Light Knight.

18 Years Ago.




Spring Light stood atop a parapet of cloud crafted from the huge mass that made up Cloudsdale's foundation. A crude tower-like structure standing little more then a few feet tall, it rose above the back 'yard' of the Light family home. The nine-year old Pegasus filly leaned upon the edge and cried out in mock distress, "Oh, woe is me! I have been forever trapped in this horrific tower by the menacing dragon! Oh, won't some brave Knight come to save me?"

A young blue colt stepped forward from the rear of the house. He wore cardboard boxes from head to hoof in a young foal's approximation of armor. "Um... Never fear, fair damsel! I the brave... Night... um...." He paused, looking down to the clouds, "I don't wanna say it."

Atop her castle, the Princess Spring pouted, "Oh, then no pony shall ever save me, I shall remain here forevermore, trapped!"

Night shook his head, or at least shook it as best he could within the constraints of his box armor. "It's dumb... it's a dumb name."

A large shadow fell across his face, as a figure appeared next to Night. The larger Pegasus casually smashed into him, sending the awkwardly armored pony tumbling to the cloud. "Just shut up and say it, dweeb."

"Diiiii-mond!!" Spring stomped upon her forehooves in frustration, "The Dragon's not supposed to show up until he reaches the castle door! You're ruining my story!"

The light turquoise filly snorted, pounding a hoof down against Night's flailing form, hammering him back down into the cloud. "Ha. That's boring anyway. The fight with the dragon is the fun part. Shame there's no real Knight here to challenge me. Just wannabe runts. Right... Little Night Light?"

Night struggled beneath Diamond's hoof, closing his eyes as tears started to well up. "I'm... I'm... I'm not N-Night Light! I... S-someday... I'll be a real Knight!"

Diamond frowned, looking at her hoof. She ground it down upon the box, pushing Night down until she managed to tear through the box. "No. You. Won't. You're just a stupid, scared little Night Light." She reached down, ripping open the box and tearing the cardboard fragments off of Night Light's form. "And you always will be."

Night cowered upon the cloud, the shattered remains of his box armor around him. As Diamond trotted past he stood slowly, his legs quivering. "I... I won't! Y-you'll see! I... I'll run away! I'll change my name... I won't be Night Light anymore! And... a-and..." He sniffed, only barely holding back his tears from overwhelming him.

Diamond sneered, "And you'll come running back to Mommy like you always do." She laughed as Night at last broke away, the colt running from the yard, tears threatening to burst forth as he desperately strained hold them back. He rushed into the house, slamming the door behind him.

Spring did her best to clumsily glide down next to Diamond, giving her a playful shove. "Well thanks, Di... you ruined my game!" She looked back to the house and frowned, unsure of what to do. "Do ya think you took it a bit too far, Di?"

The older Pegasi looked to the house, silent for a moment before at last letting out a sigh, "Maybe..." She shook her head. "Nah, come on Spring. Let's smash your castle and go do something fun."

Spring stomped a hoof, "Don't smash my castle, I spent all morning building it! I don't wanna have to come back to fix it and... fun? What kinda fun?"

Diamond laughed at how easy her sister was pulled off topic, "Come on then, you'll see." She led Spring off, mischief in her eyes.




Night Light dashed into the house, pushing his way through the door and around the stairs. Still fighting to hold back his tears, he rushed to his room and slammed the door behind him. Trying as hard as he could to stay angry, he looked about his room at the few toys and belongings lying about. In a moment of determination, he began to gather the few things he knew he'd need once he left home and made it to Canterlot.

A sudden knock at the door distracted him from his packing, his mother's voice soon followed, "My little Night Light? Are you okay?"

Night frowned and yelled at the door, his voice breaking, "No. No! I'm not Night Light! I hate that name."

Guiding Light opened the door gently, looking down at her youngest foal and only colt, "Were Diamond and Spring making fun of you again?" She trotted forward, climbing onto Night's bed and motioning for him to sit besides her.

After a moment's hesitation, Night lowered his head and climbed up, laying down upon all fours next to his mother. Guiding's wing unfurled to wrap around him, pulling Night close to hug him against her. And with that, Night suddenly sobbed, his emotions breaking open, "W-why?" He cried, pressing against her, "Why did I have to have such a d-dumb name? I... I hate it."

Guiding nuzzled against Night softly, her snout tickling against Night's ear, "My little..." She smiled, "My Night. It's because you're so special to us. Do you want to know how you got your name?"

Night Light looked up at his mother, eyes still streaming, but after a moment he manged a small nod anyway.

"Your Father is a pony of principles, and he has his duty to the Princess Celestia," She looked up a bit wistfully, but managed to blink away the hint of moisture in her own eyes and smile, "It was important to him to uphold her ideals in all things. And in his children."

"Our first born was named for Celestia's greatest gift, the Sun. When I learned I would be having a second child, we talked, and decided to name her in the tradition of an Earth pony, and so, Mint, after one of the plants grown by the farmers down below. Our third, Diamond, was named after the gems which Unicorn's use their magic to find and cherish. And then, Spring, named for the season heralded across Equestria by us Pegasi."

"We had honored the Princess, and every race of pony. And then, we learned that we would be having a son." She smiled down at Night, his face rapt with attention. Guiding lifted a hoof to boop Night on the nose, "You." He smiled back up at his mother, his tears mostly dried upon his face.

"Our first colt. Your father wanted your name to be special. He petitioned Celestia, asking for her blessing to name you for her second gift, the Night." Guiding snuggled her son closer, nuzzling through his mane. "Your father said Celestia smiled, and then refused. She told him the Night was not her gift, she was merely its custodian. But she thought, and said that your name would instead be to honor the Mare in the Moon."

Night tilted his head, leaning to look up at his mother. "The Mare in the Moon?"

Guiding nodded in response, "Yes. The Princess of the Night, trapped up in the Moon with the evil Nightmare Moon. Princess Celestia said that, as a Night Light, you were a fitting ode to her. A Light for her to look down upon and see, to know that there were ponies that still remembered her. And a Night Light, to shine in the dark, and scare away the monsters, so that ponies wouldn't be afraid to relish her beautiful sky.

Night blinked, shaking his head, "Me? A Night Light? To scare away monsters? But... that's silly, Mom!" He looks down. "A real hero doesn't need a Night Light... a real hero isn't afraid of anything... I... I just... I wanna be somepony else..."

Guiding rose up to pull herself off of the bed. In a simple motion she reached forth her hooves and grabbed Night, hugging him close. "You don't even have your cutie mark yet. The world is open to any possibility, but you'll always be my precious little Night Light." She kissed him upon the top of his head. "Now, I think somepony needs to get to bed." She looked out the window across the sky, "It's already Dusk, the sun's setting down, and you look like you need a rest."

Night nodded slowly, blushing slightly as he sheepishly sank from her grasp, "I... um, alright Mom..." He crawled across his bed and slipped under the covers, "Mom... I love you."

Guiding reached forward to pull up the covers and tucked Night in, kissing him on the snout. "I know you do, Night Light. And I love you too."