A Day with Discord

by jkbrony

Chapter 1: Missing something, Twilight?

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11:47 PM.

Twilight ascended the stairs up to her bedroom loft. Ordinarily she would have been more than ready to hit the hay, but she had recently come to realize that ever since becoming an alicorn princess, she was no longer as exhausted at night. This was largely due to the fact that Princess Celestia was no longer giving her any lengthy assignments to complete or reports to compile. She now spent much of her free time studying the mystery box from the Tree of Harmony, as well as doing other research just for the sake of it. Though she wouldn't admit it to Celestia herself, Twilight was starting to miss being her student. This whole princess thing had come so suddenly, so unexpectedly. She had managed to adapt to most of the changes, but the thought that she might have to rule over kingdom someday made her uneasy. She hated it when the thought crossed her mind since every time it did, it took a while for her to think about something else. And now that it had just crossed her mind once again, she needed to do something right now to rid herself of it, otherwise she would lie awake thinking about it.

Fortunately, she had an idea...

"Hey, Spike?" she said, just before the infant dragon climbed into bed.


"You know, I read in Celestia's journal that she and Luna used to play all kinds of games together. And they had that entire castle to play around in."

"Really?" Spike raised an eyebrow inquisitively.

"Yeah. Isn't it strange to think that they were once children themselves?"

Spike shrugged somewhat indifferently. "I guess. But we already know that there was a time long ago when they weren't ruling over Equestria, so it's not that hard to believe."

"Even so, it's weird to think that they, of all ponies, would have played games like tag and hide-and-seek in their youth—the same games that we used to play together. Remember that?"

Spike nodded. "Yeah. That was fun."

"We played tag all the time," Twilight smirked. "And you never able to catch me."

"Well you did have a bit of an advantage, Twilight," Spike pointed out. "I was still figuring out the basics of running on two legs. It's not like there were any more of my species around who could teach me. But I don't have any problem keeping up with you anymore. If we were play right now, I'd be able to catch you, no problem."

"Oh, you think so, do you?" Twilight grinned widely. "Well, let's just see for ourselves."

Twilight jumped down from the loft and positioned herself in the center of her bedroom.

"Let's play a quick game. If you can catch me, I'll treat you to any breakfast you want tomorrow morning."

Spike looked at her with confusion.

"Really, Twi? Right here? Right now?"

"That's right!"

"But there's hardly any room to run around in here. Besides, I'm kinda tired."

"Oh, I'm sorry. I must not have heard you correctly. You see, I thought the words that you just used a second ago were: 'If we were to play right now I'd be able to catch you, no problem.' But I clearly must have been mistaken. Either that, or now that I've actually challenged you, you're backing out because you don't really believe that you can," Twilight grinned even wider, growing more energized by the second. "So which is it, Spike?"

Spike cut his eyes into a glare. "Okay, Twilight. You're on."

"Well come on, then!"

Spike charged down the stairs, but Twilight curiously made no attempt to move. Just as he closed in on her, Twilight's horn illuminated and in two pink flashes of light, she vanished from that spot and was now back up on the loft.

"Gotta be quicker than that!"

"That's not fair!" Spike exclaimed, once he realized what had happened.

"What's the matter, Spike?" she giggled. "Giving up already?"

Spike grunted and dashed back up the stairs.

The game carried on for more than ten minutes. Spike chased Twilight as she teleported all over her room, giggling and taunting him the whole time. Sweat dripped heavily from his forehead. His efforts to catch her seemed pathetically futile, as she continued to vanish just out of his reach. However, he knew that Twilight was not able to perform vast amounts of magic without tiring herself out as well. All he would need to do was hold out just a bit longer than she could.

"Too...slow!" Twilight said, breathing heavily after teleporting once again from the top of her bed to the middle of her room where she started.

It was more than clear now that chasing after her was never going to work. He needed a new strategy, and fortunately, he had one in mind. He suddenly stopped running and instead walked up to Twilight slowly, his body bent forward and his tail sagging on the ground to illustrate his exhaustion. He stopped just a few feet away from her.

"Are you....giving up?" Twilight asked, looking somewhat relieved.


Spike suddenly leapt in her direction, his claws outstretched and his mouth forming a wicked smile, convinced that he had finally won.

"Whoa!" Twilight was left with no time to teleport, but she was still not without options.

Her wings opened up and she jumped upwards, just narrowly avoiding Spike, who crashed flat on his face in the spot she had just occupied. She hovered in place just above him.

"Nice try!" she giggled.

Spike lifted his head up, now fuming. This was no longer a game; he was going to catch Twilight if it took him all night.

"THAT'S....NOT....FAIR!!!" he yelled as he jumped up several times to touch her, but as always, she was just out of his reach. Twilight grinned mockingly at him.

The task now seemed more impossible than ever. Twilight was going to stay up there forever. She was never coming down. The only way to catch her now was to bring her down. After quickly formulating another strategy, Spike mustered whatever speed remained from his legs and ran up to the loft. With his momentum at its peak, he leapt from the very edge and soared towards Twilight, his claws outstretched yet again.

This was his final effort. He had now consumed the last of his energy and knew that he would have no chance to catch her if he failed to do it now.

Twilight didn't bother moving, certain that he would not reach her. His momentum was dropping quickly and he was falling to the floor.

Spike's arms were extended as far as possible. He was close.

So close.

Just a little closer...

Spike's claws finally made contact with the hoof of Twilight's right hind leg. She was pulled to the ground almost instantly, landing flat onto her stomach. Once she was grounded, Spike immediately jumped upon her back as though fearful she would take off again.

"I got you!" he exclaimed.

Twilight giggled and picked herself back up onto her hooves.

"Alright, I guess you win. That was fun, wasn't it?"

Spike removed himself from her back and huffed angrily. "You cheated!"

"I never said that I would be running," Twilight pointed out. "I only said that you had to catch me."

He shot her an annoyed glare.

"Okay, okay, maybe I was having a little too much fun at your expense," she wrapped a hoof around him and pulled him toward her. "I'm sorry, Spike. Forgive me?"

Spike sighed and his glare faded from his face. "Yeah. Oh, and I think a ruby and emerald omelette would be perfect."

"All right," Twilight chuckled and nuzzled his cheek. "Come on, it's time for bed."

"You don't have to...tell me twice."

Twilight ascended the stairs up to the loft with Spike nearly half asleep on her back, his arms wrapped around her neck. A quick glance at the clock showed that it was just after midnight. Not only had she managed to clear her thoughts, she was now much more ready for bed than she was before.

She tucked Spike into his bed and climbed into her own. They fell swiftly and soundly asleep, oblivious of what tomorrow would have in store for them, but still without any reason to expect that it would be anything more than another ordinary day.


Twilight awoke several hours later feeling wholly revitalized with her exhaustion completely washed away. She emerged from her bed to find Spike still asleep with a spot of drool on his pillow ebbing from his wide open mouth. She chuckled.

"Come on, Spike, wake up. Are you ready for—"

Her voice died instantly. She had intended to magically lift the blanket from Spike's body, but no aura had appeared around her horn. She tried again.


And again.

Nothing. Spike stirred obliviously in his sleep.

Twilight froze in a sudden panic. Her cutie mark was a symbol of her magical ability, and yet she was now struggling to do a levitation spell. A levitation spell—the most basic of unicorn magic! A spell that she had mastered as a filly, and now came almost just as easily to her as walking! She trotted quickly around her room, attempting to levitate anything her eyes came across: books, quills, scrolls. However, she was unable to get so much as a spark to emerge from her horn. She couldn't get any other spell to work either, not even teleportation, which she had used more than a dozen times mere hours ago.

She raced downstairs in the hopes of finding a book that would point her in the direction of a remedy for whatever illness this had to be. However, without magic, she was stuck browsing through a single book at a time, a single page at a time. After twenty minutes of searching through books relating to magical illnesses, she was unable to pinpoint one that impeded magical ability entirely—at least not without several other symptoms accompanying it that she didn't have.

With her mind still racing around options, Twilight dashed back upstairs to Spike's bed.

"Spike, Spike, Spike, Spike, Spike!" she shook him rapidly. "Wake up! Wake up!"

The infant dragon jolted upward, letting out a startled shriek.

"Twilight!" he said irritably, rubbing his eyes and wiping away the saliva that dripped from his mouth. "What is it?"

"There's....there's...." Twilight struggled with her next words, as though she was terrified to say them. "....something wrong with my horn! I can't do any magic!"

Spike scratched the back of his head.


"I don't know! That's what I'm trying to figure out!" Twilight trotted rapidly in place. "I mean, I'm pretty sure it's some kind of illness, but I can't figure out what it is! It's not Poison Joke, otherwise my horn would be flopping. The Pony Pox has been known to interfere with a unicorn's magic, but it's clearly not that either. And it's not Hornovanitis or Unicorniosis since those illnesses are usually...oh my gosh! I just realized that I've only been looking up unicorn illnesses! But I'm an alicorn, and I don't know of ANY alicorn illnesses! How did I not think to check?! I don't even know if I have any books on alicorn illnesses! What am I going to--?!"

"Twilight, calm down!" Spike threw himself from his bed and placed a hand on her neck.

She looked as though she were moments away from bursting into tears.

"It'll be okay," he reassured her. "We'll just go to the hospital and have the doctors find out what's wrong with you."

Spike reached up and carefully touched her horn. It instantly fell from her head.

Twilight shrieked in bewilderment and numbness overtook her body. That didn't just happen. It couldn't have happened.

"I'm sorry! I'm sorry!" Spike cried, reaching down to pick it up. "Here, let me just...."

He instantly noticed that the horn felt unusual in his hands. It wasn't as hard or sturdy as it normally was—instead, it felt almost as if it were a toy.

"This isn't your horn, Twilight. It's....rubber."


"See?" Spike bent the horn multiple times, demonstrating its flexibility.

Twilight blinked, feeling even more numb. She was struck with an urge to dunk her head in cold water to wake herself up from this horrible nightmare.

"You know, your wings kinda look a little different, too," Spike remarked.

He touched Twilight's right wing. Like the horn, it instantly fell to the ground. He examined it closely and realized that it was in a permanently closed state and also rubbery like a toy.

"It's...fake," he said warily.

Twilight looked over at her left wing and attempted to extend it, but it remained closed. She touched it hesitantly and it fell from her body like all the rest.

"This is weird..." Spike scratched his head, looking sorrowfully at the now hornless and wingless Twilight.

Twilight slowly pulled herself out of shock. This was no illness. There was only one being she knew of who was capable of doing something like this...


Almost instantly, the draconequus appeared just overhead.

"Well, that's some wake-up call," Discord grumbled, stretching his limbs. As he did so, the books in Twilight's bedroom flew off the shelves and began a synchronized dance upon the floor.

"How are you today, Princess Twilight? I must say, you look a bit different since I last saw you. Is that a new mane cut?"

Twilight glared scornfully at him.

"No? Tail cut, perhaps? New coat shine? A little nip here, a little tuck there? Hm?"

Twilight said nothing.

"Oh come on, help me out. I know there's something different about you, I just can't...." he touched the top of Twilight's head where her horn used to be. "....put my finger on it..."

"Give Twilight her horn and wings back!" Spike growled, pointing a warning claw at the draconequus.

"Oh, that's what it is! Well, I certainly shall...eventually," replied Discord. "In the meantime, why don't you hold onto them?"

He snapped his fingers and a bright flash smothered Spike. Twilight cringed at the sight of her horn and wings now attached to his body. Her horn lay just below his frontal spine, and her wings were spread wide open upon his back. Spike yelped and struggled to pull them off, but it was impossible. Her wings were much too heavy for him to support, and he fell forward onto his belly.

"What's wrong with you?!" Twilight finally spoke. "Why are you doing this?!"

"Well, as painful as it is to admit, and as hard as it is to believe, I, Discord, have made a terrible mistake."

"And that would be...?"

"After I recovered from that terrible, terrible flu, I went back home to my thinking tree, and I did some thinking. And I did some more thinking. And I thought to myself, 'Discord, I believe that you may have given Princess Twilight a pass that she didn't deserve. Your friendship test did nothing to prove your friendship with Equestria's newest princess. She didn't retrieve that giant flower and do battle with that miserable worm for you—oh no, no, no, no. She did it so that she could get you out of her hair as quickly as possible, and then continue her special day with Princess Cadence as though you had never bothered her at all. If anything, all your friendship test did was prove how much you two aren't friends because of the lengths she was willing to go to be rid of you.'"

Twilight was livid. "Are you seriously—?!"

"'And even worse!'" Discord threw himself into Twilight's bed, adding a dramatic tone to his voice. "'After you had fallen victim to that dreadful flu and you were in dire need of care, our dear princess was nowhere to be found! She brought you to Fluttershy so that she would not have to care for you herself, and did not visit you even once after that. She wouldn't even extend such a kindness as to get you a simple glass of water...'"

An empty glass appeared in Discord's hand and he shook it in front of Twilight, only to drop it to the floor.

"'It was only by the kindhearted nature of the caring, hospitable, and overly compassionate Fluttershy that were you able to recover at all. If only Princess Twilight could show you just a fraction of the kindness you receive from that lovable pony...'"

Twilight angrily rolled her eyes. Discord removed himself from her bed.

"GET THESE OFF ME!" Spike yelled, continuing to wrestle with Twilight's wings, attempting to manage them in some way that would allow him to stand up straight. Discord ignored him.

"Of course, once I came to that realization, I knew that I had made a terrible mistake in passing you, which means that I'm still unconvinced that the two of us are really friends. And then I realized something else. Princess Twilight only received her little promotion after she discovered the magic of friendship. But how deserving of that title could she truly be if she has so much trouble accepting dear old Discord as a friend, especially after all the work he's done to change his ways?"

A halo appeared over Discord's head and he gave Twilight a misty-eyed stare.

Twilight now glared at him fiercer than ever. "You haven't done—"

"And that was when I came up with the idea of a new test! If you spend a single day with me like any two good friends would, I will consider you worthy of your Princess status and return your horn and wings."

Discord snapped his fingers again and Twilight's horn and wings vanished from Spike's body, much to his relief. In addition, the books stopped dancing and fell flat upon the floor, restored to their inanimate state. Spike picked himself up onto his feet.

"Why don't you just cut the act and tell us what you really want from Twilight?!" he snapped. "I mean, you don't honestly expect us to believe that you're really that interested in being her friend, do you?"

Discord scoffed as though offended.

"Well, of course I am! After all, isn't friendship the very thing that managed to reform me? It's just that apart from sweet Fluttershy, nopony has really taken the opportunity to truly get to know me. It's just so disappointing that I've come such a long way in my reformation, and yet after all of it, I'm only left with one single friend."

Twilight stamped a hoof, now utterly sick of hearing Discord's voice.

"On a day I was able to spend with Cadence, which, by the way, probably won't happen again for a very long time, you faked an illness and had us to travel to some remote area of Equestria while hauling you on an oversized throne the entire way. And once there, you had us retrieve an enormous flower, the petals of which we were to use to create an elixir that YOU DIDN'T EVEN NEED, only to be attacked by a crazy giant worm which nearly gobbled the both of us up. And then after we defeated the worm and brought you the flower, we find out that the entire ordeal was your plan from the beginning. And you wonder why we're not the best of friends?!"

Discord rolled his eyes apathetically. "Oh, come now. It's not like I actually ruined your day. In fact, as I recall, Princess Cadence said she enjoyed my little test far more than whatever boring plans you had made with her."

"Much to your disappointment, I'm sure!"

Discord smirked and shrugged innocently.

"Well, I wouldn't have felt the need to give you that little exam, nor this one, had I not had any reason to believe that the two of us aren't really friends. I assure you, you won't be risking your life this time around. All you need to do is spend a single easygoing, non-eventful day with me. No danger, no unexpected surprises, just bonding and truly getting to know each other. Of course, you'll have to convince me that you're actually trying to be my friend, and not just trying to get this over with as quickly as possible to get your precious horn and wings back. Could you do that, Princess Twilight?"

Twilight sighed and glared to herself.

"Well, it's not like I have much of a choice..."

"My sentiments exactly!" Discord beamed. "I'll be waiting downstairs."

And with that, Discord vanished. Twilight glanced regretfully at Spike.

"Sorry, Spike. Looks like that omelette will have to wait."

"What do you think he's up to?" he asked. "You don't believe he really wants to be your friend, do you?"

Twilight shook her head. "I don't know. Maybe that is what he really wants, or maybe all he's doing is taking advantage of the fact that we can't use the Elements of Harmony against him."

"Are you sure about this?"

"I guess we'll find out..."

Twilight took a deep breath and walked downstairs. This was going to be a really long day...

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