• Published 14th Sep 2011
  • 4,328 Views, 50 Comments

The Eternal Storm - TDarkchylde

The Nightmare returns, now using an Element Bearer as a host.

  • ...

Author's Notes and Closing Thoughts

Notes from the Author

***Major spoilers present, please read LAST***

After taking a night to reflect, I thought about some things. Maybe the ending could have been a little more fleshed out. Perhaps I could have taken a different direction in making loyal Rainbow Dash into the apathetic monster, Nightmare Spectrum. I could have done a lot of things differently. I took them in the direction that made the most sense at the time. In the end, I didn't wish to test the limits of FiMFiction's comment section, so I figured I'd do it this way.

This story was originally started after Season One of the show started, but before we knew what Season Two would bring. After Season Two started, I decided to try to make it fit in that tight timeframe - after The Best Night Ever but before Return of Harmony. I figured about a month of in-story time would be enough. The epilogue probably feels rushed due to that constraint, especially after moving the story ahead two weeks between Chapters Five and Six.

Speaking of the epilogue, it was honestly getting hard to write at that point. I had already had ideas flooding into my mind for what would eventually (read: hours later) become Shylight. As an author, that's probably my worst flaw - my tendency to unconsciously think far, far ahead. As a result, rather than a drawn out epilogue taking weeks of in-story time, I took a shortcut and went to a "where are they now" type ending. Looking back, it probably works better in the movies. Oh well.

Most of the story was done on the fly. I'd know what Point A and Point B were, but I was literally drawing the line between them as I was typing the lines. I would have loved to be able to plan more, but it was out of my hands at the end. Putting a definitive end on the number of chapters probably forced me to speed it up more than I'd liked. (Note to certain sites - make it clear that "Indeterminate" is a valid number of chapters possible in the submission process. Actually, most of the submission guidelines are too vague, especially to literal-minded people like myself.)

There was some character development that could have gone other ways. Scootaloo wasn't supposed to become an Element of Harmony when I started the story; that changed later when I picked ten chapters as the total. She was originally supposed to become Nightmare Spectrum's right hand because of her Dash worship, then turn back to the light at the end. I literally decided against it when I was writing the first confrontation scene because I felt Nightmare Spectrum's indifference would play better as a lone wolf.

Twilight... yeah, Twilight kept getting the worst of it. In the show, I find her to be almost Sue-ish, so knocking her down a few pegs felt justified. What better way than giving her virtue some actual consequences to overuse? Not outlandish stuff like getting shunted to another dimension or being flung forward in time... that's too easy. No, the chance of death was the only way I could see it working in a way I could be satisfied with as an author. As for her getting hurt badly the second time, when they were using the Elements to bring Princess Luna back? She was a mortal who had nearly died two weeks earlier and had not gotten the chance to properly heal wielding the power of gods.

Honesty backfires. Generosity can give too much. Laughter can be inappropriate at the wrong time or place. Loyalty can be divided. Kindness sometimes can make one a monster. Magic goes out of control. At various points, I was trying to make that kind of clear. Yes, the Elements are good things. The problem becomes when you start taking it to its literal end. Sometimes you have to take a step back from the edge.

Dash breaking her wings. It's been done before, yes. Perhaps too often. It was also the perfect way for the Nightmare to invade her, in my eyes. When you've lost everything that you thought defined you, and someone said there was a chance to get it back, most of you would jump at the chance and worry about the consequences later. Of course, those consequences would turn out to be pretty major in almost all cases. Losing control of yourself, being trapped in your own mind while you're being forced to hurt your friends and almost destroy all life? Pretty huge consequence.

Ten chapters... that number came about completely dartboard-style... it could have been twelve, twenty, or possibly only eight. It could have lasted forever. Who can say?

I'm rambling, aren't I? Another of my flaws. In the end, though, I worked around them as best I could to try to create a story that some readers find pleasure in reading. I imagine some were scared away by the "Dark" tag. Others probably leapt in but were disappointed that nopony died. I'm not going to go into a whole rant on the Grimdark genre. I just wanted something different. To me, Grimdark isn't just about the death and bloodshed. It can be other things. I tried to make it other things. To me, grimdark is when bad things happen to good ponies, and there is nothing the reader can do but read on and hope they work their way out of it. Some survive their ordeal, some die... some suffer a fate worse than death. I wanted to create a situation where bad things were indeed happening to characters readers cared about, so that they would be interested enough to see how or if they'd get out of it. I like to think I succeeded.

I didn't just destroy the Nightmare at the end. That was by design. I wanted it to remain out there as a future threat. Maybe, generations later, Equestria will forget all about the Nightmare as they forgot about Nightmare Moon. Perhaps they'll let down their guard. I don't know yet. Maybe one of you will pick up the torch and run with it. That's fine.

In closing, I'm satisfied with the end product. It could have been better, it could have been far worse. Who can say? I enjoyed it. Others enjoyed it. Some won't. Nothing will appeal to 100% of the population all of the time. It's a fact of life. It's done. There will be no more edits unless I find a grievous grammatical error that I might have missed or something. The substance will stay the same, even the "where are they now" epilogue.

I hope you enjoyed the story either way. I just wanted to get that out there.

Comments ( 10 )


hope this is true and answers my question if the ending is happy.

If so i just might read it :trollestia:


I just want to say that i loved your story.
Your a very good writer keep it up.

I really think i might hop on the turn a seriously good pony into a nightmare fusion :heart:

Pure liquid AWSOME! :rainbowdetermined2:

Awesome story and thankyou for writing, I had a great time reading it.(And I love how you point out your view on what grimdark is, and I agree, grimdark in the basic sense is more about dramtic suspense/irony and less about the gore and horror aspect.(Though ofcourse some stories use the gore and horror to make the world darker and create a stronger feel of suspence)

I think you did fine overall, I was hooked the whole story throughout and most of all when they had the (Twisted reality) mindsets toward the end, I love that idea.

Only thing I wonder, where did the password come from? I was confused why AJ knew, was it mentioned earlier and I just missed it?

AJ thought she knew because she felt she had done just that to Dash before the transformation happened. In-story, it was a shot in the dark that just made sense.

It's nightmare rainboom

This is REALLY good,I love the picture as well for the story :3.Mind sending me a link to it?

This should be a my little pony movie. I LOVED IT!!!:heart:

Very good work love how you work the personalitis and situation, thanks for sharing

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