A Changeling at the Breakfast Table

by Hopeful_Ink_Hoof

Chapter 1: What are YOU doing here?

Twilight Sparkle let out a groan as she woke up. Her wings spread out and flapped, trying to push the blankets off her as she crawled out of bed. With a yawn, she made her way over to her dresser, eyes still closed. Horn lighting up, Twilight grabbed her brush in her magic and gave it a quick run through her mane. While brushing, she opened her eyes a little. Everything was a little blurry, but she could still make out enough to know what was what if she thought about it.

At the moment, one thing was on her mind: Coffee!

Blinking enough of the sleep from her eyes to make out basic shapes, Twilight managed to make her way to the bedroom door and opened it. As she made her way down along one of the long crystal halls of her castle, her stomach managed to reach at least part of her brain so she was thinking about food as well as coffee. It was enough to try and get her brain working a little more as she tried to remember what day it was, which in turn would help her remember what breakfast would be.

As she realized it would be pancakes, Twilight became more excited at the prospect. In this case, "more excited" meant that she actually lifted her hooves off the ground instead of simply dragging them.

Finally, Twilight reached the dining room where four figures sat, already eating. They all stopped as she entered the room, turning to look at her with various expressions.

"Morning, Spike," Twilight said before letting loose another yawn as she stopped beside the young dragon. "Please tell me there's coffee."

Spike looked at Twilight, then over at the others at the table. He raised an eyebrow then turned to look at Twilight again.

"Uhm...yeah?" he replied, shifting in his seat. He glanced toward the others again. "There's... uh... a plate of pancakes as well."

"Great," Twilight said as she started walking again. "Can't wait."

She continued on toward the kitchen, acknowledging the others as she went.

"Morning, Starlight."

"...Good morning, Twilight," Starlight replied, looking at her mentor with a furrowed brow. "Uhm... you... feeling okay?"

"Fine," Twilight replied. "Morning, Trixie."

"Sparkle," Trixie stated as she stuck her nose up.

"Morning, Chrysalis."

"Twilight," Queen Chrysalis hissed out, baring her fangs. The changeling's brow was furrowed in a mix of anger and confusion as she glared at the young alicorn.

Twilight, however, seemed completely oblivious as she made her way into the kitchen. As soon as she entered, she could smell the coffee, and feel herself perking up. Her eyes lit up at the sight and she licked her lips. Horn lighting up, she reached for one of her coffee cups when something suddenly occurred to her.

"Wait a second," she called out as she turned around and pushed the door open, looking at the two unicorns, changeling, and dragon sitting at the table.

"What are you doing here, Trixie?" she asked. "I thought you had a show down in Maneport this weekend."

"Uuuuuugh...." Trixie groaned out, throwing her head back and rolling her eyes. "Don't remind me." She let out a huff. "They ended up cancelling The Grrrreat and Powerful TRIXIE! because their... ugh... 'first choice' was able to make it after all." Flopping into her seat, she crossed her forelegs and let out a snort.

"Oh, sorry to hear that," Twilight said.

Returning to the kitchen, she grabbed her mug and poured some coffee, adding plenty of cream and sugar as she did. Then she turned her attention to the plate of pancakes, creating a ring of whipped cream and filling it with blueberries in syrup. She then added a few sprinkles and one last dollop of whipped cream before declaring it perfect.

Joining the others, Twilight sat down. She took a big piece of her pancakes and took a bite, letting out a small noise of pleasure as she chewed. Sweet, fluffy, and a little bit of tang from the berries.

"Delicious as always, Spike," Twilight stated before taking a drink of her coffee.

"Thanks," Spike said. "But... uhm..." He pointed toward Queen Chrysalis. "Isn't there something you want to... I don't know... ask about?" He then started his arm frantically toward said changeling. "Like the fact that Queen Chrysalis is sitting right at the table?"

"You're absolutely right, Spike," Twilight said as she cut another piece from her pancakes. After eating it, she turned her attention to Chrysalis. "So, since you are joining us for breakfast, does that mean you will be wanting your own room from now on instead of sleeping under Starlight's bed?"

The room turned quiet as the other four stared at Twilight Sparkle, eyes wide and mouths hanging open. She started to cut off another piece of her breakfast, but stopped as she noticed their reactions.

"You knew I was here the whole time?" Queen Chrysalis cried out in shock, her insect wings flickering against her.

Twilight jumped slightly at being yelled out, her wings flicking out as well. Slowly, they returned to their sides as Twilight licked her lips.

"Well... I don't know about 'the whole time,'" she answered, "but I have known for a while."

"HA!" Trixie cried out as she turned with a grin to Queen Chrysalis. "I knew it. Pay up, queenie!"

A grumble escaped from Chrysalis as her horn lit up. Pulling out ten bits, she tossed them at the pale blue unicorn.

"I hope you choke on them," she growled out. "Bombastic show mare."

"Don't be jealous because I was right!" Trixie retorted. Her eyes narrowed as a wicked smirk spread across her lips. "Besides, you should be used to losing to smart and talented unicorns by now."

Chrysalis stood up on her hind legs, slamming her front hooves onto the table. Her wings spread out wide as she towered over the mare.

"I WILL STRANGLE YOU WITH YOUR OWN CAPE AND STUFF YOUR BODY IN YOUR STUPID HAT!" she roared, spraying green spittle all over Trixie in the process.

The light turquoise aura of Starlight Glimmer's magic surrounded the two, pulling them apart and setting Queen Chrysalis back down.

"Chrysalis, don't threaten Trixie," Starlight ordered. "And Trixie, don't antagonize her."

"But it's so much fun," the two both whined out, getting a groan and head shake from both Twilight and Starlight.

"Fine," Chrysalis huffed. "I'll forget about the court jester for now." She turned her attention back to Twilight Sparkle, leaving a magically restrained Trixie choking on her own anger. "How did you figure out that I was here?"

"Well, the biggest and most obvious clue was the fact you sing in the shower." Twilight rolled her head and gave a shake of her head. "Even if you didn't have such a distinct singing voice, I don't think anypony else would sing a song about getting revenge on Thorax."

A green blush formed across Chrysalis's cheeks as she sank down in her seat, glaring at a snickering Spike.

"Speaking of the bathroom," Twilight continued, "there's also the fact that you left your hairs behind from time to time. Very long, green, and easily recognizable hairs. Then there were glimpses of you here and there, like when I would nearly catch you raiding the kitchen in the middle of the night or when you would transform in a flash of green flame just before I caught sight of you, and one or two glimpses of you out of disguise in the halls or such. Add to that the letter I got from Shining Armor and Cadance stating that you had been there, but fled after 'attempts at a mutual diplomatic alliance' -- which was in quotes by the way -- and I pretty much knew you were here and why."

"So, if you knew, why did you never say anything?" Starlight asked.

"Well, you seemed to have it under control," Twilight answered. "You weren't replaced by a still loyal changeling, and showed no signs of serious stress, emotional drain, or physical health issues. Plus, since you two were spending so much time together, it seemed like you would have a greater chance of developing a friendship with Chrysalis if I kept out of it and didn't interfere." Her ears pulled back. "Especially since I nearly messed things up for you with Trixie." She let out a sigh. "And on top of that, if I acknowledged that Chrysalis was here, I would feel obligated to tell Princess Celestia, who would likely tell Shiny and Cadance, who would in turn come down for more" -- she made quotes with her hooves -- "'diplomatic relations, and I don't think any of us want that." Twilight shuddered and let out a disgusted noise.

Trixie tilted her head, raising an eyebrow.

"Did something happ--"

"WE ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT IT!" Twilight cut in. "EVER!"

"Okay," Spike said as he stood up, crossing his arms. "So, how about we talk about the fact you knew she was here, and never told me?" He pointed at Chrysalis. "Do you have any idea how terrifying it was to come out of the kitchen and find her here? Don't you think that as someone who lives here, I should have been told we have a former villain staying in the castle?"

Twilight's ears pulled back as she sank down, tucking her body close. She looked away from the others, staring down into her coffee.

"You're right," she said. "I probably should have told you. You live here and do a lot of work, so you had a right to know. But I didn't want you to get caught in the middle of things, having to decide whether to keep it secret from Celestia or not."

Spike's features softened as the anger faded. Hopping down from his seat, he made his way over to Twilight and gave her a hug.

"Twilight, I've known you my whole life," he stated. "And while I may be the first to try and get you help when you go crazy, I'll also trust you if I really trust you know what you're doing."

Reaching out with a wing, Twilight wrapped it around the dragon before giving him a full hug.

"You're right. I'm sorry I didn't tell you, and I promise to make it up to you." She smiled. "Maybe with five new comic books next time we're in Canterlot on me."

"Yes!" Spike called out, breaking the hug as he threw up his arms in victory.

"Ugh!" Chrysalis groaned, reminding the pair they were not alone. "I may need to feed on love, but that does not mean I want to watch such a stupidly touching moment. Can we get back to the subject at hoof: me?" She then leaned forward. "Now, I believe you said something about my own room?"

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