Five years later
Rarity awoke to the sound of her doorbell chiming downstairs. As music went, her doorbell could have been a worse way to wake up, but it was pleasant for Rarity to wake up like that on most days. Still, her shop wasn't open for another hour, so as she pushed herself up, she figured that it was her parents or Sweetie Belle coming to visit her. She shuffled out of bed, stopping for a moment to style her mane, and then trotted down the stairs.
Just as Rarity began walking down the stairs, she heard the doorbell ring once more. Well, it certainly isn't my parents or Sweetie Belle, then, as neither of them would be so rude! They would wait patiently for me at the door and not presume to ring the silly thing until I needed to get it replaced!
She tisked to herself but allowed herself a frustrated growl when the doorbell rang yet again. "I'm coming! I'm coming! Hold your horseshoes!"
She finally reached the door and opened it. To her surprise, she saw the mayor of Ponyville standing in front of her. Oh, this was different.
Rarity blinked in surprise at the sight of the town mayor and she needed a moment to get past how rude she had been to such an important pony. "Oh! I... well, g-good morning Madam Mayor," she stuttered. "What can I do for you?"
The Mayor, rather than being angry at her rudeness, flashed her a warm smile. "Hello there, Rarity! I hope that I didn't wake you." Rarity shook her head and The Mayor nodded. "Excellent. Well I'll be direct: our lovely princess has chosen Ponyville as the location of this year’s Summer Sun Celebration!"
Rarity's eyes widened in joy and a large smile spread across her face. "Here! The Summer Sun Celebration is going to be... here?!"
"Indeed it is," said The Mayor, smiling at Rarity's joy. "As such, everypony here needs to do their part in making sure our fair town looks the best that it can be for the celebration. I would like you to be the one who decorates town hall. I can think of nopony better to undertake such a task."
If anypony watching thought that Rarity's eyes couldn't get any wider or that her smile couldn't get any bigger, they would be wrong. Rarity's levels of joy tripled and she grabbed The Mayor in a bear hug and began jumping up and down in happiness.
"Oh thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou!!!" she squealed. "You won't regret this, I promise! I'll make Town Hall look more beautiful than it has ever been in its entire existence!"
The Mayor gave a weak chuckle and eased her way out of the embrace. "Oh, yes, you're quite welcome, Rarity. You have a blank check for whatever you need. Just bill it to my office. I know you'll do just fine."
"Oh, I'll do better than fine, Madam Mayor! I'll do a spectacular job! Why, I’ll be the best decorator Town Hall has ever had!"
Rarity continued to rant to herself about how amazing of a decorator she would be. She didn't even notice that The Mayor had slipped away from the conversation.
* * * *
Rarity surveyed her work on Town Hall with a grin stretched over her face. She had decided early on that since this was the Summer Sun Celebration, she should make the theme of the decor something to do with the morning sky. Her original designs had called for a lot of yellow, representing the sun, but when she had put the idea into practice she found that the color was rather overpowering and off-putting to the pony eye. She immediately decided to use sky blue from that point as it was much more aesthetically pleasing.
She gave the entire room a last once-over and beamed to herself at how well she had done. The room was filled with sky blue streamers with a beautiful bouquet of flowers at every connecting point. It was here that she found out that she could use a color other than sky blue, and she utilized a beautiful bouquet of white flowers at most of the connecting points. Around the edges of the room and on the ceiling were banners emblazoned with symbols representing different aspects of nature, as well as others representing different moments in Equestrian history.
As she looked around, she realized that a few pillars did not have ribbons on them. She tisked and shook her head. "There's no point in decorating this room if you can't make it absolutely perfect, Rarity," she muttered. "Now, where did I put that box of ribbons?"
Rarity scanned the room and her eyes landed on a brown box that was currently resting on the balcony above her. She levitated the box off of the balcony and placed it at her hooves. She smiled and began lifting the individual colors out of the box, testing them out to see which one she liked. As she tried different ribbons, she began giving them verbal denials. "No, no, no, oh, definitely no." She was vaguely worried that she would run out of colors before she actually landed on one she liked. No, that was a ridiculous notion, she decided. There would be something in the box for her to use, there always was.
She shook her head and continued but soon found herself so engrossed in her job that she hardly noticed when the door to the room opened. She didn't even realize that two others had entered the room until she heard them begin talking to each other. She grimaced to herself. For goodness sakes. Can't they see that I'm working here?! She sighed and tossed another ribbon back in the box. Maybe they'll go away if they see how busy I am.
"Good afternoon," she heard a female voice say, much to her chagrin. Not only were these two intruding, but they seemed to want to talk to her. She inwardly sighed and reasoned that they might be here to check up on how she was doing. Admittedly, it would be rude, not to mention unladylike, to simply tell them to go away.
She forced a few tones of warmth and happiness in her voice and addressed the mare. "Just a moment, please. I'm in 'the zone' as 'twere." Rarity continued checking ribbons until she held up a sparkling red one. "Ah yes!" She tied the ribbon into a neat knot around the pillar. "Sparkle always does the trick, does it not? Why, Rarity, you are a talent."
She saw the pony in the corner of her eye examining her work. Ah yes, my audience.
She turned to the arrival. "Now, how can I help you─" Rarity shrieked as she got a good look at the mane of the pony in front of her. She was vaguely aware that this new pony was standing next to a baby dragon, but that hardly mattered to her right now. The monstrosity that was this new pony's mane was commanding her attention. It was so messy and frizzy and... horrid was the only word that came to Rarity's mind that adequately described the mess. It must be dealt with immediately. "Oh my stars, darling! Whatever happened to your coiffure?"
The new pony looked up at her ghastly mane. "Oh, you mean my mane? Well, it's a long story," said the new pony. She clearly did not understand just how horrible she looked. "I'm just here to check up on the decorations and then I'll be out of your hair."
"Out of my hair? What about your hair?" said Rarity. This had to be fixed. If this pony wasn't open to Rarity's generous help, then Rarity supposed she had enough time to kill her and get rid of the body. Well, except that she had a dragon companion. Rarity had never killed a dragon before, but she suspected that even a baby one would be immensely hard to kill. Maybe if she could slip him some poison or something it would do the job. She certainly had such things around in case she needed to make a quick kill. A knife for the dragon was certainly out of the question as even a baby one would doubtlessly have thick scales that would be almost impenetrable, not to mention his fire breath. However, it all seemed to be moot as, despite the fact that this new pony was resistant to Rarity pushing her towards Carousel Boutique, she wasn't putting up any serious effort. At any rate, once she figured out that she couldn't talk Rarity out of this she followed her willingly.
Within a few minutes they arrived at Carousel Boutique. Rarity grabbed the pony's hoof and pulled her over to a mirror. "Now is there a particular style you like, darling?" said Rarity as she levitated her emergency mane repair kit over to her.
Twilight patted at her poofy curls. "Yeah. I usually just have it straight with the end curled around my neck."
"Straight with the end around your neck." Rarity unzipped her kit and levitated a brush and some hairspray out of it. After wetting the brush, she dragged it through Twilight's mane until it looked at least passable. "Is this correct?"
Twilight turned her head both ways and examined her hair in the mirror. A small smile crossed her face and she turned back to Rarity. "It looks good. Thanks."
Rarity returned the smile and zipped the case shut. "Oh not at all, my dear. I was quite happy to do it." Rarity floated her case onto a nearby table and her eye caught on one of her 'experiments', as she liked to call them. She tapped her lower jaw and glanced back at Twilight. "You know... I might be able to further improve your looks. Would you maybe be interested in modeling some things for me?"
Twilight bit her lip and flattened her ears. "Oh, that's okay. I wouldn't want to take up too much of your time."
Rarity chuckled and waved her hoof. "Oh it would be no trouble at all, darling." She eagerly grabbed the hoof of the new pony and levitated some dress forms over to her. "This is a rare opportunity for me as of late: having somepony model dresses that I've had been tinkering with."
Twilight gulped and scanned the dresses. "Uh, no problem, I guess." The mare put each one of them on with what seemed to be quiet dignity and grace, but as each one was put on, Rarity realized that each one needed to be adjusted in some way or another. At the very least, none of them looked good on this pony.
Rarity tisked and slipped a sky blue dress off of the pony. "Don't worry, I will find something good for you, Miss..." Rarity's ears perked up. "Oh my goodness! I'm sorry, darling. I never asked you your name and where you're from."
"I'm Twilight Sparkle and this is my assistant, Spike," she said, pointing to the dragon.
"Spike?" Rarity smiled down at the dragon. "It's a pleasure to meet... meet..." Rarity's smile faded and she leaned her head away ever so slightly at the sight of the dragon. He had a large, goofy grin plastered over his face, and Rarity could swear she saw cartoony hearts over his eyes. Well I suppose that's flattering, but... Rarity turned back to her dresses. Unwelcome. Maybe he'll go away if I don't show any interest.
As Rarity continued to have Twilight try on clothes, she remembered a corset that she had been saving for a special occasion and she decided that Twilight would look absolutely marvelous in it. After she nixed the latest design, a souped up aerobics instructor, Rarity grabbed the corset and slipped it over Twilight's head. To Rarity's delight, it did look absolutely wonderful on her. Rarity realized that she needed to tighten the straps of the outfit but decided that she had done enough talking for the moment. "Now go on my dear, you were telling me where you're from." She grabbed the straps in the back with her teeth and put her hind hooves on Twilight's back for maximum strength and began pulling as hard as she could.
The strain on her ribs meant that Twilight could only get out one word at a time thanks to the corset constricting her breath. "I've... been... sent... from... Canterlot... to..."
Wait, Canterlot? Did this pony just say she was from Canterlot?
"Huh?" Rarity released the straps, sending both ponies flying in opposite directions. "Canterlot?! Oh I am so envious! The glamor, the sophistication! I have always dreamed of living there! I can't wait to hear all about it!" She leaned in next to the bemused pony. This is clearly the type of pony that I should get to know. Who knows? Maybe Twilight can get me business contacts in Canterlot! New town, new customers, new outfits, new victims, it's a dream situation is what it is.
Rarity leaned in further until she was almost cheek to cheek with Twilight."We are going to be the best of friends you and I!"
Rarity's eyes trailed down to the large gemstone adorning the front of the corset. It seemed this outfit did have a flaw after all. "Emeralds?" Rarity shook her head. "What was I thinking? Let me get you some rubies!" With a grin Rarity trotted off to get the necessary stones.
When she returned, while levitating a large ruby in front of her, she saw that Twilight was nowhere to be found and the corset that she had been wearing was lying on the back of a chair.
Rarity growled to herself. "Please tell me she didn't..." Rarity placed the ruby down on a nearby table and levitated the corset over to her. A quick glance confirmed Rarity's fear: Twilight had torn a small hole in the side of the garment in her hurry to leave. Not only that, but one of the emeralds in front had popped out as well.
Rarity gritted her teeth and gently placed the corset down. "Twilight, when I see you next I am going to─"
"Welcome her to Ponyville at her welcome party!" squealed a high-pitched, excited voice behind her.
Rarity jumped up into the air with a startled yelp. When she landed, she turned around to see a smiling pink pony behind her. "Oh, Pinkie Pie, you startled me." She had hoped to maybe catch her breath with a minute of silence after being surprised like that, but Pinkie Pie put any thoughts of that to rest when her own mouth opened.
"Well that's silly! I've been in here for five minutes." Pinkie wrapped Rarity in a squeezing hug then put her down on the floor when the corset caught her interest. "The new pony in town seemed uncomfortable when you were pulling on her clothes like that."
Rarity chuckled and glanced ruefully at the corset. "Yes, well, that's just part of the way that the outfit works, darling." Rarity turned her gaze back to the excitable party pony. "Now, what were you saying about a welcome party?"
"Well, I ran across the new pony today in the town square and I realized that I didn't know her name and if I didn't know her that means that she's not from around here and if she's not from around here then she must not have any friends and how sad is it to not have any friends am I right? So I decided that the best thing to do was to invite everypony in Ponyville for a great big party to welcome Twilight to Ponyville and I found out from The Mayor that Twilight was staying in the library and I've been on the move the whole day organizing this party for her and I've been inviting everypony in Ponyville to this party and since the Summer Sun Celebration is today nopony has anything really to do so they all said they'd be delighted to come to the party!"
Rarity shook her head, unable to believe that anypony could talk for that long without taking a breath. "I see, Pinkie Pie. Oh and by the way, her name is Twilight Sparkle and her dragon companion is named Spike, I believe."
Immediately, Pinkie started in on another long-winded rant about how awesome it was to have Twilight in Ponyville and how amazingly fun the party was going to be. Rarity managed to tune it out while nodding occasionally to whatever Pinkie was saying. She tuned back in just in time to her Pinkie say "And then I heard you say, 'when I see you next I am going to' and I said 'welcome her to Ponyville at her welcome party'!"
Rarity mused that Pinkie's idea of the second half of her sentence was quite off. Rarity was thinking more along the lines of strapping her down and removing her internal organs while her poisoned dragon lay dead at her hooves, not welcoming her to Ponyville. She wouldn't be in Ponyville for very long anyways, as mishandling her clothing was always a fatal offense to Rarity. It was good to know that Twilight was staying at the library, though.
As Pinkie Pie left the boutique, Rarity promised her that she would be at Twilight's party. Pinkie Pie said her goodbyes, content that one more pony would be at her wonderful parties. Rarity rolled her eyes in amusement at the retreating figure. She had to admit it, she liked Pinkie Pie. As hard as it was to be around her sometimes, and she took a lot of energy to put up with, she genuinely enjoyed her company. It was hard not to like somepony who made it her goal in life to make you as happy as possible. Rarity was often curious about whether or not Pinkie would get Rarity new victims if Rarity told Pinkie it would make her smile. She didn't want to press her luck on that, though.
Rarity shut and locked the door to her boutique right after Pinkie Pie left, and went into a storage room next to the main entrance to her shop. Inside was nothing more than a small, worn down piano; something unassuming to the casual looker; not that anypony came in here anyway. Rarity played the tune to the lullaby that she used to sing to Sweetie Belle when she was younger, and a secret door opened up to her right, revealing some stairs. Rarity had found this basement when she had moved in and, with a few adjustments, it became her secret workroom. It had nothing to do with fashion, though. No, this room was for her kills.
Rarity reached the bottom of the stairs and flicked on a light switch to her left. An outside pony would be absolutely horrified at the sight before them: the walls were caked in blood and entrails, some of it all too fresh. Every now and again, a stray bone could be found on the floor, and maybe a piece of flesh as well. A large metal table fitted with leather straps was placed in the center of the room, and it too was caked with dried blood. On the opposite wall from the door was a large workbench of sorts, and strewn across the room were a few tables with multiple candles on them for the smell.
Rarity sighed as she walked over to her workbench. "You know, Rarity, you really should clean this place up now and again. It is starting to smell a bit, even with the candles you put down here."
"Oh I know, Rarity, but we've had this conversation before. This is my personal space to shed the clean, sophisticated part of me. I can just let it all go here, you know that." Rarity took a deep breath and sniffed the air. "Okay, Rarity, you may be right. It could use a little adjusting. Maybe there's a spell for the odor."
Rarity sat down at her workbench and pressed a button on the bottom. The top of the workbench popped open to reveal Rarity's toys. Knives, her rock, anesthesia needles, a vegetable peeler, a small hammer, anything an active serial killer would need.
She picked up a large knife that she used to skin her victims alive. She had only done it a few times before and their pelts now hung on the wall to her left. Rarity had originally done it to keep trophies of her victims, but had stopped doing it with any consistency as she didn't have that kind of space on her wall. The wall on her right side was dedicated to scalped manes. She had about half a dozen of them right now in contrast to the four pony hides that decorated the other wall. She had decided after her first disastrous attempt at flaying a corpse that she should only do it for hides and manes that she found particularly beautiful.
As she examined the knife, she considered for a moment whether or not Twilight's mane or hide deserved to be on her wall. She had already decided that Spike's scales would play some part in the decoration of her room. After all, how often does one get a chance to kill a dragon? Even the successful murder of a baby dragon was something to be proud of.
Rarity thought back to the moment not half an hour ago when she was toying with Twilight's mane. She recalled that it was rather silky and smooth. It was obvious that Twilight took good care of her hair. Good enough care that she should be on my wall, Rarity decided.
Rarity nodded to herself and placed the skinning knife on a medical tray next to the table. Since Twilight was from Canterlot, she deserved a spot on Rarity's wall. Plus, Rarity had certainly admired the beauty of her cutie mark; how unique and intricate it was. She made a mental note to remember the design for possible future outfits once the memory of Twilight had faded from the town. Maybe she could even try to find a way to make fake dragon scales too. The possibilities for that were endless.
Rarity scanned her collection of items, trying to find out what else she wanted to use when she killed Twilight. Spike would have to be poisoned, unfortunately, as she simply couldn't risk it. Of course, she could have all of the fun she wanted with Twilight. Oh and what fun she was going to have with Twilight! A hammer, a tourne knife, and paring knife were placed on her tray as she scanned her collection of sharp instruments. Oh yes, those would do very, very nicely for when Twilight's time came. As she went to close the desk, she spotted her boning knife. She shrugged. "Well, why not?" She placed it on the tray too.
Content that she was ready for her latest victim, Rarity trotted up the stairs with a little spring in her step and checked the clock. It read six thirty-three which meant that Twilight's welcoming party would be starting soon. She giggled in anticipation while she looked around the room for a brief moment before she shrugged and walked out the door.
As she walked towards the library, she spotted Twilight talking to Fluttershy, a shy yellow pegasus pony that Rarity had a soft spot for. She seemed to be immensely uncomfortable around Twilight, despite what appeared to be Twilight's best efforts to be friendly. Rarity chuckled to herself. "Well, Rarity, I think we know one pony who won't miss Twilight."
As Rarity continued walking, she considered briefly how she would get Twilight to her boutique in the morning. Obviously, she couldn't incapacitate them at the library. Somepony would see her moving an unconscious pony and a dead dragon into her home. She decided that the best course of action would be to ask Twilight to come to her house so she could give her a welcoming gift. She would Pinkie Promise that Twilight would love it and that she had better come over to the boutique as soon as possible and to bring Spike as well. If his looks in her direction were any indication, Spike would come if she asked anyway. She would feed them cupcakes, one to knock out Twilight and one to kill Spike, and then she could do what she liked with Twilight once she woke up.
Of course, there was always the risk that Twilight wouldn't show up. Twilight had yet to understand the importance of Pinkie Promises. Although, if everything went according to plan then she would never understand them. It was considered the highest offense to Pinkie Pie to break a Pinkie Promise. Rarity knew that Pinkie Pie would never actually hurt anypony who broke one, no matter how mad she was—and seeing Pinkie mad actually scared Rarity—so, Rarity had taken it upon herself to do the job for her, as evidenced by the light green pelt on her wall.
Pushing those thoughts aside for now, Rarity knocked on the door of the library and was met by a bouncing Pinkie Pie. "Ooh goody, you're here! We're just waiting for Fluttershy now. Everypony else is here!"
"How delightful!" said Rarity, walking into the library. Pinkie closed the door behind her, making the entire room pitch black. "Um, Pinkie, why is it so dark in here?"
"Well we've got to make it dark so we can surprise her when we turn the lights on, silly!" Pinkie explained.
"Have the pony be shrouded in darkness then have them be surprised by their surroundings when you turn the light on..." A wide smile crossed Rarity's face. "Pinkie that's genius! I have to remember that one."
That's when they heard the door open.
* * * *
The party had been a decent success. Twilight had unfortunately drank a fair amount of hot sauce a few minutes in and used that as an excuse to stay up in her room the entire night. The party was still fun without her. Rarity had found out that it was indeed fun when you turned on the light to surprise a confused pony. She would certainly have to begin Twilight's session in that manner, as the mare's reaction was even better than she had imagined. She must jumped ten hooves into the air.
After the party had ended, all of the ponies in the library went directly to Town Hall to meet the princess and watch her raise the sun. Rarity felt a great rush of pride as the ponies of the town admired her work, and she eagerly ate up the various compliments that she received from the townsponies.
Of course, as wonderful as the compliments were, she still had a certain unicorn to keep tabs on. Rarity was about to begin surveying the crowd for Twilight when, to her surprise, The Mayor approached her. "Rarity, would you like the honor of pulling back the curtains to introduce Princess Celestia on my mark?" Rarity's giddy grin returned, causing The Mayor to take a few steps back, lest she be pulled into another giant hug. Thankfully for her, this time Rarity merely nodded and rushed towards the balcony.
As she got into position, she looked out into the crowd for Twilight and found her in the middle of the room with Spike on her back, talking to Pinkie Pie. Well, more like Pinkie Pie was ranting to Twilight about something or other.
The crowd fell silent as The Mayor began talking about the ceremony, something about how Princess Celestia raised the sun every day. Rarity decided that she had better focus on what The Mayor was saying as opposed to Twilight, and it was a good thing too as she was just beginning to introduce Celestia.
"And now, it is my great honor to introduce to you the ruler of our land. The very pony who gives us the sun and moon each and every day, the good, the wise, the bringer of harmony throughout Equestria: Princess Celestia!" At the last two words, Rarity pulled the cord, opening the curtain behind her. Rarity heard a gasp emerge from the crowd and she looked over to where she thought Celestia would be. She let out a small gasp of her own when she saw the balcony was empty. She decided to investigate. She looked through the back rooms of the Town Hall and any other rooms that she came across during her quick search. Nothing. Wherever else she may be, Princess Celestia definitely wasn't in Town Hall.
Rarity trotted back up to the balcony and addressed the crowd. "She's gone!" The crowd gasped again. Rarity was wondering what this all meant but stopped for a moment when she heard Pinkie Pie yelp in shock. She turned around to see not Princess Celestia, but a pony who seemed to be her very opposite materialize out of a smoky, starry mass. If Celestia was the sun incarnate, this pony was the night made flesh. Her flowing mane was much like Celestia's, but it seemed to be infused with twinkling stars. Her midnight coat was covered in silver armor, and it seemed to Rarity as if she was girded for war.
The corners of the alicorn's mouth turned up in a sort of sneering smile as she scanned the crowded hall with her draconian eyes. "Ah, my beloved subjects. It has been so long since I have seen your precious little sun-loving faces!" said the evil looking Alicorn as she looked around the room. The mere sight of this pony made Rarity's stomach twist into knots, and she was beginning to wonder what to do now. She half considered attacking, but she didn't know if she had the ability to kill her before she was stopped. Rarity didn't even have a knife on her right now. Of course, she could just crush her throat with a punch. It was something that she had done on occasion.
Rarity kept her eyes trained on this new mare as she flew over to Fluttershy and said something to her that Rarity couldn't quite make out. Right after she turned her attention from Fluttershy, she appeared next to Rarity, grabbing her face with her other-worldly mane. "Did you not recall the legends?" Her face twisted into a malicious grin. "Did you not see the signs?"
Do it now, Rarity, she thought. All it's going to take is one quick punch to the throat and she's dead in minutes. Do it, and this whole thing can be over.
However, before she actually worked up the nerve, the mare gave her a quick slap with her mane and moved on. Rarity growled at her missed chance. The mare had now turned her attention to Twilight who was talking with her. Twilight was doing her best to keep a brave face through this ordeal but she seemed to be losing her nerve.
"You're the Mare in the Moon." Twilight's eyes narrowed. "Nightmare Moon!"
As Nightmare Moon exchanged a few more words with Twilight, Rarity desperately wished that she had a knife on her, just something simple that she could use to sever Nightmare Moon's spine at the neck, but alas, she had nothing.
Just as she was about to try to back away and escape from town hall, Nightmare Moon said something that made her freeze in her tracks and sent a shiver down her spine. "Remember this day, little ponies, for it was your last. From this moment forth, the night will last forever!!"