A cyan earth pony slammed the door shut to her and her sister's establishment in an exhausted huff. Through the glass door, she could see the mass of ponies walking dejectedly away from their spa, heads hung low and dripping with chocolate. "This may be a spa in which we beautify the ponies of Ponyville, but we are not a place for free baths!" she groaned, putting a hoof on her forehead and shaking it. Her pink mane fell over her eyes as she freed it from her hairband, putting an early end to a busy day.
"Don't worry about it, Aloe!" a happier voice chimed in. Staring up, Aloe could see her sister above, staring out a window on the open loft above. Her sister was the exact opposite in coloration than Aloe, sporting a pink coat that led up to her cyan mane and tail. It was easy for most ponies to guess their twin sisterhood. "I'm sure once all this weird weather clears up, we'll be back to beautifying ponies instead of washing them!"
"Lotus..." Aloe breathed. Making as if to give her sister a rebuttal, Aloe instead sighed and made her way to the front desk. "I think it's best to close up for the day. Nopony is going to think of beauty at a time like this. Chocolate is absolutely horrid on a pony's coat."
Lotus bounded down the steps, a look of wonderment on her features. "Yes, sis, I agree. I do not believe even Rarity will be coming in today." Tittering her tongue, Lotus gestured to the chocolate storm outside. But it isn't all bad!" Lotus perked up, trotting to one of the baths nearby. Picking up a bucket in her mouth, she placed it on the front desk with a smile. "Let's say you and I set some buckets out to catch the rain! If it keeps up like this, we'll have a ton of chocolate milk to last us for weeks!"
Aloe looked up from her magazine, her face awash in mild annoyance. However, the hopeful look on her sister's face melted her chagrin enough to pry her back up to her hooves. "Well, I do like chocolate..."
"And so do I!" Kicking the door in, Discord posed expectantly as he looked over the mare's who ran the spa. "It's simply one of my favorite things, second only to wrecking unbridled chaos upon the world. Oh, and when ponies work my beautiful mane just so." Aloe and Lotus shrieked at the sight of the draconequus, quickly abandoning their buckets and instead latching on to one another.
"It's a demon!" Lotus screamed.
"From the gates of Tartarus!" Aloe yelled in dismay.
"Oh woe is to us!" Discord appeared in a flash of light between the two girls, their hooves latched awkwardly around his sinewy body. "Whatever will this stranger do?" Aloe and lotus scrambled to get away from Discord, regrouping on the other side of the front desk.
Discord had kept his finger pinned to his chin, legitimately pondering the question he had posed. "I wasn't expecting twins. I love twins!" Slithering across the floor, Discord pressed himself over Aloe's back running his claws over her terrified features. "They're like mirrors," he said, whipping under Lotus and curling himself between the mares. "Although I hate mirrors." With a shriek the girls galloped away from Discord's touch, intent on making it to the door. With a loud snap, The doors themselves turned to diamond, refusing the sisters' escape, their worried gazes met with shimmering, jagged reflections.
"Really now, ponies, must you always cut and run? When will you just stop and realize I just want to talk, maybe get a little makeover?" Discord wailed, putting his talon over his eyes woefully. "I am meeting with royalty later and I want to look my absolute best!"
Lotus gulped, her sapphire eyes shimmering as she met the similarly hued eyes of her sister. Together, they wheeled about to face Discord, who was busying himself with their legion of wall to wall mirrors. Each one no longer possessed the ideal flatness that was required for a pony to look fabulous, but instead their spa resembled that of a funhouse. "Stop that!" Lotus yelled.
Discord paused. Swirling through the air, he smiled gainfully at the filly. "Stop?" he drew out, "Well, that's certainly old hat. Why doesn't anypony tell me to keep going? Or to eat an ice cream sundae?" In a flash of light, a small bowl appeared next to Discord. Taking the bowl in his hands, he ate thoughtfully from his ice cream, taking a moment to reach out and grab various shampoos and body washes as syrup. "It's always stop."
Swirling down to the huddled fillies, Discord gave them a large, toothy grin. Leaning close to them, his voice lowered. "I've stopped before. Over a thousand years I stopped. I don't ever want to stop again." Something hung on his voice, some insipid coating over his words that betrayed his jaunty expression. "Now, my little ponies, let's say we keep going!" Without warning, he thrust his arms out and grabbed Aloe, tearing her away from her sister. "Think of this as your own, new, personal play place! Fashion is so overrated these days!"
With a scream, Aloe wriggled as best she could against the sure grip of her captor, but to no avail. Lotus shouted after them, but Discord was already snaking himself through the air, putting a fair distance between the sisters. "Now, please, tell me this isn't a vast improvement!" Placing Aloe down in a surprisingly gentle fashion, she could only stare in horror as the mirror that once showed off her once perfectly kept visage was now twisted in front of her. Instead of her pony shape, instead her legs had been fattened and shortened, her face squished and squashed in the reflection. Discord chortled as he stared down at the pony. "Oh, what fun! I've always said the pony shape could use more variation!"
"Aloe! Aloe!" Lotus cried, rounding the reflection pool as she approached them. "Please tell me you're alright!"
"Lotus!" Aloe cried, but she quickly slapped her hoof over her mouth. Or she tried. A large, stubby cyan club came up much faster than she had expected, nearly knocking her off her feet as it collided with her face. Staring at the stubby weapon, she stared once again at her reflection in the mirror, the same club that hit her face now reflected awkwardly. It was her hoof– her hoof. Looking at her own body, Aloe screamed, her voice altered to match her new funhouse appearance.
Lotus entered the room, mirrors along the walls showcasing her arrival by shifting into new and horrid shapes. "A-Aloe!?" she said, her eyes falling upon the shapeshifted pony on the ground. Instead of her mirror-image, her sister mimicked the reflection on the wall in physical appearance. Looking up, the jolly laughter of the trickster God echoed around them as Discord slid his paw in front of every new mirror, taking great delight in watching it change with each passing mirror. "You! You did this! Change her back, this instant!"
"Oh?" Discord said, his eyebrows shooting up. "But where's the fun in that? I think you're missing the point here, girl! I mean really, you run a spa!" In a flash of light, Discord was gone from where he was. Looking around, Lotus yelped in surprise as a lion's paw connected with her rear end, pushing her further into the room. "I would think you of all ponies would understand that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And I..."
Lotus never stood a change. In a brilliant flash of light, she was no longer standing in the middle of the room. She stared, transfixed, at her own unmolested reflection. Her eyes were wide, and she could she her tormentor standing behind her, but a quick look back showed nothing at all. "I think you can be beautiful. Tell me, what do you know about beauty... Lotus, was it?"
"I...I..." she felt her head forcibly turned back toward the mirror. Slowly, painfully, she watched as the mirror itself started to wobble and change. "P-please... don't do this."
"I've seen your work. Rather boring, really, but it has such potential. I think you just need a new view on life. Something, oh, I dunno, like you. But different. So much more." The Lotus in the mirror started to smile, despite the real Lotus' protests. "Yes, I can see it now."
Aloe wept in the corner, her giant hooves covering her eyes. "Lotus!? Lotus please, I don't want to see anymore!"
The Lotus in the mirror started to melt, just a little bit, along the sides of her face. Her mane seeped down toward her cheeks, melting and mixing with her natural color. "Don't worry about the makeover, really. It's on the house." Discord's visage appeared once more in the mirror, spouting off from one of the corners as he admired her new appearance. "Oh, I really have outdone myself. You're starting to look fantastic. Full of new, fresh ideas ready for the spotlight!"
Lotus shook her head, but she couldn't look away. She reached up to her face, but her reflection did not follow. "N-no!" Her reflection started to smile.
"No? Are you sure? You could bring out a new line of fashion! Get that white unicorn to really help you shine, after I'm done with her, of course..."
Lotus's eyes bulged. "Please! You leave Lady Rarity alone! she is the kindest, most generous pony I know. She does not deserve such treatment as this. Nopony does!"
Discord slipped around her reflection, and although she could see him outside of the mirror, she could feel him on her as he sat himself down on her back. "Hm, sorry, no. You see, I'm in the mood to stick around for awhile, and I don't need some set of pretty little ponies raining on my parade. They'd probably use water or something equally boring. Gag." She watched him slink his face up to hers, feeling his breath along her cheek. "No, everypony has their price. She'll make an excellent agent of chaos. Generous, though. That's good."
"I'll be sure to make her a rock star." Discord laughed, receiving nothing but a cool glare from his captive. "Oh, you'll see what I mean later." Waving his hand about, Discord disappeared from her back, and Lotus could feel his weight lift off her.
Sighing deeply in relief, Lotus turned away from the mirror, her hooves tripping up over their changed appearance. "Aloe! Aloe please, answer me!" Looking around the room, Lotus couldn't find her sister anywhere. As she passed every mirror, she could feel her body changing to reflect the image.
Her hooves felt backwards. Looking down at her, currently very spindly, legs, she made an effort to move her left forehoof.
The right one moved. She tested her other forehoof. The left one moved. Shaking the strange sensation off, Lotus kept moving. Locating the mirror her sister was at on the other side of the room where it should have been, all that remained of her sister was a puddle of tears where she had rolled up into a ball. "Aloe...!"
"Sis... is that you? Please, where are you?" Aloe's voice called.
"I'm here, Aloe! I'm in front of the first mirror you were at. Where are you?"
"I don't want to look anymore, Lotus! Please don't make me look anymore," she cried in between sobs. The puddle on the floor started to grow larger. Looking about, Lotus gasped as she finally found her sister.
On the other side of the mirror. "Aloe! Aloe, how did you get over there!?"
"Lotus... Lotus I haven't moved. I'm too scared to move. Please, can you just take me out of here?"
"I can't! You're in the mirror. Aloe, I can't... I can't..." Lotus trailed off. In the mirror was her sister, but she couldn't see herself. No Lotus met her gaze in the reflection. Looking around the room, she didn't seem to see herself anywhere in the glass. "Why... What's going on?" But there, as she stared into the mirror with her sister, she could see her.
Her reflection. The other Lotus. Melted, smiling. She was smiling the most serene grin she had ever seen.
And she took a step toward her sister.