GREEN   33    3362   18.39 KB

Changing Lanes 39: Rebuild

By AutoPony
Created: 18th December 2020 10:56:26 AM

  1. >The radio softly plays in the Superbird as you finish another tome, and set off into the next one, scribbling down some notes on an old piece of parchment.
  2. >While hardly comfortable to sit in the car for any period of time, you don't care.
  3. >For the first time in almost two days, you've managed to finally gain some semblance of control.
  4. >Now you just feel tired.
  5. >Numb.
  6. >Empty.
  7. >News has spread rapidly across Equestria, and the outpouring of condolences still continue.
  8. >Despite this, you decided to hold a private ceremony for Anon's internment in the mausoleum, with only his closest friends.
  9. >Twilight has taken it extremely hard as well.
  10. >Now all that is left is work.
  11. >"Sister?"
  12. >Your eyes look up over the dashboard to see Celestia cautiously approach.
  13. >She has hardly fared better in the days since..
  14. >"Luna, are you okay?"
  15. "I am... managing."
  16. >Her face lined with fatigue, Tia still forces a weary smile.
  17. >Despite the events, Celestia has tirelessy stood in the throne room, fufulling both her duties and yours.
  18. >She insisted upon it.
  19. >"I thought I would find you out here."
  20. >You do your best to shuffle the books on the seat next to you away as your sister peers in.
  21. "I just wanted to be somewhere.... close to Anon. I couldn't think of any closer place than his pride and joy."
  22. >You try to sound calm, but the pain in your voice is all too obvious.
  23. >"What are you doing out here?"
  24. "Just... reading. Something to occupy my mind."
  25. >As her magic reaches for one of the tomes, you have no choice but to face the inevitable as it floats out the window to her curious eyes.
  26. >The book falls to the concrete floor.
  27. >"Luna, I know you are taking this loss the hardest, and for good reason, but this... this is not the answer."
  28. >You already find yourself becoming agitated.
  29. "What is the answer, sister? What else can I do?"
  30. >"Dark magic? Necromancy? These certainly are not it!"
  31. "What else is there, Tia?"
  32. >You feel yourself being pulled out of the car, as the door opens.
  33. >Her magic surrounding you, you sister hugs you tight enough to cause a bit of discomfort.
  34. >"We all hurt right now, Lulu. You more than anypony, I'm sure. But you can't let yourself be consumed by your grief, we all need you. I need you."
  35. >You aren't sure how long the two of you hold each other there, saying nothing.
  36. >"Lulu, we will make it through this. It's just going to take some time to heal."
  37. "I know."
  38. >While you agree with her, the words feel hollow, meaningless.
  39. >Slowly, Celestia gathers up your pile of worn manuscripts with her magic.
  40. >"Until that time comes, I will be sure to seal away what we have in our collection."
  41. >She manages another weary smile, before walking out of the garage.
  42. >When she is out of sight, you pull your notes out from underneath your wing, smiling.
  43. "Okay, Tia."
  44.  
  45. >You make your way to Twilight's home in as discreet of a manner as possible.
  46. >Words of condolences mean so little at this point, you don't want to hear them.
  47. >Especially now that you have something that should work, if your research was correct.
  48. >Covered from horn to hooves with a cloak, you rap on her door and wait.
  49. >"Come in."
  50. >Without hesitation, you you make your way inside the library, slamming the door behind you.
  51. >"Can... can I help you?"
  52. >You drop the hood on your robe and turn to face the apprehensive mare.
  53. "My apologies, Twilight. It is difficult to travel considering what has happened."
  54. >"Princess Luna, I didn't expect you..... how are you doing?"
  55. "I am... better. It is still difficult."
  56. >Twilight looks down at the floor, shuffling a hoof.
  57. >"I know. I still can't believe it myself."
  58. >You already begin to grow impatient with the small talk.
  59. >Clearing your throat, you pull out your notes from earlier.
  60. "Twilight, I know you are well-versed in many subjects, I was wondering if you could tell me where I may find some of these items."
  61. >You hold up the parchment for her to read.
  62. >Her lips move slightly as she reads off the various plants and items you have listed.
  63. >You made sure to omit some of the things you need that seem..... out of place.
  64. >"What.... what are all of these for? It looks like some sort of spell."
  65. >Racking your brain, you try to come up with a believable excuse.
  66. "It is, it's..... I'm not exactly sure what it is. You see, my sister and I have been going through some books regarding arcane magic, and this one, we couldn't quite translate."
  67. >Her sorrowful face perks up a bit.
  68. >"That sounds very interesting. Maybe I could help you."
  69. "No! Er, no, sorry. This is all very advanced magic, Twilight Sparkle. However, I do appreciate your offer."
  70. >The twinkle in her eyes diminishes somewhat, but she nods.
  71. >"I understand. Unfortunately, I don't think you will be able to find some of those ingredients to complete the spell."
  72. >Your heart sinks.
  73. "What do you mean?"
  74. >"Well, the meadowsweet plant does not exist any longer, as far as I know. And Tartarus root? If such a thing ever existed, I've never heard of it. And I've read all the books and notes my friend Zecora has to offer."
  75. >You bite your lip to keep from screaming, taking a moment to reel yourself in from the edge of self-control.
  76. "I see. A shame, but understandable. Thank you, Twilight Sparkle."
  77. >Twilight frowns, looking concerned.
  78. >"Are you sure you're alright, Luna? You can talk to me."
  79. >Her eyes seem to cut into you, as if she can see something else underneath you are hiding.
  80. >Fighting back tears of defeat, you turn away, opening the front door..
  81. "I am fine, Twilight. I must head back to Canterlot."
  82. >If she does sense something amiss, she lets it go.
  83. >"It was good to see you, Luna. If you need something, just let me know."
  84. >You close the door behind you, without a word.
  85. >With all of your might, you throw yourself into the air, your anger and sorrow driving the rapid beat of your wings as you head home.
  86.  
  87.  
  88. >As you reach the bottom of the staircase, your fatigue and disappointment only makes your pent up anger build.
  89. >It seems there is no spell in the world to bring your Anon back.
  90. >You would cry, but with the constant grieving of the past few days, you have nothing left.
  91. >All that's left is anger.
  92. >Finding the cell, you stop in front of it.
  93. >Apparently hearing your footsteps, the changeling sits upright, already staring back at you, before shifting.
  94. >"I was wondering when you were going to come back down here for me. Why the long wait?"
  95. >You just glare at the creature, now in the form of you.
  96. >"Did I break your toy? I hope he comes back soon, that was fun."
  97. "My toy?"
  98. >Your doppelganger rolls its eyes and sighs.
  99. >"Sorry, your highness. By toy, I refer to your precious little ape friend you keep with you in the castle. You know, it makes it hard to capture him when you have him under lock and key."
  100. "He's dead."
  101. >The words just drop out of your mouth.
  102. >It laughs in response.
  103. >"Right, right. He's dead, so we can stop looking for him. Try a bit harder than that, princess.
  104. >You just stare, imagining your vision being enough to tear this beast into bits.
  105. >Whether it is your silence or your glare, the changeling stops, mulling over what you have said.
  106. >"You really are serious. Well, I can't say I'm upset. Mother might be, but I guess that's what he gets for torturing me."
  107. >Your grit your teeth as something within snaps.
  108. "That's 'what he gets?' Pardon me, but I believe you vile creatures began this whole mess with your haphazard plan to feast upon us. Anon was my friend, he was my whole world!"
  109. >Pure hatred pours out from every fiber in your body as tears stream down your cheeks, blurring your vision.
  110. "I want you to send Chrysalis a message. She has ruined my world, now it's my turn to ruin hers."
  111. >A nervous chuckle is the response from your prisoner.
  112. >"Ruin her world? We already starve for food, banished away from society. There is nothing you can do to us. We have nothing to lose. Which just makes this news all the sweeter for me."
  113. >You tremble as you feel yourself slipping into the abyss.
  114. >And you don't care.
  115. "Oh, but you do have something to lose. You have your entire species to lose."
  116. >Confusion spreads across your twin's face.
  117. >"Uh, run that by me again?"
  118. "I will hunt every one of your kind down, across every corner of this land. And I promise you, I will make every one of you suffer."
  119. >You feel yourself being consumed by your rage.
  120. >Your hatred.
  121. >Your sorrow.
  122. >Nothing matters anymore.
  123. >You feel your teeth rearrange themselves, as the room slowly seems to grow smaller.
  124. "No amount of pain and suffering will bring my Anonymous back. But I will make sure every one of you regrets ever living."
  125. >The look of confusion changes to horror on the changeling's face.
  126. >"Night.. mare... Mo-"
  127. >You seize the creature by the throat with your magic, slowly constricting as you watch its eyes frantically search the room for salvation.
  128. "You think you know suffering? You think you have been tortured?! I assure you, you have not experienced either in your pathetic life. But you will now."
  129. >Unable to speak, the creature moves its lips, silently apologizing.
  130. >You just tighten your grip on its windpipe further, relishing the feeling of its struggle for mercy.
  131. "Sorry? You're sorry? It doesn't matter. You are only sorry to protect yourself. Nothing more."
  132. >"Please, don't do this."
  133. >You snap your head around in the direction of the voice.
  134. >Celestia stands a few feet away, her expression a mixture of fear and anguish.
  135. "Why? Why should I stop?! Why does this... this THING, deserve to live?!"
  136. >Her voice wavers at your tone.
  137. >"This isn't you. You are better than this."
  138. >The pressure cooker inside you bursts as you further tighten the vice.
  139. "WHY DOES THIS THING DESERVE TO LIVE, OVER ANONYMOUS?"
  140. >Choking down a sob, Celestia gives in, letting the tears stream down her face.
  141. >"Because revenge isn't going to bring him back. Revenge will only deepen the void left behind."
  142. >You turn back to the Luna in front of you.
  143. >You look into its eyes.
  144. >The light of life begins to dim, its struggle subsiding.
  145. >"Don't do this Luna. Please."
  146. >Celestia begs in between sniffles, her voice getting quieter.
  147. >You can't bear to hear your sister's pleas.
  148. "Please. Come back to me."
  149. >You turn to her again, as her pink irises lock onto you.
  150. >"I just want my little sis. My Luna."
  151. >'My Luna.'
  152. >Your memory flashes back to the night of your breakdown, Anon consoling you.
  153. >'You're not a monster. You're my Luna, and my Luna's a sweetheart.'
  154. >You're not a monster.
  155. >Not now.
  156. >The ache in your heart saps your strength.
  157. >'My Luna's a sweetheart.'
  158. >Clinging to those words, you relent.
  159. >Your knees give out on you as you cry out in anguish, dropping the changeling.
  160. >It takes a massive gulp of breath, as you let the dam inside you burst.
  161. >The cold of the stone floor seems to suck the energy from you, taking your own breath away as you sob deeply.
  162. >And yet, at the same time, you feel the warmth of your sister over top you, as she embraces your form.
  163. >You raise your head, taking a moment for your damp eyes to adjust and focus.
  164. >You jump a bit as you look up, finding not only your sister atop you, but Twilight Sparkle, as well.
  165. >The purple alicorn is very nervous, and doesn't wait for you to say anything before unleashing.
  166. >"I'm sorry Luna! After you left, all those items you had listed made sense, and I figured out what you were trying to do, and I just had to tell Celest-"
  167. >You do your best to speak in a somewhat calm voice.
  168. "It is fine, Twilight Sparkle. I am not upset, just.... I just feel empty. Lost."
  169. >"You aren't alone, Luna. I know it feels that way, I know you feel a hole inside, but you can't let that consume you."
  170. >Your big sis raises her head beside, pulling you tightly next to her with a wing.
  171. >"Do not let the anguish of loss cause you to lose yourself. Equestria can not bear to lose you again. I can not bear to lose you again."
  172. >Twilight pipes up as she stands in front of you.
  173. >"I know it hurts, Luna. I hurt too. But the pain does not signify an end. You've come so far from when we first met on Nightmare Night. You've helped countless ponies with their dreams, you make the night sky beautiful. Just as much as Anonymous has affected you, you affect all of us."
  174. >You take a deep breath, as you feel a weight drop off you.
  175. "Thank you. I have felt alone these past few days. I almost let my anger and sorrow consume me, as I have once before. But you, you both refuse to give up on me, you saved me from myself. And for that, I am eternally grateful."
  176. >"Anon would be proud of you, Lulu. You are stronger than you think you are."
  177.  
  178. >Darkness falls over Equestria, and with it comes another night of insomnia.
  179. >Carefully, you creep past both Tia and Twilight, not wanting to wake them.
  180. >Both of them decided it would be best to stay close to you for the next few days, after the events of earlier today.
  181. >You can't blame them, and you appreciate and cherish having two ponies so dedicated to you, that care so much.
  182. >It makes it easier knowing you aren't alone, even if it has felt that way.
  183. >That mistake has been made once before, and nearly repeated again.
  184. >And yet, even in his absence, Anonymous rescued you from yourself.
  185. >The empty halls of the castle are silent, as all but a skeleton crew of guards are resting like everypony else.
  186. >Even so, you focus on your destination in your mind, the castle fading away, to replaced by the garden.
  187. >Your sister is likely worried enough about you to have the guards notify her if you are seen up and about tonight.
  188. >The heavy door in front of you takes some exertion to move, as you slide inside the stone structure.
  189. >Closing it behind you and turning around, you look over at the wall.
  190. >Engraved with the names of past family members and close friends throughout the many years of you and your sister's existence, the freshest chiseling stands out the clearest in the dim light.
  191. >Standing in front of the marked resting place, you try to arrange your thoughts.
  192. "In my many years of existence, I have had the pleasure of meeting countless ponies and other beings. All across this land I have traveled, and there are many more acquaintances and friends I will make in the coming years, no doubt."
  193. >You sit, feeling once again overwhelmed by emotion.
  194. "And yet, only one has so drastically affected me so, has helped me find myself. Helped me move on from my past, and look to the future. To find every day of my existence something to enjoy, rather than a burden. To help me see that even in your absence, I am not alone. For that, I thank you."
  195. >You exhale, letting go of everything you have pent up inside.
  196. "I miss you, Anon."
  197. >You touch a hoof to the internment stone.
  198. >Involuntarily, you jerk it back, a searing hot pain cutting into you.
  199. >The marker itself feels as if it is molten, as you gingerly drop your leg and stand in shock.
  200. "What in Equestria?"
  201. >Curiousity and fear mix with adrenaline as you use your magic and pry at the stone.
  202. >As it relinquishes its spot, intense blue flames erupt from the void, causing you to duck and drop the marker.
  203. >Falling to the ground, it shatters, as you feel the intense heat above you, nearly singeing your back.
  204. >You find yourself pinned there, unable to move, not even to look up.
  205. >Slowly, the heat dies down, allowing you to look up.
  206. >The flames are gone, light wisps of smoke coming from the chamber above you.
  207. >Apprehensive, you rise to your hooves slowly, minding your burned hoof.
  208. >As you peer inside the internment chamber, arms reach out for you, causing you to jump back.
  209. >"Luna, this isn't funny! I've told you before I'm claustrophobic!"
  210. "Wh-What?!"
  211. >"Sister!"
  212. >The steel door to the mausoleum opens, Celestia and Twilight rushing in.
  213. >"Luna, what is-"
  214. >"Someone get me the fuck out of here, I can't breathe!"
  215. >Without another thought, you focus your magic on the outstretched arms, pulling.
  216. >Anonymous falls out onto the floor, breathing rapidly and looking around incredulously.
  217. >You stand dumbfounded, as your sister and Twilight stand stunned with you.
  218. "Anon?"
  219. >"Will someone tell me what the hell is going on?"
  220.  
  221. "So I was dead. As in... what?"
  222. >"Clinically dead. No pulse, not breathing, deceased."
  223. >Luna still hasn't let go of you since getting back into the castle.
  224. >Continuing to run your hands through her mane, you try to make sense of the story the three princesses are telling you.
  225. "Are you sure you checked correctly?"
  226. >"Let me ask you, Anonymous, what do you remember?"
  227. >Scratching your head, you try to think of anything from what is apparently the last two and a half days.
  228. "I remember going down into the dungeon with Lulu and Twily, but I don't remember anything that happened down there. Next thing I know, Luna's staring back at me from some hole I'm crammed into."
  229. >"Internment chamber, Anon."
  230. >You stare at the purple alicorn.
  231. "My bad. 'Internment chamber,' I mean. All I know is, that is one of the most terrifying experiences I have ever had."
  232. >Luna sits up in your lap.
  233. >"You try getting burned by a grave stone, then have a wall of flame rush out at you at breakneck speed and tell me which is more terrifying."
  234. "Claustrophobia will win every time, Moonbutt."
  235. >"You don't remember that, either?"
  236. >Luna gazes into your eyes, curious.
  237. "I told you, I just remember seeing your face pop up in front of me."
  238. >Luna turns to her sister as she sits back down in your lap.
  239. >"What do you make of it, Tia? Surely you do not think I have dabbled in the dark arts, do you?"
  240. >The white mare rubs a hoof to her chin, thinking hard.
  241. >"The only thing I can think of that makes sense is the phoenix."
  242. >Everyone in the room just stares, not following Celly's thought process.
  243. "You want to run that by me in layman's terms?"
  244. >"Anon, Luna, when the two of you swapped consciousness a few years ago, Nightmare Moon when back with you, correct?"
  245. >Luna nods silently, as you do the same.
  246. "Unfortunately, yes."
  247. >"With her went not only that part of Luna, but also some of her magic. I don't think it is too much of a stretch to consider with some of that magic contained within you, our gift of the phoenix, of rebirth, is with you as well."
  248. >Holy shit.
  249. >"So, you think he is like us now, sister?"
  250. >Celestia nods.
  251. >"It is the only thing that makes sense to me, though the length of time between death and resurrection is rather odd. So too, the rather..... violent nature of the flames of rebirth."
  252. >"I don't care, I just know I have my Anon back."
  253. "So by the sounds of it, I can't get away from you, can I?"
  254. >Luna looks up at you, her eyes still damp from earlier.
  255. >"Just shut up and hold me."
  256. >You oblige Moonbutt as you pull her in tight.
  257.  
  258.  
  259.  
  260.  
  261. [Originally posted 13 November 2015]
Anonymous Princess Luna Nightmare Moon romance drama AIE

Embracing the Night 5

by AutoPony

Embracing the Night 4

by AutoPony

Embracing the Night 3

by AutoPony

Embracing the Night 2

by AutoPony

Embracing the Night

by AutoPony