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RoMS


"RoMS I love you even though you OTP Rarijack!" Monochromatic~

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Cozy Glow dreams within the stone—a dream so deep, so long, and so faint nopony knows about it. Except for Discord. Diving in secret past Morpheus’ jaws, Cozy is Discord’s stone to roll uphill.


Edited by the lovely GaraTheAuthor, proofread by the conscientious Pocketbot.
Credit for the picture goes to Bra1nEater over on Twitter.

Reviewed by Present Perfect in his May 28th, 2020, blog here.

Featured from November 13th to 16th, 2019, and reached 2nd spot in the box. Thank you, readers! :heart:

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 61 )

I suppose death by psychological erosion could be considered a change...

I love the subtlety of this story. It slowly builds on a mystery that we're fairly certain a significant time has passed, and manages to handle a timeskip with grace and a little pain.

The author of this story is a cute.

9939428
Thank you!

What can change a pony? Regret.

9939642
Yes. It definitely can! :ajsleepy:

Well fuck that hit me like a freight train:fluttershysad:
Nice short little fic you got here. I like how discord has to take up what his friends once did and even though he's no good at it he's still trying. I honestly feel bad for both Discord and Cozy.

I would love to see a sequel to this cozy glow being slightly insane after being freed would be an interesting story to read and with Discord finding and helping her after noticing that something's wrong

That was something else... didn't expect that. Older and wizened Discord feels pretty real, as does the dream-prison. Well done.

9939735
9939754
Thank you for the kind words!

We never actually learned Cozy Glow's origins, or what she really is. If she's truly a filly, how did she become that evil and that skilled?

I personally do incline to the theory that she's a Darla Dimple / Baby Doll analogue, which is to say some sort of demonologist or psychopathic dwarf. The reason for this is that she is able to deal with Tirek and Chrysalis, each of them epitomes of evil power in their own ways, on an even basis, and her understanding of the psychology of others goes well beyond that of a child, even a smart skilled child such as the Cutie Mark Crusaders or the filly version of Twilight Sparkle.

Heck, she more than once nearly kills or long-term imprisons Alicorn Princess Twilight Sparkle.

I don't see how any real child can do that.

9939829 It would have made complete sense if she was an evil pony from the distant past who'd managed to give herself quasi-immortality while trying to become an alicorn,

Or she could have been another unreformed changeling queen.

Or an otherworldly monster.

Or an evil pony from an evil alternate dimension of evil where everypony is evil.

Or a power-obsessed human in Equestria who got locked in the body of a poor filly.

Lots of ways to explain why she's like that... the show writers just never bothered to care.

9939829
There's an interesting web serial which has a character who, while somewhat inexperienced personally, can draw on the experiences, knowledge, and skill of demons. It means that while she's doing so, she can be extremely insightful, use words like scalpels, and have deep knowledge of many things. The downside is that all the insight and experience is filtered through a demon's perspective; she can't help but see mortals as weak, pathetic, predicable things.

I have no idea if Cosy may have had a similar background/ability, but her character kind of feels like that - shades of things far beyond her apparent age, but not altogether coherent. A scared, angry child wielding a gun because with it she feels almost like she has some kind of control - she can make things happen and make ponies react.

Interestingly, her cutie mark is a rook. Both indicative of game-playing, tactics, and strategy, and of a stronghold or fortification. What does Cozy have locked inside her, I wonder?

The Price of Salt, "The PoS" for short. Sorry for 12-year-old humor.

9939882
I don't think it's that they didn't care, I think they left it intentionally open to allow us fans to have our own theories. They do that with a lot of things, like Celestia and Luna's origins, or what the Elements of Harmony really are, to name a couple.

9940058 *facepalms* People make that awful excuse so many times for so many shows that go off the rails.

When you have a PRIMARY VILLAIN, you need to have some reason behind them, especially the more odd and implausible the villain.

It's easy to buy into a random already-powerful A-hole, because random powerful A-holes in general tend to want more power so they can become bigger A-holes. And even in that case, some brief backstory is almost always thrown in.

The rare case is when you have a villain whose motivations are more enigmatic and random. Discord and Joker work without origins because they're so unique, and they have motives which may not even reflect their origins, as we're talking about two beings who more or less are products of madness. In Joker's case, the enigma of him is expanded by possessing MULTIPLE backstories, which the character himself addresses in several iterations. In Discord's, he'd basically a god; an aspect entity virtually composed of chaos. He needs to be an oddball to exist. Origin doesn't add much to him.

Cozy is not Discord, and she sure as hell ain't no Joker! She's a very flat, generically-written villain. If she was 40 years older, she'd be considered utterly rote. The backstory would give her badly needed personality, because aside from being an evil filly there's nothing else to her.

If you have an evil carrot... ya kinda want to know how the hell a carrot became evil. It begs the questions, and the story is supposed to supply the answers if we're supposed to take the villain seriously.

Writing 101, people.

“Why even pull that Grogar stunt? Did you want to see us fail that much?

Discord threw up his paw and talon in disgust, "I don't know! I can't even fathom why I thought such a ridiculous idea would ever have a horseapple's chance in a dung beetle convention! I used to be cunning! I used to be able to sense a pony's weaknesses a mile away and twist them to my designs! I USED TO BE A CONTENDER!!!" He snarled and kicked a random puppy, because everyone likes to do that now and then, ya know? "Now, it's like all my wit and cleverness has been sucked out by leeches! Really angry, stupid leeches that like the new Terminator movie! It's as if my life was taken over by hack writers who had no idea how to handle a reformed demi-god!"

Cozy eye-shifter nervously, "Oh wow... what an... interesting metaphor."

Discord eye-narrowed in distrust, "How much do you know?"

And so it was revealed that Cozy was a bad fanfic writer in Equestria the whole time.

I’m just the tiny filly who hurts ponies real bad—” she tapped her hoof against the ship’s wood “—and has no soul or depth.”

Wow, it's like some mean-spirited god gave her actual conscious self-awareness and let her read her own scripts. I imagine that would break anyone.

:trollestia:

9940133
I can agree with that. She was quite flat and I would have liked a little bit of backstory for her. Sure, I found her entertaining, but 'entertaining' doesn't necessarily mean 'interesting'.

Still, it does open us up to be able to fill in those gaps, and to be honest, I've seen some pretty interesting backstories for her.

9940058
There's a really, really thin line between that and not caring.

Also it's difficult resolving this story's version of Discord with the one who gleefully suggested her punishment in the first place.

9940256
But it's a line none the less. Besides, they only have a very limited time in an episode to dedicate to things like that. So, they very well may have had a deep backstory for her but simply did't have the time to show it.

9940256
On the other hand, it's really, really in character for Chaos to be all like, "You pissed me off so much, I'm going to throw the worst possible thing I can think of at you! That's how angry I am!" A year later, "shit. I kinda broke the only moral rule I used to have because I was mad, didn't I? I... better do something about that or I'm gonna feel bad."

I feel like Discord doing things he considers heinous to someone because he's furious at them, and then regretting it and either undoing it or trying to ameliorate the damage, is probably par for the course with him, and explains some of why a guy who seems to be deep down not such a terrible creature managed to terrorize Equestria so horribly they had to turn him to stone. When Discord loses his temper, bad things happen. (He did nearly throw an innocent mare into another dimension just because his friend was friends with her.)

9940265 But they had plenty of time in Season 9 to devote to throw-away one-shot stories which added nothing, occasionally DETRACTED and severely conflicted previous canon (Daring Do, I'm looking at you), and gave new characters who'd clearly never show up again because the series was ending and were only there to satisfy a fraction of rabid fans in several instances.

So, yeah, who needs actual plot development in your big final season when you can waste time on crap?

I should point out Steven Universe and "Star Vs the Forces of Evil" are also guilty of this in their final seasons, shatting out final villains that are thin as paper and defeated in ridiculous ways that rip apart characterization and canon.

9940308
Yeah I’d say that sounds pretty in character for him. Chaos changes (it’s mind) on a dime after all.

9940343
Awesome! :pinkiehappy: It's a Discord take-over.

9940256
My goal was trying to give a bittersweet ending/way-out to Cozy. And to show that Discord has matured. As it stands, only Twilight and likely Spike remain from his first ever circle of friends.
Trying to make amend and repair the wounds of the past may be part of his work to move on.
I didn't write this piece with a fully laid-out lore, background, etc. So I am glad people read it and may take away from it their own interpretation and impressions. :raritystarry:

9940347
It’s like that Tirek takeover immediately after the season 4 finale. That was a fun time. :pinkiehappy:

9940133
dude...
None of the villains in MLP has a proper backstory unless they are planned to be redeemed.

Chrysalis had no real backstory. The idea of her wanting to feed her subjects was a plain falsehood, since she obviously care for no one but herself. She just wants power, the exact same thing as Cozy Glow.
Tirek had no real backstory. He just appeared and got defeated, appeared again and got defeated. The whole thing about his daddy is not a backstory.

Very nice, very nice

9940058
Now regularly I'd agree with you! but we never got a single God be damned hint.

So I'll just tick your theory off my ever-growing list of reasons for a lack of storytelling.

Not sayin' I agree with the other feller but 'least this time he' s got a point.

9939882
You really don’t stop with the controversial opinions, huh? No wonder so many dislike you.

Would have been a lot more merciful to just kill her. But.... that's not how ponies work. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind, and ponies don't do cruel.

9939882
You dont know the person sitting next to you
We've got minds like hand grenades

I think the point wasnt to have a elaborate back story it was to show anyone from anywhere can end up wanting to hurt others just so they can be a little bit ahead of everyone else the search for power is alwase a path littered with darkness and it can consume anyone one no matter the backround or age

9939882
9939894
9939829


Here’s an idea. Cozy Glow is the reincarnation of Grogar. They could’ve even sprinkled how Cozy is suspicious of Discord-Grogar because she never tells anyone who she really is, even when she gets her bell back. And in the final episode, She reveals that the bell was the source of Grogar’s magic, but only usable by either him or his reincarnation, which is Cozy Glow. She doesn’t transform back, but she still becomes very powerful and once again the villain of the ending.

9941405

That's an interesting concept.

In my Shadow Wars Storyverse, where the main showverse is one of many alternate universes, there is the Order of the Shades, a cult devoted to summoning the Night Shadows to gain power, using the Codex of Shades written by King Sombra. The Night Shadows can aid their summoners in various ways, but especially if they accept a Shadow into themselves.

Now, a psychically cpowerful Pony, especially one who is tied to a Cosmic Concept like Princess Luna (Gravity) or Rarity Belle (Generosity), will become a Night Stallion or Night Mare when they summon a Shadow into themselves. The apparent price is personal corruption, but the ultimate price is permanent possession by the Night Shadow. This is how Luna became trapped as Nightmare Moon, and Rarity almost permanently became Nightmarity.

Even a Pony not quite so powerful can host a Night Shadow. Stygian, who did not have a link to a Concept, became the Pony of Shadows. Grey Hoof (accidentally conducting the equine sacrifice of his own youngest daugter, Ruby Gift) and his followers were cursed by Nightmare Moon to become powerful undead Wraiths; they were imbued as such by a spawn of Luna's own possessing Night Shadow. The Manehattan Coven summoned Lesser and Least Night Shadows into themselves to attempt its destruction, and so on.

The horrifying thing is that King Sombra's writings on how to summon a Night Shadow were (intentionally) very easy to understand, and left out the drawbacks of summoning one into oneself. This meant that smart chldren, if they somehow gained access to the relevant part of the Codex of Shades, can summon at least a weak Night Shadow into themselves (usually to enhance their own abilities).

In the Shadow Wars storyverse, the young Cloud Kicker summoned a Shadow Vice of Lust into herself to make other ponies like her, and became a horribly-dangerous living succubus for years, until the (younger) Pinkie Pie repelled her attack and managed to suppress the Shadow Vice.

It is entirely possible that Cozy Glow might be bearing a Night Shadow, probably one granting her the ability to tell convincing lies or otherwise manipulate others. If it were a stealthy Shadow (as was Cloud Kicker's except when psychically-attacking others), even the Princesses fighting her might not know just why Cozy Glow was so powerful. Even Luna (who for obvious reasons is alert to the mind-scent of the Night Shadows) might miss it.

This is not necessarily inconsistent with Cozy Glow actually being an adult mare suffering from some development disability producing dwarfism among other effects. It might even be a mark of Shadow possession.

It's relevant here that, at least in my storyverse, Pony sensoria include an acute sense of smell and Pony sexuality in mares includes a 3-day fertile period during every 3 weeks. Unsurprisingly, Ponies are very good at smelling a mare who is Cycling.

While fillies Cozy Glow's apparent age and a bit younger can be Cycling, because they are not yet actually ready to safely reproduce, the filly-Cycle scent is slightly different form that of the mare-Cycle scent. What this means is that, if she was Cycling, unless her developmental disability was rather widespread, she'd smell like a mare rather than a filly. (However, this is certainly possible, and especially if magically-induced).

So those are some of my thoughts on the possibility of Cozy Glow being demonically possessed, rather like the Pony of Shadows.

What do you think?

A very beautiful, sorrowful little story that still leaves room for hope. Love the abstract, alien imagery of the scene. Well done!

9941739
Thank you a lot for your kind comment! :heart:

9939894
Which web serial would that be? It sounds really interesting.

9940427 So you're basically admitting the villains are terribly characterized.

Well glad to know you agree!

9941405 That... would've been very clever.

WHY DIDN'T YOU WRITE THE FINALE?!

9941350 Uhm, that's stupid. Because then you might as well suspect newborns.

9942283
yes, but it is nothing new. If it took you this long to realize, I feel sad for you.

9942315 You obviously have never read my blog.

I feel sad for you.

:trollestia:

9941976
Worth the Candle, by Metropolitan Man's Alexander Wales.

Discord didn't change, he got powerful people to protect him when he screwed up.

He never felt remorse for anything he did up to being stoned and never has. He got more second chances then any other character, actively had Twilight lie through her teeth to protect him and then was allowed to go free after effectively betraying the entire nation a second time.

Frankly, not a redeemable individual and he should've been stoned like the other three, not to mention the sheer hypocrisy of Harmony in it's punishments-or in this case Celestia and Luna torturing a creature for decades and acting like they have a moral stepping stone, muCh less a high ground, to stand on.

Wait, 300 years has passed? I know this is supposed to be punishment , but I know people who would kill for the ability to preserve themselves for that long. I kinda envy her; if she ever escapes Equestria would probably become an advanced spacefaring society by then. Probably by smuggling technology from EQG.

9943668
You will die as a person long before that, if your mind is conscious while you are a stone. Going mad will take less than a month.

9943668
However, if you're in stone "coma", it would be an interesting thing to consider.

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