• Member Since 11th Apr, 2012
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Bad Horse

Beneath the microscope, you contain galaxies.


Discord found love, and Equestria peace, through his union with Fluttershy, till death do them part.

But what happens after that?

Reading by Scribbler

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 118 )

Hey, thumbs-downers, leave a comment or I'll assume you're morons who can't read tags.

To those whom the last sentence didn't hurt: Notice it has the "tragedy" tag, not the "sad" tag. Sad is when something bad happens. Tragedy is when someone good makes something bad happen. Fluttershy did not make anything bad happen.

Sometimes it logs your own views as separate views. I have no idea why.

Ahh, true love will find a way. (Although sometimes that way involves shovels, midnight trips to the graveyard, and arcane rituals to hold back the inevitable decay that comes with death, it's a small price to pay for an eternity with your beloved)

Hi. Bad Horse, I've considered what to say for a while--I'm pretty sure I got the point of your story--and it finally came down to this:

You monster.

I could say more, but it would just be elaborating on the central concept of you being a monster.

1997926 I'm glad someone understands!

Here's my guess, but I'm not sure if I should just say it so, it's hidden.
The point is that Fluttershy was happy with the way things were and she is still 'alive'.

Okay, i don't get totally what happend on end. Did she move as skeleton to grab that figure or She was with that figure after spell ?


This is a great story.

Not sure where you got that definition of tragedy, but I definitely got the point of the story.

And it makes me want to cry. *thumbs-up*

Awww please write more :heart:

Wow, love how her friends missed her crying, and the fact that she totally wouldn't...y'know...try to off herself if she really wanted to...

I have a feeling your twilight just overly hates Discord...

1997950 Yes. But make that "was".
1997960 She reached for it when Twilight looked away. I wonder how I can make that clear.

Ah, I see my mistake. When I read it I attributed the sounds the effects of the spell instead of Fluttershy's movement. Separating the two somehow might solve the problem, but I'm not sure how to do it.

As much as I hate sad stories, I love tragedies. Sad stories can teach a lesson, but tragedies make others wake up.

My only compliant is that this was short.

I think the biggest thing is that you don't describe Twilight looking away.

Twilight stepped over to the sofa and touched her nose softly to the cheekbones of the skull that now lay fallen to one side on the velvet cushion. "You're free, Fluttershy," she said through her tears. "Wherever you are, whatever happens now, you're free of him."

(Twilight is apparently facing Fluttershy's skeleton because she nuzzled it--you don't describe her turning away.)

The other two ponies said nothing. Twilight looked back and froze. Her grim expression went slack and her pupils expanded across her eyes like two rapidly-approaching dark tunnels. They were staring at the absurdly-thin foreleg bones on the skeleton's chest, which lay crossed at the fetlocks, and were now clutching the little wooden figurine of Discord up tightly against its ribcage.

(Yet here in the next paragraph, she has to turn around to look at Fluttershy again? I wouldn't have got it if I didn't read the comments.)

Otherwise, good story.

Well, that's going to be awkward what with trying to "kill" her and accused her beloved of mind-necrophilia. (which he was apparently innocent of...)

And if you thought getting the stare from Fluttershy was scary before :twilightoops:

1998672 It's just before that, just before Twilight finishes the spell:

"I can't look," Twilight said. She turned away from the nightstand and took one deep breath, then another. Then she closed her eyes, gritted her teeth, and grimaced.

There was a snapping sound. Then, a wet rustling of dirty feathers, a gasp, and a brief clattering like a pile of dry sticks falling to the ground. Then silence.

Twilight finally looked up.

So, the tragedy is Twilight is projecting her own feelings on Fluttershy, and is completely blind to what Fluttershy really wants?

1998101 A tragedy is a story in which a tragic hero causes something terrible to happen, usually by making a mistake. Twilight is the tragic hero of this story.
1998928 Yes! I just realized I should have added "Twilight" as a main character to the story, to clarify that.

Also, Twilight pursues her misunderstanding like Capt.Ahab chasing his white whale; against all advice. It reminds me a bit of the horror story "The Monkey's Paw."

The only thing that wasn't clear to me was whether Twilight actually succeeded in killing Fluttershy, or whether she's still alive as some sort of animated skeleton. But that's an okay ambiguity, its creepy either way.

I'm not sure 'by mistake' is needed in your definition of tragedy. I mean, Hamlet certainly didn't happen 'by mistake'. A lot of the classic tragedies are the result of everything going pear-shaped because of a gambit pile-up. (Nor does the person need to be good. We just need to empathize with them, which i suppose nudges them in the direction of good in the 'in my moral circle' sort of way, but even a monster could be good by that definition, so long as there's something the reader perceives as a worse monster.)

Now I'm not being clear... The problem is that the way it is currently reads as if Twilight doesn't see Fluttershy move (since she was surprised to see Fluttershy hugging the figurine), which is nonsense as she is facing Fluttershy since she just nuzzled her skull. There is nothing about Twilight turning her head away from Fluttershy, or even just closing her eyes for a moment, during which Fluttershy moved without Twilight seeing.

I would say this was a nice short piece but it is ruined for me due to a single reason: Twilight's complete disregard for the ramifications of her actions and her lack of any sort of plan to deal with it. She won't ask Celestia for help because she might say no because Discord would end the world...so she (Twi) provokes Discord into ending the world anyway; she doesn't care about inflicting unimaginable suffering upon everyone and everything because a single individual's (lack of) suffering is so much more important to her. Introducing what, knowing Discord, one can only assume would be an apocalypse or something very close to one (and one that would be impossible to prevent, no less, since they've lost their only defense against him) introduces a level of scale that can't simply be brushed under the rug like that, whether through the emotions of the story (Twi's blindness to Fluttershy's true feelings cannot address this because she brings it up herself and pays it no mind. What's baffling is that none of her friends called her out on it) or the event simply not being the focus of the story because it is of immense importance. It is inconceivable that Twilight would make a choice like this no matter how much she hated Fluttershy being a zombie.

I have, difficulty, reading a story that involves the death of one our little ponies, especially one of the mane 6. (And especially Twilight, but that's a bit moot here.) I am a little too emotionally invested in them I think. :twilightoops:
So you can all imagine how I feel after reading this. (HINT: :raritydespair:) I'll say it again. You Magnificent BASTARD.
I don't think my feels could take it. They could barely take this one.
To the point she wouldn't even consult Celestia before she offs one of her closest friends.
We all know what the road to hell is paved in...

I think what happened here, and what isn't getting across, isn't that Fluttershy is still moving. It is that she isn't, and that her last act was to grab onto the Discord figurine. Twilight apparently didn't notice this fact when she first looked up from the spell completion. That is what is throwing everyone.

I think, Twi, and the others, aren't thinking clearly. It's implied that this has been going on for several years now. Worse, Fluttershy can no longer effectively communicate with her friends. That would be beyond painful to watch, especially if you think your friend is suffering. Twilight wanted to help Fluttershy, the rest of the world be damned. The problem, is that Twilight, and to a lesser extent AJ, Rarity and RD are projecting their own distrust and hatred of Discord onto Fluttershy, without knowing that Flutters is ACTUALLY happy. Poor communication kills indeed. Actually, it was Pinkie who had it right all along. Not surprising really. Twilight and the others should have known (and AJ did, really) that if they had to hide this from Pinkie, and Celestia, it probably wasn't a good idea, but Twilight was too desperate to save Fluttershy from an assumedhell. Hence the tragedy, Twilight basically doomed the world, and didn't even save Fluttershy to do it. Just murdered her.

Twilight is stated as going up to the sofa (that much is clear) to nuzzle the skull, so unless Twilight is hallucinating the skeleton being on the sofa (admittedly not entirely out of the realm of possibility for Twilight), then this doesn't make sense, either.

My opinion is Fluttershy truly loved Discord but twilight would not accept that and thought she was being controlled by Discord so she set her "free" but then realized her mistake when she saw her holding the statue. :facehoof:

I came here with the hopes that you wouldn't let me down, looks like my fears were unfounded. Well played, Evil One.

It's too bad Discord didn't consult Evening Glory, I'm pretty sure she'd have had some advice. (Let's see if anyone knows what I'm talking about.)


He is using Classical Tragedy, as in ancient Greek.

1999628 I do realize that they weren't thinking correctly and the rest I understood in the reading, but I just can't look past this one element given the sheer scale of it. The tragedy would have been just as powerful and emotional had the impending end of the world never been brought up.


Fluttershy lay on her back, sinking into the deep cushions of Rarity's best lounge, her legs and neck tied down with Applejack's lariat. The rope was not very tight; the skin and feathers had pulled away from her bones when Applejack had tried to cinch it up. It was tight enough to hold the sluggish Fluttershy. She stared up at her friends with wide eyes.

I think the "Lounge" and "Sofa" are the same object in this case.

...also, did she pull her foreleg bones out of their meat-sheaths? I missed that before. :pinkiesick:

It's the fact that the upcoming apocalypse was in vain I think. That's the crux of it all. The whole world could burn and it would have been worth it to save Fluttershy. But she didn't. And the whole world is gonna burn anyway.

I realize that, but:

Just next to the lounge, between Twilight and Fluttershy, a crude wooden figurine of Discord stood on a nightstand


Twilight finally looked up.

A pony's skeleton lay on its back on the sofa

Given this setup, there is no way for Twilight to mistake the position of the skeleton without hallucinating.

1999541 It is inconceivable that Twilight would make a choice like this no matter how much she hated Fluttershy being a zombie.
I do not think that word means what you think it means. Twilight often jumps to ridiculous conclusions and hides things from Celestia. It's even canon that she considered risking dooming the Crystal Empire to eternal slavery under Sombra in order to pass a test.

1999655 I will go through and fix the story to use only "lounge" and never "sofa". They are the same object. Hopefully I can also make it clear how Twilight could walk to the head without noticing the torso. This stuff is difficult with text.

1998101 ...that is LITERALLY the classic definition of a tragedy. A tale that isn't sad throughout, but ends with the heoes failing. Kind of why it doesn't let you put both the "sad" and the "tragedy" tag on the same story anymore.
People seriously should be required to read Wanderer D's how-tos before posting stories to this site.


Uhm... You are correct, but I do not think you realize exactly the definition of tragedy that I am talking about. As Bad Horse describes it in the author's notes, "Tragedy is when someone good makes something bad happen by mistake." I've never seen this definition of tragedy before. It is not a requiring factor of tragedy that the bad thing that happens happens at the hands of a good person.

Well, it does usually happen at the hands of the main character/s though. But you're right, they don't have to be a good guy.
I'm sorry, it just frustrates me how little users on this site actually know what a tragedy is and why it doesn't mix with the sad tag.

There's a difference. Twilight in The Crystal Empire wanted to avoid Sombra succeeding at all costs; her contemplation as to whether or not to risk the worst-case scenario (which wasn't really that bad as Celestia and Luna could have simply zapped him into a shadow again) was reasonable. Which is not to say that this work required a moment of conflict in Twilight; as I said to Blue Paladin, the tragedy would have been just as emotional and powerful had it not resulted in an eventual apocalypse.


Link for teh guide, please?


idk, sad + tragedy not being allowed makes me sad, because you *can* have a tragedy which is also sad throughout. There's obviously tragedies which don't deserve the sad tag and vice versa, but to say the two are completely incompatible boggles the mind.

(And that's before we even get into stuff like frame stories. I can easily imagine a sad frame story in which a tragedy is told/recalled. That's not even hard.)

BTW, the proper definition of tragedy is a story in which a hero is foiled by their own actions. MacBeth causes his own tragedy by ignoring the child who actually loves him. Romeo causes the tragedy in Romeo and Juliet by killing himself when he thinks Juliet is actually dead (and at a couple other points beside). Hamlet's plotting ultimately results in his (and everyone else's) death. And not to restrict myself to Shakespeare, Oedipus Rex causes his tragedy in a number of ways, not least of which is a lack of curiosity about his own past (but his active conduct during the story also contributes, so it isn't just that). Orpheus causes his own tragedy by being unable to trust the gods and looking back before he reaches the surface. Basically, its not enough for the protagonist to 'lose', they must lose because of a 'tragic flaw', that is, a character defect of some sort which is the root of their failure.

It has nothing to do with good or bad, really. Main character of a tragedy could be an evil bastard, so long as the reader can sympathize with him it'll work. Tragedy is all about the character ruining things for himself.

WNA #42 · Jan 22nd, 2013 · · 1 ·

Personally, I think the only reason a person would hate this story is because they have their priorities out of order. Fluttershy will be completely alive and okay in any other story; it's not like her death is permanent or anything. This story is well-written, and without Fluttershy's death there would be no story.
So really I'm trying to say that haters are idiots.

From the Fimfiction FAQ

Tragedy and Sad

As mentioned in the Categories description: A sad story doesn't have to finish on a sad note. A tragedy does, though. If your story is sad all the way, the tragedy doesn't happen: you are just making things, well, darker, rather than tragic. A tragedy can have some sad moments, but it will only be so if it achieves its purpose of the main characters failing in the end.

I am no expert when it comes to literature (no shit you're not shut up, brain), so that may be so. But rules are rules, so what can you do *shrug*. It's just a pet peeve of mine when people obviously don't even read the FAQ, and then are surprised some rule exists (and here on Fimfiction, MANY users never read the FAQ. It makes me pissy and unpleasant.)

It has nothing to do with good or bad, really.

Pretty sure we've already established that.


The FAQ writer doesn't really know what a tragedy is. C'est la vie. (I'm pretty sure you could write a tragedy that was sad throughout, I'm just not sure you'd really want to).

But even if you grant its implicit definition of tragedy, the FAQ provides no way to deal with frame stories and other complicated literary structures. A sad frame story around a tragedy is a natural and complimentary situation, since typically the frame happens after the interior story and thus in the aftermath of the tragedy. And its not like a story within a story is an unusual literary device, everyone from 1001 Nights to the Decameron to Canterbury Tales was doing it. (Those are all actual frame stories on the outside, too, not just story-within-a-story situations).

Unfortunately, the people they have policing this have no interest in listening to why both tags might make sense. Tragedy and Sad are exclusive is taken as word of god. They probably don't even know what a frame story is.

Kinda macabre, right there.

That's horrible.

I'm... gonna have to agree with Ghost.

1997944... I just realized...

Does this have spoilers for the latest episode? 'Cause if it does, I'm going to have to flip s**t, yell at you, and actually publish the crazy idea kicking around in my head just now (rather than fake-publish it, probably to my blog or something).

Dark and sad, but well done. The comments from others confuse me as to wether or not Twilight cut the lines and Fluttershy moved on; but before them that was what I assumed happened. I liked the ending in particular as Twilight realized how much she just screwed up.

2004234 Oh, man. I'm really sorry. I thought everybody knew by now that Fluttershy died in the last episode.

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