• Member Since 10th Jan, 2014
  • offline last seen September 8th

Headless


And so, in your despair, you come, at last, to me...


E

Today, King Sombra is reviled as one of the darkest and most evil beings to ever blight the face of the world. When the Crystal Empire was freed from his grasp, the people of Equestria were more than happy to forget him.

But Sombra was not slain, and he has not forgotten. He alone knows the truth behind his tyranny, the reason for his fall.

And he will be remembered.


Featured by Equestria Daily on Saturday, April 12th, 2014.

Runner-up for the Everfree Northwest 2014 Fanfiction Contest.

[img]http://24.media.tumblr.com/a257ad5165644b1f79354634dfdee284/tumblr_mqo61uYbwk1rj6vd5o1_400.png[/img]

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 83 )

Wow. This is really interesting. It shows a side of Sombra we don't see that much in other fics and I like his conversation with Twilight. Overall, nice job and I hope we get to see more.

-W.S.

That was a good read.

This was an excellent read, but it came off a bit rushed towards the end.

The revelation about the crystal heart and Sombra's true nature was done amazingly well. His justifications and reasons behind that though felt rushed to me.

A single blurred memory. A brief conversation. That's all we really got.

I liked this story, but I kind of wished I had a bit more.

3996492 You and me both, honestly. Unfortunately, the EFNW contest that it's written for has a 3,000 word limit. :ajsleepy:

3996498
That is a huge pity then. I certainly hope you win this contest of yours.

But again I really like this portrayal of Sombra and the crystal heart. It is very unique and I would love to see more.

You have quite the talent here. Keep it up my good man.

3996639 Much appreciated. I'll do my best. :pinkiesmile:

This was really good. Though, Like the others said, I felt it was a little rushed at the end. :scootangel:
I really, really like this, maybe we could get a sequel? :pinkiesmile:

3996775 Possibly. I love King Sombra because of the amount of potential the character has, even though his actual in-show appearance was rather disappointing. I can't guarantee that I'll ever write a direct sequel to this story, but I will very likely write more about Sombra in general.

This was a spectacular read. Like the others, I love your take on Sombra and the Crystal Heart, and the way you set the tone in the beginning was nothing short of chilling. Keep up the good work!

Comment posted by StormLuna deleted Feb 24th, 2014

This is a great story. You are the author (a great one at that), I do think a sequel in which Sombra regains his full powers, escapes the darkness and battles with Twilight would be amazing.

“Tell me,” he rumbled. “Do you feel in control?”

This single line developed the entire idea of this unsettling story—to take you out of your comfort zone. Why? No reason; the only purpose I see of this fic was to make you question your own judgment about what you think. It makes you doubt your perceptions and what you know. In truth, this is nothing but a mirror pointing into out deepest recesses, reflecting what we ignore to embrace the little lies—those stories of hogfathers—we tell ourselves.

Some time later, when the sound of her hooves against the stone had faded and all trace of her light was gone from the gloom, the construct sank back into the darkness. It had never been more than that, anyway; it was just a shadow given substance. The entity that had once been called Sombra turned away from it and allowed it to fade away like everything else.

And, in the darkness, a quiet noise sounded as the single shard of clear quartz splintered beneath the black.

Your writing reminds me of my own. This fic will go not just in my favorites box but my list of the 20 best-written one shots.

3998548 Ha, thank you. I'm very glad you enjoyed it.

Also:

hogfathers

Bonus points for Pratchett.

Wow, that was a chilling and very VERY interesting short read. You sir, have a wonderful vision of Sombra and his character. Great job dude!
denver.mylittlefacewhen.com/media/f/img/mlfw5194-discord_approves_colored_by_ditzydoolover__by_bluefire513-d4tbhmg.jpg

Very much excellent story and concept. :D Characterization of Sombra is great though I agree that the ending could have used more punch.

Props to the information about morion because I didn't know it before! Interestiiiing.

Words will never even begin to describe this. It's just so... Amazingly awesomely supertacular times one thousand! :derpyderp2:

4021562 Ha. Glad you like it. :pinkiehappy:

I really like how you portrayed Sombra in this.

First off, a couple lines I loved:

This was not the darkness of Equestria. This was an old darkness, an ancient, primeval thing.

"This isn't just your average everyday darkness; this is... ADVANCED darkness"

“Tell me,” he rumbled. “Do you feel in control?”

Gotta Love TDKR

“Before you claim you are in control of a situation, make certain that you are in control of yourself.”

Brilliant. Simply brilliant.

Now on to the meat of the story.
1) Sombra. I like this Sombra. Hero forced villain to protect others and actually stays true to his cause. I give him a deep southern plantation owner's voice when I read his lines. It fits him well. And him not asking for sympathy, nice.
2) Twilight. Good Twilight. Starting to get used to her wings and assert her power, but 1000 year old ruler would always dwarf a maybe 18 year old alicorn.
3) Nice back-story with the crystal heart. It was a neat twist. Although I would have liked to have seen more of the monsters that Sombra was combating. Some of this still doesn't make too much sense to me, but it may just be that I'm really tired at 11:22 in the noon time. Will read again in hopes for more clarity.

All around, nice job. Nice use of your word limit, because you were able to build a lot of atmosphere without using too much words. I feel this might have been a better fic without the word limit, but you didn't sacrifice much to build this fic the way it was. Like the story.

“I’m the one in control here,” she said. “Not you.”

YES TWILIGHT! TIE ME TO THE BED!
...
Wut?
:twilightsmile:
Very interesting. The crack the end either seems to tell of Sombra breaking free, or, since he is now made of crystal, he is dying.

4029106 Ha. I totally forgot Bane said that line as well, believe it or not, and I totally loved The Dark Knight Rises.

I'm very glad you enjoyed it, and yes, I totally agree that it would have been better without the word limit. For all that other people seem to like it, I'm not really all that happy with the end result here; it feels very rushed and incomplete to me. I would have loved to go into more detail, but, unfortunately, the contest is limited to 3k.

And, personally, I hear Richard Boone's voice when I read Sombra's lines. He was the original voice of Smaug, and he just nailed the delivery:

4029134 Almost what I was going for. I've left it purposefully vague and open to interpretation, but the implication there is that the one clear crystal is what's left of Sombra's original self - and it's starting to crack under the weight of the morion, what he's become as a result of all this.

Basically, Sombra is losing himself, and there's nothing he can do to stop it. Before long, he'll forget why he became what he is, and then no one will be left who knows that there was ever anyone else but the tyrant. He's called Twilight here, not to stroke his ego, but so that someone will remember him after he's gone.

He's too proud to tell her that, of course. And for all that he set himself on this path for a noble cause, he recognizes that he is a monster. He doesn't want to be remembered through rose-tinted glasses or treated as something that he isn't. He just wants someone to remember him as he really was, with all the good and the bad that entails.

Like I've said in other comments, the word limit hit this fic pretty hard in the end. There wasn't really time to get all of that across except in the vaguest terms. It's very heavily hinted at if you're looking, but I would have preferred to be able to give more time to it.

4029139
I can understand how you might feel that it seems rushed, but the atmosphere building shows that time went into this. We are all pleased, because there is a lot to be pleased with in this short, but brilliant story.

Now, with the voice, i heavily disagree. The Smaug feels too... barbaric. He feels too simplistic. I felt that he should have a more complex and sophisticated tongue. One that can be devilishly playful as well as serous and threatening. My vision would be closer to the Director from RvB.

only in a deeper tone.

4029367 Yeah, the issue with the YouTube clip I showed is that it's only got the bit where Smaug is flipping out a bit. Prior to that, he's quite composed and controlled. The Director is a great choice as well, though. Love that series.

4029173
Seems like another curse of immortality thing. Live forever but forget who you really were along the way. I did not much understand the reason why, other than that there was some threat. It seemed as if he was forced to use the Heart to gain an army of some sort to fight back a raging horde. Probably an explanation that was lost to the tyrannical word limit.

4051364 Ha, thank you! For both this and "A Bolder Note Than This", I mean. I'll just reply to both of them here, so as to avoid clogging your notifications feed. And 'grats on your promotion. :pinkiehappy:

4051778
You're very welcome :twilightsmile:

Man oh man, that was great. I enjoyed the read. A like, fav, watch and stache from me - :moustache:

4128631 Very glad you enjoyed it. :pinkiesmile:

Man, Your fics are Beautiful.'
Maybe when the judging for the contest is over y'all could expand this story beyond the wordlimit?
That'd be sweet. I found your stuff a couple of hours ago and have powered on through What Bound Them and am Hankering for more of this brilliance.
Bonus Points for The Title reminding me of The King in Yellow, even if it was an unintentional reference. DOuble the bonus points if it was intentional

4147077 Entirely intentional. I am a huge fan of all things Lovecraftian, and "The King In Yellow" is one of my personal favorites, as it directly inspired Lovecraft himself.

I hadn't actually considered expanding on this once the contest is over, but now that you've brought it up, I might actually do that. No promises, though.

Cheers!

This fic is truley superb. You are an awesome writer. Keep up the good work. :pinkiehappy:

Fantastic. Sombra's my favorite MLP villain. And to give him a Lovecraftian edge? Even better. :moustache:

4029173 What does morion mean?

4224000 As explained in the story, "morion" is a variety of quartz crystal. Specifically, it's black quartz - the black crystals that King Sombra's magic created in the show.

You know, the more good King Sombra fanfiction I read, the more I realize that the people at Hasbro really screwed him over. He deserves so much more then what we got.

4033520 Sombra: Alas, I must choose this immortality curse that will turn me evil to stop this other evil... uhm... wait. This suddenly doesn't seem like a good idea.

Oh yeah! I totally forgot about Celestia and Luna! Why don't I go ask them for help?

*Sombra goes off and gets help from the non-cursed immortals and everpony lives happily ever after.*

(If he'd only had a brain... -The Scarecrow)

:trollestia::trollestia::trollestia::trollestia::trollestia::trollestia:

You know, Twilight believes all of this far too easily.

There is NO PROOF. None at all.

Remember, Sombra's spell in the castle produced an illusory mental image so powerful, Twilight nearly lost herself in it.

We have only Sombra setting up the clues with his own claims which point Twilight to a conclusion that may be a complete fabrication. It's how professional liars work, after all. Let the victim arrive at the 'epiphany' you desire, by presenting little false hints and red herrings that leave no other conclusion they can reasonably reach other than the one you wish.

I could name quite a number of the most vile rulers in history who've used such tactics to mislead their people into committing atrocities.

Remember this always: Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

Sombra provided nothing, other than something to explain away the evil deeds he'd done and possibly prevent them from searching for a means to utterly destroy him by playing on their sympathy.

*sighs* As always, the gullible ponies need my help! *Alondro, the Deus Ex Insert, rams through the dimensional barriers and vaporizes the 3 cubic miles of rock, with Sombra in the center* There we go! :pinkiecrazy:

(PS: The crystal structure thingy reminds me of the Great One, the giant spider John Pertwee's Doctor faced. I enjoyed how it basically defeated itself by overloading its mind with the resonance amplification of the psychic power. I would expect Sombra's madness in Crystal Empire would be a parallel to that side effect.)

4224755

This is going to automatically lead to a research-binge.This is Twilight Sparkle, after all.

If he wanted to fabricate a sympathetic legend for himself, Twilight is the wrong person to try and bullshit. She'd dig her way to the actual facts sooner or later.

What seems more likely is that this is a mix of true and false: he wants her to dig, and he's going to feed her clues until she digs up something she can't handle...

I actually imagined Sombra with the voice of Unicron, just with a slightly larger array of emotions.

4226730 Ha. That actually works very well.

4224705
This solution to the problem is not well justified since many of the initial condition are still unknown. It is a problem with word length in the end and certain things just have to be accepted in the story.

An interesting side of Sombra that I'd love to see more of . Looking forward to more.
Keep up the good work. Deus tecum.

4226084 He has a bit too much of the 'Villain With Whom We All Must Agree' going. That tends to annoy me when the protagonist is just left gasping in shock and incapable of thinking, "Waaaaait a minute, this guy tried to screw with my mind already. Fool me once, shame of you; fool me twice... ooo, is that gneiss?" :pinkiecrazy:

I always figured that, had Sombra been not bent over a crate and given an impromptu proctology exam, his voice would have sounded somewhat like this:

4231402 God, I need to go back and play that game some more. DoW2 got a bad rap, but damn if I didn't enjoy it.

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