• Published 18th Dec 2011
  • 4,174 Views, 72 Comments

A Tale of Two Ponies - Silicas

Luna is pregnant with a colt sired when she was still Nightmare Moon. What will come of this?

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Chapter 15: A Waking Nightmare

Chapter 15: A Waking Nightmare

Starshade pressed himself further into the cushioning of his bed. The soft knocking at the door to his room in the Ponyville library only quieted slightly.

The colt twisted under the covers. “Go away!”

The knocking stopped, and the door creaked open. Gentle hoofsteps approached the bed, and before long they had stopped too. Starshade felt a hoof touch the covers above his head.

“I heard about what happened,” a voice said. It was Fluttershy’s.

The little pegasus pulled the bed sheets further around him and tucked his head in closer to his body. Fluttershy withdrew her hoof and instead seated herself carefully beside him on the bed.

The mare was facing away from Starshade as she spoke. “I came as soon as the doctors would let me. They said that Rainbow Dash saved your life.”

The colt grumbled. “She nearly killed you.”

“Oh, no. She didn’t hurt me that badly. It was more my fault for not watching out. Besides, after saving you, Dash more than made up for it.”

“I wish she hadn’t,” the colt spat.

Fluttershy frowned. “Hadn’t made up for it, or hadn’t saved you?”

The colt shifted under the covers again. Fluttershy could hear him choking back tears. “Hadn’t saved me.”

Fluttershy pushed herself off of the bed and walked around it. Standing so that she faced Starshade, she returned a hoof to his body. She rubbed it over the covers, feeling for the pegasus’s wings. They were ruffled and splayed awkwardly beneath the bedclothes.

“Nightmare Night is tomorrow,” the mare said. “Princess Luna is coming, she sent me a letter.”

“Miss Luna?” Starshade asked from beneath the covers.

“Yes. It’s sort of going to be a Ponyville tradition. But there’s one thing we still haven’t worked out yet.”

The colt pulled his wings out from under Fluttershy’s hoof and pushed himself away from her position beside the bed. “I’m not sure that I care anymore.”

“Oh? Picking out a costume can be such fun.”

Starshade pushed the covers off of his head with his forelegs and looked towards Fluttershy. “I already had one picked out, you know.”

Fluttershy looked to the corner of the room. A small blue and yellow bodysuit lay on the floor, the winged bolt sewn into the flank barely visible in its discarded state.

“I know.”

The two ponies were silent. Fluttershy was staring at the costume, Starshade out the small window to his side.

Fluttershy drew a breath and started to speak. Before she could say anything, yelling erupted from outside the window.

“Ya can’t go up there, Scootaloo! Fluttershy told us to be quiet an’ wait,” Applebloom shouted through gritted teeth.

“I can too. Now let go of my tail,” Scootaloo yelled back. “Sweetie Belle, tell her to let me go.”

“You shouldn’t fly up there,” Sweetie Belle said quietly.

“Argh,” Scootaloo huffed. “Forget it. I want to talk to him. You let go now or I’m gunna hurt you.”

Fluttershy looked out the window as Applebloom dug her hooves into the ground. The filly’s teeth were still clamped firmly around Scootaloo’s tail.

“Try mah.”

The orange filly whipped around, ramming Applebloom in the side with her head. The earth pony fell to the ground, kicking at Scootaloo and landing a hoof in the pegasus’s chest.

Sweetie Belle backed away, staring at her two friends. “Stop fighting! Stop before one of you hurts somepony!”

Fluttershy jumped down from the window as Applebloom kicked Scootaloo again, this time in the side. The earth pony stood above the pegasus, still holding her magenta tail.

“I told ya not to fly up there,” Applebloom said.

Scootaloo moaned.

Fluttershy took a step forwards, staring intensely at the pair of fighting fillies. “Are you two done now?”

Both froze. “Yes, Fluttershy,” they said in unison.

The yellow mare glanced at Sweetie Belle. As soon as her gaze left Scootaloo, the little pegasus jumped to her hooves. Tearing her tail from Applebloom’s mouth, she crouched down and, with a leap, took wing up to Starshade’s window.

Applebloom blinked and spat out the pink strands of hair still in her mouth. “When she gets back down here–”

Fluttershy stared at the seething yellow filly. “Let her go.”

Scootaloo hopped down from the windowsill and folded her wings. “Starshade, are you okay?”

“I’m alive,” the colt said. He looked at Scootaloo, bending his head around to see her wings. “You flew up here?”

“Yah,” Scootaloo answered, looking back at her wings as well. “I didn’t get a chance to talk after Rainbow Dash caught you. You’re not hurt, right?”

“Not really, no.”

“Well, what’s wrong then?” Scootaloo asked, taking a step closer to the bed.

“I’m not supposed to fly.”

The filly frowned. “But you’re a pegasus, Starshade.”

Starshade looked away, stuffing his hooves back underneath the bed covers. “That’s the problem.”

Scootaloo walked forwards and sat down beside the bed, looking up at the colt over its edge. “Where did you get the idea that you’re not supposed to fly? That’s stupid. It wasn’t your fault that Spitfire dropped us.”

“It’s not that,” Starshade said. “I’m afraid of heights.”

“Oh.” Scootaloo looked at the ground. “You sure?”

Starshade eyed the covers of the bed and did not answer.

After a moment, Scootaloo stood back up and walked over to the window. Hopping up onto the sill, she spread her wings. The filly opened her mouth, closed it, and furrowed her brow.

With a forced smile she finally managed, “Well, I don’t know what to say. You know, maybe it’s just a, uh, um…”

“… temporary thing?” Starshade offered, looking back to her.

Scootaloo started nodding, but stopped when the colt shook his head. Ruffling her wings, she said, “It would be awesome if you come to Nightmare Night.”

With a flap of her wings, Scootaloo jumped out of the window and, banking left, turned towards her home.

Scootaloo pushed herself off the floor of her room and, after steadying herself, rubbed the side that Applebloom had kicked. She winced; even after a full day, the spot still ached. The filly sighed, suppressing the feeling of anger. She glanced towards the poster of the Wonderbolts still on her wall and smiled.

I’m going to remember that day forever.

The rush of the wind through her mane, the fear as Spitfire fell out from beneath her, the exhilaration of adrenaline, opening her wings in terror: it was not how she had pictured her first flight, but it was a pretty awesome story.

The memory continued in the eye of Scootaloo’s mind. She could see herself soaring through the air, looking down at the ground. She saw Starshade, legs flailing as he plummeted, his wings slapping against his sides uselessly. He was looking up at her and smiling.

Scootaloo’s stomach lurched as her eyes shot open. That part of the memory hurt even worse than the bruise that Applebloom had given her. Scootaloo looked back to the floor. She could still see the blast wave of Rainbow Dash’s sonic rainboom. For a moment, she had thought that Rainbow had not made it in time.

The filly shook her head; she did not want to think about that now. She looked around the room, trying to find something to occupy her time until Nightmare Night began. She stopped for a moment; through her door, she could hear Trixie talking to somepony.

Again? Well, might as well listen in. That’ll be fun.

Quietly, the orange filly made her way into the hallway. Crouching low, she hugged the wall as she inched her way towards Trixie’s room. Her hoofsteps fell silently against the carpeted floor, her wings folded loosely against her side and ready to propel her into the air at a moment’s notice.

Scootaloo pressed her ear against the door and listened. This time, Trixie was speaking louder than she normally did.

“… that Luna will even try to save him?”

The other voice, one that Scootaloo was still unable to identify, answered. “I’m positive, Trixie. And I want you to be there when the opportunity arises. It just doesn’t add up. We need to gauge her reaction.”

Scootaloo heard Trixie stomp her hoof. “I am not going to hurt a foal.”

The other voice paused for a moment and when it finally spoke it was cold and firm. “Trixie, listen to me. I don’t want him hurt either, but we need to know. Both Russet and I suspect that there is something more to their relationship. So long as you are careful, he shouldn’t get hurt.” There was another pause. “Too badly.”

Scootaloo gasped. They had never talked about hurting somepony before. Cheerilee had just told Scootaloo to mind her own business and not to worry about Trixie. But this, this sounded different.

The next thing that Scootaloo noticed was that her head had hit the ceiling. She spun around, still in midair, looking for the source of the banging that had startled her. Inside the room, Trixie and the voice had stopped speaking entirely.

Scootaloo chuckled, trying to slow her pounding heart. It was just somepony at the front door.

“Could you get that, Scootaloo?” Cheerilee called from somewhere in the direction of the kitchen.

“Sure thing!” Scootaloo answered, flapping her way to the entryway. At least Trixie won’t be suspicious if she sees me now.

Scootaloo grabbed the door handle in her teeth and pulled against it, straining her wings. After several seconds of trying, she reluctantly dropped to the floor and pulled it open by hoof.

Scootaloo blinked. It was dark out and there was a pile of hay sitting in the doorway.

“Uh… where are you?” Scootaloo asked.

The bale of hay looked to the side. “Scootaloo, it’s me. I came ta apologize an’ stuff. I shouldn’t’ve kicked at ya.”


“And Sweetie Belle!” the white filly’s voice interjected from behind the bale. “Applebloom’s really sorry about everything. We tried to find you yesterday, but as soon as we got here Cheerilee just told us that you had flown off somewhere.”

Scootaloo away. “Yah. I did.” After a moment, she continued, “But everything’s fine now, I think.”

Sweetie Belle pushed past Applebloom. She was wearing a long white dress decorated with small gems. A thin veil hung over her head, just barely obscuring her horn. It looked like Rarity had taken quite a bit of time making the dress.

“So, what do you say to Cutie Mark Crusader treat collectors, Scootaloo?” Sweetie Belle asked.

Scootaloo smiled. “Definitely. But there’s just one problem.”

“What?” Applebloom and Sweetie Belle asked simultaneously.

“We’re missing Starshade.”

“Oh,” Sweetie Belle said. “You didn’t get to talk to him after you flew up there?”

Scootaloo shook her head. “I did, but he seemed really sad. His costume was crumpled up in the corner. I don’t think he’s coming tonight.”

“Well, there’s only one way ta fix that,” Applebloom said, shuffling around inside the large bale of hay. “I bet he’s still at the library; I don’t think Fluttershy’s moved him out yet. Let’s go an’ see him right now. Together.”

Starshade shifted his position on the windowsill. The cold Nightmare Night air blew through his mane and over his small wings, chilling him slightly. He looked back to the corner of the room where the Wonderbolts costume lay on the floor and sighed. It was too late now; the night had already begun. Scootaloo had left, and Sweetie Belle and Applebloom had not even come. He had no costume, no friends, and no purpose.

The colt looked back over the edge of window and down to the ground below. He felt the terrible feeling in his stomach again. It was a long ways down from the top of the library tree. Closing his watery eyes, he pulled his head back. He would only ever be able to fly in his imagination.

What kind of a pegasus am I? What kind of a pony? I can’t fly. My parents abandoned me. Princess Luna sent me here to this place. And Fluttershy hasn’t even brought me back to her cottage yet. Nopony wants me.

Starshade looked back over the edge. I don’t even want me.

With a yawn, the foal closed his eyes. He let his left forehoof dangle, and then his right. Spreading his wings, the small pegasus jumped. The sickening feeling did not return; he kept flapping. He opened his eyes. The ground flew beneath him, over roads and buildings. He could feel the cold wind flowing through is mane, and the pressure of lift against his wings.

He looked up. There was no sky above him, only a swirling darkness. His gaze flicked below. Where the ground had been was blackness.

The colt’s eyes shot open. He was still on the windowsill, looking out over Ponyville. His stomach lurched again, and his hooves shot back to a safe position beneath him. He had dozed off.


The colt’s head spun, searching for the pony that had called him. He looked left, and then right.

The voice yelled again. “Up here, Starshade!”

Starshade looked up. Above him, a purple and black figure was perched on a tree branch.

“Scootaloo? Is that you?”

The shape nodded, shuffling forwards and revealing an orange muzzle. “I’m dressed up as a Shadowbolt. Rainbow Dash gave me the idea.” Scootaloo ruffled her wings. “Anyways, would you mind leaving your room for a second? Sweetie Belle and Applebloom are waiting in the hallway just outside. I was too, until I came out here to try and get you.”

“I can’t go to Nightmare Night,” the colt preempted.

Scootaloo already had an answer. “Why not? It’s so much fun. Besides, Princess Luna will be here. I remember how she wrote all that awesome stuff in your astronomy book.”

“I know,” Starshade said. He eyed the Wonderbolts costume in the corner. “I don’t have anything to wear.”

Scootaloo pointed a hoof at the door. “Sweetie Belle had a great idea. We got you one of Twilight’s old costumes. She cut it down a bit with some scissors and it should fit you just fine.” Scootaloo puffed her chest. “I helped her pick it out. I think it’s pretty awesome.”

“What is it?”

“Starswirl the Bearded.”

Starshade eyed the bells lining the costume. “I still don’t think that this is a good idea.” With every word, the beard strapped to his chin grazed the ground. "Besides, the hat is too big."

“Just put it on,” Scootaloo said. “We’ll have so much fun.”

“All right, all right.”

A bale of hay collided with Starshade’s flank. The square bundle tipped onto its side, leaving the flailing legs of the pony within waving aimlessly for purchase. “Uh,” it said, “Can one of ya help me?”

Starshade turned and grabbed a rope that secured the bale to Applebloom in his teeth. With a heave, he pulled her upright.

Applebloom straightened her costume. “Thanks. Just so ya all know, Zecora’s startin’ now. Ya better get movin’ before we miss it.”

“We’ll be right there,” Sweetie Belle said, helping to steady Applebloom as she stood. “Scootaloo’s right. You’re going to have a lot of fun.”

Starshade looked back to Scootaloo. “Who did you say this costume was, again?”

“It’s Starswirl the Bearded. As soon as I remembered his name, I picked it for you. Isn’t it awesome that you both have such close names?”

Starshade shook his head. “He was a unicorn, though.”

“That’s not a problem,” Scootaloo insisted.

“But I’m a…” Starshade stopped, looking back to the small wings tucked against his side and sighing. “… Whatever. It’s not like it matters anymore. I might as well be an earth pony.”

Beside him Applebloom started, but a strategically placed hoof from Sweetie Belle stopped the yellow filly from saying anything.

Sweetie Belle hoisted the costume onto Starshade’s back, covering up his wings. The colt shifted his gaze back to the ground as the white filly started speaking.

“I’m sorry we don’t have a horn for you, Starshade. But I think the hat’ll hide it anyways.”

Before Starshade could answer, Applebloom interjected, “Come on, guys. We’ve got ta go now.”

Scootaloo patted Starshade on the back. “See? I told you it’d look awesome. Cutie Mark Crusader candy collectors are go!”

Applebloom frowned. “Don’t ya forget Zecora.”

“Oh, yah. Right,” Scootaloo said, looking away. “Zecora first.”

“My little ponies, gather round. Be quiet and make no sound. Nightmare Moon will soon be here. This is something you foals must fear.” Zecora stood up, the golden bands around her forelegs jingling quietly.

“Why?” a filly chimed from somewhere behind Starshade. “Who’s Nightmare Moon?”

“Ah, Dinky, a good question. You see, Nightmare Moon is a pony filled with much aggression. We all know she hunts and captures little foals, but Nightmare Moon also has other goals.”

As Zecora continued, Starshade nudged Scootaloo. “Why is Zecora talking about Nightmare Moon?” he asked in a whisper. “Miss Luna’s not Nightmare Moon anymore.”

“Last year, Princess Luna suddenly came here for Nightmare Night. She dressed up as Nightmare Moon and scared us all night. It was really fun and she’s doing it again this year.”

Starshade dug a hoof into the ground. “Being scared isn’t fun at all.”

In the back of his mind, Starshade sensed that Zecora had ceased speaking. The ponies around him stood with locked knees. The silence of their apprehension prevented Scootaloo from answering him.

A dark purple mist trickled around the foals’ hooves, rising and obscuring their vision. Starshade turned his head as a small filly squeaked beside him. Through the mist, he could see Zecora raising her hooves.

The zebra looked left and right. “You little foals had best run soon. Behold the dark queen, Nightmare Moon!”

In a flash, the mist vanished. Where a statue had once been, a dark figure grinned back at the foals with fanged teeth.

A cold voice resonated through the night air. “My my, we are hungry tonight!

As the ponies around him scattered, Starshade stood, frozen in place. He had never seen Miss Luna like this before, never heard her speak like that.

The dark queen halted for a moment, looking into the foal’s stunned eyes. From around the corner of a nearby building, an orange figure masked in purple and black appeared.

“Starshade, run!”

The pegasus colt looked up at Nightmare Moon and smiled. He did not need Scootaloo to tell him twice. The small bells on his hat ringing furiously, Starshade bolted for cover.

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