• Published 14th Feb 2020
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Imperial Revision - The Sound of Loneliness

What would you do if you already had everything? Or everything you wanted. Her Majesty Nightmare Moon has recently discovered there is more to life than war, intrigues and edicts. Luna is trying to be helpful. She has no choice.

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Somber Visit

“Your Majesty?” Cadance pulled Nightmare Moon out of her thoughts. The Empress stared at her Princess in a mute inquiry,
“Your Majesty, how was your travel?” Cadance repeated her question.

“Oh...I am sorry, I must have drifted away.” Nightmare Moon tried to remember the train, “I suppose, Rarity did well organizing our departure, thank you, Your Highness.” Сadance widened her eyes.

“Oh, Cadance! The train was wonderful!” Celestia rapidly intervened. “Thank you for providing it!”

“...Yes, thank you,” Nightmare Moon tried to soften her flub.

“Agh... Luna!” Nightmare Moon internally addressed her host. “Couldn’t you tell me what she was asking? The only thing I now lack is insulting Cadance, of all ponies.”

“...I am sorry. I wasn’t paying attention either. You and my sister always have been handling it yourselves.” Luna sighed, “Sorry for being useless again.”

“...Sorry, Luna.”

“It’s alright. I understand.”

“No, I mean it, sorry. I am the Empress after all.”

“Your Majesty?” Cadance asked again.


“Cadance, leave Her Majesty be for now!” Celestia rescued her once again. “Don’t you see she has a matter to contemplate?”

“But, aunty...” Celestia slowly and very deliberately shook her head, “I...see. Your Majesty, shall you join us for the supper?”

“Thank you, Princess, but I think I’ll head for my room now. The travel was quite exhausting.” Cadance gave a nod.

“Of course, Your Majesty. Have a pleasant stay.”

“Thank you, Your Highness.”

Nightmare Moon walked behind the corner, before sighing relief.

“Luna, can you remind me to thank your sister for bailing me out of this? She has been nothing but help.” Nightmare Moon quickened to her room. She could use some rest indeed.

“Nightmare, you've been doing great. I know how you feel.” Nightmare Moon smiled lightly.

“You know from experience, don’t you?”

“Yeah, I know. Don't worry, you'll pull through. My sister will watch over you 'till you do.”

“Thanks, Luna. You are very far from useless, you know?”

“Always here for you.”

Nightmare Moon snaked through the empty hallways, eventually arriving at the guest quarters. Cadance, of course, provided her very best room.
The Empress decided not to head to the dream realm just yet. Instead, she ventured straight for the balcony. What a dreamy place, she thought, leaning on the railing. It reminded her of Canterlot, before the Changeling War. Back then most of the ponies still prefered daylight, with only her servants and thestrals following the night.
Perhaps she could find solace amongst her bat-winged flock? Thestrals were elusive even at night, but followed her without question or doubt. She was their goddess after all. Perhaps even a friend?

“Hello, My Love,” someone whispered right into Nightmare’s ear, causing her to recoil dramatically. “Don't fear, I can't harm you even if I tried now.”

“Sombra.” Luna guessed. The King's gassy form floated over to Nightmare's face in confirmation.

“I was wondering if you would come to see me again sometime. I must say, I like your new seeming. Black always suited you, Luna. You also took a new name, I hear? You are Nightmare Moon now. It serves its purpose, but you always will be Luna for me. My Love, I have a request, one you would enjoy fulfilling...” Sombra's now quite material face began approaching,

“Sombra, wait, I am no-” The King didn’t allow her to finish, covering her mouth.
Nightmare Moon desperately tried to pull away, but there was no place she could escape to where the King’s form won’t follow her. She quickly surrendered vain attempts of escaping Shadow King's affection.

“No, you are not Luna,” the King confidently affirmed, having pulled away. The King immediately changed the tone: “Who are you? And why do you wear her face?”

“She is here,” Nightmare Moon astoundedly touched her temple.

“Ah...I understand now.” Sombra knowingly smiled, “I’ve met your kind before. She was lovely. Tried to fool me into letting her take over my body. I showed her what a real Nightmare looks like. When I was done with her, I only had to evict her from my head and watch her crawl to the nearest wall so she could crack her own head.” The Empress shivered, no reason not to believe, “I think I had her buried somewhere here. Just to commemorate our time together.” The King smiled again at the memory.

Nightmare Moon felt the gas running over her back, she was surrounded.

“Now tell me: how a pathetic body snatcher, such as you, could defeat someone like Luna in the battle over her own body? Has My Love fallen so weak? Hmm… No, I don’t believe this. She lets you roam around like this, doesn’t she?”
Nightmare immediately flinched, Sombra chuckled, “What could you possibly offer to gain her favour like this? You have nothing. Not even a body to call your own. Did she take pity on you, perhaps? This would sound like her. How adorable, My Love has found herself a pet!
You are no Empress. You control nothing. Hardly even...oh”-The shadow sniffed the air-"I smell fear! What can you possibly be afraid of..."
The King drifted closer, peering into Nightmare’s eyes,
“Curious,” the King murmured. “You aren’t afraid of me. You are not even afraid of death at this point. Indeed, why would you fear to lose your life if it is empty? Maybe you are...” Nightmare Moon quivered, the King burst in laughter. Nightmare Moon dropped her look to the floor, forfeiting any attempts to save her dignity.

“Really now?” The King managed to calm down somewhat, “A Nightmare is afraid of being left out? No wonder Luna took you to her liking, you are adorable!
“Boggles me. Why do they let you order them around? You can't force them. Well, I suppose they can choose their own rulers now. I think I'll leave you two alone now, you must have something to discuss there. I will be close though, watching. And you do taste good, I must say...” With another chuckle the King poured down from the balcony, finally leaving the humiliated mare alone.

Nightmare Moon leaned heavily on the railing, breathing shallow and quivering with the entire body. Even a long-dead king knew everything about her. Yes, she was no Empress.
Luna guessed what comes next,
“Nightmare, listen! You don’t want to do this!” But Nightmare Moon didn’t even hear her, in a single move she hopped over the railing, plummeting down to the ground.
“Wings! Nightmare, wings! Please!” Luna screamed in panic, the sound of bones breaking shortly silencing her.

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