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My Fair Luna
Star Swirl the Bearded, Nightmare Night 2011
no_vampires_plz
Fluttershy's cottage is one of the few homes in Ponyville that isn't decked out for Nightmare Night. Twilight hopes that's an encouraging sign for Princess Luna, an indicator that her would-be helper doesn't buy into all this 'Nightmare Moon' nonsense.

"Don't worry, Princess," she says as she leads Luna up the path. "Fluttershy can give you some great pointers. She's delicate and demure, with the sweetest little voice."

Twilight steps up to the door and knocks three times with her forehoof.

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...Oh, no.

Fluttershy has never liked Nightmare Night. Everypony trying to scare each other, and making a lot of noise in the process... well, it's not her idea of fun.

You'd think that living in an undecorated cottage well away from the center of Ponyville, with the lights off, would discourage ponies from coming. But every year, somepony comes knocking on Fluttershy's door. She takes a deep breath and calls out, "GO AWAY! NO CANDY HERE! VISITORS NOT WELCOME ON NIGHTMARE NIGHT!"

...Oops, that was pretty loud, wasn't it?

Princess Luna's expression remains solemn, but the look she gives Twilight is extremely dubious.

"Ah-heh-heh..." Twilight flashes what she hopes is a reassuring smile, then leans close to the door. "Fluttershy, it's me, Twilight..."

Twilight? Well, she wouldn't be too scary, right?

Fluttershy opens the door a crack. That certainly is Twilight's face on the other side, under a rather strange hat. "It is you!"

She eases the door open a bit farther. Has Twilight brought a guest, at this time of night? Well, it's only polite to greet her, too. "Oh, and Nightmare Moon."

Wait a minute...

"Nightmare Moon? Aaaaah!" She screams and slams the door.

Hooooo boy.

"...wait right here," says Twilight to the Princess before charging into the cottage.

Ten seconds, four overturned chairs, and one agitated baby goat later, she returns, pushing a struggling pegasus out the door in front of her.

"Fluttershy? You remember Princess Luna?" You know, the Princess who is very pointedly not Nightmare Moon anymore?

The Princess extends a hoof to Fluttershy.

"CHARMED."

Fluttershy's first response is to flee. Sure, Twilight might not be calling the other pony Nightmare Moon, but she's still big and dark, with a starry mane and moon cutie mark.

She doesn't manage to get very far before Twilight's magic grabs on to her. She tries to resist, but it's really hard to get traction against magical telekinesis that can lift your hooves off the ground. Fluttershy is dragged out and turned to face the Princess. Still held by the magic, she tries to make the best of it. She summons a weak grin and weaker voice. "Likewise."

Maybe it's just some kind of greet-the-ponies event, and they'll let her go now?

"TWILIGHT SPARKLE HAS SPOKEN OF THE SWEETNESS OF THY VOICE. WE ASK THAT THOU TEACHEST US TO SPEAK AS THOU SPEAKEST."

...No, it isn't. Augh.

"...okay.

If Princess Luna is aware of her "teacher"'s nervousness, she doesn't show it.

"SHALL OUR LESSONS BEGIN?"

Whispering now, Fluttershy just repeats, "okay."

"SHALL WE MIMIC THY VOICE?"

"okay."

Fluttershy's voice, for the record, is little more than a squeak. A far cry from Luna's.

"HOW IS THIS?" the Princess asks earnestly, bending close to Fluttershy.

Aha, an opportunity!

"Perfect, lesson over," she says, speeding back into her house...

...or, more accurately, right into the door Twilight just closed in her face. "A little quieter, Princess," the unicorn says to Luna.

The volume hasn't gone down much, but at least she's not shaking the ground with every syllable anymore. "Better!" says Twilight encouragingly. "Right, Fluttershy?"

Yeah, that smarts. But the voice is better, so after a small nervous laugh she can answer "Yes," and do so with truth as well as kindness and panic.

"How... about... now?"

"And... how about now?"

"Yes! Well done!"

By George, I think she's got it!

Fluttershy has, meanwhile, been attempting to stealthily get back inside. Quieter Luna may be, but Fluttershy will be much happier when they're on opposite sides of a door. Possibly several doors.

She's just reaching for the handle of her front door when she is, once again, grabbed by magic. It's the Princess', this time, rather than Twilight's more familiar magic. Fluttershy goes completely limp as she is yanked into Luna's embrace.

"I THANK THEE, DEAR FLUTTERSHY!" Luna cries enthusiastically as she hugs the terrified pegasus. "OUR NORMAL SPEAKING VOICE SHALL SURELY WIN US THE HEARTS OF THY FELLOW VILLAGERS!"

And, just at that moment, up the path comes Pinkie Pie, with a dozen foals trailing behind her. "Fluttershy, you gotta hide us! Nightmare Moon is here and--"

She gasps at the sight of the Princess, and the nearly catatonic Fluttershy in her grip.

"She's stolen Fluttershy's voice so she can't scream when she GOBBLES HER UP!!"

Pinkie runs back down the path, screaming at the top of her lungs. The foals do likewise.

"NAY, CHILDREN! WAIT!" Luna bellows after them, then catches herself. "I mean... 'Nay, children! Wait!'"

But it's too late. The foals are far out of earshot.

...well, crap. Now what?

Fortunately, Twilight always comes up with a backup plan as a matter of course. "Come on, Princess. Time for Plan B..."

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