• Published 22nd May 2014
  • 5,690 Views, 292 Comments

Renegades - TheAndyMac

When the Hive speaks with one voice, what do you do when your voice speaks out of synch? For two changelings, there is only one answer; run.

  • ...

Renegades: Final Report

3 Days Later

Evening Breeze stood in front of the full-length mirror, inspecting himself one last time. His new self. A form that had been a challenge to put together, a patchwork of real and imagined ponies with a little of himself poured into the mix.

Light grey fur covered his body, his mane a darker shade of the same, and the eyes that stared back at him with almost the same vivid blue as his real ones. His scar stood proud and clear on his muzzle, left ear curtailed, just as his true muzzle and ear were. Plain to look at, aside from the obvious damage, but that was right. If he were to be a pony, this would be him. The spiralling horn atop his brow completed that self-image.

It hadn't been a hard choice, committing himself to the shape of a unicorn over the other options. Magic had always been his first instinct, just as Sun preferred to trust in his wings. His pegasus form, then, had been no great surprise. Neither had the white coat or the grey mane that was clipped close to his skull and neck.

Silver Lining had furnished them with the small apartment, a stone's throw from the castle itself, no doubt at some expense. It was a shame that they hadn't stayed long; the enlistment process had been hurried on from a months-long selection process to a matter of mere days, and it was already time for them to report to the city barracks. Silver had promised, somewhat grudgingly, that the place would be waiting for them once they were through Basic. And that a portion of their pay would be going towards its rent. Celestia hadn't been seen as anything more than a distant white figure since that last moonlit conversation, and it was hard to say that she had been anything more than a dream.

The whole world was changing so fast he could say for sure that he wasn't still dreaming it all, in that strange half-sleep in the dungeons. Maybe he'd wake soon, or maybe not. Maybe he was still asleep in the one-room apartment with Nat and Val beside him. If they could see him now... He closed his eyes for a second or so, hoping that they were out of the city and safe. There had been no word from the Guard, at least, according to Silver.

Glancing over to make sure that the curtains were still drawn he let his disguise burn away, and regarded his true shape for what was likely to be the last time in a good while. Aside from supervised trips away to feed under the watchful eye of Silver, there would be no time away from the scrutiny of camp instructors and fellow recruits. All good practice, so Sun said.

In his mind's eye he tried to see the gilded armour of a Guardspony over his black-shelled form. Bright helmet atop his head crested with blue or grey hair. Saddle strapped around his middle, his holed hooves clad in gleaming shoes.

The imagined sight made him snort with laughter, just as he heard Sun's voice calling him. With a start he shifted back, letting the green flames die down before he seized a small duffel bag in his magic and joined his friend. They bumped snouts briefly then stepped off together, into something strange and new.

Evening Breeze

and Rising Sun

will return

Author's Note:

So it ends! At least for now. It's been a far longer ride than I expected it to be, but I'm glad to have this much out, and one story completed. My sincerest thanks to everyone who's stuck with it for these four years and more.

And now a short note, the clarify that future stories will carry the AU tag. Mostly because of the events of the season 6 finale, which are honestly incompatible with the story as I imagined it. I tried to stick as close to canon as possible, if with a few embellishments, but there comes a point with most fanfics, I think, when you have to admit that the tag belongs.

Again, though, I need to say thank you. From the bottom of my heart.

EDIT: Fun fact, originally I was planning to have a sequel or side story subtitled 'Changeling of the Guard' before I discovered there was already a (somewhat more popular) fic of the same name!

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Comments ( 30 )

This story was fantastic.

Though I am sorry that I wasn’t around for ride, I joined in right at the end.

Still. Should there be more, I’ll be reading.


I loved it from start to end, all the way through. It's really been three years, wow - kind of crazy to think about!

Thank you for writing it!

Well you can always make some small cameo of 'changeling of the guard' in your sequel ;p

Well, this has certainly been an interesting journey. I would say the end's a slight disappointment after four years, but considering your claim there will be more, I can't really say anything too soon. I also sense some Canterlot Wedding coming up. I think. I dunno.
What I'm trying to say, is that I'm looking forward to more Sun and Breeze. I'll keep an eye out for it.

Evening Breeze

and Rising Sun

will return

in the next Avengers


Bravo! It has come to end end at last,and what a good end it was! :heart:

totally awesome story.
i cant weight to see how
Evening Breeze
Rising Sun
get threw training and the kind of training that faces them.

This is one of my favorite cha geling fics, up there with the aforementioned changeling of the guard. I am also very happy that you decided to buck the moosen out and look forwards to what you do next!

A very nice end to a very nice story! Was a great ride through and I can't wait to see what the sequel will have in store!

It's always nice to find good changelings fics out there.

Nice story, can barely wait to see more. I can imagine how different this will be from Changeling of the Guard, with Sun and Breeze being saner than Idol and in a more serious story, and I'll anxiously await for it.

Specially for when Luna comes back. I wonder how will she receive them, and vice versa.

Well it may have been better for you that way, you didn't have to face the extended dry spells when writer's block decided to stomp on me! Thanks as always for the kind words. :twilightsmile:

Mostly crazy because it took me that long to write a 100k word story; this is why I'd never make a professional author!

Probably for the best that I avoid that; I was already worried that the ending might end up with some accusations of idea-stealing. :rainbowwild:

One hopes it was the good sort of surprise.

Thanks! Looking forward to telling more stories with them!

Thank you, though I may have to ask for clarification about 'bucking the moosen out'?

Happy to add to the list, and glad that this one ranks so highly for you.

I'll take your word for that, I've sort of made a conscious decision to avoid that particular story, given the basic concept of it!

It's sad, but well, glad too. Such a paradoxial thing to see a complete. This was a grand story, very personal in the whole of it.

What these two have been on, and through, something else. And the story at the end. There is that solemnity, and the moment of hitting close to home for the long day.

Thank you for writing this.

I can certainly see why you'd see it that way. There was something of an intentional irony, that they start and end in what at least seem to be similar circumstances on opposite sides of the border. That being said, future stories should make it more apparent that the more restrictive conditions are intended to be temporary.

Ad for why they don't bring up mitigating circumstances and such, I hope it's apparent that Breeze, at least, feels a pretty hefty measure of guilt at the things they've done or let happen, even if they were forced into the position. The Flower Fillies back in Integration - II are the big example; even if they weren't technically responsible, they still feel responsible for not doing or saying anything to stop it. The authorities assume Breeze and Sun were more culpable for the assumed deaths than they actually were, and neither changeling feels as though they should correct that misunderstanding

Moosen = filthy traitorous not-changelings

Read it, loved it!
You get a rare fav!

Fair enough. You don't need to worry though, Changeling of the Guard is much more about blundering, dumb luck and shenanigans with plot amidst that.

Do give it a read after you finish the next story though, you won't regret it :twilightsmile:

And thank you for reading it! There (hopefully) will be more, at some point.

Ah, I see!

I'll accept it with honour!

I'll keep an eye on it, for sure.

Comment posted by TheAndyMac deleted Oct 28th, 2018

Ahh, this story was excellent. I don't really have much more to say, besides that I really enjoyed following it from the very beginning; it was always great to see an update for this in my library.

Hmm, really? Haven't read too many changeling fics, so I can't say it's something I've really come across. Breeze is very into it, at least, even if Sun isn't!

Thanks, I have a few ideas I'm working with that I hope people will enjoy!

And lo, I have reached the end!
Enjoy your well earned spot on the best-of-the-best shelf.

And now waiting for the sequel...

Funnily enough the aforementioned "The Changeling of the Guard" pops up as top option under "Similar" there on the right, hah.

(TL;DR below)

Well... this story has the feature that it can surprise you with the way it goes.
Firstly I thought they're just gonna get out of the hive, and the story will be just adapting to the new life. (i. e. a bit more of the stuff in the Interlude) I didn't expect mafia-like organization and stuff like that, but frankly, I don't mind them. They worked out very well.

I love the changelings' roles with Sun being an unofficial leader, and Breeze being a follower. The names fit, you can see that Breeze is the analytic one, knows less about the outside-the-hive stuff, and can read ponies a bit better than Sun. Whereas Sun has the leader's features. This dynamic worked out supremely and was enjoyable throughout the story. Nat's character is also very interesting, I didn't catch the detail how she got into the organization in the first place, but I loved the role she played. Val was also a great supporting character - I want to see more of all of them, if that's even a little bit possible. Another good character was Goldy. Well, "good". He was the guy I love to hate, despite the fact that he probably didn't have much choice in the stuff he did.

Unfortunately, the weak link of the story to me seems to be the ending. Mainly for these three reasons:

  1. There's no mention of what happened to Val, Nat, Goldy, nor the organization where these characters work. I'd expect Sun and Breeze to spill some info about it, so the justice system could get to them. It could be another dilemma, because usually when you do stuff like that, you don't end up well. (in this case, well means alive)
    Next, Nat and Val: You set up the scene with Breeze and Nat so well, that was such a promising piece of drama that could've been expanded upon. Instead, we have a situation in which they can't reconcile any time soon.
    At least we know what's happened to the two mares back then... The fact that Sun and Breeze were basically their executioners gives that somber feeling, but that outcome was expected.
  2. The resolution, damn! That's so sad! They're running away from the system in which they're mere minions, in order to get the freedom. Hence the "we'll either escape or die free" line in the first chapters. Here they end up with no choice, and they have to accept "the offer" Celestia gives them. The whole scene was uncannily similar to the scene where Goldy challenged them to pay their debts. Not a very happy ending.
  3. The way they surrendered... I have to admit I didn't see that coming. They know what they've done, and they know the pursuers know at least something about it. They still know that the capture would be possibly a death for them. They fight for six months just to give up out of nowhere? Seriously? There was no hint of them accepting this as an option before the very chapter it happened in. I get it that the arguement with Nat brought them down, but it felt too sudden nevertheless. I hoped something bigger would happen here, a crucial mistake that would expose them, or a betrayal,... anything that isn't serving themselves on a silver plate for the possible (and considering the circumstances, I'd say likely) death row.

Neither of the three points above is bad, the first two points are actually pretty realistic and it's more or less how I'd expect the things to end up in real life. None of the things above is bad writing, it's all a legit way this all could get down and it was the author to decide what way this all of this will happen. This was just one of the options, and it's impossible to say that this is bad. I can only say how it feels. And frankly, it feels very anticlimatic and underwhelming. (mainly because the rest of the story sets the bar high)

The fact that I managed to read this all in one week is a good proof that it got me immersed, I usually end the long stories after chapter two because I lose the interest.

TL;DR: Despite the ending, I liked the story throughout a lot. The dialogues were entertaining, the decisions protagonists had to make made my brain go wild, and the characters are very charismatic.

Honoured to be there, thank you!

Believe it or not, that's where I first say it. Came as something of a shock, to be sure.

First, let me say that I greatly appreciate the feedback, and the wall of text. It's nice to know I can inspire such reactions in people! I think a lot of your concerns mostly down to a case of 'first-in-a-series-itis' on my part. Things being left for later stories and such, with the hope that plans won't come crashing down like they have with fledgling cinematic universes for the last...five years or so!

I'll admit, though, since you're not the first person to comment about the uncanny parallel's in Celestia's deal, that I didn't see that side of it. I was honestly more worried that people might see it as them getting off too lightly, or her putting too must trust in them. I may have overcorrected slightly, in this case.

Still, I'm glad enjoyed it that much, even with the ending!


Things being left for later stories and such...

I was rating this with the assumption you wanted to use all of it in one story. So if you want to carry the potential into another story and use it there, I don't mind at all!

I was honestly more worried that people might see it as them getting off too lightly, or her (Celestia) putting too must trust in them.

Well, considering everything they've done, the first worry is pretty legit. The version you went with is probably more realistic than them getting away too lightly, as you say. On second though, the genre's called fantasy, and it's supposed to be unrealistic... I can see the dilemma you had to go through in this part. But that's just the price you pay for a story with a happy end. If you went with a morbid/tragic ending, you wouldn't have to worry about it. Kudos to you for not going with the easy route.

And no worries about Celestia, I'd say you've written her very well. Calm, collected, perceiving rather than judging,... That's pretty much the way she's in the canon.

I started this story about half a year ago, or maybe longer, but about 3 or so chapters in I paused and went to other stories, feeling that it wasn't capturing me enough.

These last few days, though, I started reading again, ending up finishing it already, and I'm happy. I enjoyed this story, and I'm honestly glad I came back to it. I'm eagerly awaiting the sequel, and sure hope I remember to check for it every once in a while since there's not really any alerts for a sequel to a story you've read being published on this site.

This looks to be interesting. Time to read again!

...well, later.

I am anxious for the sequel to this! A story very well done. :eeyup:

Any chance of sequel? Maybe as they work for Celestia, or the Main 6 and others do cameos and we see what happen during the invasion.

It will be interesting to read the sequel even if I am mad that the fact they were forced to commit all their crimes in Filly wasn't acknowledged.

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