• Published 22nd Dec 2011
  • 2,937 Views, 44 Comments

No Need for Rainbows - terrycloth

Rainbow Dash never did her sonic rainboom, and now Nightmare Moon has returned. Who will stop her?

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Chapter 14: Sunshine

Nightmare Moon looked a little smaller in the sunlight, not that it was able to touch her directly. Her star-studded mist of a mane and tail glowed within the pool of shadow surrounding her crumpled form, as she lay at the base of the crater, not moving except to breathe.

The others – aside from Big Mac, who’d headed off to reassure Applebloom, and check up on Granny Smith – whispered to each other from the crater’s edge. Before long, though, the conversation died down, and they ran off to frolic in the sunlight. For a second it looked like Rainbow Dash was going to invite Nightmare Moon to come along, but Fluttershy said something to her and they both flew off without a word. Still, it was enough to make the nightmare smile.

She closed her eyes for a while, opening them only when the sun’s warmth washed across her wings, to see Celestia standing next to her. “I take it I’m forgiven,” the radiant alicorn said.

“For what?” Nightmare Moon asked. “You were right all along.”

“Your friends said that it was the little yellow pegasus who talked you down,” Celestia said.

“Fluttershy? Yes, she was the spark.” Nightmare Moon admitted.

Celestia frowned. “Then the elements were involved?”

“Metaphorically, but that is always how they’ve been at their most powerful.” The black alicorn sighed, and folded her wings in against her body. “When I declared myself ruler of Equestria, the ponies here treated me with more kindness and generosity than I realized, or deserved. I was confused by their offerings, and infuriated that petitioners brought nothing but the same request – that the sun be raised – over and over and over. I thought they were defying me, when in reality it was simply the only request important enough for them to risk offending me.

“And then, when I fled to the Everfree Forest, thinking to be alone, some ponies – these six – were not content to let me be. They laughed in the face of my threats, and told me the truth even though it was not what I wanted to hear. They pushed themselves to the brink of exhaustion and despair in my service – in the service of my dream.

“And I misinterpreted it all as treason. I was about to destroy them, when Fluttershy’s stare forced me to realize the truth – that they’d been loyal all along. That they were only trying to be my friends.”

“A valuable lesson,” Princess Celestia said.

“It had better be,” Nightmare Moon replied. “Equestria suffered enough for it.”

“Friendship is sometimes hard, Luna, but always worth the price,” Celestia said gently.

Nightmare Moon squeezed her eyes shut at the mention of that name. “Don’t call me that. I don’t deserve it.”

Celestia was taken aback. “You really want everypony to keep calling you ‘Nightmare Moon’?”

The nightmare nodded. “It will serve as a reminder, perhaps as a form of penance. And besides,” she added, with a smile, “for some reason it makes everypony bring me candy.”

Comments ( 13 )

I like this story. It has a lot of witty and funny moments, but in some ways it's more compelling than the original version. I like the idea of conquering Nightmare Moon with actual friendship, instead of some sort of friendship-powered magical super-weapon.

Very interesting, complete story. What the hell, couple of awesome original stories just popped up. WOW

<3 the moral at closing. I agree, having Nightmare Moon conquered by actual friendship is pretty awesome. Very much in the spirit of the show -- even Rainbow Dash's "friendly prank" has a certain appropriateness. :)

Heh heh. Well, I'm glad people liked it. I know the premise isn't exactly original, but I wanted a version where Nightmare Moon was both really Luna and really dangerous. And that wasn't grimdark.

I also like beating up on Rainbow Dash I guess, because she's kind of a jerk. She's still best pony though.

And yeah, Rowyn, there were a couple flashbacks I was thinking of having that I didn't have a good place to put in. One of them was Rainbow Dash convincing Nightmare Moon to let her join. The only line I had was one about her rainbow mane striking terror into the hearts of their enemies, because really, what could possibly be more terrifying than a rainbow? Those things are weapons of mass destruction!


Best ending line ever

#6 · Jan 17th, 2012 · · ·

little hard to follow but still very well writen:rainbowkiss:

Now, this... this is great. There are a few pacing issues to address, and not as much detail as there could be at times, but I'm one to talk. :raritywink:

I admit, I don't know if I like Applejack in this universe, but still curious about where it all goes from here, if you're going to expand. Maybe she'll grow on me, like she did in the series proper.

Sometimes I think detail is my bane. :derpytongue2: I can see everything clearly in my head but I forget to actually describe it and end up with pages of dialog instead.


It is awfully nice dialog, make no mistake. :pinkiehappy:

Utterly hilarious and an intelligent exploration of alternative character development.

Rarity would make a great rock farmer with her talent, yep.

Twilight and Applejack as friends in business together are highly believable.

Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy as Shadowbolts – BWAH-HAH-HAH!!! Great!

Your resolution followed very logically.

A nice bit of character exploration and humor. That last line in particular is delivered with perfect timing.

Beating Nightmare Moon by being friendly (and a stern talking to) reminds me of another alternate universe story: A Minor Variation, though Nightmare Moon goes back to Luna and is hit with the Elements, it's pretty much unnecessary as she was beaten before that by the power of hugs. It's another "no sonic rainboom" story, actually:

The stare as used here is just about the most god‐awful example of deus ex machina I’ve had the displeasure of reading in the last month. Both managing to talk the villain down and Nightmare Moon’s speech at the end are so god‐damned clichéd that I honestly would have preferred eternal night ending with the death of all life on Equus.

An alternative to the trite ending could’ve been successfully demonstrating the projectors, buying the time necessary to convince Nightmare Moon to back off on the whole eternal night schtick. Perhaps educating Nightmare Moon on how perceptions of the night have changed in the last hundred‐odd years — the very thing she wanted to achieve with her usurpation of the throne was achieved almost a century ago and everything she’s doing is actually undermining it! — and driving home the point using the scarcity of materials to construct projectors: “You have to meet us halfway on this; you gave us an impossible task and we did it. Yeah, eternal night that doesn’t end all life on Equestria is theoretically possible but it is not feasible.”

This is one of the few stories with endings I loathe that I’ll up‐vote for the journey alone — usually an ending I don’t like leaves whatever I was reading ruined forever™. Certainly didn’t hurt any that this story is flawless from a technical standpoint. :ajsmug:

7710840 It's the first ponyfic I ever wrote. :twilightblush:

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