Chapter Eight: A Slice of Life
Canterlot, Flurry Heart and Shadow
Flurry and Shadow decided since they were in the city to explore it (even though Flurry had been here on a few occasions before, but she didn’t really have time to explore it), and so they set off around the town looking at all the sights.
First there was the Canterlot gardens and park, the largest in Equestria, then there was the theater where they enjoyed a nice musical number composed by Octavia Melody, and then there was the candy shop.
Through it all they talked on and on complimenting the beauty of the nature around them to which Shadow would compare Flurry to it making her blush and then teasing her and then they ran to their next destination (and yes, I shall skip all boring parts that are not relevant and instead ‘skip to the end’ as they say).
The last destination of the day (after dinner and dessert of course) was the park yet again, but Flurry had no idea why though, but she supposed that soon enough he would reveal why. He walked her over to a maple tree and gestured to a plaque on the tree that had these words in it. In loving memory for the ponies that built this city, and for the honor of princess Celestia, may everypony remember this always and forever, and never let it fade away into time.
“Okay, I see, but I still don't understand yet,” she said.
“That’s because I haven't explained anything yet,” he said.
“Well okay then, explain,” she said waiting for an explanation.
“Well it’s simple, everypony has a story and a reason for doing things, and it’s important to remember what they did and why they did it too, anything less will distort the truth, so I don't think ponies have a problem with remembering the good or at the very least what they want, but they have a hard time forgetting something bad letting all the good slip away into an old memory,” he said.
“Okay, now I get what you’re saying, but I’m still a bit lost.”
“Don't worry, soon enough you won't be because you’ll always have me to show you the way and guide you into a better tomorrow,” he said.
Flurry blushed again and giggled while he smiled and looked at her, “So, shall we call it a night then or do you have any ideas how to make it extra special?”
“I have a few, but they can wait until tomorrow.”
“You are a naughty little tease, I should have you hanged for this or something.”
“You can try, but you will never succeed, but come, take me to the castle.”
“I shall,” he said smiling and taking her back to the castle slowly.
“But saving you from one would be both and honor, pleasure, and dream come true, it would be just like a fairy tale, or at least so I hope,” he said.
“I find that life is rarely like you ever want it to be much less a fairy tale.”
“Indeed, because if it were that way then it would be boring,” he said.
“I suppose that is true, but you do have an odd way of thinking,” she said.
“Always,” he said still smiling as they got back to the castle and into their room, “Well, goodnight my princess, sweet dreams and stay safe,” he said.
“Same thing back at you my handsome stallion,” she said smiling at him as they both slowly started to close their eyes and drift off to sleep.
I woke up from my terrible dream near the evening time and wiped beads of sweat from my face, this was very strange and odd, mysterious too, but something felt off, the air in the room, it was unnaturally cold.
Oh no, this couldn't be happening to me again, and I knew what was next.
“Oh, little Luna, did you really think that I would ever let you go? Did you ever think that I would set you free, if you did then I’m sad to say this simply cannot be, you will never get away from me no matter how hard you might try.”
I gasped in panic but furiously glanced at my mirror where I saw a reflection of myself as Nightmare Moon, but I knew that this was only an illusion.
“All you are is a face in a mirror, I close my eyes and you disappear!”
“I’m what you face in the mirror and long as you live I will be here.”
“All you are is a dying scream, go away! All you are is a dream!”
“This is no dream, this is the nightmare that goes on!”
“Stop tormenting me! Just go away and please leave me alone!”
“No! Never! I live deep down inside you haunting you forevermore!”
“No! Go away, take all your evil deeds and lies and rot in Tartarus!”
“Sad, you’ve grown up, how disappointing,”
“I can protect myself now and I know you need a willing host so just go away because I will never accept you again!” I said shouting at her.
“Well, you say you can protect yourself, but how will you protect her?”
“Wait, what?” I asked wondering who the ‘her’ could be in this case now.
“Oh, little Luna, you’re still so young and naïve, can't you see that you can't stop me?” it said smiling at her through the mirror taunting her.
“Before you say another word Nightmare listen to me, you will not succeed. I refuse to listen to your lies and I will do everything in my power to put you away!”
“Perhaps, but I cannot make your dreams come true unless you accept me.”
“No, never again! You promised me things that you couldn't deliver!”
“Maybe I couldn't deliver because you couldn't accept me and my power, you became afraid of me, and to think that I was once your best friend, don't you miss having all that power? I know that I certainly miss you, just let me in, please.”
“I said no and I mean it, now go away nightmare!”
“No matter what you might try I will always be right here ready for you, willing to embrace you again, but if you do not accept me then I am afraid I will have to find somepony else more willing, and once I do I hope you join my side,” it said.
“I will never join your side again so long as I live!”
“How sad and disappointing, but oh well, good night, and sweet dreams…”
It laughed at me and then in my anger I shattered my desk mirror with my magic as I went back to my bed and laid down and slowly started to cry to myself.
But luckily this time I had help from my sister.
I heard the sound of a mirror crashing and quickly rushed to my sister’s aid.
“Sister, what is it, what’s wrong?” I asked entering her room to see that she had been crying and at once I felt something off within the room.
“The nightmare, it made a visit to me,” she said.
Ah, that explained why the room felt so off, there was no better way to put it.
“I see, how unfortunate, do you remember what it said?”
“Yes, it tried to make an offer to me, but then it mentioned a her for a pony I had to protect, and I have no idea who she means, is it Cadence?”
“Perhaps, she would be the most likely to target, emotional, vulnerable, and the nightmare will do anything to have a host, right?”
“Indeed, it will stop at nothing, and only those that have encountered it before are familiar with it,” Luna said looking down at her bed with pain, I felt sorry for her, I should have been there for her way back then.
But not even I couldn’t change the past, “I understand, but we should probably take precautions, we wouldn't want it to get into the castle again.”
“Agreed, but I just with the nightmare would go away and leave us alone.”
“I think that these villains will never leave us alone since they like us are immortal, or at least most of them are, the others just seem to have high resolve.”
“Agreed, but would you mind singing that song mother dang to us?”
“The one that made all your worries disappear? Sure thing, anything for you little moonbeam,” I said smiling at her as I recalled the words and began to sing.
Cadence, The Crystal Empire
Somehow for some strange mysterious reason Cadence was freed from her stone prison and now stood over a fairly normal balcony not knowing that far away Celestia was singing to Luna, nor did she know about the Nightmare either.
Sighing she took off her armor and put it on a mannequin and looked at the rising moon, she wished that she had Shining Armor with her right now…
Unnoticed by her eye a shadow slipped down past her and slowly started to take the form of Shining Armor who smiled at her and walked up to her placing a hoof on her shoulder, “Cadence, what’s wrong my dear?”
“Shining? Is that you? No, it can't be, this has to be a dream,” she said.
“This isn't a dream, and I know how real this must feel to you, but let me just say this, I would do anything for you, and even if you can't always see me I will always be here for you,” he said hugging her tightly.
“But how? I don't see how I can be with you,” she said.
“Just listen to me and soon enough all will be made clear.”
“Alright, fine then, I’m listening, I just hope that this is good,”
“Trust me, it will be,” he said smiling at her as he told his story.
Canterlot, Celestia and Luna
Celestia finished up singing to Luna and smiled and yawned a bit, “I feel a bit tired, I hope you feel up to and ready for the tasks of dreams tonight.”
“Trust me, I’ve faced worst, besides I can always wake you up if I need to.”
“Fair point,” Celestia said as Luna kissed her good night and then Celestia nodded and smiled reassured for her safety and went to her own room and got in her bed and slowly closed her eyes and soon drifted off to sleep, and as she did the only dreams that she had were terrible nightmares.
Cadence, The Crystal Empire
Shining Armor smiled at Cadence, “There is a world I see with the both of us, where there is no pain, and one where we are finally reunited as a family, all you need to do it to let me into your heart again, and let me see your mind and let me use your body, I need you, and I can't make your dreams true without you.”
“I don't know if I can do that yet, not right now, dream or not I just don't know…”
“Take your time darling, and when you’re ready just say my name and I will hear and I will come to you, but until then, stay safe and have sweet dreams,” he said smiling at her putting a rose in her hair as he walked out the door and quickly disappeared into the night turning back into his true form ready to hunt and attack his true victim and it could tell that it was very close to having a new and powerful body, one that might even be better than Luna herself.