It's Not Fine

by Inky Shades

Chapter VIII: Nothing

Sunset couldn't do it. Hours. That's how long she spent staring at the cover to Twilight's diary while she sat on her bed. 'I think it will provide you with clarity.' Mrs. Sparkle's words echoed in her mind. The sun must have set by now. Why couldn't she do it? She had every intention of reading it the moment she returned home, but whenever her fingers reached for the diary's edge to open it, she froze.

It's only Twilight. Why are you so afraid? That was the question. If her diary could provide her with clarity, maybe even with some closure, she should jump at the opportunity, hold it tight so it couldn't escape. Yet she hesitated. Why? You're afraid of the truth. You're afraid of potentially learning why she wouldn't stop that day.

That had to be it. She flicked on her bedside lamp, and a dim light filled the room. But wouldn't she feel better knowing the reason behind her insistence? Or would it hurt worse if she learned there truly wasn't anything she could've done short of slinging Twilight over her shoulder to carry her home?

You need to find out either way. She knew she had to, but… It will only get harder to read the longer you wait. Do you want to make your trip to the Sparkle household all for nothing? No. She sighed. This is important. Take a breath.

“Alright.” She glanced at her ceiling as if waiting for a cosmic cue to tell her to proceed. The sound of her heartbeat berated her ears. Her fingers gripped the diary's cover. Once she opened it, saw Twilight's words for herself—whatever they may be—there wouldn't be any turning back.

She opened the diary.

The last entry. As she flipped through the pages, she forced herself to remember why she had the diary to begin with, lest she get distracted by any of the other thoughts contained within it. Though, her gaze did wander over some of the pages slower than others. Whether it was curiosity of having such an intimate look at Twilight's self or just a way to prolong the inevitable final entry, Sunset wasn't certain. It was probably a mixture there of.

Focus, focus. If she delayed much longer, she knew she'd lose the nerve to continue. Just a few more pages she hoped, but her mind screamed at her to stop. Maybe it wouldn't be a bad idea, though. With how emotionally draining her day was, could it really hurt to take a break? You're looking for an out. Don't give it to yourself. It can't be much further. Right.

Then she came across it. Twilight's last entry. Sunset exhaled a breath, gaze drawn to the date written in the corner. The day before the accident. Was she ready for this? No, but she didn't have a choice. She started to read.

“Dear diary,” Sunset said. “I accompanied the girls to their band practice in the music room today. Once again, Rainbow tried to not so subtly get me to join the Rainbooms.” A chuckle escaped her lips. Rainbow could be a little too brash sometimes. She continued reading.

“She says that I must have an interest in becoming a member since I've come to more and more practice sessions.” Thinking back, Sunset remembered seeing Twilight at every session. Or at least all the ones that she attended, anyway. Where did she leave off?

“I assured her again that I simply enjoy listening to them and have no desire to sing for crowds—which is the truth. Well… most of the truth, as I've stated before.” Most of the truth? Did Twilight have other reasons for joining them? Whatever her reasons, Sunset was always happy to have her presence nearby. Shaking her head, she said, “Unfortunately, that didn't satisfy her this time. So she pressed.” Really Rainbow?

“A not entirely unforeseen possibility. However, I hadn't prepared a secondary response today as a safeguard. As you know, my well of answers has proverbially dried up as of late and I've yet to refill it. Thankfully, Applejack and Rarity interjected on my behalf, dissuading Rainbow from asking me to join further. At least for today.” Why would Twilight have prepared answers? Sunset paused, pondering this question. Maybe if she read further...

“Honestly, I think everyone is starting to get suspicious of me. I see a lot of raised eyebrows in my direction except from Fluttershy. And I'm pretty certain that Pinkie knows already. I'm not entirely sure how, though. But every time she looks at me, she has this huge “I know what you're hiding” smile. Of course that may just be Pinkie being Pinkie. I don't know.”

What secret was Twilight hiding? Was she in trouble? No, that wouldn't make sense. If Pinkie thought there was something wrong, she wouldn't smile like that. You're right. She'd fake it. Just like you. Sunset didn't have time for that right now. Best to keep reading.

“It's so embarrassing,” she said, picking up where she left off. “Yet, I can't help but smile whenever I watch Sunset perform. She just looks so right when she sings. It's—She's beautiful.” A pause long enough to let her words sink in. Sunset felt her face warm and quickly blinked away the wet that collected on her eyes.

“Occasionally, she'll catch me watching her and she'll smile back at me. I feel my cheeks heat at the thought! Sometimes I wonder if she suspects something's up. I like to think she has an idea, but it may just be wishful thinking on my part. Still, until I'm certain on what she feels, I do my best not to stare too long. If I think I am, I resort to glancing to and from her and one of my text books. Come to think of it, I'm not sure which is more obvious. Why does this have to be complicated?”

Twilight's feelings. Flushed cheeks, stealing glances. Did that mean… Sunset felt her mind work the pieces of the puzzle. No, the answer couldn't be—but you know it is. Oh! Oh. Oh…

Did she want to continue reading? You have to. She took a breath before she continued. “My life has changed so much since I met the girls, met Sunset. I love the time we share together when it's just the two of us. We don't even have to do anything exciting. It's just nice, you know? I don't want to imagine what my life would be like if I never met her. I'd probably still be at Crystal Prep…” And she'd still be ali—No more thoughts until the end. Just a little further.

Sunset collected herself then pressed on. “You know what, diary? I'm going to do it. I know, I know. I've been saying that for awhile now. This time I mean it! Hmm… probably, have been saying that too much too come to think of it. Anyway… Tomorrow should work. Oh, wait! Shining Armor was going to take me to the movies tomorrow. That's a problem. Well, I suppose I can ask if we can do the day after instead. I'm positive that will work better for him time wise.

“Hang on. Didn't the weather man say it would rain tomorrow? You know what? Forget the weather! I'm tired of coming up with excuses as to why I can't tell Sunset how I feel about her.” She felt her voice waiver. Keep going.

“If there's one thing I've learned from her, it's that you have to follow your heart. And right now my heart tells me that I have—no, need to do this. I've lived my life too long without following my heart. That ends today. Well, tomorrow, technically.” Everything in her mind screamed at her to stop, begged her. But there were only a few sentences left.

“I have to go. Mom's calling me for dinner. But I'm so excited for tomorrow! Okay, maybe a little nervous too. Things are going to change. For the better I think. I hope. I'm going to tell Sunset how much I lov...” Her voice hitched in her throat and she had to look away from the diary for a moment. “Love her,” she said.

Sunset stared at the last two words on the page, the last two words that Twilight ever wrote. The world rumbled around her, growing more violent as the seconds ticked by in painful slowness. Jagged cracks formed in her walls, formed in the very air. She watched this happen. Breath calm, heartbeat steady, and her vision clear.

Then the world fell away.

Small pieces at first. She barely acknowledged those. Yet even when slabs crashed around her in a thunderous roar, she didn't react. She should scream or cry or… something. Anything. But nothing. The void revealed itself to her, dark and infinite. It's arms wrapped around her and it pulled her towards itself, sapping the air from her lungs.

The light left the room, consumed by the void's hunger. And she knew she was next, but there was no point fighting it. Let it torment her. Let it devour her. She didn't care. In fact, Sunset welcomed it. If the void wanted nourishment from her body, her mind, her heart and soul, it would be disappointed. Because there was nothing left for it to take.