Monday, July 13, 2015

A New Story from Chris

Everypony has dreams. Some dream of superpowers. Others dream of fame and respect. Still others dream of creature comforts, or of achieving long-sought goals.

But what sort of dream can stop the Tantabus?

After watching Do Princesses Dream of Magic Sheep? on Saturday, I did something I've never done before: I pounded out a same-day episode reaction fic.

Well, "reaction fic" might not be quite the right word for it; although this episode isn't going on my top-ten list anytime soon (Between the S1 and S4 season premiers, we know that Luna was Nightmare Moon for all of a few hours, sans moon-time, and that the most fearsome thing she accomplished during that stretch was making her sister cry.  Is that really something you'd beat yourself up over to the point where Equestria is literally moments from destruction?  I mean, there's guilt, and then there's psychosis), I enjoyed it well enough, and this certainly isn't supposed to be a fix-fic.  Instead, it's something that was inspired by seeing Carrot Top in that image that I'm using for a cover: as the main six and various background ponies rush to put their dreams to work defeating the Tantabus, she stands underneath, watching, completely unchanged by the dream-powers which everypony else is availing themselves of.

Just what was she doing?

Well, that's what the story's about: why Carrot Top's just standing there, not getting her dream on.  Along the way, I ended up filling in a few other background ponies, as well (and getting my reaction to Minuette from Amending Fences in as well; everyone else can say what they want, I think she's a little too chipper).  The first half ended up rather goofier than I expected, to the point where I was tempted to put the comedy tag on it, but I think of this as a SoL fic; at least, as SoL as you can get in Ponyville.

And, since I'd pounded 1500 words out all about the latest episode, I decided to go ahead and publish right away (well, after doing some cleaning-up on the editing front, anyway).  After all, a story like this is probably best read as an episode aperitif; best to share it now, and hope you all enjoy it for what it is; a look at how dreams of super-heroics and grand powers are important... but ordinary dreams matter, too.

I hope you enjoy!  And if you've got any comments to share, please do, either here or on FiMFiction.  Now, if you haven't already, go read Even in Dreams.


  1. Boy, that was a really... weirdly written episode. They repeated every point they made, like, three times. And at the end they literally summarized the scene that had just happened before it! Why?

    Also this episode had one of my favorite background pony moments in it as well this season. Coincidental, if I do say so, myself. It was in that one scene where Twilight was telling everyone something or other about doing whatever you want in dreams (again), and mid proclamation, Lucky just walks into view, and then isn't ever seen afterwords. It makes me imagine that in the real world he was up late working on something, and then dozed off for a few seconds before waking back up. That must have been confusing.

    Lucky would solve this Sudoku puzzle. He knew he could! He hadn't eaten or slept for three days, but that was a small price to pay for the sweet, sweet victory that awaited him.

    "So a three... and a four.... Does that mean it's a two here? No! There's already a two! Is it...." Lucky yawned. For a split second his concentration wavered, and his eyes slid shut.

    "This is
    your dream! Anything you can do in your dreams, you can do now!" Exclaimed Princess Twilight, stomping her hoof on the ground resolutely as an ominous mass of star-speckled blackness floated above them between the earth and the sky, and Big Macintosh from the Apple family orchard flew past in full royal attire, blasting winged muffins out of the air with lasers from his horn.

    "Aughwa!" Lucky yelped, jolting awake so fast that he toppled backwards on his stool. "What the what?" Picking himself up, he looked around cautiously before sitting back down. There was a long pause as he recalled what he had just seen in his head and... pondered.

    "Oh! Six!" He finally exclaimed. With a triumphant tap of his pencil, he jotted it down and moved on to the next box. "Fifty-four done, twenty-seven to go!"

    As for your story, I would almost categorize it under the random tag if someone were to ask me about it. I know dreams and blah blah, but still. In those 1,500 words it was all over the place. But whatever. That's fine. You crazy kids go ahead and have fun!

    1. Wow SeeVee, It took me this long to realize that you're CV!
      Like, what happened, dude? It seems shortly after we (and by "we" I mean "you") cobbled together that story for Chris to review, you just went poof! And took all your stories with you.

      I was upset. 'Cause like, I was considering doing a reading of Getting Lucky, but it went all Houdini. That and I missed your unique brand of wit here in the comments section.

      Word of the day: Aperitif.

    2. You have piqued my curiosity. Why could you no do a reading of Getting Lucky? There really should be a reading of it.

    3. @SeeVee: it's funny how one's eye is always drawn to the background pony one most likes, isn't it? I definitely hadn't noticed Lucky's brief foray into dreamworld, but yours is clearly the best explanation for it.

      Random might have been the right tag for my fic, now that I think about it, but I always think of the Random tag as being more about "deliberately nonsensical" than "all over the place." That's probably just me applying my own biases to the tagging system, though.

    4. Wait, SeeVee's been Chicken this whole time?!

    5. CV? Wha... oooh, because "SeeVee" sounds like the initialism CV. I get it. My name would actually be abbreviated to SV (pronounced eeSVee), which is similar, but not quite the same. Rest assured though, that your confusion over this "CV" character is completely reasonable. I mean, no one knows what happened to that guy.

      And @Chris: For me, random can encapsulate pretty much any story that doesn't have a clear and solid point to it, so most dreams, and most episode reaction stories, and most slice of life stories that do little more than follow the protagonist around for a while, and most adventure stories whose continuity tends to be a little too loosey goosey for their own good, and most romance stories.... I guess we're on somewhat opposite ends of the random logic spectrum, as far as that goes.

      I agree with you about the favorite background pony thing though. It's like how occasionally you'll notice someone you know in a crowd without even trying. I think it has something to do with applying more meaning to a specific face, so when it's put in with a bunch of less meaningful faces, there's a sharper contrast than normal. With Lucky I think it's partially that, and also the fact that after I started noticing him, I discovered that he was wearing or doing something different each time—sometimes for no reason—so it started being a kind of "find Waldo" scenario.

      Like for instance, way back in the episode Lesson Zero, there's a scene where Twilight and Spike are walking down the street checking things off a checklist, and there are a bunch of background ponies all over just as naked as ever, when at one point Lucky walks by with a bow tie on. There was no context, it was never brought up again, and he was the only one. At this point I'm beginning to think there's an animator over at MLP headquarters whose favorite pony is Lucky as well.

    6. (Psst! Actually, it'd be "essVee". :B)

    7. Nuh-uh! No way! That don't fly! You ain't foolin' me!
      That name, those mannerisms, that favored background pony...
      You're too similar to Chicken Vortex to not be Chicken Vortex. Therefore, I shall refer to you as Chicken Vortex whether you like it or not. So Nyeeeah! :P

      @M: "You just went poof! And took all your stories with you."
      That is why.

    8. There are still copies of it around. I have one, for starters.

  2. @DeftFunk: This whole "Chicken Vortex or not Chicken Vortex" thing aside, I like the cut of your jib! You go ahead and do you.