• Member Since 29th Jan, 2012
  • offline last seen September 18th

Chengar Qordath

I write lots and lots of horse words; everything from comedy to drama. If you like what I write, please support me on Patreon.



This story is a sequel to Freeport Venture: Blood and Iron

War rages throughout Equestria. The return of the Crystal Empire has seen years of strife and millions dead as Princess Celestia’s forces strain against Sombra's seemingly endless hordes.

However, the entry of Freeport’s forces turn the tide in Equestria’s favor. Archon Sunset Shimmer and her army smash into the fray, breaking the long, brutal siege of Manehattan and shifting the balance in Equestria’s favor. With Sombra's army falling back to his home territories, there's finally reason to hope again.

If only they knew something far, far worse than Sombra loomed on the horizon.

Chapters (5)
Comments ( 162 )

Everything seems to be going well... Sombrero's going to have to get his mind off of the crystals now that he's lost his best general.

“Darn right we did.” Colonel Dash grinned and slapped me on the back. “Wait until everypony else hears about this. We took out Sombra’s best general! This one’s gonna be in the history books! A hundred years from now, when kids are learning about this war in school, they’ll talk about this. This is the day we started winning the war!”

... this is the day Twilight and Starlight show up, leave and retcon everything, isn't it?

On that note, given the way you've interpreted the nature of changing the past for this story, I wonder what Twilight's reaction would be if she were to learn of the specific results of her actions. It certainly isn't as black and white as Rising Fire had it in Blood and Iron -- even leaving aside that they're a murderously insane necromancer, Twilight was under no moral obligation to let all those horrible futures keep existing for no reason beyond being suddenly dumped into them. More to the point, I doubt she knew exactly what would happen after she changed the timeline back, and for that matter it doesn't seem she had much time to think things through -- in the actual episode, the timestream sequence seemed to involve more in the way of panicked chase than time to sit and consider. Regardless, I can't help but wonder how she'd react if she learned what happened to a world and the innocents living in it as a direct result of her actions.

Also, why do I have the creeping suspicion that Rising Fire used to be her timeline's Sunset?

Is this apart of the Freeport Main Story Line, or an off shoot AU?

Yay Strumming! best pegasus. :twilightsmile:

There's timey-wimey stuff going on.

I guess the question here is... is the POV Sunset the one that faced Rising Fire in the past? Does that even matter with the timeline fractured the way Rising Fire claimed it is?

The most interesting thing about this story's premise is what it implies; somehow, the Mane Six coming together led to Sunset leaving Freeport and making for the human world. For want of that nail, she would've/has conquered Freeport. Fascinating.

And then there's the question of how the previous major threats were dealt with. Discord might have remained sealed if the Elements never changed hooves, and the wedding might be off for one reason or another, but Nightmare Moon never stopped being a thing.

But that's all bookkeeping. The story itself will end in tragedy and flame, yes, but I'm eagerly looking forward to the journey.

So I have to ask, Has the whole series been in an alternate universe that Starlight Glimmer created? Or is she only responsible for the war?

The yaks and caribou fell before the world realized what was happening,

Weren't the caribou under the protection of an epic level dragoness old friend of Luna? She appears in the Phoenixverse and even Empress Sunbeam is reluctant to move directly against her.

Shimmer-mare does not get updated enough. This one puts her on the read it later shelf. :rainbowlaugh:


It looks to be the Winningverse's equivalent of the Sombra timeline from "The Cutie Remark" -- the Season 6 finale, where Starlight keeps changing the past and Twilight keeps trying to change it back.

I remember reading in the first chapter of the side story "Anything but the Gala" that Sombra at one point dominated a elder dragon called Ember the Cyrstalline. He was a rival of Argentium the Runescaled (the dragon that guides the caribou) and Princess Celestia and Luna defeated him centuries ago after Sombra's defeat, though he managed to flee the battle.

I wouldn't be surprised if Sombra found Ember in this timeline without anyone knowing upon his return and used him to help defeat both Argentium and Cadance.

Edit: Also, I'm really happy to see Chengar write a story like this. Keep up the good work CQ:twilightsmile:

Yes, it's up!

Obviously, you know I loved how fast Dash became involved in affairs and her role in toppling this high-ranking lackey of Sombra. Also, the Hammercuda. Just ... just win.

And of course, now is when things start to go horribly wrong.

Obviously... considering how Dash is depicted in the cover art, it's only a matter of when and how.

Oh wow, I hadn't thought about Blood and Iron for a while. I was under the impression that this was Sunset many years in the future in the main timeline, which because Sunset didn't go into the mirror, meant the M6 never met.
But it could be the origins of that Warlock now that I've remembered that was a thing.
Either way, really enjoyable start.

8452462 If the sonic rainboom not forming somehow prevents Sunset from leaving, then my best guess for the lack of Nigthmare Moons in most dimensions is Sunset creating some elaborate, lethal magical trap on the assumption that Elements or no Elements, if she "takes care" of NMM, Celestia would have to make her a Princess.

Rising Fire = Sunset Shimmer, makes sense to me.

I'm still amazed that the background from the other story is getting its own spin-off/prequel. Especially considering how dark its likely to be. I wonder how much of this Sunset lines up with main Winningverse/Freeport Sunset and her future. There's Kukri and Strumming, and Sunset has her own mage forces and is influential in Freeport, golems, etc. Well, its just fun to see a more established Sunset rather than the still mostly starting out Sunset in the other Freeport stories. And great battle scenes as usual, its a big change to see Sunset as a war leader.

Its also interesting to get a more detailed look at Sombra's war on Equestria. Was that Twilight in Manehattan? Just curious considering the pairing in the Phoenix Empire stories. Also hope for more details on why Sunset didn't go through the mirror in this timeline (and whether that applies to Winningverse Sunset too). Looking forward to the rest of this fic (does this count as this year's Freeport Halloween fic?). I wonder if we'll find out if Rising Fire will show up in Freeport again or not.

Well, that's certainly a great definition of what it means to start something with a bang! An entrance into an already raging war, followed up pretty much immediately by an up-close-and-personal encounter which was great even by itself.

You certainly set the quality bar quite high with this chapter. Really can't wait to see more! Of course I don't expect every chapter to have the pace of this one - planning has to be done and story needs to actually progress, but still, if you keep it up (and I haven't yet read a story from you which failed my expectations), this is going to be one hell of a story.

Mane six are showing up, eh? Well then, I won't be surprised when I see the colonel's pink fillyfriend come in and embarrass the colors right off of her.

Ah, lesbian ponies.

Yeah, this is the Halloween fic. had to get a bit of an early start since this one goes five chapter.

You have this marked as a sequel at the top of the description but the story seems to be set as a prequel... Is this story going to go beyond the events of Blood and Iron or is it meant to take place in the Freeport timeline? If neither maybe you should change that part of the description. Really hoping this isn't just a prequel though.

I hope Sunset finally prove herself to Celestia.

I hope she realizes she never needed to.

I mean, we all know it's going to end in death and horror. It would be nice to have some happy stuff first!

Interesting start to this, particularly in what it exposes of the power on Freeport that a roughly show-era Sunset may have amassed back in the main timeline. It almost certainly answers the question of who the Archon visiting in New Life is going to be.

I was wondering all chapter long if somehow Azurite was going to have been Shining, but nothing about that description sounded like him.

Well that... was awesome... hoping for more shimmy story. :pinkiehappy:

Curious choice, jumping ahead this far... Can't wait to see where this goes.

So are these temporal anomalies some doomsday weapon from Sombra or the effect of Twilights time traveling? I assume the latter.

I'd assume Celestia is effectively immune to aging effects. I wonder if Nightmare will be brought back through this.

You Dinky killing bastard!

That said, this is a great and tragic story, what with Twilight not being able to stop Nightmare Moon. Way to ramp up the sadness.

Despair is best contrasted by hope, and this story goes immediately from one and to the other quite well.

Judging by the events of the previous story, the latter is most likely.

You know, just from reading this couple chapters one might think this is going to be a dark but not overly grim adventure story. You know, the epic adventure type of story where the characters face and overcome obstacles and trials while trying to make the world a better place. The happy ending will be hard fought for but achieved, and the characters will grow into better and more complete people as a result of the trials they've overcome.

Reading all this and seeing the characters gaining hope and making plans for the future while knowing from your previous stuff exactly how horribly their world is going to die was... I think painful might be the best word.

Hmm. That line about the student surpassing the master... It's either foreshadowing or me reading way too deeply.

Several hastily drawn banners had gone up, thanking us for joining the war.

"'Thank You Freepo.' Well, it's the thought that counts."

It's sad to see this iteration of Twilight. Without a bond of destiny helping things along, the odds of her finding suitable Element Bearers was slim to none. And thus there's no Luna to factor into things... which begs the question of what happened to the Mantle of the Moon.

I could send poor Midnight to mediate a minor succession dispute only for her to return with a report about monsters, murder, and mayhem.

There's an intriguing teaser for Succession Crisis...

I’d been a bit annoyed with her when I found out about it, since when I’d checked them over it looked like they hadn’t been taken care of for months.

And so it begins. The time duel has moved on to Chrysalis triumphant. This worldline is Langolier food. Now it's just a question of what somepony's going to do about it.

Also, poor Ditzy. I suppose that nonexistence by age regression is better than the alternative, but it's an academic distinction at best. :fluttershyouch:

I don't like where this is going, if it goes the way I'm thinking it will. Methinks it has something to do with a specific character from another story in this grouping, Freeport Venture: Blood and Iron. If it does go the way I think it will... Well played Chengar... Well played.


Some interesting tidbits in this chapter. I think Sunset mentioned wanting to eventually open her own academy like Celestia's School back in the original Freeport Venture. And Twilight failing to purify Nightmare Moon.....I wonder if all of this is going to happen in Sunset's future, or if this is simply some...bad timeline that may or may not come to pass.

Also, I've been wondering about this since the last chapter, but...what exactly does Sunset's position of Archon entail? Does she still answer to the Council? Do they answer to her? Probably not that, but what's the relationship between the Archon and Council? Is it kinda like the US Congress where only they can officially declare war, and the President has to ask them? I don't think there's an Archon as of "Blood Debts".


A very nice start, but i wonder... is this an alternate universe in an alternate universe?!
We have the big war with sombra in the season 6 finale, but im not sure if this story is based off that or sombra's first appearance before banishment and the loss of the crystal empire

Ouch, the cautious optimism in the first half of this chapter is almost painful, knowing what's coming. It is nice to see Celestia and Sunset getting along, along with Sunset being formally adopted, although its partially due to extreme circumstances and Sunset is mature now to have gotten over most of her issues (wonder how many trials in Freeport that took). She's even giving decent advice for Twilight, although since Twilight isn't an alicorn here that won't cause jealousy at least. And huh, Sunset trusts Puzzle enough to pass the Archon title (which sure sounds powerful) to him if the worst should happen.

Things sure deteriorated fast, I thought Rising Fire said it was more gradual. Then again, an insane lich from a collapsed timeline isn't the most reliable source either (and maybe this has been ongoing for much longer than they realize). Not sure if its worse or not that Ditzy still remembers (for now anyway). I'm curious if Twilight finished her assignment before things fell apart- she's withdrawn enough as is, interviewing a farmer about an alicorn version of herself showing up then disappearing probably won't help her social skills much. And so that wasn't Twilight at Manehattan (is purple just Sunset's type?). Unless time was already breaking down so much alternate versions of ponies are popping up here and there.

I wonder if Sombra is crazy enough to continue the war or if he'll be busy maintaining his empire while time breaks around them. I'm interested in more details of how Twilight failed her assignment (sounds like no Spike either), and whether Discord is still contained (probably, though releasing him might be preferable to time collapsing if he can do something about it). Things are probably only going to go downhill from here.

...Well....that's not quite what I expected to happen...:twilightoops:

I really loved this chapter, except for one thing:

Not enough background info. Like what's up with all these General guys? It just feels like there should have been SOMETHING before this, rather than dump us right in the middle.

Still, it was a REALLY GOOD read, and I'm looking forward to reading more <3

What the BUCK is going on?! T_____________________________T

“A good idea, but only a temporary solution.” Celestia grimaced. “In hindsight, I should have done that before my sister returned. I just ... magus work can be hazardous. Even what looks like a simple, easy, routine task will often prove to be far more than it seems. I remember one of her ancestors ... I could send poor Midnight to mediate a minor succession dispute only for her to return with a report about monsters, murder, and mayhem.”

Hahaha, no kidding.

Man, the collective casualties that Celestia and Twilight have suffered in this timeline, not to mention those lost to a missing future. Luna, Cadance, Shining, Flurry, and now even Dinky. Beyond that, if Derpy is here then Amethyst must be one of the mentioned new recruits.

How to make Sombra (or anyone under his command) even more evil - making Ditzy cry. Good job.
Dinky... :fluttercry:

So, the clock started ticking way faster. Or slower. Or in reverse. Time dilation stuff is confusing.

Finally have time to catch up on updated stories. First of all, this is a relatively minor nitpick but I feel I should point it out: The whole reason this timeline exists is because Starlight Glimmer went back in time and stopped Rainbow Dash from performing her first sonic rainboom, but we know from Cutie Mark Chronicles that Twilight Sparkle seemed to be on the verge of failing her entrance exam until that very rainboom intervened, so if that's the case how could Twilight be Celestia's pupil in this timeline where the rainboom never happened and oh no I've gone cross-eyed.

Anyway, minor nitpick aside, this was a really good chapter, though I wasn't quite expecting things to happen this fast. I was kinda hoping this story would be more of a slow burn, but I suppose it would be infeasible for you to start another 100k+ epic tragedy when you're still working on finishing Lunar Rebellion, the Winning Pony sequel, and whatever other Freeport stories are no doubt in the works. Regardless of my rambles, I'm looking forward to the next one!

Well, there is no evidence of any version of Spike existing in this timeline, so it's quite likely that Twilight did indeed fail to hatch the dragon egg. However, there has been plenty of speculation about that test in the fandom... especially the fact that nopony else seems to have a hatched baby dragon following them around, so it can't be a standard test that they're all expected to pass to get into the school.

Some people assume it's a test to see how students handle failure, or that it's more about what the students try than how successful it is. In any event, if such was the case, it would still be possible for Twilight to make it into the school and perhaps over time impress enough that Celestia would eventually take her on personally anyway.


oh. OH. WELL THEN. That's....wow. I...really don't know what to say here.

... was not expecting that this quickly

Hm... Pardon me for pointing out a question in this emotional scene, but when Twilight mentioned Starlight Glimmer, I was expecting Sunset to have some form of reaction. Kinda disappointed she didn't bring up the Starlight she met in Freeport, one with a ton of magical energy and a vendetta strong enough to cut through steel. Oh well.

Now if you'll excuse me, I must go cry in the corner for a bit.

Yeah, this is Shimmerlich's backstory. Smelt this coming from a mile away, but this is fantastic! Finally some else who agrees that Glim-Glam should've really done jailtime.

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