Twilight started to hyperventilate as she stared at the tiny white points sinking into the bright red gums of her bottom jaw, leaving no trace save for a few drops of blood where they had broken through the flesh. The dim light coming off her horn went out, leaving Twilight in darkness. She started to panic, feverishly scouring her mind for anything remotely similar to what was happening to her.
'No no no.! Think Twilight. What have you done in the past month that might have caused your symptoms?' she wondered, breathing heavily as she pressed up against the wall of the bathroom, sliding down the tiles and sitting on the ground. She buried her head in her hooves, closing her eyes as the metallic taste of blood swirled around in her mouth.
She slowly got back to her hooves and made her way over to her bed, levitating the 'call nurse' button and pressing it repeatedly out of panic. Five minutes of button pressing later, nurse Redheart entered, flinging the door open and flooding the room with light. Twilight turned away from her, shielding her eyes with her foreleg. Redheart walked up to her and snatched the button away, disconnecting it from the wall and throwing it on the bed. Twilight closed the door with her magic, letting out a relieved sigh.
"What do you want?" asked Redheart bluntly, raising an eyebrow at her. Twilight could tell that she was feeling bitter about the way that Spike had spoken to her. She scowled at the white unicorn, hopping up on the bed and sitting down.
"Is Doctor Neuron available?" Twilight asked and her scowl deepened as Redheart rolled her eyes. She nodded and left the room, flinging both doors open again in spite of Twilight. Only to them hit her in the behind as Twilight slammed them on her. A smile of satisfaction spread over the unicorn's lips as her breathing became more relaxed as she nervously awaited the doctor. She lay down, resting her head in her pillow and concentrating on her breathing.
It wasn't long before Doctor Neuron entered the room. He was much more considerate than Redheart, only opening the door enough for him to squeeze through. The same torch from earlier pointed at the floor in front of him. He rushed over to Twilight and put his hoof on her shoulder. Twilight explained what she had seen in the mirror, her voice shaking with fear and her eyes were welling up with tears. Doctor Neuron kept relatively calm as she spoke, listening intently and stroking her arm in an attempt to calm her down. When she had finished he pushed her down gently, telling her to lay down and relax. He pulled a smaller pen light out of his pocket and pointed it into Twilight's mouth, while at the same time he used a depress to pull her lips back so he could examine her gums.
"Well they are a really bright red, but I can't seem to see any sign of new teeth. I'd like to believe you, but I don't see any evidence. I'm tempted to say that all you need is some food," he told her, putting the pen light back into his pocket. He let out a long sigh, rubbing his eyes. Twilight took a long look at his face and the bright red tendrils that arced across the white of the eyes from the corners.
"Are you okay?" she asked and Doctor Neuron gave her a smile.
"Thanks for the concern. But I'm okay. Just very tired. There are only two other doctors apart from me working today, seeing over two hundred patients. I'm just grateful that you're the worst of them. No offence," he explained, blushing as Twilight raised an eyebrow. He got off the bed, throwing the used depress in the nearby waste bin.
"I don't have any clue what could have caused the irritation of your gums. But I seriously doubt that you are growing a new set of teeth. It was probably just your eyes playing tricks on you," he told her. Twilight nodded, understanding his disbelief. He smiled once more, before turning and leaving the room. Twilight looked around the dark room, her heart rate back to normal and thoughts of the fangs more or less gone from her mind; instead, it was replaced with a feeling of concern for her new friend.
Twilight shot upright in her bed, crying as enormous beads of sweat covered her body causing her mane to cling to her face. Her breathing was extremely heavy and she had no idea why. Whatever the nightmare had been, it must have been horrible. Her eyes darted around, searching for the source of the fear.
Twilight flung the covers off herself, walking over to the window and peeled back the thick black curtains that Neuron had put up to prevent any light from getting to her. The light of Luna's moon hit her face and Twilight quickly shut her eyes, expecting pain, but was pleasantly surprised to discover that the white light had no effect on her. She reluctantly opened one eye and was greeted with the beautiful sight of the full moon. She moved her wet fringe from her eyes as she used her magic to open the window and took her first breath of fresh air in two days.
New and exciting smells invaded her nose as the peaceful sounds of night met her ears. Her breathing slowed as the intense feeling of fear subsided. Her stomach growled, begging for sustenance. Twilight sighed, looking at the barely touched tray of food that the nurse had brought in earlier and cringed. The mashed potato and steamed vegetables had done nothing but make her ill and she was much too scared to even try the ice-cream. Being confined to her room with not even a book to keep her occupied was starting to make her feel a little stir-crazy. She started to tap her hoof on the windowsill as the lights of Ponyville slowly being extinguished as ponies went to sleep.
Twilight took a quick look to make sure that none of the hospital staff was approaching before she charged her horn with magic, the perfect spell coming to mind. A magenta glow spread over her body as she concentrated on the sidewalk outside the hospital and teleported. A momentary flash of light accompanied her disappearance and reappearance on the street. She looked back at the hospital and was grateful that she had decided to teleport as the entire hospital was lit up like Canterlot during Hearth's Warming. The pain behind her eyes was dulled, but still bad enough that her eyes watered. She looked down the street, taking a deep breath of cool night air, and started to make her way toward Ponyville, but made sure that she kept to the outskirts where the street lights were sparser than in the centre.
Twilight could see that the lights were still on in the library and smiled at the thought of Spike waiting up for her, reading some large book or writing a letter to Princess Celestia. She walked past it, heading for her favourite stargazing hill. When she got to the top, she lay down on the grass, and immediately set about searching for and identifying the constellations. Every single star in the sky felt like a beacon of imagination and peace, and she couldn't help but get lost in the beautiful night that Princess Luna had provided. She managed to take her mind off the last few days of pain and frustration as she indulged in her favourite hobby.
In the distance, Twilight could see the great city of Canterlot stuck to the side of the mountain, the full moon illuminating the tall spires and the royal palace. She hoped that Spike had sent Princess Celestia, her mentor and ruler of Equestria, a letter explaining why she would be late in sending off her weekly friendship reports and finished assignments.
Twilight thought of her friends and how much she was beginning to miss them. She briefly thought about going to visit them, but remembered that it was the middle of the night and that they probably wouldn't appreciate her knocking on her door. She got to her hooves and decided to make her way back to the hospital. The moon now sat high in the sky and made it very easy to see where she was going. She took the same path back, the library, now dark and uninviting with only a single light illuminating the street. The sound of hooves on the dirt in front of her jerked her out of her trance and she saw a light blue unicorn with a dark blue and white mane step out of the shadows.
"Hello Colgate, strange to see you out so late," said Twilight and Colgate jumped at the sound.
"Oh, Twilight. You startled me. Yeah, I'm not too pleased about it. Berry had a bit too much to drink at Junebug's party and I had to take her to the hospital to have her stomach pumped. I'm so tired, and what's worse; I have to open up the clinic tomorrow morning," Colgate told her, sighing as she explained a typical morning for Ponyville's resident dentist.
Twilight, however, had long since stopped paying attention. Her ears were filled with the sound that she had heard before; the 'thud thud' that had been coming from Doctor Neuron previously now came from Colgate, along with a hypnotic muscle spasm that pulsated in her neck.
"Uh… Twilight, are you okay? Your lips are bleeding," said Colgate, giving Twilight a strange look. Twilight cocked her head to the side and opened her mouth to reveal long, sharp fangs protruding from her top and bottom jaw. She let out a low growl as the light blue unicorn started to back away. Twilight looked more like a rabid timber wolf than a pony, the pupils her eyes wide and all of her reasoning gone. All that was running through her mind was; feed.