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File: Midnight.png (336 KB, 1003x841)
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"A new thread... if you can keep it" edition
Previous thread: >>37482313

Welcome, we are the wild west of copycats & copyright infringement!
>The BIG Green archive - https://docs.google.com/document/d/1oRVzYT__ZrtEp1HdX8t_dZuy8_8qhUR_ziGspjuZDTk/edit#
>Bootleg Pics archive - https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1r78zz2lXslL1JunYYS188jex5m9Nu9YQ?ths=true
>Bootleg shorts collection - https://ponepaste.org/5037

So, what makes for a bootleg? They can range from sci-fi to supernatural and everything in-between. Whether it's new OCs or based off ponies we know, Earth, Equestria or another world anything goes.
The bargain bin brings a ton of freedom, while some find a niche of defective products, others are just as real as any other pony, or may even push the limits of what knockoffs can be!
Ready to give a pony a chance when things aren't quite right with her? Then a bootleg waifu might be for you.

Newly binned shorts:
>IF Scenario G: Growing Wings (Blondie) - https://ponepaste.org/5438
>Peetzer Pony (Anon) - https://ponepaste.org/5248

New or continuing stories from the last few threads:
>Jacky Part 10 (Blondie)- https://ponepaste.org/5740
>Midnight (AutoPony) - https://ponepaste.org/5610
>Zooma (ReggieSomething) - https://ponepaste.org/5304
>Rosie Rock (FortuneFavors) - https://ponepaste.org/4579
>Condense (ReggieSomething) - https://ponepaste.org/4168
>Minky (NHanon) - https://ponepaste.org/211
>Tinny the Tinfoil Conspiracy Pony (NHanon) - https://ponepaste.org/3979
>SilentFriend (Nebulus) - https://ponepaste.org/4464

Recently Completed:
>Angel Cake's Quest (Blondie) - https://ponepaste.org/5251
>Jacky Part 9 (Blondie) - https://ponepaste.org/1887

The best of the boot;
>Apuljiyak (Mexicancactus) - https://ponepaste.org/3559 [Applejack] [Adventure]
>Carpathia - https://ponepaste.org/3547 [Derpy] [Sad]
>De-Meaning The Six (YukkiPalehorse) - start here : https://ponepaste.org/3176 [Mean Six] [AiE] [Lewd] [Romance]
>Twibot (Ponk) - https://ponepaste.org/1516 [Twilight]
>Jacky (Blondie) - start here : https://ponepaste.org/124 [Applejack] [SoL] [PiE]
>/jacky/ IF Scenario M: Missy Pie (Blondie) - https://ponepaste.org/143 [Pinkie Pie] [Romance]
>Patches (FONYpan) - https://ponepaste.org/3570 [OC] [Sci-Fi] [Lewd]
>Punkfire Xmas (NHanon) - https://ponepaste.org/2702 [Spitfire] [SoL]
>RamboFast- https://ponepaste.org/3550 [Rainbow Dash] [Sad]
>Rare (Anon) - https://ponepaste.org/218 [Rarity] [Sad] [PiE]

Have a broken pastebin link? Use poneb.in, just replace "pastebin.com" with "poneb.in" in the URL!
>>
We in this
>>
>>37597261
Yup. Let's see how it goes.
>>
Bump
>>
>Midnight is the OP featured bootleg
me gusta
>>
>Actually made progress on the green
Get your lotto tickets, guys
>>
>>37597994
Have you been working on her?
>>
About /bootleg/ having a small hiatus - if you end up deciding on it can you please at least give an approximate date when the hiatus ends?
I follow a shit ton of threads, many of them generals and when they take a break I often miss the moment when they pop up again, sometimes noticing them when they're already hundreds of posts long (and I do browse the catalog regularly).
>>
>>37598498
I got a start. Feeling under the weather, which makes me not really want to work on stuff.

I broke the light switch on my car, so I can't troubleshoot electrical shit now - maybe I should work on things I can't break and have to spend $80 for a used original because they don't make repros. Fuck.
>>
>>37598629
I don't think we're such a well-oiled machine that we'd know when would be good. The argument for it is due to the G5 threads but I don't think that should really effect things. The general lurched along just fine when it was only me and one or two people bumping. Thankfully now we have around four greens going on and we have regular new art. If there's concern about there being just bumping, there's always the opportunity for discussing or asking things.
Plus now that things have kinda cleared up in some ways, I want to try to get back to nightly Jackin'. I think some of us would enjoy that.
>>
Any goals (You) want to accomplish this thread?
>>
>>37599221
Hopefully keep this Midnight train rolling and get to her origins and who she is - I really don't have a clue when that will happen/how far along I am to that goal. I wrote it down a long time ago (as in, roughly after the first two updates/posts) and I've not felt the time is right yet. We'll see.
>>
>>37599270
I still haven't really thought of any sort of origin story to anyone. Seeing Jack having dreams about her past is new to me as much as it is to anyone else.
>>
>>37599221
Finish breakfast
>>
File: bootleg bunker.png (1.95 MB, 1536x1319)
1.95 MB
1.95 MB PNG
>>37598629
>>37598704
I made a pic for this occasion. many of you probably do not visit the alternative site threads so you dont know about nhnb, it's a new alt imageboard that bans all eqg, and g5 giving a breather for people who want an old /mlp/ experience.

The fact that boots survived the initial wave of g5 is better than expected but the board is still much faster now than before and it's going to be a regular thing, eqg spam isn't going away and has had an uptick as well so nhnb is a potential solution besides just outright stop posting.

People are using nhnb as a bunker of sorts away from the rest of the low effort posting and a couple generals already use it to crosspost when there's no thread up, namly tempo and /bug/. /bug/ has shown that they can have a successful bunker over there since they were the first ones who got to a bump limit.

All we need to do is have everyone in the know aware of both options, /bug/ puts their nhnb bunker in the OP and we should do the same if we're going to crosspost or go to nhnb for a temporary home.
>>
>>37600204
also i made the pic because i didnt do midnight /in color/ yet and that wasnt good enough
>>
>>37600204
Dat art tho
What is the bunker activity at? We have far more lurkers than anything else so outside of copying greens to there there might not be much activity. I'm sure whoever goes there probably knows about /bootleg/ as is. Or doesn't.
>>
>>37600204
Is that pic an original?
Because it's really cool.
>>
>>37600316
havent made yet since I just proposed the idea, but anyone can make it at https://nhnb.org if you think its better than a hiatus.

nhnb is pretty new but they're getting an uptick of posters since g5 dropped looking for an escape not to get burried by shitposts. based on some observation since g5 hit on /mlp/ its like 1 actual discussion every 9 shitposts whereas nhnb is just more chill
>>
File: bootleg bunker g5.png (1.99 MB, 1536x1319)
1.99 MB
1.99 MB PNG
>>37600714
yup still have file loaded up. maybe this is more apt
>>
>>37601261
>yup still have file loaded up
That's amazing Anon.

>maybe this is more apt
Maybe, but I prefer to look at the other one.
>>
Where is NHanon?
>>
>>37601261
>>37600204
Das it mane.
https://nhnb.org/fim/res/3505.html
I went ahead and made a thread there. Whereas if we use it there if the thread here goes bellyup out of nowhere or if it's just to copy/paste green updates, we'll see. But it's all good to go and has all of the usual OP stuff included. Looking forward to when Jack'n'Dorks get more art, what can I say I'm biased.
>>
>>37601437
naturally because that was the original purpose. maybe il post a transparent exploitable later if you guys want

>>37601489
nice, so next time we start adding this link to the OP like /bug/. we could probably use a lil trimming down on the words, maybe move some stuff into a FAQ that we never had?
>>
>>37600204
Oh my heart! Beautiful pic, senpai - Midnight looks absolutely stunning. Thank you!
Means I need to really get my ass in gear, push through this headcold I'm dealing with, and get the next update out.

>>37599666
You can do it, Satan. I believe in you.
>>
>>37601441
nhanon goes through downperiods due to irl but we'l keep holding the fort down till he returns
>>
>>37601529
That'll work for me. I think Regmans was the one who has been taking OP responsibilities for a few threads now, bless his autistic vision.
>>
>>37597247
Who is this qt?
>>
>>37601856
dont kick yourself too hard. i slack on the art a lot more than you guys for the writing
>>
>>37602948
Meanwhile I'm pretty much doing both.
>>
>>37602781
Auto's mare, Midnight.
>>37559482
"Hey Dash, what are we doing here?"
>"You want to help me out more, don't you?"
"Yeah, of course!"
>"That's what you'll be doing today."
>I'm in the middle of some really big train station.
>There are a ton of ponies of all sorts talking and moving at once.
>All of them look so different in so many ways.
"...I don't get it. What am I doing?"
>"Listen to them... I want you to learn how they speak."
>I frown and try to listen to the chorus.
>It's too loud to focus on... and my stomach growling sounds louder than everything else.
"Dashie, I'm hungry... can we please go find some food?"
>She looks hungry too, but she doesn't like acting like she is.
>She doesn't need to act like she's so much better than me.
>"I know, dear... I'm going to go look. But you stay right here, ok? Do not move from this spot. Don't talk to anyone. Just listen. Ok?"
>We at least found a nice bench to sit on.
"Ok... hurry back."
>Dashie trots off, her wings shifted low to help hide her exposed ribs.
>She looks so skinny now, she didn't used to.
>She keeps finding new homes for us but I wish we could find one place to stay.
>"Well dang it, where did that little sprout go?"
>"Damn it, that stupid heifer said she would meet me here! Useless."
>"I ain't getting on that accursed contraption again! Did you see that it almost splattered them there birds?"
>"Ooh la la, zis is our déstinasyon! But ver iz ze... how you say..."
>...A lot of these stallions and mares sound funny.
>I can't imagine ever sounding so silly as a default voice.
>"Hello! Hello little filly!"
>I blink a few times.
>I see that the funny voice belongs to a... very large mare, wearing a mountain of ribbons.
>"Yes, you! I see you!"
>She trots up to me, smiling as big as she can.
>Which is a lot.
>"Hello to you, I am in searching of ze hotel. Ou est l'hotel?"
>I gawk at her.
>What in the world did she just say to me?
"H... huh?"
>The mare gives a loud, cheerful laugh
>"Esxcuse me, my tongue, she slips back sometimes! I am staying at a very nice hotel. Do you know, where the building iz?"
>I run the sentence through my head multiple times.
>...is she asking me where the hotel is?
"I... I don't know where any hotels are. I was told to just sit here and listen."
>I try to avert my eyes from her.
>I feel terrible for not being able to help her.
"I'm sorry. Dashie said she would be back with food."
>The mountainous mare inhales hard enough that it actually causes my mane to shift.
>"Oh NO! A little filly, without even a bite of food? Did you even have a little... what is, the petit déjeuner?"
>...what did she just call me?
"I... I don't know...?"
>>
>>37603018

>I flinch and lower my head in embarrassment.
>Is she calling me hungry?
>"Your Dashie, she will return with the food! Yes? In that case, let us... how do... beat her to ze punch! Let us go!"
"Wait, I can't leave this spo--WAAAH!?"
>She wraps one of her front legs around me and scoops me away from the bench.
>I spend the entire day with her.
>We eat at a really nice place and she buys me a ton of stuff to eat!
>A soup, a salad, a funny sounding sandwich that had a lot of gross oil from olives in it...
>...I still eat the sandwich, but my mouth feels oily afterword.
>We even find the hotel she's staying at!
>I have so much fun with her and hear her stories of exploring the world that I don't even remember that I'm supposed to be at the station bench until...
>"Oh la la... look at ze sun! She is setting already."
"She iz, how you say... getting zleepy! Hon hon!"
>I've been having fun with her accent.
>She really seems to like it since it makes her laugh.
>"Zat is right, ma petit cherie! Your Dashie... iz she running late?"
>We only left the station for a little bit of time.
>The place we ate at oversaw the bench so I could see her easy.
>She has big wings and she doesn't have some sort of funny accent so of course she would stick out.
"I hope not... she is the..."
>I don't know how to continue that train of thought so I clear my throat.
"I don't know... she's never really late for anything. You know?"
>"I hope she does not punish me for stealing you away for ze day!"
>She laughs like it's the best joke she has ever told.
>I laugh a little too... but now I'm worried.
>"Tomorrow, maybe we meet again, yes? I shall buy a full meal for both ma Jacky et zis famous Dashie! It shall be a celebration of great fortune!"
>She continues to praise having met me but after a little while I do see Dashie!
>I hop up on the bench and wave to her.
>She looks like she was scratched up by something all over.
>She only has a single green apple tucked above her wing.
>"Oh ho! Zis is la Dashie extraordinaire! I am pleased to meet, I am Jelly Belly, I come from many trains to be here today!"
>Dashie looks... exhausted.
>She looks at me, and then at the mare.
>"...have you been talking with Jacky all day, miss?"
>Jelly Belly laughs again.
>It's almost so much that the bench bounces.
>"I have! Your Jacky, she is terrible to hide ze hunger! But zis is no problem, for I gave her an exquisite meal for helping me to find my hotel! Iz the best of both worlds!"
>Dashie looks at me again.
>I feel so guilty.
>I forgot to keep some food left for her too.
>She doesn't look angry.
>But she has this... distant look in her eye, like she's looking past me.
>"...I'm glad you were able to help her out, Jacky... please excuse us, we need to go home."
>She sounds so... dull.
>I really feel like I did something horrible.
>"Please say bonjour to your parents for me!"
>Before I can hop off of the bench, Jelly Belly claps her hooves together.
>>
Less pre-written and more I think I like just writing a lot and then chopping it up into bits if it's all a solid thing.
>>37603023
>"Dashie et la Jacky. Shall we meet tomorrow morning? I shall treat you both to ze best breakfast around! It iz the only thing I can do after she has helped me so much! I have been ze lost et lonely, and would continue to have been so if it weren't for her!"
>Dashie squints at the mare.
>At her lack of a response I stifle a giggle.
>Her eyes whip to mine as if they were looking for some sort of explanation.
"What she means is she wants us to have breakfast with her! Can we do that? Please?"
>"Please, Dashie? I meet new friends everywhere I go, but none look so... how you prefer, famished?"
>Dashie stands there, absolutely at a loss.
>"I... I suppose we can...? And you do not require anything in return?"
>"Ohhh non, I can not do that! You work very hard for Jacky, and you smell like tree sap!"
>Dashie's face scrunches.
>She really doesn't like to smell like stuff like trees or dirt.
>Jelly Belly gets up from the bench and laughs more as she trots off.
>"I shall meet tomorrow! Bonne nuit to you both!"
>Soon it's just me and Dashie in the station.
>Apparently it's also a 'plaza'.
>"...did you understand a word she said at all today?"
>I giggle and puff my face out as much as I can.
"Oui oui, I am ze Jacky! I understand ze alllllll of ze words!"
>She shakes her head and sighs.
>"I have no clue what you just said to me... let's go home. Good job, Jacky."
"I am ze best! Hon hon hon~"
>...
>I poke at my french fries
>Due to everyone being lazy and hungry, Anon got some drive through
>Some sort of weird zombie movie is playing that involves the zombies talking
>Who would ever want their zombies to talk?
"Zis iz le French of fries..."
>My tongue flickers easily
>"Oui. Ze fries flies where ze belly lies."
>Anon nods to himself with his tongue twister
>"Ou est le fry... not in zeese eyes..."
>Sparky lifts up a fry and points it into the center of our bags with a cautious leer
>We all look at Dashie
>She purses her lips and looks...
>Is it awkward?
>"Zeeese... eeEase... mon... food?"
>She visibly changes her face with every new sound, losing her usual air of finesse
>Sparky fails to hold in a snort
>"Oh come on, accents and... voices are the only things I can't do!"
>Everyone laughs at her resignation
"It ain't that hard, Dashie, you just gotta keep your tongue loose and sway with the words if they sound swervy!"
>I sway back and forth on my pillow seat
"Now try another one!"
>After some chuckling and small talk everyone falls silent
>Dashie's eyes dart all around
>Her face scrunches up and moves like she's chewing something super hard
>"...y'aint gonna hol'a gal like me all captive an'th'like, shucks."
>The room erupts with cheers!
>"Well dad gum, our little saloon queen knows how'ta speak like us common folk!"
>>
>>37602963
what do i get for slacking on both?
>>
>>37597994
Midnight in the OP but not part II. next bread we should have the most current one as well under 'continuing'
i dont know why writefags fragment everything like it's a book chapter, makes it much harder to archive neatly.
>>
>>37603095
I meant that I'm slacking on both too
>>
>>37603086
>Anon speaks in his own exaggerated native accent
>She averts her eyes and purses her lips
>"...well it's not like I wanted to sound like some... huckleberry. It makes my mouth sound like dirt."
>"That might be because you like those burnt fries. They're gonna be a little earthy if you're not so lucky."
>Anon seems pretty happy for the night
>That helps make this feel so much better
>"How did you even pick up the accents? I mean, I grew up with goofy movies and stuff. I even used to sound Canadian, eh?"
>His voice gets a weird bounciness to it at the end
>Dashie shakes her head
>"Oh no, that's far too long a story. It's just a skill that we naturally have. Admittedly, Jacky here has her strengths on voices and I..."
>She clears her voice and her wings push out
>"I am the most absolute of royalty if required of my subjects!"
>I try to stifle a laugh
>It sounds so uneven
>It almost sounds like what she tried to be when she first came out of her box
"I... I think you can retire that one. It was never that good?"
>Dashie gives a loud, theatrical gasp
>"I do say, even Jacky has given me scorn?! Where will such injustices end?"
>She gives a high-energy gesture of despair
>...
>But... it just looks like her front leg windmilled a few times before landing on her eye
>I want to laugh
>But I think she used to do this seriously
>...No wonder some ponies looked at us funny
"Y-yeah... I mean... practice helps too, right?"
>I try to look at Sparky and Anon
>Both of them are doing their best to hold back laughter
>Anon's failing and doing a mini-emulation of her action with his fingers
>"Pract-eese? I am the paragone of class! This demanding tonne has gifted us with entire banquits!"
>Now some of her words are coming funny
>She's just now noticing that two of us are dying from holding it in
>And it's getting hard for me to stay composed
>"...and wot is so funny?"
>The entire room erupts
>Everyone is laughing
>I feel like I'm laughing too hard
>I remember when she used to pull that on guards and they would just stare at each other
>Sometimes they would be so confused that I could slip by and grab stuff
>It's so silly but it still worked!
>"Pezsants do not laugh at me! I am Baroness Faint Presm, heir to the Presm land deed!"
>I can't tell if she's playing it up or trying to remain in character but it's hilarious
>>
>>37603095
You get a boot to your leg.
>>37603123
To be fair I split up Jacky Parts because some Parts are ~30k words on their own.
>>
>>37603145
well jacky IS a novel so that split would be more like every 5 chapters
>>
>>37603209
I don't even know if Jacky should be considered a novel anymore given how long it is. I have no clue what to call it.
I did a check and it seems like some Jacky parts are pretty short to the point that they seem more like smaller intermissions. That said, I do focus on perspective shifts between the four so that's another reason for it.
>>37601856
Autobahn, what is your mindset for having different Parts?
>>
>>37603123
I do it because a majority of my writing, I do on my phone. scrolling through everything and selecting shit after a thousand or so lines is fucking miserable on mobile. Ponepaste is at least a bit better than pastebin, but still sucks.

I know the solution is to not write on my phone - but work offers the least distractions as compared to home. So I just feel more driven to write. Such as how I have this week off from work and haven't put out an update yet (I think I'm getting close, though).
>>
>>37603123
>>37603224
>>37603243
I never really thought of it as an issue personally, but if people would rather I keep it to one, I can try doing that for a while.
>>
>>37603243
>writing on phone
That's pretty fucking metal right there. I don't think I could do even a fraction of my writing through touchpad or something so not ergonomic.
>>37603255
I'm not complaining. I'd be a hypocrite if I did, especially since one or two parts are under 10k words and a lot are under 30k words. But the longer ones are pretty easily beyond the 30k line. You do what you think works for your story.
>>
>>37603255
how did other generals handle archiving a fractured green?
>>
>>37603267
At this point, I probably write faster on my phone than I do on a keyboard. But I also sit there and peck at the keyboard, so I sure that is another major reason aside from familiarity. WASD with the left hand is all I'm familiar with, lol.

>>37603279
I have no idea. I've only written in three different generals - AiE is just a half dead mess now, /moon/ has only recently been organized and just shares my latest paste update, and then this place. Honestly, I haven't ever given it any thought - I always end up clicking on the user's/writer's profile to find the rest of their stuff at some point anyway. Figured that was easy enough. But I get how that can appear "messy" when trying to archive it or share it in the OP. I can't say I've ever had the amount of questions, inquries, and feedback on my stuff like I have here in /bootleg/.
>>
>>37603316
so it is, /moon/s OP is way more cut down but seems ok. might get messy with redundant info, looks like we recently added a new thing to the list 'recently completed' part9 would obviously be complete if we're on part10 for jacky right?
>>
>>37603123
>Midnight in the OP but not part II. next bread we should have the most current one as well under 'continuing'
That's my mistake. I made the changes for Jacky but forgot that Midnight was already on Part II. I have rectified this in the OP template: https://ponepaste.org/5500
>>37603377
I also maintain /moon/'s OP template. Personally, I prefer the cleaner, more minimalist format of the /moon/ OP, but when I assumed responsibility for this thread a couple months ago, I decided to stick with what the previous Anon had been using, making changes when appropriate.
>>
>>37601529
>so next time we start adding this link to the OP like /bug/. we could probably use a lil trimming down on the words, maybe move some stuff into a FAQ that we never had?
Forgot to add the nhnb link- just fixed that. I completely agree that the OP should be shortened. Open to suggestions.
>FAQ
It'd be great if we could all collaborate on this.
>>
>>37603524
it's just a balancing game of how to get what a bootleg is across, since it's a much more obscure topic than just a waifu general. in the past we had people specifically come in confused ask what the thread topic is. a FAQ could offload a decent amount of it out of the OP
>>
>>37603543
/sun/ really did a great job on their archive, too bad im a retard and dont know how to use pastedown
>>
File: nicemaremoon.png (1.21 MB, 1280x796)
1.21 MB
1.21 MB PNG
>>37600204
Whenever I see or read about Midnight all I can think of is,
>"I'm throwing you a bone here - I am not going to give you the whole carcass. Like you said earlier today, my past is none of your concern nor interest. Just try not to insult me anymore. Do I really look like a toy you would buy for your nonexistent daughter to cuddle and play with?"

I really hope she ends up in a similar situation.
>>
File: hop on anon.png (471 KB, 1016x874)
471 KB
471 KB PNG
would you?
>>
>>37603663
Please no. Not as a toy.
Organic or not, she's a person, not a plaything.
>>
>>37603939
Hey, it's my girl! And of course I would. I'm not so heartless as to deny Z a chance to be useful.
>>
>>37603939
Aww, what a sweetheart!
>>
Glad to see we are back on business

>>37603140
So thats where the accent comes from i always wondered where she picked that up
>>
>>37604590
At least one of them.
>>
>>37604314
>Please no. Not as a toy

I didn't mean that, more her having a child be fond of her despite her scary experience and gruff exterior. Maybe some latent maternal instincts.
>>
>>37604901
Now that you clarified, yeah, I agree. I'm sure she has potential to be a great mom. Maybe not right now, she's still hurt, her mind needs to heal and she needs to find her place in the world, but with enough time...
>>
>>37605038
Yeah, maybe one day.
Personally, I'm not fond of kids, though. Don't expect to see anything like that, lol.
Probably have an update either this evening or early tomorrow morning, depending on how I feel about what I have thus far. It will be a rather short update, but what takes place really doesn't provide itself to be very large.
>>
>>37605081
That was merely a "what if" discussion I had with the other Anon. More about Midnight's character than actual future events in the fic. I wasn't trying to influence you into adding that into the story.
>Probably have an update either this evening or early tomorrow morning
Sweet!
>>
>>37605081
>Not fond of kids

Totally understandable.

>>37605038
>she has the potential to be a great mom
Actually makes me wonder about a guy and his semi organic sapient ponebot having that relationship with a kid they picked up and the legal and other scenarios that would ensue.
>>
Bump for the boot
>>
>>37604314
not a toy, a pet
>>
>>37606359
DELET THIS
>>
>>37606842
get off the board midnight!
>>
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What would a bootleg Lyra be like?
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Alright, I'm calling this ready.

>You didn't bother keeping track of how long Midnight was in your arms.
>At some point, she finally pulled away from you without a word, turned away, and lay back down.
>All you felt you could do was move back over and give her space.
>The whole time, Midnight made sure to keep herself as silent as possible - the only indications of her outpouring of emotions was the occasional hitch in her breathing, as well as the dampness that now permeated the right shoulder and back area of your shirt.
>Now, you just sit in silence on the couch, once in a while glancing over at her now-slumbering form.
>It's an awful feeling, not knowing what to do.
>How do you help someone that doesn't want to be helped?
>Or know how to accept help?
>You already sort of figured a while ago Midnight had been putting on an act to hide any potential vulnerabilities - but you hadn't expected she had experienced any sort of trauma that was left alone to be bottled up.
>Who knows what the hell else she went through?
>She certainly doesn't want to share it.
>Whether that be fear of reliving it or appearing "weak" to you - that was up for debate.
>Hell, you had to play it off that *you* needed a hug just to try comforting her.
>And she still had a hissy fit about it.
>And you're also left with more haunting questions.
>Midnight was the only one dumped here that was apparently alive - why?
>You have to assume it was not done purposely.
>So, did she escape?
>Could EquisCo be looking for her?
>Could you be in deep shit for harboring her?
>That last question doesn't really matter much to you.
>Like hell you're going to give her up to the shithole she came from if they come a-knocking.
>...You sort of feel guilty for how you thought about her when she first arrived.
>Wondering why they didn't deactivate her.
>Now the mere thought makes you feel ill.
>She's much more than a mass of circuits like you originally thought.
>And... the pony thing doesn't really affect you anymore.
>You just wish you knew how to help her.
>Ignoring problems and lingering pain is unhealthy - you can attest to the first issue, and she's helping you with that.
>But Midnight just refuses help.
>Her boasting of superiority, of her being a strong pony...
>Yeah, totally not insecurity.
>Hopefully you've made at least some inroads with her tonight.
>You glance over at Midnight again.
>This time, you see a glint of a blue iris peeking through a crack in her eyelids.
>"What are you doing?" she mumbles sleepily.
"Sitting here, I guess."
>"You're watching me, you freak."
"No, I glanced at you," you calmy protest.
>"Multiple times."
>...
"So you've been watching me while pretending you're sleeping. And I'm the creepy one."
>Midnight fully joins the sentient world, opening her eyes and raising her head off the couch, glancing up at the clock on the wall above the tv.
>"It's midnight," she states flatly.
"Are you telling me your name, or the time?" you ask her.
>>
>>37607802

>"Ha, ha," she replies sarcastically, shaking her head. "Seriously, what are you doing?"
>Judging by the tone her voice carries with that question, there is only one answer she will accept.
>If there's any chance Midnight is going to let you crack open a door into her emotional and psychological health, it's time to make a positive impression.
>By being honest.
"Concerned, I guess. I know you don't want that but - look, you're helping me out getting shit straight financially and getting my head on right. I just don't want you to feel like I'm not willing to listen to you."
>"So... you don't listen to me when I say I don't need your help. Interesting," she replies coldy, rubbing her chin with a hoof as if pondering that thought.
"Midnight, I'm not implying you aren't strong, if that's what you're trying to get at," you argue. "What you told me earlier tonight - that's straight-up nightmare fuel. I don't know if I could mentally handle that situation as you have for so long."
>"I appreciate the compliment, whether you meant to do so or not," she replies.
>Rather than reply, you just remain silent, staring at her.
>The lack of any biting retort seems to frustrate her a bit as she sighs.
>"What do you want from me? To cave and become your damsel in distress? Some submissive little pony you need to take care of? Is that your fetish?"
"No. But stop putting up this facade that you're invulnerable to pain. Pretending it doesn't exist does not make it so, Midnight. Isn't that what you argued in my case?" you propose. "You told me I was stupid for doing that."
>"That was different," she says sternly, once again averting her gaze to an opposite end of the room.
>It's a tone and a gesture that lets you know anything else you try to use to battering ram your way into her psyche is going to be a waste of time.
>Back to square one for now - but she seems to admit there are unresolved issues she keeps a stranglehold on.
>Not that it surprises you.
>It's just a reminder that there's more to the attitude than just being an ass for fun.
"Alright then."
>Your white flag of a statement catches Midnight by complete surprise, judging by her head whipping back to you almost instantaneously.
>"What?"
>You shrug.
"You don't want to talk about it. That's fine, I can't force it out of you. I don't own you Midnight - you're your own mare," you explain. "All I want to put out there is if you need an ear to listen, I'm always available. Fair enough?"
>Her eyes narrow at you, evidently suspicious of your intentions behind those words.
>"This is supposed to be some sort of reverse psychology where I feel like there's an opportunity slipping away right now and I need to seize the moment, isn't it?"
"If that's what you want to believe, sure. I'm not trying to argue with you Midnight. I'm really just... putting myself out there. Okay?"
>"Riiiight."
>>
>>37607810

>You feel yourself starting to get a little irritated with Midnight now - and some of that probably has to do with your own fatigue.
>Reaching over for the tv remote, you unmute the volume before flipping off the power.
"You are right that it's getting late, so I'm going to get some sleep," you tell her, before getting up and shuffling off to your room, hitting the main light switch en route.
>The kitchen light is still on, but you figure Midnight will get that when she's well and ready.
>"Hey, Anonymous."
>You stop as you reach the door frame and spin around.
>Midnight's head pokes up over the couch back, her eyes giving off the faintest blue glow in the dim light.
>"You didn't bring up anything else about... earlier tonight," she says uneasily.
"Was I supposed to? I didn't think anything needed to be said," you reply, the back of your shirt still offering the slightest reminder of the emotions from earlier.
>Midnight hesitates, mulling over your response.
>Without a word, she disappears from your view behind the couch.
"Goodnight, Midnight."
>"Good night," she says, sounding a bit muffled by the obstacles between you.
>You close the door to your bedroom, leaving it open just a crack.
>"...thank you," you hear come faintly from the living room.
>Well, that's new.
>As much as you want to rush back out there and point out she actually thanked you - and you heard it - you leave it alone.
>Rome wasn't built in a day.
>Baby steps, Anon.

-----

https://ponepaste.org/5723
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>>37607716
we need to go to the source for that one
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>>37607816
Love to see Anon is making progress even if only a little.
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>>37607716
aryl!
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>>37607816
>"...thank you," you hear come faintly from the living room.
Aww... somepony liked that hug after all. Glad to see her emotional armor being worn down, little by little.
>>
Writing this part of Rosie is making me realize that Anon's personality in the first part probably isn't going to align properly with his personality in the next part. Either way, more progress has been made.
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>>37605038
>>37603663
this downtime with midnight is good but i wont lie about missing the tsundere, there's too little of them in mlp
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>>37609113
Be careful she steals raisins
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>>37607816
Good update. Seeing her open up a little, I'm starting to formulate my own little theories about Midnight's past now. I'll be interested to see how on the mark I end up being.
If that's the route we're going, anyway. She could clam up on us again before we know it.
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>>37609113
Lary
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>>37610589
so she fixes oatmeal raisin cookies?
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>>37612060
>Aryl will never give you her homemade cookies
>ywn eat cookies together in the park while she talks about her roommate Bin Bon
>ywn cuddle together in the shade after eating.
Why even live
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The board seems unusually fast for a Thursday.
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>>37612769
Bin Bon makes it sound like she's Oscar the Grouch.
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>>37607816
Dude fucking good fic, maybe need someone to grammar fix it a bit but I’m fucking loving this story and the two characters! Keep it up
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>>37612769
>Why even live
To see the advent of ponebot waifus.
>>
Word to the wise: do not play Madness Project Nexus if you have any intention of writing horse words. It will take absolutely all of your time.
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>>37614974
Noted.
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Close to finishing breakfast. This might ultimately be much shorter than I had originally thought it would be.
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>>37613379
Bin Bon is not grumpy as most believe she is just a little tsundere

>>37614511
Will to live restored
>>
Any bootleg ponies that are arguably better than the original?
I could see a good Princess Applejack crossover where someone buys an Applejack, but instead of an earth pony, they get an alicorn.
Or maybe a bootleg pony that was made from spare parts of two other ponies that resulted in a new pony that has the best personality traits of both, like a Pinkie-Shy mix where the personalities even out each other and you get a social and open, but calm mare who's caring and great at baking also.
>>
>Get a week off from work
>Spend a vast majority of it sick, including sleeping about 13 hours yesterday
So much for being productive in any sense of the word. I guess, I at least got one update done and have an idea for the next, but this has been frustrating to deal with.
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>>37616444
I wouldn't call getting back to health as "unproductive". Trying to recover from a cold or flu while working is a dumb idea Anon.
And I have a feeling you needed that 13 hours of sleep anyway.
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>>37616180
>Will to live restored
Glad I could help. I wholeheartedly believe that we'll see ponebots in our lifetime. Depending on where AI is in about fifteen years, I may try to design and build one myself.
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>>37617001
>One day, Midnight will be insulting me in a roundabout way of improving myself, while I continue to play stupid just to see her get all flustered before giving up and cuddling just to shut me up.
That sounds like a healthy relationship to look forward to.
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>>37617001
I look forward to the day that I'll have a trio of nerds to sing with.
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>>37617001
I look foward to Carpathia scaring the living fuck out of me
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>>37614511
>ponebot waifus
I may be in the minority here, but I hope it never comes to this. At least if we're talking the level of A.I. that the ponies in this thread have. To me they're no different than real people and to have them be produced for humans to keep as pets or companions is no different than slavery.
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>>37618210
This is relevant to the discussion:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ol2WP0hc0NY
An upcoming scene from Condense references this episode.
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>>37618350
>upcoming
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>>37618402
I've got to get through some other stuff first, but she's coming back. It's getting harder and harder to not think about her.
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>>37618210
Yeah, you're not wrong. That's the entire thing about Home and Angel Cake; you bring pones into the world in any capacity, robotic or other origin, and there will be people who do not keep them. Or something happens to them and the pone is left alone.
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>>37618621
I mean that's what I was gonna touch on with Golly Gee but you beat me to the punch.
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>>37619294
Ah, sorry about that. Part of why I focus so hard on my own things and don't read much of others unless asked is because I don't want anyone to ever think I'm ripping something off.
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>>37619536
No worries man, I'll probably still do something with Cognito's Ranch eventually.
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In a very chill mood. Doing a little bit of writing, trying hard to resist the urge to drop everything and run back to Condense.
https://w2g.tv/r4cci9qruvfldr797a
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>>37619744
If you currently enjoy writing Condense the most then why not do just that?
I guarantee you it won't last forever and when you run out of steam you can switch back to one of your other stories (you'll probably get renewed interest in them while writing Condense).
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>>37619879
Because Condense consumes my attention and creative energy unlike any of my other stories. I've at least got to keep one other story going until the thread it's in can sustain itself without my green.
>>
Thanks to all the guys who joined. It was fun.
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>>37620728
It was, hopefully I can remember where the hell I was going to go with the green in the morning.
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>>37620078
I understood absolutely nothing from your post.
Both Convdense and Zooma are from this thread so it doesn't matter which one gets updated.
And if you're talking about LE then as a guy who patiently awaits it's new chapters I wanna say: forget about it and go write what you want to write.
I want to read stories written out of passion, not necessity. I haven't written a line of green in my life but I've read a ton and trust me when I say that there is a visible difference between them.
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>>37619744
I was wiped yesterday after going out. It's a nice feel, to see something I started take on a life of it's own. What'd I miss?
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>>37603140
>It's raining out.
>Dashie said we have to find a new home.
>I argued with her for hours but she didn't listen to me at all.
"...she said she would take care of us."
>"I said no, Jacky."
>We haven't seen another pony for hours.
>We're stuck on a dirt road to another town.
>After a really fun week, Dashie woke me up in the middle of the night and said we had to go immediately.
>I never even got to say 'good bye' to Jelly Belly.
>It makes me more angry than sad because she really seemed to like me.
"Why did we have to leave? What happened this time?"
>We always have to leave.
>And she always has a reason.
>Always.
>We walk for entire minutes without her saying anything.
>I stop.
>She only notices after a few more steps.
>"Jacky, let's go."
"No! Tell me why we left."
>"Later."
"No! I want to know right now!"
>"Later. Jacky the sun will be setting in a few hours and neither of us ha-"
"I don't care! Answer me!"
>I didn't think I could shout that loud.
"We left behind Sparky AGAIN, we left behind Mademoiselle Jelly Belly! How many other ponies have we left behind?! WHY?"
>I can feel myself tremble.
>I want to just stomp off... but what if she leaves me behind too?
>I can't be alone now.
>"Sparking Shine is not your friend, Jacky. She is not my friend either. She's too loudmouthed, she is a third mouth to feed, and she's useless to us."
>Only now have I bothered to look at her face.
>She looks so sure of herself.
>"That... mare. I don't know what she would have done with you. But she would have separated us. She would leave me to starve and take you off to who knows where."
>That hurts to hear.
>Jelly Belly said that both of us could globetrot with her.
>You never saw her look down on Dashie either.
"Yeah well... what if I wanted to globetrot..."
>She smiles at me.
>"Then it's better to do it with me. Aren't we globetrotting in our own way? Nothing and no one is stopping us from going where we want."
>That throws me off.
"Yeah but..."
>I feel a little confused now.
"...doesn't globetrotting mean that we have a home to return to?"
>She starts walking again.
>"That's what we're looking for, Jacky! Now come on, you'll find new friends soon. You always seem to make new ones anyway..."
>She isn't stopping... so I chase after her until I'm back up to pace with her.
"I still don't see why we had to leave..."
>"Because that wasn't home, Jacky. It was a ditch under a bridge."
>I don't like it... but I really don't know if that's really enough or not.
>We walk for hours without stopping, even with the sun starting to set.
"...What is home going to look like, anyway?"
>"Home to me, or home to you?"
"What sort of question is that? Isn't my home your home too?"
>You don't get an answer.
>Only when the sun is really low does she speak to me again.
>"We don't have anything to make a fire with... come on, let's find somewhere off the road we can sleep."
>If we were still with Jelly Belly we would be having dinner now...
>>
>>37621741
...
>It's a lazy Saturday morning
>These dreams...
>They really haven't been stopping
>Anon has been noticing and has been extra cuddly lately
>We're both watching some documentary about frontier caravans and some sort of big country-wide trail
>It doesn't go into a lot about guns or cowboys so I don't really care about it
>He doesn't seem too into it either
>"Hey Jackquinox."
>My ears perk up at his voice
>I can't imagine what life would be like if I had to move away from that
"What's up?"
>"I got us some tickets to go somewhere tomorrow."
>Tickets?
>We've never done anything like that yet
>"Where to?"
>"A festival. It's not western but it has a lot of cool things like knights, swords, booze... I thought it'd be cool if we all went."
"Oh... weird. What's the occasion?"
>"It's the start of October and they're celebrating by letting a lot of people drink a lot of booze and stuff for really cheap. Which means you and I are gonna see who can hold more."
>I've noticed that over the last year, both of us have been drinking less and less
>I really liked doing it before since everything felt like a dream anyway so it wouldn't matter if I got sick
>But... this isn't a dream
>And we do a lot of things as is without touching it
>But it's still fun in it's own way too
>Especially if I can convince Sparky to drink
"Mmm... that's gonna be fun."
>I've been laying on him like a pony-shaped blanket, with my head on his shoulder
"Hey Anon."
>"What's up?"
"...am I still asleep?"
>I expect him to laugh at me but he doesn't
>He pats my flank
>And pinches it, making my entire leg twitch
>"Hm... probably not. That have something to do with how weirdly you've been sleeping lately?"
>...crap
>I was hoping he wouldn't notice
>Maybe it's not a good thing to hide this stuff from him
"Y... yeah. I guess so."
>"Anything you want to talk about?"
>Yes
"N...no."
>Crap
>"You're sure? Well... I hope you're talking to someone about it. I really don't want you to be bothered about dreams. They can kinda get worse if you can't stop them."
"Are they something you used to have?"
>"Kinda. I used to have a lot of dreams. To me, they were a lot more satisfying than staying awake."
"Well it ain't that... I like being awake. They're more like nightmares."
>"Like what, zombies and all that stuff?"
>I shiver and shake my head
"No but if I have a nightmare about zombies I'm gonna kick your butt for showing them to me."
>He chuckles
>"Alright so we know it's not about the big, bad zombambos. So what do they include?"
>Crap...he's good
"It's... stuff that I think is from back then."
>I don't want to specify further
>Mostly because I don't know how much more specific I can really be
>"Must be heavy stuff... you really have been acting kinda different lately."
"But am I acting differently now, or am I acting more like how I used to be?"
>He doesn't answer
>I don't think he can answer that, anyway
>I don't even know if I can answer that
>"Have the other two had similar dreams?"
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>>37621817
"I don't know. Sometimes it's like they know exactly what I'm talking about... and other times they act like it was just a dream."
>He's gone back to petting me
>I've stopped trying to figure out if it's weird that he sometimes treats me like a pet
>It doesn't really matter anyway since it's not like I'm a human like him
>It doesn't interrupt anything either
>"Have you tried talking to them about it? Prismite has been your go-to for pretty much forever, right?"
"Right..."
>My hind legs kick out a few times
>I haven't been able to look at her directly for a few days now
"...what we say is usually kept between us, right?"
>He finally looks at me directly
>"Of course. I don't think we've ever had to worry about that before. Is it something about her?"
>I turn my head back
>Our door is open...
>I can hear a video game going in the living room
>And something... else?
"...what's that whistling?"
>"Sounds like that tea kettle is starting to whistle. I guess someone's doing something with hot water."
"Ah..."
>Then it should be safe to say
"I think she used to keep me away from other ponies on purpose. These last few nights I've been dreaming about some big French pony named Jelly Belly that was teaching me how to speak all frou-frou like the way you like? But anyway she said that she always wanted a pair of daughters since she never had a chance to have foals on her own and I was really excited about it but Dashie was all 'nah' and then we ended up running away from her and I never got to say 'good bye' and we even left Sparky behind too and it really hurt because I felt like I was being kept from my friends and I really wish what would've happened if I got to live nice and not have to worry about food anymore."
>Anon looks at me
>I think I said all of that correctly
>After the second sentence is all kinda... came out
>"That was a mouthful."
"...did... you get all of that by chance?"
>I feel my head pull back
>I feel more embarrassed than anything else
>This is Anon
>If I couldn't trust him with this sort of stuff, who could I trust?
"Loud and clear. I guess that does kinda explains some of the ways you talk. If we ever see her again, I'll have to thank her."
>If we met her again...
>Is that sort of thing possible?
>Would she forgive me for leaving?
>Wouldn't she be mad that she got me food and I didn't do anything to help in return?
>Of course she probably wouldn't
>But part of me worries
>Part of me feels like I'm still there and on the run
>He nudges my flank again
>I blink a few times
>"It's alright. You did what you could, you know? I'm happy she managed to help you how she did. And I bet she's happen she was able to help you out too, even if she couldn't do more."
>I inhale
>And exhale
>The exhale comes out as multiple short, hard huffs
"Do you think I'll ever be at the point that I can help someone out like that?"
>"Sure. But I think you've exceeded just giving someone a few meals."
>I have?!
"Since when?"
>>
>>37621875
>The idea amuses
>Since when have I ever done anything that important?
>"Since you came into my life, Jack. It really is thanks to you that my life has finally felt like it has some purpose. You've helped me as much as I've helped you. Now whether or not that sounds like a lot... well, it is."
>His other arm is around me
>...He still hasn't moved his hand away from my flank
>Not like I could complain
"...Anon, I..."
>Something catches in my throat
>It feels like a physical item that is keeping me from speaking
>He looks at me like he's waiting for me to spit it out
"..."
>He chuckles and gives me a human-strength bear hug
>"It's hard, isn't it."
>I grumble out something
"...it's not hard..."
>That's half of it
"...it's embarrassing is all."
>"More embarrassing than the time-"
"Shh-shh-phft-ah-nope-no, not a word."
>I rush to cover his mouth with my front hooves
>I give him my hardest death squint
"...yes. And you ain't gonna say it. Not when someone could be listening"
>"DON'T WORRY, I'M NOT LISTENING CARRY ON!"
>Sparks calls out from the kitchen
>She must've heard us talking
"DANG IT SPARKY I'M GONNA SNAP THAT HORN OFF!"
>If I could just have three minutes to clean her clock, I'd...
>My hooves are meeting some sort of resistance from wanting to crush
>...It's Anon's face
>I carefully pull my hooves away and give my best smile
"...sorry."
>He releases me completely and takes a moment to massage his face
>"Well you didn't squeeze any teeth out of my head yet so... alrighty then."
>This is a perfect time to let the topic die out and switch to something else
>Anon has done that now
>...I have too
>Let something happen and suddenly the topic is just dropped and no one gets an answer
>And a secret is kept safe
>I can't do that
"...but yeah. That's kinda just how it is. I don't act like I don't, do I?"
"Well you may like me but you sure did hate my face for a moment there."
>Now I feel even more awkward
"I'm gonna say it, you know. When you least expect it I'm gonna knock your socks off."
>"In front of everyone?"
"Maybe."
>"It'll embarrass you."
"I'm gonna embarrass you even more."
>"Oh ho? And how are you gonna do that, my little Jacky?"
>I grin at him
"By acting like an animal so everyone thinks you're a weirdo."
>He opens his mouth to speak
>You know for sure he had an answer for almost anything you could say
>Almost being the key word
>He closes his mouth
>"...you wouldn't."
>I scoff
"Oh I totally would, pony boy. It's ok for me to like humans because I'm a girl but you liking some sort of animal girl like me?"
>I put my hoof up to the side of my face
"Ohhh the things they might say...~"
>He grimaces and puts his hands on my shoulders
>"Now you've done it."
>This catches me off guard
"...what?"
>"Call me Zeus."
>I'm completely lost
"...why...?"
"Because I'm about to release the Jacken."
>That tone in his voice
>Oh no
>OH NO
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>>37621937
>It was a lazy morning...
>After everything was done and... done some more
>Neither of us said the word
>But I felt it
>I still feel it
>I probably wouldn't embarrass him in front of a ton of people
>But I like that he doesn't get mad at the idea
>Maybe he wouldn't really mind it
>...
>Maybe I'll have to actually try it out and see what happens
>If I can say it in public, I can say it in private
>>
>>37621953
The interaction between Anon and Jacky are always a treat also cant wait for the medieval faire.
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>>37621544
Biggest turnout we've had yet even if most of them left almost immediately
>>
bump
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>>37621322
Apologies for the vague wording. I'm referring to a fourth story I've got outside of /moon/ and /bootleg/.
I feel this compulsion to devote my time and efforts to each story equally, to update one after the other. In trying to appease this side of me, I create undue pressure on myself and stifle my own creativity. But you're absolutely write about writing for passion instead of necessity. Thank you for reminding me of that; others have as well. Guess I needed to hear it again. I need to flow wherever the inspiration may be at any given time.
I recognize you by your writing- one of the guys from /moon/ that consistently engages with me. Glad to see you in this thread, by the way.
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>>37623586
>Apologies for the vague wording. I'm referring to a fourth story I've got outside of /moon/ and /bootleg/.
On top of composing OP for both of those threads, from what I see?
I admire the effort, but at the same time I fear you're taking the fast lane to burn out city.
>I create undue pressure on myself and stifle my own creativity
Yup. You can't direct creative energy. At least I never could. Once something caught my mind's attention I could only act on it or not.
>I need to flow wherever the inspiration may be at any given time
Good to hear.
>that consistently comments on stories he enjoys
ftfy
>Glad to see you in this thread, by the way.
It's your and Auto's fault. Mostly Auto because of Midnight's pic he posted in /moon/ that's now in the OP here. My stupid ass can't resist pretty pictures of cute mares. Thanks cunts.
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>>37622116
I think that's one of the most solid things. She doesn't really seem to strike out on her own in too many ways like Shine or Prism do, but she works beautifully off of and with Anon.
Given her dreams(/memories?), it's easy to imagine that her priority might just be to have home and man settled. She has wanted to do things before but we're seeing who might have... stifled that.
>>
>>37624123
The relationship between Prism and Jacky always strike me as a little unhealthy, hope we get some background on that
>>
>>37624248
To be honest none of them were all that great of friends. Jacky is really the only one who tried to have friends. Shine has grown a ton but she was a hardcore little shit for the longest time. She still is now, to be fair, but I mean as far as actually being violent or hostile.
>>
>>37621953
The more we see of Prism, the more I feel like pic related.
>>
>>37624882
What confuses you about her?
>>
>>37625124
It's not that she confuses me, per se, it's that she's like an onion. On the surface it seems her motivations revolve entirely around survival and caring for Jacky, but I get the feeling that there's a bit more nuance to her character. Perhaps it really is as simple as those two things, but I'd be willing to bet there's a reason for her aloof exterior.
>>
>>37625180
Well we've seen information that she has kept Jacky from really... growing. And apparently, if true, she would rather run off and stay with her rather than risk someone more capable taking the reigns. She seems pretty chill now, but she hardly exposes herself enough for us to see any noticeable flaws. Even the Part with her perspective in mind was limited third. That's... odd. People don't usually have some sort of dissociative mindset.
>>
>>37625180
Whatever she was up to, it doesn't look good, that's for sure.
>>
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>Just the tip, to see how it feels
It feels really good
>>
Bump
>>
>9
>>
>>37625782
>outline
>not just DOing IT
>>
>>37626559
I may be able to wing it with Zooma, but I can't with this story. Too many important details that need to be presented in a particular order. The outline helps me write things in the correct order.
>>
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>>37626691
Making sure everyone's clue points the same way, I'm assuming?
>>
>>37626860
You have no idea of how hard that cracked me up.
>>
>>37626691
Dew it tho, just dew it right.
>>
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>>37627780
>Excess expulsion unit
Lewd
>>
What are some topics that should be addressed for a thread FAQ?
>>
>>37621953
>"Are we ready?"
"Ready!"
>"Ready."
>"...did we have to get up this early?
>I haven't seen Anon this excited in a while
>Dashie is awake and alert
>Sparky is tired and had to be carried to the car
>I woke up when Anon did and...
>I could still use a little sleep
>But it will be a bit of a drive too
>"Alright, that's what I like to hear!"
>His excitement lasts for maybe ten minutes of the drive before he mellows back out
>"You guys are gonna love it. It's like the larping week we did, except everyone's a giant dork."
"Does this mean I can be a barbarian again?"
>"No... well, yes. Not this year but next year. You gotta learn the ins and outs of the place."
>"How big is this festival? I'm sure you've waggled your tongue at Jacky enough about it..."
"H-hey, wording..."
>"No, she's accurate."
"Anon!"
>No one speaks for a moment
>"...but you haven't said much of it to us. Wouldn't this have made a prime date for just the two of you?"
>"Yes. But this is bigger than a date thing. I've been squirreling away some extra scratch and got four tickets for us. I can't promise that we'll all be dressed up like rogues by the end but there's booze, food, games, shows and... ah..."
>Anon scratches his head with his non-steering hand
>"...horses? I think there's some jousting going on. Y'know, guys on horses smashing each other with lances."
>I could probably carry Anon on my back
>But I doubt I could run fast enough for him to bash someone
>"Are you going to enter us into a competition? I'm not performing unless I get a cut."
>Dashie sounds... like she enjoys the idea
>Her tone is still sharp but she's not angry
>Anon doesn't seem to know that
>"What? No, I wouldn't put you guys in as some sort of... animal act or something."
>He glances at me a few times
>"I... I mean... three talking ponies, huh... y'think...?"
>That wouldn't be the worst idea... would it?
>We might be able to bring in money that way
>How many of us are out there in the world, anyway?
>"Eh. Nah. I wouldn't want to risk you guys getting the wrong crowd or something. It's gotta be safe or no go."
"Well, it would pay well, wouldn't it?"
>"Not enough to me, if it means risking bad attention or something."
>"How thoughtful... glad to see that our Anon isn't the sort that would sell us out."
>Dashie really doesn't sound like she's happy...
>But I know she is
>Even without looking at her face, I can tell that she's really happy
>"Well don't sound too excited there, Miss Wingspan..."
>I don't think Anon gets what she means
>"What's Shiner's opinion on this, anyhow? She's been quiet?"
>I peek behind me
"She's, uh... still sleeping I guess. Didn't think she was that tired."
>"She's trying one of those 'boss rush' things. She gets far too worked up over those things..."
>I don't think I remember Dashie really being so worked up over anything
"Well she kicks butt so why shouldn't she?"
>I'm still not so great at those games
>It's pretty awesome that she is
>Maybe she can teach me some stuff
>>
>>37628525
>What is /boot/?
>What constitutes a bootleg?
>How did /boot/ start?
Off the top of my head.
>>
>>37628525
Thread FAQ? Good question. I haven't been keeping track of what's been going on at the other place. What all do we have so far on it?
>>37628594
>The trip has been pretty low energy so I asked Anon about where we're going
>He put me in charge of the navigation, which meant watching his phone's GPS directions
>Apparently we went in the exact opposite direction to the warehouse that had Nona
>I wonder how Hanz is doing?
>"GPS signal lost."
>Uh oh
"Uh, Anon? The phone said that we're lost."
>"No we're not."
"What?"
>"Look ahead of us, I know where we are now I think."
>I stop focusing on the phone and raise my head up
>There's at least a dozen cars in front of us, bumper to bumper
>"Safe to say the guy in front of us with the dragon wings painted on his rear window is heading toward ye olde festival."
>We...
>Slowly...
>Drive...
>For at least another half hour
>I check back at Dashie
>Even she's sleeping
>But... she's sleeping while sitting up
>I could never do that
"...is it usually always this slow?"
>"I... ah... not that I remember? Maybe it's a big year..."
>I shrug and try to poke around in Anon's phone
>The wallpaper is that picture Sparky took of us
>I look like such a goober
>She still has that smirk
>It feels like that happened a hundred years ago
"I like your wallpaper."
>I don't try to speak too loudly so neither of the two behind us wake up
>"I do too."
"...has it always been that?"
>Anon chuckles and scratches the side of his neck
>"Yeah... after a bit, I kinda just had to. Y'know?"
"Yeah..."
>I boop the touch screen to check out his other things
>Emails
>Spam
>Spam
>A... whole lot of spam
>A few receipts?
"Did you order a few things?"
>"Yyyyyyyyyyyeaaaaaa-no. Nope. Not for you or anyone else."
>His eyes dart down to me for a second
>"Don't look at those. Sales are going on now and Christmas is around the corner."
"Heheh... alright."
>I can't really sneak a look anyway with him in front of me so I boop my way out
"How are we doing?"
>"Good! We crossed the train tracks and our first volunteer is directing traffic and we're... going to the further parking area... Jesus, I don't remember this place being so packed last time I went."
"Ew... wait, when was the last time you went?"
>Anon shrugs
>"Honestly? I don't remember. But it is pretty neat. I hope you guys like it."
"What do you actually wanna do there?"
>"Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii think. I'd dig trying out the mead. And they have really great shows. Other than that, I don't know. I want to see you guys have fun. If talking ponies, including a unicorn and pegasus can blend in anywhere, it'd be here, you know? But I am kinda curious about how it'll turn out. I bet if we dressed up, we really could have some sort of goofy show."
"Would they allow that?"
>"Since they have no clue who we are? No. But people set things on fire so... you know. Shine might feel right at home. As long as she doesn't set kids on fire."
>>
Split this into two posts since I just kept going. I think this is gonna take more than just one day to go through.
>>37629085
>More slow, jerky progress
>But I can see people now!
"Ha! That man's wearing a skirt!"
>"It's a kilt, Jackly."
"A wha?"
>"...it's a skirt. But it's a Scottish thing so it's not a skirt."
"Hey that guy's a pirate! And the wom... Anon, don't look."
>I can hear him giggling
>Oh no
>Did he know that women dressed like this?!
"You remembered that detail, didn't you?"
>I squint at him
>He shrugs
>"Hey, it's period-appropriate! That's just how it was back then."
"Yeah huh... pretty convenient."
>"Don't worry, my eyes will be stuck on the stonework, swords and shows."
"Being sold by ladies dressed like that?"
>I'm not jealous
>I'm not
>But
>"What? No, most pottery and artisan crap tends to be sold by really old timers who've been doing it for decades and decades. Pretty romantic stuff, honestly."
"Oh. Who's gonna make stuff once they retire?"
>"Who knows? Their kids, apprentices, maybe they'll have something good going on."
"It must be nice to have a sort of... legacy."
>"Yeah... that sort of thing ain't for everyone."
>I want to say something about the topic
>But I can't
>It feels like too much of a serious topic for what's going on right now
>But
"What, uh... what do you want our legacy to be?"
>He doesn't answer immediately
>I don't want to stare but I do look at him out of the corner of my eye
>He doesn't look sad at least
>That's good, isn't it?
>"Legacy... I don't know. What could we even have as a legacy, you know?"
>He looks behind himself
>I almost turn my head because for a second it looked like he was looking at me
>He looks ahead again
>"I guess the only legacy I want is that I gave you everything I could."
>He clears his throat
>He said that pretty quiet
>"And that's all I guess I have to say about that."
>>
>>37629085
Henlo friens, I return from my banneddesudumpsterdiving to bring big news and revelations for the boot! Every now and then I've done this for different threads and I've gone back and combed it many times over for /bootleg/ so that the greens don't fall through the cracks, and again this was a sucessfull operation coming back with forgotten gems like new chirping chryssie and freshly archiving some still on pastebin to ponepaste. But this time brings a major overhaul and discovery that I felt like it need's some more extra fanfare

First the news that reggie knows and I've been talking with me over at nhnb
>A new /bootleg/ archive has been in the works over the past days in a major effort to revamp and clean up the OP.
>Surprised? You shouldn't be because I'm the one who has proposing reworking the OP over and over again whenever I am not dead, I like to at least leave the record of the threads accomplishments for those who come after.
>At first I just copied sunfag's archive formatting once I learned how to not be a retard with pastedown but after feedback from nhnb's anons I shifted more towards the Octavia's archive with some minor differences for /boot/
>The same list of all the greens from the gdoc is now in the new archive, but now includes a word count, summary and status, along with maintaining the /bootleg/s way of using tags
>The new archive is now public and can be found here https://ponepaste.org/5786
>>
Next is a big boon for /bootleg/ people have asked for this for years. The thun parade has been fully pastebinned! this alone would be worthwhile to celebrate
>mfw felt some real accomplishment finally able to connect the string of seemingly unrelated oneoffs, this has been a constant itch for years
>It turns out there's actually had a sense of continuitiy and it wasn't long before I noticed a pattern of characters being introduced in the same house in a short many, many posts before.
>How far back are we talking? The last time that he wrote it was in thread #36 but this man has been writing for the /bootleg/, the same house and the same Anon since #9!
>Thun all starts with Dim Sum, and I even found the Aria bootleg that he talked about. I totally glazed over that in the middle of Dim-Sum's chinese, this was driving me nuts because I've gone back so many times in desu.
>After staring at these short greens the style of writing and comedic play stood out to me too, I'm betting it's the same author as the fantastic Freedom and Commie
>On their own its hard to rally around but when seen together like a big tapestry it's great.
>No longer will kirko's work be invisible, and together with dusting these shorts off and piecing them together like a broken old stone fragments, I believe it deserves to be added to the best of the boot.
>now that the full string has been united I'll be retiring the other pastes which only served as a small fraction and had bland awful names like "counting with bump" because it was hard to pin down what to call it
>Unless someone gives me a better name I will be naming this House of boots to reflect on this madman's building of a family, and how he has been with us for the long haul
>You may find the newly binned green here: https://ponepaste.org/5794
>>
>>37629386
>Jacky is 231,498 words
Bruh. Also, I don't think I did Boolet. I think I remember Peetzer Pony but not enough to say I did it. Don't forget Bootleg Anon, which is a short where the dorks are human and Anon is the pone.
Awesome work otherwise! Not only is it pretty ergonomic but it's a quick way to check up what is new and shiny.
>>
>>37629436
you definitely did peetzer because i remember the shitposting with you in the hangouts over it. but il take off boolet and move it to anon

>>37628525
Now comes the reveal of something that's bound to shake it up and it's Rarely been covered or brought up here.
>While diving into the archives I find that many times people have asked things like how can a robot die, and the gravitation we've been unable to shake that bootleg history is defective bots
>Of course one stucks out from the rest, we did have a Celestia hassenfeld but only as a one off.
>However after spending an extra amount of time in desu I also started looking up hassenfelds
>Everyone thought that the russian rarity may have been a knockoff robot but it was actually knockoff hassenfeld
>Bootleg's grand origin is actually a hassenfeld story which were genetically engineered ponies, not ponybots
>That's right! Rare is a hassenfeld that went wrong, and /bootlegs/ greens were heavily based Rare being a robot, it's all wrong
>It was a common canon for hassenfelds to have short lifespans like a pet
>We all missed the mark and this explains many things, how can she die, and why did her life last so short.
>It has been asked a few times if hassenfelds can 'count' as a bootleg. How could they not if one of the most memorable bootlegs was one?
>The pre-conceieved notion of /bootleg/ is over with and now we are open to new horizons, what better timing than when a panel or FAQ is being proposed eh?
>pic related
>>
>>37629089
I cant wait to see how people react to technicolor horses

>>37629430
>The thun parade has been fully pastebinned!
Awesome.
Also house of boot is a good name imo
>>
>>37628525
>"Is there an agreed on autistic canon"
>>
>>37629724
Outside of an anime convention I think that's the one place they may be welcomed without too many questions.
Until they start talking. At least they're having fun dealing with the traffic just trying to enter the place and all energized.
>>
>>37629386
>>37629430
>>37629473
>That's right! Rare is a hassenfeld that went wrong, and /bootlegs/ greens were heavily based Rare being a robot, it's all wrong
Jesus Christ. You're blowing my mind like: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9CS7j5I6aOc
>The pre-conceieved notion of /bootleg/ is over with and now we are open to new horizons, what better timing than when a panel or FAQ is being proposed eh?
The future of /bootleg/ is definitely looking brighter. Excellent job compiling everything! You've done the thread a great service.
>>
>>37630047
>>37629473
And people thought Jack was a ponebot for a long while too.
>>
>>37630053
given the environment of the thread at the time its not a surprise, lotsabots tunnel vision
>>
>>37628819
How did /bootleg/ start?
>A short of a Russian bootleg Rarity, called Rare drove feels straight into our souls and set the tone for many boots to come, IE sad stories. It's still considered a staple that must be read to understand the way of the boot. After the pain came another aspect that stuck around for good, their inherent nature makes us want to protect them, cherish them or save them.
>It wasn't long before people started talking about what bootlegs of other ponies would be like, such as the Mane 6 which started the ball rolling. Twibot was among the first that hit just as hard as Rare, between some silly pointless stuff the thread clearly struck a chord with people and kept going with new green and new writefags.
>>
>Back to work
>Finally over illness
>Instantly belt out at least a good third of the next update within a couple of hours
>Have a good idea of the ensuing updates and how they will be laid out
Like fucking pottery. At least I got the time to do this shit with what I'm doing at work lately.

>>37630720
Bretty good.
>>
>>37630739
happy to hear that you're doing better andlook forward to more moodymoon
>>
>>37607816

>For the third time this morning, you hear Anon's alarm blare its electronic maelstrom of auditory pain.
>You've been nice thus far, but this is getting a little ridiculous now.
>Lazy bastard.
>With a huff of resignation, you set aside the laptop you were perusing and slip off of the couch, heading to Anon's room blocked only by his door left slightly ajar.
>It's not necessarily odd for him to hit the snooze button once in a while - but it's usually pretty quick.
>In the back of your mind, you're a little concerned with the realization that it has been blaring for some time before the noise is silenced.
>...Er, you're concerned for your own well-being, since he's basically hiding you here.
>So you sort of need him alive.
>Not that you're worried about that, either - after all, he has silenced his alarms.
>They don't turn off by themselves, right?
>You use one of your wings to lightly push open the door as you creep into his room.
> It's rather barren, the walls a pale robin egg blue that has faded with time, and no decor to speak of - aside from a small window right above the bed.
>Merely a bed, an end table, and a door which leads to a small walk-in closet grace this room as far as furnishings.
>A lump you safely assume is Anon's slumbering form is nestled within a cocoon of blankets.
>More than you would expect to see, considering the temperature in here, which is on the upper end of comfortable.
"Hey sloth, stop hitting the snooze button. It's almost nine-thirty," you snap.
>Anon's form merely shifts a bit, before letting out a fatigued mumble of unintelligible words.
"I don't understand moonspeak, try again in English."
>This time, you just get a groan in response.
"Alright, enough of this."
>You storm over to his bedside, leaning over and grabbing a hold of the end of the linens and tossing them aside to expose Anon to the sunlight.
>He doesn't put up any sort of a fight.
>Instead, he focuses on bracing his eyes for the sharp contrast of light by squinting.
>He looks... very pale.
>And slightly shivering from head to toe.
>And he looks quite exhausted, by his sluggish movements in getting himself adjusted to focus on you.
"You look awful," you finally manage to tell him.
>"You were a lot prettier last night, too," he strikes back, shuddering particularly hard as he grabs those sheets to cover himself back up.
"Stop being disgusting - what are you doing?"
>"I feel like shit, Midnight," he groans. "Unless you cranked the AC down to the 50s, I'm gonna guess I'm suffering from the chills right now."
>You blink.
"So you're cold?"
>"I'm sick. Ill. Whatever you want to call it. I can't be up and around like this. Probably got a fever, and I'm feeling dizzy just trying to look at you. I can't open today."
"You can't afford *not* to open up - we just lost almost two full days due to weather last week," you protest, the thought of more lost revenue making you anxious.
>"Alright, alright. Damn slave driver."
>>
>>37631364

>Slowly, Anon sits himself upright, still clinging to the sheets in which he's draped himself.
>He pauses before actually standing up, seeming to sway back and forth a bit.
>"Is the room spinning for you?" he asks.
"No..."
>While your first instinct is to believe he's screwing with you or playing it up, the look of utter exhaustion he sports and the continued slight swaying back and forth convinces you otherwise.
>Frustrated, you motion with your hoof for him to lay back down, which he obliges - albeit slowly and with an accompanying groan.
>"Sorry, I didn't ask to be sick, Midnight," he apologizes, shifting around a bit to find a more comfortable position.
"I know, I know," you grumble in response, turning to head back out of his room.
>Maybe you're overreacting a bit, considering the ease of access the website now provides leaves a vast majority of orders being placed online nowadays...
>But still, not being open at all has to hurt business somewhat, and you want to make this place's financial foundation as rock solid as possible, as soon as possible.
>And the hours open to the public have already been cut back out of necessity to pull parts for orders that are to be shipped out.
>Of course, that's the transition - being here only to ship out and allow pickup maybe once a week...
>You still don't like not being open at this point in time though.
>You can't sit back and do nothing.
"I'm opening up on my own," you announce, turning back around to face Anon
>"You wha?"
>He sits up right away - going just a bit too far forward before his delayed reactions stabilize him.
"I'll open up shop for a little bit - answer any calls, deal with whatever few customers we get, and get caught up on the parts we need to pull."
>"Absolutely not, Midnight," he sternly rebuts, not wasting a moment of thought.
>Undaunted by his refusal, you pin your ears back with anger and step forward.
"Why not? I'm more than capable of doing it, and it's not like I'm asking you to hand the whole business over to me," you argue.
>"Have you forgotten you aren't really supposed to be here?" he says, pointing a finger at you. "What if - well, what if someone from the place you came from happens to walk in and recognizes you? It's game over."
>Okay, he's evidently delirious with illness, judging by how little thought went into that argument.
"What the hell kind of an excuse is that? Have you somehow forgotten the numerous times I was working on engines in the shop while customers walked in? As well as the few times I've actually interacted with them? Are you being stupid on purpose?"
>Anon opens up his mouth to speak, but is unable to find any words that will help him.
"I'm my own mare anyways, Anon - you said so yourself. I'm pretty sure I can manage without your expertise for a little bit."
>"I don't like this idea," he continues to stonewall. "You still aren't supposed to legally be out on your own, you told me that."
>>
>>37631369

"Yet this is private property - *your* private property, might I add."
>In the back of your mind, you've already decided this is something you will do, whether you have Anon's approval or not.
>But you'd still rather have his blessing, rather than do this behind his back.
>More out of a desire to avoid hearing his droll scowling voice later on in the evening when he finds out.
>"Pull parts out back. That's it."
>You shake your head defiantly.
"Open till about one in the afternoon, answer any calls, and then pull parts out back."
>He scowls at your counter offer.
>However, Anon sighs after mulling his options for a few silent moments.
>"I'm not going to win with you, am I?"
>You shake your head once again.
>"Be careful, Midnight," he says solemnly.
"You act as if I'm going to get caught and get you in trouble," you chastise.
>"Dammit, I'm not worried about that, I'm worried about *you*."
>The way he emphasizes his concern makes you feel...
>Odd.
"Shut up," is all you can reply with, embarrassed by being thrust into the central focus like this.
>"No, I'm serious. I want you around Midnight - I don't care if you think that's weird or makes you feel uncomfortable," he presses.
"Well - come on, your business is-"
>"I'm not talking about having you around to help me. Let go of your pride for just five minutes, please."
"Then what is it?" you ask, feeling awkward as hell.
>"I enjoy your company, Midnight. I want you around for - you. So yes, I'm worried for your sake."
>You swallow hard at that statement.
"You can't just keep me under wraps forever. That's not a life," you reply.
>"I know, which is why I don't have a leg to stand on in this argument. And I realize it's a longshot that someone is going to recognize you, put two and two together, and come to the conclusion you're essentially a fugitive. But I can't vouch for you if I'm not there - I can't make up some quick excuse to cover your ass. So jus-"
>You unfurl your left wing and gently shove him back down to a laying position.
"You're doing way too much talking for someone as sick and out of it as you are," you tell him. "Shut up, get some sleep, I'll be fine, you candyass."
>Without giving him another chance to speak, you trot out of the room, closing the door behind you.
> It's only now you realize you've been holding your breath for some time, and you let it out in a big exhale.
>'I want you around.'
>You've never heard that directed toward you.
>Not unless it was for someone else's shot at a massive ego boost.
>Or prestige.
>Or monetary gain.
>Your whole existence is based on a gamble to gain influence within a company.
>It was only in hindsight you understood that.
>The few compliments and discussions shared were more or less to build up the ego of another, for their own betterment.
>Something beyond you - you have always been a vessel for a further goal.
>To be kept around for - well, you, your 'company' as Anonymous so eloquently described...
>>
>>37631374

> It's a wave of emotions you've never felt before.
>A completely foreign feeling that is almost overwhelming right now.
>Why?
>In reality - what do you have to offer aside from your aptitude to learn skills at a rapid pace and your gift of making ferrous objects float in the air?
>Your whole plan to fit here and make this your home revolved only around making yourself useful as a tool, not...
>Whatever Anon thinks of you now.
>Fucking rambling moron.
>He even said so on day one, he had no interest in ponies, no interest in you or your past.
>Which was fine with you - it's what you expected.
>It was what felt normal.
>What the hell happened?
>Anon just keeps digging beyond what you offered and agreed upon - face-value facts, present day.
>You don't want to delve into the past - you can't change it.
>It doesn't matter anymore, and it's unpleasant to reflect upon.
>...
>And you hate who you are.
>You hate *what* you are.
>Anon pressing his way further and further into your past is forcing you to come to terms with that.
>What does he serve to gain from it?
>It's completely illogical.
>Why do things suddenly have to be so damn complicated?
>And why-
>No, get a grip on yourself.
>You have things that need to be done.
>Stop thinking about shit that doesn't matter.
>With another deep breath, you shove those thoughts and worries down into the recesses of your mind and head out the door.

----

I hadn't anticipated getting this done last night, but shit happens.
>>
>>37631378
I'm glad to hear you're feeling better, even if that meant wasting your time off work.
Thanks for the green. It's saddening to hear this is the first time Midnight experienced someone admit to her they care for her. Hope her day(s) at work will go smoothly.
>>
>>37631407
It was fortuitous timing that I got ill last week, as I had the week off anyway - temporary week layoff as the factory I work in retooled some machines, and didn't have much to actually do in the way of work. I volunteered for it, as I anticipated getting some stuff done in the garage.

But yes, we're starting to see some of the layers underneath that gruff exterior. It's not really going to be a fun journey.
>>
>>37631427
>It's not really going to be a fun journey.
As long as there's a happy Midnight at the end of this road, I'm ready.
Until then I can dream about them being safe and happy together.
>>
>>37631999
trips confirm good end for tsunderemoon
>>
In the interest of revamping the OP, what do you guys think about changing the best of the boot?
>>
>>37632978
What qualifies as the best?
>>
>>37633104
thats a matter of opinion but every general, generally has stuff that's first to recommend to new readers to get an idea of the feel or scope and the kind of quality that stands out. best of the boot has just been a quirky name for recommend reading
>>
>>37631378
Good update. Will this lead to Anon being nursed back to health by a tsun moonhorse? One can hope.
>>
>>37633104
how about a best of 3 types that boot has. the lighthearted comfy stuff, the sad or emotional , and the ones that push the thread boundaries?
>>
>>37633717
good idea
which stories should go in these categories? i haven't read enough of these to suggest any
>>
>>37633963
I would feel like a cheater if I promoted any of my things. Twillght and Rare deserve spots, both for emotional.
>>
>>37633717
Emotional:
1. Rare
2. Missy Pie
3. Twibot
RamboFast is too fucking depressing for me.
Comfy:
1. Jacky
2. Minky
3. ???
Pushing boundaries:
No idea

Midnight should be recommended somewhere too, don't know if it really fits in any of those three categories.
>>
>>37634734
What counts as pushing boundaries? You could argue a lot of greens do that as is, depending on what counts as a bootleg or what topics are explored. I suppose technically even Photo Finished could be seen as pushing boundaries since I haven't seen many, if any, bootlegs that are downright spooky. Pic related has been written to be a little unsettling but I think that's incidental.
>>
>>37634734
>Rambo Fast will never get an ending because the writer is MIA
>>
p9 bump
>>
>>37634734
I'd recommend Zooma. Not sure if that would necessarily fit in for comfy or not. I suppose that's the downside of making categorization-based recommendation lists.
>Midnight should be recommended
Now hold on, she's hardly two months old, I have plenty of time to fuck it up. I'm curious because I'm self-conscious and sort of feel guilty for all the attention this story has gotten - what makes it a recommendation/a good read for you?
>>
>>37636156
Not that anon, but for me at least, it's a combination of the way you build characters, the dialogue, the jokes, a little bit of everything that makes a great green in my eyes.
Impostor syndrome is a hell of a thing, innit?
>>
>>37636541
>>37636156
It would be nice to see recommendations and why.
>>
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You buy a pony, but its some abomination from spore, what do?
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>>37637368
Love it
>>
I think I have an idea for another bootleg shitpost, but I have some stuff I need to take care of first.
>>
>>37637368
Feel comfortable that it'll take me to interplanetary conquest. Eventually.
>>
>>37637893
you should share your ideas, i only ever hear you talk about having them like the yandeer.
>>
>>37634759
maybe something different in order, instead of trying to classify something like that we could split things by best of the era?
>Classic bootleg
>Revival period
>Modern bootleg
>>
>>37638569
I should probably draw the yandeer too, that would probably be funny.
>>
>>37638588
What counts as revival versus modern?
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>>37638589
is it a deer thats /yan/ or just a funny way of saying yandere?
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>>37638665
Yes and yes, could probably tie it to /boot/ by making it a Velvet (Them's Fightin' Herds) bootleg.
>>
>>37638662
id say that jacky's start is when revival the kicked off. blondie joined /bootleg/ and started greening away near the end of the thread
>>
>>37638692
Revival thread in question >>34588777
>>
>>37638692
I still remember that thread. Is Jacky more revival or modern? If we're counting her for the thread revival-which isn't wrong since the threads were pretty bare for a while outside of just chugging away, would she still count for modern too or would that have to be restricted for more recent stories like Angel Cake?
>>
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>>37638737
Jacky still counts as revival era to me despite the paradox of it still going on in modern times. Unless you want to talk about our precursors that were doing bootlegs before the generals existed like Stompy as 'classic bootleg'.

A lot of it has to do with shaking off old restraints, as we get further into the unknown bootlegged side. But even though the ideas were all over it had a stigma of still being sad or depressing since we got hit by nuclear feels from Rare and the radiation feelsfallout lasted for years
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>>37638786
>Bootlegs aren't exactly chipper.
I'm glad to have shaken things up. Sometimes things aren't always so happy with Jacky, but things are better now than they were before.
>>
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>>37638685
>implyng the ponedeerpone already isnt bootlegged
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>>37638912
I forgot she exists
>>
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>>37638930
>tfw invisible to people even when they're looking at you
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>>37639001
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lLQr-HDp_Us
>>
>>37629089
>And the wom... Anon, don't look."
Hearty chuckle. I love how insecure Jacky is about other women simply being around Anon. It's endearing in its own way.
>"What, uh... what do you want our legacy to be?"
---
>"Legacy... I don't know. What could we even have as a legacy, you know?"
>He looks behind himself
>I almost turn my head because for a second it looked like he was looking at me
>He looks ahead again
>"I guess the only legacy I want is that I gave you everything I could."
>He clears his throat
>He said that pretty quiet
>"And that's all I guess I have to say about that."
Christ, this is getting deep. I really, really like that Jacky is thinking about the big picture, about deeper things. When I first read this section, Anon's response pissed me off. I quoted Captain Picard and literally yelled, "Not good enough, damn it! Not good enough!" at my computer. Took some time to cool down, reread it and had to acknowledge that he's likely not in a spot to do any better than what he said. Guess I'm always guilty of projecting my expectations of myself onto your Anon and AutoPony's Anon. But it's consistent with the Anon we've come to know in this story. I hope for his sake and for Jacky's that he's able to be more open about this in the future.

>>37631378
>In reality - what do you have to offer aside from your aptitude to learn skills at a rapid pace and your gift of making ferrous objects float in the air?
>Your whole plan to fit here and make this your home revolved only around making yourself useful as a tool, not...
>Whatever Anon thinks of you now.
Nothing like a little existential crisis to get the noggin joggin.
>And you hate who you are.
>You hate *what* you are.
Coping with insecurities is an intrinsic part of /bootleg/ stories. Looking forward to how Midnight deals with hers after this scene. Speaking of insecurities...
>>37636156
>I'd recommend Zooma. Not sure if that would necessarily fit in for comfy or not.
Well thank you, but I'm also curious why you would. I don't know what I'd classify Z as. I initially set out to write cute shorts about a Luna knockoff to bump the thread with, but it naturally evolved into something more almost immediately. Regardless of how she's remembered when I conclude her story, I hope she's able to make Anons feel something real, if nothing else.
>spoiler
I can only speak for myself, but Midnight makes my recommendation list because I care about the characters. Both characters need to grow, and I can see it starting to happen. The dialogue is natural (and hilarious at times). Pacing is good and the there's this very real feeling of danger lingering on the periphery that keeps me interested in what's going to happen in the long game.
>>
>>37639210
>I don't know what I'd classify Z as
I classify Zooma as adorable and endearing, you wanted to make something cute and you succeeded. but beyond that shes not just sugary fluff and still has her own insecurities, putting her in a world of actual ponies is a welcome change and contrasts really nicely. who knows if spitfire and luna are hassenfelds or the real deal, but it can work either way
>>
>>37629089
>I didn't expect there to be so much walking
>There are so many next level larpers that put our week to shame
"Wholesome qualities are what I might possess."
>Sparky yawns, doubling her efforts to keep up with us
>"That ride was too short.... my shadow has a different vibe than my nose has, and that's a fact."
>Dashie smirks at me
>We've all been working on a few more songs
>"I serve as an example of a something that's almost right."
>Anon points to each of us when his part comes up
>"Fixable, mixable, sitting in plain ol' sight."
>I inhale to go to the next verse... and stop when someone walking near us just...
>Stares at me
>"Dude, do you have talking dogs?"
>It's some man that's dressed up like a jester
>Instead of a knife, he has a carrot at his waist
>"Ah... nah, man. They're talking ponies from another world. One flies, one has magic and the other has legs strong enough to crush your head five times over."
>Are my legs that strong?
>The jester blinks at Anon a few times
>"...either you're on something or you need to give me some of what you got."
"Hey, at least he's being honest! Head's up, I'm not the one that uses magic."
>My own voices makes him jump
>He watched every word I said and still doesn't seem to be afraid or freaked out
>"Huh. Well, you sound like a babe. Gimme enough of anything and I game I guess."
>Anon scoffs
>"You act like you've never been around talking pony chicks."
>The jester thinks over that comment and shrugs
>"I guess not, man. My carrot's not for sharing so, you know."
>He picks up his pace and breaks away from our path
>"Well he was rude... he seemed almost disappointed."
>Dashie chuckles and gives her wings a single strong flap
>"As if we're so unique we'll turn heads... but maybe it'll be fun. Anon. Rules on how we should act?"
>Anon shakes his head
>"No stealing, mugging, kidnapping or ambushing."
>I snort at the disappointed look on her face
"Come on, we're here to have fun! And there are a lot of families here too. I bet this is a really great place, we can't ruin that for them."
>Her answer is a sigh
>"If I end up in the petting zoo I'm burning any kids that try to touch me. This is the only warning I'm giving today."
>Sparky still sounds tired
>Irritated and tired
>I sidle up to her and nudge her flank with my own
"Come on, it'll be fun! We can do all sorts of stuff and I bet we'll even get discounts for being cute and talking ponies! We've done stuff like this before, haven't we?"
>Sparks sighs
>"I don't know, have we?"
>"Eyes ahead, girls. I have the digital tickets and things are gonna get crowded so stick close."
>There are so many people standing and walking around us that it has gotten hard to keep track of them all
>So many of them have outfits that look just like stuff video game characters wear!
>Some even look like they have real swords and knives on them
>>
>>37639425
>"Yup, hi there. Got tickets for four."
>Anon holds his phone out to a man in a green and gold outfit
>...the man is at least twice as big in size but he has a sorta squeaky voice
>"Four? Someone showing up? They're gonna need the tickets, I can't pre-approve them."
>"Wha? No, four. Me and... uh..."
>Anon looks at us
>"I mean... do my girls need tickets?"
>The big ticket keeper looks at me like he's confused
>I smile wide at him
>"N... no? The tickets are for adults and... uh... animals get in for free."
>"Ha! Awesome. Well I'll help myself then."
>"Don't worry Anon, we'll be good. And how hard is it to find us in a crowd anyway?"
>Sparks and Dashie trot off past the bewildered
>"Did those two ponies just-"
>"Yes, they talked. Keep up to speed, man."
>After getting his ticket validated, we walk through some big stone gate
"...so does this mean?"
>"That I wasted like eighty bucks on three tickets we didn't even need?"
>He sighs
>"...yup. Sure does."
"Oh... I'm sorry."
>Ducking and darting through at least a dozen people, I see...
>Another world!
>Every structure and store is all colorful wood and custom signs
>Everyone is very clearly either a normal visitor or some sort of larper in full attire
>Some even have armor!
"...woah."
>Without waiting for Anon to comment, I sprint off to check out nearly every store I can see!
>Clothing
>Huge pots and ceramic jugs
>Cups
"Woah, WOAH! Is all of this stuff handmade?!"
>"Well that's right, little lady."
>An old woman wearing the tightest corset I've ever seen answers
>"Care to check them out?"
>I look around
"...you're talking to me, right?"
>"That's right!"
"...you know I'm a talking pony, right?"
>The woman smiles
>"Honey, I've been setting up shop here for thirty-four years. I've seen weirder."
>She winks
>"Besides, I know we have all of that drone technology going on. You got a real high tech thing going on!"
>But I'm not...
>Wait
>Maybe it would be better if I play that angle up?
>This could be my chance to enjoy more normal stuff!
>>
>>37639429
>"Hey, Anon! Let's grab something!"
>Out of the ether he pops up with a folded up map in hand
>"What's up?"
>"Your mare here wants my jugs."
"WHAT?!"
>"Oh score, she has good taste."
"WHAT?!"
>The two humans share a giggle and focus on me
>"So what are you looking for?"
"Iunno... how about a pair of..."
>A lot of things are high up on wooden shelves and tables but a lot are on the ground and on benches
"...cups? What cups are good for couples?"
>The woman's eyes dart to me and Anon
>"Well, depends what sort of couple you are. Complimentary colors or clashing?"
>I can hear Anon begin to speak but this is my time to shine
"Complimentary! Like these."
>I poke an orange ceramic cup
>And a green one
>"...are those complimentary colors Jack?"
>I look up at the woman
>She looks at me
>"Well I think they compliment the two of you."
>I look at Anon
"They compliment us."
>Anon shrugs
>"Fair point."
>"Gonna need bowls to go with those cups, aren't you?"
"We do..."
>We spend time comparing and contrasting not just bowl styles but colors
>Thankfully all of the things are in one of four colors so its easy to find the right options
>By the end of it, we grabbed a matching pair of bowls, cups, and even plates!
>I have no clue how often we'll actually use the plates since they're kinda small but we'll figure something out
>"Alright... you guys just get here? I can hold onto them for you."
"Please! These are fine, right Anon?"
>"Definitely. The green ones are mine, right?"
>I smirk at the woman
>She seems to get exactly what I mean
>"...I'm not liking the looks going on here."
>"Don't worry, Romeo, you're fine. So will that be cash or card?"
>>
I'm kinda digging writing in one massive chunk and then just cutting it down for post limits. It won't work for certain things or events but I think it works nicely here.
>>37639210
You gotta remember that Anon really is doing all he can. He's not a man of means or money, he's just a guy that wants to give his mare all she could ask for, up to and including finding her sisters. That said, for him to say that... it is a very important vow to take. It has no ceiling or limit.
Worth noting that the more dreams she's been having, the more rooted she is in the present. She feels more like a whole person with a real past to recall rather than having some nebulous fog, and that can really give a stronger sense of confidence. That confidence is also being paired with her almost relearning that she was never really allowed to choose her own path. And she's very happy to be proactive. They've only been around each other for close to two years now, about damn time.
>>
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>>37603524
new OP tweaks. thoughts, opinions? like it hate it? lay it on me
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>>37639425
>We've done stuff like this before, haven't we?"
>Sparks sighs
>"I don't know, have we?"
Wonder if she's being sarcastic or if she actually doesn't remember.
>>
>>37639210
To me, Zooma just stands out because she is the epitome of a bootleg - she knows she's flawed in the sense of not being to the specs expected. But that doesn't stop her from trying her damndest to make something of herself and the one she cares about - I'd argue even moreso than a 'perfect' model might, as she feels she has something to prove. It's an underdog story in a sense, and I always root for the underdog whether it be in racing, automotive, or a character in a story.
>>
>>37639605
shes great but 'knowing shes flawed of not being the specs expected' is generally one of the common things that comes up over and over in bootleg. if you like Zooma's determination, you'd enjoy Racer too
>>
>>37639646
...yeah, I didn't think that comment through too thoroughly, did I? My bad. I will say I'm probably more partial to Zooma since she's a Luna knockoff, too.
>>
>>37639714
dont worry about it being biased and new, zoomas still a good girl. what i love about her is how proactive she is despite being a bootleg
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>>37637893
I'll elaborate more on this in the morning, still thinking on how I would set this up and who to include.
>>
>>37629943
Is there an agreed on autistic-enforced canon?
>No infact the opposite is encouraged to break the mold! You can have fun with connecting the dots from different ideas though. From the beginning we welcomed a wide variety of ideas including Bots, Plushies, and Hassenfelds. Many of which might seem impossible to co-exist in the same universe, but if you wanted to do it anyways no ones stopping you.
>Instead of restricting everything down to one narrow idea with laser focus we encourage the freedom to play, to make what you want provided it sticks to the basic core concepts. Bootlegs offer such a broad spectrum that instead of a single one canon it's better to think of it as a multiverse of possibilities on what-IFs knockoffs with their own universe internal logic
>>
Should have some more green in the morning.
>>37640057
I think this is great. Part of why I enjoy writing here so much. A lot of freedom, but still pony, and much less of a magnifying glass or expectation to follow canon to a t. That's not so much fun when you're trying to fit with show canon.
>>
>>37631378

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLATbzMutkc
>This is obscenely boring.
>How Anon managed to occupy himself month after month sitting and waiting for customers is beyond you.
>Almost an hour and a half since opening the front gates. And not a single person has popped in.
>...you did get a few stares from passersby when fiddling with the lock and propping the gate open, though.
>Despite your confidence you crowed about when convincing Anon to let you do this, it was a little unnerving.
>Again, you aren't used to this attention.
>You aren't used to being out in the open for all to see.
>By design, you're meant to be quite striking in appearance.
>...that's far from a boon right now, considering the circumstances.
>But, no one stopped and shrieked in horror.
>Sirens didn't begin to blare as the authorities closed in to neutralize you.
>Just some double-takes.
>There was never any thought put into what you would do outside of the facility once you made good your escape.
>Tending to a junkyard certainly wasn't something that sprung to mind.
>But beggars can't be choosers.
>Now...
>You have too much time to think.
>What illness does Anon have?
>With virtually no knowledge of humans, that question has you nervous.
>Will he be okay?
>Could it be fatal?
>He didn't seem overly concerned about it...
>But what if that was to allay your fears?
>Fears that he probably doesn't know you have...
>Yeah, trying to hide inevitable death is probably a reach.
>However, you would like to see him back to normal as quickly as possible for peace of mind.
>The least you could do is at least check on him a few times throughout the day, in case he needs anything.
>After some time to let the thought settle, maybe it isn't so awful to think that Anon cares.
>It's - well, it's sort of a relief.
>It means you don't have to constantly be looking out for yourself in every direction.
>Someone has your back.
>Again, that's a new feeling.
>Hell, interacting with anyone on a regular occasion is new.
>You remember being virtually isolated from birth until arriving here.
>'Birth' might not be an appropriate term, but the point still stands.
>It was all part of the experiment, after all.
>To be fully independent.
>The creak of stairs draws your attention away from internal thoughts.
>Anonymous carefully makes his way down the steps, still wearing a sheet like a cloak.
"What the hell are you doing? Get back to bed!" you shout at him, aghast to see him as he tries not to fall the rest of the way down with his lack of balance.
>"You want me to shit in the sink?" he croaks.
"Not... particularly?"
>You try not to gag at the thought.
>"Then you're going to watch me stumble down the stairs. May as well see if a hot shower helps me at all, while I'm down here," he explains further, holding out a fresh change of leisure clothes out from under his cloak.
>You don't say anything else as you warily watch him traverse the rest of the steps.
>>
>>37640495

>"Any customers yet?" he asks upon reaching the bathroom door.
>You shake your head negatively, which elicits a frown from him.
>"Sorry. How many orders came in overnight?"
"I... hadn't thought about checking that," you reply, appalled that simple task had slipped your mind.
>"You worrying about me?" Anon suggests with a smirk.
>That face instantly draws your ire.
>Even if he is kind of right in that assumption.
>Are you sure you didn't just come down here to annoy me when I'm supposed to be rid of you for the day?"
>He shrugs while walking into the bathroom and closing the door behind.
>"I'm a man of many talents," his muffled voice echoes from the other side.
>Smartass.
>While Anon does his thing, you check up on emails on the computer for orders, as reminded by him.
>And there are quite a few new ones in the last fourteen or so hours.
>Most of which seem to be engine parts, just from a glance.
>Fairly simple, as your work has left shelves full of sorted parts in the building.
>Pontiac 400 heads, Ford 351 oil pan, Jeep 360 four-barrel intake...
>You don't recall doing any Jeep stuff.
>But there are some parts you know - at least, that you know are marked.
>Book smarts don't necessarily translate into instant visual identification - not like Anon can do.
>You still need reference tags for most of these things.
>That knowledge likely comes with experience.
>Almost in time with the sound of the water being turned on, you pad over to the storage room and make your way along the narrow corridors.
>The lighting in this room is awful, but you have no issues seeing in the dark, thanks to your eyes.
>You can't help but laugh when Anon stumbles his way along in here when he's looking for something.
>Like other aspects of his business, it was something he noticed, but never bothered to improve.
>With as much stockpiling as the two of you have accomplished, reaching and replacing light fixtures will be a tall task.
>Maybe someday...
>You manage to find the engine heads fairly quick, trotting back to the entrance just to place them down outside the door.
>But before you turn back to head for the oil pan, someone comes around the corner of the entrance to the shop.
>A customer!
>Just as you start to feel excitement and anxiety build, you get a better look at your visitor.
>Carrying a large box, the man is clad in a drab brown uniform...
>Just a delivery.
>Dammit.
>"Well good morning, miss," he greets you with a smile and in a voice that is borderline baby talk. "Your owner wouldn't happen to be around to sign for this package, would he?"
>Owner.
>You clench your jaw at the utterance of that insulting word being directed toward you.
>And the way he says that!
>Like you're some sort of imbecile!
>You have half a mind to-
>"In here, but I'm a little occupied at the moment!" Anon shouts through the sounds of the shower. "She can sign for it, can't she?"
>>
>>37640497

>"Of course, sorry about that," the delivery driver announces back, his gaze drawn away from you and toward the closed door behind.
>It gives you a moment to scowl at him in an attempt to relieve some of your anger.
>Just as he starts to focus back on you, you bring yourself back to a decidedly more approachable appearance.
>"Where do you want this?" he asks politely, motioning to the large package with a nod of his head.
>The box is large enough to require the use of both hands.
>Well, he can shove it wh-
"I'll take it," you reply, sensing at least some sort of ferrous material inside you can grasp.
>It's strange how your ability works, but you can 'feel' when something can be moved or drawn toward you.
>From that, you can get a sense of general shape, as well as any separate pieces.
>Feeling the presence of four cylindrical objects, you gently grab them and motivate the box to the floor, much to your visitor's surprise.
>"Whoa, that's trippy."
>It takes a moment before he reaches for some sort of device on his hip, tapping through a few things before holding it out to you, as well as some sort of plastic pen.
>"Sign here," he directs.
>You frown, knowing full well you can't handle that object.
>Your eyes divert their attention to other nearby objects, before spotting the thin metal wire holding the tag to the engine heads you put down.
>The wire unwinds itself under your silent instructions, before weaving through the air and wrapping around the stylus pen.
>"Man, they keep on coming up with crazier inventions, don't they?" he says, wide-eyed and astounded.
"Something like that," you absently reply, taking a moment to scrawl your name on the touchscreen.
>'Midnight.'
>That sort of makes it official now, doesn't it?
>It was a quick thought to avoid Anon from using the cringe-worthy 'Turbo' moniker, but you're come to prefer the name now.
>It sure beats an alphanumeric project code.
>As he puts the device away, he renews his smile and waves, heading back out.
>"Have a good day, Midnight."
>You half-heartedly wave with a hoof, waiting for him to disappear beyond the brick-and-mortar door frame.
>A growl of pent-up ire escapes you once the coast is clear.
>You don't think you'll ever get over that term.
>For more than one reason.
>"Sorry, Midnight."
"What?"
>You turn to face the bathroom door after hearing Anon's apology from the other side.
>"I was a little worried you might not take too well to him asking for your..."
>He trails off.
"Owner?" you suggest, keeping your audible bitterness to the minimum you can muster.
>"Yeah. I figured I would just speak up."
>You could berate him for that.
>After all, this is supposed to be your day flying solo.
>Perhaps he came down here to 'shower' because he doesn't trust you...
>Even if that were true, he's right.
>That comment really pissed you off, even if that is the cover you need to hide behind.
>>
>>37640503

>"I probably would have had to fetch you for approval anyways. And no, that did not sit well with me," you sigh. "Thank you."
>You await the gasp or comment pointing out your rare manners.
>But aside from the water shutting off, all is silent.
>That's... unsettling.
"Anonymous?"
>"Yeah? I'm here."
"Oh. I was expecting you to be a smartass about that," you admit.
>"Should I?"
"Normally you would have. Is this part of being ill?"
>You hear him chuckle slightly.
>"No, but I think I know why I feel like shit," he announces.
"Do tell."
>You're admittedly anxious for this piece of news.
>"You remember that chicken bacon ranch pizza I had about a week ago?"
>That looked like a horrendous concoction when he opened the box that night.
>You didn't touch it.
"That was last week, though."
>"And there were still leftovers. Maybe a little too old to eat safely..."
"Dumbass."
>"Yeah, I deserve that. But it means I'll probably be feeling better once it's out of my system, so hopefully tomorrow."
>The door opens, greeting you with a wave of steam that rolls outward.
>Anon shuffles out in his new change of clothes, his hair still looking slightly damp.
>"Anyway... to tell you the truth, I guess I see now that you've got your own demons to work through. As much as I like to pick for fun and enjoy getting it back, that's not fair to you. You're trying."
>Try as you might, it's impossible to keep stoic.
>You feel your face grow hot.
"I'm... we all got the little things that bother us. You're making a mountain out of a molehill."
>"Maybe. Let's just leave it at that. I still feel like everything is moving while I'm standing still."
>A cooling wave of relief washes over you with that gentle dismissal, leaving you with the mystery in the package just delivered.
"What did you order, anyway? Whatever it is, there's four of 'em, and I can tell they're some sort of metal tubes."
>Anon, wide-eyed, looks at you incredulously as you describe the contents.
>"You figured that all out just by picking it up?"
"Still sealed, isn't it?"
>"Cat's basically out of the bag, and I don't want you thinking they're the keys to your own private fun time," he comments, wiggling his eyebrows.
>Metal tubes as private fun ti-
>You take a step back from him upon realization and snort, aghast by the idea.
"Don't be a pervert! Fucking sicko!" you shout at him.
>He bows as if being applauded, almost losing his balance in the process as he takes a half step to correct himself.
>"Shock absorbers for the Trailduster. Leaf springs will still be another week, I think," he finally explains as he stands up straight with a serious face.
"You actually went and bought that stuff?"
>That was something you expected would be forgotten.
>Or something that was meant to be taken as a joke.
>"Said I was gonna do it, I'm not going to lie and pretend I didn't. But you're gonna help me replace them, right?"
"Absolutely!"
>You can't help it, but the fact he remembered and did this thrills you to your core.
>>
>>37640506

>Evidently, your excitement is infectious, as a grin spreads over Anon's face.
>"I am going to take note that I think this is genuinely the happiest I've ever seen you, and the biggest smile you've ever sported."
"Still unsettling?" you shoot back, stretching your grin just a little wider to show off your teeth.
>"Maybe not as much. I still wouldn't trust you with my fingers near your mouth, though.
"Get back to bed, sicky," you snidely snap back.
>He wearily salutes you, and carefully heads back up the stairs.
>As he reaches for the doorknob at the top of the landing, your mind shifts back to an earlier dilemma.
"Anon, one of the orders is for a Jeep intake, 360 four-barrel. Do we have any of those?" you shout up to him.
>"Yeah, should have at least one or two AMC intakes in there," he replies, pointing to the storage room.
>You shake your head, confused as to how he misheard you.
"Jeep, Anon."
>"Yeah, I know - that's my bad for not explaining," he says, rubbing the back of his head. "Jeep was owned by AMC - American Motors Corporation - starting in 1970. AMC and Jeep shared the same engines."
"Oh. Alright then," you reply.
>"Yeah. Whatever we got down there for AMC intakes, that will work. The intake is the same across the board, from the 304 all the way to the 401. All those engines are virtually the same - same block, cylinder heads, the whole nine yards. Just different bore and stroke combinations."
"Well that's awfully convenient," you muse.
>"I thought so. Them boys up in Kenosha, Wisconsin had some damn good ideas compared to the Detroit Big Three. At least up until forming an alliance with the French and Renault in the eighties. Damn shame."
>With that, he opens the door to the living quarters, stepping in and turning one last time to face you.
>"Don't be afraid to ask if you need any help. I'm going to try to get some more sleep and power through this crap," he says.
"I'll be fine. Just get better - and don't eat any more expired food, stupid," you lecture him.
>"You're no fun," he scoffs, before shutting the door.
>Now, back in isolation, you can't help but think...
>Maybe having someone that cares isn't so bad after all...

-----

At least one of you will know the significance of why I had fun geeking out with the last bit.
>>
>>37640057
I can dig this.
>>37639597
It isn't really uniform when it comes who remembers what. Given what we've seen, maybe it's not always the best to remember.
>>
>>37639907
Alright so, the idea was inspired by a picture which had the cast in a speed dating scenario, one panel for each, some dialogue, then on to the next character. What I'm thinking is something similar but it's just some of the bootlegs saying something goofy like Jack saying "Omlette du fromage" and Shine going "Don't worry, everything will be fire!" for everyone I include, don't wanna limit it to Jacky boots though.
>>
>>37639468
Much improved from the current OP. Very clean. Looks fantastic. Got a complete link to that FAQ paste?
Had some ideas on FAQs, will have to post them after work.
>>
>>37640511
fun read anon thanks for sharing with us
>>
>>37640656
I could see that being fun.
Jack: "like westerns or is that just a revolver in your pocket?"
Shine: "don't worry, you'll like when it burns"
Prism: "you're a human but you aren't the one riding"
Depends on if it's them being goofy or giving a real effort.
>>
>>37640939
Honestly I was thinking having Prism say: "How much did you say you make again?" Zooma: "I'm not able to run straight, but how's about you make me unable to walk straight either?" and Midnight: ... (It was like she was looking at walking garbage) If I did Missy Pie it would probably be a joke about liking older women. Then again I could probably do a less jokey more serious one for all of them
>>
>>37640973
You have my blessing to mess with the dorks. Will be interesting to see what you choose with Piera too.
>>
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>>37640973
Zooma already can't walk straight- it's not just her running. Gonna need a different line, chief.
pic unrelated
>>
>>37630047
ready to have your mind rattled up again? Ponka Po is another hassenfeld bootleg that predated the general. the very first lines mention it. https://ponepaste.org/5797

>>Be Anon, man of tomorrow
>Specifically, the date is XX/XX/20XX, X:XX PM
>Because fuck specificity
>But never-mind, genetic engineering's become popular enough to hit the civilian market!
>Among the corporations looking to capitalize on this exciting tech is Hasbro, with genetically engineered little ponies.
>So that's a bit of a pisser, but you found a company in Hong Kong that makes bootleg ponies
>>
>>37641295
Well fuck, guess I'll need to figure something else out- I still find the idea of Zooma being very "forward" funny though.
>>
>>37641608
>I still find the idea of Zooma being very "forward" funny though.
And it's still consistent with who she is. Her recent struggles with her insecurities aside, she's a very direct, somewhat aggressive type-A personality.
>>
Anyone up to listening to some mid-week tunes?
>>
>>37640696
like i said, I plan on offloading a lot of the old OP text dump into the FAQ. I had the old version up on another monitor while I worked on trimming it down, you should have seen the giant wall it was in the early revival phase

The FAQ link is placeholder for now, il wait to see what your ideas on the FAQ is.
>>
>>37642308
I'd be down to after I get something to eat.
>>
>>37642308
Yeah. I'll be home in a little over an hour.
>>
>>37642464
>>37642457
https://w2g.tv/rooms/8ewzfug7utt8nzxggc?lang=en
We'll be here.
>>
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>>37640973
>Midnight looking at you like you're walking garbage.
>One step above a bucket of shit.
>>
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>>37637017
>>37638588
I feel like this needs a whole nother bin for it but
heres part 1
>>
some funny nonlurker feedback from /moon/
guess who they're talking about?
>>37528380 >>37527681 >>37527769
>>
>>37643166
I remember seeing that. I don't get how the slightly different hair made someone think that was two completely different pones.
>>
>>37643177
laziness of doing a full complete copypaste will result in a 2 headed boot. it's only a matter of time
>>
>>37642894
Really like this. Grammar in the description for The Ranch seems off though.
>>
>>37643214
it is, clean it up a bit later but after surgery part2 going to be out of it for a few days.
>>
>>37643316
Shit, when is that going down?
>>
>>37643342
8 hours ago, pain is fine it's the bleeding thats a problem
>>
>>37643349
Hope you heal quickly.
>>
>>37643375
said bleeding is normal for the first day. its only if it doesnt stop thats things get bad and have to call them
>>
Hey Reggie, Monarch Anon and Spitfire bootleg, Chrysalis bootleg? You've honestly given me another potential idea.
>>
>>37643764
2nd spitfire bootleg eh? whats the plan this time around
>>
>>37643764
It has potential. When I mentioned basing an Anon on The Monarch, I meant having similar personality quirks. Not a direct copy. Might be funny to mix a bit of 2-ton 21 in there too.
>>
>>37643823
Just thought that regular Spitfire is kind of close to the Monarch's color scheme and Reggie likes Spitfire and Chrysalis because bug.
>>37644380
Honestly the idea you gave me was a superhero Anon who while fighting the villain of the week comes across the bootleg or a civilian Anon who was captured by a villain and paired up with a bootleg that was created as some sort of weapon.
>>
>>37643349
>>37643391
Get well soon, my dude. Sending good vibes your way.

Glad I was able to join the hangout for a bit last night. Ended up being the highlight of my night - jinxed myself and got nothing done as far as writing for reasons.
>>
>>37643764
>Chrysalis bootleg
Now you have ME thinking of a bootleg... but I'm not pulling another Angel Cake, Jacky comes first.
>>
>>37644818
jacky comes first, but does jacky ever end?
>>
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>>37645231
Please don't make me think of something so scary.
>>
>>37645231
>>37645299
https://youtu.be/eT3BFzSD6YY?t=22
She don't stop
>>
>>37638685
>>37638589
so hows your yandeer comin along? what is it about her thats going to be yanny
>>
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>>37645732
She's looking a little too Eris and not enough deer, gave her fangs to reference musk deer. As for how she's yan I don't know, since I came up with her as a joke and haven't put much thought into her.
>>
>>37645755
alright so whats the joke?
>>
>>37646019
Reggie pronounced yandere wrong because he's a normie.
>>
>>37646042
well then if you green it, youl have to bully him about how it was mispronounced
>>
>>37645755
>all the mane to chest floof
this is one hornaway from being a yankire
>>
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A little bit of talk on nhnb makes me think that there's yet another aspect of bootleg that people are totally unaware of or never did any green for.
namely cut content protoversions of equestria and characters, g4 had it and so does g5 with all the dropped concept art.
it doesnt fit the usual definition of 'bootleg' but there's a whole nother slew of possibilities with extended universe stuff like this and hassenfelds
>>
>>37646996
It feels like the sky's the limit for bootleg as far as content, doesn't it? This general is something I didn't know I needed. But to your point, the early version of Twilight comes to mind - I don't have that pic, though, but she had a profoundly different color scheme
>>
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>>37647079
>B Twilight? Yes sir shes right over here.
>... Whats the problem, what did you think the B stood for?
>>
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>>37647079
>>37647183
Found it. I think I skipped over it about twice while searching for it like a dumbass.
>>
>>37647183
Ah yes, Twilight Armor and Apple Mac
>>37647221
Inshallah Twilight
>>
>>37647221
time to start building the folder
>>
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>>37647254
>>
>>37647221
>A challenger appears
>>
>>37647675
Was that part of the early art, or just a recolor as G1 Twilight? It would still be a prime candidate for a bootleg, I'm just curious.
>>
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>>37647681
the earliest my friend. when g4 was g1 re boot
>>
>>37647690
>Surprise Pinkie Pie
>Twilight's mane colors became Rarity's body and mane colors
>Rarity's mane colors become Twilight's
>Applejack completely unchanged
>Fluttershy virtually unchanged
>Dash is a cotton candy colored eyesore
>>
>>37647705
the apple gene isn't a gene, but a universal constant
>>
>>37647690
Gotcha. Been so tuned in for so long on moonhorse and her big sis, I missed a lot of discussions and little tidbits like this over the years. So thank you.
>>
>>37647768
only half fucking with you. faust wanted g4 to be g1 ponies and those are their colors, so the screencap isn't concept art' but its "what would g4 look like if we got what faust first pitched
>>
>>37647877
No, I got the fact it was a recolor, as that was way further ahead in terms of final product to just be concept/pitch art. Just didn't know the intial idea was an actual full reboot.
>>
>>37647897
>was
>>
>>37313962
Why is this a general?
>It's not new. but boots have always been close to the fandom since early days. A rip off of spike was in a Chinese menu (Dim Sum), the ugly-cute manufactured plushie (Thun). Toying with hue sliders (Ayrl). MADtv's skit (Maplejack) and this isnt even accounting for what the general has come up with itself.
>/bootleg/ brings a home to these old abandoned ideas together along with the new, and if you ask us there's still a vast amount of untapped potential just waiting to be played with, something like the old fandom when a whole OC might be made off 1 single picture of a fakie like (Stompy) how stompy was born. We can't rely on reposted art since it's so niche, which is a challenge but there's still Anons willing to carry the torch for them
>>
>>37640511

>You're pleased to see the number of orders that continue to roll in via email notifications.
>It means your initial idea to make a proper ordering form on Anon's website was a strong one.
>However, that does mean success may have been well within his own grasp this whole time, had he put an effort forth...
>Oh well, his loss.
>Maybe you could make a case for taking over the business.
>...though you don't know what that would gain you, other than bragging rights.
>That doesn't sound too bad.
>Regardless of future conquests, the slowly building log of emails has kept you trotting back and forth around the shop when the items are something housed in the storeroom or coincidentally right outside.
>There's a fair amount to be done out back, too - you probably won't be able to get it all done today by yourself.
>Not a big deal, but it is sort of a personal pride thing.
>So, while there's been virtually no activity in terms of walk-ins, it's quite likely that is a result of the shift toward stripping this place of the self-serve moniker.
>You spotted people and overheard them taking items that they had no intention of paying for or mentioning to the owner when you still lived in the van.
>Well, the owner being Anonymous, of course - but you didn't know his name before.
>Nevertheless, keeping your head on a swivel, hiding in the shadows - there's a lot that can be observed living like that.
>Even if it can be a bit taxing.
>There is something to be said for being that way though - maybe you should keep up on your skills of skulking around unnoticed.
>Fate has a way of throwing twists and turns in the path ahead.
>Can't be too safe.
>Putting thoughts of honing survival tactics aside, you are mildly disappointed to have not had any walk-in customers.
>Well, disappointed and a bit relieved, maybe.
>You've not really interacted with anyone aside from Anonymous.
>So there is some anxiety there.
>Your social skills might be a bit lacking...
>But fuck it, you can wing it.
>Adapt and survive.
>However, the few phone calls you received today went well enough, so it isn't like you're completely blind.
>They went well aside from mentioning your name, anyway.
>That came with some... questions.
>'Erm... Midnight? That's an odd name...'
>Mentioning your mother had a degree in gender studies rectified the situation fairly quickly.
>Thank the stars for Anon's laptop you've basically taken over.
>Aside from more automotive knowledge, you've spent a fair amount of time learning and exploring the outside world via the internet.
>The perks of living on an abbreviated sleep schedule.
>After all, there's only so much you can overhear that allows you to paint a picture of what surrounds you beyond these gates.
>The facility certainly didn't offer any information.
>You hardly ever got to see the sun.
>The last phone call or two, you did decide to use another name, just to avoid the hesitations.
>Maddie.
>>
>>37648908

>God, you hope Anon didn't hear that.
>Hopefully he's been asleep the whole time.
>You checked on him once, and he was slumbering in bed.
>... the pungent odor that greeted you upon opening the door to the living space told you whatever contents that were ailing his stomach made an evacuation back up at some point into the kitchen sink drain.
>Ew.
>Hopefully that helps, though.
>If he's going to be that stupid and stubborn, you're going to start going through the fridge and throwing leftovers away.
>With the silence that pervades while you idly tap away through various internet searches on the computer.
>The sound of footsteps outside amidst the dust and gravel reaches your ears.
>Your eyes quickly dart to the open garage bay door, a few seconds before a man comes around the corner.
>...and he seems vaguely familiar.
>Wearing a beat-up denim jacket and with graying hair and mustache, the older gentleman waves as he approaches, apparently unfazed by your appearance.
>"Hi - Nightmare Moon?" he asks with a warm smile and a slight foreign drawl to his words.
>But more significantly, you tense up upon hearing that name.
>You obviously aren't wearing a nametag - and you aren't Nightmare Moon.
"Hello, can I help you with something?" you ask, pretending to be oblivious to anything other than his initial greeting.
>"Yeah, looking for some more parts - I don't have the time to pull em myself today, so I was wondering if I could just request em for pickup later?"
"We can do that - what are you looking for?"
>While you bring up the inventory catalog on the computer screen, you keep a watchful eye on your guest.
>Maybe you're being paranoid, but he seems too comfortable...
>"Where's your buddy at? I'm surprised to see you attending the counter," muses the customer, attempting to make idle chat as he scans the building.
"He's around. Stepped out for a bit. What was it you needed?"
>"Sorry. Uh... well, I need a radiator fan shroud, first of all, a heater box if you got one in decent shape."
"For what kind of car?"
>Your voice comes out a little rough, but you can't help it as your heart rate speeds up.
>He at least knows your basis, and he's trying to chat nonchalantly.
>...which is probably better than freaking out about seeing you.
>Chill out, girl.
>"Oh, duh. I'd forget my head if it could unscrew," he replies with a chuckle, slapping his forehead. "1972 Cutlass."
>That particular car jumpstarts your memory - Anon helped this guy a few weeks ago, while you were coincidentally tearing down an Oldsmobile engine.
>It made you speak up, in case the stars had aligned and he needed some of the parts you were in the midst of disassembling.
>...and then Anon referred to you as a guard dog.
>You never did pay him back for that, even if it was a spur-of-the-moment attempt to cover for you.
>That fucker.
>Regardless of past unavenged transgressions, you breathe a small sigh of relief as you connect the dots - this man has seen you before.
>Here.
>>
>>37648913

"Alright. Anon hasn't done a very good job keeping everything tidy on this computer, so just give me a second," you explain.
>More or less, you're just checking to see if that shroud is stashed away inside here...
>And it is not.
>Worth a try.
>Instead, you bring up a document form to jot down everything that he needs quickly, followed by the year and model.
"Name for this?"
>"Theodore. But everyone just calls me Teddy," he says, leaning on the counter. "I take it you don't go by Nightmare?"
>You look over at him after typing his name.
>You still remain a bit wary.
>Does he really need to know your name?
>He seems nice enough...
>So many different thoughts go through your head now in regards to your safety, now that you're interacting with strangers.
>Face to face.
>Of course, you did earlier today taking that delivery, but Anon was down here...
>...and what, you can't protect yourself?
>Going to rely on him to keep you safe and warm?
>Grow a fucking spine.
"Midnight," you tell him, garnering a nod of acknowledgment.
>"That's a nice name," he compliments, leaning in just a bit more. "You aren't a custom model though, are you?"
>The hushed question makes your blood run cold.
"What would make you say that?"
>"I don't mean anything by it," he says in an attempt to reassure you. "I've just seen my fair share of ponies and bots. You're a different breed entirely."
>He says it so calmly and nonchalantly, as if discussing the weather.
>But his conviction is solid.
"Is there a point to this rambling? I have other things to do," you sharply reply, eager to be rid of this man and this sudden shift in conversation.
>Your unwanted acquaintance just chuckles.
>"You've got spirit, and that's something that can't just be made from circuits. Look, I'm not here to harass you or out you - I assume you aren't... verified."
"Then why are you here?" you challenge.
>Teddy stands up straight once again.
>"I do actually need those parts. I'm retired... mostly," he replies, unaffected by your cold tone. "I don't want to go into too much detail as I'm clearly getting off on the wrong foot, but I do want to say that you aren't the only one of your kind - though you're more advanced than any other I've encountered. Where did you come from?"
"The backseat of a first-gen Dodge Caravan. Turbocharged, no less," you spitefully hiss, making sure to bare your weaponized dental work for him to see.
>It doesn't really seem to affect Theodore at all.
>He doesn't flinch in any way.
>You don't trust this guy for a second.
>He's asking a lot of questions for someone interested in vintage car parts.
>Even Anon was scared shitless by your appearance and threats upon first meeting.
>Not this guy.
>This Theodore, or Teddy fellow - if that's what his name even is - finds you intriguing, if anything.
>He was hardly deterred upon your initial meeting, either, come to think of it.
>You were just distracted and paid no mind.
>But this doesn't feel right at all.
>>
>>37648918

>A thought crosses your mind, one that you have to wrestle back down with every fiber of logic...
>After all, you could make this a non-issue with any sort of sharp metallic piece of scrap...
>He wouldn't see it coming aside from the slight glow of your eyes.
>Or if need be, you could go for his windpipe.
>It would be nothing for your canines and incisors to pierce his throat...
>No.
>Nothing good will come of that in the long-term picture.
>Someone will come looking for him, no matter how well you hide your tracks.
>You can't kill him, Midnight.
>"I suppose I deserve your skepticism, Midnight, I'm sorry for upsetting you," Teddy apologizes. "I'll be back in a few days to get those parts. You probably want my phone number, don't you? For the order?"
"For the order," you repeat.
>He rattles off a series of numbers, which you seamlessly transfer to the keyboard.
>"Hopefully next time, your buddy - Anonymous, yeah? The business owner?"
>You slowly nod, keeping your wits about you in case he tries something funny.
>The fact that Anon's name is mentioned only tenses you further.
>You don't want to kill.
>But you will if need be.
>Any threat to Anonymous is a threat to you.
>"Hopefully he's around as well as you when I return. Assuming he's a nice fellow. Does he treat you well?"
"I can take care of myself, thank you very much."
>That gets a cheeky grin from Teddy as he lightly slaps the counter.
>"Anyway, I might be able to help you and Anonymous. Or just you, if this place and he aren't to your liking. You have my number - and I'll be back in a few days otherwise."
>With a wave, he heads back out into the sun of the afternoon.
>You give it a few moments before dropping to all fours on the floor, making yourself low to the concrete.
>Silently, you make your way toward the open garage door from which Teddy just departed.
>It's all muscle memory from here.
>Every step, every movement is calculated and purposeful.
>Just like months ago, when hunting vermin.
>You might be doing just that right now.
>Reaching the doorframe, you pause and listen intently for any sounds indicating something that lies on the other side.
>You catch the sound of a door opening, followed shortly thereafter by the slight creak of springs meeting a new weight before the door slams shut.
>Even with the characteristic sounds of the mysterious man getting into his vehicle, you carefully poke your head out from beyond the frame, enough to catch a glimpse of what you can see of the parking area.
>Beyond the privacy fence, you hear an engine start up, quickly proceeded by spying a weathered Chevy pickup amble away from the open gate and out to the road.
>You manage to glimpse the graying hair and a bit of a denim jacket in the windows to give you some semblance of assurance the coast is clear.
>Despite that, you still watch the truck leave properly until it's out of sight.
>You honestly don't know what to make of the encounter, especially after his farewell address.
>>
>>37648921

>What could he possibly help with - whether it be you and Anon, or you alone?
>It's unsettling that he made you out for something far beyond your traditional ponybot.
>Are you that obvious from just a glance?
>Visually, it shouldn't be a difference, perhaps the mannerisms a bit, but...
>He certainly knows more than just 'having been around a fair share.'
>Furthermore...
>Are there really others?
>Of course, there were the remnants of those that you rode with to this destination, but those were basically parts, pieces, and experimental normal models.
>You don't recall any others like you...
>The thought is troubling.
>The thoughts regarding this whole encounter and the ensuing conversation are troubling.
>You dismissed Anon's concerns about your well-being earlier today.
>You aren't so sure of yourself now...

-----
>>
>>37648927
Shit shit shit. They don't need this in their lives. Especially not now, when Midnight just started to appreciate being... well, appreciated.
The fact that we have a clear date of his return puts the entire thing on a timer. It's like an extended cliffhanger where no matter how many updates you'll post between now and then and what happens in those updates, it will all be happening in this atmosphere of a looming dread until that guy returns. Fuck now I'm worried.
>>
>>37649232
> a friendly neighbor possibly offering to get her a real RFID and legalize the chassis
What could go wrong
>>
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>>37649389
Suuure.
>>
>>37648927
What a bad day for Anon to get sick
>>
>>37649797
>Zooma is takes up the offer and optimistically trots towards the van. This will make us more like the real ponies, so it must be good
>Midnight's freaks out and cockblocks her and drags her away. no time to explain to this idiot how can she be so chipper? fucking lunas
>>
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>>37649919
>>
>>37649974
does condense not have an RFID either? a whole lot of illegal loving going up in here. how scandalous bootleg is
>>
>>37650058
Wait till my <local government agency> hears about this! We can't let such ridiculously subjective things like "love" (that isn't real anyway) get in the way of justice and order. We must abide the law!
>>
>>37650099
>ACAB finally got what they wanted and defended the police, society degenerated into chaos eventually everyone wanted it back but nobody trusting humans not to fuck it up again >So it fell to ponies and the Ponice stepped in to fill the power gap, they must be better at this kind of thing right?
>
>>
>>37650058
>Condense and RFID tags
No comment.
I'm kicking myself for putting Zooma on hiatus instead of pushing through another few vignettes because I had planned for her past comes back to haunt her in a way similar to Midnight. Gonna have to retool that so it doesn't look like I ripped off AP. That, or I could always...
Hold that thought, I'll be back.
>>
>>37650471
>Spoiler
Dude I'm so lazy with my writing that people are covering the things I planned to before me, don't even sweat it.
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>>37650598
You may not be the first in some topics but you can always do it better.
>>
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It's Friday night, sounds like it's time for some tunes or movies. No Jackyposting because other things.
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>>37650471
Don't be a baby. Given the thread's premise it's to be expected that those scenes would come up. There are bound to be similarities. What other choice do you have? To ignore her past completely? Because you can do that too, you know. It's not a requirement to explore the MC's past. Unless it's part of the plan you have for your story. Anyway, don't try to rewrite half of your bloody story because Auto may write something similar - those reworked fics have a tendency to be much worse than their previous versions.

If you really need to vent then go ahead and yell at me because I'm the one who told you to go write the story that you currently want to write, not the one you feel you need to write.
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>>37650809
https://w2g.tv/rooms/ajikxa2kvtxdodvjlf?lang=en
A bit early maybe but it's Friday night and I'm up to talk writing while working on a tech project.
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>>37650987
Got some errands to run so I'll join when I get back.
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>>37650927
It's cool, bruh. I know how I'll handle it.
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>>37650471
ripped off what now?
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>>37648927
this story had better have a happy ending, theres already enough suffering in life i dont want to read about it in fiction too
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>"I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick AutoPony's ass..."
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>>37651655
>"...and I'm all outta bubblegum."

Verification not required
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>>37651513
first time in bootleg?
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>>37648908
>>Mentioning your mother had a degree in gender studies rectified the situation fairly quickly.
kek this is a great way to handwave pony names to normies. but where would she learn about that?
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>>37651975
To be fair happy endings are possible. It just requires a lot of effort to get there.
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>>37652405
a good number of happy endings DO happen here or could, but either go unfinished or we get one ticket to ride the feelcoaster before.
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>>37652489
>go unfinished
Not this one.
>>
That was a good hangout, actually got some writing done.
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>>37653790
nice cant say the same for me. just procrastination to keep my brain bussy enough to stay awake
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>>37651480
Not what, who. He's referring to the faggot that just updated Midnight, AutoPony. Hi.
>>37651513
I mentioned it somwehere else, I'm a sensitive little bitch - I've broken down WRITING my stuff on more than one occasion. Don't expect to see a bad ending from me. But we ain't riding a land yacht down the highway, either - smooth sailing isn't in the cards.
>>37652394
You can assume Midnight caught wind of it whilst sating her endless curiosity on the internet via Anon's laptop, or you can blame half-baked writing for the sake of comedy by a hack writer. I won't judge whatever you decide.
>>37654408
Don't sweat it - I never write during the hangouts, just chat and toss music into the playlist, help with advice when I can.
I will say I couldn't get much sleep and powered through a chunk of the next update this morning. There's a lot of motivation behind that.
>>
>>37654872
Autooo... pleaaase. We are one of the few boards that have the spoiler feature enabled. Please use it. I'm referring to the middle sentence in your second reply, if you're not sure what I'm talking about.
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>>37654887
Well, what a "bad" ending is leaves quite a bit open to interpretation, doesn't it? Because at the end of the day, I can guarantee I'm still going to cry at some point. Might even be the next update
But I suppose I still should have spoilered it, you're right. It narrows down the sense of foreboding somewhat. Hey, you can at least rest assured one of them will still be alive at the end, right?
>>
>>37654894
The first time writing really hit me was writing that Eternal IF short with Snapplejack. Don't know how many times Angel Cake really caused that but it didn't help that it was such a dreary place that was too familiar.
>>37639431
>"So we have our bowls, our cups-"
"Some cups, we need different sizes, right?"
>"Sure, so got those and the bowls."
"Yup!"
>"What's next? I don't think they really do silverware here. We might be able to find someone who makes those really long forks and knives but spoons were usually wood back then."
>I look up at him while we curve around the stream of people going every which way
>Some are looking at us
>At least I'm not paying attention to them
"Really? Why's that?"
>"Supposedly it had something to do with forks being more as a tool to assist in cutting stuff. Everything was pretty much done by knife. Cutting up, cooking, and eating your meat really only requires that."
"Ooh..."
>Even in some westerns they had spoons
>But were they all wood?
"Maybe we need a knife and huge fork then!"
>"I wouldn't say we need to go that far..."
"And a knight outfit with a really heavy looking sword..."
>"...what?"
>I slow down and...
>Just gawk
>At the mountain of a man that's wearing what looks almost like gold armor
>He has what looks like a huge sword on his back but it's hard to tell
>"Jesus... is that even a sword?"
"Iunno. Let's ask him!"
>"Let's not and s-wait, JACK! GET YOUR BUTT-"
>Spurred on by his shouting, I giggle and sprint up to the armored man with my head low
>I don't manage to stop in time and effectively headbutt his metal shin
>It wasn't the smartest thing I've done today
>"Wha-oh, hey there little thing."
>The man sees Anon running up to us
>"This goat yours? I've gotten rammed by all sorts of things, they really don't like the reflections."
>I can hear Anon stifle a laugh
>"Y... yeah. That must be it."
>Free from my daze I take a few paces back and raise my head up
"Hey, I'm not a goat! I don't even have horns!"
>The armored man
>This truck of a human being
>He sees and hears me speak and his first response is to scream and dodge away
>"Woah?!"
>He looks at Anon with some varying level of concern
>"...that's a neat trick."
>"It's not a trick."
"I'm NOT a trick!"
>Now that the initial shock has worn thin, he looks at me funny
"I got a question for you!"
>I punch my hoof up into the air at him
>I can hear Anon trying to talk but he isn't stopping me
"Tell me how much that armor cost so I can get Anon suited up!"
>Anon's voice winds down
>The man isn't sure who to look at, at this point
>"Well, uh... little... gallant mount. It's custom-fitted and it's actually a real suit made from a very popular fantasy series on TV you've probably watched. Cost me around eight grand, and that's because I knew someone."
>Satisfied, I smile and focus on Anon
"Well alright! You got eight grand on you, right Anon?"
>The mere mention of the number makes him look sick
>"...not really."
>>
>>37655352
"Really? It can't take that long to get that sort of money."
>"It can take a very long time to get that sort of scratch, Jackbags."
"But it's worth it, look at him!"
>"And how often am I gonna wear that sort of thing anyway?"
"You can wear it while you rescue me!"
>"...from who?"
"That's a good question. Hey, golden boy who w...ou...?"
>I look around
>Golden Boy's gone
>A lot of people are staring
>"Are you guys performing at that one stage near here?"
>The woman saying that looks genuinely confused
>"If we were, I'd be dressed up."
"Yeah, he'd be dressed up!"
>What sort of question is that?
>I feel myself tense up to charge at her next
>Before I can chase her off, my body turns weightless
>Anon scoops me up into his arms and leaves me on my back
>I squint at the woman, who's now upside-down
"Be lucky my man's here."
>"Alright Jackoff, no more spazzing out, sorry everyone!"
>Anon carries me off just as a crowd starts to form
>After a few steps the slight bounce in his arms is enough to be comforting
>"Jack, you gotta chill. A lot of people here are just enjoying the day out, you know?"
>I huff
>Twice
>I want to argue but I get the feeling he's right
"...not a goat."
>"No you are not. You're a dork."
>I scrunch my face and sigh
"I refuse to believe that I'm such a weird sight."
>"And you aren't. You got all sorts of people here who don't see much outside of TV and work."
"Whatever... I don't like them anyway."
>It bothers me how other humans look at me
>They don't have the same look that Anon has
>He looks at me like I'm... not an animal
"Hey... can you put me down?"
>"Tired already of your knight carrying you?"
>Well when he puts it like that...
"...no. But self control isn't my strong suit right now."
>He puts me down almost immediately
>"Right. Definitely for the best of us right now."
>There are still people all over the place
>There really is no escaping them
"...is there any place where we can kinda be alone?"
>Anon chortles
>"I... yeah, I wouldn't recommend something like that out in public, Jack. Especially here."
"N-not that, But glad to know I'm on your mind like that."
>And I am
"There are too many people here... is it always so busy and crowded?"
>"Oh. Yeah, pretty much."
"Where are we even walking?"
>"No clue. Wanna take a break?"
"Yeah..."
>The walking isn't tiring
>The people are
>I always thought it would be fine to just go out, make a scene, have fun
>Kinda like in the old days that I think I'm starting to remember
>But they were ponies
>Not humans
>The disconnect is still weird to me even though they're in everything I see
>All of the westerns
>All of the other movies
>All in the games that I see
>We reach a mass of wooden benches and tables and sit down
>I sit right beside him and actively lean against him
>He puts his arm around me
>This feels a lot better
>Anyone who looks our way doesn't seem to think twice
>A lot of people are eating though
>Some of the food looks good
>>
>>37655518
>There are so many smells that I can't really tell what is what
"...hey, can we get some food?"
>I keep my voice to a mutter so no one sees me talking
>Maybe that's the issue
>"Sure. What sounds good? Look around, we got options."
>Both sides of the road are lined with food stalls
"I want the caramel apple stuff. And I wanna try out the curds and one of those big pretzels."
>Anon chuckles and gives me a squeeze
>"Three course meal, coming up. Save our spot, alright? I'll be back."
>The bench wobbles as he gets up and starts on his pilgrimage
>I'm surprised it's still safe to sit on given how old it looks
>A few people look at me but don't make a big deal out of it
>Should I smile?
>Say something?
>How many of them are like Anon?
>Really like Anon?
>How many of them are not like Anon...?
>The thought sorta scares me
>...what is even happening to Sparky and Dash right now?
>They're capable
>They always were
>And this is obviously a safe place to be at
>...
>Right?
>Anon is taking too long
>I feel naked
>Someone sits down at a table next to ours
>They're going to talk to me
>I know it
>And it's going to be awkward
>This is getting to be-
>Someone sits right next to me
>I jump and can't stop a yip from coming out
>It's Anon!
>"Alright... hold on."
>In one hand he's holding a plastic cup full of brown liquid
>In the other is a large black bowl... and above that is a clear plastic tray... and on top of that is a huge pretzel
>He sets the cup down first then the cup and puts the tray nearby
>It all happens in slow motion
>The food
>It's a lot
>It looks so good
>"...y'alright?"
"Huh?"
>"You look like you're overthinking something."
"You can tell?"
>"Obviously. Listen, open your gob."
>I open my mouth
>Anon tilts my head back and pours part of the cup's content in
>He nudges my chin so my mouth closes
>It's... sweet
>Honey sweet
>I let my tongue swish it about
>It tastes kinda fruity too?
>It really is a whole lot smoother than any sort of alcohol I've had before
>I eventually gulp it down
"...what was that?"
>"Mead, my Jacken-Dazs. The real reason this place has lasted for decades without missing a single year."
>It warms my chest on the way down
>When was the last time Anon and I really had a drink together?
>It is one of my first memories with him
>Did I ever even have alcohol before that?
>"So, we have cheese curds with sauce, a big-ass pretzel, and a bowl full of chopped apples with caramel and some cinnamon ice cream. I told them to drown that sucker."
>What would I have done for all of this food before?
"...and it's fresh too?"
>I couldn't stop myself from asking that
>"Heck yeah, girly. I watched the curds and pretzel come out. Apples, I stole a bite and they are crunchy so I'd say we're good."
>Where do I start?
>This is all such a big shift from what we have at home, even if we've been going out of our way to try a lot of new things
>"You're drooling."
"Eh?"
>"You're drooling harder than the time I introduced you to chocolate syrup."
>>
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ive almost finally writtten a synopsis for all the bootlegs. its been so long since reading one of the early overlooked boots. going back to sunshine miles god she was a sweetheart and she left us too early.
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>>37655718
Haven't read that one. I'll check her out.
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>>37653790
Jesus Christ, I slept for almost 10 hours
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As long as I'm happy with it, I'll have an update sometime tomorrow for Midnight. Time to find out some of her secrets.
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>>37633963
>>37633104
>>37637017
taken a few days but finally wrote up the first pass on part 1 of bootleg recommendations. kind of like the era's fall into their own genres that are the norm for the time
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>>37658382
ofug. I dig it. We definitely need more good summaries like that.
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>>37658382
Let's see the rest of the recommendations.
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>>37655698
>The more the mead flows, the less I worry
>Technically he can only buy one cup per visit
>And people look at us funny when he gives me my half of the cup
>But screw them
>What do they know, anyway?
>Between the warm feeling that gives, and the hot food in my belly I feel great
>Even if I've been bored of walking since an hour ago when we first came in
"Anooooooon."
>"What's up?"
>He's standing on the side of the main road, looking at a shop that has a lot of leather items
"Where are we going?
>"Well... I guess we don't really have a destination in mind. Interested in a corset, by the way?"
"Eh... nah, that's alright."
>It'll take far more alcohol to get me to act funnier than usual
>But between the walking and the dirt and the grass and the gravel?
>I haven't felt this... filthy in a long time
>It doesn't make me feel good
>When did I used to care?
"Anooooooooonamooooooooo...!"
>I close my eyes and moo his name
>"Hold on, gotta write down the..."
>He fiddles with his phone and takes a note about something on a counter then comes back
>"Good looking stuff. What's up?"
>I want to go home
>And take a bath
>And watch a movie
>Being out here is fun but it keeps bothering me
"Let's find Sparky and regroup. It's been a while since we've seen her."
>Anon squints and scans the area
>"True... and she's kinda the sort that sticks out. Let's hope she hasn't gotten thrown out or stuck in a vase."
"Heh... gotta bust her out like a secret item or something."
>I wasn't having the best time
>She always has troubles going on
>Maybe together we would have more fun
>Anon keeps stopping every few stores to take a quick glance
>None of them really seem interesting to me
>Human clothing shops
>Sword shops
>Most of the clothing stops cater to women
>I can tell when he's thinking of getting something for me
>But what he's looking at doesn't fit me
>Not unless he really tries to modify something
>We search so many places without any luck
>I notice that less people stare when I don't speak
>"Haha, alright minions! Your empress will return again another day!"
>That voice
>"What the hell?"
>We share a look
>That's Sparky
>She's on a stone bench
>Wearing a white tiara
>With wings?!
"Sparky!"
>I trot up to her
>A lot of people that were watching her are watching me now too
"What's all of that stuff, where'd you get it?"
>"Oh, this? Nothing, just a REAL silver tiara with REAL dragon wings."
>Real dragon wings?!
"There are dragons here?!"
>"No, she's just wearing a set of wings that people put on their dogs. Nice fit though."
>Anon's amused explanation causes Sparks to give a sour look
"Oh, that's less cool. You look like an alicorn though, like a princess!"
>Sparks gives me a haughty laugh
>"Princess? As if. I am an empress."
>"Oh hey there's Prism too. Yup, over here!"
>Dashie's here too?
>>
>>37659120
>She trots up and sits on the road next to Anon
>Though she isn't smiling I can tell she's really happy
>Her chest is puffed out and she has a tiara on too
>The tiara has a horn on it
>"Greetings, Jacky. Both of us have had an awakening while you were away."
>"...you smell pretty fancy."
>"I struck a deal with a perfume lady."
>"You had cash?"
>"Feathers."
>"Ahh... ew."
>This doesn't make any sense!
"How did you find the tiaras? And the wings!"
>She glances back to the crowd that had mostly dispersed by now
>"Oh, you know. Do a few magic tricks and people are easily impressed."
"Aw man... I want wings and a tiara too."
>Sparky scoffs
>"No way. You get Anon, I get the title of Empress and get to rule over humanity."
>I can hear Dashie clear her throat
>"...and... Marchioness Prism gets her own little spit of land in the middle of nowhere, it really doesn't matter."
>The pegasus holds her head up high and marches to the self-titled empress
>"Excuse me but selling my feathers has given us most of our money to get these."
>"Ew, that's because they're gross and gross people will buy anything."
>"They bought more of my feathers than your little parlor tricks."
>"Tell that to your stomach, my magic and polite asking gave us food!"
>"You know, you actually sort a like Princess Celestia now. You even have the narrow face and everything."
>...Anon has a good point
>Dashie opens her mouth to say something
>...
>And closes it
>"Given she is the ruler of all of Equestria, I take this as a compliment. Thank you."
>"Yeah, and she's a freaking jobber. Now Empress Shine on the other hand..."
>Both of them smell nice
>Both look like they're happy
>...I want a tiara too
>"...so you want your own wings and stuff too?"
>Sparky sounds so bored by asking that
"Well yeah! Totally! I want to be an alicorn too!"
>"Fiiine... I guess you can be... like a Duchess or something. Maybe a mayor."
>I look back at Anon
>He already looks pleased
>"Well would you look at that. I'm gonna have an entire royal court at this rate."
"Yeah! Lead the way!"
>Reunited, I follow the empress and marchio...
>Marchion...
>Empress-lite
>Even being an alicorn mayor would be awesome so it works for me
>>
>>37658685
>>37658768
still being written up friend. il post the pastebin when i feel like im satisfied with most of it down. atm lots of placeholders just using names with nothing about why its recommended yet but workin on it
>>
>>37658071
Couldn't sleep - this update was eating at me, so here we go, continuing on from >>37648927
> For the first time today since initially waking up, you feel somewhat healthy.
>You are never eating chicken bacon ranch pizza again.
>Maybe it was too old - doesn't really matter.
> It's ruined for you now.
>After essentially sleeping the whole day away aside from rushing to the sink to upchuck twice and getting up to use the bathroom downstairs once, you decide you feel well enough to try to put some sort of food in your stomach.
>Toast is on the menu.
>Whoopee.
>You haven't seen Midnight since taking a shower earlier.
>At some point during the day - possibly while emptying your stomach - you recall hearing Midnight on the phone.
>Apparently she decided to adopt a new name for the occasion.
>Maddie will certainly enjoy you giving her shit for that.
>Or perhaps Middie...
>The other time you headed downstairs was well into the afternoon - the computer was off.
>More than likely, the slow day never got better, and she went out back to strip parts early.
>Though not knowing for certain was a bit unsettling.
>She's resourceful - you've seen it firsthand.
>You shouldn't really be that worried.
>Still have that uneasy feeling in your stomach though.
>Aside from nausea, obviously.
>Approaching six in the evening now, you would expect her to pop in sometime soon.
>Maybe - with as stubborn and as driven as she is, you're well aware of the possibility of Midnight trying to hero her way through the whole list of orders in one shot.
>You glimpsed outside - the Trailduster isn't in its usual spot.
>She's moved it a few times, it doesn't come as a surprise she would have enough comfort and confidence to take it.
>Ha, comfort.
>Probably not the best term for it, considering she bitched about how unergonomic the seating position was for her.
>...she didn't think that comment through too well.
>Of course, you gave her shit for it.
>And you got it right back.
>A wonderful circle of love.
>With the volume of the tv turned down low and awaiting the toaster in the kitchen to pop, you finally hear the sound of the old war wagon rolling up to the building.
>It allows you to finally relax, before jumping in surprise.
>Fucking toaster.
>Waiting for it this whole time, and the bastard still caught you off-guard when it popped.
>Now feeling the mild shame and embarrassment for being caught out once again by the cursed appliance, you begrudgingly fetch your toast from it and toss the slices onto a paper plate, wandering back to the couch.
>As much as you're glad Midnight is back, it's best to give her space.
>She was clearly taking a lot of pride flying solo today, let her have it until she heads up here.
>It will probably be a bit, offloading parts from the back of the SUV.
>That being said, you stretch out on the couch, using the whole length that would otherwise be shared with you two occupying either end - buffer space in between.
>>
>>37659705
>Pleasantly, there are some reruns of the Dukes of Hazzard playing right now.
>...brings a tear to your eye too.
>They went through a lot of Dodge Chargers and Plymouth Fury cop cars.
>Not to mention Daisy's Plymouth Roadrunner...
>Still, the end result was entertaining.
>Much to your surprise, you hear the doorknob of the door in the kitchen click open just as you take a nibble of food.
>You quickly turn your head in time to see the door swing open and Midnight trot in.
"Hi Middie!" you shout.
>While not surprised by your voice, the name certainly gets her attention.
>Her initial wide-eyed response narrows into one of mild annoyance, exhaling rather sharply through her flared nostrils.
>"You fucking ass."
>She kicks the door shut with plenty of force to spare.
"Hey, easy on the hardware now. That comes out of your pay if you break it," you jokingly scold.
>"Good thing you don't pay me. How long have you been up?" she asks while sauntering her way toward you.
"Not long. Not even an hour, I don't think," you reply with a shrug. "How long were you out in the yard?"
>"Few hours. I called it quits around two or three in the afternoon, at least when it came to standing at the counter looking pretty.
"You do pretty a lot better than me."
>"I didn't take you as one of those creepy freaks that sexes up pony companions, that's new," she snidely muses. "Maybe you aren't a pickle smoocher like I expected."
>You quickly regret your smart comment as your face grows hot.
>"Oh, seemed to have touched a nerve."
"Shut up."
>"That's what you get for the name."
>Spreading out a wing, she motions for you to scoot over.
"Nuh-uh, I just got comfortable," you half-heartedly argue before obliging her request.
>You merely bend your knees and scoot back toward your normal cushion, taking up some of the usual buffer space.
>You really were starting to get comfortable.
>She gets to deal with your legs and feet invading that space.
>Midnight plops down in her usual spot, though facing you rather than draping her forehooves off of the front of the couch.
>While she eyes your dinner plate in your hands, it's with only passing curiosity.
>She looks tired.
>To be fair, you would expect it - this is probably the most she's ever done in one day, aside from overexerting herself on the first day of moving that pile of engines.
>That drained look in her eyes goes deeper than mere physical fatigue.
"Today go okay?" you ask, trying to mask any concern from seeping into your voice while shifting your eyes back to the tv.
>You've learned playing it casual will get your farther - just playing it off as idle conversation.
>"It was quiet. Got quite a bit done - as much as I could while inside and manning the phones and counter."
"Great - sounds like you're more productive than I am."
>"Doesn't that go without saying?" she jests.
"Man, you're cutting deep on a sick man. That's cold," you prod back as you shoot a glance at her.
>"Truth hurts sometimes."
>>
>>37659718
>The exchange at least puts a little bit of light in her eyes, but she just feels off.
>Distracted.
"You didn't deal with any rude assholes today or crappy situations, did you?"
>"That's sort of an odd question to ask, isn't it?" Midnight suggests.
"Maybe. But you didn't instantly reply with no, either."
>Her muzzle scrunches up a bit with your reply, realizing you caught her out.
>But, she does relax that tense response - you don't think she will completely shut down.
>"There wasn't anything 'bad,' I suppose," she reluctantly admits.
"Okay. But something that wasn't particularly comfortable?"
>Your attention is completely drawn to her now, whether you and her like it or not.
>You can't help but watch as her eyes shift back and forth as she mulls her response as if visually picking out her words.
>"Do you... it's been a couple of weeks, but do you remember that guy that came in for parts for a Cutlass? Older man, the same day you started asking... questions about me."
"You mean the day you chipped a good chunk out of my brick wall by chucking a piston at it? Yeah, I remember," you chide
>"You called me a guard dog, dickhead," she adds sourly.
"Apologized for it, too - but anyway, yes, I remember," you reply, quickly trying to get this train back on the rails.
>"He came back today," she blurts.
"Isn't... that a good thing? Repeat customers?" you ask, utterly perplexed by the significance.
>Midnight's wings ruffle in tune with her discomfort as she stares down at the couch cushion she lays upon.
>"He did come in for more parts, at least initially."
>The way she says that makes you sit up and take notice.
"Did he do something to you?"
>"What? No. I can handle myself, Anon," Midnight quickly snaps back as her gaze momentarily flips to you.
>You relax a bit, but still feel a little concerned.
"Then what, Midnight?"
>"He knows what I am. He knew I wasn't a custom model, he knows I'm not verified, and he said he knows more that are like me, because he's been around his fair share of bots, and he knows I'm not one. He could tell just by looking at me, listening to me - said I was more advanced than any other he's seen, and said he could... 'help'."
>It all comes out in a cascade of frenzied words and pent-up anxiety, to the point that you need a moment for your brain to sort it out.
>Someone else knowing she doesn't have an RFID chip on her chassis is very troubling.
>But you're lost on the rest.
>She said she was a bot.
>You would expect there to be experimental models and shit, and that's what Midnight is.
>Right?
"Midnight, what do you mean by he knows what you are? I don't follow - I get that the missing RFID is a big deal, but I don't see the significance of... all that."
>She shakes her head fervently.
>"I don't want to talk about it."
"It's obviously bothering the hell out of you - and I don't think you need to be carrying that baggage."
>Midnight continues to trying staring a hole into the couch.
>You've had enough of it.
>>
>>37659726
>Leaning forward, you reach out with a hand and gently place it under her chin, directing her to look at you.
>The gesture makes Midnight jump, though the surprise of it makes her momentarily yield to the pressure quite easily.
>"What the fuck are you doing?!" she shouts defiantly upon regaining her wits, pulling away from you.
"Midnight, I can't help you if I don't know what's going on - talk to me."
>"I can't!"
"Do you trust me?"
>The question freezes her instantly.
>Those faintly glowing eyes remain locked upon you.
>Like a window to her mind, you feel like you can see the trouble and turmoil within she's fighting to keep wrested away from you.
"Midnight, I know you're strong, I know you think you need to deal with - whatever shit you got going on - alone."
>"I ca-"
"Don't tell me you can't. You delved into my personal bullshit, got me sorted out - I'm doing the same for you. Do you trust me?"
>"I'm a freak!" she roars, her voice suddenly ragged. "I'm not a pony companion bot, I'm a genetic science project sideshow!"
"I... what?"
>Between Midnight's abrupt shift in demeanor and the words she spouts, it's all you can respond with right now.
>"I don't have an RFID because I don't have a chassis - I'm not a robot... not completely."
"Well... what's wrong with that?" you speak up.
> Midnight's eyes begin to glisten with moisture as the pain slowly begins to escape her.
>"Do you know what it's like to be a group of arrogant asshole's off-the-books bioengineering project? Do you know how humiliating it is to find out your perverted birth was in a giant test tube? How that experiment in itself is not only prohibited by law, but they managed to fuck up the coloring in their attempts to create a living, breathing Luna, sans wings?"
>Midnight chokes back her tears as best she can, while you inch closer to her.
>"Already a fuck up beyond the bio-pony experiments ongoing in secret - those are dumb as mud, but at least the colors are right on the ones thus far. Why not go further with this one? Jam some wires and chips from a couple of discarded Twilight and Luna bots, try to put some intelligence and personality in this retarded animal, and if it lives more than a day or two, that's a bonus, right?"
>The torrent of words she viciously spouts is slowly beginning to be matched by the liquid sorrow that runs down her cheeks.
>"That's all I ever was - a test subject! Crudely dyed wings grafted on from the unpopular Princess Twilight bot because they couldn't genetically engineer proper wings, the electromagnetism, the eyes to fit the theme, the teeth and digestive system for better efficiency - am I supposed to be proud of that?! Being a mishmash of rejects and junk?!"
"You're alive, aren't you?" you remind her.
>Midnight stops her rant, quivering after the stress of her outburst.
>"And that's good," she states bitterly.
>>
>>37659736
"I think so. You obviously felt it was good - otherwise, you wouldn't have escaped, right? You felt your life was worth protecting."
>She doesn't say anything as her breath hitches repeatedly.
>With as downtrodden and utterly defeated as she looks right now, you take your chances.
>Seeing the facade of this tough-as-nails mare crumble to dust is just too much.
>You scoot up next to her and take her into your arms.
>"Why?"
>She asks the question but doesn't resist you.
>You stroke the fine fur of her neck, feeling the pain and anxiety deeply seated in those lean muscles that she continues to fight to keep inside...
>You can see in those misty blue eyes, she sees herself with shame.
>She hates what she is.
>Even as she crowed about how great she was - it was all a lie to herself, to convince herself that's how she felt.
>And she fears what you think of her.
>By the sounds of it, she wasn't even expected to live.
>Yet here she is.
"Midnight, what you are - what your make-up is or whatever you want to call it - I don't care," you tell her, trying to alleviate her concern. "You got out, you survived, and I'm grateful for that."
>"Did I make it out? Because it feels like I'm still trapped. Like my past is still pursuing me," she spits out in a half sob.
"Then anyone out for you is gonna have to go through both of us. This guy, if he's bad news, he's got a fight in his hands if he tries something. I promise you that," you reassure her. "You're here now, unfucking the mess that I've made. You're making this your home, and you're going to fight for it with the same grit and determination you've been displaying to me since I met you."
>You brush away some of her tears that have continued to gather under her eyes.
>With a slight nod, her resolve hardens, honing in on your words and your promise to her.
"You're not a mess of discarded parts and gene manipulation or whatever - you're better than that. I don't see that. I see Midnight in front of me, and that's all you should worry about."
>Midnight emits a sharp exhale of amusement amidst the occasional sniffle as she wrangles herself under control.
>"That was really fucking corny. You know that, right?" she mumbles.
"I'm a simple man. I cut to the chase, even if it isn't very elegant or original. But I'm not saying anything I don't mean."
>Much to your surprise, she leans into your petting a bit as you keep up your physical reassurance that what she is doesn't matter to you.
>If anything, it's even more amazing.
>And horrifying, depending on how ruthless these people were while doing "modifications" for the sake of science.
>She certainly doesn't make it sound very kind.
>Fucking hell, this world can be evil.
"We'll get the parts this guy needs tomorrow, try to nip this whole situation as quickly as possible if we can contact him to pick up. I'll be there with you, alright? I know you can handle this but..."
>"Moral support," she suggests.
>>
>>37659749
"I'm moral support. You said he mentioned 'helping,' any idea what that meant?"
>You only get a negative shake of the head in response.
"Got a name?"
>"Theodore - 'Teddy' is supposedly what everyone calls him."
> It's a long shot, but maybe you can find something online about this guy.
>You feel a bit anxious now as well, but you aren't going to let that stop you from protecting this mare with every last ounce of strength if need be.
>Via 'moral support,' of course.
>That's fine.
>Midnight is strong - far stronger than you gave her credit for.

-----

That was not a fun update to push through - I knew it wouldn't be, once I reached that point.
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>>37659760
That
That was a lot to take in. I'm trying to find some good side to their current situation.
I don't know, at least they're on the same page now, right? Midnight being a living organic organism and not an A.I. puts her in a (at least little bit) better position legal-wise, right? There should be no questioning if she's alive or not. All she has from robots are just a few cybernetic enhancements. That at worst makes her a cyborg. I know she's still a result of an illegal experiment, but you know, I'm taking every little bit of facts that Midnight can use to her advantage.
Still doesn't alleviate the fear of what's to come, both in the near future, during the meeting with this "Teddy" fellow, as well as her situation longer down the road.
Thanks for posting this so quick after the last one.
>>
>>37660546
>Thanks for posting this so quick after the last one.
That was out of necessity more than anything - Midnight's whole backstory had been eating a hole in my heart for some time now, and the right opportunity fell into place to finally unleash it upon the readers. I started it yesterday morning after I couldn't sleep, and it ended up finished around 4 am this morning after - you guessed it, I couldn't sleep.

It does go beyond that, as I did kinda want to get something out today, due to a couple of significant occurrences on this day, not least of which is FiM's 11th anniversary.

Truth be told, Midnight's breakdown has shed a lot of light, but obviously hasn't dissipated all the shadows. More will come with time - Middie is a good mare, but she has a lot of pain, as we now see. That's something doesn't just go away, but hopefully, we will see her rounding a corner.
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>>37660625
Get some sleep. Smoll horses and us can wait.
>a couple of significant occurrences on this day, not least of which is FiM's 11th anniversary.
Yea yeah yeah I know I know, but I won't repost pic related for a third time in tomorrow's thread if you fail to notice it like you did in the last one before it died.

As for Midnight? I don't expect her to change just after this one reveal. It takes time and effort from both her and Anon and more time for her to feel safe and content enough to become more open. It would be unrealistic if you rushed it.
Thanks again.
>>
>>37660718
Thread died before I could respond. Or I was just retarded, strong possibility there, too. Sorry about that - I appreciated it. And still do. Top cute mare.

I'll get some sleep at some point, probably in the afternoon again, like yesterday. That's just how I am between working graveyard shift during the week, and then combined with what I had in my mind with this - I get worked up. I enjoy writing, but I get emotionally involved in what I write to an extreme degree. Double-edged sword, as I feel that's what drives me.
>>
>>37659736
>"That's all I ever was - a test subject!
Midnight Mewtwo
>>
>>37659126
Im feeling it for Jacky right now, that feeling of feeling bad when you are supposed to be having fun is the worst
>>37659760
>>37660763
Loved this update, Anon and Maddie working together to uncover the mysteries of Theodore sounds interesting
>>
>>37661704
I think her main thing is being around other humans that aren't used to her. The closest thing I think of is someone who's going out but still isn't used to being seen as disabled. She has viewed herself like that before because she just can't do things others can, like Shine. We may never have really seen her like that but we're all complete weirdos that would be pretty stoked about talking ponies.
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>>37661849
Jacky see herself as disabled
This is sad
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Think the downtime we'r having might be good for reposting some lost green?
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>>37665580
Sure, it would be something good for us to read.
>>
>>37665587
which do you prefer. something heavy or something light
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light it is. cherry bubble may not bootleg but fuck it because she's been posted here before, and the artwork came from bootleg.

the original green https://ponepaste.org/3562
now onto the sequel.

>The sun isn't quite up yet.
>Its first rays are just beginning to peek over the horizon, though.
>Normally you'd stay in bed a little longer, but last night you promised your new housemate, Cherry Bubble, an early start.
>Balloon Pony. You've seen it and you're still not quite sure you believe it.
>Not that it's a bad thing. It's... actually pretty cute, in a surreal way.
>Then again, magic hoers land is already rather surreal.
>You roll out of bed, into your custom-Rarity-made slippers.
>Rarity tailored all of your clothes, attributing it to her usual generosity.
>You suspect, however, that at least part of it was for the challenge of designing for something with an unusual shape.
>Whatever, either way you got a wardrobe for an enormous discount; it would have been completely free if you hadn't insisted on paying her something for her effort.
>Anyway, first stage in your grooming process: SSS routine, plus brushing your teeth.
>Another 'invention' of yours is Equestria's only electric shaver; you, or rather your face, never could get used to a blade, so you had this one made.
>Second stage: clothes.
>White button-down shirt, dress pants, red tie, black suit jacket.
>Equestria has a rather cool climate, so this amount of clothing is just fine for you; besides, you're Anon, what else would you wear?
>Navy socks, black dress shoes... tie shoes... and done.
>Time to check on your new housemate...
>It takes you a couple of tries to find which room she's claimed, but you get it on the third.
>Your knock is answered with a muffled, indecipherable reply.
>Aparently you've just woken her up.
>About a minute passes, then the door opens.
>Cherry is floating at about your eye level.
>Somehow, her hollow latex 'mane' has become sleep-matted, just like real hair... cute, if perplexing.
>...No, not perplexing. Apparently she loses control of it when she sleeps.
>Damn it brain, it's too early for this shit.
"...Morning, sleepyhead."
>Balloon pony yawns. Still drowsy.
>"Good morning, Anon."
"Sleep well last night?"
>She nods, rubbing the sleep from her eyes.
"Glad to hear it."
>"Mmmh."
>This next question is going to be awkward, but you figure it's worth asking anyway...
"Do you have to... hmm... maintain your hygiene? Brush your teeth, shower, and so on...?"
>She nods again, stifling back another yawn.
"Take a couple of minutes to do that; I think I can polish off the textbook on magic I've been reading."
>You miss TV and the internet, but the lack of ads and malware almost makes up for it. Almost.
>Also, it helps that you're within walking distance of the library...
>>
>>37665865
>The sun is almost up by the time she's finished.
>You were right about the book; you make a mental note to bring it with you to Twilight's later.
>Balloon pony's mane is fixed now, and it and her 'coat' look a little shinier.
>"Where to, Anon?"
>Sounds a little more alert, too.
"Actually, I was thinking... we could watch the sunrise for a couple of minutes. Ever done that before?"
>"Nope. I'd like to though."
>You wonder what she DID do while she lived at the palace...
>You don't ask though; it would probably only upset her again.
>Never mind - the likely answer presents itself as massive amounts of reading.
>Yeah, you answer your own internal questions a lot.
>Still though... you'll have to talk to Princess Celestia about this eventually.
>Probably an addendum to your first report.
>But enough about that...
"C'mon. My master suite has a balcony."
>Facing east, no less.
>Balloon pony floats up the stairs ahead of you.
>Reminiscent of speedycloud... but bluefast is rudely impatient, while Cherry is naively eager.
>Seeing the world for the first time...
>When everything was this new to you, you were still wetting the bed.
>But... this is different, even more powerful; she knows - presumably - plenty about the outside world, but has never seen or experienced it herself.
>And she's chosen you to show it to her...
>You can't help but feel a little special at that thought.
>Up stairs; to room; through room; on balcony.
>Cherry remains by your side for the rest of the trip; probably because she wasn't sure of the way.
"Hey, Cherry..."
>"Yeah?"
>Without warning, you pull her into a hug.
>Balloon pony squeaks in surprise, but doesn't try to wriggle out of it.
"Celestia told me you're a very special pony. I agree with her."
>You give her a gentle squeeze to accentuate your sentiment, squishing her out of shape ever so slightly.
>Somehow, her cheeks turn even redder than they already are.
>"O-oh. Um... Thanks."
>As you slide onto your lounge chair, you flip her around so she can see the sun.
>The two of you sit there for the next few minutes, saying nothing; no words are really necessary.
>Cherry ooh's though, right as the sun begins to eclipse the horizon.
>Even for you, it's quite a sight. The thought that Sunbutt is raising it, rather than natural forces, accentuates its magnificence.
...
>At one point, you fiddle with the balloon-neck where her belly button would be.
>She giggles and squirms, telling you to stop; apparently it's ticklish, or at least sensitive.
>Unsurprising, considering its location.
...
>The sun is halfway risen when her tummy growls.
>How does that even - whatever.
>She looks down at it, then up at you, slightly embarassed.
"I'm starting to get hungry myself, so we should probably cut out."
>>
>>37665882
>You rise, balloon pony rising with you.
"I just thought of something..."
>"What's that?"
"What's to stop you from just floating around the outside and waiting for me?"
>She brings a hoof to her mouth as she ponders this, then glides down to the front door.
>While she takes the outside path, you take the inside, pausing for a moment to pick up the book on magic.
>It's the equivalent of high-school-level, but the vast majority of the earlier books are about how to actually perform magic; you've skipped those, since you can't do any of it yourself anyway.
>So, first stop after Sugarcube: Twilight's.
>Yeah, Sugarcube again. You're thinking of surprising Ponka by showing up early.
>Then again, it's Ponka, so maybe she'll see it coming.
>When you exit your chateau, balloon pony is fidgeting nervously as she hovers.
>Something's on her mind...
>"Um... Anon...?"
"Cherry?"
>"Would you... um..."
>She starts fiddling with the ribbon on her leg.
>Wait a second...
>You squint as the gears in your head spin away, and you can't help but grin at their conclusion.
"...Aww, you want me to hold your string, don't you?"
>She nods, blushing and fidgeting some more.
"Well... not yet."
>She wilts so much, you'd think someone let her air out.
>"Oh..."
"No, listen..."
>Cherry looks up, still droopy.
"If we spend your first full day here like that, ponies might see you as a balloon first and a pony second. I don't think you want that."
>She looks away for a second, then shakes her head.
"Hey..."
>You take her hooves in your hands.
"I'll hold it later, I promise. ...It's too adorable to pass up."
>That gets her to perk up again.
>"Alright, Anon."
"And uh... I'd stick to the ground if I were you."
>"Why?"
"Ponies will ask you how you're able to fly without wings. A lot. Do you want to have to answer that question every five minutes?"
>She shrugs.
>"I'm a balloon. I want to fly. If they ask, I'll tell them."
>Now you shrug.
"Alright. But don't say I didn't warn you."
>She grins.
>"I won't."
"...Well, shall we be on our way?"
>"Yeah."
>>
>>37665923
Cute. Keep it up!
>>
>>37661574
>spoiler
Never thought of that while I was writing it - that's an amusing thought.
>>
>>37666757
Please no sudden Pokemon crossover.
>>
>>37666961
Hell no - just gave me a chuckle. And then I thought back to everything I wrote in the last update and the implications of being forced into test procedures that likely would be painful and traumatizing, and then I felt sorta bad.
>>
>>37667046
>being forced into test procedures
Eh? This about Midnight or something that pokemon went through? I was never much into that franchise aside from watching the cartoon back in the day up to the first tourney
>>
>>37667072
Midnight. Sure as hell wasn't her idea to go through all of that. End result might be astounding, but holy shit - imagine getting hacked up for the sake of experimentation.
>>
>>37667095
The astounding result is that she's still a wonderful person despite all that. I sure as hell would be a husk of a person or completely crazy if I were in her situation. Girl's a survivor.
>>
>>37666961
tfw no weeb bootleg that identifies as a ponyta more than any weird western cartoon pony because they suck and don't have manes made out of fire
>>
>>37666629
you did read it's just a repost right?

>>37665923
>On the way, you ask her about clouds, since she can fly; no, she can't manipulate them.
>From there, the topic of weather comes up, and you explain to the best of your ability how it worked back on Earth.
>That lecture carries the two of you back to Sugarcube Corner.
>You open the door...
>To an explosion of confetti.
>"HIYA NONNY AND CHERRY!"
"Jesus, Pinkie, don't blow our ears out!"
>"...Too early?"
"Yeah, a bit!"
>Party pony cringes slightly, but her smile remains.
>"Sorry."
>You wave your hand dismissively.
"It's alright. You're just happy to see us, right?"
>She nods emphatically.
>"Uh-huh! And I knew you'd come by because you're going to show her around Ponyville, and here you are!"
>...Yep, you were right about her knowing earlier.
>She hops up and wraps herself around you... but apparently it's a pretense, because she whispers:
>"Save Twilight's for last, we're gonna throw a party for her!"
>This changes your plans, but you can still make it work... you just have to whisper something back to Pank first.
"I'm going to leave a book in my booth. Take it back to Twilight for me."
>You set her down, burying your acknowledgement in a generalized statement:
"Alright Pinkie, I know you're happy to see us, but we'd like to sit down. We didn't come JUST to chat."
>"Okay! What do you guys want?"
"Three raspberry scones for me... Cherry?"
>Balloon pony has been rather quiet, but she pipes up when prompted.
>"Same as Anon... but just one, please."
>"Okie dokie lokie! It'll be out in a minute!"
>With that, she hops off.
>You and Cherry slide into a booth - the same booth as yesterday, to boot.
>"Oh, Anonymous!"
>...You turn to see a pink-and-purple Earth Pony filly sauntering up to you.
"Diamond Tiara. What a... pleasant surprise..."
>She's slightly nicer to you since you essentially work for her father, and thus have a direct line of contact with him; especially since you've used that line before.
>Slightly.
>She's still a snobby, bratty pest.
"Where's Silver Spoon? I think this is the first time I've seen you two apart."
>"She's finishing a school project for us."
>She squints at Cherry for a moment, taking in the latter's unusual composition... and lack of a cutie mark.
"Diamond Tiara, meet Cherry Bubble, my new housemate. Cherry, Diamond Tiara, my ah... contractor's daughter."
>Cherry beams; D.T. leers.
>"Where's your cutie mark?"
>"Oh. I uh... I don't have one."
>"Why not?"
>You suspect you know where this is going...
>"I... um..."
"She... hasn't had a chance to find her special talent yet."
>"Or is it because she's just a balloon pretending to be a pony?"
>Not quite what you'd expected, but still par for the course.
>>
>>37668615
>spoiler
Damn it. Completely missed that part.
>>
>>37668810
thought it would have been clear >>37665580 just some light reading for newfrends since part2 was never posted

>>37668615
>Balloon pony's smile falters.
"Christ Diamond Tiara, what's the matter with you?"
>"I'm only here because my daddy wanted to invite you to dinner again."
"Not tonight, I hope."
>"Why would it be tonight, monkey? It's this weekend."
>You stare at her for a moment, pondering.
"...Tell him that I have to decline. If he asks why, say that it was because of your attitude. ...And I'm going to tell him if you won't."
>The pink-coated ball of spite huffs.
>"You'll regret this."
"If I catch you in my house I'll punt you like a hoofball."
>She fleetingly glances at your legs; since you're a typical human, they're about as long as Celestia's, and the width of your pants legs indicates that they're thicker too.
>"You wouldn't."
"Try me."
>She glares at you; you stare back at her.
>"Hey!"
>...You and Rich Bitch both turn to Cherry.
>"What kind of talent does a crown cutie mark indicate anyway? Being stuck up?"
>...Huh.
>"I know Princess Celestia, the High Princess of Equestria, personally, and she doesn't have a crown on her flank. So what in Equestria could your cutie mark denote?"
>The filly's mouth opens and closes a few times, but no words come out.
"Well... on that note... Diamond Tiara, you've gone about your business, so feel free to go away."
>"With pleasure."
>And with that, she storms off; but not before muttering something.
>You can't make it out, though, except for the phrase 'only one'.
>Oh well. You can work it out later if you're bored.
>>
>>37669005
>Cherry stares after Diamond Tiara for a couple of seconds, then down at the table.
"I'm sorry about that."
>"...It's okay."
>The fact that she's looking down at her forehooves says otherwise.
"No it's not. Diamond Tiara is a horrible excuse for a pony, and I'm sorry you had to cross paths with her."
>"She's right, though, isn't she? I'm not really a pony at all."
>You reach across the table for her hoof. This is starting to become a thing with you two...
"Hey. You're just just as real to me as every other pony in this world."
>She looks up.
>"Really?"
"Really."
>She glances away with a slight grin, and her cheeks turn pink.
>"Thanks, Anon."
>You give her hoof a squeeze, then release it.
"No problem, Cherry."
>She squees. Seriously, where does that sound come from?
"As for the rest of our day..."
>Brief pause, while you gather your thoughts.
"Okay, the way I see it, I'll take us by Rarity's, then Applejack, then Fluttershy, before heading to Twilight's."
>Balloon pony ticks them off on her hoof... no, the action doesn't make much sense, but that doesn't stop ponies from doing it.
>"What about Rainbow Dash?"
>Aaand that's why she was ticking them off.
"You must have heard quite a few reports."
>She shrugs, smiling.
"Well, the way I figure it, Dash will come to us before the day is finished. Better to rely on that than try to find her."
>"Ah. Okay then."
"Also, her house is in the clouds, and I can't fly."
>"...Oh."
>Pank is coming back with the scones, so you place the appropriate coinage on the table.
>>
>>37669036
>"Nonny, was that filly being a meanie-pants to Cherry?"
"She's a meanie-pants to everypony. Don't worry, it's taken care of."
>"You sure? I could say - "
"She wouldn't listen. ...Thanks for the offer though."
>Penko doesn't say anything. She looks from you to Cherry... settles on Cherry.
"You okay?"
>She turns back to you and opens her mouth; but then closes it again without saying anything.
"Something's on your mind, Pinks. What's up?"
>"...I'll tell you later, Nonny."
"Huh. Alright then."
>Wait a minute. Pinkie, Cherry...
>Pinkie's flank...
>Balloons.
>You think you now know, within a certain margin of error, what's bugging her.
>Her business said and done, Pinkie trots off. Whatever, you can ask her about it later.
>"What was that about, Anon?"
>You frown as you contemplate how to word your response.
"I'm... extrapolating here, but..."
>After a moment, you decide to simply quote what Pikipa said yesterday.
"Pinkie loves her friends, and she loves balloons. Now she has a friend who's a balloon."
>Balloon pony perks up, finishing the quote.
>"...And it's the greatest thing ever. Do you mean, like..."
>She taps the tips her hooves together; you shake your head at this.
"I'm not sure, but... I don't think so. It's just a... well, in your case, it's a... double dose of sorts. I think."
>"Oh."
"Yeah... Like I said, Pinkie loves all her friends, but you... I think you'll have a special place in her heart. As a friend. I think."
>"...What about you Anon?"
>...?
"What about me?"
>"Do I have a special place in your heart?"
>For a moment, you simply gape. Did she really just-
>"I'm sorry, that was kind of a dumb thing to ask, it's just that, I fell into your life out of nowhere, and-"
>She did, but...
>Balloon pony is rambling, and the longer she goes on the worse it'll get.
>You put your finger to her lips to shush her.
"Yeah... yeah you do."
>She sighs, relieved you've saved her from further embarassment.
"Well! On that note... what do you say we cut out of here?"
>Cherry is confused. Possibly by the abrupt subject change, possibly by...
>"But we haven't eaten yet."
>Right.
"We'll take them with us. C'mon."
>You wrap your scones in some napkins and rise. Balloon pony takes the hint and rises into the air with hers.
"Catch ya later, Pinks!"
>"Bye, Pinkie!"
>"Bye, Nonny and Cherry!"
>You hold the door for Cherry to float through, and with that, you're off for Carousel Boutique.
>>
>>37669005
>>37665865
>now onto the sequel
I think this is what threw me off. Oops.
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Man the board is moving fast. Anni stream must have brought a bunch of flakes back temporarily.
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>>37669653
>Annii stream
not nearly as much impact as g5 i dont think just the occasional thread topical to whats playing on the stream. i dont feel like its that fast. just that we're in a dead spot for the moment. how's everyone doing?
>>
>>37669716
I'm good. Starting on my next update tonight. Looking forward to what everyone else has brewing in the pot, particularly the continuation of Condense when that happens. No pressure, Reggie. I just know that you mentioned that you'd be resuming soon. You have a fun mystery going on.
>>
>>37669716
Fatigued from recent events. I've about had it this last year, I need a solid timespan of smooth waters so I can freely focus on just writing.
>>
>>37669860
thats good. havent gotten to read the latest midnight but good that youre still into the thick of inspiration

>>37669952
pretty wiped myself, get little bits of flair popping up to want to do something but then too drained to actually commit to it. halfway through the gauntlet though
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>>37669860
It makes me happy to hear that others are interested in Condense. I actually wrote for her tonight. Didn't get enough done for an update, but enough to feel connected to her again, which was more cathartic than I could have anticipated.
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>>37670530
I enjoy this feel. Empress Shine, Marchioness Prism and Mayor Jack give me hope for a bright, just future. Well, bright and just enough given the ruler.
>>
>>37625782
what program do you use ? might help organize things better than just slaping shit together in textfiles or evernote
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>>37670659
Notepad++
It's really helpful because it tracks your characters at the bottom, so you know how to divide stuff up for posting here. You can make it greentext by changing the language from plain text to "Diff".
>>
>>37670690
think ive used N++ before but never had it setup like you did. the counting does sound usefull because i always have go over or under and half to make edits before i can post it without looking like its an abrupt end
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>>37670690
hmmm. it looks like this is inverted, what's usually greentext is white and whats usually white is green . any way to change?
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>>37670954
That screenshot is from when I had the language in plain text format instead of Diff, hence the white text.
>>
How about something a little bit lighter after that last update of mine?

>>37659760

>Well, is it really that surprising to find nothing?
>Having slept virtually the whole day away, sleep tonight really wasn't an option.
>So much of the overnight hours have been spent slaving over Midnight's laptop, trying to find some clues as to this mysterious man named Theodore.
>You hardly get to use this thing anymore - for all intents and purposes, this computer is now hers.
>Speaking of Midnight, you had her sleep in your room tonight, since you knew you wouldn't be using it.
>You rather be out in the living room to have the tv on for background noise, even if it was turned way down.
>And you want Midnight to get some truly restful sleep after unleashing her burden.
>You didn't tell her that, but she likely felt you were taking pity on her anyways.
>Hence her reluctance - but you insisted.
> It's only after she calmed down and eventually retired to bed for the night you could absorb what she told you.
>You feel sick - and not because of the remnants of your battle with food poisoning today.
>How in the hell can anyone justify hacking up a living being for their own personal gain, or in the pursuit of "science?"
>No wonder Midnight is so maladjusted.
>How she's even functional is...
>Amazing.
>The mental image of her eyes being literally scooped out to be replaced with something artificial to fit a theme or aesthetic...
>Man, it's probably good you emptied your stomach earlier today.
>How the hell long did she even have to endure that misery?
>Going through that, you doubt she wanted to keep track of time even if she could.
>You certainly aren't going to ask her.
>What Midnight already shared was too much.
>Now, having escaped that and being able to live an even vaguely normal life...
>You can't help but feel a lump form in your throat.
>It takes a moment for that to pass without letting it go any further, aside from a bit of dust irritating your eyes.
>But she's not out of the woods yet with this fellow poking his nose where it doesn't belong.
>Even if he coincidentally could just tell from looking at her she wasn't a bot, you wouldn't expect anyone to just casually bring it up like Midnight described.
>There's more to it than that - that's a certainty.
>First instincts tell you this guy works for EquisCo, assuming that is indeed from where Midnight escaped.
>Could be they still want her back for more fun with their macabre science project.
>Over your dead fucking body.
>Maybe they just want to erase her from existence, to avoid getting caught doing illegal genetic experiments.
>You have the same feelings about this as your previous theory.
>Keeping up on the news isn't something you bother to do, so much of what you hear is just offhand.
>Been at least a few years, but you vaguely recall a whole debate about "engineering" pets or something like that.
>Never heard the conclusion of that, but according to Midnight, it's illegal.
>>
>>37671778

>You're inclined to believe her - though you don't know how she knows that.
>Could be like you - just happened to overhear it during everything going on.
>But Midnight also mentioned he wanted to help...
>If he's been in the business of - pony-making?
>Sort of a weird field, now that you think of it.
>Regardless - there is always the chance he legitimately wants to assist Midnight with her predicament.
>Especially since he apparently knows of others like her.
>What he means by "others like her" is left up to the imagination for now.
>First and foremost, he is a legitimate customer - he put in an order, and you will fulfill it.
>What comes after that comes down to true intentions...
>"Are you seriously still up?"
>You practically jump about a foot in the air off of your seat with the sudden quip from Midnight.
>As you turn around, you jump again, finding her snout mere inches from your face.
>Her bemused grin only grows wider with your second near heart attack.
"Damn, are you trying to kill me?!" you shout in exasperation.
>"More or less curious if I still have my sneaking skills properly honed. I'd say so, judging by those reactions I got," she explains calmly.
"I'll put a bell on you if you keep pulling that shit," you taunt her.
>"I'd like to see you try," she dares.
>Midnight casually walks around the sofa, taking her normal seat.
>That doesn't last too long, as intrigue over the laptop you're holding draws her to scoot closer to you.
>"I thought you were trying to take pity on me, and you've really been up pounding the keyboard, haven't you?" she asks, trying to make out what you have in the search bar.
>You delete it quickly, just to fuck with her - and give her a smarmy grin when she looks up at you with disappointment.
>"I can handle whatever you're trying to find," she mutters.
"I'm sure you can - but I've come up empty on our mystery man, anyway," you admit. "And of course I'm still up, I slept all damn day - I might sleep for a couple of hours before work, but I don't need any more than that. Why the hell are you up?"
>"Not needing sleep was a lie, but I don't need much of it," she replies. "A few hours here or there is about all I do. Tonight though, that was probably the longest I've slept in... "
>She trails off, looking up at the clock while pondering her answer.
>It's almost three in the morning now - and she retired to your room at a quarter till ten.
>Five hours, at most.
>Damn.
"Habit from keeping an eye open for danger?" you suggest.
>It garners a nod from Midnight.
>"Old habits die hard. But it goes a bit beyond that time frame - I just have a hard time... shutting my brain off, I guess. Relaxing."
"Do... you think it's because of..."
>You have to stop yourself from going further into explanation, instead tapping the side of your head with a finger.
>Midnight sighs as she stares at you.
>No, more like beyond you.
>>
>>37671784

>"Probably. My memory isn't that great with anything before then - very fuzzy," she explains quietly, keeping that same far-off gaze. "Twilight bots are known to be quite high-strung, always looking to learn something new."
"And that's one of the chips, I'm assuming?"
>"Mmhmm."
"I probably shouldn't be asking this shit, sorry," you apologize, suddenly feeling quite guilty about opening up this wound again.
>"It's funny, normally I would berate you for digging," she muses, cocking her head as her eyes focus on you once again.
"Why aren't you?"
>"Feel like a weight got pulled off of my shoulders earlier tonight. Don't get me wrong, I will flay you if you turn into an soft little bitch, and don't expect me to be an emotional cuddlebug-"
>"But it felt good to tell your plight to someone else," you finish for her.
>"Yes."
"At least let me say I'm sorry you had to go through all that. Can't imagine it."
>"I appreciate it - but again, don't make this all mushy," she instructs. "What's your plan going forward in regards to this 'Teddy?'"
>You have to just shrug instinctively, which causes Midnight to frown.
>"That's not reassuring," she says in a flat tone.
"Well, I'm not going to just lie to you - there is literally nothing I can find of anyone named Theodore or Teddy who's a renowned scientist or mad genius. It would probably be easier if I had a last name, but even then, no guarantees. For all intents and purposes, this is just your average guy that may or may not have been involved with the line of work that dabbles in making bots or..."
>"Making things like me."
"Beings like you. Not things. Have a little more respect for yourself - remember how you pushed yourself as this image of a superior being before," you encourage her.
>"Well, I *am* better than you, but that goes without saying," she jabs.
"Now hold on there, that wasn't what I meant," you snap, playing up the facade as being offended.
>"Perhaps not, but the point still stands. I'm turning around your business, aren't I?"
"I suppose," you pout. "But anyway, you and I are gonna get the parts for that order tomorrow, and I'll give him a call to notify him - maybe see if I can't get him to talk about what this is all about."
>"And if he doesn't?"
"Wait for him to pick up the parts - he said when he did, he'd talk to you, right?"
>"Yeah."
>Midnight's lack of enthusiasm makes it clear she doesn't like what you're laying out.
>But you certainly can't just crucify the guy for knowing something.
>There aren't really any options.
>You know Midnight understands.
>But it certainly throws her back into an uncomfortable situation, and for good reason.
"Don't stress about it - I mean it when I say I got your back. Remember that," you reassure her, going to pat her on the side.
>Midnight is keenly aware of your movement, and eyes you disapprovingly.
"Sorry," you apologize while pulling your hand back. "So you're really done sleeping?"
>>
>>37671789

>"Yep. And I'm not going to listen to your alarm go off two or three times before you get your ass up in the morning, so call it a night," she instructs.
"Fine. What are you gonna do?"
>Midnight merely points a hoof to the laptop that rests upon your legs.
"Gee, what a surprise," you say with a huff, setting it down in front of her.
>"Oh shut up and get to bed already. And you better not be sick tomorrow when you get up."
"Man, I hope not. I'm not even going to joke about that," you reply, rising up to your feet and stretching. "You want the lights on, or nah?"
>"I'll get them at some point," she says dismissively, already beginning to delve into information on the screen in front of her.
"Alright then. G'night."
>you shuffle off to your room.
>"Hey Anon?"
"Hm?"
>You turn around.
>Midnight sits upright on the couch facing you, her forelegs draped over the back of the furniture.
>"Thank you for listening to my bullshit," she says solemnly.
>You wave your hand, reminded back to when you said the same thing to her.
"I figure it comes with the territory of having someone to help me out with this place. Don't worry about it."
>The response surprises Midnight at first before the realization hits her.
>She grins, just wide enough to show her canines.
>"G'night, doofus."
>That's about the nicest thing she's ever called you.
>How cute.

-----
>>
>>
>>37671791
I'm just sitting here waiting for then to hate fuck each other.
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>>37671448
i mean specifically when switching to diff things are backwards. but i figured it out how to make it look exactly liek 4chan
>fix it in settings->style configurator
>Change color for 'Added' for your greentext sections
>Change color for 'Comment' for your white sections
>>
>>37672385
Getting a cheap tiara and set of wings has turned her into a self-appointed empress. I think she might be a little power hungry.
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>>37672629
I didn't have to do any of that. My selected theme is "obsidian" so maybe that's automatically set by theme?
>>37672465
This thought has crossed my mind as well.
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>>37672385
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>>37672465
>>37673298
Funny you mention that.
I had a lewd dream about a week ago that involved a very aggressive Midnight on top.But it's too early for that. However, it might be inspiration for later if I do take that plunge into writing.
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>>37674812
>a very aggressive Midnight on top
Hell yeah dude, cowgirl is where it's at.
>>
>>37659736
finally got through this update. so did the recent talk about bootlegs having history with hassenfeld ponies influence midnight being a biological experiment or did you decide on that going into the thread on its own?

>>37660546
i dont think it puts her in a better position legally. she is a biological product instead of a product but they would still likely view it like GMO crops, we might be in for some dark phillosophical crisis in the future about if she even has free will or if its all still part of the experiment that she 'escaped'.
>>
>>37675413
As you're aware, I certainly wouldnt know from any experience, lmao. But I'll be damned if it wasn't a hell of a vivid dream.

>>37675504
I remember the Hassenfeld ponies, but I had forgotten the name - been a while. That being said, while it helped to jog my memory, I would put it down to coincidence, maybe a very minor influence at most. I struggled a bit initially trying to fully decide on what Midnight was I knew as I started, she was going to be a mixture of Luna and Twilight Sparkle with some bastardized colors but as I kept writing, it fell onto a personal level for me as I delved into her more and more, almost the same level as Luna, my waifu. I think there's a strong argument to be made for biological/organic ponies being inherently more intimate in the sense of feelings about em, so I really felt that - aside from the augmentations forced upon her - there was only one option that would be acceptable in my mind. I certainly have nothing against robot bootlegs, but Midnight has become very special to me - and it's why I've been so damn productive. Way more than any other project I've had, and I have strongly considered the idea of commissioning a plush of her one day to go alongside the Luna one I already have.
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>>37659126
>From rags to riches
>A nobody to ruler
>I am
>An alicorn
>"...you done up there yet Jack?"
>Anon's voice...
>Oh how sweet he is
>For a mere mortal, he brings insight to my life
>He will make an excellent...
>An excellent...
>Companion?
>Assistant?
>Butler?
>I shrink back from my heroic princess pose, having run up a set of stacked benches to survey the area
>The fluffy white angel wings fit me perfectly, and act as an opposite to Sparky's black dragon wings
>The tiara is actually just a headband with extra bits but it has a lot of clovers and even some sort of fruit in the center
>I choose to believe that it's an apple
>"...Jack? You're getting that funny look again."
"Please, mortal man! Your mayor is contemplating life."
>"Yeah huh. You know you're not even on the level of some viceroy, right?"
"If I knew what that was, I might care."
>I re-establish my brave pose
>...the wings are really just part of some sleeve slipped over my chest but I'm sure I could get them to flap if I bounce enough
>With one last inhale, I bounce down to the dirt road
>Anon was close to eye level with me
>Now he towers above as is the usual
>Maybe it is better to be the ace up his sleeve...
"Hey, where did they go?"
>"Jousting arena, it's close to here so they're picking out some seats."
"Men riding mares into battle..."
>I look over Anon
>"And not just battle, if you know what I mean. C'mon, let's go."
>We keep pace until I see the empress and march...
>Empress-lite
>Dashie's tiara is a lot more place, with some sort of gem or piece of blue glass in the center
>Sparks' tiara is sorta spiky with a rose at the center
>They are nice but neither can really compare to mine
>"I'm gonna grab us some kettle corn, keep tight alright?"
>I nod at Anon's notification and squeeze between the two
"Fellow rulers, how go-eth the battle?"
>"Shh."
>"...not now Jacky."
"Come on, why not?"
>"Shh."
>"...not now Jacky."
>What's up with them?
>I focus on where their eyes are
>A quintet of men in colorful outfits are leading around huge horses that are wearing appropriately colored blankets
>Mare
>Mare
>Mare
>Mare
>M...
>Stallion
>While it a distance away, I can tell
>It's a stallion
"...I'm on purple team."
>"Get in line."
>"Mmm..."
>Barely a word is spoken until Anon comes back
>People are really starting to crowd around but he manages to squeeze onto a bench right behind us
>"Hey girls, I got kettle corn. It's usually sweeter than the usual stuff so it's a real treat."
>"Cool."
>"Mmm..."
"Yup."
>"Well... don't act so awestruck."
>Eventually the horses are led away and some wimpy looking dork runs into the center and starts shouting about different houses and clans and crests and boring things
>There's a kingly figure
>A queenly figure
>And even knights that are in full armor!
>>
>>37675683
>"Yeah, get his ass!"
>One knight keeps winning these one-on-one duels
>After the stallion, there's really no interesting stuff that can keep up
>"...they're going to have jousting, aren't they Anon?"
>Dashie breaks our silence
>"Well yeah, after this. The jousting stuff is the dramatic climax, this is just warming the crowd up. The guys are in armor so dense that for the most part those swords would never d-"
>"Yeah yeah, thanks."
>"You're welcome, Empress Derp..."
>The purple knight gets a cheer from us even if he loses in under a minute of boasting and some sort of medieval slapping fight
>Then...
>The jousting
>What will eventually lead to the jousting
>All of the knights mount their horses and line up, proclaiming their own virtues and whatever
>I don't remember what the purple knight said but Anon starts cheering when they all distances themselves away
>"Blue man group, kick red's ass!"
>Sparky seems to take this as a challenge and glares at Anon
>"Blue sucks my horn, purple's going to teabag the competition!"
>Anon seems to take this as a challenge
>"Purple's packing teabags, blue's gonna show everyone a real pair!"
>Some people cheer with Anon's rally
"Anon, purple really should win you know."
>He scoffs
>"You kidding me? He's a jobber and a half, he's the most dull dude out there."
>This can not be
"No way, his horse is awesome and..."
>Crap
>What else is worth cheering on?
"Ehhh...?"
>He shakes his head
>"An awesome mount isn't enough if you can't handle a hit."
>He's not wrong
>But
>I focus on the arena
>The jousting is actually really fun
>At least two lances shatter!
>No one was seriously hurt but one was a critical hit on a shield and the other was deflected and dug into the dirt
>It feels like things are starting to wind down...
>Until the purple knight rides in!
>As he passes us, all three of us let out loud cheers that seem to confuse him since he stops and... doesn't say anything
>Like he forgot his lines
>After an awkward pause, he calls out to the yellow knight about how he's going to win or something
>It sounds like he's issuing a real challenge
>The purple knight's horse turns his flank to us, trotting sideways
>Someone brings the knight a lance that has some sort of different design to it
>After some more shouting, the knight gallops off to his opponent!
>The quilt flaps up during the sprint, causing all of us to cheer
>I think Dashie screamed a little too loud, her face got red
>The challenge lasts for three passes but eventually the purple knight is defeated
>The yellow knight wins all of the prestige...
>Even though at the end all of the knights present themselves and bow for the crowds
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>>37675676
gotta admit, i didnt see her being part-twilight at all but in retrospect it does make sense with her being so obsessive about learning. well played reveal with the chip. of course the question comes into being how she even knew these things, what kind of parts they put in an illegal project would likely be on a need to know classified business and I dont think they would share that info with her.
>>
>>37675774
>"So... big fan of purple, are we?"
>We keep close as a group and walk off after everyone else starts to leave
>Anon sounds suspicious
"Yeah... he was so cool."
>Sparky looks satisfied
>Dashie looks excited
>I haven't seen her look so physically happy in I don't know how long
>"Hm... so, I noticed all of the mounts were mares. Why do you think they chose that for all of them?"
>I chuckle
"Come on, Anon. Obviously there were stallions there."
>"Really? I'm used to seeing mares. Green, blue, red, yellow..."
"But not purple..."
>We all three nod at the same time
>"...Jack?"
"What's up?"
>I don't know what he's talking about but today turned from good to great
>"Did you get you an eyeful of stallion?"
>All of us freeze
>...
>Empress and Empress-lite start to hurry ahead
>I'm stuck
>Don't look back at him
>Don't answer
>"You're gonna get it."
>Crap
"RUN!"
>All three of us break out into a full sprint
>I don't remember the last time I have ever seen Faint "Dashie" Prism run!
>She's keeping up actually really well
>I turn my head to ask her how the heck she's so fast...
>And then I see him
>Anon
>He's barreling after us with a bag of half-eaten kettle corn in hand
>"I'M GONNA GET ALL OF YOU, YOU BETTER PRAY THEY DON'T SERVE PONY BURGERS!"
>His outburst causes a burst of speed
>Rather than splitting up, we start to duck under and around people while keeping on the road
>The rush of getting caught and thrill of being an alicorn with horned apple tiara is too much to bear
>I can't tell if I started it but we all end up cackling and laughing at our escape
>Anon can keep up but he's nowhere near fast enough to catch us
>Feeling like I need a bath with a full belly
>Trotting on familiar feeling dirt roads
>Dozens of people around us that are too surprised to try to stop us despite the man chasing us and shouting cartoonish threats
>I feel like we're back to being fillies, free to be troublemakers and effortlessly evading The Law
>This was how things were supposed to be
>>
>>37675782
The cork has been well and truly popped, but no matter how much you shake the bottle beforehand, the champagne isn't all going to come out at once. We will see things here and there, and as you mentioned, we have seen things from her that make sense. Some of it might be obscure though, just because to some extent, there is a bit of subjectivity when it comes to personalities, particularly with Luna. There is one thing I've touched upon at least once, and we will see it grazed once again in the update I'm currently working on.

It's a situation that is sort of intriguing - with two distinct sort of personalities forced together on top of what was already there, what does that really do if/when they can sort of mesh and work as one? There's strengths of each character, and there are weaknesses - combined together, they may complement one another positively, negatively, or clash altogether. I'm hoping going forward I can touch on these sorts of things well enough to be interesting, particularly as Midnight progresses through her issues with herself and the world as a whole.

Make no mistake, Midnight is her own unique mare - but some of that is undoubtedly influenced by what's been forcibly shoved into her noggin, as sad as it may sound.
>>
>>37676046
the stuff you're talking about comes now and then for bootleg when its not OCs and like you said its pretty intriguing what you can mix into the vanilla pony. Jacky was a bait and switch that seemed like it would be Applejack+Region like how Apuljack was AJ+Mexico but then Jacky went and pulled the rug out on that trend that it was all put into her head
>>
>>37676046
>Make no mistake, Midnight is her own unique mare - but some of that is undoubtedly influenced by what's been forcibly shoved into her noggin, as sad as it may sound.
Almost like what I had in mind for Rosie, except better written and with a more consistent schedule
>>
>>37676131
I started to go into the archives last week and read some of the older stuff - Rambo Fast comes to mind in regards to the blending of personalities. Sucks that was never completed, now I feel awful for the stupid quip someone pointed out earlier regarding karate chop action.

Yeah, I agree with your observation of Jacky - threw me for a loop. I have not touched on Apuljiyak yet. But I'll also admit, I personally find it a bit difficult to go and read longer stuff when I've got a fire going with my own inspiration.
>>
>>37676214
To be fair, I've been putting my weapons-grade autism into words for almost eight and a half years now - hardly a year after joining the fandom. So I have a lot of practice fucking up. I still think you have a good start, just based on what I have seen.

>consistent schedule
Never in a million years did I think that phrase would ever be directed toward me. I've always been slow to push out updates. Until this piece.
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>>37676233
>>37676214
I hope you two arent beating yourself up over this and think the greens or characters are less special because of it. They each have their own stories I wanna read

Merging personalities with two or more ponies is just a popular trend that comes up here like its own 'original species' of bootleg mixed with flaws so we're it's not just deviantart hybrids. Twill is largely influenced as Twi+Butter it should be pretty on the nose
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>>37676474
No, I'm fine - I just thought it was funny I had just went through one noteworthy short of the type we were talking about. It's natural to want to create something 'original,' but that's something hard to do. A lot of ideas have been run through - its unavoidable. I went into this general virtually blind, so ignorance is sort of bliss for me.
Obviously now I'm catching up, but when I started - no idea what we had. I'd still probably be doing what I am now - I only came here after sharing a scrap with Reggie he urged me to post, never really planned to go with it. But Midnight's snarky attitude also comes from something else I decided not to pursue for /moon/ - everything just sort of gelled together for me. I might have mentioned that crap before, but I really don't remember. Sorry if I'm repeating myself.

tl;dr no harm no foul. No one should be discouraged by hearing an idea has 'already been done.' There still lies opportunity for something interesting and new based on what you bring to the table and how you implement it. Unless you're legit plagiarizing, that's obviously no bueno.
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>>37676585
not really one to hang out in /moon/ how much variety is there to the personality over there since with Luna you held off on snarkermaremoon ?
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>>37676836
Luna can be a rather complex personality to nail down, as she's shown a lot of different sides in the episodes she appeared in. Beyond Nightmare Moon, you have those that stick to S1 Luna, while you have others that stick with S2 and beyond. Just in that, you have those that write her as awkward, perhaps a bit timid (I've done that), while also a pony decidedly more adjusted.

Personally, I prefer basing her off of her best episodes - which really stick out as the CMC dream episodes. To me, Luna is a bit reserved - preferring to observe before jumping in. It can come off as a little cold on the surface, but she's a very empathetic pony and can be rather emotionally driven when she's passionate about something. To an extent, that's why she appears so reserved - there is a bit of reluctance, just based on what happened when her emotions got the best of her.

I've written Nightmare Moon a handful of times, and rather that just turn her into the villain, I like going with the bitterness and the sarcasm. Anon Goes to Tartarus in my pastebin was a short that I started to expand upon, and decided not to. Still have three or four updates worth of words that I never published; I suppose there's always a chance I revive it.
>>
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>>37677640
Still one of my favorites.
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>>37677640
I'm truly surprised there's only one picture of her. If I had the ability, I'd draw the moment when she says that emotional-haymaker of a line.
>>
>>37678505
Should we start asking around the art thread for stuff maybe?
>>
>>37678524
They'd need to read that story to really do it justice.
>>
>>37678533
True. Could always make an official /r/equest or even offer commissions. I'd be willing to pay someone for some art and comic ideas I've had.
>>
>>37678505
I mean that's what it's supposed to be but I'm not that good at horse art.
>>
>>37678892
I love your stuff, I'd just like to see different interpretations and I'm selfish when it comes to seeing more art of my dorks and gals.
>>
>>37678892
I mean the picture showing her sitting in Anon's lap in his office, the entire setting, captioned, the whole nine yards.
>>
>>37679640
I would dig that. If I could do anything with my meaty hooks worth a damn on drawing I'd try it out but I just don't have that capacity. So much of Jack at the faire would be far better with visuals, especially since she isn't the most focused mare on things that don't interest her.
>>
>>37678321
I haven’t read this one yet, what’s ponepaste for it?
>>
>>37680362
https://ponepaste.org/143
>>
>>37680376
Thx
>>
>>37680362
read jacky part 4 first to get the backstory. its not necessary to read up to part 4 of jacky but jacky4 is pretty important to missie pie's story
>>
>>37680697
You really only need to write the first chunk of it, if all you want is the context/impact of Missy Pie.
>>
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>>37679067
>I'm selfish when it comes to seeing more art of my dorks and gals.
I wouldn't call it selfish - it's perfectly understandable to want to see our girls come to life. I've been blessed to see it twice now from Tiff - I draw a lot of inspiration going back and looking at those pics while I'm writing.

Speaking of which, 1000 hrs in ms paint
it's just a recolored vector, and I prefer Luna's full mane and hair style - but it obviously it wouldn't billow like in Equestria. And I don't think the blue and purple wouldn't be separated like that, be sort of like blue w/ highlights, I would imagine. Basically like what I can make out in >>37600204
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>>37680935
BREED! BREED GYNOID MARE! HHHHHNNNNNNNGGGGG FIIILLL HOOOOLLLLEEE!!!!!!!!
>>
>>37680935
thats a lot more purplebutt than i expected midnight would have but you know her best
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>>37680935
That's a lot more visually appealing than my free 3d model jank.
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>>37681085
I'm not 100% on the colors, I'm liable to make some more tweaks. That was a pain in the ass filling in the mane and then completing the outlines around it. Fucking cranked down my mouse dpi to compensate for my spastic hands.
Might put a pinch more blue in her coat and see if I can't change those eyelashes to black - not sold on the purple, but I forgot about it until afterward. The rear... I initially was going for more of a Twiggles color, but I dunno if I can get it to really look right... I had to leave for work before I was done fucking with it. Just wanted to share what I had.
>>
>>37681131
>That was a pain in the ass filling in the mane and then completing the outlines around it.
Now try making her yellow.
>>
>>37681085
>>37681131
I'll also add I forgot the black inkblot outside of the crescent moon. Oops. Tomorrow night, I should hopefully get it to where I want it.

>>37681141
Lol no. I felt dumb enough fumbling around just to do what I managed with similar colors and shades. Sort of reminded me back to the NASCAR 09 days on Xbox 360 making custom schemes on the PC to port over. I'm way out of practice since then, and that was not as much freehand.
>>
>>37681099
gimps also free if you wanted to just do some recolors
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>>37681326
Let's just say there's a reason that while I like this picture, I don't exactly like how it turned out.
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>>37680935
>>37671791
This is for you AutoPony
https://youtu.be/Sxr-38-8DEM
>>
>>37681829
>At work with earplugs
>Legit nowhere quiet enough to hear this
Fuck, I'll have to wait till I get out of work. But holy Santa Claus shit, you spying on me? I actually just listened to the real song for the first time last Friday, and I've been on a big ABBA kick about the last week or so, particularly while writing. Strange world of coincidences.
>>
>>37681932
>kicking it with ABBA
Nah man, this was purely coincidence. It's a pretty funky day for coincidences.
>>
>>37681812
thats a very weird feel, what dont you like about it?
>>
>>37671791

"Holy shit, you did all of this yesterday?!"
>Midnight doesn't reply, but with the way she holds her head and puffs her chest out, she's basking in your shock.
>You managed to get a little bit of sleep last night - but again, you really didn't need it.
>A quick breakfast later, and the two of you set out to empty the back of the Trailduster.
>Midnight wasn't kidding when she said a lot of backlogged orders were knocked out.
>"There might have been a couple of items that were in the back before I started yesterday, but other than that - all me."
>You don't know if she was trying to be humble, or just gloat further.
>She failed at the former, but you will let her have this victory.
>Regardless, the ass end of the Trailduster is legitimately sagging from all of the weight in the back.
>Sure, the shocks and springs are worn out, but this is still a rare sight.
"Guess we have our morning planned out - see if we can't get all this packed up and ready to ship."
>A few parts shuffle about on top of the pile, before levitating out lazily to the counter.
> It's only now as you round the corner to get started sorting this stuff out that you see the pile of boxes off to the side ready for shipping.
"Wait, you did this, too?" you ask, turning back around to face Midnight.
>"I started on it - that's not all of them, though."
>Jesus, she's really shown you up.
>That really isn't hard to accomplish when you spend your free time fucking around on the internet.
>You'll take this as a lesson.
>She's got good reason to take pride in yesterday.
>Let her gloat if she wants.
>At least a little bit.
>After booting up your computer, you start going through orders, matching up names and addresses with parts laid out in front of you, double-checking with the packing slips Midnight has already placed within each box.
>All looks good thus far.
>You've shown her a little bit of what you do - the rest must just come with observing you and connecting the dots.
>As much as she protested in the beginning about how little you mattered in her mind, you always caught her watching what you do.
>It was a little creepy at first, you won't lie.
>Figured it was something to do with her programming, being a robot and all.
>That's out the window.
>Sorta.
"So, did you actually get all this accomplished because you were bored, trying to get ahead of the game, or just to show me up, Middie?"
>"Are you seriously going to start using that name?" she whines, halting her unloading for a moment to stare at you.
"Aww, come on, it's cute," you tease.
>"In case you hadn't noticed, I don't do cute," she snorts.
>As she has done in the past to prove her point, she bares her teeth and pins her ears back - while fanning out her wings, as if preparing to leap and savagely attack.
"What would you do if I said that was cute?" you press on, enjoying where this train of stupidity is heading.
>That makes her hesitate.
>>
>>37682756

>"Then I'd have to assume there's something very wrong with you mentally," she replies, dropping her act.
"I figured there was. Huh, guess that proves it," you shrug, getting back to packing up parts.
>"How did you even catch wind of that?" she asks.
"What, 'Maddie'? I don't really know, yesterday is sort of a blur. Probably one of the few times I was up. I'll give you props - I'm assuming there was questions about your real name?"
>She nods.
>"It was annoying to have to explain it every time, so I just came up with something. I was afraid you would run with it if you overheard me."
"Luckily I'm not doing that - I called you 'Middie,' which conveniently can be a shortened nickname for 'Midnight'."
>"Uh-huh. Even though there's the same amount of syllables?" she challenges, as another wave of parts is heaved onto your counter.
"It's fewer letters," you point out.
>Midnight stomps a hoof, though it appears more out of playing along than actual frustration.
>Her face has lightened up - to the point you see the ends of her mouth barely ticking upward.
>"That doesn't matter when you're *saying* it!" she cries.
"Alright, I'll go back to 'Turbo.' How does that sound, Turbo?"
>Her muzzle scrunches up at that nickname almost instantly.
>"Fine. Never utter that stupid name again, and you can use Middie - *sparingly*," she replies, making sure to emphasize her point.
"Works for me, Middie."
>"Smartass."
>After the stress of yesterday, even the slightest return to normalcy and banter is a welcome feeling.
>...that's sort of odd to think, with the journey you've been on for close to a month now.
"So I take it the stuff you didn't get to yesterday afternoon is heavier shit?"
>"I wouldn't say that - after all, I proved to you I could lift a whole engine, didn't I? Repeatedly?"
"You did, and then you ran out of juice."
>"Hence why I picked my battles," she explains, looking just a bit ashamed of her folly you just brought up.
"Hey, at least you learned that just because you can, doesn't mean you should, yeah?"
>You hear Midnight chuckle.
>"Listen to you trying to pass out nuggets of wisdom," she chides.
"Every once in a while I got something remotely intelligent to share that isn't car-related," you argue.
>"True. I'll give you that - you know a lot of silly little things about cars," Midnight muses, halting her progress to trot over.
>She rears up and rests her hooves on the countertop, inspecting how your side of the job is going.
>"The other half of what I didn't accomplish was parts and pieces I was unfamiliar with," she adds, casually looking over a distributor as it twists and turns within the invisible force she wields.
"Trim pieces?"
>Again, she nods in affirmation.
>>
>>37682759

"Yeah, depending on the car and what particular pieces they are, that can be a miserable task, I don't blame you there. I know you ran through every manual I have - but unless it's drivetrain or running gear related, they can be rather vague, especially when it comes to little shit like that."
>"Just comes with experience I'm assuming?"
"Pretty much. Sometimes you find a neat little trick that works just by screwing up a time or two. Some pieces are just going to be a lesson in misery every time to try to remove it - like drip edge molding around the windows."
>Midnight's ears perk up at the last bit.
>"Oh, what a coincidence - that happens to be one of the orders I didn't complete!" Midnight exclaims, a hint of mischief in her eyes.
"Aw piss - guess you get to see how awful that job is. Glad you didn't tackle that one, otherwise that would be either a twisted mess or a car flipped over."
>"And what would you base that assumption on?" she demands, suddenly not finding this conversation so amusing as she slightly bristles from your criticism.
"The first few days of you tearing apart motors in the shop," you remind her.
>"And I improved on reeling in my frustration, did I not?"
"You did. I'm just fucking with you. Mostly."
>"Mostly, huh?" she repeats, seemingly unamused. "Well I suppose, in that case, you'll have to forgive me if I do somehow lose my temper and try to flip a car over."
>"No, you won't," you say, crossing your arms.
>"Oh? And why would that be?" she challenges, standing up just a little bit higher and straightening her next as she grins even more mischievously. "Are you going to tell me no? Step in and stop me?"
"I'll pet you," you quietly warn.
>Her arrogance and taunting instantly falter at the same time you manage to wipe that smile off her face.
>"You wouldn't dare."
"I would."
>You quickly reach toward her with a hand to demonstrate.
>She recoils quickly in reaction, but not before nipping at the air near your outstretched fingers.
"Oh no, we aren't done here," you say, stepping around the corner while you keep a straight face.
>"Anon, I swear, don't you-"
>You reach over toward her in a deft movement, but she merely sidesteps with surprising agility, ending up behind you while you grasp for thin air.
>"I said stop it, you dumb bastard."
>You feel something small and solid smack off the back of your head.
"Ow," you grimace, rubbing the back of your head while trying to locate the item that clatters across the floor.
>A small rusted bolt finally loses its momentum and stops, spinning for just a brief moment.
>"I warned you," Midnight sasses.
>You turn, finding her now reared up and resting on the other side of the counter where you were moments ago.
>Once again, that same lazy, devious smirk lines her face, while her raised brows offer an air of confident nonchalance.
>She offers you a shrug as your eyes meet hers.
"Touche," you relent. "But I don't think you had to throw that."
>>
>>37682393
The yellow outline for her body, yellow is a pain to get the right shade for when coloring this way. As it is it's really harsh on the eyes.
>>
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>>37682762

>"That's a matter of opinion - I could have thrown it harder," she jests.
"Please don't - I don't want to find out you can put a hole clean through my head. That would be messy," you reply, the pain having subsided as you drop your arms back to your sides.
>Midnight chuckles.
>"Oh, that's the issue you have with it," she muses.
"I really wouldn't have any issue with it since - you know, I'd probably be dead."
>At once, Midnight's face grows cold as she stops laughing.
"Uh, you okay?" you ask, unsure what suddenly has her tripped up.
>"Let's not joke about that," she replies quietly.
"...what, death? Wasn't that what you were just joking about pointing out my issue with-"
>"I know what I said. That was my mistake," she admits, sounding rather uncomfortable. "I didn't think about it."
"Alright then, sorry," you manage, dumbstruck by the bizarre shift in tone.
>You'd rather not deal with an awkward silence, so you ready the self-deprecation humor.
"To be honest though, I have a pretty thick skull - I don't think you could do much damage," you announce, as if proud of the implications.
>It gets the desired result, Midnight perking up just a bit.
>"I don't doubt it," she retorts.
>Mission accomplished.
>... you don't know why that was your mission in the first place.
>Of course, you don't want it to just resort to the pall that has hung in the air since last night's discussion and what lies ahead in that respect.
>But...
>Going to bed this morning, turning around and seeing that face.
>That genuine smile as she thanked you for listening to her.
>You'd like to see that more often.
>Seeing her happy just puts you in a place you don't ever recall being before.
>"Hey."
>Midnight's voice breaks you out of your train of thought.
>She stares at you, befuddled and a little concerned.
>Or maybe creeped out.
"Sorry, zoned out. What's next...?"

-----

And, I'm calling this done. After fucking with the "inkblot" around the crescnet moon, I realized it would not look good. In addition, that was supposed to be a plaster on cutie mark from a Luna model, that was on top of a patch of Twilight Sparkle fur that was plastered on. That was back when I still sorta thought she was going to be a robo-pony, so the idea of all that done to a real organism is... I don't want to do that. Going to go back and remove that little bit in the story.
>>
>>37682763
I think the orange background doesn't help for harshness.
>>
>>37682771
Maybe tonight I'll try and change the colors up a bit.
>>
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>>37682763
Ah yes, outline colors have come up more than once, I remember dashie's first vector had some outlines that were off as well. did you look at how the show handles this or other bright pastel colors?
>>
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>>37682768
romantic spaghetti dinner when
>>
>>37682768
>spoiler
I mean the best you could probably do would be to trace a flesh colored line around the Twilight section to imply scarring or the tried and true Frankenstein stitches
>>
>>37683556
>romantic spaghetti dinner
I'd settle for a spaghetti tsunami during Anon's first honest attempt to woo Miss Sassy Fangs. So much comedic potential.
>>
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>>37684348
All of the nerds' faces when they see that the purple knight has a stallion steed.
>>
>>37683688
>>37683556
>Anon sets up a romantic candle light dinner as a joke
>Instead of a smile he's met with sneers at the table
>The glare intensifies as its actually cooked food not just microwavables thrown together
>>
Thread almost maxed out in close to three weeks? That's a pretty new record for activity and consistent greens. Midnight seems to have usurped Jack at being the talk of the thread too, we're in a new era.
>>
>>37685227
Considering I'm spamming the thread with updates, there's probably a reason Midnight seems so prevalent.
>>37683688
Someday, maybe in the future...
>>37685033
Secretly, she'd probably be touched, but she won't admit it. She'll even fight with herself internally on that. That fucking weirdo.
>>
>>37685227
oh we're almost at the end. we still havent got the FAQ all sorted but I can post the new OP.
>>
>>37685381
>I can post the new OP.
Please do
>>
One new OP comin up

Previous thread:

Welcome to the wild west of copycats & copyright infringement! Here in the bargain bin there's a ton of freedom where things aren't quite right... but a bootleg waifu might still be for you. Bootleg can be many things or cover many genres, but we specialize in knockoffs with tons of heart and soul whether its OCs, or knockoffs of canon. Get ready for feels or fun where they can win you over despite of their inherent flaws.

Newly binned or continuing shorts/stories
>[AJ, Twilight, OC] Jacky Part 10 (Blondie)- https://ponepaste.org/5740
>[NMM] Midnight Part 2 (AutoPony) - https://ponepaste.org/5610
>[Pies] Rosie Rock (FortuneFavors) - https://ponepaste.org/4579
>[Cadence] Condense (ReggieSomething) - https://ponepaste.org/4168
>[OC] Ceres the uniCORN - https://ponepaste.org/5787
>[Dim Sum, Cricket, Thun and Co] House of Boots - https://ponepaste.org/5794
>[Twilight] Twill Shorts - https://ponepaste.org/5703
>[OC] Dollar Tree Poney - https://ponepaste.org/4751

On a recent hiatus
>[OC] Tinny the Tinfoil Conspiracy Pony (NHanon) - https://ponepaste.org/3979
>[Marble] Minky (NHanon) - https://ponepaste.org/211
>[Luna] Zooma (ReggieSomething) - https://ponepaste.org/5304
>[Flutter] SilentFriend (Nebulus) - https://ponepaste.org/4464

Now finished stories
>[Rarity] Rare (Anon) - https://ponepaste.org/218
>[Twilight] Twibot (Ponk) - https://ponepaste.org/1516
>[MeanSix] De-Meaning The Six (YukkiPalehorse) - start here : https://ponepaste.org/3176
>[AJ] Apuljiyak (Mexicancactus) - https://ponepaste.org/3559
>[OC] Angel Cake's Quest (Blondie) - https://ponepaste.org/5251

New FULL archive for everything /boot/ with many more shorts and stories the reworked bin https://ponepaste.org/5786
>Sorted by author, synopsis with tags. Includes a link to the picture archive. Now working on our first FAQ and recommended reading for newfrens
>>
>>37686421
Well done!
>>
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>>37686708
>filename
ive been OP before but making the new template just means that anyone else can be too. its taken YEARS to get to this point
>>
>9
Nope, up you go.
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>>37686421
>now finished stories
Were most of those only just now finished?
>>
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>>37688776
far from it just wanted to include them in the OP

Rare was finished before the general became a thing, Twibot came from the first thread, Demeaning the Six is at least a couple years old that ran outside of bootleg, Apuljack finished before the revival of bootleg, only Angel Cake is a recently finished story. theres recent shorts that were finished but those are part of the newly binned
>>
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>>37690629
PPA, if you're lurking, I hope to Cadence you don't throw in the towel for good.

Unrelated, I gotta be on a plane early as fuck tomorrow so I'm listening to music while packing my bags. Figured I'd put up a room if anyone wants to hang out. https://w2g.tv/rooms/1elosl4if5ntn0mmcw?lang=en
>>
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>>37690836
>>37690629
>>37690618
this is pain. it looks like things are going to be shelved for a bit. it looks like we cant have nice things
>>
>>37690953
I guess I'll have to spend a few days going through old thread archives so I can re-copy down everything. Ah well.
>>
>>37691320
Just spent over an hour to point to old posts. it should be at least a starting point. reminder that the gdrive has it's own archive of greens you can use to keep a copy of your stuff. about finished with the changes so il post it momentarily.
>>
Sadly gutted OP

Previous >>37597247
Bunker https://nhnb.org/fim/res/3505.html

Welcome to the wild west of copycats & copyright infringement! Here in the bargain bin there's a ton of freedom where things aren't quite right... but a bootleg waifu might still be for you. Bootleg can be many things or cover many genres, but we specialize in knockoffs with tons of heart and soul whether its OCs, or knockoffs of canon. Get ready for feels or fun where they can win you over despite of their inherent flaws.

Newly binned or continuing shorts/stories
>[AJ, Twilight, OC] Jacky (Blondie) Start >>34613890 Part 10 >>37553594
>[NMM] Midnight (AutoPony) Start >>37455361
>[Cadence] Condense (ReggieSomething) Start >>36644766
>[OC] Ceres the uniCORN >>37246807
>[Twilight] Twill Shorts >>37506545
>[OC] Dollar Tree Poney >>36905544

On a recent hiatus
>[Luna] Zooma (ReggieSomething) >>37107764
>[OC] Tinny the Tinfoil Conspiracy Pony (NHanon) Start >>36510870
>[Marble] Minky (NHanon) Start >>35610962
>[Flutter] SilentFriend (Nebulus) >>36801314
>[Pies] Rosie Rock (FortuneFavors) >>36838134

Now finished stories
>[OC] Angel Cake's Quest (Blondie) Start >>37082267
>[Spitfire] Punkfire Xmas (NHanon) >>36320072
>[AJ] Apuljiyak (MexicanCactus) Start >>32297521
>[Twilight] Twibot >>32012687
>[Derpy] >>31988136
>[Celestia] Damaged Goods >>31910643
>[Rarity] Rare >>31881198

Ponepaste is down, (hacked but hoping PPA doesnt give up on it) everything is currently post links only.
>>
>>37691756
>posting direct post links
Very nice. Would be a lot of fun to be able to read stuff in their natural threads. Is there a way to incorporate the archive links for said threads?
>>
>>37691775
>Is there a way to incorporate the archive links for said threads?
4chanX will redirect you to the desu archives and dead posts. unless your asking about something else?
>>
Lads! NotTwifag from Twibooru takes the reins of Ponepaste!
>>
>>37691984
I don't know who that is. Is he a pretty cool dude or what?
>>
>>37692085
It's a guy who develops Twibooru.
>inb4 what's twiboory?
nigga, seriously?
>>
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>ponepaste hacked and he gives up throwing in the towel
>spend hours fixing links to direct posts instead of the bins
>ponepaste back up within a day under new admin
should I have done nothing? feels like an entire day wasted.
>>
>>37693540
I'd say that the direct posts are far more reliable since it's not like the archives will ever be at risk of anything. Maybe adding back the bins would help?
>>
>>37693540
Hard to say - can you keep one as a backup? I feel your pain to a lesser extent, as I had to recompile much for the second part of Midnight yesterday.

Also bump. Was hoping to have some more green to share, but after spending three hours scrunched up in the trunk of a car, I got a massive headache.
>>
I wonder what Midnight's pussy tastes like.
>>
>>37694848
the news killed me. i didnt save any of the synopsis or faq. even after it was back couldnt be happy over the updated news. hope you feel better.
>>37694006
I could keep the cross links somewhere, but dont know where redundancy is no good and uses up the char limit.
>>
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>>37694905
>>
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>>37666961
>>37364096
>>
>>37695505
To be fair the OP is only ever going to be the OP, not a whole lot of reason to worry about character limit.
>>
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not fully completed but good enough to start sharing the best of the /boot/ 2 electric bootaloo
added the link to this on the main archive https://ponepaste.org/5807
>>
>>37696496
>however it's long and meandering with major plot points sprinkled between lots of casual downtime
Is it weird that I'm kinda proud of this? It isn't long for length's sake, but it's really just a lot of nothing. It's really just a guy and one/two/three pones living their lives, and that really isn't the most exciting thing. But it can be fun.
>these are worn but compelling characters
I'm also proud of this.
>Photo and Flutterlime
You're too kind with these synopsizes, thank you.
>>
>>37696564
i think a lot of nothing isnt something to be proud of. far too many references that the audience needs to have in order to really 'get it' the same way movies trying to be hip and trendy overload on pop culture references fail to be relevant afterwords because they cant stand on their own. but thats me.
>>
>>37694905
If Luna's tastes like blueberries, Midnight would probably be blue raspberry - a little bit of a kick that fits her attitude.
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>>37696705
Sure, you can argue that but I'm also fine with saying not everyone will get everything. Much like when it comes to Midnight, not everyone is going to know what the auto parts are and understand what's going on, or they'll glaze over what they're doing and just focus on their relationship or whatever they're doing that isn't focused on the trade. That's the risk of writing things that take place on Earth and not in Equestria I suppose.
Jacky has also been a lot of experimenting with things. Pretty much every green I've done, period, has tackled a new sort of topic and angle, but this has really been a lot of seeing what feels natural. Got four perspectives dealing with the same situations and the same place(s) with a big focus on how they deal with situations and each other. Shit's mad boring if you don't care, I'm sure. It can also be pretty jarring to go from perspective shift to shift when it goes from second to first, or the curious limited third person angle.
I'll never say that Jack is great or good or really anything positive about it as a bulk. Outside of saying that I had fun with it and it really is something I can actually go back on and enjoy reading because that connection and caring is there to me. A ton of things I've written before in the past, I've never been able to go back and read them and really feel it.
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>>37696879
I think theres a line between overloading on references. autoparts in midnight is a necessary part coming with the setting and his job being believable and a lot of the jargon flies over but doesnt really feel like its relying on it like a crutch. all the references caked in jacky and nothing happening just comes off like the writefag doesnt know what to do and lazy rather than adding anything meaningful with the characters. Its strange since blondies other greens didnt come off this way but it's by the same guy.
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>>37697082
I'll admit beforehand that I'm a guy that always seems to be on the fence because I can see both sides, so sorry if I come off as wishy washy.

With that out of the way - I dunno. Personally for me, I don't get any of the game or movie references, but I can look past that. After all, this story is less about real hard drama and more about the subtle dynamics and relationships between characters, with some feels. Not all of us enjoy the same sort of things, so it can come off odd - but it would hardly be interesting were it to just be vague and generic. We've also seen more than a few times an allusion be made to something that the characters harken back to experiencing in media, which we couldnt have with placeholders, either.
In essence, it's a necessary evil for what sort of story Blondie is trying to tell - in many ways, the references to pop culture are irrelevant to the story in the sense of whether the reader gets them or not. They help to create an atmosphere and use certain parts later for comparisons.

Let's be honest here, I've needed out on cars for no other reason other than to do so. The whole shitbox safari update was one, as was the AMC-Jeep thing in one of the last ones - that was legit me needing out over something I had learned over the last few years of experience, as I have a 1974 AMC Javelin I'm in the process of bringing back to life - all of the info I shared was true.
When it comes to Anon stories - yes, they are supposed to be somewhat generic to allow the reader to insert his/herself. But some personal attributes are going to bleed through, and they have to in order to really build up any sort of emotions. Leaving something generic for the sake of keeping it "open" would otherwise make it feel cold and lifeless.
So, it is a fine line to traverse, and I see your point - and while Blondie may stray a bit far in a few instances, I think overall, it's not too imposing, and helps to sort of bring everything together into a comfy tale of dorks being dorks.
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>>37035957
>Slow, steady breaths tickled the hair on Anonymous's chest, rousing him from slumber.
>Like the morning prior, Anon found himself waking up feeling very well-rested. Unlike yesterday, he awoke unusually warm and weighted-down.
>Enough early-morning light penetrated the room's curtains to illuminate the locks of pink, purple, and yellow hair that obscured Anon's vision. He brushed the foreign hair away from his face and sat up just enough to confirm his suspicions.
>Condense lay atop him; forelegs straddling his bare torso. The right side of her face pressed against his sternum. Her long horn pointed too close to Anon's face for comfort.
>A cursory glance to his left revealed it was 0724, far later than his reoccurring nightmares usually afforded him to sleep.
'I suppose I have you to thank for that,' Anon thought as he rested his head back on his pillow.
>While the prolonged physical contact was comforting, it was something Anonymous hadn't experienced for several years. What should he do? She initiated it... should he lay there and try to enjoy the moment or extract himself from the bed before Condense woke, sparing them both any awkward tension? He laid motionless, contemplating the most prudent course of action, reticent to so much as breathe too deep lest it rouse his new companion.
>Anon's thoughts turned to his nightmare, the nightly, soul-crushing reminder of what had happened on that cursed day. Reliving memories in such detail during one's sleep wasn't something he considered "normal" but after the Convergence, any sense of normalcy was ripped asunder along with civilization.
>His leg twitched.
"If I was whole, I might have been able to save them." he growled whilst projecting silent curses towards his faulty prosthetic. "Held back by my own work."
>Condense shifted, her motion pulling Anon back to the present. He froze, only daring to breathe again after Condense resumed snoring. Her long, curly mane tickled his skin, almost begging for his touch.
>Anonymous succumbed to the temptation and dared to run his fingers through the tri-colored mane that draped over his chest. The strands were long and silky-smooth; her curls springing back to their original shape after each stroke of his fingers.
'Your hair feels just like Maria's did.'
>His idle thought renewed and reinvigorated the melancholy that his idle petting had temporarily dispelled. For a moment he could almost see his late wife's long, curled raven hair, the dazzling white of her captivating smile contrasting against her flawless tan complexion.
>'Sometimes it feels like I'm married to a complete stranger,' her voice echoed in his mind.
>It was a frequent point of contention between them in the months prior to her untimely passing.
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>>37697614
>Anon grimaced, shaking his head in a fruitless attempt to expel the bitter memories and regrets from his mind, disturbing Condense in the process. She mumbled some incoherent phrase of displeasure, then squeezed him tight with her forelegs; extinguishing any hope Anonymous had for a stealthy egress.
>Sighing, Anonymous planted his palms into the mattress and began to sit upright. The sudden movement made Condense grip Anon tighter before joining him in the waking world.
>Condense opened her eyes and blinked several times, trying to orient herself in her strange, dimly-lit surroundings. She pulled her face away from Anon's scarred chest, wiping a thin strand of drool from her mouth as she did. The mare brought a pink hoof to where her face had been resting, poking at Anon's muscles as if there was some hidden knowledge to be gleaned from them.
>Their combined motions activated the nightstand lamp, which fully illuminated Condense and her pillow of choice.
>Condense raised her head, her gaze ascending from Anon's chest to his neck, and finally coming to rest on his icy blue eyes. Neither party spoke, but each looked away before the other could see the crimson darkening their respective faces.
"Um... good mor-"
>"You had a nightmare and were thrashing around a lot," Condense was quick to explain, her ears drooping somewhat as Anon sat fully upright. "I was just making sure you weren't going to hurt yourself if you had another bad dream later on."
"Oh, um... right. Thank you."
>"You had bad dreams the night before last too, you know." Condense added. "I heard you from the living room."
>Anonymous gave his hair an absent-minded scratch.
"I've had nightmares of some sort every night since the Convergence." He answered; voice growing somber. "I typically relive what happened in my dreams."
>Condense reached out with a wing, resting the tips of her primaries on Anon's shoulder. "Do you... do you want to talk about it?"
>Anon closed his eyes and turned away.

...

>Desmond rubbed his bloodshot eyes. The night was a success in the sense that he found a way to get Tony to loosen up around him, captivity notwithstanding. Tony had lectured on his life's work throughout the night and into the morning, giving his attentive and inquisitive captor an in-depth crash course on synthetic life forms.
"Wait," Desmond said with a stifled yawn. "What made these two so special if synthetic humans had been done before?"
>Tony grinned,wide and toothy; reminiscent of the quintessential mad scientist portrayed in ancient science fiction films.
>"*That* is the million-dollar question, isn't it?" Tony replied, pacing the length of his living room. "Rather, the five-point-three billion dollar question."
>Desmond gave a low, long whistle. His bare metal fingertips played with the curled ends of his red El Bandito-styled mustache as he waited for Bowhannon to continue. He didn't have to wait long.
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>>37697616
>"Augmentation. The industry had struggled for ages trying to make it work. Injuries, rapid tissue degeneration, tumors, neurological issues, they plagued all the projects for decades..."
>Desmond leaned forward in his seat.
"I'm guessing you made a breakthrough?"
>Tony nodded. "A series of them, which gained the attention and financial backing of the RMAZ military."
"You made them supersoldiers," Desmond stated.
>"Oh no," Tony chided, wagging his finger at the larger man. "You think too small! Too conservative! Not only was I able to augment strength and stamina, I was chasing literal immortality! Why, I was about to validate my telomere research before..."
>Tony trailed off. He made his way to the couch Desmond occupied and sat next to him. A wistful look soon dominated his visage.
>"Eve was the proof-of-concept to my benefactors. She was everything they wanted, but Adam... he was to be the culmination of my life's work, the pinnacle of human achievement..."
>He clenched his fist, slamming it on his thigh.
"Did the Convergence stop you from finishing your work?"
>"No," Tony replied, hanging his head. "Eve was completed months before the Convergence."
"But not Adam?"
>"I never got the chance to test his unique enhancements."
"Why?"
>"There was... an accident... when we 'activated' Eve for the first time," Tony said, wiping his eyes.
>Desmond turned to face Tony head-on and waited for elaboration. Tony stared at his hands for some time, the horrors of the test flashing through his mind.
>"Eve's brain was grown in the tank, just like the rest of her. Many of my peers, DeTerra included, vehemently opposed my plan to use an untested synth brain with a programmed consciousness instead of a donor brain, or at least a transferred consciousness."
>Tony stood, tugging at the wispy white strands of hair that he still had.
"What happened?" Desmond asked, unable to contain his curiosity. "Something obviously went wrong."
>"Everything was fine at first," Tony began. "Eve opened her eyes and stood from the tank... You should've seen her, Desmond. Tall, graceful, perfectly proportioned, quite the looker too; features matched exactly to my artistic sketches."
"Yeah?" Desmond grinned at the description.
>"Yeah. And then it all went sideways." Tony sighed, slumping down into the love seat adjacent to Desmond's couch.
"Come on! You can't just leave it on a cliffhanger like that? What went wrong!?"
>"She attacked us, including the RMAZ army officers that were in attendance. Though her rampage only lasted mere seconds, she mortally-wounded one of our staff before being gunned down by security."
"Holy shit."
>"That day was supposed to be my validation. I was so close. Instead, my own creation derailed my life's work and killed a colleague."
"What happened to Adam?"
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>>37697618
>"The Army happened. They took possession of him. My magnum opus was taken away before I could complete him.
>Tony covered his face with his trembling hands.
>"Things only got worse at the company after that. I didn't get fired, but my budget was slashed and reallocated to other divisions. Anonymous quit, which left our android group without their leader and subject matter expert. And if that wasn't enough..."
"The Convergence destroyed what was left." Desmond finished for Tony.
>"Damned physicists... thinking they could play God with no repercussions!"
"Isn't that exactly what you were doing?"
>Tony glared at his captor, who was extracting a device from the depths of the rucksack he'd brought with him. Desmond yawned as he activated the torpedo-shaped object, placing it atop an adjustable tripod mount that he'd also pulled from his ruck.
>"What is that?"
"Mini auto-sentry turret!" Desmond replied with another yawn. "It's hover unit is busted, but everything else works just fine."
>"Why in God's name are you setting that up in here?"
"As much as I hope we'll someday become the best of friends," Desmond began after a queer smile, "I can't rule out the possibility that you may be tempted to unburden yourself of my company."
>He unpacked a sleeping bag, laid it on the couch, and began to crawl inside.
"Hence the turret. Neat little thing, isn't it? One of the very few goodies I was able to swipe from the unit's armory while everything was going tits-up. It's saved my ass more times than I care to remember."
>"I see."
"I don't mean to be rude, Tony, but we've been talking all night and I'm spent. I'm racking out for a while. Sweet dreams, snookums!"
>With that, Desmond retreated into the depths of his sleeping bag. Tony slowly rose from his seat, his movements tracked by the watchful optics of Desmond's sentry turret. He retreated from the couches, back to the relative safety of the master bedroom.
>"God help me," he muttered before collapsing on his bed.

...

Been sitting on this for a few days. Finally getting around to posting it.
Updated paste: https://ponepaste.org/4168#1047
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>>37697618
>Instead, my own creation derailed my life's work and killed a colleague.
Wonder who that colleague was.
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>>37697082
>like a crutch
I'll bring up Shine playing and talking to Anon about games as an example; the games she ends up playing don't really matter, but she is learning more about magic. The concept of having limited magic when it was difficult for her and dealing with how certain types of magic genuinely don't seem to be capable for her. It turned out that she doesn't really have MP, and doesn't really "learn" spells. She doesn't even see using magic as having spells because it's instinctual. It would feel really weird to me to have that still happen and for her to still talk to Anon to parse things out, but to do some Hollywood-tier "game X is really odd, the special attacks cost a resource". The downside is that her learning more about herself and about magic took... months. Longer than weeks to do anything reliably, and for a while she actively acted like she was still gimped with magic so she could more easily impress Anon when he was looking.
>>37697420
>it would hardly be interesting were it to just be vague and generic
>in many ways, the references to pop culture are irrelevant to the story in the sense of whether the reader gets them or not. They help to create an atmosphere and use certain parts later for comparisons.
>We've also seen more than a few times an allusion be made to something that the characters harken back to experiencing in media, which we couldnt have with placeholders
Also these points. When it comes to movies or games or even them playing D&D, I could swap those out with a lot of different things. It could be Disgaea instead of SMT. It could be a different genre of movies other than westerns. It could be GURPs instead. The media and games themselves, if we're gonna go down to brass tacks, are thematic tools to me because Shine freaking out over a boss and asking Anon for help is a character moment.
Given what we've seen about Jacky and her past, westerns seem to fit because she was also a vagabond. But in westerns the vagabonds tend to be heroes. It's also the type of human-based socialization that she can learn from without having to do much, and it's the sort of hobby a dork like her would have. Especially in the human world where pones don't have the weird suction cup tendril hooves they do otherwise. If she were a human instead of a pony and had the same basic inability to physically do things, she would be disabled. Anon has treated her more like a disabled person than a pony at times and she's come to see herself as a disabled human rather than a perfectly fine and capable pony because it's a human world.
I'm sure I could cut out a third of everything and very few important 'points' would be effected but it tends to all come down to grains forming an actual hill or mountain of an event or revelation.

tl;dr Jacky's real life is boring and saturated with media because real life is boring and saturated with media. But they at least have each other.
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>>37698806
Colored pic when?
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anyone got the green for Thun? The chep chinese Plush Celestia? Any green for Dim Sum?
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>>37699822
you want the house of boots, since ponepaste lives again that short collection is back
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>>37700022
Jesus, those digits
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>>37697420
>>37697082
Now that ponepaste is back I finally finished Angel Cake's Quest. I think it has the opposite problem. There's filler overload in Jacky but there's basically very little to connect with in ACQ at all. It starts with both an OC and setting no one knows with some other OCs like Carrot and Plum. Anon has very little impact to the whole side story when it's entirely the POV of Angel, and then there's no closure so the whole thing comes across like the reader is just visiting something bigger. If any story could have benefitted from multiple POVs it probably would have been this one.
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How's the new OP looking? Coming up on the limit.
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Heh, I actually did end up accomplishing what I wanted in this thread. >>37599270
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>>37599666
>>37701135
Technically so did I but I didn't finish the part before the end of the thread
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>>37701023
All the works done already, but making something extra for spookleg
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>>37697616
>>37697614
beautiful description of condy reggie. if she cant get through and melt his shell nothing will
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>>37701930
Yeah, Regman's tryin to take us to feelstown with this one. We keep plodding along, but there's a lot of stuff we've yet to full grasp. Should be interesting as we head down the rabbit hole in terms of how everything ties together.
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alright pushing this one over for the night next bread
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New >>37702243



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