• Member Since 10th Jul, 2014
  • offline last seen 7 hours ago

naturalbornderpy


Just a nice, polite Canadian.

T

A mammoth being of ancient metals and gears has awakened from the earth with the sole intention of destroying every villain in Equestria. Untouchable, unmovable, Discord remains as its last target of worth. Now the Spirit of Chaos must beg for Celestia's aid, even if things are so much more complicated than he would have ever wanted.

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 79 )

This... Is so good...
MOAR

Okay Chryssie was evil but how can it view the changelings evil? Damn abomination.

Celestia should have been moved when genocide occured.

Apparently to her Discord and friendship bear a higher importance than a foreign nation's death.

The obvious answer here is to somehow convince it of its own villainy, thus forcing it to destroy itself.

5128244
I don't actually know of any world leaders who would be more moved by the destruction of an enemy nation that invaded and tried to destroy them than a person they know, someone they have personal interaction with and have invested in, begging them for help face to face.

It's not human to do otherwise. It's apparently not pony either.

But what surprises me is that the Elements haven't chosen to go after it. After the deaths of Gilda and Trixie... Gilda was a friend of Rainbow Dash's, and Twilight was emotionally invested in Trixie's reform... I would have thought Rainbow Dash would have hassled Twilight day and night until Twilight agreed to let them go see if they could stop it. Celestia would have forbidden them to, but that wouldn't have stopped RD, and if she had threatened to go fight it on her own if her friends didn't help her, I think they would have gone. Particularly since Fluttershy, who would normally have been the most leery of taking on any kind of battle, would know that the thing has been chasing Discord. (Also, I wonder how many timberwolves, hydras and manticores it's killed. Once Fluttershy found the Chimera with her heads ripped off her body, I think she would have been very much in favor of trying to stop the creature.)

Possibly Celestia has them under protective custody to keep them from going and doing something stupid.

Because no one is perfect, this machine would determine life itself to be evil, and would not stop until every last living thing on Equis was eradicated. There's no doubt about it; this thing is a destroyer of worlds, and worst of all, one that is invincible and unstoppable.

Judgment Day has come.

SEQUAL:flutterrage:NOW!

5128618 I am sorry to say this then you are BLIND. Let me cite a few examples.

The public outcry for the Armenian genocide. The slaughter of the Greeks in Xios, countless other slaughters of blacks and indians in America. Fuck there is even "The road of tears" ever heard of that?

You are wrong. Ponies are supposed to be different. At least Celestia is. Wonna know something? Alexander the Great chased with fury his enemy Darius but when he found him betrayed and killed he wasn't unmoved. "Lay your cloak upon your enemy" is what came out of his actions. A phrase that indicated that someone as Big-hearted as Celestia should have felt something when an entire race was destroyed!

In short i call BS on your statement. It is BS.

i cried so hard at the end xDD ohw my gawd
please please PLEASE make a sequel

This. Is. Beautiful. I kinda wanna see an artist's depiction of the automaton.

5129870
The public outcry? We aren't talking about a public outcry. We aren't talking about world leaders saying "damn, that's a shame." We aren't talking about Celestia being shocked and horrified at what happened to the changelings. We're talking about her taking action, as a national leader. And none of the examples you cited involved one nation attacking an individual, group, or nation on behalf of a third that was suffering genocide, unless the first nation perceived itself as threatened.

When Hitler rolled through Eastern Europe, the prime minister of England, Neville Chamberlain, wanted to leave Poland to its fate, because if England left Germany alone maybe Hitler would leave Germany alone. When Winston Churchill came to power, he overturned that decision and made war on Nazi Germany, not because the Nazis were killing the Jews (which world leaders did know, even though the common citizens generally didn't) but because he believed, correctly, that Nazi Germany would invade Britain. America did not get involved in the war until America was attacked by the Japanese. No nation goes to war because "it's the right thing to do" unless they see very, very little potential downside to their own nation; even UN peacekeeping troops enter areas where their own military technology far surpasses the nation they're invading.

Celestia is obviously horrified by what happened to the changelings, but if she attacked the creature over it, that would make her a bad leader, even if it made her a good person. She'd be risking her citizens' lives over a nation that not only has no treaty with hers but in fact invaded and attacked hers. And she would not have saved a single changeling; they were all dead by the time Celestia even knew they were under attack.

Discord is an Equestrian citizen. He is a high status Equestrian citizen, a former ruler who, after serving time for committing some fairly heinous crimes under his rule, was eventually pardoned and befriended by some of the most powerful citizens of Equestria, including at least two of the Elements of Harmony and Celestia herself. And he is a known target who Celestia offered protection to a long time ago -- the lesser "villains", the antagonists like Trixie, Gilda and Flim and Flam, couldn't have been predicted to be targets because they didn't do anything on the order of what the prisoners in Tartarus, the Changelings, or King Sombra did, so Celestia couldn't have offered them protection because she couldn't have known they were targets until they were dead. And Discord isn't dead yet. Taking a stand now could save a life, rather than being reactive vengeance for the dead.

World leaders often decry genocide and demand that it be stopped, but they rarely risk their own citizens to do it unless there's an alliance in place or they fear for their own citizens' safety. But world leaders do take action to protect their own citizens. It's not about how they feel or what they'd like to do. Their responsibility is to protect their own citizens, not everyone else. Twilight, not being an actual ruler, would have had a lot more freedom to go off on her own and attack this creature than Celestia does, because Twilight has no citizens to be responsible to.

You assume I'm saying Celestia had no emotional reaction to the death of the changelings. The story says she did. The story says she had a strong emotional reaction to the death of Tirek. So I assumed that in your comment you were talking about her actions and the fact that she did nothing to stop the creature until she was sitting there holding a potential victim and the creature was right in front of her face. Yes, Celestia was moved by the death of the changelings, but not enough to risk her little ponies to avenge them. Discord, however, is a citizen, and can possibly be saved... and is right in front of her begging for help, and is going to be killed in front of her if she takes no action. (And has just pointed out that if she doesn't take action her sister could be next.) So either you read the story wrong and assumed that Celestia had no emotional reaction at all to the death of the changelings, or you're talking about actions, in which case your counterexamples don't apply because none of them describe actions taken by leaders against those who committed genocide.

5131518 Take a step back, and relax.

Celestia is obviously horrified by what happened to the changelings, but if she attacked the creature over it, that would make her a bad leader, even if it made her a good person. She'd be risking her citizens' lives over a nation that not only has no treaty with hers but in fact invaded and attacked hers. And she would not have saved a single changeling; they were all dead by the time Celestia even knew they were under attack.

Never told her to do something about it. I just say that if she is so god-damn saint as all the bronyhoof pictured her ((a living god)) she would be at least touched. Touched enough to STOP THIS SHIT.

While this approach is not true i never expected her to be a god-damn coward. It had to reach DISCORD for this to get serious? DISCORD? It didn't touch her that all the criminals HER OWN SUBJECTS she supposedly loves oh so much, IT HAD TO BE DISCORD? I give up.

Discord is an Equestrian citizen. He is a high status Equestrian citizen, a former ruler who, after serving time for committing some fairly heinous crimes under his rule, was eventually pardoned and befriended by some of the most powerful citizens of Equestria, including at least two of the Elements of Harmony and Celestia herself. And he is a known target who Celestia offered protection to a long time ago -- the lesser "villains", the antagonists like Trixie, Gilda and Flim and Flam, couldn't have been predicted to be targets because they didn't do anything on the order of what the prisoners in Tartarus, the Changelings, or King Sombra did, so Celestia couldn't have offered them protection because she couldn't have known they were targets until they were dead. And Discord isn't dead yet. Taking a stand now could save a life, rather than being reactive vengeance for the dead.

Former RULER? Try more like TYRANT.

And no... Discord won't survive. Nor will Celestia, nor will Equestria. That's my two bits about this.

You assume I'm saying Celestia had no emotional reaction to the death of the changelings. The story says she did. The story says she had a strong emotional reaction to the death of Tirek. So I assumed that in your comment you were talking about her actions and the fact that she did nothing to stop the creature until she was sitting there holding a potential victim and the creature was right in front of her face. Yes, Celestia was moved by the death of the changelings, but not enough to risk her little ponies to avenge them. Discord, however, is a citizen, and can possibly be saved... and is right in front of her begging for help, and is going to be killed in front of her if she takes no action. (And has just pointed out that if she doesn't take action her sister could be next.) So either you read the story wrong and assumed that Celestia had no emotional reaction at all to the death of the changelings, or you're talking about actions, in which case your counterexamples don't apply because none of them describe actions taken by leaders against those who committed genocide.

I am not saying she didn't feel anything to their deaths. You are reading it wrong. I am saying that when an entire race gets extinguished you know one thing "Shit just got real.". Celestia didn't understand and let it slide. Welp... you dun goofd Celly, you dun goof'd.

I mean you think she would take the hint that this thing can easily judge a whole race evil on the actions of one then why can't she do the same to the ponies? BE PARANOID CELESTIA YOU HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO!!!

So, Celestia gave up sovereignty to something because it was really strong.

This might make me a jerk, but I have a question.

Is this the same Celestia from the show? Or is it someone else? The Celestia from the show went against all odds and faced off against Discord with nothing but her sister and the Elements of Harmony. The Celestia from the show had a vision of one of her old enemies escaping prison and risked everything to stop him, even going as far as calling on Discord. The Celestia from the show sent her favorite student against Nightmare Moon with nothing but the hope that she would unite with the Elements of Harmony and save/solve her sister.

You are a very good writer, but I find a bit off that Celestia wouldn't be trying to do something, rather then letting a creature that has proven that it only wants to murder people(it killed a showmare and a random griffin, whats next, killing the homeless because being a burden is evil?). I would of personally liked to see Celestia planning something against it, even if it was foolish or impossible, its the effort that counts.

A enjoyable read, thank you for writing. Sorry if I sound overly critical.

5131904 You do not sound overly critical, only stating your honest opinion. This short definitely takes a few liberties with personality traits, but without them I don't think the story would quite work. I wanted to keep it as close to a single, long conversation as possible, so a lot of tiny details I left to speculation.

Celestia probably would have done something the moment she found the "it." Since this "it" is indestructible, she would have been defeated and the "it" would possibly then categorize all ponies as villains. If she did that then this story wouldn't exist. If she went and fought it and won, then this story wouldn't exist, also. It takes big liberties.

This "it" is also something she's never come across before. There's no room for communication and any research into the thing doesn't lead to much. Past villains she has either defeated before or known that weaknesses exist. She finds it terrible that single parties are being attacked, but is too unsure of which direction to go.

The Elements in this story are pretty much her lone atomic bomb. The "it" is a war that concerns her and yet doesn't. It's terrible, and yet it's still at a distance. There's the possibility it could go away in time, and there's also the possibility she could drop her nuke on "it" and either defeat "it," or only add herself (and most likely everyone) to "its" list.

Discord in this story acts as the push she needs. She either reacts now or not at all. She's glimpsed the aftermath of death and the news of it, but never has it been brought to her door, or to those cradled against her.

To anyone asking for a sequel, there will be none. This is a Goosebumps choose your own adventure type story. If you want them to live, then they do. If you don't, you obviously have no heart. (kidding!)

I thank you for reading and for giving your honest opinion.

I like this story, really makes you think, and I want to nickname the golem "Fanfic Justice."

These extremely powerful monsters always seem to remind me of something straight out of the SCP Foundation wiki. It kinda gives that Cthulhu feeling that there's something so mighty that even the most powerful weapons doesn't even scratch it. Damn Cosmic Horror stories messing with our natural security senses.

5132020 also. Could you tell me more about the "it"? (il call it automaton) like more about how It looks, point of origin, size, maybe find an artist on deviantart and ask them to try to illustrate it.

5129006 It was probably built as some sort of enforcement unit millennial ago, and it turned on it's creators for the same reason, preciving the slightest flaw as wrong....then killed everything, and with nothing left, nothing to do, it waited.

Ages past, and things grew around it till it was buried.

Something woke it up and thus may or may not have created a cycle much like the Reapers from Mass Effect. And that is legitimately scary and amazing. :trollestia:

5132020 I am sorry but can i ask something? Where is it said or indicated in the show that Celestia considers Discord well... anything? And shouldnt this Mammoth have priorities when targetting villains? More powerful higher priority?

5132020 whaaaat ? :fluttercry::raritydespair::raritycry::raritycry::raritycry::raritycry:
why no sequel?

It was an AMAZING story with the dramatic ending :fluttercry: and a sequel would just ruin it.
As much as I may wish for a sequel, this "short story" is a masterpiece in itself.
I just wish there was more detail about/for the behemoth :)

5133680 same, but a bit more advanced. Like better armor, chains near its arms and legs, (it was chained to a wall to prevent it to escape)

5133357 I've never been the type to describe characters in length unless it absolutely serves the plot. I might read myself some Game of Throne and the book might spend six pages describing Ned Stark, but in my head he'd still be Sean Bean. If the show didn't exist, I'd probably just substitute another actor I believe would fit the part.

I feel the same about horror. Nothing is more terrifying to the reader than what their own minds can create. I described the basic layout of a robot, basically including the only notes of interest (that it has claws and red symbols around its frame) and your mind pictures the worst version of that. If you wanted it to look like a giant Michael Fassbender in a cardboard box complete with Magneto helmet, then more power to you.

If you really, really want me to break it down, then I'll tell you as much as I can. A giant Dwemer Centurion isn't a bad choice. That's the color of ancient metal I'd go for. But it has too many features and holes to be completely terrifying. My monster would have no human or equine face on top. The gears and pistons that would be heard for miles around would never been seen on its exterior, so the very idea of jamming up its works would be moot, and the very notion of how many parts might lay inside would remain a mystery. It would be curved, smooth metal all around and I doubt it would even have the indication of eyes--such a detail would only add to it a glimpse of humanity. How tall? I'd say its a little taller than the doors or windows in Canterlot castle, meaning it would need to bend a bit in order to get in and grab what's inside. Sadly I'd consider the less details on its frame and body the better. It only means less access to find weaknesses or learn something through some old history book.

As for its origin, I will say not a word. Although some of the speculation thus far has been very interesting.

5135046 A sequel could only go one of two ways. Either they escape the throne room, get the Elements and win... or escape the throne room, get the Elements and lose. The story doesn't leave a lot of wiggly room in terms of continuation, and I think if I pulled out some last minute detail, like some old book that knows of a weakness or there's actually a giant zipper running up its back, it would only detract from the overall piece. The story is more or less how characters deal with a possible Armageddon from something they have no hope of understanding.

I've never been a fan of completely clear cut endings. I like questions and queries and speculation that might live in the readers head for a bit. Thanks for reading and for commenting.

5135481
I actually know how they would defeat it, and it doesn't involve using the Elements except as a distraction, and everything they would need to know and do to defeat it is already either in the story, in MLP, or in the mythosphere that MLP draws from, but I had assumed from the beginning, this is the kind of story that doesn't have a sequel.

If I were going to do it, I would end up bringing in Luna, the Elements, and Spike, revealing that Celestia's big plan has all along been having Twilight research the thing, and reveal also that while Twilight does have a plan, she has not been willing to implement her plan because it would endanger Spike. She was looking for another way, and now she's out of time. So it solves the problem frequently found in stories of "if you had a solution why did you wait to use it, and if you didn't have a solution how is it you conveniently found one now".

I strongly suspect that a lot of Royal Guards would end up dead, and possibly Discord depending on how sadistic/masochistic I feel (he is my favorite character, after all), and several characters would likely end up badly injured. The plan is not something that could be implemented instantly; they'd need to buy Spike time to work. Which means a fight, and given that the thing can't actually be stopped, a lot of folks would get hurt or killed.

However, that's in my head; this really isn't the sort of story that has a sequel, because the sequel would radically change tone. Up to this point it's a Lady or the Tiger horror story. Turning it into a battle royale would be a very different kind of story.

5134617
Presumably if it encounters "villains" while chasing Discord, it will take the time to dispose of them. Given that it is also established that anypony who tries to interfere with it will be destroyed rather than ignored, it can obviously balance immediate priorities with long term priorities.

And as for where it says in the show that Celestia considers Discord anything... it's a common fan speculation based on their initial interactions in Return of Harmony, also the fact that enemies who were once friends or lovers is much more dramatically interesting than enemies who were always enemies. Add to that the fact that Celestia was very emotionally distraught when Discord escaped, enough to show her level of distress to Twilight et al (something she did not do with Tirek or Sombra; she was equally distressed with those guys but only Luna ever saw her distress), but then decided to try to have him reformed, and after that has forgiven him not just for the Tirek incident but for the plunder vines... this is not behavior that makes sense unless she has some kind of love-hate relationship with him. For her to be so upset with his escape, either he's truly awful and dangerous or she's taking it very personally... and deciding to reform him does not tie out with the "truly awful and dangerous" theory. One explanation that solves the discrepancy is that they are former friends, former lovers, or estranged family.

That being said... why are you even asking? This is a fanfic. If the writer wants to suggest that Discord and Applejack are secret lovers, and is capable of writing their interaction in a way that suggests that believably, it really doesn't matter if there's any canonical support for it or not. In this story, based on Discord's line about his dance card, they are former lovers, and for purposes of this story, it's not relevant whether that's "canon" in MLP... after all, killer golem warriors are also not canon.

5135777 In short it's speculation that fails to be adequately established for me to care. I never said that you couldn't do it. That doesn't mean however i can't simply state my opinion that Celestia wouldn't act long before Discord. This really isn't a common version of Celestia. Still AU tag doesn't mean you can simply screw over characters to crazy extents without having time to establish them.

Derailing. It doesn't matter. I just disagree with this fic. Doesn't mean i don't find it interesting.

5135731 It almost makes me feel lazy when you seem to know my stories and character's psychological well being better than I do. (ie Discord in "Strings".) You obviously put a lot of thought into your own stories and yet think of even more to add to others. I find it quite neat that someone can read a story of your own and come away with more ideas or questions to add. Thanks for commenting on this one!

(BTW if you wanted at all to conclude this story go right ahead. I'm sure there's at least a handful of people that would want that. Myself included.)

5135810
I actually agree that she'd have acted long before Discord, but given what happened to the changelings... if this is a universe where changelings are not a hive mind, but a nation, and the creature slaughtered them all for the actions of their leader... and if Celestia already knew that powerful unicorns (and Discord) had thrown everything they had at the creature without stopping it, and in cases where bystanders attempted to save its potential victims, they were slaughtered too... I can see why she would be very, very leery of going after it if there's any chance at all that by doing so she would doom all of Equestria.

It would be better if she'd had better evidence of this. Say, if the mayor of a small town had personally tried to stop the creature, and the result had been that the entire town was slaughtered... as if the creature can tell who a leader is, and plainly blames an entire group for the actions of their leader.

But it's kind of like "The Cold Equations". Very powerful, moving science fiction story with a horrifying ending that raises all kinds of questions about moral choices, which totally falls apart when you seriously analyze the logic of how the situation arose in the first place. This story is actually a good bit stronger than that one, but I agree, there are logical problems with it.

That being said... Discord could be nobody to Celestia personally, and just the fact that he's right in front of her and about to be killed right then changes the situation. Humans, and presumably ponies, make moral decisions differently depending on the immediacy of the problem. When given a choice between saving 1 person or saving 5 from a threat that can't be stopped and will claim one or the other, humans generally choose to save the 5. But when given a choice between consciously killing 1 to save 5, or letting the 5 die, humans pick letting the 5 die, because consciously killing someone is very different from passively letting someone die. And the rules change again when it's "passively letting someone die right in front of you" or "passively letting someone die far away when you don't know them and you didn't know exactly who would be targeted." Ponies, presumably, have similar psychology.

This is a setup where there are no good answers. Part of the reason MLP gets away with having the answer be kindness and friendship so very often is that the writers are fixing the dice; the Elements of Harmony can defeat anything. What if they can't? What if there's good reason to think they wouldn't be able to? What if the correct answer from personal morality, the answer "try to save lives", could result in the genocide of the people you've sworn to protect?

Celestia can always do the right thing in the series because it always works out for the best for her... but there are choices she's made that could bite her in the ass, hard. Telling Twilight that the defeat of Sombra was a test came very close to letting Sombra win. Giving Discord the task of capturing Tirek was disastrous. She put all her trust in the idea that her student, an antisocial jerk obsessed with research, could make five good friends, and that her personality wouldn't turn off those potential friends, as her only line of defense against Nightmare Moon. So I don't think Celestia is perfect. A mistake like succumbing to analysis paralysis when failing to act means some ponies die, but acting and failing to win could mean all the ponies die, seems potentially within character for her. I think more information to establish why she's so certain that the creature will blame Equestria for her personal actions would be helpful, though.

5135936

I can see why she would be very, very leery of going after it if there's any chance at all that by doing so she would doom all of Equestria.

Problem with that is it considered those who act like jerks (Gilda) to be worth going after, if someone acted like an asshole even for a moment it would consider purging them. It just very simply had some extreme thoughts and likely would have gone after all of Equestria regardless.

5135999
Very true. Celestia might not even have any idea why Gilda was targeted. Trixie and the Flim Flam brothers actually committed crimes, but as far as we know, Gilda did not... and it might never occur to Celestia that being a jerk to the Mane 6 was all it took.

5135936 you're gonna write a sequel?

5136256
Maybe. As I said before, this isn't the kind of story that gets a sequel, generally, because of the tone shift. On the other hand, the fact that I know how I would do one suggests that maybe I oughta. :-)

Its creators must have been very advanced. The fact that it's still around, and they're not would seem to imply that eventually it identifies everyone as a target.

5136304 You oughta man, please :D!

I want to find art work of the machine

5135936

I actually agree that she'd have acted long before Discord, but given what happened to the changelings... if this is a universe where changelings are not a hive mind, but a nation, and the creature slaughtered them all for the actions of their leader...

Okay take a step back and give me evidence that from the hive mind Queen Chrysalis can just command and force any changeling to do what she says. In fact there are arguements against the hive mind that is so commonly used that it is almost considered canon. Guess what peeps... just because a popular headcanon/parallelization with the Zerg of Starcraft exists doesn't make it true. MagicMan dislikes it too.

and if Celestia already knew that powerful unicorns (and Discord) had thrown everything they had at the creature without stopping it, and in cases where bystanders attempted to save its potential victims, they were slaughtered too... I can see why she would be very, very leery of going after it if there's any chance at all that by doing so she would doom all of Equestria.

Why sure the villains don't have friends of their own or minions or whatever right? Or mothers? Or brothers or families that saw them and tried to protect them? All i am saying is that someone would have stood against it for sure. It's not like it acts like an assasin right? It goes barging with heavy thuds and stuff.

But it's kind of like "The Cold Equations". Very powerful, moving science fiction story with a horrifying ending that raises all kinds of questions about moral choices, which totally falls apart when you seriously analyze the logic of how the situation arose in the first place. This story is actually a good bit stronger than that one, but I agree, there are logical problems with it.

I have no knowledge of that fic/work of literature.

That being said... Discord could be nobody to Celestia personally, and just the fact that he's right in front of her and about to be killed right then changes the situation. Humans, and presumably ponies, make moral decisions differently depending on the immediacy of the problem. When given a choice between saving 1 person or saving 5 from a threat that can't be stopped and will claim one or the other, humans generally choose to save the 5. But when given a choice between consciously killing 1 to save 5, or letting the 5 die, humans pick letting the 5 die, because consciously killing someone is very different from passively letting someone die. And the rules change again when it's "passively letting someone die right in front of you" or "passively letting someone die far away when you don't know them and you didn't know exactly who would be targeted." Ponies, presumably, have similar psychology.

Eeer no. Ever heard "Every man for himself"? Humans are selfish for the most part. In this civilized jungle we are living there rules the law "survival of the fittest" it is just a more refined version of it.

I remember in Baldur's Gate a quiet interesting choice. Take a step back and think of this. You are trapped in two separate prisons by a diabolical soldier that says this. You have three choices. 1)You press the button in front of you and you go free, 2)You don't press the button in front of you and you die and the other goes free 3)If both of you don't press or press the button at the same time you both die. Now if i was in that position i would push it. EVERY TIME. But then it would be like you say... i wouldn't have thought how to go past the soldier and would likely die. The thing is... can you afford to lose those lives?

Can Celestia afford to allow a foreign nation to die ((e.g. the "Villainous Carnivorous griffins")) if it makes Equestria isolated from the rest of the world? Can Celestia allow for her subjects or imigrants to die if her relations with her own subjects and the other nations deteriorate their trust to her? Don't you think that if she gathered all those villains desperate to save their lives that they would all together have a better chance at obliterating this thing? Well since she didn't she didn't. But the thing is... wouldn't she consider what she has to lose if she DOESN'T act?

This is a setup where there are no good answers. Part of the reason MLP gets away with having the answer be kindness and friendship so very often is that the writers are fixing the dice; the Elements of Harmony can defeat anything. What if they can't? What if there's good reason to think they wouldn't be able to? What if the correct answer from personal morality, the answer "try to save lives", could result in the genocide of the people you've sworn to protect?

There is a little proverb i like to use often. "All it takes for evil to flourish is for good men to do nothing." If you stand idle you are allowing others decide for you, their decisions might not be so good for you as you think. So what do you do? You try to do something, you die fighting, you do the right thing so that if you don't survive... others will.

Celestia can always do the right thing in the series because it always works out for the best for her... but there are choices she's made that could bite her in the ass, hard. Telling Twilight that the defeat of Sombra was a test came very close to letting Sombra win. Giving Discord the task of capturing Tirek was disastrous. She put all her trust in the idea that her student, an antisocial jerk obsessed with research, could make five good friends, and that her personality wouldn't turn off those potential friends, as her only line of defense against Nightmare Moon. So I don't think Celestia is perfect. A mistake like succumbing to analysis paralysis when failing to act means some ponies die, but acting and failing to win could mean all the ponies die, seems potentially within character for her. I think more information to establish why she's so certain that the creature will blame Equestria for her personal actions would be helpful, though.

That's actually something that Twilight might befell into rather than Celestia. I figure this story would have been much better if it was Twilight-Luna with perhaps Celestia dead rather than Celestia-Discord.

5139692
You are confusing me. You seem to be challenging things I argued against as if I argued for them.

Okay take a step back and give me evidence that from the hive mind Queen Chrysalis can just command and force any changeling to do what she says.

Yes, that would be what I was getting at when I said "if this is a universe where changelings are not a hive mind" -- please note the use of not. Some fanfic treats them as a hive mind, some does not. If this is a fanfic where they are not a hive mind, then their death is an example of the creature murdering citizens for the actions of the leader, which would serve as a strong incentive for Celestia to be real careful about how she goes after it.

Why sure the villains don't have friends of their own or minions or whatever right? Or mothers? Or brothers or families that saw them and tried to protect them? All i am saying is that someone would have stood against it for sure.

Again, that would be where I said "and if Celestia already knew that powerful unicorns (and Discord) had thrown everything they had at the creature without stopping it, and in cases where bystanders attempted to save its potential victims, they were slaughtered too..." This was explicitly stated in the story, by the way.

Eeer no. Ever heard "Every man for himself"? Humans are selfish for the most part. In this civilized jungle we are living there rules the law "survival of the fittest" it is just a more refined version of it.

Eeer no. Read some literature on the psychology of morality. We are not talking about the choice "kill me, or kill someone else"; we are talking about the choice "kill one person to save many" vs. "passively allow one person to die to save many", and the fact that people react very, very differently when the victim is right in front of them. The desire for self preservation doesn't even enter into this equation yet.

However, since you're arguing that Celestia should have risked her entire nation to save the "villains" who were killed earlier rather than waiting until it was Discord and right in front of her face, I don't even understand why you're bringing this up, because self preservation says "if there is a chance that by saving someone else I doom myself and everyone I care about, I will let them die." Now add to that out of sight out of mind, or more specifically, the fact that while Celestia knew it was killing people, it was doing so erratically, unpredictably, one at a time, and far away from Canterlot, and the choice "gather more information so we can safely destroy it instead of charging in and potentially dooming Equestria" carries more weight.

I don't think it had to be Discord, either. Or Blueblood, or Nightmare Moon. If Trixie had been performing for the Princesses and the creature broke in and attacked her, Celestia probably would have defended her. The correct decision from the standpoint of "protect Equestria" is "gather more information to make sure that when we attack this thing, we kill it", but the correct decision from the standpoint of "I'm a bystander pony" is "try to save the person it's trying to kill right now". Normally Celestia operates on protect Equestria logic, but when she is actually in the situation of being a bystander pony, she is not ruthless enough to stick to her guns; she is compelled to switch to "save the victim" because it would take a much, much harder person than Celestia is to stand there and let someone die in front of them, even if they'd previously decided that this is the safest course of action for their nation.

You try to do something, you die fighting, you do the right thing so that if you don't survive... others will.

And suppose others don't survive because the fact that you took action makes them targets? That's what you're not getting here. The evidence suggests to Celestia that if she attacks the thing and loses, she may make all of Equestria a target! She's not planning to ignore it forever, she's trying to research it and find a weakness, but hasn't found one yet. She knows that Discord's magic can't stop it and that no unicorn has been able to. This suggests that the only thing in her arsenal that might work is the Elements of Harmony... but what if they don't work? What if she plays her trump card, and is defeated, and as a result all of Equestria is determined to be "villains"?

This isn't about Celestia risking her own life. I think she'd have risked her own life in a hot second if that was all it was. The fact that the creature killed all the changelings for Chrysalis' actions makes her think that if she takes official action against it her whole nation will be targeted. Rainbow Dash would charge in anyway. Maybe even Twilight. But Celestia has to be cold because she has to think of her whole country. If some die to buy time to allow her to find a sure-kill way of stopping it, that's better than if she attacks prematurely and as a result, all die.

So why change her mind when it's Discord? Because he manipulated her. By throwing himself at her feet and saying basically "I'm not protecting myself anymore, either you do it or I die," he's forcing her to face the prospect of doing nothing while a victim is murdered in front of her. This is something that very, very few beings are ruthless enough to allow for the greater good. (Many beings would allow a victim to be murdered in front of them out of self preservation, but Celestia is not motivated by self preservation. She is motivated by Equestria-preservation. She is a hero who became a leader, and her leader side must be ruthless, but her hero side can't bear to see someone die in front of her if she could possibly save them.) By adding in "and Luna's probably next", he's ensuring that it's personal for her -- even if she cares nothing whatsoever for him, he knows she loves Luna. And by begging her for comfort before he dies, he's establishing an emotional bond that will make it even harder for her to watch him die. (He's sincere about all this in my opinion, but it's also a manipulation, whether he intends it or not.)

BTW, gathering all the "villains" in one place would have been impossible. Celestia doesn't watch the show. How would she know that the creature would target Gilda? Aren't there likely a lot of petty con ponies besides Flim and Flam? Aren't there a lot of ponies who screw something up in a way that somepony could have gotten hurt and then try to cover it up, like Lightning Dust? Trixie is the only one that's predictable, because she used dark magic and took over a town. And Trixie was sincerely remorseful, and partially possessed, so you'd need to already know that the thing does not take reform or possession or extenuating circumstances into account to think she would be attacked. The fact that she tried to offer Discord protective custody suggests that she'd have given protective custody to anypony she knew it would consider a "villain", but how could she possibly guess that out of all the ponies who have probably done a bad thing from time to time, these particular ones would be singled out? Also, most likely, given how unstoppable the thing has shown itself to be, gathering all the villains in one place just would ensure they all die quickly. It'd be better to spread them all around, with unicorn guards who can teleport them to safety if the thing shows up. Then if one of them is killed at least the others survive.

5139800 EEr no.

Again, that would be where I said "and if Celestia already knew that powerful unicorns (and Discord) had thrown everything they had at the creature without stopping it, and in cases where bystanders attempted to save its potential victims, they were slaughtered too..." This was explicitly stated in the story, by the way.

That is what i am saying. They probably have been some that tried to stop it past the villains that weren't sent by Celestia.

Eeer no. Read some literature on the psychology of morality. We are not talking about the choice "kill me, or kill someone else"; we are talking about the choice "kill one person to save many" vs. "passively allow one person to die to save many", and the fact that people react very, very differently when the victim is right in front of them. The desire for self preservation doesn't even enter into this equation yet.

Yes but in the end that is what it will end up becoming. If Celestia resist she will be having to think if it is worth it. Is it?

This suggests that the only thing in her arsenal that might work is the Elements of Harmony... but what if they don't work? What if she plays her trump card, and is defeated, and as a result all of Equestria is determined to be "villains"?

I simply posed a highly hypothetical question that if e.g. villains knew about this that they were threatened they would grow desperate and come by themselves to gather forces against it. Thus i am not answering the rest of what you said.

Also most of the ones this "thing" has killed is the common misconception of "villain" and "antagonist" by many bronies.

5140136

Also most of the ones this "thing" has killed is the common misconception of "villain" and "antagonist" by many bronies.

Yes. And not having seen the show, Celestia doesn't know who's an antagonist.

I think it was part of the author's point, having it go after beings who are not actually literally villains by any stretch of the imagination, but are simply antagonists who are perceived as "villains" by the fandom. Which strongly suggests that Blueblood and Diamond Tiara are on the kill list. (We know they're not dead yet because Discord would not have failed to point out the deaths of Celestia's nephew or an innocent filly due to Celestia's inaction.)

5136304 alright. Notify me if you do write a sequel.

5140179 Right. Maybe from that viewpoint this fic gains points. Anyhow if you write something about this pm me.

She shuttered in her chair.

Not unless she was a small cottage, she didn't. :)

Seventeen days later they found it steadily marching through a field, pummeling dirt below as each metallic limb came crashing down. It was bipedal in natureā€”a mammoth being of golden and bronze metals with the steady click of thousands of gears working away in the thickness of its hulking frame. Many of its ligaments were coated with patches of dirt and dried blood, leaving many to wonder if it had originally risen from the ground in search of its villains. To both sides of its torso were two immense arms with hooked claws at either ends. It must have been the instrument of its destruction, as it first found its prey before it broke it apart piece by piece.

Sounds like something inspired by Greek Myth... And that's a good thing.

5128244

The risk is too great, if you ask me. I would want revenge badly, but that would mean the genocide of another nation.

If another nation comes to help us? They're gone. Another nation may come to the aid of the other, resulting in what can only be described as the mechanical monstrosity... Well, I'll sum it up with this quote:

Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.

5143038 You dont quite get it. Celestia instead of carefully devising a way to dismantle the thing stood idle in hopes of it stopping. It will not.

This thing is like a virus. Once the specific Cells it targets are gone it goes for the next best thing. It has proven that mere swindling qualifies as villainy. It wont stop... It will never stop. If Celestia doesn't decide it needs to be defeated eventually there won't be a world for her to save.

5143032 There is actually a Greek Robot named Talos. Guardian of Crete look it up.

5143297

That's what came to mind when I saw the description of the mechanical being. Talos was the huge one that set people on fire by embracing them, right?

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