• Published 11th Dec 2017
  • 5,946 Views, 551 Comments

Pony-Me™ - TheMajorTechie

What happens when you realize that your life is a simulation? Well, you put the headset back on.

  • ...

Final Epilogue: Be Free.

Twilight Sparkle awoke with a content yawn. The bright morning sunlight filtered softly through her window, bathing her room in golden hues. The smell of breakfast wafted through the air, aided by the distant sounds of kitchenware in use. A few minutes passed as she enjoyed the morning warmth. The pitter-patter of footsteps neared the door.

"Spike?" she yawned again, rubbing an eye with her hoof, "Spike, did you make breakfast already? You really don't have to, y'know."

"Yup!" the dragon chirped, bursting through the door, "Breakfast's already on the table!"

Twilight smiled, hopping out of bed.

"Lisa, what do you think about our pitch?"

The girl looked up from the poster she'd been designing. Samantha beamed as she admired the simulated room around them.

"All I can say is that the holograms really do bring the simulations to real life, don't they?" Lisa chuckled in return, "I promised both Argall and Roger, if we're gonna do anything when I get back into this place, we're gonna bring back those after-school courses you and I used to love so much, and we're gonna bring it to the masses."

She held up the poster -- a faint glint of voxelation lining the edges of the virtual item --, peeking out from behind it.

"...Do you think they'll like it?"

"Surely," Samantha nodded, "But don't forget about the rest of the project, Lis. It may have taken some time to adapt the simulation framework to work with augmented reality, but that doesn't mean that there aren't any bugs to iron out!"

Lisa smiled.

"You betcha, Sam. And this time, we're gonna do things right."

"Twilight, do you ever think about what's going on outside of Equestria?"

The alicorn looked up from her book to her friend.


"I mean," Pinkie continued, laying flat on her back, "It's been a pretty long time now since we've heard anything from Lisa or Samantha. Do... do you think they forgot about us? Forgot about Equestria, even?"

Twilight shook her head, her attention returning to the book in front of her.

"No, Pinkie. They're probably too busy making the next big thing now to have the time to visit anymore. You remember how excited those two were the last time they stopped by, don't you?"

Pinkie nodded. "Yeah," she exclaimed, "Lisa was all like 'Guesswhatwe'regonnabringbacktheoldthingthatmeandSamanthausedtodothatledtousdoingallthisstuffand--'"

The alicorn winced at the sudden onslaught of words. "Yes, Pinkie, that just about sums things up as far as we're concerned. Who knows? Maybe they'll finally visit again sometime in the near future. Some five or so years is plenty enough time to get a good education system up on its feet in the beginning."

Lisa yawned, rubbing the bridge of her nose as she shut off the holographic projector. Student by student, the day's usual assortment of curious kids and teens filed out of the now pure-white room. She brushed a hand through her increasingly frazzled hair, glancing for a moment at the clock behind her before walking past the rows of desks to the door.

"Hey, Lis," Samantha greeted, "How was class today?"

"Tiring," Lisa shrugged, "Definitely still worth it though. You still up for swapping positions tomorrow? I'm just itching to start testing the new headset design. Um... let's see..." she paused, filing through her notes for the week. "Tomorrow begins the class's Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality unit."

Samantha let out a playful snort.

"Just like old times?"

"Just like old times."

Lisa continued walking, making a beeline to the break room.

"Oh, by the way," Samantha called behind her, "What are you planning on testing the headset with?"

"What else do you think I'd use?"

A brief knocking came at the castle doors. Hurriedly, Spike rushed down the stairs and through the hallway, opening the heavy doors just enough to catch a glimpse of who had knocked.

Lisa waved, a friendly smile on her face.

"Hi, Spike. Is Twilight open to any visitors right now?"

Special thanks to:

  • Babroniedad: Prereader, ideas
  • Doggyshakespeare: Prereader, ideas
  • Twilight Connor: Prereader
  • Drakos779966: Prereader, ideas, and being a good friend in real life.
  • Momoruuu: Ideas, emotional support, cover art, and above all else, a great little sister.
  • Past prereaders:

  • Special mentions:

    • Undyne Devotion: Ideas, original fiction prereader
    • EverfreePony: Ideas, showing that I actually had a weaker grasp on grammar than I thought I did, original fiction prereader
    • RQK: Ideas, original fiction prereader
    • GMBlackjack: For including Pony-Me in The League of Sweetie Belles and for pointing out how the story was slowly burning out near the end.
    • Porter Robinson and Madeon - One of their songs in particular -- "Shelter" -- served as a major source of inspiration in the latter two parts of Pony-Me.
    • HDSounDI - It's an entire Youtube channel dedicated to collecting amazing music! Their "Most Emotional Music" and "Most Beautiful Music" categories, just like Porter Robinson and Madeon's "Shelter", served as major sources of inspiration for much of this story.
    • You, the reader, for being an amazing human being. Keep reading, and don't forget that there are endless possibilities in this world. :twilightsmile:

Wake up.
Take a look around.
The world is calling.
There's so much to see,
So much to hear.
There's new people to meet,
And old friends to greet.
You'll never know what's in store,
If you never open the door.
You have the power.
It's your choice.
Forge your own path,
Be your own guide.
The road is never smooth,
You are not alone.
More than what meets the eye,
There is always the unknown.
The truth may be hard,
Reassemble the puzzle.
Give it some thought.
The past never dies.
A brief glimpse is all it takes,
Now, there's a choice to make.
Go home...
...Or go on.
There's a greater world out there,
Expand your horizons.
Relive your past.
Come back,
Find yourself.
Split lives,
Rewrite the script.
Hold on...
...Let go.
Start over.
Move on.
Be the change.
Be yourself.
Be free.

Thank you for reading.

Author's Note:

Just a bit of bonus music if you'd like to hear what I got my inspiration from for this chapter. :raritywink:

(old link broke)

Follow Squidtard's Twitter @squidtard0, or her Deviantart at squibtard!

Well, I guess this is it. The final epilogue of Pony-Me. The finishing of this story has long been something I've both looked forward to and dreaded at the same time. While Pony-Me as a mainline flagship is now over, that doesn't mean that I won't occasionally post a thing or two relating back to the story, or even -- *gasp* -- a sequel.

I'm quite aware of the fact that I hardly mentioned Professor Argall at all in this epilogue, nor did I mention Timothy. Don't worry, they're fine. Whatever it is that they're doing now is entirely up to your imagination. This chapter was more or less written to offer a little peek into the potential future of Pony-Me's universe- new tech, old becoming new again, and so on. It's really nothing much more. It's really more or less just a disconnected collection of excerpts ranging from events immediately following the final chapter, to events taking place yet another half-decade into the future.

As for myself, this story has pretty much been an emotional joyride for me. What began nearly a year and a half ago as of the publishing of this chapter was originally meant to be a silly little oneshot about the frustrations of my slow internet speeds at home. Somewhere along the way, my emotional state took a deep dive after I made a horrible mistake that would forever drive away one of my closest friends. Though we have made up to each other, we no longer talk, nor do we consider each other friends anymore.

The guilt from knowing that I hurt a friend would quickly become a driving force in Pony-Me, transforming it first into what was planned to be some five or so chapters, before being consecutively added onto more and more in the background until the story ultimately became planned to be what it is today. I relied on Pony-Me as my personal outlet for how I felt, both about the world and of myself. The chapter titles are no mistake either; each one serves both as the theme for the chapter itself, and as yet another piece in what I have come to call the "Chapter Name Narrative". Reading it in order, from "Wake up." all the way to this chapter, "Be Free.", shows the steady progression of learning to forgive myself after others have forgiven me, and I hope that it may help anyone else who may have similar troubles.

Pony-Me is probably the closest thing I've ever had thus far to a passion project. It has outlasted just about every story I've ever written, save for "What If...", in terms of its active period. I not only would end up adopting a new writing style completely incompatible with much of my older stories, but I would find myself forced to look at things from every possible perspective. In quite a few ways, the path that Lisa takes from Simulation back to Reality mirrors my own thought patterns during those respective chapters. I'd initially begun in shock, even disbelief, about what had just happened. I wasn't prepared to accept responsibility and eagerly awaited for things to return to what I had considered "normal", much like Lisa and her initial goal of returning to the simulation.

Slowly, I would come to realize that it was indeed my fault-- all my fault for driving away a friend in the worst possible way. While not quite as directly related into Pony-Me, the dilemma of morality and ethics that Lisa runs into later in the story serves as the closest equivalent to that. I felt like I had destroyed someone's life. Like I had forced them to fundamentally change who they were just to get away from me. They told me themselves: They felt horrible about it.

And so, for quite some time, I simply wallowed. I would think of elaborate plans to apologize, but each idea would fail in my head one way or another. I would begin an apology message, only to delete the draft out of fear of potential backlash. Funnily enough, I would finally manage the courage to face my mistakes and apologize to my former friend after accidentally "poking" them on Facebook. It seemed at first that we were on track to becoming friends again, even sharing a couple jokes and a laugh or two. Though, eventually, we decided that it'd be best to go our separate ways, and not to associate with each other again.

It was at this point when Pony-Me began to almost "water down" in terms of plot. I no longer felt as much of the guilt that had hung over me, now that I knew that my former friend was at the least okay. The main flame driving Pony-Me had finally begun to burn out, leaving me to try my best to keep things on track until things could finally be wrapped up. Chapter lengths grew as update speeds shrunk, and more and more content would begin to be written for the sole purpose of tying up loose ends.

And that leads us back to the present. To now. To you, the person reading this. To me, the person typing in the peaceful silence of nighttime.

I'm glad. I'm happy. Old friends may have come and gone. Guilty pasts are forgiven and become faded memories. New friends are made. New opportunities appear. The world moves on.

I moved on.

Whatever issue you may be dealing with, whether it be debt, medical emergency, bullying, or something completely different, just remember this: You can make it.

You will make it. Don't think even once that you can't. Throughout life, you'll have friends, family, community. They'll be there to support you when you need it the most. Even if one may push you down, you'll almost always be given the choice to pull yourself back up. They are there for you. We are here for you.

You can do it. Don't give up.

Keep on dreaming.

Thank you.

Comments ( 33 )

It's been an emotional ride, seeing Lisa come out of the Simulation and back to the Reality.
It's been a roller coaster of emotions.
A roller coaster that I went on, completely oblivious to what's up ahead.
So thank you, Major Techie, for the story, Lisa, Samantha, Twilight and Pinkie.
Would there be a sequel? chuckles Nobody knows. Maybe one day, either you or somebody else would take up the mantle.

Isn't that the AI written story?

If I remember correctly, a lot of weird things happen, like tap-dancing cannibalism.

Well, this certainly was a nice read. It was nice to see you increasing your writing skills as the story progressed.

Really looking forward for your next project. Best wishes.

Close, but not quite. Though you are correct in that the "04" is partially a nod to Gen 4 of MLP. There's just more to it than simply that. :twilightsmile:

This fic leaves strange feeling inside. Feeling of nostalgia yet finality, regret and piece at the same time.

Personally don’t Lomé fallout Equestia. But I hurt I’ll check out rhat AI story shrug

Don't worry, I've never read Fallout: Equestria either. I tend to stick with more original fiction-based lore for my stories. Any relation to Friendship is Optimal besides the couple references here and there are entirely coincidental.

I’m not really one for reviews, but it was nice read nonethelesse

oh my dearest dear this was beautiful; thank you so much for writing this. it was darling.

Thanks. I'm actually working on a full rewrite of the story at the moment, due to drop on this story's 3rd year anniversary since publishing. :twilightsmile:

Because I wasn't able to give this story the ending it deserved.

And there are plot holes anyway that I wanted to patch with a rewrite.

Ok thank for responding

Sorry for bad inglish

7/10 good story. I read it now because of the reboot.

Too bad the sequels are both cancelled.

Both of the sequels are being rolled into the reboot. :twilightsmile:

Main difference is that rather than following a new cast of characters, the reboot takes elements from the sequels and starts setting them in motion much earlier on.

Should probably mark the sequel remake to cancelled as well then.

Huh. I didn't do that already? I'll go do that then.

Nope. It was listed as being incomplete or on hiatus.

huh. Well, it's fixed now. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

This made me cry...
I dunno how, but the writing of Lisa and Samantha is just so nice and works so well with this story.

I wonder if I can include this in my story someday

Just for kicks, do you have a rendering of Samantha? I remember you have one for Lisa, but I don't remember one for Samantha, and I'd like to see how she was envisioned to look like

No, unfortunately. The drawing of Lisa was something I commissioned a while back.

Oh wait, you're talking 3D renders?

I still don't have one mainly 'cause MakeHuman is slightly annoying and I haven't touched it in a while, but I can say that she is a little taller than Lisa and has shorter blonde hair.

Oh, sweet, thanks.

Also, what drawing did you think I was referring to?

The drawing of Lisa at the very end. I honestly forgot that I had a 3D model of her crammed into the story for a while.

I'll be completely honest, that looks like some fanart of Aphmau I've seen. I envisioned Lisa with straighter hair, and less collage looks since she is an older person.

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