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    A long time ago, someone asked me to please edit their story. They had been pushing for it, and behaving inappropriately towards me in a myriad of ways, but I was a people pleaser who felt obligated to oblige because, in my head, they’d read my story therefore I owed them.

    Anyway, so I read their story, and though I understand where I was coming from, and I think I was right and stand by my critique, I could have been a little nicer rather than decimating them because they were being so weird towards me.

    The main critique I had towards their story was that it was very evident that they’d used the characters as mouthpieces for something they were going through. All writers do this, of course, we all draw from our own experiences, but this specific story was shameless about it. “You can’t just grab a character and twist them to fit your literal narrative,” I remember saying. “This is you, but in an Applejack cosplay and throwing some Ah’s and ain’ts as salves.”

    Anyway, this is all to say that as I stare into the abyss that is the damage that being MonochromaticTM has done to my creative psyche, my bleeding hands holding a story as sharp and unrefined and visceral as the hole I am in, I ask a terrifying question:

    “Rarity, am I allowed to do this?”

    “It’s a free world, my dear,” the void replies back.

    “But what if people hate it? Hate me? What if they don’t understand?”

    “My darling,” it says, “who cares? Truly! Honestly. Who cares what others think? Or understand? This is for you, not for them. And, furthermore, forgive me for saying so, but you’re writing yourself having a conversation with a fictional horse as a way to justify even doing this at all. Darling, dearest, who cares?”

    “But what if I burn bridges?”

    “Let them burn!”

    “What if I hurt others?”

    “That is not on you!”

    “What if I hurt myself?”

    The void pauses, then says, “Sweetest, we’re well past that, I’m afraid.”

    I pause. And ask, “But won’t I be a hypocrite? Taking my pain, and giving you a script, and let the show begin?”

    And the void pauses. And thinks. And then says with aplomb:

    “Well, maybe so, my dear, but if I may be frank, I’ve always thought I’d be a wonderful actress, you know?”

    people pleaser
    variants or less commonly people-pleaser |ˈpē-pəl-ˈplē-zər

    a person who has an emotional need to please others often at the expense of his or her own needs or desires

    Dear friend.

    I would like to tell you a story of a pony named Rarity.

    My name is not important, nor is my identity, but as the one telling the story, I can’t pretend my influence won’t be present. I will make observations here and there, and perhaps wax poetic at times, but my goal here is to present a story for no other reason than to do as much.

    As someone once said to me, a painting does not hang on a wall because it has use. It hangs there because it deserves to exist, nothing more and nothing less.

    And this painting starts with Carousel Boutique.

    Carousel Boutique had been closed for months, the lights kept on solely thanks to the money brought about by old designs still sold in other locations, far away from where their miserable creator could see them.

    Once upon a time at a party, somepony asked Rarity who she was.

    “A designer,” she’d said with a winning, lively smile. “An artiste!

    The pony smiled politely. “I asked who you are, not what you are.”

    Rarity laughed, embarrassed. “Oh, goodness! Do forgive me, I’m just very proud of my talent.” And she was, which is why it came first, and only then did she say, “I’m Rarity. Pleasure to meet you.”


    She loved clothes. She loved how they worked and what they said, the language they conveyed. An outfit, she believed, could say a thousand words in a single glance, which is why she made sure to weave stories into every garment she made.

    It helped her be who she wanted to be. And it helped others, too. That’s what she loved the most, and in fact why she loved sharing her designs. For as long as she lived, she would never forget her very first client when she was just starting out, unknown and inexperienced but earnest and heartfelt.

    She would never, until her dying day, forget the tears sparkling in the mare’s eyes as she looked at herself in the mirror, in an outfit Rarity had made, and said, “I look beautiful.” Seeing herself for the first time not as the ugly mare she tearfully told Rarity she thought she was, with uneven eyes, and scars from accidents, and a coat the color of dirt, but as the stunning mare she actually was and would always be.

    It was in that moment Rarity’s identity became that of a designer. It was then she knew her purpose. Her use. The reason she existed was to use clothes as a way to share herself with others and help them see themselves as they should. Someone worthy of the world entire.

    This was her use.

    She was a designer.

    So as she stepped into her workroom, the fabrics collecting dust and the sewing machine stashed in the corner and half-finished designs chucked into an overflowing trashcan, she felt her already hollow heart somehow crumble further, still in denial over one simple fact:

    She wasn’t a designer anymore.

    And if she wasn’t a designer, then she had no use to anypony.

    And if she had no use to anypony, she was worthless.

    And if she was worthless, she was better off dead.

    Rarity,” Twilight asked, her voice stern, and cold, and angry, and upset, and desperate. She stamped her hoof on the floor. “Please! What are you doing?! What are you saying?! Do you want to be miserable?”

    Rarity, tears in her eyes, heart bleeding out, stepped back. Angry. Afraid. Upset. Hateful. Towards Twilight, and everypony, and most importantly herself.

    She had a choice to make now. It is said a possibility stays nothing but a possibility unless spoken into truth, and this was that moment for Rarity.

    Whatever she said next… it would set in stone who she was.

    But we should start from the beginning, should we not?

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    1. Common
      Mar 12, '24 at 3:43 am

      It’s clear this is a very personal story. So I love that you start out by making it all the more personal by literally placing yourself in the story! But then you invite us to listen to the recounting, and it becomes companionable. And finally the story begins in earnest and it’s more than that. It’s raw and it’s intimate. Thank you for sharing this and I hope it proves cathartic and a healing balm.

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