• Member Since 31st Mar, 2012
  • offline last seen 6 days ago

PeachClover


Harmony, should not be a delusion held only by those who have not suffered, but the knowledge that wrongs can be forgiven and life eventually returned to peace.

Comments ( 41 )

I actually really like this it kinda a shot at all those ideas of human arrogance.

Whooo. That was intense.

Smart man, got the hell outta Dodge.

Also, Mister Mann is one very angry personage. I wonder what is driving him in this!

Oh, wow! This is so totally sweet!

Also, hot damn - acedia! And vainglory too, super cool, but yowza, I have not read 'acedia' in literal decades. I am seriously impressed by the vocabulary on display. I had to look it up again, just to be sure I even remembered what it meant! Honestly, I was a little off. I love cool words.

You pulled off the denouement really well. My visualization of the transformation scene was a Boschian dance macabre. It was scary time. I loved it.

Yeah... I am adoring this novelette. I like the way you wove the sins in, and I like the biblically inspired chapter titles.

Panic At The Disco, too. God damn. Wow.

I have put this in every category it fits in the Bureau archives - this is a wonderment and a keeper. I am so very impressed with this work, Peachclover! From the indeterminate time period it is set in to the powerful emotions generated by so few words, this work is both succinct and intense. it feels like a soul-purge, and it left me minty and fresh. Really, really good work.

I just read your novelette to Aedina. She was disturbed by it, but she did think your use of Pinocchio and the Deadly Sins was clever. I had fun doing the voices of the characters for her!

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I’m happy that it moved you. I really was worried that because you had read so much fiction that it would have come off as too obvious and weak. I guess that means I really am an artist for how harshly I judge myself.

Yeah... I am adoring this novelette. I like the way you wove the sins in, and I like the biblically inspired chapter titles.

The titles are possibly the best joke in this whole thing. There are some people in the world who think that someone with a “good christian name” is a good person by default. I tend to think of such people as the sort who would find it appropriate to go to a fan site about ponies to say how much they dislike them.

As of the time of this writing, I’m not sure of the origin of “Evan”, but I wanted to give the reader a deceiving sense of familiarity by using common names. His is the sin of acedia, by the way. In truth, he would not have been in any risk of becoming a donkey, because he simply couldn’t stand watching others suffer, so he would not allow himself to give into acts of chaos, but he knew he couldn’t stand up for what he believed was right. Acedia is not considered a sin by modern standards because it risks misleading a person to try so hard they break themselves, but by letting him go, Discord scarred him with guilt. The ones who were caught by the trap may end up eventually forgetting the source of their resentment and take it out on others, they they too would fall, but it isn’t guaranteed; for all we know, good people trapped in Pleasure Island could eventually make it into a fair and happy place.

“Esau” is not so common, and this allows the readers that have been lured into a false sense of security to distance themselves from his blatant acts of iniquity. In fact, Esau’s chapter is written ambiguously as a porn comedy. This way readers who believe him completely would be nothing but excited for what they could get out of the park. To readers who believe in fair treatment, it is the last warning sign for the point of no return.

I don’t think I’ve heard the word soul-purge before, but it is on so many levels. For myself, I feel a dark satisfaction in the idea that there are some readers who are so convinced of their own superior place in the universe that they really didn’t see what was going to happen right up until it was happening.

I think many of us would end up like Evan, turning a blind eye until we saw the cruelty first hand, then feeling guilty, because after all, everyone wants something.

Then there is Celestia, who also faces the terrible burden of allowing this place to exist, because to destroy it would do more harm than good.

Pleasure Island is not a Hell in the traditional sense, because there is no higher force that condemns people to go there nor does being there guarentee one’s suffering. It is, however, the amplification of the inescapable concequences of one’s own choices.

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Well, I was also disturbed by it, and I was the one who wrote it. I would be a little worried by someone who read all of it and didn’t feel at least a little disturbed by it. It’s curious how much sympathy I felt for the donkeys even knowing that they were all, just a short time before, the same people dominating them so mercilously. I could almost rename this story The Shawshank Compassion for how well it plays into the point.

I wish I could have heard your voices. I tried very hard to give each of these narrators a different personality in the way they spoke and where they focused their attention, so it would have been great to hear how that was interpreted.

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I wish I could have heard your voices. I tried very hard to give each of these narrators a different personality in the way they spoke and where they focused their attention, so it would have been great to hear how that was interpreted.

Monday: My best generic southern Cracker who is overly proud of the Dukes Of Hazzard.

Tuesday: Educationally sophisticated southern-ish semi-black voice.

Wednesday: Kinda Jack Nicholson meets Sidney Greenstreet by way of a serial killer.

Thursday: Stock 'Gone With The Wind' Southern Belle who says 'I DO declare!' far too often.

Friday: Generic 'Californian' standard television accent, slightly desperate, slightly weak spirited.

Saturday: I tend to do... Coach... characters as a sort of effusive, vaguely queer-coded, almost Tim Curry voice, merely because I can't get the proper actor's subtle and difficult-to-do voice down. Sigh.

Sunday: I do Celestia a little reserved and vaguely British-proper because, again, I cannot seem to get the proper voice actor down correctly. Again, sigh.

Doing voices is difficult for me at best, but that does not mean I do not try, nor give it my all. I suck, of course, but I try to make up for my lack of an 'ear' for voices and accents with sheer exuberance.

"If those idjuts would just read their bible, they’d know that you have to choose to accept the Mark of the Beast,"

By God, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE tell me you didn't mean that line to be "I am a stupid person, I'm just stupid in a way different from these other stupid people, and that's the joke."

"Radiation wasn’t discovered till some French guy figured it out,"

Please tell me you meant that the way that Man is used to mean men and woMEN?

"Any country that allows slavery can’t be that free, "

Oh God. Any other other political messages you'd like to load into a rocket launch and fire at point blank range?

II. Any persons entering into this contract must be an eligible adult of their former country entering of their own freewill without threat of loss of quality of life through action or inaction.

So what happens when a 17 year old from Japan shows up banging on the gate? Tell them to go back across the ocean?

“You threatening me, you little shit?!”

Dude. I can see the twist coming from a friggin' mile away. Any human on Earth who read the fairy tale would see it coming from a mile away. This makes me APPRECIATE how the excuse in every zombie movie is that nobody calls the obvious zombies, ya know, zombies, is because zombie movies never existed in their universe...

They were all male,

I doubt not a single female on Earth would want to escape the Equestrian Menace, so why are the ladies turned into males?

Got it, they're a sexual sadist, and for some reason only men ever come to this place in spite of women making up 50% of humanity. And for some reason only unlikable human beings want to keep their fingers. (The first guy was genuinely religious, which I guess is now a crime or something.)

Ah. So there are female here, and are all just changed into male donkeys for whatever reason? (Seems too predictable for Discord, come on, it's not a spoiler, we know who it is.)

privilege of looking upon my naked body as they bathe me, the very essence of human beauty.

Given how screwed they are, it likely is the only show they get.

“Mary, will you marry me?”

That's a new low even for Discord.

“Even a child who wanted with all their heart to come here, must be turned away because the law would see that as coercion, and I will not allow my country to be threatened!”

So what about those who aren't adults by USA law, but were adults in their own country? What excuse does he invent for them?

he one act of courage that saved me was leaving the cow with my family. If I had stolen it, I would not have been able to escape.

If he had stolen his family cow? Huh?

What the heck does Discord have against people with pets?

If their sin is Acedia, how did they even manage to get there in one piece if they were dragging their feet?

Mary wasn't really written as being the embodiment of all of human vices, she's just spoiled disconnected from reality.

What the heck is chaotic about then ALL becoming SMALL MALE DONKEYS?!

Why are all the mare made to work in the fields while the male work the stands? It's too bloody ORDERLY for Discord.

Silence to Discord, a spoiled brat hungry for attention, is the biggest screw you Celly can give him.

I imagine this happening later.

Fluttershy, "How many did you promise to marry Discord?"

Discord, "Wait, you can't be-"

Fluttershy, "Herd laws are still legal in Equestria... and I expect you to keep your promises."

10586456 Hello Alex. I see that you thoroughly enjoyed hating these characters. ^.^

Any human on Earth who read the fairy tale would see it coming from a mile away.

How fortunate you are that you have only met sufficiently intelligent people in your life, however, people this stupid are tragically common. In fact, I wrote this story because of an encounter with one such person the day before this was posted. The first chapter is based on that encounter where his own sense of superiority for figuring out something blinded him to his own logical fallacy.

So what about those who aren't adults by USA law, but were adults in their own country? What excuse does he invent for them?

Well, I suppose if the contract were signed in that country, then it would be legally binding.

What the heck does Discord have against people with pets?

Nothing more than he has against anyone else. People who think they Have It All Figured OutTm just stop thinking as soon as they figure out something and focus on "How Awesome I AmTm" instead of realizing that it keeps going. Luke, and for that matter all of the "smart people" before him, believed that the contract signed with the donkeys was some other contract and the donkeys lost their freedom because they were ignorant to the traps in human contracts. They never would have believed that all of those details about four legged animals could have been referring to themselves because they believed that Mr. Mann like themselves directed all of his ill will toward "The Common EnemyTm".

If their sin is Acedia, how did they even manage to get there in one piece if they were dragging their feet?

Acedia is not physical sloth but a spiritual halfheartedness. Acedia is Evan's sin, and although he was not there at the party, Discord left his scar on him, so in that way Discord "preserved" what he wanted from humanity.

Mary wasn't really written as being the embodiment of all of human vices, she's just spoiled disconnected from reality.

Mary didn't start out that way when she hit the gate. I hoped I had dropped enough hints about it, but Mary was a poor person who believed she deserved more. How much more? All of it, and it didn't matter from whom she had to take it because she was worth it. The more she had the more she thought she deserved because of what she had. Even her lust became expressed only as the fetish of forcing the donkeys to bathe her and put so many socks on her feet because even though the sex would be for her pleasure, she wouldn't risk someone else taking pleasure in the act - that's too much like giving... She really is a black hole of ugliness and greed, and Discord took so much pleasure in her particularly because whereas others upon becoming a donkey realize that they only have themselves to blame, she won't. She was destined to struggle, blame, hate, and toil with grief until her dying day - whether she was a donkey or not.

What the heck is chaotic about then ALL becoming SMALL MALE DONKEYS?! Why are all the mare made to work in the fields while the male work the stands? It's too bloody ORDERLY for Discord. Silence to Discord, a spoiled brat hungry for attention, is the biggest screw you Celly can give him.

I imagine this happening later.

Fluttershy, "How many did you promise to marry Discord?"

Discord, "Wait, you can't be-"

Fluttershy, "Herd laws are still legal in Equestria... and I expect you to keep your promises."

You have been around long enough to know that when MLPFM was born, it was based heavily on Greek mythology. In Greek mythology, the gods conquered the titans who came before the gods. The titans were forces of nature not beings who could choose to be one thing or another. For example, a god of air could choose to be a gentle breeze or a raging tornado, but Discord is the titan of chaos and therefore is always the tornado. Because of this, Discord has the same chances of being redeemed as convincing a tornado not to ravage everything it touches.

We often think of chaos as merely unpredictability in nature, but it can also take the form of mental chaos - confusion, blame, grief, hatred, guilt, woe, and their causes which are the sins listed throughout the story. In Buddhism it is called Samsara, which translates briefly as "the causes of suffering". In this story, some physical order is needed in order to cause the greatest amount of mental chaos - that cause of suffering. You see, it is so carefully laid out:

They all become donkeys because these are the people who fear and hate the beings of Equestria. Becoming the beings that they hate and being victims to the acts of hate that they were so quick to dish out makes them suffer in the knowledge that they really did do this to themselves. Maybe you personally, are evolved to the point that when you imagine yourself in their places, you would accept that you derped, and move on with your life, but again, this story isn't really about people who are smart and wise but the ones who would stew in an endless waltz of blame toward others, blame towards one's self, and self-pity. The fact that they are donkeys instead of ponies is a physical reminder that they failed. They will never look as beautiful as a pony, they will never have a cutiemark, they will never be mistaken for the heroes who deserve praise, so they cannot even look upon one another and pretend to imagine that they have in some way become something better. Even though it is not as physically chaotic as it could be, it is the outcome that causes the most and longest lasting chaos, so that is why it happened that way.

The mares are made to work the fields because the scenery is boring and the task is monotonous. From my experience (and feel free to disagree), women are more likely to enjoy little changes and new faces to help deal with stress. If men were working the fields, the lack of changing scenery and physical stress would actually help them feel more at ease and give them an outlet for stress relief. Instead, working the stalls and tasks that require them to be mentally active, but not so much physically active, prevents them from escaping their thoughts - stereotypically anyway. Along with the idea that as humans they were manly men who were in control, could take what they wanted, and assert their dominance, but now they are subject to the whims of everyone. It isn't some big statement about the empirical differences between men's and women's psychology, it's just supposed to give you an idea of how Discord would have set this up for being maximally affected by chaos.

Whether or not Mary went to the party didn't matter, she had already fallen to the point where Discord could will her into a donkey at any moment, but he was aging her suffering like a fine wine. Deceiving her one last time was icing on the cake for Discord, one last thing for Mary to imagine that she deserved before being assed. Mary had become a master of deceiving herself - don't you think it's odd how Discord presented her with an empty box?

The relationship between Discord and Celestia is very interesting. You see, because Discord is also a personification, you can imagine that the Sunday chapter is all Celestia's internal dialog with herself. Celestia cannot attack Discord outright because of this. Even if Celestia were attacking Discord as a corporeal being, the act of reacting violently toward chaos goes against harmony. Pleasure Island doesn't have to be a magical siren song, it could just as well represent some terrible place or natural thing that draws the same chaotic people who would do nothing but harm indiscriminately. The thing is, Celestia fights against chaos, but she is really hurt here that whether spoken by the titan of chaos or the thought in her own mind, if such a place existed with these rules, it would cause far more harm than good to destroy it and free the destructive people within it. Celestia is brought so low by the terrible truth that for some of these people, receiving acts of kindness for a thousand lifetimes could not teach them to be kind but a short time of suffering has enlightened them to the value of compassion. If Celestia is to serve a greater good she must allow this chaos and suffering to exist, but she is not numb to it, so it becomes her scar.

... It's funny how my replies often end up longer than my stories...

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The first chapter is based on that encounter where his own sense of superiority for figuring out something blinded him to his own logical fallacy.

Really? Besides your Stupidville stereotypes, it felt like someone being defiant as treated as INFERIOR.

And I read up the definition of mental sloth, I just figured getting across a collapsing society would require mental force, not just physical force.

And there is room in Equestria for greedy jerks. Take a look at Flim and Flam.

So what happens when donkeys like Yankee Doodle hear about their own kind enslaved and organize a raid? All, the magic keeps out ponies after all.

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Really? Besides your Stupidville stereotypes, it felt like someone being defiant as treated as INFERIOR.

I’m not clear on what you are saying.

And I read up the definition of mental sloth, I just figured getting across a collapsing society would require mental force, not just physical force.

It’s different kind of willpower. Fighting nature is one thing, but fighting society is another.

And there is room in Equestria for greedy jerks. Take a look at Flim and Flam.

Those two are indeed greedy, but they do not outright steal. They trick, they lie, but they do not take more than what others are willing to give.

So what happens when donkeys like Yankee Doodle hear about their own kind enslaved and organize a raid? All, the magic keeps out ponies after all.

In this case “pony” is short for “all of those whose spirits are of Equestria”, which as Celestia pointed out includes ponified humans. It is unlikely that they would ever catch wind of it as news of earth would be more like news from Antarctica to Equestria.

To answer the question though, I imagine terrible sorrow. The signers of the contract are not bound by space. Discord would not need or want to reclaim them. If the wording on the contract says they shall not speak (and most likely write) “on the job” then that could mean that any act of service they do must be in silence but it could also mean their whole lives are the job. Say that some were freed or escaped, would they be the ones whose attitudes changed enough to adapt to Equestrian society or would their attitudes be the same that allowed Discord to take control of them? There is room for a story there if you want to write one.

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So how do you think Discord would go about choosing a God of Chaos for Earth since every world has its OWN god of Chaos and thus be the one person who receive the Draconequus potion?

So would Ember or Torch's blood be used for the dragon potion, or would any dragon who is currently Dragon Lord do?

Since Discord created his "guard" avatars as one part dealing with untrained flesh and blood humans trying to show compassion, and one half window dressing for an attack that would never actually come...

A commando team of Equestrian jackasses and mules hybrids who'd raid the place trying to rescue what they think are captured and enslaved fellow Equestrian asses (since they'd know the whole 'former Equestrian slaves' hasn't been true in 1100 years), would catch the parts of Discord made just to look tough and deal with their own residents.

I imagine Discord himself would be caught off guard since he knows Celly would never do this. And his 'guard' selves would have no clue what they were supposed to even do!

I also wonder what a New Donkey sneaking in would even cause, since the posted rules are just garbage and the real influence of the law is the contracts! Since Discord knows that Celestia would NOT tolerate a country oppressing Equines FOR REAL rather than just being dressing for Discord's honey trap.

Heck, mules would be the ultimate loop hole, since they are neither pony nor donkey, and exist in a limbo of sorts between them. Discord's enchantment wouldn't know what to do with itself.

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If there is a god of chaos in this plane, it is a distributed force over all mankind.

The blood in the potion is not merely biological matter. It is disturbuted existence. Blood of any other being does nothing. Celestia’s and Discord’s blood is an extention of their conciousnesses, their beings. The transformations occur because they have set the intention. Discord’s blood is the aerosol alerts him to ownership of being’s mind. It’s like a computer virus or better yet a buffer overflow arbitrary code execution; a being who is too orderly is constantly rejecting Discord’s influence because the thoughts that are being injected into their minds are flagged as disorderly, but those who give themselves to chaotic thoughts and impulses do not have such a defense. It allows him to sneak into their minds just enough to make them hand over “remote access” to him. At that point, he will retain control until they die.

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The guard selves are still Discord; he is mentally strong enough to split his mind across probably 300 or more bodies, and still not feel distracted.

This story is narrated by flawed characters who do not understand the extent of anything. The magic that keeps ponies out actually pushes out Equestrians whereas Equestrian is defined as being whose soul shares the energy signature of Equestria. Any being born in Equestria is physically pushed out. Conversion alters the energy signature so that converted humans cannot enter either. Discord’s magic doesn’t affect souls, only bodies. This is why once those who have been enslaved die, they will no longer be under his control. Celestia does have such control and uses it to prevent spirits from entering the bodies of the enslaved. Because the donkey bodies evolved in Equestria, firtilized eggs will not grow without a spirit attached past a certain point. However, Discord already knows this and instead of trying to breed slaves, he prevents the donkeys from having sex with other donkeys to create more misery and chaos.

Remember, Discord knows that Celestia is more powerful than himself, and the only way he can have his fun is if he does so within her tolerance. Clearly, there is an immense amount of suffering happening here, but it is allowed because the alternative is to have these same people running out to rape, murder, and terrorize people who deserve it far less than who they are currently terrorizing (which is themselves, ultimately).

If ever there was an outrage to free these jackasses, how would Celestia justify it? How could she justify even freeing them in a post conversion world knowingthat she did nothing before? How is that fair? Even she must painfully accept that Discord’s park, however terrible, does more good than harm, and to condone that much is to make it wrong for her to try to dismantle it even after every last human is converted.

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Well. Earth needing a Draconequus of its own is a plot point in CB: Not Just Ponies and I was wondering about your advice.

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I haven’t seen this in other stories.

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I'm asking you how would you see Discord picking someone to become a draconequus?

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He can’t; a tornado cannot pick who/what/when the next tornado will be.

But if you insist on ignoring this, I must ask you a few questions: why the hell would a god of chaos who gets off to ruining the lives of others, have want of spawning something like itself? Consider the Sith who take an apprentice strictly to use them. Inevitably, the apprentice kills the master and then in their arrogance takes an apprentice believing that he or she won’t fall to the same fate. The Sith are mortal though and need help from time to time; this is why they have an apprentice. Discord, however, is a god who long enjoyed the psychopathic delight of having absolute power without fear of retribution from anything. His hate for Celestia and Luna is unparrelled because they have been the only creatures to ever stop him.

Now, in Greek mythology, the origin of the gods are not discussed, but I choose to believe that Celestia and Luna were created by Discord, because I choose to see the metaphor for our origins from chaos and our potential to overcome it. In that regard, Discord already fucked up and created his doom, not his foil, but his personal destroyers who through compassion alone allow him to exist at all... So why would he make that mistake a second time?

Does he believe this copy could help overwhelm them? That sounds reasonable, but if he fails they will obliterate him completely this time. Is he willing to take that risk? Also, being chaos, his clone could try to destroy him as well.

I don’t see a version of this story where even Discord thinks this plan will work out, but if you do *Shrugs*

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