Part 5: The Love of Fluttershy: The Transcendent Fantasy (Part 2 of 2)
"Aah, Rarity!" Spike cried. "This isn't what it looks like, this is only a dream!"
"Yeah, you need to go back to bed!" Derpy suggested.
"This is no time for resting!" the restless Rarity replied. "If I didn't have a membership with the Lunar Republic right now, I wouldn't have even been able to return here!"
"You're a member of the Lunar Republic, Rarity?" Fluttershy squealed joyfully. "That's amazing! Now you can join our vividly lucid dream!"
"Fluttershy!" Rarity shouted. "Do you have any idea what you've done?! This is no dream! This is just a very distorted fantasy of chaos! Think about it! If you were all dreaming, how can you all be seeing the same dream at once?! This is too weird to be a part of reality, so the only logical solution is that we're all imagining the same fantasy under a hallucinogenic effect of eating too many cupcakes. You of all ponies should know that Luna, how are they believing such ludicrous tales in your presence?!"
"Sorry, I was tired," said the fatigued Luna as she gave a reasonable excuse.
"Whatever!" Rarity said in a voice as turbulent as a squall. "Anyways, we need to..."
"So...this is all just a fantasy, not a dream?" the ever-confused Fluttershy asked.
"So I didn't forget to wake up today!" Derpy shouted triumphantly. "Woohoo!"
"That's incredible, Derpy!" Rainbow Dash remarked sarcastically. "It takes a genius to know how to wake up in the morning!"
"You said it!" the orange pegasus added. "I could never figure out how to wake up from a good sleep, it just feels like something that just happens whenever it wants to."
"Right," Rainbow Dash replied.
"Be quiet, all of you!" Rarity demanded. "I am no longer at your mercy, so shut your mouths! I have had enough of you tomboys in this world! You ridiculous characters need to act like the characters you really are, stop what you're doing, and listen to explanatory speech!"
"Wow, so assertive," said the admiring Fluttershy, "you must have something interesting to say, Rarity!"
"Alright," said the reluctant Rainbow Dash as she pulled some question cards out of her mane, "but your logic better be debatable!"
"You know the drill gang," the black pegasus spoke for everyone, "just sit back and let the plot of their story unfold."
"Yeah," the orange pegasus said in concurrence, "we'll learn everything about this problem once it's solved."
"The mighty always make their mistake by flaunting their powers after all." the proverbial Derpy said as they prepared to listen to Rarity's speech.
"Hopefully, this will be the last problem we'll have to deal with in this incoherent mess of nonsense." the hopeful Spike predicted.
"Now that I have gotten your attention," Rarity began, "it's time to reorganize this unsymmetrical mess of a grimdark fantasy that's been brought to use by our "beloved friend" cupcakes. Now that Luna's explained to us all that we've all been doing this under the influence of dope, the least we can do is try to fix this mess, and face the consequences of our actions! …...Fluttershy."
"Uh...yes, Rarity?" Fluttershy whimpered.
"Come over here." Rarity requested in a foreboding manner.
"Oh, I'm so so sorry you got killed Rarity," Fluttershy apologized as she flew over to Rarity fearfully. "I should've known those mysterious clouds outside were dangerous..."
"It's alright Fluttershy," said Rarity in a strangely calm voice, "this has been just as much as my fault as yours."
"Wait...you're not mad at me?" the surprised Fluttershy responded.
"I didn't have to be so rude with you, nor did I have to run amuck like that over my realization." Rarity said as she held out her right arm while giving this unprecedented apology. "I know this disaster has been far more of Pinkie's fault than anypony's, but can you please forgive me?"
"Oh of course!" Fluttershy said as she shook hooves with Rarity without question. "I'm so glad that I'm not entirely to blame for this! Thank you so much, Rarity!"
"Wow, that went far better than expected," Rarity thought to herself. "Even after the way I acted, she still trusts me completely. Maybe she wouldn't have made me incur her wrath if she had seen her own listing in that Death Warrant..."
"What a pure-hearted pony," the pleased Luna thought, "now I know why she asked me not to show anypony else Fluttershy's listing after I told her the truth of what's been going on. She wanted to genuinely apologize to her without hurting her feelings. That is so touching."
"That is so sappy." Rainbow Dash said, dissatisfied by the lack of a climatic end to this drama.
"That is so depressing," said the misinterpreting Derpy, "I thought all the disastrous things that happened in Equestria were my fault! How could everyone lie to me?"
"Don't worry Derpy," Rarity said in a comforting voice, "you don't have to be at fault for anything anymore. Luna will be the one who will take care of everything now."
"Since this isn't a dream, I guess I have no choice," Luna agreed half-heartedly. "Without my sister or an actual government to rule by my side, I'm the only one appropriate for the role of ruling this world..."
"Hold it, you self-appointed autocrat of a candidate!" Rainbow Dash exclaimed as she read those words off one of her debate question cards. "How exactly are you going to clean up the universe in spite of all this damage done to it? You've verified that we're not living in a dream, so what can you do?"
"As the god of death, I could just cast a spell that would send all of the neutral dead residents of Equestria to the inside of the moon," Luna proposed. "Since Celestia's died, chances are she's probably taken all of her Celestial Republic members to the sun with her, so I guess that's the first thing I can do as the new ruler of Equestria. Last time I checked you're all members of the Lunar Republic, right?"
Everyone except for Spike and Derpy replied "yes", and pulled a membership card with a picture of the moon and writing that said "You were here with Luna." out of their pockets.
"Oh, that's what I forgot to do this morning besides fall asleep!" Derpy reckoned. "I forgot to put away my membership card!"
"That's alright Derpy," Luna replied, "as long as I know you're a member, I'll allow you to stay here. That is the sovereign privilege of the members of the Lunar Republic."
"Wait," Spike said in response of Luna's abrupt explanation, "I'm not a member, so that doesn't really help..."
"I'm afraid you'll have to bid any non-members you care for farewell," said the just Luna as she began to cast the spell. "In order to save this world, mortality and consequences of death must be enabled."
"If it's for the sake of restoring balance and order to this messed up world, then I'm fine with it." Rarity concurred. "Poor Sweetie Belle...at least she didn't find out about what happened to me."
"But wait, what's going to happen to me?!" Spike asked as Luna's eyes began to glow bright white. When Luna finished casting the spell...the dark sky opened up, and a gust of gravitational wind started to pull all of the inhabitants of Equestria who were not members of the Lunar Republic into the atmosphere! In vain, Spike covered his head with his arms in dread.
Every pony who wasn't a member, whether they were celebrating their immortality by eating cupcakes made with the flesh of Gilda, Zecora, or any and every other kind of creature who fell victim to Pinkie Pie's treachery, or just celebrating the fact that life was just a dream, was sucked into the sky by the wind. The voices of many bewildered ponies called out with many cries of confusion, but their calls went unheard by all except for the sky...and the ruler of irony.
"Goodbye, everyone!" Derpy called out as the sky began to close and the wind stopped. "Thank you for the company!"
"Hey, I didn't get sucked in!" Spike said as he was relieved to see he was still on the ground.
"Of course not!" Luna said. "I only said the dead citizens, and you're still alive, remember?"
"Oh yeah!" Spike replied upon remembering that forgettable bit of information. "Wait...could that mean...?"
"Heh heh, the moon is only home for the dead, so even I technically died during my struggle with my sister long ago," Luna reminisced as she gave Spike a smile. "Congratulations Spike, you're the only one in this entire fantasy tale of death, sorrow, and unimaginable confusion who was completely unscathed throughout the experience."
"What about that bunny of Fluttershy's or any of the animals that I saw around her house?" Spike asked.
"While I brought them back straight away, Pinkie...kinda needed some animal skin for her cupcakes," said Fluttershy as she held out her phoenix feather while rubbing the back of her head with her right arm, "sorry. Stupid me."
"Just me? Wow..." Spike said as his face lit up. "I guess I really am as strong and lucky as I thought."
"That's modest compared to what my reaction would've been," said the envious Rainbow Dash, "who is he?"
"You're as courageous and resilient as a knight in armor," said Luna to the dragon who had prevailed through this world which was now occupied by ghosts and goblins. "Can you please just do us one favor though, so there can be a happy end to this tale?"
"Anything for a great princess like you," replied Spike.
"Don't forget about me..." Rarity said in a slightly irritated tone.
"That cupcake recipe book was from Twilight's library, correct?" Luna asked. "Why don't you go there and see if there's another copy of it so we can see if there's anything more we can learn about those vile distortions of childhood innocence?"
"Sure thing!" the good-willed Spike replied as he breathed magic fire on himself, and teleported himself to Twilight's library.
"Okay everyone, well it seems that there's nothing really left to- alright," the awkward and dizzy Luna interrupted herself, "let's go survey the town now to see the result of all our hard work!"
Everyone stood still in silence with confused looks on their faces.
"Can't we just stand here and wait for Spike to come back first?" the attention-loving Rarity suggested, still a little annoyed that Spike paid little to no attention after his heroic victory.
"Yeah, we shouldn't be rude like that..." the considerate Fluttershy agreed.
"Don't worry Fluttershy, the others will accompany him if he comes back beforehand," the bipolar Luna replied as she got on the cloud she had used to come to the surface with. "I just want to say a few things to you two in private. After all, you are my heroes."
"Wait, what?" the perplexed Rainbow Dash said as Rarity and Fluttershy looked at the now inexplicably carefree goddess with equal surprise.
"Come on, hop on to my cloud," Luna said as she offered to let the two ride with her. "There is still much to be seen under this dark sky."
"Well...I can't ignore such good manners like that..." Rarity said as she sat on the cloud behind Luna.
"Me neither, I guess..." Fluttershy said in her shy voice as she sat to the left of Rarity.
"Huzzah! The fun has been tripled!" Luna said in an entirely innocent manner as the cloud zoomed away.
"Woah!" Fluttershy exclaimed as she and Rarity both clutched onto Luna to keep themselves from falling off.
"If you're not going to let us travel in an orderly manner," the frustrated Rarity said, "can you at least have some courtesy for our safety?!"
"I don't see why you're so worried about being safe," replied Luna as she brought the cloud down to a very low speed, "especially after everything you two have gone through, but we can stop now. Take a look at what Equestria is right now."
Rarity and Flutttershy looked down upon Equestria, and gasped at the frightening state of it. There were many destroyed cars, debris from destroyed buildings, and blood splattered all over the ground from some of Twilight's immortal subjects killing each other.
"This is what you saved the world from," Luna informed as many of the obfuscated villagers who were panicking over the sudden appearance of the tornado that whisked so many ponies away looked up at the cloud wondering what was going on. "The reason I'm so mellow at the moment is because this nightmare is nearing an end, and the god of death Princess Luna can dominate this world with her hooves of righteousness!"
"But wait, how are we heroes because of that?" Rarity objected.
"Yeah, didn't I help create this problem?" Fluttershy pointed out.
"Exactly!" the dizzy Luna replied cheerfully, unable to think everything through. "But now I can fix everything because Rarity told me about all this! And Fluttershy, you're even better! If you hadn't gotten Rarity killed or not helped create all this mess, there would be nothing for me to repair, and I would've never realized the joy of being a hero myself! For that, you are the hero of the entire Lunar Republic!"
"Wow, I never thought about it that way!" Fluttershy replied, feeling great about herself as the distortion of the truth began to grow even deeper if that was possible. "I guess there is something awesome about me after all!"
"Oh, beloved members of the Lunar Republic!" the high and mighty Luna proclaimed in a deep voice across the puzzled ponies of the land. "You no longer have to be as confused as a clumsy prince tripping over himself! The antagonists of your lives have been shown great justice through their stoning! The divine heroes of the heavens stand victorious as they are ensconced to the highest places imaginable! We can prevail over this dark sky without a golden sun to shine in its midst, because this is far from our final fantasy!"
"I still fail to fully understand what's happening." Rarity said lacking comprehension of Luna's shallow perspectives.
"Oh, I love you two so much!" the loving soul Fluttershy declared. "You're some of the greatest heroes and friends I'll ever know! That's definitely worth a hug!"
Fluttershy gave her two friends a long and well-deserved hug.
"I won!" the admirable hero Fluttershy said as her epic journey with Rarity had finally come to (at least in her contemporary point of view) a satisfying conclusion.
Meanwhile, there were still loose ends to be tied up...
"What am I doing wrong?" the fame-loving hero Rainbow Dash asked herself as she flew around pacing. "I'm just as much of a hero as those two, and I have the right attitude, and she just left me here?! She better be thanking her lucky stars that I'm loyal, or I would've gone after them immediately!"
"Don't worry Dash, you made the right decision," said the moral Derpy. "Like you used to tell me, always just sit here and do nothing!"
"Brilliant philosophy, Derpy," the black pegasus agreed wisely. "You know what they say, if you have a minor role in someone else's plot, always just sit back and watch it unravel!"
"It's a secret that helps you stay out of trouble," the orange pegasus said as he scooped up Rarity's ashes that were still lying on the ground into his hooves. "It's too bad so many don't know it."
"A lesson well learned!" Derpy said, knowing how to keep a secret now.
"Well, I guess there goes our plushie collection," the orange pegasus said, disheartened that the Dark Sky could no longer complete that goal because of Rarity's untimely death. "I was really looking forward to that tea party."
"What are you looking at?" said Rainbow Dash as she glared at Pinkie's eyes. "Are you trying to make fun of me? I don't know where you are right now, but keep those eyes shut!"
"She's in reality right now for whatever reason," the black pegasus reminded her, "but I guess in this fantasy, she's on the moon since she died."
"I actually like the look in her eyes," said the meme-loving orange pegasus as he walked over to Pinkie's body while holding Rarity's ashes. "they convey a pretty nostalgic and mystifying message. I think that's worth a little gift."
The orange pegasus dropped the fire-charred ashes on Pinkie's chest, as a cloud of smoke recoiled and began hovering over the pink pony and the circle of stone statues.
"Ugh, where is Spike?" Rainbow Dash said as frustrated as a chicken who had just received a parking ticket. "He better not have ditched us to go celebrate his "heroic victory"."
Soon, Spike reappeared in front of the pegasi with the breath of his magic fire. He was holding a huge book entitled "Cupcakes: The 100% Clean Do-it-Yourself Guide!" under his left shoulder.
"I...uh...found a copy of the cupcakes recipe book at Twilight's library..." Spike said with a wide grin. "It's definitely the one Pinkie got her inspiration from..."
"Oh hello Spike, I was just teaching myself something." Derpy said truthfully, as she had been busy learning how to teach herself something while Spike was gone.
"Same here..." Spike replied as he looked over at the others trying to contain his laughter.
"What's so funny?" the insecure Rainbow Dash asked, worrying that Spike was laughing at her. "It better not be be, because every pony knows that there's nothing funny about me!"
"It's not you Dash," Spike assured as he held out the book, "it's this book! It's hilarious!"
"Is it an educational book?" Derpy asked, having a mind that desired humorous knowledge.
"It's the greatest thing ever written!" Spike proclaimed. "Come and see!"
The others flew over to Spike and looked at the book out of curiosity. They were all quite surprised and humored by what they read in the book. Only the first few pages described how to make the cupcakes Pinkie was talking about, the health risks of eating them, and how to prepare the antidote. The page after the cooking instructions merely said the following phrases:
"Any one who eats of these cupcakes will live their most unrealistic fantasy imaginable."
"The fantasy will last for a week's time, or however long you wish to live it by consistent consumption of cupcakes."
"Any one whose unimaginable fantasy comes true will know true death."
"Dark skies are near, please use your imagination carefully and heal your mind when needed."
Below those phrases was a picture of a rainbow with the word "IMAGINATION" written under it. But what truly gathered everyone's attention was what was written on the pages after that. The rest of the book was filled with short stories each about ten pages long, short grim and dark horror tales about cupcakes and rainbows apparently written by the book's previous owners. However, Spike and the others were predictably not scared by the stories, and started to laugh.
"Ha ha ha, like there's any way that could ever happen!" Ghost Rainbow Dash said as she gawked at how diverse the stories in the book were from her real-life situations.
"What is this, a children's book?" the black pegasus taunted derisively as he thought the stories about distorting child fantasies were intended for young fillies.
"This is fantastic!" Derpy said being appreciative of fantasy in literature. "I wish I could be just like the heroes in these stories."
"It's almost like a fantasy within a fantasy..." the orange pegasus said, still believing that everything they were experiencing at the moment was a fantasy.
"I told you it was hilarious!" Spike proclaimed as happy as an engineer who learned that his grandson had just passed his midterms. "Celestia would've found this a lot more entertaining than that cideo she made me take!"
"Alright, I think we've seen enough here." Rainbow Dash said in a foreshadowing manner.
"Where's Luna, Rarity, and Fluttershy?" Spike asked in his lack of preclusion. "I thought Luna was waiting for me, did I just take too long?"
"Let's just leave it like that, kid," Rainbow Dash said as she remembered Luna's discourteous decision. "Come on, let's go find her now. She can't just leave us here waiting forever."
"I guess the only information I have to tell her is that there's no need for the cure because this fantasy will only last a week as long as we don't eat any more of those cupcakes," said Spike in reminiscence of what he read in the book.
"In that case, I think we can finally wrap up this silliness." the black pegasus said as he gave his final verse in this confusing fantasy.
"..." the gray pegasus said as he said nothing silently.
"I guess that's the end of our song." the orange pegasus said as he looked back at the remnants of this memorably weird fantasy's antagonists one more time before flying into the night sky with Rainbow Dash and his other fellow pegasi.
"Wait, where is every pony going?" Spike asked as the pegasi disappeared into the sky without warning. "I can't teleport if I don't know where Luna is..."
"That's alright Spike, I'll just help you fly with us," said the good-natured Derpy as she grabbed Spike without warning and flew into the night sky. "With my dual-angled vision, we should be able to catch up with them and find Luna. Flying's easiest when you're really high up in the sky!"
"Wait, nnnnnooooo!" Spike yelled as they ascended higher in the world like stars ascending into a dark sky.
As they left, unbeknown to them, Pinkie Pie's body turned to stone as the Dark Sky ascended higher in the world.
THE ENDING OF THE FANTASY
One week later, cries similar to Spike's could be heard around the world... The heroes descended themselves to the plane of their friends dark realities, as Fluttershy could be seen kneeling down outside her house and crying where her friends laid. The dark reality was that their bodies were dead at the end of this quest, but their consciences were not asleep.
Although the curse of the dark sky has finally been lifted, Fluttershy and her friends could not save themselves from the mental scars inflicted upon their hearts. Fluttershy and her allies' only hope now is that no one shall ever make an ascension to a dark sky ever again, and that no grim reality such as this will ever be created from a dark distortion of a fantasy.
The Final Enigmatic Words from the Cloud Dragon of the Mist
You've done it...You have done it! Do you not know what you have done? You have defeated the dark sky, and you have proven that you have a strong mind! You were able to last through this grim, dark, and unorthodox fantasy of confusion, for you were not deceived!
You did not fail, for you know the difference between fantasy and reality. You know that no matter where you run or hide, there will always be a dark sky that will try to distort you, and lead you to confuse a dark fantasy with reality. You know that your imagination is a powerful thing however, and that it can only create two kinds of dark rainbow fantasies.
One that distorts by ascending into the dark sky of your mind, confounding your sense of reality, and causing you to finally descend into a realm of discord. The other is one that merely inspires you to create something out of that darkness, and attempt to use your imagination to show them a fantasy that will inspire others to ascend to a realm of peace.
Never show fear to a distorted fantasy, as fear will allow you to become distorted in reality. Remember to always show courage in both reality and fantasy and always be ready to die, for even if you are destroyed, your spirit will always be strong.
You are now the king of the clouds! Thank you hero, you can now bring light across this sky! So long, and have a good night!