• Member Since 25th Feb, 2013
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Titanium Dragon


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


E
Source

Long ago, the founders of Equestria built a magical portal on sacred ground, hiding their greatest secret on the other side. Generations of leaders stepped through the portal so that they might emerge as the equal of their forebears.

Celestia and Luna were the last to enter. For a thousand years, the portal lay forgotten, its purpose lost.

Luna thinks it is time that Twilight learn what it means to rule.

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 136 )

Very nice!

7389954
Thanks! I'm glad you liked it. :twilightsmile:

It's very rare that a lesson can be both as silly and as significant as this one. Well done.

Ah, and that, right there, is why Luna is worthy to rule. And Twilight too, by extension, belike.

Well written, though a bit anticlimactic. Luna drops the mic, exits stage left, and...? I expect Twilight to pipe up, "You thought I was doubting my fitness to rule because I wrote Celestia too often? Did you consider that maybe I write her with rulership questions because I'm 23 and she's, oh, 5000 or so, and that I'm learning by consulting with a pony who has millennia of experience rather than by trial and error?"

It's still a great lesson, absolutely, which she's heard before: wasn't "a Princess shouldn't hold herself apart from her ponies" the lesson Discord taught her during the plundervine incident?

7389986
I'm glad you felt that way. I think it is really easy for all of us to forget that leaders are just people.

7389993
Indeed it is.

Nice use of belike there. Not a word I see very often.

Another great short by the always excellent Titanium Dragon.

7390000
Wow, that's a nice, round comment number.

Anyway...

I think that the lesson is different from what Discord taught her. Her conflict in Princess Twilight Sparkle was over whether or not she could go out on a quest with her friends, and was "held in reserve" (so to speak) as a result of the other princesses vanishing. But that was a fundamental betrayal of who she was and what she stood for.

This is more about how leaders don't have special powers - Celestia and Luna are good at what they do not because of some special powers granted by walking through a portal or being raised up on high by other ponies, but because of who they already are.

I expect Twilight to pipe up, "You thought I was doubting my fitness to rule because I wrote Celestia too often? Did you consider that maybe I write her with rulership questions because I'm 23 and she's, oh, 5000 or so, and that I'm learning by consulting with a pony who has millennia of experience rather than by trial and error?"

Luna was criticizing her for asking for help when she already knew what Celestia was going to say.

I'm glad you thought it was well-written. I feel like some of my stories are a bit light on description, so I decided to go into something which gave me a good reason to write about lots of interesting scenery.

7390018
Aw, thanks! I'm glad I have created such an expectation for you, and even more glad that I met it. :heart:

Good story but one little nitpick.

“That’s impossible! Unicornia was renamed Canterlot when you and Princess Luna became rulers of the three tribes.”

So Princess Luna and Princess Luna rule the three tribes?

7390053

Good story

Thanks!

And thanks for the catch. Fixed!

7390087
7390053
I'd like to see Princess Luna and Princess Luna rule the three tribes; crack or otherwise.

7390115
I have yet to write a story about how they came to power, though I have written a couple stories about when they were young. If I come up with a good story about how they came to rule Equestria, though, I'll definitely write it - I'm interested in how it happened too, after all. :raritywink:

Behind her, the doorway spraung to life

Looks like someone couldn't decide whether to use "sprang" or "sprung" ;)

Very nice. A great lesson, and nicely written. Loved the description of the scenery.

7390299
I'm glad you liked the descriptions of the scenery; a lot of my stories focus heavily on dialogue, so when I wrote this story, I consciously focused on trying to fill in a lot more background stuff and set the scene and have interesting things go on around them that reinforced the story. It is good to hear it paid off for you. :twilightsmile:

Dear Princess Celestia

Today, I learned to never go on field trips with your sister ever again. We went out to the middle of no where, where she told me about how stupid my ancestors were for insisting on having their entire kingdom built out of magic. Like how does anybody use a bathroom in that kind of set up? Designing that everyday sounded like a total nightmare and thank goodness we got out of that trend. Anyway, your sister took me way out to a random cave for a bunch of flashy lights to give me a pedantic aesops that she could have just told me face to face about treating others as equals to myself. This is coming from the mare who could not refrain from shouting at everypony in "Royal Canterlot Voice" for what was probably a year. I took off work for this! The words on that door need to be changed to something like "May those who make you step through this door never get cookies" because this is ridiculous. In conclusion, please send your sister back to the moon for 1000 years, or I will do it for you. Tell her it is a lesson on respecting the time of others or something.

Your Faithful Student,
Sassy Twilight Sparkle

PS: Watch those talking heads at the beginning. We need more things to do in this scene.

I like the world building you set up, but the lesson at the end doesn't do much for me because well ... "You are every bit our equal, save in experience." For a pony like Twilight that means "you are not our equal" so it doesn't solve the problem at all.

7390325 that's perfect

7390325
My Dearest Twilight,

I'm sorry you didn't enjoy your field trip with Luna. I thought you might enjoy the history of the place, even if the lesson of the door was a bit simple. Know that I do like hearing from you, though my sister wasn't wrong in saying that I wouldn't mind hearing more about your life and less about you triple-checking that your very good solution was acceptable to me.

As for the ancient Unicornian sewer system, I'm afraid that most of the books describing it have since been destroyed at the behest of Earth Ponies. You see, they didn't use water for their sewage; instead, like all else in the city, they used magic to rid themselves of their refuse. Unfortunately, they did not really care where it went, and so when they teleported it away, it often reappeared at the same elevation as their city before raining onto the towns below.

Hence the colloquial expression, shitstorm, as well as the ban on teleporting sewage of any kind.

Your friend,
Celestia

P.S. As for the request with the moon - my sister says that if you want to see her every night, you only need to ask.

And send flowers.

7390357
I'm glad you liked the scenery!

I'm sorry if the lesson wasn't quite what you were hoping for, but she was trying to get Twilight to understand that they were all ponies, and that Celestia was no more special than Twilight. You're probably right that "except in experience" would still bother Twilight to some extent, as Twilight is rather insecure about herself.

7390368
Dear Princess Celestia,

Today I learned too much information about pre-celestian methods of magic excrement expedition. Yuck! I do thoroughly enjoy history and appreciate the trip for having the opportunity. However, if your sister does not want to become history, it would be better to let me enjoy a trip to study these ruins rather than work me up in thinking that I am undergoing a major trial that my future as a leader depends on. This could have been a really pleasant friendship retreat. I didn't sleep for three days before this. When I get to sleep we are going to come to words.

I am glad to hear that you enjoy reading my letters, but I assure you that you shouldn't flatter yourself too much. I'm not "Triple Checking", it's called peer review and it's standard in the academic world. Maybe somepony else needed this field trip more than I did.

Your Faithful Student,
Incredibly Sassy Twilight Sparkle

PS: As per request, I have enclosed a bouquet of flowers to be sent to your sister as a token of friendship and respect.

pre05.deviantart.net/83cd/th/pre/i/2012/082/d/0/poison_joke_by_3luk-d4tp27r.png


(Tell me if this is getting annoying. I'm having fun with this.)

7390386
That's more what I was going for with my earlier comment. Luna has reasoned from her observations that Twilight sees herself as less than equal to the Sisters in terms of rank and ability and status. From Twilight's letters and requests for Celestia's advice I read her as drawing on Celestia's experience and wisdom. She strikes me as the sort of over-thorough, detail-oriented pony who'd consult every resource when dealing with a problem, and one of those resources is the experience of ponies who've been there. She just got a reminder of this when her instinct told her to keep Starlight away from Trixie but Celestia's method - letting her student make their own friends and not micromanaging them - proved correct.

Not to mention, Luna seems the sort of pony who might chafe a bit at Twilight's continued idolization of Celestia - after all, couldn't Twilight have written her all those times instead? With that in mind it's possible to read this story as "Luna is a tiny bit jealous of Twilight putting Celestia on a pedestal and tries to knock her sister down a peg or two in Twilight's eyes." That's not my first inclination for a reading here, but it's at least a possible one.

If anything I think an encounter like Luna put Twilight through in this story would be a good jumping-off point for the two of them to have some deeper conversations both about how to approach rulership and about each other. Perhaps they share some (current or former) insecurities?

7390615
Certainly possible! I actually have another story that has long, long been on the backburner about Twilight triggering Luna's insecurities and having to try and make up for it, but I never finished it. I need to work on that.

But you're right that the two of them do have being insecure in common as a character trait, and really, both are fairly similar characters in some respect. I have to admit the friendship between Luna and Twilight has always felt underexplored to me. Clearly, I need to read (and write) more fanfics about those two.

7390053

I'm sure that'd make a lot of people in this community very happy, sadly!

7390615

To be fair, I think she actually should be lesser. Heroes are meant to be champions, not rulers who decide the fates of millions, gamble with the heavens, and do whatever two-faced task is required to save the lives and livelihoods of their people - even if it didn't meet said populace's small-minded approval. With equal authority to Celestia and Luna, what happens if she makes a decision on her own that seems like the moral thing to do and yet was the wrong thing to do as a ruler? Hope that the outcome isn't THAT bad?

She's got a long way to go before she even understands politics. She's still not even that great of a friend yet so how can she understand the hearts and minds of millions of strangers who look up to her for protection and guidance? She should spend at least the first century or two as an apprentice to the crown, or a junior princess. Learning everything she can about how to do this right, being guided by Celestia and Luna until she's ready to join them in the big chairs.

The one thing I think that might have made the ending a bit better would have been having Luna guide Twilight to making the realization of the lesson herself, I guess, as opposed to her basically spelling it out for her when she fails to grasp it? But that's kind of a small nitpick, really, for a good story. :twilightsmile:

This is so good ! * slow clapping*

7391221
It isn't an unreasonable point of view, though I'm not actually sure how old Luna herself is linearly; she spent a thousand years trapped on the Moon as Nightmare Moon, we have little idea of how long she has actually been a "normal pony" (as normal as an immortal alicorn with a starry mane which flows on ethereal wind can be, anyway). How long did she and Celestia rule over Equestria together back in the day?

Though I do want to write a story about Cadance and Twilight forcing Luna and Celestia to go on vacation. I mean, how hard could it be to run Equestria? :duck:

7391240
Fair enough.

I'm glad you liked the story anyway, though!

Incidentally, I like your avatar. It is very iconic.

7391326
Thanks! I'm happy to hear you thought it was worthwhile. :heart:

7391350

Personally (grain of salt), I always reasoned at least a few thousand years if we're talking 'normal/canon' Celestia and Luna. At least three thousand, give or take. If we're talking a Godlestia story, then obviously since the beginning. But it seems to make the most sense chronologically. I mean, not everything could happen exactly a thousand years ago, right? With the exception of recent seasons, it's seemed that pony civilization and technology advances at a slower pace, giving at least some milestone for consideration.

I know someone's going to see this and start quoting the Journal or whatsit, but I don't consider that or the comics canon since... well it's just not in the show, which is the original source material. I'd rather try to work backwards through what we do know of the timeline and pony culture/civilization, make inferences, and postulate based on plausibility with a model of how human civilizations developed for a touch of realism.

Missing dot in description after "forebears".

And in hindsight it was so obvious.
Nice one :twilightsmile:

7390007 A little verbal bit I seem to have absorbed from Cordial Nova, actually...

Am I the only one who saw that one comming? Eh, nice story anyway!

The pun ending...

Twilight stepped forward, to run into an ordinary pane of silvered glass. As she recovered Luna threw a theatrical flash-bang. Coughing Twilight exclaimed, "Do you mean to tell me that power is nothing but smoke and mirrors?"

7391350

though I'm not actually sure how old Luna herself is linearly

I don't know how much weight it held now, but according to Lauren Faust Luna turned into NMM at very young age. And considering that she also say that Luna still growing I think that Night Princess more or less a teenager.
At the same time... Lots of things changed after Lauren left the show so maybe this is already wrong.

7391683 That's all a bit wibbly-wobbly-timey-wimey, isn't it? Only thing I can come up with is that agewise, Celestia > Luna >> Cadance > Twilight... But pinning those down? Tricky. Or nigh unto impossible, even at that.

A nice story about having confidence in yourself. The thing necessary to take change rather than letting other lead you.

I just want to say...

...that something hilarious happens when you switch this two words here.:trollestia:

Twilight licked her lips tail as she followed close on the elder alicorn’s tail lips

Just a funny thing my brain did when it went off the rails, so to speak.

This
vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/mlpfanart/images/4/4e/Lyra_and_Bon_Bon_eating_their_tails.gif/revision/latest?cb=20121219172749
and then,
derpicdn.net/img/view/2012/12/12/180611__safe_oc_twilight+sparkle_shipping_animated_lesbian_tongue+out_love+heart_kissing_canon+x+oc.gif

~Leonzilla XD

7391683 Yep, one of those things is that the show writer's used to pay attention to preestablished lore.

Well. Um, everything I was going to say has pretty much been said. And better than I can on a phone.

7391754
Well, I just using Lauren answers from her Deviant account. Like this. But considering that A) Lauren leave a show for quote some time and B) It's a source outside of the show... people could easily dismiss it.
But in the same time it's work wonderful with my headcanon :) (I always get a rather... immature vibes from Luna).

7391821 Aye, she does carry herself, well, rather like I see a fair number of folks in their mid-late 20s do: mature enough to know that they've got more of a clue than those rubes over there, but not enough to realize that they don't quite have it figured out either. Her somewhat imperious demeanor can be chalked up, in part, to that sort of feeling that power must be exercised or lost.

Of course, then she goes and does this, and shows that she does have a clue after all :)

Actually, I rather like the different interpretations of power and authority that the four princesses offer, both in canon and in fanon. (Celestia the wise and learned, yet secretly emotional; Luna the imperious and reserved, yet impetuous and genuinely concerned for her subjects; Cadance, silk hiding iron; and Twilight, competent but not confident.)

7390151

I'd like to see Princess Luna and Princess Luna rule the three tribes; crack or otherwise.

I have yet to write a story about how they came to power, though I have written a couple stories about when they were young.

:trixieshiftleft:

7391453
Fixed, thanks!

7391513
I'm glad you liked it! I do like me some foreshadowing; it is always fun to set stuff up hidden in plain sight before the story trips over it. :raritywink:

7391620
Glad you approved, even if you did see it coming.

7391630
Oh, you! :rainbowkiss:

I giggled.

7391683
My personal headcanon is that she's about the same age as Cadance linearly, but it varies from story to story depending on the needs of the story. She didn't seem very mature in Luna Eclipsed, though.

7391779

A nice story about having confidence in yourself. The thing necessary to take change rather than letting other lead you.

I'm glad you appreciated the thrust of the piece. That's always nice to hear. :heart:

I just want to say...

...that something hilarious happens when you switch this two words here.:trollestia:

For all that I enjoy tossing around headcanon about how Equestria works, the details of Twilight's role and what purpose she should come to serve in the greater scheme of things has never interested me too much. Probably because, from my perspective, Luna and Celestia filled the same protector role in centuries past, and eventually circumstances led to them being the ones who had to rule, which motivated them towards diplomacy in lieu of super-friendship lasers.

Good story, of course. I just don't have much to add to the beautifully complex debate of princesshood in the comments.

7391815
That's alright. I appreciate the comment nevertheless. Thank you for reading! :twilightsmile:

7392208

Probably because, from my perspective, Luna and Celestia filled the same protector role in centuries past, and eventually circumstances led to them being the ones who had to rule, which motivated them towards diplomacy in lieu of super-friendship lasers.

Well, as we all know, the word "friendship" in Equestrian means both "magical laser beams" and "true companion".

They leave the option open to other countries about which way to take it. :trollestia:

Good story, of course. I just don't have much to add to the beautifully complex debate of princesshood in the comments.

Thanks!

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