It was madness. It was chaos. All of this over such a big event: a coronation. Ever since it hit national news, tons of ponies have been trying to get Twilight to go to either Canterlot or somewhere far away like Appaloosa. Neither side were giving in, deluding themselves into thinking they had any choice in the matter. Ponyville was the worst, having been turned into a verbal battleground. It had even gotten to the point where Twilight ended up locking herself in the library sending out Spike and Owlouysious to get groceries. Then all of a sudden there was a knock at the door...
"Hello?" said a voice. "Twilight? I know you're in there."
Twilight was sitting in the middle of the dark room awaiting her fate.
"Twilight, it's Ty. Please let me in."
Twilight still did nothing.
"I don't want to bring you to Canterlot and I don't want to bring you to Dodge City."
"Then where DO you want to take me?" Twilight asked.
"If I just shouted out my idea, ponies would follow us. Please let me in."
Twilight thought hard for a minute before deciding to let the blue pegasus in with a new friend in tow: a brown male pegasus foal.
"Thanks. Geez, the tension out there is thick enough to cut with a knife. I even heard that Lyra and Bonbon ended up splitting over the whole ordeal."
"You said you had an idea?" Twilight asked impatiently.
"Right. How would you feel about taking a trip to the Crystal Empire?"
"The Crystal Empire?"
"It's far away from any pony settlement and we can go see Shining Armor and Princess Cadence. I figured it would be great neutral territory."
"But what if we run into somepony on the train?"
"Rarity gave me enough gems to pay for a private car as well as anything we might need while we're there."
"Wow. That was generous."
"Apparently the others were being pressured too... Which reminds me, don't go by Sugarcube Corner. Pinkie's snapped."
"One question: why should I trust you?" Twilight asks.
"Twilight, have I ever put myself before others just for the sake of a story?" Ty asked in return.
"I also managed to get help from Rarity. Would you ever doubt your friends?"
"Oh right, the changeling thing. Look, I give you my word as a reporter."
Silence. For a minute, pure silence.
"I'll let you decide. If you trust me, grab Spike and meet me at the train station tonight." He said as he walked out the door, leaving Twilight to ponder her predicament.
"We're really doing this, aren't we?" Spike asked.
"Yes. I need to get out of Ponyville for a while." Twilight said. The two were sneaking around Ponyville's backalleys while Twilight wore a cloak she got from Zecora during her training. Passing by house after house all with a sleeping pony inside, she could still feel the conflict in the air.
"This is ridiculous."
"No kidding. Why can't they just leave me be?" Twilight sighs. "Luna, help me."
"No, why are we trusting him so easily?"
"So far he's the only one in Ponyville that's actually calm about the whole ordeal."
"And that's reason enough?"
"Right now, yes." She said as they passed Sugarcube Corner where strange sounds could be heard. Almost like a mix of whimpering and insane laughter. Silence overtook them as the starry moonlit night carried a sense of dread with it instead of a sense of wonderment. Right now, with the fear of being discovered and chased, this really was nightmare night. Made all the worse when she saw three extra ponies at the train station with Ty in the shadows by the train itself.
"Pleeeeeeeeease?" they all said in a cute whispering voice.
"No." Ty whispered back.
"What's going on here?" Twilight asked.
The three ponies stepped into the moonlight to reveal themselves as Ponyville's Cutie Mark Crusaders.
"What are you three doing here?!" Twilight whispered.
"We want to go with ya ta the Crystal Empire." Applebloom said.
"Who told you we were going there?"
"Spike." said Ty and the Crusaders.
Twilight glared at Spike for a second who responded with, "They're the only ones I told, honest. And I told them that if THEY tell anyone, I'd tell Rarity and Applejack about how they forced me to go there while I was petsitting... oops."
Twilight glared harder. "Spiiiiiiike...." she said through gritted teeth.
"The three of you go home now." Ty urged.
"Well, what if Applejack and Rarity already know we're going with?" Sweetie Belle asked.
All three nodded in unison.
"... Ugh. Fine. Let's go."
"YAAAAA-" the three fillies shouted together.
"SHH!" the other three said together.
Soon the group was settled in and on their way to the Crystal Empire.
Each pony took a bed with Ty lying across from Twilight with his foal, Silver Quill snuggled up next to him. Spike and the Crusaders fell asleep almost immediately but Twilight and Ty just weren't tired. However, neither could find words and just looked out at the passing scenery. The moon suddenly seemed more inviting as its rays shone down on the trees and fields while the clacking of train wheels added to the aura of the room. Escape. That's what this was. An escape from the politics of Ponyville. An escape from being constantly pressured to speed up or outright halt the upcoming coronation by ponies who had no right to tell her she should or shouldn't be a princess.
Ty turned to face Twilight. "What?"
"Thanks for bringing me to the Empire."
"Don't thank me."
"Why is this happening? Why is everypony trying so hard to control me? It's my life. Don't they trust the princess? Don't they trust me? Yeah, things will change but it's not going to change who I am. I'll still be Twilight Sparkle the Unicorn... well, Alicorn."
"I think a lot of ponies don't see that. They don't want you to change because they think it'll change you and what you mean to them. Some already look up to you and think that if you become a princess it'll mean if you're the favorite you'll get good stuff, or maybe they think you becoming a princess is just a normally unreachable fantasy and should stay that way."
"I'm just guessing here. Bottom line is they just need to quit freaking out and let things unfold before going absolutely nuts. That goes for the supporters too."
"What do you mean?"
"Forgive me for saying this but it IS entirely possible that this whole princess thing might change you for the worse. Maybe this isn't the right time. Maybe this wasn't even supposed to happen but is anyway. I don't mean to insult Princess Celestia but the one-thousand years of guilt for trapping her sister in the moon could possibly cloud her judgement a bit. Maybe Discord managed to infuence her somehow."
"Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence."
"I'm not on either side. I'm just waiting to see what happens... but for what it's worth, I do believe in you."
Suddenly Twilight's heart felt light for the first time in weeks. "Thanks." Twilight said with a yawn. "So how have you and Silver Quill been doing?"
"We're getting along just fine. I still can't believe somepony just left him in the street..."
As dawn cracked the sky, an air of peace filled the car as its occupants were sleeping soundly including a softly snoring Scootaloo. Unfortunately this peace was broken as Silver Quill began crying out and waking everypony.
"What's that noise?" Scootaloo asked.
"It's Silver Quill. He's hungry." Ty explained.
Twilight yawned. "I've got this." She said as she levitated Silver Quill and a bottle over to her.
"Thanks, Twi." Ty said as he looked out the window to see the Crystal Empire train station coming into view. "Everyone grab your stuff. We're here." Those two words instantly energized the Crusaders as they began bouncing all over the car.
"The Crystal Empire! Yay!"
As Ty's stomach growled he turned to Twilight and asked, "Do we head straight to the castle? I know of a restaurant near here that's always open."
"Hmmm... How about we grab a bite?"