• Member Since 14th Nov, 2015
  • offline last seen June 22nd


Mostly a lurking ghost, hoping to one day return.


While investigating the details of a suspected murder, Princess Celestia summons to her court a very unusual lead, who only agrees to see her because he suspects that she knows more about his past than he does.

Radiant Blade didn't have a job, friends, or much of a family. His life had been one cycle after another of addiction and withdrawal, perpetuated by gang members beating him to a pulp once a month.

They begin with the story of one night, and, memory by memory, come to understand exactly how the events of Daggertail's death played out, along with the origins of Radiant Blade.

He went out one night to down some cider and avoid his parents, and almost believed that he was dreaming when he ran into his high school marefriend.

This is a fanfiction of a fanfiction, dedicated to the author who first inspired me to write fanfiction; Anonymous Pegasus, whom I'd like to thank for giving me his blessing for this project. I'll do my very best to do his work justice.

This takes place within the universe of his An Affliction of the Heart series, which you should read if you haven't already.

Rated Teen for some sex jokes, underage drinking, addiction to and use of illegal drugs, depression, mild cursing, and moderately graphic vampirism directed at small animals.

Chapters (4)
Comments ( 9 )

I liked Radiant’s voice, narratively speaking. It felt consistent and distinguishable, if a tad overdramatic at times. Another thing that I liked, though it’s small, is the sentence variety. It’s kind of a surface-level thing, but something I value, since it can really help the flow of a story and keep it engaging, and the sentence variety definitely worked in your story’s favour. I didn’t notice any glaring grammatical errors, either.

However, overall, I didn’t quite like this story. I think one reason I’m a bit turned off by the story is the use of angst. It’s a bit too obvious and, in a way, a bit clichéd. Radiant has a tragic backstory, with kind of a bleak and cynical attitude. I’ll list some things that exemplify the angst, starting with the story description:

Radiant Blade doesn't have a job, friends, or much of a family. His life's been one cycle after another of addiction and withdrawal, perpetuated by gang members beating him to a pulp once a month.
Suffering from his messed up life, he goes out one night to down some cider and avoid his parents

He’s got no job, friends, (almost no) family, a drug problem, and a gang problem. He drinks to forget it and has parent problems. It sounds miserable from the start. The story begins with him contemplating something resembling existentialism [“How wasted can life leave you?”]. It’s revealed he’s a teenager out drinking. He’s got a cynical attitude [Yeah, I scoffed, like the world recognized anything.].

None of these thigns are bad by themselves, but combined, I think it can be a turnoff to a fair number of readers, I think because it’s a bit too miserable for most people’s tastes. Of course dark fics can be dark (and I’m curious why this isn’t tagged “dark”), but I think angst is sort of a (relatively) surface-level and less interesting form of dark, if not enough is done to counteract the angst. It just didn’t compel me to care for Radiant all that much. I think either the angst could be toned down, or the misery could be fed a bit at a time instead of revealing a good chunk of his problems all in one chapter.

Which brings me to another point: The way you tell Radiant’s backstory feels like an infodump. I think it’d be more interesting if you fed that information over time, rather than dump it all once in what felt like an unnecessary manner. The first scene sets up Radiant as a character with a tragic past, but then the past is told and the mystery is gone. To be fair, it was one opportunity for me to sympathize with him, but even then it almost seemed too tragic, going with my argument above on angst—like he was too far ahead in his classes to feel realistic, and the whole drug thing feels too terrible of a thing forced upon him. It doesn’t feel natural, at least the way you presented it. Rather, it feels synthetic, like it was crafted—which it was (writing and all that) but it shouldn’t feel that way. It ended up hurting my immersion.

Ideas for improvement? I might suggest toning down the student-being-so-ahead thing—maybe just (lol, just) a 4.0 in high school and only one major in applied chemistry. Also, I’d include a reason he didn’t go to the authorities sooner. I don’t see why he wouldn’t tell someone the day after they showed up with weapons. All that explains the bust is [Needless to say, someone called for an investigation.], and I really would’ve thought he would’ve been the one to complain, Radiant being [a sensible person, not interested in losing my scholarship, dignity, or rapport with the university] and all. In fact, I think he should be the one to complain—good protagonists are active and not passive.

I’d also consider saving the backstory for later. You could share a few details about it, but you’ve set up a good way to tell the backstory with Firefly—she hasn’t seen him since high school, and she’d be curious where he ended up and all that. It doesn’t have to be in chapter 2—it could be later. Things like his drug addiction could be mentioned and touched upon if they’re important to establish right away, but I think the backstory could be saved for another time.

There were other parts that felt needlessly expositional as well: His “empathy problem”, his need to drink blood / the history of bat ponies, his roommate, and the sticky note thing, to name some examples. The way these things were brought up didn’t feel like they needed to be told right then and there.

A place where you did exposition and it worked was the part about his digestive system and alcohol. That’s directly related to what’s going on in the current scene, and it’s interesting, and it was short enough to not distract too much from the present scene. The other things I listed, though, felt like they were told for the sake of being told and didn’t hold all that immediate of relevance to the present scene. The empathy problem could be considered immediately relevant, but I’d consider making that one quick paragraph instead of three, saving the rest for another time if the empathy problem comes up again. The need to drink blood is already talked about in chapter 2, so there’s no need to do exposition about it in chapter 1, I think (and you have him chase down an animal twice in chapter 2, once in the past and once in the present—I think only one (total) is necessary, because two is a bit repetitive).

I do also have some more problems with Radiant as a protagonist. One is that I feel like he plays the victim a bit too much (going along with my “active vs. passive” argument before). All of his life circumstances felt like they happened entirely out of his control, and he didn’t do much to counteract them (namely the “telling the authorities about the chemistry lab” bit). He also gets a bit too perfect with his values [I cared too much, no matter how little sense it made.]. This makes it a bit hard to root for him.

A few other things: Chapter 2 was jarring, because I assumed the first scene took place in the present, when only halfway through the chapter was it revealed that it took place in the past. There were some issues with the POV—things where it seems like the narrator wouldn’t be the one to notice some things [I blinked, my earthy brown eyes dilating]. I wondered how at first he hadn’t recognized Firefly after it was made a point in the narrative that he’d looked at her for so long. Unrelated to that, the “lovers being entranced by eyes” thing is pretty clichéd and not interesting by itself. The paragraphs are tabbed instead of spaced out (like my comment here is), which is fine technically speaking, but in an online fiction setting, a majority of people prefer spaced out paragraphs.

I will say that you presented some interesting story mechanics to work with, though. Aurora is interesting, and it’s interesting how Radiant uses it, too—to forget sucking animals’ blood. I think you’ve presented some interesting core ideas and concepts in this story, but I think it needs a bit of work as is. I hope this was helpful to you, and if you have any questions, let me know. I can try to elaborate any of these points further if you want me to. ^^

So how did Anonymous Pegasus inspire you?

7517037 That rabbit hole goes deep, my friend.

When I saw the 30% dislike rates, I held off on this. I said "Screw it. Let's see where this road spits me out at," and I have to say... Good job. Really. This far exceeded my expectations and I am looking forward to more. Well, two more chapters and then I have to wait. So let's go down this hole, see how deep it goes.

7730465 Thank you. I hope you like what you find down there.

Before I read this, what is the Gore tag for ? ( is it jest the vampirism ? )
And how bad does it get ?

8192465 justthe vampirism. And no ponies have been bitten yet. I might change that if I ever feel compelled to make a mature version or extra, saucier tidbits. He just bites a mouse, and gets high to the point where one of his wings breaks without him feeling it.

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