• Published 4th Oct 2016
  • 14,332 Views, 1,270 Comments

Making Family - Cirrus Sky

You can find a home, but sometimes you have to make a family. Sunset is working on that.

  • ...

Bad Dreams

Sunlight streamed through the window, warmth on her face woke Sunset. She stretched and looked up, wondering what time it was.

The strange thing was, Sunset realised, that the ceiling above her was not her bedroom in the house she shared with Celestia and Luna. It was her Canterlot bedroom, the one from so very long ago. From before the palace even.

Also, oddly, she had hooves and a horn. She was a unicorn pony again. Sitting up and blinking, she realised she was in her old bedroom.

Sunset clambered from her bed. She was so small! It was a real effort to leave the slightly tall, but always cosy bed. Mommy usually helped her in and out, but the sun was high in the sky and mommy still hadn't been to get her up. “Mommy?” Sunset called out. She passed her mirror and for a moment older eyes set in a human face saw a little blank-flank filly.

'No...' Sunset, older Sunset, human Sunset, whispered. This was dream of a memory, a memory of a living nightmare.

The filly carried her onwards and down the crooked stairs in the tall and comfy home. Sunset the elder screamed, cried, shouted and begged the filly to stay away. To stay happy. To stay innocent. To stay golden.

Of course it didn't work. This was her memory after all, a past she could not change.

The filly reached the ground floor, she could hear the kettle whistling on the hob. Maybe mommy had been busy with breakfast? Sunset cantered happily into the kitchen to sing the Good Morning song they always shared.

The sight that met her halted her in her tracks.

Mommy lay on the floor, she had fallen awkwardly from the look of it. “Mommy?” Sunset said, fearful. Mommy said to never play games in the kitchen, so this couldn't be a game. “Mommy?” She trotted closer and tapped a hoof to her mommy's leg. There was no response.

“MOMMY!” Sunset shouted and cried in fear, shaking the mare over and over. Not once did the mare respond. Sunset shouted and cried and shook her still.

But hooves changed to hands, the kitchen in Equestria with it's humble fired stove and rustic furnishing melted to become a modern model of comfortable living. The figure on the floor was not the mare who's colouring she shared, but a woman with pastel shaded hair.

“Mom!” It wasn't a filly's voice calling out, it was a young woman's, though the panic and fear were the same.

Sunset woke shaking and crying, she felt like she was going to be sick but held on tight to an arm across her body, a hand on her shoulder. “Sunset, its okay. I'm here. You're alright.” Celestia soothed. The human one, the woman who had adopted her, who had become her mother.

“I... Sorry...” Sunset sobbed and shook. Celestia slipped her other arm under Sunset and moved her over a little on the bed. Sitting in the space, she pulled the girl up and held her closer.

“Hush, it's okay.” Celestia trailed her fingers through the red and gold hair, trying to sooth the girl. “I heard you shouting for me.” Sunset wrapped her arms around the woman, feeling her warmth.

“It was a nightmare... A dream of a memory.” Sunset sniffed and wiped at her eyes. “I was a filly again, in Equestria.”

“Something bad happened I take it?” Celestia had not heard everything about the world Sunset was from. There were personal details that Sunset found too hard to speak about. This had to be one of them, from how it was affecting Sunset.

“It was... It was when my mom died.” Sunset remained in the comforting embrace. She felt the arms around her grip tighter. “I was only little, just a blank-flank...” She thought a moment. “Grade school age.”

“So young.” Celestia whispered, her heart wept for the pain the girl must have felt.

“I found her on the kitchen floor.” Sunset sniffed, calming down now her nightmare had proven false. “I saw the medical report when I was a little older. She had a blood clot. Something moved it along and that was it.”

“Oh Sunset. I'm so sorry.” Celestia held on to her daughter. She had an inkling where things had gone in this nightmare.

“In my dream, things changed. It turned into you lying there. I was human and it was now, in the kitchen with you...” Sunset felt fresh tears falling. “I don't want to be all alone again!”

“I'm alright Sunset. We're okay.” Celestia leant down and kissed the red hair below her. “I can't promise nothing will ever happen, but I can promise that Luna will be with you. Your friends will be with you.” Sunset held tightly to her. “You won't be alone. Too many people love you just as much as I do.”

“I know. I'm sorry I woke you.” Sunset felt calmer now. The embrace and soft words working on her psyche.

“Don't worry.” Celestia soothed. “Do you need a glass of water?” Sunset nodded in reply. “I'll go get one.” Celestia stood up and walked to the door.

“Thank you.” Sunset whispered. Celestia turned to give the girl a smile, she saw Sunset vulnerable and looking so much younger than her years.

In the kitchen she pressed her fingers to her brow. “My namesake has a lot to answer for.” The woman muttered. “Immortal goddess princess or not, that girl has been damaged a long time and any person with any kind of compassion would have noticed and made some effort to give her what she needed.” She sighed. The cold water pitcher in the fridge had just enough water left for a glass. Celestia filled one, she could refill the pitcher in the morning.

Back in the room, Sunset was sitting on her bed arms wrapped around her knees. “One glass of water.” Celestia set it down on the bedside table and leaned in to hug Sunset again. “I can stay a while if you need me to?” She brushed Sunset's hair back a little and felt the girl lean into the hug.

“Its okay. I should be fine.” Sunset replied. Celestia laid a kiss to her head and drew back.

“Alright then. Goodnight Sunset.” Celestia kissed her again and stepped away, just as she was at the door Sunset replied.

“Goodnight Mom, love you.” Sunset watched Celestia smile as she shut the door. She drank the water and put the empty glass back on the table. Sliding under the covers as she lay down, Sunset still felt the hug, still remembered the words said.

She had friends, she had Luna and Chrysalis too. Discord had become a regular visitor. If any terrible repeat stole another mother from her then so many people would be there for her, just as she would be there for them.

Banishing the bad thoughts, Sunset found a comfortable position and settled back to sleep. She was loved, that was enough to chase away the bad dreams tonight.

Author's Note:

I have a few more ideas regarding Sunset's biological mother, something I want to explore in another short story here or maybe separate from Making a Family.

A little more angst after the fluff.