• Member Since 21st Mar, 2013
  • offline last seen Yesterday


Mostly harmless.


Luna has a secret.

A secret that she's kept close to her heart ever since her return from the moon, a secret she's hidden for so long that she's no longer even sure if it's real. At least until it returns to haunt her, and she has no choice but to confide in Celestia and hope her sister trusts that she hasn't gone mad.

It's time to tell Celestia about the circles.

Chapters (5)
Comments ( 151 )

The king marks his return once more.

Well, this was incredibly unsettling.
You've definitely got a knack for this genre, not what I was expecting at all!

Never start a captivating fic right before bedtime. This is good, very well written. Let's see where this goes.

I applebucking love cosmic horror.

Well that's cool. Wonder how these two will make the big portal, then, as it's unlikely to be sun- and moon-themed.
Also, would the pony of ash have failed, had the Nightmare not gathered enough resistance on the twin moon? It seems like it needed both Celestia and Luna to make the big portal; if Luna had been devoured then, the eclipse would have never happened.

a total eclipse of the heart

So everybody just...died?

Heart and Soul.

I was actually kinda hopping you would leave it a bit more vague at the end, let the dread be the unknown, but it's still really good. Though this seems more like a Discord problem than an alicorn one, he would hate anything that makes a world so still and empty, not to mention he's the only person in the show shown to be able to punch holes in reality.

It would also be interesting to see Luna's reaction to being reminded to why it told her to "come home". Is it just a shapeless evil? Is it the damned souls of her world? Lot's of neat ideas can come from this, hope it gets more traction.

Harmless? Oh please!! I still carry the scar you gave me in a knife fight.......................

A wonderfully horrific story and I can't thank you enough for giving us this gift of a world to play in. From start to finish it was simply fantastic and it will take a well loved place among my favorites.

For some reason this chapter didn't show up until I reloaded, weird.

A little on the nose with the whole endless cycle thing but it's clean ending, just a bit boring IMO. I would have left off at the last chapter but that's just me.

Huh this feels pretty familiar

Why does the cover art remind me of the One Ring? :rainbowhuh:

How delightfully terrifying, I'll send you the bill for my therapy.

A new story from Grimm? Definite "read ASAP"!

Holy shit, this unsettled me. Even an hour after i finished the story i still feel my skin crawl like something's watching me.

Please, keep writing these stories. They're fantastic.

Well that's not creepy or anything.

A very clever critter that, fishing for new meals by exploiting the multiverse's predisposition for reflections.

I feel it would have been stronger if he didn't think, or have eyes, or form. It starts with horror and the unknown and by the end it kind of transition into "wow, that guys a dick. I hope someone pushes him down the stairs next time."

I rarely ever read horror at all, but this enraptured me not sure why it was rated horror tho.

This sent shivers up my spine...


Also, would the pony of ash have failed, had the Nightmare not gathered enough resistance on the twin moon? It seems like it needed both Celestia and Luna to make the big portal; if Luna had been devoured then, the eclipse would have never happened.

... Huh, yeah, good point.
I second this one, Grimm. Why was the entity trying to get Luna to "Come home" if it needed her in Celestia's universe to open the portal? It's literally why it let Celestia come and bring Luna with her in the first place.
Also, what's Soul's full name? Soul Swirl? Gale Soul? Or More opposite? Tranquil Soul or Quiet Soul?
Also also, everyone dies? You really gonna do me like that? Thanks, I didn't need that serotonin, anyway.

Ah, I think you're taking the 'devouring' a little too literally in this instance. Even on the 'other moon' it was trying to do exactly as it did in the end, eating her but not necessarily physically. It would have sent her back through afterwards to do what it needed her to. We only have Luna's perspective, after all, and she didn't really understand what it was trying to do until too late, and that all she did on the moon was delay the inevitable.

Bah, yet ANOTHER 'eye-tentacles-shadows-blah-blah' Lovecraftian horror and the world ends in total desolation.

And yet, if I were to do this EXACT same thing, and then throw a 'God' in to destroy it, people would whine and bitch and say it's awful.

You grant darkness such power... that speaks volumes to me of what dwells within.

Lmao, yeah, of course. Because thats not how this genre works. If you throw in a God to destroy it, it ceases to be a Lovecraftian Horror story and becomes your average fantasy, where gods war and the things from beyond the abyss can be punched to death.

9779620 *tilts heads* But they can be punched to death.


I just find them annoying, as annoying as OP OCs. They have no character, just ill-defined unstoppable power. After seeing this several hundred times, I've come to notice that they all end up being pretty much the same. There's nothing unique to do with any of them.

I suppose the 'fear' comes to those who are still afraid of the dark. I can see in the dark. And the things which try to cover themselves in darkness flee from me when my eye falls upon them. They have many eyes. I need only One. (Alondro, the Ultimate Cosmic Horror... those who met him at Bronycon will concur)

I would stop reading stories like this, only I keep entertaining the vague notion that somehow at least one person will finally manage to make these things more than just blunt objects of desolation.

Grimm #28 · Aug 13th, 2019 · · 1 · 5. End ·

While I kind of see where you're coming from, I don't think 'fear of the dark' is really the root of monsters like this one, or even 'fear of death'. It's more about fear of insignificance. In general, I think humans like to think of themselves as smart, as powerful, and monster stories usually try to bounce against that notion. Here, the 'scary' part is that, for all the ponies' power and intelligence, they could barely even comprehend the thing on the other side of the circles, let alone find some way to fight it. Obviously, if the thing could be killed then that emphasis on insignificance is entirely gone, which would be missing the point. Either way, I'm sorry this story wasn't for you.

I don't think you understand the point of this genre.

If you threw another 'God' into the story, then that would entirely defeat the purpose of said story. From what you've explained in both this story and mine, you don't seem to understand what 'cosmic horror' is or means. Cosmic horror is about the fear of the unknown and unknowable. It's about the utter insignificance of man (or ponies in this case) compared to forces that are beyond purpose or understanding. In these types of stories, people (and ponies) are meant to be powerless and afraid of what they don't or can't understand. and apparently the mere concept of this seems alien to you for some reason. Sure, you can probably find or make stories like that without all the tentacled horrors, but that generally comes part and parcel with cosmic horror, so yeah, you're gonna see a lot of that in these kinds of stories.

With all that in mind, and from what I've seen of your comments, perhaps it's best if you don't read stories like these, because I guarantee you, if you didn't like my story or this one, or any story similar to those, you're just going to be disappointed every time, because they're all going to have the same theme.

I'd have enjoyed an alternate ending of them sealing their realm off entirely instead of having the cycle continue. On that note, shouldn't this have a tragedy tag? Two entire worlds just straight up died with a third hinted to follow.


Yep, seconded. And yes, this is pretty much what that tag is designed for, I think.

*Takes a second before this sinks in*

Holy sh-- **transmission lost** :pinkiegasp:

One glimmer of hope I can take from this is that unless I mis-read something, every world this thing attacks is thousands of years more advanced than the previous one. Sooner or later this thing is going to attack a world that's capable of fighting back.

That was a good read, quite satisfying.
I liked the idea of using the eclipse to form the portal circle. And maybe Soul will not make the same mistake as Celestia and tell Heart the truth. And I have my usual creepy story sound track on loop, Mass Effect 2's galaxy map theme - and I hereby declare the shadow monster the Reapers. Hacket out.

Made me think of Azothoth, at the center of the universe who devours everything... maybe they need to use the monotonous thin tune of flutes to keep him asleep just like Azothoth?

9779657 To me, that's far less meaningful when the GREAT BIG THING is just some malevolent intelligence. Then it just becomes an enemy. It's actually far more chilling to me when it's something that destroys without any intent to do so. When it's truly a force of nature. THEN it's far more tied to the angle of insignificance.

We can scowl at the mean-spirited boy plucking the wings of butterflies, but can we truly be angry at a hurricane, though it wipes out an entire island of them? The former we can fully understand. The latter gives no answer to the question of 'Why did you do that?" because randomness has no answer as it has no motivation.

To me, no matter the scale of the imagined cosmic horror, when it's simply destroying out of spite or hunger or whatever motive it has, it's just another mean-spirited little boy who needs a good spanking. Giving it a motive makes it no different than any human cruelty.

I'm far more concerned about a random black hole screaming into our Solar system and wiping out everything than I am of some generic Lovecraftian horror, based on the stories of a morbidly-depressed guy who was petrified of higher math he couldn't grasp.

9779739 Then what is the point? I do believe I grasp it entirely. It's simply that I'm utterly disaffected by it. When you know as much as I do, childish fears vanish as what is truly disturbing becomes known. And even then, I do battle rather than cower.

9779790 But this creature DID have a purpose. It was stated. It had a defined goal. I did completely understand it. As my longer post below elaborated, I see such cosmic horrors as merely larger versions of cruel, selfish children tormenting insects.

To give a classic example, I found "Alien" a very effective and chilling tale as there was no clue as to what the creature was, where it came from, what it wanted... aside from killing. It was a random beast.

Then "Aliens" came along, and it was a good action flick, but held no terror whatsoever. By the time an explanation for the creatures and The Company (unnamed in the original film, for the better in my opinion) the entire franchise had become a laughing stock.

If a horror is meant to be based on the 'unknown', then it must remain truly unknown... truly 'alien'. Once we give it goals, a direction, a voice... it becomes nothing more than a demented human being, no matter how powerful it is, as it's always possible to find actual people with such ideations, lacking only the means to carry their twisted fantasies out. I should think a truly horrible monster like Epstein would bear out that fact.

No creature on Earth is less deserving of power than a human who craves it. No creature on Earth would be more dangerous once having obtained it than one who lusted after it. The power itself DOES NOT CORRUPT, mind you... but those who thirst for it tend to already possess the intent to do evil with it.

I could write a story that would have you singing my praises for decades. It would haunt you and nettle you and prick at your mind in the quiet hours at the edges of the day. You'd mull over it time and again, picking at loose ends only to find they lead to even more knots.

How does it feel to know that you'll never get that story because I never release anything until it's finished, and I never actually finish anything?

9780507 Like all the Game of Thrones fans waiting for Martin to finish his damn books? :trollestia:

Like I still do waiting to know what happened with the technology discovered by Teddy Ruxpin in the series that ended on a cliffhanger in 1987 just as it was getting interesting with Quellor seeking the 6 crystals of pow-... wait a minute... ANOTHER mythical set of 6 crystals?! This MUST be part of a subliminal message by the Illuminati! :pinkiegasp:

Uhm… or just a fictional contrivance resulting from the fact that pretty much everything is derivative to some extent and the Doctor Who series "The Key to Time" with its 6 Segments had been really popular a couple years earlier. Also we later found out there was a 7th Crystal. :twilightblush:

It ended like this, from Wikipedia: "As soon as Teddy was done explaining to everyone of what the seven crystals do, without them realising, a rat bat took the seventh crystal and returned it back to Quellor at MAVO's Headquarters as ordered, putting it back in his Black Box but using the memory to listen in to everything Teddy said about the crystals and what they can do. Teddy at the beginning of the recorded memory said "That's why I will try everything I can to keep the crystals safe." With Quellor saying "Which won't be for long, Illiop." He laughed evilly whilst the airship flew over MAVO towards the Land of Ying, ending in a cliffhanger."

All us kids back then were rather pissed.

Or the show Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future, which also ended right after a huge attack and the revelations of the evil forces. Or the show Pandamonium. Or "The Pretender" which just dragged out for so damned long people lost interest and they STILL failed to clear up the mysteries in 2 TV movies afterward. Or "Nowhere Man" starring Bruce Greenwood, which ended right after we find out that pretty much everything we'd learned might all be a lie, basically yanking the rug out from under the feet of every fan, giving them all the finger, and running off.

I am quite familiar with never getting endings. :facehoof: It was due to this that I came to realize the power of trolling.

Yes, in response to so many disappointments on TV, I turned to a life of PURE EVIL to avenge myself on the human race, and became master of \b\… after which my henchmen created the supreme legion of trolls, 4CHAN!!! MUWAH HA HA HA HA HA!!! (still a better villain origin story than Starlight's)

Victory...a hollow and ridiculous notion.

We are born of this thing, made from it. And we will be returned to it, in time.

The great family of man -- a profusion of errant flesh. Multiplying. Swarming. Living. Dying.

Until the stars align in their inexorable formation, and what sleeps is roused once more, to hatch from this fragile shell of earth and rock, and bring our inescapable end...

So seek solace in the manner befitting your lineage, and take up your nugatory vigil.

Haunted forever by that sickening prose, echoing through the infinite blackness of space and time:

"Ruin Has Come To Our Family."

If unexplained endings vex you, then you really wouldn't like what I write. I like it when things in stories happen for little discernible reason. I enjoy writing little sub-threads in stories that end up going nowhere, or that drop out before the payoff. I definitely like leaving cliffhanger endings, then never returning to them.

To me, it's the not knowing that I enjoy. A sense of "not being at home", if you will. Stories make sense because the elements to those stories are contained within. If something happens, it happens because the logic of the story says it will, or at least promises it will make sense: the reader will find out the book appeared because of this, or the characters knew x because of that. There's a long series of connections that all exist within the logic of the story being told. The reader assumes they're going to eventually find out the reasons behind everything.

But real life doesn't happen like that. Good or bad things happen, and nobody knows why. They might have explanations, somewhere out there, but you might never find out what it is.

As an example, were I to write this story (and a good story it is too, I enjoyed it), Luna would have vanished. Celestia wouldn't have been able to find her. There's the sense of something horrible happening, something foreboding and tragic. Something was wrong, and wouldn't ever be right. Then, the end. Maybe, if I was feeling nice, Celestia would know of a way to go looking for Luna, and would prepare for her journey... and then the end. No payoff, the rest is up to the reader to decide.

I both hated and loved ShortSkirtsandExplosion's decision to never finish End of Ponies. Something horrible happened in the world, and we got a long, wonderfully written story. But the story only got about half way- then that was the end. It gave me a sense of void afterwords, like there was so much potential and that potential would forever be suspended, there but never actually made manifest.

I don't know, maybe I'd be shown to be a horrible writer, if I ever actually published what I wrote. Maybe we'll never know *shrug*
To be frank, it's probably not nearly as good or interesting as I think it is.

Great story, Grimm. I quite liked a lot of it's aspects, especially how things tended to be cyclical in the end; like a circle. Some of the literary devices could have been used a bit less, like the blending of sentences and words into eachother. I get that it was meant to portray an increase in speed in the story, and it was supposed to build up just how intrusive the words were into Luna's mind... it just didn't work for me. But what do I know?

Again, a great story. I'd slap a would-read-again/10 on it.

Hot damn, Grimm, this was chilling. And not just a little, a LOT. I honestly didn't know what to expect from one scene to the next, and that feeling of dread came through the characters with a ton of intensity behind it. I'll admit I usually avoid darker stuff, but this was amazing! So glad I read it.

I mean yeah sure, I didn't need to sleep the rest of the week.


Excellent story. The suspense was killing me through the whole read—I had to keep setting it aside and force myself to come back and finish it. Well done!

I have to wonder how this would have played out if Luna hadn't made it back through the circle on the moon, especially if it had managed to kill her.

I won't refute what's said about this story, as I haven't fully read it all yet, and In this case I will rescind my statement that you don't understand cosmic horror—for the most part. I'll even say that I agree with a good amount of what you're saying. It could be argued that things like hurricanes and black holes are more terrifying because they actually exist. Hell, the fact that our world is less than an atom in the face of the larger universe terrifies me, but it fascinates me at the same time. This is why I love cosmic horror. It's because the cosmic horror genre gives that fear and fascination a face and can be encountered.

The other reason I agree with you, and the reason I think you don't fully understand what I mean, is that the fear of a 'force of nature' you talk about could also be part of cosmic horror. It doesn't have to be a creature, but it usually is. If you want to keep searching for that elusive cosmic horror story that doesn't have a creature as its focus, then good on you, but be aware that those are generally few and far between. Another thing I feel I should add though in response to your claims about 'not fearing what the darkness hides' and 'fighting the unknown', that's easy to say in a comment, but it's entirely a different thing when faced with reality. Even if you weren't afraid of standing up against some horrific event or entity, it would behoove you to take stock of what you're getting yourself into and place more value on your life rather than simply charge in with bull headed machismo.

Maybe that's not what you meant, but that's how what you're saying comes off to me.

Holy hell man. This was dark, scary, thrilling, and phenomenally well written. You built the tension slow and steady, right up until the end, which I did *not* see coming. Fantastic work, absolutely wonderful.

Hold on, the solution to this is the same as trying to figure out if a linked list loops or not isn't it? Walk backwards or start bouncing like pinkie pie.

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