• Member Since 16th Mar, 2015
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Apple Bottoms

Pony got those Apple Bottoms jeans, jeans! Boots with the fur - with the fur!


The Six Pillars have returned to a modern Equestria, and managed to find a place to settle while they rebuilt their lives a thousand years in the future. Well, most of them; while most of the Pillars have made peace with Stygian, for some reason Rockhoof opens each day by commanding Stygian to fight him! Stygian is running out of excuses, and running out of patience! Will these two be able to work out their differences, or will the tiny Stygian have to battle the burly Rockhoof for dominance?!

Rockhoof x Stygian romance, written for the Rare Pairings Pillars Shipping Contest! https://www.fimfiction.net/group/215872/rare-pairings/thread/472953/pillars-shipping-contest

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 15 )

Why does Stygian think his friend is the type to not take no for an answer?

Great question! I think it's one of those classic friendship problems; your friend asks you for a favor, but you feel guilty turning them down, because you don't want to hurt your friend's feelings. So Stygian keeps giving Rockhoof the 'soft no' ("I'm busy today" for example) and Rockhoof is too blunt to realize he's being turned down! Add that in with the fact that I imagine Stygian is very cautious with his friendships post-Shadow (so he doesn't risk losing them again), and you have a perfect storm of miscommunication!

Thanks for the submission! We look forward to reading this piece and wish you best of luck in judging!

Is it bad that I want to see another chapter for this??

Creative situation you came up with. Nice work!

Man, this was a really great one! I think that the dynamic between Stygian and Rockhoof was extremly cute and I loved how eager Rockhoof was to "fight" Stygian. I think that the first half of this flowed really well but i think towards the second half starts to move a little too fast and kind of rushes along the shipping part, which sucks because I really want to see these two doofuses be cute and gay. Still, this was a really enjoyable piece and I loved your characterizations. Thank you for participating!


Thank you very much! I am glad you enjoyed! :heart:


Thank you very much for the feedback! I appreciate you taking the time to leave me such a thoughtful comment! :heart: And thank you for running the contest!

“Oh, very sorry, but today I have to help Twilight Sparkle alphabetize the library. Perhaps another time?” Stygian all but panted, trying to keep up his brutal pace.

ah, the perfect excuse that is always applicable

“Every day he asks you to fight?”

haha, i can see where this is going!

Unless he’s excited to pound me.” Stygian muttered, covering his eyes with his forelegs.

phrasing! and good foreshadowing

“After we had a battle, my fellow shield warriors and I would rub each other's sore muscles. It helps the healing, and the pain.” Rockhoof explained lightly, and mirrored the rubbing action on the other side.

ah the perfect bit of ambiguity, this is great

Rockhoof laughed a little louder and gave Stygian’s back an affectionate pat. “You just relax. You are safe in my hooves, friend.”

Then why do you keep trying to fight me?, Stygian wanted to ask, but he couldn’t, as most of his higher motor skills had shut down

ah, i can just imagine the confusing stew of emotions Stygian is in right now

“It says here that in ancient times, warrior cultures - like Rockhoof’s - often had very complex courtship rituals, which often tied in with their roles as protectors of their lands. The Mighty Helm, especially, was known for its elaborate courtships, and one of the rituals that was passed down in the oral tradition was known as the Heart Battle. In this courtship ritual, one warrior would challenge another to a battle, and in the course of the fight, they would reveal their true feelings for one another.” Twilight Sparkle spread her hooves dramatically for emphasis, brows lifted.

this is a really fantastic bit of cultural worldbuilding that is very fitting for Rockhoof's character! and all in all it feels very much in line with the canon, which is hard to get right. really loved this!

“He looked quite distraught. Uncharacteristically.” Meadowbrook added, and lifted her brows as Stygian took off at a gallop.

a nice bit of irony there, given Rockhoof in the canon episode we got focusing on him

“You think with your heart, instead of your head.” Rockhoof spoke gently, and lowered his head, touching his warm nose to Stygian’s damp chest. “But that is the heart of a warrior that beats inside of you. It is something that took me some time to see; that was my failing, not yours. Your heart beats as bravely as any member of the Mighty Helm, and you need only learn how to guide it properly.” Rockhoof’s gaze gentled, and he leaned close again to whuff a soft breath over Stygian’s wet forelock. “I had to learn that lesson as well. I have suffered grave heartache for not reining in my heart; I know you have, too.”

ah, this is fantastic! great mirror of Stygian's arc in this story being learning about Rockhoof, too

. “Most stallions my size are already settled with little’uns of their own, aye? I suppose I forget myself sometimes; I remember being the little one they made fun of. I didn’t think you were that much smaller than me. But I guess you are.”

and another great use of Rockhoof's past here, as well as a bit of worldbuilding about stallions continuing to grow in adulthood, if i'm not mistaken. it's easy to forget that his non-magically-enhanced form is the same "scrawny stallion" model they use for Stygian, really says a lot about pony Society

“Oof!” Rockhoof groaned, and fell backwards as if he’d been tackled by a pony triple his size. He rolled onto his back, kicking his legs, and wrapped his forelegs around his coltfriend tightly. “You’ve fallen right into my trap!”

and of course this whole last section was very adorable fluff! this bit of them playing around with the idea of the Heart Battle especially.

amazing work! honestly jealous that this was submitted for Pillars Shipping instead of my M/M contest, but i guess that is how the arrow of time works. really great job here, it was a joy to read

This one is REALLY good. It's no wonder that Bike mentioned to read this one first.

Especially the scene in the middle where Rockhoof gives Stygian a well-needed massage. I could practically feel the tension dissipate as if I was Stygian myself. Then, the endearing scene where Stygian dozes off and Rockhoof carries him to his tent and makes sure he is comfortable for the recovery, the whole scene is filled to the brim overflowing with the warm and fuzzies!

I have to agree with Red on the part though that the ending seems a bit rushed. I want to see more of, as Red put it, “these two doofuses”. There is plenty of room too, as they come two different cultures! Plus, I take that both of them are not the types to rush things (Rockhoof grew up/experienced change quickly, while Stygian fell into Shadow, which he is naturally cautious about his actions). Take it as you wish, there is a whole lot of avenues you can explore with these two!



Thank you both very much for the kind reviews! :heart:

For some reason, gay romances featuring one of the pillars that also has mentions of old Equestrian traditions makes for really good stories.

Anyways, this was a lovably hilarious story, and you absolutely nailed the characters. I can really hear their accents in the writing, which is a testament to how well done they are. Also all the pillars living together is a great concept.

Rockhoof giving Stygian a massage is fun, because it shows that Rockhoof actually took the time to learn how to properly be a masseuse. I also really like how casually the two just get up from the "fight".

Really cute and fun story, and I'm always glad to see more of Stygian because he's so underrated.

What a great romance!! Honestly, it's super hard to sell a romance in so few words - but you totally did! So props for that!!

I absolutely adore stories that explore these unseen aspects of pony culture. I also adore gay romance. So you really hit the nail on the head with this one. Stygian and Rockhoof were in such great voice - the perfect blend of old-fashioned and modern vocabulary. Their chemistry is great, the plot is adorable, and the little lesson at the end (that warriors come in all shapes and sizes, and that Stygian's strength is clear and beautiful to Rockhoof despite what others see) is icing on the cake. Really wonderful little romance - I'm definitely starting to get hooked on your style!

“Just a quick tussle! A rapid wrestle? A - fast throw down!” Rockhoof laughed, and easily cantered up to Stygian, slowing to a walk alongside him. Where Rockhoof walked leisurely, Stygian still powered through his speedy stride, sweat beginning to bead on his forehead. Stygian did not manage to put any distance between them.

I love this contrast between them. So adorable.

Rockhoof’s face fell. “But you said that yesterday.”


when you consider Rockhoof’s extremely muscular form compared to your -”
She looked down to realize that Stygian was frowning at her.
“- also muscular form!” Twilight Sparkle lied, grinning tightly.

Nice save, Twilight :derpytongue2:

And, aw. That was really sweet. I like the progression of their friendship, and the clash between their, you know, ideas. I really enjoyed the way you wrote their banter here!

Love it :twilightsmile:

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