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This is great. I’m going to get a good grade in horsefic, something that is both normal to want and possible to achieve,

Comments ( 127 )

This is horrifying.

I love it.

It is hard to describe my exact thoughts on this, but they are good. You wrote a good story here

Awesome. Trixie's behavior was excellent. She was counterproductive and unhelpful but in a reasonable way, giving depth to the tragedy. Ocellus' behavior was excellent. She was a perfect little bug. I was expecting something funnier, with a happier ending, but this was perfect for Halloween. How do you come up with this?

Thank you so much! And great question! My younger sister (the cover artist) just moved into an apartment with a roach infestation, and so I've spent a lot of time thinking about roaches lately. Sometimes that's all it takes!

Well, this is the absolutely most horrifying thing I've read in a very, very long time. Really good job at the horror here. Weirdly enough I read this while having a bit of an anxiety attack, odd choice but it was so engrossing it actually helped distract me from it, even while it disturbed and unsettled me. So thanks for that.

Honestly, I can't help but agree with Starlight's actions in the end. If there was enough of Ocellus left to lead them to her suicide note, enough of her left to form a makeshift face and cry out for help then it's likely that was left of her was suffering, and giving a swift end to her was the best help she could provide. The changeling's wanting to keep her until she passed on her own was one thing when it seemed to be just a mindless body acting on instinct, creepy and weird from my point of view but acceptable. But leaving her to suffer isn't fine with me, they may want time with her but that desire for time isn't as important as Ocellus's pain.

Of course, I highly doubt they'll see it that way, Starlight's likely just got herself and possibly Equestria in some real trouble. So maybe in the grand scheme of things this was the wrong choice...but for Ocellus it was the right call, I think.

I really liked this story. It was sad, unsettling and had a fair bit of mystery. Starlight's journey to get final decision was tragically understandable. I liked Trixie’s characterization as well. It was a very satisfying read.

I'm both relieved and disappointed I didn't get to see the aftermath of her choice at the end.

This is easily one of the most disturbing things I've ever experienced, and I'm up to date on Made in Abyss. I don't know whether or not to applaud your talent or beg you to consign this story to oblivion lest someone with a softer stomach click on this.

Pure, visceral body horror.

I don't think I've read anything here this twisted since Biblical Monsters.

Holy shit.

Phew. I usually stay far away from anything with this many red tags, but around Halloween I make an exception. Glad I did. Horrific, but great characterization.

I will say that, since you incorporated multiple scene breaks anyway, this could have been split up into multiple chapters without any loss of continuity. 10k in one chapter will turn some people away, from experience. :unsuresweetie:

Thank you!! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Very true - I did consider it, and honestly I don't have a reason not to. I might just reshuffle the formatting later today :) thanks for the input!

Welp that was a read.

10/10 my personal nightmares are now completely attuned to this.

An excellent read. I think the dementia comparison in particular really helped ground the fantasy horror of insect persistence in something we primates could properly grasp.

And in contrast to dogshit like Biblical Monsters this story didn't need to lie to and manipulate its readers in order to provoke the reaction that it did.

Appreciate the compliment, but I'd really prefer we didn't use my comment section to put down other authors. Horror is a very personal genre - horror authors bare their greatest fears to their readers in the hopes that others share them. This fic can be good without being "better" than someone else's!


But I liked it. Thank you. The horror of it was magnificent!

That's fine and well, but the author of Biblical Monsters gets off on how he lied to and emotionally manipulated his readers in order to traumatize them. He tagged his story as a Mystery and then when people called him on being traumatized about the horrific, drawn out and brutal ending he gave to his story he laughed at their pain, and he's still proud of it to this day.

If his stories are being mentioned, people deserve to know the kind of person they're giving views to and the way he writes his narratives.

Respectfully, please do that elsewhere. The comment section of this fic is not the place to debate other fics. I can't moderate discussion of a fic I haven't read.

So, changelings work like cockroaches? Who knew?

That was an interesting fic for Halloween, a horrible situation from start to finish.


Well, to get back to this story, I find it especially twisted that Ocellus' biology feeds into her reason for killing herself. It's unclear where she begins and her insect body ends, and how much of her is truly 'alive' in any given component of her body. It's like her final remains are proving her point about how immaterial she is as a person, and it's deeply unsettling.

I hate this, I hate this so damn much.

Have a thumbs up.

I don't know, can I joke about her losing her head?

Vide la revolution

Comment posted by gibbelblonk deleted Oct 30th, 2022

Ой бай, мен білмеймін сенің де ағылшы тілі

As an accomplished horror author myself in real life, and as a man who reads widely, this is perhaps one of the best pieces of horror fiction I have ever read. This is an exemplary presentation in how to make horror evoke raw and oft unwanted emotion when presented in the written form.

The objective should not (in my opinion, at least!) be to scare; writing is not scary. It can't be. The objective should be to horrify, and that is exactly what this does.

This is not just good, this is amazing. Be proud of yourself. I don't know how long you've been writing, but I've been around a while and have received quite a few accolades, and this is truly fantastic. I mean that.

I could rant a long time about this and how it accomplishes what it (presumably) sets out to, and the authors excellent grasp on theory (conscious or not), but in summary: well done.

Alternate ending: give Ocellus water via the second head, and have Trixie and Starlight absolutely pour raw magic into her that she can use to come back to life... and she does... but still, there's something very "off" about her when all is said and done. Loves me some good horror!

This was fucking incredible.

The prose and the plot and the ideas and the structure and the everything. Jesus Christ, this was amazing. What a wonderfully terrible ending, and what a magnificent concept. When Trixie talked about her mother, making the allegory of Ocellus' headless state explicit, I think I clapped in real life. Incredible work, astounding on both a conceptual and technical level. Holy shit.

I don't want to just shout praise at the entire story, even though it deserves it, cause that tends to feel vacuous? So just, shoutout to that extremely horrifying detail of the mouth and the eye that Ocellus' body grew, and the detail of it growing at the same height Ocellus had when she was a teen. Starlight remembering the angle at which she used to talk to her. Rotten milk of the past! Literally doing the thing Starlight describes in Trixie, but for the reader! So now that memory of Ocellus as a lil kid is inescapably tied to the memory of her frankenstein mouth begging for death.

Astounding work. Unironically one of the best stories i've ever read in this website, period.

mushrooms rainbow factory era fr

If I write a horror story I'm gonna use this as a field guide because hot DAMN

It was some kind of weird horror. There is nothing really scary, but this heavy feeling of complete wrongness of what is happening, it presses on a subconscious level, like a lingering nightmare.
An outstanding story.

This was incrediblely good horror, definitely one if the best on this site

Fantastic portrayal of trauma-induced shock. The way Starlight is relatively calm but prone to outbursts, unable to think clearly or focus on tasks, and almost disconnected from reality at multiple points is so believable. And the way that you gave the reader the same feelings with the word choices and the pacing is simply phenomenal.

Normally I'm not a fan of stories with a lot of gore, but using it to accentuate the story instead of as the main draw is too rare to not read, and I think you've accomplished it perfectly!

Once again, fantastic work!

It's been a long time since something I read genuinely unnerved me. Well done!

Is it bad that I kind of found this story hilarious? I mean everyone in here was just so utterly ridiculous and nonsensical that it became hilarious. When Elytra explained what was going on I was already kind of tilting my head at the sheer amount of "What?" going on, but when she then basically "Tsked" at Starlight for not wanting to be stuck in a room, by herself, with a headless body for hours it just went from horror to hilarity.

"You are totally in every way possible unprepared for dealing with this sort of Changeling culture. So instead of having a Changeling therapist/doctor/etc come in to stay with the body I will instead leave her body in the care of her massively traumatized friend and former teacher with absolutely no guidance."

"Uuuuuuuuuuh I don't think that's a good ide-"


You're not wrong! Sometimes a contrivance or two are needed to tell a good story.

In this case, the implication was that Ocellus's parents had specifically selected Starlight to care for the body, since she was her mentor in many ways. It was intended to be a sort of offering - for changelings, having even a little bit of extra time with a loved one is a great gift. This story is as much about clashing cultures as it is about the nature of death and what happens after we die. Ocellus's parents have no reason to believe that Starlight wouldn't be able to handle this task.

I get it though! Sometimes the contrivance breaks the immersion. It's a risk we, as writers, all take now and then!

Comment posted by rillegas08 deleted Oct 31st, 2022

Hey there - I requested earlier that discussion of this fic take place elsewhere. I haven't read it, and therefore cannot moderate its discussion. Also, it's at best loosely related to the above fic. I'm going to remove your comment. Please move this conversation to someone's user page or PMs.

Noted. On that note, having had a grandmother who died of Alzheimer's in 2004 and a grandpa who's currently got dementia and probably won't last much longer, I know Trixie's comment must come from some personal experience. It's sad, but an unfortunate reality.

I once worked two weeks in an old folks' home. It was a school assignment. We all had to do something charitable.

There was a woman with dementia there. She walked from one spot to the next, sitting down, getting up and walking to the next spot... as long as someone was there to hold her hand. She very much wanted to hold someone's hand and walk with her. She was so scared.

The nurses told me not to indulge her. I did it anyway. Because I was just some silly fourteen-year-old schoolkid who wanted to be able to look in the mirror every day for the rest of his life without hating himself.


Of course, I highly doubt they'll see it that way, Starlight's likely just got herself and possibly Equestria in some real trouble. So maybe in the grand scheme of things this was the wrong choice...but for Ocellus it was the right call, I think.

I'm left wondering if it was "custom" under Chrysalis because of how utterly cruel it can be.

No, no but yes.

Good story.
My only complaint is the suicide method used.
Out of all the ways someone can choose to kill themselves, who settles on automated bleachers? It's slow, for one, as you sit and wait for the contraption to crush you're head, and even the crushing process would be painfully slow. Much more so than I think anyone would willingly subject themselves too. Too much time to think about what you're doing and have regrets.
Not to mention, since Ocellus would know all about the persistence of her biology, she could have reasonably guessed that her body would go shambling around the school full of children.
Surely there are methods, specifically poison, that would work better, like a neurotoxin. Heck, such things are a primary component in bug spray. It might be a bit on the nose, but huffing a can of bug spray would have probably killed her, and kept her body motionless afterwards.
Or go to the Dragon Badlands and jump in a pool of lava. Drowning, or otherwise blocking the pores used to breath might be painful, but so is slowly crushing your head, and again, you kill the body more quickly this way.
If her goal was to traumatize as many people as possible with her death, then I guess she succeeded.

Oh... uh, okay. I rarely get just so.. blown away, by a story. Actually clapped after reading.

I wanted to read some more today, but... on second thought, it's rather late where I live and it's not like something will top this tonight.

I am wondering if a changeling could eventually "recover" if given an IV for moisture. The fact they can grow a.second head begs the question if they need the original to do it...or if a particularly lucky set of random shape-shifting impulses firing off could get them there...or close enough to form a proper head? So many dark dark possibilities

Augh! What a horrifying, unsettling, upsetting story! :pinkiegasp:

It almost begins like a joke, or a Nightmare Night prank, and then the hideous reality of it hits you right in the face. And the horror does not stop, but it keeps on building, and changing! It's body horror and pscyhological horror and existential horror. It's the absurd, alien terror of a headless half-alive body stumbling around, crashing right into the painfully real terrors of dementia and depression and suicide. And the nexus of all this horror being Ocellus, the cute, lovable nerdbug, is just the poisonous cherry on top of the whole thing.

This is not just an all-around excellent fic, but also the most horrible thing I've read this Halloween season.

That entire thing, from start to finish, seems horribly unhygienic.

You can't just let dead bodies wander around, spreading germs willy nilly. Somebody could get a nasty infection.

I uh, er... wow

Comment posted by Immolation deleted Oct 31st, 2022

All valid complaints. I initially had a section which addressed some of these issues - at the end of Ocellus's note, she described the way in which she intended to die (full-body crushing in the bleachers) and who to call to clean it up. She explained that she knew there was a malfunction and there would be no investigation. She explained that, in changeling culture, suicide was a sin (the next logical step from "we keep the body around as long as possible").

Following the reading of the note, Trixie and Starlight would briefly speculate on what must have happened to make things turn out the way the did, though they had no confirmation of course.

Ultimately, I decided to remove this section, only because I felt that it seriously disrupted the tension and flow. I placed on the reader to speculate what may have happened... And, honestly, to remember that those who commit suicide don't tend to have great capacity for logic at the end. If that is your sticking point, the logical thing for Ocellus to do would have been to seek therapy and/or medication. This fic takes place well past logic.

Jesus fucking christ, this was fucked up.

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