Starlight in a Broken Vessel

by the-pieman

Chapter 182

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Chapter 182

Striding into the main part of the library with a Pinkie on each shoulder, like a pair of nordic shoulderpads, and step up to the ‘stage’. There’s several ponies looking at us funny, but most are just giving me odd, cryptic smiles.

“Well, I’ve been convinced that I should sing without any magical aids... I guess you asked for it, last warning though.” One of the Pinkies nudges me in the side in a ‘go on’ gesture. “Alright then...”

“I warned you all!” I yell, sitting on the doorstep outside the library. My singing wasn’t that bad... well, no, it was. It was that bad, and that’s why I normally don’t sing. But still... “I warned you three times! I’m not the one at fault here, you got what you wanted! ...kinda”

I hear the door open, and turn to see who it is. Reflexively, I feel my jaw clench as Twilight steps outside, looking bright and happy. “Hey, Anthony, it’s alright. I can’t dance; we’ve all got something we’re not so good at.”

“Some have more shortcomings than others, whether they realize it or not.” I reply, coldly. “Can’t be helped, they’re just too stupid to realize it.”

“Yeah, like Fluttershy when she’s startled by a light breeze. Though I wouldn’t call it stupid. Paranoid maybe-”

“Way too stupid to realize it. So when were you going to tell me that I was right and that there was a point when you wouldn’t just zap a clone hoping it wasn’t Pinkie? Why do you act so careless-”

“Because any of the clones incapable of sitting still, or too unstable to actually maintain a semblance of realistic proportions-” We both take a moment to shudder of the mental image of the hellspawn one of the clones temporarily turned into, “-then I could safely eliminate any chance of them being either the real Pinkie or even a close enough approximate so as to be a living pony on their own. And... I didn’t actually get rid of them all. Several just sort of... dissolved on their own.”

“My problem was that during our little talk about clone ethics, you seemed like you didn’t give a crap and were trying to justify obliterating clones in general, close approximation to the original or not, implying you wouldn’t even try to think if one of the clones was actually Pinkie. What I heard you say over and over was ‘please understand, I know you don’t see it the same way, but let me kill these things and hope I get this right and don’t murder someone we care about’. That’s what I heard Twilight, and you don’t seem to get that.”

“I’m sorry, Anthony. I’m not very good at explaining while stressed, and I thought I was doing an adequate job.”

I sigh. “As long as you know you fucked up-”

“Well, you’re also really terrible at listening while under pressure. I mean, I explained they aren’t real ponies, and I collected empirical evidence supporting this during the removal process.”

Goddamnit. “So your little science thing covers ethics entirely? Great, then when were you going to tell me about that book on me? Seriously Twilight, not cool at all.”

“Anthony, I was taking notes about you the entire time! It’s not my fault you didn’t pay attention to any of that. You’re just overreacting.”

“I’m overreacting? I’m overreacting to the discovery that someone was specifically explaining how to take me down in a fight so anyone with that book could find me and kill me, whether I was possessed or not!?  You created a physical object that allowed one to murder me! And I’m overreacting because I never thought you would make something like that!?”

“What? I didn’t make something to murder you, it was to help in case anything steals your powers, or takes over your mind! I mean, you spend a great deal of time with Discord, who took the time to turn every one of my friends into the full embodiment of the opposite of their best traits! And that’s when he was winning the bet!”

I seriously consider slapping her across the face again. “And you don’t stop to think why he did it? You were trying to stop him. No, worse. You were trying to lock him up in stone after he just got out after several lifetimes, he was trying to preserve himself by preventing you from retaliating! Name one time Discord directly hurt any of you. Not disappointed you or antagonized you, hurt anyone! Name it!”

Twilight opens her mouth but pauses. “Uh... I got trampled by some altered bunnies that Discord made...”

“And he distinctly told those rabbits to trample you? Even though he was winning, he went out of his way to punish you further?”


“Your problem is you don’t think things through. You never look at the big picture! That book you wrote detailed how to shut me down, that you can’t deny. It offered insight to allow a reader, any reader, to defeat me in combat with no way to win. What if a demon got it and was smart enough to read? I’d be killed with no way of stopping it because it knew exactly how to kill me. Then what? What happens then? You give copies to Celestia, someone who has already attempted to kill me once, and now she’d know how to finish me for good if she felt like it! I trusted you Twilight... but you never mentioned this book to me, so I couldn’t know it would exist, ensuring that anyone with the book would know more about me than I know about myself. You’ve lied to me and betrayed me. I’m sorry, but if this is how you treat people who you want to be friends with, go back to Canterlot with the other self-serving pricks!”

“The book wasn’t finished yet!” Twilight protests.

“Wait, what book?” I turn and see Rainbow Dash and AJ have stepped out of the library. A moment later, Fluttershy, Spike, and Rarity come out.

“A book she wrote about me, detailing my powers, how they worked, and numerous weakpoints. Therefore, in the event someone read it, they’d know exactly how to kill me for good. You know, just in case I become evil, or I’m mind-controlled, or Celestia wants me gone for whatever reason. Celestia, who Twilight clearly would be sharing the findings with before me who it matters most to considering I’m the main subject and the one who’d suffer from the consequences. Finishing the book or not wouldn’t change what could be learned from what’s already there, unless ‘finishing it’ involved destroying it. Twilight Sparkle? Destroying a book? Like that will ever happen! If you’re gonna keep watching me and trying to find out new ways to kill me ‘just in case’, then you can just leave. You don’t care about ethics, you don’t care about me, you don’t think about the feelings of the people you call your friends... You’re just a lying traitor trying to appease your precious Celestia, and I don’t want anything to do with you anymore.”

I walk off, my message sent in words that finally managed to drill their way into her head. As I’m walking away, I hear her start to cry, but otherwise there’s nothing but stunned silence.

I stop to address the onlookers, including Spike and the other Element Bearers, though I don’t turn around to face them. “It wasn’t intentional, I know that, but accident or not, the damage is done and it can’t be overlooked. She didn’t see what she was doing from anyone’s perspective than her own, and that’s what started all this. I’m out of here.”

I continue walking further from the library. You screwed up too many times Twilight. Nothing you can do but realize you did. That’s the way life works. Always been that way, always will. Next Chapter: Chapter 183 Estimated time remaining: 6 Hours, 4 Minutes

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