Twilight levitated another book off of the shelf. Pure nonsense. All of it everywhere was pure nonsense. She continued to open book after book contemplating her predicament.
“No wonder Discord was so chaotic,” she thought to herself. He spends all of this time inside of the library inside of his head reading stories that don’t make sense. Somewhere in this library is a story where a young foal places his hoof on a hot stove and suddenly chocolate rains from the sky. Or he places his hoof on the stove and a tsunami wipes out a city. There is every possible consequence for placing his hoof on the stove, but the one correct consequence of being burned only happens once in the entire library.
This is no way to learn, this is not how to grow or experience or gain knowledge or to be entertained or anything. There is no value in a place where everything exists. There’s nothing to be gained in learning every random combination that can exist. Ponies… ponies matter. Sentient beings that can grow and change and learn. This is the most random, inefficient way of learning there is. Every lie exists at the same time as a single truth. If he spends all his time here trying to chase every idea that could exist, he will gain nothing.
Twilight almost felt sorry for Discord. With a completely skewed concept of cause and effect and what is or isn’t normal, Discord goes to the real world and tries to experiment to see which part of these books actually happen. Every time he actually experiences real life, he has to treat it like an experiment to see what affects the real world has in comparison with all the other possibilities he’s read.
She wanted to feel sorry for him, but she was stuck here. Her friends would take months to finally decide to help her. And what then? Not even Luna would have any experience of trying to escape a mind that wouldn’t allow her to leave, would she?
Twilights only option was trying to find the book that Discord was talking about. A book that contained the spell that would allow her to leave.
She pulled another book off the shelf. More nonsense.
Twilight started to examine the books, the bookcases, and the floor of the library. It all seemed to be made from the same kind of tree wood. She levitated a book in front of her, scrutinizing the brown material, the white pages, the black lettering with the exact same boring font as all the rest of the books in the library. She placed a horn against a bookshelf, examining it.
The floor was a light, uniform brown that despite feeling like wood, had absolutely no grain or wood pattern. She placed her horn against the floor, testing it.
The entire library appeared to have been made magically resulting in every book and shelf and wall looking the exact same. These properties enabled the books, the shelves, the floor, the whole library to easily conduct magic.
She stared back at the nonsensical books. If only there was a way to make a searching spell that would search the library for her.
“How would a spell like that work?” She started to think about the mechanics of how she could cast it. If she could have the spell search for a phrase in a book, maybe that could help her? She could try searching for the phrase “The spell to leave Discord’s library is: “ and maybe the right book would show up.
Twilight spent days trying to figure out the searching spell. There was no need to eat or drink in the Library, it was just books. Even sleep was something she didn’t have any desire to do.
She tried out a spell on a single book. “Search for the word ‘the,’” she commanded. Amazingly the book glowed magenta and the number “227” flashed into her mind. She had successfully managed to have the book search itself and give back the result. Excited, she searched for her own name, “Princess Twilight Sparkle” in the book, no results showed up.
Now… how to search more than one book at a time. All the books are right next to each other. Every book touched the shelves, and the shelves touched the floors which touched more shelves of books. If she could enhance her search spell to use the uniformity of the materials that made up the library, she could have it instantly search every book all at once for her phrase.
She cast the spell again, but this time to have her spell reach the end of the library and recursively show the locations of books with the phrase, “Princess Twilight Sparkle.”
In one moment Twilight felt as if she could feel and understand the locations of incalculable number of books in which her phrase existed in the library.
Twilight felt the location of the nearest book and went down the long corridor and into a side hallway to find the book glowing magenta. She opened it up and read:
“Yellow bamboo plus capital discombobulate princess twilight sparkle pencil aromatherapy broccoli.”
Which was entirely unhelpful.
Twilight began to understand how many possible locations her phrase could possibly exist. The only way to have her search spell actually do something would be to write a book herself. “How am I supposed to find the book that teaches the spell of how to escape if I need to know all the exact phrasing to even find the book!? That would be the same as knowing the book to begin with!” she thought angrily.
Frustrated, Twilight tried to write out a book to put in the search query for her spell. It would need to be a long book indeed to reach 410 pages. Perhaps in the first 200 pages or so the number of books would drop below the billions.
Twilight started to write the book in her mind, starting from the very beginning.
“Twilight Sparkle is an alicorn that was born in the year 1514 in the reign of Princess Celestia to her parents…” she tried to include all the details of her life she could.
“Her first best friend ever was a baby Dragon named Spike that Twilight has been friends with since she was a filly.” She wrote about her many adventures, on reading books, on learning spells, and how much she loved and appreciated each of her friends. She wrote about Discord going on a rampage, about how she lost her best friend, Spike, and about how much he meant to her. How much she missed him and wished that he was there at her side right then and there.
She wrote about how she was sick of being in this library searching for the book that would tell her how to leave. About how every book existed in the library. How insane this place was. How Discord could possibly learn all the truth and beauty the universe had to offer in this library, but how every lie was learned at the same time as a single truth. About how much she really did love books, but she understood now how much more powerful friendships and relationships are. She also wrote about how she wished she could find that book with the spell that would tell her how to get out of here.
While Twilight wrote her book, her search spell continued to find books. She liked watching as the number of books got exponentially smaller with every sentence she wrote.
One time her spell stopped working and it shook her up a bit. But then she realized that the name Fluttershy was not one of the words that fit under the 200,003 word limit. Every time she talked about Fluttershy or Applejack she had to spell their names out with two words. Once she did that, the number of possible books jumped back to the astronomical amount.
When she neared about 50 pages left of the book, she paused to reflect on the total amount of books left that had her full 360 pages of rambling about her life compared to the beginning. She stared at the unfathomable number. Even if she finished her entire book, she would only find the location of a book that didn’t have the spell to leave anyway.
The number she was staring at changed.
Twilight watched as the amount of books she was searching for increased by one and then decreased by one, increased by one, and then decreased by one. She watched the number rhythmically switched back and forth. She was dealing with a stupidly large number, but the fact that the very, very, last digit in that insane number kept changing positions unnerved her.
“Which book is that!?” Twilight exclaimed out loud. “What in Equestria is making it disappear and reappear?”
She could feel that the book in question was somewhere down, far, far below her.
“If only there was a way to see what it was that was moving that book all the way down there. But books don’t have eyes, they can’t feel, they can’t hear, they can’t do anything,” Twilight thought to herself. There was no mechanism for Twilight to work with that would even allow her to see who was holding her book.
She sat on the floor of the completely silent library contemplating what she could do.
“Maybe someone who had handled the book had done something to the cover?” she half-jokingly asked herself.
It was a stupid idea. But what else could she do? She could at least see if the person holding it had made some scratches accidentally while reading the book.
She edited her searching spell again, but this time to show what was on the cover of each of the books of the library. She saw the countless numbers of completely blank normal covers and hoped against hope she could see something, anything amidst the blank covers. She saw something that made her gasp in complete and utter shock and horror.
In claw marks, on the cover of one of the books far down below, were written the words:
I found the book.