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May 6, 2012
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(non-canon) Survivor Shy - The Old Castle by Mattatatta (non-canon) Survivor Shy - The Old Castle by Mattatatta
"Night had fallen in the Everfree Forest, and around me I could feel dozens of pairs of eyes watching me in the dark shadows of the trees and bushes.

"I kept up my pace, moving as quickly as I could among the chaotic and wildly overgrown foliage. With only a simple lantern lighting the way and scaring off the creatures lurking in the darkness, I wasn't certain if I was heading the right way, or deeper and deeper into danger.

"At last, the trees and bushes parted and opened up to a familiar gorge, with a wrecked rope bridge draped down one side of the cliff-face. I checked to make sure my saddlebags were secure, bit down harder on the lantern's handle so that I wouldn't drop it, and carefully unfurled my wings. I suddenly heard Pinkie's advice echo in my memory; "A hop, skip, and a jump.", and I felt the tears well up in my eyes. I tried to blink them back, hearing Rainbow Dash tell me to "Suck it up, Fluttershy!", but that only made it worse.

"I sat down where I was, placed the lantern on the ground, and buried my face in my hooves. I couldn't do this, not without my friends. I had not seen them ever since I woke up to the destroyed world I now seemed to be the last pony to exist in. I had no purpose, no direction, nothing. Coming here had been a reckless decision, I didn't know what I expected to gain, and I was in an extremely dangerous forest.

"I heard howling behind me, and instantly leapt up onto my hooves, turning around to face the source of the sound. I heard a second howl, this time closer, and I didn't waste another second to grab my lantern and jump into the air, pumping my wings as hard as I could just as a pack of Timberwolves came charging out of the bushes. I flew over to the other side of the gorge, dropped down the ground and kept on running. The wolves couldn't jump across, I was sure, but I wasn't going to wait and find out for certain.

"I galloped up the mossy steps and forced the heavy, wooden door open, and then slammed it shut behind me. I stood there for a moment, staring wide-eyed at the ancient door, shaking at the encounter with the Timberwolves. I slowly sat myself down and put the lantern on the floor, and dried away the tears still in my eyes. I mumbled "Everything will be okay." to myself, I repeated it a few times, almost promising it to myself, before I felt ready to stand and carry on.

"I started roaming through the hallways of the Old Castle, the place where my friends and I defeated Nightmare Moon oh so long ago. In spite of the time that had passed, being here made it feel like it had only happened a few days ago. I walked slowly, and found myself walking into a large room. Even though it was really dark, due to the overcast skies blocking out the Moon and stars, and my lantern not bright enough to illuminate the giant room, I knew exactly where I was. I was in the Throne Room, the exact place where Twilight faced off against Nightmare Moon alone, and held her own long enough for the rest of us to find her.

"I walked up to the remains of the Throne that sat on the far end of the room, and sat on my haunches beside it. I looked over the vast space, remembering the showdown. It must have been terrifying to have been alone with Nightmare Moon. She was bigger, more powerful, and very dangerous. But Twilight didn't run away, in spite of the odds, she did all she could to protect the Elements of Harmony, it was the only chance we had to defeat Nightmare Moon, and we were lucky to have found Twilight when we did.

"I blinked as a thought crossed my mind. I was fighting a losing battle alone, too. And no more than ten minutes ago did I consider giving up. I couldn't do that to Twilight, I couldn't just give up because things were looking bleak. I owed that to Twilight, to all of them. I had to hang in there.

"I rested my head down to sleep, and promised myself that everything would be okay."

~=~

Here we go, a new installment in the Survivor Shy series! Enjoy it, and hopefully you'll enjoy the story excerpt I wrote on-the-fly during submission. based on the picture.

Survivor Shy Gallery: [link]

*FAQ:*

(q)What is this?
(a-short answer) Survivor Shy, an ongoing series following Fluttershy on a mission to survive being in an Equestria in ruins, and to restore Equestria and ponykind.
(a-long answer) A project I began after binging on Fallout 3 and Fluttershy episodes. It originally began as a couple of pictures that depicted Fluttershy in an ambigious, post-apocalyptic setting. But since then, Survivor Shy has evolved into an ongoing adventure/fantasy series following Shy's journey to restore Equestria and ponykind.

(q)Where do I start? In what order do these pictures go?
(a-short answer) Follow them in any order, none of them are in chronological order, and I've left it up to you to work out the correct order.
(a-long answer) I'm experimenting with an unusual way of storytelling. I focus on drawing dramatic scenes that fit the basic theme of Survivor Shy, and once I'm finished, I write a story excerpt based on the picture. As time goes by and I complete and upload new scenes, the chronological order of the story shall become clearer, and the story shall practically write itself. Once I finish the 'last' scene of Survivor Shy, I'll see about linking the scenes together into chronological order.

(q)Why are your animated pictures so big? They make me lag!
(a)I'm a silly pony who likes massive pictures, but I'll downscale the gifs so that they don't lag so much from now on.

(q)Is this going to be Grimdark/Mature?
(a) I have no intention of drawing anything that could be classed as Grimdark. We're talking Disney-levels of blood and overall darkness. As for the written parts, I will not write anything graphic, but the written parts do have less-strict rules.

(q)Will Fluttershy die?
(a)I can't say exactly, I will say that she could die, but I'll never draw her dead or write words to the effect of "Fluttershy died". If your imagination says that she died after a certain scene, then that's your interpretation.
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:icongiromcalica:
GiromCalica Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
"the moon shall never have them" through deviantART search sent me here
Reply
:iconmattatatta:
Mattatatta Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well that's a strange occurence. I might have to borrow that phrase for the actual story xD
Reply
:icongiromcalica:
GiromCalica Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I was looking for a Red Alert 3 mission artwork. But I see nothing.

Yes, "The Moon Shall Never Have Them" is a final mission from the said game.
Reply
:iconmattatatta:
Mattatatta Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ooh, neat!
Reply
:icongiromcalica:
GiromCalica Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Click [these words] for the entire playthrough of said mission.
Reply
:icondarthwill3:
DarthWill3 Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Brings back old memories, uh?
Reply
:iconmattatatta:
Mattatatta Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is quite an old piece, yeah. I completely replaced this illustration and scene with a later one.
Reply
:icondarthwill3:
DarthWill3 Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I see.
Reply
:iconkingofraggedy:
kingofraggedy Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012
"I was in the Throne Room, the exact place where Twilight faced off against Nightmare Moon alone, and held her own long enough for the rest of us to find her."

This. This sentence gave me chills that I could not get rid of for about a minute or so.
It had not occurred to me that Twilight had been in the room alone with one of Equestria's most heinous villains, but had still stood her ground, despite the odds. I also think that Twilight knew little to nothing as to the extent of Nightmare Moon's powers, and yet courageously marched straight into the face of the demon (possibly leading to her being ripped apart, if NMM had used her full potential). Truly, Twilight has all the qualities of a hero (or a heroine, in this case).

Thanks for the insight, Mattatatta. Now, I shall continue reading this lovely story. =)
Reply
:iconmattatatta:
Mattatatta Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It does surprise me that a lot of people don't consider how potentially dangerous it was for Twilight to face off against Nightmare Moon alone. I felt it would be noticed by her friends, though, and to Fluttershy in this given scene, it provided something to compare her current situation against.

I hope you're enjoying the rest of the story so far
Reply
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