• Published 2nd Aug 2016
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A Mortal Dillema - Queen Sanguine Dreams



King Sombra returns. He is not happy about how it turned out.

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Making 'Friends' and Aquaintences

"Snf."

What is that smell?

"Snf, Snf."

I bolted upright in my bed. I knew that smell...

"Cocoa..."

A voice called from outside of my room. "Sombra, are you awake?"

"Yes!" I called back.

I flung the covers from myself with a free hoof, rolled out of bed and landed squarely on my hooves. Looking around, I found the bits of armoring that I had flung off before sleeping and began hurriedly donning them. My cape had decided to interrupt my efforts by blinding me and flipping over my head, but that was no distraction. I could put my armor on blindfolded! Or, in this case, Cape...blinded? Cloak-folded? Perhaps Blind-cloaked would be a better-- I am getting distracted; there is cocoa to be had!

Eventually I had freed myself of my cape clinging to my face and properly attained my attire. I then spun in place to face the door and moved with speed to open it, swinging the door wide to find...

"I remember you... somewhat. What do you want?" I asked of the pinkish coated mare I had seen in the castle earlier.

"Oh! Well, Twilight wanted me to come and find you for breakfast." She replied with surprise and a bit of nervousness.

"Was she too busy playing cook to find me herself?"

"Actually, Spike does most of the cooking around here. Twilight forgets to eat a lot."

"Somehow, this doesn't surprise me. Spike is an excellent chef."

Her eyebrow raised in surprise at me.

"What, I am incapable of commenting on a dragon's cuisine?" I challenged.

"No-no! It's not that, I just didn't expect something like that to come from... you, is all." She practically blurted, though her attempt to save face was marred by the slight jab at me in the end.

"Well, you have found me. Lead on, servant mare." I motioned to whichever direction the smell of cocoa was, yet something I had said upset the mare.

"My name is Starlight Glimmer, and I'm not a servant mare." She grumped.

"Let us see," I began, holding up a hoof as if I could count on it. I had seen minotaur do something similar, though they had fingers. The gesture itself just seemed to amplify the annoyance of whomever was on the receiving end anyway, regardless of extremities. "You follow Twilight Sparkle around her castle, in which you supposedly live. You probably clean messes around the castle to 'assist', since you most likely live here for free. You don't have gainful employment anywhere as if you're in the same position as me, you are untrustworthy at best. I will admit, you may be slightly more trusted than myself if you don't have a Null-Ring on, but you're as much a prisoner here as I am. So tell me, Starlight, at what point are you not a servant mare?"

"Twilight and I are friends! I'm not her servant!" she shouted back at me, my tactics of annoyance working far better than I had hoped.

"Friends, certainly. I'm sure you tell yourself that every night before you go to sleep." I scoffed. "You should know that Twilight considers me a friend as well. She's the Princess of Friendship. It is her mission in life to befriend everypony."

This upset Starlight even further, as she stormed off in a rage having nothing to actually counter my argument aside from insults and promises of retribution.

"Oh well." I shrugged. "Cocoa."



I later found my own path to the kitchen, Twilight and Starlight (Whom I realized have very similar names) chatting in the corner. Sparkle was attempting to soothe Starlight's worries and the both shot looks at me. Twilight gave a look of disappointment, Starlight gave one of hatred.

"I smell cocoa." I announced, looking around. "Where is the cocoa?"

Twilight whispered a few words to Starlight before walking over to me. "King Sombra, we need to talk." She said sternly.

Well, aside from bolts of magic flinging me into the wall I won't have much to worry about. "Yes?" I asked neutrally. "About what?"

"The way you treated Starlight!" She hissed. "What did she ever do to you?"

I pondered for a moment, my hoof rubbing my chin. "Well, she avoided me the first time she saw me. That was a little annoying. You sent her in your own place like a servant which irked me as well. Typically I am the one that sends for servants. She also knocked on my door."

Twilight seemed dumbfounded. "Seriously!?"

"What, does she knock on your door regularly? If so, you should have her hooves flogged for it. It can't do to have a servant constantly bothering their master unbidden, Twilight. As an Alicorn you should know that."

"She isn't a servant!" Twilight loudly protested, the volume of which caused me to recoil a bit. "She's my friend! I asked her to find you as a favor for me!"

She was getting very heated in her anger, her face actually turning red with small... flames? Are those FLAMES!?

I held up a hoof in worry that she was about to erupt into an avatar of fury right in front of my eyes. "All right, All right! I may have made an error in judgement!"

"May have!?" She repeated incredulously. "No cocoa for you!" She shouted, lifting me in a field of magic and floating me outside of the kitchen and slamming the doors behind me, dumping me on my face onto the floor.

"Well." I said to myself, my muzzle scrunched into the crystal. "That could have gone worse, certainly."



I had decided that getting outside of the castle was the most prudent decision, given the flaring tempers of both a unicorn without a null-ring and an Alicorn that was friends with said unicorn, both of whom were very upset with me. I had wandered around the castle until I found myself in the main entrance hall after around an hour of getting lost.

"Maybe she doesn't even need defenses. Any attacking force is going to starve to death before they even find the kitchen, let alone the main hall." I grumbled to myself. I hadn't eaten as punishment for my behavior, leaving me feeling very much like a colt again.

Suddenly, three knocks sounded on the front door of the castle. The door which stubbornly refused to be a gate, or a drawbridge, or something equally defensive and justifiable on a castle. Looking around, I found nopony to answer the door but myself. I opened the door after some difficulty in maneuvering the handle with my hoof to find three fillies staring back at me.

"Yes?" I asked of them.

"Uh, is Twilight home?" A yellowish mud filly with reddish pink mane asked.

"She isn't in the mood for visitors." I replied cryptically.

"Do you know when she'll be able to see us?" An orange feather duster with a purple mane inquired.

"Not the faintest."

"Hey, that's a really neat ring on your horn, mister!" The white unicorn filly with light pink and purple mane complimented.

"Oh, do you like it?" Well, Sanguine did tell me to make friends. If one of these fillies was a Unicorn, then it would be simple to befriend them.

"It's really fancy!" Muddy agreed.

"Where'd you get it?" Featherduster asked.

"It was a... gift, from Twilight."

"Can we look at it?" The unicorn asked hopefully.

Oh, this is perfect.

"You can have it, if you want. I have several of them that look identical to Twilight's, so she won't even notice. If she asks you about this one, just tell her that I gave you one of my spares." I replied nonchalantly. Internally however, I was madly cackling with glee. If this actually worked... Ooh, the possibilities!

"Are ya sure? It was a gift after all..." Muddy questioned uncertainly.

"What are your names, if you don't mind my asking?"

"Well I'm Applebloom," The muddy pointed to herself, "This here is Scootaloo, and she's Sweetie Belle!"

"Hi!"

"Hello!" They chimed in cheerfully.

"Pleased to meet you. I am Sombra." I replied smoothly, pointing to myself.

"Wait, you mean you're the big smoke monster that was chasin' everypony in the Crystal Empire?" Applebloom asked.

"No, he can't be! Twilight said that King Sombra got shattered!" Scootaloo countered.

"Maybe they just have really similar names-- Like a Crystal Pony custom or something?" Sweetie reasoned.

Please oh please, do all the work for me. Please convince yourselves I'm harmless. Go on!

"But there isn't anypony we know of that has the same name as anypony else, is there?" Scootaloo countered again.

"Well, alotta my cousins all have the same soundin' name. Sorta." Applebloom said.

"Mister Sombra, do you have a big family?" Sweetie asked me.

"Yes! A very large family in the Crystal Empire. It's sort of a tradition, as you guessed, to name ourselves after famous historical figures." I put on a grumpy expression for show. "Unfortunately for me, I was named after a villain in our history. Imagine my surprise when the real Sombra appeared. Terrifying!"

"At least everything worked out in the end!" Scootaloo brightly provided.

"That is very true," I replied. Time to get back to the issue at hoof. "Would you still be interested in this ring of mine?" I asked.

"Yeah! I think Rarity's been lookin' for something just like it for one o' her dresses!" Applebloom chirped excitedly.

"That sounds splendid!" I replied sweetly. I remembered to refrain from smiling, given my sharp teeth would probably startle them. "All you have to do, is take it from my horn."

"Uh." Applebloom blurted.

"What?" Scootaloo added with a look of pure confusion.

"How?" Sweetie asked, interested.

"With your magic, Sweetie Belle. Think of it as a challenge!"

"I'm not that good with my magic, though." Sweetie replied uncertainly.

Just my luck! The one unicorn in Equestria that isn't good with magic! "You could always give it a try anyway! Think of it as an accomplishment if you can remove it, and keeping it as a reward for your ability."

"O-okay..." Sweetie said, her horn lighting up with a light greenish glow and locking onto the Null-ring.

The key to successfully removing a null ring is for the captive to remain perfectly calm and still. Any magical interference will cause the ring to lock on and be immovable while still in the grip of magic. With this in mind, I completely relaxed my mind and body, allowing Sweetie Belle the lack of resistance needed to remove the ring.

Come on.... You've got one task ahead of you. Make it perfect! I willed internally. I could feel her magic tugging at the ring, though she was straining already.

"Come on Sweetie Belle! You've got this!" Scootaloo cheered.

"Show that ring who's boss!' Applebloom added.

"Rrrrrr!" Sweetie strained, the ring coming off bit by bit from my horn. I lowered my head to allow the ring to slide off after a certain point, if this filly would ever reach that moment in time. Hopefully.

...


Any day now.

...

"I think I've got it!" Sweetie cheered, and indeed I felt a final tug from the ring as it popped free of my horn!

"Yes!" I shouted in triumph, finally free of the blasted ring!

I could feel my power rushing back into my body, my eyes venting out dark purple miasma like they should.

"Uh, Sweetie Belle?" I heard Applebloom nervously ask. "What did you do?"

"It wasn't me!" Sweetie cried. "I don't know what's going on!"

I opened my eyes as even more power flooded into me. This is marvelous! I couldn't help myself but grin maliciously.

"Do ya think we should get Twilight? Maybe somethin' went wrong?!" Applebloom yelled, a growing maelstrom of dark energy causing the three to back away from me.

"He's blocking the doorway!" Scootaloo pointed out.

I took a deep breath, feeling the shadows enter my lungs like an old friend. "Yeesss! Hahahah!" I laughed aloud gleefully. I was feeling the rush of power, the elation of finally being free and the overwhelming burden of being mortal slipping away from me with each passing moment.

"King Sombra!" I heard a voice yell from behind me.

"Huh?"

I turned around to see Twilight and Starlight looking very angrily at me.

"You know what this means?" Starlight asked, grinning at Twilight for some reason.

"Teleportation time!" Twilight cheered, causing my blood to freeze.

"No, wait! I'll put the ring back on, I swear!" I pleaded desperately.

Both of their horns charged.

"No, stop!" I held a hoof up as if it would do anything, shadows swirling around my form.

"You asked for this!" Starlight cackled.


*POOF!*

"Aaaauuu--"

*POOF*

"-uuuuuugg"

*POOF

"Huurr---"

*POOF*

"--ruuuuggghh"

*POOF*

"-uuughh"

*POOF*

"--uurrrr"

*POOF*

"Bluurrrgh!" I finally vomited on the floor. My eyes were blurry and I had no idea where I was, but everything about what had just happened had made my body feel like it had been sucked into a colossal whirlpool of sickness. I fell over onto the ground, thankfully free of my own vomit, and began to shake.

"Are you done?" Starlight asked with dark sarcasm. "We could always ask Room Service to clean up after you, if you want to go again."

"N-nuh-"

*POOF*

"--uuuughhh!"

I was in another room now, which one I didn't really have a clue. I was too busy dry heaving and feeling more miserable than I had as a mortal.

"You going to be okay with Sombra?" Twilight asked.

"Yeah, We're going to be good friends when I'm done." She replied sadistically.

I flailed a hoof weakly in the direction of Twilight's voice. "Help!"

"This one is all your fault, Sombra. Maybe next time you won't manipulate ponies and treat others badly!" she scolded.

"You're one...to...talk!" I shot back, holding my stomach from its attempts to vomit again.

I felt a hoof press onto my chest. I saw the blurry image of Starlight. "No, this was all my idea." She then grinned evilly.

At that moment, my body had enough, and I blacked out.




I later awoke in my own room, though curiously... the ring was missing? I sat up quickly, and immediately regretted it. My body tried to dry heave again, but only wisps of shadow came from my mouth this time.

No, it can't be. Did they really forget to put the ring back on?

I felt my horn with a hoof, finding it still armored, and confirmed the lack of null-ring.

This is very strange...

I tried to get out of bed, but instead morphed into a shadow and simply reappeared at the edge of it.

"Haha, yes!" I rejoiced. My body was getting used to being immortal and immaterial again! I hadn't even thought of transforming and already it was like muscle memory. For however long I had been asleep, I was gaining more and more of my power back. Suddenly, I remembered that the room had a mirror. I willed myself to it, and found my reflection staring back at me.

Small wisps of black shadow mixed with the purple venting from my eyes, just my head appearing from the cloud of shadows. Glowing green where the whites of my eyes should be with red iris' staring back at me. My horn slightly red at the tip and curved once more into a sharp point. I smiled at my reflection, seeing the sharp teeth had returned in their full form as well.

Perfect!

I willed myself into corporeal form, regaining my pony body as well as my enchanted armoring and snuggle cape of glorious fuzzyness. Taking a deep breath, the exhale vented a bit of shadow like smoke.

"I'll never get tired of that." I mused.

*Knock knock knock*

"You may enter!" I called reflexively. I probably should have prepared myself better, in case they were going to hurl me around with teleportation magic again but it was too late for that.

The door creaked open, finding Twilight and Starlight pushing the doors open and peering cautiously into the room before spotting me. A look of determination crossed their faces as they marched imperiously into my room.

"Oh, its you two. I don't know why I expected anypony e--"

There was somepony else. At least two some-ponies. Very tall, very regal... very large.

Two Alicorn some-ponies.

"--eh...heh." I blurted, my train of thought completely destroyed as 'Princesses' Celestia and Luna followed Twilight and Starlight into the room to confront me directly. A look of stern warning should I try anything was all I needed for my body to root itself to the floor. These two -even without the elements of harmony- were capable of moving the Sun and Moon! I barely had my power restored for what at most would be a few hours, and even then they would have the advantage of a thousand years to learn spells I could only dream of since being banished by the both of them.

"King Sombra..." Celestia said neutrally.

"Eh..." I was freezing up. The last time I had seen these two, they obliterated me instantly with rainbows. I didn't even have any time to set up new phylacteries, so the thought of permanent death was causing me to freak out.

"The Shadow." Luna finished.

"Hello?" I nervously greeted. I also backed away from the array of magical death in front of me, uncertain if their magic would work on my shadowy form yet not wanting to risk it in the first place.

"Princess Twilight has told me a lot about you, King Sombra." Celestia continued. "In the short time that the two of you have known each other, that is."

"This most recent development troubles us, however." Luna said. "You have regained enough power that the Null Ring will no longer contain you."

I don't like where this is going. If I couldn't be contained and I was a threat to their kingdom, they would obliterate me just like last time without a second thought. Well, the first time it had simply been because of my mind controlling of other ponies. Now, they had all of Equestria to look after as well as my Crystal Empire under control of Cadance. I was a threat by simply existing now, whereas before I was a novelty with that Null-ring on.

"This leaves Equestria in danger." Celestia said firmly. "Something I cannot allow."

"W-wait!" I blurted desperately. "I can be nice! I swear!"

"We have seen your attempts at being 'nice', King Sombra." Luna snapped. "Manipulating innocent fillies to free yourself is not 'kindness'."

"I-uh, I can change?" I offered with continued desperation at not wanting to be obliterated.

"Doesn't seem so calm and collected now, does he?" Starlight snickered quietly to Twilight.

Celestia and Luna shot a glare of suspicion at me before looking to Twilight. After a while, and a throat clearing cough to gain Twilight's attention, she realized she was being put on the spot.

"Oh!" She suddenly blurted in realization. "Well, I'm always willing to give a pony a second chance... or a third... or maybe a fourth, in your case."

"Truly? After all Sombra has done you offer him another chance for redemption?" Luna asked in surprise. "We would not be so lenient."

"If somepony like Discord can change, then I think we should give Sombra a fair chance too." Twilight reasoned.

"If I remember correctly, giving Sombra a chance is what resulted in this confrontation." Celestia pointed out calmly.

"Well... I think I did it wrong." Twilight admitted with a tone of shame.

"What do you mean?" Celestia asked with raised brow to Twilight.

"When we offered to be friends with Discord, we accepted him as he was. With Sombra, I took away everything that meant anything to him, which for him means his powers."

That much was true. I felt worse than naked without my power.

"He was probably lashing out at everypony because of how I was treating him... and I want to apologize." Twilight said to me, walking closer and causing Celestia, Luna and Starlight to stiffen in worry at her approach.

"You're..." I blinked. What is even happening right now? "You're apologizing?" I asked incredulously.

"I shouldn't have been treating you like a prisoner. I'm the Princess of Friendship, not the Princess of Prisoners." She smiled lamely at her own joke.

Snarky reply, or thankful reply? I looked at the death glares from the other Alicorns in the room and the dark grin from Starlight. Thankful reply it is!

"I... um... Thank you?" I replied uncomfortably, the words feeling like disease on my tongue.

Then, she hugged me. Very tightly.

"So... disaster averted?" Starlight asked everypony in the room.

"So it would seem." Celestia replied.

"Do not hesitate to call on us again, Princess Twilight." Luna bowed officially.

"I'll be sure to let you know about everything that happens!" Twilight replied dutifully.

"We ask that you leave out his favorite dishes, Twilight." Luna grumbled a bit. "His daily intake of Hot Cocoa is something we do not need to know."

Twilight nodded abashedly. "I'll be sure to remember that!"

I flinched as the Alicorn Sister's horns charged, having flashbacks already to the rapid teleportation I had just undergone. Thankfully, the two vanished in a loud poof of magic from the room. Breathing a shadowy sigh of relief, I looked to Twilight and Starlight.

They looked back at me, and nopony said anything for quite some time.

Thankfully to break the tension, Spike wandered in with a plate of Sandwiches. "So, did we win?" He asked Twilight before spotting me. "Oh."

"Hello, Spike." I said evenly, still looking at Twilight and Starlight as if they would attack me, were I to make any sudden moves. "How was your... day?"

"Good! I'm kinda surprised you're still here though." He replied honestly.

Starlight snickered at Spike's blunt answer.

"Are those sandwiches for everypony?" I asked cautiously to Spike.

"Yeah! Where did Princess Celestia and Princess Luna go?" He asked Twilight.

"They went back to Canterlot, Spike."

"Oh. Well, I made them sandwiches. If they're not here to eat them, then I guess that means more for everypony!" He replied cheerfully, balancing the plate on one claw while taking a sandwich from it to neatly bite into. "Ey, is'shish preddy guhd." He said with a mouthful of sandwich, wandering away from the room.

Then I remembered. I was immortal now, comprised of dark magic, shadow and... more magic. Could I even eat anymore?

"Something wrong?" Twilight wondered aloud, placing a hoof on my armor and startling me.

"I was..." I looked to Twilight with a hint of sadness. "Can I still drink cocoa?"

Author's Note:

Another Sombra chapter! Hurray!

It only took him seven entire chapters to gain his power back, but what will this mean for Ponyville?

Find out next time, on SOMBRA BALL Z!

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