Last Flowers/No Surprises
"As a well spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well spent brings happy death."
- Leonardo Da Vinci
Dear Princess Celestia,
I have not heard from you in days. I hope you are ok. I'm sure everything is fine. I'm just worried, but you know how worried I can get sometimes. Remember that time I thought I'd be sent back to magic kindergarten for being late on a report? Boy, those were some crazy times!
Everything in Ponyville has been quiet for a while, now. No monsters, natural disasters, parasprite infestations, or any other types of crisis for that matter. I kind of hate admitting it, but I miss all the adventures me and my friends in Ponyville used to have trying to overcome a lot of those things. Those girls and I have been through so much together, and we've learned a lot about friendship. Thank you again for sending me here. You always know best.
I realize you're probably just very busy, but if you have time I'd really like to hear from you again. I miss you and I miss Canterlot. I may have to come visit sometime. Maybe I could visit the palace and see you if you're not so busy, then.
Your faithful student
Celestia wept silently in her chambers as she read what was probably the last letter she'd ever receive from her most promising personal student. She sat there frozen in time in a moment of sadness that seemed to go on without end. Maybe the moment would never end. Maybe she could be sad forever. Maybe time really stopped. Maybe she didn't have to die.
"You were her world, Princess." came the voice a young girl from beside her. Celestia, still locked in her state of sorrow, did not budge.
"Twilight, I mean." the young girl said, "That is who the letter is from, right?"
Tears began streaming down the princesses' face. "Yes." She whispered.
"I think she really loved you. She probably wrote more letters to you than she did her own mother, don't ya think?" she said. Celestia could hear the girl rocking her hips back and forth as she talked. Swaying like a child often does.
"Yes." She whispered.
"She loved you a lot. A lot of other ponies liked you, too." she said as she took a step towards the princess.
Celestia felt a tiny human hand rest itself gently on her shoulder. "See?" the little girl said, "You'll always be in their hearts. That's why you're coming with me when you..." she stopped, "when you..."
Tears poured from Celestia's face as the young girl fell silent. She sobbed aloud, and the girl began to cry with her.
The little girl embraced Celestia from the side as she turned to face her young visitor. The two shared a tight and heartfelt hug.
"Cherish?" Celestia managed to say through her sobbing, "Is there a way Twilight could take my place?"
The young girl loosened her grip on the princess and said sheepishly, "I don't knowww."
Celestia wiped her eyes and kneeled down. Face to face with the ragged and bruised little girl before her she said, "She has the royal blood in her. She will be a princess some day."
Cherish stepped back from Celestia. She hung her head and shuffled her feet without a word.
"Cherish," she said nervously, "Can't that day just be today?"
Cherish continued shuffling. "I can't change stuff." She said without ever making eye contact. "I'm not allowed."
Celestia hung her head and closed her eyes. Up until now the thought had never crossed her mind that she could simply choose a successor capable of keeping the kingdom she worked so hard to maintain a safe place for her subjects.
Cherish looked up at the wall behind the princess. Still making no eye contact she said softly, "All I can do is make sure you're ok when you...have to go." The child sniffled and teared up again.
Celestia knew that not one of the Ungods would be able to help her, especially this one. She knew that if she had to name Twilight as her successor, it was to be done now, and it was to be done only by her.
The princess cupped the little girl's chin in her hoof. With a kind look in her eye she lifted the child's head to meet their gazes. "You may not be allowed to change things, Cherish." She said sweetly, "But I am."
With her horn's magic Celestia opened the southern window of her chambers and flew out into the evening sky. She had decided that is was high time she responded to her faithful student's letters.
As the open sunset cast an orange glow on her pale body and the wind blew the tears from her eyes she knew that the words she would say to Twilight Sparkle now would be the last words anyone would ever hear from her. She knew the that the words she would say to Twilight Sparkle would change both of their worlds, everyone's word, forever.