Trixie groaned and stretched as she woke up. Her legs felt like lead. Opening her eyes revealed a familiar ceiling. It was the middle of the night, a half moon providing only just enough light to see by. Trixie wondered if she could go more than a week without passing out anytime soon. She glanced up as if to see her own forehead, and focused for a moment. Sure enough, a pale blue light emanated from her horn.
"Hah hah!" she shouted in excitement. A murmur caught her attention. She looked over and found Fluttershy asleep on her stool, just like a week ago. Trixie smiled and chuckled. She gazed on at Fluttershy for a moment, before a small part of her reminded her of her situation. Her smile turned into a deep frown. She forced herself out of bed on the far side from Fluttershy.
"I've taken enough from you." Trixie whispered. Her horn continued to glow as she enveloped Fluttershy in a magical aura. She gently lifted Fluttershy from her seat and pulled back the covers. She slid Fluttershy into bed, tucking her in.
"I'm sorry Fluttershy. I can't keep you with me." she paused, and then on impulse leaned over the bed. She bent down and kissed Fluttershy's forehead, lingering for a moment. The pegasus mumbled in her sleep and smiled. Trixie leaned back, walked around the bed, and headed out the door.
She cast herself enough light to see by as she lowered herself down the steps. She was nearly to the door when she saw an all too familiar silhouette on the windowsill. Angel hopped down and towards her. He got between her and the door.
"You know where I'm going, hmm?" Trixie asked. "That was the deal. I'm better now, Angel. Emotional block, heh." she smiled sadly. "I can't just stay here forever. I know how she feels, but how could it be? I have no home here." she lifted the bunny aside magically. Angel flailed about, glaring at her, but it was no use. Trixie had her power back, and that meant she had no more place for another pony in her life. That was what her memories told her, at least. So she opened the door and walked out into the night.
The walk into Ponyville seemed longer than ever in the night. Trixie found her steps heavy and couldn't keep her pace up. She gazed at the stars. When had the nights gotten so cold?
"Perhaps I am still tired. I should wait until...no, no. It has to be tonight. Oh why did I have to-"
"Trixie? That you?" a voice came out of the darkness. Trixie looked up, and Applejack stepped into the light she was giving off.
"What...what are you doing here?" Trixie asked. Applejack looked away.
"Ah couldn' sleep, not after that. Ah wanted t' make sure you an' Fluttershy were okay. What...you weren't leavin', were you?"
"You said it yourself." Trixie replied. "I cannot keep 'leaning' on Fluttershy. She deserves...better."
"Better? Better?" Applejack looked as if Trixie had just admitted she was Princess Luna's mother or something. She shook her head. "Beggin' yer pardon, but Ah think y' don't have it quite right. Ah would know, after all, if'n there's somethin' Ah've learned after tonight, it's that it can be easier t' lie t' yerself than to others. Ah...Ah was wrong about you."
"I....really? But I still, I mean, no, you were right. I shouldn't have just taken so much..."
"Sugarcube, maybe you missed it, but you've given Fluttershy a whole lot more than you took."
"Ah ain't never seen her like tonight, not even las' time she faced a dragon. When Ah ran ya out of Sugarcube Corner - which Ah'm mighty sorry for - she blew up like a firework at th' Summer Sun Festival. Ah don' think Ah've ever seen anything like it."
"I..." Trixie had forgotten what Twilight had said earlier. "But that still doesn't-"
"Lissen, ya know why Ah came wi' the others to get the two of you? We hurt each other, but Fluttershy an' I are still friends. Y' don't abandon your friends. That's why she ran into the Everfree forest for ya, an' from the looks of things righ' into th' dragon's maw for ya too. She did that for us too, but only at the las' minute. Ah've never seen her run towards danger, not for anypony. You gave her strength, Trixie, put somethin' fierce inside her. A bit 'f pride too I reckon, but all the same. An' Rainbow kept babblin' about you two bein', well..." Applejack trailed off, and Trixie blushed despite herself. Of course Dash wouldn't keep her mouth shut about that. As she thought about it, Trixie knew why Dash's blurting out of the situation wasn't any surprise. Trixie had grown familiar with the other pony; she had grown familiar with a number of ponies.
"Ah know y' had a life out there, an' Ah can't say Ah blame you for wantin' it back. But, if'n you wanted...there's a life for you here too, Trixie. Y'got friends here, y'know? Y'got... y'got... Ah'm no good at this, Ah'm sorry."
"A life...here." the idea was one Trixie had simply assumed would never be. Without needing to buy a new carriage, her savings alone could last her a couple years, maybe rent herself someplace small. There was always demand for a showmare in whatever town she visited, entertainment hard to come by, and this one was no different. She could work Ponyville as a regular gig, maybe branch out her act. And she had friends here. The insanity that seemed to follow this group, part of her own daily life? The adventure, the excitement, the stories she'd have to tell!
"I..I could stay here."
"We'd love to have ya."
Trixie smiled. "You're right. Thank you, Applejack."
"Ain't no thing." Applejack tipped her hat. "Hey. How come Ah don' hear you callin' yerself yer own name all the time?"
Trixie blinked. "I..." she only then realized she had done just as Applejack said, and hadn't referred to herself by name since the dragon's cave. She chuckled.
"When I was still a filly." Trixie told Applejack. "I figured if I told myself I was Great and Powerful enough times, it would come true. Silly, isn't it?"
"Not really." Applejack smiled back. "Worked, didn' it?"
"I guess...I guess I'm finally happy with who I am." Trixie said. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I should go before I'm missed."
Applejack chuckled. "Good night to ya." with that, they parted ways, each heading back to their home.
Trixie awoke early the next morning. She had been too anxious to sleep, and had only gotten a couple fitful hours rest in the end. She awoke to the rapid clatter of hooves on wood, and raised her head from the couch she had slept on. Fluttershy had run down the stairs, eyes wide, a small brown parcel on her back. She was visibly relieved by the sight of Trixie.
"Trixie, I...I was so worried..."
"Fluttershy...we need to talk." Trixie slid off the couch, but stopped and blinked at the parcel. "What's that?"
"I...I, um, wanted to give you these after the party...I was scared you had left."
Trixie shook her head. "No. What...?" Fluttershy placed the parcel before her. She undid it magically, taking care with whatever Fluttershy had found so important. The brown paper came undone and Trixie gasped. There, folded neatly, were her hat and cape. She almost didn't recognize them - they were pristine, vivid purple, and the stars sparkled like gemstones.
"I had Rarity fix them, I hope you like it...I'm sorry they weren't there before..." Fluttershy smiled. Trixie felt her eyes water.
"Fluttershy, I...oh Fluttershy!" Trixie leaped forward, wrapping Fluttershy in a hug, pressing her lips against the other mare's. She didn't even realize what she was doing until she began to slip her tongue past Fluttershy's lips. She stopped herself in an instant and drew away, face hot and flushed.
"I-I'm sorry, I didn't mean to-"
"Sssh." Fluttershy responded it gently. Trixie stopped, eyes widening.
"Ssh." the pegasus repeated, brushing her cheek. She leaned in, her warm breath on Trixie's face. Trixie looked into her eyes, those eyes that had always told her so much. Now they told her an entire story, the story of her own future. It promised to be exciting, even a little frightening, but full of joy. A future full of adventure and drama, where every day would be a story in itself. A future they could share together. Trixie's lips parted readily and she let Fluttershy kiss her. Fluttershy was soft, but not too timid. There was surprising passion in the mare, once one dug deep enough. What had Applejack told Trixie? That she had given Fluttershy strength? Apparently so, as Fluttershy began to put more force into the kiss, becoming more adventurous. Trixie was chuckling on the inside. The pegasus was adventurous to be sure, but inexperienced, much less so compared to Trixie herself. She decided now was as good a time as any to start repaying Fluttershy for her kindness, giving instead of taking.
Fluttershy was startled but open to french kissing, and Trixie eventually moved on to show her the sensitive spots behind a pony's ears, and down her neck - all first-hoof of course. She managed to get Fluttershy on the couch, where they were free to embrace one another without having to balance on their back legs. Trixie couldn't remember how much time passed, how much they did, but every second was bliss, and when they were finished both ponies were exhausted. Trixie found herself on top of Fluttershy as both rested on the couch, cuddling one another despite the heat between them. Trixie still felt vaguely giddy from it all.
"I see what you meant now." Trixie told Fluttershy with a grin. Fluttershy gave her a questioning blink.
"This is kindness's reward, isn't it?"
Fluttershy giggled. "Oh, not usually."
Trixie laughed in return, nuzzling against Fluttershy. "I-" she was interrupted by a knock on the front door. Trixie blinked and reluctantly slid off of Fluttershy. She got the door for her, and was met by an explosion of streamers. She reared back as a certain pink pony followed the explosion of colored paper that showered Trixie.
"Where are you guys? Come on, the party's about to start."
"Party? We just-"
"The party last night got interrupted by grumpy mcgrumpypants and saddy mcsadpants. Hehe, that makes you sound like cousins! Boy, I wish I had cousins, but-"
Trixie just stared at her. "What are you going on about?"
"So we're having an emergency party-replacement party! I broke out the emergency streamers, the emergency cake, the emergency party favors, but not the emergency kit Mrs. Cake has, even though the bandages are so much fun! So many colors and they stick to my nose and make me as colorful as a pinata! Ohmygosh I need an emergency pinata!" she was all over the place, bouncing between overly sugary-sweet and dead serious. Trixie could just watch her.
"Hey! Why are you guys so sweaty?" Pinkie asked, making both ponies jump.
"A party sounds lovely, thank you. Why don't you go ahead and let the others know we'll be right along." Trixie said quickly, getting behind Pinkie Pie and shooing her away.
"Oh, okay. You sure you guys are okay-"
"Fine, fine." Trixie told her, forcing the persistent pink pest out the door. She sighed and wiped her brow as Pinkie Pie took her oh-so-subtle hint and bounced off. Trixie turned back to Fluttershy and smiled.
"Are you okay, after..."
"Come now, we're talking about the Great and Powerful..." Trixie chuckled. "Sorry. Old habits."
"It's okay. I think..." Fluttershy blushed. "I think it's...cute."
"Cute? Cute? You think I'm...cute." Trixie laughed. "I shall show you cute, dear Fluttershy." she gathered her magic, and Fluttershy blinked as she was swept off her hooves. Trixie brought the pegasus to her, reaching up to brush Fluttershy's hair back and kiss her nose. Fluttershy giggled, curling up like a small child as she floated weightless.
"Shall I carry you like this to the Sugarcube?" she asked, teasing gently. Fluttershy giggled again, shaking her head. Trixie smiled and let Fluttershy down gently.
"I, um, forgot to ask...your magic?"
"I..." Trixie looked away. "Twilight was right. I didn't want it."
"At first? I imagine I felt I didn't deserve it. Then...I didn't want to leave you."
"That is something to discuss another time." Trixie responded, feeling about as eager as Fluttershy was to engage this topic. "Now come, before Pinkie Pie comes back to drag us there herself!" And with that, the two mares headed for the door.
"Oh, wait!" Trixie turned back and looked around the room. Some time during their intimacy she had felt it fall loose.
"Where'd it-oh hello." Trixie saw Angel off to the side, tapping his foot impatiently.
"Erm...you saw all that, didn't you?" Trixie asked. She wasn't sure why she cared what a rabbit thought, but it was Angel after all, and that was different somehow. The bunny rolled his eyes at her and held up something from behind his back. It was the feather.
"Oh, thank you." Trixie said, slightly awkward. She lifted the feather, and took her hat and cape out from the paper where she had left them. She put them on and felt like a piece of her had been restored. Then, lifting the feather up, she stuck it through her hat, using magic to bind it to the weave, never to fall out. There; now, finally, she was complete. She turned back to the door, seeing Fluttershy waiting, smiling both literally and with her eyes. With those eyes, no words were needed. Trixie got back to her and they headed towards the waiting party.
"There's the mare of th' hour!" Applejack greeted Trixie as she walked into Sugarcube corner. She gave Trixie what was probably meant to be a friendly slap on the back; Trixie was pretty sure her spine was rearranged by the hit. She tried to grin at the earth pony.
"Yes, well, thank you." she moved away slightly from Applejack. She looked to Fluttershy on her other side and quickly rolled her eyes, which got her a stifled giggle from the pegasus.
"So...how are th' two of you?"
"Oh, fine, fine." Trixie said. Applejack gave her a look, but Trixie kept up a coy smile and walked into the party. She spied Twilight and headed for her, wishing to discuss magic with the other unicorn after last night. It occurred to Trixie she had one up on the mare now, what with that dragon ordeal behind her. It was amazing how little that mattered to her.
Unfortunately, Trixie found herself intercepted before she got to Twilight. Pinkie Pie was babbling to her before she even registered the party pony's presence.
"-and I made a whole new thing of punch before they even knew! But her mane never did grow back." Pinkie Pie looked to her. Trixie blinked.
"What do you think of the party?" Pinkie asked. Trixie looked around. Dozens of ponies chatting, dancing to the music, sharing punch and treats, and-
"It's quite...is that a stage?" Trixie's eyes widened. A rickety wooden platform was set up against the wall, a lamp hanging from above, pointed down like a spotlight.
"Oh, I just set that up in case anypony felt like karaoke, or telling a story, or putting on a show..."
"Really?" Trixie gave her a look.
"I think that sounds...nice." Fluttershy said from behind. Trixie turned and saw her smile.
"You want me to...?" she looked around. Twilight had noticed them and approached, and Rainbow Dash came over as well.
"Don't you guys wanna see Trixie tell a story?" Pinkie Pie asked. Twilight's eyes lit up.
"That sounds like a great idea!"
"Yeah!" Dash piped in. "That last story was awesome!"
"You all want me to...?"
"Is Trixie going to tell another story?" It was the orange filly from last time pushing through the legs of the others. "Your stories are always cool! Like Rainbow Dash cool!"
"Cool it kiddo." Dash chuckled. "But that Ursa Minor story made Twilight sound cool. Twilight!"
"Thanks." Twilight quipped. Rarity and Applejack had spotted their bundle of friends and came over. Trixie found herself surrounded by smiling faces.
"What's up everypony?" Applejack asked.
"Trixie's gonna tell another story!" Pinkie Pie said, making Trixie's mind up for her. Trixie flinched and glanced to Applejack.
"Well, now don't that sound like a right nice idea." she tipped her hat. Trixie smiled and nodded.
"Alright, alright. I know just the story." Trixie walked towards the stage. Ponies saw her, glanced to the stage, and she found them parting before her. By the time she got up onto the wooden platform and turned around, she found everypony's eyes on her. Trixie smiled. This was where she belonged. Her eyes searched for Fluttershy, near the back, before she got started.
"Let me tell you the story of the.... of the Maiden and the Mage." she told the crowd, pacing slowly. Her horn began to glow, and a fog began to collect from nowhere. The stage creaked underfoot, shifting, growing, becoming sturdier and more proper with every step of her hooves. The fog began so spread over the stage, refusing to disperse into the crowd, hiding Trixie from them. Trixie hid the glow of her horn by tipping her hat forward and collected the fog into a solid wall. On it, she painted scenes of light, simple but beautiful, like the pictures in a story book.
"In a delicate, forested land..." Trixie narrated, showing what she told against the fog. "There lived a maiden, as wise as Celestia herself, charged with protection of a small hamlet." she painted the scene of a small castle and tiny thatched-roof town, placing in the foreground a pegasus mare with a long, flowing mane. "The maiden watched over all in her lands, from ponies to creatures both greater and lesser. She brought peace to all she passed, and kept a court of the wisest and strongest ponies in all Equestria"
"Then, one day, a wandering mage came to the maiden's lands." she depicted a blue unicorn in a cloak, throwing a staff on the mare's back to add to the fantasy. She had the mare walk towards the castle.
"The mage was strong and well-spoken, and earned an audience with the maiden." she shifted the scene to a throne room, putting the maiden on the throne and surrounding her with five other mares. "But the mage was haughty, and challenged the maiden's court. The maiden's most trusted landowner, a farmer known for her hard work and simple wisdom, stepped forward to rise to the challenge, but the mage turned her tools against her and swept her aside." she wrapped up the earth pony and had the unicorn advance forward. "Next the maiden's bravest and most loyal knight stepped forward, but the maiden summoned a storm to combat her, refusing to truly engage the knight." for effect, Trixie blew a wind through the cloud, keeping care to hold the fog she was using in place. "The maiden's seamstress was next to admonish her - many would consider it a lowly profession, but the maiden knew of the seamstress's impeccable eye and valued her attention to detail and art. But the haughty mage tore down the seamstress's pride, ruining her prized work. It looked as if the mage was as powerful as she claimed."
"All the while," Trixie lowered her voice, just enough to make ponies lean in and pay closer attention. "Another of the maiden's advisors watched on. A wise sage, young of heart but with a wisdom far beyond her years. She allowed the mage to talk herself up, refusing to engage in such a prideful and foalish display as the mage was calling for. So the mage left the maiden's court, assured of her superiority, her victory."
"What the mage wasn't aware of was that while the maiden's lands were peaceful, they bordered a dark woods that ponies dared not venture into. This dark woods was sensitive to the evils that lurked in a pony's heart. The mage's power and pride did not go unnoticed, and the forest sent a beast forth to challenge her, to steal her power. The beast was all teeth and claws, coming in the night, rampaging across the maiden's lands. The mage rose to the challenge, planning to prove that she could offer better protection to the land than the maiden ever could." Trixie painted a dark scene, keeping the beast mostly unseen, just a giant toothy jaw with red eyes. Ponies' imagination could always scare them far better than she could "But the beast was prepared for a mage, and the mare's spells fell uselessly into the darkness surrounding the beast. The beast crept further and further, and the mage's tirade of spells did nothing to diminish its hunger for the mage's power."
"And then..." Trixie brought her voice down to a whisper. She extinguished every light in the room, let her scene fade, and put the crowd into total darkness. Next, she removed her hat, allowing the bluish glow to grow brighter and brighter, cutting through the fog, the crowd drawing a collective gasp of awe.
"Out stepped the sage." Trixie said, allowing the words a moment to stand on their own. A quite entrance could inspire awe where a loud one would only startle. She drew two red eyes behind her on the fog, giving the impression the beast was staring the crowd down. She placed between them and the eyes a single unicorn with a mane like the night sky,
"The sage stepped by the mage, ignoring her cries that magic was useless." Trixie brought the blue unicorn into scene, making her mime calling out to the sage. "The mage could only look on in awe as the sage summoned the winds to do her bidding, distracting the beast from its prey, addling it. Resident and beast alike gave tribute to the sage to try and slake the beast's hunger.." She magically shook the planks of the stage, adding a rumble as if they were in the midst of the storm or stampede. "The beast fought back, refusing to be distracted by the sage's attempts, raging against her forces. Her hoof forced, the sage was not concerned in the least, and in a grand feat of magic to rival the raising of the sun itself the sage lifted the beast and flung it back to the dark forest from whence it came, never to return!" she stamped her hooves, playing up the echo, and let the red eyes behind her wink out. She gazed over the crowd. Every last jaw hung slack, every pony leaned in to capture her next word.
"The mage, incensed and embarrassed, refused the sage's help after the fact. She had never seen such power, and then the sage, having defeated such a mighty beast, turned to the town it had ravaged and got to work clearing and aiding its ponies, alongside the rest of the maiden's court and the maiden herself. She required nor requested praise for such an act, despite doing more than the mage had ever imagined. The mage fled the town, shamed to find her power so useless, her words so empty."
"But our story does not end there." Trixie assured the crowd. "The mage had meant to run into the wooded glade of the maiden's land, where she could rest and recuperate. In her blind anger, however, she ran until she found the very dark woods that had tried to capture her." Trixie flashed up pictures of trees like hooked claws, lighting up dozens of red eyes to blink at the crowd. She decided to go direct here, and began to play the role of the mage as she narrated her own ordeals.
"The forest fought to claim it's prize, clawing at the mage at every turn!" Trixie leaped to the side as she brought down the shadow of a tree "The mage was still feisty, but the forest had her trapped at every turn." she brought a coil of dark smoke around her that she pretended to rear up to avoid. "The mage fought for night after night, refusing the forest. If it could not have her in life, the forest would have her death, and the mage found hopes of escape vanishing with every passing night." she swept shadows across her, making sure to flinch at every one. She got onto her knees, and allowed a large shadow to dart over her before collapsing on her front.
"The mage was done for." she whispered from the ground, closing her eyes. "Her magic exhausted, her body more so. The forest had won. She lay herself down and prepared for death. Coldness and darkness swept over her..." once more she hid her horn, plunging the crowd into darkness. She waited, counting the seconds in her head, and then sprung up.
"And then came the maiden!" she cried out, her horn glowing brightly enough to be seen through her hat. She swept the fog around her, disappearing from view, and the light became muted. She brought more lights up for the crowd, but kept the brightest in front of them, drawing on it the maiden with the flowing mane descending to where a broken unicorn lay prostrate on a dark ground.
"The forest was sensitive to the evils of a pony's heart. And for that reason it could not touch the maiden, no matter how hard it tried, for hers was a heart as pure as the sun is bright. The maiden may not have had the power of her sage or her knights, but she held within her a light that could guide a pony back from the realm of the dead itself! The mage was not there yet, but ever so close, as the maiden picked her up and carried her back herself. She would not risk another pony in the dark forest, and she refused to let the mage die. She was charged with the protection of all ponies under her land, and when she had learned of the mage's mistake in escape she could not let it be. She returned the mage to her home, and began to heal her. For anypony else, the mage was already dead, yet the maiden could touch the poor pony's heart and remind her she was alive when she herself forgot. The maiden, with all her duties and all she cared for, found time to spend by the mage's side, refusing to see any fall under her care, even one most wicked as the mage had been."
" 'Why?' The mage asked her once. The maiden smiled and told her, 'Because it is right.' Refusing this, the mage asked again, 'Why?' 'Because it is right,' the maiden responded. And once more the mage refused. A third time she asked, 'Why? Why aid me, me who has brought such terror to your lands? Why care for me, even after you have returned me from death's door? Why do you care?' And once more, the maiden smiled, and with the tenderness of a mother she told the mage 'Because it is right.'"
"The mage grew healthy again under the maiden's guiding hoof. She was not loved by the court, but in time they grew to know her, and she them. There was strength in each of them; the knight's intense loyalty to her maiden nearly got the mage killed." Trixie stopped herself from giving a dry chuckle, trying not to kill the mood. "The seamstress, with her detailed eye, even saw something growing inside the mage. Something that the maiden had brought out of her, though she knew it not."
"But before the mage could discover this, the dark forest struck again. It could not touch the maiden, but it found one who could, a dragon greedy and terrible. One night the dragon came to the maiden's castle, and stole her from the court as they slept. Only the mage was awake, kept by the maiden's side as she healed. The mage panicked and spied the dragon heading for the forest. She called for a messenger to alert the court, but could not wait! Into the woods she ran, guided by a force more powerful than magic, a force more ancient than the forest itself!" Trixie allowed the performance to lighten a little more, throwing contrast on the shadowy trees that dominated her scene.
"The mage found the dragon in his cave, preparing to feast on the maiden. She did not hesitate, and stormed into the cave, demanding the maiden's release. She offered herself, body and soul, in replace for the maiden's life. The forest compelled the dragon to accept, for the mage's life would serve its nefarious deeds far better than the maiden's death. The mage submitted, but to her surprise the maiden did not."
"'Not without you' the maiden said, refusing to leave the dragon. 'I cannot leave without you.'"
" 'Why?' The mage asked, fearing the dragon would take them both. She looked into the maiden's eyes, and realized why. The maiden knew that if she stayed, she would fail all the citizens under her care. But the mage, as she had healed and learned the wisdom of the maiden's court, had taken something from the maiden. Something she never meant to take, but would never abandon. She had taken the maiden's heart."
"The mage understood. She understood why the maiden cared, why the sage was so powerful, why she stood now against a dragon. A force more powerful than magic guided them both, a force more ancient than the trees. Love, my ponies. The maiden had taught the mage to love."
"The love inside her fueled the mage's magic, and she broke free of the dragon, defending the maiden. The dragon's fire could not burn them, nor could its claws touch them." She depicted the fire almost too realistically, sending the audience leaning away as she drew two ponies facing down the terrible dragon. "And the two of them fled the forest, the forest that now could not touch the mage, not with the love in her heart. They fled, and returned safely to the maiden's court."
"There is one last part to the tale, my friends. For her service, the maiden offered the mage new robes, the finest crafted, to bring jealousy to Celestia herself. But that greedy, selfish mage, who had stolen the maiden's heart, she wanted something more. She stood before the maiden and said," Trixie got up on two hooves, and created a spotlight she pointed into the crowd. The crowd was shocked and all turned to face the center of the spotlight - Fluttershy. Fluttershy herself simply looked on, incredulous.
"Maiden, oh my dear maiden!" Trixie cried, real tears in her eyes. She stretched out a hoof to Fluttershy, who timidly began to approach her. "I pledge myself to you, my fair maiden. I will be yours until my coat grows white and my magic fades, and then I shall be yours still. Tell me you will have me, tell me I have a home in which to hang my cape and to rest this weary heart!" Fluttershy reached up, and Trixie helped her onto the stage. Fluttershy held herself steady by resting her hooves on Trixie's shoulders. Trixie searched her face, and smiled at what she saw.
"And to that the maiden said.." she prompted. Fluttershy swallowed.
"Yes. P-please, stay with me, be a p-part of my life. P-protect me, and I will try and do the same. I...I never want to lose you a-again."
"And the maiden and the mage looked into one another's eyes." Trixie said, not even aware of the crowd. She let her magic fade, returning them to the normal room. "And they both knew that as long as they had each other, no evil will touch them..." she whispered, "and they shall never be alone." She leaned in and kissed Fluttershy, deaf to the roar of the cheering crowd.