• Published 16th Jul 2014
  • 2,957 Views, 51 Comments

That Which Plagues the Mind - Journey Blue



King Sombra has returned from the shadows, his sights on a new conquest. Twilight Sparkle's efforts to save the Crystal Empire may have gone unnoticed by the masses, but not by Sombra. She has earned his interest. Much to her dismay.

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Chapter 2 - Where the Truth Lies

Twilight was frustrated. She had found nothing. Months of delving through every book between Canterlot and the Everfree, digging through tome after ancient tome—countless pages read—had yielded nothing. Nothing in her search for answers. Answers that would shed light on the enigma that lay at the base of the Tree of Harmony: the Box that was her every obsession.

She had found nothing.

Nothing she was looking for, that is.

She had found things she hadn't been looking for. Things she hadn't wanted to find. As she scoured through the vast, and vastly forgotten Library of the Two Sisters, she had found many a text that had shed light on another topic. A rather dark topic.

Dark magic.

Or lack there of.

It hadn't initially been obvious to Twilight. With the castle in such an advanced state of dereliction, library included, it would not be surprising if the discrepancy went unnoticed by most ponies. But not by Twilight. She wasn't like most ponies, and she had taken notice of something missing. Intentionally missing. Pages lost, chapters gone, entire books from what should have been a complete collections absent. There were holes scattered about the library. Holes that Twilight –guided by her own insipid curiosity– sought out. And with each hole she was able to piece together what it was that was missing. And it was clear that it was missing deliberately.

The library had been systematically abridged. And Twilight was certain by whose hoof it had been done.

It would seem that his words had some validity after all.

But, wait. Just because Celestia sought to remove all information regarding dark magic, didn't mean she feared it.

Or does it?

No. Celestia clearly meant to protect Equestria for ponies whom would use the knowledge for evil. Ponies like Sombra.

Like her sister.

!

This was absurd. Twilight wasn't going to get anywhere by questioning her mentor’s motives, nor by looking for dark magic. Dark magic wasn't going to help Twilight find the answers she was looking for. It wasn't going to help her open The Box, or find the keys.

What if Dark Magic is the key? What if it is in the dark that your answers lie?

No! It had been by the power of friendship that the Tree of Harmony had been saved. From the power of friendship that The Box had arisen. And it would be by the power of friendship that The Box would be opened.

But hadn't it been with the power of dark magic that you even found The Box?

It had.

Zecora’s Potion.

“I do not dare to use it myself, the results would be tragic. It only responds to Alicorn magic.” Zecora had said, in her rhymes of wisdom.

And respond to Alicorn magic it did. And not just any Alicorn magic. But Dark Alicorn Magic. And how easy it had been for Twilight to use it.

If dark magic wasn't the answer then why had it been necessary to use it? And if Celestia feared dark magic so much, then why had she taught Twilight how to use it?

But she didn't teach you did she?

She hadn't really. Yes, Celestia had demonstrated it to Twilight. Demonstrated it in order to impress upon Twilight the importance of stopping Sombra from reconquering the Crystal Empire. But no, she hadn't actually taught her how to use the dark magic. Twilight had simply been able to figure out how to use it. Through the use of logic. Through experimentation.

Through intuition.

‘Took to it like a fish to water.’

Those had been his words.

And so too, in Sombra’s castle, had it been necessary for her to use dark magic.

How then, could she justify continuing her search, but ignore dark magic when it already proved to be instrumental to her in the past?

And how could she approach Celestia about it, she who had made a valiant, yet vain, attempt to hide it?

Does she even know you can use it already?

That question startled Twilight. If Celestia hadn't meant for Twilight to learn how to use dark magic, and hadn't been present when Twilight had to use it, then could it be possible that Celestia wasn't aware? Sure Twilight had told Celestia about her first encounter with King Sombra, and that she had resorted to the dark powers. But if Celestia was under the impression that it was a dream, a nightmare, could she fail to realize how developed her student’s dark talent had become?

‘In time you will realize the limits to Celestia’s wisdom.’

Could this be what he meant?

If Celestia didn't know, then how would she respond once she found out? Would she be impressed? Surprised? Horrified?

Disappointed.

And what of Princess Luna? How do you think she will respond?

If she wasn't already aware, which Twilight doubted, she would probably side with her older sister. But wouldn't she be the more understanding of the two? Maybe. But, if anything, she would be the less sympathetic. She who knew the dangers of using the dark powers. She who lost control. She who still punishes herself for losing control. For giving in.

For being too weak.

But you aren't weak. You, who have the potential to be even greater than Celestia. You who could control the darkness so naturally.

Something was off. This wasn’t like Twilight to think such thoughts. It would seemed that she was underestimating King Sombra's influence. This was the price she paid for listening to him.

For letting him get to her.

This had to stop. Twilight couldn't let this continue to go on. She had to do something. She had to get help. But whose? Who could she turn to? Who could help repair the damage Sombra had wrought upon her?

Celestia?

No.

Luna?

No.

Surely her friends then. Her friends who had always been there for her. Her friends that had been by her side through every ordeal she had faced, and would be there for every ordeal she had yet to face. They would never abandon her, especially in her time of need. And they would be her friends to the end.

And in the end, they are all fated to die.

‘I can show you how to fight fate Twilight.’

Every moment. Every precious moment she spent with her friends only made Sombra’s offer all the more tempting. All the more alluring.

If not them then who?! Who could Twilight turn to? Surely, there had to be a pony she could seek help from. Who would be there for her, who would always be there for her. Surely, in all of Equestria, there had to be one pony.

There was.

And it should have been so obvious.

There was one pony that would be there for her. Always be there for her. Had always been there for her. A pony she could turn to for help. For comfort. A pony that could understand the turmoil she felt, and love her unquestionably. For she was love incarnate.

Cadence.

It had to be Cadence.

Cadence, who had been her foal-sitter. Cadence, who had been her first true friend. Cadence, who was now her sister-in-law. Who, together with Twilight, had first defeated Sombra, and could so again. For Princess Mi Amore Cadenza, like Twilight, was an Alicorn.



And Time wouldn't be able to take her away.

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