The ponies stared, aghast at what they were seeing, but no one was more surprised than Sonic was. He’d only taken that form once, empowered by an alternate world’s source of the very emotions the hedgehog had mentioned, and now he was seeing it separate from his body. “Dark… spine?!” he gasped.
Discord popped up at the edge of the street, positioned right behind Sonic with his eagle talon gripping the street and his lion paw on his chin as he too stared at this new sight. “Hmm… not quite what I expected to happen, but that certainly makes it chaotic in its own way,” he mused. He then grinned down at Sonic as he and the ponies turned their heads to look up at him, “It’ll make for an amusing spectacle to see you beat yourself up over who’s the better hedgehog!”
Darkspine Sonic, meanwhile, looked in the direction of Super Sonic and, after a moment, pointed in his direction and said in a loud, angry (though still ghostly) voice that caused everyone to look back at him, “YOU!” Without warning, he suddenly hovered off of the ground, his fiery aura forming a kind of shield around him, and shot towards the gold/yellow hedgehog. Just as he was about to reach him, however, he suddenly jumped over him and floated in front of Discord’s face. As Discord stared at him questioningly, Darkspine Sonic swung his right arm back and then punched him right in the face! Time seemed to slow down as the punch connected and then returned to normal as he was sent spiraling away, Darkspine Sonic already moving after him!
Everyone stared in shock for a moment at what they just witnessed. “Whoa… What just happened?” Rainbow gaped.
“Who was that? Was that you, Sonic?” Twilight asked.
“Did that ‘hog really come outta you?” Applejack questioned.
“You got me… but I’m gonna find out,” Sonic replied. He ran to the edge of the street, remembering when he was almost there what he had and pulling a 360 spin, throwing the Elements in his left hand at the 180 point and saying, “Here, hold these!” He then jumped from the street, flying after Darkspine while Applejack and Pinkie Pie caught their necklaces, clipping them back on and immediately starting to feel a little better afterwards.
Sonic flew through the tunnel, dodging the debris that was coming in through the sides of the tunnel while keeping an eye out for his doppelganger. He soon spotted the flaming aura from Darkspine Sonic and quickly flew up behind him; he guessed his Darkspine form couldn’t fly as fast as his Super Sonic form without the use of Speed Break. He flew up along the hedgehog’s left side and said, “Uh, hey there, me. What’s the story here?”
Without breaking flight, Darkspine held up his left arm and swung his fist at Super Sonic, forcing the gold/yellow hedgehog to stop to avoid getting hit. He then growled over his shoulder, “Don’t interfere. He’s mine!”
Super Sonic regained his composure and once again flew up alongside Darkspine Sonic, though he kept back a little bit as he said, “Hey, I’m the one he’s got a bone to pick with! Why is he all yours?”
Darkspine replied, “Because what he did… I’m going to make him pay for what he did to Shahra!”
Super Sonic raised an eyebrow, “Shahra? What are…?” He trailed off as a realization dawned on him, “Since I took that form based on what I was feeling for Erazor Djinn at the time, he must somehow think Discord is Erazor Djinn. This whole thing’s got to be because of Discord’s magic; there’s no way he could have such a huge case of mistaken identity otherwise.” He then shrugged, “You’re the boss. He’s all yours.” Darkspine didn’t respond, instead flying forward with Super Sonic following close behind.
They both soon came upon Discord and the Time Eater, the former rubbing the side of his face where he had been punched. When Discord noticed the two Sonics together, he stared in disbelief, “What the…? Why are you two together?!”
Super Sonic shrugged, “Well, apparently, I’m not the droid he’s looking for!”
Discord growled, “That’s not what I meant! Why aren’t you two trying to destroy each other?! Why did he split off from you rather than turn you into him?! What did you do?!”
Super Sonic replied, “Hey, you’re the one who called him up! I didn’t do anything!”
Discord grunted, “Well, if that didn’t work, I suppose I’ll have to try something else! But first…” He snapped his eagle talon fingers, causing several holes to open up behind him and fire chocolate milk balls at the two hedgehogs. They came at them fast, but both Sonics rolled, moved to the sides, ascended, and descended to avoid them and miraculously did not get hit once. At this, Discord growled, “How’s this, then?!” He snapped his lion paw fingers, something beginning to form above his head in response. Both Sonics came to a stop and watched, waiting to see what he was up to.
As they watched, they saw that Discord was creating a giant scoop of chocolate ice cream over his head, far bigger than any of the ones he tried to drop on Super Sonic earlier. Once it was at its full size, close to the size of a large meteorite, Discord swung his lion arm down, sending it plummeting towards the two Sonics! Super Sonic braced himself, ready to stop it with all his strength, but Darkspine didn’t do the same. Instead, with a shout and a sudden burst of speed, he shot towards the ice cream, colliding with it head-on and pushing back against it with his hands.
After a few seconds of pushing, Darkspine let out a loud shout and swung his legs up in front of the now greatly slowed down scoop of ice cream. He then started kicking it with his left foot so fast it was nearly impossible to keep track of all the kicks he landed. After about two seconds of this, he raised his left foot and performed a downward kick, sending the ice cream crashing down on Discord instead!
Super Sonic grinned when he saw Discord splattered with the ice cream, “Hey, Discord a la mode!” He then flew towards the Time Eater, but before he could get far, Discord’s lion paw reached out and grabbed him by his shoes, knocking him off course and forcing him to stop. As Super Sonic tried to regain his composure, his shoes were released, only for Discord’s lion paw to grab him around the middle, the draconequus holding him up to his face as the chocolate ice cream slid off of him.
“Where do you think you’re going?” he hissed. Super Sonic was about to answer him when he seemed to notice something behind him and started pointing. “Oh no, I’m not falling for that trick!” Discord said. Super Sonic continued pointing, doing so more frantically now. “What? What are you pointing at?” Discord questioned mockingly. Suddenly, there was a tap on his shoulder and he finally turned around to see Darkspine Sonic right behind him… who instantly nailed him with an uppercut once he saw his face! The blow was so sudden his grip on Super Sonic lessened, allowing the yellow/gold hedgehog to slip out of his paw and fly towards the Time Eater.
Discord reached out to grab him again, but without detaching his arm, he missed and instead turned to look at Darkspine Sonic, who began pummeling his face with a barrage of fast punches. After a second, he raised his hands above his head to deliver one last blow, but Discord recovered before he could and grabbed the hedgehog in his lion paw, throwing him off. While he was off balance, Discord raised his eagle talon and touched him on the forehead with it. Darkspine immediately began to writhe in his grip as his flaming aura faded and the magic holding him together was pulled out of him. He finally slumped over in Discord’s grip, letting out one last groan as he faded away completely. Discord glared in Super Sonic’s direction afterwards, seeing him getting close to the Time Eater. “All right, Sonic. I’ll give you this one,” he growled before snapping his lion paw fingers and disappearing.
As Sonic approached the Time Eater, Eggman said, “If Discord couldn’t stop you, then how about… this?!” At his words, two portals opened up at the Time Eater’s sides and it reached both of its arms through them.
“It’s attacking!” Spike warned.
“Be careful, Sonic!” Blaze called.
“It’s a warping arm attack!” Wave exclaimed as the portals opened up above Sonic, the Time Eater’s arms reaching through them. It swung its arms down, trying to grab Sonic in its hands, but he shot past them, closing in on the Time Eater.
Once he was in front of it, it recalled its arms and tried to grab him with its hands. After dodging them, he repeated the process from earlier, striking the beast in its face, then hitting Orbot and Cubot’s cockpit, and then hitting Eggman’s cockpit. This knocked the Time Eater back and freed the Elements of Kindness and Generosity, which Sonic called to him with Chip’s necklace.
“All right!” Vector cheered when he caught both.
“Not bad,” Shadow commented.
Sonic smiled as he held both Elements, one in each hand. He was about to fly off after the Time Eater, but before he could, he heard a popping sound behind him and whirled around to see Discord behind him, the draconequus having a rather sour look on his face. Noticing the spots on the Spirit’s face, he said, “Whoa. Sure looks like he had some fun with you.”
Discord grunted, “Yes. I still don’t understand what happened.”
Sonic smirked at that, “You don’t understand? Dude, your chaos combined with chaos, and chaos is unpredictable on its own! Guess you should have been prepared for the chance that something unexpected might happen.” He apparently struck a nerve because Discord let out a shout and lunged for him, trying to grab him. Sonic managed to avoid him and, as he flew around him back to the girls, called back over his shoulder, “Hey, you really are the master of the unexpected! I was expecting a better comeback!”
Discord curved his head around and glared at him. “You want a snappy comeback? How’s this for a comeback?!” He held out both of his arms, both of them lighting up with the yellow aura of his magic. A similar colored line of aura appeared above his head and ripped the fabric of time and space in two, forming a rift that was black on the inside. And whatever was causing the blackness was moving…
Sonic looked back over his shoulder in alarm when he heard what sounded like rushing winds coming up behind him. Instead of wind, though, he saw a large mass of black mist heading for him! “What the heck is that?” he asked.
“It’s the Dark Forces! Discord has summoned them!” Luna exclaimed.
As Sonic got closer to the girls, the mass broke off into smaller wisps with evil-looking eyes that sped after him. The sight caused Rarity to gasp, “The wooshie things! Sonic, don’t let them get you!” Shortly afterwards, the wisps began trying to slam into Sonic, who flew faster and dodged and rolled to try to avoid getting hit. He managed to dodge the ones that came rushing at him, but a smaller one had been sneaking up behind him and, after he dodged the charge of a larger one, shot straight at him and crashed into his back! He may not have felt much, but it was enough to slow him down, giving the other wisps a chance to swarm him!
Since Twilight couldn’t use a lot of her magic at the moment, Applejack and Pinkie Pie stepped up to help Sonic. As the mass began to surround his front, Applejack brought her hooves together to form a sphere and Pinkie pulled out her party cannon. Pinkie Pie fired while Applejack was forming her sphere, but just as her shot was about to hit the black mass, it suddenly jerked out of the way, pulling Sonic with it! Applejack’s attack was similarly avoided as Sonic began wrestling with the mass as it tried to surround him.
After a couple of seconds of grappling with the Dark Forces, Sonic was forced down onto his back on the street chunk. The Main Six immediately moved to help him, but he grunted, “Don’t touch it! I’ll get it!” After a second of struggling, he kicked the mass off of him and it landed past the girls with a thump. Sonic then stood up and the girls looked at him in relief, but then they all heard a growl coming from the mass of mist and turned to look at it. As they all stared at it, they began to make out a large form within the mist. It had large hands and muscular arms, they could see long wild quills jutting out from its back, its mouth was filled with sharp teeth, and it had long fur…
As it stood up, the last of the mist fell away from its body, revealing its fur to be dark blue and its hands to be light blue. When it turned around and looked at them, they saw that the bottom part of its face was light blue and its eyes were green. They all stared at it for a moment before Sonic spoke, “Whoa. So now it’s the Werehog?”
Twilight stared at the creature in surprise, “Wait, you mean that’s the Werehog you mentioned?”
Applejack whistled in amazement, “Now Ah can see why ya called it that. He does look kinda like a wolf.”
The Werehog began to look around curiously, as if it was confused about why it was there or felt like something was missing. It looked back at the group when Fluttershy asked, “Do you think he’s… friendly?”
Sonic replied, “Maybe. I mean, I stayed pretty much the same while I was in Werehog form, but…”
Rainbow nodded, “Right. It was you changing, it was all you, and you didn’t truly turn into a monster or anything. But now that it’s separate from you, who knows what it’ll do? It could decide…” Before she could finish, the Werehog suddenly stretched out its arms towards Sonic and closed its larger hands around Sonic’s! Sonic looked down at his hands when it retracted its arms and realized his hands were empty! He looked back up at the Werehog to see it holding the Elements in its hands, looking between them. “Hey!” Rainbow Dash exclaimed, but before anyone could move, it extended its arms again, its left arm towards Fluttershy and the right arm to Rarity. In one swift motion, it placed their respective Elements around their necks and clipped them on before pulling its arms back.
Fluttershy looked down at her necklace and then looked up at the Werehog with a smile. “Oh, that was so sweet of you. Thank you!” she said as she fluttered to his left side and wrapped her hooves around his arm, nuzzling him. The Werehog tensed and looked at her questioningly, but he remained where he was.
“Well, yes, it was rather nice of him, but… oh! Such big hands and long nails! He should be careful with those!” Rarity commented.
“Aw, don’t go fussin’ all over the fella. Ah’m sure he wouldn’t have done that if he didn’t know how to control himself,” Applejack said.
Twilight, momentarily excited by what she’d seen, clapped her hooves together, “Fascinating! You were right, Sonic! He really can reach far away with his arms!”
Pinkie giggled, “Hee hee hee! They’re like rubber arms, if rubber arms could get longer at any time they wished!”
Rainbow shrugged, “All right, looks like he’s okay.”
After Fluttershy let the Werehog go, Sonic looked at him and asked, “Hey, how are you feeling? Feeling okay?” The Werehog nodded and gave a wordless grunt in response.
“Um, I think he said yes,” Fluttershy said.
Twilight looked at Sonic, “Are you going to be able to understand him?”
Sonic replied, “Oh yeah, I think we’ll understand each other pretty well.” He then looked at the Werehog and asked, “How do you feel about coming to help me trash Eggman and Discord?” The Werehog flexed his arms and growled, nodding.
Applejack looked at Sonic, “Excuse me for askin’, Sugar-hog, but how is he supposed ta follow you? It doesn’t look like he can fly like you can.”
Sonic looked back over his shoulder at the debris floating around inside the time tunnel. He nodded after a moment, “That should do the trick.” He turned to Rarity and pointed with his thumb, “Hey Rarity, can you use your magic to pull some of that small stuff over here?”
Rarity eyed where he was pointing carefully, seeing some rocks, chunks of oversized cookies, and large tree leaves floating through the air. Taking a moment to think about it, she finally answered, “Certainly.” Her horn lit up and she focused on the distant objects, which were soon surrounded by the aura of her magic. She then started to pull them closer to the group.
Once they were close enough, Sonic said, “Okay, that’s good. Just hold them there for a minute.” Rarity stopped pulling and used her magic to hold them in place. Sonic turned to the Werehog and asked, “You ready?” His beast form dropped to all fours and let out a shout, baring its teeth. “That sounds like a yes to me!” Sonic said as he took off, flying down the time tunnel. The Werehog dashed to the edge and then jumped, stretching out his arms towards a nearby rock and pulling himself towards it. Once he reached the rock, he pulled himself over it and reached for a giant leaf, once again pulling towards it and repeating the process.
As they continued onward, Sonic flew up to pieces of debris and knocked them back towards the Werehog, who used them to follow Sonic deeper into the time tunnel. It wasn’t long before they saw Discord up ahead, no doubt waiting for them judging by his slumped posture and crossed arms. Seeing this, Sonic stopped and turned to look at the Werehog, waiting for him to reach the last piece of debris he had knocked towards him. When he reached the end, he reached his arms out in Sonic’s direction and pulled himself towards him. When the Werehog reached Sonic, he wrapped his arms around the yellow/gold hedgehog and held onto him as he shot towards Discord.
As they approached, Discord commented, “Oh, look at you, Sonic. It looks like you’re taking the dog out for a stroll.”
Sonic replied, “Yeah? Well, I think the ‘dog’ wants to play with you!”
Discord quipped, “Oh? Does he know any tricks? Can he sit up and beg? Does he like games?”
Sonic smirked, “He sure does, and here’s his favorite game: catch!” While he was speaking, the Werehog loosened his grip on him and let his arms hang at his sides. When Sonic finished speaking, he held the Werehog up with both hands and, while still flying, threw him at Discord!
Discord tensed up at this and flew up, intending to get out of the way. Before he could get high enough, however, and before he got past the draconequus, the Werehog extended his arms and reached up, succeeding in grabbing the dragon part of his tail! “Hey!” Discord exclaimed in shock as he felt his tail being pulled downwards. The Werehog was stopped when his arms reached their limits and swung backwards. Sonic stopped and watched as Discord began trying to shake the Werehog off his tail. “Hey, that’s my tail! Let go!” Discord yelled while swinging his tail. His swinging eventually pushed the Werehog down, at which point it used the momentum to slingshot up towards Discord, using his claws to hang onto Discord’s stomach.
“You mangy mutt, get off of me!” Discord yelled while curling his lion paw into a fist and swinging it down towards the Werehog’s head. The Werehog managed to lower himself down enough to avoid the hit and then swung himself around to Discord’s backside, close to his wings. He then used his hands and arms to pull himself up to Discord’s head, standing triumphantly atop it. Discord winced at the feeling of the spikes on the Werehog’s shoes and asked, “Ugh, you wore golf shoes in this form? You really were a monster!” The Werehog growled out something, causing Discord to smirk, “What was that? I couldn’t understand you with that atrocious accent of yours!” The Werehog snarled at that and raised his right hand, slamming it down on top of Discord’s head. “OW! Was that really necessary?!” Discord exclaimed. The Werehog only responded by raising and slamming down his left hand, then his right hand, then the left again… He started pummeling Discord’s head so fast his fists were able to hold him up in the air!
As he flew by, Sonic grinned, “Man, he’s gonna wreck you good!” He then turned his attention back to the Time Eater, leaving Discord to deal with the Werehog.
As he got closer to the Time Eater, it held out its arms and started to rotate them in a circle. “Think you can dodge this?!” Eggman yelled as yellow energy began to trail behind its hands as they moved.
“Hey, that thing’s making something!” Storm called.
“You’d better move it, Sonic!” Jet exclaimed as a brief flash appeared in front of the Time Eater and it stopped rotating its arms.
While moving backwards, the Time Eater thrust out its right hand, causing a yellow clock with moving hands to appear and move towards Sonic. He managed to avoid the clock by flying through the lower right corner when both hands were in the upper left corner, but as soon as he was past it, the Time Eater thrust out its left hand and released another clock at him. This time, Sonic managed to slip between the two hands moments before they sandwiched him between them. He then struck the Time Eater’s face and then both of its cockpits, managing to release the Element of Loyalty from its grip and catch it. The Element of Magic wobbled in its spot, but the Time Eater managed to hang onto it.
“Oy, good going, Sonic!” Marine cheered.
“You can’t relax yet!” Amy called.
“Sonic, behind you!” Tails warned. Sonic whirled around at that to find Discord towering over him, glaring down at him while clutching the Werehog in his lion paw and sporting a rather noticeable goose egg on top of his head.
Sonic grinned up at him, “Nice hat!” Discord scowled at him and snapped his eagle talon fingers while using his magic, reopening the rift he had created earlier. Once it was fully open, the Werehog was sucked out of Discord’s lion paw, being broken back down into wisps as the Dark Forces were sucked back inside. Once it was fully gone, Discord snapped his fingers again to close the rift. “What, what did I say?” Sonic asked. Discord growled and lunged at him, trying to grab him. Sonic rolled out of the way and flew past him, looking back over his shoulder and saying, “Okay, I get it! You’re a touchy guy! Yeesh…”
Discord turned around to look at him while placing his lion paw on top of the bump on his head. While pressing down on it, his magic causing it to sink back into his head, he growled, “Go ahead and run, hedgehog. Even you can’t outrun shadows.” Once his bump was fully healed, he thrust both of his hands out while using his magic, launching what appeared to be three pegasus-shaped apparitions that were shrouded in shadow in Sonic’s direction.
Sonic was about halfway back to the girls when he heard something behind him and looked back over his shoulder. He saw Discord’s apparitions approaching him, but as soon as he did, they suddenly split off and seemingly vanished. “Huh? Where’d they go?” Sonic wondered. He got his answer when one apparition suddenly leapt out of the side of the time tunnel and tried to attack him! Sonic managed to dodge it, but as he turned around to face it, the apparition faded away, turning into a shadow. “It turned into a shadow? How…? Wait, pegasus… It’s a Shadowbolt, duh!” Sonic said.
He turned and tried to get back to the Main Six, but the Shadowbolts kept leaping from the shadows to attack him, throwing him off until the two male Shadowbolts got in his path when he wasn’t going at full speed, when he was close to the girls. Their leader materialized behind him, for the moment just floating there. Suddenly, Rainbow Dash said to him over the radio, “Sonic!” He looked past the two Shadowbolts towards the chunk the Main Six were on and quickly got what Rainbow was trying to tell him.
Clutching the Element of Loyalty in his right hand, he pulled his arm back and whispered to the pegasus, “Go long!” As the Shadowbolts rushed him, he swung his arm and let go of the necklace, throwing it over the two male Shadowbolts’ heads and towards the girls. While the Shadowbolts caught him in a pincer maneuver, Rainbow quickly backed up near the opposite edge of the street chunk and, when her necklace was close enough, jumped up and felt it hit her at the base of her neck. She quickly reached up and caught it with her hooves before it could fall and clipped it on as she dropped down.
Upon landing, Rainbow felt a small surge of Chaos energy and grinned, “All right, we’re back in business!” Feeling the need to flaunt it, she flew up and started charging energy into her right hoof, a little bit of fire from her mane going into it as well. She then pointed her now-glowing hoof at the Shadowbolts, who were still surrounding Sonic, and shouted, “Heads up!” The pegasi looked at her when she spoke, allowing Sonic to slip out of their grip and fly off to the side. With her necklace glowing brightly, Rainbow fired a rainbow-colored beam at them, which engulfed them when it reached them!
Sonic watched as the beam shot by, the silhouettes of the Shadowbolts visible from where he was. When the beam died down, all he could see in place of the pegasi was smoke, the beam seemingly have broken them down. As he watched, though, the smoke swirled and spun around, forming a miniature vortex. He couldn’t see through it, but he could make out a form within it. After a short time, the vortex vanished revealing, a hedgehog clad in gold armor and holding a golden sword in its right hand.
Sonic eyed the hedgehog carefully, examining it. “Looks like the form Caliburn and I took when the other knights sent us their swords, but… the armor’s a little darker and not as shiny, and that Excalibur’s blade is just gold; it doesn’t have that glow around it. Guess that makes sense; that’s not really Caliburn and that hedgehog is still made up of the Shadowbolts. They must’ve taken that knight form due to being hit with the Element of Loyalty’s power.”
He was brought out of his musings when Twilight called to him, “Sonic, what did Discord’s magic do now?”
Sonic replied, “Looks like the Shadowbolts have been turned into the form I took when Caliburn’s true form was revealed. Except… that sword doesn’t look like the real Excalibur, and that armor looks more like the Black Knight’s.”
Applejack asked, “So that DEFINITELY ain’t the real deal?”
Rarity chided her, “Well, of course not, Applejack! Sonic left Caliburn in Camelot, remember? Therefore, it’s just an imitation.”
Applejack replied, “Yeah, but the others were just copies too, yet they seemed like they were able to mimic Sonic pretty well! The fact that he can tell the difference about this one could mean somethin’!”
While watching the armor-clad hedgehog raise his sword up and examine it, Sonic spoke, “Well, this isn’t a good time to be worrying about things that stand out anyway. Not while Eggman’s still got the Element of Magic.” Without another word, he turned and flew down the time tunnel, once again going after the Time Eater and Discord. The Excalibur Sonic lookalike turned his head as Super Sonic flew away, seemingly watching him. After a few moments, he dropped his arm to his side and started flying after him, no one spotting a mark displaying a pony’s skull with a pegasus’ wing attached to it underneath his cape or the crescent moon on the other side of his cape.
Rainbow Dash flew around to the back of the street chunk the girls were on and placed her hooves on it. She then started pushing it while saying, “Hang on, girls! I’m gonna get us closer so we can watch and be ready for the finale!” The other members of the Main Six sat tight at that, making sure they had a sure grip on the pavement.
When they got close enough to clearly see Discord and the Time Eater past him, Rainbow stopped pushing and they all stared in surprise at what they saw: Black Knight Sonic was attacking Super Sonic while Discord watched. Rainbow flew up and hovered above the girls and asked, “What the hay?! Why is that knight guy attacking Sonic?! I gave those Shadowbolts a big dose of loyalty; now that they’re like that, shouldn’t they be on his side?!”
Twilight spoke, “Actually, Rainbow, most black knights are independent; they don’t often form allegiances.”
Applejack looked at her, “No allegiances? So even though that guy’s attackin’ Sonic right now, it might not mean anythin’?”
Twilight shrugged, “Yeah, maybe. I don’t know.” Applejack looked back at the battle, holding a hoof to her chin in thought.
Discord floated in place with his arms crossed, highly amused as he watched a copy of Sonic finally fighting against the real deal. Super Sonic was doing fairly well at dodging Black Knight Sonic’s blade, but that didn’t concern Discord. That’s what he wanted, actually: to see Sonic exhaust himself so that, later on, he would be tired and easy to deal with, and this copy of Sonic was certainly keeping him on his toes with different ways of using his sword.
After about a minute of Sonic’s dodging and trying to communicate with his double, Discord laughed, “Yes, this is more like it! I find this chaos to be much more fun! Finally, I’m getting the chance to just sit back and watch!” Black Knight Sonic turned his head in Discord’s direction after he finished speaking, causing the draconequus to straighten up. Even though he couldn’t see its eyes under the helmet, he could feel them boring into him. In less than a second, the knight shot towards him, making a wide swing as it got close to him. Discord anticipated this, though, and managed to move out of the way before he was slashed. While dodging more slashes, he yelled, “Now what?!”
Sonic looked at the knight’s cape and spotted the crescent moon on it, the same crescent moon as the one on Luna’s cutie mark. “Looks like this knight is loyal to the night and nothing else!” he grinned.
Discord, after moving so that the Time Eater was behind him, growled, “Shadowbolts and their supposed loyalty to Nightmare Moon… Luckily, I was expecting this to happen.” After dodging a downward slash from Black Knight Sonic, Discord tapped him on the head with his lion paw, causing him to wince and look down in alarm as his armor began to crumble away.
Seeing this, Super Sonic quickly flew up behind Black Knight Sonic and grabbed him by his shoulder plates. When the knight turned his head to look at him, he said, “Hey pal, I could use a little bit of your help. How’d you like to go out with a bang?” The knight seemed to consider what he said for a moment before holding his sword straight up.
Discord smirked when he saw this, “Looks like he’s saying no, spikeball!”
He watched as Black Knight Sonic held the sword at his side in both hands, his armor crumbling up to his waist, and Super Sonic floated in front of him, the latter saying, “You think so? Well, I’ve got two words for you, ‘Dizzy’.” He then curled up and began spinning in midair like he was readying a Spin Dash, “Play ball!” As soon as he said that, Black Knight Sonic swung his sword sideways into Super Sonic, sending him flying towards Discord as his upper body and sword began to crumble away.
Discord was not anticipating this action and so the wind was powerfully knocked out of him when Sonic slammed into the middle of his long body. He remained where he was for a moment before Sonic shot into a Boost, pushing him back towards the Time Eater! Before Eggman could move the beast out of the way, Discord slammed into it hard and ended up splayed out over it with Sonic crouching on top of him. The impact knocked the Element of Magic loose, the crown flying straight up and towards the front of the Time Eater. Sonic quickly leapt up and grabbed it in his left hand. Not missing a beat, he took the crown in both hands and flipped in midair, calling back, “Heads up, Twilight!” He then threw it behind him and, after flipping back over, shot into a Homing Attack, shooting underneath Discord’s shrinking body and striking the Time Eater’s core while saying, “Here goes!”
While Sonic was attacking, Applejack stood up on her hind legs and lifted Twilight above her head with her hooves. After the pseudo-alicorn spread her wings, Applejack threw her towards her crown, her wings remaining firm enough to allow her to glide through the air. Her crown was spinning as she got close to it, but a quick, low-powered flick of her magic righted it and set it atop her head. Feeling her power floodgates come back under control, she flew towards Sonic, who had bounced back after cracking the Time Eater’s core some more, and channeled her magic into her horn. A second later, her friends were all teleported to her and they all flew at Sonic’s sides as they went after Discord and the Time Eater.
While Discord, who had shrunk back to his regular size, was recovering from Sonic’s earlier hit and crashing into the Time Eater, Orbot looked at Cubot and smugly said, “Told you the Boss wouldn’t be able to hold onto the Elements. Pay up.”
Cubot, his voice chip having been knocked out of place yet again at some point earlier, handed his red-headed companion his money while complaining, “Mama mia! I’m-a never betting with-a you again!”
Rainbow grinned when she overheard this, “You hear that, Egghead? Even one of your robots was rooting for us this whole time!”
Twilight called, “It’s over, Dr. Eggman and Discord! Let’s just put a stop to all of this now!”
Eggman spoke, “Hmph, you ponies have proven to be quite troublesome all this time. Surprising, considering you don’t look like much up close like this, but you really are quite a handful for such little ponies.”
Applejack rolled her eyes, “Oh, like you’d know anythin’ about bein’ little.”
Sonic called, “It doesn’t have to end this way, Discord! You could still have your chaos and not be a jerk if you just mellowed out a little!”
Discord, now fully recovered from earlier, placed his hands on top of Orbot and Cubot’s heads as he leaned out over his Eggmobile and questioned, “Let me ask you again: do you really think that I would have any fun that way? Do you think anypony in the current Equestria would actually appreciate me or my chaos aside from that bipolar nutcase, Pinkie Pie? Because I do not, and I am not pandering to her for any reason!”
Pinkie gave an indignant shout at that, but Sonic simply said, “All right, but just remember: you brought this on yourself!”
Discord leaned back and relaxed in his seat as he replied, “Pah, whatever! This game has gotten boring anyway, so I say it’s time to end it!”
Eggman nodded, “Indeed! After this, there won’t be enough of you fools left to fill a Petri dish!”
Rainbow asked, “What are you talking about?!”
Eggman grinned, “Oh, that’s easy, my dear Rainbow! This!” He pressed a button on his console and suddenly, the ball of magma that had been circling the Time Eater throughout the whole fight suddenly vanished and reappeared inside the time tunnel, causing everyone to stop in midair at the sight of it.
“WE’LL END IT! BURN! BURN TO ASHES!” Eggman and Discord shouted at the group as the Time Eater launched the ball of magma towards them! Sonic regained his composure first and shot towards the ball, the Main Six quickly doing the same. They all slammed into the side of the ball and began pushing against it with their hands/hooves, trying to stop it. They all pushed as hard as they could, the ball seeming to lose some of its momentum…
Suddenly, Fluttershy let out a shriek and everyone looked over at her. They quickly saw the reason: her hooves were sinking into the magma! Sonic and the girls all tried to move to help her, but the same thing was happening to them! They all tried to struggle and break free, but the magma kept pulling them in, some of the girls screaming as they got close to disappearing. Within a minute, they were all pulled in completely!
Eggman stood up and triumphantly said, “YES! It’s finally over! At last I can say farewell to my admirable adversary and those annoying ponies and their talk of friendship!”
Discord scratched his chin with his lion paw, “Yes, but… I can’t help but think we could’ve tried to break them instead, after making them pay for defying my magic rather than outright destroying them. Are you even sure they’ll perish in there, Doctor?”
Eggman replied, “Oh please, Discord. A quick, somewhat painless death is far more merciful and preferable to destroying minds and letting them live and actually seeing what you’ve done to them. And do you not know anything about magma? That kind of pressure is intense; they’ll be able to survive, however briefly, until the pressure on the inside crushes them like insects! There will be no suffering involved!”
Discord crossed his arms, “I still like my way better.”
Eggman retorted, “Yeah, well there’s nothing for Celestia to save this way. How do you like that, cake cheeks?” There was a moment of silence; Discord wasn’t sure if he was talking to him. “Ah, right. They communicated with the others over that radio that Sonic had. That’s probably melted down to nothing by now. Well, no matter. They’ll all soon see…”
Eggman stopped in mid-sentence at that sound, both him and Discord looking around in confusion. They heard it again, and again. Orbot pointed at the ball of magma, “Um, Boss?” Discord and Eggman looked to see cracks forming on the surface of the magma, growing bigger and making that loud cracking sound as they looked at it. What was going on?
When the cracks extended from the top to the bottom and ran along the sides of the magma, bright light began to shine out of them. Seconds later, the entire ball was destroyed in an explosion that sent embers flying, surprising and temporarily blinding Eggman and Discord! When they could somewhat see again, they could see none other than Sonic and the Main Six floating where the ball had been, still Super but also seeming reenergized!
As they floated motionless (for the moment), Zecora spoke, “Chaos and Harmony are combining in a perfect fit.”
Everyone helped her finish that rhyme.
“NOW, GO FOR IT!”
And that they did.
Eggman and Discord barely had a second to put on a look that fit their situation before Sonic and the six mares shot forward. As they flew forward, they each left a trail the color of the last Chaos Emerald they’d been holding before their transformation, looking like a rainbow as they flew together before they broke off and began assaulting the Time Eater. They flew along the creature’s body, their emerald trails cutting into it and causing damage to the additions that Eggman made to it. Parts of its remaining arms were broken off, the Eggmobiles suffering considerable damage, dark cuts that began spewing smoke lining it… And through it all, Discord and Eggman were trying desperately to get the beast to listen to them and get away.
Eggman did manage to open a portal behind the Time Eater when Sonic and the Main Six backed off, but they quickly came back together again to deliver a powerful combination hit to the creature’s face, forcefully sending it backwards through its portal, which remained open unlike the others it had created. It was time.
Twilight, Applejack, Rainbow, Pinkie, Rarity, and Fluttershy all came together, floating into their proper positions. Once they were all in place, they closed their eyes and began to charge the Elements of Harmony. With the power of the Chaos Emeralds coursing through them, they were charging faster than ever before. It wasn’t long before Twilight was ready to open her eyes to reveal the glowing white behind them… but something else seemed to be different this time.
Sonic floated off to the side and watched silently, knowing that, in the long run, Discord was going to need this if he was ever going to learn. Suddenly he noticed Chip’s necklace shining and held it up to look at it. As he looked at its jewel, he could almost see Chip’s face on the inside; he knew what he was supposed to do. He flew up underneath the girls and held his left arm straight up, the shining from the jewel intensifying in response. After a moment, six lights rose up from the Elements of Harmony and floated in the air above. Sonic’s ring then shot a beacon of green light up that formed a ring around the lights and caused them to glow brightly, as if they were the Elements of Harmony themselves. As they continued to glow brighter, the girls opened their eyes and Sonic flew up in front of them. They got on his sides in a triangle formation (three on each side, one above the other two) and, joined together, they all flew through the portal.
On the other side of the portal, near the end of the time tunnel, Discord and Eggman managed to get the Time Eater back under control and stop it from spinning end-over-end. After righting it, they looked forward to see the group shooting towards them, a rainbow aura surrounding them. Eggman screamed, “Gah! Stop them!”
Discord grunted, “Oh, would you relax?" He snapped his lion paw fingers and pressed a button on his Eggmobile’s still-functioning console. In response, the Time Eater began throwing everything except its arms at them: lasers, homing shots, and the clocks. Though they remained on target, the seven moved around these attacks as best they could at the speed they were going, and anything they did hit, even the clocks, failed to slow them down. “What?!” Discord exclaimed at this.
Eggman growled, “I’m not giving up yet!” He commanded the Time Eater to defend itself with its arms, but just as it moved them up, Sonic and the Main Six reached their target: the Time Eater’s core. They shot straight through it to the other side, the core sparking with electricity as it began to destabilize. “DISCORD!” Eggman screamed.
“All right!” the draconequus groaned as he snapped both sets of fingers. The Time Eater’s core stopped sparking and some of the cracks smoothed out somewhat in response. Unnoticed by either of them, Cubot, or Orbot for the moment, the group pulled off a kind of U-turn, curving their flight path upward and arching as they turned back towards the Time Eater.
Eggman noticed them when they finished arching and started heading straight down for the Time Eater. “Guh! Now what?!” he exclaimed. The group shot straight down, Sonic flipping around so his feet were pointing down. They hit the Time Eater between the two Eggmobiles, though they were closer to Discord’s. They held there… and then pushed off, rebounding away from the Time Eater and separating as they all came to a stop and floated in place some distance away from the Time Eater. Eggman uncovered his eyes and asked, “Huh? Nothing happened?”
Discord laughed, “HA! Looks like you all need to work on your aim! Care to try that one again?”
To his and Eggman’s surprise, Sonic and the girls shot knowing looks at each other before looking back at them with Rainbow smirking, “No, I think we’re good.”
Sonic grinned, “Yeah, you guys haven’t even seen the best part yet.” They all then looked in the direction they had come from, Eggman, Discord, Orbot, and Cubot following their gaze.
Suddenly, there was a glint of light in the shape of a six-pronged star and a familiar rainbow, the front of it having a yellow glow instead of the usual white glow, shot into the time tunnel, heading straight for the Time Eater! Before anyone had a chance to react, the rainbow shot through the Time Eater’s core, completely shattering it! “What?!” Eggman exclaimed.
Applejack grinned, “You wanted to see the power of the Elements of Harmony, Eggman? Well, you just got it!”
Twilight said, “And that’s not just the Elements of Harmony. The power of the Chaos Emeralds is there too!”
While looking back at the Rainbow of Light as it suddenly began to curve upwards, going into a U-turn, Discord exclaimed, “But… But that can’t be! Harmony and chaos can’t mix!”
Fluttershy spoke, “Oh, but they can, Discord.”
Rarity tossed her mane, “If you weren’t such a ruffian who could think about somepony other than yourself, perhaps you’d know that!”
As the Rainbow of Light began to arch down towards the Time Eater, Pinkie said, “We’re always learning about how chaos and harmony come together! There’s no chocolate milk rain, but we still manage to find plenty of chaos of our own!”
Sonic nodded, “Dishonesty, greed, anger, cruelty, disloyalty… together they make up hopelessness and chaos, driving people apart. But honesty, loyalty, laughter, generosity, and kindness come together to form magic and harmony, soothing souls and bringing them back together. They always vary, but when the right combination of chaos and harmony come together, they form… friendship!” Sonic and the Main Six turned to each other and did a high fist/hoof bump at that.
Discord watched in fear as the Rainbow of Light began to shoot straight down at the Time Eater, following the same path the group took. “No…!” The Rainbow then struck the Time Eater dead on in its center, Discord being caught under its colors. “NOOOOOOOOO!!!” He screamed, already feeling the effects of the Elements of Harmony taking effect.
He wasn’t the only one being affected by it; the Time Eater’s body was shaking erratically as the power of the Elements of Harmony and the Chaos Emeralds shot into its body, beginning to shake it apart and break apart the remaining bits of machinery attached to it. As a bright light began to shine from within it, rays of the light flowing out as if through cracks in its body, Eggman shouted, “I hate friendship! I hate those ponies! I HATE THAT HEDGEHOG!!!”
And with that, a sphere of rainbow light erupted from the Time Eater’s body, spreading throughout the Center of Time. Sonic and the Main Six shielded their eyes as they were enveloped by it, the light going through the earlier created portal and continuing. It enveloped everyone who had been watching and continued going, spreading to the entrance portal and beyond…
It was unknown how much time had passed before Twilight opened her eyes again and looked around. She was still in her Super form, but she was now floating in white space, seemingly alone. She couldn’t see anything; there was no sign of Ponyville, Canterlot, Appleloosa, the Crystal Empire… she couldn’t even tell if she was in the space that Equestria occupied.
Turning around and looking she finally spotted something, or rather someone: Sonic! He was still in his Super form as well, and as she watched, she saw Rainbow Dash and Applejack float into view, both of them Super as well. “Twilight, there ya are! Thank goodness. We’re almost all back together,” Applejack said in relief.
“Are Rarity, Pinkie, and Fluttershy here as well?” the pseudo-alicorn asked.
Sonic looked off to the side and said, “Well, there’s Fluttershy and Rarity coming this way. No sign of Pinkie, though…”
Suddenly, the now-red party pony popped up behind Sonic, exclaiming, “Whee! That was fun, wasn’t it?!”
Rainbow flew over to her and said, “Aw yeah, you bet it was, Pinkie!” The two bumped hooves together.
Rarity and Fluttershy reached the group and stopped in midair, Rarity saying, “I must admit, that was quite a blast.”
Fluttershy nodded, “Oh yes. I had… fun? Yes, I think that’s correct. And maybe I was a LITTLE scared too.”
Applejack said, “Well, don’t you worry, Fluttershy. We done showed that Eggman and Discord whose boss!”
Twilight smiled at that, but then her natural curiosity came back and she asked, “But… if we stopped the Time Eater, why are we back here? What’s going on?” Everybody else seemed to be confused about that part too.
Sonic noticed something out of the corner of his eye down to his left and turned to look. “Hey, look,” he said, the girls turning to look as well. Down below them, they saw a purplish-black cloud with a scary-looking face in the center. “It’s the Time Eater, without Eggman’s modifications,” Sonic commented. They watched it, wondering what it was going to do.
Suddenly, a white light erupted from behind the Time Eater’s cloud. As the group watched, what appeared to be bubbles began to float out from behind it, floating past them. Looking at one of the bubbles, Pinkie saw something beginning to form on its surface, color flowing into it. About a second later, she recognized what it was. “Hey, that’s the Crystal Empire!” she exclaimed.
Applejack looked at another bubble and saw a town beginning to take shape on its surface. “And that there’s Appleloosa!” she said a moment later.
As they all watched, every place they knew, every place they visited (except for the dark future places; they showed their locations, but their bubbles soon burst after they were released), and locations they didn’t see floated past them into the white space before vanishing. One bubble caught Sonic’s attention. It showed an island from his world, an island that, although he had not been back to in years, still held a spot in his memory.
“Isn’t that… Christmas Island?” he wondered. He didn’t get a chance to wonder much longer as light began to shine from the Time Eater once again, grabbing everyone’s attention.
As they looked at it, the white light behind it began to emanate from inside of its body, much like when it appeared above Ponyville, but it seemed different this time. It seemed like the light was beginning to swallow it, yet as it vanished, it appeared to be spreading out from it as well. And indeed it was; once the light had enveloped the Time Eater, it began to spread out towards the group. As it reached them, Rarity, Fluttershy, and Applejack looked down and saw themselves beginning to fade away into white, vanishing from the white space.
As Rainbow and Pinkie began to fade away next, Sonic and Twilight looked over at each other. They locked eyes as the last two of their friends disappeared and the light spread to them. They began to fade away as well, but they weren’t afraid. No matter where it was they were going, they had a feeling all of their friends would be waiting for them there.
As the fading spread up their bodies, Sonic raised his right hand and Twilight raised her left leg, her hoof meeting the palm of Sonic’s hand. He closed his hand around it, quietly promising Twilight that she wouldn’t be alone.
And then the light reached up to their heads and enveloped them all the way, both of them quietly fading away as both of their worlds were released from the white space they had been drawn into by the Time Eater’s power, the white space vanishing as well as their worlds began to reset.