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    “Does something trouble you, little one?”

    Pinkie’s ears twitched, her eyes fixed on the night stars reflected in the endless lake before her. She wanted to look up to her friend, but instead she stared down at the lake’s surface, lifting her hoof and dipping it into the water, watching as the ripples distorted her reflection.

    “She’ll be okay, right?” she asked, finally, turning up to the princess.

    Princess Luna smiled softly, glancing down at the mare. “Curious. Was it not you who assured her she would be?”

    “’Cause she will!” Pinkie exclaimed immediately. “She’ll be okay!” She paused and once more looked down at the water. “I just…”

    Princess Luna lifted her hoof, and with it did a trail of white smoke rise from the ground. Her horn flashed, and Pinkie saw Rarity reflected in the smoke, as if it were a screen. The unicorn was sitting inside a train carriage, silently looking out the window.

    “She has been damaged,” the princess said sternly. “Her dreams have not been kind to her. They have haunted her.” Her horn flashed and the image on the smoke changed, now reflecting Twilight hugging a mare Pinkie had never seen before. “And they will haunt her still.”

    “Can’t you fix it?” Pinkie asked, finding she did not want to keep looking at the smokescreen.

    “Not all nightmares happen within my realm, little one,” the princess said. “If one does not face one’s fears, they may come true in the end.” She lowered her hoof, allowing the wisps of smoke to disperse and disappear. “But…”

    Pinkie looked up. “But…?”

    “But perhaps you should have faith in her.”

    The princess stood up and turned around. When Pinkie did the same, she was surprised to find a white door in the distance. She followed Princess Luna all the way to the door, and she stood back when the alicorn opened it with her magic.

    “Are we going into her dreams?” Pinkie asked.

    Princess Luna did not reply. She merely stepped through, prompting Pinkie to quickly follow. When she crossed the threshold, the door disappeared and she found herself on the sidewalk of a bustling city.

    “Oh! I know this place!” Pinkie exclaimed, jumping in place. “This is Manehattan! I came here, ’member?!” She looked around and pointed toward a large white building nearby. “That’s the train station!”

    Princess Luna merely smiled. “And a most important train has arrived.”

    Prompted by the statement, Pinkie stared at the train station’s entrance, and her heart jumped when she finally saw Rarity stepping out into the street. What struck Pinkie the most, however, wasn’t the lack of scars, but how happy Rarity looked.

    “What’s she doing?” Pinkie whispered urgently, but received a cryptic smile in reply.

    She turned back to Rarity, watching as the unicorn rushed back into the station and Pinkie’s eyes filled with tears when a giggling Rarity returned in the company of a blindfolded alicorn.

    Princess Twilight Sparkle took several tentative steps forward, looking around and trying to find the source of Rarity’s laughter. Before she could do so, Rarity magicked the blindfold off, and an excited giggle left Pinkie’s lips as Twilight looked at the city before her, mouth hanging open.

    The younger princess rushed toward a nearby cab, and then turned to the giddy unicorn, flagging her down with unrestrained excitement before trotting off into the street, Rarity trotting after her.

    “Yes, little one,” Princess Luna said, “I believe that Rarity will be all right. Perhaps even better than she ever was.”

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    1. A Deer
      Mar 6, '23 at 10:09 pm

      A lot of what life is about is moving forward. We kind of have to until time travel becomes a thing. Rarity faced so much on her journey but is picking herself up. She’s ready to move forward. Pinkie, Rainbow and the others helped her to get to this point. It’s important to have people who got you because we all need some help at times. Rarity has that and it shows here.

      Really liked this chapter being from Pinkie’s POV. I think it sets up the last chapters well by giving us a hint of what’s to come for Rarity. I know there’s a word for that but my brain likes to forget things right when I need to know them – I’ll never be on Jeopardy. But right now I’m curious as to how Rarity breaks the curse. How does her Manehattan dream come true? What will her mindset be like after what she went through?

      Also “foreshadowing” is the word I couldn’t remember. The cogs in my head turn slowly but they turn eventually.

    2. Zanna Zannolin
      Sep 25, '22 at 7:57 pm

      *points* YEAH EXACTLY SHE NEEDS TO FACE HER FEARS (like she did last chapter) OR SHE’LL END UP BECOMING THEM (like she did LAST CHAPTERRRRR) sorry i’m literally obsessed with rarity’s descent into grief-stricken short-lived madness. it is definitely NOT healthy how she and twilight have been throwing themselves into well Everything this last arc and it’s so spicy and fun to watch that come back to bite them. and also it’s very stressful sitting and waiting for the consequences to eventually result in character growth and the two of them someday finding a way to heal.

      i’m simply enamored with relationships that are definitely the slightest bit unhealthy but not out of malice like…you didn’t mean for it to end up here but it HAS and now you have to find the way forward, you have to find a way to be okay and to learn healthy boundaries and TO STOP THROWING YOURSELF INTO DANGER, RARITY okay i’m fine. it is kinda fun watching rarity throw herself into danger, of course. but oh my raritwi heart i miss them. just seeing a little glimpse of a possible happy future (even if it’s not a FUTURE in rarity’s dreams as she doesn’t have the scars…SEMANTICS all my comments are just turning into terrible first drafts of an essay analyzing this fic on god) for a moment or two is enough to make me so sad like :(((( my girls….i miss them.


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