• Published 17th Oct 2014
  • 32,315 Views, 1,208 Comments

Living Nightmare - Autum Breeze

Nightmare Moon was destroyed by the Elements. But a part of her remained, working til it could become whole again. But something went wrong.

  • ...

Chapter 1

Chapter 1


I groan, struggling to get up. I don’t know what happened, but when I screamed I’d felt something tingle on my horn and heard a strange shimmering sound, before an explosion sent me flying backwards into the wall on the other side of the room.

I open my eyes and they widen as I look at the spot I’d seen the spider. There was a large hole in the wall. Had the spider exploded? Did spiders do that in my dream, like those bomb bad guys in Super Mario?

Wait. I look down at my hooves, fear creeping into me. I can feel... pain. I’m... I’m hurting from being thrown at the wall by that spider exploding.

But... you can’t feel pain in a dream; you can’t get hurt. If... if I’m hurting right now, that means... that means this isn’t a dream. I really am in some ruined castle somewhere, I really am a unicorn with wings and dragon eyes and I really have turned into a girl!

I probably would have started screaming right then and there, but something stopped me.


I freeze. Another voice. Someone else was in this ruined castle? Maybe it wasn’t abandoned after all. And I just went and made a spider explode and destroy more of the castle. The owner will probably think I did all the other damages too.

I frantically look around, trying to find a place to hide. My eyes fell upon some turned over, moss-covered stone tables. That would have to do.

I hurried across the floor, hating my hooves as they made loud clopping noises against the stone floor.

“Twilight, did you hear that?” another voice called from somewhere in the castle.

“She must be in the tower where we defeated Nightmare Moon,” the first voice answered.

I skidded under the tables and hunched down, my wings pressed against my sides. Something about those last two words made me feel uneasy. They shouldn’t have. It just sounded like a lame name for a bad guy in TV shows like Sailor Moon. In fact, it could have passed for a name like that. But, the name made me uneasy, as if I should know it, as if I knew it, remembered it. But how? Til just now I’ve never heard that before.

The sound of clopping on stone caused my ears to turn towards the door and I shut my eyes, listening, hoping I wouldn’t be found out.

“Whoa. I don’t remember this hole being here before,” the second voice said, sounding like it was in the room now, meaning the other voice, Twilight, I’m guessing, was in here too. She was going to be so angry with me.

“You’re right, Spike, it wasn’t,” Twilight’s voice said, her tone sounding angry to my ears. “It’s strange. I sense magic around it. But... that can’t be right.”

“What is it, Twi?” Spike replied, slight worry having entered his voice.

“It feels like... No, that can’t be. We defeated her and freed Luna from her.”

“Y-You don’t mean...?” Spike’s voice was trembling now.

“Yes,” I peeked me eyes open and saw Twilight nodding. “Nightmare Moon.”

At the sound of the name I shivered again. Why did just hearing that name make chills go down my back, causing my wings to twitch?

“B-but that can’t be!” Spike practically shouted. “You and the girls beat her ages ago! She can’t be— Hey, what was that?”

I shut my eyes quickly. I’d opened them to get a look at Twilight and Spike. What I’d seen had frozen me to the spot. Twilight was a horse like me, and had wings and a horn too, only she was much bigger and her colours were very different. Her fur was lavender coloured and while she had a mark on her thighs much like I did, hers weren’t of a moon, but a six-pointed purple star surrounded by five other white stars.

Spike was some kind of lizard that walked on two legs. His tops scales were purple, like Twilight’s fur, but his underbelly was green. His tail ended in a triangle. He was really small, only reaching to just about the same height as me, I think.

I only got to see his eyes for a second though. They were like mine, but green. As soon as I saw them though, I shut my own eyes, so he wouldn’t see me, but he must have just seen a small bit of my eyes closing, because I could hear steps coming towards me.

“What is it, Spike?” Twilight’s voice asked, sounding both cautious and interested.

“I thought I saw something,” Spike’s voice answered.

I was shivering. Any second now they’d find me and blame me for what had happened to their castle. It wasn’t my fault. I didn’t know that spider would explode and I didn’t have anything to do with the rest of the castle. That must have been this Nightmare Moon they had mentioned.

“Hello?” Twilight’s voice pulled me from my thoughts. However, it didn’t sound angry, like I’d thought it would. It sounded kind and gentle. “Are you in there? You really shouldn’t be playing around in here, it’s dangerous.”

I had no intention of answering. If I showed myself, they’d punish me for ruining the castle, when I didn’t do anything; I just knew they would. That’s how fairy tales work. You think someone’s nice, but then they reveal that they’re evil and you’re doomed.

I tried to move farther back, not noticing the bit of cover dipped down and scraped my horn against it. I give out a yelp as I drop down, pressing my tummy against the cold stone floor. That had really hurt. I didn’t know my horn would be that sensitive.

“Are you okay?” Twilight sounded worried now. Maybe she thought I’d hurt myself, which I had. Maybe she’s not so bad after all. No bad guy pretending to be a good guy could sound so concerned without it sounding fake.

“J... just my horn,” I whisper, keeping my eyes shut. “I-I scrapped it on the stone.”

I heard Twilight sigh. “That’s good. I was worried it was serious. Now, how about you come out of there, so I can see you? You can’t stay here, after all.”
Yeah. She probably didn’t like little kids playing around in her castle.

I squeak in answer to her, nodding my head and slowly move forward, keeping my eyes shut the whole time.

When I’ve finally stepped out from my hiding place and fall height, I open my eyes and look up. Twilight’s staring at me, her eyes (which I notice are a really beautiful purple) wide in shock and... fear? Why is she scared? What did I do?

Suddenly, without warning her horn glows with some purple stuff and I hear that shimmering sound again. However, I’m not thinking about that, because I feel my whole body surrounded by that strange tingling feeling I’d felt on my horn before, only different this time. Not only that, but I’m lifted into the air and held there. No matter how hard I struggle, I can’t get free.

I look to Twilight, wondering what’s going on, before my heart leaps into my throat. Twilight’s glaring at me. No, glaring doesn’t even come close to the look she’s giving me. It’s outright hatred in her eyes.

I’m gripped with terror. I was right. Twilight is like those bad guys that pretend to be good, only to turn on you because they’re evil.


Twilight scowled at the filly in her grasp. She was back! Nightmare Moon had somehow come back. She dared to return after everything Twilight and her friends had done to stop her, to save Luna, and yet she still found some way of coming back.

Luckily, it seemed she hadn’t been strong enough to return as she was. She’d become nothing but a filly Alicorn and clearly had been planning something here in Celestia and Luna’s old castle. Her mistake had been getting angry, and blasting the wall like she did.

If she hadn’t done that, Twilight might never have known she was even here, gotten her books from the castle’s library and left, none the wiser that the demon that separated Celestia and Luna for a thousand years had returned.

“Why have you come back, Nightmare Moon?!” she demanded, practically shouting it, not noticing the filly flinch at the sound of her own name. “You lost, the eternal night will never happen! Have you returned to take Luna and Celestia away from each other again? Do you plan on making everypony suffer for no reason what so ever? Talk!!”

“I— I— I’m sorry!” the filly Nightmare Moon screamed and, to Twilight’s shock, tears started streaming down her face. “I’m sorry! I didn’t mean to make that spider explode; I didn’t know that they could explode. I didn’t mean for it t’ happen. I promise that’s all I did, though! I don’t know what happened to the rest of your castle, but I’m sorry! Please, don’t hurt me, Miss Twilight! I didn’t mean to make a hole in your castle. I’m sorry!”

Twilight was stock still, her brain having gone into lock down. Nightmare Moon was... apologizing? Honestly apologizing? That... that didn’t make any sense. Nightmare wouldn’t care enough to feel even the slightest bit sorry for anything, let alone actually be able to bring herself to say those words, even if she didn’t mean it.

Not only that, it was the way the filly was looking at her. In her dragon-like eyes, eyes that had looked down on Twilight herself like she was nothing but a bug to be squashed under her hoof at a moment of her choosing, she saw, not hatred or disgust, but... fear. Pure, unadulterated, I-am-about-to-die fear. She was looking at Twilight as if she were a horrifying monster about to gobble her up.

Twilight’s mind was locked in a tornado of confusion as she tried to process this.

It was some time later when the sound of pleading caused her to come out of her stupor and look back at Nightmare moon. The filly had closed her eyes, tears still streaming down her face.

“Mum, Dad, where are you?” she was whispering as she sobbed, her voice filled with heartache that made Twilight’s own heart clench. “Save me, please. Please save me.”

That did it for Twilight. While she had no idea whether or not this was Nightmare Moon reincarnated as a filly or not anymore, she couldn’t, in good conscience, hold the filly like she had.

She gently lowered the filly and released her magical grip. The moment she was free the filly ran back to where she’d been hiding before and stayed there. With no sign of her eyes, Twilight knew her eyes were tightly shut as the sound of her sobbing continued.

Twilight looked to Spike, who was staring at her, just as shocked. He shook his head. He hadn’t been expecting that either.

Twilight sighed, guilt gripping her insides now. Whether this filly was Nightmare moon or not, it didn’t matter. She was scared and alone and Twilight clearly had done something horrible then. She’d gone and convinced the filly to come out of hiding, to trust her, only to yank her into the air and treat her like a monster. This filly wasn’t the monster; she was.

Carefully, Twilight lowered herself down onto her stomach and looked into the darkness within the hole the filly had run back into. She put on her most sincerely apologetic face.

“Hey,” she whispered, only to be answered but a sobbing squeak. She sighed and moved in a little. “Listen, I’m... I’m sorry. I thought you were somepony else. I wouldn’t have done that if I knew you weren’t her.”

The turquoise-blue eyes opened and looked at her, both in fear and curiosity. “P-promise?”

Her voice was so small. It sounded nothing like Nightmare Moon, yet Twilight couldn’t ignore what she could see with her own eyes, nor what she could sense with her own magic. This filly didn’t just look like Nightmare Moon; she also had her magical power, the magical mane and tail were evidence enough of that.

But, the way she was acting, the fear in her eyes, it was nothing like Nightmare Moon. Even if this were the same mare, turned a filly, the fear in her eyes would’ve been that of not being able to finish her plan, of losing. The fear she was seeing, however, was that of one who had no clue where she was or why she was here.

The filly didn’t respond right away. Twilight waited for several minutes, til the sun was high in the sky, before she finally came out.

Slowly, the filly walked out, keeping her head low, as if she was afraid looking at Twilight would give her reason to grab her in her magic again.

Soon as she was in clear view, Twilight looked over the filly. The fur colour, magical mane and tail, Cutie Mark and eyes all matched the infamous Mare in the Moon, but, at the same time, it was like seeing somepony wearing a costume that had been stuck onto them.

This filly didn’t seem angry that Twilight had found her, annoyed by her presence or anything that would suggest Nightmare Moon. She only showed fear and sadness, as if her whole world had been taken away from her.

Twilight chanced leaning her head down and nuzzled the filly’s cheek. The response was for the filly to throw her forelegs around the older mare’s neck, beginning her sobbing once again. Twilight couldn’t help but lift a foreleg and hold the smaller Alicorn. She was upset and it was all Twilight’s fault. She’d already been scared and Twilight had only made it worse.

Spike looked at the black pony, confusion on his face. “Twilight, is this Nightmare Moon or not?”

Twilight didn’t respond at first, noticing the filly flinch at the name. But, after a few moments, she shook her head. “I’m not sure, Spike. All I can say is that she’s scared and we can’t just leave her here, all alone.”

Spike nodded. As much as he was scared of the Nightmare Moon look-a-like, he knew Twilight was right. Whoever this filly was, she was scared and they couldn’t just leave her alone in the castle, even if she was Nightmare Moon.

Twilight motioned for Spike to come closer. He did so, hopping onto her back. Twilight lit her horn and began her teleportation spell. She felt the filly tense as the magic covered her, but after a few soothing whispers, her body eased.

Twilight knew she couldn’t take the filly back to Ponyville, not directly anyway. Ponies would panic when they saw a pony that looked liked the mare who’d banished Celestia to the sun and was willingly to plunge their world in Eternal Night.

So, she’d have to teleport her directly to the castle and hope none of her friends found out before she could think of what to do next.

Author's Note:

So, Michael has been found. Twilight REALLY didn't make a good first impression here, did she?

Well, let's see where this goes. How will Twilight's friends react to the Nightmare Moon lookalike and what's in store for Michael?