So, a while back, I posted up She Came To Me. This was a place for me to put down stories that weren't long enough to be posted on their own, but were complete in my eyes. It's first two entries were most definitely Not Safe For Work, as the saying goes.
I then had another couple ideas that were safe for work. So I decided that I would just have two of these anthologies. One for adults only and one for everyone.
And this is the one for everyone. :)
Each chapter is its own story, so feel free to bounce around if you wish.
Pain. It will always be around. You may not always feel it; that just means it's not your turn yet.
But don't run from pain when it comes to you. It can be a powerful catalyst. Harnessed and used properly, pain can end wonderfully. _____________________ APPLEJACK
Applejack didn't have any words. Rarity was crying. And this wasn't her usual diva “getting what I want” crying. She was genuinely sad. She felt unwanted. She felt unloved. But she wasn't unloved. All her friends completely love her.
Applejack's own thought surprised her. It was something she had known for a while but hadn't ever put into words until now. But it was scary. Especially since Rarity was her best friend. Should she risk that?
Applejack reached out and touched her friend's cheek. She leaned in and pressed her lips to Rarity's. Rarity leaned in as well, wrapping her arms around Applejack.
Their kiss was electric. Applejack felt it through to the core of her being. And when she pulled back, she saw that Rarity felt exactly the same. ___________________________ RARITY
What just happened?
Rarity felt amazingly giddy. She had been wanting this for so long. Applejack was looking at her with a bit of concern and a whole mountain of hopefulness. Rarity knew it was her move.
She smiled. A smile so genuine that even Applejack wouldn't sense any fault in it. She pulled Applejack in for as tight an embrace as she could muster.
"I love you, Applejack."
The words, whispered into her ear, cause a slight tension in Applejack. And that tension, I'm turn, caused some worry for Rarity.
Applejack released her hug and pushed Rarity away to arms length. The motion scared Rarity. She was scared that she ruined the moment. She was scared she ruined their friendship.
Through watery eyes she looked to Applejack's face. Her grin said it all, but her words confirmed it.
"I love you too, Rarity."
Applejack pulled her in once more and kissed her. Rarity could really feel Applejack's passion and she happily reciprocated. _____________________________ EPILOGUE
"You see!? I TOLD you there wasn't anything like that between me and AJ."
Rainbow Dash's words brought them all back to reality. The rest of the girls had been watching Applejack and Rarity from the bakery across the street. They were all quite surprised at the event. Everyone except for Rainbow Dash, anyway.
She kept exclaiming that she knew ever since Equestria Land. The other girls kept saying different variations of "I never saw it coming".
Then, Fluttershy spoke up with a question that caused the table to go silent.
"Do you think pony Applejack and Rarity like each other too?"
The silence was broken by a familiar drawl.
"Hey, y'all. Rarity and I have somethin' we need to tell you."
Pinkie Pie rocketed out of her seat. She popped up between Applejack and Rarity and pulled them into an almost painful hug. She couldn't stop squealing.
"We saw the whole thing, AJ" Rainbow Dash said as she got up and slugged her friend in the shoulder. "We're super happy for you guys."
Applejack and Rarity looked around the table and saw nothing but smiles and nods in agreement. They looked at each other and smiled.
"Kiss! Kiss! Kiss! Kiss! Kiss! Kiss!"
Pinkie's chanting was not really a surprise and they were happy to oblige.
Twilight looked up at the sky. She didn’t know why she did. She knew there was nothing there. There hadn’t been in years. No stars. No moon. No sun. No clouds. Sometimes she wondered how she was alive. She always reached the same conclusion: she was an alicorn. Of course, that didn’t really mean much. If that actually meant anything, then why was she the only one left?
She didn’t even remember exactly what happened. There was a bright light and then she was alone in the dark. She couldn’t find her friends. She couldn’t find anybody. No ponies. No animals. It took her a little over a day to walk to Canterlot. She couldn’t fly because of the darkness. She walked the tracks using the light from her horn to keep from losing her way.
Her horn glowed permanently now. She didn’t even have to consciously maintain the spell. She didn’t know if she could even turn it off. She didn’t care either. There was no one to bother. No one to find. It was all just a black void. She spent her days scavenging for food at this point. She had cleaned out Ponyville a while ago. She didn’t know the name of the town she was currently in the middle of cleaning out.
Twilight didn’t know why she bothered trekking back to Ponyville from Canterlot. When she had been in Canterlot, it was all the same. No ponies. No animals. Even Celestia and Luna were gone. She cried herself to sleep in Celestia’s bed that night. She had thought about ending it then. There were plenty of ways that she could have done it in Canterlot. The only thing that stopped her was the fact that she was an alicorn. There would be something that would hinder her death. She just knew it.
Now...she wasn’t so sure. Celestia and Luna were both gone. Twilight had even checked out the Crystal Empire. Nobody there either. Cadence. Shining Armor. Flurry Heart. Gone. Of course, being gone didn’t mean dead. No matter how many times Twilight tried to end her suffering, that little piece of logic always came in and stopped her. So she carried on. Scavenging what she could to survive. ________________________________________________________ Celestia wasn’t sure what to do. She had never seen anything like this before. There were no records of it anywhere in any library in Equestria. Twilight was blind. But not just blind. She was completely unaware of any pony around her. As if...she was being blocked from reality.
That first day and night were the worst. Thank goodness she had a friend like Rainbow Dash. She flew as fast as she could to Canterlot as soon as they noticed it. Twilight was walking around Ponyville calling out, not noticing any of the responses. Her friends tried yelling, poking, even pushing her over. Perhaps the most odd, though, was when she arrived at the train station and started walking the tracks. Her friends kept her company the whole way. Walking alongside her. Making sure she didn’t fall.
Her arrival at Canterlot castle, despite the warning from Rainbow Dash, was unnerving. Twilight was clearly scared and, though she was surrounded by her friends, utterly alone. After walking the whole castle, calling out for anypony to answer, Twilight ended up in Celestia’s room. She crawled up onto Celestia’s bed and started crying. Celestia held her all night, crying with her.
The next day, Celestia decreed that across Equestria, all must watch over and protect Twilight Sparkle until this spell could be undone.
That was five years ago.
No progress had been made on anything. Daily, Celestia would try her hoof at trying to break through the spell. Nightly, Luna would try to break through Twilight’s dream door. It was completely immune to Luna's power.
And every day, the citizens of Equestria cared less. It's not that they didn't care, but what could they do. They all had their own lives to live. You can't stop the world for one pony.