The Stallion Who Waited
So…um…I’m told by my sister that you waited for me.
I’m flattered, and grateful, truly I am.
I had hoped…I had dreamed, while I was, well, up there, that I might get a chance to see you again, to have things back the way they were. I remember those nights we had together. I remember the scandal in the royal court at the time. I also remember telling Celly to tell those nobles to stick their concerns where her light fails to shine.
I also remember your disappointment. That’s what hurts the most. My last memory of you was you being so disappointed in me. Not that I blame you, after the things I said, and the things I did.
I’m frankly surprised you stayed faithful to me at all.
Now, well, here I am, far in the future without you. I always knew eventually our relationship would end – such is the curse of our immortality – but at least I had hoped to spend those years beside you, perhaps surrounded the foals we could have had. Instead, all I have is that horrid memory of our last conversation.
Well, I’m here to say I’m sorry. I know it’s not much now, not after all this time and all I did. Sorry seems so inadequate. It just feels lacking. I wish I could do more, but all I have are memories and words that just don’t seem to do the job. So here I am, sat beside your grave, saying sorry.
Oh, and I love you so so much. I can’t express just how much I love you. If I could have one last moment with you here, holding me and telling me everything would be alright, I’d give anything to have that moment. I just wish I could tell you one last time, the way I never was able to before.
…apologies…I need a moment…
Well, the moon is raised, and Night Court is adjourned for today, so I have nothing else to do tonight, so I’m going to stay here and tell you about this modern world I find myself in. There are so many marvels I’m sure you’d love! You always did have that inventive mind. There’s a unicorn mare you’d get on brilliantly with! And the engineering skill in this age! To say nothing of new music, art, literature…
997 years ago
“It’s been 5 years. 5 years since I had to banish my sister and every night, without fail, you sit here and watch. What is it you’re waiting for?” Celestia asked the unicorn sat atop the hill.
“For her. She’ll be back. The way I remember her. She’ll be back, I just know it.”
“I admire your dedication, and you honour my sister with your loyalty, but this isn’t healthy. I know you were Luna’s favoured steward, and her Special Somepony, but you need to learn to let go, my little pony. With the disbanding of the Night Court, a talented unicorn such as yourself could find any number of jobs. I could even use your help in the Day Palace.”
“I…I could…I could work on some spells I’d been developing. Luna always loved when I made something new to show her. Maybe I’ll have something flashy to show her when she gets back.”
“That sounds perfect. Now, come, my dear. It’s quite chilly tonight.”
“Yes, your Highness.” The unicorn gave a polite bow, and stood to leave with Celestia.
“Oh, and just a friendly hint between you and me – lose the goatee. Nobles around the castle are calling you Beardy.”
“Oh, but Luna always loved it! And besides, who gives a flying feather what those nobles think?”
“Really? Hmm, well, there’s no accounting for taste, I guess. Oh well, leave it then.”
“I intend to, your Highness.”
And so the young unicorn started the process of picking his life up and carrying on once more, enduring the loneliness that he suffered, the memories of the good times they spent together lingering in his mind.
During the day, the unicorn studied hard, learning, practicing, casting spells, writing new ones, and in turn teaching his own young protégés. But every night, despite Celestia’s insistence, he sat atop the lonely hill, and gazed up at the moon, and his beloved Princess.
“One day, I know it. Even if it takes a thousand years. Even if you have to use the stars themselves to pull you out. You will be back.”
“And I’m going to be there when you do.”
The present day
Luna sat beside the grave, having run out of words and thus resigned herself to sobbing. Her misery was interrupted, however, by the sparking of powerful magic energy. It started as a pinprick of light, then expanded rapidly, a growing sphere atop the lonely hill, illuminating the night.
“What in Tartarus…?”
The light suddenly exploded outward, and standing within was a young unicorn. Luna’s eyes went wide at the sight.
“It…it can’t be…you…is it truly you?”
“Luna? My Princess?” The unicorn asked in reply, before galloping over, hugging the stunned mare.
“It is! It truly is you! My Princess, I missed you so much!” He shed tears as he was reunited with his lost love, and Luna responded in kind, before tilting his head to hers for a deep kiss. The kiss was suddenly broken as he pulled back to look Luna up and down appreciatively. Then he remembered a key point about the spell he had cast.
“Uh, Princess, this spell won’t last long.”
“I know, my love. I’m prolonging it with my magic for now, but I dare not continue for more than a few moments. The universe may rip in two.”
“Right. I just wanted to say this, Princess, before I head back to the past. I love you, truly, deeply, and eternally. I will never forget you, and I wish you all the best in your life in the future.”
“I…my love, I had hoped…I love you too! I have never loved another as I have you! I regretted not being able to tell you before I was banished! I have never forgotten you, nor shall I ever!”
The swirl of energy began as the time travel spell began to unravel, pulling the unicorn back.
“Live for me, my love! Don’t sit and wait for me! I shall be well here!”
“You too Princess! I love you!”
“I love you!”
POP – he was gone. Luna sat, gobsmacked…and then she smiled. She stood, and turned to the grave, smiling and nodding.
“You always were full of surprises, love.”
Luna trotted away from the grave. She wouldn’t need to pop by for a while, now, except to water the plants. She had her closure, and she was happy.
Upon the grave were engraved the words
HERE LIES STARSWIRL THE BEARDED – SCHOLAR, STEWARD, EVER FAITHFUL COMPANION
BELOVED BY ALL, BUT MOST OF ALL THE NIGHT ITSELF
REST IN PEACE
Oh, this is really good. The image of poor Starswirl sitting and watching the moon every night, for his entire life, is a powerful one - his complete faith in (and love for) Luna is very, very touching and powerful, and their reunion, though brief, is heartwarming and lovely. I also really like Luna’s letter, in the beginning. Just good stuff, all ‘round.
(My favourite thing, though, is that Starswirl grew his beard just ‘cause he thought Luna would like it. That’s adorable and heartbreaking.)