• Published 21st Feb 2018
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The Last Sacrifice - Doof Ex Machina

When the world is once again in mortal danger, humans come into Equestia through the Magic Mirror. Luna, turned into Nightmare Moon, must stop it.

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The Last Sacrifice

The sun cautiously peered out from behind clouds, as if there was somewhere a hidden monster ready to swallow it. Celestia hugged her cold, shivering sister. She dreamed—either out loud or in a whisper—that someday everything would be different. They would become Princesses, for real! There would be a castle, blankets and lots of cookies!

Luna yawned and closed her eyes.



“We shall die in the end, shan’t we?”

The older filly seemed to be taken aback by such a start. She had expected something like “good morning” but received a rather uncomfortable question. The younger filly regarded her silence in her own way and frowned.

“I had a dream about mom.”

Silence fell between them like a thick fog. Neither of them dared to break it.

“When we die, where shall we be?”

“We’ll enter the celestial bodies. Ponies of day go to the Sun, ponies of night to the Moon,” Celestia booped Luna, making her smile. To the moon, heh...

“And from above we’ll watch other ponies living, yes?”


A colt was gazing up into the night sky, mouth agape. He stared at the thousandfold stars and black autumn clouds coiling around the horns of the crescent moon. He had long dismissed all the warnings and admonitions, apprehensions and screams of his parents, all of them distant as if from a past life and dying in the throes of the passing day.

His forehooves lay down comfortably on a fallen tree destroyed by an old explosion. The nasty stench of burning wood, which hadn’t been washed away by many hundreds of rains, was like a punch in the face, but Blacksheep could endure it. He had failed his last attempt to sneak away, so his parents locked him in a shelter, hiding him from what he thought was the event of the century! He imagined the last time. The rumbling explosions, the bursting of thousands of pulsars, dozens of Princess Celestia’s guards showing their ability to fight invader after invader! But all scenes of the battle were behind massive fortifications in the underground shelter.

Invaders had been raining down on Equestria in droves from time immemorial. Different, unlike each other, but certainly cruel and hungry for territories, life force, magic, little foals, lands... The reason why they came was always different, but the way of achieving it never changed. And when a judgment day was not far off and the blackest hour set upon Equestria, he came.

The Savior.

They said each time he called himself a different name. They said he was big and walked on his hind legs because he had strange appendages at his forelegs, like a set of worms or tiny snakes—’thingers’, or something like that. Blacksheep didn’t care. All the Saviors came with enviable regularity, wishing to feel the culture and ‘magic of friendship’ of this world, only to sacrifice themselves in the end. Sometimes they were reborn, sometimes not...

A colossal alien ship came from behind a black thundercloud. The foal suggested the ship was the cloud, just skillfully disguised. The bastard floated slowly and smoothly, pacing steadily in the free sky.

You see that, stars? The winners are coming! You hear that, moon? The engines of the conquerors are roaring!

The poor invaders never realized that the Savior would certainly find a way to deal with them. Some kind of miracle happened all the time. The Princesses—Luna and Celestia, and maybe even Cadence or Twilight Sparkle—would stand as last guardians and defeat an enemy fleet. They could make it lower on the ground or slow it down or close the eyes of enemy pilots. Black wanted so badly to see this. Although Bluffer Tails had said that the Princesses decided to sacrifice Ponyville and this time there was no way to save their town, Black knew he was just a cheap liar. A pity was that the cookies which his grandma had baked last week would evaporate. As well as those two bits that he had hidden under a floorboard. He wanted to buy a plush toy of one powerful magician with them. So the question was, would two pieces of gold be able to burn in the inferno or not?

There were also rumours that Princess Luna became mad again. This happened to her from time to time, and she went off the rails, turning into her dark self, but she was always on the right side. This time, however... In the morning, at breakfast, Bluffer had told everyone that this time Luna was so crazy and wild that she brought herself to a full and final conclusion: to go against her sister’s will. Her anger was, like, so fierce and her grudge so terrible that she decided to become a servant to the invaders. Black had choked on a piece of bread when he heard this. And when Tails, that snivelling liar, had begun to tell about how Luna was a petty mutt for the Chief Invader and even yapped when he ordered her to, Black couldn’t help but pounce onto him. Tails had neither mind nor respect. Such a butthead! Black rubbed his black eye. After that, his father had given him a good kicking, the mother hissed as if being a snake, and even his sister was a rat and laughed at him! So he had run away. Let they find him now! A sense of self-importance and purpose poured over his body in a warm wave, soothing his racing heart.

Black was afraid that his father could appear here at any moment, and then the alien colossus would seem an innocent toy in comparison with him.

In a single bright flash, night sky blazed above his head—echoes of heat wave licked the colt’s face, causing him to wince in surprise. Black closed his eyes, and in a split second he found himself lying face down in the dirt. Not paying attention to it, he stared at the sky colossus.

The smooth pace of the colossus flinched and slowed down, a confident gait replaced by caution. Hundreds of guns cracked and dozens of cannons thundered as their shells cut the sky in beautiful traces.

A tiny figure was rushing from one small ship to another, leaving a slightly visible trail behind. They flared up. They didn’t slow down, nor did they disappear in a cloud of magic, nor did they lower on the ground—they exploded like festive fireworks.

Black almost screamed from the overwhelming delight when the silhouette hovered in place just for a moment. Bluffer could eat his words because that was Princess Luna. Princess Luna herself! The colt struggled to suppress the urge to shout her name out loud and to wave his forelegs…

Worthless, pathetic, weak. When I look at all their miserable breed, their many-coloured coats, the infinitude of smiles and the manifestation of what they call kindness, I want to trample them. The desire to collect them all together under my hoof and crush them like a hooffull of worms burns inside me.

I look at them and sincerely wonder when came the moment that we lost our power. What did not we notice? The Savior—all looking at him, praying to him, giving him praise. Waiting for him, like a flock of crows for blood, to sacrifice himself once again. And I do not care what his name is: John, Grigory, Ivan or Mbenga...

The Mirror standing in the Canterlot treasury always spawns them in the darkest hour, offering us salvation both quick and useless. After salvation comes another enemy that is angrier, scarier and more dangerous. They promise to destroy the whole world not in a month but in a day! It is a well-established tradition that if somewhere an evil fiend dares to bare its teeth, you should run quickly into the treasury; he will already be there. Naked, muscular, not very handsome, but nevertheless fine as ‘a friend’ to the Princesses.

Celestia glared at me while her little protege—how long ago did this tiny tot get her wings?—crumbled slabs of the marble floor under her hooves in anger. The purple upstart blushed like a poppy blossom when I mentioned that she obeyed the Savior only because she liked the way he spanked her flanks and perhaps he had already known their depths. Celestia turned away in embarrassment. She knew this even better.

“We must obey the Savior,” the winged rugrat said. He is right, he knows how to save us. He has brought the wisdom of other worlds and the yearn lying beyond the bounds of thousand galaxies and, for some reason, the undissipated love of a milliard unborn stars. In return, he asks only our friendship and adoration. It is not a big deal, right? Moreover, how cannot you love such... such... such as him.

At some moment my kind self succumbed to these entreaties, foul affection and fleeting words as she did not dare to spot rude mockery behind the veil. Behind his friendship, there is only the dull gloom of the world where the Savior has come from. Behind his love—the wicked lust, the touch of a cold wet hoof to the crotch. Behind his wisdom—the viscous ooze of long-learned words. He does not need us; he needs the means for his fantasies to come true to feel himself a power, salvation, something bigger than he is. Tell me, can a world throw away strong, intelligent, decent individuals? Or does it get rid of the worthless by casting them to us?

The mystery is, how do they manage to do what they came here for? And to go away, leaving our world in the same pristine danger as before.

My kind self fell when I awakened from sleep. Little modest Luna! She was drowned in a multitude of questions, in a plethora of doubts and strong arguments. Weak and passive, she is just unworthy not only to rule the body, but to rule at all.

My sister’s pathetic mutt screamed at the top of her lungs, accusing me of everything that was on her mind. In treason, in dislike of my own sister, in the desire to wipe out this world from the face of the earth. And... in some ways, she was probably right.

The coolness of night asks me: What do you want? They are ponies. They have forgotten the past, they played all their lives, living without knowing troubles and hiding in the sunlight from every problem. There is a Princess, they have said, there is salvation that is sure to come. Just find shelter, hide, put a helmet on your head and wait. A day or two, a week, a month—everything will pass on. It is simple: imagine that your beloved Equestria has just got sick and the medicine is on its way.

The myriad stars ask me: Do you remember, Luna, do you remember? Do you remember those days when Chrysalis came? And how you dug your teeth into her withers, aimed at her throat. And every pony, every little foal, thought about the same thing. They dreamt not to crawl under a stone, but to die for our land. Do you remember Celestia gnashing her teeth, all forgetting that she is the Solar Princess, setting Sombra aflame? Do you remember how the Diamond Dogs who had foolishly decided to make a raid trembled? And how they ran, tails between their legs, dropping their wounded comrades?

And I say: I do. Oh yes, I do.

I must slow them down. Let them approach Ponyville at a snail’s pace, let the Savior do everything? Screw you, dear sister. No one shall die! My sister, once the powerful and strong ruler, has turned into a limp rag. Why should there be no enemy blood? Because of love and tolerance?

Grey wind exhales, dispersing pitch-black clouds. I see a huge, bigger than anything, colossal ship able to cover whole Canterlot with its shadow. Cannon barrels glisten in the midnight darkness, illumination lights smiling a wicked grin, engine turbines radiating heat. A swarm of small jet fighters circle around the giant like locusts. Like flies over a piece of dung, I think. I want to smirk.

The wind asks me a question: Why are you doing this? Well, tell me, Nightie, why? Come back, obey your sister, apologize to that little upstart and obey. Let it be as always, eh?

It will not be as always, my wanderer wind, it will not. For a moment, I have a vision of myself coming back ashamed, my kind self back in, and I am off again into oblivion. With my head down, sniffing my nose, accepting their smiles and pity... pity!

No, my wanderer wind, it is now or never! Never ever!

Swarming fighters spot me and change their original course. Waiting, I suppose, for my support to come from behind clouds. They think that Wonderbolt pegasi or some flyers will collapse on them like a hundred problems.

They have got used to it, too. They know about their predecessors' past defeats. They know that they can shoot with impunity, that the worst thing we can do is to lower them on a meadow like a precious vase.

The first fighter bursts in a beautiful explosion as I send a single magical pulse in its direction. The lizard pilot barely blinks in surprise before death takes him away. What was he had thought about? Though, if honestly, I do not care.

As if having come to their senses, cannons begin to speak the words of thunder. Well, I am no stranger to them…

Black was biting his lips as he watched the battle raging in the sky. A tiny neat figure, the grace of alicorns and the power of ancient ones, the might of all fears and regrets that melted together—she deftly avoided almost every shot. His ears grew deaf from the roar of cannons. Ponyville was burning; the wreckage of destroyed and damaged ships fell onto the town like a rain of fire. The first house blazed up, then the second, then the third. Would his two bits burn or not?

The glow of pulsars, the magic light, the stars falling from heavens! Princess Luna was mauling the enemy fleet without mercy.

Black thought it was great. An inevitable spanking, his scolding and berating parents, all punishments would be in distant and unattainable future, like in a place somewhere far beyond, for now he saw the main thing. It had to be watched without closing the eyes and without blinking, only to remember all the details. “I’ll tell them,” Black whispered, “I’ll tell everyone how it was! About Princess Luna! She didn’t betray, she fought!” He imagined vivid visions of Bluffer’s tears and himself mocking that liar. The colt saw himself as a hero like it was him who fought in the sky.

The enemy ships groaned in the sound of explosions and farewell cries of mechanics, the fiery flowers opened their buds and made the enemy army melt like a candle near an open fire. Like a holiday, thought the foal, the real one; when would you see anything like that? Only two things were vague. Black strained his tired eyes, hoping to see tiny dots of fleeing pilots. He wanted to see the wondrous invention, big white shawls on which you could gently descend to the ground even without wings. But there were none of them.

But the second question irritated him more. Where was the army? Why did the Princess fight alone? Why was she taking every blow all alone? Where were they, those brave Wonderbolts? On impulse, he remembered how he had wanted to be a pegasus to be able to join the elite detachment of flyers. And then to shield the Princesses from a deadly blow during a terrible battle someday.

Nobody shielded her. All alone was the Moon of Nightmares. Horrifying laughter suddenly swept across the woods, shattering the air with the sound of breaking glass. Black pressed his ears to his head and felt an urge to crawl under the nearby stone. A wave of fear descended upon him and licked him as if tasting. And then it vanished just as swiftly as it had appeared.

The foal blinked, once again fixing his gaze on the clouds. Thousands of bats didn’t leave their night master and flew to join her. Like a legion of nightmares coming from the underworld, they blazed with fire.

The sky colossus faltered and stumbled, its pace stopped, its advance stricken back by an unprecedented attack. Black imagined that inside this huge ship, among the triumph of technology and mechanics, a huge lizard captain blinked in surprise and didn’t know what to do. His subordinated rushing through the decks and compartments, his operators scribbling records to the distant command... all afraid.

Luna turned into a star. Deadly, murderous, merciless. Black’s former enthusiasm instantly gave way to extreme horror when awareness crept into his mind like a snake. The Queen of the Night came not to stop the enemy fleet—but to punish. She was going to do justice to the brats who came up with the idea that they could come to her land with impunity.

The infinite horror became sweet and pleasant as if Black was looking at some mystical rituals being created. That was like something old and forgotten was revived from a deathly slumber before his eyes. That was like the return of a mythical hero who could single-hoofedly slay a giant. And now the giant was silent and blind, howling fearfully with its turbine engines. It was about to roar and run away in a sluggish retreat.

Remains of the former swarm of fighters hastened to leave the heavens of death. They thought that there was salvation in the bowels of the mothership. They wanted to dive under the steel of armoured plates and never, never again rise in the sky. Because the sky became a nightmare.

Black thought with disappointment that he had missed the very moment when it appeared. A single ship blazing brightly and teasing an observer with lights. So tiny so that it could only be marvelled how the ship fitted a lizard pilot’s massive body. It didn’t fly; it danced. An elegant dancer worthy of the Queen herself. His warning shots sounded like they asked for a dance. And Black wanted to know what would be Luna’s answer…

They are terrified. They tremble from power and might which they have never seen before. Their small brains managed to give birth to mechanical monsters, but now a simple idea both terrible and beautiful meanders into their thoughts like a snake: there will be no easy victory. And an easy defeat either.

My powers are not infinite. How long shots can be endured, shells be deflected, the shield be raised? A net of burns swells on my muzzle and legs and body, only to be instantly covered with new skin and fur. Magic.

The Savior would smirk a wry, predatory smile if he was there. He thought that magic is nothing, a grain of sand in comparison with self-sacrifice and infinite kindness. Everyone echoed him—all like parrots repeating the long-learned phrase word by word like a miraculous mantra. Magic? The desire to fight? No, we will caress our guest, we will show him how loving we are and how we deserve to live because cruelty is alien to us.

Do you remember, Celestia, how you stomped on the Queen of the Breezies when she wanted to put all of Equestria into a deep slumber? When you offered her our friendship, a shameful war indemnity and our lands, why did the tiny jerk turn her back on you and say that she would take it from ‘filthy lankies’ herself? When she said that she would reduce you and put you in a glass prison like a beautiful butterfly, why did you not bow? Rage and magic, strength and power! You punished the bitch as she deserved. You scourged her like a god who burned a presumptuous sinner with righteous fire—and you were right.

And you stopped only when those petty worms begged for mercy, their haughty pride replaced by indelible horror and dread. Not before the friendship they knelt, but before the strength. Do you remember? I wanted to hiss it right into your violet eyes and see the reaction of all who considered you a champion of friendship.

With sobs and shivers, the lizards pee in leather armchairs and scream for mummy, losing control over their ships. Their fear—white like milk, thick like a fog—flows to me in streams, just about to turn into a wild river. It fills me with power, returns the lost, heals my wounds. The laughter of the triumphant Goddess thunders over the heads of nonentities.

They flee from flaming bats and blazing stars, which fall from the heavens as if in hurry to fulfil someone’s desire. They run for their lives, saving the remnants of their defeated fleet. My heart pounds wildly: it is not the end, it is still not over. This cannot be! My mind is clouded with the realization of how weak our opponents have turned to be. I want to push further, until the end of the eternity itself, to cast down a fiery rain from the wreckage of desires and hopes to the earth. It is like when I was born of a grudge held by my little foolish self. How did they want to call my reign? Eternal night? Eternal pleasure…

Two shells explode nearby; the pilot of a tiny ship did not even aim at me. He fires in a precursory manner. Has he fallen in love? Or wants to play, teasing and exacerbating me? If so, he has succeeded.

The wind—screaming in the ears: Shall we dance? The lizard—performing a bizarre manoeuvre, flaunting in front of me, asking: Shall we dance? He knows that if I go into a wild attack, he will immediately hide under the protection of a thousand energy shields, like his brothers before. It did not save them. But it will save him, though.

Such a cavalier, with epaulettes and aiguillettes, hung with medals and dressed in a black jacket with a white knitted scarf, hiding his eye behind a view-lens! His face flashes a white-toothed grin of sharp teeth. His single eye reflects an endless series of battles. Winged, mechanical, beetle-like creatures—how many lives have been taken by him? How many partners has he asked for a dance of death? For how many has he become a rustle of deadly maracas?

The pilot asks me: Shall we dance? and extends a green claw. Should I blush in embarrassment or turn my nose up arrogantly?

The calm rhythm of the dance, measured like the life of a peasant, finds a way to my ears.

“Your Highness?” the cannons ask humbly, spitting shell by shell.

“My Majesty,” the pulsars answer them with pride and dignity.

Shall we dance? Yes, we shall! Play faster, ye orchestra of death! From the waltz to the merry Earth Pony branle! From the branle to the jaunty Pegasus polka! Let the Grim Reaper itself play our music. Let there be no Goddess nor Mortal among the wild dance today. On equal terms they are. Behold, all servants and plebs! On equal terms!

“How beautiful you are, my good lady,” his engine murmurs, performing an avoiding manoeuvre.

“I can say the same about you, my honest sir,” a flap of my tired wings echoes.

Play your music, Reaper! Your violin whines, striking rampageous sparks of fervour out of the strings, and through the heat of battle your flute revoices it. Who said that a flute is a peacemaker’s instrument? What does he know! Your double bass booms and thunders in the shells that split hearing in our ears. Like a clockwork watch your drum pounds, as if counting every moment and every second of the passionate dance.

But things are out of whack for the Reaper today. Its instruments play out of tune: the violin wails like a tortured cat, the flute dies down in the cacophony of noises, the drum loses the beat, and the bass seems to have all the strings broken. Is it the Unicorn lament coming?

“Dying is bad for health, isn’t it?”

“Yes, it is,” I say with a smile. Is it a duel? No, just a conversation between two dancers.

Manoeuvres, counter attacks, suicidal onslaughts and a sense of fear creeping occasionally into the soul—is it what dancers should talk about? But what if... what if one gets hit? Feathers flying, the starlit mane tangling and fading and hanging low? The alien mechanism screeching its swan song, muffling the curses and the gnashing of teeth, taking the pilot into fire and oblivion? Do we have to care about aviation terms today? It is better to see what a good whisk we have made.

The Reaper throws the instruments away and jumps on a table, squatting and stomping boldly, tap-dancing, clapping over the head and over the ears, setting the rhythm and asking us to adjust. It is as if saying: Whatever you want, I’m not going to go away alone. Either with a bonnie lady on my arm or with a noble gent, does it matter to me?

The Reaper does not care, but we do.

“What a pity, milady,” his right wing brattles, falling off completely. A pulsar sliced through it. The dangerous manoeuvre ends in failure. The ship lurches, limps, then stumbles. Like a bird, it rushes to the ground.

“Indeed.” Her Majesty should not cry, that’s what I have always told myself. Her Majesty should not cry, but I want it so badly. And then there comes a strike—not of the ship crashing on the ground but of a shell bursting through my shield. The searing heat, the smell of scorched feathers, the death cry of the barrier broken like a shattered glass.

“How quickly you did follow me, milady,” my partner’s ship comments sadly before the earth receives him in its cold embrace, the words of the dead one ascending to me in a ritual dance of fire.

My wings try to restore balance but fail. Thy goddess has come to an end, brave pilot, all powers lost in the brisk dance…

They swirled and converged like two tiny stars. Like a couple of long lost lovers, like random passers-by, they rushed past each other. And only the wind was there to witness them.

Black was biting his lips. He didn’t know for whom he should cheer. For Princess Luna, the Black Goddess and the Lady of the Tenebrous Nightmares, or for the bold pilot who grasped a hand-wrought steering wheel in his claws?

Like being in caresses of love, one incited and lured and deceived the other. It was as if they were about to ride each other in a bed. The colt thought he should have had to blush at the idea. But he didn’t. Some voice inside him just wanted to say that it was beautiful. And it seemed like there was neither threat to all Equestria nor the Savior waiting somewhere for his sacrificial hour; all that was important was going on here. He had to see, to find them! To notice them in a series of flashing silhouettes and images. The smoke trail, another one, the flickering trace of a pulsar. Was it even possible?

The pilot whirled; he couldn’t stand the pace, didn’t react in time, sprained his leg in the middle of the swashbuckling dance. His ship flashed up like a match just from one hit. How little there was enough to perish... into nonexistence, into oblivion, into eternity—Blacksheep could pick up thousands of words. And none of them fitted what was happening.

The colossus wasn’t asleep. Fallen but not defeated, it decided that winning at any cost is still winning. A sound came as if from nowhere: a bolt of the giant cannon loudly clanked. When did they find time to point it? Tracking the couple’s manoeuvres was a hard row to hoe. But they did it. An igneous flower bloomed over the earth, its fiery petals falling down. Black watched it.

...Princess died? Where was she? Princess... Goddess, she couldn’t, she shouldn’t, she mustn’t... His dimpled cheeks, dirty and covered with soot after the night fight, forced the treacherous tears to take branching paths towards the earth. And then a gleam of hope helped him to notice her—the wrathful storm of fury, ready to punish villains for their infamy.

It should not be like this, Luna! It just should not! The wind begs, the wind asks me to back off: Come back! Not for so long ago it has grumbled discontentedly; now it begs.

I am so tired, my wanderer wind, I can not. Falling. The wings do not obey. And the black muzzle of the head cannon is pointed at me as if deciding whether it was enough or to add more fire.

The rebel Princess, the brave Princess, the foolish Princess. Come on, give up your idea. I will blow as hard as I can, I will change your course, and you will gently touch the ground. Let them burn the town, let this ‘hueman’—or whatever his name is—sacrifice himself, let the enemy fleet go into eternity.

O ye wind! A vagabond, a friend, a lover. At nights you caressed my body. In moonlit twilights when I wanted to cry into the pillow, holding my grief down, you brought me coolness. You whispered pleasant nonsense in my ears. You told me about funny fears of others and things that were in the day that I had not seen.

But why are you doing this, Luna? The wind does not want to calm down and whips the face of—Her Majesty?—Her Highness only harder. What are you going to accomplish?

The wind reads my thoughts, seeing through me, understanding the simple plan which the lizards still fail to realize. It seems to them that my cold corpse will collapse on their hull like a long-awaited terrible trophy, like a generous payment for all ruined lives. They think that their ship will sail to the mountain where Celestia is waiting with the young upstart and the alien hero to show them my dead body. Like a spit in our face: All your efforts are nought but mud and dust.

They do not realize, but the wind does. I will descend upon them not as a defeated carcass, but as the last blow of—Her Highness?—Her Majesty. I will become their terror, their nightmare, their pain. Like a bullet through the thickness of the armour, through the ligature of wires, through the complexity of mechanisms. Breaking it and breaking myself.

Spread your wings, Luna! Spread your wings, my girl! I will catch you, and then we will fly away so you can have some sleep, and everything will be okay tomorrow.

No, my little wind, it will not. Everything will be worse, only worse. After these reptiles there will be other ones, and some new disaster after them, and so on. It will never be okay.

Why are you doing this, why? Is it heroism, false bravado, a childish protest? What are you going to prove and for whom, Luna? Do you think that they will cry? That Celestia will visit your grave, shedding tears, all the mistakes admitted at once? Do you think that they... those insignificant beings whom you have decided to save and protect... that THEY will appreciate it? They will erect a memorial to you, and the next day birds will be shitting on it. They will forget. In a day? No, in an hour. You, all your existence, will be remembered only on the day when it is time to go trick-and-treat.

What is it for, Luna? What for? They can do it without you!

The wind is angry. It does not want to accept the bitter truth. It is afraid not of my fury, but of losing me. They say you love the one for whom you worry. Thank you, wind, I am pleased. But I can not.

They—both invaders and a Savior—come from the outside, from other worlds. Because we are weak. As if the universe itself knows this and wants something from us. As if each one of our new enemies is an attempt, a hint that we cannot understand. Since when has it started? Was it the moment when we began to solve all troubles with friendship, when we lost our power, entrusting our lives to the whimpering of promises and conversations? Friendship! Friendship on any terms, everything but war! Everything if there is no blood, no violence. Not the hardness of the ground, but the softness of pillows!

We do not fight. Really, why? After all, the mirror—shatter, you damned glass!—will give us salvation. Do you hear, wind? Do you hear the town burning there, below us, the town which we decided to sacrifice? And why? Because we are scared. What if the enemy loses a drop of his blood? What if he gets hurt? Why do we think about it, why not this scum under us?

There you run, parasites. Rushing along the deck, fussing like a bunch of tiny cockroaches. The cannon barrel that was silent all the time wakes up and changes the direction. Will I get my turn before a shot or will I not? Energy shields wrap the ship one after another in layers, like a carapace, spending last bits of power. Have they realized? Or does the ship’s captain like to reinsure? Whatever sense it has now…

I am the strength, do you hear me, wind? Born of strength, possessing strength, ruling by strength! And I do not want to rule feeble insects! There is a place for survival, might and struggle in my eternal night. Weakness, though, is not afraid of nightmares—but relishes them.

Tomorrow is not going to be good, my dear friend. We are to watch conquerors appearing. We are to hide behind every stone, staring at them as they save us. We are not to save, but to be saved. We, adults? No, we are silly and carefree children, happy from the fact that a heroical do-gooder will be coming to protect us. Eternal children that do not want to grow up. We are to pray to the mirror, praising it as a false god. Poor harvest? O Savior, come to us! Rebelling weather? O Savior, come to us! A broken barn? O Savior, come to us! Degradation, that is it: interminable, merciless and inevitable. What kind of wretches are we if for the salvation of our—OUR!—world we need a sacrifice from the outside, from another world?

Equestria will grow weak, becoming a special place for the manifestation of someone else’s wet dreams, their dissatisfaction, their despondency. And we will be happy with the way we are used. I do not want to see this, wind, even from above in the Moon. I do not want…