"My Princess!", she exclaimed abashedly from where she knelt, not raising her eyes from the floor.
"Is something the matter?" asked Celestia, her tone light.
"I have failed you! I am sure the Captain can find someone else to stand watch since I obviously can't pay sufficient attention to fulfill this duty... unless perhaps the fault lies in my ability to ensure the proper functioning of my equipment."
"Oh really? Just what might you be basing that conclusion on?"
"The... the fact that My Lady was so close before I detected her!"
"Say rather that your Princess is still in good enough health that you need not send for a physician to aid her."
"My Princess?", daring to make eye-contact.
Celestia laughed, a heartening sound, full of joy. "Get up you silly pony. You didn't do anything wrong. If I couldn't fall silent as a sunbeam,", she cut a caper in place, her hooves making not a sound on the flagstones, "if light did not listen when I asked it not to give me away,", she faded briefly from view, passing through complete invisibility at the word 'asked' and returning to full visibility by the word 'away', "then I would need to have a concern for my health lest I be slow in raising the sun one day."
"If the air carried my scent when I did not give it tacit leave to do so,", she continued then, spawning a pair of dust-devils with a single flap of her wings, "then, as a paragon of among pegasi I would need medical treatment."
The guardsmare rose.
"I was not informed of this."
"Well, it hasn't come up in over five-hundred years, so I can understand the current training regimen de-emphasizing it. Speaking of which, however... I need medical treatment."
Celestia turned slightly, revealing a bleeding pock-mark, about two inches in diameter on her right shoulder.
"Oh Celestia!"... the words were a prayer said in shock, not an expression of sympathy.
"You called?", said the alicorn bringing her nose within inches of the guardsmare's, her grin only getting larger.
"Oh goodness!" said the guardsmare, turning for the stairs.
She paused, one lime-green hoof raised in the air.
"And just where do you think you are going?"
"To get a doctor?"
"For something like this? Does not your armor contain bandages?", asked Celestia, gesturing with her horn.
"Well, yes, but..."
"I COULD heal myself, you know that don't you? Wouldn't take me but a few minutes. I want to ENJOY this memento a few days. I just don't want to get blood on my dress."
The guardsmare materialized the bandages from her peytral. Celestia took them with a gracious inclination of her glowing horn and placed them onto the wound, their magic adhering them in place.
"Oh! Should I alert the castle or is the villain defeated?"
"I will thank you not to refer to my dear sister as a villain."
"Wait! She REVERTED?", despite the bright and clear day, the guardsmare glanced fearfully up at the sky, reassuring herself that the sun was still there.
"Nothing of the sort! We were having a sparring match up beyond the atmosphere, and I managed to convince Lulu to stop pulling her kicks with the micrometeorites. I am quite proud of her. She has been so TIMID in our matches since her return. Too bad it vaporized on impact.", said Celestia wistfully, " I would have liked to have challenged a sculptor to see if they could turn something the size of a grain of sand into the center-piece of a decent trophy to give to her... perhaps have the trophy-maker collaborate on the design with the more intricate sort of jeweler. Something a quarter inch tall might have been the way to go... ah well, can't be helped."
"Well, I am off to consult with the master of my wardrobe for a dress to hide this under so I don't start TOO many rumors among the nobles. Keep up the good work, don't let word get out about this, and don't forget to replace those bandages from the stores."
Celestia's horn started to glow when the guard interrupted.
"My Princess... if I might make so bold...?"
"Yes my little pony?"
"Don't forget to shave that spot if you intend to allow it to persist for more than a few days. I can have the medical staff send over a razor."
Celestia gave another laugh. "On MY pelt? That would be a wasteful thing to do to a razor. If I ever need to shave I will freeze the hairs to brittleness and then break them off. Thank you for the suggestion though!" she said with a wink of her eye.
The Princess of the Sun winked her whole self out in a large burst of mist. The guardsmare sniffed the mist, enjoying the scent of chamomile and sugar-cane even as her eyes returned to scanning the dome of the sky above her.
Elsewhere in the Palace, the Princess of the Moon settled in for a day's sleep (only a few hours), an angelic smile on her lips.
"I'm back." she murmered as she drifted off to another realm that she ruled, secure in the love of her sister.
Draco Dei Started August 20th 2011.
First Draft finished 7:25 AM Eastern time.
Second Draft finished 12:10 PM Eastern time.
Minor edit and added more line-breaks September 15th
This is the first MLP fanfic I have completed. Critique welcome.