“Torn, could you watch the foals for a few minutes? I just need to talk to the neighbors real quick.”
“Right on it,” Tornado, “Torn” for short, nodded at the adult mare speaking to him.
“You’re such a doll,” the mare grinned as she patted his head briefly. “I’ll be right back.”
The mare trotted away from the gray unicorn, leaving him to watch two foals wrestling each other and giggling the whole time. Tornado lived in a village called the Zen Village where he and other able-bodied ponies took turns doing different responsibilities. Sometimes, mares in the Zen Village took turns watching all the foals to give the other mothers a break. Tornado shook his head and chuckled, at least he’d never have to-
“Yes?” Tornado turned to see another mare with her four foals of various heights all trotting towards the stallion.
“You wouldn’t mind watching these guys while I’ll go fetch water for the village, do you?” the mare batted her eyelashes, and Tornado’s face heated up as he chuckled.
“It wouldn’t be a problem at all,” Tornado assured her.
“Thank you! I’ll be back soon!” the mare galloped away before Tornado could put together a response.
And so over the next ten minutes, more mares began to leave their foals with Tornado until he was left with twelve foals to watch, from ones barely older than infants all the way to adolescents. They played with each other and conversed with one another, not really paying Tornado any mind or leaving his sight. So the stallion allowed his mind to wander, thinking of the tall white alicorn that lived in Canterlot and was the current ruler of Equestria. Everyday, she crossed his mind, and he wondered how she’d feel about a pony that took on such responsibilities for his village. Would she smile, and tell him that he has a great future ahead? Would she nod quietly and then send him on his way? And then…
Tornado froze, remembering something that had occurred a few months ago that everypony far and wide had already known. There was a sister, Princess Luna, who tried to be the pony that Equestria was proud of, and it lead her to getting defeated and exiled by Princess Celestia herself. Tornado imagined the Sun Princess looking into his amber eyes and spitting at the ground near his hooves, telling him that she saw the same darkness piercing his heart as she did with her sister.
And as he stared at the foals, their giggles and free minds causing his blood to boil, would she blame him?
You’ll never be enough.
Was…was that really Celestia’s voice?
None of the villagers actually care about you, you’re there to do their work and not mess it up.
But, she couldn’t possibly say that. But how did the voice sound so identical to hers?
You’ll never be satisfied with this life, best thing to do is-
“WHAT?!” Tornado whirled around and bellowed, the fire in his body turning into a raging inferno for a few moments before he saw the gentle blue eyes of a filly before she began crying. Feeling his heart twisting inside his chest, Tornado teleported out of the village before anypony could speak out against him.
Teleporting to a tall tree on a hillside, Tornado pressed his back against it and bawled loudly. He had a village with ponies who cared and loved him…when will that ever be enough?
Tornado’s breath got caught in his throat as a green serpent slithered down the tree and held a bright red apple.
“So, I couldn’t help but overhearing the thoughts of somepony that wanted Celestia to be proud of him,” the serpent explained.
“Y-Yes, but there’s no point,” Tornado shook his head. “She’d never like a pony that acts like me.”
“But, if you take this apple, you’ll know everything~” the serpent hissed. “Even more than Celestia herself, how could anypony not worship you after that?”
“W-Wait, what do you get out of this?” Tornado huffed. “Why are you even here?”
“I can see a pony who is better off alone,” the serpent admitted. “All these ponies do is drag you down, do they not?”
“I…I suppose I could try it,” Tornado reached for the apple and consumed it all, staring into the serpent’s sharp eyes the whole time. Before he could scoff at the creature, he froze and saw everything.
He felt the light inside a filly running in the field, groups of ponies throughout Equestria laughing and chatting away, two mares falling in love, and countless other visions of powerful warmth.
Then, he felt knives stabbing every inch of his insides as he felt the subconscious hiss of jealousy, anger, and sadness from every organism in the universe breathing as one inside him. He felt the coldness piercing his heart as he felt a mother losing her child, the endless screams inside a stallion’s mind as he raped his victim, and every moment in which a creature turned their back on another. The screams and cries of every creature’s mind echoed inside of Tornado’s mind as he collapsed to the ground and screamed.
“P-Please, make this stop,” Tornado begged.
“Hmmph,” the serpent rolled his eyes as he slithered back into the bushes with one final statement. “Should’ve thought about that before believing in my words, Discord~”
Tornado continued to hear the cry of every creature for what felt like an eternity, until one moment, it finally stopped. Tornado looked at his hooves, no longer trembling.
Tornado grinned as he jumped away from the tree, galloping back to the village. Surely if he apologized and offered to take on extra chores, would the Zen Village then forgive him. He didn’t need to worry if those thoughts continued to swirl around in his head. He’d be fine.
Tornado ran down the hillside and approached the village, his once black-furred tail now a red scaly tail trailing the dirt.