• Published 11th Jun 2016
  • 1,307 Views, 184 Comments

Equus Metamorphosis - boardgamebrony



2072 TX: A young human with a degenerative bone condition must prepare for a life-saving technological transformation into Rainbow Dash. His robotic partner Pinkie Pie, several other robot ponies and exosuited-humans guide him toward his new life...

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( 7 ) Behind the Curtain [30-33rd Floor]

With exposed piping and masses of insulated wiring running across the darkened back halls, the freight area of the 30th Floor was not at all what Armin expected. Princess Luna guided Discord with the help of her two human security guards as Pinkie and Armin fell in step behind. Dim florescent lighting filled the back hall as they passed by crumbling wallpaper and computer terminals which looked like they dated from the previous decade.

“Is this where SYS-TER lives?” Armin asked.

Princess Luna said nothing as she and her guards walked up to a series of doors. It was quickly apparent that Discord would only be able to fit through the double-door entrance in front of him. Luna stepped over to a smaller door with the sign Do Not Enter During Tour. Above the door were a lit green light and a red one which stayed off. Luna put her hand on the door.

“Armin, you and Pinkie will be going through here while I will take Discord through the other entrance.”

Pinkie and Armin looked at each other. “Why are we splitting up?” Armin asked.

“Because I’m tired of you questioning me and I don’t want you to cause any problems when Discord is interrogated,” she said bluntly and without feeling.

“Luna!” Pinkie said. “You said we’d see SYS-TER together!”

“And you will. When she’s done speaking to him privately. Don’t make this difficult.” She kept her large, equine eyes narrowed at Armin.

“Seem to be bending the promise there quite a bit, Luna,” Armin said.

She stepped forward and put her face an inch away from his. He’d never seen another pony face this close before and her furious expression put him off. He noticed his heart begin to accelerate unusually fast. Pinkie picked up on the abrupt change and quietly sniffed the air. She turned around and quickly projected two words on the wall from her eyes: Intimidation Pheromones, before flicking them off and turning back around. The guards turned in time to see Pinkie smiling nervously at them. Luna’s eyes, however, had flicked over to a reflection of the projected words visible on a uninsulated pipe behind Armin, and then back at the young human.

“You two are quite the little team, aren’t you?” Luna asked, breath coming out of the pony mouth. It had to be a Meta-Frame…right? “Always trying to be sneaky. Always backing each other up. SYS-TER may be impressed, but to me, you’re just another juvenile pair. You’ve had it far too easy up to now.” She leaned in, causing Armin to back-up in response. “I wonder what will happen on the day you push and someone pushes back. Are you going to be able to stand up to them? Think it’ll turn out okay? Think they won’t turn out to be stronger, or smarter, or more experienced?” Armin leaned uncomfortably close to the piping behind him. Luna sneered. “Here’s a lesson you won’t get in our pre-planned company tour, courtesy of the one hundred grand you invested in your procedure: you go out there, into the real world, with that attitude of yours and someone’s going to knock you down a peg or two. If you’re lucky, your pride is all they’ll knock out. You’re going to be walking around as a living cartoon character. Intimidation will not be your skill. You better learn to charm people. Better learn to help them like you, or you’re going to experience some very painful falls.”

Armin didn’t know how, but he managed to speak despite the intimidation tactics. “You don’t think I know that?” he started. “You don’t think I’ve considered all of that already? I know my life is going to change. But at least I’m going to have one. So why should I continue being scared of it? Why should I bother considering what other people think of me? I’ll have a life, so I’m going to live it the way I want.”

Luna nodded very slowly. “So that’s it, isn’t it? You think because you’re close to death that you can be as reckless as you want.” It wasn’t a question. “You still haven’t realized the potential of this suit, Armin. Not only are you not going to die anytime soon, but you’re probably going to outlive your mother, your friends, your relatives, and anyone you end up loving.” Pinkie’s ears dropped and her expression turned sad. “You haven’t noticed it, but you’re moving from the boy holding death’s hand to the boy death couldn’t see. At your age, with the kind of resources you have available, it’d be entirely possible for you to live close to one hundred fifty years, maybe even two hundred. Are you ready for that kind of responsibility?”

“Do I have a choice?” Armin asked.

“I’m not talking about whether you should get the surgery. I’m talking about whether you should change your attitude about life so drastically that you think your actions don’t have consequences. Trust me: they do,” She said before turning to look at Discord. He had said nothing during the whole talk. Luna’s eyes narrowed. “What? No witty come-back from the draconequus? No coming to the rescue of the one who tried to save you?”

Discord’s eyes were calm, but wearisome. He sighed. “I respect you, Luna,” he said. His eyes looked away.

Luna turned to Pinkie, whose sad face garnered no pity from her. “And you? He’s your companion.”

“I don’t know what to say to someone like you,” Pinkie said. “You…you scare me.”

“Fear and respect,” Luna said. “I’m fine with either.” She turned back to Armin, whose face had hardened the moment he saw Pinkie upset. “But I can’t read what you’re giving me. It’s neither.”

Armin said nothing, but his gaze didn’t divert this time and he wasn’t backing off from Luna.

She looked surprised. “You aren’t even the slightest bit afraid of a goddess?”

“You’re not a goddess,” he said. “You’re either a robot or a person in a suit.”

Luna seemed to consider his words. “Or both. Or neither, perhaps?” she asked, purposely ambiguous. “As far as you’re concerned, I’m the only thing keeping you from going through that door.”

Armin was angry. His emotions made it very hard to think. Pinkie looked down at the ground and her eyes watered.

“There it is,” Luna said. “Anger. That’s what you have for me. It won’t do you any good, though. You’ve turned me into your villain,” Luna said, “simply because I’m telling you to do something you don’t want to do. You can’t even put this whole situation into perspective. You have to pick someone to defy, if only to feel like you’re rebelling against the system. You still don’t realize that I saved you,” she turned and pointed at Discord before looking back at Armin, “from this one who was content to toy with you until someone put him on a leash.”

“I never sought to hurt him,” Discord said.

Luna’s glared at him. “I didn’t ask for your input.” She turned back to Armin. “I seriously hope you aren’t considering doing the same in the outside world, where you make someone your villain just so you can have a purpose.” She lowered her arm and her gaze suddenly looked tired. It was almost ancient, tinged with sadness. “I wish I could warn you. I wish I could just…tell you all the problems you’ll be facing because that anger of yours keeps determining what you want to do with yourself.” She looked down, seemingly lost in thought. “But it won’t make a difference.” Her expression was stern when she looked back at him. “People like you need to learn things the hard way. It’s the only way you’ll learn. Then, when no one’s around to argue with,” she opened the smaller door, “only then will you finally see what it’s like to argue with yourself. Maybe then you’ll listen.”

Armin looked through the door into a room with nothing but white walls, a single door at the back and a glass viewing panel where several chairs rested on the opposite side. He looked at Luna. “I have been listening.”

“Prove it,” she said as she motioned to the door. Her words weren’t harsh anymore. They seemed heavy, with one nearly imperceptible emotion…regret.

Armin looked at Pinkie. She nodded and shook her head out of her down expression as she walked through the door. Armin sighed and stepped through. Luna stood in the doorway. “Pinkie needs to enter through that service door and activate the button to start the tour.”

“Tour?” Armin asked. “I thought we were going to see SYS-TER?”

“Please just do what I say, for once,” Luna said. “Normally we call up a Technomancer employee to operate the console and guide the tour, but Pinkie can do it if she follows the prompts on the console. With you two, I feel this experience needs to be more personal. You’ll see.”

Pinkie nodded and walked over to the service door, exited it and stood behind the glass where empty seating peered up at the scene where Armin stood. She saw a pedestal with some buttons and waited.

Luna spoke. “This isn’t going to be what you expected, but it’ll be exactly what you need.” She stepped back and closed the door. It locked into place, leaving Armin alone in the central room with Pinkie staring at him from the glass. She said something, but the sound was perfectly muffled. Armin made a motion with his hands near his ears that indicated he couldn’t hear. Pinkie activated her earpiece and Armin heard her voice on his end.

“Are you ready?” Pinkie asked. Armin looked around the room and saw nothing but the rear exit door and the front service door. Everything else was covered in small one-foot by one-foot tiles from top to bottom.

“I don’t see what I’m supposed to do in here.” Armin looked past the glass viewing panel where Pinkie was standing. “I see chairs behind you. I think Luna’s messing with me.”

“Perhaps,” Pinkie said. “But my sensors are picking up small creases around the room, like tiles are supposed to move. Maybe it’s a puzzle?”

Armin moved over to the service door where Pinkie was, opened it, and stepped through. An audible sound played from overhead speakers as a nameless female voice spoke. “To begin the tour, please step back into the white room while Pinkie presses the button on the console to begin further instructions.”

Armin and Pinkie looked at each other. “She knows your name,” Armin said.

“We’re in a company headquarters that makes robots and artificial intelligence, Armin,” Pinkie said.

Armin smirked and shook his head. Pinkie kissed him on the cheek and then stood back as though she were waiting for a response. He couldn’t help but blush a little as he stepped back into the room and closed the door. “Hit it,” he said.

Pinkie tapped the button excitedly as they both waited. The lights in the room changed as the middle nine blue floor tiles light up blue. STAND HERE was written across them all. Armin did so and the lights changed again as the bordering tiles around the center ones started to slowly lift up off the ground. SIT HERE was written on them. Armin saw down and felt the cold tile under him. The wall lit up in red across from him with one tile illuminated in blue. LOOK HERE it read. Armin stared and tried not to comment on the constant instructions. DON’T BLINK FOR FIVE SECONDS, it now read.

Lights streamed out of the tile as Armin struggled to keep his eyes open. They scanned his retinas as eight cameras appeared from each corner of the room at both the bottom and the top tiles. They hung there silently.

“What do you see?” Pinkie asked.

“Nothing special,” Armin said as the lights stopped. He looked back at her. “Didn’t know I was getting an eye exam.”

“Wow, those blue lights look pretty!” Pinkie said.

Armin looked around the room. “I don’t see any blue lights.”

Pinkie pointed to the tile where the lights had come from moments before. “The ones streaming from that tile. And pretty much every camera in the room when you turn your head. It’s like they’re tracking your eyes.”

Armin shook his head. “I’m telling you, everything in here looks exactly the same.” He gestured to the tile with his hand. “That one looks…” He stopped and stared at his hand. His blue hand.

For years Armin had wondered what it would be like to be inside a Meta-Frame, permanently sealed off so all he could ever see from then on was a body that looked so different, so alien to him, that his mind would consider it nothing more than a dream. He had seen videos online of other Meta-Frame wearers showing their first-person experiences with the suits and how they freaked out the first time their minds fully comprehended what they had become. There was no video, no written experience that could fully portray the startling emotional impact of finding that you had moved from one body to the next. And today, Armin stared at his hand, now blue and cel-shaded, with the appearance of a soft fine coat of hair. He looked down.

His whole body had changed. The clothes and the crutches were gone, replaced with a sleek sky-blue body of hooved feet and subtle, graceful curves like that of an upright equine. The symbol of a cloud with a rainbow lightning bolt rested on both of his hips. The sight of them made his eyes tear up. Streaks of a rainbow tail flicked out from behind him as he turned his hips to see it move. He smiled as he fought back tears. “Oh my gosh…”

“Armin,” Pinkie asked. “Why is your butt making you emotional?” She looked closely. “What are you seeing that I can’t?”

“It happened!” He said. “I mean…I can see my body as Rainbow Dash!”

“WHAT?!” Pinkie said. “I wanna see!” A camera dropped down in front of her and projected over the glass panel for Pinkie to view. “OH MY GOSH YOU LOOK AWESOME I WANNA HUG YOU SO MUCH!”

A mirror materialized within Armin’s view in front of him. He caught himself staring at the light fuchsia eyes matching his gaze. He approached the mirror and saw tears streaming down from the smiling pegasus in front of him. Her eyes were so beautiful. Her smile lit up the room. “Is this what I’m going to look like soon…?” The mouth moved perfectly in-sync with his. Wings flexed up behind him and he giggled in glee. Pinkie laughed along with him. “Pinkie, you have no idea how happy I am right now,” he said as his voice cracked.

Pinkie smiled. “Yes I do,” she said as she felt the wireless readout from Armin’s emotions in her chest. She put her hands up to her mouth. “I want you to feel this happy all the time,” she said.

“My ears are twitching!” Armin said as he saw the ears in the Rainbow Dash reflection twitch towards Pinkie’s voice whenever she spoke.

“WHOA,” Pinkie said as she pressed her face against the glass. “Armin, turn around! The room has opened up. IT’S HUGE and it’s not a simulation, either!”

Armin looked behind him. The white walls were completely gone. He was standing at the bottom of a four-story high city with colossal pillars stretching from floor to the ceiling as though they were in a forest of metal trees. Each pillar spanned outward with spiraling steps leading up to several levels where open-air balconies had people and ponies, fantastic once-fictional characters and customized beings chatting with one another. Each floor of elevated glass-walled rooms was rife with activity from people having their own meetings to Meta-Frames and Pod Pals playing games with one another. Small lifts moved between the levels, allowing Armin a sigh of relief as he eyed small groups of ponies getting ready to hang out with a large group of brightly colored creatures that had to be Pokemon. Armin laughed at the combination of exosuits and robots as they chatted amongst each other, some even cuddling with one another as they talked on couches or at bar tables. The massive room was its own bustling mini metropolis contained inside four floors in a building in downtown Corpus Christi, Texas. Did anyone outside the building even know that such a place existed?

Armin wanted to step forward off the white tiled floor and onto the fake grass which had been planted beyond it, but he turned around and saw Pinkie staring at him. He motioned for her and she ran through the service door to give him a hug. “I can’t believe this place!” She said. She looked at Armin and then at a small floating drone hovering above them. Blue light issues from its optical sensor. “Ohhh, that’s how it’s maintaining the overlay of Rainbow Dash in your vision.” Pinkie hugged Armin. “This place is so beautiful. I want to live here.”

A shimmering form appeared in Armin’s vision. He opened his mouth in awe at the sight.

Armin’s mind interpreted the vision as a sun being born only yards away above him. The swirl of elements coalesced into a mixture of hues he had never seen before in his entire life, save for something out of a dream barely held on the edge of waking. The colors shifted into a mass of floating nebulae as the spark in the middle of the celestial mass blew outward. A shimmer of stardust solidified into four legs, a body, and the head of grand mare staring up regally as her wings moved in slow motion. Her mane and tail reached out beyond her almost a dozen yards above and behind her, filling the sight with swirls of perpetual pastel colors swimming across Armin’s view. They flowed gracefully in the solar winds of the vision, casting a calming glow upon all they touched.

Armin had never experienced a miraculous vision in his life. Until now. His heart felt inspiration and awe in a way it had never before. He would have dropped to his knees had Pinkie not caught him before his legs hit the ground. She gently lowered him onto the fake grass and held him as she saw an image of the vision wirelessly projected into her ocular input by the building’s artificial intelligence.

Armin’s eyes locked on the celestial being whose eyes were kind and brought up every positive memory in his life all at once, filling his heart with soft wonder and calm radiance. He sat there in the moment, doing everything he could to remember the feeling of majesty and wishing it would never end.

The scene around him changed while the graceful goddess floated above him, her serene smile soothing every hidden pain in his heart. He saw a pinpoint of light, distant and beckoning, on his very left. He turned to look at it. As his eyes adjusted to the light and settled upon it, a sliver of a scene stretched out in front of him, filling his eyes as though he had stepped through time. He saw himself in the Meta-Frame, stepping into college while holding Pinkie’s hand. They met friends, laughed, got close and Armin moved his head to the right out of reflex to try to hide his tears. The moment he moved his head in the slightest, the scene changed to something potentially further in the future during his college career. Each single degree of movement opened up another sliver of the possible future, unfolding in front of him like his eyes had discovered another dimension beyond his own. Every millimeter of movement of his head to the right opened up another simulated reality, one where he was happy, one where he was successful, one where Pinkie and he were holding each other as the sun set behind them, one where his mother welcomed him into the company, one where he wore an even more fantastic Meta-Frame…the visions spread out before him like a timeline to the future, speaking in possibilities and whispering inspiration into him through every sight, sound and smile. He raised up his hands and found he could wave them in front of him to slowly glide between the slivers of possibility, re-watching each one and jumping between them with the flick of his fingers. He spread his fingers out and saw, like the folds of a curtain, multiple points in time bending around his sight as though he stood in the center of a black hole curving the points at the accretion disc where no light would return from. The visions stood static in their frozen motion as moments of time caught in stasis. Every smiling face of his potential self-existed across this spectrum as they bespoke of a silent story which could be. Pinpoints of light existed at each one of the faces, like billions of stars floating across his sight all at once. It was an impossible view, one that no human could see in any way other than what Armin had just been given. The tesseract closed around him as the multiple views combined into one in an accordion-like shrinking of time down to the single most important point in Armin’s life and the one that would always be the most important.

“Now,” Armin said. His breathing was labored but excited. He was on the ground. “I’m back to now…Pinkie?” He looked around and saw he had become human again in his sight. Pinkie Pie held him close and smiled.

“I saw it too,” she said. “That was your life, or at least, what it could be, shown in four dimensions through a simulation created by SYS-TER.”

Armin looked around but didn’t see the majestic celestial being anywhere. The small drone beaming the Dash overlay into his eyes had also disappeared.

“Was that…SYS-TER?” Armin asked.

Pinkie smiled. “What do you think, sweetheart?”

Armin sat up. “That was amazing. I can’t even begin to describe it. All of that in less than sixty seconds…”

“What?” Pinkie asked. “Armin, you were lying on the ground for almost thirty minutes.”

Armin stared at her. “That can’t be. I distinctly remember it lasting less than a minute, Pinkie!”

Pinkie looked at the ground as her eyes lit up and projected an image of Armin on the very same fake grass. The time shone in the corner like a digital clock. She fast-forwarded it to show several people coming to check on Armin as Pinkie waved them away, motioning that he was fine. She did this several times during the full duration of Armin’s vision until he finally sat up twenty-seven minutes later.

“WHAT?” Armin said. “But how?”

Pinkie hugged him. “There are some things the human mind has trouble comprehending. You were viewing a potential future while inside of a digital tesseract SYS-TER had created. Every time you moved your head, the next 3-dimensional vision unfolded within the 4-dimensional space. You viewed most of your possible entire life in less than half an hour, and your mind has no idea how to comprehend that. It’s no wonder if freaked out and failed to track the time. Kinda like being stuck in a dream that feels like it’s lasted a few minutes only to wake up hours later.”

“That’s insane.”

“No, that’s your human mind failing to comprehend anything beyond 3-dimesionaly Euclidean space,” Pinkie said.

Armin laughed. “I can’t even begin to imagine it.”

“You don’t have to imagine it. You just saw it,” she said and giggled.

“I could have that life, Pinkie,” he said. “If I work hard at it, I can be all of those things I saw and more.”

“SYS-TER wants you to make sure you understand how promising your future really is. But you have to choose to do it. No more fear from here on out,” Pinkie said.

“No more fear,” Armin said. He stared up and saw the mini metropolis still in existence. “Ah, so this place IS real.”

“Somewhere in here is the Pod Pal that represents SYS-TER, but it’s different every time. It’s done on-purpose so that anyone who planned to hurt her would have a nearly impossible time figuring out which one was her. Though you could make the argument that her digital presence is actually deeper in the building…”

“Pinkie,” Armin said. “How are you figuring all of this out?”

“SYS-TER is literally texting me it right before I speak it,” she said.

Armin smiled. "Of course," he said. He looked around. “Where’s Discord? And Luna?”

A buzzing sound came from Armin’s tablet. He pulled it out and looked at it.

Armin, I am sorry you did not get to speak with Discord while he and I were talking about his actions down on the Showcase floor. Know that I took into account your compassion for him and his willingness to ensure your safety as well as his incredible generosity inspired by your own kindness. Still, my position requires me to ensure he is held accountable for the potential danger he put you in, since causing you to panic could have resulted in permanent physical injury to your body thanks to your condition. As such, with all things considered, I have given him a reprimand. He will not be allowed to visit you again until tomorrow after your procedure. He is currently in stasis and will be so for approximately twelve hours as he will not be allowed to interfere with anything involving your surgery. I hope you understand my caution in this.

Still, today is a great day for you. You are standing in my home where all should feel safe and welcome. You are only one two steps away from achieving your dream. You must complete a series of examinations on a separate floor before Floor 37 will open up to you. You must successfully complete these examinations, otherwise you will have to retake them no earlier than 24 hours later. Fail them again and you’ll have to wait a week while you prepare for them. I only do this to ensure you are absolutely prepared in every way possible for this life-altering procedure.

I was so overjoyed to see you happy when you saw yourself as Rainbow Dash. I hope to see that smile again very soon.

For now, explore this area and find yourself something to eat and drink. Perhaps you can even make some friends. I know of a shy unicorn who would like to speak with you. Meet her at the Replicant Lounge on Pillar 7D.

Good luck to you. I will be here if you need me.

- SYS-TER <3

---- ----

Author's Note:

Extra Story Details

Writing Time for This Chapter: Approx. 6 hours 4 minutes
Draft Number: Multiple Outlines, 2 Drafts over 2 Days
Setting: Technomancer Industries Corpus Christi Offices, Elevator and 30-33rd Floor
Themes: Artificial Intelligence, Exosuits, Tesseract, Hypercube, 4th Dimension

Story Notes:
This was a difficult chapter to write. I needed SYS-TER to be amazing. I believe I have succeeded. :)

Comments ( 38 )

Luna was acting a bit... strange

While sys-ter was spot on. And set for something unique. Which mentioning above you intended. There's more the motivation of it all for the rest of things.

Ultimately, whats the saying. "It's easier to rule in hell than serve in heaven?"

Still, Luna has good chance to be one of the folks who survived the little attempted bloody coup of the takeover. If not that, then one of the other veterans of the russian/chinese war. Those two seem to have the right mix of loss and anger to look at the pair like this. I'd wager likely more on the latter on things.

With the approach of doing this away from the camera's. The fact that luna was confrontational here, and aggressive, makes me think of a military background. Though, given the pauses here, there is a point of at least some of it being planned.

7378708

She was acting like the worst possible combination of an angry old person who believes they know everything and an angsty teenager. Whether she was right or not, it was super obnoxious.

The SYS-TER bit was well done though, and the reaction to seeing himself was great.

Major congratulations on the chapter BGB! My mind. Is. Completely. BLOWN!! Keep up the good work, my friend. I will be waiting with baited breath for the next chapter!

I sence Twilight will be in the next chapter...I cannot wait to read it :pinkiehappy:

7378708

Maybe it was the Nightmare?

7379812

There are so many ways The Nightmare could manifest in a real-world scenario, but many of them are technological. Still, that would have to be something in her past, so we'll see what clues LUna gives later :)


7379506

A Princess Twilight Pod Pal in this scenario would be super! We'll see if and when she may show up. Also, Cadance hasn't appeared yet either. I have a plan for her :)


7379345

Thank you! *hugs* I really stressed about this chapter. I was trying very hard to make SYS-TER something absolutely fantastic. I'm incredibly happy with what came out. You guys are inspiring me to strive for me with each chapter! This story is my special focus and I want to make it extra special for all of you <3


7379095

She was acting like the worst possible combination of an angry old person who believes they know everything and an angsty teenager. Whether she was right or not, it was super obnoxious.

The SYS-TER bit was well done though, and the reaction to seeing himself was great.

HAH! In some ways I wonder if that means Luna was too effective as a character or just right considering the result she was trying to get from Armin.

And thank you for the compliment! So far, Armin has technically had TWO transformation sequences. One where he was put into the Celestia suit, and the other one here where he saw himself as Rainbow Dash. Suddenly you guys are getting all SORTS of unexpected transformations! :D

7379040

Luna is one of the few characters who purposely obscures her identity as to whether she's human in a Meta-Frame or a Pod Pal. Granted that she's in a very significant position of authority, she deems it necessary to remain ambiguous. You're right, though, that she has a high chance of being one of the ones who survived the coup decades before. There are a lot in the military who owe their newfound livelihood to Technomancer Industries for their prosthetics and their robot companions.

In fact, I have yet to expound upon the benefits of having a robot companion for someone suffering from PTSD.

7378807

Hmmm indeed :)

7378708

Very strange for her being the only hostile one out of the bunch so far...

7381874 Sorry that I end up making you look at more of these things for all the crazyness that goes into it.

7381888

Oh no no! I love that you've been pointing out all these wonderful things! It's really exercising my brain and it helps me get so much more enthusiasm when I see that people care deeply about my work and the stories behind them! :D *hugs* Keep asking!

wait, what coup?

7381874

Only thing to consider; making sure you don't burn yourself out, take some breaks, get some sleep, eat some food. You'll thank yourself later.

7381874 Possibly Nightmare_Moon.exe or something invading the circuitry?

7382525

They're talking about a reference from the history of the China/Russia Border Wars of 2048 and Technomancer Involvement listed here:
http://www.fimfiction.net/group/211037/equus-metamorphosis-universe/thread/263841/very-extensive-background-on-the-chinarussia-border-wars-of-2048-and-technomancer-involvement

I wrote it to give some more backstory leading up to "Equus Metamorphosis." Check it out! :D

7417148

HAH! I love it when things like that work out, like when one of my readers read aloud a crackfic of mine and was surprised when they were suddenly saying "BWA?" as part of Sweetie Derelle's actual lines :P

This sounds like "Friendship is Optimal meets The Conversion Bureau", to be honest :P

Interesting, I always liked both universes, though the latter was sometimes a bit lacking in stories that were both well-crafted and not hugely controversial, heh.

7427748

I kinda like that combination of Optimal Conversion :P I like both of those story universes and wanted to make something that showed the positivity of the future and how it could be helpful and not scary. :) If you haven't already got to read this storyline, you should. The fans have been super supportive of me and my story is getting better for it :)

So... When can more be expected

7427878 Heh, and to think this story (and it's also true for the other stories) piqued my interest because it sounded like a horror vision of some dystopian future. What's perceived as "positive" can differ a lot from person to person, I guess :P

7440993

Sometime this week, good reader! *hugs*


7441131

Heh, and to think this story (and it's also true for the other stories) piqued my interest because it sounded like a horror vision of some dystopian future. What's perceived as "positive" can differ a lot from person to person, I guess :P

It's funny you say that, cause when this story first came out, there was a HUGE discussion on what readers and I considered a dystopia vs a more positive future. It focused on something the character's said in the early 2nd or 3rd chapter. If you ever have time, you'll see the large discussions wayyyyy down at the bottom of the comments page about it :P

7441145 So I wasn't the only one who thought the premise seemed dystopian? Heh, didn't expect that, actually :rainbowwild:

7441145 Speaking of, I never got around to replying in that discussion again... I'd say "oops", but that type of thing is a bad habit of mine, so I can't blame anyone/anything but myself. :facehoof:

7454194

That's okay *hugs* I do that too. My memory is kinda wonk. Good to see you again, though! :D

Had this story on my read it later list for some time now and decided to give it a read today.
I definitely do not regret it, can't wait to read more.

I actually thought that Discord and Luna were in league with SYS-TER all along, that the whole situation was an adventurous and sneaky attempt of evaluating Armins personality further, to observe his reactions to stress situations while still guaranteeing a safe environment.
It would probably be unwise to ignore potential violent tendencies during the preparation of giving someone the means to end arguments by ripping someones spine out, so seeing if he would hold a grudge or loose his temper would give more information to work with.

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Hi there! First off, thanks for reading my story and for the compliments :) *hugs*

You are definitely right that a lot of what happens within the Technomancer building serves as a way of testing Armin's reactions in various situations. Even unplanned scenarios give SYS-TER valuable feedback on how Armin would react to an ever-changing environment.

It's good that you're attempting to see beneath whatever the characters are currently doing, because it allows you to anticipate potential future actions the characters might be planning, but not talking about. Definitely a good way to approach this story. :)

Thanks again! Stay tuned!

You’ve turned me into your villain,” Luna said, “simply because I’m telling you to do something you don’t want to do.

Does Luna think nobody can be angry at anyone else without making them into a villain? Frankly, she's more villainous for going back on her promise, than for standing in his way.

“I wish I could warn you. I wish I could just…tell you all the problems you’ll be facing because that anger of yours keeps determining what you want to do with yourself.”

Good grief, has he been angry at all this entire story until now? :rainbowlaugh: Luna's projecting on him so hard, it hurts!

I mean... has Armin been getting angry? :rainbowderp: I don't even remember where Discord appeared in past chapters, so maybe I'm just forgetting. Again.

Wish I could get a Pod Pal to help with my brain...

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*reads the list of available Pod pals, see's transformer as a listing* where can i sign up for megatron? does he come with a plasma cannon? we shall be.....unstoppable!

failing that, i'd take starscream. i could use a bungling idiot i can shoot when ever im in a bad mood

Later in the story after it hits a certain point, I'll start introducing more pod pals a little more quickly. Just note that Transformers Pod Pals will be human-sized since ACTUAL SIZE Transformers would be REALLY hard to store :P

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Ooooh doctor you got some 'splainin to do... :pinkiecrazy:

I can't believe he forgot. Armin even said he was leaving the microphone on. :rainbowlaugh:

"We're sorry, but unless you have gender dysphoria, we're going to have to put you into this female body. Logic!

Hehe the whole microphone ordeal can be read several different ways on the part of the doctor. Did he forget or did he let it happen and not say anything? His mind was mentioned to be seriously lacking in its own ability to maintain cognition without the help of his Pod Pal.

And as for the gender dysphoria part, I could have sworn I made it more complex than that :P

You’ve turned me into your villain,” Luna said, “simply because I’m telling you to do something you don’t want to do.

Does Luna think nobody can be angry at anyone else without making them into a villain? Frankly, she's more villainous for going back on her promise, than for standing in his way.

“I wish I could warn you. I wish I could just…tell you all the problems you’ll be facing because that anger of yours keeps determining what you want to do with yourself.”

Good grief, has he been angry at all this entire story until now? :rainbowlaugh: Luna's projecting on him so hard, it hurts!

I mean... has Armin been getting angry? :rainbowderp: I don't even remember where Discord appeared in past chapters, so maybe I'm just forgetting. Again.

Luna's a...very strange character in this scenario, to put it mildly. Her responses indicate someone who is hiding a HECK of a lot.

Armin has only been angry in this one section...well...kinda stressed in other sections but mostly angry here with the part including Luna :P

And Discord appeared in chapter 6 during the whole segment where he was the "dragon" stalking Pinkie and Armin through the pod hallways.

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Thank you! I've been brainstorming this universe for a few weeks now after the most recent chapter has been posted. I'll get back to it next week some time after I'm done with my classes :) Thanks for checking it out! :D

7581648 no thank you for writing it:rainbowkiss::pinkiehappy:

I want an exoframe. Don't ask, I'm not going to tell you anything.

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This doesn't make much sense. Gender dysphoria would be him being unsatisfied with being a man and desiring to be a woman.

Something that can occur and is treatable with drugs showing that it is caused by a neuro chemical imbalance, which can be caused my too many things to list here.

It would be much more concerning that making him wear a female form would cause him distress since he identifies as a male. In other words it could cause him to have gender dysphoria and not that he already has it. Based on his reservations currently he doesn't.

Interesting you bring up this point since this past week I was considering this very thing (before your reading your post, though now I'm considering it even further).

I think as a writer I may have hit a split-point here, in that I know exactly what I'm trying to say, but I may have written myself and the characters to a point where it might not be easy to say what I want without significant hurdles being overcome story and character development-wise. I had thought I was going in the right direction with this, but you are the second person to bring this up. It truly is tough to write these complex traits on a chapter-by-chapter basis, even if I knew where I wanted to go from the start.

Hmm...I'm going to have to think about this some more. Thank you for reading! :D

Can you do more please

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Holy crud, not only do i want to do more, but i looked at your comment upvote ratio and you have FIVE upvotes on your request, meaning that the general consensus to continue is definitely with the audience :)

I am so happy to see that :) I'm still brainstorming these ideas. Geez, I wonder if there's a way I can step away from what Pinkie and Armin are doing temporarily so the characters can have their rest while going to some other characters who are important to the storyline but whom we haven't focused much on...

Hmm...Possibilities include Caroline (armin's mom), Melody Noble, the Celestia AI of the company...

Loving the story so far and I especialy love the cover art which oddly enough is a picture of my hometown

when will the next chapter come out?:heart:

Lord have mercy, where has this been hiding all this time? Magnifico! May you get to complete this! Enquiring minds want to know!

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