Does anyone remember the Gameboy series: Bugs Bunny's Crazy Castle? By God was there a game I could never finish. XD
Okay, to summarize: I have enjoyed Series 11.This recent stack of adventures is rather divisive between fans, and it's not difficult to view why. Is it good? It has its qualities. Is it amazing? I wouldn't stretch it that far. Memorable moments both good and bad; missed opportunities, hit and misses in writing, extreme lack of creativity - including story elements and monsters - many cases of style over substance.Overall, the best word for Series 11 is 'Average.' It has just about an equal scaling of pros and cons. Jodie is magnificent as the Doctor when the writing does her credit (and when she's not sounding out of breath every time she's technobabbling) though nothing really that stands her out yet. The companions are subpar, when Graham being the evident best among them (this recent episode might have been his best piece of an arc yet). Side characters for each episode are often memorable, and well written in some cases (Bring back King James!).Ratings for each episode in total:The Woman Who Fell To Earth: 4/5.The Ghost Monument: 4/5.Rosa: 2/5.Arachnids in the UK: 4/5.The Tsuranga Conundrum: 2.5/5.Demons of the Punjab: 1.5/5.Kerblam!: 4.5/5.The Witchfinders: 4/5.It Takes You Away: 3/5.The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos: 3.5/5.
The first scene for this week's exciting chapter of AJBS! Enjoy!
Ow my [BEEP]!
Thanks Starswirl! Couldn't give me time to even react from my fall before the sudden duffle bag and Nightshade followed above, landing critically below my waist, could you? I hissed irritably and painfully, shoving the bag of essentials to the side and clutching my private junk with tightly closed eyes, oblivious to my next surroundings. Hey as long as no one took advantage in my temporarily pained state.
My [BEEP]s and my [BEEP]. How utterly charming. I grumbled in disoriented annoyance, moving from my back and placing one palm on soft ground, pleased to find I had landed on something like grass, so long as it wasn't wet. Kneeling now, I took great care in lifting myself upwards, grimacing repeatedly.
"[BEEEEEEEEEEEEEP]..." Came my sharp drawn out response, as if I couldn't emphasize how exactly painful it was for a man to be hit in the lower area. Hey Twilight, if you ever thought losing a friend was the worst experience to have. than won't I be disagreeing with you? Heheheheh...
God I needed to sit down... Oh, how convenient. A bench just right there. Where the Hell was I anyway-?
God [BEEP]ing dammit...
Only then did I finally see that I was being observed by flabbergasted colourful pasty humans, some with sheer disapproval and covering their children's ears my way. The reality of where I precisely was this time brought on even more annoyance than getting a bag dropped on my [BEEP]s. Starswirl clearly has a sick twisted sense of humour, as always.
The EQG world.
You mean to tell me Zagreus was HERE? AGAIN?!
Sadly indeed. Though Starswirl sounded far more amused than apologetic over the circumstances. At least, another measure of imbalance caused from the fiend's twisted magic.
Wonderful... [BEEP]ing wonderful... And from my surroundings, looks to be a park. Funny, t'was where I fought Mane-iac and Nightmare Rarity on my last unwilling visit to this forsaken universe. Alright, Starswirl, where's the Goddamn imbalance? Want to get this over with quickly as possible.
I'll need some time before gaining a precise estimate, Jack. For now it appears to be all over the place. Likely Zagreus intends to keep us stalled for a certain amount of-
So no clue then? [BEEP] it!
Practically throwing the bag onto the bench, keeping Nightshade on my shoulder, I winced and flared through nostrils at every step I took, refraining the urge to swear loudly for nearby citizens to hear. If there was one thing I did take immense pleasure in this world other than Equestria, it was that these people could at least hear what exactly I said instead of obnoxious beeping noises. It was great.
Alright, strategy time... Wait until this pain to my testicles wears off, then look around town and ignore the curious and whispering gazes of people who have never seen a proper human being before. Find Zagreus, kick his arse to next week, get rid of the imbalance and leave with my dignity and what remains of my sanity intact. Done and done, nothing needed revising there.
One hand clutched the armrest of the bench tightly as I hovered over the bench with Nigthshade now perched atop the wood, my other hand rubbing below my waist to make some effort of soothing the pain. Wasn't working too well. Man, it's as if Zagreus knew how much I despised this world and everything about it, coming here and endangering its people again out os sheer spite. Because he knew I couldn't just leave these victimized people to their doomed fate-
[BEEP]'s sake. "Take a picture, it'll last longer!" And they all scattered like chickens, aiming to get away from the little human whom looked ready to bite their heads off the moment they lingered around.
Tempted, believe me-
A voice I've grown accustomed to, so familiar and welcome, gentle and entirely disbelieving resonating from behind that it caused my whole body to freeze, just for a moment. No... It couldn't be...!
Nightshade let out an elated "Hoo!" in evident recognition, and I slowly turned around, part of me deeply afraid I wasn't just simply hearing things and hoping for naught. A teenager girl, frozen in shock, in green and black with ripped pale dark blue jeans, tiny shoes and long flowing purple hair with strands of light blue. As if that wasn't enough of an indication as to who she was, the light purple eyes were enough of a giveaway.
"Starlight...?" The SAME Starlight from Equestria, not simply this world's version of her? Why else would she call out my name and was currently looking at me as though I was expected to have never been seen again- "...Are you wearing a beanie-?"
I think the incredulous disapproval was enough to provoke the teen forward, thoroughly tackling my unprepared state and knocking uf both roughly to the ground. Ow.
"I knew it! I knew you wouldn't give up on us!" Starlight's voice sung in utter relief and happiness, eyes tightly shut with slender pink arms wrapped around my neck, burying the side of her head on my chest. Jesus. Tentatively I returned the hug... Before my own grip tightened as well, because by God I missed her too. "Spike was right, it was too soon to consider the worst, regardless what the rumours said!"
Despite my own feelings of pure content and peace at seeing an old friend again, hugging her this way in a very suggestive position, I had to smile and gently brush through her hair. "Don't know why you're so surprised my dear... Discord should've confirmed I was still alive and kicking since our last encounter."
Starlight looked up then, beginning to lean upwards with leaked tears and eye makeup starting to become ruined, moving back one hand and-
"If you think that hurts, just wait until what Twilight may have planned for making us think you were gone!" Followed with another harsh slap to my arm. Jesus. Her pink features frowned in exasperated disapproval. A very Twilight-like trait. Like teacher like pupil. "When we heard what happened in the mountains, we assumed the worst. We thought... We thought...!" A choke sob, followed with a bitter sigh and Starlight shaking her head and grinning tiredly. "And now I find you here... You always had a skill for taking people by complete surprise, Stardust."
"I'm sorry." And I truly meant that, because the last thing I needed was everyone believing me dead. The severe consequences there would rip my heart apart. "Please, let them know as soon as possible that I'm alive and kicking." Let her know.
Starlight shook her head again. "You will be sorry soon enough." But the threat barely sounded convincing enough, the pink mare-turned-teenager now grinning more positively in utter relief. "I'd ask just what you're even doing here, but right now I'm just relieved you're okay and... You know."
"Yeah..." I nodded with a slight smile. "And what are YOU doing here, Starlight? Twilight send you here to handle a friendship situation with Sunset?"
The young woman grinned sheepishly. "Actually, something similar happened a few days ago. Now I'm sorta sticking around to learn a little more about this world Sunset chooses to live in." Starlight shrugged with a light smile. "And I don't know why you've complained so much about it, Stardust. This world is amazing!"
Starlight smirked at the immediate dry response, still sitting atop me before shaking her head and proceeding to hug my chest and neck yet again, finding my own face being buried into her long hair. "I'm so happy to see you again..." Came the sheepish yet utterly thrilled whisper.
"As am I... Sister..." I quietly mumbled in response, happily returning the embrace to a very good friend to me, Twilight and everyone else. I could practically feel Starlight's emotions pouring out of her from the elated cuddle, softly stroking her back. "I'm glad to see you're safe and unharmed..." Though where Sunset and the others were was a big question; why was she wandering around the park on her own?
"You can let go of me now if you want..."
"...I kinda don't want to." Came my honest reply, the pleasure and joy of seeing a good old friend again after months and months of uncertainty. Starlight being in my presence again was bringing back some old happiness, protection and relief to my starved heart.
"Oh..." Starlight quietly responded sheepishly, then proceeding to bury her face further to my clothed chest. "That's good, because neither do I..." And the moment lasted for a good matter of minutes, utterly ignoring the curious and fond looks of passerbys.
The latest, exciting installment for A Journey Beyond Sanity has been published! Stardust finally meeting his people. Enjoy!
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New preview for this week's chapter of AJBS. Enjoy!
I knew this spot...
Starswirl I knew this spot... I was almost there! After weeks to near months to trailing back, I was almost there! The directions equal to the warm welcoming greetings of old equines had guided me in the right place, for over the small hill I heard them.
I was almost home!
My pace only quickened, relying on grabbing some of the grass to assist my eventual mad dash up the hill to where they were. Where home was. Not the castle or library. Not the town itself. But home was where the heart was.
And my heart was always, neither hesitation nor fear to admit it without a singular shred of doubt, them.
The sounds of melodious laughter, noises of enjoyment and peace. The sounds I would have expected to hear from wonderful, beautiful equines... And dragon. What I wouldn't give to be in their arms again, safe, sound and happy for the rest of my limited time. And now...
Now, that was going to become true-
There they were... There they were...!
Over the hill, enjoying an obvious lovely picnic below next to a clean, gorgeous lake at a nice spot typical of Equestrian land, was a sight so familiar and so nostalgic my breath hitched, heart beating wildly at what I've been hoping to come back to without the likes of Zagreus, Chrysalis or any other fiend potentially ruining.
My friends, at a picnic, in peace.
Pinkie Pie, chasing after the pets of our friends happily, her energetic shrills of laughter and joy music to my own ears. Once I would've found the noise irritating and tiresome, but there was a sensation I welcomed with open arms... Physically to follow soon.
Applejack, Rainbow Dash... Both clearly in the competitive spirit at present, playing a game of horseshoes at a nearby post, both were typical smirks and challenging glints in gleaming pink and emerald eyes. And from the looks of the next throw, by Rainbow's cursing and Applejack's smug expression, one evidently was in the lead with the advantage of knowing the game since birth.
Hate to see the farmer's face if I challenged her to a 'friendly' match of Yu-Gi-Oh.
Fluttershy, Rarity, happily conversing without a care in the world over a plate of delicious-looking sandwiches, even from this distance. Both peaceful mares holding large pleasant smiles and chatting away about some topic or another, even offering one another clearly their separate homemade dishes. The spectacle brought a wider smile to my face.
Starlight... Spike... The former obviously educating the latter with their own kites in the air, the pink unicorn often glancing to the young dragon sat beside her with expressions of fond pride. I released a long exhale at the gorgeous sight, my sister and son spending quality time with a carefree activity and large smiles on their faces... My heart was hurting for even considering how much I've missed out since leaving.
Well... We all know the cause of what made my heart stop beating for a long, drawn out moment. Because in all her beauty, never once dull, which expanded tremendously from how I remembered her since I departed ages back, the lavender alicorn Princess was observing our family as well, violet orbs sparkling in all that typical breathtaking vision, gorgeous dark purple mane with those lighter shades reflecting from the sunlight beautifully. The smile on her face was what made me take another step forward, though she, never mind the others, has yet to notice the presence of their old friend just then...
"Twilight..." My mouth breathed by instinct, mind and heart whirling in apprehensive excitement, another small step forward. How to make my presence known? Casually? Tch, nothing was ever casual with these ponies...
But Nightshade wasn't as patient, though, deciding to direct their attention as he launched from my shoulder in pure eagerness, clearly as excited and elated to see them as much as I. His eventual stop was at his old animal friends, flying atop Pinkie's head and having the Earth Pony glance upwards in pleasant surprise.
"Oh, hey Owlicious!"
Gasp. "Owlicious?! Hey guys, look who's back!" That brought all the others to look, each one either gasping in shock of elation. "It's Owlicious!"
"Hoo!" The owl puffed out in enthusiasm, flying around then in circles above the gathering friends, all whom gazed at Nightshade in pure wonder.
"Well I'll be!" Applejack smiled broadly, jade eyes following the young bird cheerfully. "There's a sight for sour eyes."
"You mean 'sore' eyes dear."
"I know what I said."
"It's so good to see you again." Fluttershy expressed quiet elation, letting Nightshade perch upon her offered yellow hoof, the compassionate pegasus nuzzling against his cheek which widened my grin. "We've missed you terribly."
"Welcome back!" Spike greeted next, hurrying to the bird joyfully with his own huge grin. "Where the heck have you been this whole time?!" Twilight stayed silent, but the same question was clear in her expression and breathtaking sparkling eyes.
Starlight, as always, was quick to point the most obvious thing out. "Hold on a second. Didn't Owlicious leave with Stardust?" Ah, it began. The dawning expressions slowly rose on their adorable equine faces.
"You don't think...!" Rainbow gasped next, all pairs of eyes beginning to focus on the location Nightshade flew to greet them from. Atop the small nearby hill where the little man with folded arms and the biggest, happiest grin ever to appear on his face looked forwards at his bestest and wonderful friends.
A moment of dropped jaw and uncomprehending features. And the penny - Or bit - eventually dropped by the loudest exhalations of excitement and disbelief from the first two of my friends to react.
But even mental and physically preparation didn't stop me from falling over at the pink and purple blurs tackling my chest and stomach, the energetic pink mare and young ecstatic dragon burying themselves into my clothes with cries of elation and relief. Without even considering it, I embraced the two back just as tightly, fighting off the urge to shed tears at this reunion I've been anticipating for so long since I decided to return.
"You're back!" Spike exclaimed into my chest with one cheek pressed against my jumper, sounding close to breaking tears himself. He's probably started to. "You came back! I knew you wouldn't let us down! Or let me down!"
My hand, by instinct, grabbed the top of the scaly head and affectionately rubbed it, missing the sensation so much and the hugs of my favourite son. "I came home." Was my solemn reply, leaning my face down next to nuzzle the dragon's forehead. Didn't hurt in the slightest.
"OHMYGOSH OHMYGOSH OHMYGOSH! YOU'RE BACK!" Pinkie proceeded to announce, removing herself from my stomach next but with front limbs still wrapped tightly around me, as though planning to never let go. "I knew you would return! Of course you would because you would miss your friends almost as terribly how much we missed you and everything we've ever done together and I told everypony you would never abandon us unless you're some illusion made by our hopeful imaginations all together... You're not an illusion are you?" Ow. The suspicious Earth Pony then knocked my forehead introspectively, smiling widely in satisfaction. "Nope, you're real. Which means real hugs!" Tightly embracing my middle body yet again. "And I'm never letting go of you again for the life of me!"
My own expression of relief, humour and joy to see the pink mare again was cut off by another amused and relieved tone. "I think he'll have to move again eventually Pinkie." Starlight, approaching with the others holding a rather composed smile. But those lilac eyes told a different story; sheer joy and relief glimmering withing them. She looked ready to hug me herself when the other two eventually released me. But something else shone in that expression as well. "I knew you would come back." "Just couldn't keep away from us, huh?"
I smirked widely at that. Happy to see you too, Starlight. However, any further response was firmly interrupted next by three certain mares approaching slowly next, Pinkie and Spike making room for the pegasus, Earth Pony and unicorn all simultaneously carrying the same looks and glints in pink, jade and sapphire eyes. My nostrils inhaled deeply, knowing what was likely coming and bracing for it-
They certainly didn't disappoint...!
"Typical. Absolutely typical!" Rarity began scolding, having wracked my shoulder several times with a cup. "Leaving unannounced, then returns just as well. You truly are the bane of my existence, Stardust Balance! The gall! The audacity! What made you even think you had any right returning after what you did!" But the unshed tears were already there. "And worse, my mascara is now ruined because of you... You...!" And suddenly embraced around my shoulders next, beginning to sob rather loudly into my ears. I was torn between smiling and grimacing in regret... Instead resorting to sheepishly patting the dramatic unicorn's hoof. I suppose it was warranted, the dramatics this time.
"Just what in the hay were you thinkin' sugarcube?!" Applejack pitched in to lecture harshly next, placing orange hoofs on my legs sternly as though to keep me from leaving ever again. The farm mare glared over me with enough intensity it made me prefer fighting Tirek all over again. "Runnin' out on yer friends like that! Without good reason to! I have half a mind to use ya dumbnut as a wheelbarrow for the next apple buckin' season! Yer stubborn, reckless, selfish little... Ugh!" Eyes closing tightly with tears beginning to clearly leak, Applejack then regarding me with a tiny smile. "Well, the fact yer have enough common sense to come back means there's hope yet..."
And guess who finished for them? "And ponies call ME foolish and egotistical!" Rainbow started, proceeding to irritably slap the top of my head repeatedly to get the message across. Ow... Repeatedly. "But at least I don't go out to get myself killed without any help from my friends! Seriously, just because you don't think you're going to last means you have to fight this battle alone! Just because you have an excuse this time doesn't make it valid Stardust! You stupid, cowardly... Typical person..." And Rainbow turned away from my eyes promptly, hovering above with folded front limbs and refusing to let me see her tears of anger and relief.
That left just two others to greet me, and one would be far more emotional than the last. And that's saying something with who was next to approach with hesitation, fear dancing behind clear blue orbs.
Walking around slowly, Fluttershy was clearly apprehensive, wincing softly upon my decision to reach out with an offered hand, assuming the mare through body posture and facial features that yes, indeed, it was her old friend and he's returned. Fluttershy just stared... And stared, and stared, and stared some more...
Then a sniffle. And soon enough, the yellow blissful mare embraced my side gently with full tears cascading down regularly peaceful features. The sight caused my heart to freeze and make the attempt to cheer my vulnerable friend up, running a careful hand down bright pink strands. That only incited the emotional Fluttershy to hug me tighter, making low sounds of relief and more sniffles. As if that wasn't painful to see enough, a distraught Fluttershy.
Try a distraught Twilight.
The purple alicorn, at first, kept expressionless, even when standing right before me. I gulped, knowing this could go several different ways, and a majority not without serious pain from the mare I loved delivered to my exposed body. Oh boy...
Despite which, I made the attempt to grin weakly and offer open arms to the observing alicorn, the mare making no immediate reaction. "Honey I'm home..." Oh I was gonna die. "You were right, it was a foolish choice to leave in the first place... I missed you. All of you, so..." A tiny shrug. "Don't hurt me too badly...?"
The next movement followed with my flinch, expecting Twilight to start beating me to a pulp with a hard leather book. Instead, a tackle to my chest that almost made me fall in the ground yet again, myself eagerly returning the hug just as tightly at the alicorn's, the loud sounds of relieved sniffles and exasperation escaping her beautiful tearful face, burying my own lower half of my features into soft purple hair.
"I, am going, to kill you..." Twilight vowed softly in my clothes, her body heaving quite loudly.
Well, that was a given. "I'd expect nothing less..."
And Twilight then pulled back, glaring at me with sorrowful yet heavily thrilled violet orbs, clouded in affection and pure relief. Her melodious voice cracked. "Promise me." And pressed her own muzzle against my nose warmly, purple eyes tightly closed with her hoof on the back of my head. "Promise me you won't ever leave me like that again..."
'Me.' Not 'us.' An instance where Twilight wasn't afraid to show how much I meant to just her than the rest of our agreeing friends.
The contact melted my own chest, finding myself closing my eyes right back. "I promise..." And turned to everyone around me with my hands cupping Twilight's cheeks with sheer love and devotion, my voice carrying the wieight of such. "I'm not leaving again, I promise you all that... My time is limited, and I want to spend the rest of it with all of you... All my family..."
Twilight's smile lit my whole world, and it was so good to see it than imagining it in person again. "We'd like that too." The emotional alicorn I loved responded in soft kind, hugging around my neck yet again with the rest soon to follow, all finding spots of me to embrace in pure warmth and loving.
I missed this... I missed this too much...
"And we all know what this calls for..." Pinkie started to my right excitedly, that classic grin always highlighting anyone's day. "A welcome back party-!"
Stardust Balance changed their profile photo
Happy December all!
The latest exciting chapter for A Journey Beyond Sanity has been published! Stardust, helped once again by an unexpected source... Yet, not entirely unanticipated. Enjoy!
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Those whom own a Discord server and/or part of one, watch out; a bunch of MLP raiders have been scouring around of late and forcing other servers to shut down with their immense trolling. Look out for the names KineticStorm or Asus, they're the heads of these ruthless raiders. Fair warning to everyone.
A scene from this week's exciting next chapter of AJBS! Do enjoy!
My new companion made no vocal response, simply content to dining on the chips in the paper bag on her lap. The closest I got to a physical response was the glint in her violet eyes, still the same feature as her original form as opposed to the blue eyes with tiny purple pupils. That was a real good sign.
Another sign? Thus far, my guest had yet to make any inclination of an attack. If Zagreus was hoping to have this Twilight strike whilst my guard was down... Well he's gonna have to be disappointed. Then again, that may be myself clinging on to the present hope that it wasn't too late for this version of the person I loved, and that there was still a chance to save her from the darkness and back into the light.
It's nice to live in hope; a lesson my Twilight and the girls have taught me time and time again.
I was tempted to speak some more, lift up the tension suffocating the cave a little, but I think Twilight would appreciate the silence more, speaking herself when she's ready. The human Twilight always struck me as a version whom enjoyed silence when she's pondering or enjoying herself. So, again, in her own time. I was content myself with dining on the freshly baked greasy chips and warm fish sitting on my own lap, the steam of the food drifting through the dark cave and warming up the body appreciatively.
The rain was still persistent outside, and Starswirl had acquired me a towel for my hair, which was now trailing down my head and back down. The weather indicated it wasn't safe to leave until morning, and night was already on the loom from the sky darkening all the more since the storm began, trees outside rustling loudly and looking ready from every glance to be torn off and thrown into the ruthless winds.
I could just go outside with an umbrella right now... But I wouldn't want to risk a Franklin incident. Another potential embarrassing demise. But I'll tell you what, it was getting humourous how jumpy this woman-in-demon-form beside me was getting jumpy at the flashes and roars of lightning outside. Some things never change, and I was trying my best not to smile every single time.
"Why do you insist on helping me?" And she speaks! Mid- Twilight turned from her food to resume her curiosity on me, frowning still, but not quiet as guarded as earlier. The tone was genuinely puzzled. "I just... Don't get it."
The fact of how much she was questioning herself sparked hope. I shrugged, offering a wry smile. "Do I need a reason?"
Twilight tilted her head, an adorable features in contrast to her otherwise intimidating current features. "When I've done nothing but tried to harm you?"
"Did you ever try to harm anyone else?"
"Well there we are." I shrugged. "Lack of self-preservation, love. Not to mention, you've been tricked by a madman to attack me under the false promise he'll restore you back to your real form, am I correct?" The unintentional flinch was all that was needed, and I smiled in light sympathy, restraining the urge to place a hand on her shoulder and scare the woman off.
"But I have hurt you!" Twilight couldn't resist exclaiming in regret and befuddlement. "At that tower, and with Sunset at the dam... You should be hating me and trying to get away, by all rights!"
"You've also kept an eye on me, and healed my wounds before they could get any worse." As I raised my bandaged hands. "Thanks for that, by the way, and before. You're a lifesaver and a good person regardless of what you may think, Twilight."
The woman hesitated, violet eyes uncertain before clouded with doubt, turning away again to regard the fire somberly. "I'm not Twilight Sparkle... Not anymore." Her expression looking close to tears, food forgotten by both of us.
"I don't believe that." I had to say gently, the sight causing my own grief and guilt. She never deserved any of this. But my refusal to accept otherwise prompted the uncertain glance my way, prompting me to continue solemnly. "Who else would show compassion to look after one she considers an enemy, despite what she's been promised...?"
Silence followed, Twilight looking back to the cackling fire which was nearly ready to die out. Hopefully the message sank; If there was any chance to save her... Well, you all knew me by now.
"You're not my enemy..." Twilight mumbled in her arms quietly, sounding deeply upset and shaking her head with grit sharp teeth and closed eyes. "I just don't know what to think... My life's been a whole mess up to now... Everyone just wants to use me for their own intentions, and I'm just so... Tired of it."
My own head titled sadly. "Do you hate them? For what they did to you?" A simple question, but a thousand meaningful things behind it.
"I..." Twilight hesitated, still refusing to meet my inquisitive hazel eyes and looking out to the dreary rain outside. Then a final, quiet answer barely heard through the echoes of the weather and the damp cave. "I don't think I can hate anyone, even those who wronged me..."
And if she thought that was what I expected to hear, then you, my dear Twilight, was terribly mistaken. THAT was what I wanted to hear, now grinning to myself wildly and causing the corrupted teen to blink when she noticed my beaming proud expression.
"You see?" I motioned then happily, the hope in my chest rising brighter than the dying campfire between us. "You're still you. The appearance outside never changes whom you are on the inside. And inside; you're still the same compassionate, knowledgeable, kind and thoughtful, brilliant, considerate, strong amazing Twilight Sparkle I've... Well, I think you know." The faintest traces of pink on dark purple features, but Twilight never lingered her gaze from me or my great smile. "And I want to help you, Twilight Sparkle, not just as an obligation, but because I believe... I KNOW." I affirmed with conviction. "You deserve happiness and peace."
"...How?" Came the small, meek response, but I knew those eyes long enough now; enough to catch the glint of vain hope in those beautiful violet orbs. How indeed, love? Well I already had the perfect start in mind, lucky for you.
Smiling, I proceeded to offer an open hand gestured for shaking. "By starting over. Because forgiveness, my dear Twilight, is always the opening to a new peaceful beginning." And added with slight humour in my otherwise light tone. "My name is Jack Edward James Wright, my dear. It's a pleasure to meet you."
Twilight didn't react in kind initially, as I anticipated. Of course she needed a moment, and I could wait forever for her if need be. The teenager looked down to her own open purple hand, examining it and then mine for a long, drawn out minute, internally at war. But something, in the back of my mind under the smallest glimmer of hope, informed me over the decision this woman made before it even happened.
Tenderly, a small purple hand reached and clasped my own with gentleness, allowing a slow shake. "Twi... Twilight Sparkle." Still sounding completely unsure about addressing herself as much, but the lavender teen managing to keep going regardless. "And... It's nice to meet you too, Jack Wright..." And then suddenly frowned, and my mind quickly panicked. Had I done something wrong? But it wasn't the frown of caution or anger or malicious intent. Instead, it was a frown I was all too familiar with regarding my own Twilight, having bore witness to it time and time again.
The disapproving frown.
"Your bandages are wet." Oh, so they were. Twilight regarded my hands with an expression displaying annoyance, followed with her suddenly grabbing said hands before I could react. "Hold still, let me re-apply them." And paused, looking up albeit shyly. "It's... The least I could do for your kindness."
A part of me was tempted to point out the comparison between herself and my own girlfriend, but I neglected from mentioning as such not to upset the girl further. Instead, I grinned as my hands were currently being treated, this time me being conscious for the act, knowing better than to argue. "Afterwards maybe we could play some chess. Did you know I am currently beating Twilight by thirty-six to twenty-eight?"
A big fat lie, and even this Twilight knew it. Her lips curled upwards to a genuine amused smile, lighting up her beautiful features. "I sincerely doubt that... But you can prove otherwise in a moment."
Good moraftereve my friends! How are we all?
According to our residential science/math geek in my Discord server, the chances of Stardust and Twilight realistically getting together is 73%.
BUT. Today, we just learnt that Stardust and Cadence getting together, in a scenario where the Princess and Shining weren't a thing, is an astonishing 94%.
Lamp oil? Ropes? Ponies? You want it? It's yours my friends, but only if you have enough rupees!
The latest exciting chapter for A Journey Beyond Sanity has been officially released. Enjoy!
Come join our AJBS Discord! https://discord.gg/d63vGu
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The fruits of my boredom!