• Member Since 6th Nov, 2012
  • offline last seen 19 hours ago

ArgonMatrix


I've never seen a place that's quite like this. Everything is turned around; this crazy world is upside-down.

E
Source

The Firework Lotus Celebration, a grand festival which celebrates the dawn of a new year, is a tradition held near and dear to Spike's heart. But when the winds of change threaten to take this special time away from him, Spike is forced to make a difficult decision. Which is more important: what he knows to be right, or what he feels to be right?

And as Spike soon discovers, it's a choice best made with the help of some friends.


Inspired in part by (believe it or not) this comic.
Cover art by Sophie-Y.

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 66 )

This was a simply beautiful way to ring in the new year. In fact, if it wasn't for the length, I think this could work as a canon episode of the show. The characters are portrayed well, the message is powerful, and those performance scenes practically demand to be animated. All in all, a job well done. :moustache:

The D'awww and HHNNNGGGG are strong in this one

Love it, of course. It was a fine story, good sir. Keep up the good work! :twilightsmile:

Wonderful, Arg... simply wonderful.

3733467
Don't tell anyone, but that's what I was going for: something that has the feel of the show while not being restricted by the time constraints of an actual episode. Glad you think I did a good job!

Also, I would pay a pretty penny to see any of those sequences animated. I can visualize them beautifully in my head, but seeing them brought to life would be a dream. Especially the Rarity+Sweetie Belle one—that one's my personal favourite.

3734066
I would be lying if I said the cuteness factor wasn't a huge part of why I wrote this. Glad you enjoyed it!

3734307
Thanks for the kind words! Good to know you enjoyed it.

3734508
Thanks, T.D.. I was aiming for complexly wonderful, but simply wonderful works just as well. Happy you enjoyed it!

...oh! And I'll get right back to editing Zenith now that this is written. Sorry for the holdup, but inspiration waits for no one!

B. U. T. Foal.
'Nuff said.
Have a mustache :moustache:

3739230
Took me a second to understand that, haha. I've never seen it phrased like that! Regardless, thank you kindly.

3739736 That's probably because I just made it up :ajsmug:

If you made The Descendant nearly speechless, you did very well!

3742212
Heh, yeah, I like to see that as a sign of success, too. :twilightsmile:

This story was amazing :pinkiegasp: :rainbowkiss: The sugary dawwws counterbalanced the bitterness of the feels to make the good wholesome morals into a hearty meal for the soul. Everypony learned something that I think they needed to learn. I could tell exactly who was speaking from the dialogue alone. And to top it off, I saw exactly 3 grammatical mistakes in 17,000 words.

All I can say is:
gifs.gifbin.com/1233928590_citizen%20kane%20clapping.gif

Faving, thumbing up, recommending for Twilight's Library, and putting in the featured selection on my user page. Bloody good show.

3776382
Wow. Thank you very much for such high praise! I do feel like this story is probably my best one to date, and I'm glad to see that reflected in your opinions as well. Very glad you enjoyed it!

As for those three grammar mistakes, I'd be more than happy to go in and fix them if you remember where they are—no sense in leaving them there, after all! If you don't remember, though, I'll just read through the story again myself and keep an eye out. Thanks for the tip!

3776382

DID SOMEONE SUMMON ME?!

Jest aside, I must second my co-workers views. Absolutely outstanding. And as someone who loves seeing Spike get the attention he deserves, this fic was a special little treat.

Here is a special treat from me in return.

24.media.tumblr.com/a257ad5165644b1f79354634dfdee284/tumblr_mqo61uYbwk1rj6vd5o1_400.png

Wear it with pride;
-Lumino

3778544
You're very welcome. You earned it :twilightsmile:

I'm not quite sure I remember where those mistakes were. All I remember was a rogue "you're" that should have been a "your," but I don't recall where.

3788256
Thank you very much for the kind words and for the accolade. Glad to know I did Spike justice in your eyes.


3788602
Ugh, what a horrible mistake to make. :facehoof:

Regardless, I found it now and I'll keep an eye out for the other two. Thanks again!

Spectacular! Love everything about the story.
:moustache::twilightsmile:

3819416
Very glad to hear it! Did anything in particular strike a chord with you?

3820657 The strong amount of pure love that Spike and Twilight have for each other, and how though out the years together that they can share something special together that only got better with time.:moustache::twilightsmile:

3820976
Wonderful! Glad I could bring their relationship to life for you.

Not really my thing, "the direct feels", but it's done well. Some of the dialog is just sort of there; it has no rhytmic merit and doesn't contribute anything, but that's a pretty ubiquitous mistake in fiction. Rarity's exposition was great. I found myself skipping over parts, but the overall message and culminating narrative pressure engendering it were still apparent. In short, bravo. Clarity of message is paramount, and your clarity was superb. You added some base alkali to my caustic heart. +like

I dug the five-stage party cannon. Slick gimmick.

Very nicely done. Great Characterization all around, good pacing, great story. :twilightsmile:

3896342
I'm very glad you found things to enjoy about the story even though it wasn't your cup of tea. Thanks a ton for the feedback!

Oh, and it was a hoot writing that party cannon gimmick. I like calling them the Matryoshka Cannons, myself.

3896718
Thank you for the praise! Glad you enjoyed it.

diamond in the ruff

I believe you actually mean rough - unless the diamond in question really is wearing a lace collar. (Always a possibility where Rarity is concerned.)

I really want to like this story. It's nice to see Spike get some love and it has some great character moments.

But I keep tripping over one thing. Why would Twilight let Spike spend the last two days being miserable when all she had to do was tell him her plan? It just feels like pointless cruelty on her part. As a result I find myself really disliking Twilight by the end.

3898040
Not sure how I missed that typo. It's fixed now, though. Thanks for pointing it out!

As for your complaint, I'm sorry if that soured the reading experience for you. There is a conscious reason behind why Twilight kept the plan a secret, and I could try to explain it here, but I feel like that would undermine the story. As George Orwell once said: "I do not wish to comment on the work; if it does not speak for itself, it is a failure."

I'm glad you found other things to enjoy in the story, though. Thanks for the feedback!

And as the firework lotus burned far below, everything was perfect.

This is the best line to describe this piece, which just got more magical, more engaging, more brilliant the longer it got. Absolutely amazing, author.

3899080
I'm so glad you enjoyed it to such an extent! Thank you very much for the praise.

Fantastic work, excellent job capturing all the characters. It was nice to see Spike give two of the Crusaders some sound advice, it plays to the fact that they have been shown to kind of look up to him in the show. Writing an article on him and taking ideas like zip lining from him, for example.

Sweetie: I put on an awesome show like that and I don't get a cutie mark? GIPT

I kid, this fic was pure awesome!

3899714
Glad you enjoyed my characterizations! I always did sense a little inkling of something between Spike and the Crusaders. Glad that came through in the writing.


3900834
Fun fact: In the original draft, Sweetie Belle did get her cutie mark for that performance. It didn't quite fit within the scope of the story though.

Regardless, very glad you enjoyed it!

3901132 I'm still cursing autocorrect for arthimcal. :facehoof:

Why didn't I read this sooner?

Great story.

And this story is a prime example as to why I had to follow you. All I can really say was wow and that I simply loved this. Now you sir are what they call a talented author. *standing ovation and plenty of hoof clops*

-Frost:pinkiesmile:

3905889
Regardless of why it took you a while, I'm very glad you read and enjoyed it. Thanks!


3909605
Thank ya kindly!


3911095
D'aw, you're too much. I'm very happy that this story satisfied you, though. I worked rather hard on it, and I'm glad it shows!

This one was a real treat to read... Very heartwarming, with charming characterization and a nice, substantial length for a one-shot. It's the kind of story I love to find here... Thanks for sharing it!

3911422
Thanks for all the feedback! Glad you enjoyed it that much. :twilightsmile:

Again. Wow. You have a gift for these. The characters are perfect and I love the images you create. Those shows were brilliant and that song was beautiful. Where are the talented singers in this fandom when we need them, someone should sing that song!

Two nitpicks:

"And will you say, or will you run and hide?!" Is it on purpose you wrote "say"? Because "stay" makes more sense to me.

"dulcet voice. Brava!”" Is it supposed to be Brava or did you misspell Bravo? I'm guessing "brava" might actually have been chosen on purpose, but I have to ask.

Again, this is beautiful. Love, affection, humor, friendship, everything I love about MLP. Fantastic job. :pinkiehappy:

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

I want to say that the ending of this story went on just a bit. I didn't feel like the performances were entirely necessary to include, Rarity's aside; Fluttershy's was kind of... weird. But it speaks to the quality of the writing and the emotions you've brought forth from the characters that that didn't diminish my enjoyment or appreciation of this piece one bit.

3997486
"Brava" is actually how you congratulate a female performer. It's been subsumed in the English language by the masculine form since we don't gender words that way, but in Italian, it's proper.

4006252

Yeah, it did seem too deliberate to be a mistake, so I was assuming there was something like that behind it. Thanks for that, I always enjoy learning new things.

Just out of curiosity, what do you say to a group performance? Bravo?

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

4006291
According to Wiktionary, it's bravi for a male (or mixed) group, and brave (brah-vay) for a female group.

3997486
I'm glad I could bring the characters and images to life for you. My main fear in writing is that I'm not conveying what I want the reader to see adequately, so you have no idea how awesome it is to hear that my words somehow brought life to the story.

As for the nitpicks, that instance of "say" isn't a typo of "stay," but it does sound a bit jarring. Might have to change that one. And it looks like presentperfect already cleared up the "Brava" thing, so there you go! Thanks a ton for the feedback!

4006252
I can definitely see where you're coming from. Personally, I think the performances added something of value to the story, even if they didn't necessarily need to be there for the story to be told effectively. And even though you don't agree with that, I'm glad it didn't detract from the story for you. Thanks for the feedback!

Oh, and as for Fluttershy's performance… I knew that one would be hit or miss for people. I aspired to do something abnormal with her—something to show people how far she's come over 3.5 seasons. At the very least, I wanted it to be memorable, and it looks like I accomplished that much!

4029954

On the subject of performances: Yeah, the story doesn't really need them and one can be easily label them as bogging down the narrative. Having the last part without the other performances would have tied it more strongly with the other ones, in a more concise manner.

On the other hand, I loved reading the performances, so I'm not complaining, even if they are kinda tangential. Though the one with the Apples jumped a bit and never really explained what happened with the fire and snakes. Was that one purpose?

I particularly loved Fluttershy and Discord's performance. There is something incredible awesome about it. I'd put it this way: Discord put a little madness in Fluttershy, and that was creepy and cool and a good sign of character development for both of them. Well done, once again.:twilightsmile:

Very nicely done, very nicely indeed!

This one's a treasure. With so many folks writing exclusively about the six ponies, so many Spike fans writing wish-fulfillment dribble, and so many others downgrading Spilight (be it romantic, family or friendshipping) in general, it's a tremendous pleasure to get a shining piece of work that exalts the intimacy and importance of Spike and Twilight's unique bond.

You deserve much credit for dodging clichés in order to keep things developing consistently, rather than getting the characters hung up on one situation just to stew them in it or cheapen their intelligence for lowbrow drama. The one example that springs to mind is one of Spike's best moments, in which he commanded Twilight to 86 their tradition for everyone else's sake, but didn't try to hide his pain from her. Though as finely crafted as the story is, it's not perfect; the letter from Celestia never specifically stated that Twilight and Spike would be abandoning their pre-ceremony routine, and it seems a little sinister of Fluttershy to participate in a performance that would make small children cry, regardless of how much she's changed.

Furthermore, the emotional payoff didn't wrap up how I thought it was going to, and although what you have here is gold, it's still missing something. Twilight should have pointed out that she was executing the Firework Lotus Ceremony as a princess of Equestria, and since friendship is what made her a princess, she wouldn't have been able to represent herself if her most precious companion wasn't part of it. As the Princess of Friendship, it had to be done with Spike, or not at all. Instead of a "Please do this with me" line, I was hoping for her to plant him on her back and say with a smile, "No. This is the right thing to do."

Sweetie Belle's song, though...that was gorgeous. Before Rarity said "Luna's Hymn" I was convinced it had been written by Rarity in reference to her relationship with Spike and his thousand-year nap (which hopefully doesn't apply to Spike himself) to show that she understands his feelings. I can't help but feel that your powerful, melodic lyrics were inspired in part by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. The whole concept of the Firework Lotus ceremony, though, still makes me think of this fantastic piece of music:

Thank-you for writing this. It ranks right up there with The Seventh Star.

...I just wish Rarity had been a little jealous that Spike chose to kiss Twilight instead of herself. :twilightsheepish:

This story deserves far more upvotes than it currently has. It is one of the best, most heart-warming stories on here. Thank you for writing it Argon.

Really great. Some of it was unsubtle, and clichés were used abundantly and sometimes incorrectly (particularly "missed a beat") but overall, well done!

It felt a tad out of character for Spike to be so weepy so often, but I know that it really wasn't; it was just the time gaps between events. This is a masterpiece :twilightsmile:

Truly magneficent.

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