• Member Since 25th Feb, 2013
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Titanium Dragon


TD writes and reviews pony fanfiction, and has a serious RariJack addiction. Send help and/or ponies.

T

Fluttershy has returned to Sweet Apple Acres a week after the events of "Bats!" in order to check in on her new animal friends, only to find they have disappeared from their sanctuary, and Applejack is reluctant to tell her where they've gone.

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 67 )

That's how it's done. :applejackunsure:

Next time, Fluttershy, leave the farmers to deal with the pests their way. Because farmers know how to deal with pests.

Well then. Don't see it in AJ's nature to kill animals, even vampire fruit bats.

uh huh...i say it should continue. you left it on an effing cliff hanger man. that's good in a chapter story but not on a one shot. then you're just leaving us on nothing at all

Poor fluttershy:fluttercry:

Well then... That waa a good little read <3

Hm, I don't think that Applejack could agree to kill vampire fruit bats. It's just... not like Applejack. Also, she knows how much it would hurt Fluttershy.

Muahaha, excellent.

3744449
Well, you can't argue with a pony that has experience, especially Granny Smith.

This story was about to get interesting!

...

And then it ended. I was expecting to see more. Nice story though. :ajsmug:

O.o Oh...the poor bats...:fluttercry:

continue. i HATE cliffhanger endings. with a burning passion

Let me quote something for you:

Some good characters might view a situation where an evil
act is required to avert a catastrophic evil as a form of martyr-dom: “I can save a thousand innocent lives by sacrificing my
purity.” For some, that is a sacrifice worth making, just as they
would not hesitate to sacrifice their lives for the same cause.
After all, it would simply be selfish to let innocents die so a character can hang on to her exalted feats.
Unfortunately, this view is ultimately misguided. This line of
thinking treats the purity of the good character’s soul as a commodity that she can just give up or sacrifice like any other possession. In fact, when an otherwise good
character decides to commit an evil act, the effects are larger
than the individual character. What the character sees as a personal sacrifice is actually a shift in the universal balance of
power between good and evil, in evil’s favor. The consequences
of that single evil act, no matter how small, extend far beyond
the single act and involve a loss to more than just the character
doing the deed. Thus, it is not a personal sacrifice, but a concession to evil, and thus unconscionable.

3787006
What's that quote from?

EDIT: Nevermind, the Book of Exalted Deeds. Of course, that's D&D for you.

3787504
In a world where:
Frindship is Magic.
The feelings of the people in the Crystal Empire affects all of Equestria. <--- looks like a good example of good helps good, evil helps evil.
Evil (Wendigos) feed off of hate.
If Pinky is not actively trying to make people happy, people start attacking each other.

I would not put it pass the world to make what AJ did give power to evil. To shift things a little more to evil.

Now for a more basic look her action:
AJ was being a little unsafe and there are likely laws about marking when poison is in use and limiting their effect on the environment. If you are going to do something like that, you should do it with worst case in mind.
It is like keeping a loaded gun in the living room. It may protect you from a break in, but it is also not the thing to do if a small kid can get a hold of it. You can find ways to keep the gun near you and not put kids in danger.
Put up signs and fences. Make it crazy clear that you should not eat from the tree. If the bats can read signs, then maybe you should not be poisoning them.

Still I liked the story.

3787006 Wasn't that the same edition where engaging in consensual BDSM automatically meant you were evil-aligned? D&D might make a good analogy for a setting like Star Wars (which in some ways is even more rigid!), but the comparison doesn't really hold for a setting where Discord is capable of redemption.

Edit: Actually, it's an interesting idea--how well do Applejack's actions function within the framework of the show? True, she's not following the primary value of tolerance by failing to tolerate the bats, but if she's acting to protect the traditions of the Apple family, should her behavior be tolerated? In a setting that's built around a certain degree of relativism (it's okay if zebras or buffalo are different, because that's just they way they are!), but dumbs it down for kids and avoids the messier aspects, how far does that relativism actually go when you introduce concepts that wouldn't appear on the show?

Edit to the edit: Just noticed your comment was eight weeks old. I'm sorry for reviving a dead topic.

This is not something AJ would do. Not ever. This isn't believable or long enough. Fluttershy would never speak up like that, even if she thought animals were in danger.

This is a well-written tale that, above all else, is perfectly in the spirit of the episode which spawned it.

Take that as you will. :raritywink:

i for one found the story well written and belivabel fluttshy can get loud if she wanted to there a few epsods she did season 1 and 2 being the most promanit. :twilightsmile:

3787006

Opposing a force of destruction is not evil. Those apple trees were FAMILY to Applejack, with names. Fluttershy didn't think that there was nothing keeping the vampire bats from feeding on the rest of the orchard once they had fed that part dry. Fluttershy, is naive. She thinks animals are always going to be rational and reasonable, she keeps forgetting that animals are creatures of drives and instincts. Animals don't judge her like ponies do, so she holds them in an idealistic regard.

Seems that AJ will have a lots of explaining to do...

Unless Fluttershy dies and they'll bury her next to the bats... :pinkiecrazy:

Granny Smith stopped the bats, and possibly FlutterShy too.

The story is AU:

Lauren Faust created a show devoid of negativity, except for the antagonists one finds in the opening and finales of the seasons. What is means practically is no violent deaths of animals or ponies. Indeed, we have not seen any deaths from natural causes.

Well... when locusts are eating your crop, you poison-murder the ever-loving shit out of them. I felt that Fluttershy's been a traitor to Applejack twice now, once to Discord and his "reformation", and a second time trying to choose pests over her own "friend's" livelihood. Because of that, she plummeted straight to the bottom of my Mane 6 list. She's a boring character with no real personality besides shy and angry, and subtly, a manipulative and treacherous bitch.

Fuck Fluttershy. But that's just me. :rainbowlaugh:

4899736
Yeah, I found that episode to be rather dissatisfying for... a large number of reasons. There's a reason farmers eliminate pests. It just wasn't a good idea for a MLP episode, because exterminating pests is terribly discordant with the world of MLP.

And because the last five minutes of the episode is basically the characters running around with Flutterbat hovering overhead. And they set up the apple having a shiny, reflective surface and didn't even use that fact to resolve the conflict.

Started off kinda clumsy, but it got on the right track toward the latter half. I like how you pulled off the "Ah ain't gonna speak a lie no matter what" thing that AJ tends to do... :ajsmug:

The "BATS!" episode was by far the most aggravating episode for me. It pits pest control -- a real-world problem -- against the usual "Fluttershy was right all along and we should have listened to her and acted with more kindness" thing, which was already old in the "reforming Discord" episode... :facehoof:

The song sucks, too...

Then again, to be fair, Fluttershy's approach to the problem, in both the episode and this fic, isn't completely naive. Unregulated pest control has led to serious, sometimes even irreparable, damage to the ecosystem in certain regions, to the point that some suggest less "sterile" approaches, i.e "not just murderizing everything that dares to nibble on your property." Is it silly to give the ending that interpretation?

5000286
North America once had a locust, the Rocky Mountain Locust. Like all locusts, it swarmed and was a major pest.

Then some folks accidentally plowed under where they laid all their eggs one year, and the species rapidly became extinct.

Now, North America has no locusts, and a major pest was eliminated forever, and yet, North American ecosystems didn't collapse as a result.

I dunno, call me cynical, but eliminating pest species isn't always a bad thing.

As for the rest of it... really this story was written as a quick reaction to the episode. It is probably my most controversial story. Overall, it doesn't fit well into the world, but on the other hand, that's really a problem with the episode in general - I think the real mistake is that pest control like this feels out of place in Equestria, but Fluttershy's position didn't make a whole lot of sense either. I did my best to keep the characters in character, despite the unpleasant situation they found themselves in.

5000410

I didn't say all such efforts lead to bad results. Some have claimed that the whole panic about DDT use over "a couple of bird eggs" was a huge screwup on the public's part, because it practically destroyed the ability to use an effective and helpful pesticide with little to no benefits to the ecosystem in return.

Indeed, the Earth is not a little baby that needs to be pampered. Nature adapts far more quickly and drastically than we can imagine. If we kill off one pest, another will just take its place. It will now be free of competition, not to mention it could be far more robust than its predecessor. The problem isn't as much about "upsetting the balance" as it is about "where will the new status quo end up?" Nature can balance itself, and we'll only end up trying to cope once again...

That said, solving a pest problem by eradicating the species can have repercussions that are difficult to predict. This is what got me thinking about AJ's solution, and why I thought the final scene may have another meaning. Did the poison just scare the surviving bats away for good? Or did it wipe all of them out in that region?

5000460
Getting rid of DDT was probably wise; modern pesticides really are better, primarily because they don't have the same sort of issues with lingering in the environment. The problem with DDT is that it lasts forever, which means that you are more likely to end up with stuff getting resistant to it simply because if you apply it fairly frequently, you're going to end up with it being present at some level in the environment all the time, and stuff is much more likely to end up resistant to it that way. Something which is sprayed, kills everything, then goes away very quickly doesn't give pests time to really accumulate resistance to it iteratively, thus delaying the acquisition of resistance. DDT is handy for applying to a house or similar place, though, precisely because it lingers; today, it is only usable for vector control (primarily mosquitoes) legally, and because it is ONLY used for that, it means that there is less of it in the environment, and thus less accumulation in living things as well as less opportunity for things to become resistant.

And DDT bioaccumulates, which is bad for birds, but also potentially bad for humans, too, given that DDT has a ridiculously long half-life and despite its ban, they STILL detect DDT in pretty much all humans to this day. The fact that it caused problems in birds was worrisome, because who knows how long it would be before it was causing problems in humans? And if it DID cause problems in humans, its extreme durability in the environment meant that the contamination would continue for decades.

All in all, it was good to move away from it.

It is very much the case that eliminating one thing can cause problems when something else comes along or takes over or whatever. That being said, sometimes it is totally worth it.

Plus, from an individual farmer's standpoint, who cares? Today is more important to them than ten years from now. Of course, one could argue that's what gets them into trouble in the first place...

As for the ending - well, I dunno. My thought was that they all died from it, but it is possible some of them left. But animals tend not to really understand such things, though MLP animals show a greater level of intelligence than most normal real-world animals do.

You know, barring Fluttershy getting poisoned, this is a far more satisfying ending to that episode than the actual ending. Fluttershy was thirteen kinds of wrong in it, while Applejack was, well, right. The episode tried to make us side with Fluttershy, but it backfired spectacularly.

5039837
I'm glad you enjoyed it!

It is true that the episode was flawed in this regard; the real problem was that it took up a real world problem and then didn't really present it in a remotely reasonable way. It also took up an issue which feels just plain old weird in Equestria.

That's not to say that there isn't more than one perspective on pest control, but that the one espoused in the episode by Fluttershy wasn't a particularly reasonable one.

5039959 Very true. Sorry Flutters, but as demonstrated in a later episode, you were just TOO soft when it came to critters that were complete strangers ruining the livelihood of one of your best pals.

Thanks for this story! The worst part of this episode for me was that it called Granny Smith an idiot who didn't know how to farm, but avoided confronting it by putting her on a bus. You're the first person I've seen who showed her as having the only real, (final *ahem*) solution.

4827331 We have, actually. The CMC crashed a funeral when they were desperate for a stallion.

5072787

> >> “Walabio We have, actually. The CMC crashed a funeral when they were desperate for a stallion.”

Yes, I remember that funeral, but no pony died on screen. We have seen neither deaths from natural causes nor violent deaths.

In Bats, the Apples wanted to chase the bats away (“¡Stop the bats! ¡Stop the bats! ¡Make them go and not come back!”), which seems reasonable. I love FlutterShy to death, but her solution to give the bats an huge chunk of the orchard could financially ruin the family Apples. Nopony in the episode advocated killing the bats.

3793775

ah, the importance of communication

5104896
Or the lack there of. Giving in the MLP world Bees are able to understand equestrian, the Bat would be able to also.
For it to work Applejack may have had to not put up signs.

Hey! just wanted to let you know I did a reading of this story. :) thanks again for writing it! :D

5343843
Thanks! That was really, really awesome of you! I liked it; that had some real production value. :heart:

I put a link to it at the end of the story and made a blog post about it.

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

I lol'd. I think you took the wrong tack with the ending, though; I had everything figured out well ahead of Fluttershy (I felt she had some Idiot Ball) and was more interested in what was happening to her than the bats. I expected the silence at the end to be because she was choking on her own vomit or something, for example. :B

5351134
You wanted me to murder Fluttershy? :fluttercry:

You monster. :trollestia:

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

5351748
Kill your darlings. :V

Hey, I wrote a review of this story. In case you are interested, it can be found here.

Overall, It didn't really do much for me. It feels incomplete, and while I like how you set up the mystery, the payoff is too disappointing.

5495589
Thanks for the review! I ended up putting my comment over on your review.

jmj

Nice work, sir. You really did a swell job of using some darkness without being overt. It's a cute little story that has it's poignant secret hiding just beneath the surface. Everything is implied and yet never spoken to leave the weight squarely on the center of the table under a delicious layer of icing. But, Celestia help you when you take a bite.

5519743
Thank you! I'm glad you liked it. I don't really write stories like this very often, so it was nice to hear that it worked for someone who does.

I'm a little surprised this has so many dislikes -- and I'm saying that as one of the (rare?) people who liked "Bats!" I thought it was pretty good. I found it a bit hard to believe that Fluttershy wouldn't have worked out what had happened by the end, but I did like the uneasy atmosphere.

...That...was dark.

And I like dark. Oh so very much! :D

I am faving this! XD

5731530
I'm glad it worked so well for you!

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