• Member Since 28th Aug, 2011
  • offline last seen Monday

Cold in Gardez

Stories about ponies are stories about people.


Why do ponies dream? Why do we all seem to dream the same dreams?

What if we started to dream new things?

Discord said he wanted to make our dreams more interesting. Add some spice to our boring nocturnal lives. Nothing dangerous – just a bit of excitement to talk about in the mornings.

"Stop worrying so much, Twilight Sparkle," he said. "After all, dreams never hurt anypony."

How I wish he’d been right.

Gold Medalist in the Under the Sun Writeoff Event.

Now with Russian translation, courtesy of Cloud Ring! https://darkpony.space/the-archetypist-1/

Chapters (19)
Comments ( 632 )

Oh, it has been far too long since I read a Cold in Gardez story. And this is definitely an excellent way to dive back in. I'm fascinated, a little apprehensive, and very much eager for more.

Oh, this promises to be fascinating on multiple levels. Eagerly looking forward to seeing what you do with the concept.

This one is going straight to the top. Very difficult task you have chosen for this story, but thusfar definitely up to it.

You posted this at a time when 6 of the 7 slots in the "mature" featured box had been there for less than 2 days.
The only chance you have to get this story into the "new stories" part of the box is to kick out "Leveling Up", which might not happen, since it's published a chapter a day.


Already in the non-mature Featured box.

Oof, that last sentence was heavy, I hadn't read one of your fics in a little while and I'm glad to see a new addition!

Love it love it love it!

I think my favorite thing about your writing is your pacing. It's so self-assured. Every step is placed with certainty, and you're in no hurry, but every word moves me forward.

Ooh. CiG story with first-pony Twi. If I ever start reading stories, this will be high up the list.

9535382 Yes, it already was when I posted that comment. But that's different.

Enjoying this so far, and can't wait to see what else happens.

For some reason I really love how utterly calm and unflappable your Fluttershy is here. It's rare to see her written this......confident and sure of herself and bluntly direct, without even the slightest hint of stutter or hesitation, and it's strangely refreshing. Is it because she's just so completely and fully in her element in this scene, or is there some specific thing you see in her that compels you to write her that way in a more general sense?

Anyhoo, very intrigued by this premise and beginning chapters, looking forward to seeing where it goes.

A lovely chapter overall, but Fluttershy was definitely the best part. Beautiful work!

Also -- the contrast between the cover pic and the summary, and the story so far, makes me very curious.

And now in the mature feature box.

I've been putting off reading the WO version in anticipation of the finished product. Can't wait to read the whole thing, Gardez.

I was under the impression that someone with 3.5K followers needn't worry about not making the feature box.

9535631 You're right! It finally kicked out FINALLY!

I wish I could check and see if that story was actually posted late Tuesday night (eg Wednesday at 1AM), in which case it wouldn't surprise me, as it would then have been in the box for more than 2 and a half days. But knighty doesn't display timestamps anywhere anymore.

No; not even having 3500 followers can get you into the featured box unless there's a story in it that's ready to age out. That can't happen until a story's been in the box for about 2 days. That's because the featured box algorithm doesn't count views/ratings/whatever for less when it's in the box than when it isn't--and a story in the box by somebody with 10 followers still gets more views than a story by CiG that's not in the box.

Oh, I never knew that. Thanks!

9535739 Sorry; I shouldn't state it like it's a rule. Only knighty knows the algorithm, and he can change the algorithm at any time. But I've never seen it happen.

Too late I already took your first answer as gospel.

the new Ponyville Starbucks

Like, an actual, human world Starbucks, not a made up pony stand-in for Starbucks, like Skybucks or Buckstars or something?

I mean, 'buck' is kind of already in the name, sooo....

9535731 I asked Rated Ponystar when he posted "FINALLY!", & he said, "I think morning of Wed." CiG posted this story just around noon Eastern Friday, and it was featured around 4PM Eastern, and RPonystar is on the east coast right now, so FINALLY! was about 2 and a quarter days old when it gave up the box.

Nothing else has entered the new mature featured box yet today. Probably new stories will start entering later this evening.

Well that's a blast from the past.

CiG stories all have that refinement that allows them to flow like water, just like this one does.

Looks quite good so far. :)


I think you'll really like where this story takes Fluttershy, then. I hope you continue to enjoy it :)


I thought about waiting a few more days, to be honest, but I did say in that last blog post that Archetypist would be out this week, and I didn't want to keep people waiting. Hopefully they'll find it enjoyable.

I'll also be publishing a chapter a day for the next few weeks (minus the next two weekends).

You're doing a great job of building suspense, and I'm really enjoying the atmosphere of the story!

Ah lovely, unreliable narrator...

It should be interesting depending on which type of one we get here.

Favorited. Also, theory crafting

What Discord did will cause the downfall of pony society because nopony will be able to tell the difference between dreams and reality.

Hmm, perhaps Discord has accidently made everypony a lucid dreamer? Full awareness and control when asleep? Dangerous that, you can get lost in your dreams.

Hmm. Fluttershy's new animal acquaintance should be interesting to meet when she shows up.

She shook her head. "He has friends now. That’s more important. What does 'being reformed' even mean?"

I mean, in this context I would assume it means he's stopped tormenting people for fun and learned that it's wrong to behave in that manner.

A great portrayal of Fluttershy.

This whole thing reads like a dream, it's wonderful.

It will be a bit longer before we actually meet them, but you'll start learning more in just a few chapters!

Thank you :) It's going to get more interesting soon, too.

Put a pin in that thought for later. While the story is has explicit separation between dreams and reality now, that may start to change!

Great idea, Twilight. Taunt Discord and tell him you didn't notice anything. Nothing bad could ever come from that.

“Oh, we’re relying on evidence, now?” He waved a paw. “This is why nothing invites you to parties, Sparky.”

"Pinkie Pie."
"Oh, she hardly counts. She invites anything and everything. Have you ever actually talked to Sir Lintsalot? Dreadful bore."

As for what, if anything, Discord did... Well, I suppose we'll find out tonight.

Is this about to become about solipsism?

Nice to see Twi and Starlight nerding out on a research binge. Also, your Luna is always cool, and dark, in a good way.

I’m really enjoying this and looking forward to what’s gonna happen when they dream.

Ok, so I like your version of Luna already.

My immediate thought is that he's just turned everyone into an unwitting lucid dreamer, if such a thing can exist. The question is why do neither of them think that even in passing? It might be unimportant, but I'm curious. Do they simply not have the concept? Is it close enough to Luna's Dreamwalking that she's placed controls on it, or ponies dismiss it as being above their station? Maybe it's just not how pony dreams work.

Or maybe it's just for literary purposes, the way I recently saw a villain explain in pretty clear terms exactly what he was doing, then proceeded to watch the hero be completely baffled for several pages. Who knows?

Whoever made that Cover Art is super talented.

I cut your dreams loose! No more archetypes anymore, you can dream whatever you want! Anything your beautiful little ant brains invent, you can dream it now!

So Discord cut loose ponies' ids to traipse through their subconscious in new and terrifying ways when they are at their most vulnerable?


Put a pin in that thought for later. While the story is has explicit separation between dreams and reality now, that may start to change!

So will we know things are starting to go amiss when Discord starts smelling of Bakelite and alpenglow instead?

Interesting. I don't exactly recall if I read the original. Perhaps I did so in a half-rembered dream.


Thank you! I've done my own art before but I took some extra time with this one.

I can already control other people's minds through my dreams.

So, yeah.


Gardez secretly works for Starbucks and writes them into his stories to please his corporate overlords, pass it on.

Your welcome. The attention to detail is amazing and the image itself has a lot of meaning. You put a lot into it and for that I say thank you. you’ve given the community a great treasure.

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