• Published 4th Jun 2020
  • 1,346 Views, 50 Comments

It Takes A Princess - Casketbase77



Creativa's struggle against Order's tyranny isn't going well. Another humiliating defeat has her hurled her across time and space... and into the lap of a Moon Princess who was just starting to get bored of retirement.

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Or Maybe A Queen

Creativa felt numb all over. The entity that had grown from Luna was pacing back and forth like a starving panther, and had been doing so for the past few minutes. Anemic wings that once belonged to Luna were hanging limply at the entity’s sides, but each huff of her powerful borrowed lungs perked them up just a little more as the bloodflow slowly returned.

"A sun guardian who is at the same time a draconequus," the entity growled partially to Creativa, but more to herself. "Two terrible tastes that taste terrible together. Just one of those would be an capital offense to reason, but he just had to defiminise me on sight. To declare himself sole lunarch instead of me! Ad damnandum eum! Once I'm back at full strength, he's history. No, wait, not far enough. Damnatio memorae is more apropos for a usurper like that. Nothing less. Nothing less!"

The entity was spouting profanities that Creativa hadn't heard from anypony’s mouth in centuries. Least of all she wouldn’t have expected them to come from the terminally polite Luna. What was unfolding here made no sense to Creativa, though a large part of that was because the thing hadn't stopped to address her directly since sitting up.

"Hate," it was seething. "Hate hate hate hate hate HATE..."

Long nights tutoring Twiddle had taught Creativa to hold off interrupting another pony’s thoughts. But truth be told the previous two hours had been the most harrowing and eventful of Creativa's long life. Everypony had a limit to their pleasantry. Luna had obviously passed hers. Creativa decided to follow suit. She wiped her nose and cleared her throat.

“What are y-“

“Finally recovered your resolve? Excellent. Supply me answers.” The pony who’d replaced Luna broke off her the most recent meandering lap and prowled over to where Creativa was kneeling, hoarse voice firing off militaristic demands.

“The mouthy one‘s monologue challenged the usurper to ‘sit on his throne,’ so where would that be? What is your world’s equivalent to Canterlot? Furthermore, what is this world even called?”

Creativa blinked, uncomprehending.

“The equivalent of Canterlot!” The entity snapped. “Tell me it’s name and location, chaos mare! No doubt the usurper has gone to languish in what he idiotically believes is victory. Vultures always go home to roost after getting fat on stolen sustenance. Stolen!

The last word had been an animalistic shriek that made Creativa frown with renewed resolution.

“You’re incredibly eloquent for an egotistical brat,” she finally challenged.

A look of pure, contorting rage reddened the entity’s face and the canines in her muzzle audibly grinded together. Creativa feared for a moment she was about to be attacked for her insult, until the entity’s eyes scrunched shut and a steamy exhale vented the anger away.

“That I am,” the entity quietly agreed in a tone so controlled and articulate that she almost sounded like Luna again. Almost.

The entity gave another steamy snort and knelt across from Creativa so the two of them were eye to still closed eye. After a few moments of silence, Creativa realized that the floor had been yielded to her by a pony keeping itself quiet through considerable self-restraint.

“Who are you?” Creativa asked gently.

“The contents of Luna’s spiritual septic tank. I am the dirty, ugly fuel supply that is only burned when nothing else is left to keep her lights on.” The entity’s eyes opened again, no less fiery, but held calm and steady with obvious effort. “My turn now. What is the name of this place?”

Creativa looked away. “Twiddle dubbed these the foothills of the Prancing Peaks when we arrived, but they actually don’t have any real name. Nowhere around here does, because Order doesn’t care enough to name anything or even any pony. Twiddle Spiral was the one who named the Kalihorsey Desert when we retreated through there, and even named herself after I first... I...”

Creativa thought she’d gone fully numb in response to Order taking the last of her ponies away again, but remembering Twiddle’s once powerful spirit and how it was beyond her ability to save was causing Creativa to reflexively choke up. The entity recognized her distress, but seemed unable to care.

“Your turn, though I’ll save you the effort of asking me my name: Originally, I was Queen Nightmare Moon, though the title was mine for less than an evening. Lost my crown and far more than that through hubris and rainbow lasers.”

For the second time, Creativa blinked uncomprehendingly.

“You have permission to laugh,” Nightmare Moon invited. “Years of looking out from Luna’s eyes have softened my feelings towards being defeated.”

“I hope I can reach your level of acceptance someday,” Creativa sighed. “I never had a crown of my own to lose, but I still feel like curling up and fading like Order told me to.” She traced a hoof through the grass regretfully. “I don’t think I have my powers anymore. I’m just a tired old mare with no one left. I wish saying that out loud made me more upset, but I think deep down I always knew there was never any real hope fo-“

“By Faust, you are a depressive sadsack! Have been since you crashlanded on that beach and got one over on Celestia. If that’d been me rubbing her face in the sand, you can bet every Bit in the castle vault I’d be hot to trot for weeks afterwards.” Nightmare Moon tapped a hoof to her lip in contemplation. “Then again, inter alia, the reason I exist is to take Celestia down as many notches as I can, laughing like the madmare I am as I do it.” Nightmare Moon seemed lost in self-indulgent reverie for a moment. Creativa was increasingly aware that Nightmare’s favorite pastime was talking about herself to herself, but the monster mare suddenly frowned with disgust and acknowledged her companion again.

“You are not Celestia, though. You may look and sound the part, but you lack her... haughtiness. And while I find it horrifically dull to bully creatures like you who don’t deserve it, there’s a certain sun-patterned someone I believe will be an absolute treat to knock off his high horse. A high horse he stole ad imo pectoire, I should reiterate.”

A defensive guffaw escaped Creativa, which made Nightmare Moon tense with insulted anger until she realized the laughter wasn’t directed at her.

“You sound so much like Loopa,” Creativa sighed mournfully. “She always ran her mouth when she saw I was upset, hoping that eventually she’d say something that would cheer me up.” She wiped her eyes with her wing. “When am I gonna learn to let the memory of her go?”

Nightmare Moon snorted dismissively. “If you put half as much effort into helping me as you do into slurring out eulogies, I’d have the good half of my soul back and you’d have that sister of yours unfrozen by now.”

“Wha-?”

Deodamnatus, chaos mare! I speak two tongues, and neither seem to be ones you understand: You and I aren’t beaten. Not as long as our horns sport points and our wings have lift.” She gave a few flaps to demonstrate. “And it seems these are finally alive again, keen on carrying me towards a rematch with the only creature in the multiverse with an ego bigger than mine. But to throttle that boor, I first need to know where he is. So before you slump and atrophy where you sit, you will give me a bearing. Now or never, because I’m out of tact, out of patience, and out of excuses to not go find him myself.”

Creativa regarded Nightmare Moon for a moment. She couldn’t remember the last time she hadn’t felt afraid. In her darkest, most isolated moments, Creativa sometimes wondered if fear was all that had ever kept her moving forward. Nightmare Moon though, there was a creature with a fire in her hollow soul that Creativa envied. Did she maybe have a Nightmare Moon of her own, somewhere deep down in a locked box that would only open if there was no other option left? Creativa supposed it was possible, but she supposed more that it didn’t matter. Simply believing being in the presence of someone so unflinching in their defiance gave Creativa’s weary knees the strength to stand.

“South by South-Southeast of here is the centroid of the continent. There’s a palace there, on a cliff. I’ve only ever seen it from a distance, but I’m almost positive it’s the only one of its kind in the whole world.” Creativa spread her mismatched wings. “And I can take you there.”

“There’s a good pony. As I said, we’re not beaten yet." Nightmare Moon ran a hoof through her hair, relaxing into the role of a commander forming war plans. "You can let your greyed out followers languish under Order’s control for now; in a castle siege, the safest occupants are the prisoners in the dungeon. We can let them out afterwards at our leisure.”

“If... if you say so. But even if we find Order at the palace, what can we possibly do to stand against him? I have no believers left. No faith to give my spellcasting any strength. And what about you? Doesn’t all your magic belong to Order now?”

Nightmare Moon scoffed before taking flight. “He has my magic, yes. But it doesn’t belong to him. It will never belong to anypony other than me. But I’ll make that better known once you take us close enough. Now giddyup! I’m a very punctual pony!”

Creativa kept her eyes on her companion circling overhead and pumped her wings a few times to prime them.

I’m coming for you, Loopa. Please forgive me for making you wait this long.

Then Creativa rocketed up into the tepid twilight, off to guide an angel of vengeance to the lair of a demon who’d plagued her world far past his allotted time.

Author's Note:

Another breather chapter for this week. The contest deadline is fast approaching, so I’ll have to hustle to finish this fic in time. Expect the next installment by Saturday evening.