• Published 7th Apr 2016
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Transparent Living - PinoyPony

Disowned by her parents, Diamond Tiara is hastily sent to Mane-hattan to meet Coco Pommel. Even if she has come to turn a new leaf in her growth, there is still a lot for her to learn. New town, new life.

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Chapter 5: In Dreams

Many ponies dreamed of glories such as riches, fame, and power. Some were close to achieving it, while others were lightyears away. Some would do anything to get it, and some lost hope of getting it. However, some ponies dreamed very differently.

All alike, the silent majority of dreams had to do with internal thoughts and feelings about reality itself. Luna had seen it all: from mild fears dwelling with earning cutie marks to concentrated nightmares dwelling on Equestria-wide catastrophe. However, just as important as those dreams were the dreams concerning simple fears.

It is known when a pony is dreaming about where to get their next meal, or where to find a set of warm clothes- Something has gone terribly wrong. Simple fears included a variety of the simple needs never met. On the edge of this plain- was family issues. These were the dreams she had to pay close attention to, for most simple fears start when the family falls apart.

Unfortunately, the fabric of the dream forbid her entrance until the dream escalated to a full-scale nightmare. It was problematic, but intervening at the wrong times, can alter a pony’s personality for the worse. It would do more damage than good.

Luna wished she could help ponies with simple fears.

Sometimes, all you can do is watch.

Diamond Tiara awoke amidst a beautiful plain, filled with lush grass. She glanced around, trying to make sense of her surroundings. She had no idea how she got here, or where to go.

She didn’t care.

It was a strange place, but familiar at the same time. She remembered there was a solitary, gentle hill in this place. On top of the hill was a tree, beautiful and blooming with flowers, ready to bear fruit.

She remembered playing in these flower-dotted hills when she was a foal. She enjoyed rolling around down the hill on her side. She would also chase her mother and father in a game of tag or watch the clouds, thinking they were ice cream cones or fuzzy bunny rabbits.

The thoughts in her mind flew away like doves as she heard the faint sound of flute music. The music’s gentle rise and fall, help her recognize the tune as “Winter Wrap up”.

She trotted up the hill, following the music as it floated in the air. She reached the top, glancing at a familiar pony sitting at the foot of the tree.

A stallion, holding his flute in his magic, glanced over to Diamond while carrying the tune. His greasy mane was no more, replaced by soft and silky one. His tan coat was nicely groomed, like he came back from Aloe and Lotus’ Spa.

He finished the musical phrase and set the instrument down at the foot of the tree.

“Good Afternoon, my little filly,” he greeted.

Diamond Tiara took a seat right next to him. “Hi dad.” She gave him a hug. He responded with wrapping his right wing around her.

“How is my beautiful crown jewel doing?” he asked.

“Nothing much,” she answered. “What about you?”

He looked out further, beyond the endless plains of rolling hills “Just enjoying the day.” He looked around. “We live in such a beautiful world,” his gaze stretched onward through the endless plains. “It almost feels like heaven… but it is missing something” His horn glowed “At first, I didn’t know what was missing- now I know,”

“What is it missing dad?” Diamond asked, leaning closer to him.

He looked to his daughter “It was so simple… but I was so blind” The glowing of his horn faded “It wouldn’t be heaven without you…”

His horn flashed back to life “Look at yourself, you’ve changed.”

A mirror materialized out of thin air, but Diamond quickly closed her eyes, refusing to look at her own reflection.

Her father, in a soothing voice, guided her toward the mirror “Why do you turn away from your own reflection?” His gentle tone continued to soothe her “Please, I beg of you, gaze upon my finest masterpiece.”

When Diamond Tiara finally opened her eyes, she stared at the reflection in the mirror. Staring back at her was a filly. Oddly enough, the filly was smiling, her bright eyes possessed a certain light that she couldn’t describe.

The filly playfully flapped her wings. Diamond Felt a mysterious connection to this filly, like she was no longer earth, but all-powerful like the Alicorn in the Mirror. He levitated a familiar item toward her head and carefully placed it. “Since I am the King, you are Princess Diamond Tiara, the crown jewel of this world.”

Diamond Tiara backed away. “Dad, I’m sorry to disappoint you, but I’m not that filly in the mirror. I’m fine without my horn and wings.”

He waved his hoof across the mirror, revealing another filly, glowing like the Alicorn before her, only this time, possessing no wings nor unicorn horn. He patted the filly on the back “Alicorn or not, you are still my precious daughter, and I love you in any form.”

As Diamond felt the Alicorn horn and wings being changed. She knew her identity, but she felt different. Diamond asked “Dad, what is my name?”

“Diamond Dazzle Tiara.” He repeated “Your mother picked it out.”

His horn glowed, and he pointed out into the distance “Look there, our home.”

Diamond looked in the distance. Her eyes lifted as she saw the city of her birth.

Ponyville, a small, yet profound town bustling with ponies that were good at what they were at.

She leaned in closer to her father “You are very kind, but the greatest gift you can give me is time with you.”

“You are just like your mother, pure in heart,” he said “Let’s enjoy our time under the sun in our new home”

She snuggled in the curve of his neck. “I love you dad,”

He kissed her forehead “I love you too, Diamond”

As both of them held in embrace of each other’s hooves, Diamond noticed that her father’s flank was blank. If he was an Alicorn, then why he didn’t have a special talent? She was acquainted with the bag with a dollar sign on it, but why then was it missing?

She gingerly asked “Why don’t you have your cutie mark?”

He flashed a look of concern “In this world, there is no cutie marks. We do still have talents, but we aren’t limited to just one.” He waved towards her flank “In this world, you are free to be anything you want to be…”

She looked to her flank, relieved that there wasn’t one there. She hated that picture, it kept her from trying new things. After all, that crown meant nothing. She was no longer trapped.

“Cutie marks… unfortunately, once a pony has one, they are banished from this plain of existence, forever. The cease to be.” Rich explained. “One third of Ponyville is gone for that reason, they have no idea what harm it could do a pony.”

His horn glowed, and a basket appeared in front of them. Diamond opened the basket to find a bunch of baked goods. “For you, my sweet daughter.”

She took out a simple sugar cookie. Nothing was special about the cookie, just a plain, old sugar cookie. But when she took a bite, it tasted better than she expected, like honey more than sugar.

“Thanks, daddy,” she leaned toward him, and wrapped her hooves around him once more. She wanted to stay that way forever, in her father’s arms.

“Your welcome, honey,” he patted her on the back.

The both let go, as the wind rushed past them. Diamond noticed a red and white picnic blanket had appeared under them, with the shade of the tree outlining a safe zone from the sunlight.

“Want to go meet up with the others?” He asked, looking towards Ponyville.

“Maybe Later…” Her smile faded “I mean, we are in no hurry correct?”

Her father shot another concerned look “Are you alright, Diamond?”

“Yeah…” Diamond laid on her back and looked at the light filtering through the tree’s leaves.

He shrugged, going back to munching the blue enveloped cookie.

He didn’t give it any second thought… Go figure.

Diamond fell back on the blanket, staring up through the sunlight filtering through the tree’s leaves. She realized why she was present here, in this beautiful place. She had visited it a thousand times.

It was all fake.

This place was only a manifestation of her unconscious mind. Surely it had the same ambience from her previous visits, only the tangible details were rearranged.

She had read it a thousand times- she had wrote it a thousand times.

…Once upon a time, there was a filly named Diamond Tiara, she loved to spend time with her dad. One day, like any other day, it was Diamond’s birthday. Her father promised to go onto a picnic with her, just the two of them.

Diamond wrote one ending, “…And they enjoyed the picnic, in each other’s arms and lived happily ever after…

…while Reality wrote the other- the true ending to the story.

Her memory bled into dream. She opened her eyes to realize the diversions of her mind. She scanned around, tears welling up in her eyes as she floated through the familiar landscape.

A house.

She entered cautiously, floating into the gargantuan hollow that she used to call home. By the light of a wax candle, she followed a familiar figure down the hall. His old hooves trembled under the own weight of his body. On his back, he carried a small plate with a tiny slice of cake, presumably no, absolutely coming from Sugarcube corner, alit like a beacon in the darkness.

The floorboards creaked and moaned as the Stallion trotted gently across the hallway, cursing at his arthritic hooves. Alone, he mumbled “I hope you know what you are doing, Mr. Rich”

At last he burst into the kitchen, setting down the yellow light next to windowsill. “Yet another birthday, another chance to renew your relationship with your daughter,” He opened the window, letting the cool spring air in, damp and earthy from an April shower.

The old stallion watched the flame with his tired eyes, watched it dance in the wind, until the wick was blown out, flooding the room in darkness. In monotone, he sung “Make-a-wish, it’s your birthday… Make-a-wish, it’s your birthday…”

He plucked the candle out of the cake. He shook his head at the plate, saying “It’s a shame, Pinkie Pie makes the best cakes that make any filly and colt smile.” He rolled out a bin from the cabinet under the sink and tossed the wedge into the liner. “Pinkie’s rare recipe… you only see these in birthdays where the parents can’t make it.” The Stallion rolled the bin back into the cabinet “Shame that Pinkie’s magic doesn’t work on Mistress Tiara anymore…”

He shuffled toward the foyer, looking at the massive painting on the wall, depicting another stallion, known as the master of the household. “I followed your very orders sir,” He bowed “Permission to speak freely sir?”

The painting narrowed its eyes at the old stallion before him.

“It’s your daughter sir, you see, she is terribly ill,” he spoke “I must caution you about your priorities- I know you are busy trying to provide for her, but what she needs is some quality time with her father… not more toys.”

The stallion took a deep breath as a flash of thunder illuminated the estate for a split second. “I know that you look at numbers all day long, making sure your finance is in tip-top shape, but I must warn you, don’t treat Mistress Tiara like a number in your logbook, she is a special filly that needs your love.”

Thunder crackled again, making the servant back away from his master “I understand sir,” he turned away from the painting, trotting up the spiral staircase “If you’ll excuse me, I’ll attend to Mistress Tiara.”

He opened the door, carefully stepping into a filly’s bedroom. The thunder crackled again, noting that he had to shut the paper-thin curtains. As he muffled the scattered light, he picked up couple toys scattered throughout the room, putting them back into the bin.

He hesitated to pick up an Alicorn plush. Gently, he scooped it up and set it right next to the filly curled up in her covers. He shook his head again, checking the damp covers for any sign of life.

A heartbeat. A breath.

He smiled softly, “I always knew you were an overcomer.” He set the toys back into the chest, then checked the drawers.

Finding nothing but a small crown tucked away on the nightstand, he trotted away. The stallion slipped through, keeping the door a-pinch. As he shut the door, he called out, praying “May Celestia have her watchful eye over you.”

However, unbeknownst of what the butler suspected, Diamond knew that the filly under the covers wasn’t asleep. She was surely awake. Those blue eyes dared to peek through the covers into the vast space of the room. Her gaze shifted downward, looking at the cold floor.

“If only…”

The blue eyes faded as the filly fell through the surface of the world, drowning in her own sorrow. Black water filled around her, as she struggled for the air pockets in the dark room. It became hard to breathe as the thick darkness strangled her.

Her soul, filled with deep despair… accepted fate, and took one final breath.

…The iron grip loosened, and she dashed towards the light at the end of the tunnel, and resurged back to reality, safe in her new home.

Dazzle awoke to a semi-messy bedroom. The floor greeted her, littered with fabrics. Never before in her life had she felt so alive and so happy. She smiled, the love and warmth of the apartment enveloping her- energizing her.

…Or that could be the smell of cinnamon and apples in the morning.

Dazzle stretched, popping her spine, “Better get up…”

Author's Note:

I know, I know. It's a day early on schedule, but what did I say? NO PROMISES!

This is, by far, one of my favorite chapters (Next to the very first chapter, of course). The reason being, is how the chapter is free to explore, ink-in, and make assumptions without tearing apart the arc of the story. Just like it's equal (chapter one), It lets the reader know that something is afoot, something is not quite right.

To let you know about the progress of the story, Chapter 6 is going to be a tough cookie since I hate dislike making filler chapters. Unfortunately, it is necessary to give the story context. Probably the next update will be late. NO PROMISES!

Alright, I think I nuked you guys enough... Pinoypony out!

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