• Member Since 1st Nov, 2011
  • offline last seen Jun 21st, 2016

The Descendant

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September 17th, 1862 became the single bloodiest day in American history when a battle was fought along the Antietam Creek near Sharpsburg, Maryland.

Yesterday, Fluttershy hummed happily as she watered her garden.

The two events are not unrelated.

Chapters (4)
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Comments ( 323 )

The contrast between Equestria's peacefulness, even including Fluttershy's disturbed sleep, and the build-up to the battle at Antietam, is really powerful.

I can say, after just the first chapter, that this is a good story; but not a story it's easy to read. Must not have been easy to write, either. :fluttercry:

Goddamn TD, I'm Australian, know barely anything about the American Civil War other than the homework you set us, and this story still made me tear up. Beautiful writing.

Are you particularly a Civil War enthusiast, or did you just pick a war at random? This story could work with almost any war ever, and I expect different people would get different emotional impacts depending on their nationality and which war you picked - I would pay good money to see a version/sequel to this for the Battle of Culloden.

Great job as usual, mate.

Just like aljada
I'm an Aussie and have hardly anything about the civil war either.
This still pulled at my heartstrings :fluttercry:

Oh god sir.

This made me cry.


I fucking love you.

This was great.

You are wonderful.

Oh god I'm crying.

This was beautiful and you should be proud.

This deserves to be forever remembered.

Thank you for this masterpiece, sire.


-Cortex Repository

P.S. Oh god I'm crying.

I'm glad that the contrast stood out for you, Lurk. No, it wasn't easy to write... I'm a student of the Civil War, and I feel a real connection to the stories it presents. I'm going to be at Antietam this weekend, and I expect it shall be emotional for me.

Glad I could get some emotion out of you!

I have a huge interest in the American Civil War. I am in fact a Civil War Re-enactor, and I shall be participating in the reenactment of this battle, Antietam, this weekend.

I'm very glad that there was emotion in this story for you. Thanks for reading and commenting!

Forgive me, but I'm deleting this comment. This is a story about an actual boy, an actual soldier, who actually was killed in a real battle. This story was meant as a tribute to him, so I do not find advertising to be appropriate here.

I am indeed proud, and I take the emotional response you are having as a high compliment. You do the memory of the youth well with your tears.

I really wish he hadn't died... ugh. That would have been great, if he had been able to live in Equestria... darn it.

TD, I like the added content that you incorporated into the story. I found those maps of the battles quite interesting and to actually see the graves of some of those that you mentioned really made your story more realistic. I also liked that you went with a soldier who ended up MIA at the end of the battle.

1263650 Concerning the re-enactment, do you know what side you will be on and what general you are supposed to be under the command of? All the same, it sounds like an enjoyable time. Do die honorably if you get hit. Also how did you get into that re-enactment stuff? How could some join something like that?

"Angle could see her simply trying to make some sense of the visions that had clouded her sleep."

Just a spelling error I caught, can't seem to find anymore. From the first chapter, I can tell that this is shaping up to be a good story. I haven't studied the battle of Antietam, or really the entire war that much,(I'm more into World War 2 history) but this has inspired me to look into it.

>posted new story
Ah yea, cool, gonna be like a prologue or something
>18k words, 4 chapters
I love you man. I love you.

Oh man, that whole scene before his death, where he thought Fluttershy was an angel and such, made me so sad.
And then him singing "Amazing Grace" just did it in for me. Manly tears, man. Manly tears.

I had thought of what it would have meant if the youth had lived, but in the end the story would have lost a lot of its emotion if he had survived the wound. I hope that the way that the story went didn't destroy the story for you.

Here's a great narrative by Stetson's father about how he went to recover his son's body, and laid it out in the grave. He met a dying Roosa there, and there's pictures of both if you'd like to do some reading.

I chose Allorian Bassett specifically to be the youth because he went missing, and because he was so young.

As for reenacting, I've died horrible, tragic deaths upon dozens of battlefields, so that's not new and I shall do my best!:twilightsmile:

I got into reenacting about six years ago, mostly because of my love of the Civil War. You can only read about it so many times before you feel the need to try to understand what they went through. It's an expensive hobby, but many units will let you borrow equipment until you begin buying your own.

At little events, my unit commands itself (like when we're doing talks at national parks). At big events like the Antietam reenactment I'm about to do a national organization with elected officials takes over command an organization.

Joining a Civil War Reenacting unit is as easy as finding one that fits your needs and personality, what type of unit you want to represent, and your commitment. You've just given me an idea for a blog post, so I'll go about it there!:raritywink:

Oh! Thanks for the catch, man! I'm glad that I've inspired you to look into the A.C.W! f you have any questions about it, let me know!

Aww! Thanks! I love me too!:twilightblush:

Just manly tears? I was bawling aloud when I wrote it!:twilightblush:

Just...wow. That was such a powerful story.
I don't know how you do it. Can you share some of that story-writing awesomeness with some of us? Shouldn't be fair to hog it all to yourself. :P

I sell it for $5 in a six-ounce can, Van.:raritywink:

And I'm sure that 5 dollars worth of awesomeness works for...what, only one paragraph? One Page? :derpytongue2:

Well, made me cry. :fluttercry:

As has been mentioned, him interpreting Fluttershy as an angel and then dying after singing Amazing Grace was very powerful.

Depends upon how thick ya' spread it!:twilightsmile:

I'm glad it was very powerful for ya', DJ... gee, I've got to make some comedies here again soon, huh?:twilightblush:

This chapter was painful to read. In the good sense, absolutely, but still painful. Powerful writing, TD. :fluttercry:

All in all, I'm glad you wrote this, and glad that I read it. But, pardon me when I say that I doubt I will re-read this story.

I'm certainly glad that you gave it a go the first time, Lurk. Painful indeed...

The feature box was cloying me during the last few weeks with all the "romance" titles...
You came just at the right moment. Thanks for giving my fill :raritywink:

As for the story itself... This is my way of showing I shed a tear:

Good God... I expected something of a high standard from you, but this, this story surpassed all my expectations. The two timelines fit together seamlessly, and the idea of Equestria seeming like heaven to poor Bassett is just inspired. When he was dying and started singing 'Amazing Grace', that was when the tears were properly streaming down my face.

You said that you set out to put a different spin on the Human in Equestria genre. You succeeded with flying colours, if you ask me.

Reading this and listening to Johnny Has Gone For A Soldier by James Taylor sure brought tears into my eyes.

A beautiful story.

Beautifully done. As always my friend, as always.

The Civil War is one of the few things that genuinely strikes a chord with me. It's far too easy to relate too. I grew up outside of Richmond, sandwiched right in the middle of all Hanover Counties battlefields. It surrounded me. I can see the Cold Harbor memorial park from my grandmothers, and I drove past the garthright house to get to my wifes while we were still dating. The civil war is still a real thing in these places, where you can still see earthworks preserved. They're so common, kids in my neighhborhood used to melt down old lead balls to make sinkers for fishing. When it gets expounded upon it's very jolting, being reminded of how violent something you've always been around used to be.

that was just so butiful (forgive my spelling)

that last picture blew my mind :rainbowderp:.
I cant even make words, too many feels:raritycry:.
:rainbowlaugh: dat elephant.

Damn... There aren't many fics out there that make me cry like this.:fluttercry: Real powerful stuff here.

I'm glad I was able to give you something to peruse! I'm also glad that it struck an emotional chord. Nice song!:twilightsmile:

I consider that high praise, Nos! Thanks so much!:twilightsheepish:

I'm very glad that I could supply you with something emotionally powerful. Thanks for reading and commenting!:pinkiesmile:

I can see that it still has a presence for you too, and I'm glad that I was bale to bring some life back into it for you. Thanks, as always, for reading!

You are forgiven... and thanks so much!:twilightsheepish:

Oh, yes... everyone in this story was a real person, taken directly from the muster rolls of the 59th New York and the 31st Virginia. I'm glad it had such a powerful effect.

I'm glad that I was able to provide you with a way to feel that emotion.

Oh man, that was tragic. I was holding back tears for the entire chapter, but when he started to sing Amazing Grace, I was unable to hold back.:fluttercry:

Wow. Just, wow. First off, this is an extremely moving story. Tears were shed. Second, this is probably the best HiE I've ever read. That last picture there just blew my freaking mind, and seeing how Fluttershy kept his locket, do I, by any chance, smell a sequel? I've enjoyed reading this immensely, and I look forward to your next story!:twilightsmile:

Very sad but good story. Barely held back the tears at the singing of Amazing Grace.

But I must ask, why did you choose Private Bassett?


Just... Wow.

This took me by surprise. Even with checking out the homework videos setting the tone and giving the background info I was totally unprepared for all the feels. I didn't cry but I was moved past tears into speechlessness and I'm typing this up nearly 12 hours after reading so as to properly collect my thoughts. As it is I can't really think of anything to say other than you really weren't kidding when you said this would be a different kind of HiE.

I think what got me the most was that Allie was from Kingston NY, which is only 15-20 minutes from where I live, so all the flashbacks and memories of the Hudson and Catskills really struck a chord. Excellent choice. And T.J makes a great foil to him as well. And... just so much more. This story should be taught in schools and dissected in the same way as all the classics; Milton, Kafka, Chaucer etc, because it's just THAT good.

A new story from the descendant?! MUST READ ASAP! :flutterrage:

This just gets to me cos its so.... Real, y'know?
(second read through)


I know it would have killed some of the emotional stuff, but it just sucks that he died anyway.

I hoped that have Allorian's entry from the muster book as the last image would have an impact, and I'm glad that I made the choice to include illustrations. Thanks!

I honestly have no plans for a sequel at this moment, but anything is possible. The next story I'm working on is Lysok's commission, but don't be surprised if there's a fe side-tracks!:raritywink:

Indeed. Thanks for reading and commenting!

I chose Allorian for a few reasons.
1.) I searched the order of battle for a regiment at Antietam that had an interesting story to tell. I didn't want a "famous" regiment or a "elite" one, just a very normal regiment that got into a bad spot. The 59th NYVI fit the bill.
2.) In that regiment I went searching for a soldier who was young, and who went missing. Allorian J. Bassett fit the bill as well.
3.) I needed someone whose background I could reconstruct. Seeing as he was from Kingston, N.Y., I imagined him a job on the Hudson River. The rest just fell into place!

High praise from you as always, sir, and I am most grateful.

You should search your local cemetery and see if there are any soldiers from the 59th NYVI, as the regiments formed by counties back then, so there may be some near you. Roosa was from Ulster, N.Y. if you're on that side of the river and that close to the Catskills!:twilightsmile:

I hope you enjoyed it!:pinkiesmile:

Indeed, very real indeed. All of the people are actual figures I took from regimental rosters...

Agreed, agreed indeed.

I'm in New Paltz so Ulster is just a hop skip and a jump away. I may end up checking out some graveyards soon. Tis the season and all, what with Nightmare Nigh- I mean Halloween around the corner. :raritywink:

Makes sense, I was thinking you might have been related to him or was in a unit that would have been close to your hometown


What a coincidence I live near their. Well closer to Middletown though

Damn, that's powerfully moving
Private Macintosh salutes you sir :eeyup:

That last chapter with Rainyday. Jezzums.


Never before have I found a more fitting story for this picture.

I came across this, ironically, after seeing Pins and Needles show up in the feature bix and going "Descendant; I know he's written some good stuff before, but I can't remember what it was - okay, check profile" and saw your blog post.

I generally shy away from HiE stories, but seeing the historical context, and the significance, of this, as something of lay military historian myself, I felt obliged to have a read, as my own quiet salute to the fallen.

Being English, my knowledge of the Amercian Civil War is limited to what I have osmosed, and a few of the moments that have shown up in my own reading of military history; much of it has come from came from Geoffry Regan's excellent books on military blunders, which show the bitter and tragic cost of the darker side of generalship throughout the world and the ages. Antietam recieved a mention in passing once or twice, though not in detail. (One is forced to reflect on the grim fact that this, the bloodiest battle was not, unusually, perhaps, the worst-lead in the war.)

This first person look was excellently done, nay even inspired, and powerfully written. That was a superlative memorial piece, and I think you hit the tone just right. Your goal - in ensuring that a few more people will remember the dead; those we know about, and the likely more that we don't - has been accomplished admirably.

Thanks for reading and commenting!:twilightsmile:


Glad that it moved you. Thanks for reading!:twilightsmile:

On Pins and Needles was in the Featured Box? I'm sorry that I missed that... but not really, as I was at the Antietam reenactment when it did.

I'm glad that you took the time to write me such an excellent note. I'm especially glad that you feel that the story completed it's primary purpose, the commemorating of a life. That makes me feel like I've truly done something worthwhile. Thank you so much!:pinkiesmile:

1278547 No, no, no, thank YOU for writing such a beautiful and sad piece. :pinkiesad2:


Not to hijack the thread, but cool stuff sir. If you're ever in town, stop by Gourmet Pizza where I work most nights and we can nerd out over ponies and things.


Thank you for writing this.
It's pieces like this that hammer home how much war sucks. It makes it more personal than a news report or even an interview could. The scene where they're walking among the dead and dying... it's chilling.

The contrast between the scenes from the war and the scenes that take place in Equestria creates a mood whiplash that unbalances you, and the ending gives you a shove that sends you plummeting from your emotional equilibrium into an abyss of sadness.

Damnit, you made me cry.

Thank you.

Salud y paz.

Well, I wasn't thinking anything spooky or like that. Civil War graves are easy to identify, you se, because the government provided them free to veterans. They are straight sided and have a curved top. They always have the soldier's name, company, and regiment. Following any flags, or Grand Army of the Republic markers, is usually a good way to find them too.

I'm very happy that you found those scenes poignant. I'm especially glad that the contrast between the two worlds stood out. Thank you so much for reading and commenting!:twilightsmile:

made me cry not bad :fluttercry:

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