Today is an interesting day. For today is the day I alert you to the Progress of the Revisions. Now, I don't know if anyone else knows this, but I am dividing the Revisions into two halves. Why? Because if I was to hold all those rewrites until I finished all of them, you wouldn't see me for quite a long while. Therefore, Revisions for Chapters One-Five will be the first half, and Six-Fourteen shall be the second released half.
Since I am contradictory to my namesake, I planned for this using intellect. While I had taken the beginning chapters to freshen them up, I left my ever-impressive Editor-In-Chief to try his take on the Big Changes. Don't worry, I'm making sure he doesn't write, say, or do anything I wouldn't have agreed and considered myself. Anyway, you don't care about that: you want statistics, don't you? Well, I can oblige to a degree.
First Revisions (One-Five): 17.1 thousand words done. And I'm not even done yet. Plus, we just finished editing the Revision for Chapter One today. There will most likely be some extra thousand words as I re-examine my work during Editing.
Second Revisions (Six-Fourteen): 9.5 thousand words done. Not as much, but he's really just trying to give me a new perspective on my major error that caused this cleansing in the first place.
Chapter Twenty-Four: ??? words done. There is however a Teaser that Shadow (my editor) wrote. I looked it over, thought it interesting, and decided to place it here to show how I'm still making headway on newer things. Let the Teaser commence:
Silence filled the ruined audience chamber. Tapestries hung in tatters, their edges frayed and burnt from the magical energies unleashed in the devastating battle. The twin thrones, one of gold and one of obsidian lay in shattered pieces. Pieces of the ceiling were missing, and the once famed stained glass windows that had lined the hall were shattered into an impossible puzzle.
There had been nopony to bear witness to a duel that would live on in legend. The only two who witnessed it firsthand were now separated from one another. To the victor went the ruined castle. To the loser, went an eternity imprisoned within the cold stone of the moon that slowly dipped below the horizon.
Tears flowed freely from the alabaster-coated victor. At her hooves lay six orb-shaped gemstones in a perfect circle. Nothing more than baubles in the mare’s eyes. Their beauty couldn’t match that of the sister she had sealed in the moon.
“I’m so sorry, Luna,” she whispered. Her voice cracked as she fought against a fresh wave of tears. “I’m so sorry I didn’t pay attention. I didn’t know this would happen. I didn’t know.”
Celestia hung her head once more and stared at her golden-covered hooves. If only she had been a better sister. If only she had seen the signs. Then Luna wouldn’t be… She wouldn’t…
She barely took notice that the moon outside had been set as her sun rose into the first dawn in three days since Nightmare Moon had refused to lower the moon and end the night. An alicorn stallion, with a coat the color of freshly fallen ash, and a mane and tail like emerald Hellfire released the magic he had used to set the cycle of night and day back into order and turned to face the broken-hearted princess.
“Celestia,” his voice was full of concern, compassion, and sorrow, “This is all my fault. I should’ve found another way.”
Celestia tried to say something to comfort her oldest friend, but only managed to let out a strangled sob. She barely had time to rise to her hooves before he was by her side, his wings gently wrapping her in a comforting embrace. The floodgates broke open and the princess of the sun buried her head into her friends’ mane, allowing the tears she had been attempting to hold back to fall unabated.
“It’s okay,” he whispered softly. “You shouldn't be ashamed to cry.”
“I-I couldn’t do anything,” Celestia sobbed. “My sister. Luna… She’s gone now. What am I supposed to do?”
“I don’t know,” her friend said sadly. “I wish I fully understood how the Elements work. Then I could have prevented this. I could have ensured that Nightmare would have been purged from Luna, instead of having both of them sealed away.”
Celestia slowly backed away from the stallion, gazing pleadingly into his eyes. “You’re the one who led Luna and I to the Elements, and you taught us how to use them to defeat Discord,” she said, wiping her eyes on the side of her foreleg. “If anypony can do something to save my sister, it’s you.”
“Celestia-” the stallion began, but the princess cut him off.
“There has to be!” She shouted. “I’ll make a deal with you. That’s how your magic works, right? By making deals with others?”
“And that means that you have to keep your end of the deal, which means you can be given the power to do virtually anything, right?” Celestia continued, still giving the stallion a pleading look. “Please. Make a deal with me.”
“Just because deals power my magic, doesn’t mean I can free Luna,” the stallion explained, glancing out of a shattered window where the last curve of the moon could be seen vanishing beyond the horizon. Then his ears perked up, and hopeful expression crossed his face. “But, I might be able to weaken the binding spell. Reduce her sentence, as it were. Rather than an eternity of imprisonment in the moon, I might be able to shorten it to five thousand… no. A thousand years.” The stallion began to pace back and forth, his eyes fixated on the ground as he lost himself in thought.
“What do I have to do?” Celestia asked, hope creeping into her voice for the first time in days. “What has to be my end of the bargain?”
“The Elements,” the stallion realized. “You have to give up your connection to the Elements. Luna lost her connection when Nightmare took over. And without Luna, the Elements will slowly become nothing more than colorful stones, powerless, and forever unable to help us undo the seal.” His horn lit up with an emerald-green light and a scroll and quill appeared before Celestia.
“Sign the scroll,” he explained. “And give the Elements to me to place in a secure location where nopony, save the next true Wielders of Harmony will ever be able to find them. And by relinquishing the power of the Elements, you allow me to shorten the sentence of Nightmare Moon’s imprisonment to one thousand years. That should give me enough time to find a way to permanently seal Nightmare Moon away, while freeing your sister.”
Celestia didn’t hesitate in the slightest. Her golden-aura of magic grabbed hold of the quill and signed her name at the bottom of the scroll, which promptly vanished in a puff of smoke.
The stallion floated into the air, lifted up as he was bathed in an emerald green light. The Elements slowly lost their color beneath him, and turned into chunks of stone. A second flash of light later, and the Elements rested on a stone dais in the heart of the room, looking no different than some modern art piece.
“Take your subjects and flee this part of your kingdom, Celestia,” the stallion said. “I will turn the surrounding land into the Element’s keep, where nopony will dare tread, until those who are destined to wield the Elements can be found.”
“And what about Luna?” Celestia asked. “How will I know when she is free from the moon?” In response, four twinkling lights as beautiful as the stars appeared around her, circling three times before flying off into the sky above.
“On the longest day of the thousandth year, the stars shall aid in her escape,” the stallion said, giving Celestia a caring smile. “Now, go, my friend. I’d rather you and your subjects be as far away as possible for what is about to happen.”
Celestia nodded and took wing, sailing up into the air with the intent to leave. However, she turned back long enough to embrace the stallion in a hug.
“Thank you,” she whispered. “I don’t know what I would have done without you, Shadow.”