6w, 6dChapter 7 is nearly done4 comments · 209 views
14 comments · 404 views
I suppose it's just as well that I never specified the 'later' in my 'later blog post.' For whatever reason, it always ended up more compelling to work on chapter 6 than to polish this old fragment up. Still, 'tis now polished, and some folks may be interested.
To reiterate, this is not what actually happened, but it's basically what might have happened, had he simply been banished back to Earth by the elements, due to his alien nature, and the Princesses had not yet arrived to begin clearing things up. This ending would've originally come just after chapter 5, with Inscape planned as a surprise bonus (except things would have continued to spiral even further out of control, until the ponies leave in a huff at the end).
So, without further ado:
Chapter 06 - The Blue Pill
Dear Princess Celestia,
You have no doubt been briefed on the situation by the royal guards, but I am writing to add my own preliminary notes on today's events, as well as an unexpected lesson we learned about friendship.
I am pleased to report that we have discovered the cause of the disaster at Cloudsdale, and that nopony was seriously hurt. From what we can tell, the events were all caused by a single creature.
In the end, we were able to stop it with the Elements of Harmony, but we couldn’t have done it without the assistance of the diamond dogs, in particular one named Fluffy.
When we first arrived at Cloudsdale, we learned that, in addition to causing the explosion, Spitfire had witnessed the creature foalnapping two young pegasi and escaping.
Unfortunately, nopony knew where it had gone until Fluttershy was able to ask the local animals, who lead us to a nearby mine. Inside, we found a group of diamond dogs had set up camp while they looked for a new home. Before we even arrived, they had captured the creature and rescued the foals from it, tasking Fluffly with returning them to Cloudsrail, the nearest settlement.
While they were evasive as to why they captured the creature, and they need to improve their definition of property ownership, between Rarity and Applejack we are pretty certain of those main points. Unfortunately, when we went to see the creature, we found it had mysteriously escaped.
It went chasing after the foals, but also set up a variety of traps to slow our pursuit down. At some point it also managed to catch up to Fluffy and steal the foals - when she reached the exit, she discovered they had been replaced by dummies. She returned just in time to delay its escape enough to allow us to catch up and save the foals, despite being injured in the effort. Who knows what would have happened if we hadn't been able to catch up to it?
While clearly intelligent, and using items of a craftsponyship I’ve never seen before, the creature behaved extremely erratically - endangering everypony around it, and nearly killing Fluffy during the fight. We were ultimately able to subdue it, but when we demanded it explain itself, it replied with an escape attempt that forced us to use the elements. We planned to question it afterwards, but to our surprise, it disappeared completely! Was it a spirit? Some variant of the Nightmare returned in physical form? A scion of Discord? Something else entirely? I have so much research to do!
I will elaborate more on the details in person, but for now, let me say that the episode showed me the importance of clear communications.
All this time we thought the diamond dogs were just greedy, barbaric group of ruffians. It turns out that they actually have a deep sense of community and responsibility. Had we established better communications and developed a true understanding of their motivations, our original incident with the diamond dogs might never have come to pass, and we would have been in a much better situation today. The experience has taught me that you shouldn't jump to conclusions, and you can find nobility in even the most unlikely of locations.
Your faithful student,
"Sir? Sir. SIR!"
He looked up, dazed.
"Sir, I have no idea what you think you are doing down here, but we’re currently closed to visitors, and I am going to have to ask you to leave."
The dirt-smeared man smiled broadly, visibly unnerving the security guard as he knelt down and started kissing the ground.
It's good to be home.
44w, 6dOn the (non) ending5 comments · 360 views
I would've posted this on the Author's note, but I realized it made it way too long.
So one of the pre-readers on this chapter was unhappy with how grim the chapter was. Turns out they thought it was the end of the story. This is not without reason - google docs doesn't have a complete/incomplete tag, and, well, it used to be the end.
At the time, I thought I was being cleverly subversive, because in HiE, how often do the elements work properly and the humans simply get banished like a monster-of-the-week? Not terribly often. Not to mention from my perspective, all the characters in the story basically get what they want - the Mane 6 are the big damn heroes and banish the scary bad guy, and said bad guy escapes the crazy pastel equines. Of course as my pre-readers pointed out, by doing so I may have given the characters what they want, there was this little group called the readers that might not be so satisfied. Something about dangling plot threads and resultant torches and pitchforks.*
After some thinking, I came up with an alternate plot that will hopefully be posted before the heat death of the universe. For those curious about my initial intentions, I plan on tossing up the original epilogue in a later blog post, once I've cleaned it up a bit. While said Epilogue is no longer entirely accurate, it may still provide some insights.
Regardless, I hope you've enjoyed the latest chapter.
* This may be embellished
46w, 3dChapter 05 is almost ready9 comments · 227 views
Happy new years!
Though life has been busy at times, you may be pleased to hear that neither I nor the story have died. In fact, I recently completed the last major piece of chapter 05, and it is now in a final draft, pending pre-reader feedback. As soon as I hear from a few of them, I should be able to post it.
Sorry for the wait, hopefully it won't be much longer.
72w, 2hChapter 4 progress2 comments · 200 views
Thank you all for your patience, I know I'm not always the most communicative.
So the initial draft of Chapter 04 is basically complete, and is currently receiving that all-important objective feedback and consideration. I'll be putting it up as soon as I've gotten the all clear.
I didn't think the writing would run nearly this long, but some portions ended up taking a fair amount of re-writing to get right, and I also had to take some time out to brainstorm some major plot elements. One of those benefits of pre-readers is getting push back when you're trying something silly; the eventual form of the story has diverged greatly from plan A, and coming up with plan B was non-trivial. So long as things hold together, though, it should be for the better.
Oh, and count yourselves lucky that April 01 is in the rear-view mirror XD