It was impossibly big. There was no end to it. Celestia had no idea what she was looking at. The last thing she remembered was carefully opening the metallic sphere, after her sister and every guard had left.
Now she saw an endless flow of images.
For a second several names echoed past her: Pool of Truths, Mirror of Souls, Gate to Self, Abyss of Fears, Existence's Shadow and simply Truth.
Why should she just trap his soul in the sun?
Her light shined brighter than before.
Eventually he would escape that prison as well. There was only one way to make sure that he would never harm another pony again.
The light was so bright that it was harmful to look at it. Nopony besides her sister was there to help her.
Celestia crushed Discord's very soul against the desperate pleas of her sister. Immediately afterwards the Sun Goddess began to change as her light engulfed the ruler of the Day completely.
"I MUST SAVE THIS WORLD!"
Now it was painful just to look at this new being. While she still had the general form of an Alicorn, she seemed to have no real body. It was like the Goddess was made out of pure energy. The air around her heated up and fire started to spread around her and soon the few remains of the city were set ablaze.
The ponies that were still in the city tried to run away as the fire got closer and closer to them.
"I MUST PURGE THIS WORLD OF ALL EVIL!"
Without hesitation the Goddess attacked her terrified sister as well.
Queen Celestia ruled in perfect Harmony over Equestria. There were no signs of possible dangers for her subjects like Discord, Windigos, Changelings or even the creatures of the Everfree Forest. But there was also no hint of her own sister. A very long time ago Celestia had changed her title to Queen.
One day the entrance exam to Celestia's School for gifted unicorns started with a promising purple filly. The test was to hatch a dragon egg but the foal seemed too stressed to do anything. Suddenly a large noise triggered her magic, hatched the egg, turned her parents into plants and the entire room into chaos. Soon Queen Celestia arrived to comfort the filly.
"You have a very special gift. I don't think I've ever come across a unicorn with your raw abilities. But these abilities are untamed and dangerous. Just look what you did to your own parents."
The child broke down in tears as the ruler kept comforting her.
"Don't worry, I have already called my guards and they will bring you to the best doctors in Equestria. They will remove your horn and you will never be able to hurt anypony again. Then I will be able to break the curse you put on your parents."
The unicorn looked hopefully at the Goddess before her.
can you really help them?"
"Yes, my dear. Don't worry and leave the rest to the good doctors. They will remove this evil from you and you will still get a special place in my school. There are many others like you, you can still learn the history and theory of magic and become a scholar."
The Queen embraced the child with her wings to calm her down.
Within minutes the little filly was carried away by guards dressed in pure white. The Queen had already healed the teachers and asked her personal guards to bring the plants to her own room. As promised she would break the transformation later. Celestia used her magic to seal the almost catatonic newborn dragon back into his egg. This was not the first time she had done this.
The teachers left and the ruler of Equestria was all alone and started to sob.
"Why? Why must these cursed Elements keep disturbing the peace of my kingdom? Discord and Luna were threats to the safety of my subjects by why does this kind of power have to manifest itself in mere children? This wasn't what I wanted when I started to rid this world of all threats to the helpless mortals!"
Her weeping became worse. The eyes of these children and her own family never stopped hunting her in her sleep. She could sometimes still hear the last screams of the Changelings as she had burned down their hive.
In moments like this she seriously considered supporting one of the rebellions against herself and let them overthrow her. But who would raise and lower the Sun and the Moon if she were gone? There was no escape.
As someone knocked on the door Queen Celestia quickly vaporized her tears.
"Come in," she said serene and collected.
Blueblood, Captain of the Royal Guard, entered calmly and bowed politely.
"Your majesty, we have another candidate for today, a young Miss Lulamoon."
"Send her in."
Twilight Sparkle stood besides a white unicorn stallion and before another pink Alicorn. The annoyance of not being told about the marriage of her brother vanished as she heard who he was going to marry. Smiling, both the unicorn and the Alicorn started to dance.
"Sunshine, sunshine, ladybugs awake! Clap your hooves and do a little shake!"
"You still remember me!" the purple unicorn said with a beaming smile.
"Of course I do. How could I forget the filly I loved to sit for the most?"
The image shifted and showed the same purple unicorn sitting all alone on a stairway as the Alicorn sat down next to her.
"I thought I saw you speaking with Discord, but now I'm not so sure anymore. I'm sorry," the unicorn sobbed.
I should apologize for deceiving you. I will stop hiding my real self from you."
The Alicorn stomped her hoof on the ground and they were both teleported into a dark cave with countless huge crystals around them. The body of the Alicorn shifted and changed into something else.
Now her body was that of a brown snake, and she had the head of a gray horse. One of her wings was swan-like and the other one looked like it belonged to a flutterpony. One of her back legs was that of a black cat, and the other of a duckling. While her tail was a fox's, her front legs were as a bear's paw, and a green gnarled hand with warts on it.
"My real name is Pandora. And I was talking to my brother through the mirror and made it VERY clear that he is not invited. He suggested a wedding in the classical Draconequi way with evil clones of the bridesmaids and the groom mind-controlled to make silly faces. "
I was suspecting something completely differ- ...what happened to the real Cadence?"
The expression on the face of the Draconequus before her became mournful.
"I was always the Cadence you knew. There was another one a long time ago but she died in a very permanent way. Her last wish was for me to look after this world. I have been doing that for many, many years no matter what my brother tried."
Pandora looked at her own reflection in one of the crystals.
"I had expected your brother to run away in fear when I showed him my real form as an explanation of why we shouldn't date. He wasn't fazed at all. Shining said he didn't care what I am and that he fell in love with who I am."
Twilight seemed to struggle to comprehend what she just heard.
"Princess Celestia told me the story of the Draconequi. Your brother is Discord but
So I guess the two pegasi claiming to be your family up there aren't what they seem to be either."
"Yes, Beat and Sonata aren't their real names. But I guess Anarchy and Strife would be a bit too suspicious
This time Twilight Sparkle just fainted.
Shall we continue with the story, teacher?" the purple unicorn asked Princess Luna
"Of course we can. Now where was I
But before the Goddess of the Night could continue her story to her faithful student two unicorns interrupted her.
Two members of the Royal Guard almost fell into the room as they knocked the door down. The Princess of the Night recognised them immediately: Flim and Flam; one was a member of the Day Guard, and the other of the Night Guard.
After Nightmare Flare was healed from her insanity, the ponies still feared her and were very hesitant to join the Day Guard. The two brothers saw how hurt Celestia seemed about this rejection and decided that one of them should join her personal guard. Then the two unicorns had decided which one should become a Day Guard with the flip of a coin.
Both were well-known for being among the most dependable soldiers in the Royal Guard, and for their tendency to finish each other's sentences.
"We are terribly sorry
for disturbing your majesty."
Both quickly bowed down to their ruler and continued their explanation. They knew that the Princess considered wasting her time worse than interrupting her.
"But court mage Trixie found
"Apple Gem in the garden and there seems to be the taint of dark magic in her!"
"So remember, your great power also brings a great responsibility."
Celestia waited for a reaction from the winged being before her, with her sister by her side quite as curious about the next step of the mortal who had just awakened as an Alicorn
Merely getting her to Canterlot was difficult as she had stopped at every hospital and orphanage on their way to bring some smiles to the inhabitants. And it did work. The foals loved her lively bouncing balloon animals and the stories she told them.
"Okey Dokey Lokey."
Both signed in relief. Despite her new powers her character didn't change that much. But Pinkie Pie seemed much more balanced, more in control of herself. Well, most the time at least.
Her mane and tail had become even more ballooned, and her body had grown as well. Now her proportions were much more like those of Celestia and Luna. A pink and white horn grew from her head, looking almost more like a candy cane than a normal horn. Her new majestic wings had feathers with all shades of pink in it, including the darker one her fur turned into when she was unhappy before. But some of the feathers were also white.
"I have just one question," Pinkie Pie said smiling from ear to ear.
"We shall try to answer it," Luna assured the new Alicorn.
"How can I make chocolate rain clouds?"
Both Princesses seemingly didn't lose their composure at all but the sun outside skipped slightly ahead of its normal position.
Berry Punch saw this, threw her glass away and decided that this was a sign to stop drinking. If it had been dark enough the ponies could have seen their moon spinning like a humming top.
"That might be unwise. You will make them think that Discord had returned," Luna finally managed to say.
"You need to start slow and rediscover yourself step by step. It will be difficult but I am sure that you can do it."
The pink Alicorn's reaction was to rush to the two rulers and hug them. With every step, she left a small pile of confetti behind.
"Does this mean we're related now?"
think so," Luna managed to say.
"Yay! Now you're honorable members of the Pie family! And you'll get along wonderfully with the Cakes as well!"
Celestia had to chuckle, remembering her last visit to Sugar Cube Corner. The Cakes had a hard time accepting that the Princess was drinking tea in their shop; this would be too much for them.
It won't be easy to teach Pinkie Pie how to fully understand her powers but she had so much support from her friends, once they had recovered from their collective fainting. The Sun Goddess had never seen so many couches in the same place.
The other five heroes had been a big help in bringing Pinkie to Canterlot and once the five had recovered from their exhaustion, they would return to Ponyville for now. The Goddess of the Night considered letting them visit their friend regularly via teleportation.
She knew that Pinkie Pie needed all the support she could get to prevent her own tragedy from ever repeating itself again. She would not let another Alicorn fall into darkness.
Luna knew that they could do it together.
The grey Twilight walked through her empty castle. 400 years ago the interior stopped changing. The dust maids were long gone and by now the castle was regularly dirtied and cleaned by her own magic. For over 500 years the fortress was flying above the world of Chaos below her. It made it so much easier to fulfil her duty without any outside interference.
She walked past the room containing the aged Spike. Soon after the fall of the Draconequus the dragon became violent and the grey unicorn had to remove his free will. For some reason it felt painful to her but she remembered the advice her Master had once given her and ignored that uncertainty.
A grey hippogriff and her hatchling were flying past the window at high speed. It was strange to see her still around, even enduring the chaotic storms that constantly circled around the castle. A chaotic blast had changed the mare a long time ago and after that her speed was increased so much that she flew around the castle faster than Twilight could ever remember Traitor Dash flying.
Only a few years ago the muffin she always carried around turned into a little unicorn. It was hardly surprising in this world of Chaos. After that both continued to change races so often that Tragedy lost count. She knew that her Master would be proud to see that.
Soon the immortal mare had reached her throne room where the other 5 Elements of Chaos obediently awaited her orders. They had followed her every order for all these years, not that there was anything else they could do.
Twilight Tragedy remembered the time when it all started in Ponyville. Her Master was too slow and Fluttercruel had already murdered the filly that laughed at his joke. Not that it mattered to Twilight, it was just another life lost that day, nothing special. For some reason the Draconequus didn't like that at all and as punishment the grey pegasus had to spend three years as a happy Sea Pony.
After a mission at Sweet Rock Aces and meeting a strangely familiar green earth pony Twilight began to have strange dreams. In them she saw a purple unicorn. They ended up fighting and in the end Tragedy won. But it was an empty victory. Her memory got better and better and she realises that the Chaos of her Master became stale over the centuries. She recognised many ideas he reused constantly and started to desperately think how she could help him improve his Chaos. Twilight knew he would object, so she started to plan it all by herself.
She began to learn spells on her own, always trying to learn what could benefit her Master in a way even he might not realise yet.
Her research eventually showed her that there was a much greater power sealed within the Elements of Chaos and that they could in fact be used together. She was sure that if she could direct this power of Chaos on him, it should be able to cleanse his dissonance of whatever was holding him back. The grey unicorn was sure that it had to be some outside interference that didn't allow him to create the perfect Chaos.
She knew that the other five would view her plan as turning against their Master and either attack her instantly or betray her. From experience she knew she couldn't trust any of them. So the obvious solution was to remove their free will completely.
Fluttercruel was the first one to go and her current existence as a sea pony made it so much easier. As her Master turned her back to her normal body, he actually seemed sad about something for the first time. He blamed her condition on the time she spent with the Sea Ponies. Twilight didn't want to think about what he did next to them. She didn't understand his reaction and kept the Valeyard and her Master busy with a minor rebellion of Queen Tiamat.
Then she just continued to free Angry Pie from her burden as well. Liarjack had noticed that something was wrong but was overwhelmed by the obedient Fluttercruel and Angry Pie before she could ruin their Master's surprise. Rarigreed didn't even notice what happened until it was too late and finally Traitor Dash had the strangest reaction and merely said:
"I deserve this."
Twilight Tragedy didn't understand that either but ultimately that was of little consequences.
Finally it was time to give their Master his present but to her disappointment the six Elements together merely caused pure chaotic energy to circle through his body. Grey, black and white glows covered him and kept burning through his body and spirit.
His screams might have horrified her if she wasn't so used to that from his, Angry Pie's and Fluttercruel's targets already. His condition didn't change and soon she suspected that the pain made him almost brain-dead, unable to do anything.
Even the Valeyard was unable to cure him and the grey mare had to admit that she had failed Discord more than she could ever atone for. Of course she didn't trust the earth pony at all, so she replaced his sonic screwdriver and the keys to the blue shed with decoys, let Angry Pie and Liarjack guard the TARDIS, held the Valeyard within a telepathic hold, teleported the countless items he had somehow hidden close to him into the block hole, let Fluttercruel break his legs and had Traitor Dash and Rarigreed next to her in case he could still do anything.
The Valeyard claimed that her method of using the Elements of Chaos was wrong. It was clear that he was of no more use and might be a danger to her Master in his current state so she just removed the Valeyard's free will as well and dropped him off somewhere on the world.
Then she decided to take over her Master's duty and bring the order of Chaos to the world. Twilight had sealed the body of her Master inside the moon to protect him and in irregular intervals she used the Elements of Chaos to redirect his power onto the world below.
The energy took the form of chaotic storms that changed gravity, transformed beings into different species or objects, speed up the aging process, brought objects alive, turned adults into foals, caused airquakes, turned everything into glass, created flying volcanoes or let it rain chocolate rain. She knew her Master would love the ever-changing nature of this world.
The life was born, changed and eventually it died one way or another. The species she knew had gone extinct and were recreated so many times that she stopped counting. It was the eternal circle of this world.
For her Master she would keep it turning until the end of time. It was the only thing she could do for him now. At least the other five were a lot easier to work with than before.
Today it was time to unleash another storm of Chaos onto the world below. Wordlessly her fellow Elements assisted her.
"NO! I don't
want to hurt
Neither brute force nor Twilight's magic could remove the white manacle that had controlled her. But as Fluttershy was able to resist its power it fell finally off the yellow pegasus. Carefully the ponies of Canterlot looked outside their windows.
Rarity was slowly able to stand back up. The next attack could have seriously injured her or even worse. But she didn't care about that, she was just too happy to see her friend back to normal.
"Finally back together! Now we just need to take the Elements back and blast this Alicorn jerk into the sun," Rainbow Dash said proudly, trying to hide her own exhaustion after the battle.
"Ah doubt that Morning Star will let them just lay around somewhere, we need to
"My dear subjects will not have to worry about that," said a voice devoid of all friendliness.
Without any further warning the six ponies found themselves in a telekinetic hold and were lifted from the ground.
More and more ponies could be seen in the streets. Some tried to help them but a powerful force field threw them back.
Then they saw him again: An Alicorn as majestic and awe-inspiring as Princess Celestia. But unlike her he was always nearly completely covered in overwhelming light. Not even his cutie mark could be seen. His voice sounded wise and controlled but they were no longer fooled by his appearance.
Twilight was the first one who noticed that something was wrong after the Princesses suddenly vanished. Her worst fears were finally confirmed as she used a spell, Princess Luna once taught her, to shield her eyes from the light around him and she saw his soulless and lifeless eyes.
"Are you looking for this my worthless subjects?"
His light dimed a bit and they could see the Elements of Harmony slowly circling around him, glowing in the same green light as they did.
"Maybe my sisters should also see this."
Behind him a dome of light appeared with the exhausted Celestia and Luna ramming against it. Their bodies were covered in countless injuries and scars. The two Alicorns tried to tell the Elements something but the dome didn't allow any sound to travel through it.
The ponies of Canterlot and the six trapped ponies were shocked to see them in such a poor condition. The attention of the fallen Alicorn returned to the six heroes.
"Tell me, what are you without these little trinkets? With them you defeated Nightmare Moon but without them a mere cockatrice or an insignificant Hydra are too much. You must face this truth: You are weak and pathetic. Mortals will always be weak and pathetic. Ponies will always be weak and pathetic. I am the only Perfect Being created by Mother. Don't think there will be another chance for you to annoy me. I will just break your little necks. So tell me, what are you?"
Twilight knew that this was it. He would end their life no matter what she said. Morning Star smiled cruelly at them. She looked to her friends, seeing them all looking back at her, more concerned for her than for themselves. And then it hit her.
"I'm perfect, I am incapable of being wrong."
"You're not perfect ether, or you'd know what I'm talking about. And I don't care what you think of them, but I believe with every part of my heart that my five friends are the greatest and most wonderful beings I have ever met in my entire life. You are nothing compared to them!"
The six all reached out despite of Morning Star's magic, managing to grab one another's hooves, ready to face whatever came next together.
A spark glimmered in her horn and suddenly similar sparks glowed in the bodies of her friends. Morning Star tried to keep them apart but a power greater than his own pulled their bodies together. To his shock, the magic holding them shattered like glass as they embraced each other, the sparks turning into a fire.
Celestia and Luna watched in awe as they saw the Fires of Friendship. The heart shaped power charged at Morning Star and didn't stop no matter what powerful barrier he created in its path. To his own frustration he was unable to use the Elements to shield himself. Finally the power broke through his last barrier and engulfed Morning Star.
"No! I am perfect!" Morning Star screamed in complete disbelief as the flames hit him full force.
For a moment the self-proclaimed ruler of all Reality thought he could see the image of his Mother looking at him with disappointment and sorrow. His eyes went wide in shock. But as suddenly as it came it was all over and the fallen Alicorn was gone.
The crown and necklaces just fell to the ground. Seconds later, Morning Star's own scorched crown hit, shattering to pieces.
The dome above the two Princesses broke apart and vanished. Both were never more proud of the six friends standing before them.
The Draconequus roared as he destroyed the moon and the burning pieces rained down on the helpless mortals on the world below him. He looked like he had the rear legs of a buffalo and a bull, the tail of a monkey, the arm of a gorilla, and the other one was a tentacle. His wings were one lizard crest and one dove wing.
have to destroy more
Three other Draconequi teleported between him and the world. They would only stare at the look of pure madness in the eyes of their brother.
"Hey, I just had planed a few revolts on that place!"
"Stop that right now, Destruction! How are the mortals supposed to adapt to fiery death from above? You will just kill anybody on this world."
"Please Ruin, stop doing this," Pandora pleaded.
They already knew that he targeted their projects and ignored the Alicorns until they got in his way. Two members of Nature's Law had already paid a horrible prize for that. The siblings knew that their brother wouldn't stop until he got his confrontation.
"Well, weeell, weeeeeell. Family has finally come. How nice of you. It is time to eat. Discord showed me how much I really meant to you when that bastard almost devoured me. Dad was sure cheering for him. And he kept cheering when I turned the game around. Dad was tasty as well."
The other three Draconequi were prepared when Destruction suddenly attacked them and quickly dodged aside. Three blasts hit the enraged Draconequus.
Her favourite teacher found the pink pony with slightly darker fur and a straight mane sobbing under one of the many trees outside the school. Not even the songs of the Sea Ponies could cheer her up. The grey pegasus sat down next to her.
"Why so down Pinkie Pie?"
its nothing Mister Tempest
The pink pony practically hid her face behind her straight mane. She was a terrible liar.
"Now I am really worried. You never call me that."
Carefully he used his left wing to move the mane aside and looked her into her eyes.
"I am sorry Tempy. It is just that Lotus and Aloe said that nopony really likes me and that they all just think I am a big joke and that they are all laughing at me and that I am adopted and that the only job I could ever get would be as a circus clown and
"That is the biggest piece of stupid I have heard in 30 years. You have six wonderful friends; they spend time with you because they like you and because you really are funny. They are always laughing with you
And what is wrong with being adopted?"
I don't know."
"You should realise that if someone adopts you and is willing to raise you as their child, it must mean that they really love you. Even the great hero Patch who brought magic back into our world was adopted."
Patch's story did survive history relatively intact and by now most ponies suspected that the surprisingly accurate retellings of her adventures like facing down a dragon and Grogar had to be exaggerations. He suspected that Celestia made sure that this story wasn't forgotten. Finally Pinkie Pie's smile returned to her. But her teacher wasn't done.
"And you are so creative you could become anything, maybe a cartoonist."
"Our arts teacher fainted when she saw my picture. After that she claimed that the proportions of the mint green pony I did draw were all wrong. But that was exactly how I saw her in my dream
"Lady Sunny Days might kill me for saying this but: Even teachers can be wrong. And didn't Mrs. Moonflower change her opinion about your drawing later?"
"Yes, she said it was creative and now I have gotten an "A" for it. She really seemed sorry for something but I didn't quite understood what. The song I sung for her didn't cheer her up either."
"Erm. Some people need just some time alone, maybe your picture opened an old wound
He knew he needed to switch the topic as soon as possible.
"When Trixie heard what the twins said, she nearly drowned them with a conjured raincloud. She is currently in detention for it. If there would only be a way to cheer her up
Suddenly the colors of the pink pony became bright and cheerful and her mane became bloated and ballooned.
"I know how to. I will cheer her up Pinkie Pie Style!"
The earth pony was gone in a pink blur as the grey pegasus chuckled. There weren't many beings in this world that could shock Luna but somehow Pinkie Pie just managed to do that. It was silent for one second but then the hyperactive pony returned as fast as she left.
"I almost forgot the most important part: THANK YOU!"
After a quick hug she was gone again. The grey pegasus looked at the other ponies of her group. Applejack and Rarity were racing each other, Rainbow Dash tutored Twilight Sparkle and Fluttershy was reciting poetry before some ponies. They all made such progress.
Sadly he looked into the sky. He knew that it was only a question of time before Nightmare Martyr would find this world. Even together the three Alicorns were only able to wound the Nightmare and forced her to retreat for the moment. Galaxia was heavenly injured in the battle but together Celestia, Luna and he were able to heal her.
Maybe the Rainbow of Light was really their only hope to defeat the former Cadence once and for all? Somehow by just looking at these ponies living their normal lives he knew that it wasn't hopeless.
Only then the overlooking and very confused Celestia noticed a trail of energy rising from the ground. Curiously she followed it until she flew further above the world and realized there were other worlds nearby connected with the same raw power.
Then she saw countless worlds carefully woven together with this very energy. The connections between these worlds seemed to form a bigger picture that eluded her. Was it like a spiderweb or maybe more like a gigantic tree? Even the Goddess couldn't fully comprehend it. No matter how far she moved away from it, there was no end to these worlds. Since the voice of her creator it was the first thing that made her feel small in comparison.
Curiously Celestia flew closer to a single world. By now she didn't see the world in real time but more as fast flow of events with countless minor occurrences between. Only thanks to her nature the Goddess of Light was she not overwhelmed by everything that was going on.
She realized that maybe world was the wrong term for this construction. It was its own universe. A nearly unlimited number of planets formed a beautiful construction.
The incarnation of the Sun saw herself, her sister and an extended family of Alicorns. She had to admit she was slightly jealous at this version of her. Celestia was especially envious on the fact that there were still a mother and a father watching over them. The ruler of the Day never had such an extended family, even if one of them Morning Star was a complete monster, arrogant and prideful. He reminded her somewhat of Discord.
"Hm, I guess this would make him the black sheep of my family."
But then she saw another Discord there as well. There was something different about him but the incarnation of the Day couldn't quite pin it down. He had his own not quite so extended and loving family of Draconequi. His mother Entropy and father Havoc seemed to be horrible abominations.
Now she knew that the Discord she knew would hate to see this. The spirit of Chaos was always so proud of his unique nature. Once both sisters had to invent the solar eclipse to stop him from ranting about his one of a kind nature. But the look of his face was well worth it.
In this world both Celestia and Discord spend time together and learned from each other. She taught him to plan ahead. At first the watching Celestia thought this would turn this Draconequus into a better person. After all the Discord she knew left their little group very soon. But she was wrong, if anything he became worse and worse.
Just like the incarnation of Chaos she knew he enjoyed the suffering of others for his own entertainment. But this version went much further and had much more experience. So much that he could trick others into carrying out his twisted orders and sit back and watch the results.
Finally the watching Celestia realized that the other Discord actually had two fangs but there was also more that was different about him, it was something in his eyes. It was hard to describe. It was like something this Draconequus seemed to have lost completely, while the incarnation of Chaos she knew still had some distant traces of it.
The other Celestia felt responsible for his crimes and left her family to run away towards a strangely familiar world. Only to see it fall apart in an uncontrollable explosion caused by one member of the Draconequi.
"No, not again!"
The watching Celestria tried to interfere, only to pass right through the events. There was nothing she could do for all the suffering ponies. For the second time in her life she felt completely helpless. The first time the incarnation felt that way when the three corrupted ponies, which she considered her own family, arrived home and there was nothing she could do to cure them.
The other Celestia had a similar reaction and returned home broken, only to learn that more horrible events were planed for this poor world about to be crushed by hatred.
"And those beings dare to call themselves Nature's Law!" Celestia snarled with anger.
Only then the overlooking incarnation remembered that they never claimed to be forces of good. And while most of them were kind to mortals, Nature even in Celestias own world could be cruel at times. The memory of the dead white unicorn lying next to a tree was an image that would never leave her. But these Alicorns still radiated something that was very comforting. They felt like family to Celestia.
The other Celestia had a different conclusion and went to the most disturbing concept the incarnation of the Sun had ever seen so far: Entropy. To save this world from its fate and erase hatred she made it deal with this being and obtained small pieces of it to follow her own orders. Somehow those seemed familiar to the watching Sun Goddess.
"Erase hatred? Is that even possible?"
Several members of the other Celestia's family tried to stop her and she fought against them. Eventually with the strange alliance of Luna and Discord she managed to break through their defences and unleashed the small pieces on the world.
"These pieces, they are
The very moment these beings were unsealed the overlooking Celestia recognized them as Windigos. She watched in horror as they started to turn the entire world into a lifeless piece of ice, while hatred continued to devour the remaining ponies. The goddess who brought them there was not able to stop the Windigos, the other Alicorns couldn't interfere, the Draconequi couldn't fight them, it was hopeless.
No matter how long the incarnation of the Sun looked at this world, its suffering seemed endless. She was about to leave when she heard a voice.
"DO NOT YET LOSE YOUR HOPE. CELESTIA, CONCEPT OF THE SUN, YOU WITNESSED PERSONALLY WHAT OUR CREATIONS DID WHEN ALL SEEMED HOPELESS, AND YET NOW YOU LOSE FAITH IN THEM?"
The Princess of the Day was startled at first but after a few seconds she realized that the mother of the other Celestia had spoken. It wasn't meant for her. Was it?
Celestia noticed a strange pattern: One earth pony, one pegasus and one unicorn were free of the hatred that seemed to poison everypony else. The three were guided by an Alicorn and a Draconequus.
This sort of cooperation was a complete shock to the incarnation of the Light. Sure her creator had made Luna, Discord and herself for a reason that to this day still eluded her. But only now did she realize that the three incarnations never in their entire existence ever had finished or even started a project together. They did spend some time together and grew up together but that was it.
Then those three mortals did what the gods were unable to do. They summoned the very concept of existence into their world to obliterate, no to fill the nothing inside the Windigos. Celestia smiled at this image. It reminded the incarnation of the Sun at the very moment when Luna and the three mortals saved herself from becoming a monster. It reminded her of the mortals that fought alongside them against Discord. They could be so powerful.
Briefly images flew by her: The healing of the world many Alicorns and Draconequi desired became the start of a horrible war between both fractions.
She had just met these beings but their brutal demises were so saddening. Celestia always wished for a bigger family. Seeing this extended family she never had die or be horribly injured almost broke her. Only the memory of her own caring sister supported her through all of this.
Havoc seemingly lost his mind and one Alicorn Cadence sacrificed herself to allow three of her sisters to escape into a familiar world, Discord devoured his brother Destruction and the avatar of his father, the Alicorns and Discord were reborn onto the world without any memory of their past. Suddenly she saw a kind version of the Draconequus.
"Even he had innocence in him?"
Confused the incarnation of the Sun followed the flow of time as more visions appeared to her: Discord ate his own kind side alive, the Draconequus tortured the mortals and turned his own loving mortal mother into a weapon, Discord was defeated, only to raise from the remains of his statue after it was destroyed by the Alicorn Galaxia, the Draconequus possessed a panicked mortal and twisted her body into a replica of his own, Discord killed the unlucky Galaxia in a horrible and permanent way, Discord destroyed one of the Elements and everything turned to madness.
The entire body of the overlooking Alicorn was in pain. It was so much insanity concentrated into one point. Watching all these horrible events compressed into each other was nearly breaking her mind.
"You float one inch towards my daughters I will kill you and seal your spirit into one of my horseshoes!"
The watching Celestia saw an incredible determination in this mere pony who stood up to the mad god. Mimic knew that she wouldn't survive this battle. Again a mortal succeeded were the Alicorns failed and her sacrifice didn't only allow the others to escape but also did cause permanent damage to the Draconequus, breaking one of his fangs. Finally the Alicorn was able to think clear again.
"Now he looks just like the Discord I know. Is this his fate?"
But the remaining two Alicorns were seemingly helpless against his overwhelming power. All they could do was to hide as the world suffered under his insane rule. His unspeakable crimes would have continued into all eternity if the other Celestia and the other Luna hadn't found a way to work around the missing Element with their own trust and finally defeated Discord with the help of his own mortal mother, Shady.
It made the watching Celestia realize that
The memories broke apart as Celestia was still unable to see what was going on before her eyes. After all these visions it was hard to concentrate on the present.
Silver Hooves, now totally confused and terrified, stood next to the ruler of the Day standing shell-shocked on the balcony. Everypony heard the disturbing laughter of her sister echoing through Canterlot. Memories of her encounter with Truth still circled around the mind of the incarnation of the Light. Slowly Celestia remembered that her beloved sister just turned into an insane Nightmare before her very eyes.
"Please your majesty; it is time to raise the sun."
The sun! Celestia realized, she had to raise her celestial body. The ponies depended on it and maybe this would bring her sister back to her senses. To her frustration, she found out, that she wasn't able to raise the sun as long as her sister actively blocked her path with the moon. She had to find a way to talk her out of it.
The older sister looked at Silver Hooves standing by her side. Most ponies thought that she was not worthy to serve the Princesses with her strange eye condition, her almost legendary bad luck and her sometimes clumsy movements. But Celestia knew that she had a kind heart and respected her determination to work just as hard as anypony else despite her condition. After quickly explaining the basics of the situation to Silver Hooves, the goddess of the sun rushed into Luna's room, hoping to find any hint about what happened.
After searching fruitlessly for hours, Celestia decided to question their subjects and court members but neither of them had any further explanations but several of them had noticed that the Princess of the Night had become more and more distanced over the last two weeks.
Eventually the Princess of the Day entered the throne room again; the seal on it had vanished as Luna left Canterlot. Carefully she closed the sphere so that nopony might take a look at the reflective inside and put another seal on it. As she saw the window depicting Discord's defeat by the two Alicorns her expression became wistful.
"It is my fault. I left my little sister all alone with this burden. I should have been more careful."
Then the incarnation of the Light looked at the window depicting the struggle of the three ponies.
"I will not give up on her. No matter how long it takes, I will be there for her! I promise you that I will save her."
Celestia quickly realized that she needed something to remind her sister on everything they experienced together. After all memories of happiness, friendship and joy were able to break out several ponies from Discord's corruption. She decided, that the Elements of Harmony would remind Luna at their greatest moments.
But first she had to find her corrupted sister. Even as she mobilized every servant, guard and pony she could send, it was difficult to track down the Princess of Darkness. Everypony was ordered to immediately call for backup and not attempt to fight her. Celestia knew she was the only one who had a chance to calm Luna. At the same time the mortals suffered under the lack of sunlight and the dying crops caused mass starvation.
After several months of unsuccessfully searching every part of Equestria the Princess of the Night was found in the second royal castle build in a place that would later be known as the Everfree Forest. Everypony had fled the palace when the insane goddess entered it and destroyed the entire roof. Celestia feared that her sister's madness had become even worse. She had stopped hiding and was basically offering a confrontation.
The completely empty castle was disturbing but even worse was the empty look on her sister's face, when Celestia found her. The Princess of the Night starred motionless at the moon. She stood in a room that was originally designed to become a second throne room.
It had huge windows, several massive pillars and a special column in the middle of the room, designed to place the six elements of Harmony and the larger sphere of Truth on it. Luna's throne was still in one piece while Celestia'a throne was broken and thrown across the room.
"So you came
I have been waiting for you. Did my sister come to swear her alliance to the eternal darkness?"
"I came to talk to you."
As the Princess of the Darkness slowly turned her head around she saw her sister encircled by the six elements.
"Instead you want to turn me into a statue just like Discord?"
"No, please we have to talk, Luna!"
"Don't call me that! I am Nightmare Moon, the one and true ruler of Equestria."
Without further warning spears of darkness rose form the ground as Celestia spread her wings and soared into the sky. The Nightmare followed her and both winged beings flew through the hole in the roof into the dark sky above the castle.
Both Princesses charged at each other, their horns brimming with raw magic as they clashed into each other. The impact threw both back and the Luna quickly flew into the clouds below them.
Celestia looked around worryingly and quickly dodged the blade of mist that was launched at her from the clouds. More sharp weapons followed as her sister stayed hidden from her eyes. Celestia knew that she couldn't dodge these attacks forever. The Sun Goddess concentrated her power and created a bright light evaporating all the clouds around her.
Her sister was nowhere to be seen.
Suddenly she felt pain in her left wing and was unable to fly anymore. As she fell to the earth the Princess of the Day could see a large mass of mist changing from a blade back into her corrupted sister. Only now did Celestia realize that the sword had left a deep cut in her wing and must have broken a few bones in it.
The Nightmare smiled and followed her with high speed. Celestia crashed back into the floor. The impact had enough force to leave a small crater on the ground of the throne room. Everything started to blur for the Sun Goddess as she saw Luna charging right at her.
Just when the ruler of the Night was ready to impale her sister with her own horn, she was blinded by another bright light. This time the spell was fired directly into face of the attacking mare. This distracted her long enough to allow Celestia to grab Luna with her telekinesis. Then she slammed the Nightmare into the pillar behind her.
"I am so sorry, please stop!"
The Nightmare just growled in annoyance and used telekinesis to throw her own throne at Celestia. Instinctively the Sun Goddess defended herself with the remains of her own throne. Both thrones broke completely from the impact.
"Words are meaningless now. Dance with me, sister," Nightmare Moon said almost emotionless.
Darkness surrounded the windows behind Celestia and broke them into countless pieces. The shards all flew directly at the Goddess of the Sun. She knew that she would not be able to hold her sister and defend herself at the same time.
Celestia let go of her sister and quickly grabbed two pillars with telekinesis and teleported the structures in front of herself, causing most of the shards to break on contact.
Only few of them got past this shield and left several cuts on the Alicorn's body.
"This battle requires your full attention. Are you so worried about our precious sun-loving subjects?"
As she concentrated on her sister, she was just able to jump aside as another blade created from fog attacked her. This strike left a large cut in the floor where she was just standing. Celestia finally fully realized that her sister was using lethal force on her. Had this attack hit her, she could have lost a leg or even more.
Both Goddesses concentrated their magic: Celestia created a sphere of fire before herself, while Luna completely removed heat of the air around her and shaped it into a sphere of ice in front of the dark Alicorn.
As their attacks charged forward and crashed into each other, both used more and more of their magic to push the opposing force back.
The spheres grew and grew until they almost filled the entire room and both incarnations lost the control over the violent magic, sending it flying off sideways. It struck another part of the castle, obliterating everything in its path.
Luna concentrated some of her darkness before herself to protect her eyes from the next glaring light Celestia created.
But she didn't react in time as several of the broken window shards rose into the air by telekinesis and reflected the light over the entire room, illuminating the entire castle in the process. This time Celestia used the distraction to grab the ruler of the Night and didn't let go of her.
In anger the nightmare unleashed her power and several spikes of darkness rose slowly from the ground aimed at her sister.
"Please Lulu, you have to stop this insanity!"
The stingers had almost impaled the ruler of the day, when she decided to use the Elements again her own sister.
The spheres swirled around her erratically as a concentrated prismatic beam was fired at Luna. It was much less powerful, than the last time both sisters had used the Elements together.
The Nightmare's form twisted and turned before taking on the form of a black sphere and flying into the air right at the moon. Immediately after the impact the silhouette of Nightmare Moon appeared on the moon.
As the spikes around her vanished into nothing, Celestia fell exhausted to the ground. The Elements weren't in a much better condition as five of them turned to stone and crashed lifelessly into the floor. The sixth Element Magic continued to encircle the Goddess of the Light, shining its light onto her for several seconds before vanishing into nothing.
Then the realisation hit Celestia. She had lost her sister for a second time. Not only was Luna corrupted by her own power, she was completely out of reach. Celestia on the other side was left behind by herself, all alone. First Discord had turned against the mortals and now Luna as well. Would she be the next?
Was this the point where she would become just like the other version of herself? Would she crown herself Queen and rule over everything with an iron hoof?
Without her sister blocking the process she should be able to move both moon and sun to recreate the normal day-night-circle. But what good would that do? Only two weeks of this burden did drive her own sister insane. How could she fare better?
"Princess, are you alright?"
Only then the remaining Goddess noticed that several ponies had entered the hall and surrounded her with worried looks. Silver Hooves was standing right next to her, one eye fixated on the incarnation of the Sun.
They were still there for her. After she had failed them and her sister they were still there for her. Celestia had abandoned her eternal task in one short moment of carelessness, but they seemed so worried for her.
The Goddess of Light knew how powerful mortals could be. The last world she had seen in Truth made it so much clearer to her. Ponies like Mimic and Shady stood up against the impossible odds with their entire being. Ponies like Silver Hooves and Solar were there for her when she needed them the most.
She knew she had to do it for them. The Sun Goddess would not fail them again, no matter how long she would have to carry this burden all alone. And she would find a way to heal her sister.
Slowly the moon moved down and the sun rose.
"Yes, I will manage. Let us return to Canterlot."
Soon after her return to her castle, a vision appeared to Celestia: She saw a dragon egg hatching, six ponies wielding the Elements of Harmony and finally Nightmare Moon returning to her true self. The Goddess of the Sun never forgot their faces.
Over time the second castle was abandoned completely as the impact of the Elements was strong enough to disrupt the normal flow of magic and life around the area. A wild uncontrollable forest grew around it, giving shelter to many of the monsters Discord had created. Silver Hooves got married, had a loving family until she finally died at old age. Her line would continue into the present.
Celestia continued her eternal task and ruled over the Equestria together with her court. She decided that Truth was too powerful and dangerous and sealed it in a cave under the royal castle and secured it with enough protective enchantments so that nopony would ever notice that it even exists.
The sphere of Truth started to melt after the use of the Elements and soon it looked only like a tiny speck of water on the ground. After what had happened to her, she didn't want to risk what could happen if anypony else looked inside Truth. Others might never reawaken from their slumber.
At the same time she tried her best to replicate her sister's constellations and to raise interest in astronomy. Every time she moved the moon, Celestia concentrated her mind on Luna, fighting of the alien feeling of moving something she shouldn't touch.
She never stopped believing that the vision would come true.
Eventually the mortals that Discord had declared worthless fulfilled her greatest wish and healed her sister. Celestia was sure that he would never understand that.