• Member Since 24th Mar, 2015
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The Hat Man

A man with a love of top hats and the finer things in life. Like aged rum. And UNICORNS.


Banded Agate and his family flee across the snow-swept wasteland to escape their life of slavery in the Crystal Empire under King Sombra.

One thousand years later, a group of ponies arrives in the Empire with a story to tell.

Written for Everfree Northwest's Scribblefest 2017 Contest. Winner of the coveted Fluttershy Award! :yay:

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 18 )

You've got this marked as incomplete, do you plan for more? I think this works as is.

:pinkiesmile: Really nice!

8003341 Oops! Okay, got it marked "Completed" now. Thanks! :pinkiesmile:

Woot! Aggies are everywhere. :pinkiehappy:

Pinkie Pie is Celtic.

Five and a half hours! That's some quality speedwriting. Thanks for the read, and thanks for reminding me that I need to go watch Snatch again.

Well that was great.......I can't really honk of anything else to say so

Inheritance lawyers are going to have a field day with the Crystal diaspora.

8004190 Pinkie is a pony, I believe the term is Shetland.

I am still trying to figure out what "Pinkie Pie is Celtic" means. :rainbowhuh:

For the record, and as I've added to in the author's notes, the "Shetland Highlands" is basically my stand-in for Scotland, so that wouldn't work for Pinkie.

What I was basically hinting at was that Pinkie Pie, like the other characters is the result of a very widespread family line that has stretched all the way across Equestria in the last thousand years. The result of which is that a much later descendant of Banded Agate eventually married into Pinkie's family. This doesn't make her anything other than a regular earth pony, her crystal pony roots having diluted and vanished after a millennium.

In any case, though, thanks for reading and commenting!

Irish and Scottish people are known for being crazy.
And they all had what sounded like Irish or Scottish accents.

8007887 Ahhh, that explains it! :rainbowlaugh:

WOW, you wrote this in five hours?! I'm deeply impressed, this was excellent reading! I thought the interplay between past/present scenes really heightened the excitement, and I half expected to see Banded Agate arrive with the rest of the group right up until the explanation at the end! I love how you worked Pinkie Pie into it as well, among all of the very-different characters it was nice to see a familiar face! :pinkiehappy: Best of luck in the contest!

So... I've really only one complaint, and that's the pacing of the scene switches. We get a brief glimpse of the present, but then it's back to the past for far too long. It'd work better if you break it up a little bit more, weave the two together so the climax of each comes together near the same point. But that's really just arguing for a more artistic form and presentation, not a true flaw, just a suggestion for improvement.

Beyond that, I loved this piece. You've got a beautiful idea, with enough foreshadowing to keep us hooked, and enough characterization to make us care, without overdoing either and bogging things down. I guessed what was happening a fair bit before it was fully revealed, but the heartwarming nature of it made that even better, and the impact of the full "reveal" was actually stronger for it being expected by that point.

Bonus points for the visuals of guards having helmets that make them mental slaves. Sells the harshness of Sombra's reign very well. Also, the quip at the very end is absolutely perfect. I, like the characters, had a tear in my eye at that point, and saying something to make everyone smile is exactly what Pinkie would do... and it worked!

8034619 I actually worried about the pacing a bit too, so I think that's a fair bit of criticism. Part of my concern was having too much revealed of the "pilgrimage" group in the present. While readers might be able to guess their intention, I worried showing too much of them would make it way too obvious and reduce the overall impact of the ending.

Still, if I'd had it to do over and perhaps left myself more time to write it than I did, I would try to balance the two timelines out just a little more.

Thank you for the kind words and constructive criticism, and thanks for reading!

Oh, this is excellent. The concept is fantastic, and the execution was nearly flawless. The action scene actually had my heart in my throat, and the ending was perfect. The cameo in the middle went straight over my head because I wasn't paying close enough attention, and that speaks as much to your skill as it does to my (in)attentiveness. Otherwise, I think Xepher hit the nail on the head here.

I'd love to see this concept explored in greater depth, but this story still sits comfortably within its 4,000 words. It's masterful. I love it.

8094916 Thank you very much for the kind words! I think Xepher's right about the pacing as well, but overall I'm pleased with how the story turned out and the generally warm reception it's received. Thanks again for commenting!

I really like the concept for this story, and I admire the way you've kept track of a fairly large number of OCs for such a short fic. The twist is interesting, too. Not sure I entirely like Pinkie's attitude at the very end, but I still like the story overall.

Well, I suppose Pinkie's attitude could be seen as selfish, but really I felt it would be the perfect silly thing to say at the end to finish the story on a more humorous tone to leave the reader chuckling. The goofy cherry on top of the dramatic, heart-warming sundae, if you will. But still, I understand the criticism.

In any case, though, I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it. Thanks for the kind words! :twilightsmile:

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