• Published 22nd Jan 2020
  • 1,262 Views, 248 Comments

Never Alone - SoloBrony



It's time for Cozy Glow to get back out in the real world and figure out where she fits into Equestria. She's tried superheroics, supervillainy, and accidentally destroyed the world; now she has to try being normal. Yeah, probably not.

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Mom

Author's Note:

When someone is miserable enough, the worst punishment they can get is a quiet, comfortable room with no distractions.

I sat waiting in my room while Sunset tattled on me to Mom downstairs. I knew I was going to get it as soon as Mom came up here, and there was nothing I could do about it but wait for the inevitable.

I couldn't even wait a day after getting back to get into trouble. I'm such an idiot!

There's no way Luna will let you stay with her now.

I scowled and flopped back on my bed.

Oh, come on! Mom's not going to kick me out over something this minor... right?

Minor? 'Oh, gee, it turns out the filly who almost destroyed Equestria was just fooling around with dangerous alchemy, didn't tell you about the stash of bits she brought over from the other timeline, and clearly hasn't given up her lust for power!' That's probably what Sunset is telling her right now! You should have known you were already on thin ice, so when Luna kicks you out you'll deserve every bit of it!

I curled up into a ball and tried to focus as hard as I could on anything else. It worked, for a while, but it was only a matter of time until my thoughts drifted back to what was worrying me.

Your real mom was right about you, you know.

I cringed and curled tighter.

No. Nonono—

It's true. You couldn't even be obedient for a single day! You only accepted Luna as your 'mom' because she didn't stand in your way! You're no daughter, just a monster, just like she said!

I bit into my covers so my voice wouldn't carry downstairs, and desperately tried to muffle my own crying.

It was just a little mistake! I just wanted to feel useful again!

You wanted to feel powerful, because that's what monsters are.

I kept trying to block it out, but the memories were coming, now. I hissed as I couldn't block out the face of my mother, and bit down so hard my jaw and teeth ached.

Why can't you be like your sister?

Right, just be quiet and demure and hide in my room whenever you're around, then sneak out whenever you're drunk!

Why can't you do anything right? Fillies half your age do a better job and they never complain! I'm sick of having to do every little thing around here! I swear I must have dropped you on your head for you to be this stupid!

Nothing ever satisfies you when I do it! I've tried everything! You only ask me to do chores so you can yell at me!

You do nothing but abuse your father and me, you know that?

I—

Ungrateful little bitch!

Don't think I don't know the games you're playing! Your little tricks won't work on me you stupid bitch!

I wasn't—

Your teacher called me about your grades. Don't you think I have enough to deal with without having to explain to her why my stupid daughter isn't paying attention in class?!

No dinner until your grades get better! You're getting fat anyway!

But I—

Why am I hearing from your sister that you talked at school that we're not feeding you? It's not like we're starving you! I swear you make such a mountain out of every molehill, and you're always up to your little games! What happens in this family stays in this household, you hear me?!

So you went to your father, huh? You think you can play the two of us against each other? Do you have any idea what that stallion goes through every day to put food on your table? And then you bother him with this!

I didn't—!

All you ever do is make everypony miserable.

I should have stopped at your sister.

I'LL KILL HER! I'LL KILL HER I'LL KILL HER I'LL KILL HER!

I tore at the cover, whipping it back and forth as I desperately vented my anger – at her, at myself, at Discord for not just turning me to stone or throwing me in Tartarus or anything but this. It took a few seconds for the haze to clear, for me to realize I'd torn the nice bedspread Mom had given me.

I dropped it and dropped onto my rump, panting and trying to wipe the snot off of my muzzle.

I'm a bad filly.

Now you're getting it.

I heard the clip-clop of hooves ascending the stairs, and it sent a thrill of terror through me. I rushed to clean off my face, to try to hide the fact that I had been crying – until I realized that was a reflex from my old parents. I hesitated.

What, going to play for sympathy?

It's not manipulative to just be honest!

Oh wow, you almost believe that! It won't stop her from kicking you out, you know.

Mom's not like that.

I heard a knock at the door, and it sent chills through me. I grimaced and tried to call out, only to croak at first. I cleared my throat and called, "Come in!"

Mom gently opened the door, peeking in at me as she slid in. I saw her eyes widen at the sight of me, flicking over to the bed cover. "Cozy, what happened?!"

She started in towards me, and for a moment I seized up in panic, holding out a hoof. She halted, and I realized she just intended to hug me – but that wasn't any good, either!

I don't want to undercut her with my stupid tantrums!

"Don't worry a-about it. I-I was just being stupid."

Mom balked at that, looking at me like I was a crazy pony. "Cozy, you are very clearly upset! I am not just going to ignore that!"

I grimaced and rubbed my face.

How is it I manage to even buck up getting scolded?!

"C-can we just—I'm sorry, I just want to skip to the part where you yell at me. I was just being stupid about something, it's no big deal."

She really dig hug me then, clambering onto the bed and pulling me tight. I tried to pull away, but she didn't let go. "Cozy, no. Do not try to push me away when you are hurt!"

I groaned. "I just, I get it, okay? You need to yell at me because I did something bad, and I don't want you to think I'm playing some sort of game to get out of it!"

Mom held me there for a silent few moments, cradling me back and forth. "Cozy, I did not come here to yell at you. It is okay to be upset, to need me, regardless of what the situation is. You know that even if I reprimand you, it does not mean I do not love you, right?"

My head swam trying to take all of that in. Always okay to be upset? Even if she reprimands me?

It was simultaneously so obvious and so alien I didn't know what to make of it. I felt my muzzle scrunch up like she'd just tried to explain magical theory with a cheese metaphor.

"I-I don't... what are you saying?"

"My meaning is that I do not ever wish you to be afraid of me, Cozy. Even when we have our differences, it is okay. I shan't pretend I never lose my temper, but I shall never intend to do so – not with you. Whatever I may say, it comes from a place of concern and love. Can you accept that?"

I'd manipulated an entire school into overthrowing the only adult in clear view during a crisis, but right then I was drawing a blank. I wanted to say yes, just because it was expected of me, but it just made no sense.

"I... I don't know?"

Mom pulled me in tighter for a moment, like I'd just hurt her with my words.

"Oh, Cozy... I hope you can trust me, given time."

"I do trust you! I just..."

"Shh, it is alright. I understand that it will take time. I want you to be honest; you need not rush into anything. Just breathe, for now."

I did that. We sat in silence, her cradling me, and I just breathed and tried to relax. I felt myself start crying again after a while as the tension eased, and she heard me sniffle and glanced down.

"Cozy...?"

"Don't worry about it. I'm just... just breathing."

She seemed to accept that, and we resumed our silence for a little while before she spoke up again.

"You are very advanced for your age, Cozy. I shan't talk down to you like a little child. I want to know... what do you think of what you did?"

I sniffled, wracking my brain. "It was stupid—"

Mom squeezed me gently again. "Do not say such things about yourself! Cozy, you are not stupid, and advanced alchemical experiments certainly are not stupid, even if they might be... other things."

I winced, cataloguing away 'stupid' as a bad word with Mom.

Don't be an idiot. She wants you to stop thinking of yourself that way, not just stop saying it.

I sucked in a breath, and tried to re-evaluate her question, rather than just what she wanted to hear.

"It was... disobedient?"

Mom quirked an eyebrow down at me. "I don't recall prohibiting you from practicing alchemy. And did I not give you significant freedom in your training?"

I blinked a few times at that. "I guess so... I just thought, since I'd caused a problem, you'd be... mad?"

Mom laughed softly, shaking her head. I didn't see it, but I felt it against my mane.

"No, dear. I am not mad, I was simply worried. I accept that you will do risky things, but there is a line between that and unnecessary recklessness. You may always simply ask for my help – you know that, don't you?"

I fidgeted, my mind racing for the right answer. I tried to short-circuit that by answering before I'd even thought of anything. "I-I... I don't know? I guess, I guess I don't. I was, um, I was trying to become more powerful, and I thought ponies would be angry at me if they knew that."

Mom just tousled my hair and smiled down at me. "And why did you want more power?"

I glanced away from her. "I wanted to keep being a hero."

Mom nodded, her smile still just as broad. "I know, dear. I know how important that is to you, and I support you in that. It's okay. You don't need to go behind my back to do that. We shall work up to that together."

I snuggled into her and thought about it. "I'll... I'll try. And I'll come to you for help if I think I need it with anything. A-and I'll try to be less... arrogant. Because that's what I was, thinking I could mix that potion all on my own even though I don't have the earth pony sensitivity I had as an alicorn."

Mom snickered. "You will master it, given time. It simply takes more practice."

I snickered back, and for a moment I marveled at the fact that I felt well enough to do so. She'd come up, and rather than attacking me, she had just chipped away at all of the misery and panic I felt. Instead, I just felt an inner warmth.

Like warmth radiating from your bones...

I felt my face stretch out into a smile without meaning to, the warmth on Mom's coat as I started crying again. She looked down in surprise. "Cozy? Are you alright?"

"Yeah, it's just... I love you, Mom."

Mom froze for a moment, then smiled softly. "Oh, Cozy."