• Member Since 30th Jul, 2014
  • offline last seen June 28th

Mister E


Eclectic observer of the odd, and the esoteric.

T
Rot

Twilight Sparkle has always been frustrated with Discord. His ability to do anything, with no more effort than a snap of his claw. It shouldn't be possible. His power had to come from somewhere.
Then, one day, Twilight lets slip how she feels. Surprisingly Discord agrees to explain it to her. To give her the secret to all of his powers. If she's willing to pay the price that knowing it all will bring.

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 137 )

ROT would ruin any chance of me being able to play video games. No thanks, I already knew it all existed, that's enough for me.

This is... Great!
Words fail. More please!

Thinking about it..... *blurg* hold on.....*blargghh!* ugh, that was nasty. 10%......thats a scary thing to think about....:rainbowderp: Damn

Incidently, totally out context, but the story was reminiscent of "The Picture of Dorian Grey". At least to me.

I would like to see Celestia reaction. If you felt inclined to continue it?

Thumbs up -- I see a future for this fic.

This is dark. Honestly surprised, entropy is usually "chaos" and "order" is what happens when humans oppose entropy. With this you make Order sound alive and it's will is that of all things ending.

Can understand the whole everything eats you thing. To see everything rot though must be horrifying and knowing Twilight will one day be like Discord makes it more frightening.

An interesting use of the potential heat death of the universe as a horror trope. After all, it would be a perfectly orderly universe. with the individual atoms spread evenly throughout space.

Well done.

7686577 Well, I hadn't originally planned on this being more than a one shot. But there is more to the story in my head.
So, okay.:pinkiehappy:

7686661 To me the thing that made me shudder the most was seeing those spiders that live in our facial hair. Like literally inside the hair itself in little hollowed out nests. That was when I realized I had learned too much. I can't unsee that. Best I can do is try not to think about it.

7686676 I loved 'The Portrait of Dorian Grey'. And yes, I think I will keep going a bit on the story. There are a few ideas I still have in mind.

7686881 There is a series of books by L.E. Modesitt Jr. starting with 'The Magic of Recluse' that changed the way I viewed the idea of 'order' and 'chaos'. From the very idea that 'order' was black, and 'chaos' was white, to how both were used in the series really opened my eyes, (no pun intended).

Twilight still has it in her head that she can get a handle on things. She hasn't given up on her idea of mastering the power of Rot and using it for good.
But her eyes have just barely been opened. And there is still a lot left for her to understand and come to terms with.

7688679
Way ahead of ya lol:pinkiehappy: I started reading creepypasta lol so that I have nightmares of something else :derpytongue2:

This is great! I'd love to see an epilogue set a few hundred years in the future...

Ah, my favorite trope, entropy. And you did such interesting things with it too! Great job on this! :twilightsmile:

That was a very good story and well deserving of a fav... yet I can't help but think it might need a disclaimer in the description.

*May cause excessive beard shaving*

Now that's an interesting idea. An horrifying but interesting idea.
I would like to see it continued, if only to see if she will manage to control it for the better. If so, it would have been her greatest sacrifice for ponykind, greater even than everything Celestia ever did.
If not... Well that's depressing...
But I think she is strong enough (mentally) to handle it. :twilightsmile:
(Then again, I tend to think that everything can be handled by being mentally strong...and having a certain view, philosophicaly, on life itself)

I'll agree that this story feels like it got clipped a little short, but is otherwise quite good. It's not the first time I've seen an entropy-horror work, but you handled it well and I enjoyed the read. If you do decide to add to it, I would recommend a series of either one-shots or stories from varying perspectives and points in time. Given the long term implications, exploring how Twilight handles the power and knowledge (and how it changes her) would probably be best handled that way instead of a single giant work.

In a similar vein are good eldritch horror stories. The poor ones focus on the monsters. The good ones focus on what the monsters represent. Specifically, on how truly small and insignificant our existence, and the existence of everything we can perceive, really is. Like Twilight seeing the ROT, horror is found in understanding how transient everything is. It's why I've long held the belief that I don't want to live forever, only a really REALLY long time (around 50 quadrillion years would be ideal). People don't, and probably can't, really understand the implications of true immortality.

Well written and well explained. I probably shouldn't have read this though. I knew about the micro bug thing and it haunts me, but this reminded me of it. How am I going to sleep now? :raritydespair:

could pour over it later

pore

Another for "Entropy is not chaos".

Alternate title: Discord teaches Twilight the Meaning of Life and the Laws of Thermogoddamnics

This is amazing! I;'d love to see more of this!

ohh this was good. it could definately use a sequel or followup chapter.

I want to read more!


First, though, I need to go shave.

Ah yes the "bugs are all over you 24/7" thing. The way I see it, however, I'm pretty much a planet Earth to these micro creatures. I'm aware of their existence yet I don't feel them. In a way, it's kind of a godlike feeling.

While I understand that the idea of entropy can be/is horrifying on its own the heightened perceptions that Twilight now finds herself with make no sense to me. She can hear and smell the rot, fine, but if that's the case why is it that when Starlight and Spike speak she hears them at a normal level? Shouldn't her hearing be hyper sensitive now that she can actually hear the rot? Or how she can smell the rot on her food, but never makes a note of her sense of smell being any more sensitive regarding anything else. Being able to see the ros is confusing to me too. When she looks at something what exactly is she seeing? Does everything appear as if it's already decomposed? When she was describing what she was seeing to Starlight is kinda sounded like she's not actually seeing her rot in real time but rather she's seeing the future, she's seeing Starlight's body and what is going to happen to it as she ages and eventually dies and decomposes. If her senses were just tuned specifically to perceive the rot only, without affecting her perception of anything else then it just sounds like Discord fucked with her senses just cause he's a dick. I don't see why he couldn't explain to her how his powers work without having to change her perception. He harnesses the power of entropy, big deal. Why the need the alter her senses? To teach her a lesson I suppose.

I don't know, the more I think about it the more silly and over the top the execution seems.

~Have a good one.

Ah, yes. Entropy. The inevitable slide of all existence toward pure order. It's been something I've thought on every day for over a decade now.
Knowing that eternity's eventual, inevitable end is an empty white void that renders any and every action pointless at best? It's driven me to honest despair at how meaningless everything is.

Being suddenly hyper-conscious of the actual process? As well as all the little things that feed on it?
Well. It'd just about break anyone.

Edit: Of course, neither chaos nor order in pure form is good. Pure order is an empty, bleak void. Pure chaos is naught but primordial slurry of energy and matter with no definable boundaries.
It's just as effectively empty as pure order, just coming from the other direction.

7690034 Because something needs to be felt.
Not everything can be explained with words alone, and if certain subjects are explained with words alone, they are watered down, until they are a mere joke of what their original meaning was.

Some things needs to be experienced and felt by yourself, because hearing a story about it, or having another person tell you about it, is a pale comparison that holds no water to the real thing and will never compare.

7690054

Ah, yes. Entropy. The inevitable slide of all existence toward pure order. It's been something I've thought on every day for over a decade now.

Don't you mean disorder? :trollestia:

7690054 And yet the universe had to come from somewhere.

When you get down to it, we still can't explain why ANYTHING exists.

So, declaring that everything is pointless is rather jumping the gun.

Also, the little critters living on your eyelashes are MITES, not spiders. Same class Arachnidae, different subclass Acari. They're in the same kinship as ticks. One main body part instead of the two spiders possess.

As for being 90% 'not you', that's also not really true. It's the same sort of pseudo-science legend as 'people only use 10% of their brains'. This stemmed from someone who WASN'T a scientist commenting on a survey of cells which suggested bacterial cells outnumbered human cells 10-to-1. This turned out to be false regardless: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/body%E2%80%99s-bacteria-don%E2%80%99t-outnumber-human-cells-so-much-after-all, but the layperson also didn't comprehend that, even were it to be true, bacterial cells are MINISCULE compared to mammalian cells. The average bacterial cell in the body is about 2 microns in diameter. Let's pick a typical cuboidal body cell at around 20 microns. Now, do the calculation for volume, assuming basic spheroidal structure for simplicities' sake (since cells have so many shapes and when you isolate a single cuboidal cell in a liquid culture, their shape tends to relax into a spheroid). The bacteria take up roughly 4 cubic microns. The mammalian cell dwarfs this at 4 THOUSAND cubic microns. It would take a ratio of 1000/1 bacterial to human cells just for the bacteria to equal the mass of the human cells.

And then there's the noncellular mass of bone and connective tissue to consider, which are the densest and heaviest tissues of the body.

*Discord withers away under the resounding might and authority of Alondro's GOD-LIKE SCIENCE POWERS!!!!* Delicious, magical science! :pinkiecrazy::twistnerd:

Order and chaos have nothing to do with energy. Energy follows gradients. It can be into a more ordered state with a lower energy level, or a less-ordered state, though it tends to be a LESS ordered state.

The end of a universe, if one decides to permit the ever-expanding near-absolute-zero hypothesis, is an appearance of order resulting from maximal entropy into the lowest energy state possible.

Life takes place when order and chaos are striving against one another. If either 'won', life wouldn't and couldn't exist.

This Discord isn't nearly as smart as he thinks he is. Either that or he's merely propagandizing his ideology to the ignorant pony masses... much like politicians. :trollestia:

So what, he gave her super-senses? Hah, yeah, stuff like that can backfire. At least she's in Equestria. Imagine going to a place that already smells horrible. Now that would be a nightmare XD

So is Discord a champion of the red? I mean he made those vines but don't think that is really enough evidence to say he is a champion of green.

Pleeeeaaaaassse do more of this!

Entropy will break down the universe until nothing's left. Good thing I won't be alive to see that date, which is literally centillions of years in the future. :pinkiecrazy:

7690607 Its even further than that. Because as long as 1 black hole exists there will be something in the universe. When the universe has been eaten by that 1 black hole it will be so massive that even if something doesn't happen to make a new universe which thats purely theoretical at this point said Mega massive Black hole would take in the region of 10 to the 50 or so power million years to decay to a point that it can't sustain itself and die. So basically we would look at no less than 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Years or as a said number one sexdecillion years. But this would be around the time it takes for that 1 blackhole to die. This doesn't include how long it would take said blackhole to actually eat everything as well.

Let me put it this way if you live to see it you will be very very welcoming of it. Likely you will party the last 10 years or so to celebrate finally dieing

I could tell Discord was a liar or an idiot when he said 'order is there to break it down'. Order is lack of change, Chaos is change.
I could tell he was a liar when he 'tuned her perceptions' with hyperbolic sensitivity that almost completely overrides her normal senses causing such a visceral reaction, when in reality, such things are infinitesimal in scale.
Also, matter IS energy. The 'solidity' just comes from the bound electron fields, which can't slip through each other.
Also, most nuance in 'taste' is actually caused by smell.

7690146

...he's merely propagandizing his ideology to the ignorant pony masses... much like politicians.

I'm calling you out on this one, Discord!

7690139

And yet the universe had to come from somewhere.

This statement is logically false...(unless you mean the current iteration of the universe)
You can't get something from nothing, so there always had to be something...
(seriously, it's a logic trap, you can iterate it infinite times, it has no solution)
A fact theists constantly try to get around with their ridiculous hypothetical creator deity nonsense, despite the fact that clearly counts as something, and in this context, is part of the universe.

7690054

It's driven me to honest despair at how meaningless everything is.

7690139

So, declaring that everything is pointless is rather jumping the gun.

Your Philosophy is getting in my Science!
Seriously, meaning is subjective, so yeah, objectively meaningless.

There is so much more potential for this story. It needs to continue. Definitely earned its spot on the featured list.

7688679
Demodex mites aren't spiders. They're arthropods, which spiders also are, but this is not a spider:
ichef.bbci.co.uk/wwfeatures/wm/live/1600_900/images/live/p0/2q/vt/p02qvt3x.jpg

Also: Demodex mites explode on death instead of pooping, ever.
static2.fjcdn.com/comments/5463414+_dd5a5f2466c0b66045f723bab65120c8.png

[youtube=https://youtu.be/BOjrS3rv7ZY?t=3]

I could not stop thinking about this the entire time I was reading the story.

Is it weird to be fine with the knowledge that microscopic things are crawling around on my body?

But our all-consuming destruction. As Davros puts it: "The people and planets and stars will become dust. And the dust will become atoms and the atoms will become... nothing."

While he was talking about a bomb destroying everything, that is what we will have in the end. No matter what we build or own far we spread, we and our influence on the universe will eventually be Nothing.
:yay:
Have a nice day and a fun No-Shave November knowing about the tiny things burrowing into your facial hair.

7690782 Your specific points, while interesting, are largely moot while dealing with magic.
As soon as magic is involved, especially Discord's magic, things like logic and actual physics are easily bypassed.

Or to put it another way, "A wizard did it." Which is the traditional handwave used in any fictitious media to explain logical inconsistencies within a broader narration.

7690105 Errr, no. I mean order. Amusingly, due to a quirk in language, while entropy as a mathematical measure indicates disorder, in more philosophical discussion entropy is more traditionally linked (due to associated ideas) with the Heat Death of the universe (which occurs when there is no thermodynamic energy left within the universe to sustain motion), IE, what Discord spoke about.
So neither of us are entirely wrong.

7689847 It was clipped a bit. I had started working on it the day before Halloween, and had done some more with it Halloween day. Honestly, if I had known it was going to be THIS popular, I would have explained a few things better and fleshed out the story more.
Since so very many people want more, I will continue it, but just so a few more things make sense I'll go ahead and say this.
Discord knew exactly what he was doing. In his own chaotic mind, he has a reason. He also left Twilight's sense of taste alone on purpose, due to what happened to the LAST being he did this to. :raritywink:

7690034 I won't make excuses for the gaps in perception. The fault is mine for rushing it out the door just to post it in time for Halloween, instead of going back over it more thoroughly.
To offer some explanations however. Twilight's normal senses are for the most part, the same. What Discord altered is her ability to perceive the various processes of dissolution. Sounds are heard normally, but they fall off at the end. The sound of decay is heightened to the point of being noticed, and will only get worse the more she pays attention to it. Smell is normal, she could still smell the fragrance of a rose. However it would be overpowered by her heightened ability to smell decay specifically. As for sight, Discord said it's tricky to mess with someone else's perceptions. It wouldn't be that hard for him to have made a mistake or two while doing so. Which would explain why Twilight can not only see the decay in objects around her, but all of the teeming hordes of creatures crawling all over every living non- immortal creature that she sees.

7690146

Either that or he's merely propagandizing his ideology to the ignorant pony masses... much like politicians.

You sir, are remarkably close to the bulls-eye.
Discord has his own agenda. (nuff said).

Also, you are indeed correct about the little critters in you hair follicles being mites. Demodex mites. But they are not just restricted to your eyelashes.

We got into the habit of calling them 'face spiders', after the facehuggers came out in the movie 'Alien'.

This is so buetiful... :pinkiesad2:
good job on the story

Interesting premise! Did you draw at least a little inspiration from Dragonlance's Curse of the Eyes of Raelana?

This brings to mind memories of Saya no Uta.

If more is indeed along the way, I'll be eagerly awaiting it.:pinkiehappy:

7690782 Ah, but there is a problem with an infinitely existing universe in quantum physics! The causation problem is a HUGE sticking point in every theory.

There are dozens of competing hypotheses as to what triggered the Big Bang, or even if there really was one... and ALL of them run into the mind-bendingly impossible problems a) no really conceivable way of testing them and b) the issue of what came before THAT!

Really, you run into INFINITY no matter how you spin it, and infinities make life a living hell in physics.

I tried to look into it several time, and quickly realized no one had a clue. It was all mathematical gibberish without any experimentation. And since so many of these mathematical models looked good in equation form, BUT they all conflicted with each other... it leaves open the potential for them all to be completely wrong.

And then there's the Silicon Valley crowd who now seriously believe we're living in a simulation... which just kicks the can down the road as to where the beings came from that made the simulation.

It's at that point I just threw up my hands and decided to see if God couldn't just explain it all.

And lo... ALL WAS REVEALED UNTO ME!!!

gretachristina.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8341bf68b53ef01348624d3f9970c-800wi

7691066

>> cooldash Errr, no. I mean order. Amusingly, due to a quirk in language, while entropy as a mathematical measure indicates disorder, in more philosophical discussion entropy is more traditionally linked (due to associated ideas) with the Heat Death of the universe (which occurs when there is no thermodynamic energy left within the universe to sustain motion), IE, what Discord spoke about.
So neither of us are entirely wrong.

No. Entropy has never been credibly associated with a sense of order, philosophically or otherwise.

What you are referring to as the "Heat Death of the universe" is actually the trend of the universe (or any isolated thermodynamic system) towards equilibrium (maximum entropy). Entropy is a measure of the possible configurations of a system. This is a general definition that covers physics, chemistry, engineering, and the computational and mathematical sciences. Equilibrium refers to the changes in state of a system which maximise entropy. Isolated systems will always tend towards equilibrium/entropy naturally. The Second Law of Thermodynamics describes and implies, rather than prescribes, this.

When there are fewer possible states of a system, the entropy of the system is lower. A system in perfect order implies a state of minimal entropy, with the smallest possible set of possible configurations.

Consider: Discord is in Twilight's castle, begging for mercy because he massacred a banana cream pie while singing a Hearth's Warming Carol, in historically accurate costume, while turning himself inside out. He ends up wearing his eyeballs as testicles (which he normally doesn't have) and using his testicles (that he now apparently has) as decorative soaps in his guest bathroom. All while juggling a monochromatic goat and making out with Donald Trump's much younger self. It seems like Discord has lots of possibilities to work with, and he picks and chooses them at will. Meanwhile, the universe marches onward and rots.

7691636
But perfect equilibrium is in no sense chaos, either.

If there is an evenly distributed spread of particles which are not differentiated from each other in any meaningful way... that's order more than it is chaos. And as the heat runs out, liquids and gases crystallize, a state in which they are far more structured than they were when there was enough energy for motion.

What we think of as chaos isn't just disorder, because any stable state of disorder can be described as order. If I have huge stacks of random paper everywhere, except that I happen to have memorized where all of the papers are, then the paper is in an order that is meaningful to me, even if chaos to everything else. If someone then comes along and neatly files all my papers, but I don't know what system they used, my papers are in chaos to me, even if in order to the person who filed them. So for something to remain in a state of chaos, it must be in constant motion. Chaos requires that things change; any stable system is, in fact, ordered.

To me it seems more useful to describe entropy as something completely separate from order and chaos. Entropy causes ordered systems to break down and the components tend toward equilibrium, but while the short term result of this is disorder -- a carefully controlled structure breaking down and spontaneously becoming a different structure that is significantly less functional, where everything is out of place from where it would need to be in order to work -- the long term result is that nothing changes, and no state that remains stable can be described as chaos. Order requires energy to maintain -- but so does chaos. Build a house on the moon out of completely heat-and-vacuum-resistant components, leave for 20 years, and it'll more or less be exactly like it was when you left it, because without atmosphere or rotation, the only thing that ever changes on the moon is the temperature due to the visible presence or absence of the sun. Things on Earth fall to chaos naturally because there are many, many forces on the Earth that are constantly acting on everything.

Which implies that chaos can accelerate entropy. Certainly chaos can produce death, which is an expression of entropy. But so can order. Weeding your garden kills a lot of weeds. Technically speaking you've invoked quite a bit of entropy and rot to cultivate just the living things you want, in the places you want them, because to get that way you had to kill all the things you didn't want.

This is why I prefer systems that envision entropy as a completely separate force, neither chaos nor order. Of course Discord is much more likely, being a manifestation of Chaos, to perceive Order as evil and the enemy, so he associates it with entropy; but Order would associate Chaos with entropy. And the truth is Entropy would quietly laugh at them both and wait to claim them all, because in the end entropy always wins.

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