Chapter 13: The Royal Party

It was late in the evening and the sun was starting to set. Luna was on her balcony looking over the railing at the large numbers of soldiers on the ground. She watched them as they set up their tents against the thick castle wall. There were soldiers wearing many different kinds of armors and colors, some had flags next to their groups. The wind blew Luna's white hair wildly in the air, her white coat waved like the ocean waves. She so busy watching the soldiers that she never heard her mother walk in calling for her.
Royal Heart walked in, "Luna." but she didn't hear her. Royal Heart turned towards the door and saw the servant standing at the door with a large, silk green pillow.
"Set it on her bed," Royal Heart ordered her.
The yellow unicorn with red and orange hair walked in with the green silk pillow and laid it on the bed. On the silk pillow sat a shinny silver collar embedded with diamonds and rubies, in the center at the point was a symbol of the feathered dragon.
The yellow unicorn turned and quietly left the room.
"Luna!" Royal Heart called, this time Luna heard her. She turned and saw her mother smiling. She was wearing her tiara and collar with her blue mane coming down in curls.
"Luna, please come here. I have something for you."
Luna turned and left the balcony, "Mom there's so many soldiers camped outside."
"Those soldiers belong to our guests for the Royal Party. They will be camping outside until tomorrow morning," Royal Heart took her hoof and took a strain out of her face, "Your hair is a mess. You'll have to get ready for the party but first I want you to wear something at the party." Royal Heart led her to the bed and showed her to the silver collar laying on the silk green pillow.
"This Luna, is yours to wear at all times," Royal Heart picked the collar up.
"All the time, even in the other world?" Luna asked.
"No, I'm afraid you can't in the other world. This is too valuable to wear in the other world, Luna," Royal Heart replied.
Luna stared at the collar, she couldn't believe it was hers. But something about it seemed different than her mother's collar.
"It's a bit different than yours, Mom."
"It's just the design on the collar that looks different," Royal Heart carefully placed the collar on Luna's neck, "There. It looks so pretty on you."
Luna touched the collar with her hoof. It felt strange to have it hanging on her neck but she remembered what Starfire said that she would get used to it.
"Now, lets get you brushed," Royal Heart went to the dresser and took the brush then she went to Luna and started brushing her long white hair. Then she brushed her wings and coat.
"Why are you brushing my coat?" Luna asked curiously.
Royal Heart laughed, "Your coat looks a mess too. I want you to look very pretty. Everyone is going to see you and your father is going to announce you to everyone."
When Royal Heart was done, she set the brush on the dresser and looked at Luna smiling, "You look much better. Luna when you go to bed, be sure you put your collar on your pillow," Royal Heart pointed at the green pillow on her bed.
"Ok," Luna replied.
Royal Heart smiled. "Well, let's go to the party."
Luna smiled feeling excited but at the same time she was nervous too. She followed her mother out of the room.

When they came upon the large double doors to the ballroom, Luna felt even more nervous. She could hear voices in the room. The two soldiers at the door were wearing full body armor. They turned and opened the door letting Royal Heart and Luna inside.
Luna walked closely at her mother's side while looking around the room. The voices suddenly became quiet. There were six rectangle tables with white table cloths on them. In the center of each table was a basket of pink and white flowers. Luna noticed a few princes and princesses her age staring at her. In front of the doors on the other side of the room were ponies with instruments. In the corner of the room next to the stairs sat a white stage with a long L shaped table on it. A green and gold table cloth covered the table. Starfire, Skyview and her grandparents sat at the table on the stage smiling at her. Stardust stood on the floor in front of the stage waiting. He wore his crown and collar. Her uncles wore their collars as well.
Royal Heart walked up to Stardust and turned facing the royal ponies at the tables. Luna turned and looked at the ponies, not one looked away from her.
"Kings, queens, princes and princesses!" Stardust yelled so everyone can hear him, "I meant to introduce you to our daughter thirteen years ago but because of Star Cluster taking over my kingdom I never got a chance to introduce you to her. Today is her official announcement. This Royal Party is in her honor. You all have heard rumors about our daughter and not sure if it was true. As you can see, they are in fact true. Our daughter is a real pure white winged unicorn. The first of her kind," Stardust looked at Luna. "This is, Princess Luna of Ponyland. She is our only child."
Luna stood uneasily staring nervously at them. She could hear them whispering, no doubt it was about her.
"Luna, just smile," Royal Heart whispered to her.
Luna smiled at them as they all nodded their heads at her and smiled back.
"You will get a chance to speak with her later, but first lets eat and let the musicians play their music!" Stardust yelled.
When the music started to play Stardust turned and walked to the stage with Royal Heart and Luna behind him.
Stardust walked up the steps on the stage and went to the tallest wooden chair, it had soft green seats and back. Royal Heart had a chair just like it. Luna had one just like her parents but not as tall. Once they were seated the cooks came in the room at the far end of the room. They carried several trays to the stage. They set them on the royal table and left the room. Once they had served Stardust and his family, the cooks served the six tables. A long table sat at the other end of the room. On it were a couple of large punch bowels with glasses being filled. The servants that stood against a wall came to the long table and served the drinks to the royal table then to the six tables.

When Luna was done eating, she sat and looked in the room. There were still a lot of ponies still eating but there was some that were done. Most of the princes were done and had gathered in the corner is the room next to the drink table. The princesses were also done and had gathered on the other side of the table talking. The room was filled with voices and whisperings.
"Luna," Royal Heart called to her. "If you done, why don't you go meet a few of the princes and princesses? Don't be long though, dessert will be here soon."
"Dessert," Luna asked happily.
Royal Heart smiled. " Go on Luna."
"What's for dessert?" Luna asked curiously.
"You'll find out soon. Now go and meet someone your age," Royal Heart told her.
Luna stood up from her chair and left the stage. Royal ponies looked at her as they ate and talked.
"Hello, Princess Luna," a queen quickly said to her.
Luna stopped nervously smiled at the mint pony with green and white hair.
"Hi," Luna replied.
"It's an honor to see you, Princess Luna."
"Oh, well...thanks," Luna replied not sure if she had replied to her right.
"I think she's anxious to meet the boys and girls," another king said.
"Oh, I'm sorry," the queen apologized. "I guess you are rather anxious to see them."
"Yes I am. I never meet another princess or prince," Luna told her.
"I'm sorry. Perhaps we can talk again later then?" The queen suggested.
"Yes, that would be nice," Luna replied.
The ponies around her sat and watched her as she left them. Luna walked towards the drink table to the corner of the room. There stood seven princes talking when one of them noticed her approaching.
"It's her," one of them whispered.
Luna stopped and stood next to them looking a bit shy. "Hi."
"Hello, Princess Luna," one of them replied.
The dark green pony with light pink hair smiled at her, "I'm Prince Skybloom and these are my friends." He turned and introduced them all to her.
"It's nice to meet you," one said.
"Do you mind if I ask you something?" a light blue pony asked. "We're a bit curious."
"I don't mind," Luna answered.
"Can you really fly and do unicorn magic at the same time?" the Blue pony asked.
Luna smiled, "Yes I can."
"What's it like to be...a winged unicorn?" a pink pony asked.
"I don't know," Luna replied. "Can you tell me what it's like to be a normal pony?"
Prince Skybloom and his friends laughed at the pink pony.
"Oh I see your point," the pink pony replied.
Just then a queen with a tan coat and pink hair walked up to the boys. "Please excuse me Princess Luna," She looked at Skybloom, "Where is your sister?"
Skybloom looked around, "Mom, she was just here."
"Go look for her."
"I'm sorry, Princess Luna, I'll talk to you later." Skybloom left the group and walked around to find his sister.
The queen excused herself and returned to her table.
"I'm going to meet the princesses," Luna told them.
"It was nice meeting you," one of the boys exclaimed. The group of boys agreed and watched as she left.
"She's not at all what I thought she would be," one of them said.
"Yeah, she's nothing like my chatterbox sister," another boy replied, "Which is kind of good actually."

Luna walked to the girls in another corner.
"Hello, Princess Luna," a princess exclaimed.
Luna could see the eight girls were all very pretty. They had their hair up, some had it down in curls, while others just had it hanging down flat.
"Umm…hi." Luna nervously replied.
The girls smiled and introduced themselves.
"We've been most anxious to meet you," a princess said.
"I've heard stories about you. Forgive me but I can't believe your real," another princess said.
"Yes, I'm defiantly real," Luna replied smiling.
As she continued to talk to them, she started to feel comfortable and feeling less nervous. She had forgotten the other ponies staring at her.
As they talked, Prince Skybloom saw his sister's yellow tail sticking out from under the drink table. He lifted the table cloth and his sister ran out giggling.
"I'm not playing," Skybloom told her.
The baby pony was a white Pegasus with yellow hair. She can from the table just as the cook brought out a large tray. He carried a white cake with blue and chocolate icing, red flowers with green leaf icing all around the cake. The baby pony giggled as she slid across the floor in front of the cook who didn't see her in time to stop. He fell over top of her and the cake went flying from his tray.
The princesses turned to see what the noise was about. As Luna turned to look, the cake suddenly hit her in the face.
Everyone looked at her and gasped. Icing dripped from her face and hair to the floor. The music stopped as well.
"Princess Luna, are you alright?" Luna heard a voice ask.
Luna's parents gasped. They could see how upset Luna was getting.
"Oh Luna," Royal Heart muttered worriedly.
Luna fell like crying she was so embarrassed. A tear trickled down her cheek. Her horn began to glow and suddenly she winked out catching the ponies by surprise.
"Oh poor Luna," Royal Heart muttered sadly.
"Go find her and see if she's alright. I'll take care of this mess," Stardust proposed.
Royal Heart stood up from her chair and left the stage. Everyone watched as she left the ballroom. Stardust left the stage and walked across the room.
"Please everyone, continue eating and playing the music!" Stardust told everyone. He walked across the room and stood next to the seven princesses. Just then a queen walked towards him and stood with Prince Skybloom and her baby girl.
The cook stood up and bowed. "I'm truly sorry."
"Who does that girl belong to?" Stardust asked.
"She is mine," the queen replied. "My son was supposed to watch her."
Prince Skybloom lowered his head in shame. "I'm sorry. I'm to blame for this."
"I don't want the little ponies in this area where they could get in the servant's way," Stardust turned to the cook. "Clean this up and make another one."
"Yes, your majesty," The cook turned to get other servants to help.
"Umm...King Stardust, will Princess Luna be ok?" one of the princesses asked.
"I don't know. She was quite upset and embarrassed."
"I've been embarrassed at parties before. I hope she comes back," the princess told him.
Stardust smiled at her, "Be sure to tell her that when she comes back. Luna isn't used to large crowds seeing her as a winged unicorn."
"What do you mean?" one of the princesses asked.
"I heard she can change her looks. Is that true?" another Princess asked.
"Yes that is true. Luna hide her identity but she can be shy or very nervous when others see what she really is," Stardust explained.
"Oh," the girls replied.
"We enjoyed talking to her," another said.
Stardust smiled. "Thank you, girls." He turned and left them. He walked to the stage and sat down.
"What happened?" Starfire asked curiously.
"A baby pony tripped the cook and Luna was right there in the way. Skyview, go find Luna and Royal Heart. I want to know if she's alright."
"Ok," Skyview stood up and left the stage, then he walked past the tables and left the room.

Luna winked to the light green bathroom. It was big with the tub the size of a medium pool. Towels hung on several racks on either side. Luna went to the sink and began wiping the icing off her face as tears fell from her cheek. She had never felt so embarrassed in her life.
"I can't go back," Luna sobbed loudly.
She grabbed a towel and rubbed her face on it, then she looked up at the mirror and saw her face had turned brown. Luna got her hoofs wet and splashed water on her face, then she dried her face with the towel. When she looked up at the mirror be began to cry harder. Tears started to flow heavily.
"No...What...what am I going to do?" Luna cried hard. She wiped the tears from her eyes with her hoof but no matter how hard she tried to get the chocolate off it only smeared more. Luna sat and cried.
Just then Royal Heart walked in. "I thought you would be here."
Luna turned and looked at her as tears flowed from her eyes, "I can't get it off."
Royal Heart looked at her sadly. "Luna let me help you. I'm sure I can get it off." Royal Heart grabbed another towel. She got it wet from the sink and began cleaning Luna's face. When she was done it no longer looked brown but a tan color instead.
Luna looked in the mirror and started to cry again. "I can't go back looking like this."
Just then Skyview walked in, "I should have known you would come here."
Luna turned and looked at him sadly. Skyview gasped.
"I can't get it off. I don't want anyone to see me!" Luna sobbed.
Skyview smiled at a sudden thought he just had. "I have an idea. I'll be right back." Skyview winked out. A minute later he appeared with a razor in his hoof. "Try this Royal Heart."
Royal Heart took the razor from him. "Oh, why didn't I think of this?"
"What is it?" Luna asked still crying.
"It's a razor. I'm going to shave the chocolate off of you."
"What?" Luna asked loudly, "I'll...be ...bald!"
Royal Heart and Skyview laughed.
"Luna," Royal Heart began to say. "Don't you know your fur will grow back instantly?"
"Like my hair?" Luna asked.
"Yes," Royal Heart answered, "That is normal for every pony in this world."
"Oh."
"I'm going to let Stardust know everything is ok." Skyview turned and left the bathroom.
"Now hold still and close your eyes."
Luna closed her eyes and listened as Royal Hear turned on the razor. Luna could feel a tickling sensation all over her face. It made her want to smile but she knew she couldn't move.
"Alright it's done," Royal Heart told her. They she took a piece of Luna's hair and cut it where the chocolate stain was. Luna's white hair instantly started to grow back and soon it was long like it had never been cute.
"Now shall we go join the party?" Royal Heart asked.
"Do I have to?" Luna asked.
"Yes, you do. Everyone gets embarrassed every now and then. Someday you'll even find this all funny," Royal Heart smiled.
She turned and left the bathroom a mess with Luna behind her.
"What about the bathroom?" Luna asked.
"The servants will clean it, Luna," Royal Heart told her.
"Oh," Luna replied.
Royal Heart laughed. "Luna, you don't have to say oh all the time."
"Oh…I mean, ok."
Royal Heart laughed and turned towards Luna. She smiled and nuzzled Luna. "You'll always be my baby girl."
Luna smiled. She enjoyed getting hugs and nuzzles from her mother.
"Let's join the party. We still have to eat that dessert," Royal Heart told her.
"What dessert are we having?" Luna asked.
"Well, I think you were wearing it," Royal heart replied.
Luna sighed sadly. She felt badly that her parents cake was ruined.
Royal Heart turned and smiled at her. "Don't worry Luna. The cooks will make another one."
"Really?" Luna asked.
"Yes, now lets hurry back before they get that cake done," Royal Heart smiled at her.
They walked quickly down the hall back to the ballroom where Luna spent the rest of the party enjoying herself.