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Champions of Equestria

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“S-stay back!”
“Hah!” The young bat pony smiles.
Moments pass, and the unicorn is still shaking. The bat pony’s smile fades.
“…Oh, you’re serious.”
“Come any closer and I’ll- I’ll be forced to unleash my magic on you, vermin!” The unicorn threatens, the tremble in her shoulders only growing stronger. The tremor in her voice betrays her, but her point seems to have gotten across anyway.
“Alright, alright,” the bat pony shrugs, but she backs away to a safer distance just as she’d been asked. She’s only ever heard rumors of the power of unicorn horns, but she’s not about to take her chances, even though she can smell the unicorn’s bluff from a mile away. “This far enough for ya?”
The unicorn blinks, but the stiffness in her body somewhat melts away. “That’s better,” she sighs, relieved, but she’s still visibly rattled from the whole thing.
“I’m Luna!”
The unicorn looks up with a frown. “What? No, I’m not- no. Leave my land, this is unicorn territory. You killers have your own land.”
Luna lifts a hoof, head tilting as she draws herself an inch closer before suddenly remembering the boundary rule. “Killers?” she asks, skeptic at first, but she drops the act as her head rolls back in laughter. “You’re not serious, are you?” she giggles. “That’s hilarious!”
The unicorn’s hoof taps against the soft ground, her nostrils flaring. “This isn’t funny,” she says, her voice an octave lower. “Go back to where you came from. I won’t hesitate to summon my guards to come here and exterminate you if you keep pushing your limit.”
Luna gives her a heartfelt chuckle, and she’s comfortable enough to sit down. “You’re so silly,” she grins, head tilted, smile warm. “My momma used to tell me about the Unicorn Clans, but I can’t believe I’m seeing one for real now! You’re really pretty.” Her tail wags behind her.
The unicorn’s frown deepens, two different sides of her pulling at each other. She doesn’t know whether to return the compliment or resume her threat, but her cheeks go red in her frustration.
“What’s your name?” Luna asks, smile as wide as ever.
“What? I’d never tell you,” the unicorn spits back. “I won’t fall for your trap, either,” she says, chest rising. “I know you’re only being nice to me to lure me in, and that your pack is waiting in the tall grass to ambush me. It won’t work.”
“Woah woah woah,” Luna’s head shakes. “Pack? Ambush? Yeesh, what do they teach you in unicorn school? Or… do you even have that sort of thing? School, I mean?”
“Stop interrogating me,” the unicorn growls, stance widening as she takes on a more hostile position.
“Aw, but I wanna be friends,” Luna explains, her shoulders sagging. “Don’t you?”
“Are you- are you serious?”
“Well of course I-”
“Here I was trying to have my routine afternoon stroll, when a bat pony falls out of a tree and lands on me. We’re not meant to be interacting, let alone conversing like this. I should’ve killed you the moment I saw you, but then again… I’d never stoop to the level of your kind. Go back to where you came from and I’ll forget this ever happened, okay? You can live freely, knowing a unicorn saved your life.”
“Wowie, was that a speech. I’ll take that as a no to my friendship offer,” and then Luna’s standing again, inching herself closer to look at the unicorn’s mane. It looks so soft, so… loved. So well taken care of. She wishes she had that.
“I- I told you not to come any closer,” the unicorn’s body has recoiled into itself, and her horn begins to light up purely out of instinct. She’s not talented in magic, and the truth is, she’s terrified. Everything she’s said has been nothing more than a show- without decent magical ability she can’t call for her guards this far away from the castle. She can’t use a spell to defend herself. And she certainly can’t defend an air attack.
Luna backs away again, a little farther this time. She really doesn’t want to come home with any bruises.
“You’re judging me based on a story you probably heard when you were a foal,” Luna says, her voice much quieter than it was before. “We’re not really killers, you know. It sucks you guys still think that. Most of us don’t even have a territory like you said. And we definitely don’t have a home to come back to at the end of the day.”
“What?” the unicorn says, clearly stunned, but the light from her horn finally fades away. “That… doesn’t sound right. You’re forgetting the part where your kind started the war. You killed our soldiers, you killed innocent mares and- and children- all because you were afraid of our power. Your kind was never able to get over the fact that we were better.”
“My kind, your kind, yeesh, you sure talk a lot,” Luna’s eyes roll. “Why don’t you just play with me? Don’t you know how to do that?” Luna suddenly reaches forward to tap the unicorn’s leg. “Tag, you’re it!”
The unicorn instantly tenses, holding her leg up close to her chest, and she’s abruptly breathing faster. “Don’t- don’t do that again.”
“Urgh, see?” Luna groans. “You really don’t know how to play. Anyway, you have it wrong. We didn’t kill anyone, you guys probably just wrote it like that because the victors alwaysss get to tell the story their way. You ever think about that?”
The unicorn’s eyebrows crease upwards as she gives it some genuine thought. “Hm,” she says, her eyes trailing off to the side before returning to her bat pony companion. “You’re not lying to me, are you?”
“No, Corny, of course I’m not lying to you.”
“Yeah!” Luna’s suddenly laughing again. “It’s short for unicorn, and, well, you’re funny! Get it?” Another chuckle. “Well Corny, I’ll be here tomorrow if you’re ready to play then. Don’t worry, I’m patient! If you’re not ready tomorrow, I’ll be there the day after that, and the one after that, and the one after that, and-”
“I’m not coming here,” the unicorn scoffs, taken aback at such a preposterous proposal.
“Aw, come on, it’ll be fun!” Luna has stood up again, turning around to bounce away, leaving just as mysteriously as she’d first appeared.
The unicorn doesn’t know what to say. With her newfound companion suddenly leaving, she finds herself standing straighter, wanting to chase after her.
“Wait!” she hears herself say. “My name’s- my name’s Celestia!” She calls before Luna is too far from earshot. “Remember that, okay?”
Luna turns around, bouncing backwards now, flashing a bright smile to her new friend. “See ya tomorrow, Tia!”
Celestia’s face flushes red at the nickname, but before she can respond to it, Luna is out of sight. “See you tomorrow,” she grumbles under her breath, and she can’t help the smile that grows on her face.


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