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My Little Pony: Nightmare Knights #1
Nightmare Knights issue 1 cover A
Issue №: 1
Published: October 10, 2018
Writer: Jeremy Whitley
Artist: Tony Fleecs
Colorist: Heather Breckel
Letterer: Neil Uyetake
Editor: Bobby Curnow
Megan Brown (assists)
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Nightmare Knights #2

My Little Pony: Nightmare Knights #1 is the first issue of IDW Publishing's My Little Pony: Nightmare Knights comic miniseries. In the issue, Princess Luna and Stygian travel to an alternate world and encounter a bizarre and mysterious evil.

Summary

The issue begins in the dream world, where Princess Luna observes and interacts with the dreams of Twilight Sparkle and Apple Bloom. In Stygian's nightmare, Luna witnesses the battle between the Pillars of Old Equestria and the Pony of Shadows that took place in another world in the Legends of Magic Annual 2018 comic, though Luna has no recollection of the event. Luna believes the other inhabitants of Stygian's memories cannot perceive her, but the Pony of Shadows starts addressing her directly.

As in the Legends of Magic Annual, the Pony of Shadows seeks to corrupt Princess Celestia and Luna and force them to become Daybreaker and Nightmare Moon. However, the Luna of his world did not survive his corruption, leaving the Pony of Shadows with only one princess to corrupt. As Celestia is shackled and calls out to Luna for help, the Pony of Shadows goads Luna and Stygian to try and stop him, saying they just need to "look in the mirror."

A short time later in the real world, Stygian leads Luna into a secret part of Canterlot Castle where Star Swirl the Bearded's collection of mirror portals is kept. The mirror that leads into the Pony of Shadows' world is broken with a piece missing, and Stygian reveals he has the last piece needed to reopen it. He warns Luna that if his alternate universe counterpart was able to reach into his dreams, he is much stronger than when Stygian and the Pillars first fought him a thousand moons ago. Nevertheless, Luna is determined to save Celestia from his clutches, even if she is the Celestia of another universe. She places the mirror's missing piece, reopens the portal, and steps through, with Stygian hesitantly following behind.

On the other side of the portal, Luna and Stygian unexpectedly find themselves outside a garish castle, where royal guards test visitors on whether they are good or evil and only allow entry to those who are or were previously evil. Stygian believes he and Luna should leave and come back with help, but Luna is still determined to rescue her alternate universe sister. Stygian and Luna are able to gain entry into the castle by telling the guards about their respective villainous pasts as the Pony of Shadows and Nightmare Moon.

The inside of the castle is a grand casino occupied by dozens of villains, and Stygian believes someone other than the Pony of Shadows is in charge. A pair of Diamond Dogs recognizes Luna and instructs her to take the elevator to the casino's top floor and meet with their "princess". In the casino's top floor office, Luna sees Celestia by the window and races over to her. However, she is too late to recognize an array of magic symbols carved into the floor, and a cage is dropped on her. A cloaked figure steps out of the shadows and commands Celestia—now in the form of Daybreaker—to blast Stygian out of the room.

The cloaked figure reveals herself as Princess Eris, a female draconequus and alternate universe counterpart to Discord, who wields the Staff of Sacanas and has Daybreaker as her personal slave. Eris, the owner of the casino, uses the Staff of Sacanas to drain Luna's magic, planning to auction it off to the highest bidder in three days and allow the power of the princess of the night to be unleashed on an unsuspecting world. All of a sudden, Stygian returns to rescue Luna from captivity, and together they escape Eris' casino and flee back to their own world.

Back in Canterlot Castle, Luna laments her now powerless state and her and Stygian's situation: Eris intends to auction off Luna's magic in three days, and with her casino only allowing entry to villains or former villains, none of Luna and Stygian's hero friends can help. Stygian points out that assembling teams to combat great evil is his specialty, and he and Luna set out to devise a plan.

Quotes

Princess Luna: Good evening, Apple Bloom.
Apple Bloom: Princess Luna? Evening? It's the middle of a— Oh shoot, it's a dream, ain't it?
Stygian: We rescued Luna and Celestia. We stopped you!
Pony of Shadows: Did you? You saved yours, but I'm not picky. Well, I am, that's why I only ended up with one of the sisters. The blue one was too weak to survive.
Princess Luna: To survive what?
Pony of Shadows: Corruption.
Princess Luna: Even if she's from another world, that's my sister he was torturing.
Casino Guard 1: Are you now or have you ever been a villain?
Felix: Oh yes, I am very malicious! I lack empathy for my fellow pony. I once tied a pony's horseshoes togeth—
[WOOONK!]
Felix: —eeeeerrrrrr!
Dragon: Didn't you notice the line got shorter? I just ate the three ponies in front of me!
Casino Guard 2: Go on through, sir.
Princess Luna: I am Nightmare Moon! I defeated my sister, the sun, and plunged Equestria into darkness! I visit nightmares upon innocent foals. I haunt every shadow you fear in the night. I see what you fear, and I will use it to destroy you!
[DING.]
Casino Guard 2: Jeez, lady, leave some drama for the rest of us.
Stygian: That's the first time I've ever seen you like that.
Princess Luna: I don't like doing it.
Stygian: Does it hurt?
Princess Luna: On the contrary. It feels great.
Princess Eris: My name is Princess Eris. I am this world's Lord of Chaos. Perhaps you know my idiot cousin, Discord? A poor and misled creature if ever there was one. Chaos wasn't meant to play pranks and turn rain to chocolate milk. It was meant—to cause destruction.
Princess Eris: There's only one real way to serve chaos. You saw all of those scum below? In three days, I'm going to auction it off to one of them. Imagine all the chaos one of them could do with the power to control the moon! The power to invade a pony's dreams! Ponies in their kingdom will never sleep again.
Stygian: We'll use a trick I learned from Flash Magnus.
Princess Luna: What's that?
Stygian: Do something brave and dumb—and hope it works out.
Stygian: Princess Luna, what is the one good thing I'm known for doing?
Princess Luna: Defeating the Sirens?
Stygian: Close, but not quite. I didn't defeat the Sirens... but I assembled a team that did.
Princess Luna: Stygian, we have work to do.