Making Adjustments

by Spazzy Jamz

Chapter 1: Waking Up in Equestria (or, Dude, Where's My Hands?)

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The morning sun shone through the castle windows as Tristan Shay regained full consciousness. He blinked a few times, then smiled up at Twilight Sparkle. Tears of joy welled in the eyes of the purple unicorn that stood above him, who did everything she could to not let Tristan's first sight of Equestria be that of her crying. She let out a sigh of relief and contentment. Tristan took some deep breaths before finally speaking.

"W-Where... where am I?" he asked. His voice was weak and raspy. Twilight's heart sank a little from his condition, but her pleasant expression continued.

"You're in Equestria." she answered softly. "Princess Celestia brought you here."

Tristan shook his head quickly, as if he were trying to rattle his brain back into operation. Twilight backed away from the bed Tristan had been laying on to allow him some breathing room. He forced himself up into a sitting position, yawning as he groggily took in the rest of his surroundings.

The stone floors, stained glass windows, and lavishly decorated walls gave Tristan the impression that he was in some sort of church or castle. The bed he had been on laying felt of fine silk and the scent of incense floated in the air around him. He shook his head again and returned his focus to the far side of the room, near the door, where more familiar faces stood, smiling just as brightly as Twilight.

Pinkie Pie, Applejack, Fluttershy, and the others hurriedly rushed over to Tristan's bedside, spewing words of welcome between tears of joy as Tristan continued to grasp this new reality. Still standing at the door was two white-coated pegasi in golden armor, simply watching the emotional event take place with unchanging, and to Tristan, nonexistent, emotion.

Spike jumped up on the bed, wrapping Tristan in a tight embrace. Tristan choked at the surprising strength of Spike's grip, but welcomed it just the same and returned the embrace. Upon hugging the baby dragon, Tristan's eyes shot wide open as he felt something was definitely amiss. His mind was screaming something to him, but he just couldn't decode what that was. It came to him as Spike released Tristan and crawled back off of the bed.

Why can't I feel my fingers? Tristan thought. More sensations occurred to him as panic began to course through his body. Or my toes for that matter. Wait, why am I naked? And what the hell am I sitting on that's so damn uncomfortable?

Tristan motioned to pull the silky blanket off of him when he saw it. He gasped a little too loudly as he looked down, motionless from shock.

A.... hoof?!

Tristan quickly backed up until he collided with the headboard. He checked again and saw that it was not only his hands that had been replaced, but his feet, too. He inspected the rest of his figure. His sun-kissed skin had been replaced by a light gray coat and a charcoal mane adorned the top of his head. Looking down further, he noticed his lengthy tail, its color matching that of his mane. Tristan reached upwards and felt he had some sort of protrusion on his forehead. It was sensitive to the touch, but firm, like a bone.

A horn, too?! Seriously?!

Tristan had found himself hyperventilating at this point. He held a hoof over his chest, fearing his heart would stop at any given moment. It felt way too real to him to be a dream, yet too crazy to be reality. The thoughts that raced through his mind and the growing number of unanswered questions had soon became too much for him to physically keep up with.

"Is there a trash can or bucket nearby?" he asked, breathless. Twilight nodded quickly and levitated a dented, metal pail in his direction, placing it just between his legs. Pinkie Pie bounced up next to Twilight, who had begun to shield her eyes with one of her front legs. Seeing this had piqued the curiosity of the Element of Laughter.

"A bucket?" the pink pony asked. "What do you need... oh... o-okay..."

Pinkie Pie backed away slowly, trying not to watch as Tristan had started vomiting into the little metal bucket. Inaudible groans were made among the others as they themselves blocked their view while Tristan finished. The newly formed unicorn hung his head, gasping while Twilight floated the bucket of waste away from him. She next retrieved a small piece of cloth to wipe what remained form the corners of Tristan's mouth.

Tristan had remained slouched when the subtle sounds of metal on stone graced his pony ears. He slowly turned his head, facing the direction of Princess Celestia. The regal, white alicorn approached him, accompanied by another alicorn with a coat like the night sky and a mane that resembled a miniature nebula, stars and all. Her eyes appeared cold and her gaze piercing, giving Tristan instant goosebumps. He corrected his posture at once and bowed before the two. Celestia counterbalanced her companion's stare with a smile that felt as warm as the sun itself.

"Ah, good, you're awake." she began. "It's great to see you again, Tristan. How are you feeling?"

Tristan looked up at Celestia, adjusting his hind legs to where he could comfortably lay down. "A little shaky, to be honest." he replied. "I'm not exactly used to trans-dimensional travel just yet."

Celestia chuckled at Tristan's remark and motioned to the other alicorn that stood by her side. "This is my sister, Luna." she introduced. "She assists me in watching over Equestria, primarily during the night."

The dark-blue alicorn stepped forward to Tristan, her eyes never leaving his. Tristan once again found himself intimidated as the night princess observed him. She stopped a few feet away from the edge of the bed alongside the others.

"We have heard many things about you, Star Skipper." she said. Her voice, much to Tristan's discomfort, was as icy as her stare, yet there was a slight undertone of sweetness in her words. "Thou hast protected the Elements during their engagement in your dimension. We wish to express our utmost thanks."

Tristan smiled weakly. "It was no problem at all." he assured. "Really. I... wait." He thought for a moment before speaking again. "Star Skipper?"

Luna's face bore an expression of confusion. "Why, yes. That is thy name, is it not?" she asked. Tristan's face mirrored that of Luna's for a second before Celestia stepped in.

"Star Skipper is what I referred to you by when I informed Luna of your arrival here." she clarified. "I chose that name for you because you are the only human to have ever visited Equestria. Therefore, that is the name that everypony will know you by."

Tristan removed his attention from Celestia and stared back down at his hooves. He inspected them and scanned the rest of his leg, then his chest. He followed his curiosity back towards his flank, where a sharp change of colors had jumped out at him. It was a design of some sort.

Is that my... cutie mark?

He moved his head closer and squinted. It was indeed a Cutie Mark. He wanted to squeal with delight, but he forcefully kept his composure and studied the marking closer. The arrangement consisted of a blue shooting star positioned above and between two clusters of smaller yellow stars, almost as if it were simply changing galaxies. Nebula hopping.

Star skipping.

It finally all clicked together for Tristan at that moment. He knew that Twilight Sparkle had something, if not everything, to do with his existence in Equestria. Even if that weren't the case, he felt like he was destined to be here anyway. The day they had visited his world, the second he opened his door to them, the ties of fate had bound them all together. His life didn't change today, when he woke up as a unicorn hundreds of dimensions away from home. It changed when he met them. He simply didn't know it then.

Tristan exhaled softly and smiled as he returned his attention to the group that stood before him. The princesses, Celestia and Luna, patiently awaited Tristan's next words. Pinkie Pie stood between Applejack and Rarity, beaming from ear to ear as she was already making mental preparations for Tristan's welcoming party. Fluttershy gently hovered above them with Rainbow Dash, and Spike sat atop Twilight's back. He even made a glance back at the Royal Guards, whose facial expressions still haven't changed.

This was his life now. His chances of reconnecting with what little family he had back home had been obliterated. He would never again be able to have dinner at Ginetta's, where he would unload his worries on it's motherly owner in return for words of encouragement and the occasional free sundae. He was saddened by these thoughts, but remembered something his mother once said to him in her final hours at the hospital.

"No matter what you do in life, no matter who you choose to be or where you decide to go, I'll always be right there with you. I'm proud of the young man that you've grown to be. You'll do great things, I just know it."

She passed away almost immediately afterwards. The image of seeing her on that hospital bed would still haunt him sometimes, but it was those words that seemed to make her death less painful to remember. Despite the sudden change of scenery, he wasn't about to let her down now. Tristan sighed contently.

"If I'm correct," Princess Celestia began, "It was your birthday back on your world, wasn't it?" She gave Pinkie Pie an inconspicuous wink. The pink pony gasped in excitement.

"No way!" she squealed. "It's your birthday?! This calls for a double-party! Double the streamers, double the snacks, double the fun! I have so much planning to do! Let's go, let's go, let's go!"

Tristan smile grew as he started for the edge of the bed. Unfortunately, the softness of the bed coupled with his lack of experience of walking on all fours sent him tumbling forward, then off of the bed, landing him on the stone floor next to Twilight's hooves. He groaned in frustration.

"This... will take some getting used to." he said, making another awkward attempt to stand. Twilight Sparkle giggled to herself as the rest of the group began making their way to the door. She remained behind to help Tristan along.

"Okay, let's try this again." she said, smiling. "Just put one hoof in front of the other."

Author's Notes


I'm so excited to finally have the ball rolling on this new story. Yes, it was another awkwardly short first chapter, but I'm saving some of the more important stuff (Exploring Ponyville, meeting other ponies, etc.) for the next chapter. It'll make more sense later, I promise.

Thank you guys so much for supporting the furthering of the "Tristan Shay/Star Skipper" saga. If it wasn't for the awesome feedback that I received from "My Little House Guests", then "Making Adjustments" honestly would never have happened, so thanks again!

In the next chapter, Star Skipper finally gets the whole walking thing down, and he meets some of Ponyville's other residents and, in general, gets a feel for the place. Also, Pinkie Pie's party (what could possibly go wro-)

You're right. Better keep my mouth shut. But you guys don't have to! Do yo thang wit those comments and such! See you all later for Chapter Two!

Keep being awesome!

- Spazzy Jamz

Next Chapter: New In Town Estimated time remaining: 2 Hours, 5 Minutes
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