Thunder rumbled outside as she made her way through the library, and the night sky was briefly lit up by a deafening crash of lightning.
‘Wow, what a horrible night,’ she thought. ‘Looks like I got back just in time. I’d hate to be outside in this kind of weather.’
‘Wait... what’s that noise?’
She paused outside one of the doors and listened carefully at the woodwork. From the other side there came a sort of sobbing noise, as if somepony were whimpering with fear.
When she opened the door there was a fearful yelp, and a light purple face disappeared underneath a quilt. Her emotions quickly transmuted from curiosity to sisterly concern.
“Dusk?” she asked in her kindest voice. “What’s the matter? Are you afraid of the storm?”
She walked into the room, closing the door behind her, and paced over to the bed in which the little colt huddled under his sheets.
“You know, it’s nothing to be afraid of,” she told him. “It’s just that the weather teams missed a scheduled drizzle last week, and now they have to have a massive storm to make up for it. You learned that at school, didn’t you?”
“I’m- I’m not s-s-scared of th-the storm, Dawn,” Dusk stuttered, without revealing his face.
“Then what are you afraid of?”
He slowly pulled the covers away from his head, brilliant green eyes almost glowing with fear, the dim light of the outside world shining upon the silver stripe in his mane.
“The scary pony,” he told her, clearly on the verge of tears.
“What scary pony?” asked Dawn.
“The fiery one,” said Dusk. “The one hiding behind the curtain. I’m scared, it’s-it’s gonna get me, Dawn!”
Dawn looked over at the window, and indeed, it did appear that somepony was there. There was the shape of a masculine, almost demonic pony’s head, and it almost seemed to be glowing.
She walked slowly over to it and yanked back the curtain to reveal...
...a street lamp, illuminating a tree branch with leaves in such a shape that it could easily pass for an evil looking pony.
“It’s okay, Dusk,” she reported. “It’s just a lamp behind a branch which looks like a pony.”
“But-but it was there!” Uncontrollable tears started dripping down the small unicorn’s cheeks. “It really was! It was hiding in the closet, but then it-it came out and it stared at me, Dawn! It stared at me for ages and ages and ages and it was sooo scary! And when you came in it hid behind the curtain! It was right here, Dawn! I was scared it was gonna hurt me!”
“Hey, hey,” Dawn whispered soothingly. She sat down on the bed and pulled her little brother into a tight, comforting hug as he sobbed with fear.
“Whatever it is, it’s gone now,” she told him. “I’ll talk to Mom in the morning and see what she knows about scary fire ponies that live in closets and come out at night. And you know, in order to haunt you it had to come out of the closet.”
Dusk started sniggering, and Dawn soon found herself laughing as well.
“How do you get that joke?” she asked. “You’re only ten!”
“Rainbow Blitz heard it from Lightning Strike,” said Dusk, with renewed chirpiness in his voice, “and Lightning Strike got it from their dad-”
They sat there in the darkness for a few moments, sister hugging brother as tightly and comfortingly as she could manage.
“I’m still scared,” Dusk whispered after a while. “It was right here, Dawn. Right here in my room! What if it comes back?”
“Well... would you like it if I stayed here tonight?” asked Dawn. “I’m sure any scary ponies would be terrified of a big tough grown-up mare like me.”
“You would do that?”
“Of course I would! I’m your sister, aren’t I? I love you!”
Dusk hugged her even tighter than he already had been.
“I love you too,” he told her.
Dawn laid them both down on the mattress and pulled the quilt over their bodies, and Dusk cuddled up to her and hugged her again.
“Dawn,” he said, “you’re the best.”
“I know, Dusk Shine,” said Dawn Shimmer, “I know.”
“Hey Mom, Dad, I’m home!” Lightning Strike called as he entered his home. “Man, its bad out there. I don’t wanna-”
As he hung his coat on the peg behind the door, he felt something buzz past behind him, and turned around while placing his flashlight in his mouth (he was pretty sure he might need his wings).
“Hello?” he called into the darkness.
A white hot bolt of pure electricity split the sky outside as he walked through the cloud-built rooms, the only other light coming from the wide circle of his flashlight and the softly glowing rainbow pools outside.
There was another whoosh and buzzing noise as something passed behind him.
“Look, I don’t have time for thish,” he said indistinctly through his flashlight. “I’m getting a drink.”
He entered the kitchen, feeling more than ever like he was being watched, and opened the fridge.
Lightning leapt back in fright at the sight of the small blue colt lying motionless in the fridge, eyes wide open and completely derped, tongue lolling out of his mouth, and covered in gloopy-looking red liquid.
“Blitsh!” he exclaimed, and put his flashlight on the sideboard. “What they hay are you doing still up?”
“Did I scare you?” Rainbow Blitz’s piercing green eye focused on the startled Lightning. “I totally scared you, didn’t I?”
“What? No!” cried Lightning. “I was just-”
Lightning sighed huffily.
“Alright, you startled me,” he admitted, “but what the hay are you doing still up? It’s half past eleven, for crying out loud!”
“What are you doing still up?”
“I told you, I had a date with Dawn tonight and not to wait up. Didn’t I say I wouldn’t be back until late? Now come on, get out of the fridge before your wings drop off.”
“Well, I am pretty cold,” Blitz confessed, and he hopped out of the fridge after replacing the bottle of ketchup.
“Now why are you still up?” asked Lightning.
“I...” The multicolour-maned colt seemed uneasy about giving an answer, and mumbled it incoherently.
“What was that?”
“I’m scarem mm m stmph.”
“Didn’t quite catch that.”
“I’m scared of the storm, okay?!” Blitz almost yelled, but caught himself just in time. “Thunder and lightning are scary!”
Lightning smiled reassuringly.
“I know they seem scary,” he said, “but we’re inside. The storm can’t hurt us. And anyway, my name’s Lightning. Am I scary?”
“Um... A bit.”
The older colt almost laughed at this.
“That’s good to know,” he said. “If I’m gonna be a cop, I’ve gotta be a little bit scary, or I won’t be able to do my job.” He ruffled his little brother’s mane, and grimaced at the sight and feeling of ketchup all over his hoof.
“Now how about we watch a movie?”
“Really?” asked Blitz. “That would be awesome! It’s the latest I’ve ever stayed up but you still want to watch a movie? You’re the best brother EVER!”
“Easy there, Blitz,” said Lightning, and pushed the excited colt onto the ground. “Go clean up all this ketchup and I’ll pick a movie.”
“Okie-dokie,” said Blitz as he hovered over to the sink. “Just don’t make it a scary one, okay?”
“Okay,” said Lightning. “Wait, what’re you-?”
Before he could finish his sentence, his little brother had sat down in the kitchen sink and turned on the tap, and sure, it washed away the ketchup, but pretty soon Blitz was drenched from head to hoof, with saturated stripes of red, orange and yellow flopping onto his face.
He and Lightning Strike could barely contain their laughter.
While other little fillies and colts might have been terrified of the storm, one of them was sitting at her window, gazing out forlornly at the lashing rain and the spectacular light show of crackling lightning as thunder rumbled overhead like the Princesses bowling.
She was scared too, but for a completely different reason, which she felt was anything but consolable. She sat on her bed, resting her crossed forelegs on the windowsill, tears beading in her sapphire eyes.
She bowed her head and sobbed silently.
Behind her there was the clopping of hooves, and she felt the presence of an older stallion pausing in her open doorway.
“Topaz?” he said. “Y’all okay?”
She couldn’t contain herself anymore – she bowed her head and let the tears flow freely.
“Honey, what’s wrong?” asked her father. When he saw that the little filly may have pushed herself beyond the despair event horizon, he walked over to the bed, sat down and pulled her into a tight cuddle.
“Dad,” she said, “do you love me?”
Her father was deeply shocked.
“What in tarnation’s that s’posed ta mean?” he asked.
“You heard me,” said Topaz. “Am I really your daughter? Do you... Do you love me?”
“Aw Topaz, ya know Ah love ya!” the stallion insisted. “Of course you’re mah daughter! Why in Equestria would ya think otherwise?”
“Braeburn?” A pale unicorn with a painstakingly styled mane appeared at the door. “Topaz, what in the world is going on? Shouldn’t you both be getting your beauty sleep?”
“Rarity, you would not believe what our daughter just said to me,” Braeburn told his wife. “She just asked me if we really love her and if she’s really ours.”
“Oh, that is simply ridiculous!” Rarity exclaimed, and she joined her husband in cuddling little Topaz. “Darling, of course we love you! Why would you ever have reason to think otherwise?”
“It was the fillies at school,” the sobbing Topaz explained. “They told me... They told me that-that you didn’t really love me *sniff* that you were just pretending, and that... that I was adopted and that-that you didn’t... didn’t care about me at all! I just- I didn’t know-”
“What do those bullies know about yer family?” asked Braeburn. “’Course yer our daughter!”
“Topaz, I want you to look at us,” said Rarity. She released the filly, wiped her tearful eyes dry, and placed a hoof on her chest. “You have a coat which is as white as diamonds. What colour is my coat?”
“Um, white,” Topaz replied uncertainly.
“And what colour is my mane?”
The filly turned her eyes upon the unicorn’s gently curling locks of deep violet.
“Purple,” she said eventually, “like mine. And-and before you say it, my eyes are blue, just like yours.”
“Of course they are,” said Rarity. “Now look at your father.” She placed a hoof on his shoulders and he gazed lovingly into her face.
“He is an earth pony with the most scruffy mane I have ever seen in all my days,” she ruffled it affectionately, knocking his cowpony hat off in the process. “And he is the most handsome, most loving pony I have ever met in all my days. And look at you: a simply lovely, if rather scruffy, absolutely beautiful little filly.”
“Now do ya really think we ain’t blood?” asked Braeburn.
Topaz sniffed and wiped her eyes.
“When you put it that way,” she said slowly, “I guess you must be my real parents. But-but they sounded so sure.”
“Darlin’, those foals are nothin’ but bullies,” said Braeburn. “They don’t know nothin’ ‘bout our family. Topaz, you are our whole world.”
“We have no idea what we’d do if we ever lost you,” said Rarity. “The two of you stay here, and I shall prepare us some cocoa. Celestia knows what time it is.”
“Here,” said Braeburn as she left. He removed his trademark vest and placed it upon Topaz’s shoulders. “Ah was gonna save this fer yer birthday, but... it kinda seems like ya need it now.”
“But-but Dad, this is-” Topaz began.
“Ah know, Ah know!” said Braeburn. “But mah pa passed it onta me when Ah was your age, so it-it seemed like the time was right.”
Topaz hugged the comfy leather around her shoulders.
“Wait a sec,” said her father, and he helped her pull her forelegs through the holes provided.
“Now ya look like an Apple pony,” he commented. “Don’t ya move a muscle, ya hear? Ah’m gonna help yer mom with the cocoa.”
When he was gone, Topaz removed the vest, held it to her muzzle and took a deep sniff, before smiling and sighing contentedly.
It smelled of family.
When he finally and thankfully awoke, thunder and lightning ruled the sky outside and murderous rain was threatening his windows with an endless rattle like those snakes from Zebrica that he’d learned about in school.
His room was almost pitch black – the only (dim) illumination came from his uncovered windows. He tried to lie down and go back to sleep, but his pillow and sheets were dripping with cold sweat and it was just-just so uncomfortable. He was so wet his mane and tail had fallen flat, and fell in soppy strips upon the side of his face and the backs of his hind legs when he stood up.
Would he ever be able to sleep again?
After what he’d just... experienced?
He tried to walk along the bed, but instead he slipped, fell to the floor and hit his leg. Did he sprain an ankle? Maybe. He had no idea how to tell.
Feeling around in the dark with one of his forelegs, he made his way, limping and trying not to put too much weight on his back right leg, out of his bedroom and into the corridor, which was occasionally illuminated by flashes of lightning.
He could see the bathroom, and the stairs down to the shop, and his mom’s bedroom door. That was the one he wanted.
So he slowly limped over to the door, but had to jump to reach the handle because it was higher than the one on his door. After about the tenth jump, he managed to pull the handle down and the door swung open.
The dim light fell upon the face of a mare with a light pink coat, just like his, and a curly dark pink mane, just like his (or rather, how his had been). She lay curled on her bed, snoring quietly, but when the light reached her eyes she awoke and scratched behind her ear with her back hoof.
“Hmm, wha, huh?” Her sleepy gaze wandered to the doorway, in which the little colt stood watching her with wide, fearful pinkish-orange eyes.
“Bubble Berry?” she said in a fatigue-ridden voice. “Wha... what are you doing up? It’s way past your bedtime, you know. But then, what’s bedtime? I mean, is it time for bed, or time in bed, or-”
“Mom,” said Bubble Berry, “I... I had a nightmare.”
Pinkie Pie’s face became one of concern.
“A nightmare?” she asked. “Oh, sweetie...”
“Can I sleep with you?” asked Berry. “My bed’s all sweaty.”
“Aw, of course,” said Pinkie, and she opened her hooves and allowed her little colt to cuddle up to her.
“Do you want to talk about it?” she asked.
“It was horrible,” said Berry. “It was... I was in the basement, and Rainbow Blitz was there too, but-but he was older – both of us were older – like, almost grown-ups – and...” He took a deep, shuddering breath, trying to hold back tears.
“And I had him tied up so he couldn’t move,” he continued, “and-and I was wearing a suit made of pony skin and horns and wings and-and I was gonna make him into-into cupcakes ‘coz it was his turn and... oh Mom, it was awful! I cut off his cutie mark, and his wings, and then I electrocuted him and...”
He trailed off and cried helplessly into his mother’s shoulder.
“Hex said *sniff* Dusk’s dad said that when you dream, it’s like looking into your mind,” he wept. “Does that- does that mean that inside I want to kill Blitz? ‘Coz- ‘coz he’s my best friend! He’s like a brother to me. Why would I ever do such a horrible thing?”
Pinkie wasn’t sure how to respond, so she just cuddled her son and waited for the tears to stop.
“Sometimes, dreams are just weird,” she stated. “I once had a dream where everything was made of cake.”
Berry giggled adorably.
“And-and in this other dream, Dashie got transported to another world and some guy took care of her for like, fifteen years, and then she had to leave and I woke up crying ‘coz it was so sad. And then another dream – and I think this was the weirdest one of all – I dreamt that everything that’s happening right now was being written at 10pm at night by a teenage Australian schoolgirl who was so depressed she wanted to kill herself before she became a brony.”
“I know, I didn’t get it either!”
Mother and son lay in bed giggling, almost completely forgetting about the storm outside and the circumstances which had led them there.
“Thanks, Mom,” said Berry.
“That’s okay, Bubbly,” said Pinkie, using the special pet name she reserved for him. “You feel better now?”
“Loads better,” Berry said. “But I still kinda wanna stay with you tonight.”
“Then come here so you have more blanket,” Pinkie said, and draped the covers over the little pink colt, whose mane had regained its usual curly bounciness.
“Mom?” he said as he settled under her foreleg.
“I love you.”
Pinkie closed her eyes and nuzzled Berry’s forehead.
“I love you too.”
Twilight Sparkle sat alone on the very edge of the Everfree Forest, feeling a deep despair the likes of which she never thought she’d experience again.
She rifled through her memory banks and decided that of all the worst things that could have happened, this was ultimately The. Worst. Possible. Thing. Rarity’s loss of her prized purple ribbon all those years ago faded into insignificance before the current situation.
She didn’t look around when she felt a pair of warm, gentle hooves wrap around her shoulders, carrying something thick and soft with them.
“Thought you might be cold,” said Hex quietly, “and that’s the last thing I want, so I brought you a blanket. One of the last available actually; we should have got somepony to pick up more on their way out.”
Twilight remained silent, staring blankly out at what mere hours before had been a town bustling with life and activity, and now lay silent and slightly smouldering in the light of the crescent moon and the stars, which seemed all the more cold tonight.
“Listen,” said Hex. “There isn’t anything you could do. If it’s anypony’s fault, it’s mine – I should have paid more attention.”
“No,” said Twilight solemnly, “it’s my fault. All of it, all of... this. If I hadn’t been so forceful, so narrow minded, none of this would have happened. I learned over two decades ago that you shouldn’t make a decision until you have all the facts, I-I’ve let everypony down...” She trailed off, trying to swallow the lump in her throat.
“You haven’t let anypony down, Twi,” Hex said in what was apparently supposed to be a reassuring voice. “You’re the most wonderful mare I’ve ever met. There was nothing anypony could have done. Celestia herself couldn’t have seen this coming. Smeg, not even Dawn saw it coming.”
“And she’s still in there,” Twilight pointed out. “She’s still in there with that-that thing on the rampage-”
“She’s not a foal anymore,” said Hex. “She’s more than capable of taking care of herself.” He held his wife close and looked out at Ponyville, searching in vain for any sign of life.
“I just hope she can handle what Dusk has become.”
And at the mention of that particular name, Twilight’s already fragile emotional state could take no more. It cracked and split like a ruptured dam, and she found herself breaking down into tears in the comforting hooves of the stallion she loved.
Not too far away, another couple had concerns of their own.
“They’ve been gone way too long!” Rainbow Dash declared. “I’m going to look for them!”
The only thing keeping her from zooming away into the chilly night sky was the powerful pair of jaws which clamped down on the end of her tail and anchored her no more than a few feet off the ground, and she gave up after several seconds of struggling.
“What are you, crazy?” asked Soarin’. “You’ll be killed!”
“Well, I can’t just sit idly by and do nothing!” Dash exclaimed. “What if nopony finds them, Soarin’? What would we do then? Or worse...” Her voice cracked as she uttered the next few words.
“What if-What if Dusk finds them?”
“I’d be an idiot if I didn’t say I was as scared as you are,” Soarin’ said evenly, “but I’m sure that Dawn will come up with something. She’s the expert on these things, right?”
“I know that,” said Dash. “It’s just that... Soarin’, what if he’s dead? You saw what that thing did, everypony saw what it did, and, well...”
“What if Blitz is-?”
Soarin’ couldn’t take much more of this. He had never seen Rainbow Dash so upset before, and it broke his heart to see her in such a state. He pulled her into an embrace which she was more than glad to accept.
“He’s still alive,” he said. “I feel it in my gut.”
“You can actually feel things under all those layers of pie?” Even in the darkest of times, Dash’s humour still shone through, and the two pegasi found that they were almost laughing despite themselves.
“Rainbow Dash! Soarin’!”
The cry came before the pony. Pinkie’s mane and tail had completely deflated, and now fell flat against her face, her normal bright colour and bubbly demeanour dulled by despair and fear.
“Rainbow!” she cried desperately. “Soarin’! I gotta know: have either of you seen Berry anywhere?”
The implications of the question struck home immediately.
“You don’t think he might still be in Ponyville, do you?” asked Soarin’ nervously.
“I don’t know!” said Pinkie. “I’ve looked all around for him and I can’t find him anywhere, I think he might still be in Sugarcube Corner! And I want to go and check, but I’m scared of what I might find and...” She trailed off, for once unable to find the right words.
“Berry’s a smart kid,” said Dash. “He knows to stay inside. I’m sure he’ll be fine, Pinkie.”
“Are you sure you looked everywhere?” Soarin’ asked.
“I dunno,” said Pinkie, “I think I might ask Rarity if she’s seen him anywhere.”
“It’s...” Rarity said quietly. “It’s gone. The Boutique... everything... gone.”
“We c’n easily rebuild,” Braeburn pointed out. “We done it before, and Ah helped put up Appleloosa in less ‘n a year, remember?”
“I know,” said Rarity, “it’s just that- Topaz.” Her gaze wandered in the direction of Ponyville, or at least, what was left of Ponyville. Celestia knows what that creature had done to the place.
It was a series of images that would be branded into the minds of both the apple farmer and the fashionista for the rest of eternity. Rushes of blinding white light, like purified, concentrated sunlight... the Carousel Boutique a mass of ravenous, roaring flames... and worst of all, the sight of blood dripping to the ground from...
Braeburn looked up and saw the same situation everywhere he turned. Husbands comforting wives, parents trying to reassure their children, and the most heartbreaking sights were those of the families that had members missing, and were crying out for sons, daughters, sisters and brothers lost in the panicked rush to the sanctuary of the forest.
A voice distinctly lacking in chirpiness made the unicorn and Earth pony look around at the normally hyperactive baker who stood before them, dulled by sadness and deflated by the needles of unhappiness which had pierced the hearts of just about every resident of the small town.
“I...” Pinkie’s voice was broken with despair, “I-I can’t find Berry anywhere. I don’t suppose either of you two have...”
Braeburn closed his eyes and shook his head.
“Ah’m sorry, Pinkie,” he said, “but Ah would definitely remember if Ah’d seen Berry around.”
At that, the pink mare was pushed well and truly beyond breaking point, and she broke down into a drenching fountain of tears. It was all Rarity could do to wrap her hooves around her friend, and reassure her, with certainty which was clearly flawed around the edges, that everything was going to be okay.
“Ugh, this is taking forever!”
The young Earth pony mare in the oversized vest threw a book over her head and with a well aimed buck, a buck only an Apple pony could accomplish, slammed it into a wall, where it fell into the rapidly growing pile of books already checked.
“Will you please at least try to be careful?” asked a previously reading unicorn. “You know that Mom would throw a fit if she saw you treating books that way!”
“I know, Dawn,” said the purple maned apple-bucker, “and I’m sorry, it’s just that I’m so – grrrr – frustrated! I feel like Mom does when she runs out of diamonds! I never knew searching for information could take so damn long!”
“I’m sorry, Topaz,” said Dawn Shimmer, “Look, I completely understand your frustration, and I know that it’s perfectly justified, but we’re gonna check this whole entire library and stay up all night if we have to. Like it or not, we have to save Dusk!” She punctuated her last sentence with a stomp of the hoof.
“Hey, don’t get me wrong,” said Topaz, “I want to save Dusk just as much as you do. It would mean a lot to me to get him back.”
“Oh yeah?” asked the golden unicorn, a smile playing across her muzzle.
Topaz stared at the mare for a moment before comprehension crossed her features.
“What? No!” she almost shouted. “No, I-I didn’t mean that way, I mean- who doesn’t want to see him safe, right? Right?”
“Me, naturally,” said Dawn, “but I’m starting to think that you had some rather, shall we say, ulterior motives for helping me find some useful info. It wouldn’t have anything to do with the crush you’ve had on my kid brother for the past two years, would it?”
“That’s not true!” Topaz cried.
“Oh, come on!” said Dawn, stepping away from the book she was reading and turning to face her white coated companion. “Part of my job – the job I’ve been studying for all my life – is assessing behaviour. And you act like a nervous school filly when you’re around Dusk!”
Topaz bowed her head in shame, pulling her scruffy mane down and over her eyes, and Dawn sighed.
“Would it help if I told you what he’s told me?” she asked.
“Come on, li’l bro,” whispered Lightning Strike, “wake up. I know you can do it, it’s easy. Just-just wake up.”
There was no response from the colt that lay in his hooves. The young stallion felt yet more hot tears rolling down his cheeks, and they dripped onto the face of his younger brother, trickling past his closed eyes and soaking into his spiky technicolour mane.
“Hex was right,” said Lightning, in the hopes that the motionless colt would hear him and respond. “He was right, I-I should never have treated you how I did. It was unfair of me. You’re my brother and I am so, so sorry.”
He hugged the sky blue colt closer to his chest, and felt something wet on one of his hooves. He examined it and found that his foreleg had stains of deep red on the pale azure of his coat, and saw that blood had started to seep out from the already soaked bandages around his sibling’s torso. He might as well have wrapped the colt in tissue paper.
“Come on, Blitz,” said Lightning, voice beginning to crack. “I already said sorry like, a million times. What more do you want from me? Just-just please.”
His fruitless pleas fell uselessly into the freezing night air, and Lightning Strike felt the monster of guilt growing ever more powerful as he wept once more for his wounded brother.
Nopony out the front. That was good, right?
Still not exactly trustworthy though. Who knows where that thing could be hiding.
Out the back. Yeah, right now heading out the back door sounded almost as good as hot sauce cupcakes. Or maybe even sarsaparilla! Oh man, his mouth was watering just thinking of it. When this was over, he was going to drink so much sarsaparilla he’d have fountains of the stuff pouring out of his ears.
He pulled the back door open just a smidge and looked outside.
Nopony there. Good.
He yanked the door wide open and zoomed at near-supersonic speeds through the streets of Ponyville, galloping as he had never galloped before.
Eventually, he found a sheltered alleyway, and stopped there to rest and catch his breath when-
He instantly shoved bubblegum pink hoof into his mouth. Had somepony heard that? Nah, they would have noticed by now.
It was just that at that moment, his knee had felt particularly pinchy...
“Wait a minute,” he said, thinking out loud, “pinchy knee is one of the twitches! Something’s about to happen! What was it Mom said? Pinchy knee is something... happy? Huh, can’t imagine anything happy happening on a night like this. Hey, happy, happening, those two sound the same! Okay, getting a bit sidetracked. Pinchy knee is something... timey-wimey? Something pretty? Nah, that doesn’t make any sense. Was it something-”
“Hey there, Bubble Berry.”
He was here. It was here. Whatever it was, it was right here, in this alleyway!
He looked up at the glowing form which slowly unfolded not two feet above his head.
“No,” he said, memory flooding his mind like a tsunami. “It was something...”
He couldn’t help but stare in horror as the razor sharp teeth of the being formerly known as Dusk Shine split into a terrifying smile.