• Member Since 17th May, 2013
  • offline last seen 2 hours ago

Daedalus Aegle

Black Lives Matter. Good things are good, actually. I write about wizards and wizards' apprentices. 90% of prophecy is just pattern recognition.


This is a story about climbing a mountain.

Inspired by the videogame Celeste.

Chapters (3)
Comments ( 15 )

Hmm. Well, this could be very interesting indeed. Though the real question is whether Clover will try to collect any strawberries along the way. :raritywink:

Interesting start! Celeste is one of my favorite games so I am curious to see what will come of this.

Though the real question is whether Clover will try to collect any strawberries along the way. :raritywink:

I reckon he'll give up on collecting them halfway through Celestial Resort :)

I'm sure Celeste is a fine video game, but I'm still very disappointed that this isn't a Dark Summit crossover. Are you ever going to write a Dark Summit crossover?

I'm sure there's stuff I'm not getting at all, having never played this game. But it's an interesting start nonetheless.

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"Clover? The way forward is over there. You are hurling yourself at death-spikes."
“I. Don’t. Care.” Clover growled through clenched teeth. “I. Want. The strawberry.


I'm sure there's stuff I'm not getting at all, having never played this game. But it's an interesting start nonetheless.

Yup. Same here!

Though I did give a Letsplay on YouTube a shufti to get a general flavour of what I could expect. This is going to be good


“I. Don’t. Care.” Clover growled through clenched teeth. “I. Want. The strawberry.

I wonder what he will make of the cassette tape?

There had been a rug in his room that he played on, which was a picture of a town from above, like a map but not, full of buildings and streets and ponies.

I remember having a rug like that as a kid.

Also, time travel, I guess? I wonder who else we will meet during the ascent.

Excellent work, as usual. Maybe I should've expected it, but the Canterlot and Mount Celestia parallels took me by surprise.

There's a lot of resonance in this crossover, I think.

The brick wall shells of buildings gave way to skeletal steel bars, concrete rebar and construction site scaffolding that climbed through the vertical city.
Ad banners, erected before the buildings from which they were to be seen, showed lithe and slender pegasi as the peak of physical beauty and vigor, lest anypony forget.
It showed a stallion in an expensive suit with a muzzle like a steam locomotive, prominently wearing a luxury anklewatch. Huge letters read:



Shades of Ozymandias there, both Shelly and Smith, only instead of ancient Mesopotamia, we have late 90's/early aughts
He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess
What powerful but unrecorded race
Once dwelt in that annihilated place.

“Hi Pippsqueaks! I’m up here on the side of Mount Celestia and I’m—no no, that’s terrible, let me try that again…”

Perfect stand in for Theo!

That was odd.
She seemed friendly, though.
…I can’t ever speak to her again.


Clover certainly has some demons hitch-hiking with him up the mountain.

Huh. Skyscrapers on a mountain almost feel like a G5 reference, but that wouldn't make any oh hi, Pipp. :derpytongue2:

“I love your cloak! It’s i-cooon-ic!

Well, she's not wrong.

Travelogue? Clover, everypony uses Feedbag now.”

I though she made that one up...

…I can’t ever speak to her again.

Ah, awkwardness, my old friend.

Wonderful stuff thus far, especially since I can't tell what's the harder struggle, the climb or Clover's internal turmoil. Looking forward to more.


Skyscrapers on a mountain almost feel like a G5 reference, but that wouldn't make any oh hi, Pipp.

Any oddity that can only be justified as an artifact of the game is so, but anything that has deep multilayered artistic resonance is completely intentional :trixieshiftright:

I though she made that one up...

Just so it's clear this story is completely 100% canonical. It is entirely in accordance with canon in every respect :trollestia:

Ah, awkwardness, my old friend.


Thanks for reading. We'll see how it goes next.

A scene that was regretfully cut but I think still deserves to be visible:

The front doors had burst inwards. That whole side of the building seemed encased in ice, and impassable. The wooden stairs to the upper floors had long since crumbled and fallen away leaving only holes in the ceiling to mark their passing, too high above Clover for his dash spell to reach on its own.

He cursed in frustration at being stuck. His face felt hot, and he glared up at the ceiling while thinking.

One of the upper floor entrances was in a corner, and he studied it. A few rusty chains ran down from above. Some of them held old lanterns, but many had been torn off and simply hung in the air. There was nothing there he could stand on, but…

If I can get up just a couple pony heights on that wall, he thought, and jump off, and dash at just the right moment, then I might just barely reach the edge of that hole and climb up.

He approached the wall, searching the rough brick facade for purchase, anywhere he could grip the wall of his hoof, and tried to climb.

He made it two steps up before he fell backward on the floor, landing heavily on the frozen ground with a thud.

He got up, and ignored the shaking in his legs to try again. And after four tries he found himself clinging high enough, and pushed his legs with all his might to jump.

At the top of his arc, when his mind was empty of all thought, he dashed straight up and jammed his forelegs over the rough, broken edges of the planks. He kicked his hindlegs on empty air while he scrabbled for purchase, desperately clinging to the unsteady ledge while he tried to pull his weight up and over for balance.

When he got up he fell to the floor and allowed his legs to shake all they wanted.

He stood up and pushed away a pebble that was blocking his sight, and it drifted over to the wall while he looked around the room he now found himself in. It was narrow, and there wasn’t much to see. The threadbare wooden floor allowed little room to move, and if there had been a door in the room the ice had long since claimed that entire wall. But it kept going up, and now that he was out of the spacious ground floor he thought he could get from wall to floor to ceiling crossbeam. He only had to get past the spikes.

Clover took another look, and shook his head as he reoriented himself: these weren’t the spikes he had seen down in the city. Why would there be, here so far removed from the construction site? He saw now that they were only icicles, wicked-looking like long shards of glass, but harmless. They covered the ceiling between him and his next step, and somehow they covered the floor as well, like stalagmites, making him think they were there as weapons.

It made him feel sour when he realized it, like he was the butt of the mountain’s joke. He grunted angrily, and stomped in a circle before jumping head-first into the ice.

It cracked under his hooves with sharp shards that stung the frog of his hooves, and he stumbled and tripped, and the force shook the floor under him, and through the wooden beams up to the ceiling.

A hunk of ice cracked off and crashed into his head before a broken shard stabbed through his side and left him pinned under it, freezing as his blood poured out from his stomach and between his ribs.

He lay there, gasping, unable to breathe, struggling to push his hooves for agonizing long moments before everything faded to black.

Time reversed and Clover screamed as he floundered backwards and pushed up against the wall, with the icicles returned to their undisturbed state before him. He clutched his stomach and patted himself down, his lungs freezing as he dragged the cold air down in huge gulps before he was able to calm down.

He looked through the ice again, and looked back down the hole in the floor he’d come up. He grimaced, every muscle in his body tense, his eyes clenched shut.

“…I have to reach the top,” he told himself under his breath.

If I just jump straight up, and dash straight ahead mid-air, I should get just far enough to land on that open patch over there. And from there, jump over those spikes to that wall… and hold on to it for dear life… and dash from there to the level above…

He gulped, and drew a deep breath, and jumped.

A minute later he was curled up on the floor above, lying on his side and clutching his cloak as he shivered, the events of the last ten seconds and the sheer number of times it had almost killed him running through his mind on a loop.

Eventually he was able to stand up again without feeling that the bottoms of his hooves would make him slide to his doom from sweat. And from that it was just a last dash up to the final platform and he would be at the top of the chamber.

Looking up he saw moonlight cast on the wall, spilling through some window or doorway opposite, not obstructed by ice. It made his heart sing.

He gingerly made the jump, and climbed the ledge.

The window on the far wall was locked and barred with iron bars, and impassable. There was no way out of the building, or to anywhere else.

Hanging from a crack in the ceiling above was a strawberry.

Clover stared at it for a long time, while a number of powerful negative emotions fought their way across his face. He thought about the climb back down.

He grabbed the strawberry and put it in his bag, and began to make his way back to the large hall below.

One does not climb a mountain nopony else has dared for fun, and Clover isn't the sort to do it for fame either. Thank goodness Pipp's there. He needs some kind of grounding presence to counterbalance the darkness in his heart.

Brilliant work, seamlessly blending old memories and unquestioned surreality into something that actually feels like a dream. Looking forward to more.

I kind of love Clover and Pipp together. Those little ponies are trying so hard.

I really wanted to nail the dreamlike atmosphere in this one, I'm glad it worked.

That's also the reason the scene got cut, along with some other platforming sections. The detailed physical description was very hard on the atmosphere. But I wanted to have a death, and a strawberry in there :derpytongue2:

Thanks for reading.

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