• Member Since 25th Jun, 2012
  • offline last seen June 1st


I'm here to help. Avatar image courtesy of Taggerung


Octavia Melody isn't what you'd call a particularly adventurous pony, but even she can't resist the temptation to investigate a good mystery – especially when that mystery involves one of her greatest musical influences.

The identity of the great composer 'Cecily Cambirvir' has gone unknown for more than a decade, but Octavia heard a rumor that suggested more information could be found in the Changeling Hive Chrysalis. Against her better judgement, she signs up for the changeling cultural exchange program, and rides the train to the hive with her best friend, Vinyl Scratch.

(( This fic can work as a standalone, but it is an epilogue for The Queen and I Book 3. Consequently, it has massive spoilers for that story. You can check out the entire series by clicking here. ))

Chapters (4)
Comments ( 29 )

My reactions, in order:

> This can only end in glory
> Everything is in Nowacking's voice
> I really liked this moment between Vinyl and Octavia
> Fuck yeah characters who's stories we hadn't finished yet showing up
> Needs more romance tag

Looking forward to see where this goes.

Oh, dear Solo. Brace for a comment.

By now you should know a few things about me. I rarely have time and will to read stories, even if they're coming from the people I know. Moreover, if they're good, I usually settle in for giving them a like for the sake of the stats and don't comment (again, the time and will issue). And I am very, very rarely impressed.

But damn, this story of yours is really good. Your writing has improved a great deal since those first bits you've been throwing at me years ago, and quite honestly it reads like something I'd write myself if I was the author here (that's not to be self-serving here - this current style of yours just really works for me!). And there's the story itself. Since I am, uhm, quite acquainted with the setting, reading these two chapters gave the same vibe the new Star Wars movie did. I feel that I'm stepping back into the world I already know, and I'm greatly enjoying the references and cameos. Little things, like the description of the Hive - yup, that's Whitefalls and the Spire alright. Nihkel and the pamphlets - yup, I remember the TQ&I opening. Astra and Stargazer - hey, it's them! Even if I didn't feel much attached while reading their story, it's always nice to see a familiar face. And we're still before the main course, which I believe will contain more of Cecily and Iqqel's awesome-duo-ness.

So, good job. :raritywink:

Poor, poor Octavia. If her mind is blown at this point, they'll be finding bits of overloaded pony brain miles from the hive by the time this is over. Heck, she's so overwhelmed that she didn't even notice Nihkel's comment about how Vinyl is likely going to be meeting Celestia. Good thing, too. It'd be incredibly unseemly for Octavia to have a heart attack before meeting with Cecily.

Also, it seems Nihkel never picked up on how pony eyes don't work that way. This is what happens when you have your tourism board try to market towards customers they've never met. Seriously, get that ling out in the world for a bit.

Oh, and it's nice to see Astra and Stargazer moving into their new lives. :twilightsmile:

In all, I'm quite enjoying this, especially how well Octavia's attitude shows through her dialogue. The anxiety is certainly there, yes, but so is the artistic temperament, slightly removed from the moment and analyzing everything for the inspiration it can provide. It's a familiar feeling, and you capture it well.

Wow, just wow. Ponies allowed into a Hive without ending up as food. That alone gets a big plus from me, and the quality of writing makes it even better.

He glanced up at us as we entered, and gingerly spat the quill out into a nearby inkwell, before scrutinizing me over her glasses. She idly gestured at Nihkel.

Missed an "s" there, I'm thinking.

Read and enjoyed all the iqqelverse stories. Thanks

Oh no.

Ohhhh no.

Ohhhhhhh noooooo

Strap yourselves in boys, it's gonna be a bumpy fucking ride.

6881933 Yep. Thanks for the correction. Fixed.

Oh god.

It's like two trains. On the same track. Heading in opposite directions. Except at the last minute they jump the tracks.

And then they start flash stepping.

And summoning shadow clones.

And the clone trains are crashing, and going up in fireballs and others are going spinning off into space like giant metal ballerinas and everything is fire and metal and glass and it's amazing.

I'd elaborate on that metaphor, but I think leaving it as is is funnier.

Oh my. This is going to be a wild ride.

blue-green thorax

you mean teal.

a misanthrope,

misanthrope? Doesn't fit in pony lingo.

Cecily's horn lit up, and ghost-like images of instruments flickered into existence all around us.

Did they need to be conjured?

I'm afraid I made a few unladylike noises reminiscent of being strangled as I processed that.

More pls?


you mean teal.

Actually, it's a blue-green gradient, which is why I said that, instead of just giving the middlepoint color. One end is blue, one end is green. I felt like describing it in that much detail would take too much room and distract from the story.

misanthrope? Doesn't fit in pony lingo.

The ponies often use words with a root meaning 'human' to refer to people, as opposed to humans specifically. Coining a new term on the spot would be confusing and unnecessary as far as canon goes.


More pls?

My god. It's an epilogue fic to a novel-length story that has tens of thousands of words worth of sidefiction for it already, and you remain unsatisfied. Good thing it's only the first of four epilogues ;)

Did you actually read all of the other Iqqelverse stuff already?

The idea of this beautiful instrument with a snapped-off handle sent a shudder through me.

Octavia is greatly distressed by the senseless, gratuitous violins.

And that reveal. I suspected this might be the case, but it's still a beautiful blend of beauty and tragedy. The mental images that come to mind when I consider the efforts that went into distributing Cecily's work, the dedication to a dream even as it was edited out of the dreamer's mind... Very nice work there.

I had tactfully left out the visual-arts part of the event.

You know, aside from how it's called the Murals & Melodies event.

This was a wonderful bit of warm fuzz... but there's a chunk of cold, hard reality at the core. Cecily's triumph seems to carry a heavy cost. If I'm reading this correctly, luminite production in Hive Chrysalis is over and done with now and forevermore. And when it's the basis of their technology... well, it's a very good thing they're forging closer ties with Equestria. Who knows? Maybe one day they'll be able to synthesize the process without the negative consequences.

... Actually, now that I think about it, aren't there other changeling hives? Hive Chrysalis wouldn't need to be called such if there weren't other hives from which it needed to distinguish itself. Given that... Oh dear. I really hope I'm reading too much into this. :twilightoops:

6885442 example? I don't think so because things like "hands" were often used in expressions but when RD was asked in the first eqd movie she didn't know.
6885452 likely I will never be satisfied until I see Chrysalis paired with Iqqel but the universe itself is awesome.

And yes. All of it.

My god. We've got a dedicated fan. I didn't know I had those.

Well, I think by the time we're done, you'll be satisfied. I'mma leave it at that :duck:

This was briliant and beautiful. :pinkiesad2:

Aww. I'm glad it was a good experience for you.

I wonder if Chryssie got at least a bit better.


Well, it was nice when Octavia had a while brain, cause it's going to be bucking shattered now.


That was... Interesting. Also beautiful. I hope Cecily gets the recognition she deserves.


Still sad that Chryssie ended up blind... I wonder if with time her sight could be restored or augmented with magic?

Still, it was really nice. I wonder if she'll be called to speak on Equestria once the music society at large will find out if was her who wrote all that stuff.


So it continues.

I vote for:
-Chyssy/Cecile taking Iqqel with her to the concert. As a date. Openly
-Octavia spilling out the whole Cecile truth to the public after the concert.
-Chryssy taking in Octavia as a music student.
-Vinyl doing a sick rave dubstep piece abaut the hive
-Octy doing hive-inspired music
-Vinyl secretly admiring Cecile as well by remixing her stuff
-Cecile doing a concert in Equestria, counting in a part where she does the work of a whole orchestra by ghost instruments.


So there should be some closure with Astra and Stargazer (okay, not that much new), and their presence helps place this in time.

Her cryptic answer left me uncertain where to push for more answers. I didn't want to pry, as I could tell that this was uncomfortable for her, but I could hardly make heads or tails of what she had said.
"You mean to say that... your mother blinded you? As a nymph?"

I'm not really buying this inference. I don't think there's really the context there to support it as entirely plausible. Especially with the implication that they'd mostly been talking music.

Reading this after Dichromatic, or perhaps that after TQ&I, was strange in that it seemed to me like there was canon-drift between the two branches regarding the way Chrysalis's memory of her life before becoming the queen worked, and the apparent full erasure doesn't mesh that well with the old queen's motivation in TQ&I for choosing Cecile.

Anyway, the outsider viewpoint seemed like it helped focus on just a couple of threads better than tackling this period and task from Cecile or Iqquel's perspective. Tying together Cecile's old life and the present, and offering a path to regain some connection with it going forward, and how this changes her role as queen. So it does its work well as an epilogue, and the parting acts from Cecile were a nice touch.

Glad you enjoyed it. I've largely stepped away from FIMFiction due to other projects, but there is one final sidestory to TQ&I planned. Hopefully, it will be a satisfying conclusion for you.

Interestingly enough, while I haven't listened to it, apparently there is an actual album out there titled Gratuitous Sax & Senseless Violins.

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