A/N: This one-shot was inspired by the song "Lullaby for a Princess" by Christina Larson and Ponyphonic. The timeline takes place five years before Princess Celestia meets her future protégé, Twilight Sparkle. The story is told from the perspective of Princess Celestia. Feels abound, so R&R and let me know what you think.

Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters associated with My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, nor the original story.

The Princess' Lament

This was wrong in every sense of the word…and yet, I had to keep a brave face for my loyal subjects. Presiding over the night in itself felt wrong in itself, but even more so because the blame for why I was forced to rests with me. It was my own pride and arrogance that caused this to be…and every last one of these thousand winters has been colder and darker because of it.

While princess of the sun and the day, there is no light or warmth for me…just a cold mockery of a reminder of what I have lost, and the fact that it was my own fault. And yet every day I lower the moon – her moon – and raise the sun, putting on a fake smile and going about the day. As terrible and heartless as it sounds, I am actually glad that the few ponies who knew the truth have long since passed. No longer must I face their judging eyes…their faces a mask of happiness concealing disdain. Now I must only face myself every day. To look into the mirror and see my own face looking back…it sickens me. I do not deserve to look as beautiful as I do. No…instead I deserve to look like the monster I was. After all, a beloved princess does not banish her own beloved sister to the bucking moon for a millennium.

No…that is something a wretched beast does.

It was not so bad the first hundred years or so, but each year after simply caused the guilt to weigh more heavily upon me…and I deserved it. I saw the signs of her unhappiness, but did nothing to stop it. Instead, I was foalishly wrapped up in my own greatness and the love the ponies gave me…so much so that I did not notice just how dark the shadow I cast had become. This shadow of my greatness and pride fell upon my beloved Luna…and I did nothing to alleviate her feelings of inadequacy.

I used the Elements of Harmony to restore harmony to the world and banish Nightmare Moon from it, but justice was not done that day. The blame was my own, but the punishment was wrought upon an innocent soul, crying out for help…for love and adoration.

Tonight as I look upon the moon, I feel regret, guilt, and self-loathing. And so, as I have for the past five centuries, I sing a lullaby to my dearest sister – the pony I love more than life itself – in hopes that somehow…some way…she can hear it. I hope that in some way, it brings her some small amount of solace in the prison I have banished her to for a fault that was not her own doing. What was once a simple way to keep my sanity has become a prayer of sorts to the beloved sister I banished, in hopes that somehow she can hear me…and may one day find it in her pained heart to forgive me for an unforgivable crime. It is a foalish notion in itself to think that I could be forgiven, but I hope for it nonetheless.

Like so many nights before, I look upon the moon again, noticing the foreboding shape of a pony upon its surface…

"Dear Luna,

Long has it been since I have last seen your face – your beautiful smile, and your wonderful shining blue eyes. It has been harder than I could have ever imagined to be without you, and I hope that in some way you can hear me when I say that I am so, so sorry. I ask…no…plead for your forgiveness for my terrible crime. Please…please forgive me for my blindness and my pride. You are loved more than you could ever possibly know, and I ask your forgiveness for not showing it to you sooner. To think that your feelings of loneliness and lack of love were my own doing…it pains me deeply. No pony should ever feel that way, dear sister…least of all you. I hope you can find it within yourself to one day forgive me for the monster I am, but I cannot help but smile now as I realize your imprisonment is drawing to an end. Luna…I love you and miss you so much it hurts…and I anxiously await your return.

May you sleep well, moon princess, bathed in the beautiful moonlight of your night. Goodnight, dear sister…I love you."

As I turn away from the window and let slip a tear, I began thinking of another pony, one I had heard of earlier today. Her name is Twilight Sparkle, and even at birth, I can feel her immense magical power even from the palace.

'Dear sister…the Elements are resonating to set you free. Come home soon.'