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Best Pony


Hearth's Warming Helper

Found 78 results

  1. Winter in Canterlot OOC Midnight Oil Midnight Oil yawned as he waited outside Princess Luna's chambers. The bat pony wore a dark winter cloak over his armor that the princess had requested. To be honest, he was a bit confused as to why Luna had requested the Lunar Guard to begin earlier then normal this evening, but he did not dare question the princess's orders. He was just anxious to get started at whatever task or event Luna had planned. Beside him sat a box that Luna Requested. . Princess Luna roamed about her chambers nervously. Tonight was the first night of winter, and as such, the begging of longer nights throughout Equestria. She would check and double check the paperwork that was left on her desk before slowly walking over to her balcony window. Using her magic, the doors would slowly open to reveal a faint dusting of freshly fallen snow. The alicorn would grin as memories flooded back to her of her foalhood and the snowball fights she would have...building snow ponies...all those many years ago. A gust of winter air would snap her out of the daze as she remembered the reason for coming to the balcony. With a glow of her horn, the moon would begin to rise on the horizon. With a smirk, she would close the door and make her way out to the hallway where her guard waited. As the door began to open, Midnight sprang to attention. "Good evening Midnight." Luna would open the box beside the guard and levitate a cloak out of it for herself. Draping it around herself, she would begin to walk down the hallway. "Come along Midnight. We must find my sister. Bring the box with you." With a nod, the bat pony would place the box on his back and followed Luna to wherever she was going within Canterlot Castle to find Celestia.
  2. Winter in Canterlot RP LINK The first dusting of snow has fallen on the cobblestone streets of Equestria's capital city, Canterlot. Princess Luna has ventured out about the city under the light of full moon hoping to interact with her subjects and friends during this early evening. This Role Play is open to ALL Equestrian Empire Approved Characters, both Cast and OCs. Please link your character that you would like to use in the comments below so I may update the RP roster. Roster Princess Luna-Skycoaster Midnight Oil (Luna's Bat Pony Guard)-Skycoaster Princess Celestia-EquestraianScholar Golden Dawn-EquestrainScholar Applejack-Red Cedar Red Cedar-Red Cedar Pinkie Pie-Unicorncob Cooper-Dwightthegamer Discord-Randimax
  3. Musing in the Royal Garden IC Seeking to have Princess Celestia start meeting others again. During the rare moments where the princess find her day free, deciding to wonder the royal gardens and relax. Since I don't remember the Canterlot Gardens ever really being blocked off, accessible during parties and for school tours as let, I see it as not so difficult a task to figure out why a member's character might bump into the princess there. Especially since her guards were left to relax as well with the assurance that if the princess needed them she will call. Any and all are welcome, as long as your character is approved for use in the Equestrian Empire. No rules really, and honestly given how little activity I have seen here I'd be fine with even Discord popping in to given his greetings or cause mischief. Perhaps he can even get Princess Celestia to smile. Chuckle, really though if you want to your character to meet the princess let me know.
  4. Earl Grey Ghost

    Spoiler Royal Titles

    This has probably already been brought up, but it is something that has confused me highly. So you have Princess Celestia, Princess Luna, Princess Cadence, all rulers of their respective places. Great, that's awesome. Questions though arise for me. Why is Princess Celestia and Luna not Queens? To be a Princess means you are the daughter of the King and Queen, where are they? Obviously from what we can glean, they have passed away. They are never shown, nor really talked about (unless somewhere in the comics, to which I am not privy too unfortunately, so please educate me if this is so). On the same page? Great. SO, if the King and Queen pass away, that makes the Princess...now become a Queen. So why is it not Queen Celestia and Queen Luna? Or since Celestia is the older of the two, Queen Celestia and her sister Princess Luna? Why have the titles not changed? Now we also have Queen Chrysalis, which is explicitly stated, obviously, as a Queen. Why is she given the title of Queen and Celestia and Luna, and even Cadence, are not? It should even been King Shining Armour and Queen Cadence, but again, this is not so. You'll also notice King Sombra kept his Kingly title, and turned out evil, even if in the comics, he started off as "good". We have good Kings then, but hardly ever, IF ever... GOOD Queens. There has been a theory put forth called, aptly "The Princess Theory" and what it tackles is the issue as to why female main characters in certain things are called Princess without the knowledge of the whereabouts of their parents, either they are not mentioned or it is made clear that they are dead. That would boost the character up to QUEEN, but it never happens. Why? The theory goes that little girls like the idea of "Princess" because of what it denotes. Royalty, status, special treatment, yet kindness, care, beauty, and above all: YOUTH. Queen means older and MORE RESPONSIBILITY. Little girls (Disney and society assumes) wants all the perks of royalty but not the RESPONSIBILITY of a nation like a Queen has. It's less desireable to a young child to have responsibility. Disney has had a ban run, (if you notice) of making Princesses the "good guys" and all the Queens "bad guys". Have you noticed this? Queen has become almost equal to "bad guy". The EVIL Queen, trope. This has become so engraved into movie and story pop culture it's become an unfortuante staple. So therefore, in MLP, they don't call the "good guys" Queens. Notice, QUEEN CHRYSALIS.=EVIL. PRINCESS CELESTIA/LUNA/CADENCE=GOOD Why cant we break this cycle? Why cant we respect and honour the actual royal titles? Why can't a Queen be good? Why is age, wisdom and resposibility taugh to young girls (and even boys!) as undesirable? Why can't this become a positive? Thoughts?
  5. Little Baby Dashie

    Spoiler Saffron Masala Fan Club

    Hey guys. So I just got done seeing today's episode, and no one made a fan club for Saffron? Come all Saffron Masala admirers to the Grand Opening of the MLP FORUMS Tasty Treat!
  6. Musing in the Royal Garden OOC Princess Celestia had found the rest of her meetings for the day canceled, since those she was to speak with couldn't come for one reason or another. The Saddle Arabian ambassadors she was to meet at four o'clock were delayed because of a sandstorm, her treasurer came down with the feather flu and thus unable to discuss finances, the head cook and many of the other kitchen staff had an accident with the cake being made for a social event coming up, with others was well. Once she had done her part to plan reschedules and make sure those involved her fine it left her unexpectedly free for the evening. It did not happen often, though if Princess Celestia was often secretly pleased with such moments of rest from her duties. As such, the alicorn mare decided it was perhaps time to relax and walk among the quiet beauty that she had became so familiar with over the years. Not only in the ways the Canterlot Royal Gardens have stayed the same, but how it has changed and even grown.. Perhaps the princess could even see if she could make her way through the maze and remember how to get to the center. Now one may ask where her guards were, and though dedicated in protecting her as well trained not to leave her side for the most part Princess Celestia could still get away from time to time. Since her schedule had been cleared up, the mare offered her guards relax as well and if she needed them the princess will call for them. She even had refreshments sent to be given for their hard work, leaving the mare to leave and enjoy herself during time moment of freedom. Right now, she was resting near a pond within the royal gardens, enjoying the pleasant day and watching as the birds played in the water with some even coming near to observe Princess Celestia who had a soft smile on her face.
  7. themirro1

    Canterlot's map

    Hi everyone, today I'm proposing a discussion that interests me a lot. Canterlot, the capital, but how is this city structured? We, with our knowledge and a bit of fantasy could make a realistic map for Canterlot, with the real Palace and his towers, parks, residences and main structures. Maybe a lot of you won't be interested but if you are, I hope you'll help this topic grow. I know that in MLP there isn't such a detailed description of environments, but only points where the characters are making their actions. This is why I want your help to structurate a pretty realistic but also accurate map for the city starting by important buildings such as towers, library or Canterlot's arena. After this damn long presentation I need a list of important places. I was arrived until 4th season's start but I had a year without watching it so I needed to restart. Things are re birthing in my memory! If there are Canterlot places not listed until 4th season I ask you to list them anyway. Any idea will be discussed! Without spoilers
  8. Shining Armor was the original captain of the Royal Guard, but now that Shining lives in the Crystal Empire as the prince, that means he's no longer part of the Canterlot guard, and he'd have to be replaced! So... who's the replacement? Hopefully the show can mention that soon!
  9. Attention subjects of Equestrain Empire! All Approved Characters, both cast and Original are hereby invited to attend the Winter Moon Festival. This years festival shall take place at Canterlot Castle, both in the Great Ballroom and Castle Gardens. The evening shall begin with the raising of the Winter Moon and end promptly at Midnight. Attached to this invitation is your ticket. Please RSVP in the thread below. Your Princess looks forward to spending the longest night of the year with her Subject. Princess Luna of Equestria. ___________________________________________ Questions about Equestrain Empire and how to join may be found HERE Please post a link to your character's database entry. Roster Princess Luna-NightTerror Nebula(Skycoaster) Trixie-PathfinderCS Soft Star-Mentis Soliloquy Mentis Soliloquy-Mentis Solioquy Twilight Sparkle-Derplight Sperkle Fleur de Lis-Fhaolan Dr. Whooves-Kulstor Alto Tuner-Yoshi89 Princess Celestia-Dwhitethegamer
  10. Ya know, switching their coffee instead of their cutie marks might have honestly been a more dangerous move on Starlight's part Good afternoon, everypony, and welcome back to another edition of "Batbrony Reviews"!!! Well, after the horror that was "Hard to Say Anything," and the mixed results of "Honest Apple," we needed something extra special to wipe the bade taste of those two episodes out of our mouths. After today's episode, I am very happy to say that we got just that and so much more! "A Royal Problem" is easily, for me at least, the best episode of Season 7 so far, and the only disappointing thing about it at all is that since it premiered early in Canada, pretty much half of the brony fandom has known how great it is for weeks and let the other brony fandom know early on just how great it was. It's a very little thing to complain about, I know, but it really would have been nicer if the episode had debuted in both Canada and the U.S. at the same time so that the majority of bronies would have seen it at the same time. Still, if that's my sole complaint, you just know we must be in for quite a treat, right? Right you are, so without further ado, let's dive into a truly spectacular episode, this is "A Royal Problem." NOTE: Because this episode is complex in content but simple in the number of pieces involved in its execution, this review will largely be divvied up into the main players involved, that being (1) Princess Celestia and Princess Luna, (2) Starlight Glimmer, and (3) Twilight Sparkle. Miscellaneous items will be covered towards the end of the review, but the meat of the review will be found in covering these three characters. The Royal Sisters: Princess Celestia and Princess Luna So despite the Cutie Mark Map and Starlight Glimmer initiating this episode, this episode is really about Princess Celestia and Princess Luna. As you can see below, I've labeled Starlight Glimmer not as the "Problem Resolver," but rather the "Problem Confronter," and that's because she really doesn't resolve things, and honestly that's not a bad thing. I'll go into more detail about that later, but really, the primary actors here are Celestia and Luna, because ultimately they have to be the ones who resolve their differences. Before I go any further, let me first just say that it is about damn time we FINALLY got an episode focused on both of these two, especially Celestia. While Celestia did have a great appearance in the season premiere, it was still in the same role we've always largely seen her in, that of mentor; while it makes sense that Luna has had more appearances to date since she does have more personal issues to tackle than her sister, pretending like Celestia had no issues of her own would have risked making her out to be a Mary Sue. While I still don't think that Celestia has as much to deal with in her personal life as her sister does, it is nice to finally see her flawed side as well, and really I just want to see even more after this of these two just doing sister-things together. But back to the meat of things. What is the problem they need to deal with? Basically a sibling problem. No really, that's it. Even after Luna's return, they still haven't learned how to truly appreciate each other, mostly on a professional level. They clearly love each other, but they run into a problem that many siblings can run into as they get older, busier, and more distant (while these two live in the same castle, they run an entire country and celestial bodies, so it's not hard to see how they might be more distant even living in such close proximity to each other): they fall out of touch with each other's lives, what the other is up to, the challenges and struggles they face on a daily basis, what their priorities and schedules are, and just forgetting how to make time for each other in general. It's actually a very understandable problem especially for people who have siblings (especially those in two-child households like myself); keep in mind, in a two-child household with siblings not that far apart in age, your sibling is probably your first best friend, but also someone who as a kid you most likely live with on a daily basis and the best friend you are least worried about getting into spats big and small with because you know that, unless something REALLY bad happens, you'll still be loving each other at the end of the day. After years of living together, you can easily take for granted the time you get to spend with one another, but before you know it you're growing up, moving away, and seeing each other far less than you used to. This can be even harder than seeing parents less, because just as you tell or do things with parents that you wouldn't do with anybody else, you also talk about or do things with your sibling that you wouldn't do with anyone else, and they get you in a way that not even your parents can since they're usually pretty close to you in age. So they're distant and don't appreciate what the other goes through on a regular basis, seems easy enough to resolve, right? Well, not really, especially for these two. I would argue that since they're the rulers of all of bucking Equestria, they like to think that this was either a problem that would either fix itself, or was not even a problem at all, just something they could ignore. Most of the time in their daily lives they have to worry about what they can do for others, not necessarily what they need for themselves. This made it easy for these issues to slip under their radar, though it's not untrue to siblings either; siblings often let problems between each other fester under the surface until they can't any long and they just explode. This seems to be where Celestia and Luna were heading before Starlight intervened, and thank goodness she did because who knows how things may have exploded if she hadn't. What doesn't help is that they literally operate polar-opposite daily schedules (although this episode left me confused as ever as to how much Luna does typically stay awake during the day; Celestia clearly sleeps at night, but Luna often makes daytime appearances, so what the buck is it? I suppose that the most likely possibility is that she gets 7-8 hours of sleep after going to bed somewhere around 7 or 8 am, which would mean that the latest she's waking up typically would be at 4 pm, with possible exceptions to that rule, of course. And if the situation really calls for it on special occasions, I'm sure she can get up around noon or early afternoon for special events and get some shuteye later in the day too), so they really only see each other normally in the morning, late afternoon, or early evening, and even then they're usually super busy. They do, it should be noted, both do little kindnesses for the other, something which in my experience as a sibling older ones often do since they no longer have 24 hours a day to do something nice for their sibling; Celestia makes pancakes every morning for Luna, which always goes unacknowledged since Luna is really too tired to care and just wants to get to sleep, and Luna tries to make the castle as peaceful a place for others to sleep as possible, which Celestia can never really notice or acknowledge since she's usually still busy with kingdom affairs and is on her last leg of the day by that point. After figuring out that this is how the situation is (doing some very good research I might add), Starlight of course does her old cutie mark-switcheroo on the two so that they have to see for at least a day how the other has to live their lives and what kind of struggles they have to put up with, just so they can appreciate what the other goes through. Just what do they find out? Basically that they have an older sibling-younger sibling dispute very much rooted in an old trope about older and younger siblings, that being who they are as a result of how they grew up. Luna learns that Celestia, as the older sibling who has always taken the lead being the face of the two, largely has to devote most of her time and energy to fulfilling societal expectations, very similar to how older siblings and firstborns may often feel more pressure from their parents to succeed professionally. Celestia needs to constantly worry about where she's going to be next, who she needs to help her with something, who needs her help, and doing all of this with the same calming, serene smile on all the time, even if it's not what she's feeling at the moment. After a thousand years she's great at it, but what she's come to take for granted is the idea that her life is as hard as it could get. What she craves from Luna is just some quiet moments where just the two of them can slow down and not be so perfect, just sisters doing sister things. Celestia in turn starts to learn that Luna, as the younger sibling who has never garnered as much attention as her elder sister, largely devotes most of her time and energy to working behind the scenes, doing her most good in the Dreamscape, where she can assist ponies one-on-one in the deepest depths of their psyche. She no longer craves the praise of her subjects as she once did before becoming Nightmare Moon, in fact she seems rather comfortable with working alone (something Princess Celestia clearly is not), but, as the more neglected publicly of the two, Luna resembles very much the archetype of the younger sibling whose parents put less pressure on them than their older sibling to succeed, and as a result they can often feel neglected. Like this archetype, Luna does not seek affirmation from her subjects, at this point she just wants to help them (emphasized nicely by how much her botch of the fundraiser for a field trip for a bunch of foals bothered her so), but she does seek affirmation from those closest to her, and since her parents aren't still around, that happens to be her sister, her elder sibling and in a sense a semi-parental figure to a certain extent. After seeing what could be the extreme result of not resolving this problem, that being the return of Nightmare Moon and the emergence of Celestia's own dark side, Daybreaker (an extreme fear no doubt, especially considering Starlight is the one who dreamt it up, but nonetheless not outside the realm of possibility with such powerful beings), Celestia manages to defeat their demonic dream-selves (which works for me considering I would argue that Luna was having a harder time personally dealing with Celestia's neglect, or at least it was hurting her more, while Luna's neglect of Celestia was something Celestia was just trying to bury under a smile, not exactly too hard for her after centuries of wearing smiles day-in and day-out), and the two sisters proclaim and reaffirm their love for one another, resolving to make things right and make time for one another no matter how busy they may be, since, well, there's no pony more special to them than each other. Their relationship is too unique and precious to squander, and you get the sense that even though it will be a lot of little things making up the bulk of it, that alone will be enough for those two to show each other how much the other truly does love them, plus it should make it easier to go about their own business every day. A fantastic lesson learned by two characters who, although not the biggest messes in the world since they are so mature from centuries of life, do deserve more development than they have gotten considering they are easily two of the most complex characters on the show. What more can I say other than everything with these two was perfection, plain and simple. The Problem Confronter: Starlight Glimmer There's not nearly as much to say about Starlight or Twilight, thankfully, but both did have pretty great episodes in their own ways. For Starlight, this was the very first time the Cutie Mark Map has called her, and to top it off in another first it called her alone, the first time it has called anyone alone. While this could have potentially fallen into the trap of "Ohhhhhhhh, Starlight Glimmer is too special to go with anypony else to solve a friendship problem," it actually was executed great here and made perfect sense. We know the map seems to understand how both a character's strengths and weaknesses can help resolve a conflict, and it even seems to have some innate sense of how delicate situations may be. In this case, the problem did not need someone who was going to be able to actively teach Celestia and Luna what they were doing wrong (not entirely at least) so much as somepony who could confront the problem in the first place, make it known to Celestia and Luna that they were having problems. Starlight was oddly well-positioned for this; unlike Twilight she didn't have any particularly close attachment to Celestia or Luna, but she's about as observant and measured as Twilight can be as well, making her ideal for identifying that a problem exists in the first place, studying the situation more closely, identifying what the problem is, and confronting both sisters about it. She was also ideal, oddly enough, for forcing these two to confront their problem head on, more so because of who she is than anything else. It's not hard for Starlight to imagine worst case scenarios, but for very different reasons than Twilight; Twilight almost always considers in even the most banal situations what a worst case scenario could be just because it's who she is. It's just another thing on her checklists that she takes into account. Starlight, on the other hand, tries not to worry about worst case scenarios most of the time because if she does, she knows that she's going to spiral into a deep spell of depression and anxiety. Why? Because she was at the heart of a worst case scenario when she was a tyrant and almost destroyed Equestria to boot. Normally she has a pretty good lid on these anxieties, but it's not hard to see why she easily fell into these anxieties here. After all, she was dealing with a problem that not even Twilight herself had ever confronted involving the two most powerful rulers in all of Equestria, so given that her frighteningly real (to her) nightmare involved the Royal Sisters spiraling in their hatred for each other into Nightmare Moon and Daybreaker, it's clear that she would have held such a scenario to be her own failure. Her anxiety inadvertently forced Celestia and Luna to remember how much their subjects depend on them, which means they even depend on the two of them maintaining harmony between one another. So while she may not have ultimately taught them the lesson or fixed things single-hoofedly, Starlight nonetheless was the best pony to initiate the confrontation of and resolution of Celestia and Luna's squabbling, even if she herself quickly realized that it would take them more than her since she was, even early on, quite in over her head. A very good episode for Starlight all around, in a very odd way at that considering her ultimate contributions were, to a certain extent, pretty limited beyond giving Celestia and Luna the tools to patch things up between one another. Starlight Glimmer looks far cuter while eating pancakes than anypony should, at least for the sake of the audiences' health The Beleaguered Comic Relief: Twilight Sparkle This episode found Twilight in a place we very rarely see her, especially these days: primary comic relief while being a supporting character! It's rare enough for her to be the primary comic relief in an episode nowadays, but usually even when she is she's still the main character. Here she was most definitely a supporting character and very deliberately did not have anything much to contribute towards fixing things, which is where most of her humor stemmed from. We already know that Twilight absolutely hates the idea that there are problems she can't help out with or tackle herself, but it was even more maddening for her to think that there might be something wrong with her precious mentor and her sister which she could not help resolve. Of course, the fact that Celestia is such a beloved mentor to her is exactly why she couldn't help; she hold Celestia on a pedestal, even more than most ponies typically do, and while this usually isn't a problem, here it would have been. Compounded with the fact that she has had to help Luna with many personal problems in the past, it's not hard to imagine that Twilight could have easily thought that Luna alone was to blame for these problems, not the both of them. Thankfully, her displeasure and anxiety at these circumstances leads to some splendid OCD-Twilight freakout moments. The best running gag of the whole episode (and one of the funniest running gags this whole season so far) was the spell Twilight used to animate some kind of ballet figurine on a music box or something, which ended up being as hilarious as it was creepy. I especially enjoyed that the Royal Guards by Starlight could easily hear her talking to Twilight and thought that she was going insane. Besides that, Twilight didn't do much else but spend most of the episode freaking out, but to her credit she did trust the map and let Starlight go on her own in the first place, and it's not like she gave Starlight any bad advice, even if none of her advice turned out particularly helpful either. All in all, while hardly a serious appearance for Twilight, it was a splendidly funny one! I like to think that Twilight was freaking out from this so much that she spent about two straight days maintaining that spell so that she never missed a moment that Starlight was in her room... 'tis a most amusing thought, indeed! Miscellaneous Items -The pacing of this episode was absolutely fantastic and proof that fast-paced does not always equal frantic or dumbed down. There was a ton to fit into this one, but the episode managed to do so without ever feeling like it rushed or didn't cover something properly by largely staying on point, not having any subplot outside of the few times Twilight conversed with Starlight, and keeping the focus on a handful of characters. Excellently fast-paced episode and kudos to the writers on a job well done there! -I love little details like the fact that Celestia makes pancakes (or some kind of nice breakfast) every morning. While it initially might sound like some kind of Mary Sue character trait, it actually invites closer inspection from the viewer. Upon further consideration, it does not seem like Celestia makes her other meals on a regular basis (probably because she's so busy normally during lunch and dinner, and run-ragged by the time dinner arrives), just breakfast. I like this detail for a couple of reasons. For starters, it probably started as something she did because she knows the value of a good breakfast for starting your day off right, and eventually it warped into a peaceful little routine of hers that she seems to enjoy doing by herself. A little something that's only hers and helps her start her day off right. Considering this, it makes her gesture of making Luna breakfast every morning all the more touching; it's clearly a nice little way she tried to reconnect with her sister, even if Celestia focused more on its convenience for her as well as what it means to her rather than if it would make any sense to her sister. Mmmmmmmm... hey, Celly, if Luna doesn't want any I'll totally have some panca- Damn it, Celly, don't just throw the pancakes away! I'm sure one of your servants or guards would enjoy what appear to be heavenly pancakes!!! -Speaking of breakfast, I kind of adore that Luna just DOESN'T do breakfast. Don't get me wrong, I love breakfast and it's sad that anyone wouldn't enjoy it, but let's keep in mind what it means to Luna. Let's say ponies are typically in bed between 9 and 10 (late night exceptions notwithstanding). That means Luna is working essentially a 10 hour shift in which she's monitoring the dreams of every pony in Equestria, one-on-one. By the time she gets off, breakfast to her is the same as what dinner is to some poor schmuck who just worked a full shift and is getting home after 8 pm, ready to have nothing but a frozen meal he can make in five minutes and just fuel himself with. I absolutely died when she bit right into the side of a pineapple and ate a banana peel (girl must have a stomach of steel, though I couldn't help but think she was also trying to spite Celestia just a tad both times), and her I don't give a buck face made it even better! The cherry on top was when she made the shittiest pancakes ever, which again, makes sense, but hopefully from this point on she'll be more willing to have actually good breakfasts with her sister, and get to spend some quality time with her to boot. She either REALLY hates pancakes, really hates Celestia's pancakes, or just wanted to prove how much stronger her bite strength is than Celestia's. JAWS OF STEEL ON THAT MARE!!! AND A STOMACH OF STEEL TO BOOT! That's just... noooooooooo, Luna, noooooooooo. Why you do that poor banana that way, what that banana ever do to you? Also, dat sibling death glare... drink it in, folks, because it is terrifying. Note to self, NEVER say no to Celestia's pancakes. -The 'talking to themselves' bit between Celestia and Luna was handled masterfully. If they'd done it poorly, we would have seen Luna doing it earlier, then Celestia, THEN they would have been like at the end "Were you talking to yourself???" But the way they did it here was so much better. We first saw Celestia doing so when she was trying to do Luna's duties, which was made even funnier considering you realized just how much she relies in her professional work on working with others, and how weird working in solitude is for her. But when Luna said to her at the end "Did you talk to yourself," that suggested that Luna does the same, and I LOVED that that's how they showed us that. Heck, I could totally relate because I ALWAYS talk to myself, in fact, I love it, I don't understand why some people think it's weird talking to yourself when you're all alone. Heck, it's my favorite time to vent about anything because I don't have to lash out with my most extreme emotions at anyone when they're actually there. -I really need to know now if Twilight really does know ballet. I know it's just the object she was using, but she looks too cute in a ballet outfit for me not to know. -Luna's dream was bucking terrifying. Between the creepy foals surrounding her in a dimly lit room and her bucking TEETH falling out, holy shit, that was all downright bone-chilling. That was wayyyyyy creepier than anything in Starlight's dream. -Daybreaker has a very distinct personality from both Nightmare Moon and Celestia. She's about as campy and over-the-top as Nightmare Moon, but just as Nightmare Moon as a lot of the same self esteem issues as Luna, Daybreaker takes Celestia's general confidence to an extraordinary level of contemptuousness and pride. Like Celestia, she is very sure of herself, but in a prideful manner that leads her to reject the notion of needing anyone else at all, and only needing power. Whereas Nightmare Moon in a twisted sort of way still wants to be loved, even if it means enslaving ponies into loving her out of fear, Daybreaker couldn't care less what others think of her and is clearly happy to just flaunt her power. Overall, whereas Nightmare Moon represents a cold, distant Order based on devotion to her and her cold, distant Moon alone, conversely Daybreaker represents a fiery, raging Chaos based on trampling all who would dare challenge her or just the idea that she couldn't handle and control everything there was to handle with her power and her Sun. Her design was pretty awesome too, while I'm at it, and it was great seeing the show daring to go such a dark place as it did in Starlight's nightmare. "Mwahahahahahah, bow before me mortals, behold all these flame wars on Twitter I totally started! See the destruction I have wrought online and quiver in fear of my ability to anger others with my unbearable s***-talking and trolling ways!!! NYANYANYANYANYANYANYAAAAAAAAAAAAA, I'M SO EVIL!!!" Sweet Celestia, she truly is an unspeakable evil unlike any other! -I really want Celestia's pancakes now because they looked so delicious. Also, I think this might explain why Twilight loves pancakes. Luna's, on the other hoof, I will pass on "Oh... they're... lovely, Luna." "Oh I know they're not, I just wanted you to have as s**tty a breakfast as I usually do!" -The dream bubbles floating past Celestia was one of the best parts of the whole episode. On the funny side of things, we got (1) Discord in a pillow fight with the Smooze, (2) Cadance jamming out with DJ Flurry Heart (and I have no bucking idea who was dreaming that one), (3) Pinkie Pie surfing on Gummy, (4) Fluttershy on a giant Angel Bunny (come to think of it, the idea of a giant Angel Bunny is kind of terrifying), (5) Flim and Flam swimming in loads of bits Scrooge McDuck style, and (6) best of all, HER ROYAL LORDSHIP, EMPRESS DERPY, FIRST OF HER NAME, LONG MAY SHE REIGN!!! On the sadder side of things, we had (1) Doctor Whooves with what appeared to be a Weeping Angel, and (2) most bucking importantly of all, APPLEJACK AS A BABY CRADLED IN THE ARMS OF HER PARENTS!!! I don't know if AJ was dreaming this or if Granny Smith was, but this is the closest we've ever come to seeing them, and it's as important as it is sad. Her dad appears to be pear green (very much like Granny Smith) and her mother appears to be grey or tan. Very similar to some of the background information we got about Derpy and other characters in "Parental Glideance," this has just put the death of AJ's parents once again front and center to AJ's character, and central to how she's turned out like she has. If this is supposed to be set-up for the episode later on this season which will be focused on how her parents met, I have to say that I am loving it DHX, please give me MORE! -Luna getting tired from smiling was too funny. Don't have much else beyond that, I just think it was hilarious how hard it was for her to do it all day. -I love that both Celestia and Luna turned on their sibling-sass the second they switched places and made it a competition as to who could handle the other's duties most easily. That's just such a sibling thing to do and I could easily see myself doing that with my sister in similar circumstances. -Starlight's "Heheheheheheh, oh buck, I may have just pissed off the two most powerful rulers in the world, please don't blast my flank to the moon or the sun" face after impulsively switching Celestia and Luna's cutie marks was perfect and I don't blame her for freaking out after what she did. Dat moment you're this close to getting sent to the moon and the sun at the same time -Luna's facial expressions, particularly whenever she was tired in the morning after a long night of working, were too funny and I could look at them all day! "Get that bucking thing outta my face." "I'm not touching you! I'm not touching you!" Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh, memories... this makes me want to start randomly poking my sister in the arm for no reason other than to her annoy her And now, Batbrony proudly presents, "Drunk Luna Ain't Got Time For Your S***" "Ah will boop you whenever I want as much as I want, Miss Twilight-Sparkle-with-Aqua-Highlights! Ya know why? Cause I'm the bucking Princess of the Night and just spent a whole night protecting your dreams AGAIN! If ah wanted to, I could let your dreams drive you BUCKING insane with a flick of my wrist, no joke, you want Lovecraftian horrors up the ying yang, well that's what you'll get if you don't GIVE ME MAH BOOPS!!!" "I don't understand, I just asked her if she could pass an apple over!" "Well that was your real mistake, Luna's very protective of her fruit." -I very much liked that neither Celestia or Luna were completely bad at what the other did. Luna only screwed up at two tasks while doing just fine with the others and ultimately Celestia acquitted herself just fine in the Dreamscape. A more annoying version of this kind of episode would have taken the blatant "Town Mouse - Country Mouse" approach of having them just fail at everything that the other normally does, and with characters that powerful, that just wouldn't make sense. That being said, it is quite clear that unlike her sister, Luna is not a fan of checklists... and suddenly I now know where Twilight's checklist-fetish comes from... why am I not surprised by this? -At first I thought it was just plain stupid that Celestia and Luna haven't confronted this problem sooner. It didn't bother me because I wanted this episode very badly, but the more I thought about it, the more I think it's actually justified. You see, we know that years have passed in show-time since the show began. Well, with most ponies pushing off such a problem that long wouldn't make sense. The thing is, Celestia and Luna are immortal alicorns, so for them, time probably has different meaning than it does to normal ponies. Years passing before they talk to each other about something personal probably doesn't feel like that long of a time for those two, so really, if one considers that, it actually makes sense that they would have allowed these circumstances to stay buried beneath the surface and just continue to annoy them more and more over the years, festering. -Overall, this is one of those rare episodes that, for me, is just perfect in every which way. It's perfect in knowing what it was and what it set out to do, remaining laser-focused on those goals no matter how fast the pace got, and ultimately being everything it possibly could be in knowing itself and embracing itself for what it was. After the last two episodes, I love so much being able to say that. That's all I've got for ya, everypony! Hopefully, like I said earlier, now that this episode has happened we'll get more episodes starring Celestia and Luna! I'd eat that up even if it was just "A Day in the Life of the Princesses" kinda deal where we see them just doing their own thing together, including activities as sisters. But for now, until next time, this is Batbrony signing off. I'm off!!! *cue dramatic exit* D'awwwwwwwwwwww, is a wittle Daybreaker!!! WHO'S A CUTE SUN TYRANT, WHO'S A CUTE SUN TYRANT? YOU ARE! YES, YOU ARE!!! "Mornings... not even once." ALL GLORY BE TO EMPRESS DERPY! LONG MAY SHE REIGN!!!
  11. flutterbard

    Canterlot Snobs You Hate

    Canterlot is full of unlikeable snobs. Are there any that you really don't like?
  12. You should see in some episodes like Boast Busters and Feeling Pinkie Keen, that Twilight didn't actually believe in that some sort of stuff in some episodes that anypony else would of done. So what happened to her common sence?
  13. So there are recurring references in mlp that all lead back to the tale of king arthur such as: Canterlot - Camelot Knights of the Round Table - Elements of harmony (They even have a round table now) Merlin - Starswirled the bearded I bet there are plenty more as well like possibly the sword in the stone being connected to spike's egg hatching and twilight's glowing eyes. Now do you think there's a possibility of a King Arthur themed episode? If so what would it be about?
  14. Ponies + Indian Food = This Now that that's out of the way, good morning everypony, and welcome to another edition of "Batbrony Reviews," our last for a while I'm afraid given that the Season 6 hiatus is upon us. Thankfully, I am glad to say that today's episode was most delightful indeed, even if it wasn't perfect. A nice return to the Friendship Map formula of last season with a fun pair of ponies we've already seen once this season, let's dive into "Spice Up Your Life." So, in this case I feel compelled to get what I thought didn't work in this episode out of the way first, because it bugged me as the episode unfolded. I was honestly having a hard time figuring out what the lesson was supposed to be. That is not to say that the episode didn't have a message, oh no, it did indeed. But I think it was the Friendship Map formula in general that threw me off; the presumption was that the quarrel Rarity and Pinkie had to solve was that between Coriander Cumin and Saffron Masala. Now there clearly was a quarrel, but I don't think that's actually what Rarity and Pinkie had to do (though the episode didn't do a very good job of explaining that). The nature of the quarrel wasn't very well explained; obviously both ponies were fighting a lot since their business was struggling, but I never really got a sense for what Coriander wanted to do differently from his daughter. Rarity pretty much handled everything in the music montage on his end, and Coriander was just kind of grumpy the whole time. In the end, the action did not center around those two at all, at least not salvaging their relationship. It also wasn't just about saving their business, because that's not really a friendship problem either. Yelp and RT reviewers manifested as a pony; as one can imagine, she sucked as much as you would think she would :crackle: No, in actuality, the message is actually quite nuanced, if not a little too subtle until the very end. I think the friendship lesson that they had to teach was to all of Restaurant Row in Canterlot, not just Coriander and Saffron. The crux of the conflict was that nopony in Canterlot would even try their food because they didn't have a hoof rating from Zesty Gourmand. Up till the very end, even after tons of other ponies in Canterlot were trying and clearly loving their food, Zesty still refused, contending that it was beneath her to do so and would ruin her reputation. What we have here, oddly enough, is a critique of critic culture, specifically critics who write for published and major media sources. Critics can sway public opinion quite a bit, and that can often be a good thing if the critic is good; but the problem with critic culture, sometimes, is that critics can sometimes become too full of their own opinions for their own good. They care more about the weight of their critique than remembering that they have their own personal tastes just like everyone else, and sometimes it can be so bad that it even prevents them from giving something new a chance, or judging something based on its own context/what it's trying to be instead of measuring it against things it simply shouldn't be. An Indian restaurant should be an Indian restaurant, not a place of high, cultured food. A blockbuster should try to be a great blockbuster, not an art house film, just as an art house film shouldn't try to be a blockbuster. Forming one's opinion, especially if voiced in public with the power to sway others, is a heady responsibility that should not be taken lightly, especially if you do have the social standing to sway others, and sometimes it's all too easy for people to forget that they could be wrong or just not like something that most others will if they actually can influence others' opinions. I very much liked this message, but again, I feel like it was not delivered, until the last few minutes of the episode, in a way that was readily understood, at least as the center of the episode's theme. Like I said, the friendship problem was not readily apparent at any point in the episode, but I think it came down to the episode title; people shouldn't be afraid of spicing up their lives, trying something new or giving something a chance, and shouldn't let the opinions of others prevent them from trying something if they think they'll like it or actually do like it. If you have a different opinion or tastes than someone else, that doesn't make you less of a person for it; all it means is that your ideas of what's enjoyable are different from what others find enjoyable. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that most of the time, and like I said, I really like this message; I just think it could have been delivered better. I love this guy! Coriander just does not have any time for any of your BS, Rarity; don't take it personally darling, he doesn't have any time for anyone's BS, and he thinks that everything is BS 99% of the time Now that that's out of the way, let's get to what I loved. Really, I loved everything about how this episode looked and felt. The style was great; getting to see Canterlot again, great; getting to see more Rarity and Pinkie Pie, great; getting a father/daughter conflict, great; father/daughter turn out to be Indian, very unique and awesome to see the writers branching out their character types in such a diverse way; the song, just as unique and awesome, combining familiar musical talents with a style of music we've never heard in the show. Basically, this FELT and LOOKED exactly as I hope new slice of life MLP episodes should; enough familiar elements combined with new ones to add some great flair and style, with just a dash of nice world building to boot. Admittedly, Rarity made a few more mistakes than Pinkie Pie, but really they both just weren't doing the right job from the get go; Pinkie Pie was just as bad at attracting customers to a restaurant in Canterlot as Rarity was at preparing the decor of the place, and in that regard the episode again felt a tad confused as to what it was trying to tell us about them. I think it came down to each of them working off of each other's strengths as the situation demanded; Rarity was still great at converting the restaurant, but that simply wasn't what needed to be done. Likewise, nobody questions that Pinkie Pie is as friendly as can be, but she wasn't about to attract new customers in Canterlot simply by being outgoing. This goes back to the episode's message; in Rarity, we see how the opinion of one with social standing can be turned to good in helping nudge others along to trying something new. In Pinkie Pie, we get obviously the tried and true message that, if you love what you do and know that others can and should love it too, then you shouldn't conform to the point that what makes your product unique and special in the first place is entirely absent from the finished product. Pinkie, that's not helping anyone Coriander and Saffron were a great addition to the show; again, the nature of their conflict with each other wasn't explained the greatest, but Saffron was perfectly friendly and Coriander was a hoot when he was grumpy, with his constant, deadpan expression and complete disinterest in everything (very nicely captured in his movements; I thought the animators did a wonderful job of making Coriander actually LOOK as heavy-set as he was drawn through his very slow, drawn-out movements). Zesty Gourmand was genuinely unlikable, and it was very nice how the episode showed she was so stubbornly set in her ways and had such a high opinion of her own opinion that she wouldn't even taste Coriander and Saffron's food. She missed out on a great chance for some great food all because she thought too highly of herself. As I said, I loved the Canterlot setting, and aesthetically the episode was extremely bright, colorful, and vibrant, very befitting an episode with this title. The music too, as I mentioned earlier, was a real treat and, although unique for the show, felt perfectly at home in it all the same. Overall, while this was hardly a perfect episode, it was a very delightful episode all the same, and if you can figure out the messages, they're actually very good ones. They're just a little hard to catch in the episode's actual execution. Until next time everypony, which may be a few months given the hiatus, this is Batbrony, as always, signing off. I'm off! *cue dramatic exit* That's not helping anyone either, Pinkie P.S. Before I forget, it was great seeing Starlight at the start of the episode with the rest of the Mane 6, in an actual slice of life episode, and on top of that fixing the Friendship Map with Twilight. Very nice to see the writers working her in like that finally in a small, supporting role.
  15. Would you live in Castle of Friendship or Celestia's Castle? Basically you somehow ended up in Equestria, as a human (yes you're still human) have the choice of being taken into care by either Princess Twilight or Princess Celestia? Me, I would probably choose Celestia's Castle, at least I get to avoid the danger that is Ponyville. Sure, the noble ponies would give me odd looks that a strange hairless ape sits among them at the dinner table. But at least I get to avoid the weekly monster attacks or other madness from Ponyville. Not only that Celestia is older and more mature. Plus I get to give Celestia nice pets and belly rubs. I bet she would like that.
  16. EquestrianScholar

    [Canterlot] Meetings At The Throne Room

    Princess Celestia @@Flying Ace, For as long as Princess Celestia could remember since she had and her sister had been crowned, they had served their subjects and been there to listen. That is where she was today, in the throneroom preparing for th tone her subjects could enter and speak with her. Most days this was a joy, though other days it could become tedious if. Yet no matter how bored or frustrated she was Celestia showed her subjects a warm smile and her attention. Today the princess had some additional stress from paper work, meetings with dignitaries and nobles, all this being where things got a bit more tedious. Yet sh would not allow this to effect her day. Turning to a guard at the door and says, "Please open the doors and allow the first to enter". The guard bows to the princess and does so. ((I don't always have confidence starting a roleplay, I hope this will do))
  17. Parties like Pinkie

    Royal Guard Theories.

    Long read ahead, so brace yourselves!! So I watched the new episodes, and saw all the Royal Guard everywhere, and it seemed to me like there were TOO MANY of them. I did a little research on the matter, and some questions arose. First off, the MLP wiki on Royal Guards says: "The guards... their cutie marks are obscured by their uniforms." Also: The My Little Pony wiki page on Cutie Marks says that: "The My Little Pony franchise is famous for cutie marks, unique symbols located on the ponies' flank or haunch." Unique. This means different, original, not like others, etc. This brings to mind a certain question. If cutie marks are usually different, then how are there so many Royal Guards? They surely can't all have the same cutie mark, as they are unique. Also, since they cannot all have the same cutie mark, and their uniforms cover the area where a cutie mark is located, what if the Guards don't have cutie marks at all? Does this mean that all ponies without cutie marks must join the Royal Guard? But, also, the same MLP wiki page on cutie marks states that: "The cutie marks are obtained when ponies discover a unique characteristic that sets themselves apart from others" so does this mean that the Guards actually DO have cutie marks? Wrong! "A unique characteristic" Guards all do the same thing, so no outlying differences there. "sets themselves apart from others" Guards, once again, all do the same thing. This brings an altogether different question forth: How does a Royal Guard become a Royal Guard? Are they, as I stated above, simply cutie-mark-less ponies, or is there something else in play? Maybe the Guards aren't ponies at all, but Magical beings conjured by Celestia and Luna? Or maybe there was only one or two Royal Guards to begin with, and they were cloned to make more? Also, since the Head Guard is Twilight's brother, does this mean that all Head Guards are actual ponies, who are controlling the other Guards? Does this mean that the Head Guard knows the secret of the actual Guards? I'm just throwing ideas out there, and I have no idea what could be true. (Although the cloning thing might make for a good fan-fic) Please tell me if you've got a plausible solution for the matter? TL:DR - Royal Guards aren't real ponies.
  18. In the third movie, Sci-Twi wanted to be accepted into the Everton Independent Study program because she thought she would be able to expand on her education and current research. She believed that Crystal Prep was too easy of a school for her, so she wanted to explore what more that was out there by upping her game. Instead, she transferred to Canterlot High which was well-known as being worse academically than Crystal Prep. Why would she transfer to Canterlot if isn't going to help out her education much? I know she wanted to learn more about friendship, but she doesn't necessarily have to go to a worse school to find friends. She could probably still learn about it regardless. Those are my thoughts - what are yours?
  19. ok so this has bugged me for some time now (sorry for the slew of topics I just had one of those bursts of questions) If we are to look at the kingdoms out there, a LOT of what we see in the interiors of these castles does not seem to match the outside. for one the interiors have too many windows. In the center of twilights castle there are windows all around but looking on the outside there does not seem to be a place that reflects that. In celestias castle there are many many halls with barrel vault ceilings and columns upon columns of either windows or stained glass - also not reflected on the outside of the castle. Cadences castle is harder to tell as it's so square.. this one might actually be ok. The castle of the 2 sisters - the original castle doesn't even match the second one they show, and it's got some inconsistencies with the one shown in the journal of the 2 sisters as well. ----- as an architect graduate this drives me nuts. If one were to do a 3d rendering of these castles how would they map out the rooms? I'd love to see a layout that shows me "oh ok they are in THIS part of the castle now" instead of just having random rooms and you never know what part of the castle they are in. What do you guys think? Are there architectural plans for these castles or is everything just drawn up when say, a new convenient room is needed?
  20. Alrighty, welcome, welcome, welcome back everypony to another edition of Batbrony Reviews! After a 2 month hiatus Season 5 is back in business! And my, my, is it back in business indeed. It's never a bad thing to start things off with a Rarity episode; I don't believe she's ever had a truly weak episode unlike other main characters like Pinkie Pie or the CMC. Not that most of the characters ever have weak episodes, but Rarity's are especially of a consistent high quality, and in my opinion "Canterlot Boutique" is no exception. Without further ado, let's dive right in and take a look at the 14th episode of Season 5, shall we? New episode, where?! Right this way, darlings! First of all, I don't actually have a lot to say about this episode, but that's not because there wasn't a lot I liked, oh no, there was. It's actually mostly because it was very well-paced to the point that scenes were so fully developed that not a lot ended up happening. It was a very self-contained episode with a grand total of two settings, Ponyville Boutique at the very start of the episode, and for the rest of it Canterlot Boutique. In many ways, it actually felt like a Season 1 episode in that regard, and even has some parallels in its overall feel with Rarity's first episode, "Suited for Success." I get how that might not be for everyone (myself included given that I have complained about "MMMystery on the Friendship Express"'s lack of interesting settings before, but that episode sucks in general and the lack of settings is the least of its problem), but here I thought it really worked given that it was a new setting and not a whole lot was happening. As far as Rarity goes, I really liked her characterization here, mostly because the episode was not entirely clear (at least I didn't think so) for a while as to just what exactly the problem was. We knew that this lifelong dream of Rarity's was not turning out the way she'd hoped it would, but it wasn't exactly clear why. It wasn't that she was getting worked to the bone; sure she got some fatigue, but Rarity's a hard worker and we know that she loves putting in a hard day's work. Eventually it became clear that there was simply no more joy and passion going into her work; her lifelong dream was turning into a chore, not the passion she'd always treated her work as, and that made it simply unbearable! I think even outside of creative communities many, many, many people can relate to this feeling; work simply being a means to a paycheck, not something you actually love and truly care about, and how crushing that feeling can be. What made it worse for Rarity was that she was technically in charge of this venture (and I will say in that regard it's a little surprising that she didn't put her hoof down sooner, after all, Sassy Saddles was her employee), so for it to get out of her control like that must've just hurt her all the more. I'm guessing she went with it for so long because she was convinced that she wanted to do whatever it took to make it Canterlot, even if it meant not doing her work her way, but eventually she realized that not only was that unnecessary, but also simply not worth it even if it had meant closing her business (which thankfully she didn't have to do). Her forgiving Sassy Saddles only made her lesson learned all the better, because after all, her manager never really meant any harm. Aside then from her fantastic characterization, there were other things that were great about Rarity here as well. Her song "Rules of Rarity" was great (as virtually any Rarity solo song is), and pretty much had a constant presence in the episode for the second half of it, to the point that it was very much doing some of the storytelling here similar to how "Art of the Dress" did in "Suited for Success" (which I believe was intentional, and the two songs even sounded similar). It was great seeing both her creative side on display (I always love when the show embraces the fact that Rarity is a fashionista and designer and yet doesn't make her cliche as buck as any other show would) as well as how business savvy she remains, I mean, heck, she now has two branches for her business, that's a permanent change and shows how far her own career has advanced since the show started! Overall, Rarity was super solid here; she kept a cool head for the most part and didn't fall into hysterics, but still learned a valuable lesson rather than knowing it right from the start. Super solid Rarity episode, and I enjoyed her here as I pretty much always do when she's the star of an episode. As for other elements, I really had no major complaints about anything. Her friends were great, Twilight especially being super kind helping Rarity out like she did. Sassy Saddles was a nice new supporting character; I liked that she wasn't just straight up antagonistic, but rather just a pony trying to do the right thing but in the wrong way. It seemed like she'd failed at managing a number of boutiques in the past, probably because she seems to value very much separation of responsibilities between managers and designers. So it's not that she's so much a control freak of everything, but rather a control freak of her own areas of responsibility, and I know that in many different careers there's a lot of people who hate sharing their particular responsibilities with others. It's a very understandable character flaw, and she really was well meaning through and through, but thankfully she learned a valuable lesson as well about working and collaborating on an equal basis with a business partner and aiming for long term success in the fashion business through diversity of stock, not just selling the buck out of one dress, which would only remain in fashion for so long. I loved being back in Canterlot and always love that setting, and the fact that they were consistent in showing mostly unicorns there was a nice little aesthetic touch. That Cosmare writer was HILARIOUS, and I can't believe I'm saying this, but they somehow made a character more over-the-top... than Steven Magnet. I still don't know how, but they did it. This guy... I love this guy! Loved, loved, LOVED this last scene! The one thing that was completely unnecessary was that random as buck obese pony at the end; I know that same pony technically showed up on that picture in that locker earlier in the season in "Tanks for the Memories," but it was just a weak joke in general. It was a fat joke that came at the last second in the episode and was literally the last thing we saw, just kind of fell flat as a regard of that. However, I LOVED the last scene when we got to see Rarity actually working her boutique, something we usually only get to see her do with one customer at a time or a close friend. Here though it was packed with new characters, and once again, I cannot reiterate enough how much I love Canterlot ponies! The variety in personalities was great, the dresses they were picking out were beautiful (I adored her entire princess line up and also loved the fact that it illustrates the princesses' effect and influence on Equestrian popular culture), and the whole scene was just a lovely look into Rarity when she's in her element. Overall, this was a slower episode, once again reminding me very much of a Season 1 episode, but I really, really liked it very much for what it was. Season 5's back, and we got from the looks of things another Rarity episode to look forward to next week, yay! ... ... OK, one more time... I LOVE THIS GUY!!!
  21. Good morning everypony, welcome back to another edition of "Batbrony Reviews." My my, looky here, we've got ourselves another Rarity episode this morning (and another one after that! Dear Lord, this is simply the season of Rarity, isn't it?! ). And what an episode it was. I have made it no secret in the past that "MMMystery on the Friendship Express" is my all time LEAST FAVORITE episode of MLP; it's incredibly stupid, boring, convoluted, and relies on many main characters acting incredibly stupid and out of character. I hate, hate, HATE IT, and all the more since it came at the tail end of my still favorite season of MLP, Season 2! :okiedokielokie: This episode, "Rarity Investigates," has officially made up for that, by giving us an actual mystery episode that was executed extraordinarily well. Without further ado, let's dive right in and take a look at "Rarity Investigates." You've been hit by, you've been struck by... A SMOOTH CRIMINAL! First of all, as with last week's episode, Rarity was spot-on yet again (maybe even more so). This week we really got to see her in her element the entire episode, being simultaneously fabulous but also extremely competent in her own way (which we all know she is). Not only was her changing wardrobe throughout the episode both fabulous and entertaining to watch, but Rarity really tackled this challenge from the start all on her own. It was actually a wonderful display of her generous spirit; she just completely gave of her own time for the sake of her dear friend Rainbow Dash without asking for anything in return, and it's always nice to see her Element being highlighted like that. Not to mention that, unlike in "MMMystery on the Friendship Express," where Pinkie Pie is practically too dumb to breathe and needs Twilight to hold her hoof on everything, Rarity figured everything out all on her own. And she did it because Rarity paying attention to little details in general makes perfect sense for her, it fits right into her fashionista persona and professional life. Heck, it was even highlighted at the beginning of the episode before the investigation even began when she not only took care to make sure her display was arranged perfectly, but also noticed that the rhinestones she got were the wrong kind. Lots of little subtle details like that throughout the episode in highlighting what makes Rarity such a strong character, and I really loved that about it. Fabulous Gem-Butt Pony: She can make even sunscreen adorable and fabulous So she was just lugging all her new outfits AND the couch around the entire time? If not for her unicorn magic, I'd call BS Miss Rarity, I believe you're trying to seduce me Next, let's look at our deuteragonist here, Rainbow Dash! She was... basically what a deuteragonist in this role had to be. She didn't do a whole lot besides geek out over the Wonderbolts and get impatient with Rarity, but neither of those things were really all that bad. She was cute when she was geeking out and funny when she was getting impatient, and if anything it was kinda nice seeing her not trying to hog the spotlight, both in the episode as a whole, as well as when she selflessly retrieved Spitfire and risked her own shot at performing with the Wonderbolts. Not a whole lot else to say about her besides that, but she had a fine episode, and it's fun seeing her interact with Rarity, albeit probably less whacky than it would've been in, say, Season 1 or 2. But that's a nice quality of Season 5, it goes to show how much these friends trust each other even if they have very different personalities (another good instance of that was when Rarity didn't lose her cool over RD staining her dress, something she most certainly would have done in Season 1). Rainbow Dash always dances with style! Ha! See what I did there? Come here!!! I'm gonna eat you!!! GET IN MAH BELLY!!!!! The other characters here were just fine. Wind Rider was kind of obviously trying to set RD up (even though at one point I thought Spitfire herself might've just run off), but he didn't really leave much of an impact overall. It was pretty obvious it'd be him, but we just didn't learn enough about him besides his backstory to really care. So he was just kinda there, not a very memorable antagonist really. The Wonderbolts were just fine, I always like seeing 'em myself; Spitfire and Soarin' are always fun to see, and I didn't think their suspicions of RD were unwarranted or unfair, given that they gave her a chance to prove her innocence after all (and RD certainly wasn't doing herself any favors in her defense). It was very cool getting to meet Spitfire's mom, Solar Flare, I really liked her design and certainly wasn't expecting to meet a character like that. Very nice getting to see Sassy Saddles two weeks in a row as well, as well as the fact that she and Rarity are getting along just fine now (and on top of that the Canterlot Carousel Boutique seems to be doing quite well as well). Finally that trio of Royal Guards was pretty hilarious during that interrogation scene, especially that one guard with his line about counting the bolts in the ceiling. Ooooo, hello Raindrops, long time no see! Love the dress! Rarilicious: Making even detective work SUGGESTIVE AS BUCK! Seriously, I'm guessing all three of those guards are glad she can't see under the table Lastly, I have to of course mention the episode's art-direction and style. Obviously I always love seeing episodes set in Canterlot, it's a great setting and I love getting to see more of that city, just like we did last week. The fact that we also got to see two of the Mane 6 there at an event that Celestia herself was attending, and neither of them were Twilight, is also quite noteworthy I think. It shows that these characters are continuing to grow as adults and, while they're not growing distant from each other, their own real-life responsibilities are taking them further from home, and that's something they're more comfortable with at this point. Finally, the noir style. Oh my, the film noir style. That was simply too fabulous! It just screams Rarity in every sense of the word and fit her character to a T, from the inner monologuing/thinking out loud to herself (even when she didn't realize it ), to the black-and-white cinematic look, to the jazzy music in the background. Loved, loved, LOVED everything about this style, and it's the final element of this episode that really makes it not just perfection as far as a Rarity episode goes, but also solidifies its blowing that wretched "MMMystery on the Friendship Express" out of the water. All in all, yet another lovely Rarity and Season 5 episode, and it looks like we're in store for what could be the best Rarity episode of this season to date next week (helped by the fact that it will include my favorite pair of best friends in the Mane 6, Rarity and Applejack, helping each other! ). See you all next week everypony, when the Rarity shall be tripled!!! I'm off! *cue dramatic exit*
  22. ~The Night Shift~ The fallow up RolePlay to Luna in Charge and Meeting at the Throne Room, Princess Luna is once again holding court in the Canterlot Castle throne room. This Role Play is open to all approved citizens of Equestrian Empire. The Princess of the Night awaits her subjects. ~Roster~ Princess Luna Astral Legend Rakon ~Waiting to be seen~ Lightning Dust Silver Spoon Moonlit Ace RP Link
  23. OOC Octavia The sounds. They played so elegantly during this time. Octavia knew it as well and she had planed for this thoroughly. She looks around to see the crowd sitting in their seats, staring at her. Only her mind was she available where she played and followed her words with grace. You're good, Octavia. As she thought, she looked at her cello, as it glimmered and shined in the light. It was beautiful. She couldn't believe that for all these years, she still had this same cello she got on her birthday. It was such a present she cried. All from those years, she gradually got better and to this day she plays. Playing on, she shifts her notes with careful steps and begins her main part.
  24. Fimfiction Link (A light story focusing on Culture and Characters) Breaking News Headline: COLT CATCHES LUCKY BREAK, GETS TO BREAK A LEG WITH PRINCESS LUNA The winner of the first 'Royalty for a Day' contest has just been selected, a young earth pony colt from Ponyville named Pipsqueak. This lucky colt was selected randomly from tens of thousands of entries across Equestria to spend an evening with Princess Luna, stay at Canterlot Castle, attend the first Royal Nightmare Night Festival as Princess Luna’s personal guest, and will be knighted as Equestria Royalty for the day. When asked, Pipsqueak had this to say. “Oh, I was just so excited when I got the letter telling me I’d won. Princess Luna‘s been my favorite Princess ever since she visited Ponyville during the last Nightmare Nights Festival three years ago. She’s ever so much fun! I must‘ave sent a thousand letters, I did.” There you have it folks. I can’t say I’m not jealous of the little tyke. He’s agreed to tell us all about his day as Royalty sometime next week. Have fun, little guy. -Head writer for the Canterlot Times, Inky Quill. Written for VGI based on his art provided here. Edited by Drgnwolf and enti0 who is also British and really helped with the accents. Dear Pipsqueak It is our pleasure to inform that you have been randomly selected as the winner of Our first Annual Royalty for a Day contest. Congratulations! We fondly remember when we first met you at Ponyville's Nightmare Nights Festival three years ago. Imagine Our surprise when you won. My sister even commented on Our smile as We read the winning letter. We will pick you up from your home on the 29th of October, promptly at 5pm. From there we will attend a private dinner in the castle and go over plans for the next day. Please dress casually for the 29th, but bring a nice business casual outfit for the 30th, and your Nightmare Nights outfit for the First Royal Nightmare Nights Festival. You will then stay one more night before We return you the morning after. We look forward to seeing you again, -Princess Luna Pipsqueak smiled and placed the frequently read letter back in it’s drawer in the nightstand next to his bed. He turned back to look around the room. The letter had distracted him from the search for his misplaced pirate sword. Three years. Thought Pipsqueak. After three years I finally get to see her again. “Mum! Mum!” yelled Pipsqueak as he rummaged through his closet. “Where’s my pirate sword? I can’t go as a pirate to the Royal Nightmare Nights Festival without my pirate sword.” Pipsqueak’s mom called back from down in the kitchen “"Already packed, Luv, you'll find it in there eas'ly enough. I've gone and wrapped it in a sheet to keep it safe!" “Oh, alright then.” Pipsqueak dug himself out from under a pile of dirty sheets that he hadn’t had time to wash. “Ave you got everything else?” “Um, I think so,” he called, yelling into his suitcase as he scrounged around. “Yes, I do.” “What a good lad. Come down 'ere and give yer mum a hug before you go. Quick now, can you hear it? That's the Princess, she just landed her chariot right outside!” Pipsqueak struggled to pick up his suitcase. While he tried to pack light he found that a costume including a hat, sword, and fake parrot took up more space than he was expecting. Add to that his nice outfit, four dress shoes, basic toiletries, and a picture of Princess Luna that he wanted to get signed, and the stiff suitcase could barely stay shut, despite being as large as he was. Eventually he managed to get the suitcase onto his back, and began awkwardly walking down the stairs, his head turned behind him to hold the suitcase. He was about halfway down the stairs when he heard a knocking from the front door at the bottom of the stairs. Pipsqueak was only able to turn his eyes to see his mother already opening the door. There bowing to his mother and calling his mother ‘Lady Cipher’ was Princess Luna. After his mother returned the bow, Luna then turned to him and bowed deeply. “Greetings, Prince Pipsqueak. Art thou ready for our royal dinner?” Pipsqueak turned his head and bowed. Suddenly the weight of his suitcase slipped from his back and he felt the bottom fall out of his stomach. He could only watch as the suitcase tumbled down the stairs, merrily bursting to toss his carefully packed belongings every which way. Pipsqueak covered his eyes with his hooves until the clatter of his life coming to an end settled. When he finally opened his eyes he was shocked that such carefully packed belongings could so easily wind up a giant mess. His pirate outfit had fallen across the stairs without too much damage. His nice clothes, however, had been strewn about and covered in toothpaste, which had somehow managed to become impaled by his costume pirate sword. He looked from the mess to his mom, and then to Princess Luna. He felt his cheeks redden as he noticed a pair of clean, white colts underwear resting upon her head, one leg opening having come to rest over her horn. Pipsqueak’s mother was close to exploding. “Pipsqueak Burgundy Leviathan! What, In, Equestria were y'thinking when you managed to throw yer knickers on our most exalted Princess Luna's horn!” “It’s quite all right, Lady Cipher,” said Princess Luna as she began to chuckle. “There is a reason royals do not normally carry their own luggage, things like this simply happen from time to time.” Ms. Cipher looked from her boy, to the mess, to Princess Luna before swiping the offending garment from Luna’s horn as she blushed. “Terr’bly sorry, Princess. Oh! You must think us rude beyond belief-” “As We said, Lady Cipher,” interrupted Luna. “Things simply happen from time to time. One would be remiss as a leader if one was not capable of taking friendly amusement from such circumstances.” “That’s very understanding of you, Princess. Would you like to come in while we get this cleaned up.” Luna smiled as a midnight blue aura surrounded the split items and sorted them into two piles. “No thank you. Everything is absolutely fine. The luggage was simply overstuffed. The castle will have ample toiletries, you need only bring your costume and your good clothes.” Luna stopped when she noticed the picture of her and smiled in a teasing fashion. “What is this, Prince Pipsqueak? A framed picture of me? That hardly seems appropriate. You haven’t even been a Prince yet and already you have a picture of me for your private collection.” Pipsqueaks cheeks flushed an even brighter red and he began to stammer. “N-no, Princess Luna, it’s not like that. You see, you’re my favorite Princess, my hero, and I just wanted to get your signature on my picture of you.” Luna chuckled. “Oh, you want a signed picture of me to put in your room. My, my, you are the little rogue, aren’t you? But We merely jest, perhaps a bit too aggressively given the undergarments of a teenager that I recently wore as a headdress. We would be more than happy to sign a picture for you. But perhaps it should be a picture of you and myself together at the festival tomorrow. I do believe that would be the most fitting.“ “Blimey! You mean it?” asked Pipsqueak beaming. “Oh, you’re the best Princess ever!” Luna smiled as she floated the clothes into the suitcase and zipped it up. “Come, my Prince, We must hurry if We are to raise the moon on time.” “Absolutely. Bye Mum,” said Pipsqueak quickly, as he hugged his mother before dashing out the door. “Be nice to the Princess, Pip,” reminded his mother. “‘And thank you, Princess.” “Think nothing of it,” said Luna. “I merely wish to show a bright-eyed child a good time.” Pipsqueak had never ridden in a chariot ride before and he couldn't get enough of it. He dashed from side to side, the front and back, constantly trying to look at everything at once. It took a full ten minutes before he settled down to stare at the approaching castle, lit in all it’s glory by the light of the soon to be setting sun. Princess Luna found the childlike wonder extremely refreshing. The work of a Princess was constant. With the exception of the few minutes she took to appreciate her night sky, just after and just before sunrise, she never seemed to find the time to appreciate anything. But with the little pinto colt dashing from side to side, yelling about how amazing everything looked from up high, she found herself looking from side as well and actually enjoying herself. Though, Luna didn’t need to run from side to side, she merely had to turn her head, but at least it gave her a good view of the young colt’s utter amazement at the world around him. “Princess?” asked Pipsqueak. “Might I ask you a question?” “Of course, my Prince.” “Why did you call my mother ‘Lady Cipher?’ Is my mum secretly a noble?” Luna chuckled. “No, my Prince. But, on the morrow I will name you a Prince for a day. That would make your mother a Lady, even if she was not of noble birth. I decided that I should address her appropriately. As you helped show me, Nightmare Night is a night of fun in many different forms. I decided that it might serve that interest, fun, by calling your mother by her soon to be proper title, seeing as I won’t be able to call her that tomorrow.” “Oh, I get it,” said Pipsqueak. They had just begun to pass over Canterlot proper. Pipsqueak stuck his head out the back of the carriage in order to get the best view of everything when he spoke again. “Princess?” “Yes, my Prince?” “Why is it that when you were around my mum you kept saying ‘We’ but around me you use ‘I?’ Luna hid her smile as she turned to find Pipsqueak still leaning out of the chariot while he turned his head to await her answer. “After many hundreds of years of using the royal ‘We’ I find it is a habit most difficult to change. But around those I am more comfortable with, I find ‘I’ much easier to use.” Pipsqueak beamed at the compliment before following up with another question. “But, why did you ever talk that way in the first place? I mean, why do you talk so formally? I’ve never heard anypony talk like that.” Luna tapped a hoof to her chin as she thought. “I suppose that has to deal with class differences from over a thousand years ago. It’s quite boring, actually, are you sure you wish to hear of it?” Pipsqueak nodded, having forgotten the view as they approached the castle in the sky chariot. “Oh,” said Luna. “Alright, but I’ll try to condense it as much as I can.” Luna politely cleared her throat as she collected her thoughts. “Both Royalty and the Aristocracy tend to value themselves much higher than the common pony and enjoy constant reminder about this fact. It is much like a star hoofball player might enjoy constant recognition within his school. One way ponies of elevated stations took to reminding themselves of their status was to create complex social rules and language that could only be truly mastered by those who didn’t have to waste time with manual labor. Eventually the language and customs began to differ so greatly that it was all but impossible for the common pony to effectively communicate with the aristocracy who began to look down on their countryponies who couldn’t comprehend the nuances of their culture. “This wasn’t always an issue, largely because any business deal required a certain level of mutual respect. But it was almost always an issue in the court system, which use to be dominated by aristocratic lawyers and judges. The difference in communication was highlighted by the fierce pride many earth ponies feel about their livelihoods and hard work. The result was that earth ponies often refused to hire someone to argue on their behalf even though they couldn’t understand the words and games their opposition used to gain the upper hoof. Eventually tensions between the two groups came to a head when one particularly creative aristocrat tricked a particularly proud earth pony into saying that his farm was owned by the aristocrat and, so, the court took the earth ponies farm away and gave it to the aristocrat. It was at this point that my sister and I intervened.” Luna stood and exited the chariot with Pipsqueak who looked around, having just realized that they’d landed without even the faintest bump. A unicorn guard levitated Pipsqueak’s bags to a waiting attendant and Luna asked that the garments be cleaned before being placed in his chambers. “Where was I,” muttered Luna as Pipsqueak waited. “Ah yes.” They began to make their way to into the castle, Pipsqueak too enthralled with Luna’s summary of social and legal changes to appreciate the castle. He was so distracted, in fact, that he didn’t even notice when Princess Celestia had fallen in step behind him, prompting the Princesses to share grins and stifle knowing, very un-princess like, giggles. It was only when the doors to the Princess’s private dining hall were opened that a multitude of mouth watering smells caught Pipsqueaks attention. “Oh, we’re in the dining hall. When did we get here?” Princess Celestia’s soft, warm, and very casual voice sounded from just above and behind Pipsqueak “Just now, my little pony.” Pipsqueak jumped, turning midair. “Oi! I mean, Princess.” He bowed deeply, both out of respect and in a failed attempt to hide his crimson blush. “Pipsqueak,” said Celestia bowing. “It is an honor to finally meet you. My sister has, very excitedly, told me about the meeting you two first had three years ago and how much she was looking forward to seeing you again.” “She did?” asked Pipsqueak excitedly. He turned to look at Luna and smiled as she nodded. “Of course I did,” said Luna. “Finding out that a holiday concerning the terrifying Nightmare Moon was giving so much joy was probably the happiest experience I’ve had since my return. Aside from being reunited, and forgiven, by my sister, of course.” Pipsqueak beamed. “Shall we?” gestured Celestia to the tables. “Let’s,” declared Pipsqueak as he felt his heart race. His mother had spent the last week imparting what she knew about proper manners and he didn’t want to embarrass himself in front of two princesses. He bowed to let the two Princesses pass him to choose their spots at the head of the table. The hours of lectures and practice came flooding back to him and he raced ahead to pull out the Princesses seats for them, starting with Princess Celestia as she had approached her chair first. “Oh,” said Celestia as she stood behind her seat at the head of the table. “Such a gentlecolt. Luna, I thought you said your contest was only for foals.” “It was supposed to be,” said Luna as she made her way to her seat. “But I had no idea that colts in this day and age were so well versed in proper etiquette.” “M’ladies,” said Pipsqueak with a smile as he pushed in Celestia’s chair as she sat. “Oh my,” said both sisters. Pipsqueak diligently moved over to push in Luna’s chair as she took her seat. Celestia turned to her sister. “I think it’s been centuries since somepony other than a servant did that for me.” Luna nodded. “It hasn’t happened to myself since I returned.” Pipsqueak looked at them in confusion. “Isn’t that what a gentlecolt is suppose to do to a proper lady?” “Mare or lady, yes,” stated Celestia. “It even used to be common for male guests to push in our chairs. But that was more than a thousand years ago. Since then Luna and myself decided to minimize the gap between the aristocracy and the common pony and we have discouraged it with ourselves. Most ponies likely think it improper now, though it is not.” Pipsqueak gulped. But before embarrassment could take hold, something his mother had drilled into him during those many hours of etiquette popped into his head. ‘All mares love a compliment. If you misspeak, try to make it a compliment.’ "Well I'd say that, once in a while, the bestest ponies in our lovely land ought to be treated good and proper now and then." “Oh,” said Celestia. “He is good.” Pipsqueak bowed, before taking his own seat on the side of the table, next to Luna, as was proper for her guest. Immediately after he was seated three servants appeared, seemingly out of nowhere to Pipsqueak, and placed one dish of the first course in front of each of them before removing the cover. Pipsqueak’s mouth immediately began to water at the site of a stunning dish of carrot tzimmes. The carrots were perfectly round, and were so soft they flopped over each other. They were practically sparkling with perfectly heated, slightly caramelized, honey and had a dash of cinnamon sprinkled over the top. It was also clear that the dish included a secret step to preparation that his mother used, a small amount of butter was mixed with the honey to help tie all the flavours together more neatly than if they had been added separately. “Carrot tzimmes! That’s my favorite,” declared Pipsqueak. He turned to Princess Luna. “How’d you know?” Princess Luna held in a chuckle at the explosive excitement of the little colt. “I didn’t. I actually don’t know of this dish,” Luna said, trailing off before turning to her sister, a playful glare in her eye. “Sister, do you know of this dish? The one that just so happens to be my guest’s favorite?” Celestia took a large and satisfying whiff of the dish before replying. “No, dearest sister. I must admit that I rarely ever heard of this dish. Though, I do believe it is more popular with some of the older, more traditional earth pony families. That said, the chef might have mentioned to me the desire to make this dinner perfect, and I might have offered the young Prince’s address so that he might contact his mother and inquire about his favorite dishes.” “Sister, you should not have done that,” whined Luna. “But you must admit, he is enjoying himself,” said Celestia, pointing to the colt. Luna turned back toward Pipsqueak to find that he had one of the happiest faces that she had ever witnessed on a colt. To his credit, Pipsqueak managed to control himself and settled for adding one moderate bite at a time rather than shoving it in his mouth as he would have prefered. The carrots were, for lack of a better term, perfect. They were soft and tender but still meaty. Honey had slightly caramelized with the thinnest layer of butter adhering to it. It was only after the third bite that Pipsqueak realized that brown sugar had been added to thicken the honey, and provide a little extra flavor. If Pipsqueak had been eating as fast as he wanted to he would have missed that subtlety which also served to provide a delightful contrast to the sweet and meaty carrot. The cinnamon, of course, had only been dusted on the top of the carrots after cooking, creating a small zip at the beginning which served to heighten the sensitivity of his tastebuds. Sadly, all good things come to an end. As Pipsqueak placed the final bite within his mouth he made sure to savor it slightly longer than all the rest. He turned to the Princesses with a most satisfactory grin. “That was the most beautiful thing I think I’ve ever eaten.” The Princesses had not touched their tzimmes, as they were too enthralled by the pure and innocent pleasure expressed by the young colt. But when he spoke, they turned to look down at their steaming pile of carrots. Celestia was the first to try a bite, and it most certainly was very delicious. Luna also found the meal to be one of the better ones since she had returned from her long banishment. She said so and they all agreed, it would be hard for the chef to top that appetizer. The prediction held true and the rest of the meal, while quite delicious and the best that Pipsqueak had ever had, never quite tasted as good as that first dish. Pipsqueak fought through his growing food coma and managed to hold in a most undignified belch. “That was the best meal’ve eaten. Bloody brilliant posh nosh.” “I must say,” said Luna. “That was quite the meal. Were all the recipes provided by Lady Cipher?” “I think so,” said Celestia. “Though, at this point, I don’t really care. Whatever the chef did to pick this meal, I’m making sure he does it again tomorrow.” “The day after tomorrow,” corrected Luna. “Tomorrow is the festival.” “Oh,” said Pipsqueak. “Tomorrow, tomorrow. Oh no! I still need to get my suit cleaned for tomorrow.” Celestia lazily waved a hoof in the air. “The servants will have seen to that, have no fear.” “Tonight,” muttered Luna. “Tonight. Oh, I still need to raise the moon. And you need to lower the sun sister.” “Oh, if I must. How long do we have?” Just then a servant appeared from somewhere far outside of Pipsqueak’s perception, and whispered in Luna’s ear. “Ah, it seems that we have five minutes sister.” “Five. That should be long enough to walk out to the balcony. Come sister, the sooner we are done the sooner we can pleasantly sleep off this meal.” “Sir,” said Luna. A small grey pegasus stallion with a black mane stepped out from somewhere Pipsqueak didn’t care to identify. “Please see Prince Pipsqueak to his chambers.” The servant nodded. “Come now master Pipsqueak. I will show you to your room.” “Mmmm. Okay. Hey, what’s your name?” “Sir.” Pipsqueak blinked. “I said what’s your name. No need to be shy, I’m not actually a Prince.” The stallion grinned with bemusement. “My name is Tuxedo Sir, sir.” “Haha, sir Sir. Sure Sirsir. Show me my room, Sir Sirsir. I’m sure you're the best servant in the castle, Sir Sirsir, sir.” “Most hilarious sir.” Pipsqueak grinned nearly the entire way as he was gently guided to his room. “I’m fourteen, but for one day. For one day I’ll be a Prince.” Pipsqueak didn’t know how he’d made it to a bed. He hadn’t even been aware of walking. “We’re all jealous of you sir. Now, sleep tight.” “Jealous? You shouldn’t be jealous. That mean’s you're not having fun. I’m only Prince fer a little while. You, you get to see Princess Luna every day. Princess Luna is the best Princess.” “True, sir. Can I get you anything else before I go.” “Anything… Oh! Make sure to tell the chef thank you. That was the best meal I’ve ever had. And thank you, Sir.” Pipsqueak was vaguely aware of a blanket being placed over him as he drifted off to sleep. A steady knocking woke Pipsqueak the next morning and his eyes immediately shot open. Today is the day, today is the day. Golly gee willikers, this is going to be the best day ever! A flash of memory came to Pipsqueak as the voice of Sir came, muffled, through the thick wooden door of his chambers. “Mr. Pipsqueak, are you presentable?” “Oh,” groaned Pipsqueak. “Y-yeah, sure.” The doors opened and a flood of light invaded the dark room. Pipsqueak, in abject terror of the sudden harsh brightness, squeaked and threw the covers over his head. “Oh, sorry about that,” said Tuxedo. He closed the door, walked several paces to the left, and turned on a less aggressive reading lamp. “There. That should be better, sir.” Pipsqueak slowly took a peek from under the covers. Finding the light only moderately objectionable he stretched and yawned. “Yeaaaaahh. Mhmmm. What time is it?” “Six in the morning, sir. Princess Luna had intended to have you present for last night’s Moonrise, but as you retired early she inclined to let you sleep and let you see the Moonset instead.” “Oh no. I missed the moonrise? Aww, I’m a dunce.” “Well, sir, you will still have time to see the moonrise tonight. In a way I prefer the Moonset anyways. The few times I have witnessed Princess Luna coax the moon to sleep have been nothing short of both beautiful and intimate.” “Mmmkay.” Mumbled before he turned over, away from the light. “How long until it sets?” “Thirty minutes, sir.” “Thirty,” whined Pipsqueak. “Why’d you get me up so early?” Sir smiled knowingly. “I assumed you at least wanted to shower and groom yourself. The better to appear for her highness.” Pipsqueak opened his eyes and managed to sit all the way up as he began wiping the sleep from his eyes. “Tha’sa good point, thanks. I’m a go take a shower.” Pipsqueak stood up and looked around groggily, though not for a lack of trying. “Um, where’s... Where’s the shower?” “Ah. The guest baths are through that door over there.” He gestured. “Thanks,” said Pipsqueak. Pipsqueak took his first groggy steps toward the bathroom when Sir asked him another question. “Would you like me to have a warmed croissant and some hot cocoa ready for you when you’re done? It should be rather chilly outside.” Pipsqueak had to stop and think for a moment before turning around with a smile. “That would be fab, sir, but might it be possible to make it a buttered crumpet instead?” The servant nodded. “I’m sure the kitchen can come up with something.” Pipsqueak smiled. “What did you say your name was?” “My name is Tuxedo Sir, sir. If you are inclined please call me Sir. Though, don’t feel you need to ask every servant their name. It might become, rather intrusive when you take a tour of the castle.” “I’ll keep that in mind, Sir. Actually, do you mind if I just called you Tux?” Tuxedo nodded with a smile. “As you wish, sir.” Bathing didn’t take Pipsqueak very long. He was still small and young colts weren’t known for being the most thorough. Still, as he would be spending the entire day with the Princess he decided to try to some of the scented shampoos that were provided. Dragon fruit sounded like it would smell awesome, cause dragons were, of course, awesome. Sadly it was a rather normal, sweet fragrance. Not strong or powerful like the beast it was named after. Still, Pipsqueak did like the smell so he kept it. As he stepped out of the bathroom he found Tuxedo leaving. Two freshly buttered crumpets and a slightly steaming mug of cocoa had been placed on a corner desk. “Oh, thanks Tux, that smells scrummy.” Tuxedo had turned to bow, but looked up at him oddly. “Pardon, sir, but am I to presume that scrummy means good?” Pipsqueak nodded aggressively as he consumed one of the crumpets in a single bite. “Mmmhmm,” he mumbled as he swallowed. “Positively crackin’.” Tuxedo smiled as he bowed again. “When you are done you will find Princess Luna to the right, just outside the end of the hall.” “Thanks, Tux.” Tuxedo bowed. “Good day, sir.” “Cheerio,” said Pipsqueak as he nodded back towards Tuxedo. Pipsqueak stuck his head out of the doorway and into a small private garden at the end of the hall, unwilling to completely expose his body to the morning cold until he was sure the Princess was here. Just before he finished scanning the garden from the balcony, a familiar pleasant voice drifted down from above him. “Good day, my Prince.” “Luna,” said Pipsqueak. He jumped outside and turned to look up at Princess Luna. Princess Luna sat atop the slanted roof covering the hallway Pipsqueak had stepped out of. Her legs were crossed and, though her hair was shimmering as if from some unseen breeze, it wasn’t as lively as it usually was. Pipsqueak bowed. “Good morning, Princess.” Luna smiled and nodded in return. He may have only just entered his teen years, but it was obvious how hard he was trying to impress her. He was actually doing quite well despite his age and lack of formal etiquette training. Perhaps it was his years spent in Trottingham. That region of the country generally placed a higher value and focus on royalty and more traditional customs. Whatever the reason, she found his innocence and skill an amusingly rare combination. “Would you like to join me?” asked Princess Luna. “I find that a balcony adds something special when witnessing the raising and setting of both the Sun and Moon respectively.” Pipsqueak nodded vigorously. “Oh yes, Princess. That sounds brill.” Princess Luna chuckled as she levitated the young colt up to sit next to her. She hadn’t talked to many ponies from Trottingham but she enjoyed the accent. It was far different from the rest of Equestria, incorporating slang and terms that, while she didn’t always understand, were very colorful and often filled with enough energy to indicate something close to their meaning. Sometimes she could even piece together the slang. ‘Brill,’ for instance, probably stood for brilliant, a term she had heard Pipsqueak use before. Princess Luna pondered Pipsqueaks colorful speech as she watched him settle down next to her, leaning against the roof. The slant of the roof wasn’t steep, but it definitely warranted being cautious. When he finally settled Luna sighed and reached for her alicorn magic, extending it through an invisible and immaterial plane to the Moon, her special friend. Pipsqueak was torn between watching Luna and watching the moon. He noticed how, at first, she had closed her eyes and leaned her head toward the celestial body. But as her eyes opened he noticed the magic that enveloped her horn. Pipsqueak rarely had a chance to study unicorn magic in Ponyville. He simply hadn’t seen that many unicorns do more than levitation, and skilled unicorn magic was often done very quickly. But it was different watching Luna. Instead of a pulsating glow enveloping her horn as if directing tidal energies toward the moon, the magic almost seemed to caress up her horn in the moon's direction. Each caress extended on it’s own only slightly farther than the last. It was very different from what Pipsqueak had remembered of her magic, possibly even a completely different type of magic, and he couldn't take his eyes off it. The energy continued to flick up Luna’s horn until the energy reached the tip. Once there the magic didn’t hold its shape around her horn as Pipsqueak had expected, but instead almost seemed to roll off of it in little wisps of swirling light that could barely be seen. Pipsqueak found himself blushing. The magic she was using seemed both very mature and very private. After a few seconds he noticed that Luna had opened her eyes and looked fondly upon the moon as it began to lower. Her face, from her lips to her eyes, adopted a loving smile as the moon kissed the horizon. Her smile continued to grow in small ways that Pipsqueak could barely make out as the moon dipped further. Sometimes the changes in her smile were minute adjustments from the raising of her cheeks to an extra curl where her mouth met her cheek, at other times he caught a small blush, and sometimes her eyes sparkled more. Still, at other times Luna let out an audible chuckle or even a nodded. Pipsqueak only realized he had been staring at the Princess after the moon had finished setting and Princess Luna took a deep breath. “Well,” said Luna, “it’s not as flashy as a sunrise but it’s still a sight worth seeing.” Pipsqueak looked away from the Princess as the the sky brightened. Obviously, Princess Celestia would be raising the sun on the other side of the castle, but he wasn’t thinking about that as he remembered the warm, loving glow of Luna as she had lowered the moon. They sat in silence for a few minutes, content in each others company and the brightening colors around them. Eventually Luna spoke up. “I find that I am now quite hungry. Perhaps we should see ourselves to breakfast, my Prince?” “Oh, Mr. Tux brought me a crumpet and some cocoa after he woke me up. But I might be convinced to ‘ave a bit of cereal.” “Cereal it is then,” said Princess Luna as she lowered Pipsqueak off the balcony. As they walked back inside Pipsqueak felt himself shiver, his body expelling the last traces of early morning chill. Luna, however, didn’t seemed phased in the slightest and they enjoyed a pleasantly lonely, uneventful walk to the dining hall. The faint smell of baked goods had begun to pleasantly permeate the halls with promises of great things for the day ahead. Pipsqueak enjoyed a few deep sniffs as they walked. “Pipsqueak,” said Luna as he began sniffing the air, “are we reconsidering the choice of cereal this morning?” Pipsqueak smiled. “Do you already know me that well, Princess? Or do all your guests go through this?” “It is hard to miss your eyes growing in size but many guests often reconsider their morning meal after a few wafts of the royal bakery.” “A real wicked wolf I am. I ‘aven’t had proper prench bread in ages. I might ‘ave to ‘ave a dinnerplates worth.” Luna smiled as they continued to walk. “Would that be a favorite of yours?” “Mum isn’t much of a fan of makin’ it, but me and pap use t’have it every Sunday while we read the comics. Pap always kept his recipe a secret though, kept saying I’ll get it when I move out. Drives me up the wall sometimes, but it’s the best prench bread ever so I’m not complaining too hard. Though I s’pose your chef might be a tad better. I’ll ‘ave to try it ta be sure.” Luna nodded. “Prench toast is an excellent choice, though I recommend going light on syrup and sugar until you try it. The bakers make all the castle’s bread fresh daily, so the toast will only spend a few minutes between the oven and the batter. The cook also adds in a little cinnamon, vanilla, and a touch of powdered almond. He doesn't know that I know about the almond. He still thinks it’s a secret.” “Almond, on prench bread?” “It’s more of a compliment to the vanilla and cinnamon which hide the almond surprisingly well. If prepared right almond can complement or even adopt all sorts of flavors in many different ways.” Pipsqueak’s mind drifted to what the prench bread would taste like. He hadn’t ever had it prepared like that before. But he supposed if Princess Luna liked it then it couldn’t be all that bad. It didn’t seem to take nearly as long to walk to the dining room as it had taken for Pipsqueak to walk to his room the night before, and this time he was coming from further away. He even passed his room. Fortunately the quick passage of time made the smell wafting from the hall less torturous. By the time they arrived Princess Celestia and Princess Cadence were both seated at the table. Pipsqueak paused to bow to the Princesses before taking his seat which now lay across the table from Cadence. “Good morning,” greeted Cadence. “You must be Pipsqueak.” “Yes, Princess. It’s a pleasure to meet you.” “Ah, I see what you mean, Celestia. Even most of my crystal Ponies aren’t as on-the-ball as him. They’d be too nervous sitting with three Princesses.” Celestia and Luna nodded while Pipsqueak grinned at the compliment. “Good day, sir. May I take your order.“ Pipsqueak turned to see Tuxedo standing next to him. Pipsqueak hadn’t even notice him before he spoke. “Yes. I’ll have three pieces of prench bread with cinnamon, vanilla, and powdered almond mixed into the batter.” “Very good sir. Anything to drink?” “Hmmm. Some apple juice would be brilliant, actually.” “And for you, Princess?” Princess Luna was looking at Pipsqueak with a mischievous grin. “Oh, almond. On prench toast. Are you sure?” Pipsqueak paused for a second before he caught on to the game and smiled. “Oh yes, Princess. But it’s more of a compliment to the vanilla and cinnamon.” Out of the corner of his eye, Pipsqueak noticed that Celestia and Cadence had placed hooves politely over their mouths and were, quite expertly, containing giggles. It was the same look his mother used to get when she realized he was playing a joke on his father. “I’ll have that then, five sleeves please,” said Luna. “And a cup of strong black tea.” Tuxedo bowed as he spoke “Very good, Princess.” “Oh,” interrupted Celestia before Tuxedo could retried to fill the order, “That prench toast sounds splendid. Do you think you could add a piece for myself?” “Could you add one for me too?” asked Cadence. “Yes, your Majesties,” said Tuxedo before bowing once more and departing. All the ponies inconspicuously observed Tuxedo leaving, Pipsqueak being more conspicuous than the Princesses, before all four of them broke into small bouts of giggles. “Oh, thank heavens,” said Celestia trying to keep the volume down. “Luna and I have been trying to get a guest to order prench toast like that for ages.” “Yes,” said Luna. “But alas all the diplomats, statesmen, and business ponies we’ve invited always just ask for it the way the Princesses like it. And of course, clueing them in too much would ruin the fun.” Cadence managed to take a sip of her tea as she finally calmed down. “They even got me in on it a few months ago, no luck.” Pipsqueak smiled, proud that his childhood mischief was reflected in the princesses, even if he wouldn’t have explained it that way himself. “What?” came a distant yell. “Okay,” said Luna quietly. She gestured for the others at the table to lean in as if they were part of a great conspiracy. “Pipsqueak, in about ten minutes the chef will come out to deliver the food himself. Simply, how do they put it now,” she turned to Celestia, “play it along.” Celestia sighed but smiled good naturedly at Luna, “Play along. Pipsqueak. He really is an excellent chef, very creative when he feels challenged, but he works best when he thinks we don’t know his secrets.” “So,” muttered Pipsqueak as he scratched the back of his head. “Then why were you trying to get people to say how he did it?” Luna and Celestia sighed heavily before Luna answered. “Honestly it’s just a bit of fun. We know most of his ‘secrets’ but we don’t want him to know that we know. He takes a great deal of pride in his work. But, by having others ‘know’ some of his secrets it pushes him to do better. His pride drives him, but if he thinks he is unmatched then he doesn’t innovate as much. At the same time if we brought it up it’s not fair because we, well my sister and myself, have been around for millenia. It’s just not fair to compare our tastes to even the most noble and refined ponies, after all, we’ve tasted secrets that have died without ever being passed on. “But by having a stranger bring it up it reminds him that there are millions of beings around the world, creating things that he may not ever even dream of. It’s important to remind a world renowned craftspony of that from time to time. They might be the best, but that doesn’t mean someone else can’t do something better.” Pipsqueak turned to find Celestia and Cadence nodding before Celestia adopted a small grin. “Besides, it’s fun.” “Yes,” said Luna and Cadence in unison. Pipsqueak nodded. It seemed way too complex for him, but he guessed that if it was what the Princesses thought was best then he would play along. “Now Pipsqueak,” said Princess Luna as they all leaned back in their seats. “There are some things to go over for today.” Pipsqueak started as Tuxedo walked passed him to give Luna a small notebook. She nodded and opened the book as he backed away. “Now,” said Luna as she opened the book to a pre-marked page. “After our meals I will personally provide for you a tour of the castle. Just before your ceremony two reporters would like to ask you a few questions, nothing too complex, simply asking why you like Nightmare Night and the like. It is, of course, entirely up to your discretion as to whether or not you do this. I can vouch that these particular reporters will be very friendly.” Luna turned to Pipsqueak and waited for a response. “Oh,” said Pipsqueak as he realized that she was seeking his approval. “I, well, I s’pose that’d be okey. I mean, I’ve only been interviewed by student reporters before.” Luna nodded. “It’s a small story about a child and they’ve been made aware that they will only be allowed to question you as you wish it. You simply need to declare the interview over if you become uncomfortable and they will acquiesce without question.” Pipsqueak nodded, more to reassure himself than to respond to Luna, as the Princess turned back toward her itinerary. “After the interview, you will have a few minutes before your official acceptance into the royal family at half past ten. As I understand it, several of your friends will be in the crowd.” Pipsqueak had grimaced at the mention of friends being in the ‘crowd,’ but quickly smiled as Luna looked toward him and his attempt to pass off his nervousness. “Uh, sounds brilliant.” Luna paused before nodding, seemingly satisfied, and turned toward Tuxedo. “Sir, shall we assume that the toothpaste was suitably removed from Prince Pipsqueak’s ensemble?” Pipsqueak blushed and felt his stomach tumble as he noticed Celestia and Cadance politely stifle their giggles with their hooves. He also wondered if they had seen his reaction to the mention of being in a crowd. Tuxedo nodded. “Yes, Princess Luna.” “Good,” said Luna. “It is traditional for a pony being given such an honor to wear something of their station, your dress shirt and pants will be fine for that. After the ceremony we will make an an official visit to canterlot and inspect the soldiers at some point. While out in Canterlot we will attend a light lunch at the Mareway Café at our discretion before continuing with Canterlot or retiring to the castle. After that, we will return and prepare for the evening festivities, which will begin two hours before moonrise. I will need to step away for that period to review the decisions of parliament and dress in my costume, but will join you just before I raise the moon.” Luna closed the notebook and magically levitated it to Tuxedo. “Normally I keep a much more precise schedule, but seeing as today is more about fun than work I thought we’d leave it a bit more up in the air.” Pipsqueak nodded. “It sounds like a full day to me, Princess. I mean, I could probably spend a few days in Canterlot without trying. But are we not going to parliament at all?” Luna shook her head as several servants appeared and began placing plates of food and drink on the tables. Pipsqueak looked down and began to scrutinize his food as Luna continued. “Parliament tends to be either extremely boring or somewhat offensive. Half the aristocracy doesn’t even make sense half the time. Quite frankly I am glad you’re here so that I don’t have to attend.” “Yes,” said Celestia as she finished powdering her prench toast. Pipsqueak noticed that she didn’t use syrup. “My dearest sister elected for me to preside today. Though in her defence she did elect to take tomorrow in exchange.” Pipsqueak began cutting his own peace of prench bread. “Princess Luna, do you think we could at least stop by parliament at some point? I mean, I can’t very well be Prince for a day without at least stopping by to check it out.” Pipsqueak finished his question by placing his freshly cut piece of prench bread up to his nose and sniffing it. His nostrils were immediately assaulted with a variety smells from cinnamon, to vanilla, to butter, and what even a hint of what may have been the almond; even the egg was mixing in with the other flavors in such a way that one couldn’t quite tell which flavor would be stronger than the others. “Oh blimey,” said Pipsqueak with realization. “This is just like my fathers.” He took another sniff and was again mesmerized by the kaleidoscope of smells, “better, even.” Pipsqueak quickly took a bite into his mouth and closed his eyes at the even balance of taste. It wasn’t just the flavor that was well balanced. The eggy mix hadn’t soaked the bread heavily all the way through, allowing for a nice springy bite with a hearty finish rather than a mush of flavors. “My word, this is tops. It’s way better than pap’s.” Luna smiled, but waved her hoof to shush him moments before a portly earth pony in a white chef’s uniform strode up to the table and bowed. He didn’t wait for permission before bringing his head up to look at the royal diners. Princess Celestia nodded toward him as she nibbled her own piece. “Princesses,” began the chef before he turned towards Pipsqueak. “Prince. I do hope you find your meals enjoyable.” Pipsqueak could tell he was nervous as he leaned back from them, almost fearfully, though he kept his face stoic. “Hmmm,” mused Celestia. “I do believe, Chef Crouton, that this young colt asked for almond in his prench bread, and I asked for a sample for myself. Yet my prench bread tastes just like the prench bread you normally make. Am I to assume, then, that almond would be your secret ingredient?” Crouton nodded, never letting his face change though Pipsqueak noticed his tail had moved to between his rear legs. “Yes, Princess. I powder it and only add a little.” “Hmmm,” mused Celestia. “Oh, don’t sulk. There are millions of ponies out there who take an interest in the culinary arts. One family’s recipe matching your secret recipe isn’t a reason to sulk. If anything, I should expect you to spend the day experimenting to improve the recipe even more.” Crouton’s ears perked up and he puffed out his chest. “Yes, Princess. By tomorrow, I will have created a prench bread far above this one.” Pipsqueak noticed the eye contact Luna and Celestia made with each other before Luna dismissed the chef. Then he remembered the delicious prench bread in front of him and started eating, adhering to the fastest possible speed that etiquette would allow. The rest of the meal followed in occupied silence. When they were done, Luna had Pipsqueak return to the room to change into his nicer outfit and had Tuxedo escort him to the royal audience chamber. Pipsqueak was very impressed by the glass murals and Luna shared some of the stories as to how they came to be. Pipsqueak took a particular interest in the mural describing her own fall and redemption at the hooves of the elements of harmony. For her part, Luna found herself telling the tale with less reservation that she normally would. She chose to think on that as Pipsqueak walked off to look at the mural showing the redemption of Discord. Her ultimate conclusion was that Pipsqueak trusted her, and accepted all her faults unconditionally. He didn’t try to take advantage of her kindness or openness and she generally felt more free around the colt than with anypony other than her sister. Sadly, they did have a semblance of a schedule to keep and after several hours of Luna telling various stories about the murals they were forced to put off the rest of the tour in lieu of going over the coronation. When Luna felt confident that he understood his cues, she had him ushered to a side chamber for waiting dignitaries while the guests were ushered in. The waiting room was exquisite, fit for royalty in both size and beauty with it’s spacious seating area and several trees that were flowering, even in late October. Pipsqueak admiration was drawn to a crystal chandelier that dangled without any seeming connection to the ceiling. Many small white crystals seemed to revolve around and under three colored crystals, one green, another blue, and one red They slowly rotated at various speeds under what appeared to be a pure gold circlet. He turned as Luna entered with several earth ponies in hats and trench coats. One carried a camera and the other a pen and pad of paper. “Pipsqueak, these two are the reporters we spoke about, Perfect Flash and Inky Quill. They’d like to take a picture of you, ask you a few questions for the papers, and then afterwards they’ll take a special picture of you and me, just for us to keep.” Luna stepped behind Pipsqueak and reminded him, quite audibly, that “You may end the interview at any time. They are here as our guests, after all.” The two ponies, Perfect Flash with a camera and a Inky Quill with a pen and paper, nodded at Luna’s reminder. Pipsqueak shook their hooves and asked them to sit down. “Um,” said Perfect Flash, “Perhaps, we should get a few photos before we ask questions, then a few after. It will give us the best chance at getting the best picture.” “Sure, I guess,” said Pipsqueak as he looked around. “Where do you want it?” The reporter gestured to Pipsqueak’s right. “Just step to the side so we can get the chandelier and that lovely flowering tree behind you.” Pipsqueak nodded and stepped to the side while Luna stepped away to observe. “Like this,” he said as he lifted a hoof and forced a smile on his face. “Um, no. Perhaps, uh, perhaps you could think of some happy thoughts. You know, help the smile appear more natural.” “Like this,” said Pipsqueak through gritted teeth as he smiled a little bigger. “Oh, dear no. Um-” “Perhaps,” said Luna, “We should take our picture first. It might help.” “Ah, if that’s okay with you Pipsqueak?” said Perfect Flash. Pipsqueak nodded and Luna stepped next to him and flared her wings. “You know the secret to taking a good picture Pipsqueak?” asked Luna as Perfect Flash stepped back and adjusted his camera. “No, what?” he said through gritted, exposed, teeth. “Much like the adage for public speaking, it’s to picture the camera clothed. I prefer a suit and tie myself.” Pipsqueak could help but break out in a laugh at the absurd comment. He noticed the flash through his closed eyes and stomped his hooves as he continued to giggle. “Oh no! I had me eyes closed.” “Don’t worry, don’t worry,” said Perfect Flash. “It’s a perfect picture. I’ll have this developed and a copy will be sent to both of you. Now, do you think you are up to one by yourself?” Pipsqueak nodded as he wiped a laugh induced tear from his eye. “Ya, we can take the picture now.” Pipsqueak turned slightly and smiled as he remembered Luna’s comment. “And… Perfect,” said Perfect Flash as he took the picture. “He’s all yours, Inky.” Inky nodded. Pipsqueak looked at the stallion and noticed that several notes had already been taken. “Alright,” came the nasally voice from Inky. “First off, it’s a pleasure to meet you, Pipsqueak. A real pleasure. Now, why don’t you tell us what got you so interested in writing in to our dearest Princess Luna for the contest.” “Oh, well, that one’s easy now innit it. I wanted to meet Princess Luna again. She-” “Again you say? So you met the Princess before have you? Why don’t you tell us about that encounter.” Inky Quill’s pen scribbled as he spoke through the side of his mouth. “Yes, well. I met her in Ponyville, during the Nightmare Night’s celebration three years ago. She-” “Wooow, and here you are meeting her again, special guest of the first royal Nightmare Night celebration three years later. Fabulous, fabulous. That really is a touching story. Hmm, let me see here let me see. Ah, yes, what was it like when you first met the Princess.” “Inky,” said Luna. “I don’t really think-” “No, Princess,” interrupted Pipsqueak. “I mean, it’s okay. You'er right wonderful, remember.” Pipsqueak turned towards Inky Quill and looked him directly in the eye as he answered. “To be honest, it was a big surprise for all of us. She soared out of the night sky, pulled by two o’the biggest bat pony guards you ever saw in this gnarly lookin' charriot. And when she landed she ‘ad the loudest voice ever. It really scared us, it did.” “Scared you?” mumbled Inky quill around his darting quill. “What do you mean she scared you, exactly?” “Oh, well, it was Nightmare Night, wasn’t it, and then the Princess that was Nightmare Moon arrived and was really loud, almost angry. It was wonderful.” “Wonderful?” The quill stopped its scribbling and was placed to rest at the side of Inky Quill’s mouth. “But, if you were scared then how was it wonderful?” Pipsqueak stared at Inky Quill a moment before answering the seemingly obvious question. “Well, being scared is the whole point of Nightmare Night now, innit. And Princess Luna is really good at it. Load a fun chasin’ us around and poppin’ up ta give us a good scare. I can’t wait t’see what she’s got planned fer tonight.” Pipsqueak watched Inky Quill look at Luna, look back to Pipsqueak, put his pen down, and asked. “Would you say that you are friends with Princess Luna. Pipsqueak nodded without hesitation. “That tells me a whole lot more about you and our beloved Princess than I was hoping to get. Perfect, just perfect. Normally I’d press a bit more for the full story but this will already make a splendid third page story. Real short and sweet. And, well, I wouldn’t want to harrass our new Prince on his first day. Enjoy it kid, the only days that will be better will be when you have kids of your own some day.” “And grandkids,” added Perfect Flash. “And grandkids,” echoed Inky Quill. “With your permission would it be okay for Perfect to take a few photos during the ceremony?” Pipsqueak nodded. “I think that’d be okay.” “Excellent, excellent,” said Inky Quill. “I look forward to seeing you as our new Prince, Pipsqueak.” “Me too,” added Perfect Flash. “I think we’re done here. We’ll be in the front, just to the side of the crowd. See you, Prince.” “See ya, chaps,” said Pipsqueak as they departed. Luna began to follow them out, stopping just before she left to remind Pipsqueak that she’d be back in about ten minutes when all the guests were settled. Pipsqueak felt a familiar dropping in his stomach at the mention of guests, but he managed to keep a smile on his face as he waved Luna goodbye. Pipsqueak paced in the side room while he waited. He wasn’t nervous, or so he told himself. He was just contemplating how he wasn't bothered by the noise of the gathering crowd, and instead how he must have been eating too much to cause his stomach to feel the way he did. He paced to work off the food in his stomach. He heard a knock on the door and turned as Luna opened it and stepped in. “We are just seating the last of the guests. Do you feel like you are ready or would you prefer to go over the steps one more time?” Pipsqueak swallowed. “No, please. I, uh, I think I’d rather get this over. I mean, with, Princess.” Luna stepped into the room and closed the door. Pipsqueak became acutely aware of Luna as she walked over and sat a large, plush, pillow, patting the spot next to her. “Come here, Pipsqueak.” It wasn’t a request. Pipsqueak gulped as he walked over and sitting where he felt was far too close to the Princess. “Pipsqueak,” said Luna, “What do you think of when you think of crowds?” “Huh? Oh, well. I guess I think of going to a do- um, a party that is, or maybe a concert or somethin’. You know, crowd… things.” “Ah,” said Luna, nodding. “And what do you think of when presented with the idea of being in front of a crowd?” “Oh, well. I guess if I think about, I’m pretty worried that it’d go all pear shaped. I’d probably botch it up and make a right ruddy mess of things.” “Do you feel this way when presenting in groups at your school?” asked Luna. Pipsqueak scratched the back of his head. “Well, no. Of course not. But they’re me mates. It’s really different t’present in front of ponies I know.” “Well,” said Luna. “Some of those in attendance will be your friends.” Pipsqueak nodded. “Yeah, but, well, there’s still gonna be a bunch of other folks. And if I muss it up, then I won’t ever hear the end of it!” “Ah,” said Luna nodding. “You fear embarrassment.” “Well, yeah.” “Do you know that I’ve been embarrassed countless times by my own mistakes and the carelessness of others.” “You?” asked Pipsqueak. “But what was that, like, a thousand years ago?” Luna chuckled. “Well, yes, a thousand years ago I embarrassed myself most thoroughly when I became Nightmare Moon.” “What? No,” said Pipsqueak as he recoiled. “That wasn’t what I meant at all, Princess Luna. That was the nightmare that did that to you, that was.” Luna shook her head. “Ah, to you that’s how it seems, but to me that is my greatest shame and it was a tremendous embarrassment. You see, we all judge things differently. Many ponies think like you do, that I was possessed by some external force. But to some, including myself, it is viewed very differently. In fact, there are many ponies that still fear me for what I once did. In the end, however, what matters most when others form an opinion about you is their character, not yours.” Pipsqueak scratched his head again as he tried to comprehend what was being said. “You see, even if you go out there today and mess up, your friends will still be your friends. They might tease you for a bit, but it won’t be meant to cause you pain. On the other hoof, if you learn from the experience and are able to laugh with them you will find that you and they will grow closer.” Pipsqueak shook his head. “But what about the bullies at school? Or strangers? They won’t be trying to have a laugh with me at all and I really don’t want to deal with people talkin’ rubbish ‘bout me.” Luna tapped her chin for a moment. “Well, let’s look at it this way. You’re still a kid so no one is really going to judge you all that harshly. If they do then they would be the ones at fault. Additionally, remember what I said about the judgment for others about your mistakes reflect more on them. There is more truth to those words than just the surface meaning. For instance, if a bully keeps bothering you about this issue, then they don’t really have anything better to do. It means their lives are empty, which is truly a tragedy in it’s own right. I mean, can you imagine what your life would have to be like for you to go around making fun of others for their mistakes from weeks or months ago?” Pipsqueak scrunched his head in thought for a few moments. “You know what? I can’t.” “Then don’t fear those ponies, don’t take their words to heart. If anything, pity their words because it means that they have lives that are lacking compared to yours.” Pipsqueak sat in silence for a few minutes before speaking. “I don’t think I’m worried anymore. I’m ready when you are, Princess Luna. And, well, thanks for the pick me up, Princess.” Luna smiled. “Any time, my little pony. Now, if you are ready we can start.” Pipsqueak nodded. Luna nodded back one last time before turning and walking out the door, holding it open so that Pipsqueak could join her. They walked out behind a hanging tapestry that blocked their site from the audience. Pipsqueak stopped just before the attendance would have become visible and watched as Luna stepped forward. Immediately Pipsqueak became aware of the chatter dying down, though he hadn’t noticed the general hum of the audience before. The quick silence was followed by Luna bowing slightly toward the audience, which he imagined would be bowing back. Trumpets began to play as Luna stood up from the bow. Tall and proud as befit a Princess of Equestria, thought Pip. Luna waited for the last notes of the wind instruments to die down before addressing the crowd in a full royal Canterlot Voice. “Ladies and Gentlecolts. It is my pleasure as Princess of the Night to introduce you to the most recent addition to the royal family. As you all know I was saved four years ago from the living nightmare that was Nightmare Moon by the six Elements of Harmony. In the thousand years since my banishment the legends of Nightmare Moon grew and morphed into the yearly Nightmare Night Festival which is held in nearly every settlement, town, and city across Equestria and many outside it’s borders. This festival grew to mock the very nature of Nightmare Moon, creating joy from terror. “The first year I returned after that long imprisonment I, unfortunately, did not see the joy in that festival, only the terror. I was mortified that even after a thousand years and her defeat, ponies were still trying to appease the horror of Nightmare Moon and so I sought to end the festival once and for all. But the Elements of Harmony again stepped in, as did the children of ponyville.” Pipsqueak heard a number of foals cheer at the mention of Ponyville and he thought that he recognized some of the voices from school. Luna smiled at them warmly. “Yes, children.” She looked up with pride at the rest of the crowd. “For those who do not know the children of Ponyville are in the audience and have joined us for this celebration. Truly I am glad that I was able to invite them.” Pipsqueak felt his chest tighten as another round of cheers erupted and sever fillies and colts shouted up toward the Princes, “We love you, Princess Luna.” He hadn’t expected his entire school to be present. Luna continued, slowly at first to let the excitement die down. “And I love you. For it was you, the children of Ponyville that shared with me the joy of that night, and, in doing so helped me beat the terror that I still felt toward my own actions a thousand years ago. “It was the children, as much as the Elements, that helped me realize the meaning and purpose of the Nightmare Night festival and tonight that festival has come again. Only this time I will be the proud and joyous host of the first Royal Nightmare Night Festival.” A generous applause of stomping hooves echoed around the chamber with the foals jumping up and down to add as much noise as possible. Pipsqueak found that he had joined in at the same time, stomping his own hooves with the rest of the attendance, his own anxiety forgotten. It occurred to him how Luna’s speech was having a universal effect on the ponies in attendance. Luna waited for the applause to die down before continuing. “To honor the children that taught me the joy of this night I held a write in contest. Over twelve thousand children wrote in for the chance to be randomly chosen as the honorary guest for first Royal Nightmare Nights Festival, and one was selected as royalty for this day.” Pipsqueak began walking forward at the cue ‘royalty’ without even realizing it. As he stepped out in front of the audience he felt hundred of eyes turning toward him and he let himself smile as Luna continued. “Much to my surprise, the randomly selected colt was not only from ponyville, but was the child whom was most influential in my newfound understanding of the Nightmare Night Festival. And so, it is my honor to welcome Pipsqueak Burgundy Leviathan as the first ever special guest for the first Royal Nightmare Nights Festival and to welcome him into the royal family for this joyous day.” Princess Luna turned to Pipsqueak who bowed deeply to Luna and held the pose. Princess Luna levitated a foal sized crown over to Pipsqueak that had been brought forward by a unicorn guard. “By the power invested in me as one of Equestria's Royal Alicorn Princesses, I grant thee the title of Prince, with all the trappings and honor that accompanies such a position, until the sun rises tomorrow.” Pipsqueak felt the weight of the crown as it was placed securely on his head. “Rise, Prince Pipsqueak,” commanded Luna as she increased the volume of her Canterlot Voice. “Rise and gaze upon your subjects and love them as your own.” Pipsqueak pushed himself to a standing position and turned to see the crowd cheering his name. He smiled as he saw the first few rows in the crowd. In the center sat Princess Celestia with Princess Twilight and Princess Cadence on either side, flanked by the remaining Elements of Harmony. The rest of the first two rows, however, were occupied entirely by his elementary school class including his teacher, Ms. Cheerilee. Pipsqueak felt a flutter of fear rise in his chest along with the question ‘What if I mess up?’ But just as his fear began to pick up he remembered Princess Luna’s words. Picture them clothed. It was an old adage, used to distract foals who were afraid of public speaking. But Pipsqueak, much to his own amazement, found the comment comforting along with that fact this the ceremony was basically over. Despite the cheering, he managed to pick out a few shouts from his classmates and he called out to them with a raised hoof. “Ponyville Elementary.” This caused the cheering of the crowd to nearly double and Perfect Flash took picture after picture, flash after flash blinding Pipsqueak. Suddenly the foals from his class burst forward and up several stairs to crowd around him. They lifted him upon their shoulders and began cheering his name as they bounced him up and down. “Pipsqueak, Pipsqueak, Pipsqueak!” He saw Princess Luna beaming at him and, when she noticed that he was looking at her, she winked and he knew that he had nailed it. Pipsqueak felt like he was on top of the world and it was, unquestionably, the best moment of his life. But suddenly, Pipsqueak felt himself slip off to one side and away from the hooves that had been bouncing him up and down and he felt himself falling, bright lights from the flash of Perfect Flash’s camera confusing him farther as he bounced off his classmates. He threw his hooves out in a wild attempt to catch himself as the stairs approached faster and larger than he thought possible.
  25. ...what elements would they be? Twilight can keep the element of magic but for the rest of them I would say: Minuette-Laughter Lyra-Honesty (based on her reaction to Bon Bon being a secret agent). Twinkleshine-Kindness Lemonhearts-Generosity and Moondancer-Loyalty