Partially inspired by "Emperor Stark" from Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes.
"Why did you do it?!" Princess Luna shouted.
It was the night before Shining Armor's and Princess Me Amora Cadenza's wedding. The Moon was setting and soon Celestia would raise the sun. Luna was going to go to bed. A part of her regretted that she would not be present for such an occasion, but then again she was nocturnal.
But currently, her focus was on her sister Celestia whom she was glaring at.
"What do you mean sister?" Celestia said in a calm voice.
"I've looked through all the official history books distributed throughout Equestria. The kind that are taught to schoolchildren. And I've found out something rather interesting Sister. I'm not in them!" Luna growled.
Celestia avoided her sister's eyes for a moment, and then she asked, "why does this anger you so much?"
Luna was almost speechless. She had been back for awhile and she'd often wondered why most people reactions to her were as if she was still Nightmare Moon. So she'd done a bit of checking up on what people knew about her. She had been very surprised to discover that most public information about her was in dusty books that almost no one read.
"Sister, I regret what I did as Nightmare Moon. But why did you not tell the people that we once ruled together before I became a monster? Why is it that the only thing that most everypony remembers about me is that I tried to usurp the throne and kill you?!"
Celestia faced down her angry sister with a sad look on her face.
"Luna, please try to understand. There was a thousand year gap in-between when you were banished to the moon and when you returned. Our subjects are not immortal and they needed a sense of stability after you were gone."
"So you made me into your scapegoat?!" Luna said, hurt evident in her eyes.
"No. You know how tiring and hard our royal duties are. By the time I had realized that you were passing into becoming an old Mare's tale . . . well, the effect was already underway."
Luna looked at her sister with hurt and tired eyes. She wanted to continue on, to scream at her big sister that she could've found time to make sure that Luna wasn't forgotten in favour of Nightmare Moon. But she simply felt too tired to do so, especially after watching Canterlot for so long and so vigilantly after a threat had been made from out of the blue against them.
So Luna simply sighed and walked past her sister, intent on going to bed. She'd deal with it after the wedding.
"Goodnight Little Luna," Celestia said softly.
Luna stiffened, and then walked on.
Celestia looked down as she watched her sister go. It had really been a stressful day and night. First Twilight had driven Princess Cadence to tears with ridiculous accusations of her being evil. Then Twilight had vanished, Celestia sincerely hoped that she was thinking her actions over. And now Luna was angry with her too. Celestia was happy to have her sister back, but their relationship still had some rough spots. Celestia sighed as she got ready to raise the sun. She'd deal with this problem after the wedding.
Luna finally got to her room and lay down in her bed. She was asleep almost before the sun had begun to rise.
She woke up around sunset and groaned. She really just wanted to stay in bed. But she knew that she needed to be there to raise the moon. That and the fact that she could make it to the Wedding Party after she raised the moon was enough to coax her out of bed.
After splashing some water in her face to make sure she was fully awake, she set off for the balcony where she and Celestia raised and lowered their respective objects in the sky.
At first she didn't notice anything out of the ordinary as she walked through the castle. She was in a hurry to raise the moon so she could attend the party and brushed past everyone, not noticing how they stared at her. She finally reached the high balcony where she and her sister usually performed their duties. She concentrated and with a smirk of satisfaction, saw the sun set fully and her moon begin to peek over the horizon.
It was when she finally lowered her gaze to look at Canterlot, to see if she could catch a glimpse of the party that was supposed to be held out on the grounds of the castle, did she notice something out of the ordinary.
Luna froze in shock and horror. Changelings were roaming all over the city, some simply were wandering, but others moved in clearly practiced formation. Everywhere she looked, Luna could see Changelings. But strangely enough, all the citizens seemed to be surprisingly acceptant of the monsters that had invaded their city. They were strolling around and it appeared that to them, this seemed to be just another day.
With another thrill of horror, Luna remembered what Changelings fed on and realized that they must be using the entire population of Canterlot as their version of a buffet.
Luna heard some hoofsteps behind her and turned to see her sister. Luna's face broke into a smile as she felt relief surge through her.
"Thank goodness sister. What has happened while I slept? How can we . . ."
It was only then that Luna noticed that Celestia's face wasn't arranged into its usual kindly smile. Celestia's face was murderous as magic ran along her horn in preparation for a spell.
"Celestia!" Luna said in confusion and fear. "What are you doing?! What has-" Then Luna noticed something else. She was very good at discerning magic, but only if she looked at her sister just right could she see it. Her sister's eyes held a slightly greenish tint, characteristic of a mental intrusion spell.
Otherwise known as a Hypnosis spell.
Luna backed away in fear as her sister glowered down at her while saying in a thunderous voice, "enemies of the Queen shall not be tolerated!"
Luna felt her hind legs hit the railing of the balcony, then without a second's hesitation, she threw herself off. Her wings snapped out and she glided away. But it was only a second's respite. A bolt of energy flew past Luna and she turned to see Celestia in pursuit of her. Luna flapped her wings, trying to keep ahead of her sister as she dodged the beams of energy that came flying at her.
Somehow, she managed to land, crashing through one of the windows and as soon as she'd gotten herself steady, she bolted.
Behind her, she could hear Celestia land, then her royal Canterlot voice echoed throughout the castle.
"The traitor Princess Luna has been found, all guards are to arrest on sight. Lethal force is authorized."
Luna panted as she ducked into one of the rooms and hid under a table. Some guards rushed past the door and Luna tried to control her breathing. Then she heard the flapping of wings and heard some Pegasus come floating in through the door.
"See, I told you she wouldn't be in here."
"Quit questioning me, just check under the tables to make sure!"
The voices sounded vaguely familiar, but Luna was too busy trying to steel her nerves to make a run for it as soon as she was found.
The head of a Pegasus poked its way under her table and Luna started. Fluttershy stared at the Princess of the Night. Then she smiled shyly.
"Uhm, I hope it's not too much to ask, but could you please turn yourself in Princess? We really need to obey the Queen."
Luna propelled herself off the floor, knocking the table out of her way as she fled for the door. She had almost made it when what felt like a small torpedo slammed her against the wall. Looking down, Luna was startled once again to see that Rainbow Dash was responsible for her missing the door. Now that she got a good look at them, she noticed that they too had a slight greenish tint to their eyes.
"You're not going anywhere Looney!" Dash said with determination.
Luna didn't waste her breath on words, knowing she was running on borrowed time. She created a small sphere of complete darkness from her horn and flung it right into Rainbow Dash's face. Rainbow Dash fell back, trying to scrub the blinding darkness out of her eyes. Luna turned to go but saw that Fluttershy was standing in the doorway.
"It would really mean a lot to me if you turned yourself in. The Queen is going to fix the world. She's already fixed Canterlot and it would be nice if you could join us."
It was surreal. Her voice seemed just like how Fluttershy would speak normally, shy and kind. But Luna knew far better than to even consider her offer so she charged past the Pegasus.
Almost immediately, Celestia found her again. Luna tried to gain some ground on her but Celestia kept a dogged pursuit. Luna pushed herself to her limits as at first she had to dodge beams of energy in the enclosed space of the corridor. Then Celestia enchanted various decorations such as paintings and flower pots to attack her.
As Luna turned one last bend, dodging some guards that had been posted there, she saw with shock that the corridor ahead lead to the entrance of the Crystal Mines beneath Canterlot. She tried to backpedal but it was already too late. Celestia landed at the entrance to the corridor and slowly advanced upon her sister.
"Celestia" Luna pleaded "please don't do this. You know it isn't right!"
Celestia's green-tinted eyes blazed, "you are unfit to determine right and wrong! Only the Queen may do so!"
And with that she charged at her sister.
Luna panicked and didn't even try to meet her sister in combat. Instead she turned and fled into the mines, not paying attention to where she went.
Celestia was about to follow her sister when a voice stopped her.
"No, she cannot leave the mines through any way but here. Post guards at the entrance."
Celestia turned and bowed deeply as the person who had spoken walked forward.
"As you command my Queen."
Queen Chrysalis's face split into a manic grin. She turned to leave while chuckling to herself. This was so much fun, truly the perfect end to her best day ever.
Luna landed to catch her breath and assess the situation.
She finished assessing the situation and came the conclusion that she had almost no idea what was going on.
Then something off in the distance got her attention. A soft sound of sobbing was echoing through the mines. Pinpointing where the sound was coming from, she spread her wings and propelled herself off the ground.
Soon she came into another room and in that room, to her great astonishment, was Celestia's prize student Twilight Sparkle who was busy comforting none other than Princess Me Amora Cadenza. The Princess was obviously in great emotional distress as tears were flowing down from her eyes.
However, as soon as Luna landed they noticed her.
"Princess Luna!" Twilight said with a great deal of relief on her face. But then her eyes became suspicious and her horn pulsed with magic.
"How do I know your not one of the Changelings?"
"I am Princess Luna, once called Nightmare Moon," Luna recited. "You and your friends freed me with the elements of harmony and I recently attended Ponyville's Nightmare Night in the hopes of improving my relations with the common folk."
After a few seconds, Twilight nodded and ceased the flow of magic. Then it was Luna's turn to ask questions.
"What has happened Twilight? I woke up this sunset and found Canterlot overrun by Changelings. I had to flee from my own sister and barely escaped some of your friends."
Twilight sighed as she sat down.
"Did you know about my little temper tantrum during which I called Cadence "Evil"?"
Princess Cadence looked up at Twilight with a questioning look on her face in spite of the tears.
"You called me evil?"
"Not you, the other Cadence."
They turned back to Luna and she nodded.
"I remember. Celestia seemed a bit tense when we exchanged the night with the day."
"Well, turns out I was right. The Cadence that's been around for most of the wedding planning is actually the Queen of the Changelings."
Luna's eyes widened as she at least partially realized what had happened.
"Unfortunately, before I could warn anyone, she sent me down here where I met up with the real Cadence. We tried to find the exit and eventually we did. But Celestia was waiting for us. At first we were happy, but then we noticed that Queen Chrysalis was behind her and Celestia's eyes were glowing green."
Twilight's head drooped.
"She tried to shoot us down and we barely made it back into the mines. We've been stuck here ever since. There are always some guards watching over the exit."
Luna nodded, "my story is simple. I went to bed as the sun arose; I am partially nocturnal by nature. When I awoke I was eager to raise the moon as quick as possible so that I might not miss the wedding Celebrations that were due to take place at night. However, after raising the moon I noticed the absurd infestation of Changelings who were running rampant through the streets and through the air. I also noted how nobody seemed to consider this out of the ordinary. I was then set upon by Celestia and she gave quite a chase throughout the castle. I eventually found myself at the entrance to the mine and was forced to flee into it."
Cadence seemed to have managed to get control of herself for now as she stood up. Twilight thought for a bit, then she said, "based on your description of Canterlot it seems as if everypony's been put under some form of Hypnosis spell. We should probably be able to break it, but it'll require several tries to determine what kind of Hypnosis spell it is. If only we could get someone to test on."
Luna grinned and motioned for them to follow here. If she was right, then it should be in this room. She saw the small out of place crystal and pushed down on it.
Cadence and Twilight's mouths both dropped as a door opened up in the wall.
Luna smiled "tis a small tunnel I had made before I was Nightmare Moon. It was Celestia's and my little secret. Come, it will lead us out of the castle."
The three Ponies followed the secret passage, their horns lighting the way. After awhile, they came to the end and Luna pushed open another door. The walked into the new room which appeared to be the back of some warehouse built into one of the cliffs of Canterlot.
Just as they had closed the door however, they heard a buzzing noise and they all turned to see a large crowd of Changelings staring at them. Some where licking their lips as if in anticipation.
But strangest of all were three little fillies who were wearing red capes. They appeared to be leading the Changelings and they all advanced on the three escapees. As they advanced with mischievous smiles on their faces, they all said simultaneously, and in a creepy monotone, "you're not going anywhere. Nobody escapes the Cutie Mark Crusaders."
Back at the Castle, Queen Chrysalis grinned as she watched the warehouse from a window.
"It's really quite nice that you remembered that secret passageway you and Luna had built when you were children. You truly are under my full mental domination Celestia."
Celestia said nothing as she watched the warehouse as well. Her face was completely blank, except for one subtle twitch of the eye.