• Published 28th Aug 2020
  • 2,886 Views, 17 Comments

Hidden Scars and Heavy Hearts - frenettek314



Weeks after the Fall Formal, Sunset Shimmer, swearing to follow the side of good, has successfully rebuilt the wall from her destruction. She is now completely free from her past...or is she? Can two friends help her through her troubles?

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"My Past is Still Today"

Canterlot High's Fall Formal. A supposed wonderful evening filled with friends, lights, music, food, and dancing. An occasion where the students of the school could focus on having a good time in lieu of the usual pop quizzes and assignments. A night they would never forget.

In reality, the students indeed wouldn't forget the events of that night - for an entirely different reason.

Instead of a party, there was a sinister plot - a ploy by a literal demon to control all of Canterlot High and seek revenge on an alternate world. Many of those outside school grounds would never believe the story, calling whoever dared tell the tale insane; but for those who had witnessed it with their very own eyes, it was all too real.

As masses of students circled around a large, gaping crater in the middle of the school's property, their eyes laid on the reason for such a disastrous turn of events.

Sunset Shimmer.

A girl who many originally thought of as the 'typical mean girl' or the 'queen of the school', no one could've expected this random transfer from 2 years ago would've been a literal villain - a teenager with the capabilities to possess a magical crown with the ability to brainwash the whole school and open up a portal to another dimension. Not even the spontaneous Pinkie Pie could've remotely predicted such an arbitrary concept to come to fruition.

The only one who could've even had a fraction of a guess as to what would've happened was that same girl now silently walking to Vice-Principal Luna's office - a bittersweet smile resting ever so precariously on her face.


A gifted unicorn from the magical equine land of Equestria, she was always pressured by her parents to achieve true greatness - to become the very best she could possibly be no matter what the cost. As a filly, she had worked hard every single day to prove her parents right - until it had finally happened.

Not only did she get an invitation to enlist in Canterlot's "School for Gifted Unicorns", she became the student of the all powerful Princess Celestia herself. Her gifted skills in the field of magic were good enough for the literal raiser of the sun to take notice. If that didn't prove how special she was, nothing would.

And yet, it seemed like expectations only grew higher then. Her parents continued to push her studying and spells no matter how far ahead she was in her studies - now add on top of that the continuous internal pressure to not disappoint her beloved ruler and Sunset had become anything but happy with her successes. She had to keep improving, had to keep pushing herself; she couldn't become a failure... she wouldn't become a failure.

With her hunger for satisfaction in herself and those around her proceeding to grow to improbable proportions, any outsider could probably tell you the studious unicorn would one day snap.

And boy did she snap.

It had been one day - about two years ago - she had discovered an unconventional way to improve the strength of her magic, a tactic involving dark magic prohibited by all of Equestria, yet she had to have it - she had to be the best.

An excited Sunset begged and pleaded Princess Celestia to let her perform the dark energy spell, but the princess persistently refused over and over again. Soon, Sunset became angry with her teacher. How could she hold her back when she could become greater? When she could prove to everyone to have faith in her? What were things like risks and threats when she could become a success?

"To be happy...right?"

Eventually, the tension between the two ponies reached its breaking point. Sunset yelled at her mentor, accusing her of trying to limit the unicorn's success, of trying to keep her from becoming the best she could be. After several long hours of yelling and screaming back and forth, Sunset knew she had to flee - but where? Then she remembered an ancient portal she came across one day while exploring the castle. She had no idea where this mirror led but it was better than being limited with Celestia; with a surplus supply of her savings in bits, she boldly fled into the magical transporter - leaving her previous life behind without a second thought. She became an outlaw, but maybe she could show a new world of creatures her greatness.

She'd show everyone who doubted her. She'd make her dreams come true.

"My dreams? Yeah...becoming a powerful unicorn...of course."

Turns out this new world was an alternate Canterlot filled with the strangest creatures she had ever seen - humans. To say it took some getting used to walking on two legs, using her hands and fingers, and just generally adapt to human social culture would've been an understatement, but she prevailed. She'd always prevail.

"Prevail at what exactly?"

After a while, she had managed to use some of the bits from her funds to rent a decent apartment, gather supplies (a phone, outfits, clothes, books.... oh and of course food and water, those were important too), and obtain the fake documents necessary to become a proper citizen, and most importantly - a student.

Discovering the existence of Canterlot High proved to be the inspiration needed to phase the next part of her plan. With a plethora of students that she could rise above, she could prove to herself to everyone that she could be successful in this world. What made this high school takeover all the more sweeter in her mind though was the discovery that this school was "ruled" by Principal Celestia - another Celestia she could demonstrate her skills for.

If she could rule over this school, and bring her accomplishments back to Equestria, she could prove to her former mentor, her parents, everyone that she was not a failure. She was a winner - a winner who could have everything she wanted.

"Everything... I want?"

She soon became the feared presence of Canterlot High. She studied hard, destroyed friendships, stopped anyone who dared tried to get in her way from becoming the truth alpha - the one everyone had to respect lest they suffer the consequences.

Of course, her plan needed one final masterpiece to ensure her reign - The Elements of Harmony - Equestrian tools so powerful, both Celestias would have to admit that she was capable of anything. Once she discovered the opening pattern of the portal, she sneaked back into Equestria, only to discover...

Her.

Princess Twilight Sparkle - Equestria's newest princess apparently. Not only had Celestia gotten a new favorite pupil in her absence, but she made her a princess as well?! The unicorn/human hybrid could vividly remember the pains of hurt and anger that arose from the revelation.

"How could she replace me so easily?! Didn't I matter to her?!..."

"...do I matter?"

Oh well, it didn't matter. She'd get away with the princess's crown (with The Element of Magic inside) and retreat to the school, finalizing her plans for her definitive return to Equestria once and for all.

She'd be respected, she'd be admired, she'd be loved.

She wouldn't be... alone.

But alas, despite her methodical planning and determined perseverance, Sunset hadn't expected two important details from the results of her brilliant scheme.

The first being the pursuit of Twilight Sparkle and her little assistant, Spike. Not only had they successfully followed her through the portal, but they also managed to reunite a powerful group of friends set on taking her down. Her hard maniacal work in separating the precious bonds they had, only to see it return in greater force - it frustrated Sunset - how could they be so happy and confident in everything they did - all because they were together?!

"They're happy... because... they have each other?"

The other point she failed to consider involved her transformation thanks to the Element of Harmony. Once confronted outside during the Fall Formal, she harnessed the power of the element and became a literal monster bent on the dominance of the two worlds. Yes, she became powerful and menacing - as to be expected - but she also thought she'd become... happy.

She put on the crown thinking she'd bask in her accomplishments, feel a warm sense of triumph, become the pon...person she always wanted to be.

But nothing happened.

No semblances of joy, no victorious alarms going off in her head; she was gloating, sure, but it was...empty.

But how could there not be any gratification?! She had won! She had the whole student population under her power, she had a surge of great magic, and she was about to show everyone who she was! But... as her opposers managed to form their own power - a greater power than hers even - she was suddenly met with a handful of internal thoughts in the rainbow-like vortex.

"I...I don't understand! I had everything... everything I... wanted?"

"And they're so happy and carefree while I'm miserable. But I have strength, intelligence, magical ability; I have the things I needed to strive to be the absolute best! So why do I feel so empty inside?!"

"I asserted my dominance, I studied magic and the workings of this world for this very moment, I became a bully in order to protect myself, how can that not be enough?! How am I not enough?!"

Then, one last bitter realization hit her as she saw the flash of colors.

"If this isn't who I'm supposed to be, who am I?"


Now, three weeks later, Sunset reflected that painful experience the night of the dance, she remembered feeling utterly baffled. She couldn't understand what she was missing - she was so sure she was destined for greatness - how could she fail?

Then she remembered the powerful words her former enemy - now proud to call friend - had spoken to her that night, gazing at the literal hole she had dug herself in with a majestic and yet serious expression on her face.

"You will never rule in Equestria. Any power you may have had in this world is gone. Tonight, you've shown everyone who you really are. You've shown them what is in your heart."

"The magic of friendship doesn't just exist in Equestria. It's everywhere...."

"...you can seek it out, or you can forever be alone. The choice is yours."

That speech. That string of words she would've once scoffed as "mushy garbage", now rocked her soul to the very core. Those words showed her why she had failed, why she was never truly happy.

She did everything she thought would make herself and her family proud - but where had it gotten her? No friends, no love, she was merely a pathetic creature who had no one. She thought she knew what she wanted, but... she felt nothing. Nothing but the poor, bitter stings of isolation and heartache.

She was alone.

She could still feel the bitter tears pouring out from her eyes. Years of repressed emotions and loneliness now pouring out of her as she found herself entering a full-on mental breakdown.

"I...I never knew there was another way."

Thankfully, Princess Twilight seemed to forgive her almost instantly upon seeing her sorrowful state, promising her there was a better way and that she could change - she could be happy.

The five girls behind her; well, they were a different story.

Of course they (and the rest of the students for that matter) wouldn't forgive her as easily. She had spent years destroying friendships and casting her boisterous presence all over campus - all for some perceived pipe dream of earning admiration and respect.

She had caused these girls to split up, almost forever. Fortunately this wasn't the case, but the skeptical and/or practically hostile looks they sent her way told her that they didn't forget. She was on very thin ice. Even after Twilight had seemingly told them to "look out for her", whatever that means, they still wouldn't hold back eyeing her with either concerned looks or warning glares throughout the hallways.

Come to think of it, as Sunset continued walking towards Vice-Principal Luna's office, she realized they weren't the only ones. Dozens upon dozens of cold, calculated, narrowed eyes met her way. Instead of being afraid of her like they once were, they now knew she was weak, powerless...

...alone.

Sunset all too eagerly ran down the hall the rest of the way to the office, never taking the chance to peer her head up at the downright malicious looks they sent her way. Even after three weeks of punishments, proper behavior, and silence, there was nothing but hostility. Of course she wasn't expecting them to hug and praise her after all the suffering and manipulation she put them through, but their looks only reminded her of the monster she was.

Looking down at her sleeves as she ran, she couldn't help but feel tears welling up in her eyes.

"This is all my fault. I'm the reason why I'll always be alone. I just keep hurting others..."

One more look at her trembling arms.

"...I just keep hurting myself."

However, thanks to her sprinting, she made it to her destination before she knew it.


With a light, gentle knocking on the door, Sunset heard a warm "Come in!" before opening it ever so gently, revealing a blue-haired woman smiling at her.

Despite the fact that Vice-Principal Luna seemed to dislike... scratch that, despise her back when she was a no-good troublemaker, these last few weeks actually managed to form a new relationship between student and educator. True, Luna was one of the more vocal about her distrust for the rebellious teenager - even after the all-powerful pony princess said her graces and left - but one look at the determined spirit fixing the shattered remains of the school's wall told her this was a new Sunset.

She went above and beyond to fix the physical mistakes she had made. Getting up early in the morning and waiting for Celestia and Luna before they arrived and eventually staying after school until the two were on their way home for the evening, she never once whined, complained, or grumbled about the labor she found herself forced into.

Of course, Sunset felt this was "going easy" on her, believing she deserved much worse, but the two principals had other opinions.

Celestia herself praised the reformed student's ethics and focus almost instantly (despite the arguments of the student body around her) and even Luna was won over eventually. She was well-mannered and listened to authority, her grades were nothing short of impressive (even before her change of behavior) , but most importantly, one glance into her hurt, yet contemplative eyes told them she was being nothing but genuine.

In short, this was an entirely different Sunset from the one they once knew.

"If only we had known she just needed a firm reminder that she needs friends..." Luna thought to herself.

Nevertheless, Luna and Sunset found themselves interacting more and more outside of the supervised re-building of the school - getting to know one another better and even exchanging a few jokes here and there.

Sure, Luna was less than thrilled to think this girl had feigned paperwork to get into school for years now, but a literal magical demon opening a portal to another world made one accept things much faster than normal.

Today was no different as Luna welcomed her completely changed student with a thin smile.

"Good morning, Sunset. What brings you in here today?"

Realizing the reason for her arrival, the girl quickly shook off any leftover pain on her face as she beamed a confident grin at her elder.

"Actually, you won't believe it. I finished the wall."

Luna gaped for a second processing this, her eyes widened.

"Y-you finished the wall? You're done?!"

"Yep." Sunset nodded. "I finally fixed the damages I caused."

"You mean besides that giant hole in the middle of the field?" Luna smirked, gesturing to the bulldozers outside working on mending the crater the student was blasted into.

"Meh, some fertilizer will fix that." Sunset sheepishly admitted, a hand to the back of her head.

A few seconds of silence followed before both women burst out laughing at the joke she made, their harmonious giggling echoing throughout the room.

"Don't worry, that's almost done too. You're finally done with your punishment." Luna wiped a tear from her eye.

"Y-yeah..." Sunset realized, a sincere smile gradually crawling on her face. "I guess I did, huh?"

Luna stared at the student, a warm smile that usually her sister would've displayed made its way onto her face instead.

"You really have. You've changed so much since the Fall Formal, Sunset Shimmer. I know we haven't always had the best relationship, but I always knew there was a spark of brilliant potential in you..."

"Principal Celestia?" Sunset quipped, knowing the eldest sister was more so the sappy one.

"Possibly, but seriously," Luna refocused with a fond smile, "I may or may not have caught you studying in the library late at night when you thought no one was watching. I was though and while your other actions were inexcusable - the Sunset I saw cracking at the books and focusing without relent - I knew she had good in her. A passion to push through honestly when she could've just bribed or lied her way through classes."

"And now to see that bright, burning potential shining forward - my sister and I are so proud of you, Sunset." she concluded, earning a slight sniffle from the recipient across the room.

"Is this what it feels like? To be truly wanted? To be loved?"

Sunset rubbed her eyes with an offered tissue profusely, daring not to speak until she had calmed down enough.

"Vice-Principal Luna... I-I don't know what to say. That honestly means a lot to hear someo...you say that." she quickly corrected. "Thank you... for the chance to fix myself..."

Luna gave a warm chuckle.

"You've truly earned it. Now you can start a hopefully normal life." she smiled, earning a playful snort from the teenager.

Just then, a few students passed by the closed door of Luna's office. While the two couldn't see who they were, they on the other hand could obviously tell Sunset was in there as a few choice words echoed audibly enough through the walls.

"Bitch."

"Dirt-bag."

"Demon."

Luna's eyes only widened while Sunset held her head down in defeat, the momentarily forgotten memories of her peers' hatred of her returning full force. At this point, she figured it would always be this way.

"Yeah...normal." she weakly muttered. Any positive feelings Luna had bestowed upon her were now long gone.

The observant vice-principal noticed this at first glance however, prompting Sunset to take a seat across from her desk, which she gratefully accepted.

"You know, fixing the wall was only part of the reform plan Celestia and I had for you." she spoke.

Sunset perked her head in a tilt, not really sure what to say.

"I think its time you've tried to find some friends here. People who can care about you." the adult elaborated.

Despite her newfound respect and bond with the authority figure across from her, Sunset couldn't help but let out a bitter snort.

"With the students who will never forgive me? Not sure that's a good idea..."

For a response, Sunset was expecting some offered sentiment about how 'people will forgive if they know you're sorry' or some other cheesy one-liner; which is why it came as a complete surprise to her when she said.

"You're right. A lot of them will probably never forgive what you've done."

Sunset sat speechless, never expecting that blunt sense of honesty. While she knew it was true, she couldn't help but be saddened by it.

"Even Luna thinks I can't be forgiven."

"But that doesn't mean that no one here will."

Sunset sat straight up with slight hope in her eyes before ultimately feeling that glimmer of hope dwindle into resentment.

"Who would be foolish enough to forgive me?" she muttered.

Luna, brows etched in concern for the fragile interior that she recognized in the youth, offered a light suggestion, a small smile tugging at her lips.

"What about those girls who stopped you with Princess Twilight?"

The resentment and frustration left Sunset's face, now completely shocked by Luna's suggestion.

"I know they said they would 'look out for me', but I don't think they meant it. They just glare at me with hatred - just like the rest of the students."

Luna's smile grew ever so brighter as she placed a reassuring hand on top of Sunset's.

"I for one know that's not true. In fact, I've recently been having some students pop into my office and ask me how you were doing. They've said they've noticed how quiet and distant you are and they're very worried about you."

Sunset's face contorted into utter disbelief, almost daring to call Luna a liar on the spot.

Realizing she didn't want to burn a bridge she had just built, she opted for a more subtle approach.

"Name one," she offered, though with some exasperation in her tone. "Rarity scoffs at me whenever I walk by her, Applejack just stares pointedly at me until I shy away from her, Rainbow literally looks like she wants to kill me - I've even seen her make 'pounding fist' gestures at me..."

"Two actually. Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy."

Sunset's rant paused at Luna's interruption. She hadn't expected her to counter so readily; the most shocking tidbit that came with that though were the names of which she spoke.

"Pinkie Pie - the one I've called a freak and made her break up with her best friends in the whole world? And Fluttershy - the one I've constantly bullied and harassed ever since I've gone here? Those two?! I know they're kind, but..."

The room sat in eerie silence for several minutes until tears began pouring down Sunset's cheek.

She glanced down once more at the leather sleeves covering her arms.

"How could they... after all I've done? After all I put them through...? I don't deserve it! I'm a freak, I'm a monster, I'm..."

"Sunset?" Luna whispered worriedly, not expecting the student to slowly break down in tears in front of her.

Snapping out of her trance, the teen realized she was crying and proceeded to duck her head in shame, not wanting the adult to see her like this.

"They're making a big mistake."

Before Luna could figure out what that somewhat cryptic message meant, a frantic knocking pounded on the door, interrupting the moment shared between the two.

Soon after the knocking popped in a frazzled Lyra, her eyes widening as she spotted the vice-principal.

"Vice-Principal Luna! Come quick! We need help!"

Luna slowly rose from her seat upon seeing the distressed look of the student; even Sunset was fully intrigued, proceeding to rub her eyes with her hands as she gazed at Lyra with concern.

"Lyra? What is it?!" Luna rose.

"It's Gilda. She's creating a scuffle with Pinkie and Fluttershy and she won't leave them alone!"

Luna felt her concerns shoot out of her like a volcano. If there was anyone more troubling than the past incarnation of Sunset Shimmer, it was Gilda. While she had never turned into a demon or brainwashed the school, she had a wicked long history of fights and other physical confrontations in her short (often-suspended) time at CHS. The girl had been known to even go as far as to punch well-behaved children for no reason. Hearing her name being involved with two unsuspected individuals was not a surprise to her in the slightest, knowing there'd be a crisis if not stopped soon.

If there was any student she thought could never be reformed, it was Gilda.

Sunset's eyes widened in shock, hearing the names that were being uttered.

"Pinkie and Fluttershy are in trouble?! And they're worried about me...somehow?! I..."

"Lead the way!" Luna announced, before a hand stopped her on the shoulder.

Sporting a steeled resolve in her eyes, Sunset practically bounced out of her seat.

"I'm coming too." she replied simply.

Lyra and Luna both sat there in a slight daze, not expecting Sunset to boldly volunteer her services like this. Though after a moment, the educator found a soft knowing smirk on her face, acknowledging the girl's spirit.

"Then let's go."

And with a round of three affirmative nods, they were off towards one of the school's corridors, hoping the two kind girls weren't in danger.


There they were. In a secluded corridor in the back of the school stood Gilda proudly sneering over a scowling Pinkie Pie - holding a softly weeping Fluttershy in her embrace.

"Leave us alone, you big meanie!" Pinkie roared, glaring at the tall, muscular figure in front of her.

Sunset, Lyra, and Luna peered from behind the corner in disarray. They had to do something, but how to go about it?

"I guess it's kind of isolated back here, but why hasn't anyone stepped in to help them?" Sunset worriedly whispered.

Fortunately for her, Lyra was one of the more... neutral...(if you could be neutral) students in regards to Sunset's appearance, allowing her to reply without a devastating glare sent her way.

"They say once you mess with Gilda, it'll be the last thing you do." the green-skinned girl offered, staring at the confrontation in front of her with abject horror on her face.

Meanwhile, Gilda only seemed to sneer more at Pinkie's verbal retort.

"Aww, what's the matter? Think you and your little homo-girlfriend can stand up to me? That's adorable..." she taunted.

At that, Sunset's eyes widened in dismay.

"Did... did she just say... girlfriend?"

Lyra absentmindedly nodded.

"Mmm hmm, they used to be a couple until they split apart for some reason. Though, rumor is they've been seeing each other again over the last few weeks. It was too bad when they split up too, they really loved each other. They were practically the cutest couple in school."

Sunset felt a sharp stab in her stomach, her hands quivering rapidly at the tidbit of information.

"No... no... I-I... split them apart..."

Indeed, Sunset's mind went back to the events of the previous year - hacking into their friends' phones in a devious ploy to split apart the group. She specifically remembered texting Pinkie Pie to bring a bunch of fireworks and loud noisemakers to Fluttershy's animal shelter silent auction. She figured it'd ruin their friendship, but seeing how close the two targeted girls in front of her were now, she felt her face turn white.

"They loved each other and I... I almost ruined that forever..."

She couldn't even imagine how heartbroken the two girls were after the presumed argument. The tears, the pain, the loneliness; and she had done it all without a second thought.

But that second thought was coming now.

"What have I done? I made them miserable... I hurt them so much..."

Once again, she subtly gazed at her arms.

"They were...alone...without love..." she sympathized, feeling like she was going to vomit any minute.

"I said LEAVE US ALONE!" Pinkie yelled, gazing right up at Gilda's face.

Fortunately, or rather unfortunately, that defiance was enough to wipe the smug grin off of Gilda...and replace it with a deep scowl.

"I'd watch it if you don't want me to mess up both of your 'pretty little faces.'" she glowered.

"Bite me." came the pink girl's response, the other girl in her arms looking up with a narrowed, teary look.

If it wasn't for the almost always cheerful girl's sour demeanor, what surprised everyone at that moment was the seal of fate she had just placed herself in. Everyone there knew the gruff bully would not take kindly to that.

Sunset especially knew that.

Sunset felt time come to a screeching halt as she began running towards the trio with determination in her gaze. She wasn't exactly sure what she was doing, but she knew she had to get in there pronto!

"Why you little..." Gilda's gruff voice bellowed out in slow motion, raising her fist to strike the flesh in front of her.

Sunset felt herself sprinting as fast as she could - holding in her breath. She had to stop this, this was all her fault! She hurt them worse than she could've imagined and she'd be damn sure she wasn't going to let that happen again.

"Noooooooooooooo...." her voice drawled out, rushing in front of the two now shocked girls just in the neck of time.

Her reward - a full throttle punch to the cheek, stunting her jaw as she struggled to remain standing. Pain was imminent throughout her face, as she felt a gush of blood spew out from her mouth and onto the cold surfaces of the floor in front of her.

Everyone stood in stunned silence for a moment (even the normally brash and cocky Gilda stood there aghast), until it was broken by a couple of yelps in concern.

"Sunset?!" Lyra called, never expecting the former villain to heroically step in like that.

"Sunset!" Pinkie cried out, a shaking hand hovering over her mouth in surprise.

"Sunset, No!" Fluttershy cried, tears welling up in her eyes once again, almost feeling the intensity possessed in the punch.

And just like that, time resumed once again.

"Well, well, well, what do we have here?" Gilda snapped out of her stupor with a snarky smile. "Little Miss Terror decided to show up."

As soon as those words were spoken, it was as if the pain flowing through Sunset's bruised and swollen cheek had disappeared for the time being.

"Leave them alone." she growled.

Gilda's smile dropped as she growled at the former bully in return.

"What makes you think you can tell me what to do?"

Sunset felt a bitter smile on her face as she cautioned a momentary glance at the two girls staring at her with worry.

She turned back to Gilda with confidence.

"I ruined their relationship once, I'm not going to let it be damaged again."

Luna felt her jaw hang open, watching the scene with fascination.

"She really has changed." she mentally noted.

Meanwhile, Pinkie and Fluttershy exchanged a shocked glance, never expecting Sunset to be aware of the implications of their argument. Even if she was aware, they weren't expecting such a strong sense of remorse.

Gilda only scoffed in disgust.

"What? You think you can step up to me, make yourself look like a hero, and win the school back?"

She lurched a step forward, peering at the teenager with an ear-splitting grin.

"Well guess what, you can't! No matter what you try, everyone here hates you! They want you DEAD - D-E-A-D!"

Sunset felt her head lower.

Gilda suddenly began rubbing a hand to her chin in external thought.

"In fact, if I were to knock you out right here, right now, I'd probably be the biggest hero on campus. I'd be the one with all the love and admiration, I'd be basking in the sunlight while you're thrown away like the trash you are. And that's just what I'm going to do..."

"Then do it."

Gilda paused her monologue, tilting her head in confusion at the sulking form in front of her.

"What?"

"Then do it." she reiterated. "I know probably everyone at this school will despise me for the rest of my life, but I don't care! Just because I've messed up beyond repair doesn't mean I'm just going to let you come in and hurt these innocent girls even more than I already have!"

Her eyes pierced at the jock bully with fury.

"SO COME ON AND BEAT THE EVER-LOVING SHIT OUT OF ME, BUT I WON'T LET YOU LAY A FINGER ON THEM AS LONG AS I'M STILL STANDING, YOU HEAR ME?!" she hollered, her legs firmly spread and planted, ready for any confrontation.

"If this is how I die, at least I did something good." she told herself.

Gilda only maniacally laughed, her muscular biceps ready to grab onto Sunset's neck.

"Ooo boy, your funeral's going to be sweet!"

"Not as sweet as your expulsion, young lady!" countered a firm Vice-Principal Luna, metaphorically towering over the now panicked bully in front of her.

With a slight gulp, the girl spun around.

"Vice-Principal Luna! How nice to see..."

"Principal Celestia's office! NOW!" she bellowed, pointing firmly to the direction of the room behind her, a grumbling but ultimately caught Gilda slinking away.

As Gilda's form disappeared out of sight, Pinkie and Fluttershy immediately relaxed while Sunset breathed a sigh of relief. That was too close for her comfort...even if she was fully willing to meet her doom.

"Thank you for your help, Sunset Shimmer. I'm sorry I didn't step in sooner but I wanted to have enough evidence for someone's permanent ban from this school. She's been too much of a nuisance for far too long." Luna scowled, thinking about the paperwork she'd have to fill out.

But her smile soon returned as she acknowledged the group of teenagers in front of her, Lyra walking idly to meet her side.

"And since Lyra here was a witness to the whole thing, along with her long list of physical confrontations, we shouldn't see her again."

"I'm hoping for jail time." Lyra added in.

Sunset gave a polite chuckle, the pain in her face starting to catch back up to her.

"Glad I could help."

Luna nodded, proceeding to walk away from the hallway alongside Lyra before she called back.

"Pinkie. Fluttershy. Take good care of her, ok?"

The two girls enthusiastically nodded with thankful smiles on their faces while Sunset's smile slowly fell.

"They shouldn't. I'm no better than Gilda. She was at least right about everyone wanting me dead."

Everyone ignored the subtle telling however as Lyra also peered over her shoulder.

"Sunset... I was still furious about the Fall Formal, but what you just did was pretty cool. If you ever need anything, Bon-Bon and I have your back, ok?" she called out with a small grin on her face before following the dark-haired woman in front of her.

Sunset decided to allow herself a miniature smile at that.

"At least she seemed sincere."

Her inner musings were short lived however as she felt her body wrapped up in a bone-crushing hug.

"Sunset! Thank you so much! We knew you were a good girl now, but WOW was that unexpected! We need to throw you a 'Sunset's an incredible best friend party!'"

Any pain from the hug immediately numbed.

"B-best friend? No..."

Surprisingly, Fluttershy also managed to deliver a powerful embrace.

"We really appreciate what you did Sunset! That was the one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me. I thought you still didn't like us."

Her stomach twisted into knots.

"Isn't it supposed to be the other way around?"

As the three exited their group hug, Sunset suddenly felt the urge to speak.

"R-really? You mean you don't want to send another rainbow laser my way or anything?" she glumly looked down at her feet.

Both girls felt their smiles immediately vanish, being replaced by well-concerned frowns.

"Why would you say that silly? We know you're not a bad egg anymore. You've really changed since the Formal." clarified Pinkie.

"R-really...?" Sunset squeaked out, not believing what was happening in front of her.

"Of course!" Fluttershy exclaimed, placing a comforting hand on her shoulder. "We've seen how hard you've worked in classes and with fixing that wall..."

"...and those menacing glares you receive from everyone."

"Pinkie!" Fluttershy lightly reprimanded, making the other blush in embarrassment.

"Whoops, sorry."

"...we would be honored to call you our friend - especially after you stood up for us."

Sunset felt her heart threaten to crack.

"No, no, no. This is all wrong. I've never mattered before, I've never meant anything... can I really now?"

"Oh my, but we should really check you for other scrapes." Fluttershy told herself, slowly starting to tug up on Sunset's sleeves.

She should've realized what was happening before she said that but she was too caught up in the emotion, too drawn into the moment. When she finally saw what was happening however, it was almost too late.

"NO!"

Scratch that, as her bare arms were revealed, it was too late!

With startled gasps, both Pinkie and Fluttershy instantly dropped into stunned horror at the sight in front of them.

There, clearly visible and circulating Sunset's wrists laid firm red cuts - cuts that still shone vibrantly.

"This is all my fault. I'm the reason why I'll always be alone. I just keep hurting others..."


Sunset felt her veins freeze over, staring frigidly back at the two girls for what felt like an eternity.

Nobody moved a muscle or made a sound for what was a pain-inducing long time.

Finally, risking one more frantic look at the two terrified teenagers in front of her, Sunset opted for a nervous chuckle.

"Heh. Those pesky sidewalks I keep tripping on. Clumsy me." she shakily grinned, sweat pouring down her face.

But one judge of the two's quivering eyes in front of her told her they knew what those marks meant. They weren't buying her excuse one bit.

"S-Sunset..." Pinkie stammered, her jittery hands clasping at her heart while Fluttershy stifled a few sobs.

Suddenly, several voices came flooding into her head.

"Bitch."

"Dirt-bag."

"Demon."

"You've shown them what is in your heart."

"...forever be alone..."

Before she could even feel the salty teardrops leave her eyes, Sunset quickly turned around from her present company. She needed to go. She needed to go NOW!

"I-I...I need to go..." she hastily muttered, bolting from the scene as fast as her legs could carry her. She deserved to be hated, she deserved to be scrutinized, she deserved to be alone. She didn't care where she was going, she just needed to escape this school immediately.

"SUNSET WAIT!" Fluttershy soon bolted after her, but it was too late. Sunset was long gone.

Pinkie soon caught up to her, placing a firm grip on her shoulder as she sat there violently shaking.

"Sunset..."

"Don't worry, we'll find her." Pinkie reassured. The school bell dramatically rung, signaling a wide variety of students to crowd the open hallways of the school, none of them the wiser for the drama that had just taken place moments ago.

Pinkie stared vacantly at the doors leading outside the school, resolve crawling on her face as the background chatter of lockers and gossip ebbed its way out of her consciousness.

"We're going to be there for you Sunset. We promise."

Author's Note:

Hello everyone! Welcome to my first "Equestria Girls" fic , my first "Sunset Shimmer" story, and a more darker tone of writing than my usual style.

I've always wanted to do a "post Equestria Girls" story detailing Sunset's heartache and now I'm finally doing it. There are a lot of amazing Sunset stories out there though so mine probably won't meet up to the amazing quality of those, but I hope this is enjoyable nonetheless.

The themes of suicide and self-harm are definitely a new area for me - I don't usually write this dark but I feel it works with Sunset - seeing her slowly recover her mental health between the first two Equestria Girls Movies. I'm hoping that my portrayal is not in any way offensive to those who've had suicidal thoughts or depression but I do apologize in advance as I only want to tell a powerful story from Sunset's psyche. I am trying to capture these subject matters in an honest and respectful portrayal but if there are any problems with the themes, please feel free to let me know.

The second part of this story should be coming up soon after the first, so stay tuned for that and have fun reading!

(*If I do more writing, I'll definitely try to do some more "Equestria Girls Universe" fics.*)



Sincerely,

-frenettek314


*P.S. - If you like this story, I've actually gotten a lot of inspiration for this story from these amazing Sunset fics that I'd highly recommend :

"Goodnight Sunset, Good Morning Sunrise" by Twilight Nightmare


"Seeing the Sunset" by CoverArt


"Accepting Help" by Tinybit92


If interested, please check these out. These are definitely much better than mine, but they are also some personal favorites. Anyways, I'll see you on the next part.*