• Published 8th Jan 2013
  • 824 Views, 13 Comments

Antipode of Light - wYvern

After a days worth of crusading, Apple Bloom finds herself lost and alone in the darkening Everfree forest. Whilst pondering how to escape from this predicament, she encounters a foreign structure—and finds more than she bargained for.

  • ...

Antipode of Light

Zecora accompanied Apple Bloom out of her hut. She halted and took a look around. "Buck up home young Apple Bloom, there is something odd about this dusk's gloom!" she called to the filly that had already commenced her homeward journey.

Apple Bloom turned around and waved, the look of worry on the zebra's face lost to her, seeing only the dark silhouette of the familiar mare against the hut's brightly lit interior. The exclamation was overly dramatic in her opinion. This was not her first trip through the forest at dusk anyway, and she knew the way from Zecora's hut by heart. She had to admit, though, that it was awfully dark by now amidst the tall, closely spaced trees.

She was a brave pony, she thought, and smirked to herself. Even Applejack wouldn't feel all too laid-back being thus far in the forest at the brink of night. Thinking back to Zecora, hadn't it been Apple Bloom herself that had first conquered her fear of the unknown mare and discovered her kind nature, while all the grownups had shuddered in fear of the supposedly evil enchantress? If there was a cutie-mark for bravery, it should have been hers for ages already.

She frowned. That blasted cutie-mark! What had she not yet tried to gain it? This afternoon hadn't brought her any closer to her goal. Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle and her had tried slack-lining, hacky-sack and free-diving this morning—before Sweetie Belle had complained she wanted to do something less exhausting.

After lunch-break they had settled in their clubhouse, and, much to Scootaloo's disgruntlement, started dabbling in various card games. After trying out poker, solitaire and blackjack, none of which yielded a cutie-mark nor considerable fun to anyone, they had run out of ideas.

It had been then Apple Bloom had suggested visiting Zecora. They had managed to brew some effective love potion, had they not? Even if it had turned out it had been more of a poison, that was neither here nor there. Scootaloo had groaned, but after suggesting they could do something else if she was too chicken-hearted to go into the forest, she had agreed.

Zecora had greeted them merrily. After revealing their intentions, she had shook her head, but smiled. “Your cutie-marks won't succumb to force, but a bit of knowledge wont hurt, of course.”

Scootaloo, however had succumbed pretty soon. Darting off towards Ponyville, she had shouted something about watching Rainbow Dash practice.

Sweetie Belle had tried her best, but being unusually clumsy, spilled elixirs and smashed jars left, right and center. After having burned a glass of nectar to black lumps, she had given up. “I'm just not cut out for kitchen work. It's no use.” Sullenly, her head drooping, she had left, leaving Zecora and Apple Bloom amidst the bubbling liquids and peculiar-smelling fumes.

Brooding over that day's events, the yellow filly trotted along the forest path, darkness descending to her surroundings, accompanied by an uncommon silence. Apple Bloom remained oblivious to it.

She had really enjoyed her visit to Zecora, but there was no doubt it had been a lost day to the Cutie-Mark Crusaders cause. What did the Zebra's mark stand for, anyway? She had never asked, but resolved to do so as soon as she had the chance. It would take some time before she would be able to convince any of her friends to visit Zecora's place again, though.

Apple Bloom let out a sigh—and froze mid-step. It was then that she realized she had not heard a sound except her own hoof-beats for minutes. Standing still, all she could hear was her own heartbeat. It seemed to intensify as she listened.

She continued her trotting, stepping up her pace. Her steps sounded strangely muffled now as the galloping sound in her ears gained in acuteness. The edge of the forest should be around the corner any moment now. How long had she been en route? She had lost track of time.

There was a gap in the thicket of trees ahead along the path. Apple Bloom ran flat out towards the opening, wanting nothing more than to leave the scary Everfree behind her. As soon as she had reached it though, the decisiveness of her movements subsided rapidly, and she came to a halt again. This was not the edge of the forest. She could see the outlines of trees to all sides against the lesser darkness that was the night sky; She was lost.

Apple Bloom spun around as the sensation of being watched overcame her, but all she could see were the creepy trees bordering the moonlit clearing. They were unusually twisted, their branches bending in odd angles. The holes in their trunks resembled gaping, grotesque mouths.

Apple Bloom shuddered. She'd retrace her steps to Zecora's. She'd take refuge there and head back home in the morning.

In risking one final glance at the clearing, she noticed a dark shape. Her heart missed a beat as she froze and stared, her hairs standing on end. The moment passed, and as the shape did not move, Apple Bloom regained her composure. It was far too angular to be a pony or an animal after all, but looked more like some kind of artificial structure. Curiosity and anxiety battling each other, she stood there. Applejack would have told her to stop snouting around and get the hay out of there. Then again, Apple Bloom was the brave pony.

Cautiously she approached the unidentified object. Still several meters away, she realized what she was seeing was a well. As her excitement of discovering something fascinating ebbed away, she realized splashing sounds were issuing from it. More cautiously still, she drew closer. A gargling sound made her stop. Clearly, something had fallen in and was struggling to get out, possibly drowning. That sound though—Apple Bloom had never heard an animal make anything like it. It repulsed her. However, whatever creature had fallen in there—it sounded like it needed help. Apple Bloom forced herself to cover the rest of the distance between her and the well. Hesitantly, she peered over the brim.

The walls on the inside were dimly illuminated by the invading moonlight, the contents only distinguishable as a pitch black mass, still in uproar. Apple Bloom stared down, but could not make out what was causing the ruckus.

Suddenly, the darkness below went still, and a smacking sound, reminiscent of something being pulled from muck, reached Apple Bloom's ears. The content of the well seemed to swell. Getting faster, it rose up towards the opening. Apple Bloom recoiled and fell over. Horrified, she watched as a dark, tar-like mass started to pour over the brim.

Once it had covered the whole of the well, it stopped spreading out. It gave off a terrible grinding noise, and Apple Bloom more felt than heard the shock waves coming from the crushing of stone as the thing seemed to contract. She watched in horror as the well seemed to shrink beneath the black cover. Within seconds it had gone, leaving behind a dark patch on the ground that now moved again—towards her!

Regaining her senses, she rose to her hooves and took flight. Upon reaching the forest path she glanced around. It followed, and it was fast. She chose a direction at random and went straight into the thicket of undergrowth.

She dared not take another glance back, galloping flat-out in as straight a line as she could. Thus she fled, dodging trees and jumping boulders. Soon her muscles were burning and her eyes streaming, making her blinder still, for only flecks of moonlight penetrated the tightly spaced treetops. Several times her hooves caught a root and she was sent flying, but she got up fast, ignoring her aching body and protesting limbs. She lost all sense of time, but did not dare stop or look back.

When she thought she might collapse any second, she sensed the darkness lifting ahead. Trying to jump a rock, she miscalculated and was once again sent tumbling through the brushwood. Her fall had taken her beyond the edge of the forest. As she tried to get up, she numbly noticed that she was within sight of Sweet Apple Acres.

She shouted. The stitch in her sides felt like knifes as she tried to get up one last time, but her legs gave way again. Through misty eyes she saw a tall figure moving towards her as as she heard hooves pounding the lawn.

“Apple Bloom, is that you?” asked a familiar voice. “Apple Bloom!”

Recognizing her sister, she finally gave in, and fainted.

Apple Bloom heard soft clattering noises. She felt warm and very comfy, and did not want to open her eyes, wishing to doze off again. Then out of the blue, a vision of a dark forest clearing and a shadow creeping towards her struck her consciousness, making her bolt upright. She gave an involuntary gasp of pain at the abrupt movement. It felt as though her whole body was sore, fiercely protesting her sudden desire to flee.

She found herself lying in her bed, the red cover neatly wrapped around her. The bedside lamp was lit as the sky visible through a window to her right was still dark. The door leading to the hallway stood wide open.

Applejack seemed to have heard her. Coming swiftly upstairs and noticing the fearful expression of her little sister, she said, “Calm down, li'l sis, you're home. You're safe.”

Apple Bloom eased up a little, but did not reply.

“How are you feelin'?” asked Applejack.

“Ah... Ah'm like, real sore,” said Apple Bloom.

“You're scratched all over,” continued Applejack when Apple Bloom did not elaborate. “Ah cleaned all your wounds and bandaged most of 'em. You've been out for over two hours!” Applejack's concerned voice slowly passed into anger. “You got me worried sick! You're gone past nightfall, come burstin' out of the forest, lookin' all put through the hoops, and collapse! What the hay happened?!”

Applejack stared at Apple Bloom, who averted her eyes and started explaining.

“Ah was at Zecora's and... and got lost on mah way home.” she said.

“You've been there a hundred times, how did that happen?” interjected Applejack

“Ah don't know. Ah kinda got lost in thoughts, Ah guess,” said Apple Bloom.

“Well, so you walked around the forest with yer head up in the clouds. Go on,” said Applejack.

“Ah got to a clearing. There was this... well. Ah looked into it...” said Apple Bloom, still looking intently down at her bedsheets.

“So what did you do that for?! You get yerself lost in the forest, in the middle of the night no less, and the best thing you can think off is poke around?” burst out of an exasperated Applejack.

Apple Bloom looked up at her sister, “Ah heard something splashin' around in it and thought it might be some critter, drowning. Ah wanted to help, see?” she spluttered.

“So, what did you rescue? A timberwolf?” snorted Applejack.

Apple Bloom, still gazing at Applejack, opened her mouth to answer, but found herself at a loss for words. She looked down, staring into space, and said, “It was... there was no critter. Ah looked down but couldn't see anything but...“ Apple Bloom hesitated, “but the content... splashing. It suddenly started welling up. It kind of boiled over and... and sort of... crunched the well. After the well had gone it came for me. It was really fast—it chased me!” Apple Bloom looked at her sister again, her eyes tearing up.“It was like darkness come alive! Ah ran away as fast as Ah could... Ah was so scared!”

Apple Bloom started crying in earnest now. Applejack stood there, staring aghast at her little sister. Regaining her composure, she sat down beside the weeping filly and hugged her.

“It's alright, Sugarcube,” said Applejack. “You're save now.”

“Ah... Ah just ran str... straight through the forest.” hiccuped Apple Bloom. “Ah didn't know where Ah was goin'... it felt like forever. When Ah felt like Ah couldn't run anymore, Ah tripped.... Ah saw Sweet Apple Acres and shouted—is all Ah remember.”

Applejack and Apple Bloom sat there for several minutes, the strong mares arm still resting around the sobbing fillys withers. Applejack did not speak, apparently lost in thought, while Apple Bloom tried to calm down, reassured by the warm embrace of her big sister. When she had finally regained control over her breathing, she asked, “What was that, Applejack? Ah never heard of anything like that in mah whole life.”

“Ah have not the slightest idea, li'l sis—but Ah'm glad you got away from it alright.” said Applejack, smiling at her sister and nudging her with her snout. “We'll ask Twilight tomorrow, shall we? Ah'm sure there isn't a thing in that forest she doesn't know about.”

Applejack stood up, and Apple Bloom gasped in pain as the mattress rocked. “If you're up to moving tomorrow, that is,” said Applejack. “Ah'll get you something to eat.”

Applejack left the room and returned shorty after with a bowl of hot carrot soup and a plate of buttercup sandwiches. Apple Bloom noticed her hesitate at the edge of the bed. Memories of being fed by her big sister, whenever she had been so ill that she would have had to stay in bed as a filly, welled up in her. She realized Applejack pondered whether she ought to do so today, too.

She had been trough quite a nightmare today, alright. But she was a big pony. She could eat for herself. Delivering Applejack from making up her mind, she snatched the bowl of soup from her sisters grasp and started eating hastily. Applejack placed the plate of sandwiches on the bedside cabinet, and Apple Bloom thought she looked slightly crestfallen.

Apple Bloom ate without talking. Applejack had taken a seat beside the bed and watched her in equal silence, her expression unreadable. Upon finishing, Apple Bloom put both bowl and plate on the bedside table and laid down gingerly on her bed. Applejack got up and tucked her in.

“One more thing,” said Applejack when she had finished. “Ah won't be punishing you—Ah think you learned your lesson—but promise me you'll be paying more attention to yer surroundings when visiting Zecora's next time. And no more nighttime strolling in the forest.”

“Promised,” said Apple Bloom.

“Sleep tight,” added Applejack as she extinguished the lights and went out the room, closing the door behind her.

“Night,” said Apple Bloom, feeling queasy. She didn't feel remotely like sleeping yet, being still too worked up about remembering her forest encounter. She turned on her side towards the window through which the wan light of the distant moon shone, but, wincing, immediately regretted her decision to move.

For several minutes she lay there, unable to drop off to sleep, despite feeling properly beat. Every time she closed her eyes, unwanted images emerged before her minds eye, images of moving shadows and dark trees. To avoid seeing them, she continually gazed out of her window, taking in the faint stars of the firmament instead.

She could not take it anymore. She got up despite feeling sore and stepped out into the hallway connecting the bedrooms on the second floor. Quietly, she nudged the door to her sisters bedroom open and sneaked inside. Applejack was distinguishable as a big bulge in her large, pink blanket on her wide bed.

On tip hoof Apple Bloom crept beside her bed and slipped in under her sisters covers, trying not to disturb her. Applejack however, who seemed to be still awake after all, chuckled. Her eyes still shut, she turned around to face Apple Bloom and cuddled up to her without comment. Apple Bloom gave a sigh of relief, and, with the feeling nothing in the world would be able to hurt her, fell asleep within minutes.

Apple Bloom awoke from the creaking of a door. It was still dark. She turned around, drowsily noticing that Applejack was gone. Probably on the potty, she thought, snugly rolled-up in the overlarge blanket. What a baby she was, sneaking into her big sisters bed. She had not been scared enough to do so for a long time now, but she was assured Applejack would keep it in confidence.

Applejack did not come back. Apple Bloom, unable to fall back asleep, strained her ears for signs of her return, but did not hear anything. In fact, she did hear absolutely nothing: No farm animals, no owls, no wind rustling the leaves of the nearby orchards trees, no nothing.

Apple Bloom's eyes flicked open, but to no effect. It was as though she had gone blind. The blanket that had been comfortably warm moments ago suddenly felt painfully hot as her breathing quickened. Something was terribly wrong. She wanted to shout for her sister but was paralyzed by fear. Moments passed as she lay there, desperately listening for anything, anything at all.

When she could no longer bear it, Apple Bloom raised her head for the tiniest of fractions, and whispered, “Applejack...”

Hearing her own voice break through the total silence made her heart skip a beat.

“Applejack?” she whispered again, a pleading tone now to her voice which had risen in pitch.

“Applejack?” she said, more loudly this time, but her voice was quavering.

She propped herself upright, finally breaking her rigor, her unseeing eyes frantically scanning her sisters room. She could still not make out anything, though. It was as though someone had put out the moon and the stars, leaving absolutely no light.

Cautiously, Apple Bloom groped around where she estimated the lamp she knew to be on the bedside cabinet. When she had found it, she flicked the switch, holding her breath. The light went on and illuminated the room. Apple Bloom looked around, dazzled by the sudden brightness. The room did not look changed whatsoever, and she would have felt reassured were it not for the window. Now discernible from the green, flower-patterned tapestry, it was still dark. This did not look like the normal darkness of night though, but a solid, impervious darkness—as though there were another wall behind the window which absorbed all light.

Apple Bloom got out of bed, still feeling battered, but slightly encouraged by the light to which her eyes now had adapted. Grabbing the flashlight standing on a wooden table in the center of the room, she tip-hoofed towards the bedroom door left ajar. Peering into the hallway, she called again, “Applejack?”

The sound of her own, now steady voice made her feel a bit braver. She stepped into the hallway and turned the lights on. Nothing unusual could be seen, but the windows were the same, pitch black.

Apple Bloom continued her journey through the house, switching on lights and calling for her sister, but did not receive an answer. Finally, she reached the sitting room. The front door was closed. Maybe she went outside, thought Apple Bloom, reaching for the door handle. It did not move.

She clung to the door handle with all her weight, trying to make it budge, but it did not. Panic welled up inside her again—she was trapped. “Help! Ah can't get out! Applejack?!”

She raced to the back door in the kitchen and tried to open it, but it would not move either. In her agitation she tried kicking it in, but achieved nothing but to remind herself how badly bruised she was. Breathing heavily, she stopped to think. As she did so, a terrifyingly familiar gargling reached her ears.

Apple Bloom jumped as her fear seemed to solidify to a knot in her stomach. She rushed to the sitting room entry from which the sound had come. Through the gap under the door, a pitch black substance was fanning-out across the timber flooring.

“Oh no... no... no! This can't be happenin',” stammered Apple Bloom, retreating backwards upstairs to the hallway connecting the bedrooms, her eyes wide in shock. She heard the breaking of wood as the thing seemed to annihilate the downstairs furniture. “Applejack! Help me, Applejack!”

She dashed into her sisters still brightly lit bedroom, looking for a way out. She spotted the still pitch black window, turned around and launched the nearby wooden table towards it with a kick. As it hit the glass with a dull thud, a leg broke off and was sent flying across the room. The glass however seemed unscathed.

Apple Bloom hastened to the window and bucked against it with all her remaining strengh. She felt her left hoof split and yelled in pain, dropping down on the floor, the glass still intact.

As she looked back at the entrance of the room she felt her heart sink. The black mass had reached the threshold and began pouring in as the light in the corridor went out. She tried to get up, but her hurt hind leg injured like hell and would not carry her weight.

“No, leave me alone! Help!” she screamed. “Applejack!” her voice cracked.

With a snap, the broken of table leg disappeared. The black substance had crept across half of the length of the room now. Mustering her last strength, Apple Bloom threw herself on the bed to evade it. The bedside lamp died and all went dark. Shrieking in alarm, she fumbled the flashlight, nearly sending it flying as she tried to turn it on.

A cone of light sprang into existence from between Apple Bloom's hooves. She frantically looked around. The thing had surged upward and built a standing wave of impenetrable darkness, towering in the middle of the room.

“What are you? What do you want?” whimpered Apple Bloom, gazing up at the massive, black wall in front of her. A shiver ran through the dark mass, and a strange rushing sound started to emanate from it. She listened, transfixed. The sound went on and on, until Apple Bloom finally realized what it was. It struck her like a blow and she winced in horror. What she heard were thousands of cold voices, laughing.

Suddenly, the sound stopped, and the wall of darkness came crashing down on Apple Bloom...

Squealing and thrashing around, she jerked up and opened her eyes, instantly dazzled by sunlight.

She had sent a pillow flying by her sudden movement. Soaring in a great arch across her sisters bedroom, it hit the mirror which reflected the bright, blue skies visible through the window to her side. A bird that had been sitting on the ledge took off, twittering in protest to Apple Bloom's exclamation; a lovely noontime scenery was presenting itself to a saucer-eyed, heavily breathing and sweat-drenched Apple Bloom.

From the first floor sounded a voice: “Oi, you up already?!”

Applejack had apparently heard her violent awakening, and though her tone was ironical, it also conveyed affection. It was like balm on Apple Bloom's distressed mind, calming her with a suddenness that elated her. Chuckling to herself, she sank back onto the cushions and closed her eyes.

She heard her sister move up the stairs and halte in the open doorway to the bedroom, just as a cloud seemed to block out most of the sunshine that had lit up the room.

“Why did you shout?” asked Applejack.

“Ah had the creepiest nightmare you could imagine.” answered Apple Bloom, not looking up at her sister. It felt so real... but it was just a dream after all, she thought to herself.

She heard a splashing sound, and an unearthly, harsh voice whispered in her ear: “Was it?”

Apple Bloom whipped around. Her sister suddenly was beside the bed, looming over her, a wide, humorless grin distorting the mares face. Shying away from her, Apple Bloom stared into what her sisters eyes should have been, but all she saw was a dark, endless abyss gaping back at her.

- The End -

Incredibly rambling authors notes -or- How this story came to be

First things first: Thank you for reading. I sincerely hope you enjoyed it! These authors notes, for lack of a better word, are excruciatingly long, but I wanted to write them anyway. I included a tl;dr version at the end.

I had the plan to start writing for years and years. It was one of those plans ones commitment starts with “If I ever have time...” or “Definitely someday...” which more often than not means you won't be ever doing it. It was the plan to do original fiction, though—I never knew fan-fiction was a thing back then.

My first encounter with fan-fiction was Cloudy Skies awesome story Building Bridges. This story made me feel more elated than anything I could remember off the top of my hat for at least 2 years. I realized what power fan-fiction held, and that it was not in any way inferior to normal fiction. After reading a few more of his excellent stories, the thing was settled; I would be writing fan-fiction.

I started out the very same day using an idea sparked by some obscure memory of a Stephen King short story I had read sometime, and two songs of a favorite band of mine; Eisregen.

As was to be expected for a first time writer, I ran into difficulties—to me it felt like running into a brick wall. I was stuck in this one scene and stared at the sentences, that had come to me so easily to that point, for a good twenty minutes.

I started editing what I had written the next day, instead of going on, and nearly rewrote it all—but it still sounded feeble. Over the next weeks, I opened the document from time to time, only to read the last sentence, feel horribly inadequate, and close the damn thing again.

After reading the book “The War of Art” be Steven Pressfield—a book I hereby shamelessly advertise to anyone who struggles with procrastination concerning any endeavor, really—I managed to get it done, and it felt good doing it. Though I still feel inadequate.

As you might have concluded by now, this is my first fan-fiction. My first work of fiction ever, to be exact—apart from the two or three pieces I had to do back in school. And in a foreign language! Hence, it is crucial to my improvement that you criticize everything you notice. Otherwise I'll be churning out more sub-standard quality fics in the future that could have been better. (Yes, there will be, one is in the making already, the other yet but an idea)

I proofread the text several times, but searching for mistakes in your own text can only take so far. If you find any wording errors, typos, etc, (apart from generally critique on my style, which I'd prefer in the comment section), I want to ask you to write me a pm so I can correct them.

I want to thank Cloudy Skies again, who, apart from arousing rare emotions inside me by means of his writing, answered encouragingly and kindly to my e-mails, which were just as, if not more long-winded than this authors blurb. Were it not for him, I think I would not have started writing—and would not know what I was missing.

PS: If you wish to write me love/hate/spam mail, here is my address: wYvern1349@gmail.com Don't bother wishing me the flu though, I have it already.

tl;dr: Thank you for reading my story. I hope you liked it! This is my first work of fiction ever, so please leave a comment and criticize as thoroughly as you can. Thank you!

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Comments ( 13 )

This Review is brought to you by the group Authors Helping Authors

Name: Antipode of Light

Grammar: 8/10

Pros: Gave me a nice creepy feeling
Overall pacing was good
Has the potential to become something more.

Cons: other than a few Grammar mistakes here and their, not much else I can think of.

Notes: I liked this, I really liked this. The way you described the Darkness reminds me of Alan Wake (Great horror game, look it up). There were a few spelling mistakes, but not enough for me to not enjoy it. If you wanted to you could turn this into a larger story.

Hope you liked your Review Don't forget to review my story Guardian of the Heathfire.

This review is brought to you on behalf of the group: Authors helping Authors
Name of Story: Antipode of Light

Short review
Grammar score out of 10 - 9. Very nice work.
1. Story has very distinct beginning, middle, and end structures.
2. Climax of the story was well detailed and layed out.
3. Character dynamics between AJ and Applebloom are touching.

1. Transition out of the dream feels abrupt.
2. The darkness could have used some more character.
3. AJ and Applebloom lack their southern accents in dialogue.

In Depth Analysis
The story for this fic was quite a nicely based one shot. Applebloom confronting a creature composed of such a primal fear makes for good reading. I thought that most of the scenes that you included were very well detailed - each consisted of enough ambient descriptions to set the tone while not waffling the reader or attempting to pad out a word count. The scene in which Applebloom goes into AJ's bedroom to sleep in her big sis's bed was touching and a nice choice.

I liked that you were able to make this story into three distinct sections, following on from the Aristotle three act play - start, middle and end/climax. Introduction in which Applebloom encounters the goo, middle in which she thinks she has escaped it, and climax in which she must confront it again. This helps keep the story structured well and pacing level through out.

One thing I felt was lacking was any real reason to fear the darkness in the later scene, much of it was implied. It's big, it's black, but apart from being a puddle it didn't do much other than menace. It could do with some descriptions of it being more destructive - have it cover and then consume a chair or seat when it comes into the house, the object quickly dissolving into more darkness, something that clearly states to the reader that something bad will happen to you if you let the darkness touch you.

I thought that you handled most of the characters in this story quite well. Zecora was her general wise, if cryptic self, Good job with the rhyming section at the start.

I liked how you made reference to both Sweetie Belle's lack of coordination at cooking, but also montioned that she in normally fairly good at things like chemistry, as was shown in Hearts and Hooves day.

As was mentioned at the start - I liked the sister dynamic between AJ and Applebloom during the middle of the story - clear reference to Aj having to take over the duties of a mother to Applebloom in the absence of their parents. the scene in which she brings food over to Applebloom was very touching in this respect.

The weakness between them however is that neither of them seems to have their accent written into their dialogue. While it can be assumed to be present, it helps the reader if you actually include alternative spellings for certain words so as to highlight the accent.

“One more thing,” said Applejack when she had finished. “I wont be punishing you—I think you learned your lesson—but promise me you'll be paying more attention to your surroundings when visiting Zecoras next time. And no more nighttime strolling in the forest.”

could be altered slightly to

“One more thing,” said Applejack when she had finished. “Ah wont be punishing you—Ah think ya learned your lesson—but promise me ya'll be paying more attention to your surroundings when visiting Zecoras next time. And no more nighttime strolling in the forest.”

I have to say that 99% of the grammar in this story seems perfect. I did not notice any major or repeated instances of badly used punctuation - commas, quote marks and full stops all appeared when they had a reason to.

You had a good usage of paragraph structure - each new idea or topic would appear in a well spaced out paragraph with indented leading sentence. Makes it very easy to read your story. Short paragraphs make it much easier to digest each topic and track ones place in the story. Good job there.

My only gripe (and this is a small one) was the transition from the dream sequence to Applebloom waking up. that felt indistinct and could easily be missed if the reader isn't focusing on it.

I would have included a page break within that section, to clearly indicate a change of scene to the reader.

“What are you? What do you want?” whimpered Apple Bloom, gazing up at the massive, black wall in front of her. A shiver ran through the dark mass, and a strange rushing sound started to emanate from it. She listened, transfixed. The sound went on and on, until Apple Bloom finally realized what it was. It struck her like a blow and she winced in horror. What she heard were thousands of cold voices, laughing.

Suddenly, the sound stopped, and the wall of darkness came crashing down on Apple Bloom. She squealed, “Ahhhhhh!!” and jerked upright, “Huh!”

She had sent a pillow flying by her sudden movement. Soaring in a great arch across her sisters bedroom it hit the mirror which reflected both the invading sunlight and the blue skies visible through the window to her side.

Could be done as

“What are you? What do you want?” whimpered Apple Bloom, gazing up at the massive, black wall in front of her. A shiver ran through the dark mass, and a strange rushing sound started to emanate from it. She listened, transfixed. The sound went on and on, until Apple Bloom finally realized what it was. It struck her like a blow and she winced in horror. What she heard were thousands of cold voices, laughing.

Suddenly, the sound stopped, and the wall of darkness came crashing down on Apple Bloom...

Applebloom squealed and jerked upright, her legs flailing.

She had sent a pillow flying by her sudden movement. Soaring in a great arch across her sisters bedroom it hit the mirror which reflected both the invading sunlight and the blue skies visible through the window to her side.

TL;DR Summary
Well planned out and written fic, easy to read and solid themes. The darkness could have used a bit more menace to hammer home that it is something to be feared.

Well that's all I got. Hope you find something useful from it. If you did them please at least have a read of my story - Interview with the Changeling

1933019 Thank you for your review and kind words. I'm glad you liked it! I have heard of Alan Wake before, though did not check it out back then.Seems I've been missing out! :pinkiegasp:

I'll be looking through the story again to find the spelling/grammar mistakes you mentioned, but I don't think I'll be turning this into a larger story—at least not in the near future. I'll be reviewing you story ASAP.

1933131 Thank you for your very detailed and well written analysis. And thank you so much for complimenting my grammar. It is a very sensitive topic for me as I am usually the one to criticize. :twilightsheepish:

To your con list:

1. I liked the idea of her in-dream scream transitioning into the waking "Huh!" and focused on that. Now that you mentioned it, I can see that this can be missed. I'll change it.

2. You are indeed right about the goo being a bit of a joke. The Stephen King story that was one of the things that inspired me for this story was very graphic. I did not like that and wanted to avoid it, but the memory of it made the thing scary enough for me—a thing someone not connecting the two stories could not have done, of course. I'll have to ponder as to how to re-integrate that into my own story, thank you for bringing it up!

3. I have trouble rendering things phonetically in English and actively decided against integrating the southern accent into my writing out of fear of doing it wrong or overdoing it. I justified it before myself by arguing that the story was written mainly from Apple Blooms point of view, who of course would not notice the accent that much. A lame excuse, I know. I'll have to research how others convey the accent in an acceptable fashion and work it over.

I will be reviewing your story of course, but please be patient, I'm not fast and your story will take some time to do a proper job considering its length.

You have to write more, or else the Darkness will consume innocent fillies in their sleep :ajbemused:

1936616 That is the only thing it has learned, and I don't want to be held responsible for its unemployment. I'll be writing other stories, though. Thanks for reading and commenting! :pinkiehappy:

This review was brought to you by CluelessFilly at Indie Authors Unite- We Will Help Everyone!!!

Quick Review:
Grammar: 7/10
Concept 8/10
Storytelling 9/10
Overall 8/10

Grammar mishaps don't pass me, I'll be the first to admit. You did a very good job on incorporating the sourthern accent, as I saw that you didn't have the confidence to try above. Aside from a couple of minor hiccups along the way, and some comma usage vs. period uses, there was only one persistent error.

You didn't use apostrophes.

Now, mind you, no apostrophes is better than too many. They can be easily imagined. But the main thing here is having a persistent flaw. The main uses for an apostrophe (') are 1. Posessives (Apple Bloom's) and B. Contraptions (Won't). But, for a non-native English speaker, you did very well.

This isn't a very original concept. I've seen plenty along the same line. But you did a very good job with it. The goo was terrifying enough, and,most of the time, this kind of thing is done with Slendersomething. Plus, instead of using Twilight, you went with Apple Bloom. Not a completely random choice, having a place in the plot, despite not being a mane six, which seems oh so hard for writers to do. l8 -

You did a very good job in telling us a good story. You kept the plot simple but enchanting, and went with simple but not repetitive words. My only concern is that the formatting with parapraphs isn't constantly persistent.

You did an outstanding job with your story! Not only is this your first venture into fiction, but it's in a foreign language. :scootangel: If you ever need any help, you can either go to any group for editors (I'm in about 100 groups here, so chances are that I'll be around) or ask me. I'm also available if you want an editor to crush any errors to sediment. Sediment that will later be eroded away and deposited at the mouth of a river. :twistnerd:

1947226 Thank you for your review and kind words! I'd however need some clarrification to some of the points you mentioned:

1. The apostrophes. I am aware that you should use them in contractions, like won't etc... it must have slipped past my mind this time. I'll incorporate them. However, I thought to make a possessive distinguishable from a contraction (e.g. its = possessive, it's = it is), using them with possessives was actually wrong. I'm confused now.

2. What do you mean by the formatting of paragraphs? Things like indentation or the structuring of content by means of paragraphing?

You double-entered and indented. In some places, you just indented.

By posessives, I mean characters. Applejack's, Apple Bloom's, Twilight Sparkle's, etc. :pinkiesmile: Sorry for not making it too clear.

1947947 So there's a difference between possessives of he/she/it and names? Good to know, I've never noticed that before... although now that you mentioned it, the "Apple Blooms" does indeed look wrong. I'll fix it, thank you.

Pretty much all I've said about your other story can be applied here, so I'll keep things short and informal this time around.
- improve your grammar/punctuation: Use apostrophes. Learn the rules of English thoroughly. It'll help you out so much, I promise you.
- sometimes, common, everyday words work better than ones that sound sophisticated. If you read it out loud and the writing doesn't sound right, then it doesn't flow smoothly enough.
- You're good at mood portrayal and storytelling. That's important in any work of fiction.
- Learn to distinguish between parts that require detail and parts that don't. It all depends on what mood you're going for.

I've quite enjoyed reading both of your stories tonight, and I wish you luck in future pieces.

Off to get some much needed sleep,
Black Lightning.

Hiya, Wyvern. It's me again, reviewing your story on behalf of the Good Grammar Directory, a comprehensive directory of grammatically correct stories on FIMFiction.

Unfortunately, your story does not yet meet our standards for addition into the directory. Fortunately, that can be easily rectified, which means that I get to add your story into the directory and your readers get a more polished product. So let's take a look at some of the issues here, shall we?

the look of worry on the Zebra's face

While this includes a masterful (and, sadly, uncharacteristic) use of the possessive apostrophe, "Zebra" probably shouldn't be capitalized.

against the huts brightly lit interior

That should be "hut's".

Though it was awfully dark by now amidst the tall, closely spaced trees; she had to admit.

"She had to admit" is not, in this case, a complete sentence, and therefore shouldn't be connected to the rest of this sentence by a semicolon. You could probably replace it with a comma, but I think it'd work even better if you rewrote it like this:
"She had to admit, though, that it was awfully dark by now amidst the tall, closely spaced trees."


Again, apostrophes matter.


The word is "won't".

Sweetie Belle had tried her best, but, being unusually clumsy

You don't really need the comma after "but". It doesn't ruin the sentence or anything, but it's superfluous.

Scootaloo however had succumbed pretty soon.

A comma after "Scootaloo" would help this sentence read more naturally.

peculiar smelling

This should follow the same rules you applied when you wrote "slack-lining" or "free-diving".

that days events


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