• Published 7th May 2016
  • 10,175 Views, 192 Comments

Changing Lanes - AutoPony

When a human and his home land in Equestria, his love of speed quickly draws a few ponies to him, most notably Princess Luna. But her own desires and secrets soon begin to create..... complications in their friendship.

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Chapter 15

"Do you have any movies that aren't lame?" Rainbow Dash asks. As she stretches out next to you on the couch, a few audible pops erupt from her miniature form, as the credits rolling on the TV give off the little light there is in your dark living room.

"What are you talking about, Rainbow? The Shining is a classic," you protest. Rainbows only response is to stick her tongue out, blowing a raspberry to emphasize her disappointment.

Without warning, the TV set flickers, before powering off, as does the indicator lights on your DVD player. The two of you sit blindly on the couch, your eyes attempting to adjust to the lack of light.

"Did you do that?" Rainbow asks, a bit of anxiety creeping into her voice.

"No, but I know who did," you sigh. You give up on your eyes, closing them in order to focus your mind on what you cannot see. Sensing what you expected, you reach out into the darkness with your hand, grabbing a hold of something silky smooth and pulling with a light tug.

"Ah, my tail! Let go of my tail," comes a frantic voice from the darkness. The lamp next to you comes on, piercing through the darkness and revealing your living room once again.

As well as Luna, whose star-studded tail you currently have in your grasp. She does not seem pleased in the slightest, as you relax your grip and let her go.

"Luna, I understand this is your favorite time of the year, but could you tone it down just a bit?" you ask. Luna's gaze softens up, turning around to sit down on the floor in front of you.

Nightmare Night is quickly approaching, and with each passing day, Luna has become more and more excited. it is her time of the year to shine, and from what you've gathered, the time for her counterpart to be feared. Every night when she visits, Luna has tried to give you a scare, and her attempts have been foiled by your own senses in tune to her energy, a byproduct of your mental link with her.

"Wait, how did you know she was there?" Rainbow asks. It amazes you with as many times as you have explained the link you share, Dash is still absent-minded, asking the same question every time.

"I'm not going to explain it again, Dash," you tell her, as she smacks herself in the head with a hoof.

"Sorry, forgot about your mental thingy," Dash says, correcting herself.

Meanwhile, Luna continues to pout in front of you, as you scratch her ears and caress her mane.

"I'm not trying to be mean Luna, I know you're excited for your big day. But you haven't scared me the last three nights, because I can sense you," you tell her.

Her eyes light up as she giggles mischievously.

"It is good that your senses have become sharp because tomorrow is when the real fun begins," she says with a sinister cackle, leaning in for a kiss. You happily oblige her, even as Rainbow Dash gags in response.

"You two are embarrassing to be around when you're like this. Twilight's lucky she never seems to see this crap," Rainbow groans.

Ah, Twilight. You haven't seen her in about a week, but every encounter with her has been a little awkward. Perhaps she is unsure about how she really feels about you now after your stupid stunt in the castle. Even so, you've repeatedly asked her to spill what's on her mind, and every time she has rebuffed your request. simply stating that everything "was fine."

Keen on giving Rainbow Dash a hard time, you lean towards her, puckering your lips up as she freaks out, backing away. With a laugh, you sit back upright and ruffle her mane with your hand.

"Don't get me involved in this crap. What time is it, anyway?" she asks.

"About ten o'clock. You calling it a night already?"

Rainbow nods in response as she rises up from the couch, spreading her wings and hovering towards the door. "I have to get ready for tomorrow. My costume still isn't finished," she says, before bolting out the door with a quick burst of speed.

"Wow, everyone is excited for tomorrow night."

"You are not?" Luna asks, tilting her head as her eyes scan you with concern.

"I never said that, Luna," you say, patting her on the head. "I guess I've just grown out of the celebration a little bit. We had a night like this back in my world, but it was mainly catered to the children, not adult. But I always did enjoy the folklore that came with the holiday."


"Yeah. You know, ghosts, monsters, all that stuff," you reply. Luna's face lights up with a smile.

"Well, be wary tomorrow night. After all, the late-night hours are not called 'the witching hour' for nothing. Especially on Nightmare Night."

With a sinister cackle, Luna's form dissipates into a hazy blue mist, swirling around you before it races out of the living room.

"Carry on, oh Keeper of the Night," you say with a smile, shaking your head as you lean down and plug in your DVD player and TV again.

"Anonymous," calls a stern voice from the entrance to your living room. You turn your head to find Luna, who looks none too pleased with you. You are far from surprised to see her, nor the rather unhappy demeanor she shows.

"Oh, hi Luna," you say with a smile. Luna's expression does not change as she storms into the room, flicking the TV off with a touch of magic from her horn.

"I am curious to hear your excuse for why you feel the need to be anti-social tonight," she says, already short on patience.

"I'm not anti-social, I would just rather avoid the large crowds you say gather at this event every year. I filled in my quota for the year on being social when you made me go to the Gala," you say. Luna's ears droop, her face quickly shifting from annoyance to one of a more pleading nature.

"Could you at least show up for me? I will not even ask you to wear a costume, though everypony else in Ponyville will be wearing one," Luna says.

Her azure eyes silently beg you to say yes, and you find yourself unable to resist.

"Alright, just for you, Luna," you relent, causing Luna to instantly perk up and smile from ear to ear. "But where is your costume if everyone else has one tonight?"

Luna's grin instantly turns sinister at your question.

"In due time, Anonymous," Luna answers with a slight chuckle. "In time."

Without another word, Luna's horn erupts in a blue glow that envelops the two of you, the living room of your home giving way to the sights and sounds of Ponyville. You tense up a little as you find yourself at the back end of a crowd gathered near the center of Ponyville, where a stage has been set up.

The murmurs of the crowd die down as the mayor walks along the stage, headed toward a podium place upon the stage, equipped with a microphone. Just as she begins to speak, your attention is turned to a voice calling your name. As you turn toward the voice, a lavender blur hits you in the chest.

"Twilight, hey. It's been a while," you say, as Twilight squeezes you in an energetic embrace.

"I know, sorry," she says, letting you go and resting back on all four hooves. "I've been really busy with some projects Princess Celestia has given me."

"No need to fret, Twily. I'm just glad to see you," you reply, as your eyes finally have the chance to look at her.

Like everyone else this evening, Twilight is attired in a costume, with hers being a whole body cloak. Deep blue in color, it is adorned with various stars, both individual and linked together in various constellations. Atop her head, a tall pointed hat is colored and decorated the same way, with the addition of various small bells.

"So... are you a galactic wizard or something?" you ask, genuinely unsure of what or who she is dressed as. Shaking her head, Twilight giggles, the bells letting off a light jingle with her movements.

"No, Anon. I'm Starswirl the Bearded," she says posing for you in pride.

"And he was a wizard?"

Twilight rolls her eyes, smiling all the while.

"You don't listen much when I talk, do you?" she asks in jest.

"You talk so much, I tend to lose track of the topic at hand," you respond, earning a playful shove from Twilight.

The mundane drone of the mayor's voice ends, drawing your attention to the stage again as Luna makes her way towards the center.

"It looks like you got here just in time to see Luna," Twilight whispers, her hushed voice still unable to contain her excitement.

Before the mayor steps off the stage, she offers Luna the microphone. Luna politely declines, preferring to use her royal voice you've personally heard only once.

"Greetings, citizens. I see you are all in a quite festive mood this evening," Luna shouts, as the crowd erupts into a chorus of cheers. Even as she tries to keep a straight face, Luna is unable to contain a small smile at the enthusiasm Ponyville shows in her presence.

"It was on a night like this many years ago that what we now know as Nightmare Night came to be," Luna shouts, her voice deepening as she speaks. "Who better to begin the night's festivities than the pony that began this tradition. Me!"

As Luna finishes her short speech, her horn lights up with a bright glow. In an instant, a bright full moon rises up behind her on the horizon, its light bathing her body as she too begins to glow in an eerie blue haze, lifting Luna off her hooves by at least a few feet.

Luna's form begins to warp and shift, partially obscured by the ethereal mist surrounding her. As her entire body begins to grow, the outline of her horn grows longer, the energy surrounding her feeding the changes as it slowly dissipates. Her wings unfurl, the shape of them changing minutely as the deep blue plumage falls away onto the stage

While it quickly dawns on you this is part of the show, many ponies in the crowd gasp at the sight, some even breaking out into screams. A pang of fear tears through your own chest, your heart rate jumping up just a bit. Even so, a more foreign sensation courses through you, a feeling of calmness, perhaps even satisfaction as the magic surrounding Luna finally disappears. But she is Luna no longer, as a sinister cackle erupts from the tall, onyx alicorn.

Nightmare Moon.

"Tonight, my little ponies, the night belongs to us all," she shouts, as her wings keep a slow, steady beat to keep her aloft. The crowd erupts into a deafening cheer as she swoops down, skimming across the crowd before her feral, cat-like eyes hone in on you.

"Luna, that was amazing," Twilight exclaims as Luna descends next to you, giddy with excitement.

"Thank you, Twilight. I am so happy to see everypony else enjoyed my performance as well," she says to Twilight, before focusing her striking turquoise eyes upon you again.

You can only stare back, transfixed by her feral eyes, getting lost in them. Everything else disappears from your vision as you feel as if you are free-falling.


Shaking your head, you snap back to the present, Luna having reverted back to her normal form as she and Twilight stare at you, both looking very concerned.

"Sorry, just day-dreaming," you lie, unsure what the heck is going on with your mind today.

"For two whole minutes? While we were trying to talk to you the whole time?" Twilight asks, seeing through your fib.

"I'm really good at day-dreaming," you reply. While Twilight is frustrated with your passive attitude, Luna continues you eye you with suspicion and anxiety.

"You are sure you're alright? I can understand if you were a little frightened by my appearance," she says quietly. "Especially if one considers that you have been through the torture of Nightmare Moon herself once before."

"I'm good, I swear," you snap, getting flustered with all the questioning. Luna backs off, nodding her head before changing the subject to the night at hand.

"Well, what would you two like to do? There's apple-bobbing and other fun games, a spooky haunted house, and even a haunted corn maze," she exclaims, motioning to all the attractions.

"Corn maze sounds interesting, where is that at?" you ask. Luna becomes even more animated upon your choice.

"It's only a trot east of town. Come on, I'll race you two," she shouts, before turning and heading off in a full-out gallop. Twilight is right behind her, leaving a cloud of dust in their wake as you set off at a jogging pace.

"I only have two legs, wait up for me," you call out. Yet part of you is glad they are so far ahead because it at least gives you some time to dissect the last several minutes in your mind.

While you were quick to catch on to Luna's transformation as part of the show, you still don't understand why it felt so... right to you. Reflecting back on your personal encounter with Nightmare Moon, it was a nightmare in the truest sense of the term. So why did seeing her form again result in any other feeling than dread?

Your lack of awareness while you think catches up with you as your foot catches on a large rock in the dirt path. Before you can react, you lose your balance, sprawling face first on the trail.

"That was intelligent," you grumble as you pick yourself up off the ground. Hoofsteps rapidly close in as Twilight makes her way back to you.

"Are you alright?" she asks, as you rub your forehead. Pulling your hand away, you groan at the presence of blood on your fingers. It's not a lot, but you need to see what the hell you managed to do.

"Yeah, I'm okay," you say, pointing to your head. "Does it look bad?"

Twilight studies your face for a moment before her own face warps into a perplexed stare. "I don't see anything, Anonymous," she responds. She raises a hoof, directing your attention to a funhouse nearby with a collection of funky mirrors at the entrance.

You shuffle over to the display, focusing on a taller mirror that looks relatively normal. Peering into it, you scoff as the visage of Nightmare Moon looks back at you, following your every movement. Admittedly, it's an impressive feat, but it doesn't help your current situation.

"What's wrong? Unhappy with your own reflection?" You jump back as the image suddenly speaks up, no longer mirroring your movements. Nightmare's face grows smug, as you turn to look at Twilight. But she, as well as everyone else in the village, seems to have disappeared.

"Relax and listen to me. You have no idea how much effort I had to put in to create this dream," she says as you turn back to her voice, watching her tall, lithe form step out of the mirror.

"I'm dreaming?" you ask. At least this makes a bit more sense, though Nightmare Moon still shouldn't be here in your head.

"You managed to knock yourself out, genius. Maybe that's why I was able to reach you now, when I had such difficulty in your dreams during sleep," Nightmare muses, before shaking her head. "Enough of that, are you going to listen to me, or not?"

"Why should I?" you retort, folding your arms in front of yourself.

"Because you've got questions, and I've got answers," Nightmare replies, harboring a smug grin.

"So you're a Radioshack commercial now?"

"You know, if you just want to be a smartass, I'll gladly go back into my personal corner of your head and let you stew in your own insecurity. That works for me, too," she snarls.

"Whoa, back up. What do you mean your 'personal corner in my head?'" you shoot back. Nightmare Moon's eyes light up upon hearing your inquisition.

"Ah, that one got your attention," she croons before her expression grows much more serious. "You see, these odd sensations you've been getting during Luna's little show, those were like..... deja vu. Because I'm not with Luna anymore."

Outstretching a wing, Nightmare pulls you up next to her, directing your attention to the mirror once again. Slowly, her form begins to meld into you, before the only image in the mirror is your own. A flash of turquoise shines from within your reflection's eyes.

"We're bunk buddies now," Nightmare's voice echoes. "But I think you've spent enough time unconscious. We can discuss this later."


You rapidly sit upright, your head lightly throbbing as you take stock of your surroundings.

Both Luna and Twilight sit in front of you, their faces lined with anxiety, though relaxing a bit as they watch you scan your environment. A few other ponies have gathered around as well, checking to see if you are okay. Once again you're sitting back on the dirt path you managed to fall on, but your vision is at the forefront of your mind right now.

Luna said that she had Nightmare Moon under control upon reversing the spell she cocked up weeks ago. Either she genuinely believed she did, without knowing what happened, or she flat out lied to you.

You focus on Luna, who takes notice as her expression grows more anxious.

"We need to talk, Luna."