• Published 29th Aug 2016
  • 10,217 Views, 119 Comments

Mother Moon, Father Shadow - MatCor1337

Twilight gets the wake-up call of a lifetime as she discovers that her life has been a lie when she finds out who her real parents are.

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Visions Of The Past?

Twilight Sparkle was feeling somewhat conflicted. She and her new friends had not only saved Equestria from a great threat, they also reunited Princess Celestia with her little sister. But despite all that, she couldn’t shake off the guilty feeling in the back of her head for what they did to Nightmare Moon. Did she really mean what she said about eventually giving back the sun, or was she lying to make Twilight drop her guard? No, the look in her eyes was sincere.

All day the young scholar was looking for books on Discord, King Sombra and the Crystal Empire only to find nothing. There wasn’t a single book that so much as even mentions either of them. Sighing in defeat, she trudged up the stairs to her new bedroom and made her way to the bed.

Spike was already fast asleep in his basket at the foot of the bed, snoring softly. She used her magic to lift the covers and climbed in, then lowered the covers to get herself set. Once comfortable, Twilight closed her eyes and drifted off to sleep.

A grand city of glistening crystals and green fields stood tall and proud, stretching for miles in all directions. The ponies, Changelings and other races that traversed the streets were so happy their smiles shone just like the crystals that made up their home. At the base of the Crystal Palace, the largest building in the city, was an open lobby that showed the greatest gem in the Empire, held suspended in the air between a stalagmite and stalactite: the Crystal Heart.

Four figures stood in front of the Heart; the more detailed features of three of them were blurry but they resembled a black-coated mare, a dark-grey stallion - both much taller than the average pony - and a light-pink colored mare.

“Wow.” A small, light-purple filly breathed as she stared in awe at the heart-shaped gem from between the larger ponies. “Is that really the treasure that keeps the Empire safe from the monsters?” she asked.

“Yes, Twily, it is. And it's my duty to make sure it’s safe.” The pink mare, a little taller than the filly, said. “The Crystal Heart has used the love and hope in the hearts of the crystal-ponies since the first king and queen created it over three-thousand years ago.”

“How did they make it, sis?”

“They did so by paying the ultimate price.” Answered the black mare instead. Her daughter gave her a confused look, so she continued. “Not willing to put their ponies in any danger, the king and queen used their love for each other, their children and their kingdom to vanquish a demon known as Diablo; who was the very embodiment of terror and insanity, despite not being insane himself.” She mumbled.

“Then, why was he called that?” Twilight asked her parents and sibling.

“Because he grew so powerful that his mere presence alone could drive not only ponies, but all sentient creatures into madness.” Her father said with a deep voice. “It was only because the king and queen believed that their love was stronger than Diablo’s power that they were able to stand before him without being affected by it at all. They challenged the demon and used all the power they had and even went as far as to unleash the strength of their very souls to destroy him. Once the guards came to the battlefield, all they found were the shattered remains of a monster, a pile of cloths, and the Crystal Heart.”

“They selflessly sacrificed their own lives so that the Empire could live on. And now, we celebrate that sacrifice through the Crystal Fair every year on the anniversary of their death by powering the Crystal Heart with our love.” Her mother finished.

“Whoa…” was all the little filly could say. “That is so cool!” she screamed, ruining the moment and causing her parents and sister to flinch from the sheer volume. Her small wings buzzed so much she floated above the ground for a short time before falling back on her hooves.

“Cool?” Her sister asks, curious of her explanation.

“Of course! Where all other ponies would go crazy, they were perfectly fine and they took down a big monster that no one else could. Sure they died to do it, but they’d rather risk themselves than their people, and at least they were together at the end.”

Her parents looked between themselves for a few seconds before smiling down at their youngest daughter. “That’s very impressive reasoning, Twilight.” Her mother said. “Why don’t we go home and have lunch while your father and I teach you a little more about the infamous ‘Lord of Terror’?”

Twilight gasped and looked up to her father. “Really?” she asks excitedly.

He sighed but smiled. “I don’t have much of a choice, do I? And what’s this ‘father and I’ you speak of?” he asks, looking straight at his wife.

She merely grinned. “You’re much better at telling stories than I am.”

He chuckled. “Alright, let’s go.”

“Yay!” filly-Twilight exclaimed, running ahead of her parents.

Twilight Sparkle’s eyes widened and she hastily sat up in bed with a gasp. “What was that?” she thought out loud.

“What was what, Twi?” Spike asked. He had woken up earlier to do some chores and make breakfast. The little purple dragon was just about to wake Twilight up just when she’d awoken herself. “Was it a nightmare?”

“No, Spike, it wasn’t a nightmare.” She replied. “But it didn’t seem like a dream either. It felt more like… like a memory.” Her assistant merely shrugged his shoulders and walked back downstairs. Twilight stayed in her room for a little while before her stomach grumbled, signaling that it was time for breakfast. She walked out of her room whilst thinking about her strange ‘dream’.

Unlike most other dreams, she could remember this one perfectly and it kept repeating in her head. When she came into the library foyer, Twilight stopped and gasped, a piece of detail just dawning on her; the black mare, the one that the filly-Twilight called mother, was Nightmare Moon. ‘W-what’s going on around here?’ she thought.

The next day...

“So let me get this straight, darling: you had a dream that you were an alicorn filly living in a city made of crystals, and Nightmare Moon was your mother?” Rarity asks, earning a nod from the lavender mare. It was the day after Twilight had her ‘dream’, and when Rarity invited her and the other girls over to the boutique for some tea, she decided it would be the best time to tell them about it.

“The first time I had it, they were all blurry and I could only see the color of their coats. Every time I think about it, my ‘father’ and ‘sister’ are still blurred but now I see Nightmare Moon as clear as I see you guys.”

“It’s probably just something to mess with ya.” Rainbow Dash said. “I mean, did you hear Nightmare Moon call out your name just before we hit her with the Elements? She was probably all “Curse you, Twilight!” and all that.”

“There’s no such thing as curses.” Twilight replied dryly.

“Um, I didn’t hear her say anything before Twilight’s name… you know, in case you were wondering.” Fluttershy just barely whispered.

“What Ah’d like ta know is why in Equestria you’d have such a dream in da first place.” Applejack commented.

“But that’s just it, Applejack,” Twilight said, “It felt more like it was a memory than a dream.”

“Don’t worry like a silly filly, Twilight! I’m sure that in a couple of days you’ll forget all about it and everything will be back to normal!” Pinkie exclaimed, getting approving nods from the other four mares.

“Pinkie is right, dear. Just forget about that dream and your life with go back to the way it was.” Rarity encouraged.

“Thanks guys, and you’re right; once I forget this dream everything will be fine.” Twilight said. After the group all finished their tea, they embraced in a group-hug and went back to their homes. As she was returning to her library/house, Twilight was filled with confidence that her mind would be rid of the strange dream and she could move on with her life. Everything would be fine.

About three weeks later...

Everything was absolutely, positively, definitely not fine! Not only could Twilight not stop thinking about her first ‘dream’, but she’d also been having more every week or so as well.

They would often vary between Twilight being a foal, a filly and about the age she is now, but all would have her doing some kind of activity with the grey stallion, Nightmare Moon, both, her ‘sister’ or all three. Although the purple unicorn still couldn’t make out his more distinctive features (like his cutie-mark), she was able to find that the stallion’s horn seemed to be red, considering that the norm for the horn of a unicorn and even alicorn was to be the same color of the pony’s coat. So seeing that her ‘father’ had a different colored horn was very odd.

The things she did with her ‘family’ varied from learning strange concepts of magic (she says strange because some parts keep getting blocked out) with her father, stargazing late at night with Nightmare Moon, taking strolls through the crystalline city with her sister, learning to fly (she found out that the stallion and other mare were alicorns as well) and other activities a family would do. What made Twilight feel bad about it was that they seemed so… happy. She could feel the love and joy being expressed in every event, and it made her feel guiltier for what she and her friends did to Nightmare Moon.

Whenever Twilight would recall that night, she would always see the look of sadness and hurt on the dark alicorn’s muzzle. The more she had these visions (they begun to occur during the day for the past week, so she began calling them that), the more she kept thinking about them, the more she began to believe that they really were memories, not dreams.

She sometimes thought of going back to the old castle in the Everfree to see if she can find even the tiniest fragment of Nightmare Moon still there, a small piece of her hoping beyond hope that she wasn’t destroyed by the Elements. But she decided against it, hoping to find more information herself before she tried that option.

Presently Twilight was wandering around town when she caught sight of a rainbow streak. Looking up she saw that Rainbow Dash was hanging out with a griffon, and she could tell that they were friends that had recently reunited. Twilight smiled at the two from the ground as they laughed at something one of them said, but that smile wavered when Pinkie Pie interrupted them with a strange contraption to get to their cloud.

She didn’t know how but Twilight could feel that the griffon was both uncomfortable and irritated at Pinkie’s presence. ‘Well I would be too if a stranger interrupted a moment between me and an old friend.’ She found herself thinking. Twilight wasn’t too surprised that the griffon - ‘I really need to know her name.’ - aggressively told Pinkie to leave the two alone after Rainbow left for something. As she was about to leave, the lavender mare suddenly clutched her head when a wave of images flashed through her mind.

“C’mon Twilight, is that the best you got?” called out a black-feathered, red-eyed griffon with a slightly gruff voice for his age.

“Yeah! No way you’ll beat us at tag if you fly that slow.” Said another griffon, this one looking like a female double of the first but with longer feathers at the back of her head.

A filly-Twilight pouted, her small wings buzzing after the two siblings. “Well this wouldn’t be a problem if I just had my magic.” She grumbled. The young Alicorn had caused a massive mess when she tried, and failed, a spell that was too advanced for her. As punishment, her uncle took away her horn for the day and would only get it back when she went to bed later.

Thus it was a moping filly that her griffon friends, the Branwen Twins, found and decided was their job to cheer up with a few games, like tag. Besides, she needed to start using her wings more often.

“Even if you had your magic we wouldn’t let use it, that just won’t be fair for me and Raven.” Commented the first griffon.

“Qrow’s right; you can’t be too dependant on your magic otherwise you’re a sitting duck.” Said the second. “We can’t use regular magic and even we know that!”

Twilight had to admit that they had a point. Her parents and even Summer learnt different forms martial arts, combat and flight - though the last one can be linked to the other two. That in mind and with newfound determination, Twilight smiled before she made a shocked expression. “Oh my gosh! A Void Dragon!” she screamed, pointing a hoof behind the griffons.

“What!? Where!?” they called out in fright, turning around to find the beast and not noticing Twilight coming up behind them.

“Tag, you’re it!” she said, tapping on Qrow’s shoulder before flying off.

He blinked in confusion until it clicked. “Hay! That’s cheating!” he yelled angrily, his sister flying away as well, snickering at how she tricked them.

“No it isn’t!” Twilight yelled back, laughing.

Twilight stumbled slightly but quickly regained her balance when the vision ended. “What was that?” she muttered, a little confused by the contents of her newest vision. “Did I used to have griffon friends too?” she wondered. Twilight looked around and noticed that Rainbow Dash’s friend was gone and Pinkie was bouncing away from her now wrecked contraption.

Not seeing anything that was of any interest at the moment, Twilight decided to return home to take notes of what she saw.

It was mid-afternoon when Twilight left the Golden Oaks Library to attend a welcoming party Pinkie had set up for Gilda the griffon, but was busy with the notes of her vision earlier. The lavender mare actually found herself quite excited to meet her and find out more about griffon society while making Princess Celestia proud that she made another friend, one that wasn’t even a pony at that!

Twilight was about to enter Sugercube Corner when a white and brown blur flew out, zooming just above her head. She looked back towards the blur, barely recognising it as Gilda and seeing her retreating to Whitetail Woods. Confused to why she was leaving her own welcoming party so abruptly, Twilight went inside and immediately walked over to Rainbow Dash and her other friends.

“Hey, what’s going on? Why did Gilda leave so suddenly?” she asks them.

Rainbow scoffs. “She just couldn’t take a few pranks and yelled at Pinkie for no reason, thinking that she was trying to make her look like a fool on purpose.” She said, the others nodding.

Twilight raised an eyebrow, but was growing concerned. “Really? What exactly were these pranks?”

“Oh just some pepper in the vanilla-lemon drops, dribble glass, a spitting-snakes gag box, relighting birthday candles and she slipped on some cake frosting when playing pin-the-tail-on-the-pony. It was when everypony laughed at her she yelled at me for wanting to humiliate her.” Answered Pinkie.

One of Twilight’s eyes twitched slightly. “So you’re telling me that you set up a party to welcome Gilda to town so that she could feel at home when she’s here, but you pulled a whole bunch of pranks on her - regardless if she set them off herself - and effectively made her a laughing stock, right?” She summarized. The others nodded, though slightly uncertain of where Twilight was going with this, and her eye twitched again.

“Twilight? Are you alright?” Applejack asked.

Twilight quickly shook her head and gave her friends an apologetic smile. “No, I’m fine, but I just came over to tell you that Princess Celestia had just sent me some documents for me to look over as soon as possible, so I won’t be able to attend the party. Sorry.” She said, acting as though the previous conversation never happened.

The farmer had an odd look on her face, but Pinkie Pie spoke up. “That’s okay, Twilight. I’ll just have to make another party to make up for this one that you’re missing out on.” The party mare said excitedly.

“Alright then, I’ll see you girls there.” Replied Twilight as she left the bakery.

The others began to join in on the party, but Applejack remained in place. Rarity took notice quickly and walked up to her friend. “Applejack, is everything alright darling?” She asks. The fashion designer didn’t get a response for a few seconds, but before she could say something else, Applejack spoke up, though it was mostly to herself.

“...She’s lying.”

Twilight was indeed lying. She didn’t return to her home/workplace, but gallopped towards Whitetail Woods, after Gilda. Twilight didn’t exactly know why she was running after the griffon, but she was and that was all that mattered at the moment.

“Gilda! Gilda, where are you?! Gilda!” She shouted, hoping that she’d get a response. After several more minutes of this with only silence answering her calls, Twilight’s throat was getting sore so she decided to stop. She looked around the small clearing she was in and sighed, her head lowering. “This is hopeless, she’s probably miles away by now.”

Twilight was about to leave and return home, but her ears perked up as she just caught the sound of sobbing. Curious, she creeped over to where it was coming from and moved aside the low hanging branch that blocked her view. What she saw was quite surprising.

“Gilda?” Twilight asks timidly, stepping closer to the crying griffon.

Gilda spun around, startled at the sudden voice, but frowned when she saw it was a pony. “What do you want?” she demanded angrily, though there was still some hurt in her eyes.

“I just wanted to apologize for what my friends did to you at the party.” Said Twilight, walking over to the griffon and sitting next to her. “And also tell you that I can see where you’re coming from in terms of yelling at Pinkie.”

That confused Gilda. “What do you mean?” she asks, rubbing her eyes with her wrist.

“Pinkie really doesn’t understand the concept of personal space most of the time from what I know of her, and I saw how she kept interrupting you and Rainbow from hanging out together. In her defence she just wants to be friends with everyone she meets, but I’m sure that if she just left you alone for a while this whole mess could’ve been avoided.”

“Plus there’ll always be someone who doesn’t want to be friends no matter what you do.” Gilda muttered.

Twilight gave the griffon a sympathetic look. “Speaking from experience?” She asks.

Gilda nodded. “Flight Camp was a tough time for me, being the only griffon there. Dash and I hit it off pretty quick when we first met, but the other colts and fillies were nowhere near as nice. They constantly called me names and bullied me, but luckily the instructors made sure that nothing ever got physical, and Dash was always there to support me. Though that also made her a target for being friends with a griffon.” She said with a sad smile.

Twilight smiled also. “Sounds like she was a very loyal friend.”

“The best I could ask for, seeing that she was the only friend I ever had that wasn’t a relative.” They sat in silence for a moment until Gilda spoke up again. “So… now what? Do you want me to go back and apologize or something?”

The lavender mare thought about it. “Maybe, but not right now. Give it some time for things to blow over before we do that.”

The griffon nodded in agreement as she stood back up, then a thought occurred to her. “Hey, you seemed to know my name - probably from Pinkie Pie - but I don’t know your’s.”

Twilight stood up too. “Oh, sorry about that. It’s Twilight Sparkle.” She said, offering her hoof for Gilda to shake, which she did. They shared another moment of silence until Twilight thought of something. “Hey, on an unrelated note, have you ever heard of something called a ‘Void Dragon’?” she asks.

Gilda’s eyes widened slightly, surprised by the question. “Uh, yeah. Can’t remember much at the top of my head, but stories that my grandpa told me say that they were some of the biggest creatures in the world. As large as any modern city, mostly made of pure energy that was contained by armor that looked a metal skeleton, and they got their name from being able to fly into and live in space.” She explained.

“Wow. That’s amazing. No creature that I’ve heard about could possibly match that.” Twilight whispered in awe.

“Yeah, they’re pretty awesome, but that’s all I can think of right now.” Gilda then smiled as she got an idea. “How about the next time I come to Ponyville to patch things up, I could bring some of my grandpa’s books with me?”

Twilight’s eyes practically sparkled at the thought of new books. “Really? That would be amazing!” she screamed in excitement.

The griffon chuckled. “I’ll be sure to remember, then.” She said, before pulling the unicorn into a hug, and action she happily returned. “And thanks for helping me out here, couldn’t have done it without ya.”

“It’s okay. What are friends for?” Twilight said, the two separating and heading back to their homes, both overjoyed that they made a new friend.

Neither griffon nor mare noticed the starry cloud that was hovering above them the whole time and continued following the lavender pony.

Author's Note:

I personally am not sure whether or not I should, so I'm leaving it up to you guys!
Should I ship together Twilight and Gilda? Give me your opinion in the comments down below.
If I get twenty-five approvals it shall be done!