Chapter 1: I titled this chapter is "Agony;" however, this was not my original intention. Originally I desired to simply name it more properly the ancient Greek word αγων (transliterated as agon) from which we get our word “agony.” I made this change because I thought that people would be deterred if I used a foreign word as a title for either of the chapters. In English, “agony” is generally defined as “extreme physical or mental suffering.” As I intended to assert in this chapter, I do not believe that this is a proper definition for the word. “Suffering” could be easily interchangeable with this definition, but I believe that there is no such thing as an interchangeable word. All words have their own, unique meanings, so no one has the exact same meaning as another.
I believe that we should maintain the same meaning as the Ancient Greeks when defining αγων. Their word does not necessarily refer to pain, but can literally be translated as a “struggle,” and is commonly used to refer to a battle. In this chapter, it is not fair to say that Rainbow was in agony in the Standard English sense of the word, but it is certainly appropriate if one is pointing to its Greek derivative.
Chapter 2: As with chapter one, I have given this chapter a crude misnomer as well. I have titled it "End" which is a reference to the Greek word τελος (transliterated telos). “End” is a sufficient translation for the word in most cases, but in nearly all situations it is a horrible interpretation. Originally, this would have not been the case, but since Aristotle took the word and coined a new definition for it, its meaning has not been the same.
Now Aristotle theorized that everything has a tendency to change. This change is for the betterment of the things and is the process by which they attain maturity. Such is part of what he called the nature or “φυσει.” For example, it is the nature for a boy to become a man. This idea may sound biological, and it is in part, but Aristotle looked at it in a different way. The change that the thing experiences is ultimately for the good of the individual though it may at times be painful. This change stops when the complete potential of the thing has been actualized (or brought to reality). He called this stopping point the τελος. Thus, τελος does not necessarily mean “end,” but instead “That for which everything was meant.” Τελος is effectively the recognition of the purpose of the thing.
A great example of this idea can be found in chapter three of my story Brilliance. In this chapter, called “Mazzaroth,” not long after the initial defeat of Discord, Luna practices divination in order to determine what she should do about the public not appreciating her and goes a little farther than she had planned to. She effectively gazes on the entirety of the past, present, and future as a whole. Before this is done though, she looks at the individual stages of the future’s development and is horrified as she sees the terrible events which will befall the world. There come tragedies, one after the other; each worse than the last. Yet when she finally sees the ending, she is indescribably astounded by what she sees: everything that had happened (or rather will happen) was all building up to a beautiful end. Not even the smallest pain that that anypony had endured was in vain, but all things worked together for a good and perfect design. Effectively, she saw the τελος, that for which everything is meant.