• Member Since 3rd May, 2021
  • online

RangerOfRhudaur


Nai hiruvalye Valimar, nai elye hiruva; namarie!

Sequels1

T

This story is a sequel to The First Fall Revolution


Cloudsdale prepares for war against an unknown invader. The Stormlings ready for battle, for their mountain homes to become islands in a sea of war. This is not their story.

Castellot reels from a riot led by the Unmarked, a riot which has caused one of the Element-bearers to disappear. The capitol takes stock and grieves, and debates how to respond. This is not their story, either.

Wallflower Blush lies in a cave, far from civilization, far from the battlefield. She watches, and learns, and dreams. This is her story.


Continuity: The Song of the Spheres
Branch: The Heirs of the Everfree

Chapters (4)
Comments ( 66 )

She cried out and tried to run away, and to her shock ran out of the world entirely, emerging in a warm, dark void. Turning around, she gasped: there was a great tree behind her, gnarled branches spiraling out before ending in beautiful fruits. Swimming through the void, she went over to examine one of the fruits, and found that it wasn't a fruit at all; it was a small, crystal globe, its interior the world she'd just left.

:derpytongue2: "First time?"
(My own EqG AU has a Derpy with an unfortunate habit of stumbling out of the universe and into the space between.)

Ah. "-tria" as a suffix for worlds. I suppose Midtria would've been giving the game away too early.

The Elves have gone into the West and diminished. Well, there's one deus ex machina off the table. Also, Wallflower is not yet mentally prepared to hear about some of the effects of Gaea's blessing.

I was expecting Svartalftria to be the other side of the elven coin, but I suppose that would actually be home of the dwarves.

"What does 'elven' mean?"

... Huh. Not sure if Wallflower just had no interest in fantasy or if the concept was forgotten entirely. I'd expect faint memories of the Fair Folk to hang preserved and distorted in the amber of pop culture.

countless creatures feeling the chill of their silencing arrows and obsidian spears.

Hmmm...

And yeah, finding out that you've been speaking to something that seems more and less than human will lead to some uncomfortable questions. I hope this doesn't lead to any unwise decisions on Wallflower's part.

I do love seeing the wider, multiplanar context for this sort of thing. This also provides a nice chance to breathe amidst the rising (and, in some cases, exploding) tension. Eagerly looking forward to more.

10871325

:derpytongue2: "First time?"
(My own EqG AU has a Derpy with an unfortunate habit of stumbling out of the universe and into the space between.)

Technically speaking, Wallflower didn't stumble out of the universe so much as into the part of it where she can see all the different worlds (what some might think of as the different universes, like Equestria and Homestria).

Ah. "-tria" as a suffix for worlds. I suppose Midtria would've been giving the game away too early.
I was expecting Svartalftria to be the other side of the elven coin, but I suppose that would actually be home of the dwarves.

Technically, "-tria" translates more directly to "land" (thus, Equus-tria = pony + land = land of the ponies), but you're right, at this scale it refers to worlds rather than mere kingdoms or continents. Also, Svartalftria isn't the other side of the elven coin because I thought Niflheim was the home of the dark elves, and for some reason didn't think of actually doing my research to make sure I was correct. :twilightblush: I think I'll keep it, though, keep the clearer link between high-elves (Alfin) and deep-elves (Nilfin).

The Elves have gone into the West and diminished. Well, there's one deus ex machina off the table.

You know, that's something really strange; going through LotR and especially the Silmarillion, the elves' reputation as "Perfect-Good" really doesn't hold up. Gildor Inglorian and his company tell Frodo, when he first asks if he and his friends can come with them, that they're not interested in the hobbits, so why should they stop for them? And Feanor just seems like a jerk. Elves are usually stronger than Men in capabilities, yes, but ethically they seem just as shaky as them, even the ones who should know better. (Feanor, pro-tip: back-talking to the people who helped create the world is generally seen as a bad idea.)

Also, Wallflower is not yet mentally prepared to hear about some of the effects of Gaea's blessing.

“You will never walk again, Bran,” the pale lips promised, “but you will fly.”

-A Dance with Dragons

... Huh. Not sure if Wallflower just had no interest in fantasy or if the concept was forgotten entirely. I'd expect faint memories of the Fair Folk to hang preserved and distorted in the amber of pop culture.

Lack of interest in fantasy, and narrative convenience on the author's part.

I do love seeing the wider, multiplanar context for this sort of thing. This also provides a nice chance to breathe amidst the rising (and, in some cases, exploding) tension. Eagerly looking forward to more.

Glad to hear it! Yeah, currently Wallflower's arc is different than the other's; while Sunset, Rarity, and Platinum are in the thick of things, Wallflower's on the outside looking in, giving us a cosmic-eye view of things. Of course, once that view starts seeing the war, things are going to change.

And yeah, finding out that you've been speaking to something that seems more and less than human will lead to some uncomfortable questions.

Not just wondering who you're working with but what they even are is definitely going to shake people, just when trust is most crucial.

I hope this doesn't lead to any unwise decisions on Wallflower's part.

Now, where would be the fun in that? :pinkiecrazy:

10871325
The elves may have diminished, but they’re far from the only deus-ex-machina still on the table. Unless I’m misreading things, Luna still has the option of writing to Princess Twilight et al. if things get too far out of hand. Between Discord, the Bearers, and two basically-goddesses, to say nothing of Harmony, Starlight would piss herself if they showed up in her world with a half-decent plan of attack.

Quite a moving scene; you really know how to Breg-a-lad.

I regret nothing.

Was there any of Stumper even left, hidden behind that knotted skin?

Bit of a Ship of Theseus issue there. Though one that can possibly be settled with an X-ray machine if you're feeling prosaic.

"Hoom," Stumper snorted.

Heh. I do appreciates the subtler Tolkien references.

They like the, what was her name, Rarity's of the world. Pretty as a flower, maybe, but flowers wilt.

Well, that's unfortunate timing.

And yeah, while Wallflower isn't sure what she's gotten herself into, she knows she in it with a friend. It's definitely a better position than when she first awoke.

What's a Stormling?

Ah, valuable intelligence provided to both sides. Though Wallflower may be hard-pressed to survive long enough to deliver it. Still, she’s turning this misstep into impressive diplomatic work. Now if only she didn’t have to deal with something as intractable as elvish pride...

Well, we’ll see what happens from here. Who knows? This conversation could be the beginning of Mankind’s salvation, or at least greatly contribute to it.

10880770
Indeed. For a former recluse, Wallflower sure is rolling high on her Diplomacy checks. It really is amazing what can be accomplished when people actually communicate.

You’ll definitely want to make a note on this chapter thwt you added to the earlier one. Anyone who’s been following along won’t see the one there if they just look at the newest entry. (They may look back and see what they missed given that first sentence, but still.)

In any case... yeah, this is going to be extremely tricky to work out. I can’t blame Stumper for not knowing how to handle an emotionally vulnerable teenager from an era centuries after her own adolescence, nor Wallflower for being so hurt at this betrayal of trust. Really, it’s up to Gaea herself to try to clear up this one, and I doubt whether Wallflower will listen to anything she has to say.

Oh, and there’s the whole elvish intelligence thing. Good luck getting that information where it needs to go when the only one who does is a mute girl stuck in the woods.

We’ll have to see where this goes from here. Though I suspect we’ll be focusing on the more local issues next.

Last chapter, we saw the benefits of proper communication.

This chapter, we see the consequences of poor communication.

I am sad and angry and in desperate need of something to punch.

10882483

*carefully moves out of range of wrath*

10882446

Added, thanks for the advice.

Poor Stumper, like she said she was just trying to help. She's been trying to be a good friend to Wallflower, but the way she's gone about that has tragically undercut her intentions. And, like you said, you can't blame Wallflower for her reaction; she basically had to go to the enemy she was supposed to be fighting in order to learn that Wallflower's master isn't as blameless as she made herself out to be and that her service might very well last for the rest of her life.

That was something important I realized while writing this; Wallflower Blush did not want to be caught up in this. She wanted no part in all this wizardry and war: all she wanted was her garden, like Samwise Gamgee from The Lord of the Rings. She's been torn from her home and forced to fight in a war she didn't even know about, and now she learns that there's secret lore that's been kept from her and that she'll be trapped in her new role until she dies, which, thanks to her commander's interference, might be a long time in coming. So much has changed for her, all without either her consent or knowledge. She's a slice-of-life anime character suddenly thrown into a fantasy-adventure one, with virtually no time to adjust. There are some parts of it that have been nice (her joy at casting), but at what cost has she gained them? She's on an adventure with Gandalf as patron and Aragorn as companion, but she's had no preparation or preexisting desire for adventure, Gandalf turns out to be Saruman, and Aragorn is less a trailblazer and more a soldier following orders. With friends like these, who needs enemies?

Really, it’s up to Gaea herself to try to clear up this one, and I doubt whether Wallflower will listen to anything she has to say.

And even if Wallflower does, given the words of Gaea's we've already heard in the story, will they do more good than harm? 'I will marry none so much lesser than I' is not a good way to turn down a proposal, after all, even someone who thinks of themselves as a social sprout like me Wallflower can see that. For all we know, Gaea could make this even worse, which would be bad; however low her Charisma (Persuasion) checks might be, she is right about the Windigos, and according to Tein they won't come alone. So not only is the intelligence the elves gave confined to a mute girl stuck in the woods, as you put it, the knowledge of the Windigos' return is confined to her, her likewise-stuck friend, and an egotist who seems to have a way with words less like Elrond's than Gollum's.

As for where we go from here, I'm trying to get into a cycle with these stories, alternating between the three main branches of the story; Everfree, Cloudsdale, and Castellot; with a few interludes thrown in here and there. Next up, we rejoin Applejack and the others in Rohan Cloudsdale to see what's been happening since Thunderlane showed them that 'What-in-the-world' thing in Children of the Storm.

"So was the Sundering of the Worlds," Stumper said, appearing at her side. "After the War of Creation and the suspicions it roused between creatures, what was one world became many, the many fruits of the World Tree Yggradsil. But though they were sundered, the worlds were not completely separated; paths were made between them, and space left for more paths to be made in future."

Wait what?

"Too many for simple folk like myself to know," Stumper bashfully admitted. "But those that concern us are much smaller in number, thankfully, only three; Alftria, Nilftria, and Homestria."

Are those worlds or countries?

She turned to look at them, and did a double-take; they seemed smaller than the soldiers she'd seen before, and less beautiful. They looked more like a leaf than a flower, so to speak, plainer, duller. The shining armor was gone, replaced with simple white cloth, while the face that she'd once seen as friendly was now nervous, if not angry.

Wait, is she basically looking at elves going to war?

"I asked you a question," they repeated while she stared. "How did you pass the Fence?"

They can see her?

Wallflower furrowed her brow. "Don't you mean, 'they view us like they view other mortals?'"

Isn’t that what she said?

Once, they were mighty warriors and captains, Alfin hosts striking fear into the hearts of evildoers everywhere, spears glinting like beams of the Sun which their magic could hide at need.

So elves had magic?

When dealing with either house, proper courtesy and etiquette is necessary; elven girls are always to be addressed as countesses, boys as counts, women as ladies, men as lords. All elves, even the lowest, believe that it is their right to be addressed in such a way, and take a refusal to do so as a slight on their honor, a slight which they will be quick to punish.

"So," Wallflower put a finger to her lip in thought. "the old Sunset Shimmer was kind of like an elf?"

If she said that to sunset’s face, then she probably would have been my favorite character.

"Wallflower, please," Stumper sighed. "This isn't important, your education is."

"And the welfare of my friend," she replied defiantly. "is just as important."

They’re friends?

Silence, stiller than Nilftria, fell. Then, Stumper mumbled, "No, it's not," and snapped her fingers again.

Why not?

"What?" Wallflower blinked in confusion. "How could they possibly trust the Windigos? They're literal demons."

How does she know that?

"Honeyed words," Stumper shrugged. "or ones that inflamed their hatred of us. It doesn't matter: it's not our place to question their foolishness, only to respond to it. Our response is limited, though; while Gaea sleeps, it's just you, me, Willow, and Timber."

Who’s willow? And does she know timber is involved in this?

"So four people," Wallflower said. "against an army."

"Those four people," Stumper reassured her. "can each do the work of twenty, at least. Four wolves against an army of cats is more even than it sounds. But one of those wolves is young, and needs training; will she let one of her packmates help her?"

I highly doubt that.

Stumper hesitated again, then snorted. "It'll complicate things?" she muttered to herself. "Things are already complicated, Gaea." Then, to Wallflower's surprise, she took off her helmet, letting her hair free, her hair that was like silk.

Why is she calling her gaea?

"The Green-Warden," Stumper replied, shifting her helmet under an arm. "executor of Gaea Everfree's will within her realm, protector of all that is green and growing within the Everfree Forest. As for tribe, though, I am still a Man, as I was before I took on my mantle. A Man, and yet more."

A man?

"Even if Gaea does give you my gift, though," Stumper cut through her thoughts, her voice reassuring. "it won't change the most important thing about you. You'll be a Man, and more besides, but most importantly," she gently tapped over Wallflower's heart. "you'll still be Wallflower Blush, and nothing can change that."

That just gave me genji vibes.

10888938

Wait what?

Part of the history of this world, somewhat like J.R.R. Tolkien's Silmarillion.

Are those worlds or countries?

Worlds.

Wait, is she basically looking at elves going to war?

She did, yes.

They can see her?

Yes, but "they" aren't actually an elf; most of what Wallflower's seeing this chapter is simulations generated by Gaea/Stumper, like entires in a magic-VR encyclopedia.

Isn’t that what she said?

She said that "they view us as they view mortals, with suspicion and distrust." A fine difference, yes, but an important one; according to what Stumper said, the elves view Everfree as they view mortals, which logically implies that Everfree (or its representatives Gaea and Stumper, as the case may be) is not mortal (if they were, Stumper would say "they view us like they view other mortals," like Wallflower thought she meant).

So elves had magic?

All tribes/races in this continuity have some form of magic, yes.

If she said that to sunset’s face, then she probably would have been my favorite character.

Lol.

They’re friends?

Yep.

Why not?

We shall have to see.

How does she know that?

Off-screen infodump.

Who’s willow? And does she know timber is involved in this?

His hair was grey rather than green, and his skin was duller, but even from a distance Wallflower could see the resemblance between Timber and his father.

"Stumper," the man grunted.

"Willow," the woman nodded. "What news do you bring?"

Willow was encountered way back in Up Through the Roots in one of Wallflower's dreams, meeting with Stumper. He's another one of Gaea's servants, working as a go-between for her and Camp Everfree. He was also mentioned in The Gifts of Gaea, saving Principal Celestia's life when she was younger. Though he hasn't had much screentime yet, he still has his part to play in the wars to come.

I highly doubt that.

We haven't seen any of the four mentioned in combat yet, keep in mind.

Why is she calling her gaea?

She isn't calling Wallflower Gaea, she's talking to herself and referring to something Gaea told her.

A man?

If Man is written with a capitol M, I mean it as a reference to the human race, not only the male members of it.

That just gave me genji vibes.

In what way?

10889067
I don’t think I understood that reference.

So homestria is a world?

So she’s inside of a vision?

And those same elves were in the everfree forest?

So willow is timber’s father?

I may forget that, but I’ll try to remember.

Because it’s similar to what genji believes.

10889238

I don’t think I understood that reference.

Google it, it should clear things up.

So homestria is a world?

It's a bit complicated. "Homestria" can refer to three things; 1) The world of Homestria 2) The country of the Kingdom of Homestria, located within that world, or 3) The continent on which that kingdom stands. It's similar to how "America" can refer either to the country of the United States of America or the North (or South) American continent. Context can usually provide clues to which one the specific use of the word is referencing, thankfully, so we don't have to guess: for instance, because most of Stumper's references to Homestria occur in the context of other worlds, we can fairly safely assume that she means "Homestria, the world" as opposed to the kingdom or the continent. It can get a bit tricky, though. Thanks for asking, and making me actually clarify that.

So she’s inside of a vision?

Yes.

And those same elves were in the everfree forest?

Wallflower saw Nilfin in the Everfree back in Up Through the Roots, if that's what you're referring to.

So willow is timber’s father?

Yes.

I may forget that, but I’ll try to remember.

That's all anyone can ask. And speaking of remembering, please, in future, if you make a point-by-point reply like this, please use the Quote function to show what parts of either the story or the comment you're replying to that you are talking about, it makes it much easier to follow along.

Because it’s similar to what genji believes.

I thought as much, I was more wondering what that is.

10889311
I’ll see what I can find.

Wow. That’s a lot to take in.

Not exactly. Does that mean magic was already in the human world before sunset came around?

It’s not really something I’m used to doing, but I’ll try and keep that in mind.

You know, despite the fact he’s half-machine he’s still a man on the inside.

10889588

Wow. That’s a lot to take in.

Yeah, it is.

Not exactly. Does that mean magic was already in the human world before sunset came around?

Yep, though it was fading before she brought Twilight's crown over. Like Celestia said in The Gifts of Gaea, Sunset brought magic to Homestria, but she brought it back, not for the first time.

It’s not really something I’m used to doing, but I’ll try and keep that in mind.

That's all I can ask.

10890073
So their planet is called homestria?

So will it fade again?

10890141

So their planet is called homestria?

Yep.

So will it fade again?

Perhaps in future, but judging by the behavior Sunset was alerted to back in The Sun in Flight, magic growing more powerful in the world (as opposed to staying localized), that appears unlikely.

10890249
The characters don’t get confused by that?

Damn, homestria gets all the fun.

10890269

The characters don’t get confused by that?

Like I said, context clues make it a lot easier to tell which meaning someone's trying to use.

Homestria gets all the fun.

And peril. Don't forget the peril.

10890431
Oh ok.

That’s true, too. But, nothing life threatening.

She shook her head; Stumper had warned her, when she'd started teaching her how to use her new abilities.

Does that mean the rainbooms could recruit her? Because, they’re gonna need all the help they can get.

"The problem with dreaming," she'd said. "is wanting to wake up again. Legends say that dreamers or seers, like you, seldom die; instead, they fall asleep, go off dreaming or seeing, and never come back. The visions you'll see, either in the eyes of your dreams or the eyes of the world, will be marvelous, but the visions your own eyes show you in the real world are important. Don't forget yourself, doe, no matter how dull you think you are." She was boring here, so she knew this was the real world; no nightmare could come close to the dullness of reality.

What does that mean?

She bit her lip guiltily. She'd been trying to escape that dullness, even when Stumper had told her to take breaks. Once she'd learned how to cast her sight (and control where she cast it), she'd done so at almost every opportunity; she'd taken to falling asleep on her stomach so that Stumper hopefully wouldn't see the glow her eyes gave off as she went on her unauthorized wanderings.

She means her visions, right?

Stumper frowned. "Why not? You're pretty, tall, healthy, good hips-" Wallflower almost choked at that. "-skilled at gardening, at least one stag should have asked for a hair by now."

Is that their version of being asked out on a date?

" Hoom ," Stumper snorted. "Stags. No, not even stags, bucks, too young to realize what they're missing. They like the, what was her name, Rarity's of the world. Pretty as a flower, maybe, but flowers wilt. A strong sapling like you, though, is a flower in its own way, and it'll grow with them. But bucks don't care about growing or wilting, they only care about the moment, about what is right now. Well, their loss; they thought you beneath their notice," she nodded at Wallflower. "and now you've soared above it."

Is there a difference between stag and bucks?

"If they could see you now," Stumper chuckled. "Even that Rarity doe would have to say you're the fairest."

How does she know rarity?

And Stumper began speaking again, saying, "That Fluttershy doe was quite nice; almost as fair as that Rarity one, and almost as kind to the green things as you. She preferred the blooded living things, though. Shame. We could've used her help. But you'll do fine," she reassured her.

Ouch. That hurt a little.

Oh, Viovelchoriz, Yorelt, oh Obborarlim! Oh redwoods tall, I saw you all upon midwinter's day! Oh Star-Chaser, I saw you sure and strong upon the bay! Oh Bloodycoat, my eyes you smote with your red beauty rare! Oh Roundedroot, your gnarled shoots turned green the frosted air! Your trunks so strong, your limbs so long, they filled the winter world, While thoughtless time touched not your lives though all its might there hurled!

Are those her comrades?

Stumper sighed. "Thirty-four I am, yes, but not in years; thirty-four hundreds of seasons have I seen since Gaea gave me her gift. When last I walked in the Frostwoods, I saw Vanhoover as a village, a small fishing town along the cold sea. The shining knights of the great Empire of the North protected it, and riders from the western mountains came to trade. But now Willow tells me that the Empire has faded away, Vanhoover has become a city, and there are no more shining knights. Only the mountains and the Frostwood have survived, and for all I know the forest may have fallen."

Thirty-four hundred seasons?

Wallflower's eyes, which had bulged at the news of Stumper's true age, softened as she continued. Stumper wasn't a mythical figure come to life, or something like Gaea; she was a long-lived woman, wondering whether the old trees she'd loved still stood. She'd loved and hated, laughed and cried, lived her life just as Wallflower had before the wolf found her.

By the way, whatever happened to that wolf?

After running through the spelling a few times, making sure she got the message across, Wallflower pointed at Stumper again and used her hands to remind her of something she'd said to her early on;

Can she not talk?

Stumper took the empty bowl and left her to rest, something she had no intention of doing. She might have been sure that Stumper was her friend now, but that still left too many questions: was Gaea able to cast her sight through her? Why hadn't she mentioned it earlier? Was Wallflower going to be the same? Just how much was Gaea hiding?

Is it me or is wallflower starting to get paranoid?

She took a deep breath as she rolled over onto her stomach; she needed answers more than rest now. Exhaling as she closed her eyes and cast her sight into the aether, she prepared to find them.

What’s aether?

Neither Stumper nor Gaea had given her a name for this place, the realm where she chose where to cast her senses; a few names had come to her mind, but eventually she settled on thinking of it as "the aether." It felt like a sea of darkness, islands of intelligence occasionally breaching the dim surface. When Stumper had first given her her markings, she'd almost completely lacked control, throwing herself into the minds of the forest's flora without understanding or restraint. She shivered at the memory of the horrors that lack of control had shown her, the horrible piping still dimly audible to her ears.

Piping?

She entered the tree's mind, and looked deep into the rings of its memory, searching for... What was she looking for? Would the tree have even been around when Stumper accepted Everfree's 'gift?' Would it know anything about Gaea's plans?

Gift?

Well, mind wasn't the right word. "Intelligence," "brain," "perspective," those were more accurate: plants weren't sapient, but there was an intelligence in them, as fascinating in its own way as her own. It seemed more physical, more concerned with chemicals and stimuli than thoughts, emotions, and concepts, and stored in a more literal way than memories. The rings of trees were their memories, as much as the ribbons of light the Stone had stolen were.

How does that make sense?

She winced at the reminder of what she'd done, and quickly felt the consequences of her distraction; she was flung out of the fern's mind (inaccurate though it was, she had trouble thinking of it as anything else) and into another one, this one unfamiliar.

Hey, if sunset can get over it, then so can you.

Thankfully, while sight may have been cut off for her, plants could still hear, in a fashion, allowing her to detect what sounded like metal on a rock beneath her branches. She could feel someone leaning against her trunk, too, though lightly, and her leaves drank in the scent of faint perfume, dirt, and salt.

Trees can do that?

The drawing back of a bowstring made her decision, and she blurted out, "Wallflower Blush, I'm Wallflower Blush. My lords and ladies," she added, remembering what Stumper had told her. "My lords and ladies, pardon me."

Why did she say that?

"The lord Mavyr tells me that you speak the truth," the speaker said, nodding back. "as do the wards which you activated: less noticeable were you, so unlike the braggart Gaea, Oiorava as you called her. That presence we know, and we know that it is not here. But that does not tell us who you are, Wallflower Blush, or why you came here. You are not our chief enemy, but that does not mean you are not an enemy at all. Speak!"

Oiorava?

"This is no mere lord you stand before," one of the archers replied. "He is Tein, King of the Deep-Elves, wearer of the Onyx Circlet, lord of Minas Drow, Celeblona, and Felyamirea, First Ranger and Captain of Nilftria."

And yet he can be squashed.

Unexpectedly for reported allies, the deep-elves hissed at that name, some covering their ears, some glaring at her as if she'd just sworn, some murmuring soft prayers. Tein gestured for silence, and when he received it he turned back to Wallflower with a surprisingly soft expression on his face. "Your duty does you credit," he said gently. "The defense of one's home is a great burden indeed, especially against the foe you named. Beware; the hammer-stroke is soon to fall, and all the realms of Men be besieged. I cannot tell you where the heaviest blow will fall, for to me it appears that every blow will be heavy; the Luxolie and the heirs of tyranny in the horselands, the Airelie and the tempted across the sea, the Ungocalar in the north..." He shook his head sadly. "All your land shall soon become islands surrounded by seas of foes, and either fall beneath the waves or endure for a little while."

What?

"Need drives us to do deeds we would have never imagined without it," Tein replied with a frown. "I loathe the coldshades as much as you do, but I loathe Gaea and the threat she poses to my people more. As for how I know they won't betray us first, that is one of the reasons I have tried to work as closely as I have with them; I learn their plans, allowing me not just to foresee their treachery earlier but to plan my own so as to make it deadlier." Face softening again, he said, "Stand firm; as soon as we have dealt with Gaea and her minions, we shall come to Homestria's aid. The hammer-stroke shall find one of its own architects working against it, as soon as the tyrant falls."

Is she in the present?

"Do you need to?" she asked. "I know she rejected you in the past, but is that enough to justify trying to hurt her like this? I know it's hypocritical for me to say this," she cast her gaze at the ground, remembering her refusal to see Sunset's reformation. "but maybe you should try just putting it behind you."

Not gonna lie, I can’t really blame her.

"In years past, our lord King Obyrn, may he sleep in starlight," Tein bowed his head in respect for the dead. "desired to draw our realm and her's closer together. He sent envoys and tribute to her court and the court of our high rivals, proposing alliance, and went himself with the twelve greatest lairds of the realm to offer the capstone of the alliance to Gaea; his hand in marriage. Wearing softest bat-felt and spidersilk and bearing fine gifts he came to her, in the midst of her court and her allies among our high cousins. He explained his plan, proposed to her with a ring of fine ivory and onyx, and do you know what her reply was?"

Aren’t you supposed to buy her dinner, first?

"How could you not?" Tein retorted. "Do telecontolor like yourself wander heedlessly nowadays, not caring where their arts take them? Or did you lose your way, or forget the way home?"

Telecontolor?

A murmur went through the elves at that. Tein looked troubled. "A scrying-shield?" he murmured. "And one so strong? But who would raise it, and why..." He looked at her again, his gaze almost a glare. "Where were you when this happened?"

A what?

"The soldier is as responsible to their conscience as their commander," Tein retorted.

I mean, it kinda depends.

10880116
Where did they mention that?

These last two chapters just made me realize how bad this really is.

10882446
Not bad of an analysis.

10892709

How bad the situation is, or my writing?

10892744
The situation. Your writing is all good.

10892707

It was mentioned in the long description.

10892702

Is it me or is wallflower starting to get paranoid?

Given what Gaea seems to have been keeping from her, justifiably so.

What’s aether?

The answer's in the quote you put right under this question in your original comment.

Piping?

The music she first heard in Up Through the Roots.

Gift?

Whatever Gaea did to Stumper to turn her into her current form.

How does that make sense?

It's complicated. Basically, plants are sentient (able to sense and react to stimuli) but not sapient (able to think or form mental concepts), more like a computer program (something that obeys a set of direct instructions) instead of an artificial intelligence (something that is capable of conceiving what it needs to do even if its instructions don't cover it). They are still intelligent, however, capable of responding to stimuli with something more than simple chemical reactions, even if they aren't as conceptual as people.

With regards to the more physical nature of their memories, they don't have brains to serve as memory storage organs, so they store them in other ways, ways which are typically more physical than human memory storage. In the case of trees, they store their memories (the stimuli they received and potentially their reactions to it) in their rings, allowing Wallflower to go through those rings like they were files.

It is all a bit confusing, though, you're right.

Hey, if sunset can get over it, then so can you.

Eventually.

Trees can do that?

In the fictional world of Homestria, at least. "Hearing" isn't the right word, though; the tree is simply recording whatever vibrations affect it, especially its sensitive leaves. Wallflower is simply deciphering those vibrations, determining what their cause was (which is easy because of narrative convenience).

Why did she say that?

Like she said, it was part of Stumper's training; address elves with noble titles like that to avoid 'slighting' them and quite possibly inciting a war.

Oiorava?
Telecontolor?

Elvish for Everfree and Dreamwalker, respectively.

And yet he can be squashed.

That doesn't diminish his titles.

What?

There's a lot of "What?" in this quote; what parts specifically are confusing? If everything is, what's the most confusing?

Is she in the present?

Yep.

Not gonna lie, I can’t really blame her.

For the first few moons it would've been understandable, yes, but she nursed her doubt and hatred far too long.

Aren’t you supposed to buy her dinner, first?

Different times, different cultures, different customs. Plus, it would've been a political marriage, one with a different style of courtship than the romantic style we're more used to.

A what?

A scrying-shield is a spell meant to prevent extrasensory magic from detecting inside a certain area, basically a magic curtain blocking other magic from seeing or hearing what's behind it.

I mean, it kinda depends.

In some cases, a soldier can be more responsible to their conscience than their commander, but the point Tein's trying to make is that "I was just following orders" isn't a legitimate way of diminishing guilt; if you know your orders are wrong, you have a duty to go against them.

10892772
You’re welcome.

10892803
Ohh. So aether is just a place?

Well that’s a sucky gift.

Wow, plants are complicated.

Narrative convenience?

It doesn’t? I would assume getting squashed would.

The part about hammers and blows.

If she’s in the present, then does that mean gaea isn’t a sleep?

It depends on how long a moon is and what she did.

That is true.

10892842

Ohh. So aether is just a place?

Somewhat. Think of it like the dreamscape, Luna's realm from "Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep?".

Well that’s a sucky gift.

It has its perks, and its costs.

Wow, plants are complicated.

And creatures are even more so.

Narrative convenience?

Making things easier for the author, possibly at the cost of logic or realism.

It doesn’t? I would assume getting squashed would.

Gaea hasn't fully manifested yet, so him getting squashed isn't as certain as one might think. Plus, just because someone dies doesn't mean their life loses meaning. Adagio's death doesn't mean the end of her legacy, for example: the impact she's had on her sisters and the world at large will live on long past the time when her death-rattle falls quiet.

The part about hammers and blows.

Ah. Basically, Tein's warning her that multiple attacks (or blows) are coming, and almost all at once, combining together to strike with the force of a hammer. 'The hammer-stroke' is his name for the launching of these attacks, the start of the Windigos' and their allies' big push.

If she’s in the present, then does that mean gaea isn’t a sleep?

She isn't fully asleep, yes, but neither is she fully awake; conditions aren't right for her to unveil her full power, drastically limiting her capabilities for the moment.

It depends on how long a moon is and what she did.

What I mean is that Wallflower remained distrustful of Sunset for too long, long after most of the other Wondercolts managed to forgive her. Caution is admirable, but not to this degree; if trying to reform herself for (what appears to be) several months or even a year, as well as saving the world, isn't enough to convince you that someone's changed, what is? There comes a time when trust is needed, otherwise paralysis or self-destructive behavior (like Forgotten Friendship) results.

Comment posted by Pete100 deleted July 8th

10893046
What are the differences?

Perks? All I’ve seen were the costs?

That is true.

Ohh. So that’s what it’s called?

Oh yeah. I forgot about her, but wouldn’t her impacts most likely be negative?

Aren’t they just elves?

So she’s hibernating?

True, but sometimes changing isn’t enough. Although, it does help.

10893134

What are the differences?

Many and varied, but in concept (a place side-by-side with but not exactly in physical space) they're the same.

Perks? All I’ve seen were the costs?

Living for several hundred years is a perk, and there are others that, like you implied, we simply haven't seen yet.

Ohh. So that’s what it’s called?

That's what I call it, anyway.

Oh yeah. I forgot about her, but wouldn’t her impacts most likely be negative?

Not all of them. She was a would-be conqueror, yes, but she was also the fire that reforged Sunset and the other Rainbooms, and her influence on her sisters was, as we shall eventually see, not entirely negative either. She made a lot of bad choices in her life, yes, but no one is purely good or evil; like much else in this series, her influence will still be felt, for ill and for good.

Aren’t they just elves?

Wallflower's audience is only elves, yes, but Tein is talking about non-elven participants in the coming war. Evil is assembling its own coalition (however loose) to attack Homestria; almost everything's coming out of the woodwork as the hour of doom approaches. As for who those other participants are, we shall have to wait and see.

So she’s hibernating?

More like she's being forced to self-quarantine until everything's safe for her.

True, but sometimes changing isn’t enough. Although, it does help.

Then what is? Sunset changed and showed a clear desire to make up for what she did in the past; if Wallflower had talked to her about how she felt, I'm sure that Sunset would've tried to atone for that, too. And it needed to be Wallflower who reached out; if the concept of "innocent until proven guilty" is to be preserved, then the responsibility of demonstrating that a wrong was done and needs to be addressed is on the accuser, as opposed to the responsibility of demonstrating that nothing wrong was done being put on the accused's shoulders. Without Wallflower reaching out and telling Sunset about what she did to her, what can Sunset do? How can she make up for wrongs she didn't even know she committed?

10893289
That’s a perk? Sounds like a pain.

So there’s no good or evil in this series?

I’ll be honest, that’s a lot.

10893336

That’s a perk? Sounds like a pain.

It can be both, but you're right, immortality is surprisingly painful for mortals.

So there’s no good or evil in this series?

Oh no, there is, it's just that most of the time individual characters are a mix of both. They are neither angels nor devils (er, for the most part), but Men.

10893361
Oh so they can live forever? I just thought they lived longer than normal.

You also say “this series”. Is there a specific name or is that just the name?

10893425

Oh so they can live forever? I just thought they lived longer than normal.

Their lives are bound to Gaea's now, and Gaea's immortal, so yes they are.

You also say “this series”. Is there a specific name or is that just the name?

I've been trying to come up with a name for it for a while, and now I think I've finally found one I'm happy with. This series as a whole is "The Song of the Spheres," subdivided into three main parts; "The Children of the Storm," telling the story of Cloudsdale, "The Seekers of the Stars," telling the story of Castellot and Crystal City, and "The Heirs of the Everfree," telling the story of the Everfree Forest.

10894012
Those are some odd names.

10894039

Those are some odd names.

I'm an odd person. :twilightsmile:

10894066
Are there reasons for those names? Are they meant for foreshadowing or something?

10894138

Are there reasons for those names? Are they meant for foreshadowing or something?

"The Song of the Spheres" is a philosophical concept, one that says that there is a pattern, a musical (though inaudible) pattern, to the movements of celestial bodies like the Sun, Moon, and stars. Here, it references both the fact that this story is a tale (a "Song") and how momentous the events in it are ("the Spheres" are in space, a region far beyond the mundane everyday).

"The Children of the Storm" is meant to reflect both the physical weather of Cloudsdale as well as the fact that its inhabitants were raised in harsher conditions than most of the other states, making them children of both the physical storms of the weather and the metaphorical storms of life.

"The Seekers of the Stars" is meant to reference the stars, literal, which Castellot/Crystal City are frequently associated with, and metaphorical, in the form of Sunset and Starlight. In addition, searching is one of the main themes of that arc, whether it's the Unmarked searching for meaning, Shining searching for justice, or Sunset searching for her friends. "The Children of the Storm" is a test of various characters' character, while "The Seekers of the Stars" is about finding out what those characters are.

"The Heirs of the Everfree," on the other hand, is about legacy, about your choices and the impact they have on the world. Namely, this arc's about Gaea's legacy, from her diplomatic blunders with the Nilfin to whatever she did to Stumper and Wallflower. It's about what happens after the test of character from "The Children of the Storm," what happens after The Big Battle or The Big Event. What do you do after your trial of fire? What legacy do you leave behind?

Mainly, though, I just thought they all sounded good. :trollestia:

Login or register to comment