• Published 17th Feb 2016
  • 2,422 Views, 227 Comments

I'm Not A Tribalist - TheGreatEater



Princess Celestia sees a news article that brings about a choice that will change her life forever.

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History Pt.1 Rise and Fall

Author's Note:

Yes, Celestia's past is different than in the books. Which I honestly haven't read. As for when this fic takes place, it takes place shortly after the "Do Princesses Dream of Electric Sheep" episode. Next chapter History Pt.2 with early Equestria and Luna's fall.


This and previous chapters have an editor looking over them now-ish. I'll let y'all know when the editor has caught up to the published chapters ^_^.

Edit:

Merged Original Pt.1 with Pt.2. At the suggestion of commentators. Hopefully this is a better.

Discreetly teleporting isn’t an easy feat when one has power of magnitudes beyond mortal ken. Thankfully my room is one of the few places I can teleport to without raising a fuss. Charging up the wards that kept ponies out, and a flick of the locks, mundane and otherwise, I was alone. No ponies to judge me, no prying eyes, no need for masks other than the few I keep for myself. Just me and my thoughts, and father did I need them.

It was rare that I thought all the back to my childhood, nor did I come across thoughts that would necessitate remembering them, but it was sad. I couldn’t really remember our parents faces. I know my sister and I swear on our parents from time to time, yet their faces are fuzzy. They have been for the longest time.

I don’t know why I’m trying to wax melancholy. I guess it’s where things began for me though, but isn’t it all? The foundations of youth building up to the landscapes of our present … I remember father’s last words, “Excubat parum luna. Et est soror tua, non indiget. Sed qualecumque Marcum Principium alter a Regnorum nunquam. Quem profert, nihil quam tristitiam..” Watch over our little moon. She is your sister, and needs you. Also no matter what, never get a Cutie Mark for the Other Realms. It brings nothing but sadness.

I asked what he meant and he told me that the Rainbow Web, and Other Realms were much more delicate and dangerous than the physical realms. That there came times when those of us who hadn’t perished in the Nihil Cor, which he never told me much about, nor of our races homeland. Other than somewhere in the world, or slightly out of phase with it. But when the time came those of them were called to join the higher planes and become one with them. To ensure that the lesser planes would remain safe.

I didn’t want them to leave. Luna was still a little filly, and I was only a few centuries older. I tried using the excuse that I was a Flare to keep them from leaving, but he put a hoof on my cheek and told me that he would always be in our hearts. Mother nuzzled us one last time and asked me to promise them. I did … then they were no more … at least as I was aware of things.

I felt tears roll down my face as I feel their love and the sensation of their last acts of physical contact with me, but I can’t remember their faces. Or even if the faces I vaguely remember are them at all. I never really felt it till now, but it feels as if I lost something important that I didn’t know I lost till now.

I think about taking a break, I truly do, but I just don’t have it in me. It’s the blessing and curse of being an immortal introvert. Once your mind starts going it doesn’t stop. It never stops.

I had watched over Luna for a century before the founding of Equestria. At first we simply watched the ponies of the different races, but we rarely interacted. They were too different than us, and we always had an appendage that bred mistrust with one tribe or the others to one degree or another.

Luna got along with the Pegasi the most. Being extroverted, even as a young filly at the time, and highly competitive. She won their respect if for not else but her sure tenacity and the speed at which she learned pegasi magic. Something I was never able to teach her all that well.

For them a lot of their acts are instinctual, and worked by feel. Something Luna as an artist and well Luna was very good at. I think that’s alway why she became the more militant of us. But me, I felt more at ease with the unicorns … well not the race persay at first. But their libraries. I wonder if any still exist up in the Frozen Wastes.

Still I would sneak in and raid their libraries for knowledge. Spell books, books on history, maths, theories. I consumed it with vigor, always making sure I brought them back when I was finished and hopefully nopony the wiser.

That’s when I think I fell in love with magic. Before then, and even up to now I guess. I was a thinker and a tinkerer. I would build marvelous mindscapes and go over all that I learned. Seeing how things merged together, and play thought exercises with magic. Then after I got it down pat. I would work on making it real.

I honestly don’t think any of my original spell books survived all these millennia. I might have to go to our first home since our parents moved away to see if they are still there. I think Twilight might enjoy reading on the things I made in my youth.

But even with our contact with others beyond ourselves. I always looked after Luna one way or the other. It’s what got me into being the planner I am nowadays. I couldn’t afford not to. I made a promise.

I try shaking my head to toss away the tears rolling down my face in rivulets now. I don’t even remember why I’m crying. I’m not supposed to cry, not over the happiest days of Luna’s life. Days I worked hard to make sure she was happy. Deflecting the cruelty and remarks tossed at us, bringing a smile to her face. I still don’t know if she knew what I did for her back then, but it would be cruel to take away that smile of hers.

The tears come even stronger I stole that smile from her. I’m the reason she … she left. I promised to protect her and I failed. I thought if I healed her with the Elements she’d be alright. I’d get her back … but I didn’t want her to be broken.

I stood up and started pacing. Calming my nerves. I don’t even know why I was foolish enough to dredge up those memories. Yes I do. I need to show myself that I don’t put unicorns above the other races. Sure I fell in love with their knowledge, and I loved magic more than almost anything. That doesn’t mean anything … as for Luna. I … I need to be better. I still can’t believe that I’m still messing up after all this time. Tantabus … how can she create such a thing? Why can’t she trust in me?

Even as that question rises to the surface I know why. I failed her, and she can’t trust me to be her mother-sissy. Her big sister. Her protector. I probably wouldn’t trust me either if I was her, but I still have to try.

The pacing helps. If anypony tells you pacing doesn’t help you, they don’t know what they are talking about. Sometime moving while thinking helps a lot more than sitting around doing nothing. Sometimes the best way to calm the body is to get up and move it.

A small smile graces my lips as a random thought of Twilight dancing flitters through my mind. Such abandon, such joy, such cringe worthy antics. It’s one of the many things that makes her adorakable.

Where was I oh yes. Celestia the Chess Master. I can’t help but sigh at that. But yes, ever since our parents moved I couldn’t help but do everything I could to protect my little sister. So I planned, working on the worst case scenario, and moving up to the best. Using what I knew of others, and the situation at hoof. As well as lots of trial and error.

But I must’ve done something right since it worked all the way until the Windigoes came.

My sister and I followed the ponies to Equestria, when we saw the true Fire of Friendship. Not the romanticised tale written one thousand years and some change later … at least I think it was that long. Discord’s arrival made things crazy for however long he was in power. Days and nights didn’t make much sense then.

By now I calmed down enough now that the worst of the memories were over … for now. But Equestria when it first started. Looked as if it was going to be a repeat of the Frozen Wastes. So my sister and I made a plan that we would step in, and lead them. It had been a few generations from our first encounter with them till now.

We told the unicorn royal family that we were going to take control of the Celestial Bodies, as alicorns it was our duty to do so. But they refused, stating that even though we had horns on our heads, they didn’t acknowledge our power nor our rule over them. The pegasi joined in and told us in no uncertain terms that if we were to side with the unicorns they’d see us as worse than blood traitors. While the earth ponies simply sat back and watched wearily. Seeing us as another in a line of petty tyrants that would place them under hoof.

Seeing our original plan slip through our hooves. I called upon my power and spoke over the growing mob around us. I think that’s what originally started the traditional use of the Royal Voice with Luna and I. I said that unicorn law allowed for me to challenge to rule, and pegasi culture allowed for a trial by combat.

Thinking of it now I never knew what earth ponies had back then. They were highly xenophobic folks, and being close knit as they were didn’t trust outsiders enough for us to know their laws.

In the first instance of ponies working as one since the Fires of Friendship. The three tribes asked to convene before answering. In the end it took a week before they came back, with a quest. If we could complete the three quests, one for each race. They would acknowledge us as rulers.

I can’t help but smile thinking of that adventure. It was truly glorious, and I wish it never ended, but all good things come to pass eventually. And leave you forever.

That was a way to kill the mood brain. Thank you, it was just what I needed. Here let me lay down so you can drive more stakes through me. Who knows I may secretly be a day walking vampony and you can slay me properly? I think it would save the world on needing more sunscreen.

I waited for my brain to dredge up another barb. Yet once again snarking and sarcasm have saved the day. Twilight would be proud. I turn around so I could give a true headdesk to the marble floor. It may not be a desk in the modern sense, but back in the day, if it held paper and you could write on it, and could hide things in it. It counted as a desk. Which reminded me I needed to check my hidden slabs to ensure Luna didn’t sneak off with my … relaxation enhancers again. *Snerk* Relaxation enhancers indeed.

Where was I in my thoughts? I wondered to myself as I somehow ended up on my bed, my tiara escue and my six limbs out in different directions. Oh yes! I was thinking about the Pre-Discordian era. Those were fun times, it was shortly after our rule, when we got the celestial bodies, and started bringing peace to what became “our little ponies” that we received our Cutie Marks.

When deciding who would get what, I let Luna choose first. After all she was the youngest, and only a few centuries old. Barely a teenager, and my little sister. Why wouldn’t I want to see what she’d choose. She chose the night. When I asked her why, not because I wanted it necessarily, even though I’m not a morning pony, I was simply curious about her choice.

She spent what felt like ages going into detail about the artistic potential of the night sky. How stellar clouds, and star placement could weave a more beautiful sky than the rigid, and unfeeling, structured set up unicorns did. I admit to feeling a bit miffed at calling the mathematically structured, and “orderly assembly” (it wasn’t rigid) set up of stars to be rigid and unfeeling.

But my sister was always the artist between us. The raw emotions she let herself feel, and the passion at which she approached everything made her artwork truly beautiful. If she thought she could make something even more beautiful than what the unicorns were creating, then I knew it would be so. Even if I wasn’t completely in agreement in how she phrased her points.

… I can never forget the first night she painted. There is no painting, no experience, nothing that can compare to what I felt when I saw what Luna crafted. Although it took some time to tell Luna that the tears were ones of joy, not sorrow. Another reason a princess isn’t allowed to cry. But Luna was so happy when she learned I was crying tears of happiness that her little Cutie Mark appeared right on her adorable haunches. I was so happy for her, although back then there weren’t Cuteceneras, I kind of wished there were though, it would’ve been fun to throw her a party celebrating that achievement.

As for myself, even after making the day, and for many days afterwards I didn’t get mine. It was hard at first for us. What with having to magically correct our wards when unicorns tried to alter it, it wasn’t till I decided to alter the spell used to move the sun, and taught it to Luna that the celestial bodies were fully under our control. It didn’t hurt that by using them as a psionic as well as mana power source our incredible powers were given a well deserved boost as well.

A generation later, when the ponies got over their grudge with us becoming their defacto rulers, did they thank me for the consistant days did I get my Cutie Mark. Not for the sun itself, but with knowing that my sun and my work was making a positive difference in their lives. And things went pretty well for a while, me and my sister played just as much as we ruled. But they were happier times.

Then he came. At first there were reports of a mischievous spirit that caused minor annoyances to ponies, but if you threw rotten fruit or stones at it, it would go away. So we thought nothing of it, other than strange folk superstitions that ponies form from time to time. But it wasn’t long till that mischievous spirit became a serious threat. The Spirit of Chaos, Discord. I feel ashamed that I was unable to best him, my sister wasn’t able to either. I think in some part of his mind it was a rather funny game to him.

We would cast our strongest magics, summon the mightiest of natural forces. Even resorting to attacking like an earth pony. Yet, nothing. Worse than nothing, he would toy with us. Sometimes he would just ignore the damage, or spell effects, and lob pies, ponies, or even *shudders* bad puns at us.

Othertimes he would let us think we were finally winning, that we had some effect on him. Then he would restore himself with some random movement, a snap of a paw, a wiggle of the nose, even a salacious wink. Other times he would turn to ash, or break to pieces. Only for it to be a set up to a punchline.

At others, we found we were simply fighting a construct that looked like Discord, that would eventually blow up in our faces. Quite literally, while the real Discord watched from afar with a bag of popped corn.

Eventually during one of the times were we were looking for where he went off to next in our twisted game of tag. We came across the Tree of Harmony. It was if the tree sensed Discord’s harm of the universe, and our inability to fight and drew us to it.

I never told anypony about this, even if Luna knows the Elements are sentient, and have form, I doubt that she figured this out. But I suspect that the Elements manipulate Destiny to ensure some greater plan of theirs come to be. After all, how else would the tree pick ponies to gather its ‘fruit’ yet have our Cutie Marks upon it.

Even Twilight’s Cutie Mark was upon that tree now that I think about it, and it was her that was needed to be one of the six ponies to return what we borrowed. There are too many coincidences around them, and while one event might be an accident, two might be a coincidence, the hundreds of little coincidences that have shaped me and my sister’s fate can’t be a coincidence. Even that little box it created, I’m sure my compulsion to free Discord for reformation was from them. Otherwise the keys they chose to open that box would never have been found out.

After all who could have guessed that a flower, a spool of thread, a rubber chicken, a bit, and a badge would be keys. Not the Bearer’s, not even myself. It was Discord who figured it out and pointed it out. Bah! Thinking about the manipulations of the Elements is confusing, I should have Twilight research them. Hopefully get the voices and feelings of the Elements to manifest so we could talk. Face to face.

… I’m going on a tangent aren’t I? Yes, yes I am. But the rest of what happened is history. The Elements chose us, I received Generosity, Kindness, and Magic. My sister received Loyalty, Honesty, and Laughter. We defeated Discord, and the nation as a whole loved us.

But after all of that. After things settled down my sister and I gravitated to our positions. I dealt with the nobility mostly, since they needed my guidance, planning, and knowledge. My sister was the blade of our nation though. She fought the battles, and fought off monsters. While also guarding our subjects in their sleep. But the soldiers in those days were mostly thestrals and pegasi. Few earth ponies felt the need for battle when they were needed to grow enough food to survive from year to year on subsistence living, while the unicorns for the most part felt they were better off in government and supervisory positions. Those who weren’t usually working as a servant for some higher ranking unicorn. But like a slow stream that became a raging river. The more Luna fought for our safety, the more ponies avoided her. The more she kept to herself and focused on their well being, the more they ignored her. Old prejudices and superstitions taking over common sense and fealty towards one’s sovereign slowly crushing her spirits.

Where was I as my sister fell one might ask. I threw myself into my work to ensure our little ponies were happy. Trying to fix a world that even a thousand years later still had Discord’s little surprises popping up to cause havok. If I didn’t know any better I would assume that he had planned such events just to cause me headaches. Luna swears that her fall isn’t my fault. Even now, but what sister would let her little sister fall into the madness that was Nightmare Moon?

But she left for the moon, and for the first time in two and a half thousand years I was truly alone. I poured over the book of prophesies that Luna had talked me into creating when our castle was formed, and I saw the one that both shattered my heart and gave me hope. A prophecy that Nightmare Moon would return after a thousand years, and with that time frame, I knew I had to do everything I could to make the world Luna came back to a happy one. One that would appreciate the night she shaped.

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