• Published 3rd Feb 2024
  • 530 Views, 74 Comments

Starlight Glimmer Regrets Her Mistakes - MagicS

Now exactly how was Starlight supposed to know that a few changes to the past could cause the space-time continuum to collapse?

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Room for One More

“Y-Your Cutie Mark...” Starlight stuttered as she pointed at her other self.

“I did it to myself,” Former Empress Starlight said as she picked her shawl back up and put it on. “As punishment for what I did. And because I can’t trust myself with my magic anymore. The crystal ball the Cutie Mark is stuck in is enchanted so I can’t break it unless I believe in myself… I had Twilight make that after I removed my mark in the first place.”

“You deserve to have it back Starlight… I’d break it for you if I knew you wouldn’t just remove it again,” Twilight sighed.

“Oh man...” Spike sadly frowned and hung his head low.

The other Spike standing behind him dismissively crossed his arms and looked away. There was no pity on his face.

The Former Empress shook her head and looked at Starlight. “Look, I’m glad you stopped me. I’m grateful for what you’ve done. But I just want to be left alone right now, okay?” Before anyone could say anything she pulled her door shut.

Starlight stared at the door for a while before she turned her head to Twilight. “Can you get the rest of your friends here too? I’d like to talk with everyone. I think all of this has to do with why I’m here.”

“Of course,” Twilight nodded. “I’ll get in touch with everyone. Maybe we can have something to eat in the meantime. Do you want to come back downstairs?”

The Cutie Map room was a little quiet for how many ponies (and young dragons) were inside it right now. Starlight and Spike were standing before the table, directly facing Twilight, while the other Elements and this world’s Spike were at their own seats. It was most definitely a bit of an awkward meeting. Strange too. Not quite as strange as seeing their alternates, but seeing these other versions of their beloved friends was still a little odd. So similar but still so different.

“So since I only saw you for like thirty seconds last time, what’s it like being from a world where you didn’t enslave Equestria and put us in stasis pods for like a year?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“Rainbow Dash,” Fluttershy chided her.

“I’m just curious!” Rainbow shrugged.

“It’s a fair question… but I don’t think you really want to hear too much about our world,” Starlight rubbed the back of her neck.

“Cause we’d get jealous over how much nicer it is? And how much more peaceful things were?” Applejack guessed, a flat look on her face.

“I don’t want you to hold anything else against her...” Starlight murmured.

“We… wouldn’t. I promise,” Rarity said, with a bit of hesitation.

“Eh. Be tough though,” Pinkie Pie shrugged while Rainbow Dash nodded.

Twilight glared at the both of them. “I know things have been rough but-”

Pinkie Pie immediately wilted. “I’m sorry, Twilight. You know I want to get along with her too, and I really have forgiven her, but when I think about all the smiles Equestria missed out on...”

“I know,” Twilight sighed, closing her eyes and taking a deep breath. “I know, Pinkie. Just do your best.”

Starlight looked over the five other Elements besides Twilight. “None of you are actually friends with her, are you?”

The five quieted down, sharing uncertain looks of dismay and shame with each other.

“We’re not… we don’t hate her or anything,” Fluttershy quietly said.

“It’s just tough. Like Pinkie Pie said,” Applejack shrugged. “We’ve all forgiven her but actually saying we’re friends? I don’t know if I can go that far.”

“It was difficult coming back to our homes and families and seeing what we lost in the time we were imprisoned in the Crystal Empire,” Rarity said.

“Our families all remembered that they had been brainwashed to forget about us,” Pinkie Pie said.

“So while we’ve forgiven Starlight… most ponies haven’t,” Fluttershy said.

“And I can’t force them to,” Twilight Sparkle shook her head. “It wouldn’t be right—you can’t force friendship. I make sure no one does anything to Starlight, and I’ve tried to convince ponies to forgive her, but I can’t make them smile and get along with her. Or it doesn’t mean anything. Ponies have to become friends with her for real… even if it might take a while.”

“I know you’re right but partially because she’s me and I can empathize with what she’s going through it really makes me wish things were better for her,” Starlight sighed. “With just one wrong choice… I could’ve been her.”

Starlight bit her lip and turned around to leave the room. “I need to go talk to her. Alone.”

Twilight’s eyebrows shot up. “But what about-”

“Spike? Can you take care of everything else with them? Tell them why we’re here and what we think needs to be done,” Starlight said to him.

“Okay… if you think you need to go talk to her on your own like that,” Spike said.

“Thanks, Spike,” Starlight smiled at him and left the room.

As soon as the doors closed, Spike looked to see everyone else peering down at him from their seats. All eyes on him and very curious about what he had to tell them.

Spike cleared his throat and tried to be as confident as possible. “So—who wants to learn about saving the world again?”

Starlight found herself back in front of the door to the former Empress’s room. Her room. She hadn’t gotten much of a glimpse inside earlier but she wondered how differently decorated it was. Obviously there wouldn’t be as many pictures of friends around. If any at all. From how the other her had acted, Starlight wouldn’t have been surprised if it looked like how her old room in Sire’s Hollow did as a teenager. That thought made her grimace and shudder in horror.

After a moment of hesitation she lifted her hoof up and knocked on the door a few times.

“Go away. I know it’s you, we don’t have anything to talk about.”

Starlight frowned and pushed the door open, walking in on her own. What she saw was a mostly empty room, lightly furnished, like a ghost was living in it.

Her other self was on the bed, reading a book Starlight didn’t recognize. She frowned as Starlight walked in. “I guess I can’t say I’m surprised you’d just waltz on in like that. I’d do the same thing.”

“I just want to… I just had to talk to you about some things,” Starlight said.

“There’s nothing more to talk about. The old me is gone, everything I did has been undone, and now it’s just about moving on and waiting. Time heals all wounds, right? It’s part of my punishment,” Former Empress Starlight said.

“But you don’t need to be alone for all of it. You shouldn’t be. Even before I truly felt like I belonged there were others who helped me. I can’t imagine dealing with what you are without someone else to rely on...”

“I have Twilight,” she shrugged.

“That’s not the same and you know it. Even for me and my Twilight it was a little different—and the two of you aren’t as close as we were when we first started living together here. Is there… is there no one else who would call you their friend? What about...” Starlight winced, worried she was about to step on a landmine. “What about Sunburst?”

The other Starlight twitched and looked away, putting her book down. “He won’t talk to me.”

“Did you try and-”

“I tried to get in touch with him after things calmed down. He refuses to even meet with me.”


“I’m not angry at him either. Who could blame him?” Former Empress Starlight shrugged, staring up at the canopy of her bead.

“What about this world’s Discord?”

“Are you friends with your Discord? This one threatened to turn me to stone if I even so much as looked at Fluttershy the wrong way.”

Starlight frowned. To be honest, considering Discord’s past she knew that was a little hypocritical of him to not be a little more forgiving. “And Spike?”

“I took Twilight away from him. Separated him from the others. And now he knows he’d have wings right now if it wasn’t for me. He tolerates me for Twilight’s sake but he doesn’t like me,” the other Starlight sighed.

Starlight groaned and started rubbing her forehead. “Ever meet a mare named Trixie? What about Maud?”

“I don’t know who Trixie is but Maud’s the name of one of Pinkie Pie’s sisters, right? Pinkie told me that it was probably a bad idea for me to meet any of her family for a long time.”

“This is worse than I thought...” Starlight mumbled.

“I heard that.”

“S-Sorry… I don’t mean to make this worse for you. I want to help you.”

“You already did. Heh, what you’re doing right now is just proof of how much better than me you are. I did all those horrible things and yet here you are trying to help even more. I didn’t deserve any pity or forgiveness but you still gave it to me. I don’t think I could ever be as kind as you. Just let me stay here and go through my punishment. It’s fine. You don’t need to feel bad for any of it.”

“But you are me. You can be what I’ve made myself to be. I know you can. I’m worried that like this… you won’t ever believe in yourself or be able to do something. And that… that would just be too sad.”

The Former Empress shivered and turned over onto her side so Starlight couldn’t see her face. “J-Just go… please.”

Starlight stood there. As much as she had gone through, as much as she could empathize with her, there was a lot she couldn’t. She turned on her hooves and pulled open the door, walking back out of the room. “I’ll be back.”

She teleported herself right outside the front doors of Twilight’s castle so she could avoid being stopped by anyone else. Starlight had a little mission to go on. The town of Ponyville sat directly ahead of her, full of familiar and friendly faces. Not so friendly in this world. And this time when she walked through town, Spike wouldn’t be with her. Exactly how would ponies react to and treat her? What did the Starlight here have to go through every time she decided to actually leave her room and home? There was nothing she was going to actually do—just make a circuit through town and come back here. The simplest of all walks. Time to see where it led.

Starlight took a deep breath and started randomly walking past some of the buildings and houses of ponies, taking a slow way into the center of town. It hadn’t been too long since she and Spike came through here so ponies were mostly out doing the same thing they were. The first thing she saw was Daisy and Lily frightfully run back into their store when she walked by.

Wonderful. They were downright afraid of her.

A walk past Sugarcube Corner and Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon curled up their lips at her as they walked away with a pair of cupcakes.

She walked by Cheerilee a minute later and heard the earth pony mutter “Monster” under her breath when she thought she was out of earshot.

And the average look sent her way was far nastier and aggressive than before. When she walked along the row of stalls at the market it was clear that even if she had money, no one here would sell to her. She heard something falling at her and moved to the side right as a strawberry splat into the ground next to her. Looking up, she saw Strawberry Sunrise whistling innocently as she flew away.

“Hmpf, too bad,” Bon Bon said from where she was handing out samples of new confectioneries.

Starlight ignored it all until she crossed paths with a few fillies and colts she recognized. Pipsqueak, Twist, Rumble, Toola Roola and Coconut Cream. They must’ve been out having fun after school. All five of them glared up at her with angry eyes.

“Why don’t you just leave already, monster,” Toola Roola said.

“Princess Twilight must be going crazy,” Coconut Cream said as they all ran off.

Starlight held a hoof to her forehead—starting to feel a little sick.

That feeling only got worse and worse the more she walked through Ponyville.

It was a lot worse than when she had Spike, as if the ponies of Ponyville weren’t even trying anymore to hold back their true feelings. Twilight said she made sure no one would actually do anything but the more disgruntled the town got with her mere presence she wasn’t exactly sure. This was every nightmare she had back when she first came to Ponyville in her world magnified. Every horrible misgiving she had about going back to her village and meeting the ponies she had wronged again. Could the her here ever really get over this or move on when things were this bad? She didn’t even have her Cutie Mark or magic to dwell on.

Starlight saw Big Macintosh selling some of the apples from Sweet Apple Acres. The moment their eyes met, a harsh frown graced his features. All of the families of the Elements must despise her even more than the typical pony.

Here she was—barely a few minutes into living in her alternate’s horseshoes and she couldn’t take much more of it.

Starlight was never the type to feel spiteful, not since turning over a new leaf at least, and the fact that it was a mare who she could so easily have seen herself be if there were only a few changes go through this was unbearable. She didn’t want this for anyone. She had been the one to tear it all down, she had to, but this isn’t the outcome she wanted either. This wasn’t harmony. There wasn’t friendship here.

At least she knew why they were brought here. The problem was obvious. The how to fix it wasn’t so much.

Maybe this world’s Twilight and the others were at least plenty open to what Spike was telling them…

“So you’re telling me we should build a school that teaches friendship and invite creatures from all over the world to come study at it to strengthen the bonds of friendship and our various nations because if we don’t the entire space-time continuum might collapse?” Twilight asked with a raised eyebrow.

“That uh, yeah, that about covers it,” Spike nodded.

Twilight thought for a few moments and shrugged. “Well there’s not really a downside to that, is there? Sounds like a good idea to me!”

“You sure are taking the idea of the world ending rather easily, darling. As I am myself it seems,” Rarity said, tilting her head to the side.

“I think we’ve all just become physically unable to be surprised by anything anymore,” Rainbow Dash said. Herself nothing more than slightly confused by all this.

“Well considering what we’ve been through...” Applejack muttered.

“I think the Princesses will support the idea of a school like that too,” Twilight said, getting back on topic. “They’ll want things to improve at a faster pace. A big project like this for Equestria to look at and work together on? It could really be just what we need.”

“I’m just going to give you a warning to not listen to a pony called Chancellor Neighsay and all his rules and regulations for the school. As much as you love rules and everything—follow your heart and listen to your friends instead, okay Twilight?” Spike asked her.

“Um… okay I suppose,” Twilight shrugged.

“He’s not a bad guy either, just needs his eyes opened a bit. Keep it in mind,” Spike gave her a thumbs up.

“That’s not all that needs to be done here,” Starlight Glimmer said as she opened up the door and strode back into the room.

“Starlight? Were you talking to yourself—your other self—this whole time?” Fluttershy asked.

“No, I also took a walk around Ponyville,” Starlight said.

Rarity grimaced. “Alone?”

Starlight nodded. “That’s right. And something I know for sure now is that the problem won’t truly be fixed until one more true bond of friendship can be forged. Only then will this world be close to what it should be. You all are doing your best—honestly maybe even better than the me here deserves after what she did, because what she did was definitely more permanent than what I did, but you don’t know what a great friendship you’re missing out on either. It may be hard for you to believe, but I’m proof that you all can become magnificent friends with your Starlight Glimmer. And there are so many other ponies missing out on a great friendship with her too. Until that’s changed this world will always be missing something.” She looked at Twilight. “It can’t be forced, but it can be worked harder on.”

Twilight Sparkle smiled and silently nodded.

“So what do you think we should do?” Pinkie Pie asked.

“Talk with her more. Have a party with her. Don’t just let her mope in her room all day. Convince her old friend Sunburst to at least give her a chance, be seen around town with her a little more, try and get ponies to at least open up a little. Really show everyone how she’s changed,” Starlight smiled to them.

Applejack and Rainbow Dash shared a glance, the pegasus shrugging.

“I think we can manage that at least then,” Applejack nodded.

“I’ll make sure we all put a little more effort in. When it comes to everything,” Twilight said.

“Good. And whew,” Starlight wiped a hoof across her forehead. “This was a little stressful in its own way but it was still a lot nicer and more straightforward than the last worlds we visited.” She raised an eyebrow at Spike. “Do you think we’re ready to go.”

Spike took a look across the table of familiar faces and grinned. “I think we’re leaving things in pretty good hooves here.”

Starlight smiled once more. “Alright! Thank you all for everything, but it’s about time for us to-”


Starlight and Spike turned around and the others in the room looked back at the door as it opened up. The shawl wearing other Starlight Glimmer stepped into the Cutie Map room. Much to the surprise of the others.

Twilight flittered up from her chair and landed before her. “Starlight? Is something wrong? You don’t usually...”

“Leave my room?” The former Empress weakly grinned. “Sorry. I was… I was thinking about some things. And I overhead all of you so...” She took a deep breath to compose herself. “I’ve made a decision about something. After meeting… myself… and now hearing about what’s going on, I want to act. I-I don’t want to burden you anymore, Twilight.” She turned to face Starlight. “I’m coming with you.”

Twilight’s jaw dropped and her eyes started searching around in a mixture of confusion and dismay. The other Elements were just as surprised and both Spikes were staring in shock at the former Empress’s declaration.

Meanwhile, Starlight Glimmer smiled widely.

“But Starlight-” Twilight said, fluttering around to face the other mare. “I just—we’re going to work so much harder to make Equestria a better place and to help you! We’ll strengthen your bonds of friendship with everyone! That’s what we’ve decided and… and I just don’t want to feel like you’re running away from your problems...”

“I’m not, Twilight, but I’m happy you’re so concerned about me,” the former Empress said. “It’s just that… I think this will be better for everyone. At least for the moment. I’m not leaving for good. This is my world and I will come back to it, I just… want to find myself first. And let’s be honest, I think the rest of Ponyville will be happy to not see me around for a while. But it’s not just that either—work on the school with your friends, do something all of Equestria can focus on and look at while I’m not around. If I was here helping you out… I don’t think ponies would like it as much. And besides, from what I heard this mission my other self is going on is partially the result of what I did. So I might as well help fix that problem too.”

Twilight sighed but after a moment smile at her Starlight. “I understand. And I believe in you. If you want to do this, you’ve got my support.”

“All of our support!” Rainbow Dash shouted with a grin.

“Yepperooni!” Pinkie Pie agreed.

“Thank you. I guess it’s time to take a little vacation,” former Empress Starlight said.

Spike shuddered. “Please don’t use that phrasing.”

“She’s right though,” Starlight said. “Spike? Wake up Discord—we’re done here. It’s onto the next world to help out.”

“You say that but I don’t know if Discord is going to like us bringing another pony along...” Spike said as he reached into his bag.

“Absolutely not,” Discord said. And if he could right now, he’d probably be defiantly folding his arms.

“Discord-” Starlight started.

“No. This is the exact opposite of what we should be doing. We can’t bring along another pony when we’re trying to stabilize the space-time continuum. How am I being the sensible one right now?” Discord glared at her.

“It’s not another pony, it’s me!” Starlight smiled.

Discord was not convinced.

“Look,” Starlight rolled her eyes. “I’m not just doing this for fun. This is right. I can feel it. This is what we should be doing. We’re supposed to be increasing all the friendship and harmony where we visit—this is going to do that. I just know it. It’s like… I don’t know if it’s because she’s me but there’s something telling me that we have to do this. For the sake of friendship and harmony.”

Starlight exhaled and looked at her other self—the one she referred to as her evil self until very recently. “This is a good thing. How can we say we’re trying to save the world if we refuse to help save one pony?”

Discord stared at the alternate Starlight as well for a minute before finally rolling his eyes in defeat. “Oh fine, I give up. Far be it for me to know what will help harmony anyways.”

“We won’t regret this. None of us will,” Starlight smiled at him and reached a hoof over to affectionately place on her other self’s shoulder. “Congratulations, you get to have some fun now.”

“That’s not how you should be putting it,” Spike said.

“Let’s just go already. And nobody blame me if the world ends because of this,” Discord said and became animated enough to snap his fingers and make another portal in the map room. “There are still a lot of problems we need to fix.”

“Yeah,” Spike nodded and started to walk into the portal.

Former Empress Starlight gulped, a bit nervous about the portal’s appearance, and glanced to her other self. “I-Is this really okay? Are you sure I can come? I don’t want to cause even more problems.”

“You won’t. This is your mission too now,” Starlight said.

The former Empress nodded. Trusting in her other self if not herself. She looked back at the few friends she had in this world. “Thank you for supporting me, even when it must’ve been difficult for you. When you see me again I’ll be a different mare.”

And with that she started walking towards the portal as well.

“Goodbye, Starlight. I’m looking forward to it,” Twilight waved.

Starlight went to follow them, picking up the rear, when she remembered something. Pausing, she turned on her hooves and quickly trotted over to Spike—this world’s Spike—with a smile on her face.

The dragon looked up at her suspiciously. “What?”

“I know it might be tough for you to believe, but you’re missing out on having a great friend. Give her a chance when she gets back,” Starlight winked at him and trotted back to the portal.

As the denizens of this world watched, all four of them entered the interdimensional portal and it closed back up behind them. Now they had some work of their own to do.