• Published 10th May 2014
  • 5,419 Views, 1,097 Comments

Pound and Pumpkin Tales 1 - Never2muchpinkie



Set a few years into the future, six year old Pound and Pumpkin have a lot of growing up to do. They fight and make up, make mistakes and learn lessons, and love and protect each other as much as they get on each other's nerves.

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PreviousChapters
Happy Birthday finale: The best gift ever

In the morning Cup Cake came into the twin’s room. “Morning, everyone!” she said loudly to the sleeping children.

Pound mumbled something.

“Mornnnnn-” Pumpkin only got out half the word before she let out a sleepy groan.

“Who’s ready for some breakfast?”

Masky slowly sat up. “Food sounds good,” he muttered, scratching his head.

Peppermint let out a loud yawn as she sat up and stretched. “What’s for breakfast?”

“Pancakes,” Cup replied.

Pound already felt his mouth watering. “Mom makes the best pancakes.”

“Well, thank you, Pound.” She started heading for the door. “I’ll leave you to wake up.”

“Excuse me?” said Flurry.

“Yes, Princess?” she replied, stopping and turning.

“Is pancakes our only option?”

“You don’t like pancakes?”

“I do, but I’m kinda in the mood for some French toast.”

“I can do that. Anyone else want something a little different?”

Tree Leaf raised a hoof. “Do you have waffles?”

“Sure do. At least you’re all asking for things you can put syrup on.

“Well, I’ll be downstairs. Come when you’re ready.” With that she left.

For the next two minutes the children shook off sleep, getting up and stretching.

“So how’d everyone sleep?” asked Pound with a yawn.

“Like a rock,” said Masky. He walked over and hugged Pound. “Thank you so much for being my friend.” He squeezed a little tighter. “It’s so nice to have friends that I don’t have to leave.”

Pound grinned, hugging him back. “Well, we’re happy to have you too.”

“Speaking of,” said Pumpkin, “how are things going with your housing situation?”

“Pretty good,” he replied, letting go. “Their boss was pretty disappointed that they couldn’t travel around anymore, but he still really appreciates them for all their years of service. They’re going to be the head of the Ponyville branch of the business, which should create a lot of jobs. Right now we’re still living in a hotel, but their boss pays for that as a business expense.

“They told me that it could take a while before everything gets settled. Things are still a little lonely right now, but that’s okay. I can take it.”

Pumpkin frowned slightly. “I hope you’re not just saying that.”

Masky grinned. “I mean it, Pumpkin. When I finally worked up the courage to tell my parents how I was feeling they immediately changed their actions for my sake. Right now they’re still working a lot, so I can’t have my parents the way I want to, but just knowing how much they want to be there for me is enough.

“And besides, I have all of you. If I ever get too lonely, I know all of you are there for me. In another month or two maybe I’ll be inviting you to sleep over at MY house.”

Pumpkin didn’t look quite convinced. “And we’d definitely come, but I just feel bad.”

“If I asked my parents to stick around me it’s only going to make it take even longer before everything is fixed and I can have them more often. Besides, my problem wasn’t only with my parents. I also felt like I couldn’t make friends. I mean, I got to experience my first sleepover, and it was a total blast.”

He walked up to Pumpkin and hugged her. “Thank you for worrying about me, but I can take a little bit of loneliness now for a lifetime of happiness later. As long as I have my friends I don’t have anything to worry about.”

“Alright,” Pumpkin said, hugging him back.

Flurry sniffed the air. “Mmm. I think a batch of French toast is calling my name.”

Mayhem bounded for the door. “Let’s go eat!”

“Don’t have to tell me twice,” said Tree Leaf.

The children all sat down at the table, Cup Cake setting down damp cloths for them to wipe their hooves on.

She got their food preferences, as well as a choice between apple juice and milk, and after everyone had a plate and drink they all began to dig in.

Flurry speared a piece of toast, putting it in her mouth. After she swallowed her first bite she said, “Delicious!” It didn’t take long before half the plate was gone.

“I guess it’s to your liking?” Cup asked with a giggle.

Flurry gave a big nod. “It’s great. I think you make it even better than our royal chef.”

Cup blushed slightly. “I’m glad you enjoy my cooking. There will be more if you want.”

“I’m definitely having seconds… if you don’t mind. I don’t want to seem greedy.”

Cup patted her head, grinning. “It’s a pleasure and a delight to bake for someone that appreciates my cooking. Eat to your heart’s content.”

The bell rang on the front door.

“Good morning, everyone,” Twilight said cheerily as she walked into the kitchen.

“Hey, Twilight!” Pound called out, raising a hoof to her and waving. “Would you like some pancakes?”

“Sure,” she replied, then looked at Mrs. Cake. “If, that is, you have some to spare?”

“Of course, Princess,” said Cup Cake. “What flavor would you like?”

“Hmmm… blueberry sounds good.”

“Coming right up.”

Pumpkin levitated a chair towards the table between Flurry and Masky. “Have a seat,” she said as she shoved another piece of pancake in her mouth.

“Don’t mind if I do,” Twilight replied.

When she was seated Flurry said, “Good morning, Aunt Twilight.”

Twilight put a hoof around her. “Good morning, Flurry. Did you sleep well?”

She nodded. “It was the best first sleepover ever.”

“You said it!” said Tree Leaf.

“Right on!” said Masky.

“Mmm-hmm,” agreed Peppermint.

“I loved it,” said Mayhem.

“Well, well,” said Twilight. “Unanimous approval on all sides.”

Flurry swallowed a bite of toast. “I’m ready to go home, Aunt Twilight.” She speared another piece. “After I finish breakfast, of course.”

“Oh?” Twilight said curiously. “I thought for sure I was gonna have to fight you tooth and nail to get you to agree to go.”

“I’m not afraid anymore, Aunt Twilight. I know that no matter far apart we seven are we’ll still always be friends. So I’m not worried. Our hearts will always be united.”

“I see.” She smiled warmly at her niece. “I’m glad you understand that.”

“Mayhem made us all those magic connected journals so we can talk to each other whenever we want.”

“Oooh.”

“Besides, I miss Skyla. She slept through the whole party.”

“Yeah,” Pound said, setting his head on his hoof. “We never did get to play with her like we wanted.”

Flurry let out a little sigh. “I just wish that the kids in the Crystal Empire could be more like you guys.”

“I got an idea,” said Mayhem. “Open your wings, Flurry.”

She looked at him questioningly, then shrugged and unfurled them to their full extent. As always she felt a little self-conscious about them.

Mayhem lifted his claw into a snapping position. “With my magic I can change things for you. I can shrink your wings down to a normal size, then nobody will make fun of you for that anymore.”

“You can do that?” she asked.

“Mayhem,” Twilight said in a stern voice, “I don’t think you should be messing with someone’s body like that.”

“Why not?” he asked. “I’m not forcing her into it. She can decide for herself, so what’s the problem?”

“The problem is that her parents may not approve of you permanently changing Flurry’s appearance.”

“But her parents said that all they cared about is Flurry being happy,” said Pound, “so why would they be mad at her doing something to not be picked on?”

“Yeah,” said Pumpkin. "And if it really bothers them he can always change it back.”

Twilight looked between the children for a few moments. “I guess you have a point. If Flurry is making the choice of her own free will then I guess I can’t stop her. I just don’t think such radical changes to one’s appearance should be done without thinking about them first.”

“I have been bullied a lot.” Flurry got a melancholy look on her face. “I remember it. I remember the pain of everyone looking down at me, or being jealous or afraid.”

***

“Hmph! Alicorns already have more magic than the rest of us. Do they have to show off with their wings now too?”

“Big winged freak!”

“Look, today was okay, I guess, but I don’t want to be your friend. I only did this because my dad told me to, and he thought it would get him in the Royal Guard.”

“What, are you part dragon or something? Why are your wings so huge?”

“L-l-look, I’m sorry I spilled grape juice on you. Let’s just pretend today never happened. We never met, okay? OKAY?”

***

Flurry set her fork down. “So many kids never saw Flurry Heart. They saw an alicorn. They saw a princess. They saw gigantic wings. But for everything they saw… they never saw ME.” A tear came down her eye. “I tried to make friends, but it never went anywhere. And because I was so afraid, thinking that I had to become strong enough to protect an entire empire at only six, when other ponies pulled away from me I didn’t even try to fight to keep them.”

She looked up. “My parents dragged me out here, but even though I was rude and dismissive you didn’t abandon me.” She flapped her wings a few times. “And when I showed you my wings you didn’t laugh at them, or think it made me too weird.”

She turned to Mayhem. “And that was the worst part of it. Even though I felt horrible when other ponies called me a freak I still called you one. I’m really sorry about that.”

Mayhem shook a claw in her direction. “Well, I am pretty different. It hurt, sure, but we’ve already made up.”

“The point is…” She sniffed, tears coming down her face. “When I showed my whole self to all of you, it didn’t matter. Like Aunt Twilight said, when you saw me you saw a pony. You didn’t see just an alicorn, or a princess, or an enormous winged oddball. You saw ME. It was such a relief.”

She closed her eyes, taking a few deep breaths. “I… I made my decision. I want to keep my wings exactly as they are.”

It was what Twilight hoped to hear, but she couldn’t help but be curious. “And why is that, Flurry? Don’t you think the teasing would slow down or stop if you had normal sized wings?”

“Some of it would, but that’s not the point. When I went up to Pound and Pumpkin’s room with everyone they all talked to me like an equal. They weren’t afraid of me, and they didn’t look down on me for being different.

“Pumpkin, you said last night that even if Mayhem didn’t use his magic to make the party so random it still would have been just as enjoyable, because you valued him for him, not for what he can do.”

Pumpkin nodded. “Yeah, I said that.”

“I could ask Mayhem to make my wings smaller, or just remove them entirely, and look like just an ordinary pony to other people. However…”

She looked around at all of her friends, smiling widely. “All of you love me for me, just like Mayhem. We became best friends despite our differences. Changing my wings or getting rid of them might make other ponies like me more, but if I have to change myself THAT much just to be loved like the ponies that accepted me for everything I am already, then THEY’RE not the kinds of friends I want to have.”

Standing up on her chair she began flying. “I’m Flurry Heart, the freakishly big winged alicorn princess, and I’m proud of it! And if someone can’t accept me for ALL of me like you can then who needs them? They’d never be as good friends as all of you.”

“Awww,” said Pumpkin. “We love you too.”

Twilight was beaming as Flurry got back in her seat and started eating again, looking calm and happy. “That was a very mature thing you decided, Flurry. Peer pressure can be a big problem growing up. Sometimes we are so invested in others approval that we’ll sacrifice who we are just to continue being liked.

“That being said, however, you aren’t completely in the right.”

“What do you mean, Twilight?” asked Peppermint.

“There are two things Flurry said that are very significant. The first is that Flurry said she did the exact same thing to Mayhem that others did to her. Others have called Flurry a freak because of how big her wings are for her age, and yet she called Mayhem a ‘mix-and-match freak.’”

“But why does that matter now?” asked Pound. “You said to us during one of our talks that even princesses and adults can make big mistakes, so shouldn’t she be forgiven for her mistake?”

“Very true. The point I was making is not to make Flurry feel bad, but to understand that a first impression can play a big part in how we perceive one another. When Flurry first saw Mayhem she thought the same thing about him that others thought about her. When she got to know Mayhem her initial bias against him vanished and she grew to like him.

“The reason I invited Flurry here is so you other children can help her open up about her issues. In other words, I set things up for the best chance of success. I was involved in most of your conflicts, so I knew all of you and your personalities beforehand. You won’t always be so lucky to be in that situation.

“Now, the second thing, and the point I’m making, ties directly to the first. Flurry also said that when she ran into conflicts with potential friends she just let them go because she was too busy worrying about being forced to save the world as a preschooler. Now that you know that won’t be the case, and your parents have already planned for all your fears, I believe you can give friendship a true chance in the Crystal Empire.”

Flurry looked down. “But what’s gonna change?” she asked.

“Things can change now because YOU’VE changed. You feel more confident in who you are, and you know what you will and won’t stand for. However, just like with what happened between you and Mayhem, you also understand that sometimes it takes a little while to warm up to someone that looks different.

“The point is that you can’t expect everyone else to do the work for you, as friendship is a two-way street. Just like you and Mayhem, a pony might not accept you for you right away, so it falls on you to show them it’s worth it to change their mind about you. If a pony thinks you’re going to blow them up for making a mistake in front of a princess then it’s your job to reassure them that it’s okay to screw up. If someone thinks your big wings make you just a freak then show them that there’s more to you than just that one quality.

“It won’t always work. There are those close-minded kinds that still won’t be able to look past your outer qualities to the great inner you that shines inside, but it falls on you to cultivate and pursue those that look like they will be able to do so. Out of a hundred children you may only find three that see the true Flurry and appreciate you for all you are, but you’ll treasure those three far more than three hundred pretenders.”

Flurry looked around at the friends she had made. Among the children she had played with she could definitely think of five or six that she probably could have become true friends with if she had put in the effort and hadn’t been so deep in a river of terror.

She nodded. “Alright. I’ve got a couple of ponies in mind that I might be able to win over. And even if it goes horribly wrong and none of them give me a shot I know I’ve still got all of you waiting here for me.”

“Very good, Flurry,” said Twilight.

After breakfast all of them hugged Flurry and wished her well.

On the way towards the train station Twilight couldn’t help but let out a few happy tears at the pep in Flurry’s step. All of the children were on their way. Things had gone better than she could have ever dreamed. Her belief in the twins had not steered her wrong.

One by one Peppermint, Tree Leaf, and Masky were picked up by their parents. Mayhem said his goodbye’s himself and teleported back to Fluttershy’s cottage.

Now that everyone else was gone it felt so quiet. “I miss our friends already,” said Pound with a little sigh.

“Me too,” said Pumpkin. “But we can always play again another time.”

“I know.” He hugged her. “Happy seventh, Pumpkin.”

“Happy seventh, Pound,” she replied as she hugged him back.

“Our sixth year was pretty wild. I wonder what this year will bring.”

“Who knows? All I know for sure is that as long as I have you to look after me I’m not afraid.”

“The same to you.”

Carrot grinned at his children. He always loved to see them getting along.

The two of them moved to their room. Pumpkin sat down to read a book, while Pound took Champ out for a walk, things feeling normal once again.

When it was close to their bedtime Pound realized that with the craziness of the past day and a half he hadn’t gotten any practice in. He thought of the wish he had made, wondering how long it would take to come true.

He unfurled his wings, stretching them and rotating them in their sockets to warm them up. He then sat on the floor and began doing wing-ups.

It felt just slightly off. Maybe it was just his imagination, but it felt like there was less strain as he pushed himself off. He also could have sworn he was ever so slightly higher above the ground at the peak than he was the last time he practiced. The difference was so slight that he quickly dismissed it and focused on his practice exercises.

When he had worked up a good sweat he stood up to catch his breath and give his wings a short break. After that he jumped and started flapping hard.

“Hmm?” He definitely felt the reduction of strain as he hovered… except he wasn’t hovering. As he looked down at the ground his eyes widened. His head shot upwards at the ceiling. It was definitely getting closer to him. He was propelling himself upwards!

“Heh. Heh heh. Heh heh heh.” He started laughing a victory laugh, slowly at first but it soon blossomed into a full-body experience where he was practically shouting his joy.

Pumpkin frowned at the noise. “Pound, do you have to be so loud over-”

She gasped, dropping her book as she saw Pound almost touching the ceiling of their room. She hopped off her bed. “Pound! You’re flying!”

“I’m flying! I’m fllllllllyyyyyinnnngg!”

He angled himself downwards in a small circle, then tilted his body upwards as he kept flying, his heart soaring as much as his body.

Pumpkin felt oddly emotional as she thought to her wish the night before. Finally, all of Pound’s endless hours of practice had come to fruition. He had been so miserable and jealous of her, but now he could finally stand beside her in skill. She felt so happy for him.

“I DID IT! I DID IT!” Pound just got louder and louder, too focused on his success to even think of controlling his voice. Joyful tears came down his eyes. “WOOHOOOOOOOOO!”

It didn’t take long to get the attention of his parents. “Pound, what is all that-”

Just like with Pumpkin, the words got cut short in their throats as they saw Pound flying around.

“Oh, my,” said Cup, her legs feeling weak as tears came to her eyes. “Oh, Pound!”

Carrot put a hoof around his wife, his head against hers as he started tearing up too. Not for an instant would they think of taking this moment away from him. After all his talk of feeling inferior to everyone, telling her he felt worthless and at one point even saying he’d rather just get his wings cut off than go back to school, now he had finally accomplished his dream.

Pinkie opened her door to see what all the yelling was about, and saw Cup and Carrot just standing outside his door as she came down the stairs.

As she got close Cup turned to her, a joyful look on her face and happy tears running down her cheeks. That got her even more curious.

She looked in the door, and just like the rest she was speechless as she first saw it before she dissolved into tears as well. “Pound, you did it!” she cried out as she ran inside.

Pound looked down at her. He beamed. “That’s right!” Angling himself he descended, landing right in her hooves as he hugged her. “I did it, Auntie Pinkie! I really, really did it!” That was all he could get out before he lost himself in his emotions, sobbing uncontrollably.

Cup and Carrot took that as their cue to join in on the hug. “Way to go, Pound!” said Cup. “We always knew you could do it!”

“All you had to do was believe in yourself!” said Carrot.

Pinkie moved her hoof a little so Pumpkin could get in and hug him too. “Now both of you have embraced your special talents. We’re so so so proud of you!”

Pound’s emotions got to them until all of them were breaking down right along with him.

A spider on the windowsill chuckled. “Took you long enough to figure it out,” it said as it phased through the glass, turning into the form of Discord.

He watched the happy family lost in their happiness for a short while, feeling some of their emotions infecting him as well. He’d seen enough. “Happy birthday,” he said as he vanished with a snap of his claw.

Author's Note:

Well, everyone, it's been quite a ride. 84 chapters, almost 300 thousand words, and 3 years and eight months to get this far.

With the end of the twins birthday this marks the end of THIS story of Pound and Pumpkin Tales. There's still quite a few chapters I have in mind for the sequel. When I write the first one and publish it I'll be sure to leave a link here.

Thank you for supporting me through this wild ride into the twins lives, especially AandW guy, Firemind, DeltaXeno1138, and LoveAndTolerateEveryPony, who have been there almost since the beginning.

Stay tuned for even more peeks into the lives of the twins at they embrace their seventh year. :heart::twilightsmile:

PreviousChapters
Comments ( 50 )

So, the epilogue is next then the whole thing is complete?

8681049
Nope, that's it. Part 1 is complete.

8681051
You still have the story marked as Incomplete

Nooo...NOOOOOOOOOOO!!! I don't want it to end! NOOOOOO-wait, there's gonna be a sequel? YAY!!!

8681069
I was thinking about putting some bonus content, but I guess I should fix that.

Been a good ride man. Can't wait for the next tale.

8681179
How about Discord or Mayhem showing them what could have gone differently?

8681452
*tail

Forgive me

I think the best part was at the end with Discord saying "Happy birthday". It shows that the twins have touched the lives of more than they are aware of. Of course I'm sure he'll deny it.

Masky lifted his claw into a snapping position.

pretty sure that's supposed to be "Mayhem"

OH MY CELESTIA!!!! You almost had me in tears with the birthday stories. My heart ached for Flurry (she's so freaking adorable in the show! ) I just wanna hug Mayhem, he's so cute, and POUND CAN FLY NOW!!! I can't wait to see what adventures you give them in the next book!

8851525
Glad you enjoyed it. I still have quite a few ideas for this series.

I know it seems weird to have 'the finale' before the middle, but since this story is constantly ongoing I really just wanted to get it out of my head to free up space.

Hope you're enjoying that one too, even if it is a little more intense than the usual stories.

PAPT 2 hasn't gotten very far yet, but it's getting there.

8931301
That all makes sense; as of now I've finished reading that chapter, so yeah, things worked out. :twilightsmile: Glad to hear it's still ongoing with a sequel! I'll be checking it out as soon as I finish this one. Don't get me wrong - I love this story. I'm just the type of person who finds it easier to point out things I don't understand or that I have a problem with, with the assumed "if I don't bring it up, I liked it". :twilightsheepish: And glad to hear Pumpkin gets some focus over time - maybe it's just me, but I like her a bit more than Pound.

Out of curiosity though, why is this story still marked as "incomplete" if you've moved on to a sequel?

8931312
At the time this story was in a group for ongoing stories with no planned conclusion, which certainly fits. I just didn't if marking part 1 as complete would make them remove it from the group, though they did mention sequels getting a pass.

If Pumpkin you wants, Pumpkin you gets. As I mentioned chapter 17 is a one-shot where Pumpkin helps a filly in need. I calll it her friendship exam because she needs to use a lot of her previous experiences to get through to her.

Chapter 19 is also pretty Pumpkin focused. It's split between Pound dealing with his bullies, and Pumpkin having her first crush on a new student.

And if you go to read the finale you'll really like it, because Pumpkin is the main star there. It involves an invasion where Pumpkin is separated from her family and her magical gift awakens. It turns out to be pretty powerful.

If the Cake Twins and the main OCs in this story were voiced, what would they sound like?

9179655
I'm not really good at voices. I don't have a set voice in mind when I write them.

10007444
Also, I meant he is being stubborn about not letting ponies show him kindness, not that his stubbornness was exactly the reason he was refusing love.

10007957
Thank you so much! I already have friends and family to voice the important roles and I know lots of artists who I can ask for help with the art. I'll do my best to make it happen! ^-^

10357953
OHHHH OKEY DOCKEY LOCKEY

10359391
Who is this friend of yours that wants to kill me 😂😂😂😂. It's gold and should be kept safe at all times. Such preciousness should be valued.

Hey if you're not busy would you please read my newest story. It would be an honour and maybe you could give me some pointers. Would mean the world to me.

Hey. I remember this. I think, I found it in November of 2016... Hum-m-m... The last chapter was definitely about getting a pet. Or, more likely, it was even earlier, but no earlier, than January of 2016, judging by the chapter publish date. Yes, the first half of 2016!

So emotionally twisted! And here I am back.

10878454
Yes, I figured that much. But some of the supposed one-shots were referenced, as I remember, so the plot may be considered to start in those early chapters. Some of them, however, fit nowhere, unless they are referenced. I merely keep track of that.

It's good to see you are alive!

10885927
But they told me, that after finishing my stay in kindergarten I'd go to school... And so I did, when I turned seven. So "school" has always meant something different from a kindergarten...

To summarise: by multichapter 11 there are chapters: 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9 and 10, which are referenced. Chapter 7 references chapter 6, thus being the earliest point a plot appears, and chapter 9 introduces an account of an important (even if sad) event, serving as a stem to said plot. It is unlikely there will appear standalone chapters after chapter 11.

Thus the only chapters so far, not adding to the plot, are chapters: 1, 5 and 8, unless further chapters reference those.

:twilightsmile:.

10892931

To summarise: by multichapter 11 there are chapters: 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9 and 10, which are referenced. Chapter 7 references chapter 6, thus being the earliest point a plot appears, and chapter 9 introduces an account of an important (even if sad) event, serving as a stem to said plot. It is unlikely there will appear standalone chapters after chapter 11.

Thus the only chapters so far, not adding to the plot, are chapters: 1, 5 and 8, unless further chapters reference those.

So I'm curious, since you seem to have a real focus on it, at this time what would you say "the plot" is? I don't understand why simply making a reference to a previous chapter suddenly makes that chapter "plot-relevant."

Chapter 5 does get a reference later on, but as far as I remember 1 and 8 never do.

There isn't another one-shot chapter until 17, one of my favorites. Pound usually gets most of the focus because he's the more emotional of the two, so I wanted to let Pumpkin get her own chapter where she helps a filly solve a problem with her dad.

I can't wait until you get to chapter 15. It is one of the most fun arcs I got to write, as it's the introduction of Discord to the story.

10894140
It's simply that, when kids mess up, it is their parents, who have to listen to complaints. Parents are responsible for their kids' behaviour.

The suffering you refer to is not the due payment. In fact, getting scolded so harshly to the point of despare was a somewhat poor parenting... The twins didn't amend matters, nor were they charged for their mischief (back in the kindergarten). Their parents had to be chewed out, not to mention, Twilight was disappointed... And if there'd been no scolding at all, maybe, the twins wouldn't even have considered thinking of how they'd behaved. But they got scolded, and they repented... Unfortunately, they did not realise they just had to correct their behaviour. Instead they thought themselves irredeemable... Oops... That was another mistake the adults had to pay for: the twins decided to run away. In the end the twins only suffered from the adults' mistakes -- but they were not charged (duh, they're minors).

And then Pound misbehaves! He wants to be listened -- and so the adults listen. Instead of coming off as a poor child with troubles... what does he do? As if he'd done nothing wrong and as if the adults hadn't had the right to scold and to punish the twins for what they'd done... he fumes! Even though he admits to the misdeeds... He just suggests the adults did it wrong...

So, as I said, I don't think I could listen to them, if I were their parent. I can imagine, I'd just do something not improving the situation at all... A gut feeling of sorts.

But, then again, I think I'd handle the situation differently. No running away from home...

Mehopes, this clarifies it.


And you're also trying to compare the mind of a child to the mind of an adult. These are six year olds. They're not going to have the best impulse control or mindsets. That's why the adults in their lives need to set good examples for them so they learn how to handle themselves better.

Indeed. This is exactly why I'd demand of children to treat me respectfully. Impulse control... Undeveloped minds... They need adults, and adults have to nurture them. They have to tell them: "You have still much to learn, my child, so remember: you may think yourself right, but there will be people to prove you wrong. Do not misbehave. Listen to the grown-ups. Trust your parents and treat them with honour, for they are your loving family".

As once demonstrated in the show (S2:E17, the CMC seek a special somepony for Cheerilee), kids make mistakes, but can they be charged? No. As I summarised the lesson:

So, CMC... Learn responsibility -- or do not make decisions. Listen to the grown-ups and learn, and one day they'll entitle you for great roles! That day -- the sky will be your only limit! (Actually, prepare for that day and do not be afraid to try new things. Do you see my message here?)

Good children are responsible -- but more often they are not, and so they must be docile and, more importantly, have an attentive ear and respect toward the elders. Such good children are rewarded, when they ask, if they may give a try to something new. And adults should encourage those good children as not to be afraid of dreaming big and to be daring! Seriously, adults, do reward virtues in your kids! How much of good parents are you?

Again, I hope you understand me and my comments.

10894163
But without the referenced chapters the story appears incomplete... As if we've missed something... If I were to start from the middle, I should be confused for sure.

So far the plot appears to be: the twins are crushed repeatedly with intense emotions... but in the end the reward is most delightful, for through that they grow!

Thank you for explaining things. I'll reach later chapters eventually. Once again, writing this must have been emotionally exhausting... But we like to invest emotions!

10894319 See, I still can't agree with your viewpoint. There's a difference between listening to someone and actually hearing what they're saying.

Yes, Cup was listening, but as the narration said she found herself getting defensive and brushing his complaints off. She wasn't really acknowledging her role in things. That's why they felt they weren't really making any progress and why Pound got angrier, starting to desire revenge.

As soon as Cup actually emphathized with his feelings and appeared genuinely sorry Pound's red-hot emotions immediately cooled off and pulled a 180.

It all came down to just wanting to feel understood. All it took was a symptathetic parent to break down the walls and allow them to forgive each other. It made Pound realize that he was being no better than what he was accusing them of.

If you consider that they got scolded 3 different times for the same thing and nobody even tried to talk to them from the time they got home from school until shortly after they ran away I'd say they are more at fault. Yes, doing bad things deserve consequences, but the adults botched it up and I believe they deserved to be called out.

If they had at least sat down and talked with them about their feelings they wouldn't have felt the need to run away. So I believe Pound has every right to fume. Even Twilight needed to be coaxed into actually caring they had run away when she started out just annoyed they were avoiding punishment. So basically the adults all did a crummy job and brought all this pain upon themselves for not trying to be more understanding.

10895046
Surprisingly, everything appears just as you've said... Still... Mistakes were made by the parties... First the adults... Then Pound in his confrontation with his mother... And in the end they settled...

It appears right, but sounds out of place... When parents make mistakes, they have to fix them. They are not careless children. Pound behaved as if he'd been the adult, but that wasn't right. Even though the adults had goofed, they were not his children, and he was not their authority.

So Pound's behaviour was... impolite... Would you defend that? Impoliteness might be tolerable with the Cake parents... Maybe, that was why they decided to bear with Pound, knowing they had goofed...

But I don't think I would tolerate that in their place. Gee, I keep repeating that.

The twins were indeed suffering victims... Let us not forget that. They needed justice. And justice came...

But still, the adults were rather tolerable...

I can just see it: my sweet Pound and Pumpkin go to kindergarten... and goof!.. The principal is furious! Kids, I'm put to shame! I thought I raised you better!.. And time passes, and they run away. Oh my sweet children!.. You didn't have to!.. Not to mention, you've made me worried! And desperate... Oh? Fluttershy! Thank you! My sweethearts!.. But Fluttershy will have none of that! She demands we'd shut up and listen. Though reluctantly, we do comply. And the twins start: "Oh gosh darn it to hecks! What is the big problem??! Is that how you love your kids??! Honestly, I! Am! Infuriated! You all will pay, you good for nothing goofballs!!!" Now this is not the way to speak to your parents! But Fluttershy hushes: no, that won't work! And I, nonetheless: listen, my beloved child... I will not stand and listen through your outrage! I'll be blunt: what you're saying isn't right! Good kids respect their elders! If you come here to play offence, then knock it! Need I remind, that it was you, who goofed! Who did the wrong thing in the first place! You must accept the consequences and learn! To! Be-have! "Ha! I KNEW IT!!! YOU DO HATE US!!!" I'll have none of that, Pound! I am your parent, and that means I love you! And I punish those I love! And those I don't -- I just cast away into darkness! They perish, but my beloved ones shall not! They WILL be good! For the good never perish!..

...

...So... See?.. What Pound did was not a good behaviour... That, however... would only cause his troubled heart to plummet, for he'd be confronted...

I do realise my suggested attitude would heal no one, but... Pound was in the wrong. Had he only not fumed...

This... is exactly why the Cakes are the parents, and not I...

Now... if I might proceed with the reading...

10895271 My viewpoint on it is that they're just lashing out. Fluttershy's advice was to just let them vent and get all their bad feelings into the open, that way they could work on resolving them. Feelings create similar feelings. Hate creates hate, and love creates love. The twins felt they were hated, so they were coming at the adults with hate.

His issue, in the end, wasn't about DENYING wrongdoing, as you suggested, but that they were being attacked over and over again for the exact same action, and no one sans Fluttershy was willing to give them a chance. When Cup showed Pound love it instantly dissolved his anger and turned it back to love, making him feel guilty for being so aggressive to his mother.

10895340

Hate creates hate, and love creates love.

Undeniably! So all the more the hate Pound showed was unjustified. Being hurt, he tried to hurt back. And though all he needed was indeed just some love... that love could be created not by hate, but by love! He only thought he was hated, which was untrue, but, if he'd asked for love, he'd have surely received it. Instead, though?.. Yeah...

It was a good thing his mother decided to get hurt in a sacrifice: she didn't react with hatred to hatred, because she was admittedly smarter, what with her being more mature... Shame on you, Pound!

At least he felt guilty for that... Just as you've said.

And I? I didn't suggest Pound had denied his misdeeds, rather his behaviour had suggested that.

I'm not trying to portrait the twins as wrong-doers, nay. Their behaviour is totally understandable -- up to the point they start raging. But that was resolved: they didn't hate their parents after all.

10895384 If he thought he was hated by his family then why would he think to ask for love? From his perspective, all the adults besides Fluttershy were an enemy. She was the only thing stopping the adults from treating them the same way they did earlier. They were still terrified of their family, and only returned home because they were freezing and soaked from the rain.

Shame on you, Pound!

See, this makes me angry. I feel you're putting too much blame on Pound. The adults repeatedly talked down to them, made them feel like crap, pushed them to run away from home because they thought they weren't wanted, and after all that we're expected to just think they're going to ask for love when they haven't even gotten a genuine apology yet?

I'm not trying to say Pound did nothing wrong or he was acting in the best way, but it's the role of the parent to soothe their child's hurt feelings, especially when they're the ones who caused those feelings in the first place, and Cup wasn't doing that. She couldn't drop her pride enough to apologize from the heart and really acknowledge her role in things until she felt like she was going to lose his love forever if things continued on as they were.

Once she stopped trying to justify her poor treatment of him and actually tried to understand his viewpoint she became empathetic and could show him love. If the adults hadn't let the children's feelings fester all day by just trying to have a conversation with them about what happened instead of ignoring them all day this wouldn't have happened in the first place. So the adults aren't just innocent victims in this and the kids just jerks.

10895982

If he thought he was hated by his family then why would he think to ask for love?

Why? He needed to be loved, and he thought he was hated. The next logical thing to ask? "Please, don't hate me... I just want some love..." Even though, as you've said, he (and Pumpkin) lost his trust in the grown-ups, love was what they both desired. Were they expecting the adults to respond with love to some inappropriate talk? They must be coaxed into meekness. Not into fuming. That's what children learn, as they grow.

That said, I feel at fault... I do realise it was a hard time for the twins, and I did mention mistakes had been made. The adults were not so innocent. And as adults they'd have to pay the price... And, as if they hadn't been going to, Pound... did his thing. He just had to show, just how hurt they both had been. And I'd expect the adults to understand that.

I've seen you feel angry, by your testament, and I understand and want to say, I've never intended to cause you bitterness. Pound was hurt, and I empathised. Pumpkin was hurt, and I cared. Their troubles, believe me, are not insignificant. I see their pain, and, if I had been their parent and made the same mistakes, upon realising that -- I'd have repented, sought the kids and given them their hearts' desire, shown them, that despite what they might think I still cared for them. I am not heartless. It is considering me heartless that gives that result. The twins are quite eligible to experience pain and to receive comfort. They shall receive it. And if they cause others to experience the same pain... How can they get comfort?.. The parents may comfort them, but who'll comfort the parents?..

With this I hope to invoke relief in you, that I am not in fact unfair toward the poor twins. Oh nay! My heart is with them!

10897158
Oh, don't worry. I'm not bitter at all. I enjoy having in-depth conversations about my characters and the stories I write.

I just got a little annoyed with that specific sentence because it felt like you were villainizing Pound rather than just disagreeing with him.

I guess my thought process is that since the adults instilled those feelings of hate it was on them to demonstrate love to make up for it, not the children to ask for it.

At the start of the next arc we see all of the adults have learned from this experience. Pinkie instills in them the notion of "we only hate the behavior, and not the child." Twilight works to teach them how to better cope with their feelings. And the adults in general try to work on staying calm and being nonjudgmental. So this arc has consequences for future behavior.

Though considering our conversations here I'm a bit concerned about how you're going to respond to the arc after the next one, as it specifically deals with Pound trying to get hate because of a certain event.

10898100
'Tis a good thing to hear we have not grudges!

The adults, however... Are they not the responsible ones? And if they are, are they not entitled to others' telling them what they did wrong? It's been told me, that I should speak, if I have troubles... Repeatedly... But I was rather responsible, albeit a child, and took upon myself to deal with my issues... And I learnt, that I had many things to learn. And if I had not... I'd have, perhaps, remained ignorant for the rest of my life. And what'd have become of me, if I had had kids? Would I have become a bad parent? How should I have been to know, what I'd done wrong? How should I have realised I had, as you've said, "instilled those feelings of hate" in them? And how long would it have taken me to realise that and to do what I should have done?.. if no one had told me I'd done something wrong... If, if I had known!..

Well, the moment has passed. Back to reading!

Please, think not of me badly. Although they tell me judgement is a part of my personality (of which I'd not be so certain), I think twice or even more times, before I speak. And if I be proven wrong in my reasonings, justice will follow nonetheless, for I flatter myself never to stand in its way! So fear not!

10899553
Doesn't that make "judgment" sound like "jud-gment"? With "-gment" from "segment" or "pigment" :rainbowhuh:? Why should E go from the judge, when he's about to make a judgement :twilightoops:? I appeal to logic.

Hum-m-m... The French, I've heard, spell "judgement" as "jugement"... Without the D... That, however, would make it sound "joogement" in English.

10902171
I just want to say this in reply: the logic you've shown Pound follow is not faulty. It was explained to him, that he did a poor job protecting his sister. His reaction to that, though? "Gee, I'm so bad at this..." And just before that he was ready to butt heads with Twilight! This sharp turn in his behaviour doesn't seem correct! I can't believe he'd be so easy to accept the new way. It takes time! He should be unsure of making a step to the new direction, for there's still the old Pound, who's not yet gone.

That's all the issue.

10903554
Action in a time of quiet is different from action in the moment. Just because he's being accepting now doesn't mean he'll actually be when it comes time to put it into practice. As was shown, Pound mastered his emotions when it came to the practice sessions, but when Pumpkin was actually attacked Pound readily threw it away for revenge. The only thing that stopped him was hearing Pumpkin cry.

Pound's emotions war with each other several more times over the course of the series, where he wishes to pursue violence but forcing himself to hold back out of fear it will make things worse for Pumpkin, so the old Pound is definitely not immediately gone. He's just willing to try pursuing a different tactic.

10904439
Whatever do you mean?? It's a list: "the day and the day"! Lists need no comma!

The other one, however, introduces complex sentences with "if" clauses. It doesn't read well without the commas. Especially "if you overtrust someone".

10904470
Although the old Pound, as you've said, will not be gone immediately and will return, he does hide very quickly. As if he'd not been there! And that wasn't expected. Pound should have been more unsure about changing his ways, you see.

10908757
Are you saying writers are eligible to forget rules in direct speech :rainbowhuh:? That's incorrect. Although characters may have an F in speaking-style, reading through their mistakes is as painful, as reading through someone's chat message with same mistakes. That's annoying. People have been pointing those flaws out, but who does that to characters?

Narrating about someone correcting someone has to serve a purpose, which I don't see here. So it is upon you as the writer and the narrator to correct the characters' mistakes, because you report their speech. Like a journalist. This is why characters in fiction never err: their speech is reported, corrected and censored. It has to be important to say a character said something with errors, for example, it is a character's trait and everyone comments on that.

However it sounds highly unlikely Twilight would not check herself before saying things. She's studied and is expected to speak perfectly correctly. Thus it becomes funny, when she does err. And you know, how we, readers, are: we like funny!

But in this one her erroneous speech is not funny, for no one even notices. So I notice and correct it, reporting it to you. And if you choose to leave it as is, I am sure others, coming after me, will notice and report corrections regardless. And comments shall repeat themselves, and this warning shall multiply.

I don't know, how you'll cope with that... And I just wanted not to insist... Unless... you agree...

10910176
Oh, gee, I'm totally not hacking :twilightblush:!.. The mistake appeared to be right there... Maybe, the other readers' eyes were not so sharp...

10910181
Do keep in mind, a lot of chapters were very emotional. Complicated feelings, twisted in knots... It took a lot to unwind them. That's sweet for a reader to read!

This chapter 14 has had that part that was difficult to put away: in the other parts I found ways to stop and to comment, but part 3 was just too well knit for me to stop! Even though I spotted errors to report, I couldn't stop. That's good.

Further chapters may reach out to me more, but we'll get to them later.

I think, so far the out-of-school-kicking story was the most emotional one. Chapter 14 gets its award as the well knit one -- well-knitness signifies immersion, and we like that! Though Twilight seemed behaving manipulatively (I forecast an apology from her), she was the princess of friendship and did what she had to. But she failed -- seemingly, as the kids had come to hate each other's guts. And then, when it seemed hopeless -- wow! The poor kids found they could be friends after all. It's a... satisfying ride!..

And there is yet part 4 to read!

10910181
Adding to what I've said in reply to this...

Have I been spewing negativity, by chance? It appears you have been suffering! But really! Here things go wrong, and who can avert the oncoming disaster? The readers are worried. And the hero appears... but is not so heroic! Hence my saying!

For instance, Fluttershy. Compassion was expected from her -- of unimaginable proportions! If I had inserted myself into the story, I think I'd have empathised on a bigger scale. Fluttershy didn't seem to suffer alongside the twins, so I commented on that: "Is that how you empathise?" Although the story was beautiful, the salvator seemed not so heroic.

Or take the twins later on. Although they deserved their fair share of retribution, my internal judge didn't deem them right. You don't set things right by hurting someone. Either the twins had to know that, or someone had to tell them: no! And we've discussed this. It's hard to sympathise with someone, who from poor little turns offencive. I felt their pain and sorrow, but at the venting I saw the injustice -- and commented on it. You told me I was unfair toward them, but they sought comfort and should receive it; the adults, however, giving them comfort in letting them speak their minds, wouldn't receive comfort. Which was unfair. As well as messing with the expectations of either party, even though the emotional tale was beautifully tear-worthy.

And Twilight. I expected her to be wise, but she did not what I expected of her, so I commented. She was the issue-resolver, but came off unwise: that was not the way to show flaws in child logic. Though the moral was good, she tainted the feel of the otherwise beautiful tale.

Things like those create a feeling of dissatisfaction, even though without them I'd praise your work and sing you glory. But I'm not dissatisfied with your work as a whole, and those little things can be forgotten, once I'm overwhelmed with the next chapter I proceed to after reading another one!

So, please, take no offence, for I am not here to criticise :fluttershysad:.

10910312
Obviously you like the story, You wouldn't have read like 25 chapters if you didn't. I don't mind if you don't agree with every action and call out what you dislike. It's just that it's also nice to hear what went right. What keeps you coming back for more. That's all.

10910761

"As a princess every pony is like family". But not every pony is a princess :twilightoops:...


I'm not sure if you're joking about this one. Twilight is saying that she considers it her duty as a princess to see all the citizens of Ponyville like her family.

Wait a second :applejackconfused:! So Twilight's line should have been like: "As a princess I, Twilight Sparkle, have a duty to see all of them as my family". But the original never mentions Twilight. It mentions a family and "every pony", who is like family. In fact, "as a princess every pony is like family" can be reworded as: "Every pony, being a princess, is like family". To convey what you think it does, it has to include Twilight, who is a princess and who as a princess has to see every pony as family.

Twilight is a princess. So she says about herself: "As a princess I..." And if she says that about "every pony", it means every pony is a princess, hence my confusion.

10910795
Ah... I see.

I feel awkward... But thank you, anyway, for believing in me!

10912202 In this scenario I think you're wrong. "As a princess..." Twilight is the only princess there, so she's obviously talking about herself and doesn't need to awkwardly namedrop herself.

"...every pony is like family." This doesn't need explanation.

Put them together, and you have Twilight speaking about how she feels of the citizens of Ponyville.

Considering you love pointing out the references to previous chapters you might want to go back to part 1 of this arc, since she's referencing what she said to Pound earlier.

A princess is the ruler of the ponies around her. She is expected to protect the land and be a shield for everyone, regardless of age, relation, or circumstance. And what that means is now I have to consider every pony in Ponyville like a member of my family, and do for them what I would do for my closest friends.”

10912554
But wait! Grammatically "as a princess someone..." means, that "someone" is a princess! So, as I said, this could be reworded into: "Someone, being a princess, is/does..."

It is logical, that Twilight is the only princess, so this logic must not be contradicted by grammar. If Twilight can't be possibly talking but about herself, "I" has to follow that expression, so, followed by "every pony" as the subject, the "as a princess" comes to describe "every pony", which doesn't seem correct.

Again, if Twilight says, that she feels "every pony is like family" to her, she should say it that way. Saying simply, that "every pony is like family" (or for short... FLDSMDFR EPILF!) leads to a mistaken belief, that everyone is related. To clarify things, Twilight may say, that "to me EPILF". This sounds odd... What is so special about Twilight that validates her saying that? To that Twilight says, that "to me as [to] a princess EPILF". And everyone "o-o-oh!"-s in understanding, nodding, because that makes absolute sense: she is a princess, so of course she considers EP as F, which explains why to her EPILF.

So lacking in "as a princess EPILF" is "to me", because that way it states the truth (that "me", Twilight, is a princess), expresses Twilight's intentions (she wants to say about how she treats EP -- as F) and preserves what you envisioned (saying EPILF to Twilight).

"To me as a princess every pony is like family" :twilightsmile:.

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