The Party Hasn't Ended Concludes Part 1: Pinkie Pie
The next thing Pinkie saw was Twilight Sparkle's face, contorted in absolute horror, gaping at her.
"Pinkie Pie," Twilight whispered, her violet eyes wide and staring. "What
what have you done?"
"What are you talking about, Twilight?" asked Pinkie. She saw that she was in Sugarcube Corner and in front of her was a still-steaming batch of cupcakes fresh out of the oven. "I'm just making cupcakes!"
Twilight's sickened gaze switched from Pinkie to somewhere over her shoulder - and then her mouth slipped open in silent scream at what she saw. Pinkie turned in shock and saw something on one of the work benches the sight was so inexplicable that it took her several heartbeats to realise it was a Pegasus pony, lying on its side.
Dash?" Pinkie whispered. The Pegasus pony was lying on her side and her face wasn't visible, but her unique multi-coloured mane identified her without a doubt. But she wasn't moving! Her unfurled wings lay slack at her sides, and there was no sign of breathing. Pinkie gasped when her eyes at last focused on the terrible thing beside her a carving knife, covered in something red! Was that...? It couldn't
it just couldn't be!
Oh!" Pinkie lifted her fore-hooves to her mouth in shock... and then she noticed they were covered in red stuff as well!
Twilight had slumped to the ground. "Pinkie... how... how could you?" Tears were streaming down the unicorn pony's face. "Why did you... Rainbow Dash? You... chopped her to pieces!"
"But I was just..." Pinkie shook her head. This wasn't happening! "...I was just making cupcakes!" she sobbed. A nightmare. It must be! A terrible, horrible nightmare! Pinkie squeezed her eyes shut, but when she opened them Twilight was still there, crying and shaking in horror... and her hooves were still covered, covered in Dash's....!
"You made Dash... into cupcakes?" Twilight whispered. "Why Pinkie? Why?"
Pinkie's mouth opened, but what she was about to say she never found out for she suddenly heard a voice, a voice that came to her as if floating across time and space from somewhere far away, a voice she immediately recognised and loved more than any other in the world. It said seven simple words to her, and by the end of them all her memories came flooding back at once.
Pinkie's mouth no longer gaped open in horror but curled itself into a wide crescent smile. She laughed hugely. "Oh, Twilight, you silly billy! What are you talking about?" Pinkie lifted her hooves to her mouth and started to lick the red stuff off them.
Twilight's muzzle wrinkled in disgust. "Pinkie
what are you doing? Have you gone insane?"
"This isn't blood, Twilight!" Pinkie chuckled. "It's raspberry jam! And these are just normal sweet and tasty cupcakes!" She rolled out her tongue and gobbled one up. "Mmmm! Raspberry jam filling!"
There was a sudden explosion of boisterous, boyish laughter as Rainbow Dash leaped off the work bench. She was trying to wipe the raspberry jam that covered her stomach off but was only succeeding in smearing it everywhere, and soon she gave up and double over in laughter. "Aw man, I didn't think it would be this sticky!" she chuckled.
Pinkie had a hoof to her mouth to try and stop her own giggles from escaping, but to no avail. "Oh Twilight! You should have seen your face!" Pinkie giggled. "You thought I'd gone crazy and chopped Dash up and turned her into cupcakes!"
Twilight's gaze switched from Pinkie to Dash and then back to Pinkie again, and then her face suddenly twisted in a mixture of confusion and rage.
Dash trotted over to Pinkie and stood next to her. "Uh oh Pinkie!" She nudged the little pink pony in the side with an elbow. "Twilight looks pretty angry! I think we may just have taken this prank a little
Twilight was covering her face with her fore-hooves. At first she seemed to be crying but then she lifted her hooves away and Dash and Pinkie saw that her violet eyes had been replaced with ones that glowed a sickly green.
Nightmare-Twilight screeched in rage and threw herself bodily at Pinkie, but Dash, wings unfurled to their full size and fluttering aggressively, jumped between them.
"Tricky tricky, Black Snooty!" chuckled Pinkie Pie from behind her friend. "But if you're going to scare me with a nightmare, at least create one that makes sense! Why in Equestria would I chop Dashie into cupcakes? I love her!"
"Yeah Nightmare!" scowled Dash, pawing the ground with her fore-hooves. "You'd best pack your bags and get outa here! There's not enough room for you and me in Pinkie's heart!"
Twilight dissolved back into the dark form of Nightmare, his strident voice echoing throughout the bakery. "THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING, PINKIE PIE! SOON YOU'LL SUCCUMB TO DESPAIR AND YOUR HEART WILL BE MINE FOR THE TAKING! AND THEN..."
"You know what this calls for?" laughed Pinkie. She hopped back over to the bench and grabbing a cupcake in each fore-hoof she threw them at Nightmare. "A FOOD FIGHT!" The cupcakes exploded on impact, vanilla frosting and raspberry jam coating the black shadow who stumbled back in confusion.
"Oh yeah! You're on, Pinkie!" yelled Dash. "Hundred points if you can hit him in his mean black muzzle!" She leapt behind another bench and with her wings swept all the desserts that had been resting there at the floundering Nightmare who was trying to scrape the jam and frosting from his eyes. A veritable squadron of cream cakes and éclairs sailed through the air and slammed forcefully into the shadow, and they splattered him with huge streams of cream and melting chocolate.
Nightmare roared in anger and frustration, the sound of his scream making Pinkie and Dash clutch their ears in pain. And then he melted away into a tempest of darkness which coursed and seethed throughout Sugarcube Corner, reverting all that it touched into shadow: the benches, the walls, the ceiling - and then finally the dream of Dash still laughing at Pinkie's side, until it poured all over Pinkie herself. She cried out as total darkness fell over her eyes again and her memories dissolved and fled away.
"Hurry Pinkie Pie! Hurry!" Nurse Mercy was yelling as Pinkie and her galloped towards the infirmary tent in Ponyville Park. "I... I'm afraid there's been an... an accident," She turned to Pinkie, her face haggard and her voice almost breaking. "I'm afraid that... that Rainbow Dash-"
"What's... what's happened to Dashie?" Pinkie whispered. Her entire body felt chilled to its core, as if she'd fallen into the lake during the depths of winter. She had never in her life seen Mercy's professional demeanour so shaken. Something super terrible must have...
"It... it happened while she was flying through a violent electrical storm..." Mercy explained, her voice heavy with pain. "She... she was struck by lightning and... she fell from a very great height..."
They had arrived at the infirmary tent now, and Mercy, without delay, pushed the flap open and led Pinkie inside. The inside of the tent was in total darkness except for a single flickering fluorescent light that hung over a lone bed shrouded by a curtain in its centre.
Pinkie closed her eyes. This couldn't be happening! Her hooves refused to take her any closer and she stopped dead, but Mercy placed a hoof on her shoulder and forced her to continue. Behind the curtain somepony was stirring, moaning in dull agony.
"Oh Pinkie... I'm so, so sorry!" Mercy's voice was barely more than a whisper. "Dash... she's still alive, but... please. Please don't be shocked when you see her," Tears glistened at the corner of Mercy's eyes. "She needs you to be strong for her. She... doesn't look like the Dash you remember." Mercy's hoof trembled she moved forward to pull aside the curtain.
But then Pinkie heard the voice again that voice she had heard before, a voice she immediately recognised and loved more than any other in the world. And it said seven simple words to her, and by the end of them Pinkie was smiling in joy.
"Oh Nurse Mercy!" She put a fore-hoof up and stopped the nurse from moving the curtain aside. "I'm afraid you've made a silly mistake. Dash is fine! Look!" She nodded back towards the tent flap, where a rainbow-maned Pegasus pony was pushing her way inside.
"Hey Pinkie, hey Nurse Mercy!" Dash greeted them cheerfully. She was wearing her saddlebags at her sides and in her mouth was a tangle of strings connected to a big bunch of green and purple balloons that floated above her head. "How's the little patient?"
Nurse Mercy's mouth gaped open in shock and confusion. "What... how are you over there? I thought..." She turned back to the curtain, and further agonised moaning came from behind it.
"Oh Nurse Mercy, I think you must be just a little teeny bit confused!" laughed Pinkie. "It's Spike who's sick! The naughty little dwaggie ate too many baked bads and gave himself a tummy ache, so we're here to cheer him up!" She went to Dash's side and took a hoof-full of party poppers out of one of her saddlebags. "And what's better at cheering a pony up than a party?!" she cried.
"You got that right, Pinkie Pie!" laughed Dash, who passed the balloons to the still perplexed Mercy.
Suddenly the curtain was pulled aside from within and Spike appeared, his green face a mixture of anger and nausea. "Aw, could you guys keep it down?" he cried in annoyance. "I'm trying to sleep off a baked bad bender in here!"
Nurse Mercy stared at the little purple dragon for several heartbeats as if she had no idea who he was, but then, letting go of the balloons, she turned violently to face Pinkie. The nurse's eyes had turned a sickly green colour and her face was a mask of catastrophic rage.
Mercy hissed and lunged at the little pink pony but Pinkie was ready for her. She pulled all the party poppers at once and with a loud bang a mass of streamers and confetti exploded into the nurse's face and as it fell about her in a multicoloured shower she melted away into a swirl of darkness that rapidly resolved itself into the form of Nightmare.
"Close but no chocolate éclair, Black Snooty!" laughed Pinkie as she popped more streamers and confetti onto the confused shadow. Beside her, Dash was rolling on the floor of the tent in laughter. Spike just shook his head in disbelief and muttering threw the curtain closed with a resounding ring.
"You FOAL!" screamed Nightmare, pulling at the streamers and scratching at the confetti that covered his dark form. "YOU CANNOT ESCAPE! THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING OF YOUR SUFFERING!"
"I'm just getting started too, you big meanie!" growled Pinkie, falling onto all fours and pawing the ground with her fore-hooves. "Give me your best shot!"
Nightmare exploded into a whirlwind of shrieking darkness once more, and once again it spilled over everypony and everything, obliterating all it touched until it flew at Pinkie and enveloped her in shadow and she knew no more.
Pinkie found herself in Sugarcube Corner again. She was sitting in a chair in the centre of the bakery, but when she tried to get up she found she was tied to it with rope.
Nearby, Rainbow Dash was standing at a work bench with her back to her, singing to herself in a strange, monotone voice. "Chortle at the koooooky, snortle at the spoooooky..."
"Dash!" Pinkie cried out. "Let me go Dash!" She struggled to move, but the rope held her tight. "What... what are you... going to do to me, Dash?" The little pink pony's teeth chattered in fear.
Dash had been busy working at someone unseen task, but when Pinkie spoke she stopped singing and turned to look at her. The Pegasus pony's eyes were impossibly wide, and her unfocused pupils darted this way and that as she smiled hugely at Pinkie.
"Oh, hi Pinkie Pie!" said Dash. Then she turned back to her task, and there was the clinking of metal against metal. "Sorry, I'll deal with you in just a sec!" she said over her shoulder.
She'd moved aside now so Pinkie could clearly see that she was standing in front of an open cutlery draw and was sorting through it. "Maybe a spork?" Dash looked back at Pinkie and turned the spork about in front of her eyes with a wink, but then she shrugged and put it next to the other implements on the cutting board she had rejected.
"What.... what are you going to do to me, Dash?" whispered Pinkie, petrified. "Is this a... prank?"
"No pranks, Pinkie Pie!" Dash chuckled. "This is like TOTALLY serious." She resumed her browsing through the cutlery drawer. "An egg-beater? Now that's a little too crazy!" She tossed it aside and turned around to face Pinkie. "Ya see, Pinkie Pie, I have to find something I can use to let that demon out of you, or else you're the one who's going to do something crazy! These bad dreams I've been having! Terrible, terrible nightmares!" Dash clutched her fore-hooves to her head, her eyes squeezed shut in pain. "Celestia must be sending them to me telling me to do her bidding!"
"Stop it, Dash!" sobbed Pinkie. "You're scaring me!"
"You? I'm scaring you?" Dash opened her eyes and they narrowed. "You're the one who's totally crazy, Pinkie Pie! I know what you're going to do... what that demon inside you is planning to do to me!" The Pegasus pony reared up on her hind legs and started to dance, her wings sweeping about her like a ball-gown as she sang:
"Cupcakes! So sweeeeet and taaaasty!
Cupcakes! Don't be so haaaasty!
Rainbow! Dash! Cupcaaaaakes!"
"Cupcakes?" Pinkie struggled. How... how was this all happening? Since when did Dash sing and dance? Everything was so totally wrong!
The song finished, Dash had turned back to the work bench and lifted something Pinkie couldn't see from the cutlery draw. She turned it before her eyes, apparently examining it closely. "Ah yes! Perfect!" Dash whispered. "This'll be totally effective at letting that demon out of you, Pinkie Pie!"
Pinkie struggled desperately. The ropes had loosened a little, but still held fast all she accomplished was to cause the chair to rock back and forth. "Dash!" she cried. "Don't do this to me! Don't you
don't you love me?"
"Of course I do, Pinkie!" Dash sighed. "And that's why this has got to happen
" She had turned around and was advancing on Pinkie now, the implement she had chosen hidden behind her back. She sang softly to herself "Giggle at the ghostie, guffaw at the grossie..."
But suddenly Pinkie heard the voice again that voice she had heard before, a voice she immediately recognised and loved more than any other in the world. And it said seven simple words to her, and by the end of them Pinkie had begun to struggle against the ropes again, but this time with a wide smile on her face.
"Oh Dash! No! No!" Pinkie yelped. "Don't come any closer with that horrible, terrible thing!" She squirmed and kicked her hooves. "You know how ticklish I am!"
"... ticklish?" Dash's expression shifted suddenly from one of insanity to one of confusion, but then she shrugged and smirked darkly. "Whatever, Pinkie Pie. You can be so random sometimes!" She slowly brought the thing she was holding from behind her back and raised it in front of her face.
It was a long, red feather.
"Oh please don't Dash! Oh, oh, oh!" Pinkie squealed louder and louder. "I'm beeeeeegging you! Keep that feather away for meeee!"
Dash's expression straightaway changed. Her eyes lost the stare of insanity that had held, and they now glittered in good-natured humour. The dark smirk had transformed into a playful grin. "Too late, Pinkie Pie!" she laughed, clearing the distance between them in a half-bound, half-glide. "You're going to get the tickling of a life time! So where do you want it
?" She ran the feather across Pinkie's round tummy, and the little pink pony giggled and then gasped as Dash drew it lower. "Or maybe
"No, not my hoofsies!" Pinkie struggles became panicked. "That's the most super tickly part of my whole body!
Dash said nothing, but lifting one of Pinkie's hind hoofs she brought the feather closer
But then she dropped the feather and scrambled backwards with a bitter cry of defeat. She scowled at Pinkie with malice, her rose eyes turning the ghostly green that Pinkie now knew so well.
Pinkie pouted. "Oh Black Snooty, you spoilsport! Couldn't you have waited just a few moments longer?"
Nightmare-Dash was livid with rage. "You intractable, incomprehensible, irritating pony! There's more, so much more, where that came from!"
Pinkie sighed and stifled a huge yawn. "Let's get it over with, then, Black Snooty! Every one of your nightmares is the same." Pinkie rolled her eyes and wrung her hooves in her best rendition of Rarity's theatrical expressions of horror. 'Oh no, Dash had a terrible accident!' 'Oh no, Twilight is evil!' 'Oh no, Pinkie, you went crazy!' 'Oh no, Applejack went crazy!'" Then she broke down into giggles. "Who's going to go crazy next Spike?"
Nightmare screeched in frustration and, reverting to a cloud of darkness, he again surrounded Pinkie in a screaming shadow that stole her memory away.
Each time the nightmare grew more horrible as Nightmare despaired and tried to break Pinkie's spirit. But each time the little pink pony would hear the same words in her ears, coming as if from far away, spoken by a voice she recognised and loved more than anything else in the world.
And the words Rainbow Dash said to her were these: "I love you Pinkie! Please wake up!"
And each time Nightmare's illusions were stripped away as Pinkie remembered that it was all a dream and she wrested control of her heart from him. And each time he despaired and reverted to his form of living shadow, stealing her memories away and drawing her into a new nightmare but each time he grew smaller, his eyes paler, his voice weaker.
At last Pinkie found herself standing on the road that led to Ponyville from the Whitetail Woods. In the sky, the black storm was dissipating away, and what was left was a scene of utter destruction. Even from a distance the devastation was horrific. Pinkie could see Twilight's library, torn out by the roots, now little more than a splintered heap of broken wood. Sugarcube Corner, Carousel Boutique, Fluttershy's treehouse, the homestead at Sweet Apple Acres, and every other building and home in Ponyville everything had been destroyed by the storm and lay in total ruin, angry flames sweeping over the little that was left. And everywhere, everywhere the bodies of ponies lay unmoving on the ground, and among them stumbled the surviving inhabitants of Ponyville, their cries of agonised pain filling the smoke-stained air.
Next to Pinkie Dash had fallen to her knees and was weeping. "Oh Pinkie!" the Pegasus pony sobbed. "We were too late
too late!" She slammed her fore-hooves on the ground. "I saved you, but... but we lost everything and everypony we loved!" She looked up at Pinkie, her rose eyes awash with tears. "Everypony... they're all dead!"
Pinkie choked back her own tears. "Oh Dash, it's
. it's all too horrible to look at!" She covered her eyes with her hooves and so Dash didn't see the huge smile that had broken onto her face behind them.
The little pink pony leaned down and hugged her friend, and as Dash hugged her back the Pegasus pony grew insubstantial, melting away into an inky darkness punctuated by two glowing green eyes and a white slash of a mouth that curved up into a smirking sneer. And then Nightmare enveloped Pinkie, from hoof to ear-tip, shrouding her in shadow
but almost immediately fell away from her, like water slipping off a leaf, and Pinkie stepped back and laughed a bright laugh, full of happiness, that hung in the air like the ringing of a bell.
"It's all over, Black Snooty!" said Pinkie, a beaming smile on her face. "There's no reason for you to lie to me anymore. I remember everything now you can't take it away from me again. I've won!" She cried out in joy. "Dash is alive and she LOVES me!"
"You foal!" Nightmare hissed and reared up before her but he was smaller now, so much smaller that Pinkie was far taller than him now, and his voice had lost all of its resonant strength, although it still retained all of its malice.
Pinkie chuckled at the now almost-comical shadow attempting to threaten her. "You weren't even a very big ghostie, were you Black Snooty?" she said.
Nightmare stepped back
but then the tiny dagger smile reappeared and he snickered. "You
you think you've won? It is I who has won!" His green eyes flickered. "The storm is destroying the real Ponyville as we speak! Even if you do make your way back there, there will be nothing left except what you see before you now!" He waved a melting, shadowy hoof towards the burning village. "This might be an illusion, but what you will find will not be! Look upon my works, Pinkie Pie, and DESPAIR!"
Pinkie giggled. "Despair? Oh Black Snooty, you just made up a word that doesn't exist! Maybe you should be a funny ghostie rather than a scary one!"
Nightmare stumbled back. His green eyes now looked upon Pinkie with an emotion akin to terror. "What... what are you talking about?"
Pinkie looked at the little black shadow with pity in her big blue eyes. "Poor silly, silly little Nightmare
you're not scary anymore, and you're so teeny-tiny now you can't really be called a nightmare can you?" She took a step forward towards him. "But then, Nightmare isn't your real name, is it? And it never was. But you're not Black Snooty either, are you?"
what do you mean?" Nightmare's eyes blinked. "I am Nightmare, the one who lurks at the end of your
Pinkie shook her head. "I know your real name now," she whispered. "You said it when we fought you in Dash's heart!" She looked down into his pale green eyes that were still blinking nervously at her. "'Goodbye loneliness!' that's what you said! And that's your true name Loneliness."
"Loneliness?" repeated the shadow. "What are you
? I am Nightmare! I am what I
"Your name is Loneliness," repeated Pinkie. "You can't hide it anymore it's written all over your heart!"
"My heart!" laughed the shadow but it was a feeble, hissing laugh that dissolved away into the air as soon as it was born. "I have no heart!"
Pinkie was the one who laughed now. "Oh, what a silly thing to say! Everypony has a heart." She started to trot towards the shadow, who retreated from her approach with now undisguised fear.
"What... what are you doing?" cried the shadow. "Stay away from me! Stay away!" But Pinkie was too quick. She had already cleared the distance between them.
"I'm sorry," she whispered as she touched a hoof to the shadow's chest as it struggled in vain to escape from her. "I don't usually go where I'm not invited
but Pinkie Pie has to do some gate-crashing just this once! It's time you remembered everything!" And then Pinkie drew herself into the shadow and the two of them became one.
Pinkie found herself standing in almost utter darkness, and it took an age for her eyes to adapt. There was light in this place, but it came from a scattering of distant stars high above her. They glared down at her, white and fresh and angry, and as she moved forward gingerly she noticed that their light was periodically broken up by patches of darkness that she soon realised were leaves and branches. She was standing on a path in the middle of a forest no, not a path, rather just a place where the forest had thinned naturally and the trees were not so bunched together.
Pinkie shivered. It was so cold here! And all was silent, except for the soft rustling of the trees around her as a gentle but icy breeze slithered through them.
She trotted forwards along a zigzag path and soon she reached a pool of lighter darkness which she realised must be a glade. The frosty white light of the newborn stars overhead rimed the ground and tree trunks with a ghostly glow.
As soon as Pinkie had slipped into the open, she looked up at the sky. The heavens seemed impossibly full of stars far, far more than she had ever seen in the night sky over Ponyville. As she gazed upwards, she noticed now that two of the stars were moving, gliding slowly across the sky a larger star and a smaller one. As they moved they grew brighter and larger, and Pinkie saw now that the larger one was leading the smaller. They seemed to be falling from the sky no, not falling, but floating down to where Pinkie was standing! She was gripped with a sudden overpowering fear, and she galloped out of the glade in panic and leaped into a bank of darkness that she hoped was undergrowth. The scratchiness of the branches and the smell of vegetation told her that she had been right.
She lay still and looked out. The glade was now wholly ablaze with white light. Against it, a tall black figure equine in shape was silhouetted, but when it stepped forward Pinkie realised it was not just a silhouette, but wholly made of darkness and then she noticed a smaller figure of the same shape peeping from behind the larger one. It moved forward suddenly with the skittish movements of a foal, and it looked about itself with a mixture of curiosity and fear.
"Mama? Where are we?" The voice was so soft, a sibilant whisper resembling the rustling of the breeze through the trees, and Pinkie recognised it immediately from the many times she had heard it before.
"This world is... well, it doesn't matter where this is," the taller shadow that was the smaller one's mother replied. Its voice echoed as if it was coming from the depths of space between the stars, deep and cold and yet somehow kindly. And even in such an unearthly and alien voice, Pinkie could clearly recognise a terrible sorrow.
The mother shadow lowered the part of it that Pinkie guessed was its face to touch the same place on the little shadow's body in an invisible kiss. "I...I want you wait here for a while, little one," said the mother shadow. "Just a short while." It lifted its face to the sky. "If... if they ever found you, they would take you away from me. You have to hide here. I won't be long, little one. I promise."
The little shadow rubbed its neck against its mother's. "But mama! I want to go with you!"
"You can't," the mother shadow replied, and the pain in its voice almost broke Pinkie's heart. "They'll find you if you do."
"But mama! I'm so scared!"
"Don't worry, little one," The mother shadow was walking away from the smaller one now. "I'll be back for you soon. You just have to wait a little while, a short little while..."
The mother shadow walked back towards the light, turning back just once to shake its head at the little shadow that had moved to follow it. And then the light swallowed it up, and becoming a shining sphere it rose slowly into the sky, leaving the little shadow alone in the centre of the glade. As the light receded and darkness fell once more, Pinkie saw the two glowing green eyes on the little shadow that had until then been invisible. They were lowered to the ground and glistened wetly, as if full of tears.
"Mama?" The plaintive voice drifted up into the air, hanging there unanswered, and Pinkie watched as the little shadow raised its face up to the heavens and cried one last time: "Maaamaa!"
Then suddenly she was back in the world of the burning Ponyville and Loneliness was staring at her, its green eyes blinking in confusion. But then it hissed and batted at her with its fore-hooves. It seemed so small now, and its green eyes were so disproportionately huge compared to the rest of its shadowy body that any fear Pinkie had once felt towards it was gone forever.
Tears poured from Pinkie eyes as she looked at the little shadow that shivered in front of her. "I... I understand now," she whispered. "Now I know why you're so lonely,"
"So lonely," Loneliness's voice was an echo of an echo now, and against the sound of the burning homes and the cries of mourning from Ponyville it was almost impossible for Pinkie to make it out at all.
The little pink pony sniffed, dabbing at her eyes with a hoof. "Your mom left you here and she never came back, did she? You waited soooo long for her to come back, and she never did."
"Never did," echoed the little shadow with a blink of its green eyes.
"And you got sadder and sadder," continued Pinkie, "until all the sadness tangled up inside you went bad and turned into anger and ate you all up inside."
"Ate me all up inside," the little shadow agreed.
"Oh Loneliness you poor, poor scared little ghostie!" sobbed Pinkie.
"Poor scared little ghostie." Loneliness's huge green eyes looked up at Pinkie, pleading.
Pinkie placed a hoof on top of the little shadow's head. "I'm sorry, Loneliness," she said. "I can't stay and play with you right now." Pinkie wiped the tears from her big blue eyes, and she kneeled down so that she was looking right into Loneliness's green ones. "I have my town and friends to save from a terrible storm that a mean old ghostie created! But I promise that somepony will be here to find you soon."
The little ghost's eyes blinked in panic.
Pinkie shook her head and smiled. "I know your mom never came back, but I bet she really tried to. Something must have happened for her to break her promise. I know she loved you very much." Pinkie's lip quivered. "But I won't break this one 'cause it's a Pinkie promise!" She stood up and crossed herself, tears rolling down her cheeks. "Cross my heart and hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye!"
And then she galloped away towards the burning village of Ponyville, leaving the little black shadow staring after her with its round, green eyes. She stopped once to turn and wave, and when she turned back towards Ponyville the little village was no longer burning. The flickering flames had turned to a rising wave of streamers and balloons, fireworks exploded in the sky overhead, and the sound of crying and lamentation had been replaced by cheering and laughter. It was as if all the villagers were holding a celebration party, a party that sounded like it had been going on forever and one which gave no sign that it would ever come to an end.
TO BE CONCLUDED IN THE PARTY HASN'T ENDED: DASH