FimFiction Link - Short ID: 489964/celestia-regina
Published: Jun '21
>nice melancholic comfy feel
>it's got a mythology tale in it. God, I want more of them in fics
>bolts itself to fics I've never read
>stereotypical Blueblood-esque specist unicorn
>actual story was pretty boring
A "warfic" that chucks the "besiege the rebels" warfic stuff aside in favor of having tea and talking while forlornly staring out at a city. It's got some great post-NMM worldbuilding and one of those mythological stories fics never include. The tone is wholly melancholic and it sets its camp in the "immediately post-NMM" time frame. Things are let down by the actual plot being kinda boring and not all that impressive. It's just there for the worldbuilding stuff to grab onto. Still, a nice break from all the usual crap.
'Celestia Regina' is thirteen thousand-word shortfic about the revolt of a city during the times Celestia ruled alone.
I really wanted to like this story, the title is beautiful and the description seemed promising. Sadly, however, I ultimately didn't really find what I was looking for. While I suppose neither the description, nor the tags explicitly imply it, I sort of went in with the expectations of reading a warfic, or at the very least a wartime drama. I have to immediately dispel these preconceptions, if you expect fighting, politics or EaW shenanigans, you should probably look for a different story. No, in fact the whole siege subplot is resolved in practically the blink of an eye in the beginning. To me it kind of seemed like the author originally wanted to make the unicorn supremacist general into a proper villain of the fic, but then decided otherwise and straight up wrote him out of the story, mentioning him only once in the epilogue.
Instead the story focuses on Celestia taking matters into her own hooves by first stopping the siege, then easing the spirits of the city's children by telling them an admittedly nice folk tale, then ending the conflict by having a gentle talking to and reminiscing with the city's baroness, and finally returning home and painting a picture. I suppose, the problem might be with me, but I feel like this story doesn't really achieve anything exceptional. Every issue just crumbles before Celestia, which in a way makes sense, since she's a powerful and experienced monarch, but on the other hand takes out all tension from the story. Every character either follows her without question or yields after a few stern or understanding words.
The other thing that I found a tad bothersome is the story's reliance on OCs, but not even the author's own, rather a random assortment of characters taken from other fics, whom all kind of stick out like a sore thumb from the otherwise largely faithful-to-the-series approach the fic takes. It's not that it makes the story impossible to follow or understand, but you constantly feel like you're out of the loop and that you should know who these ponies are. Also one of them pretty much takes the spotlight away from the tragedy of Celestia's regret about sending Luna to the moon. The ferrymare's secrecy also feels like it doesn't really go anywhere. I could decipher as much as that she's sort of implied to be related to Luna or the dead OC, but I didn't really feel much after this revelation.
Overall: 6/10 This fic is about as inoffensive as it gets. There is nothing fundamentally wrong with it, but aside from a bit of worldbuilding, nothing really shines in a way that would make the story memorable. I suppose if you're really into horsewords, you might enjoy the inclusion of OCs or if you want a simple, uncomplicated feel-good narrative with a touch of feels, you might enjoy it.