• Published 22nd Apr 2015
  • 16,568 Views, 271 Comments

Inexcusable - cleverpun

Princess Nightmare Moon had tried to keep it secret. She had feigned ignorance, but the charade could not last. She nocked the arrow. Tirek was a large target; he would fall easily. Then the true challenge would come: explaining herself to Celestia.

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1. Inexcusable

Princess Nightmare Moon took a deep breath. The chilly air in Canterlot’s high towers always reminded her of the old Canterlot. Or was it new Canterlot, considering its age? The previous iteration of the city had never stopped being cold. No matter how hard she had tried, fires and magic could not replace the sun or its light.

Of course, no wind swept through previous Canterlot either. It felt strange every time she went up here. The cold reminded her of dead Canterlot, yet the wind assured her it still lived.

She shook her head. She had come up here to get a better view, not to reminisce. She needed to focus.

She raised the bow. It felt so flimsy in her magic. She had chosen the strongest one in the armory, made out of hickory and strengthened with runes and spells. Yet it still felt so fragile. Many things in Canterlot felt that way. Being very old and very powerful required a lot of self control. Perhaps Celestia had the same problem, to a lesser degree.

She nocked the arrow. There was nothing for it. She couldn’t risk Tirek absorbing any of her spells, so this mundane weapon would have to do.

She took another breath. Magic swirled across the arrow, ensuring it would fly faster. Another spell laced across the string and bow, ensuring it would not break and would shoot smoothly. A final spell wrapped around her eyes, letting her see the hundreds of kilometers into Baltimare. She sighted him easily; Tirek was a large target. Now he only had to turn around. An arrow to the spine would kill him simply and instantly, no matter how much magic he had absorbed.

She needed to do this. Celestia’s plan was terrible. Twilight’s body would shatter if it tried to hold all of her magics, let alone Celestia’s and Cadance’s. Even if it didn’t, Twilight possessed no experience with such massive amounts of energy, let alone combat. Tirek would find Twilight eventually, and he would inevitably best her. Then it would be her old life all over again, a dead world with nothing but statues and the moon to keep Tirek company.

They would discover her lies no matter what. Twilight would reveal how her magic worked, given the chance. She had been faking incompetence for so long now, but it could not last. If her facade had expired, then she could at least keep Equestria safe.

In the distance, Tirek sucked the magic out of another pony. He laughed. The sound didn’t carry that far, of course, but she could imagine it from the way he looked. Smug, confident, sadistic. He grabbed another pony, and another. He laughed again.

Finally, he turned around, exposed the base of his skull.

Princess Nightmare Moon released the arrow. The air in front of her warped and bent as the arrow shot forward. A sonic boom trembled through Canterlot. It mixed with the sound of the bow breaking in half.

Even with all the spells, it took the arrow almost a full second to hit him. The arrow pushed aside clouds and trees as it traveled, leaving a blue and white streak in its wake.

It struck his spine perfectly. His hair covered the entry, but she saw the blood spurt out the other side. She could imagine the wet thunk it must have made, imagine the way he gurgled up blood as he tried to scream.

Magic began to leak out of his body along with the blood. He collapsed, and Princess Nightmare Moon let the vision spell fade.

She dropped the pieces of the bow and turned to the stairs. Now came the hard part; explaining herself to her sister.

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