"Hey, Discord," said the ex-Nightmare of Pinkie Pie of the 'Dark World' Worldline to the 'Dark World' Worldline's Discord. "I just wanna say thanks. You sure were helping a lot of ponies before with that rumors curse mess."
"Uh... I haven't," Discord of the Dark World Timeline admitted, currently wearing a pink construction worker outfit and moving a piece of raw matter into position to become a random object. "I haven't been to Amicitia's new timeline universe, ever, nor have I been able to send any detachments or anything. Haven't even sent one of my Yokai."
"So Heart World Discord?"
"That's impossible. Even for me, him, whatever."
"Comic book Discord?"
"Touchpad Freemium Game Discord?"
"Only one more evil than I used to be."
"Guardians of Harmony Discord!"
"That isn't out yet."
"Nope to that too. Pinkie, do you REALLY think two Discords could ever stand to be in the same place at the same time? Well, except if one of them is Eris or if we're crashing our own funeral."
"But... the only Discord that leaves that was helping them that whole time is..."
Discord found himself sitting at a table, his body the age he was at Paradise Estate, a 'draconequusling'? Funny how his family never really settled on what to call their juvenile forms. Way back when he was that young, he'd called himself a colt. He practically thought he WAS a pony, at the time.
After admiring himself he noticed the table was raised to his chest, and that a chessboard had been set upon it. Then he saw who his opponent was.
"Now remember Dissy as we begin to play the game: there is to be no transfiguring the chess pieces, and no 'creative reinterpretation' of the rules," said Wind Whistler calmly and evenly as she made the first move.
Discord grumbled and matched her pawn. "I am not having this dream."
"But you are. Denying reality by itself shall not change it." She moved her knight.
Discord moved his. "And why, pray tell, should I be dreaming of you NOW?"
They continued to move chess pieces across the board with each reply. Wind Whistler gave the smallest twitch of a smirk. "Dissy, I can appreciate your refusal to be categorized as a part of a system like your fellows. To control chaos is an oxymoron; if it could be controlled, it would not be chaos. Even chaos theory is simply the observation of chaos and attempt to analyze it, rather than a clear-cut method of controlling it."
"For once, I’ve found someone who’s on the same page as me," he said, sliding a bishop down.
"But you disappoint me, you revel in the chaos you cause, but when chaos happens to yourself, you reject yourself... no wonder you're not truly happy."
"Since when does Wind Whistler deny the facts?” he asked, pushing a pawn forward. “I AM happy! I have a family that accepts me, a domain of my own, and my other family can't touch me."
"I thought I taught you better."
"And that's why they realized it was better for Surprise to teach me than you! At least she made learning fun!"
"Yes... I remember."
"Of course you remember,” said Discord, rolling his eyes. “I remember, and you're just a figment of my mind."
"Are you sure? This room looks rather orderly, as does this game of chess, and I look like my regular self instead of a cockatiel-orangutan hybrid…"
"Don't try mind games on the master, you already told me this is a dream."
"So I did. A pleasure to see you're still capable of cognitive recognition at least Dissy. And I have grown a nanoangstrom of pride for you in this micro-instant in one respect."
"What's that?" Discord asked blandly.
"You're finally treating your pawns as more than expendable." She gestured at the chess set with a wing. To be fair, it wasn't Discord's normal game of throwing his pawns away en masse.
"A game of chess reflects the pony who plays it."
"I'm no pony!"
"You called yourself one more than once at Paradise Estate."
"That was before I woke up to myself."
"You mean when you recovered your memories of your former self, couldn't accept what you did, lost handling of the power of your Father's avatar, and your brother-"
"We were both dying! It was one of us! We had no idea Pandora was coming! And pop's avatar was no good!"
"... I wasn't going to bring up your cannibalization. And why should that matter to you? Why should you justify it? Unless you've begun to feel guilt... after all... when did Destruction EVER judge you? Chaos and destruction walk side by side. Probably the only reason you're capable of controlling his power as much as you can."
Discord tried to toss the chess set over, but found it was like it was glued to the table, and the table was glued to the floor. After several seconds of exhaustive effort he stopped. "Why SHOULD I be having this dream? I've never had a dream like this before now!"
Wind Whistler nodded. "An intelligent question. Another point for you, Dissy. But not with a simplistic answer..." Wind Whistler seemed to grow larger. "Perhaps the weakening of barriers between different states of existence has allowed me channel myself into your subconscious of my own body. Perhaps your cognitive dissonance of what you think you want, and the resulting emotion state, have reached critical mass, and I am acting as an outlet for your psyche by externalizing your anxieties, your suppressed Shadow expressing itself. Perhaps you are unsure what to do of said cognitive dissonance, and desire guidance, but have none to turn to, and feel too ashamed to face your mother, or Surprise, so you manifest me instead. Maybe ... just maybe... my soul never left, and I have been slowly driving you sane for centuries... slowly eating at your chaos, and making you a tiny bit more orderly and logical, trapping your chaos in predictable patterns instead of truly random, silently attacking your mind from the moment you stole my body."
"You think that kinda 'don't think of elephants' suggestion will work on me?"
"You tell me. You said I was just a figment of your mind. So wouldn't that be you using it on yourself?"
"Watch your manners young stallion! You will not address your teacher in that manner!" Wind Whistler grew so she looked down on him.
Discord shrank himself down to where he'd been just out of diapers. "Y-yes, teacher."
Wind Whistler shrank back to pony size, and Discord aged up to colthood. "There. That wasn't so hard, was it?" She smiled the sort of gentle smile, which Discord was SURE the REAL Wind Whistler would never have worn on her face! "Now, it's also possible that a fundamental truth that you've built your world view upon has recently been proven false. Perhaps due to a chat with a candy making Earth Pony turned Changeling monster-hunter? You are trying not to think about it consciously, but your unconscious mind is discussing it through me. Or you desperately want back the life you threw away now that you've seen you'll never reclaim that happiness. Maybe both."
"Oh, please. Then where's the cheerleader costume for Celly and Lulu to shove me into? Where the stage for Surprise and me to bounce jokes off of each other? Where's Galaxy and her star maps? Where's Firefly and her acrobatics? Where's Posey and her garden so I can turn all the flowers random colors?"
"Sounds like you loved us very much. Just like you loved the seapony's games and songs. No wonder you unconsciously desired to undo your sin so badly."
"I'm a concept! Since when do I have regrets?"
"To regret is to wish to change what has been done, to atone is to wish to make amends for it."
"I sold my conscience, that can't happen."
"Where's Sea Swirl?" Doctor Red Heart asked, seeing the tub was empty.
"She said she had to go back to her people to lead them in a quest to defeat an ancient evil," Nursery Rhyme explained where her patient went.
The sea ponies stood in wait, watching as the beast came. Every last one of them ready to lay down everything to protect their people.
Emerging from the deepest recesses of the ocean came a colossus. A beast resembling an unholy mismatch of sea creatures that seemed to constantly shift and turn. The only clear cut thing about it was its maw was similar to an angler fish and its head had many tentacles.
"I AM DRA-GON. FATHER OF THE DEEP ONES. RULER OF THE ABYSS. FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN BENEATH THE WAVES. YOU WILL PAY FOR INTERFERING IN MY DOMAIN, WATER BUGS!"
"The sea doesn't belong to you!" announced a pink-scaled blue maned sea pony wearing royal guard armor. Each sea pony had a weapon composed of holy, enchanted sea stone. The captain wielded a golden trident, a gift from their ruling deity himself.
The Great Old One's eyes widened, noting no fear in the sea ponies eyes.
"DO YOU KNOW WHO YOU STAND AGAINST?!"
"We do, we just know who REALLY rules the seas!" The captain Wavedancer, announced, as she severed one of Dra-gon's tentacles with the sacred trident. "FOR KING LEO NEPTUNE AQUASTRIA!"
"FOR KING LEO!" replied Sea Swirl, the two dodging a swipe of Dra-gon's massive claws.
Dra-gon was taken aback when what seemed like the entire Sea Pony race charged at him as one.
The Sea Ponies formed a barrage of bubbles and launched them at the Old One, detonating like pressure bombs on impact.
The war waged on. Dra-gon was not going win. The seaponies, in their heart of hearts, were unconsciously beyond determined not to be driven to extinction or slavery by a mad god again. And that determination WOULD see them through!
"You're chaos, since when do you play by the rules?"
"When is this stupid dream going to end already?! I want out! I want out!"
"The instructor dismisses the class, Dissy, not the bell. I did teach you better than that."
Discord tried to knock over the pieces, but they seemed glued to the spot when he wasn't making his move.
"Your mother has taught you to avoid such tantrums, Dissy."
"Stop calling me that!! I am Discord!"
"Like Nightmare Moon was not Luna?"
"Don't compare ME with Lulu's heavy metal makeover! I am the real Discord! I'm the original!"
"The real you... is ALL your experiences, Dissy. ALL of your actions. You are the only concept who's lived as a mortal and refused to admit to this. Lulu's finally confessed she and Nightmare Moon were one pony, not some alien parasite... how much longer are you going to pretend?"
"Stop it! Stop! I don't feel anything for you! I don't feel guilty! I'm not sorry! I don't have a conscience! I don't give mercy! I don't feel anything for ponies except as toys! I don't hate myself for not being able to stand up to my dark side! I'm NOT sad I destroyed my real family!"
"Or maybe you've been Dissy all along, and you've been letting your memories of being Discord rule you."
"Dissy no longer exists! I ate him!!!"
"Didn't you remember what your mothers taught you, Dissy? If Dissy is not in Oblivion, then he had to have existed...and you are what you eat."
Discord woke panting.