• Member Since 26th Feb, 2014
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She's looking at you. Yes you. And she is judging you with her eyes. There is no escape.



Flicker Nicker, having acquired his cutie mark, takes the first step of many into adulthood. Along with his mother, he travels to Canterlot, where he will join with the Rat Catcher's Guild.

There, he will don the mask of his calling, and he shall become the pony that he was meant to be.

An entry in the Weedverse.

A dramatic reading!

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 89 )

Fear the candle little rats for another has been lit.

This could be a lot of fun to follow, watching young Flicker learn about the unending war in the dark places, battling the red eyed horde.

But it also works as a nice little standalone, should yoy leave it as is. Thanks Kudz! :pinkiehappy:

O please continue, you have piqued my interested and whetted my whistle.

Ah, for a time when one could earn a living working at such a simple and straightforward task.
For a short while, part of my job was trapping and killing rodents behind a broadcasting station. Their burrowing was throwing the satellite dishes out of alignment. It was a strange time, when all is said and done. For this, I had a ship's RADAR endorsement on my FCC license?
Nonetheless, killing them was my task, and so I did. :ajbemused: <Can't say Ah'm likin' this, though)

This looks interesting
I like it


So, you don't like it, noted. :fluttershyouch:

7710633 Ah, you misunderstand... The story was quite good, and I enjoyed it greatly. It only brought up some memories from a time in my past that at that time I found to be ...peculiar...

A little stroll down one of the darker bits of memory lane for me, if you will.

Oh yes, I like this.
I want to know what Flicker Nicker's most difficult day on the job will be like, however many years in the future that may be.

Imagining ponies wandering the streets and sewers in the equivalent of medieval plague doctor outfits is a fairly creepy image. The idea of a story told from the perspective of such ponies sounds fairly intriguing and given the locations they would go into as rat catchers opens lots of possibilities of stumbling on things far worse than rats.

7710641 :fluttercry: <Those poor little creatures)

Some of the crew were setting up a gas grill for a hamburger and hotdog picnic. I walked up and said, "I gotcha some meat for the grill!" holding up a gopher the size of an average domestic cat. My joke wasn't appreciated. How was this my life?

That has to be the oddest way to join a secret order ive ever seen.


Oh, Wick Chandler is a member and he gets funding from, well, friends with an invested interest in keeping disease at bay.

The Rat Catcher's Guild is evolving and will become Equestria's CDC in time, but will retain the Rat Catcher's Guild title.

I would read a series about these characters.

This is an interesting exploration of the power of a Cutie Mark.

A new Cutie Mark must be a heavy thing on a pony’s soul: The heightened and focused senses that make it hard to look away. The feeling of rightness/wrongness and belonging that makes a situation hard to ignore. The fact that other things in life that were important before must, by comparison, feel less important now. It must take a strong will to act against one’s mark.

The incredibility specificity of Cutie Marks, and their expression that exactly matches the technology and needs of society, are signs that Equestria is very likely the result of continuing intelligent design, rather than pure evolution. It will be interesting to someday meet the designer(s) of the Weedverse. Or for one of our characters to become one. :twilightsheepish:


The idea originally came when I was thinking about Pinkie Pie. We know from the show that she left home at a very early age, she was little more than a foal when she came to Ponyville. It was back when I was writing The Weed and I started to think about the power of compulsion, the irresistible urge to do what one was meant to do. After all, something had to lure her away from her family and the relative safety of the rock farm.

Over time, this idea germinated and kept growing inside of my head. Eventually, this came along as I was watching a really disgusting documentary about the bubonic plague on Youtube. Then I learned that horses are particularly more susceptible to the plague than humans. Very much so.

So, I started thinking, as I am wont to do, what does this mean for Equestria?

You are a species that is particularly vulnerable to the plague. How does one deal with that? Would fate and destiny select protectors of the herd to save all equinekind from mass extinction?

And from there, the idea grew.

Her compulsions are one of the many reasons that Pinkie is darned hard to write well.

7710667 Silly comparison, bit like the Ben 10 cartoon, a galactic police force that conceal themselves in communities as plumbers!

I like it!
Makes me think something like this would have been made by Winterworkx after Ponyville's less than stellar encounter with the shadow rats.

all of the work she must of done



he thought about the rat that he had killed in the cellar coming into her room while she was sleeping.

needs 'for' before 'coming'

This is an interesting idea I wouldn't mind seeing more of, although it does work as a one-shot. Nice to see a bit more of the sort of stuff the Lucerna Perpetuum gets up to.

Sorry if this has been said somewhere, but where does this sit on the timeline?

Is Flicker Fox?

As always, your descriptive portents make my insides churn with anticipation in the very nicest of ways. Even as a stand-alone, this is excellent work. If there's more to be had, I'll certainly take another helping.

I think this is a marvelous start for young Flicker. I love all the Weedverse stories and how they intertwine. I can't wait to see what destiny has in store this time around!

Now this is interesting!

This kind of worldbuilding is what I like more than most anything in a story: the pull of the Cutie Mark, the importance of a little-thought-of profession. Yes, I'd most certainly like to see more of this, if'n ye've a mind to, that I would.


No. Flicker is blue-grey and Fox, well, looks like a fox.


No it doesn't. He's thinking hypothetical. What might have happened.

I like this... would like to see more in this vein.


I'd like to write more of this I think. We'll see how this does.


I want to know what happens next!

featured box... each time...


Eh, a lot of things never even register on the radar.

This was quite nice, if you turn it into a series I would be glad to read it.

Sweet and short, I love it. It also does make a lot of sense for some ponies in the show.

One question - this Equestria does have antibiotics, right? Ponies wouldn't get so old if not. Not that they are the solution to everything, especially not in an epidemy and prevention is better than treatment, but Yersinia Pestis are bacteria, better treatable than say, viruses.

and a short double-sided sword. tucked into a beat up wooden sheath.

I think this needs a comma instead of a full stop.

Seems kind of odd that ponies would just kill the rats, when it's not even their fault or something that they know about. They have plenty of real enemies already. :unsuresweetie:


Um, yeah, we'll be happy to let you gnaw the faces off of our foals, Mister Rat.


7711666 Well, I expected a pony rat-catchers guild to actually catch them and tame them or something, like Fluttershy. :derpytongue2: But your world has always been really bleak, I guess.


Ever seen what rats will do to barnyard animals if given the chance?

Imagine coming out to a pen full of lambs only to discover that they've all have their eyes gobbled out, their ears eaten, and rats have eaten their way inside of them through their backside.

And that's just the barnyard animals. I've lived on reservations where the rats will do the same thing to human babies if you leave them alone for even just a few minutes.

7711670 Not so much bleak as "earn your happy ending, gorrammit", at least to my reading.

Le Gasp! :pinkiegasp:
Weed Words! :raritystarry:
I'll check this out later on tonight! :rainbowdetermined2:
Probably. :unsuresweetie:
Maybe tomorrow. :facehoof:
But soon! :twilightblush:

The Ratcatcher's Guild, eh? Officially, yes, they catch rats--but come on, we know that's just a front. They're really thieves, spies, assassi--*shnk!* *gurgle* *sound of dead body being dragged away*

7711917 There are a number of parallels between plague rats and other domestic threats to Equestria...

7711670 Have you read The Chase? Rats are one of Kudz's default villains.


Read through the comments. You'll see why I hate rats.

7712116 Oh, not criticizing in the slightest. If anything the fact that you can use a real threat so well in a fictional setting shows great skill. If I landed in one of your stories I'd probably consider rats a bigger threat than manticores, hydras, or dragons.

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