• Published 20th Mar 2013
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Dreaming of the Moon - BeardedRedMane



Anon, a practitioner of Lucid Dreaming one day finds himself in a peculiar dream. One that he cannot seem to wake up from.

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Chapter 10 Choices (Revised)

Celestia's horn ceased its glow and for a half second she could be seen frowning before she resumed her "All is well in Equestria" façade. Celestia had thought that she sensed what was the problem briefly as her magic wrapped around Anon but if her sister wanted to solve the matter she wasn't going to undermine her efforts. Still, she couldn't help but wonder as to the reason why… Perhaps she felt usurped from her place as Mare of the Night by this being and its strange dream ability. Shaking her mane lightly she resolved to carefully question her later, as of the moment there was a matter of equal if not greater importance.

"Twilight Sparkle… First I wish to express my deepest gratitude to you and your friends. Once again you have put your lives on the line to protected Ponyville from evil. Which makes what I'm about to say… harder." Princess Celestia, a being whom time had no effect on, choked briefly on her words before resuming her normal tone.

• • •

"Uhm… So, you're trying to find your way out of this---" again the scenery suddenly shifted as trees phased into existence and grass sprouted under their feet, "…forest." Anon replied with a grunt as his walking cane he had been using to traverse the desert they were in only moments before transformed into a scimitar to cut through the brush. Luna wasn't sure what unnerved her more, that the landscape rapidly kept changing or that Anon failed to realize it in the slightest, she had thrice before questioned him about it and each time Anon replied with a 'What are you talking about?' "So, where are you trying to get to, after you get out of this forest, I mean."

This time Anon ceased his slashing and turned to face her, wiping sweat from his brow. "Well isn't that obvious? I've got to go home. I just got off work and I have to let my dogs go out to pee." Luna was at even more of a loss than she was moments before, she could just wake him up and be done with it but that wouldn't solve the mystery as to why he didn't remember her but the other one did.

"And.. what of that thing from earlier that looked like-- looked odd." She said deciding to try to gage his reaction.

Anon turned back to the task at hand and continued his assault on the brush, "Him? Dunno, annoying bastard though. Every time I almost get home he puts up another detour but what're you gonna do? They're working on the road so I have to go around."

Luna sighed deeply as she knitted her brows in concentration, Anon wasn't making much sense and they weren't getting much of anywhere at this rate. In the back of her mind she could also feel her sisters' presence and the multitude of questions on her mind; she couldn't keep everyone waiting with the exit they pulled. Closing her eyes she began concentrating her horn faintly glowing searching for anything. Moments later she felt the tiny whispers she had heard earlier, "Anon." she said firmly, causing him to pause his advance. "This way."

• • •

Throughout the hundreds of possible punishments Twilight Sparkle had thought of none of them compared to this, so absurd was Celestia's response she literally couldn't comprehend it. "You mean, you can't send him back at the moment right?" Twilight blurted out without regard to the way she addressed her Princess. Celestia only shook her head sadly before taking a stern tone with her student.

"The spell you used wasn't as simple as teleporting somepony across a set distance, Twilight." the Princess began. "To begin with the power it takes to teleport an object over the distance of a mile is a great feat in and of itself for said unicorn. The power needed to accomplish such a task doubles as does the distance."

"But I-- there's no way that I had enough power to pull a being his size over the distance of the world, let alone countless galaxies!" Twilight interrupted.

Celestia's brows furrowed in thought, Twilight's statement was valid… If applied to anyone but her, still there would be no way to explain it to her without revealing everything. Hardening her resolve Celestia looked down upon Twilight not as her student but as a ruler of an entire nation. "Twilight Sparkle, it is fact that due to your actions all of Equestria has been spared a terrible fate… Though through your actions and reckless use of magic a being has been translocated from his home world against his will with no current way to return. You will hereby be placed under arrest and stripped of your title until such a time where we can come to an agreement with Anon the Human."

• • •

"So.. that's it…" Luna stood unmoving as she watched Anon fight a ghoulish version of himself wielding nothing but a tower shield and a dagger.

"Yo!, what's with that tiny ass dirk you're tryin' to stick me with?" laughed a corrupted version of Anon as he easily avoided Anons' attacks while raining a barrage of his own on, "Really-- you're going to have to throw away that shield if you even want to graze me!"

"Screw that, last time you tickled me with one of those claws I nearly wet myself." Anon retorted while swinging in vain. All the while Luna concentrated her gaze on the hole in the doppelgangers chest. A black substance oozed from the hole and gave off an aura that was all too familiar to Luna. It was the same aura of darkness that she felt when the nightmare first struck days ago.

Luna's mind was racing over the implications and possible resolutions. On one hand it would be a simple matter to just obliterate the remnant of darkness subsequently curing Anon and then return with him, but it would come at a price. The nightmare seemed to have latched onto a piece of Anon's soul, erasing the remnant would at the least obliterate a portion of Anon's soul that still remembered her.

And at most kill him.

Soon she would have to make up her mind, Anon wasn't getting anywhere in his fight and the shade would only run off again. Biting down on her lower lip Luna, Mare of the Night gathered her resolve.

"Seriously, why is the shield so large and the sword so tiny? Does it mirror the size of something private of yours?"

"You… Oh I'm going lodge this prick so far into your rectum!"

"Enough!" Luna cried out using the Royal Canterlot voice, "Your terror ends here." Lunas' horn shone brightly causing the doppelganger to shrink back. Anon ceased his attacks as Luna approached them with her eyes glowing white with power. "You will cause no more harm to Anon, Nightmare!"

Gasping for air the doppelganger managed to smile before he spoke, "So that's… how it's gonna be eh? Must be pretty nice, to conveniently cast away someone after he isn't useful anymore. Guess you were just toying with me back then under that tree in the grassy field."

Luna grimaced as she let the light of her horn overtake everything.

• • •

Anon sat up slowly as he brought a hand to his forehead, probably the right one. Splitting headache, huge gape in memory, lights being way too bright and sounds not working properly, Anon hadn't had a hangover before but he imagined that it would be like this. Blinking through the pain Anon focused his eyes to where he thought he heard voices and was able to make out six small colorful shapes and two larger ones.

The six smaller ones were most likely his new friends but what the fuck were those two large ones? As his mind slowly cleared he was finally able to make out the two large shapes of-- "Yo… What the fuck?" Eight mares turned toward Anon giving him his attention. Oh fuck, is that Princess Celestia? She's huge, You'd think the Princess of Ponyland would-- Well be a pony. Not a horse... And who's the second one? Wait-- fuck! I come to and the first thing I do is yell obscenities in front of a Princess. Wait-- the scenery fucking changed, why am I always waking up in unfamiliar places?! No--Quick! Damage control Anon! Think of something good to say!

"uh…..Sup?"

• • •

"Sister, while we do agree that Twilight's actions do warrant a proper reprimanding-- Thou art suggesting imprisonment?!" Luna stomped her foot down hard against the wooden floor as she glanced back to a Twilight Sparkle who was currently in shock, Fluttershy was crying next to her while the rest were trying to comfort Twilight.

"Do not misunderstand me Luna-- or you six." Celestia shifted her tone into one of comfort, "Twilight will be placed under house arrest only as a precaution. There will be no dark dungeon or improper treatment." Behind Celestia, Twilight at her mentors words finally snapped out of her shock while Fluttershy's tears slowed to sniffs."Howev--"

"However it is imprisonment all the same," Luna finished. "No matter how thou might word it. Anon isn't the--We are sure Anon while upset about this development will not want to see somepony punished for a mistake made in good conscious!"

"I… She's right though, I did something that can't be taken back. At the very least I should be punished. What of Anon? What if he has a family somewhere? People that miss him! And I--"

"Yo… What the fuck." a voice interrupted from their left. Luna was the first to look up and relief washed over her face for an instant before she saw his confused gaze at the sight of them. At the sight of her. A few seconds of silence passed before anyone said anything, leading Anon to break the ice, "uh…..Sup?"

Had the situation been lighter Dash would have snickered at his expense instead she looked at him with a mix of pity and anger. Pinkie Pie was imitating Fluttershy, her mane straight as she stared at the ground while Twilight briefly met his gaze only to tear up and look away. Applejack cursed under her breath while Rarity shuffled her feet awkwardly. Celestia on the other hand took a few steps toward Anon. "Greetings Anon, I am Princess Celestia and on behalf of all Equestria I would like to give my thanks for your heroism in our darkest hour." Princess Celestia dipped her head down and bowed.

"Uh.. no problem?" Anon nervously replied. All right, damage control success! Step two, figure out what the fuck is going on. Relaxing a bit Anon brought up his right arm and flexed, "Just doing what anyone would do, besides what kind of man would I be if I let a bunch of girls have all the fun?" Anon instantly cursed his casual personality and way of speaking, while it was easier to let people laugh around him goofing off in front of royalty wasn't exactly the smartest thing. In the background Pinkies hair poofed a little as she hid a giggle, Dash huffed and rolled her eyes.

The tension in the room dropped regardless of how Anon felt about his words, visibly blushing Anon continued, "If you don't mind me asking is there a particular reason" Why you're so tall? "Why I'm on the floor?"

"We will be able to explain it to thou." Celestia furrowed her brows slightly as Luna trotted up beside her stealing Anon's attention. "It seems as though the wound you received from the calamity that struck our world ran deeper than we thought." Luna spoke as she brought up a hoof pointing it toward Anons chest while Anon trailed his eyes down his body. "We Alicorns are beings of great power, so great that we constantly radiate a bit of our power around us. When evil happens to be in the presence as one as strong as my sister, their minds are wracked with a great sense of pain."

"Whoah, you saying I'm evil? I mean I know I'm not the best person around-- and there was that one time I beat the snot out of that one kid but he deserved it. That prick hocked a loogie in my hair!" Rarity gasped and cringed in the background.

Luna continued, "Seeking refuge from the Elements of Harmony the nightmare must have impregnated you with a piece of itself hoping to slowly recover and make a comeback." Luna paused as she remembered the scene of Anon fighting himself and what she had to do. Crinkling her nose slightly she continued, "However its plan has been thwarted as I dealt with remnant personally."

Anon went silent as he grazed his fingertips over his chest, "Gay. I got raped, didn't even get dinner and a movie." Rainbow Dash laughed hard before covering her mouth and tried fixing a stern look at Anon. It didn't work. "So it looks like I've got you to thank for saving my life huh?" Anon placed his hands on his knees as leverage before hoisting himself up, standing a bit taller than Luna but on eye level with Celestia. "Thanks for saving me." Anon said sincerely as he smiled and held out his hand. Luna felt her hearts' pace quicken as she lost herself within Anon's smile, slowly she reached out to shake his hand only for him to take his hand back. "Oh, well I suppose handshakes are a bit inappropriate for a princess." Moreover impossible without hands... What would be the proper thing for royal-- Ahah! Always wanted to do this. Anon smiled to Luna's disappointment, however to her surprise he instead knelt down to one knee while bowing his head and dropping his left arm to his side while his right clenched a fist over his chest. "Thank you, Princess---" This is soooo fucking cool, despite her being a pony and all.

"Luna…" she replied while blushing then added, "Please rise, if anything it is us that should be bowing." Anon rose his head with a silly grin on his face that made Luna's heart skip a beat.

"Indeed she is right; we are the ones that should be bowing… Moreover there is also another subject that we must discuss." Celestia said bringing the tension back to the room. "I wish you to take into account this fact before I continue; know that Twilight Sparkle is my most prized student. With her level headed thinking and superior knowledge of the magical arts she has on numerous occasions saved Equestria from forces that seek to bring about chaos within it. So as her teacher the responsibility for her actions should fall upon me." Twilight looked up and was about to protest before Celestia glanced back at her sternly.

Anon's smile slowly faded into a confused frown as he waited for her to continue, "The spell that allowed you to manifest in our world… Is unknown to me-- but know that even now I am searching for alternatives to solve this. But know that while I will dedicate every resource I have to return you to your world I do not want to give you any false hope. You may very well--"

"Be stuck here…?" Anon finished as he felt the strength in his legs leave him. Stumbling backwards Anon landed hard on the floor. Celestia allowed him a few minutes of thought before she continued.

"I know this pales in comparison but know that I am prepared to receive any punishment for my students act--"

"No Princess-- It should be me who suffers!" Twilight chimed in as she walked up next to Celestia while looking Anon in the eyes." Please, I'm the one who cast the spell, I'm the one who ripped you from your world.. If anypony should be punished I should bear the responsibility." Twilight lowered her head in shame.

"No, as your teacher the blame falls upon me, had I properly trained you more than it would not have come to---"

"Quiet!!"

Everyone froze as Anon cut off both Celestia and Twilight. Anons hands were shaking as his eyes locked on the wooden floor. Everyone held their breath as they waited for what would next come out of Anons mouth.

"You guys are pretty crazy, y'know that? Fighting over who will take the blame and shoulder the burden." Anon's fist clenched as he rose his head to look at both Celestia and Twilight. "With both of you guys that prepared and apologetic, what kind of guy would I be if all I thought about was punishing both of you?" Anon gave the best smile he could muster. "It was an accident right? We'll just have to work together and somehow straighten everything out right?"

A few seconds passed before Twilight blurted out, "Wha-- really? I mean-- Just like that? You don't want to banish me, or imprison me or--"

"Or at least punish me, whatever you ask could never be enough."

"C'mon guys, give it a break. Didn't I just finish telling you? A man doesn’t go back on his words right?" Anon kept smiling best he could.

At the end of Anons words Pinkie Pie, Applejack, Rarity, Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash rushed over and piled together on top of Twilight in a group hug as Twilight herself broke down and began crying. Across from them nopony noticed Anons smile falter for a brief second as his thoughts went back to Celestia's words.

I do not want to give you any false hope.

You may very well

Never see my family ever again...

• • •

Later that night Anon laid awake atop a makeshift bed of blankets on Twilight's wooden floor. In the end he had finally convinced Twilight and Celestia to forgive themselves but it had come only after much negotiation. Celestia had at first tried to reward him with a mountain of treasure, complete with his own mansion and estate. "Hah, make me into something like a Baron with riches beyond my wildest dreams eh? And then what? What do I do with it... an alien in an alien world. Go out and spend it on expensive wine and women?" Anon didn't drink and even if he did there wasn't a woman for a few light years around. "Buy video games?" Anon shook his head, there was no way ponies had video games, lacking hands and what not
.

"Hell, what am I even going to do for the rest of my life? I mean it's not like I had much of a plan back home... Just living day to day. Go to work, go to school... What now?" Thinking about everything all at once wasn't going to work, tomorrow he'd wake up, find a job and begin to pay Twilight rent... If she let him. And someday, maybe not tomorrow or the next, Celestia would find a way to send him home. Anon closed his eyes and tried to let sleep take him.

Author's Note:

3/14/2014
Reformatted

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