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Rambling Writer


Our job is not to give readers what they want; our job is to show them things they never imagined. --Walt Williams

E

Inky Quill has a doctorate in history and an idea. The Summer Sun Celebration turns 1000 soon, and it’s the perfect time to write a book. What better way to commemorate such a nice, round number than by comparing Equestria in the first days of the Celebration to Equestria now? It’ll get ponies involved in history, be a nice tie-in, maybe teach them about the long-lost Princess Luna. (Ponies, Quill knows, have disappointingly short memories.) Besides, Celestia’s ruled for a millennium. It’s not like anything’s going to change anytime soon.

In other news, Twilight is about to move to Ponyville.


Cover art is edited from Marshall Chipped’s May You Live in Interesting Times. Not originally conceived for the My Little Pony Renaissance Contest, but since it inspired me to finish it, I'm entering it anyway.

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 17 )

I do love ponies getting to see the mare behind the mask when dealing with Celestia.

Whatever. They’re capable, they saved Celestia, and they redeemed Luna. They could all be clinically insane for all I care.

Well, then I have good news! :pinkiecrazy:

There’s no way around it. Twilight is a MASSIVE DWEEB. She gushed about my BIBLIOGRAPHY, of all things!

Is it wrong that I ship it?

Also, I know “Mi Amore Cadenza” is a mouthful, but sun blast it, why is the shortening of her name “Cadance” instead of “Cadence”? The latter makes more sense in pretty much every way!

Much easier to trademark, which is why I don't bother with it. :derpytongue2:

Why’s it even called an empire, anyway? It’s really more like a city-state.

Quite a few possibilities there, from other cities lost to the ice to self-important naming schemes.

If anything, she seems like a new parent, getting run ragged by the foal but not wanting to change anything.

Oh, that's going to be hilarious when looking back. Also, I do like this take on Cadence's first days in the Empire. She never asked for this.

Maybe I can get an interview with Twilight. I never tried when she was just Element of Magic, did I?

I'm going to assume Inky is so shaken by this latest blow to the status quo that she forgot about the post-Discord interview.

I heard Princess Twilight got an apprentice or something, but it’s not like THAT’S gonna cause any big, dramatic changes, right?

Heh. That's the thing about time battles. No one outside of the fight notices it.

Come to think of it, why would a species that eats emotions have cheese around to make grilled cheese anyway?

Where did they even get the milk? :pinkiesick:

First things first: apparently, “School of Friendship” focus-tested better than “Cultural Exchange Center for the Betterment of Harmony Throughout All Lands and for a More Complete Understanding of Every Species From All Angles”.

This makes a terrifying amount of sense.

Come to think of it, how did Celestia and Luna move the sun and moon if they’d also lost their magic? Or did they just have SO MUCH magic that they were still getting drained right up to the end?

Yeah, that whole event wasn't well-thought out. Living through it must have been equal parts terrifying and deeply frustrating.

Who invoked the “may you live in interesting times” curse? Was it Rainbow Dash? I bet it was Rainbow Dash.

Reasonable expectation.

And poor Inky, a victim of her own success. Glorious stream of consciousness down whitewater rapids. Thank you for it. And I can just imagine the inevitable reaction when some new world-shaking event hits Equestria just as this book hits shelves:
"Sunset WHO!?"

TCC56 #2 · 1 week ago · · ·

Then Twilight happened and everything was peachy-keen again.

There have got to be so many parts of Equestrian society that are exasperated at that.

"This amazing, world-altering thing happened! But it's gone now, a random librarian solved it."

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I'm going to assume Inky is so shaken by this latest blow to the status quo that she forgot about the post-Discord interview.

Goit. Originally, I didn't have the post-Discord interview and added it in later rewrites. Slipped through in editing. Although I like this assumption enough that I almost didn't fix it.

Ahh, this was amazing. I love it. :pinkiehappy:

I’m sure which is weirder: the past or the present.

I think you're missing a "not" here.

The past is never dead; it's not even past.

Or, in Inky Quill's case, it's deliberately shamming. It's playing dead! Look out, it's gonna rip your book's throat out!

This was a hilarious read, I love it

Imagine it's so good that I was laughing before the punchlines! (already knowing how history went helped)

I haven't read the story yet, but in my background the phrase "May You Live in Interesting Times" is a curse. Peaceful times, successful times, happy times are boring times. War time, failure times, sad times are interesting times.

Then she started grilling me about one of my articles in The Equestrian Historical Review, and we got sidetracked for like fifteen minutes.

I'm impressed you two managed to keep it to fifteen minutes :moustache:

So the Crystal Empire thing way up north is suddenly back and Cadance is going to be its princess. Not empress? Why’s it even called an empire, anyway? It’s really more like a city-state.

The previous ruler had a bit of an ego and some plans to expand :trollestia:

Okay, not JUST like me, they don’t have wings and their coats are shinier, but you know what I mean.

This is the sentence that told us that Inky Quill is a pegasus, why I feel the need to point this out I have no idea :moustache:

I know that the past was less literate, but SHEESH Equestria is insular. I only found a whole bunch of vague mentions of the Empire that didn’t amount to much until after its disappearance. Wlah. I really hope we’re doing better nowadays.

You're not :trixieshiftleft:

So if alicorns are immortal, are Cadance and Twilight the only ponies Celestia has ascended or whatever? You’d think we’d have more running around if they lived forever.

There might be, just because they're not openly showing themselves doesn't mean they don't exist or maybe they just don't live in Equestria for personal reasons.
Or just to avoid becoming a Prince(ss) and getting harassed every five seconds due to Celestia and Luna unintentionally making it so that every Equestrian thinks "Alicorn = Prince(ss)" :moustache:

You know, some day, somepony’s going to look in here and go, “Wow, Inky Quill was super whiny about her history book.”

And this is the sentence that finally gave us a gender on Inky Quill, still no idea why I feel like pointing this out :moustache:

Still chugging along. Still no big changes! Yay! I heard Princess Twilight got an apprentice or something, but it’s not like THAT’S gonna cause any big, dramatic changes, right?

Soooo, should we tell Inky about everything that transpired for Twilight to get said apprentice? :trollestia:

It seems right up Twilight’s alley, too: friendship plus organization equals happy Princess of Nerdery.

This equation is correct :moustache:

Don’t know what she hoped to accomplish by draining magic, but she’s clearly a megalomaniac in the making. And a stupid one, at that.

She somehow believed that "Friendship = Power" even without magic, and that if she was the Principle of a school that teaches friendship, it would make her the most powerful around... :ajbemused:

Only she didn't have any friends just people she tricked into doing what she wanted so even if "Friendship = Power" there was no way she would get it.

And seeing as she is a minor, lacks the education needed to run a school, and that Celestia is not as naive as Twilight and would put two and two togetherrather fast, there is no way for her to have ever really become the Principle of the school.

So really her entire plan was doomed to fail from the get-go and being a child (a very cunning child, but still a child) she never really thought things through and realized this :facehoof:

Welp. Tomorrow, Twilight’s getting coronated. Again. And Celestia and Luna are abdicating.

That is still weird to me, I mean taking a vacation I would understand, sticking around for a few more decades in the background to help Twilight actually learn how to run a nation I would understand, but telling someone that:

"Well you've been doing a great job saving the world, getting tricked by a child (a cunning child but still a child), and no one's ever really taught you about diplomacy, economics or really anything really related to how to run a nation, but you can totally handle running a nation.

Especially if you get help from a baker/party-planner, an athlete, a farmer, a fashion designer and an animal caretaker, all of whom, just like you, have absolutely no idea how a nation is run" :trollestia:


Yeah I just can't understand the thinking... though that does kinda explain why things apparently went down the drain by the time of the G5 story :trixieshiftleft:

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It really is easier to pretend the abdication never happened. It's irresponsible, doesn't make any sense (especially for Luna), and by any sound logic is destined to result in a colossal failure in short order. It's impossible to justify. I quietly ignore it for my own sanity.

Sweet puckery lemons, this all happened over three years?

It's pretty funny to remember how, for all that the big dramatic things mostly make sense in canon, most of Equestria probably reacted to them with a confused "huh?" well after the fact.

Also, I get the reactions towards the end -- in-universe and out-, I feel like the huge dramatic invasions started to get kind of humdrum after the fifth or sixth time.

Still, Inky Quill really lucked out -- recording major history like this right as it happens is an opportunity most historians would kill for. Literally, I suspect.

I heard Princess Twilight got an apprentice or something, but it’s not like THAT’S gonna cause any big, dramatic changes, right?

It's honestly kind of funny how, for all the mess that Starlight caused, none of it actually affected Equestria itself or had any impact on the actual timeline that the show happens in.

First things first: apparently, “School of Friendship” focus-tested better than “Cultural Exchange Center for the Betterment of Harmony Throughout All Lands and for a More Complete Understanding of Every Species From All Angles”. She sounded like she was ready to break into tears when she told me how she needed to cut down the name. I know, right? Stupid focus groups.

Funny thing is that that was basically what I'd been assuming the school was going to be when the first teasers popped up.

I can just picture the foreword now. "As hard as it may be to believe now, five years ago almost nobody in Equestria knew that Princess Luna, the Elements of Harmony, Discord or the Crystal Empire ever existed. Times sure change, huh?"

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That is still weird to me, I mean taking a vacation I would understand, sticking around for a few more decades in the background to help Twilight actually learn how to run a nation I would understand, but telling someone that:

"Well you've been doing a great job saving the world, getting tricked by a child (a cunning child but still a child), and no one's ever really taught you about diplomacy, economics or really anything really related to how to run a nation, but you can totally handle running a nation.

Especially if you get help from a baker/party-planner, an athlete, a farmer, a fashion designer and an animal caretaker, all of whom, just like you, have absolutely no idea how a nation is run"

Yeah, that's the thing for me as well. In and of itself, Twilight taking over Celestia and Luna's roles is a perfectly sensible conclusion to the show in general and to Twilight's character trajectory in particular. What doesn't make sense is

  1. It happening so suddenly. Celestia and Luna saying that they're going to abdicate down the line and want Twilight to take over when they do? Sensible. Celestia and Luna starting the abdication process a couple seasons before the show ends and Twilight taking over at the very end? Sensible. Celestia and Luna announcing that they're abdicating now and Twilight is taking over effective immediately, and only just being talked in delaying for a few months when Twilight almost has a heart attack then and there? A little less sensible.
  2. The lack of training. I mean, yes, I get that Twilight's friends have been huge supports for her, but just acting like a lifetime of day-to-day learning about social life can serve as an efficient substitute for learning how to run a country... eh. You wouldn't even need to make a big deal out of it -- just have Celestia tell Twilight that she's going to have to go through a crash course on rulership, have offhand mentions of Twilight hitting the books on the subject here and there, maybe have a couple episodes be about or started by Twilight doing some research project or some kind of assignment on the subject, and there you are.
  3. The actual post-abdication life. Celestia and Luna retiring to private life I absolutely understand, especially on Celestia's account. Them just retreating to a retirement home for the rest of eternity... I'm less on board with. I personally interpret it as them just taking a couple decades of vacation, but I feel it would have made more sense to become something more like mentors/advisors/"princesses emerite" to help Twilight out while she's still, you know, getting used to ruling a country by herself.
  4. Also, while the celestial bodies were accounted for, I don't think it was ever explained what's going to be happening with dreams.

Well, the beginning was slow but it was a great story, Too bad that just when it was almost over, then suddenly something happen, well, at last the show is over so there should be time to finish it, or divide it in volumes.

I also wonder if there will be a chance to interview Chrysalis or Cozy Glow

I love the creative cursing in this story. Friggernaffy just sounds like something an exasperated pony would say.

AHAHAHAHAHAA

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU FOR THIS STORY

That sounds exactly like it'd be living through year 1000 onwards.

Giant squids invading Manehatten, oh, yeah, happened yesterday, Elements talked them down and now we know there's another nation just on our doorstep. Hey, you want one sugar or two with that tea?

I ship them if only for the caos :pinkiecrazy:

Hilarious and one of the luckiest historians ever. Suffering is the path to greatness, she should learn.

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As a fan of Bacon Horse I approve! Although she would be just a footnote at this rating. Maybe get a small chapter ir ascended.

This story is a masterpiece and I NEED MORE. I feel like having Twilight's reaction to the book or the aftermath of the book could be awesome.

This is a great story and it's good tat Inky Quill finally managed to find a solution to her problem about what to do with her book.

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