The chocolate cupcake was delicious. Far Cry thanked Pinkie Pie for coming and, with a wave, Pinkie Promise, and ultra-cute smile, she was off. The happiness serum that Pinkie had injected deep into his brain was still lingering as he contemplated perhaps someday inviting her out to dinner or a movie…or both. Maybe they could just go downtown and have a milkshake or something, he reasoned.
Almost without realizing it, Far Cry had walked right through his living room and into his workspace. Snapping himself out of his Pinkie-inspired daze once again, he looked up at the sculpture that was sitting right in front of him on a stool. It was the sculpture that Pinkie had been admiring a few minutes ago, and looking at it filled Far Cry with a new batch of determination. His smile quickly turning into a serious scowl, he continued walking toward the piece, picked up his favorite sculpting tool in his magic, and began raking at the clay.
He concentrated so hard on his work that he lost track of time, same as always. The mindset of “I just need to fix this one last thing…” took over and he soon found himself in a never-ending struggle to perfect the piece in the only way that he could, never feeling satisfied enough to leave it alone for the night. That, plus the steady flow of whiskey on the rocks kept him from feeling the pangs of hunger, for the most part. Eventually, long after everypony else in town had already been in bed for a few hours, the Princess Luna sculpture was finally complete. Far Cry raised his head, looked the piece over one final time with his discerning eye, and used a brush to flatten a rough area he noticed near the mane. “Perfect,” he said with an air of confidence. “I may send one to Luna as a gift once it’s done. She deserves more love than she gets from everypony here.”
Anticipating that only the finished version of his newest work could earn a cutie mark, Far Cry headed on to bed.
The next morning, Far Cry woke up earlier than usual. His mind was abuzz with excitement that maybe, just MAYBE, this next piece could be the one to earn him his cutie mark. He jumped out of bed and immediately began work on molding and casting the new sculpture. He felt sure…This time would be it! This time, he had made a piece so great, it would finally earn that elusive, unknown mark of destiny on his flank. Only stopping once to eat a small breakfast of leftover hay fries earlier on in the day, he spent the entirety of his time feverishly working.
Sometime in the early evening hours, he completed the mold. Then, he pried it open and carefully removed all the clay. With the mold ready, Far Cry’s eyes lit up. It was so close now, he could taste it! He lifted a couple containers of liquid with his magic, and then started mixing them together. With the empty mold strapped back together, he poured in the mixture and waited impatiently.
After a while, the statue was finally removed. More determined than ever, Far Cry lifted up a few small containers of paint from across the room with magic and began adding Luna’s dark, deep colors to every inch of the design. He was in a full-on frenzy now. Upon finishing the last brush stroke, Far Cry reared up in joy and looked back at his right flank – and then, he waited. He waited a long time, his smile slipping into a deeper frown with each passing minute.
Finally, with tears in his eyes, he shouted, “WHY?! WHY NOT?! If this is what I was born to do, then why can’t I earn my cutie mark?!”
He seemed to be shouting at somepony else in the room who was forcibly withholding this experience from him. “I’ve tried everything I love to do - things that I’ve been good at for many years - and yet…nothing. What do you WANT me to do?”
A single tear rolled down his cheek as his head dropped toward the floor in utter despondency. It was true. He had done everything in his power to try and earn that mark, but for some reason it just never came to pass. There was something he still lacked - perhaps…something he had not yet done, creativity-wise. He simply did not know anymore.
Feeling absolutely crushed, he slowly turned from the piece and trudged back into his bedroom. It was rather late in the evening now, and he was starting to feel the effects of the lack of sleep he experienced the night before. He flopped over onto his bed and stared at the ceiling for a few minutes, trying to contemplate exactly what he could do now. It soon became harder for him to keep his eyes open. He tried to fight it, but it was no use. His body and mind demanded sleep, and, with a final sigh, Far Cry drifted off into the dream world.