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Novel-Idea


"Do it right and do it with style." - Author, Designer & Project Lead of the story-driven DLC Gardens of Equestria: This Coming Storm - (Patreon)


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Through countless centuries, Princess Celestia has remained a steadfast beacon of benevolence, kindness, wisdom and grace. Everypony knows the Princess of the Sun cannot have a dark side.

Sunset Shimmer is about to find out just how wrong they are, and in doing so, find that Celestia understands Sunset more than she ever thought possible.


Contains Spoilers for "A Royal Problem"


Historian’s Note: Dreaming in Dawn's Light occurs several months after the events of A Royal Problem.


Featured on FimFiction for June 12-16, 2017!


Cast: Sunset Shimmer and Princess Celestia

Text and coloring design by Novel Idea
Princess Celestia, Sunset Shimmer and background by Jykinturah.
Sunset Shimmer Cutie Mark By Millennial Dan

Beta Reader & Editor Credits
Ebon Quill - Audio Director & Quest Designer on The Manehattan Project
Little Tinker - Master of Systems at Poniverse & Scripting Engineer on The Manehattan Project
Beltorn - Commenter-at-Large on FimFiction
Cursori: Stolen Enchanted Library Editor
Painted Heart: Wife of the Author :twilightsheepish:

Word Count: 8,000 words
Version: 2.3

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 55 )

Novel doesn't agree, but I'll always hear this as the end credits. Woo artistic differences!

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For the love of Celestia, Ebon...

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I just can't stop grinning at the scene when both Suns watch their dark counter-parts fight. As Novel said, bonding over similar demons is unusually effective.

Awesomely done, Novel! (And Ebon too, especially your 3 night long crusade of editing).

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It's probably one of my favorite scenes too. Not for what's shown, but for what's not shown.

This isn't the Daybreaker/Sunset Satan story I've been hoping for—imagine their teacher-student relationship—but it was magnificent. I admit, I'm still not convinced by the rationale for worfing Luna, but the interactions between Celestia and Sunset—both of each—more than made up for the somewhat dubious setup. Thank you for this.

Ah, Treasure Planet. Not one of the great Disney movies, but I'm still fond of it (that and Atlantis, which is fortunately on Netflix again, from before Disney gave up on hand-drawn animation), particularly some of the songs (this and Jim's theme).

Interesting different take on the Celestia and Sunset relationship. As you said, their potential reunion has been plotted out in many different ways in many different fanfics already so that's not really necessary here. I wish Luna wasn't thrown out so quickly, Sunset's mind-reading power and Luna's dream-walking power seem like they could be compatible (maybe a combined Tantabus and/or Nightmare Moon and demon Sunset vs. Daybreaker fight), but I can understand that this was meant as a Celestia and Sunset character story. And talk about fighting fire with fire. I wonder how often Sunset had to put up with her demon self (compared to Sci-Twi's demon self), whereas Celestia's "dark side" was under control until Starlight had to muck things up (again).

Its only fanon, but stories like these are why I love the idea of Sunset as Celestia's daughter in all but name. For better or worse Sunset inherited everything from Celestia, just without Celestia's centuries of experience to balance out her natural brilliance, and having two similar personalities led to many clashes. Maybe that led Celestia to hold back more with Twilight, maybe Twilight's own personality led to more distance (she's always been neurotic and prone to panic, compared to Sunset's earlier arrogance).

Thank you for another great story. It was really nice to finally get a Celestia-focused episode, just too bad canon doesn't seem interested in Sunset meeting up with Celestia ever again.

Seraphem #8 · June 12th · · 2 ·

Okay so don't think I've done one of these for you yet. prepare for wall o' commentary. Assuming you got stuff in here worth talking about which, how can you not?

Sunset Shimmer fell through the night.

Hmmm, going by the title, and other bits of hints already, guessing this is her dreaming?

a tap on her forehead revealed her horn.

Given she wasn't expecting this, yeah dream. Though a dream crossing over with Equestria some how? This.. I am not sure what or why yet, still an interesting idea that gets used often enough. So, now to see what's up.

which was both liberating and odd at the same time.

"Silly self-conscious humans getting me all used to wearing clothes. Wish someone had told me that even applies while sleeping before my first sleep over with the girls though."

her ‘memento’ from Camp Everfree

And hers is one of the only ones that would have a point while a pony, as most of the rest are just giving the humans a small fraction of the abilities their pony selves have. The one other exception being Pinkie Pie, because, in any universe, Pinkie will be Pinkie.

But... I’ve only had this on once as a pony. That was when I visited Equestria after graduation. And that was months ago. So why would I have it on now?

Okay i'm confused. She forgot to take off the necklace after, some event with and orb and training with Celestia? But then points out she wasn't wearing that as a pony, except for that one trip back? The fact she was surprised to be a pony means she was in the EQG world most likely. So can't be after some practice with the Princess... or is that an older memory and this is just it being a dream making things kind of blur together? But then why would she be.... okay yeah confused here.

there was a piece of her that would always remain irrevocably a pony

D'awwwwww, and that's sweet, just hope the EQG writers continue to remember this.

she was cuddling with Twilight, watching some random movie on the couch…

Okay so is a dream, was in the human world, but then what does her wearing the necklace have to do with some sort of practice she had with Celestia years ago? Also, because of course can't go without some Sunlight shipping. Of which I thoroughly approve. :twilightsmile:

Longer since I dreamt I was a pony

And figures out it's a dream quickly, Sunset is a smart one.

Either that, or somepony was throwing around some serious magic.

Granted, also always something you have to watch for, being you and all. Or more likely this is both. Still eager to see how this happened and why.

Also... :raritystarry: Very nice description there.

I wonder if they really were better

Better no..... Simpler... yes, and your outlook on things was certainly simpler back then.

She could not bear the shame of it. Not then. Not now.

Well, given we know from the description what she's likely to be seeing, the fact the voice is saying 'she' and cares about what 'she' might want. I'm guessing this is Luna taking to her?

No, not anger. Rage? Shame?

Though that seems less like Luna... Daybreaker speaking while she gains power and rises to the surface? Celestia's Id?

No! You must turn away, Sunset Shimmer. Avert your gaze.

No, Daybreaker wouldn't care that much, this is sounding more like Luna, but why wouldn't Luna just speak plainly and directly?

You should not do this, Sunset Shimmer! You must turn back! Please!

Yes because vague, mysterious warning EVER actually work rather then straight forward, direct explanation. Luna seems smarter then this. So... Luna overseeing a nightmare of Celestia giving into Daybreaker, and somehow Sunset got pulled in? Again, why not just show up and explain things to Sunset then?

This must be one of your little tricks, my dear sister.

Okay so it is Luna doing that... but why if she's also trying to prevent Sunset from seeing this? And why not just directly intervene if it's a nightmare?

She froze as she stared into the bloodshot eyes of Princess Luna.

Oh... so ummm, Celestia's nightmare is kicking Luna's ass then? Ummmm, okay then. Makes me question how she's doing that given Luna's power over dreams, but sure we'll get and explanation.

I’ve battered her, beaten her down, and banished her from your dreams for months.

Wait, this has been going on for months? And Luna hasn't found a way to deal with a simple nightmare? Or Celestia able to take control knowing it's a dream? Kind of hard to buy given what we've seen. unless it's a case of Daybreaker being part of Celestia's subconscious harnessing Celestia's own power to block Luna out but, that would mean Celestia is WAY more screwed up about this then just some nightmares if it's been going on for months like this.

She let out a whimper… a sound that Sunset had never believed the alicorn could make.

Even knowing this is a dream... just... :fluttercry: Ow.. simply.. just... all of the :fluttercry: And this goes on every night for months? Though again, at this point, if they know it's a dream.....

It’s so obvious why you banished her, Celestia!

Ehhh, sounded more like Sunset simply ran off then was actually banished.

and how badly they’ve failed Mommy

Yup, really knows how to dig that knife into Celestia's gut.

“Tell her, before I burn you to charcoal!”

Scary yes, but given she should know it's a dram by now, not TO huge a threat.. still hurt like hell and be unpleasant. Though then again, that could make it all the worse. Yet on the third hoof, how long could it go before she wakes up?

“Hey!” Sunset snapped back. “I’m right here, you know!”

There we go, yeah, no need to let the blowhard go prattling on. They are quite effective jabs, and can see the inner issues Celestia has making them be said, the worry, but it's all twisting events all out of context and proportion and just making it nothing even close to reality. But damn does she know how to do that. Granted it only works if you do take her at all seriously, so the best way to counter something like this, is with lots and lots of snark. Sunset, this is what you were born for. (Okay, maybe not the best option for it, but I doubt harry Dresden is going to pop in to deliver his god-tier snark in the face of impending annihilation.

you will never exist!”

Technically she said 'never exist again' and seems to not be stopping her from showing up in nightmares.

But wasn’t Luna supposed to keep me out of your dreams by mastering dreamwalking?

Wait, this is saying it's been going on for longer then that, but Daybreaker said 'months' so, how does Luna doing something she's seemed to have mastered for years, if not centuries, supposed to prevented and stopped something that happened only the last few months?

And Twilight, wasn’t she supposed to silence me forever by unlocking the mysteries of friendship?

Okay guessing this bit is more about Celestia getting over her own issues and not fearing Daybreaker even without the whole showing up in nightmares thing? But still, while it would be something Celestia would be afraid of, hardly seemed to be THAT huge a fear for her that, even with Daybreaker twisting things, it would be this large an issue.

“Yes, my dear pony.”

Well in a metaphorical sense. In a literal sense, it's still a dream, unless breaking out some odd twist to things going on here.

A nightmare! But… it’s real?

I'm confused too.

Nothing can defeat Celestia.

I'm with you, this feels... way to defeatist and, after months? At that point I'd more expect to just be so used to this Tia could just lounge back "Yeah yeah, 'best of me,' 'i am you' 'seize your true power' 'yadda yadda' have anything new this time?"

She ignored them.

Well there are varying levels of 'defeat'.......

she has more experience

Which is something I'm having a very hard time understanding given just how good Luna would be at dealing with this and her power over dreams. It's not like Celestia actually has anything she's done to feel this guilty about or give Daybreaker life.

Celestia’s not that dense. What do you think it is, you overgrown matchstick?”

:rainbowlaugh: Yes, yes, let the snark flooooow!

Her shield vanished like a soap bubble.

Yet when Daybreaker pulled this same thing in Starlight's dream, her shield held fine and left her clear enough to pop over and grab Luna while still being there. Granted, inside Celestia's own head so maybe more powerful.

I’m not going to lose you now!

Very sweet sentiment, but, well the whole 'it's a dream' thing kind of blunts the reality of it.

“Twilight’s made of stronger stuff than you!

Yeah, right about now Twilight would be going into full badass, DBZ level, take you down HARD mode. :twilightangry2:

And not once did you win alone!

Ehhh still harsh but,gotta give this point to Daybreaker.

…But could she defeat herself?

"Can an omnipotent being create a rock so heavy, that being itself could not lift it?"

A never-ending parade of your failures until—

Until she wakes up.

“Don’t you ever shut up?” Sunset shouted and fired a magic missile

"I cast magic missile!"

Also, way to go Sunset!

watched the missile fly by

Clearly not a real Magic Missile then.

That’ll make the big scary monster see the error of her ways!’

It's had a good track record so far.

with that pathetic imitation of Twilight Sparkle!

HEY! To far! Yeah the other 5.. I'll give you they are just pathetic imitations of the ponies, but Sci-Twi is her own awesome version of Twilight!

“Stop being so boring, Tia!”

At this point, you're the one being kind of boring, it's all the same repetitive megalomaniacal BS over and over, and a bunch of trying to hurt them, which is painful yes but, well, dream. Not really dangerous.

where she can decide to hold back.

DING DING DING! And yeah, Chryssi, holding back to prevent colateral damage. The Plunder vines.. well that's Discord's magic, Tirak, didn't really defeat her, she outplayed him. Chryssi 2.0, I'm still going with some lings infiltrated the kitchen staff and laced her evening cake with sleeping potion.

Where the balefire options are off the table.

You and using that word with ponies, you know the only thing it makes me think of is FoE.

it’s not worth the price…

What price? Again, dream. I mean yeah, could be some psychological issues but, so long as you know this is a dream and know what you are doing....

as something with horrid red skin,

Well going evil v evil, but given MLP and how much story is left, guessing Sunset choose poorly here, and will end up either needing Tia to snap out of it and save things, or try out Daydream Shimmer. (Still prefer Sunset Phoenix) But, now having Demon Shimmer as an external force too..... Sunset, Maxim 29.

MAXIM 29: The enemy of my enemy is my enemy's enemy, no more, no less.

“So what?” Sunset shot back. “Do it!”

Well, good reasoning, so now epic evil v evil fight?

“Not your best plan, Sunset.”

That is an understatement. 1. Doubt you were really that powerful. 2. You had the other Mane 6, and all three Princesses, plus Shining Armor, AND would be at ground zero for Cadance simply activating the Crystal Heart.

And since Daybreaker is you…

And this is a dream where belief matters more then fact.

had the potential to be greater than I am.

And I can buy that, if nothing else, because Celestia is that self effacing and humble and that much more likely to look down on herself for her flaws and see others as better.

She should have granted me Ascension before that moronic Cadance!

Well, kind of hard when she didn't 'grant' anything to Cadance in the first place, but Cadance earned it in her own right. Still, yeah can see Sunset back then not getting that.

“Of course you have, my dear Sunset.”

And this I really like, just, pausing for a bit of banter and dismissing the whole, demon war thing. Just, chatting like this like it's not some uber-serious issue. Keeping things a bit less moody and tense.

The demon’s magic engulfed Daybreaker. With a final cry of protest, the alicorn vanished in a puff of ash

Okay, i get the whole, it's how sunset felt but still, making her inner issue be powerful enough to do that so seemingly easily, when Luna, the actual dreamwalker with power over the very realms of dreams itself, can't deal with her? Hard to really buy.

“Like we haven’t been hearing that kind of horseapples for hours!

I know right?

“Oh just shut up!

Finally.

I probably won’t have it installed here.

Okay, that is good, but still a window? Those things have been for major, saving Equestria itself moments, just.. helping Celestia deal with a bad dream?

“You are probably curious what happened,”

Just a bit.

“Why?” Sunset stared up at Celestia. “I thought Luna held total domain over the dream realm.”

Likely that whole 'believe you can do it' thing, which, fair enough but, Luna would KNOW this is a dream, and hence, 'power levels' do not matter. Further, what would fighting them like that even require, when the key is dealing with the underlying issues causing Celestia to HAVE the nightmares themselves.

I think it had more to do with the gem around your neck rather than true dreamwalking, Sunset

So Sunset pulled herself in, across the worlds?

Trying to use empathic magic on an alicorn with over a millennium’s worth of experience, wisdom and knowledge? Not a good call.

Yeah.... not very. But her first? What about, you know all the times she was using it at camp?

to wielding some of the most powerful magic I have ever witnessed.

Ehhhh, nothing Twilight hasn't done more impressively.

“I was afraid that I had pushed you onto the path of becoming another Daybreaker. And from what your subconscious unleashed, I wasn’t far off.”

Fair enough, add some meaning back to things. Though might be cranking the 'she is always afraid of Daybreaker' a bit to hard. Seeing the potential yeah, but even then, Daybreaker would only really be a threat because of how powerful Celestia is, and Demon Sunset is nowhere near that powerful, it was just because of the weird dream logic she was using.

If I say I believe you can handle it, what do you think

Can't fault the logic there. But yeah, use the dream to attenuate the information flow, makes sense.

She fell into the love, comfort and—most of all—acceptance of her mentor, Celestia. She fell, knowing that Celestia fell just like her in that same moment.

:heart::pinkiehappy::twilightsmile::yay: So perfect. Yeah, Celestia is not omnipotent, but she comes damn close to omnibenevolant.

It was as if Sunset had never left.

D'awwwwww... so sweet.

putting aside that Starlight is still crazy OP #nerfstarlight2017

Oh had to bring that one up huh?:derpytongue2: No, no Starlight is not 'OP'. For one, her ability to mess with Cutie marks has been long established, so this isn't anything to far from what we've seen. Yeah she's skilled, powerful, but hardly 'op'. This is probably the first time her magic actually helped solve things rather then made them worse, and even then all it did was serve as a catalyst for something more.

The bigger OPness issue for me, is kind of Sunset in this. How everything was made so that Sunset and Sunset alone would be able to solve the problem. Not Luna, yeah you gave a hand-wave that makes sense, but still feels like nerfing her for the sake of Sunset. And, kind of worse, not Celestia in anyway. She did nothing to help beyond some words of support, didn't rise up to take down her own demon, while Sunset pretty much effortlessly took control of hers after it casually wiped out Daybreaker.

Plus, this doesn't really solve anything. So she defeated a nightmare, in a single dream, that has been showing up for months. What's stopping it from happening all over again the next night? Three was not revelation for Celestia, no Sunset helping her move past whatever was causing this to defeat it at the source. Just, beat it through brute force, and then everything better. It feels.. kind of way to easy.

That character stuff between Sunset and Tia was amazing, but, the framework around it feels a bit to forced and made to make Sunset seem as powerful as possible, without letting anypony else really have a moment. Would have been far more impactful if Sunset managed to connect to Celestia, share the struggles she's had contain Demon Sunset, find the core issue that was causing Celestia to have this dream over and over, and to fail to be able to control it, something that then let Celestia get over that mental block and defeat Daybreaker herself, which would feel more like actually fixing the issue, rather then just fixing this one nightmare. There wasn't even a lot of good rebuttals for Daybreaker, she had some great lines, but, there wasn't a lot of really good back and forth, her lines either being ignored, or allowed to pass a lot of the time, and was the same stuff quite often.

Luna blowing up the Headless Horse didn't end the fear Scootaloo was feeling that caused her to have that dream. It merely stopped the immediate threat and allowed her time to talk to Luna and to realize what was going on.

That might be the bigger issue that's keeping me from REALLY loving this, It treated Daybreaker to much as a physical threat, as a real, direct foe that had to be defeated. When she wasn't, this was all a dream, none of it real. Sunset wasn't in any danger, nopony was. When what she was was a sign of some kind of issue with Celestia herself. But rather then deal with the root cause, what was really creating this, it treated defeating her as somehow.. doing anything. When it shouldn't. Add on the whole, this has been going on for months and neither Celestia or luna could do a thing to stop it, and apparently did nothing but try brute force rather then what Luna KNOWS is the real answer of tackling the underlying mental issues causes Celestia to dream this up.. none of which were dealt with directly, just somehow made all better by Sunset brute force beating Daybreaker..

Yeah the character stuff was great, but the focus on the whole Daybreaker threat just, didn't feel right and the story felt to much like it was trying to show off how awesome Sunset is at the expense of Tia and Luna.

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Yay! That's what I was going for!

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While I think I know what you mean by "worfing," could you explain it a bit more? While I could have put Luna in there in the end with a nod, congratulations or thank you, it just didn't feel right. Now granted, a couple editors said I should have something... but it would have pulled the focus away from the main targets: Sunset discovering that Celestia has demons of her own and in so doing, each of them finding strength from that acknowledgment. If I didn't pull that off (especially without this explanation), I'd definitely like to know that.

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And talk about fighting fire with fire. I wonder how often Sunset had to put up with her demon self (compared to Sci-Twi's demon self), whereas Celestia's "dark side" was under control until Starlight had to muck things up (again).

I have a nagging suspicion that Sunset's seen her plenty of times since the events of Equestria Girls.

It's only fanon, but stories like these are why I love the idea of Sunset as Celestia's daughter in all but name. For better or worse Sunset inherited everything from Celestia, just without Celestia's centuries of experience to balance out her natural brilliance, and having two similar personalities led to many clashes. Maybe that led Celestia to hold back more with Twilight, maybe Twilight's own personality led to more distance (she's always been neurotic and prone to panic, compared to Sunset's earlier arrogance).

This has always been my take on Sunset and Celestia's relationship. They were intensely close and when that fell apart, it drastically changed how things happened with Twilight. Celestia kept herself strictly in a teacher/student relationship with Twilight, which was only enhanced by Twilight's tendency to be oblivious to the world around her. All of it because she tried the close near-mother relationship... and it blew up in their faces.

8228209 Can't speak for him, but for me, well for one I agree with the not liking how Luna just got brushed aside. But this bit

: Sunset discovering that Celestia has demons of her own and in so doing, each of them finding strength from that acknowledgment.

Is where I don't think it works because... we don't really see them 'drawing strength' from this. There is some really well done bonding afterwards, but it's only after everything is solved. It had nothing to do with overcoming Daybreaker. Sunset just summons Demon Sunset, Demon Sunset PWNS Daybreaker with raw power then offhandedly and easily destroys her. Sunset exerts full control over her own demon and sends it away. Then the two have a little heart to heart.

The focus is entirely on the external conflict of beating Daybreaker, then switches to the two simply talking things out and explaining stuff. Rather then having them learning this about each other have them overcome and internal conflict that then allows them to rally and face their external ones. The Demons are beaten simply through shear force of Sunset's will alone. With everything else being a afterward of sorts where it's all explained and they reach that now understanding.

Lots of words to try and explain, feels like the story focused to much on the external conflict of Daybreaker to really get into the intended internal conflict of Sunset and Celestia dealing with the underlying issues they share.

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I mean it in the TV Tropes sense, beating up someone the audience knows is strong to establish the danger of the new opponent. Luna losing to a nightmare just feels wrong to me, and the "power of belief" justification doesn't quite make it ring true. Yes, she's fighting Celestia, but she's also fighting a figment. She can manipulate the dream itself, and knows for a fact that no version of Celestia can. Indeed, a direct confrontation on Daybreaker's terms is probably the worst way to deal with her, and after that many defeats, you'd think Luna would try changing her approach.

Mind you, at least some of this is a matter of clashing headcanons.

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I don't usually weigh in on these things, but these are spoken like someone who has never felt like they needed to prove something to someone they respected. Like someone who's never bashed their head against mental blocks. Like someone who never kept trying what wasn't working long after it was a good idea to stop.

Knowing the path is not walking the path. One can know what one needs to do, and be utterly incapable of actually doing it. Add to that what professional athletes call 'slumping', and it turns into a cavalcade of failure. So long as Luna insists on being the only one to handle Daybreaker, she's automatically and axiomatically going to fail.

Before you say she wouldn't insist she be the one to bear the burden, she's already tried to do that twice. Both times, she failed. Both times, she refused to reach out for help until the situation had gotten way out of hand. So this is entirely in keeping with what we know of her character.

Justified Trope.

8228317 That still doesn't make any sense to me, why would she just bash her head over and over and over trying to brute force destroy Daybreaker? Why would that even be her first option when she's proven that she gets the issues in dreams is about confronting the underlying issue causing the nightmare, like with Scootaloo or the other CMC. How would beating Daybreaker do anything to fix the underlying issue? And as Fan said, she can control the very fabric of dreams themselves. Why would a brute force, treat as an IRL foe to fight be what she is doing, doubly so given.... there is no reason to do that in the first place versus help Celestia figure out and deal with the underlying cause of the nightmares. And the 'she doesn't believe she can beat me' well for one, we saw the fight, NMM was beating Celestia pretty easily, Celestia only won by pulling out the Elements and that was rather clearly a last ditch effort. But then, as Fan also pointed out, it's not Celestia, Luna knows this is just a dream, just a construct, so why would she have those hang ups?

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Hmmph. I'm happy my tears bring you such joy. You monster. (He said with tongue planted firmly in cheek.)

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I don't usually weigh in on these things, but these are spoken like someone who has never felt like they needed to prove something to someone they respected. Like someone who's never bashed their head against mental blocks. Like someone who never kept trying what wasn't working long after it was a good idea to stop.

I'm not in the habit of divulging personal details online, so I'm just going to say that in this regard, you have no blessed idea what you're talking about. I will acknowledge that my interpretation tends towards the "Why didn't they just do X?" end of things, but in the future, please phrase your arguments in a way that doesn't make them seem like ad hominem attacks.

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That still doesn't make any sense to me, why would she just bash her head over and over and over trying to brute force destroy Daybreaker?...

You're assuming that's all she's done. For all we know, she's tried the other avenues. However, if Daybreaker knows everything Celestia does, that means she's got all the ways Celestia knows to push her little sister's buttons, all the insight Celestia has in regards to her sister's methods, and absolutely none of her conscience.

Frankly, Luna doesn't stand a chance.

And as Fan said, she can control the very fabric of dreams themselves. Why would a brute force, treat as an IRL foe to fight be what she is doing, doubly so given.... there is no reason to do that in the first place versus help Celestia figure out and deal with the underlying cause of the nightmares. And the 'she doesn't believe she can beat me' well for one, we saw the fight, NMM was beating Celestia pretty easily, Celestia only won by pulling out the Elements and that was rather clearly a last ditch effort. But then, as Fan also pointed out, it's not Celestia, Luna knows this is just a dream, just a construct, so why would she have those hang ups?

Welcome to the wonderful world of plot holes. As vavacung pointed out here, either Celestia did this in her sister's stead for a thousand years, (in which case Daybreaker knows all of the necessary tricks and becomes kind of like Star Trek's Professor Moriarity; an illusory creation with control over their own medium,) or she didn't, and there's a slew of Fridge Logic a-comin'.

Truth be told, I don't read a lot of Sunset Shimmer fics, which is a crime in itself, I know, I know, but this was a lot of... well, to say fun would be the wrong word. This was meaningful and especially moreso when I know very well what inner demons can do to hurt you.

I loved the descriptions, first and foremost. So often I look at flourished descriptions as the end-all of writing, and to see your descriptions and how they work perfectly was oddly validating. Short and to the point, and always just what it needs to be.

As for story, all the character were strong, I felt. Sunset and Celestia obviously, and I LOVE that Celestia like literally mentally showered Sunset with love, like you have no idea, there is nothing I love more than another character showering the other with validation i love,,,,,,,soooo,,,,much,,,,,validation,,,,

Daybreaker was also very good! I really loved her lines lmao she did not hesitate in going for the throat

All in all, very A+

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There is nothing attacking anyone. To be frank, I wish I was such a person. I regret that we both seem to be people for whom these are issues.

I also didn't intend any harm, especially over a theoretical debate about which cartoon horses have what mental issues. Please accept my apology for any pain I may have caused.

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Apology accepted. You have mine for the oversensitive reaction.

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Thank you, and I accept yours as well. I have a great deal of respect for you and your works here.

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And the 'she doesn't believe she can beat me' well for one, we saw the fight, NMM was beating Celestia pretty easily, Celestia only won by pulling out the Elements and that was rather clearly a last ditch effort. But then, as Fan also pointed out, it's not Celestia, Luna knows this is just a dream, just a construct, so why would she have those hang ups?

While it's true that Celestia won by using the Elements, so we don't really know how well she would hold up in terms of offense, Nightmare moon was hardly beating her with any kind of ease. NMM was only even beating her in the sense that she was the only one going on the offense, given that Celestia wasn't attacking back in the first place and instead spent the entire fight basically trying to talk Luna down and avoid fighting. Even then, despite landing a direct blow on someone who was actively avoiding striking back, NMM still only managed to temporarily knock her out.

It's not exactly an impressive feat to beat someone when they're actively trying to talk you down and avoiding retaliation unless absolutely necessary. Especially when "beating" them consists of knocking them out for a minute or so, only for them to stand right back up with no signs of even being so much as winded. Honestly, that fight does more to contradict the idea of Nightmare being stronger than anything, and makes it far more plausible that she would be hesitant to fight a Celestia who was actually returning fire instead of trying to convince her sister to stop being all murder-happy.


EDIT: That said, I agree that it seems odd that Luna would have any hangups in that regard within the context of facing Celestia or Daybreaker in a dream.

:twilightsmile: I liked it. I was admittedly a little confused at first that this took place after Sunset and Celestia's reconciliation, as obviously you haven't shown that scene in any fic...but I understand why you did it now, and it doesn't detract from the overall heartwarming nature of the fic. I love your depiction of their relationship in the canon (or near-canon) universe. And also the casual mention of Sunlight! Because Sunlight is best ship. :eeyup:

You've certainly given me something to think about when it comes time for myself to write Sunset and Celestia's reconciliation (and the aftermath thereof), so thank you yet again for the great story.

“Gold star! I’m impressed, little sun. I’m sure your replacement would have given up by now.”

I really like this Daybreaker.

Using fire to defeat fire? I guess love doesn't conquer all, after all. Sometimes you reach the godzilla threshold and you just have to sic your ego-maniacal demonic past self on the other pony's Nightmare and hope everything works out.

“She believes she is,” Sunset replied as Celestia’s shield protected them from a nova of blood-colored flame. “Here? I think that’s all that matters. What do you think?”

I hate dream-power logic.

“Sure. And then one of us will stab the other in the back,” the demon snarled. “Thank you, but I think I’ll take out the most dangerous enemy first.”

I also very much like this demon!Sunset.

“No,” Sunset shook her head. “I don’t believe that. I can take you. And you know it.”

Hmm. Like a Rock<Paper<Scissors<Rock, thing, but it's Sunset<Daybreaker<Demon!Sunset<Sunset.

Sunset gritted her teeth a little. “You mean the whole ‘it’s a good idea to mess with the innate powers of the two most powerful alicorns in Equestria’ thing?”

Seriously. I don't usually subscribe to the whole 'don't tamper with powers you don't understand' thing, but I definitely believe you shouldn't be reckless about messing with it.

Yeah, imagine that. Trying to use empathic magic on an alicorn with over a millennium’s worth of experience, wisdom and knowledge? Not a good call.

I'd do it.
Oh wait, is this what 'recklessly tampering with powers you don't understand' looks like in practice?... Hmmmm...

Hmmmmmmmmmm....

HMMMMMMMMMMMMMM....

I'd still do it.

“If some part of you knew I came specifically to help, why would you want me to leave?”

Do your conscious and subconscious minds always agree? Look at Celestia and tell yourself she doesn't have a fine flank.

Yeah, Sunny. That's what I thought.

...well, can you imagine what it would like to get a telepathic link to someone as powerful and ancient as Celestia?

There's a reason she was blasted halfway across the room and knocked out for the better part of a day.

I'd still do it.

Thoughts were provoked. I was intending this to be very short, but I had too many comments. It was a good story. Keep writing stuff like this, and maybe one day I'll finally latch on to the emotional part of a story, rather than wallowing in the powers, setting, and snark aspects.

Also, you got Treasure Planet songs stuck in my head again. Thanks. :ajbemused:

Very nice story!

very good story deeply enjoyed it

I found myself immensely entertained by your Daybreaker, and I loved the heartwarming moments between Sunset and Celestia. It probably wasn't your intent, but the fact they had a few while demon Sunny and Daybreaker were fighting came off as more comical. The ones at the end were sweet and moving though. I also agree with Sunny, Daybreaker, while awesome, talked way too much. A lot of it was recycled material from eight paragraphs ago, too. It kinda dragged on for a bit. Other than that, good story, friend!

I feel like I might have missed a few small details in this from not having read your other stories, but it was still amazing to me. This is a whole other kind of reunion story, and I love it to death.

Also, I am immensely glad I'm not the only one who rambles in the AN. For me, it was a habit I picked up from my favorite mangaka, who would always have three-paragraph or so story talks before every chapter. I like seeing that insight in writers, and I'm always bummed to see people annoyed by that kind of thing.

Incredible story! Instantly going into my favorites!

I haven't read this story yet, but I have a question: do you need to have watched the new EG specials to understand this?

8228351
The greatest compliment an author can receive is the knowledge that they moved a reader, though tears of joy or tears of sadness. So, I shall celebrate it, in both me just being an evil author and in me doing my job right.

8228405
Yeah. I think you're well-qualified to understand that need for validation. Means a lot that you dropped this comment, Mono. Thanks a billion! :heart:

8228810
Yeah, it's almost a sequel to a story that was never written. I hope I did enough work to make that story unnecessary... specifically within this story.

And come on. This is me. You really think I'm going to miss a chance to put in SunLight? .

8229130

Do your conscious and subconscious minds always agree? Look at Celestia and tell yourself she doesn't have a fine flank.
Yeah, Sunny. That's what I thought.

S-shut up!

...well, can you imagine what it would like to get a telepathic link to someone as powerful and ancient as Celestia?
There's a reason she was blasted halfway across the room and knocked out for the better part of a day.

I'd still do it.

Why am I not surprised?

Thoughts were provoked. I was intending this to be very short, but I had too many comments. It was a good story. Keep writing stuff like this, and maybe one day I'll finally latch on to the emotional part of a story, rather than wallowing in the powers, setting, and snark aspects.

I'm all for finally getting through to you emotionally, but your snark helps fuel my passion for writing. :twilightsmile:

Also, you got Treasure Planet songs stuck in my head again. Thanks. :ajbemused:

I regret nothing! That movie had an awesome score and two awesome songs!

8229163, 8229486
Thank you! I'm delighted you enjoyed it! :twilightsmile:

8230428
Now that's some strong praise. Thank you kindly!

8229260
I don't think I'll be doing a sequel to this story. I think it's pretty well self-contained. Anyway, I have far too many other stories clamoring for my attention.

8230393

I feel like I might have missed a few small details in this from not having read your other stories, but it was still amazing to me. This is a whole other kind of reunion story, and I love it to death.

Not really! This story was designed to be completely independent of everything else. It's one of my few canon-timeline stories, in fact (as much as any fanfic is canon-timeline).

Also, I am immensely glad I'm not the only one who rambles in the AN. For me, it was a habit I picked up from my favorite mangaka, who would always have three-paragraph or so story talks before every chapter. I like seeing that insight in writers, and I'm always bummed to see people annoyed by that kind of thing.

If I have a ton to say on it, I'll do a full-blown retrospective blog and link it in the author's notes, but it seems a little silly to do one for a short story. That being said, Sunset and Celestia's relationship has always been something I've thought way too much about, so I needed to pontificate a bit!

8230808
Nope! I do recommend watching the most recent MLP Episode "A Royal Problem" though! (I haven't even seen them yet)

8230848 Nooooooooooooooooooooooo :raritycry:.

In all seriousness though, this is an amazing and really underrated story. I hope you get more credit where it's due, because you sir are fantastic.

8230286
Thank you ever so much for this. Means the world to me! Daybreaker was way too much fun to write. And she was even more fun to read out loud for my audible edit. I kinda want someone to do an audio production of this story just so I can hear her.

That fight was set in the background for a few reasons. First of all, because Sunset's focus wouldn't be on them. It would be on Celestia. I liked the visual of them talking quietly as this demonic battle royale raged around them. And in truth, while it is important, the real focus is on them. So putting them in the background is a bit of a twist I could see as comedy.

Daybreaker seems to be the type to do the classic villain monologue. Like... nonstop. I may have played it on a bit too much... but for me, it was worth it just to get Sunset to yell at her. Granted, she got backhoofed immediately afterward, but it was still a great moment. :twilightsmile:

Thanks Albi. A ton. :pinkiehappy:

8230854
Comments like this are the best kind of credit there is. :raritystarry:

But seriously, if I had sequels to every story people asked me to do... I'd never finish Wavelengths! Or anything else. Ever.

8230836
Yeah, I think you did do the work you needed. :twilightsmile: I suppose I really should have expected Sunlight from a story where Sunlight wasn't written out by the premise. Though I recall you even managing to work it in to Diamonds Amidst the Stars...

8230862
:twilightsmile:
Classic villain monologues can't be beat.

8230890
Go back and look at the name of the chapter. :trollestia:

(Okay, confession: maybe 1% of the name is from the ship. The rest is to match the story vibe.)

Comment posted by EbonQuill deleted June 14th

8227920
How it went down, Gold.

How I pictured it would go near the beginning in my head, however?

i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/895/845/2f9.jpg

This touched my heart in places I thought I had destroyed it. Thank you for helping me find them. The problem has been rectified.

8232150

How I pictured it would go near the beginning in my head, however?

I hope there was a little bit of popcorn enjoyment from time to time. :twilightsmile:

This touched my heart in places I thought I had destroyed it. Thank you for helping me find them. The problem has been rectified.

I actually did a fistpump when I read this. These kinds of comments make all the stuff I go through behind the scenes worth it. :pinkiehappy:

I wanted to like this, I really did. I loved the interactions between Celestia and Sunset and the interesting connections between Sunsets fall and the darkness that dwells inside Celestia. Daybreaker was well portrayed (I loved the little sun jibe) as was demon Sunset.

But, I can't help but feel this demeans Celestia. In the episode it was she who defeated Daybreaker (with gentle reassurance from Luna). It showed she had the inner strength to never succumb to her dark side. Having her need Sunset to defeat Daybreaker just defeats the entire point of that moment. That after Luna is apparently effortlessly defeated on her own turf as well.

It's got some great stuff in it, but I feel this all came at Celestias expense.

I do like the idea of every characters darker egos fighting a deathmatch though:pinkiehappy:

8233825
That sounds truly disappointing.
Daybreaker ought to be this terrifying:

https://www.fimfiction.net/story/299981/why-no-one-messes-with-celestia

[edit]
Three downvotes? Seriously? What, exactly, is wrong with saying this?
oh noes, we can't possibly have a depiction of terrifyingly powerful characters in MLP. [gasp]

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