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Fading Future


"Oh Twilight Tragedy, you've failed me?" asked Discord, in that sickening false compassionate tone he likes to as he set on his throne. "Tisk, tisk, tisk, how disappointing of you."

"I… I'm sorry, master. An older pony was there, they knew you'd send me and had a trap set. I managed to "erase" that one, sir, but I had to retreat for the time being. They laughed and said you must be slipping, letting your second-in-command walk into a trap so easily," I reply, looking up at him, bruises covering my face and upper body. I have a pleading, miserable, fearful look in my eyes, like beaten dog expecting to be punished.

Discord gets furious, glaring straight down at me, his normal silliness vanishing in an instant. "Oh did they?! Well, I think it's time those precious little fillies get a visit from their master! I'll punish you when I return. And do get that dragon ready for my next ride, I have a feeling I'll have a few corpses to parade around my kingdom!" he growled, disappearing in a flash of light.

I smirk as he goes, standing up tall and wiping the blood from my mouth. Watching Liarjack for so long has made me a pretty crafty liar myself.

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"Yah sure yah want me to do this, Twilight?" asked Apple Pie, the little filly staring up at me, fear in her eyes.

I nod quickly, a determination in my eyes that I had to be very careful to hide from my "master". " Yes, don't worry. I'm immortal, you can't kill me that easily, just give me everything you've got, for this to work, Discord really has to think you kicked my flanks. Don't hold back one bit!"

Apple Pie nodded with a sad sigh. "Alright, hold still…" she muttered, before turning around, taking aim with her hind legs right at my face.


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Apple Pie is definitely an Apple, even if the Sweet Apple Acres is now who knows what (that changes from day to day, last I checked, it was covered in snow and on fire at the same time).

My name is Twilight Tragedy, at least that's what "Master" Discord calls me. Oh, I remember when I called him Master and believed I meant it for real, he thinks I still do. I don't know how long we've lived in this rotten dystopia of his, it's easy to lose track of time when you're immortal. But given how long it's been, it was only a matter of time until the old man slipped up and one of us got free without his knowing.

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I walk down around my room, Master is out taking a ride on Spike, nothing for me to do but read up on the latest black magic he wants me to try out. As I lift up the book, something catches my eyes, a little scroll, shoved in between the desk and my bed. For some reason I feel like it's calling out to me…

My horn lights up, so does the paper as I telekinetically pull it from it's hiding place. Unrolling it, I instantly notice something. It's my writing, but I don't remember writing it…Then I read what's written on it.

"Friendship Is Magic…"

Friendship is Magic? But…Tragedy is magic, that's what the master has always told me…But why don't I remember writing this? Its my writing, I had to have wrote this… Maybe the master is playing a game with me…But then why…why does it seem so familiar? Why does it sound so right?


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I head into my room, opening an old book I found in the "master's" personal collection. He gives me access to it, having his personal assassin up to snuff on all the deadliest spells is useful… And being immortal, seeing me mess up on them was a favorite pass time of his. And now, he's going to regret it… That's not the only thing he's going to regret…

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I walk down the hall. Friendship is magic? Why…why does that just click? Why do I feel like it's important? Why do I feel like…like it's right? I can't ask the master, I know that…why do I know that? What's going on?

I see a dull orange Earth Pony walking past me. A thought comes to my mind. "Liarjack," I call, getting her to turn to face me.

"Yeah, Twilight?" she asked, looking at me.

"Tragedy is magic, right?" I ask, innocently as possible.

"Why of course it is, Twilight, no doubt about it!"

Funny thing about Liarjack…she lies, and even I knew it.


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I know Apple Pie and her friends won't be able to hide from them, I feel a pang of guilt in my heart, but I know that if this succeeds, their sacrifice won't be in vain, I can't LET it be in vain.

I get out a clock and a calendar, as well as all of the ingredients I would need. The irony of the fact this all is going to end the same way I began it doesn't escape me. I'm just sending another message to myself…

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I look over the letter once more, master is busy "rearranging" the glass menagerie that used to be Manehatten into a giant board game, which he then intends to play.

"What does it mean?" I whisper. My head feels like it's burning, like something is trying to break out inside my brain. I was curious originally…But first I asked Liarjack about that, and her answer just confirmed my suspicions that SOMETHING was up…Now I can't think of anything else…

"If I sent myself this letter…somehow…I wonder if…" I write a letter of my own.

"Friendship is Magic? What does that mean?"

I slide the letter back where I found the first one, putting a darker ribbon on it to identify it as different, just in case.

A few weeks later, I find a different colored ribbon on it…

And so it continued that way…Until I could remember it…I could remember everything…


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Time magic is a tricky, risky thing, you know. If the times weren't so dire, I'd never do this, but it's not like there's a possible future WORSE that this one. Summoning as much power as I have, I concentrate on sending my thoughts back into time, another message to myself. At the one moment in time it'll matter the most.

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Maybe once the world stops being kind, maybe when the world stops being playful, maybe that's when we stop too.

With Applejack -the first of my friends I formally made in Ponyville- still next to me, I look at the part of the sky Rainbow Dash flew away towards. Why did she leave us? She wouldn't without a reason. I know whatever it was it had to be important. Maybe loyalties only last until something bigger comes along. So much for the ponytail of the loyal Samurai.

Maybe friendship only lasts until the world applies just the right pressure. Is this the truth Applejack didn't want me to see?

"Friendship report 25; Pinkie Pie learned that she should always expect the best from her friends, and never assume the worst."

I give a blink of confusion. Where did that thought come from? Or…was it just a memory?… I remember… That was the day that Pinkie Pie almost went insane because she assumed we'd all abandoned her, when all we were just unable to tell her what we were really doing…I look back up as Rainbow Dash flies off…Am I doing the same? Am I just assuming the worst? Maybe she knows something I don't, just like we knew we were throwing Pinkie a surprise party and she didn't…

I look to Applejack. Just because she's been lying all this time, doesn't mean I shouldn't think this is one. She told the truth about Rainbow flying away…

Before I can sort things out, the maze walls begin to crash down around us, vanish.


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The effect is immediate, new memories rush into my mind, ones that weren't there before. A sudden "epiphany" about not thinking the worst of my friends, restoring my hope just before I lost it. Calling Discord out on cheating…Him showing me my mistake, the Elements weren't in the maze. I begin to lose hope again, it's not enough. I concentrate again, powering up the spell once more.

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I…I was wrong…Whatever happened to my friends…All this is…It's my fault…I-

"Wait, he doesn't play fair…If he doesn't play fair, then why should I think he ever wanted to? Even if I'd chosen right, he'd just have done whatever he did no matter where we went."

I…That's right! Discord is a cheater! It didn't matter which choice I made, there WAS no right one!… But what does it matter then? No matter what I do-

"A cheater can still be beaten. As long as I have hope, I can't give up, I can't quit just because it seems too hard. Did Fluttershy back down when that dragon was on the rampage? Did Rainbow Dash stop when she saw how far Rarity was from her during that fall? No! So what gives me the right to quit now?! If I give up now, Discord win!"

Where are all these ideas coming from?…They're right though…If I give up now, Discord DOES win. If I keep trying, he MIGHT win…And all of Equestria is counting on me…I can't afford to give up now!


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More new memories, rushing to Ponyville. There they are! The Elements!…But they don't work…No, I'm giving up again!…But wait, what's this? Memories of letters rushing to me from Celestia, my own friendship letters. I see my own darkness be washed away. I see myself pinning my friends down one by one and restoring their memories, them to their old selves. I smile as one glorious memory enters my mind. The look of shock on the "master's" face as he's beaten…

I use another new spell I know on the mirror before me, causing it to distort and change to show me events happening elsewhere.

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I see Discord…surrounded by dozens of maimed, dead, and dying ponies, many of which aren't even recognizable anymore…My new friends…I let the rage rise inside of me, feed the one thing I have left to do.

Discord laughs that stupid laugh of his, Apple Pie's throat firmly in his lion paw. "I've enjoyed this game, but I'm afraid it's time for it to end," he said, smirking and then scratching his chin. "Now what should I do to the little ring leader?" he asked, looking thoughtful. "Ah, I know, I think I'll-" Discord screamed as Apple Pie bit down on his paw, causing him to drop the little filly. "You little brat! You actually bit me!"

"Ah ain't goin' down without a fight!" exclaimed the little filly, jumping at Discord and attempting to buck him in the face. Discord just teleports behind her and whips her away with his tail.

"Aww, how cute! You actually think you can fight me," stated Discord with a chuckle. "That hasn't worked well for anyone else, are you certain that's a game you want to play?"

"Mimic did a pretty good job, that's why you're missin' a tooth, ain't it?"

Discord's eyes went wide. "How do you know about that?!" he exclaimed, taken off guard at the mention of the only pony to ever successfully hurt him…Well, the FIRST to do so.
Apple Pie leapt up while Discord was distracted and bucked him right in the face. Stunned by the kick, Discord was left open to another kick to the face. Funny thing about not feeling pain a lot, it hurts a LOT more when you finally do get hurt.

Apple Pie goes for a third kick, but Discord finally teleports out of the way. "Alright, now you're just getting annoying," he growled, snapping his fingers and suddenly razor sharp playing cards manifested and tried to lacerate poor Apple Pie. The little filly manages to dodge and jump into the air at Discord. Discord snickers…Then looks surprised, left open as Apple Pie kicks him right in the head.

I smirk, I know why he didn't just teleport away. The time change is starting to catch up with him.

Apple Pie takes advantage and gives him a quartet of kicks right to the skull. Finally, a loud crack resounds through the air.

Discord's horn went flying into the air and embedded into the ground nearby, Discord yelling out in pain. Looking close, I notice grey stone were the crack happened.

"My horn…You…You actually hurt me!" exclaimed Discord in complete disbelief, holding the bleeding stump where his horn used to be.

Apple Pie chuckled. "Yeah, not bad for a little filly, huh?"

Discord snarled in complete rage, his composure dissolving into almost animalistic anger. "Oh yes, and it'll be the last thing you ever do!" he yells at the top of his lungs, fury filling every word that this mere filly had actually managed to HURT him. "I promise you that!"

You don't want to know what happened next…Just know that when the ancient unicorn Mimic managed to bust out Discord's tooth, he turned her bones to glass and slammed her into the ground at Sonic Rainboom speeds over and over again, then vaporized her body…Apple Pie's demise was no less brutal. My blood boils like fire and I let my tears flow freely…

Discord panted in fury, a murderous rage in his eyes as he stood over what was LEFT of the filly who had broken his horn, probably wondering how he'd been rendered unable to teleport…Only to notice something. Particles of light rising off the bodies of his victims, them slowly fading away. "What? I didn't do that…" he muttered, watching the bodies vanish. He then looks back at his tail and his eyes widen in shock. "No…No!" he exclaimed, fear in his eyes as he sees stone slowly but surely begin spreading across his body.

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It'll take Discord far longer to make it here than before, if the effect will be as I've read it should be on him. I have a lot to do before he gets here. And to make sure he DOES get her, I cast a temporal displacement spell on the two of us, after he's as weak as I need him to be, that is. I'm going to enjoy this…But first…

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First I find Liarjack, looking torn, a conflicted look on her face. I see little bits of light coming off of her, heading towards Ponyville. That's a good sign, exactly what I'd hoped would happen.

I let her rest her head on my shoulder, crying softly. "Twi…Ah didn't mean at lie…Discord told me our friendship was gonna break…Ah…Ah just couldn't stand the truth…this is all mah fault…"

"Applejack…It's ok, you don't have to lie anymore, not now, not ever again…Discord tricked you, just like he tricked all of us…Now we're all getting a second chance, even if we don't remember it…Just don't make the same mistake twice…I've already forgiven you…Me and my past self too…I remember…"

The darkness fades from her body, reverting her to her normal colors. She looks up and gives me a genuine smile. "Thanks, Twi'…Just don't go lyin' to yourself now," she said as she fades away completely. "Ah'll be seeing yah soon Ah guess…" she says as she disappears into light.

I let the bitterness towards the one making me witness this grow…But her words still stick to me.

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Next was Fluttercruel, though hers was a bit strange, I'll admit. Two streams of light, separate but together rose off of them… Before I could say anything, she… They hugged me instead…

"It's alright, Twilight. Everything will be ok… But don't say we never have to be cruel again," said Fluttershy, at least I think it was.

Fluttershy's body language changed completely, to a more strong willed pony instead. "Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind, the actual cruel thing is to let a thorn fester that needs to be pulled out, no matter how much it hurts…"

She, they, smiled and faded. I don't know what to think about that one… But I feel strangely… Good…

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I head to Rarigreed's room, expecting to find her in similar condition…Instead I'm greeted by "Tom" being hurled right through the door and the window behind me, followed by several other smaller rocks the poor mare was hypnotized into thinking were gems.

"Rarity?" I ask, poking my head through the window.

Rarity was throwing rocks out of windows and in all directions, tears streaming down her face. "Stupid rocks! I don't want you!" she screamed, throwing another, forcing me to dodge.

"Rarity!" I yell again, trying to get her attention.
She twirls around, looking at my face in surprise…Then wrapped her hoofs around me, sobbing her eyes out. All I can do is hug her back. I feel a burning fire inside me, directed towards the one putting her through all this misery. I feel the fire growing…I'll keep breeding it there…

"I don't want any of this Twilight!" the poor mare sobbed. "Even if they were gems, I wouldn't! The only thing I want…The only thing I want is…is…Sweetie Belle…I…I just let her slip away! All this time…I missed her whole life…Now I just want her back!" she cried, even as she began to fad away a bit.

"Rarity… You're getting another chance now… I don't have time to explain, but… You'll have a second chance, you'll have Sweetie Belle back, I promise… You're probably never going to remember this consciously… But never forget how much Sweetie Belle means to you, how important she is to you… Don't ever let your desires get between you and her ever again! Promise me Rarity that you won't!" I plead, looking her right in the eyes. "Promise me!"

Rarity's colors return as she continues fading. She gives me a smile and we hug. "I swear… I shall never go sisterless again…" she said, tears running down her face as she too fades away in my forelegs.

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Next was Angry Pie, who was well…NOT Angry pie. She was presently wearing a party hat, throwing the various weapons she'd wielded against anything that had ever laughed at her out the window. Gummy, restored to his original, infant self, was sitting there, staring at his owner happily. I look around, finding her normally dank and dreary room made up like a party was happening.

Does…does she know what's happening? She looks almost more sane than I remember her, no matter what she's doing. Even BEFORE Discord got his claws in her…

"Pinkie?" I ask, confusion in my voice.

Pinkie gave a gasp and was in front of me before I could even move, smiling ear to ear, oh how I missed that smile…Once more I breed the fire inside me towards HIM for making me not see it in so long.

"Hey Twilight! Welcome to the party!" exclaimed the pink pony, placing a party hat on my head.

"P-party?" I reply, my brain trying hard to understand what's happening. Even if I remember her parties…After Applejack and Rarity, I wasn't expecting this. Even if Fluttershy was strange, she wasn't like this.

"Yeah! Our Rebirth Party! We're all gonna be brand new ponies now! If you can have a birthday party, why can't you have a rebirth party?" Pinkie exclaims, just dripping happiness.

My eyes widen. "You know?! How do you-"

"Oh! It's a long story, but this has kinda happened to me before…It's a really really REALLY long story, and I don't have time to explain now, that's why I didn't have time to invite everypony else, even though I really wanted to, but I'll make up for that, promise! But this time I understand, this is happening cause this world is REALLY bad and the new one will be how it's supposed to and everypony will be happy again!" said Pinkie, in her normal, rapid voice. "But let's party until I get reborn, ok?"

I give a small smile. I almost stop myself from laughing, before reminding myself I don't need to anymore. For the first time in Celestia knows how long, I laugh. I have fun. And so does Pinkie Pie. Even as Pinkie begins to fade, we dance and have fun as much as we can until Pinkie's fading begins to speed up.

"That was great, Twilight! I wish it could've lasted longer and I know I might not remember it this time, but that's alright! It was worth it just to see you smile again! I know you've got a lot of important things to do, just don't keep us waiting too long! I think I'm going to be throwing a big party! It'll last for three weeks! Then you cut off my coffee and I fall asleep and undergo character development!"

"I… I wouldn't miss it for the world, Pinkie," I don't care if she sounds nuts! She's her again, that's all that matters.

"Pinkie Pie Swear!"

"Alright, cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my-" I say, going through the motions…And jabbing my hoof right into my eye. Naturally, I give a scream. I could never get that part right.

Pinkie hugs me anyway. And I hug her back, watching her fade away in my hooves with a big smile.

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One left, Traitor Dash. I find curled up in her room, confused and distraught. She looks up at me as I enter, her body fading like the rest, a tad more so, since I spent so long with Pinkie Pie. "Twilight… I'm sorry… I…"

"I figured that out a long time ago, Rainbow. I know what happened…I figured it out when you knew what it used to be like but still called yourself a traitor…" I say, once more using her REAL name. I pull her to her hooves and hug her. "… And I forgive you…" I reply, tears going down my own cheeks as she fades in my grasp. "… And I'm sure the me I'm going to be will forgive you too…" I see her mane slowly turn back to it's proper color as she fades away too.

And the fire in me grows. I see black spots begin to spread over my back like cancers…I'm going to make HIM pay for putting Rainbow through this…

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I head into Spike's chamber, the protective spell I put on myself to keep tethered here just a bit longer is beginning to weaken, but it's got to last, I'm not done yet. There's still some things I've got to do.

I put my hoof on the massive dragon's snout, seeing bits of him fading as well. He can't speak anymore, he lost that capability when he annoyed Discord too much. All I do is lean in, resting my head on his as he fades, tears streaming down my face.

I know what's happening, I know this is for the best… I wonder why it still hurts to see my friends fade away. Why I feel guilty knowing Apple Pie and the others probably died at Discord's claws when I know the life they'll receive will be so much greater? I don't know, some things we'll never know… And I don't care, I like it, it feeds the flames inside of me, this is what I want… I want to make HIM pay for all of this!

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As I walk down the path towards the place were my final act will take place, I look over, seeing Ditzy Doo, cradling Dinky, whose no longer a pony-shaped muffin but a living breathing little foal.

"Mommy missed her muffin…Mommy loves you…Mommy promises she'll never let anyone take her little muffin away ever again…" she repeats, her and her foal slowly continuing to fade, tears streaming down both their faces as they embrace and fade away into a new life.

I let my memories of the horrors Discord put that poor mare and her beloved child through feed the flames…

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I find HIM crawling weakly towards his palace, his body turning to stone slowly but surely.  Most of his tail is gone, faded away.

"Twilight Tragedy… What's going on?" asked Discord, fear and uncertainty in his voice. He can barely move, his power is gone. Perfect.

I let all my anger, all my rage feed that fire. Not the Fires of Friendship…something else. "It's Twilight Sparkle, Discord! And what's happening is things going back to how they're MEANT to be," I say, it feels good to call myself that. Is it wrong to enjoy seeing him like this? Maybe, but after so long, I don't care. I let the black spots spread over me as my mane begins to smoke from the fires inside me.

"But how can yo-"

"Because you slipped up, "master". Remember all those times you let me off your leash just to pull me back?" I ask, enjoying every second of this. "I wrote myself a little message during one of those times. You know what I wrote?" I ask, glaring him right in the eyes. His eyes go wide in shock.

"Friendship is magic," I tell him, stomping right up to his face. "And that got me thinking, so I sent myself back a letter, back and fourth until my memories broke your spell! This entire time I've been acting like your little pawn?" I ask. "I. Tricked. You."

Discord looks at me in complete disbelief. "But… But my spell… That's… That's not possible! You can't have outsmarted me! You're just a pony! I'm the lord of chaos! I've existed before your little world did! How can you possibly outsmart me!"

"Oh, it's possible, Discord!" I reply, taking a few steps back as the shadows spread on and threw me. "And here's something else that's possible, thanks to you, I found a little time spell. Enough to send back something to myself in the past. A few tidbits of information that gave her the resolve to avoid falling where I did. And guess what, Discord? She and the others beat you! That means in the timeline overwriting this one, you're a powerless statue! And that's what you're turning into now!" I state, watching stone continue to snake up his body and then fade away. I see the fear in his face, the same fear that he loved inflicting on everypony else for so long. I relish in that fear. "You know something else?" I ask, my mane bursting into shadowy fire. "I'm not."

My body contorts and changes as I let the flames I've been feeding all this time finally consume me! I'm going to be reborn anyway, why not make sure this monster pays for every second of it at the hands of something he himself created!

I feel skeletal wings erupt from my back and shadowy flames ignite in them. My tail follows the same path as my mane as my body grows into that of an Alicorn. I see my skin turning a deep purple. I look over my shoulders to see boney armored plates burst out of my skin and cover my back, razor sharp spikes covering them. I feel a helmet forming on my head, my horn growing out. My whole body is burning! But I know it'll be worth it! It'll be worth seeing every last bit of what I'm about to do!

"What I am is your nightmare!" I call, my voice sounding ghostly, like a banshee almost. I almost scare myself with it. "A nightmare born from the flames of vengeance fed by the loss of the ones I hold most dear to me! You've taken away everything that matters to me again, and again, and again! And all you've done is feed the fires that are about to consume you, Discord! Got a catchy name for me now? No? I've got one, tell me what you think…"

Discord's eyes widen, he tries to craw away from me. My horn glows as I slam my front hooves down on the ground, causing flaming, spiked chains to erupt from the ground like snakes, wrapping it's way up around his arms and pulls him to the ground, piercing his flesh and causing him to scream in agony.

"Nightmare Purgatory, the most vengeful friend!"

"No! Y-you can't do this to me!" yelled Discord, quaking in terror as he looks up at me. For the first time in his life, afraid of death. Good…I make my chains pick him up and slam him hard back into the ground three times.

I stomp forwards, the earth blazing beneath my hooves. I make the blazing chains go THROUGH his wrists and ankles, I listen to him roar in agony with a smirk. "Just like you wouldn't let Mimic be the one to ruin your "flawless" face?" I ask, looking at his tooth. He gasps in surprise. "You'd be surprised what a pony looks up when they're desperate for hope, like the one pony to ever hurt you," I state, never letting my eyes leave his. "You're ashamed of that, aren't you? And I bet you're ashamed you got your horn snapped like a twig by a little filly too. Well guess what?"

"I'm going to remind you what pain feels like before we fade into the new world!" I yelled as the chains tear backwards, pulling Discord off the ground and holding him against a stone wall, arms held out as if he was crucified. "What it's like to be at someone's mercy! What it's like to feel scared like you make everypony else feel!" I yell, another of my chains bursting from by chest, from my heart. I don't care about the stabbing, horrible pain, it doesn't matter.

I take careful aim, pointing the chain right at his black heart. "Beg…" I say simply as the smell of his flesh burning from contact with my chains enters the air. "Come on, beg for your miserable, no good life!"

Discord looks at me in absolute terror…Then slowly grins, as if he's realizing something. "I've taught you well, Twilight…"

My eyes widen as his words pierce deep into my soul. I look in a puddle of chocolate milk sitting nearby, in the process of slowly changing back into water. The skull like helmet on my head, the murderous look in my fiery eyes…

I look back at Discord, that sick smirk…And I see it…I see the same look in his eyes…

"Come on, do it. It doesn't matter really, you're going to be reborn anyway, no one will ever know if you impale me here and now," said Discord, using what little power he has left to form a target right of his black heart and a pair of sunglasses on his face. He probably thinks this is the first time he's used this trick. "I'm ready to die now."

I snarl, launching my chain forwards, Discord closing his eyes with a smirk…

Only the chain to swing right in front of his face, shattering his remaining tooth to bits, causing him to let out a roar of pain, blood pouring from his mouth. I swing the chain back around and snap off his other horn as well, earning a second roar of pain.

The chains all fade away into nothingness. A glowing purple version of my Cutie Mark appears on my forehead, it's power spreading through my body, pealing back the darkness. I feel it putting out the fires as my body returns to normal. Finally, my colors come back to me, restored as I stand in shattered bone armor.

"Now they match…" I state, then trot up to him, looking him in the eyes, using my telekinesis to tear the sunglasses off his face and throw them aside. "And that'll be my payback, Discord, because you know what? Because I'm not like you! I'm not going to murder someone in cold blood who can't defend themselves, no matter what they did to me. I'm not a heartless monster like you. I've beaten you and saved the world, I've got nothing more to prove and even if I or anyone else never remembers it, I'm not going to become the thing I saved it from! I'm going to be reborn as me, not a killer or a Nightmare! I'm going to be reborn as Twilight Sparkle! And I'm not going to have any regrets when that happens!"

I look him close in his eyes, which are wide with shock and disbelief. I give a sincere smile. "So I'm letting go of everything you've done to me…I'm letting go of the pain you put me through all this time. I'm even letting go of everything you did to my friends and loved ones, I don't want any of it anymore…And most importantly…I. Forgive. You."

I start walking away, looking back over my shoulder, seeing Discord stare at me in complete disbelief as he continues to fade, blood running from his shattered tooth and from his severed horn. I wonder if what little of this he subconsciously remembers in the new timeline will ever have an effect on him. I don't care. For the first time since I started all this, I don't care anymore.

I didn't have to become a murderer to save the world, I didn't have to become the thing I was fighting…Now I can be reborn without any regrets, any pain, any old grudges, I can be reborn in peace…Well, come to think of it, I still have one last thing to do.

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I stand, looking up at the two gold and silver statues of Celestia and Luna as they, and I, begin to fade. I look over to an unmarked grave, I see light rising from it too and heading to… Ponyville? I don't have time to think about that, I look up to Celestia's statue as it fades.

"… Dear Princess Celestia…" I say, looking up as my body continues to fade away. "I learned that even when everything is hopeless, when it seems the bleakest, that's when friendship is the most important. As long as we don't forget what our friendships mean to us, there will always be hope. And as long as there's hope, there's a chance to set things right… And also, we need to remember that even if someone hurts our friends, it doesn't give us an excuse to become just like them in return. You can still stand up for your friends without acting like a monster yourself… Your faithful student, Twilight Sparkle…" I say as both Princesses, restored and fading themselves, stand over me smiling. I smile back. We just stand together as everything goes white and my memories of this world fade, replaced by memories of a new one…
Another bit of recursive fanfiction for the Pony POV Series, this one just wouldn't leave my head!

In the Bad Future where Discord wins, Twilight has restored her memories. She has a plan to stop Discord's reign in it's tracks. Now it's time to put it into action.

Yes, I know what the "canon" is for the series, this is just a "what if" that wouldn't leave my head. It was inspired by [link] If Discord can tamper with the past, whose to say Twilight can't? Also worth noting, this is another "alternate future" read the latest Pony POV chapter to see more on that.

Totally revised completely with help from [link] Thank you so much for your help dude!

First draft here: [link]

Also, as a "What could've been", I originally intended to pretty much have Twilight brutally murder Discord in an extremely sadistic manner, but I decided, even with her personality twisted, she wouldn't do that. Which also worked into the real ending.

My Little Pony belongs to Hasbro.

Pony POV Series belongs to [link]

EDIT: Redid Apple Pie's death scene completely, and added a few lines to Twilight's confrontation with Discord to reflect it. Tell me what you think! I'd have shown how he killed her, but I couldn't do it justice without turning it into a Mature Fic.

EDIT: Made a small, but important addition to the part where Apple Pie breaks off Discord's horn to justify it a little better.
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:iconmorion87:
morion87 Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2016
Question: why is it this one chapter has so many endings? 3, or 4, that I know of. Or are they all alternate timelines Eclipse is seeing? Her rant in one says its the latter.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2016  Hobbyist
They're all alternate timelines except Final Cut which was the original timeline 'as it should've been'.
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:iconmolly87:
molly87 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2016
Is it bad I like both versions you have. Discord got off light here, compared to what Purgatory had in mind (which he totally deserves anyway). I think the pantheon here will give Twilight the one rewrite. Now, who knows what's changed. Rest of the series here won't be the same is all I got.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2016  Hobbyist
Not particularly, though Purgatory won't STOP is the big problem.

And yeah, things wil lchange a lot here.
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:iconmorion87:
morion87 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2016
You know, I like both versions of this. Twilight ascending in one, and the timeline rewrite here. Plus, a sane Purgatory. Who knew? (at least, her look and, for a few seconds, her mindset). Question is (because the series loves to be way too obscure), now what? Darkworld fixed (only one timeline lost, but I'd think even the pantheon would give them that).
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2016  Hobbyist
Glad you liked it!

Also, thanks for all the favs!

And as for what happens, hard to tell. In this world there's still Grogar to deal with.
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:iconmorion87:
morion87 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2016
Grogar, then would any other series arcs survive? The whole series is based off of how Darkworld ended, so somethings, I know, wouldn't be here (the Interviewers most likely not, rest, not sure).
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2016  Hobbyist
Keep in mind this ISN'T the universe the Interviewers or Amicitia come from, this is a divergent one.
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:iconmorion87:
morion87 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2016
True. Which is why I'm thinking that alot would be differen't from the, main, universe. Just wondering outloud.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2016  Hobbyist
True.
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:iconyoshiegg64:
yoshiegg64 Featured By Owner Edited Apr 29, 2015
Oh Discord you are lucky you are immune to contradictions or you would have blown 10 tens times over by then. Also loved that Dragon Ball Abridged reference, it truly belong there.

Edit: Opps put this in wrong place.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2015  Hobbyist
Huh?
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:iconardashir:
ardashir Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2013
Just so you know, I still love this story. It was great to see Twilight deal with Discord without running on an endless cycle of vengeance.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2013  Hobbyist
Thanks for the fav!

Thanks, I'm glad you liked it!
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013
(Hello. I am here to tell you that this story is now one hundred percent canon. HEH! HEH! Iteration three. LET THE GAMES BEGIN!!!)
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner May 18, 2013
*The games will end. The madness will stop. The suffering will be over. A better day will come. Twilight has arrived for a Dark World, and the new dawn will shine all the brighter.*
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2012
A reminder that this is still a beautiful, moving story of redemption and hope.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2012  Hobbyist
Thanks. Glad you still like it!
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner May 18, 2013
Too bad Nightmare Eclipse had to bloody go and ruin it.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist
Yeah, I still feel like I've created a monster.
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner May 18, 2013
Alex likes to show there is a flip side to things like these - how noble intentions could be corrupted and how the lowest evil could emerge from the highest good.

In a sense, this is a punch to us readers that wanted to see our heroes make Discord suffer for his crimes - we got EXACTLY what we wanted, in all its horrifying glory. Nightmare Eclipse is in a sense a deconstruction on the ideas of righteousness and retribution in fiction, especially in stories where heroes and villains are well defined. Nightmare Eclipse's obsession with it ultimately makes her an arrogant, narrow-minded deluded, mass-murdering sadistic mad goddess not so different from Discord.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist
That is quite true.
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner May 18, 2013
We all had a fault in this, ultimately.
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:iconamam0t0:
amam0t0 Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2012
okay if you don't mind me saying that the song corruption garden fits twilight tragedy / nightmare purgatory as a theme for this one shot chapter

lyrics found here

http: // kran117. blog127. fc2. com/ blog-entry-69 .html
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2012  Hobbyist
Um, the link doesn't work.
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:iconamam0t0:
amam0t0 Featured By Owner Aug 30, 2012
soory stuck in ff.net mode revised link

[link]
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Aug 30, 2012  Hobbyist
Interesting.
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012
Recommended theme:

[link]
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012  Hobbyist
Hmm, interesting suggestion.
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:iconblade10000:
Blade10000 Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2012
That was beautiful....
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2012  Hobbyist
Thanks!
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2012
This story . . . heh. I've had it on my mind for a while now. It is VERY ironic. And you'll see why.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2012  Hobbyist
I've got my ideas...
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2012
Not quit the reason you think though.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2012  Hobbyist
I have quite a few ideas actually.
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:iconitsfrompeople:
ItsfromPeople Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2012
This is a truly unique way to make a bad future vanish.

We start with the continuation of the glimpses we saw in Applejacks visions. Twilight Tragedy managed to break Discords control over her and is manipulating him very effectively by faking a fight with members of the Apple Family. The very moment a few mortals laugh about him he shows his true colors and decides to go on a killing spree and makes plans to parade the corpses of his victims around his dystopia.

The facts that are told about the world are all rather disturbing: Sweet Apple Acres changes practically every day into something entirely different, the former Elements have been blessed with immortality so they can suffer forever and it is unknown for how long with did go on.

Of course it is Discords fault that Twilight came so far. Since one of the few things that are bigger than his power is his arrogance, he keeps playing games with her. He lets her remember her past, only to erase these memories again, while laughing about it. And one time she managed to write herself a letter before he came back to remove her memories.

And all she had to write herself was that “Friendship is Magic.” The way she confirms this truth is also quite clever, she just asks Liarjack if Tragedy is Magic and since the earth pony predictably lies about it, Twilight knows the truth. Then she is smart enough to write herself letters about each progress she makes until she finally remembers everything.

Another mistake is to allow his mind controlled servant access to powerful and dark magic just so he can laugh about her, when it backfires on her. Since she is immortal this will never kill her and would go on forever.

That this plan includes the sacrifices of Apple Pie and her friends is somewhat unnerving. The old Twilight would have never made such a plan. Living in such a horrible dystopia since an eternity did change her.

Despite knowing the risks she sends reminders of her lesions and Discords cheating to herself at the critical moment. This finally allows the events to play out like in the heart world and Celestia/Luna free Twilight by sending her copies of every lesion she ever achieved.

Meanwhile Discord had killed everyone but Apple Pie and prepares to finish her of. But she manages to show a surprising amount of resistance and frees herself by biting him. Then she actually fights strategically and surprises Discord with her knowledge about Mimic before hitting him right in the face.

Still she would have died immediately after if the change didn’t catch up with Discord and he is unable to teleport himself. Now she actually manages to break his horn of. This in turn lets him show his true self and he brutally murders her.

Finally the changes become more noticeable and his victims vanish into nothing as Discords body slowly turns to stone.

Old Twilight would never allow his sealing to slow down to allow her to have her revenge, again showing that she did change.

Then she visits her friends one after the other.

Liarjack is slowly vanishing and turning back into Applejack. She regrets her lies and blames herself. But Twilight just lets her cry on her shoulder and tells her that she has already forgiven her. Applejacks line “Just don't go lyin' to yourself now.“ is a clear warning to Twilight about not losing herself in revenge.

Fluttercruel is also vanishing and turning back into Fluttershy and Fluttercruel. Before Twilight can do or say anything both of them hug her and give her some final advice. “But don't say we never have to be cruel again” is also a good line, nicely foreshadowing their character development.

Rarigreed is also vanishing and turning back into Rarity. And first thing she does is to throw out “Tom” and his companions. And she also hugs Twilights and laments the loss of her sister. I liked the line “Even if they were gems, I wouldn't!” because it shows that even in this short time of sanity she has realized what is really important and she even turns back into her real colors before fading.

Angry Pie isn’t just vanishing and turning back into Pinkie Pie but has also prepared a party for Twilight. Despite her smiles the Rebirth Party is bittersweet as she knows that this world will end but unlike last time where she fought it with all her might, she embraces it this time because it means the end of Discords rule. And Pinkie Pie actually manages to resist her fading long enough to have one final party with Twilight. We also have a nice bit of foreshadowing “I think I'm going to be throwing a big party! It'll last for three weeks! Then you cut off my coffee and I fall asleep and undergo character development!" that is obvious to all who have read her chapter but Twilight is completely confused. And Twilight messed up the Pinkie Pie Swear. I guess this is the beginning of a wonderful running gag. With one final hug Pinkie actually makes Twilight smile.

Traitor Dash is almost gone as Twilight spent a lot of time with Pinkie Pie and the “traitor” is turning back into Rainbow Dash. Twilight is still able to tell her that she knows that Rainbow Dash remembers the past and forgives her. Finally Rainbow Dash returns to her real colors and vanishes in Twilights hoofs.

Just like the main characters Spike, Ditzy and Dinky are fading away, the family finally reunited. But Twilights condition gets worse and worse her hatred turns her into a Nightmare.

Then Discord reaches the castle and is almost powerless. Twilights boosts into his face how she did it, how she tricked him and she enjoys every moment. Discord for the first time isn’t able to find anything witty to say to her. And since Twilight knows that what she does here will have no consequences on her future she lets the Darkness corrupt her and turns into Nightmare Purgatory, the most vengeful friend!

That is a good choice for a Nightmare of Twilight, devoured by her friendship and the desire to avenge her friends.

First she tortures him, not caring about her own pain or his fear, only stopping before the final strike to hear him beg for his pathetic life. Then Discord ruins her corruption in one single line: "I've taught you well, Twilight…"

She sees that she has the same eyes he does. So instead of killing him she just breaks his other horn and tooth. And to his complete shock she returns back to her old self and tells him that she will never be like him. Instead she does the worst thing somebody could to do a villainous Smug Snake like Discord, she lets go of her hatred and forgives him. After all he saved her unintentionally from her own Darkness. This is his biggest failure so far. And he seems to realize this as he fades away.

In the end she meets the Princesses returning to normal and states her final lesion: That there will always be a light in the darkness and that you don’t have to become a monster to fight one.

I think I also found a few minor mistakes:

“I know Apple Pie and her friends won't be able to hide from them” should be “hide from him” since Discord goes alone.

“If I give up now, Discord win!" should be “If I give up now, Discord wins!”

“Discord's eyes widen, he tries to craw away from me” should be “Discord's eyes widen, he tries to crawl away from me”

But wouldn’t these events cause a time paradox if the bad future needs to happen to send the message back to the present in order to create a better future? Because there would be noone to send the message back from the better future. Or this time travel causes both timelines to split apart, so there is still one bad future left but also a better one. Maybe a certain time travelling pony is willing to help with the prevention of a time paradox.

Overall this is a wonderful tale about the desperate fight against outer and inner demons. Keep up the good work.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2013  Hobbyist
Something I didn't realize at the time I wrote this but did later when it became canon; Twilight comes off as more Ax Crazy here, which probably laid the ground work for Paradox being as insane as she is.
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:iconitsfrompeople:
ItsfromPeople Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2013
It really becomes worse and worse as she sees her new and old friends perish one by one.
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2013  Hobbyist
Exactly. This turned out to make it a pretty good Start of Darkness.
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:iconbrightdark89:
BrightDark89 Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2012  Student General Artist
Is it OK if I use Twilight's confrontation with Discord in my fanfic?
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2012  Hobbyist
Sure, just give me credit, ok?

What's the fic?
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:iconbrightdark89:
BrightDark89 Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2012  Student General Artist
It's for my ponysona's Discorded future. (Even though I was planning on having the confrontation occur in the ancient castle of the royal pony sisters while he observes)
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2012  Hobbyist
Fine by me!
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:iconbrightdark89:
BrightDark89 Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2012  Student General Artist
Here it is: [link]
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:iconkarrinblue:
KarrinBlue Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2012
I;m confused---I get that Twilight used a time travel spell to send messages to past-her, but how did that make the other Elements reharmonized and everyone turn into light?
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2012  Hobbyist
She sent messages to her past self, allowing Twilight to survive long enough to get her friendship letters back and save the world. The rest all happened because she changed the past, meaning Discord never won in the first place.

That help?
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:iconkarrinblue:
KarrinBlue Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2012
Yes, thank you.
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:iconhmorris73:
HMorris73 Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2012
Interesting how Tragedy's thoughts subconsciously prevented Twilight from giving up until Luna's letters could do the rest in this scenario. The "don't assume the worst of your friends" lesson was very appropriate since show Twilight definitely seemed to take that lesson to heart more than Epilogue Twilight (at least until she was pushed past the breaking point).

There were lots of other bits I enjoyed, like Pinkie anticipating "character development", Twilight Tragedy fighting back her Nightmare self and of course the letter at the end. All in all this was a very enjoyable recursive fic. :nod:
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:iconkendell2:
Kendell2 Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2012  Hobbyist
Thanks! I'm glad that part worked out nice!

And thanks, it just felt more Pinkie Pie to have her go out like that. And I'm glad that worked too.

Did the other mane cast member's final moments work out too?
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:iconhmorris73:
HMorris73 Featured By Owner Jan 11, 2012
I think so for the most part, though the Flutters' was a bit confusing with them telling Twilight "don't say we never have to be cruel again" before she even had a chance to speak. Did they just know that she was going to say something like that?
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