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"...what did I just even read." - Wintermist || "Pour la beauté du geste" || ooo || π


There are rumours circulating. Stories about something lurking in the darkness. Something hiding in the unlit corners of rooms and hallways. Something waiting in the shadow. But they're just rumors. Just fiction. There's nothing to be afraid of. There's nothing there at all.

An entry into the A Thousand Words contest, under the "Grim" and "Experimental" categories.

Prereading and cover art edit courtesy of Reviewfilly.

Live reading by The Mystery Fluttershy Fan.

Vaguely inspired by a series that doesn't exist.

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 6 )

Vaguely inspired by a series that doesn't exist.

I know you're the guy to read for Teen-rated mindf:yay:, but even by those standards... :rainbowhuh:

Boy, it sure is reassuring to know that there very definitely isn't anything to worry about! :pinkiehappy:

Great buildup to the cognitohazardous reveal. Definitely one of the more effective creepy entries. Thank you for it and best of luck in the judging.

There is no mare in the shadows. There are no evil eyes looking at you from beyond the edge of your vision, waiting patiently for you to fall asleep. There's no one hiding in the unlit corner of your room at night, ready to strike when your guard is down and your senses dull. There's nothing lurking in the darkness, watching you to catch you in your most vulnerable moments.

phew, that's good to know! it would be very scary if there were

There are no black wings gliding through the night, carrying along a mare that doesn't exist.

hehe, lines like this are always fun

Nothing is there when the sky is black and you can't see the stars.

how can anything but "nothing" detected by an absence? makes you think!

There are no fugitive shards of the Nightmare that was, living in the far dark corners of Equestria. There is no part of it that survived the Elements and escaped the purging of its host. There is no fragment of night eternal hiding during the day and coming out at night to terrorise ponies once again.

ooh, love this worldbuilding bit! rooting the origins of this "nothing" in the canon (or really, giving it a good reason for being at all) does make it resonate more

There is no tall mare walking quietly through the night, towering over ponies like you, powerful enough to crush you with little effort or worse, much worse.

oh no, anything but that!

Lurking in the shadows of your mind, hiding in the darkness where nightmares dwell and none can find her. There is no mare in the shadows of this world. But soon you will be in hers.

ooh, love this ending! of course, the story would have worked just as well with the entire "there is no" motif merely being an ironic way to narrate the (possible) existence of this dreaded nightmare being, but this both retroactively makes all of those "there is no"s literally true while also describing what really does exist within the confines of your mind, and will harm you in all the ways described. and throughout, the themes of this creature existing in the negative spaces, detectable only by absences and lacks, all of it comes together so beautifully.

excellent stuff!

Perfect bedtime light reading. Really need to be voiced by someone!

Hello! Have a review. This one really grew on me. For a while I was unsure about the level of repetition of the negatives, but the narrative then got inside my head and wormed around. It wouldn't go away. The second-person voice was unexpected but it worked much better than 2p often does. Clever ending, too. Liked and faved! Congrats on the Silver Medal, too.

I like the story, but Nightmare Moon was one of the most pathetic villains to ever appear on the show (and considering the competition, that’s really saying something), so why should I be scared of her? Why would anybody, especially if they’ve seen Black Lagoon?

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