At the edge of Ponyville lies the Everfree Forest, cradled to it's side is a beautiful stretch of land called the Shy Heart Animal Reserve. Once in it place was a nice homely cottage which held a shy, unassuming pegasus whose love of animals had this place made so that the creatures of the woods had a place even after she had passed. In the corner of the reserve, hidden away was, to some, to most important place there. A statue of the pegasus that watched over a small fresh grave that read, “Here lies Fluttershy, Element Bearer, and Friend.”
Around the memorial were many animals, crying softly and holding each other as they gazed upon the stone form of the one that loved them like a second mother. From bears to tiny birds all huddled together, remembering the warmth and kindness they were shown by one dedicated soul.
The sound drove them from their mourning as they turned to the one who dared to interrupt them, sorrow turning to anger as many growls raised in their throats only to die when they saw Discord, Lord of Chaos, standing there a bouquet delicate daffodils in his claws. The animals froze in fear, a handful of heartbeats passed as they realized something was off. Discord was standing there, not his usual defiance of gravity the he preferred, the mismatched features of his face lacking their usual impish energy hung low. Tentatively they moved towards him, after all it was him who saved a few creatures that Fluttershy could not (though they knew it was more for her happiness than any act of kindness).
“Hey fellas, can I.......can I get a bit of alone time with her?” he asked in a weary voice.
The animals looked at each other for a moment then all began to file away from the grave, each looking back with a mix of sympathy and concern.
Discord ran his lion's paw over the worked stone of the pegasus, a familiar tightness clutching his heart. “You're really gone aren't you? No more lying together in each others embrace on long and cold nights, no more tender kisses shared, mo more talking and laughing during those tea parties that you obstinately kept even after I moved in, no more.........you.” Tears began to flow as every memory of her passed through his mind and more painfully his heart. He gathered all his memories of her, how she acted, how she talked, how she moved, then he snapped his eagle's talon.
The statue began to move, slowly at first gradually becoming a shadow of a real pegasus. It stretched it's wings and smiled.
“Hello Discord, do you miss me already?” the Fluttershy said in a voice that was like hers but seemingly softer, sadder, as if it was coming from far away.
“More than you know, more than I thought, my Butterfly.” Discord reached out to touch his creation yet pulled back at the last moment. He awkwardly shifted his feet and wrung his hands for a moment. He took the bouquet and presented it to the figure, “Oh, yeah. I brought you flowers, not you/you, uh you/her flowers not her/her more of her gr...grave.”. Sighing he set then at the foot of the grave.
“Those are very nice, you're such a thoughtful Draconequus.”
“You always say that.”
“I always mean it.” the figure paused and let out a little sigh, “You didn't come to my funeral.”
“HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT!?!?” Discord panicked
“I'm created from your memories of me, that would include my death and funeral after all.”
Discord began to softly sob, “It's just....I.......I don't know. Maybe I thought if I didn't go you would not be dead. You would be at home, or out with the animals, not there. Not in the cold ground. Then Thursday came and no tea party.”
“But I'm here now, am I not?”
“Yes...no...I don't even know anymore. You/you are Fluttershy's memory, her shadow. You put on a good act but you are not her.”
Tears began to take shape in stone Fluttershy's eyes. “I'm not real? How can you say such a mean thing? I'm talking to you right now so I must be real!” she cried.
“I'm sorry Flutters, I didn't want to make you cry.”, ha said as he rushed over and hugged her.
“All anyone wants is to be real.”, she sniffed.
Discord started to stroke her mane and felt only hard stone, he felt no warmth from her. Swallowing a lump in his throat he moved away. “Heh. Seems like my magic has gotten away from me again.”
“What do you mean, my Dracutiequis?”
Winching at his pet name he turned to the memorial. “I miss you so much, each day seems like an eternity, and an eternity of eternities is something I don't think I can do. Not even with all my power. I even thought about bringing her back from the dead, to force her to be immortal. But Chaos magic does not work well with the energy of souls. Making her immoral would be worse, after the rest of the gang passed away I realized that if I did grant her eternal youth that she would have to watch everyone she cared for grow old and die. I stayed my hand then, can't really tell you if I would do so again feeling as I do now.”
“Why are you saying she? I am Fluttershy...”, the statue said.
Discord let out a world-weary and heavy sigh, “No, no you are not. You are made of my magic and memories, a simulacrum of Fluttershy. She's........she's gone. I have to accept that as something I have no power over. At least this time I get to say goodbye, even though it feels I am losing you again.”
Raising his eagle talon he looks at the image of his love one more time. “Goodbye, my love, I will miss you.”, with that he snapped his talon and the statue return to it's original form.
Sitting in the grass minutes pass as he tries to control the pain is his heart. “How long have you been the Princess.”, he almost snarls.
“Long enough.” replies a voice on the verge of tears as a purple Alicorn sits beside him. “I'm glad you didn't choose to bring her back, it would have been difficult for me to deal with”
“Deal with!?......DEAL WITH!?!?”, roared Discord inches from Twilight's face, “Is that she would be a problem to 'deal with'? Don't you think I considered bringing her back? That I didn't tear myself apart metaphorically and literally? That when I gave up on the idea it was like I gave up on...” he slunk back down his voice quieting to a whisper, “on her.”
Her jaw set like the stone of the grave they sat before Twilight spoke in barely contained anger. “Do you honestly think I meant as a problem. I would have to see her die again, this time at the end of my own magic.”. Taking a deep breath in she put her hoof to her chest and exhaled as she moved it away. She resumed in a softer voice, “I know it hurts Discord, I felt the same way when my parents, brother, and all the other girls died, when they all left me I....”
“THE OTHER GIRLS DIED!” Discord shouted as he sprung up, a disquieting glimmer in his eyes. “The other elements are dead right?
Twilight raised a concerned eyebrow, “Yes?”
“And now you are their sole keeper, right?”
“Turn me to stone!” he chirped with a happy grin.
There was a pause as Twilight gathered her thoughts. “No.”, she said with a finality.
“WHAT!?!? Why not?, If I was stone I could be here with her forever, not feeling anything, I would let the magic take all of me, no resistance at all. You would be rid of a great danger, I would be free of the pain. Please Twilight, for me, please!”
“You narrow minded, narcissistic, shallow, self absorbed IDIOT!” Twilight replied with a vicious slap across his face. “Give up, that's your plan? Would she give, did she ever give up? When it came down to those she loved those she cared for, she never gave up. Not on her animals, not on the girls, not on me, and not even once on you.”
He paused, unable to reply as Twilight continues her verbal assault of him.
“And what about me? What about my eternity of eternities? What am I to do? What if I wanted a friend all those years? You thick skulled Draconequus, people still care about you, I still care about you.” she finished as she broke down into tears, her sobs wracking her shoulders and trembling her body, robbing her of any royal grace she may have had.
Discord sat there taking everything in, getting up he wrapped his softer lion arm around Twilight, “You're right Twilight, I'm sorry. I guess I'm still not as good as any of you, not as strong nor as kind.”
She leaned into him, her sobs lessening as her body relaxed, “You're better than you give yourself credit for. I was right all those years ago against Tirek, you are a friend.” giving a playful punch to his jaw she smiled, “You just need someone to show you the way here and there.”
Getting up Twilight wiped the tears from her eyes an regained her regal poise. “Take care Discord, us younger immortals have to stick together.”
Grinning slyly he responds, “Come Twily, I'm older than even the Sisters, but flattery on my age will get you no where.”
Returning the smile Twilight starts to leave, stopping briefly to look over her shoulder, “You still don't get it do you? That was the Master of Disharmony, now you are the God of Chaos. You are a new you, and maybe you can continue to grow, much like the love of Fluttershy helped you get this far.”. Taking to her wings she flew off with the practiced grace Discord has become familiar with.
Stepping up to the grave he looks at the inscription, snapping a claw he corrects it. “Farewell, my Butterfly. I will hold your love in my heart always. When the days are long and the nights are cold the memory of you will keep me warm. For everything you have ever given me, patience, understanding, friendship, and ….and love. Thank you, and,” he leans in and kisses the pegasus on the stone lips, “goodbye.”
As he walks away his heart still heavy but the light of love and hope still burning deep inside the last light of the setting sun crosses the grave revealing a new inscription.
Here lies Fluttershy, Element Bearer,
Friend to All
Beloved by Many
Keeper of my Heart