• Member Since 13th Dec, 2011
  • offline last seen 5 hours ago

Raugos


T

Hearth's Warming is never an easy time for Gallus, being the only one without a real family to go home to.

But this year, he just might discover a new friend to spend it with.


Spanish Translation

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 62 )

Percussive Friendship.

Tempest loomed over him. “Be mindful of your surroundings. Your opponents will use it against you.”

Wise counsel. And I see we've found another student of Ra's Al Ghul.

“How long can you stand up on your hind legs?” she said after he’d gone down for the sixth time. “Perhaps Minotaur Stance will be more suited to you.”

So that's what they call it.

And you know what, this would explain how Gallus first got drawn into being party of the royal guard in the first place. And Tempest is always a joy to see in the little slice of life things with other characters to bounce off. Overall, great fic. I could totally see this happening.

Being my tired self, only now notices who the author is Oh, of course. :rainbowlaugh: Just the style and quality I expect from you.

Lovely, cute, enjoyable, and fitting! Well done!

Interesting take on how Gallus became Twilight's guard, and I can see him and Tempest connecting like this. Also liked how Tempest's answer to "do you sing" is just "I'm a pony" basically ackowlageing singing talent is pretty much a genetic trait in Equestria's. As to how the Daring Doo books got fighting styles spot on, well we know Daring is real so any fighting techniques the books describe accurately are ones she uses. The wings and tail would let a Griffon balance in a bipedal stance pretty well.

Excellent.

Loved it. Great take on these two... Though I kinda admit I was envisioning Brianne training Podrick during the first part of the sparring

Wanderer D
Moderator

This was a very nice story, thanks for sharing it!

10077252
Well, that's quite an interesting song... :twilightoops:

10077322

So that's what they call it.

I imagine that Diamond Dogs have a similar style, too.

10077506

The wings and tail would let a Griffon balance in a bipedal stance pretty well.

Oh yes. Equestria Prevails has done some amazing artwork featuring bipedal griffons:
derpicdn.net/img/2014/1/22/531241/large.png

10077813
They do have kinda similar character dynamics.

10077382 10077622 10077914
I aim to please. Thanks for reading! :twilightsheepish:

I officially ship Tellus.

I dig this. :3

I'm a sucker for anything with my girl in it.

You do some good action.

Loved every second of this.

~Skeeter The Lurker

“By the way, can you sing?” he asked.

“I’m a pony,” Tempest deadpanned.

“We do tend to break into song at the most random, sometimes inopportune times.”

Wow, nice work here. Great little scenes, especially the realistic take on the swordplay. Wasn't too keen on Tempest being the personal attaché to Twilight, but in the post s9 context it makes good sense. This'll be going into my group (and my faves) for sure.

Bravo. Did you study any martial arts or fencing?

This was fantastic. You did a really good job with Gallus slowly learning how to actually fight, and Tempest was a good teacher in both telling him what he was doing wrong while also letting him figure stuff out on his own. And of course the song at the end, with Gallus helping Tempest out with feeling more a part of the herd once again.

I'm also getting the sense that Starlight and Tempest don't get along, which amuses me on multiple levels, from both being reformed villains, to both of them having Twilight in some form of mentor role...

I once again find myself wondering how the heck ponies stay warm when wearing just a scarf or fuzzy hat or something in the cold. I do known horses have a higher average body temperature than people, but I doubt that enters into it. More likely the physics of the MLP universe are simply, "if it's cute, it works".

Maybe a Knight of Friendship?

Tempest: "We are not calling it that under any circumstance - "
[Later that year]
Twilight: "And so I hereby do create, the Knights of Friendship!"
Tempest: "T'chaak..."

In my headcanon, Flesh Sentry trained Gallus.

You destroyed it with violence, thanks so much. It's a wonderful, wonderful story.

So adorable, so so fitting. This is my headcanon now.

This was lovely, warm, and fluffy. Similar to Gallus in that respect.

I absolutely love this, damn it, my feels.

Great writing with believable characterisation.

ok so yeah that was sick i know this doesn't mean anything but could we get a full story :eyes:

10078302
I'm here trying to figure out whether Tellus or Gallest sounds cooler. :derpytongue2:

10079486
Nope. But I do watch Shadiversity and Skallagrim on Youtube. They're great historical martial arts enthusiasts, and they're very entertaining as well!

10079793

I'm also getting the sense that Starlight and Tempest don't get along, which amuses me on multiple levels, from both being reformed villains, to both of them having Twilight in some form of mentor role...

Well, they say that opposites attract and likes repel, and Starlight and Tempest are practically the same mare when it comes to problem-solving. Just throw enough magic or blunt-force trauma at it until it goes away. :twilightoops:

Though, if we were to delve a little deeper into why there's friction between them, I imagine that Tempest let slip that she is a little contemptuous of Starlight's original motives for becoming a villain. Starlight, on the other hoof, is irritated by Tempest's utter indifference to any authority figure other than Twilight, and she's never encountered a mare who's also completely unfazed by her magical prowess.

10080042
Eh heh... Happy to be of service? :twilightblush:

10081177
But it is already a full story. :derpytongue2: I currently have no plans for a sequel, but they could certainly make further appearances in some of my other stories when it is relevant.

Dan

To the tune of Auld Lang Syne, I take it?

10081750
Yep. It's actually an official song for one of their Christmas albums.

Well that was just pleasant as hell! Feels, Smiles, Humor, Singing, Drinking? That's a lot of good boxes checked in a nice little story!

This is great. Fantastic. Exellent.
This is the exact type of content I like to see.
I really like this sort of relationship building, and the world coming together when characters like this interact.
Gallus treating this challenge so earnestly is a little adorable with how much he seems to appreciate someone just taking a genuine intrest in his improvement as out of the blue as it was.

"that hit the sport" is a typo for "that hit the spot"

10083627
Fixed. Thanks for spotting that!

This is absolutely now my headcanon Tempest. Heck, this is now my headcanon season 10. Rooting for this one in the contest. :heart:

Gallus comes across as young without being childish, Tempest is tough without being edgy, and the whole setup is shippy without being saccharine. Most of fimmfiction can't even manage a single one of those at a time, much less all three simultaneously. Excellent work and I would kind of like to read more.

10082323

Gallus treating this challenge so earnestly is a little adorable with how much he seems to appreciate someone just taking a genuine intrest in his improvement as out of the blue as it was.

Poor guy being an orphan probably plays a lot into that. Outside of the formality of a school, he doesn't have many authority/parental figures taking a personal interest in his growth and development.

10084484
Always happy to hear that I've influenced headcanons. :pinkiehappy:

10088865
Aww shucks, that's very flattering. :twilightblush:

Excellent work and I would kind of like to read more.

Well, I don't currently have a sequel planned, but if you enjoyed Tempest in this story, you might like her in this other one.

He shrugged. “It was a very stealthy tree.”

Hahahaha

Outstanding story .
Not just two favorites but a very cool setup...
Also it's subtle. Gives time to settle in and doesn't spell everything out!

Fave.

A fine read. It was nice to see Gallus learn about fighting properly while getting just enough of the stuffing knocked out of him to get the point across. Also, the polite eldritch visitor was a nice touch.

And I thought I'd recognized "Auld Pone Syne" at the end there. (Which was heart-rendingly, yet fittingly, performed by the Apple Family on the album.)

10130463
Fun fact: that song was a most fortuitous last-minute discovery.

I was initially going to go with Hearth's Warming Eve is Here Once Again because it was the only relevant song in my head, but it was a little too cheerful for the scene.

So glad I went with a last-minute search of ponified Christmas songs even though the deadline was really closing in on me. :derpytongue2:

On the one hand, I'm trying not to ship them, because I don't think that's the aim of this story, and I don't want to ruin a friendship. On the other hand, they do seem rather cute together.

Hi, Raugos! Let’s talk shop.

First off, thank you for submitting this story! It received an honorable mention, as you know, which means it was one of our finalists, and for good reason. I gotta tell ya, of all 38 entries, this one had the best construction, hands down. Seriously, you have an impressive writing style. There’s droves of fanfiction out there that’s littered with stuff like overexplaining, repetitive word choices, perspective errors, repetitive sentence structure, the list goes on—but this story doesn’t have any of that. Your style is a cut above, not just because of the structure and vocabulary, but because it genuinely reads like you’re not trying to show off how good you are. Not a lot of people focus on this, but I really appreciated it.

And I have to give specific props to the way the action is told in the sparring match. It’s exciting, varied, easy to follow, and it has a genuine progression to it. Gallus slowly but surely gains the upper hand--and we’re shown this, not told. You’re not just going through the motions; there’s real care put into every swing and parry.

But the hangups, for all the judges, came from the story itself. The way I described it was that it felt like the story was asking the reader to take a lot of things for granted. The biggest thing being character motivation.

Because when you see these types of sparring matches in media (and let’s be honest, we’ve seen a lot of them), there’s always something bigger than the sparring match hanging over both characters’ heads, something that adds to the stakes. There’s a big bad villain that the sensei must teach the student to defeat. Maybe the kid’s a misfit and needs some guidance before he ends up in jail, or worse. Or, the sensei killed the student’s parents and is training their son as penance. This story doesn’t really have something like that.

Take Tempest, for example. There’s lots of reasons for her to be training Gallus. I thought of two: She could be scouting him for the guard, or she has the hots for him. While reading the sparring scene, I assumed it was one of these two things, but she’s not the perspective character, so whatever, I didn’t worry about it. But then in the bar, where she has a chance to explain her motivations, she dispels both of these ideas, and says instead that she recognized him as being from a poor upbringing like her. And she figured that out because he’s a griffon? It’s a little murky.

But Gallus is the bigger problem. I gotta be honest, he feels like a passenger throughout the story, never making any decisions of his own. His transition from lonely goof-off into motivated student happens so quickly, and I don’t know why he’s going along with it. He wasn’t practicing fencing before she arrived; he was just screwing around. He gets scraped and beat up and embarrassed, and as it’s all happening, I’m wondering why he’s putting up with the abuse. Nothing is keeping him there, and he never struck me as the type of character to just let things happen to him. True, this is all Tempest’s doing, but if you ask me, you’re treading dangerous ground of a protagonist without agency.

There’s a moment in the bar that’s emblematic of the motivation issue: the drinks. Why is Tempest so insistent on Gallus drinking alcohol? She’s not having any. And Gallus himself never seems to want it either. He says it smells strong, that he’s not of age yet, so he isn’t supposed to have any. But one wry smirk later and they’re clinking mugs. It was definitely funny how she pushed it on him, but why was she doing it, and why did he go along with it? There are explanations out there, but none are presented in the story.

One other thing that needs to be taken for granted: Tempest’s magic. In the movie, she’s definitely limited to explosions and electricity, and can’t hold a stick. I normally don’t debate headcanons, but there’s a flashback where they specifically show her failing to levitate a ball. Some may find this a minor thing, but I found it distracting. Sure, yeah, maybe she "got better". But her handicap is a vital part of her character for it to vanish in a piece of fanfiction like it does here.

The last thing I wanted to mention is the song at the end. I’ll be honest, it didn’t get a lot of mileage with the judges. Songs in stories are hard, for obvious reasons. But even so, it came off a little saccharine for these two characters, for me. Again, how it played out, with the “I’m a pony” gag is top notch, but it didn’t feel like a story that wanted to break into song, if that makes sense. Especially right after a candid conversation about classism. And it probably should have been a song that you wrote yourself...

Okay! That’s all from me. Thanks for listening, and again, thank you so much for submitting. This was a fun read, and I have a soft spot for character pairings that have never been done before. You can’t write a story like this without getting really creative, and this story has creativity coming out its ears.

See you around!

10156102
Hey man, thanks for the feedback.

I just needed some time to digest it before getting back to you.

But then in the bar, where she has a chance to explain her motivations, she dispels both of these ideas, and says instead that she recognized him as being from a poor upbringing like her. And she figured that out because he’s a griffon?

I'd meant to convey from her earlier quip about knowing all of Twilight's associates that she'd done some research on his past as well.

So, the idea is that she already knew his background, found him playing solder, and then decided to see what he was made of. What she saw was promising, and things just moved on from there.

His transition from lonely goof-off into motivated student happens so quickly, and I don’t know why he’s going along with it. He wasn’t practicing fencing before she arrived; he was just screwing around.

Gallus initially was going to walk away from her.

But then she made it a game by offering him a stick. And after a few stunningly quick losses, his motivation for putting up with with the abuse was that his pride's been wounded, and he's not going to let that slide so quickly. And after sticking around (ha!) for a bit, he realised that he was getting better at the game and wanted to see how far he could go.

But yes, I see that I could've done a better job of conveying Gallus' motives and given him a little more agency. Which brings us to...

There’s a moment in the bar that’s emblematic of the motivation issue: the drinks. Why is Tempest so insistent on Gallus drinking alcohol?

Gallus was chilled, and I've heard that rum is pretty good for warming up if you're cold. I mean, in the sense that hot alcohol gives the sensation of warmth in addition to the temperature.

Gallus then played along when he recognised that Tempest was showing a streak of mischief, which is something I should've shown he was partial to, rather than weakly implying it.

One other thing that needs to be taken for granted: Tempest’s magic. In the movie, she’s definitely limited to explosions and electricity, and can’t hold a stick.

Spoiler: I have not watched the movie. :pinkiegasp: So this one's totally on me. I have seen snippets and summaries, but this whole time I've been working under the impression that she could still manage telekinesis, albeit with great difficulty.

My headcanon was that she 'got better' by having royally funded access to therapy and teachers who actually knew how to work with damaged horns. Things she never had access to when she was in foreign lands.

Of course, it's not fair to expect readers to roll with it just like that, so I should've found a way to properly integrate that idea with the story... :ajsleepy:

The last thing I wanted to mention is the song at the end. I’ll be honest, it didn’t get a lot of mileage with the judges.

Oof. Fair enough. :twilightsheepish:

I would've loved to write a more appropriate song myself, but it was three AM by the time I was working on the end of the story, and I wanted to get some sleep and also leave myself enough time for final touches and editing within the remaining ten hours or so before the submission deadline.

At that point, finding an official, holiday-appropriate song was too much of a lifesaver to pass up. I suppose I could've avoided a song entirely, but it seemed like a good way to tie everything up at the time.

Oh well, hindsight is 20/20 and all that. What I wouldn't have given for another 24 hours back then... :raritycry:


Once again, thank you for the feedback. Especially the critical parts. I just needed some time to get over the part of me that wanted to sulk and dismiss all criticism. :raritydespair: :unsuresweetie:

Thanks so much for organising the contest. It's been a great learning opportunity. :twilightsmile:

10159003
I'm so glad you enjoyed the contest. It was a blast to run.

Also:

I just needed some time to get over the part of me that wanted to sulk and dismiss all criticism.

Would you believe me if I told you I've received like a hundred reviews on the Writeoff and I'm still waiting for this feeling to go away.

10159489
Now this is slice of life.
I think a great problem with my writings is that I always look for the top shelf for everything I do. Be it story elements, emotions, words, anything. I think to a lesser degree the two other honourable mention in this contest suffered from the same problem. The may not have looked right at the top shelf but their gaze wasn't that much lower either. One wanted to write a story about a transformation of a changeling drone to a changeling princess, (With all the psychological, sociological and biological consequences crammed into like 8 thousand word, or because that's physically impossible mostly just ignore them all.) While the other played some village-wide addiction for cheap laughs. They both wanted to force very big stories into very small confines.

This one didn't. You had a kind of restrain very few here possess. I certainly don't so you have my utmost admiration. You knew what you wanted to achieve and what's more you knew what you needed. You had a respect for your story and your characters to not put them in these extreme situations because you knew you couldn't handle those in the confines of this contest. It's so simple, yet I can hardly understate how smart it is. When you told the story I heard a story being told, not some second rate author trying to flex on everyone by writing something unique and ridiculous.

And it's not an easy task. Extreme situations are very easy tools to generate feelings with. You denied all of these in favour of lot smaller scale tools. As if you were a blacksmith and instead of all the fancy power tools you only worked with a hammer an anvil and a chisel. You didn't build those impressive feats of craftsmanship the others managed. But unlike them, you didn't waste a lot of material in order to shape the metal into whatever your vision was. You took a set of meagre things and created something more with it. To me that is the definition of Art.

And I mean that. Which is a double sided statement. It's not gonna win awards and I'm not gonna pretend that you're some exalted individual inspired by the high heavens and we can't even hope to touch your toes for we are not worthy of that. But it is something more than anything else I've read in this competition. If you are as modest as I think you're that's probably enough for you. As it should be.

Not bad story

Daaaaawwwww more of these two please!!

Well, that was a combination I didn't know I needed, and incidentally an explanation for how Gallus wound up as a guard in the final episode.

Good stuff, Raugos.

10262952
Thanks for the kind words. Happy to be of service! :twilightsmile:

*see thumbnail and mini summary*
*deep inhale*:pinkiegasp:
*internal excited screaming*:pinkiehappy:

Haven't read it yet and I'm excited!:pinkiehappy::twilightsmile:

Edit: I just noticed that Tempest in the series has normal pupils, rather than her movie pupils where her pupils are a darker color of her irises.
I've read that it's from her not being "innocent" like the rest of the ponies.
Forget if that's official or fan canon.

10078302
Not sure if this counts as the HRMS Tellus's maiden voyage, or it being built in the fimfiction dry docks.

I ship it like a FedEx overnight priority package.

I love how Berry is encouraging cradle theft!:rainbowlaugh:


("Robbing the cradle" means to date someone of legal
age, that is much younger than yourself.)

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