Today’s story reminds us that the one constant in life is change — so keep your coin purse close by when you pay with a big bill.
[Slice of Life] • 2,361 words
When the time of monarchs and royals ends, what becomes of Princesses who live on?
FROM THE CURATORS: This is exactly what it says on the tin — a story about a pony coming to grips with modern capitalism. We started out worried that such a premise seemed like a recipe for soapboxing, but this story quickly vaulted past those doubts to unanimous approval. As JohnPerry said, “I think it says something when a story gives you a premise that’s hard to swallow, but still manages to impress you.”
The biggest factor in that was Selling Out’s arresting portrayal of its protagonist. “The voicing really is the draw,” Present Perfect said, and JohnPerry was more broadly appreciative: “The characterization of Luna is absolutely marvelous, and the larger historical landscape this story merely touches upon is very intriguing.” Horizon, meanwhile, found the two sides of Luna poignantly juxtaposed: “The contrast in tone between her regal narration and her out-loud dialogue is proper heartbreaking.”
It wasn’t only the characterization that impressed us, but also its excellent choice of character. “Seeing Luna in this situation, harboring all of her pride and past hurts, is so much more heartbreaking than seeing Celestia, or Cadance, or even Twilight would be,” Present Perfect said. “Luna’s the one who’s already fallen once, and she fell so much further than this.” The story’s nuanced portrayal of the world around her sealed the deal. “What strikes me the most is the ‘long view’ of Equestrian society,” AugieDog said. “Yes, ponies will learn and grow and discover new and different things, but they will always be ponies. And their princesses will always be there when they’re needed — even if what they’re needed for changes and shrinks and grows back differently as the pendulum of the centuries swings to and fro.”
Ultimately, by treading a careful path across the razor’s-edge of modern cynicism, Selling Out left us with a thought-provoking message. “The idea of balancing duty, pride, and commercialism is one that’s more applicable to many of our real-life idols than we might like to admit,” Chris said.
Read on for our author interview, in which Kaorin discusses technological singularity, paycheck relevance, and post-apotheosis continuations.