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    State of the Mono + Story/Tec Updates

    Hi everyone!

    I was on the fence about writing this, but enough people have asked here or on Twitter about my lack of activity, so I thought I should try and write something. Originally I didn’t want to because I felt bad that here was another blogpost explaining the shit I’m going through, but didn’t I leave Fimfiction so I wouldn’t feel that way anymore? 

    So here I am. 

    I’m going to divide everything into sections, including individual updates on stories, but for a TL;DR, the past six months of my life have been insurmountably difficult on me, and it’s only just begun to ease up. I still want to write but it’s been hard. But I still want to, which I figure counts for something. 

    I’ll start with the general life stuff and then go to stories.

    JOB
    There’s not much to say here except that my current job is draining the life out of me. It has been for a while, and extremely so in the past few months where I get home so exhausted I can’t even think. I particularly had a coworker who would undermine me so much for so long that it just ruined my self-esteem and confidence. They left a few months ago, and though I’ve managed to build some of it back up, it’s still very much still in the ruined area. I’ve also held off looking for a different job because I’m going to school next year, and because my bosses are nice people even if they’re god-awful bosses. But I can’t anymore. I miss feeling alive, lol. I’ve finally just started applying for other jobs, but obviously, this comes with the crushing blow of rejections and anxiety and feeling like I’m not going to get out. It’s been really rough. 

    HOME SITUATION
    I haven’t really addressed this anywhere else, but I think I sort of can now. My home situation for the past few months was not great—through no fault of anyone, it’s important to add. Sometimes a good situation just comes to an end, and that’s okay. Unfortunately, because of my mental health being drained both at home and at work, for the longest time it felt like I was a shell. I only just recently moved out, and though I think it was the right choice and the relationships I cared about have started to heal, it’s still rough. There’s been moving, and getting acclimated, plus this was a lot more expensive than I anticipated, so it’s just been A Lot. I also had a personal problem spring up that was brutal to deal with, and I’m still dealing with the lasting damages it caused, but… But it’s improving and I’m working on it. Healing is slow, but it’s there. 

    MENTAL HEALTH
    I’m gonna keep it short, because the next segment will be long. My mental health has been in the shitter. There’s really no other way to put it. Between work stuff, and home stuff, and just stuff happening one after the other, and also world in general stuff, I’ve been dead. I also feel guilt for not writing and guilt for selling my books at Everfree and just guilt for everything. I feel like every day my life is shit, and every day all I can think is “It’s my fault”. I am trying my best to overcome it, and work on it, and going to therapy and all that, but it is so hard. I barely feel human. I feel like I’m on auto-pilot, mindlessly going through it because what is the point?

    Which leads me to

    WRITING

    Welp. 

    I miss writing. I miss missing writing. But with just how ruinous this entire year has been, every day is a struggle to want to do it. I’m still doing it and am trying because I want to despite it all, but every day is a fight against the voices saying “who cares, it’s just stories, just cancel them and move on”. 

    I remember the saying “writing is a lonely job”. I never got that or felt that way, but now I get it. I feel so alone with my writing (except for with Crimson/Sapphire). Every day it gets harder and harder to not convince myself that finishing stories isn’t worth it, and no one cares, and everyone’s moved on. I wish I had a glory story, that I left Fimfiction, and all was well, and I’m thriving. 

    But I’m not! And I knew it would be hard, and it is, but with everything going on it’s just been too much. So many aspects of my life have beaten me down to such a level, to a place where I can’t see the point to anything, so it’s easy to convince myself others don’t. I don’t know. I’m just struggling. But I’m trying. I’m writing little drabbles and oneshots and trying. I am, even if it’s hard. 

    There’s a tweet I really love that’s like “If I owe you an email, please find some comfort in the fact that my every waking hour is haunted by my debt to you.”

    Well, if I haven’t finished a story, please find some comfort in the fact that my every waking hour is haunted by my debt to you/myself. 

    Still in this topic, I will address three stories and give a generalized update on them. 

    TRAVELERS OF CAELUM
    Quick and simple. This is still cancelled until I finish my other two big fics. I want to finish this, but considering everything going on, I’m not giving anyone hope until I feel it’s actually viable. 

    SAPPHIRE EYES
    Sapphire Eyes is on pause right now while I recover my writing muse, but it will be updated as soon as that happens. Crimsonverse is probably the only thing in my life right now still beating if only because it’s good enough I’m using it for my Grad School applications. And because I recently saw the theatre version of Moulin Rouge and that really inspired me. But Crimson is okay right now. 

    THE ENCHANTED CAROUSEL
    I’m going to be blunt with this because I need to be, for my sake and yours. 

    TEC is on what could be considered life-support right now. I am so exhausted by life, like I said, beaten down to a point where I don’t know if anything matters anymore, and TEC and the Enchanted Series as always is the one that suffers the most. 

    I am struggling to find a reason to finish this. I thought I could do it support entirely by my own love for the series, but when I have no love or life left to give, I don’t know what else to do. I feel so alone writing this series. And right now, in this state, I can’t bear another year or two of the effort it is to write this and write it well, only to feel alone, like I’m putting so much work for something that so little will enjoy. 

    I recognize that’s toxic. God, I know that relying on external validation is the root of all evil, and it’s not right, and you shouldn’t, but God, I am fighting and failing to find a point to trying to finish it at all. It’s part of the reason I haven’t updated even though I know how the next chapter goes. Because I’m so afraid that I’ll go through it, get excited about the series again, post it, and feel like it didn’t even matter, like it was a blip in the radar. 

    I don’t regret leaving Fimfiction, that place was not good for me (highlighted by some really disturbing stuff that was said about me there recently), and I thought TEC would survive the transition and loss of audience, but every passing day, I’m starting to feel it won’t. Maybe if my life hadn’t been a shitshow for so long, it would have.

    And yet. 

    And yet, I was recently re-reading Crimson Lips in preparation for selling it at EFNW and I came across an excerpt that felt strikingly apt. Painfully so, almost. 

    I turned to the Lady when she sniffled, the both of us looking at each other as we earlier had when I’d first arrived. There was still love there. That’s the worst part of it, I think. The fact that there was still life beating in the mangled pulsing flesh that was the heart of our relationship.

    Everything I was, I was because of her.

    Crimson Lips, “22. ‘Till The Streets Bleed Like Our Hearts”

    In so many ways, I am who I am right now because of The Enchanted series. I am living in Los Angeles because of it, I met my closest best friends because of it, I am who I am as a writer because of these stories that are so much a part of me that they’re the first to bleed when I am bleeding. 

    Nothing hurts me more to a visceral level than struggling with TEC. But I’m struggling, and it hurts, and it feels like shit, and it feels so much easier to quit just so I can stop feeling this way. But I can’t. I don’t want to. 

    A long time ago, when I was struggling with finishing The Enchanted Library, I was telling my dear friend Cynewulf about it and she said this to me: 

    It would be a sad thing to quit. (It is always a sad thing to quit just about anything that isn’t a drug of some sort. And even then, subjectively one FEELS sad, as if some thing or other has been lost. That is the cruel thing about addiction.) Not only would it be sad for your readers and, I confess, myself, but it would also be sad for you. The relief that comes from throwing off a long-held and dear burden is immediate but shortlived. The regret follows you for much, much longer. 

    I think about this quote so much. Because it’s true. If I choose to quit the story, it will haunt me until I die. But I am struggling. The regret is starting to feel like something I can live with, and I don’t want that. I don’t want to quit, I have been thinking about the ending of this stupid series for so fucking long, I want to see it through. 

    So, I am fighting agains my shame and guilt to ask a favor of you, if you are reading this and care. 

    If you care about TEC, if you are in any way invested in seeing it finished, if you care, then please help me. I’m asking for help. If you have favorite passages, post them, or talk about them I don’t know. If you’re on the Discord server, you have my blanket permission to harass me for updates, to poke me about it, I don’t know. If you care, if you want to see this finished, help me believe that there’s a point to it. 

    I know people care. I know this on brain level, I know this, but right now I am so deep in the hole, that I need to be pummeled with hammers to see it. This isn’t about my writing. It’s just about TEC and The Enchanted series. If you care about them, in any way you can, please metaphorically hold my hand and help me walk until I don’t need the help.

    “I have to help Princess Luna and the others. I’m sorry. I can’t give up on them.”

    Now Rarity reacted, her hoof flying down to her chest. “I know that. I would never dream of asking you to do that. I’m just… If you get hurt, or…”

    “I know,” Twilight said, gently. Remorsefully, her ears folding back. “And I wish I could, but I can’t promise you I won’t get hurt. I can’t promise you something won’t set me off, or I won’t lose myself again, or Discord won’t hurt me, or… Or that I won’t blame myself anymore because I’ve been doing it for centuries! That’s a lot of years of bad habits to break! But…

    “But I’m going to get better. Even if it’s hard. I won’t be great at it all the time, and even though I’m statistically likely to have tons of regressions, I’m still going to keep getting better no matter how long it takes me, whether you’re there or not.”

    The Enchanted Kingdom, “Chapter 22 – The Filly Who Believed”

    I’m going to finish TEC. I know this. Sooner or later, I will, be it in ten years or twenty or three or four. Just like Twilight will work through the fifty million traumas I saddled her with even if it takes ten years or twenty or three or four. 

    But if you, like Rarity, care and want to be part of that journey, I am stuck real deep in my underground library and could use some help in getting out of being dead displaced.

    -Mono

    56 Comments

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    1. SQ
      Aug 30, 22 at 8:14 pm

      From someone stuck in their own underground library, I hope you find your way out of yours. I’ve always been partial to your short stories; while I would love to see TEC finished, I hope the weight of expectations there isn’t keeping you away from writing in general. In any case, I’ll keep my fingers crossed and keep checking the site from time to time for updates.

    2. asdfghhjkl
      Aug 28, 22 at 7:59 pm

      I just finished reading The Enchanted Library and really enjoyed it. I may read The Enchanted Kingdom next, but I am a little hesitant as I know that if I finish, I will want to start Carousel next and I like binging series instead of waiting for updates. But when you find the strength to finish Carousel I will definitely finish it.

    3. Nation
      Aug 28, 22 at 12:55 pm

      I feel your weight and appreciate you being open about it. Your friends remarks are spot on and I really hope you internalize them. Regret weighs tons… Discipline weighs ounces in comparison. You don’t see it now, but you will know if you choose to submit to your demons.

      That said, you should balance your life. Might I suggest prayer? It can sound silly, but it really has made a difference for me at times.

      I pray you find the strength to navigate your challenges. I would love to see this finished. I remember my giddy excitement when reading each new chapter. I love this series. If no one else does, I do. You can do it. I feel it and know it.

    4. Harwick
      Aug 26, 22 at 9:34 pm

      Hello there Mono!

      I confess, I dropped by to see if you had made any post about EFNW, as I had heard that you were there and was jealous that I wasn’t and couldn’t cross paths with you and others again. You were such a bright spot of both of my convention experiences, even in brief interactions.

      I feel bad that I am so late to updates here, especially reading your post above. You have seen me and as such, you have likely noted both my age and my clueless expression, both of which I will point to to explain how I’ve never figured out how to get notified of new content at this site…. I simply have it bookmarked, and I check in hopefully now and again.

      So I do want to let you know that those updates are a delight to me. As with many, including yourself, these last few years have been difficult for me as well. There has been loss, and sickness, and struggles. One hopes that the slope of one’s life will be consistently or at least generally upwards, and so the downward turns and new lows coming later in life can be rather gutting. There have definitely been times when I’ve needed an escape, and here you’ve been supplying thousands upon thousands of words adding up to countless hours of entertainment that allows me to do so…. Taking me out of my own head, sharing with me the perspectives of others, and spinning tales of hope and love and caring that can help restore a sometimes wounded soul. I really can’t overstate the gift you’ve given freely… the drops of your thoughtfulness infused with your talent for spinning yarns that are warm and wonderful that I just happen across online, like random gems scattered through the path of my life.

      I hope that you’re being reminded of that uplifting touch that you have graced the fandom with right now in Everfree. I’m sorry that I can’t ease your own troubles, but I wanted you to know that every small brush with you via your writing has been a treat in a world where positive moments can seem scarce. I want to thank you profusely for sharing them.

      —Harwick

    5. Baree
      Aug 26, 22 at 5:03 pm

      It was rough to read that. Which might not be a helpful thing to say, even with some elaboration, which I’m going to give. But I can only hope you will take this in the way I mean it.

      I have some friends who struggle with life’s issues, perhaps more so that average ( I mean, everyone encounters challenges, but they are not fairly distributed). Part of the struggle is who they are, how they tick, but yeah, life can really be unfair sometimes. And I can’t really relate. I have my challenges but they are perfectly manageable and I think the way I thick helps too.

      I don’t know how I can help them (or you, that’s the rough part), other than listen and maybe give some ideas or insights, probably stuff they already have been told or thought of themselves many times. I’m sure it’s worth something, but it’s no solution.

      It’s kinda the same here. Sounds like there is a lot going on, a lot of it is (very) bad. I wish you didn’t feel that way. just because I don’t think anyone should. I can relate somewhat to feelings of guild, I am very good in coming up with scenarios about why I let people down and I have to be careful to be realistic about what I can do, accept the fact I make mistakes, or that you can’t always do everything you want to do. Life can get in the way and that’s ok. I recognize some of that in your blog. But that’s a small part of stuff from what I understand.

      There’s is a lot I want to say here, but I don’t think I can say it properly. I will try to summarize my thoughts. The main thing is, I really hope you can get to a place where you are feeling better again. Mentally, emotionally, physically. First and foremost because everyone deserves happiness. Secondly, even if we don’t know each other, I have really enjoyed the Enchanted series (and some of your other works) and that has to count for something.

      I would love for the series to be finished, absolutely. I would also love to be able to eventually have all three books in my possession. I have a LOT of pony books in dead tree form, including The Enchanted Library part One and Two from the Ministry of Image. And I will definitely get the PFP version as well. I will get all books published by either, and if there would be more versions that are different I will get those as well.

      I also reread. A lot. Couldn’t tell you how often I have reread the Enchanted Library, but at least three times so far (though it’s been a while). Enchanted Kingdom twice. And I will revisit them, many times, I’m sure. The ending of Enchanted Kingdom is the most fresh in my memory.

      I remember the teddy bears. I remember Tilly Rose remembering Luna, and realizing the wings are real. I remember Spike choking up. I remember Luna’s eagerness to meet Pinkie when she finally got out. I remember The Cupcake and The Pacing of the scene in where they finally meet, and how perfect that pacing was. No joke, I’m tearing up a bit thinking about it again.

      I remember the epilogue, and the moon, and the suspense felt by a certain character. And then the stars, and the immense joy and relief when it was finally certain… yes, Luna was back. And I remember the final gut punch with Celestia (although part of that I think was in one of the first chapters of The Enchanted Carousel).

      The finale is the freshest in my memory and it was such and emotional roller coaster that it kinda takes preference over most other stuff. Memories of the Enchanted Library are more abstract (I actually really want to start rereading it again now… I’m currently rereading another story but I’m fairly sure I can safely say EL will be next again).

      When it comes to EL, I wonder how true some of these memories are right now. But let’s give this a go. I remember Rarity falling down into the tree for the first time. I remember her fleeing pretty quickly I think. I remember being charmed by the name “Princess Bookie”. I remember the description of the tree and I think some remnants or memories of the town that once surrounded it. I remember a strange feeling of nostalgia for a town that was still perfectly fine and present in the actual show because of it. I remember a floating(?) chandelier I think. I remember the owls (though not their names right now). I remember moving bookcases. I remember Twilight standing on one of them and speaking to Rarity. I remember the CMC, and loving their interactions with Twilight. If i recall correctly Sweetie was the first to meet her. Or maybe she talked the other two into meeting them together (I think it was the first).

      I remember the invisible wall. I’m pretty sure I remember a game, and Twilight having fun. I remember Twilight’s wonder about moderns books and other objects (the camera), and Rarity’s fascination with Twilight’s wonder. I remember Fluttershy getting involved, though not the exact scene. I remember Twilight’s anxiety and guild. There’s a lot here I don’t remember, another reason to reread.

      I remember a story of how Twilight got trapped in the library. I remember a being who may or may not have been Discord. I remember guild about not wanting to make a certain sacrifice. I remember meeting that sacrifice, both as a reader and the scene with Twilight and Spike. I remember despair, and hopelessness, and a long period of it in the story world, though not so much for the reader. I remember the moment of freedom, and the reunion. I also remember the first chapters of the EK. The emotional struggle and all the baggage that had to be worked through throughout the EK.

      I remember Canterlot, and Denza, and her issues. The kind of ingenious way her trap worked, or seemed to work. I think I remember something about an NPC (guard?) and Canterlot and tunnels and a possible betrayal (but that’s rather vague).

      I think I remember something about food and tasting it for the first time.

      I’m sure more would come to me if I would give it time. But I’m honestly excited now to start reading it again and rediscovering everything I have forgotten or that is buried somewhere in my mind. In a week I have two weeks off, and I’m pretty sure I will have finished rereading my current story by then. You asked for favourite scenes. After this lengthy ramble, I will just say this. I recently made an estimate I must have read about 800 million pony words by now (including rereads), and that’s a fairly conservative estimate. I’m sure I have forgotten a lot more than I remembered. Everything I do remember means the story left an impact (even if I maybe didn’t remember everything correctly). And since I read it al multiple times (and am about to do so again) it obviously has been a positive impact.

      At the end of the day, as much as I would love to see this finished, I mainly hope that you find yourself in a good place and a good way at some point in the (preferably nearby) future. If that is possible without finishing the Enchanted series and it turn out that way I’ll gladly call it a win. That means no feeling guild or regret for the rest of your life. If it does get finished, I have another trilogy to come back to every once and a while and keep enjoying. Even if I’m not active in the fandom anymore and haven’t been for many years, reading fanfiction is the one thing that stuck. I read it pretty much daily. For now I don’t see that stopping anytime soon. even if it doesn’t get finished I’ll reread this. Time and time again. If i does get finished, even better. If there will be physical copies of all three books, even better better. By both MoI and PFP, even better better better.

      I know I was kinda all over the place with this, but if you manage to read (some of) it, I can only hope it will help somewhat. I’ll be sure to post again after rereading it and actually go into my favourite scenes (the finale of EK definitely is one though, that Cupcake Scene… OMG). I hope life treats you better, and I hope you can get to a point where you can look back at this part of your life and go “Glad that that’s over! Things are so much better now!”

    6. platinumSKIES
      Aug 22, 22 at 2:38 pm

      Hi Mono!

      I have a confession to make:

      I haven’t read any of the Enchanted series yet. And…I kind of feel ashamed about that.

      Not in any way that reflects on you, please please please believe me. I didn’t read them for a while for a really stupid and….goofy reason.

      I wanted to read them as physical books in my hand.

      Like…I say that and I feel dumb for writing that. I always saw so much praise and love for this series, and I’m holding off on it??? Am I crazy? But…but part of me feels like reading them in my hands, holding the story you wrote that was voted the Best Fanfic on Fimfiction, would be worth anything and the wait for them.

      Now…

      Now I wish I read them much sooner so I could see them at the same time as so many other people. To give them the same treatment as I gave Crimson when I read it here. I did you a disservice in that regard. You’re a wonderful writer and I’m so excited to get my hands on the PPP versions so I can get to reading them ASAP!

      And I plan on commenting on every chapter as well, because there’s no way I don’t have things to say on it.

      But thank you again Mono. Even when you’re having a hard time, know that we out there who love your writing want nothing but the best for you.

    7. StalwartHeart
      Aug 21, 22 at 3:25 pm

      Hey, rest assured, if you go ghost for ten years and then out of nowhere post again, you can be sure I will be here to lurk all over it. I have this site bookmarked and it’s part of my routine to check it for updates regularly. 🙂

    8. cvb
      Aug 20, 22 at 6:17 pm

      Hello Mono 🙂

      It’s been a while and I know that I haven’t been as active as I was at commenting stuff since I’m usually the “lurker” type of person, but the recent e-mail notifications made me come here and here I am (a week later after the blog was posted apparently).

      Anyways, I just want to let you know about my absolute favourite quotes from TEL and gave my thoughts about them :3

      Even before I have my physical copy of the book I have been preparing myself by re-reading TEL and when it finally came it really feels like I’m reading it for the very time by relieving every romantic exchanges; shocking discovery; funny moments and also enjoying the beautiful artwork that accompany the stories has been such a joyful delight back in December of 2021.

      I was at the halfway point of the book when school stuff kept me busy yet again, but I picked back up again in July of 2022 and continued from then on and I finished it today as I write this comment, rejuvinated with overflowing memories at how much I praise this story and the Enchanted-verse series :’)

      “Rarity, what if

      Her ears lowered, nearly clamping against her skull. “What if Princess Twilight really did do something bad? What if that’s why Princess Luna never wants to tell me what happened?” (Link)

      “Rarity, what if

      Her ears lowered, nearly clamping against her skull. “What if Princess Twilight really did do something bad? What if that’s why Princess Luna never wants to tell me what happened?” (Link)

      She was, however, certain of one thing. (Link)

      “Whatever happened, Pinkie, does not justify what Discord did to them,” she said with confidence. “I don’t care who was at fault, but Twilight has suffered for far too long, and even if she’s incapable of forgiving whatever deeds she thinks caused this, I am not.” She pointed the pencil at Pinkie. “I will find her again, and mark my words, I will get through her thick skull.” (Link)

      At first time read, I dismissed this moment quickly since the next chapter will explain the backstory of how everything happened, but after what I’ve been through in 2022, I began to treasure this passage with my whole heart at how much I related to twilight’s struggles and what rarity said its true and what I kept in my mind to motivate me every now and then >:3

      “Rarity, I’ve got a bone to pick with you!” Rainbow said upon reaching the mare, jabbing a hoof on Rarity’s chest. “You’ve got some nerve! I literally flew a forty-foot dragon here for you, and you can’t even, like, wait two hours for me to come back before running off to

      She stopped and stepped back, furrowing her brow. “Wait, are you crying? Why are

      She stopped again, her eyes landing on the glowing necklace. “Oh.” (Link)

      Rarity blinked at her before silently moving her gaze toward the dragon. (Link)

      Rainbow looked back at Spike. “Oh.” Then back at Rarity. “Spike. Spike. Spike!” she yelled, running toward the dragon and pounding her forehooves on him. “Spike, wake up! Wake up!(Link)

      The dragon groaned, rolling onto his other side and nearly squashing Rainbow Dash in the process. His frowning face, however, was now clearly visible, and he swatted away at something. (Link)

      “No, I don’t want to read more books, Twilight,” he sleepily mumbled. “I want to eat more cake

      (Link)

      Rarity fell down to her haunches, her forehooves flying to her mouth as her eyes again welled up with tears. The shock Twilight felt was very much hers now, and she felt no desire to make it go away because she wanted this to happen as much as Twilight did. (Link)

      “The necklace, Spike!” Rainbow blurted out, flying up and landing on his head. “The necklace, it’s glowing!” (Link)

      He immediately sat up straight, staring at Rarity as though she were a ghost. His eyes flickered back and forth between Rarity and Rainbow. “She’s… You… Can she hear…?” (Link)

      Rarity nodded. (Link)

      “Yes,” she replied, lifting her hoof and pressing it against the necklace. “She can see and hear you.” (Link)

      Spike faltered for a moment before looking toward the campfire and grabbing a saddlebag. “Rainbow, where’s—?!” He practically tore it apart, its contents littering onto the ground, when finally he dropped the entire thing and grabbed something from the bunch. In a very child-like way, he pressed his balled up claw against his chest before dropping a heart-shaped emerald at her hooves. (Link)

      Which both sides of Rarity recognized. (Link)

      “That… Discord gave me that a long time ago. It’s the last thing I have of Twilight,” he explained, his voice leveled. “Tell me something only she’d know about it. Please.” (Link)

      Rarity took the gemstone in her hoof, carefully looking it over and remembering what it was—not that Twilight had ever forgotten, of course. A smile spread across her face, she looked up at Spike with twinkling eyes, and exclaimed, “Why, I do believe this is her favorite Hearth’s Warming present she’s ever received. You gave it to her when you spent the holidays in Trottingham, didn’t you?” (Link)

      What a sight it was, to see a thousand-year-old dragon cry. (Link)

      Large tears formed under his eyes, rolling down his cheeks and falling to the ground. He gulped, his mouth opening and closing several times, and for a moment, it felt like Twilight’s consciousness had retreated, waited patiently for his reaction. (Link)

      “Spike?” Rainbow prompted after a moment of silence. “Are you ok— Woah!(Link)

      Spike had fallen on all fours, bowing his head to Rarity, eyes scrunched close. “I’m sorry,” he said, and his voice sounded so childlike. “Please, tell her I’m sorry.” (Link)

      Rarity stepped back, ears folding back. “Sorry?” she asked, both parts of her horrified by the statement. “Spike, whatever for?!” (Link)

      “I’m sorry,” he repeated, still refusing to look up, still subdued. “Isn’t she… Isn’t she mad at me for not having found her? I failed!” (Link)

      Two hearts broke at the statement, which only intensified the feeling overcoming both Rarity and Twilight. However, before either one could react, Rainbow landed in front of her, looking absolutely mortified. (Link)

      “No, no, no! Don’t listen to him!” she blurted out, grabbing Rarity by the shoulder and shaking her. “Rarity, Princess Twilight, whoever, please, you need to listen to me! He’s never stopped looking, ever, I promise! Even when I was a kid, he—! You’ve heard of the growing trees of Whitetail Woods, haven’t you?! How trees were uprooted for no reason and then replanted and nopony knew what was going on?!” She pointed at Spike with her hoof, tears in her eyes. “That was him! Looking for the library underground! He’s never stopped looking for her! He’s the reason I joined the Wonderbolts! He’s why I killed myself trying to be the youngest captain! So I could help him!” She turned toward him and slammed her hoof against the ground. “You are not a failure! You’re my hero, and you should be Princess Twilight’s too!” (Link)

      Without a word to Rainbow, Rarity walked forward, past the pegasus and straight to Spike, once again brushing her hoof against his muzzle. “Oh, sweetheart,” she whispered, and Spike opened his reddened-eyes. “She’s not mad at you. She loves you more than you can possibly imagine.” (Link)

      As though he’d reverted to being a baby dragon, he tearfully whispered,

      I love her, too.” (Link)

      Rarity laughed, wiping away her tears. “She knows, and

      She stepped back, raising a foreleg. “If you’d be willing, she’d really love a hug from you.” (Link)

      Not a moment passed before Spike’s claw wrapped itself around Rarity, allowing her to hug what she could of his muzzle, her—and Twilight’s—tears falling onto his scales. (Link)

      Both of these moments. Every single time I re-read I always find myself bawling my eyes out at how much I adore the meaningful sibling relationship between spike and twilight both in the canon show and in the Enchanted-verse series :’)

      “Well, I unmasked him as Discord, of course, after which he did the obvious thing on such an occasion and asked me out on a date.” (Link)

      Twilight nearly choked. “He what?!” she sputtered, practically falling onto her back before jumping to a standing position, wings flared and fire in her eyes. Honestly, Rarity was flattered. (Link)

      “Oh, you heard me. And that’s not even the worst part of it,” she replied. (Link)

      “Rarity, what could be worse than that?!” Twilight asked, clearly never having read a book in her life where a character asked that very same question. (Link)

      “Well, he brought a plus one on the date,” she elaborated. “Which was him posing as you.” (Link)

      Twilight didn’t immediately reply. (Link)

      In fact, Rarity didn’t get to see whatever reply she had, for the alicorn teleported away nearly instantly after she’d finished her sentence. However, she did hear somepony in the floor below shout quite the expletive, followed by a loud crash she dearly hoped wasn’t Twilight smashing one of her own bookcases. (Link)

      After a minute, Twilight returned, looking wonderfully calm and composed. Rarity didn’t dare ask what the source of the noise had been, and instead waited for the alicorn to take the lead. (Link)

      “Sorry,” Twilight said, sitting back down and folding her wings against her body. “You were saying?” (Link)

      Now this is a hit or miss moment where I’m glad that I caught upon it again at my physical copy re-reading 🙂

      Princess Twilight Sparkle stepped back, her eyes fixed on the barrier, her breathing unsteady, and her mind… Her mind was a void as empty as the silence inside her library, because she wasn’t Princess Twilight Sparkle anymore, was she? (Link)

      The real Twilight was gone now, hidden away in her own body, having used the last of her will to protect the only pony that mattered from the real monster—herself. She stayed there for a minute or maybe ten, the magic in her body finding no pleasure in anything but the barrier in the distance. (Link)

      There was no pain if there was no way to confront it, was there? (Link)

      Her horn flashed, and the room was plunged into darkness, her ears barely twitching at the distant sound of a chandelier forcibly turning back into a candelabra. (Link)

      The alicorn smiled. (Link)

      Darkness was good, wasn’t it, Princess Twilight? Good for sleeping and sleeping and never waking up, never dealing with reality, and pain or anything else. (Link)

      A light emerged in the distance, and the princess walked toward it, a frown marring her face at the sight of a glowing necklace tossed aside on the floor. She levitated it, and for a moment, she felt it. (Link)

      Guilt. Sorrow. And the terrible yearning for Rarity to come back. (Link)

      In reply, she tossed the necklace on the floor, watching as it landed and slid under a bookcase, and Twilight Sparkle’s consciousness surrendered to the chaos monster within. (Link)

      Now everything was as it should be. (Link)

      Now was the time to sleep for days, months and even more. (Link)

      It pains me that to add this just because of how cathartic and truthful twilight corruption of chaos magic is that I just had to include it :(((

      No! Leave her alone! Discord?! Discord!(Link)

      She stepped back, an agonizing pain shooting through her chest. She couldn’t leave. She couldn’t break the barrier. She didn’t know how, but if she didn’t do something, the worst nightmare she never knew she had would come true. (Link)

      She felt sick. She didn’t even know she could still feel sick, but she felt sicker than she’d felt in her entire life. Rarity was going to be trapped as a spirit for the rest of eternity, and it would all be her fau— (Link)

      No. (Link)

      Not anymore. (Link)

      THE MOMENT TWILIGHT REALIZED THAT HER SELF GUILT AND HATRED DON’T MATTER ANYMORE 😀

      If Rarity wasn’t going to save herself, Twilight would just have to go and do it for her. (Link)

      She ran through the toppled bookcases, all the way to the entrance of the library and then jumped, landing near a toppled table. (Link)

      “Right! Right!” she exclaimed, trotting around in a large, quick circle. “Fact number one. Rarity isn’t answering the mental link, so either she’s dealing with Discord or she misplaced the necklace somewhere. Fact number two. Rarity said Discord said I’m powering the barrier. Scientific investigation has proven that screaming at it isn’t the key to breaking it. Fact number three. The barrier wasn’t black before I was possessed, therefore it’s powered by the chaos magic from the maze and Rarity was right. Fact number four. The chaos puppet appeared when I told Rarity I wanted to be free and when I was overwhelmed with guilt, therefore it acts on my emotions. Fact number five. Taking into acco

      (Link)

      She stopped, having finally noticed the dried inky hoofprints on the floor. (Link)

      She looked down at her hoof, finding both it and her forelegs stained with ink. (Link)

      Oh. (Link)

      “Fact number five. Possession by the chaos magic restored my body to its proper timestream.” She smiled. “Solution?” (Link)

      I friggin love this moment like twilight re-analysing everything about the barrier and herself while having that confident and hopeful attitude 🙂

      Twilight groaned in pain, another pulse of magic shooting up her body, and another memory pushed itself into her mind in reply. (Link)

      She was inside the tunnel now, on the coveted other side, her forehead pressed against a black barrier. (Link)

      Twilight? Twilight, darling, I don’t know if you can hear me, but I’m leaving. I can’t stay here anymore,” Rarity’s defeated voice spoke. “Pinkie and Princess Luna need me, and I…” She faltered. “I will always be here for you, but only you can save yourself. As much as I may want to, I can’t fight this battle for you…(Link)

      And the memory stopped, Twilight’s grip on the spell having run out. The chaos magic intensified inside her, eager to take over now that Rarity was gone, but Twilight clung to Rarity’s words and then slowly and with every ounce of will within her, stood up. (Link)

      She rushed forward, slamming herself against the barrier, which began to hiss and crackle, resonating with the magic inside her. The barrier pulsed and threw her back, rolling onto the floor, and though the pain remained, she stood back up and rushed forward again, because Princess Luna needed her. (Link)

      And again, because Princess Celestia needed her. (Link)

      And again, because Cadance needed her. (Link)

      And again, because her past choices would not haunt her anymore. (Link)

      And again, because even if they were mistakes, she could try her hardest to do better next time. (Link)

      And again, because Rarity was willing to risk everything for Twilight, and so would Twilight in return. (Link)

      She pushed, and pushed, and pushed against it, until the library and the earth shook beneath her hooves, and the foreign magic in her body pulsed one last time before disappearing. As the barrier vanished and the library was engulfed in darkness, Princess Twilight Sparkle flew into the tunnel, rolling and crashing against the stairs on the other end. (Link)

      Everything about this is just pure perfection.The very final push that twilight needed for her freedom is something all that we aspire to do in overcoming our struggles 🙂

      Thank you, Mono for creating such an iconic tale that helped so many of us feel acknowledged; loved and remembered every single time we revisit them (aka TEL; TEK; TEC). Take your time and we will not rush you on writing TEC wether you feel like or not 🙂 In the meantime I can also enjoy your other works that I haven’t catch up upon like your amazing one shots (aka Nothing Special or Great) and might be considering to start reading Crimpson Lips, once I finished re-reading both TEK and TEC :0

      Love you always, Mono<333

      From your dear friend cvb/cal

    9. VioletsInSpring
      Aug 20, 22 at 8:57 am

      “I can’t free myself, Rarity,” Twilight continued. “I have tried. I tried when you nearly got killed by dragons because of me. I tried when you were cursed because of me. I tried and tried and tried when the only information I had about you was a letter telling me you’d barely survived a timberwolf attack because of me. Tell me why I haven’t freed myself. Tell me!”

      I absolutely love The Enchanted Library. I consume a lot of art. For decades I have been looking for something that really gets this emotion. No television show, no movie, no podcast, no short story, no novella, no novelette, and no novel has ever gotten to what it feels like. Except, of course, The Enchanted Library (& sequels!) has ever understood this emotion. I have never felt like anyone I know understands how much this hurts and how much it hurts to have it so often and for so long, until Twilight Sparkle. Your Twilight Sparkle.

      I read TEL and TEK for the first time in the summer of 2020, just a few months after I started watching MLP. I finished in (I think) a week in a half, because I couldn’t put them down. I was sad for about 10 minutes that it wasn’t finished. Then, I read the whole thing again, this time in a week. It is still, by far, my favorite MLP fanfiction, and in the top five of my favorite stories to read.

      I love your fantastical realism–or magical realism or whatever it’s called. I sometimes feel like symbology is so arbitrary(?) in it’s inclusion. My favorite example of this arbitrariness is the ending to The Awakening. Basically, there’s this really important symbol in The Awakening, where the sea is meant to symbolize the pressures of society at large. At the end of the book (spoilers for an 1870s pseudo-feminist text that’s okay, I guess), the main character walks into the sea, drowning herself in order to escape the pressures of society. This kind of works in the story, but there’s so little build up to the suicide that it just doesn’t really work for me. Additionally, the suicide is not written in a particularly moving scene and it begs the question: “why doesn’t she just leave?” It’s somewhat clear in the novel that she has ways of leaving her situation, and has the money for that freedom. But she just… chooses not to? And it feels really weird in the book. In contrast, the cloak as above was really well done, as was the chaos magic, the necklace, and a bunch of other things I’m sure I’m forgetting right now, because I haven’t reread the story in months (been meaning to though).

      I got inspired to start writing myself because of you and—though I really haven’t done much—I’ve been very happy with what I have done.

      Honestly, I’m already very happy I got to see Twilight get over her (at least some of) her issues in TEL and TEK. But, I would love to see the ending these characters get. I’m ecstatic to see where the series goes. Know that I—at least—will follow this series as far as it can go. If this series starts being written exclusively in Ancient Yiddish, I will learn. If I have to decipher [url]The Riemann Hypothesis,https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Riemann_hypothesis[/url], I will (at least try to, lol).

      Happy writing,

      Hope you get a better job soon,

      Violet

    10. Dustin Lurie
      Aug 20, 22 at 8:23 am

      First thing I want you to know is don’t think that your writing does not matter. It’s just the curse of all great artist that they can never see how there art affects there viewers so I want to tell you. I have never been much of a reader before I started to read the Enchanted Library it had been about 5 years since the last book I had read. I have never been much for reading it’s just hard for me to care about a character on a page when I can’t see them, but with your writing I could see every book in Twilights Library and every tear that Rarity shed when she thought she would never see Twilight again. Your writing is so beautiful and it pains me to see you having such a hard time. As a fan of your writing I should be banging on the wall demanding more writing but I won’t. I care more that you are happy. Don’t force yourself to write do what makes you happy you owe your fans nothing it’s us that owes you.

      Second I want you to know that you do matter. I know that it sometimes can be hard to see but you do matter your writing matters. There are people who care and I know it means little from some random person on the internet but I care. Your writing has just meant so much to me and so I am writing this message. I don’t know if it helps I feel like your Twilight who has locked your self away and your friends and fans are Rarity sitting in front of the force field hoping you can here us and comeback.

      I hope you feel better and just remember there is always a rainbow somewhere over the horizon your just need to find it.