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    If Rarity had learned anything from her many experiences with painful goodbyes, it was that the faster one could get them over with, the better. 

    While years ago, she might have reveled in the fuss and the excitement and the poetic pang of things coming to an end, now she just wanted to avoid it all. It would be easier this way. No fuss, no hassle, departing at the crack of dawn and leaving behind nothing but a letter. Very efficient, she’d said when pitching it to Twilight. 

    And yet, as she stood over her bed, smoothing nonexistent wrinkles on the sheets, she found that taking the…not the coward’s way out, but the simple way out was harder than expected. 

    The door of her room creaked open, followed in short order by Twilight Sparkle, looking entirely too cheerful and awake considering the unholy hour. 

    “Rarity?” Twilight said, the only one of the two who’d actually slept a wink. “Are you ready?”

    “Yes, yes!” Rarity replied, affecting a cheerful tone as she tore herself away from the bed she’d no longer sleep in, inside the room she’d no longer live in, inside the home— She turned to Twilight, forcefully swishing her tail behind her. “Just making the bed!”

    Twilight raised her eyebrow. “The bed you’ve already made six times in the past fifteen minutes?” As Rarity’s ears dropped, the teasing lilt in Twilight’s voice faded, replaced with sympathy. “Do you want to stay and leave later with the others?”

    Rarity held the notion tight against her heart a moment but forced herself to let it go, shaking her head. 

    “No. No, let’s just… It’s too late to change plans, regardless, and—”

    “Too late?” Twilight interrupted, the playful smile returning. “Too late to cancel our secret early exit that only you and I know is happening?”

    “Oh, don’t tease me, Twilight, I’m already an awful mess,” Rarity chided half-heartedly, Twilight’s giggling chipping away at her aggravation. 

    “Sorry. But I’m just saying, we don’t have to go through with this.”

    Rarity looked away, forcing herself to keep her hooves glued to the ground instead of smoothing a sheet already smoothed to oblivion. “I want to. It’s just…” She sighed. “I didn’t expect this to be so hard, I suppose. I…”

    But that wasn’t right, was it? It wasn’t really that it was hard, moreso that… Well…

    “You…?” Twilight pressed, and Rarity felt embarrassed to answer, but she did regardless. 

    “I didn’t expect any of this to happen so soon.” She smiled wryly. “Frankly, I didn’t expect this to happen at all. I thought I’d be living in Hollow Shades for years trying to free Princess Luna, but here I am not even two years later, already leaving.”

    From the corner of her eyes, she saw Twilight open her mouth to speak, and self-inflicted guilt forced Rarity to continue talking, turning from Twilight’s gaze as she forcefully interrupted her. 

    “And it’s good, of course! It’s wonderful we freed her so fast! And that you’re here, and I know I’m being selfish, and complaining over nothing, I know, but… I was finally settled.” Her throat felt dry. “I was comfortable.”

    “I was comfortable in my library,” Twilight replied, finally drawing Rarity’s gaze towards her, even if it was more of a half-glare than a gaze. 

    “That’s not the same at all!” she said, indignant. 

    “No, it’s not. You’re right,” Twilight conceded. “But this isn’t permanent. Once we free the others, we can always come back here. The Dreamland isn’t going anywhere.”

    Rarity felt the urge to protest but instead remained silent, which, judging by Twilight’s frown, was as if she’d protested anyway. 

    “Rarity,” Twilight said severely, “what happened? Where’s the Rarity that moved from her hometown to a little village in the middle of nowhere far away from her friends, huh?”  

    “She’s too old!” Rarity replied, ignoring Twilight’s trademark Rarity-Please Look. She placed a hoof on her forehead. “Withered away! Too old to upheave her entire life all over again!”

    “Alright, Grandma,” Twilight said, ignoring Rarity’s immediate scandalized gasp. “If that’s the case, then you’ll be happy to know I already put all our luggage outside, so all that’s left is taking your creaky old bones out to join it.”

    Old BONES?” Rarity squawked, following Twilight out into the second-floor hallway. She noticed the raspberry magic of a noise-suppression charm enveloping the two of them as they walked. Grateful for the considerate gesture, Rarity continued yelling. “You’re a THOUSAND years old! How DARE you?”

    A chipper Twilight stopped at the top of the stairs to look back at Rarity. 

    “As a matter of fact,” she continued cheerily, “time displacement put my body in stasis, so for all intents and purposes, my body is still literally that of a twenty-four-year-old. Meanwhile, you are going to turn thirty in a month, so!” Twilight giggled, giving her partner a sultry look. “You like them young, do you, Madame Rarity?”

    Tuh-Twilight!” sputtered poor Rarity, practically tripping over herself as she chased her giggling marefriend down the stairs. “The ONLY cradle robber in this relationship is you! You seduced me!”

    Twilight laughed hard at that, her horn glowing with magic and opening the front door. “I seduced you? With my awkward conversations and repeated destruction of your property?She stopped short of leaving and turned to her partner, eyebrow raised. “Either you’re giving me too much credit, or your standards are very low.”

    Rarity gasped theatrically, stamping her hoof on the floor. “How dare you imply my marefriend is anything but the finest pony to walk this land?” she demanded, doing her best to stifle a giggle of her own as Twilight trotted outside, making a great show of rolling her eyes. “I won’t stand for this!”

    “You’re walking,” Twilight pointed out, closing the front doors as soon as Rarity was out and then grinning broadly at Rarity’s trademark Twilight-Darling-Dearest-Please Look. “Anyway,” she continued. “Mocha Waft said she’d be opening her café early for us, so let’s get going. I don’t want to keep her waiting.”

    It wasn’t until that moment Rarity processed that she was outside the Dreamland. 

    “Get going?!” Rarity exclaimed, startled. She rushed towards the door. “Wait, I’m not even remotely rea—Oof!”

    To her great whining despair, Twilight’s magic grip on her was stronger than her will, moving her away from the door. 

    “You are ready,” Twilight said. “I checked the entire place ten times while you were re-making the bed again and again.”

    “But—! But—!”

    “Rarity.” Again, Twilight affected her gentle but firm tone reserved for Rarity’s many ‘shenanigans’, as she called them. She levitated Rarity over so they were face to face. “No more stalling.”

    “…But I didn’t even get to say goodbye,” Rarity said, the whining laced with real, genuine sincerity as Twilight placed her on the ground. She looked the Dreamland over, ears pressed against her skull. “Leaving like this feel so… so… so blasé.” Her eyes lingered over Incantation’s bedroom window. “What about poor Incantation? Will she be alright?” 

    “I’m sure she will,” Twilight replied, giggling when Rarity again whined theatrically and buried her face in Twilight’s chest. She wrapped a hoof around her marefriend, nuzzling her affectionately. She then moved away from Rarity and gestured over to the suitcases a little ways away. “We’re going to miss our train. Come on.”

    Rarity’s eyes fixed themselves to the Dreamland, a pang in her chest. It really was time to go, wasn’t it? Time to leave, to move on, to allow things to change once again. 

    Well, she thought to herself, steeling her nerves, she’d fought dragons before and survived. Surely, she’d survive this too. 

    “All right… Let’s go before I change my mind,” she conceded, forcing herself to join Twilight near the suitcases. She looked them over a moment, and then levitated a small, purple one. “I shall take this one, then.”

    Twilight blinked. “That one’s mine.”

    “I know that, dear!” she replied, fluttering her eyelashes. “As we embark on this new part of our life, is it not appropriately romantic that I carry your burden?” 

    Twilight tilted her head. “Aw… Rarity… My burden of one single light suitcase,” she said, affection pouring out every word right up until she arched an eyebrow and snark took over. “And I suppose it’s only fair I carry your burden of seven large suitcases, right?”

    “It’s only fair, my love!” Rarity called out as she trotted away. “And romantic!”

    “Romantic.”

    Devastatingly romantic!”       

    Half an hour later found the two mares sipping coffee in to-go cups outside the dimly lit Hollow Shades train station, the many ads on the noticeboard barely readable under the pre-dawn sky. 

    “All the ads are old,” Rarity noted, idly reading through them. “You’d think they’d have gotten rid of them now that the town’s opening again.” She took one down in her magic and read aloud: “‘Seeking Night Celebration! A night like no other!’” She frowned at an illustration. “Hold on, there were piñatas shaped like Discord? I never saw those! I’d have thoroughly enjoyed assaulting one of those with a hammer.” She turned to Twilight with a teasing expression. “Wouldn’t you?”

    To her surprise, Twilight did not return the sentiment. She simply looked away towards the tracks, speaking as if she hadn’t heard Rarity.

    “I think the train is late.”

    She’d probably hoped such an obvious change of topic would have an effect, but it only served to do the opposite. Rarity frowned as she pinned the notice back on the board, her narrowed eyes set on the Discord piñata.

    Hellish, manipulative beast, she thought. 

    She hadn’t forgotten the implications of Twilight refusing to condemn Discord the day before during the town meeting. 

    “Twilight,” she said, casually walking over and cuddling against the alicorn, intertwining their tails, “may I speak my mind on the subject of Discord?”

    Twilight said nothing, her eyes still glued to the train tracks disappearing into the horizon. 

    “Twilight?”

    “I’m debating it,” Twilight finally replied. “I know if I ask you to drop it, you will, but I know I’ll be thinking about it instead for hours, so.” 

    “How about a question, then?” Rarity suggested, changing her approach.

    She knew exactly how she felt about Discord and how she thought Twilight ought to feel about him, but… Well, Twilight was not her, so it might be better to think more like Twilight and do some research instead. 

    “One question,” Twilight allowed. 

    One question. 

    Rarity licked her lips, running the different possibilities over in her head, until she finally settled on one that she hoped would encompass the root of the issue. 

    “Why do you struggle to believe Discord is irredeemable?”

    She felt Twilight immediately stiffen next to her. 

    “I’ve never defended him, Rarity,” she said curtly. 

    “And I never at any point implied such a thing,” Rarity replied, as firm as she could be gentle, “did I?”

    One, two, three seconds passed, and Twilight slumped ever so slightly. 

    “No.”

    “No,” Rarity repeated. “The only thing I asked was why you act as though you believe he can be redeemed. Why do you hesitate to—”

    The sentence ‘call him what he is, which is a vile monster’ clung to her lips. It felt easy to say, because it was true for her, but… 

    “What makes him worthy of any kind of sympathy?” she asked instead. “I know you feel tricking him was…wrong, but why hasn’t everything he’s done since convinced you you have nothing to feel guilty about? Surely any grace that tricking him gave him shouldn’t even matter anymore after everything he’s done?” 

    Twilight didn’t reply, her gaze elsewhere, and Rarity forced herself to let the matter go, having pushed her luck enough as it was. 

    But it was hard!

    It was difficult to let it go, to not conceive how Twilight could even hesitate to utterly and completely vilify him. It was so obvious for Rarity, so easy to do, his dozens of cruel atrocities as plain and eternal as the train tracks stretching out before her. 

    But she knew Twilight was not dumb. She knew Twilight Sparkle had grown, gone through hell in past years, clawing herself out of her worst thoughts and impulses, trying to be better one painful day at a time. The Twilight standing next to her was in no shape or form the same as the alicorn Rarity’d found in a library years ago, so then…

    So then, if this Twilight still had a reason to have a shred of kindness towards Discord, it had to be for a good reason, didn’t it? But what could it even be, because Rarity couldn’t conceive a single reason he deserved nothing but death. 

    “Discord had a chance to steal my crown.”

    Rarity blinked at Twilight, her train of thoughts smashing to a halt. 

    “Excuse me?” 

    The alicorn was still staring at the tracks as she spoke. 

    “Before he found out. We were… Princess Celestia sent me out to deal with something in the West, and he came with me, and it went wrong. Really wrong. Not because of something he did, but—” She cut herself, and then continued, “The point is he ended up with my Element.”

    Rarity frowned. “But the Element didn’t work on its own. Or at all.”

    “I know,” Twilight replied, her tail thumping against the ground like an anxious drum. Thump, thump, thump. “But he didn’t know that then.” 

    “…Ah, right. So, he stole it?” Rarity immediately clarified, pressing further into the matter.

    “No,” Twilight corrected just as fast, wincing ever so slightly. Sounding ever so slightly defensive. “I gave it to him.” 

    This got a start from the unicorn, as well as a gasp. “You gave it to him?”

    Once more, Twilight stiffened against her, and guilt washed over the unicorn. 

    “Not that that’s bad,” she hastily added, even though it was. “I’m sure you had your reasons.”

    “I don’t…” Strain cracked Twilight’s every word. “I don’t want to talk about it, but it was bad, and the only thing that mattered was saving my element. So I gave it to him because he was there, and he…”

    “He realized it had no power?” 

    “No,” Twilight replied, her gaze lowering down to the ground before her. “He could have. He could have left me there, and taken the Element, and realized I’d lied to him. But he saved me instead, and gave me back the crown, even though he thought that was the only thing we had over him.”

    “He gave it back?” Rarity asked, dumbfounded. She was expected to believe that Discord had a chance to destroy the very thing he believed held power over him, and he didn’t? “I don’t believe it. He must have known it was fake. Could he have known?”

    A pause. 

    Until Twilight Sparkle finally looked at Rarity, and with a genuine smile, quietly said, “That was more than one question, Rarity.”

    The train arrived eventually, late but not late enough that the two of them had to sit with their emotions too long. Not that they would have, regardless, because Rarity had meant well, and Twilight knew this, so when she changed the topic by asking if the cold weather was manageable for a senior such as Rarity, the two fell right back into their comfortable teasing dynamic, tacitly agreeing to continue the conversation some other time. 

    But the conversation didn’t end for Twilight. 

    It was just as she’d said, that even if the matter was dropped, it would linger in her mind, and linger it did, all the way into the train, into the cabin, and into the long hours, Rarity asleep next to her while Twilight looked out the window and remembered. 

    Funny, she hadn’t thought about it in so long. 

    She thought about it constantly when in the library, going back to that day over and over and over again, but she’d stopped after being freed. Maybe it was because the novelty of being free left little space for ruminations, or more likely because she knew Rarity was in pain and for as long as she lived, Rarity would always come first. Or maybe it was both, or maybe it was neither, and it was just the fear that she was defending him. 

    But Rarity was fine now, and the novelty of being free had worn off, and now she’d been questioned on why she thought there was a chance of redemption.

    All that was left was Discord.

    And that day. 

    Waking up in that cot, dazed and drugged out of her mind on medicinal herbs, distraught ponies coming in and out trying to alleviate the pain that came with her back leg having been practically snapped in half. She could hear them whispering amongst each other, appalled because a princess had almost died under their watch. 

    And humiliated that it hadn’t been they who saved her, but Him. 

    Him, the great evil, the great demon, the great spirit who breathed only because the Equestrian princesses were kind enough to let him—too kind, they thought. 

    She remembered him lying on a mat on the other side of the cot, meticulously licking his wounded front paw like a cat. Her eyes then trailed the rest of his body, lingering here and there on the actual wounds littered all over, crusty with blood nopony else had offered to help clean. 

    It was silly, but until that moment, she’d never thought a creature such as he could bleed. 

    “How’s the leg, dear princess?”

    She blinked at him, startled that he’d noticed her staring, even if he himself still looked preoccupied by his paw. 

    “It hurts,” she croaked. 

    “I’m not surprised,” he replied, sympathetic. “You did snap it like a twig.”

    She glanced down at the rest of her body, catching sight of the many bandages dotted all over her body. They’d dressed her wounds, she noted, and guilt washed over her. 

    A guilt, however, that was quickly forgotten when her eyes landed on the golden crown clutched against her chest, stained with somepony’s blood. His, she surmised, but she still hoped it was hers. That would be better, easier on her soul. 

    Her Element of Harmony. The Element of Harmony, in fact; the only one that probably existed, which now belonged to her. A dingy, shiny crown she was forced to wear upon her head every day like a curse; ever a reminder of the fraud she was, weighing down her spirit just as much as her forsaken unearned wings. 

    She hated it. 

    She hated it, she hated it, she hated it. She hated that she’d found it, she hated that it didn’t even work, and she hated most of all that it had made her a liar. 

    “Now, now, princess,” his voice came again, soft but firm, his eyes set on hers. “There’s no need to cry. You made it out alive!”

    Just as he said, she realized then that she’d indeed started to cry, tears stinging at her eyes. 

    When she said nothing, he rambled on, affecting a cheery tone. 

    “And if you’re going to cry, at least be bold about it! Cry like you mean it!” 

    He turned towards a potted jar of water on a nearby table, and when he snapped his claw, two big cartoonish eyes and a mouth materialized on it. 

    “Boo-hoo-hoo!” it wept dramatically, comically large droplets of water splashing out from inside it. “Boo-hoo-hooooooo!” 

    “You call that crying?! Put more heart into it!” he commanded, only for his anger to subside and turn into delight when what filled the air but giggles

    Satisfied, with a snap of his claw, the weeping jar wept no more, and Discord turned to the giggling princess with a broad smile. 

    “See?” he said. “Now, that’s crying, princess.”

    For a moment, forgetting her predicament, she opened her mouth to speak, only for her remark to become a strangled cry when she leaned on her leg a bit too much, and agonizing pain shot right through her. 

    Through eyes cloudy with tears, she saw Discord immediately stand up, annoyed. 

    “Incompetent,” he hissed, stalking towards her and throwing the cot’s entrance a dirty look. Once he reached her, his expression softened, and despite her wincing, he placed his wounded paw over her covered leg. “Hold still.”

    He didn’t notice her moment of fear. Or, if he had, he ignored it, instead simply standing there until she felt a pulse of warm magic seep into her body. 

    “Discord?” she stammered, afraid, only just starting to register the sharp pains fading out with each pulse. “What…What are you doing?”

    “Helping you,” he said, unimpressed. “Isn’t it obvious? It won’t do much for long, but it’ll help until they bring more medication for you.”

    “O-Oh,” she said, and she felt guilty again. “Thank you.”

    He didn’t acknowledge her words. He was too busy observing the crown tucked in between Twilight’s forelegs. 

    “All this mess because of one little crown,” he said, and she did not miss the disdain his tone took on at the very last word. He too hated her crown, it seemed, as much or perhaps more than she ever could. 

    She clung to this thought, and still dazed by it all, a word tumbled out of her mouth unbidded.

    “Why—?”

    She cut herself off, almost afraid of asking. Of knowing. 

    “Why, what?” he asked, his eyes glued to the star-shaped gemstone. 

    “The crown,” she croaked, willing strength from who knew where. “Why did you give it back? You…You could have taken it, you—”

    “I could have, yes,” he said, and nothing more. 

    “But why didn’t you?” she pressed, desperate to know so she could—So she could what? Find out if there was goodness in him, and feel even worse about her lies? Or—? Or what? 

    “Why did you give it to me?” he asked instead, still uninterested in meeting her gaze. Eyes on the crown, and only the crown. “I know I said I wouldn’t take it, but why did you? Why should you?” For a split second, his eyes darted towards the outside. “They certainly didn’t think you should have. So, why did you, dear princess? I could have been lying.”

    “Because we’re friends.”

    She had never said it before. Never once dared speak it into truth, even as Discord spent his time around her, and she allowed it. 

    But it was true. Wasn’t it? It was. Wasn’t it? They were friends, they’d become friends, she thought just as she’d thought long into the night, telling herself that they were friends, and friends were kind, and friends forgave, and friends understood why one lied to the other, and—and—and—and—

    “And friends don’t lie,” he finished, so deep in his thoughts he missed the emotion in her eyes, threatening to choke her out. 

    “I could have taken it,” he said. “I could have, and left you to die, but I didn’t.” A humorless smile curved his lips. “If you had been Celestia or Luna, I might have considered it. But… It was you.” 

    Finally, he looked at her, and her uncertainty over whether he was genuine or not when next he spoke would haunt her for centuries to come. 

    “And you, Twilight, are my friend.” 


    isn’t friendship magic?

    If you see any typos, feel free to let me know!

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    16 Comments

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    1. Anonymous Guest
      Jul 13, '24 at 11:02 pm

      I love the writing

    2. Gavier
      Jul 12, '24 at 8:16 am

      I’d say that this complicates things but things were never simple so

    3. Wolfsong
      Jul 2, '24 at 10:30 pm

      I’m very excited to read this new installment now that I’ve refreshed my memory on TEL and TEK! I’m glad you started over if that was the best way to tell the story you truly wanted to tell. I know I, and the rest of your audience, will love it wherever it goes.

    4. Kapuchu
      Jul 1, '24 at 4:51 pm

      This is a very sad chapter, but also a little hopeful I think.
      If Discord really thought of Twilight as a friend, I think there is hope yet that they might reconcile. Perhaps if they get all of the Elements, and make them “work”, they can make a…. do-over? A repeat of the past, but without the lie, and Twilight showing that though she/they now have the power, they were friends once, and could be again, and so does not want to hurt him.

    5. A Deer
      Jul 1, '24 at 6:34 am

      Very kind of Twilight to be considerate of the senor citizens. Rarity’s just looking to settle down for her golden years. I always enjoy the good raritwi banter in these stories.

      The flashback to Discord and Twilight stood out for what it adds to their relationship. It gives more insight to their motivations and actions later on. You can tell Twilight definitely was impacted by the decision to trick Discord. Them becoming friends makes the guilt she has worst.

      I really enjoyed this chapter! It had a nice mix of cute banter and a serious flashback. I liked the way the chapter transitioned from the light heartedness into the heavier part. It was a nice contrast. The way Twilight avoided Rarity’s questions did a nice job of showing her reluctance.

    6. Dimbulb
      Jun 30, '24 at 6:05 am

      Ahhhh I dig the way Twilight and Rares bounce off each other! Their banter is always so amusing. I want more of iiiiiit….

    7. Olden Bronie
      Jun 29, '24 at 8:10 am

      I love the playful and sweet banter between Rarity and Twilight! It’s always something I enjoy reading and makes me smile and laugh out loud quite often.
      I had always suspected that Twilight and Discord had become close but not under such traumatic circumstances. Discord had become her friend and was loyal to her. It’s a small wonder that she felt she deserved being locked away in the library. And it’s easier to understand Discord’s feelings of betrayal and anger when he discovered the lie .
      Not that this excuses his behavior or Twilight’s self-deprecation, but it gives a sense of how they felt.
      Even so, friendships can survive many things. Hopefully they can reconcile.

    8. ShadowLDrago
      Jun 29, '24 at 2:21 am

      So, for SOME reason, I didn’t get an email notification about this. Between this and fanfiction.net, I’m starting to think something screwy’s happening.

      And yet, as she stood over her bed, smoothing nonexistent wrinkles on the sheets, she found that taking the…not the coward’s way out, but the simple way out was harder than expected.

      Simple certainly is a word for it.

      “Frankly, I didn’t expect this to happen at all. I thought I’d be living in Hollow Shades for years trying to free Princess Luna, but here I am not even two years later, already leaving.”

      I’m afraid I don’t see the problem.

      “I was comfortable.”

      Ah. I see.

      “She’s too old!” Rarity replied, ignoring Twilight’s trademark Rarity-Please Look. She placed a hoof on her forehead. “Withered away! Too old to upheave her entire life all over again!”

      Whatever you say, old lady.

      “You like them young, do you, Madame Rarity?”

      In the eternal words of one Mr George Takei, “Oh, my!”

      “It’s only fair, my love!” Rarity called out as she trotted away. “And romantic!”

      I wouldn’t know.

      “I know you feel tricking him was…wrong, but why hasn’t everything he’s done since convinced you you have nothing to feel guilty about? Surely any grace that tricking him gave him shouldn’t even matter anymore after everything he’s done?”

      She may not be the same Twilight from canon, but she’s still full of that juicy Paragony goodness.

      “Discord had a chance to steal my crown.”

      Huh?

      was saving my element.

      Forgot to capitalize the E.

      “He could have. He could have left me there, and taken the Element, and realized I’d lied to him. But he saved me instead, and gave me back the crown, even though he thought that was the only thing we had over him.”

      Which begs the question of why. Discord is certainly not stupid.

      Until Twilight Sparkle finally looked at Rarity, and with a genuine smile, quietly said, “That was more than one question, Rarity.”

      Cute.

      It was silly, but until that moment, she’d never thought a creature such as he could bleed.

      Given he’s able to defy physics just like that, a reasonable assumption.

      She hated it, she hated it, she hated it. She hated that she’d found it, she hated that it didn’t even work, and she hated most of all that it had made her a liar.

      That’s rough, buddy.

      “Because we’re friends.”

      And there it is. Twilight always wants to see the best in others.

      “And friends don’t lie,” he finished, so deep in his thoughts he missed the emotion in her eyes, threatening to choke her out.

      Oh boy…

      “And you, Twilight, are my friend.”

      She’s never gonna forget that, huh?

      1. @ShadowLDragoJul 11, '24 at 3:04 pm

        Did you check whether you are subscribed?

    9. The Lost Messenger
      Jun 28, '24 at 9:25 pm

      I do love how the chapter opened with cute RariTwi antics before pivoting toward an emotional flashback scene involving Twilight and Discord, one that sheds more light onto their shared past. As others have pointed out, it’s the kind of character dynamic that’d be right at home with how Friendship is Magic handled these things.

      “And you, Twilight, are my friend.”

      Ending the chapter and flashback on that line was an emotional punch in the gut. That one line and the flashback as a whole also show why Twilight sees Discord in a way that’s notably different from how Rarity sees him, one that makes me curious to see how they’ll change over the course of the story.

      Anyway, kudos on another brilliant chapter, Mono! I’ll be on the lookout for the next one when it’s ready!

    10. JMP
      Jun 28, '24 at 5:06 pm

      Huh. Didn’t expect Rarity to technically be older by Twilight. Their banter is fun as always, but I really loved Twilight’s memory of Discord. They were friends, and she betrayed him. She lied to him. And she will never stop feeling guilty about that, no matter what he’s done since. I think there’s a part of Twilight that still feels she deserved to be trapped in the library, and that’s why she won’t condemn him. She wants to rescue her fellow Princesses of course but….I think she also wants her friend back. I don’t know how realistic that is, and I doubt she thinks that’s possible but….I think it’s something she’s been wanting for a long time. And no matter how much she loves Rarity, that won’t change.

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