I hugged my husband and son for what felt like an eternity before finally letting go… oh, what the heck, I hugged them a second time. Was this unlike me? I don't think so; I always did feel that family was one of the most important things out there. Maybe it has something to do with me being an orphan, or maybe it has to do with how my foster parents raised me, who knows.
"Wow" said my husband, Buddy, "I didn't realize you'd miss me that much."
"Are you kidding?" I said with tears in my eyes, "I never stopped missing you."
"I missed you too." he said, "I waited for you even after I passed away."
"And founded a town in the meantime." I added.
"Yeah, that was just something that sort of happened. It was nowhere near as amazing as the adventures you went through."
"It was still pretty impressive, though" I then turned to my son, "And you, Robin, you've certainly grown since I last saw you."
"Yeah, well, this really wasn't what I looked like when I passed away." he said.
"The reason for that is that your spirit has taken subconsciously taken on a form that would be comfortable for Patch." answered Galaxia (or was it Dazzleglow?).
"To be honest, I'm not really interested in hearing how you passed away." I said, "its way to morbid a topic, and I don't think any mother wants to hear how their son died."
"I understand. It's not even really a very impressive death anyway." he said.
"So, not counting your passing, what have you been doing?"
"Not much" he said, "Just robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. Oh, and I put Trottingham's sheriff out of business after I found out he was abusing his power."
"Well, what do you know?" said Firefly smiling, "An adventurer just like his mother."
I chuckled, "This is probably not a very motherly thing to say after finding out that your son is a thief, but I'm proud of you. I really am."
"Well, this was fun, but I really must get back to helping mother." said Starglow as she turned into an alicorn and turned to leave.
"Leaving already, Abbatissa?" said Galaxia.
"I was only here so that I could honor the hero that helped save the world from the brink of destruction as well as to welcome back our sister, but now I must leave. I have duties to attend to." said Abbatissa.
"It wouldn't kill you to just relax every once in a while." said Happyglow, or whatever her name was.
"No, it wouldn't kill me, but one should neglect their duties." said Abbatissa, "By the way, Venus, when are you going to take off that form?"
"Sorry" said Happyglow as she also turned into an alicorn, "I may not have liked the alias I chose to use, but I find that form to be strangely comfortable."
Brightglow approached me. Was she still Brightglow? She was no longer the orange glow in the dark pegasus that I remembered. Now she had a horn in addition to wings, was pink, and much taller than me.
"Patch?" she said, "I'm sorry to interrupt, but there are two more ponies that would like to meet you."
She turned her head towards another direction, and I turned to see who it was. I think my jaw nearly fell off when I saw them. It was Rosy and Squire.
"What are you guys doing here?" I asked them.
"That's a silly question." said Rosy, "We're here to see you, Patch."
"I'm feeling strangely popular right now." I said. I then turned to Squire, "Didn't your soul move on after I defeated Basil?"
"Indeed it did, fair Patch." Squire answered, "But I chose to linger on for just a little more so that I could thank you again for your kind and noble deed."
"It was nothing." I said half-embarrassedly. I heard Buddy grumble about something. I think he might have been jealous.
"It was far from nothing. You managed to do the impossible, and defeat Basil as well as free my soul."
"I wanted to also thank you." said Rosy.
"Thank me for what?" I asked.
"For continuing to just call me Rosy, even after we found out that I was a princess. As well as for continuing to treat me as your friend rather than royalty."
"Well, I guess I should thank you for not turning into a power mad tyrant." I said back to her as we both burst out laughing.
"Something's never change." said Rosy.
"But how can you be happy to see me after what happened to you?" I asked.
"We've been over this already." said Starlight, "The incident was mine and Bright Eyes' fault."
"But if I hadn't agreed to it then…"
"Seriously, stop, Patch. It wasn't your fault." said Bright Eyes.
"They're right, Patch. The explosion that took my life had very little to do with you, so there's no reason for me to be mad." said Rosy.
"I guess I still feel a little guilty for what happened."
"Well, you shouldn't be." said Melody, "As we've already explained to you, nothing is your fault."
"It's time to put all of what happened in the past behind you." said Masquerade.
"Yeah, I suppose you guys are right." I said.
Galaxia cleared her throat, "Sorry to interrupt this moment, but it's time to move on."
"Move on to where?" asked Buddy.
"To what you mortals refer to as the afterlife." Venus answered.
"But isn't this the afterlife?"
"Not exactly. This is the space between the realm of the living and the place that all souls go to when they pass away."
"I'm not entirely sure I understand, but alright."
"Don't worry; you'll understand when we get there."
Galaxia, Venus, and Brightglow led us (or maybe we teleported, it was hard to tell) to another room/dimension/whatever it was. And inside was a massive alicorn stallion. He looked like he had the entire universe inside him (at this point, I wouldn't be surprised if he did). Other than that, it was hard to actually describe him. Nevertheless, he was beautiful in a strange sort of way. I looked over at my friends; they were just as dumbstruck as I was.
"Oh, wow. I… wow." said Surprise, who was for the first time in her life lost for words.
"Impressive" said Squire.
"Greetings" said the alicorn making us all jump. It wasn't that he sounded menacing (in fact, he actually sounded friendly); it's just that we were all so in awe of him that we were caught off guard by him talking.
"Patch, everyone else." said Brightglow, "This is my father, The Father of All Alicorns."
"Your father?" I asked.
"Indeed." said Galaxia, "He is also the one that souls go to when they finally pass from the living realm."
"What, you mean he judges whether we go to Pony Heaven or Pony Hell?" asked Rosy.
"Not Exactly." said the father of all alicorns, "It's More Like I Am Pony Heaven."
"You know, I've never really liked the terms Pony Heaven and Pony Hell." said Venus, "The names imply that only ponies can pass on the next life."
"So, you're not going to judge us?" asked Clover.
"He has no reason to judge you." said Galaxia, "All of you were already judged based on your actions while you were alive. That's why you are all here."
"And All Of You Are Welcome In My Realm." said the alicorn stallion as he seemed to grow even bigger than he was before, making it so that the entire room/realm/dimension was filled with his essence (or maybe it already was his essence).
"So this is it." said Starlight nervously.
"Yeah" said Bright Eyes who was also nervous.
I turned to Brightglow, "So I guess this is good bye."
"Hardly." said Brightglow, "I'll still continue to visit you as often as possible."
I smiled. "By the way, Brightglow, who are you really?"
"Like Galaxia, I have many names. But the one I use most often is Mi Amore Cadenza. However, I would greatly appreciate it if you continued to call me Brightglow."
"Will do." I said as I turned and walked with my friends into the next life. Well, all but one of us. Bonbon remained still.
"Is everything alright, Bonbon?" asked Sweetheart, "Are you scared?"
"It's not that. It's just that I want to wait for Cookie and the rest of my family. It doesn't feel right to move on without them." Bonbon answered.
Venus smiled, "I could probably go into a long explanation about how due to the nature of this place your family is already here while at the same time not here, but I understand perfectly. I'll take you back so that you can continue to wait for your loved ones."
"We'll be waiting for you on the other side." said Starlight.
"I know." said Bonbon as Venus moved/teleported her away.
And with that, me, Buddy, Robin, and my friends moved on to the final destination.