive collection,” Trixie said to her from across the room. Her voice once again echoed in the empty chamber. Luna took one last look around to make sure they were alone, and then approached the small unicorn.

 “You said you needed my help. So, start asking,” Luna said. Trixie’s eyes shifted from side to side, as if she were embarrassed about something.

“You have to keep this a secret,” the smaller mare whispered.

Luna brought a hoof to her face. “Cross my heart, hope to f-“

“Yeah, yeah,” Trixie interrupted. “The truth is…” she trailed off for a moment, her face scrunching in disgust, seemingly at her own words. She swallowed and continued. “The truth is that stupid unicorn is more… technically proficient at magic than I am.”

Luna nodded sagely at her pained admission. “That doesn’t surprise me. She is the personal protégé of my sister, after all.”

“I don’t know what that word means, but I don’t want to hear about any hot-for-teacher stuff,” Trixie said, giving Luna an odd look. “All I know is her connection to your sister makes her very powerful. More powerful than myself. And it irks me greatly.” Trixie turned to look back at the shelves of books. “I’m sure you know the feeling.”

Luna thought for a moment. “No, can’t say that I do.”

“How was the moon?” Trixie asked, still facing the books. “Cold?”

Luna narrowed her eyes at the mare’s back. “Point taken.”

“Exactly,” Trixie said, levitating out a large book from the stacks and turning back around to face Luna. “So, you’re going to teach me.”

“Teach you what, exactly?” Luna asked.

Trixie turned the cover of the book so it faced Luna. The gold embossed title read Really Advanced Magic: Part I of XXIV. “You’re going to teach me everything I need to know to get rid of Twilight Sparkle, of course.”

Luna blinked. “That’s all you need? Magic lessons?”

Trixie cringed as if in pain from Luna’s wording. “Right. You teach me everything she knows, and a little more, and I remove a pesky problem from your life. Sounds like a pretty good deal, doesn’t it?”

Luna pondered this idea for a moment. It did sound like a pretty good deal. She decided to make sure Trixie had the same plan she did, though, just in case. She started with an obvious question. “So, if I’m teaching you, what’s to stop me from just going and taking care of her myself?”

Trixie just laughed. “Yes, the Great and Powerful Princess Luna strolling casually down the streets of Ponyville. That’s real subtle. There’s absolutely no chance that’ll backfire. Might as well stop by the sweets shop while you’re down there, and pick up a case of you’re stupid and so is that idea.” She finished the last part of her sentence with a completely deadpan expression.

Luna furrowed her brow and pretended to look offended. “You’re not exactly low-key yourself.”

“I don’t have both a horn and the wingspan of a dragon,” Trixie countered. “So unless you plan to kill her in her sleep- which isn’t very sporting, if we’re both honest- everypony will know it was you who killed the princesses’ prized student.”

Luna completed the conversational thread with the obvious bullet point. “And that would not bode well for my life expectancy.”

Trixie gave the princess a practiced, showboating grin. “Duh. Guess who’s got four hooves and can solve that problem for you?”

Good, Luna thought. Trixie was on the same page she was- and even better, she thought she had come up with the idea entirely on her own. Her heart was racing with excitement. This had literally dropped into her lap, and it just might actually work. She couldn’t possibly screw this up. Once Twilight was out of the way, she could focus on her real goal: Celestia.

For the rest of the night, Luna shared a few choice things with the smaller mare, planning out Trixie’s sleeping arrangements at the castle and her schedule of lessons over the next few days. When the sun was due to peak over the horizon, Luna led Trixie off to an unused room for her to get some sleep.

What neither Trixie nor Luna had noticed was a white-furred alicorn, watching from one of the library balconies.


It was breakfast as usual in the royal castle. Fine dishes from all over Equestria were on the menu, dressed up with the most ornate of place settings and fine china. Steaming piles of bacon and freshly-baked bread covered the table, all freshly prepared that morning. Luna honestly just preferred toast.

As she arrived in the dining hall, Celestia was at the table already, cutting up a poached egg with a knife. As Luna sat down next to her sister, levitating her own knife to butter her simple breakfast fare, she discretely looked in the direction of her sibling. Celestia had the tiniest of smiles on her face as she chewed her food. Luna’s fear got to her- she was instantly a little worried. Had she discovered anything? Luna wasn’t going to be the one to give anything away, though. She looked in the opposite direction and took a bite out of her toast, ignoring her sister.

After a minute or so of silence, though, her resolve broke down, and she looked back. Celestia had stopped eating and was watching her little sister with the same tiny smile.

Luna frowned. “What?” she asked.

“Nothing,” Celestia said in a sing-song voice.

The two sisters simply stared at each other, each daring the other to speak- Luna with a glare, and Celestia with her maddening smile. The only noise in the dining hall was the chirping of birds in the garden outside. It wasn’t so much a menacing silence than a continuation of the rivalry that any two immortal siblings would have, if one were secretly trying to dethrone the other. As it turns out, Celestia spoke first.

“She’s cute,” she said in a whisper.

Luna nearly choked. “Excuse me?”

“Your friend; she’s simply adorable,” Celestia elaborated, letting her mischievous grin spread a little further.

Luna was thoroughly confused. Was her sister playing a game with her? Did she actually know anything? Had she heard what happened last night? She swallowed. “What are you talking about?”

Celestia propped her head up with a hoof, putting her elbow on the table, smiling all the while. “Don’t be so shy about it, Luna- I approve. Don’t worry about it!”

Luna’s jaw dropped slightly. She couldn’t possibly be… and yet, she looked completely serious. Luna was silent for several seconds, trying to process this. Celestia took it as her cue to continue, her voice taking on that familiar motherly tone that Luna hated.

“Luna, you’re my sister,” she started, reaching across the table to ruffle her mane. Luna sat completely still, her face still a mask of disbelief. Celestia kept going. “I just want you to be happy- you know that, right? You don’t have to hide anything from me, and I’m not going to judge you. If that’s the path that you want to take, I fully support you.”

Under any other circumstances, Luna would have been on the floor with hysterics. Now, though, she was at a complete loss for words. Celestia kept her genuine, happy smile as she waited for her sister to say something.

Luna’s response was to quietly stand up, push in her chair, and walk out of the dining room to her quarters.


Luna spent the day asleep, as usual. When she awoke, she avoided her sister at the dining hall for dinner, instead requesting that her food be sent up to her quarters. She didn’t want a repeat of that awkward conversation.

Once Celestia had retired to her own room, Luna emerged, delving deep into the castle corridors to gather Trixie from her room, grabbing a tray of pastries from the kitchen on her way over. When Luna reached the unmarked door, she knocked quietly with her hoof. There was a sudden rustling from inside and a smattering of muffled swearing. Luna felt a little guilty- she hoped she hadn’t interrupted anything embarrassing. After a minute, Trixie mumbled, “enter!”

Luna opened the door. Trixie was sitting up on the bed, the covers mostly over her, her face slightly flushed. Luna took a cursory glance around the room, but only found one alteration: a poster of one of the Wonderbolts on the wall. The name ‘Spitfire’ was written under the uniformed mare. Luna looked back at Trixie with a blank look.

“Where did you get that?” Luna asked.

Trixie shifted her eyes. “I brought it with me,” she said quickly. She looked at the pastries. “Are those raspberry?” she asked, changing the subject. Luna nodded. “The Great and Powerful Trixie loves raspberries,” she said, almost sheepishly, grabbing one of the puffs off the plate.

After a quick snack for the both of them, Luna led Trixie through the complicated castle corridors towards the library. Her paranoia guided her around the longest way around that she could find, though she doubted Trixie noticed. Once they reached the doors, Luna once again dismissed the guards and led her accomplice inside, instructing her to secure the door behind them.

Trixie turned around and was about to comply when Luna’s eyes met the sight she had been secretly dreading. Inside the library, on a far table, nestled between stacks of books and what looked like tiny pillows, was a large plate of sandwiches and a smattering of small chocolates. On top of the platter was a tiny sign stuck into the top sandwich that clearly bore the words, “Have fun, you two!” Underneath the words was a small red heart.

Luna immediately turned around and started to walk out of the library. Trixie stared after her.

“Where are you going?!” Trixie asked in a loud whisper.

“Somewhere else,” Luna replied in a flat voice.


The two ended up practicing in Trixie’s borrowed room that night. Three productive nights passed there without incident, but far from comforting Luna, this only served to fuel her latent paranoia. She still wasn’t sure what Celestia knew- if she were actually concerned about whatever she was concerned about, or if she were merely toying with her while she warmed up the straight-to-the-moon spell. Or both. She hadn’t been able to tell the difference a thousand years ago and she sure hadn’t gotten any better at it in the meantime.

She didn’t let that stop her, though. There was work to be done.

“Okay, so you know how to summon simple objects pretty well,” Luna said, beginning their third lesson for that night.

Trixie, as if to prove a point, lit her horn and procured a perfectly smooth glass sphere into the air between them. It fell to the soft carpet. “Yep,” she said.

“And we’ve covered how to materialize more complex objects,” Luna continued, prompting her this time.

Trixie shut her eyes, her horn glowed once again, and after a few seconds, a brilliantly detailed gemstone came into existence. The light from her horn and the candles around them shined through the facets of the jewel, covering the room with radiance. Trixie opened her eyes and grinned devilishly.

Luna let a tiny smile cross her face. “All very good. Now, we’re going to do something more difficult.” Using her own magic, she brought forth from the air a simple box. She levitated it in front of Trixie. “You’re going to teleport out the item in this box.”

Trixie scoffed. “That’s it?”

Luna cocked an eyebrow. “What must one do to teleport an object?”

Trixie thought for a moment, and then her face fell, her grin disappearing. “You have to know what the object is.”

Luna nodded sagely. “Precisely.”

Trixie frowned. “How is this supposed to help me?”

“You never know what skill might come in handy during a fight,” Luna said off-handedly. Trixie looked like she was about to say something in response, but gave up, shutting her eyes and focusing her magic. Luna placed the box on the floor, watching Trixie with anticipation. This spell was tricky, but not overly complicated. The object she had put in the box wasn’t hard to manipulate either, but the mare would need to master this spell before…

Before Luna could finish that thought, there appeared with a flash of light a book between the two unicorns- a book far larger than would have fit in the box. Trixie opened her eyes in confusion at the same time Luna read the title. It was Colts and Fillies, a book infamous for its… racy content. It was often colloquially called, along with other reading materials like it, clop fiction.

Trixie blinked in confusion and her jaw hung open. “Uh…” she stammered.

Luna simply turned and silently beat her head against the wall beside her.


The night of practicing was long and tedious, but fruitful. Trixie wasn’t used to the powerful magic Luna was teaching her, but she was learning fast, which was exactly what Luna had been expecting. The two magicians stopped working around the time when Trixie’s horn started to glow a weird color.

Luna once again avoided Celestia at the breakfast table and had her food sent up to her room. When it arrived, though, it was the exact same plate of sandwiches and chocolates that she had seen in the library. Suddenly not hungry in the slightest, she frowned and pushed the plate away, crawling into bed. She was asleep as soon as her head hit the pillow. She vaguely remembered dreaming of the moon.

As she was accustomed to doing, she awoke at almost exactly dusk. She blinked a few times to get the sleep out of her eyes, and rolled over in her bed to get ready to raise Equestria’s nocturnal satellite and her accompanying stars. To her surprise, she rolled over onto something warm and pony-shaped.

Yelping with surprise, Luna bolted upright and threw off the covers. Lying next to her in bed was a disrobed Trixie, who was looking back up at her with about as much surprise on her face as Luna felt. Neither said anything for a heartbeat, both of their jaws quite agape.

Luna recovered first. “What are you doing in my bed?!” she squeaked.

“What are you doing in my-“ Trixie started, but stopped suddenly when she looked around the room and realized that she wasn’t in her assigned quarters. Both ponies looked at each other again with a disbelieving silence. Trixie was blushing a deep red now that she realized what was going on.

“You didn’t come here on your own?” Luna asked.

Trixie took another look around the room, then down at herself, then back at Luna. “No! Where are my robes? What’s going on?”

Luna still wasn’t quite awake, but she had a pretty good idea of what was going on. “So you don’t know how you got here?” she prodded.

“NO!” Trixie repeated, quite forcefully.

Another moment of awkward silence. Trixie uncomfortably grabbed a hooffull of the sheets and covered herself up a bit.

“Let’s pretend this didn’t happen,” Luna said, blinking.

“Agreed,” Trixie mumbled.

Eager to put the morning- technically evening- behind them, the two quickly left Luna’s quarters. Now that Luna knew that Celestia knew where Trixie had been living in the castle, she made a mental note to find her a new room. In the meantime, though, they two would need a new practice space, and Luna thought she knew just the place. There was a balcony loft that she knew for a fact was unoccupied. It was a special room, usually reserved for when Celestia wanted to address her subjects in the most public manner possible, which wasn’t often nowadays. Before Luna had been banished, she remembered it seeing frequent use. Times had indeed changed.

Stopping only to gather their spell books, the two made their way up the winding flights of stairs. Upon reaching the top, Luna opened the door to find the room exactly the way she had remembered it. Nice, quiet, and private.

The two unicorns got settled, as they were now used to doing. Luna levitated one of the books and flipped to a dog-eared page. “So, we left off on barrier spells…” she began.

“When she’s gone, what will you do?” Trixie interrupted.

“Come again?” Luna asked.

“That ridiculous unicorn,” Trixie clarified. “Once she’s out of the picture, what’s your plan?”

Luna looked at the mare thoughtfully. At one point she might have hesitated in telling her this, but she had grown to trust her during her admittedly short visit. Plus, she was helping her- what harm could it do? “Celestia,” she said. “Celestia is next. This kingdom will be mine again.”

“Sounds pretty vengeful,” Trixie noted lightly.

“Says the mare that’s still focusing on one failed show,” Luna pointed out.

“Says the princess who’s focusing on something that happened a thousand years ago,” Trixie countered.

Luna was about to respond in kind when she realized Trixie had a point. They were both after something rather shallow and vain, weren’t they? And yet neither of them had really stopped and considered the consequences of the actions they were about to take. Luna looked into the younger mare’s eyes with a fresh understanding that she hadn’t expected. Perhaps there was more they could both learn from the other.

Luna’s deep thoughts were interrupted by a knock at the door. Luna swore quietly and lightly hit her head on the wall beside her.

“Girls?” a sing-song voice came from the other side of the door. “Are you in there?”

“Celestia, I swear to-“ Luna said, but the door opened before she could finish. Celestia popped her head into the room with a huge smile on her face.

“Oh, hello!” she said cheerily. “Don’t mean to interrupt! Just wanted to see if I could get you girls anything,” she said, still smiling broadly. Luna gave her her best glare.

“Celestia…” Luna mumbled.

“Now, don’t be rude, Luna,” Celestia responded. “Ask your friend if she wants anything.”

“Celestia,” Luna said, more forcefully.

“Whatcha studying?” Celestia asked, peeking her head around to look at the books.

“Celly!” Luna shouted, shoving her sister back through the doorway with her head. Once she was outside the doorframe, Luna shut and locked the door. She took a few deep breaths and then turned back to Trixie with a deadpan look on her face.

“Point taken,” Trixie said quietly.


Luna, exhausted from the night’s work, once again prepared to bed down for the duration of the day. She opened the large window that dominated one side of her quarters to let the fresh dawn air fill the room. She took a deep breath and savored it- the balcony loft had gotten quite stuffy after so many diligent hours. Trixie was absorbing her lessons almost as fast as she could think of them. They had perhaps one more night of studies before Luna felt the unicorn was ready to perform her mission. One more night, she thought, turning away from the window and approaching her bed. She could surely keep her sister out of the way for one more night.

Seemingly in response to that thought, Luna heard a rustling behind her, on the other side of her room. It sounded almost as if somepony had come through her window. Luna sighed and closed her eyes as she felt a headache coming on.

“What, Celestia?” she asked, turning around. Celestia was indeed perched on her open windowsill.

“Now, now, Luna,” Celestia cooed. “No need to be grumpy with me.”

“Why are you doing this?” Luna asked, narrowing her eyes.

“I’m just looking out for my little sister!” Celestia said, climbing down from the windowsill. “Is that such a crime?”

Luna gave Celestia her best glare, but said nothing. The white alicorn trotted cheerily to Luna’s bed, flopping down on it with a soft flump. She looked back up at Luna. “There’s something to be said about being a good host, you know,” she said, playing with the sheets with a hoof. “Though, it was nice of you to give her her own room and all. Shows respect for her privacy.”

Luna continued her silent glare. Celestia continued, oblivious.

“You could certainly have asked me to procure a better room, certainly- but I understand! You’re taking this gently. Slowly. I can appreciate that. Give her the old razzle dazzle. It works, sometimes. Sometimes it doesn’t- who knows with these performer types?”

Luna thought she knew where her sister was going with this, but kept her glare up. Celestia took a tiny pause in her diatribe and levitated a sandwich from the tray that Luna had left untouched near her bedside. She took a bite and spoke around the food.

“Though, dear, you might not want to leave her waiting too long. That’s rude.”

Luna’s glare dropped to a flat expression. “Celly, we’re not-“

“Oh, don’t give me that,” the alicorn countered lightly. “You can’t hide anything from me, dear.”

Luna resisted the urge to sigh. There was no way she was getting out of the conversation. She decided to take the easy way out. “Obviously not,” the alicorn grumbled.


Celestia gave her sister a beaming grin, her point made. “That’s the spirit,” she said, getting up off the bed and magically opening the door out of the bedroom. Just as she was about to leave, she turned and looked back at Luna. “Be gentle with her. She’s kind of temperamental,” she said slyly. With that, Celestia walked past the threshold, the door closing behind her.

Luna hit her head on the closest wall.


This was it- the final night. Luna had picked a room as far away from her previous choices as she possibly could, to hopefully throw Celestia off. Luna looked on expectantly at Trixie as she closed her eyes and tried to perform the last spell for the night. If the performer could do it, then she had learned all that Luna could teach her- all that she needed to know to kill Twilight. It had been over a week of nonstop practicing and drilling and planning, and it was all coming to fruition right before Luna’s eyes.

Trixie started to take on a peculiar glow as she focused her magic. Her horn positively lit up the room, it was becoming so bright. The blue unicorn mumbled something under her breath that Luna didn’t hear. Without warning, the mare disappeared in a flash of light. Luna smiled at the space that she had previously occupied, now covered in wisps of smoke. She- they- had done it.

“I did it!” Trixie shouted from where she had successfully teleported - the other side of the room, near the balcony window. Luna turned around to see Trixie on her hooves, looking around in awe at her achievement. With the moonlight highlighting her form against the blackened sky, Trixie almost looked the same as she had the night she had broken into the castle grounds- but much happier.

“And thus endeth the lesson for tonight,” Luna said contentedly.

Trixie stamped a hoof on the ground in approval and whinnied. “Damn straight! There’s nothing that little unicorn can do to stop me now!”

Luna gave the blue mare a wide smile. “There’s one last thing we need to discuss,” she said.  All that remained now was to fill Trixie in on the exact details of how she would carry out her assignment. Luna had been obscuring the details of this intentionally up until now, just in case, despite Trixie’s protests. Now that their lessons were over…

Luna’s heart skipped a beat when Trixie moved away from the window. Past the balcony railing, she saw the unmistakable silhouette of a horned, winged figure with a long, flowing mane, just out of sight. Celestia was here, watching them.

Luna tried to keep her face impassive, but inside she was panicking. Not now. Not now, when she was so close. Her mind raced. She needed to get her sister away from that window for ten minutes. Ten minutes was all she needed. She knew her sibling, and she wasn’t going to be able to chase her off again; she’d just come back. Celestia needed to leave on her own.

Luna swallowed, and her heart fell into her stomach. She knew exactly what her sister was waiting for the two of them to do. She looked at Trixie’s advancing form, hoping against hope that her hastily-constructed idea would be enough. Trixie was not going to like this. Here goes nothing.

As Trixie walked the final steps towards Luna, the elder mare indicated silently that she should sit, which she did. Once Trixie was close enough, Luna put her snout gently against the blue unicorn’s ear and gently nuzzled it.

“Celestia is in the window,” Luna whispered softly.

Trixie, taken aback by both the unexpected gesture and the news, almost pulled away from Luna, but the alicorn lightly grabbed her ear with her teeth to stop her. Trixie took only a second to absorb the news, and then pulled her head back, seemingly understanding the gravity of the situation. “What do we do, then?” Trixie whispered back nervously.

“We need to get her to leave,” Luna replied softly. Trixie paused, unsure of what to do. “Just pretend I’m Spitfire for a minute,” Luna elaborated. To Trixie’s credit, as corny as Luna’s encouragement had seemed to her, the blue mare took the hint without much hesitation and relaxed her posture. Her face had taken on a slight shade of red.

Luna faltered, though. She was so out of practice that she wasn’t sure she could make this look convincing. Plus, Trixie was a mare. Luna would have to fake this like she’d never faked before. Just take it slow, she encouraged herself.

Luna continued her nuzzling motion under and around Trixie’s ear, massaging the side of her head with her snout. She alternated between rubbing that spot and kneading the underside of Trixie’s neck. Every few moments she would nip a little at Trixie’s ear, which, after a few rounds, began to elicit soft moans from the blue mare. To her surprise, Luna could feel Trixie’s face getting redder and redder. She hadn’t expected that. She felt a little guilty for doing this to her, but she was sure the unicorn understood what was at stake. Though Luna wouldn’t admit it, her guilt was alleviated slightly by the sheer virtue of the fact that she was either apparently doing a decent job or that Trixie was a remarkably good faker.

Luna stole a quick glance towards the window. She still saw the shadow of her sister watching them. It dawned on her that this would get awkward quickly if Celestia had no plans to leave, but Luna liked to think her sister had some sense of dignity. Time to continue.

“I’m going to kiss you,” Luna whispered quietly, mostly as a forewarning. Trixie’s eyebrows shot up even as her eyes remained closed, as if she had been awoken from a trance. All Luna got in response was a soft hum and a nod from the blue mare.

The alicorn stopped her nuzzling and brought her lips experimentally to Trixie’s. Their height difference made the movement a little awkward at first, which Luna solved by backing up a bit from her student. The heat coming from the performer’s face was very apparent now. She hadn’t been sure what to expect Trixie to taste like, but Luna thought she tasted a tiny hint of blueberries. Trixie didn’t reciprocate the kiss at first, but slowly, gradually began to push back on Luna’s lips with her own. The princess had no idea if she was doing her part correctly, but Trixie seemed to be enjoying it just fine. Luna kept it up for the better part of a minute before Trixie offered her tongue. Luna was surprised by the gesture, but accepted it. Their makeout session intensified. After another minute, Luna broke the kiss.

“What was that about?” she asked quietly, taking another glance at the window. Celestia was still there.

“Authenticity,” Trixie cooed, nuzzling Luna’s neck as the alicorn had done previously.

Luna resisted the urge to shrug. Her sister was being very persistent- it was probably time to look a little more serious about what they were doing. She looked down at her student. Her face was now bright red. She looked further up, and eyed Trixie’s horn warily. This she did have some experience in, but it had been so long since she had practiced it that, in this case, she was even more unsure of how to proceed. Here goes some more nothing.

Luna gently brushed Trixie’s horn with her snout, which caused the mare to tense her body slightly. Luna repeated the action a few times until Trixie seemed used to it, then gave the appendage a light lick. Trixie sighed with pleasure, and involuntarily ducked her head a little. Luna took that as her signal to proceed. She gave the shaft another lick, stronger this time. Trixie almost shivered.  Luna looked up for just a moment to the window, and saw the sight she had been hoping for- the figure was turning away from the balcony! Just a few more seconds…

“Wait,” Trixie said suddenly, forcefully. “Wait a second.”

Luna’s heart skipped a beat as the figure in the window paused, and turned back to the castle. No! Not now! I’m so close! “What?” Luna hissed.

The blue mare had already stood up before Luna could stop her. Her eyes were focused oddly, her breathing was irregular, and she looked angry. Her blush had spread across her entire face. “I see what’s going on here!”

“Trixie, sit down!” Luna whispered loudly, hoping to salvage the situation, but already instinctively knew that her plan had just fallen through the floor. At the very last second. Amazing.

The mare narrowed her gaze dangerously, her tone absolutely furious as she unsuccessfully tried to wipe her horn clean with a hoof. “You’ve been planning this all along! You and your sister have set this all up so you can get me into bed!”

Luna’s face dropped into utter disbelief. “What-“

“Do you think the Great and Powerful Trixie is stupid?!” Trixie continued. “You don’t care about getting revenge on Twilight! You don’t care about teaching me magic! All you wanted was Trixie’s Great and Powerful bits!

Luna blinked in confusion. “Why would I want your mone-“

“I’m…” Trixie started, but her face scrunched up with anger before she could finish. “Insulted!” she managed. “It was a mistake coming here!” With that, the blue magician turned away from Luna and lit her still-moist horn with magic. “I expect my things to be mailed by morning!” she screeched. With that, Trixie disappeared in the flash of magical light that Luna had just taught her, leaving small contrails of smoke where she had stood just a moment ago.

Luna was left staring blankly at the spot, wondering how her until-then perfect plan had fallen apart in thirty seconds. She blinked. Yep, Trixie was gone. That had just happened. She was too surprised to be angry. She was too surprised to be upset. She was just confused.

From behind her, Luna heard soft hoofbeats as Celestia approached. Luna didn’t turn to face her.

“I’m so sorry, Luna,” Celestia said in a voice that contained no sorrow whatsoever. “Sometimes things happen. She really wasn’t your type, anyway.”

Luna let her head hit the floor.