twilight_game_night Mar 7th, 2015 (edited) 1,028 Never
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  1. >Scootaloo’s ears perk up at the light knocking coming from her front door.
  2. >”See!” she tells Apple Bloom. “I told you she’d come.”
  3. >The little Apple fidgets in her chair as her friend jumps from hers to answer the knocking.
  4. >”I hope she didn’t bring – him.”
  5. >”Kyubey?” Scootaloo asks, shuffling towards the door. “*It* has a name, you know.”
  6. >”Weird name,” Apple Bloom grumbles, pawing at the upholstery.
  7. >The pegasus harrumphs loudly – for a tiny filly – drawing her friend’s attention.
  8. >”Sorry not everyone has a Noun-Noun name,” Scootaloo responds mockingly. The Earth Pony sticks out her tongue in response – Scootaloo’s back is turned, she never sees it.
  9. >The orange filly unlocks the door – even in a place as safe as Ponyville, her parents had been insistent she always keep it locked – and lets the third Crusader enter.
  10. >Sweetie Belle steps in hesitantly, followed by the white cat-like creature that is Kyubey.
  11. >”Have you changed your mind?” it asks before Scootaloo can even close the door. “Have you decided on your wish?”
  12. >”No,” she grunts. “I still don’t trust you.”
  13. >Kyubey leaps onto the back of the nearest chair, curling into a little ball of fluff with its tail wrapped around itself.
  14. >”Why not?” it asks innocently. “I’ve been nothing but honest with you – all we are trying to do is save the universe.”
  15. >Save the universe.
  16. >All it’s trying to do – save the universe.
  17. >Said as if it were some minor task akin to taking out the trash or setting the table.
  18. >There is no emotion backing the words, nothing to lend them weight.
  19. >”The universe is dying,” it says. It almost sounds annoyed, repeating the same words to the same fillies over and over, but such a thing is impossible – it cannot feel annoyed, it cannot feel emotions.
  20. >It cannot feel anything.
  21. >”That’s why we need you,” Kyubey continues talking as Sweetie Belle gingerly seats herself beneath it. She moves with the care of some someone recently injured, though Scootaloo cannot see any marks on her white coat. “Only you ponies can do it.”
  22. >”I don’t care if the universe *is* dying,” Scootaloo growls, taking a different seat – one away from the creature. “How can you do this to Sweetie Belle!?”
  23. >Its head tilts quizzically to one side.
  24. >”All I did was grant her wish,” Kyubey answers. “She knew it came at a cost. I have forced nothing on her.”
  25. >Sweetie Belle nods in agreement, not lifting her eyes to meet those of her friends.
  26. >”I have what I want,” she says softly, hugging herself around her midsection. “And it’s not a cost, not really…”
  27. >Her voice quavers at the end – she cannot even convince herself, though she tries desperately.
  28. >”It’s not a cost,” she repeats. “I get to protect everypony from the nightmares.”
  29. >She finally raises her head, looking pleadingly into Scootaloo’s eyes.
  30. >”Don’t you want to be a hero too, Scootaloo?” Sweetie Belle asks. “You always wanted an adventure…”
  31. >”Not a fair trade,” Apple Bloom answers for her friend. “Not on its own.”
  32. >”That’s what the wish is for,” the unicorn whines. “Can’t you see? He can give you ANYTHING you want and all you have to do is fight the nightmares!”
  33. >”Nightmares that will destroy your town if you do nothing,” Kyubey chimes in, turning his round head to face the little Earth Pony. “Don’t you want to protect your family?”
  34. >”Of course she does!” Pinkie Pie answers, popping up from behind the chair Sweetie Belle occupies. She picks up the white fluff ball and throws it into the sky, long ears and tail streaming in the air.
  35. >”Hello Pinkie Pie,” it says calmly as it falls, the mare catching it carefully with her hoof.
  36. >”IT’S PINKI – oh,” she scrunches up her nose, looking like she had bitten into a lemon. “You got it right.”
  37. >The creature scampers along the mare’s outstretched leg, jumping onto her head and from there back to his place on the back of Sweetie Belle’s chair.
  38. >”Have you decided to do your duty?” it asks. “The number of nightmares grows daily.”
  39. >Pinkie Pie giggles, sweeping Kyubey off the chair again, hugging it tightly. It’s tiny paws flail, trying to drag itself free from her grip.
  40. >”Oh silly Kyubey,” she giggles, squeezing tighter, “I’ve always fought the nightmares!”
  41. >She tosses the fuzzball again, this time through an open window.
  42. >”He’ll just be right b-“
  43. >A squeal of joy cuts off Sweetie Belle.
  44. >”It’s so cute!” they can hear Fluttershy yelling, “Can I take it home, Trixie?”
  45. >”Your house,” the unicorn huffs, the sound muffled by the walls. “Do what you want.”
  46. >”yay.”
  47. >”Nope, I think we have some time!” Pinkie Pie tells the fillies, slamming the window shut. “I think we need to have a teeny-weeny talk about all this, okay?”
  48. >The three fillies stare as her in confusion.
  49. >”Not okay…?” Ponka asks, hesitantly, her eyes darting between the Crusaders.
  50. >Apple Bloom slides out of her seat, circling the mare with wide eyes. Pinkie’s head turns, following the filly.
  51. >”Y-you know about this…?” she asks after doing a complete circuit.
  52. >Pinkie Pie giggles, lifting a hoof to cover her mouth.
  53. >”Of course!” she answers, mouth pulled in a tight smile. “I made a contract years ago!”
  54. >A hurt wail escapes Sweetie Belle’s mouth, the sides of her eyes dragging down to make her look like Fluttershy eating flan.
  55. >Fluttershy hates flan, but she’s too polite to say no.
  56. >Poor pony.
  57. >”You made a contract!?” Apple Bloom yells angrily, head jerking between the mare and Scootaloo. “For what!?”
  58. >”I told you last night, silly-billy!” Ponka answers, booping the filly’s nose. “Don’t you remember? I –”
  59. >” – wished to be happy, forever and always,” Scootaloo answers glumly.
  60. >Pinkie’s head bobbles up and down rapidly.
  61. >”Yeppers!”
  62. >The mare’s word is punctuated by a blast of streamers and confetti, covering EVERYTHING in the room with a thin layer of party supplies. She grabs the three fillies in a flash, hugging them tightly to her chest.
  63. >”I’m afraid it didn’t work out for them too well,” Ponka tells the fillies, her face still smiling though her voice has a tint of regret to it. “Did Kyubey tell you how becoming a magical filly will save the universe? Did he?”
  64. >Sweetie Belle struggles to free herself, with about as much success as the last white critter.
  65. >”Kind of,” she answers between grunts of exertion. “Something about our feelings.”
  66. >Pinkie moans in disappointment.
  67. >”I HATE being the exposition fairy,” she pouts, falling flat on her rump. “Stay here, I have to go find a bunny outfit and an angry little Japaneighs filly…”
  68. >She shakes her head vigorously.
  69. >”No, no time,” she says to herself, scrunching her nose. The mare is obviously unhappy not being able to do this properly, but still…
  70. >Ponka sighs.
  71. >”He told you our universe is dying, right?”
  72. >The three fillies nod quietly.
  73. >”And that only us ponies can save it?”
  74. >Another nod.
  75. >”Because our emotions are so strong?”
  76. >Another nod, this one coming slower.
  77. >Pinkie takes a deep breath, holding it for a second –
  78. >She has to take the time to think – to decide what to say – there’s only so much time, only so much the fillies can take.
  79. >”Filly magica get their powers from their positive emotions,” she blurts out, catching the fillies by surprise. “And Kyubey uses our negative emotions to repower the universe.”
  80. >Apple Bloom blinks in confusion.
  81. >”What does *that* mean?” the little Earth Pony asks
  82. >”It means…” Pinkie Pie smiles sheepishly “… they don’t want us to be happy.”
  83. >She raises a hoof to pat Sweetie Belle’s head.
  84. >”I’m sorry,” she says as a tear drips down her smiling face, “they can only use our energy when we’ve lost all hope... and then…”
  85. >”Then…?” Scootaloo prompts.
  86. >”Then the nightmare we’ve become has to be harvested.” Another tear falls. “I’M SO SORRY, SWEETIE BELLE!”
  87. >The look of horror on Apple Bloom’s and Scootaloo’s faces cannot match the despair on Sweetie Belle’s.
  88. >”So, the nightmare I fought –“
  89. >”Yes.” Pinkie answers, nuzzling her face gently. “But don’t worry – it *can* be reversed!”
  90. >The mare cannot understand why the unicorn’s eyes glaze over.
  91. >”If it happens to you, I can fix it!” she shouts. “Don’t worry, I can fix it! We can bring you back!”
  92. >A sneer curls Sweetie Belle’s lip.
  93. >”Then why don’t you do that for ALL of the nightmares?” she spits.
  94. >Her friends look to her in confusion, surprised at her venom.
  95. >”I KILLED somepony last night!” Sweetie Belle yells in Pinkie Pie’s face. “SOMEPONY LIKE ME! SOMEPONY YOU COULD HAVE BROUGHT BACK!”
  96. >Pinkie Pie smiles sadly, stroking the filly’s mane.
  97. >”Not everypony wants to come back,” she answers.
  98. >Apple Bloom frees her forelegs, reaching over to hug her friend.
  99. >”It’ll be okay,” the Earth Pony says comfortingly. “Just don’t lose hope! That’s easy, right?”
  100. >Pinkie Pie purses her lips.
  101. >”Why… why would anypony make a contract…?” Scootaloo asks quietly.
  102. >”Because their wish is worth it,” Pinkie Pie answers with a gentle kiss to the pegasus’ forehead. “Or because they want to protect their friends.”
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