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Destiny is a fickle thing.

Cloud Kicker had her life figured out. A cushy desk job in the weather service in a few years' time. Great friends. Good times. Loose mares. A mild amount of family and relationship drama along the way, maybe, if she was unlucky.

She'd never have guessed that her life would take a meteoric rise toward eternity after making a cute, purple librarian cry.

(Written entirely for laughs for AU Month in the Winningverse. I couldn't resist.)
(For those that reflexively downvote Winning stuff, comment instead! It's more fun to bicker. Ask Pinkie.)

Chapters (4)
Comments ( 220 )

Been out of editing for a while. :raritywink: The idea was just go get a head start on the next section.

(It did almost no good.)

Thanks Chen!

Adorable, so far

I wasn’t sure if Twilight was going to die of shame right in front of me, or scream and run off. Or maybe she’d just light me on fire.


Oh, the equinity.

Dear lord...

There should be a law against that sort of thing when someone’s trying to wallow in whatever it is ponies wallow in. Jelly, possibly, going by my last date.

My favorite line so far.

To the moon, Clonetrooper.
...Or pony equivalent.

'Tis basically taking early days Cloud, and seeing what would happen if she dodged the relationship drama. Then having everything come up Cloudy as she continues on with her... erm... free-spirited ways. Even through all the insanity of the Wedding.


Oh, the equinity.

Dear lord...

I'm sorry. :fluttershbad:

D'aww, you're too nice to me, Wade. Probably have no idea what's going on. Have you even read Winning Pony? :trollestia:

A worthy addition to the panoply.

I'm betting that right now, Twi is actually frantically pulling every single book about dating and relationships off the shelves with the intent to read all of them before sundown.

Instant thumb for using the word panoply.

Lies, she totally was just overcome by Cloud's raw, animal magnetism. She needed a cold shower, stat. I mean, how could be it anything else?

You know what?

I'm happy that this story is going to get the views associated with the "Winning" brand, for it has become a brand unto itself, but I'm a little sad that this story might not get the attention it so righteously deserves on its own merits.

It's pretty swell.

Is it only so good because you're so effectively aping the style of a 'better' writer? (I say better when truthfully I mean 'more popular' and 'different' (though whilst admittedly, you are quite good, but Chengar still finds a way with words that astonishes me (For instance, I bet he never resorted to brackets within brackets))) I'm not sure.

And I have no real way of knowing. That's the tragedy of the matter. I'd read Crucible to find out, but I'm loathe to start on a story that will never be finished...

once you go Kicker, at others you’ll snicker.

... Well played.

Like this story, really interesting divergence. Hope to see more.:twilightsmile:

Oh, I don't mind if it doesn't get much attention outside the Winningverse, honestly. I shamelessly made WP required reading, because I wasn't looking for more than that. My other fics are things that I'm proud of for my own writing style. This one I wrote just on a lark, purely for fun. Not only to explore an idea or character, or tell some 'deep' story, as with my other stuff.

I have no doubts it's my lamest work, and massively outside my normal comfort zone. But it doesn't matter. It was quite the experience.

Chen is indeed awesome. It's an absolute pleasure to pre-read his stuff. You can spend so much more time enjoying things, rather than correcting silly mistakes in structure or plot.

I didn't really go out to ape his style specifically, though. He writes in first-present, which I couldn't bring myself to do. And I do a lot more direct snarkification, while Chen is a bit subtler. But, yeah, there's a certain amount you have to beg, borrow and steal to sound Winning-Ponyish (Or I guess Dresden'ish, ultimately). It would be almost weird to see my usual third-person.

Oh god. Don't praise me for that. I was facepalming while writing it.

...the whole fic, really.

Thanks. :twilightsmile:

I honestly can't believe this is the fic that got me on the (sans clop, at least) feature box for the first time. :raritydespair:

Not the works of art (lies) I slaved over, with depth and emotion.

...actually, all that sounds dull. Nevermind. Makes sense.

So far I see the divergence as Cloud goes after Twilight instead of Derpy. Your Twilight seems to be handling CK better than Ponibus' Twilight, forced removal from the library notwithstanding.


Don't praise me for that.

You can't tell me what to do! *starts shovelling praise* :derpytongue2:

This Twilight has far less of an idea what she's getting into, and had actual interaction before finding out. Poni's was a bit more 'prepared', and went right to seeing her as an icky anthropological (equipological?) subject to poke at with a ten foot pole.

We might be seeing something closer to Ponibus' version in the next chapter.

Um, I demand you praise me for it? :fluttershyouch:

3833275 Or, assuming that her noble ranking from Study of a Winning Pony is a factor here, freaking out over having a "moment of weakness" when she's spent her life preparing herself to settle for a politically arranged marriage.

Either way, this is looking like a good story! I love seeing Cloud Kicker's perspective on Twilight as she starts falling for her adorkableness. Twi had better be careful about walking under the skies Blossomforth is working on, though.

I maintain that Twilight is incredibly kinky and any possible banging will end with Cloud jumping out of a window in pants-wetting terror.

Going off what I barely remember from the early Winning Pony, I imagine Rainbow's 'get out of Ponyville' is referring to the Cloudsdale weather conference thing. Which she's using as a convenient excuse to punish Cloud without actually punishing her. . . Rainbow's that smart, right? :rainbowhuh: . . . Or maybe not.

Lum, is there a real-life equivalent to Schism?
I want one. :rainbowdetermined2:

on an unrelated note, we really need an Evil Grin emoticon on here, preferably either Chrysalis or Sunset. :ajsmug:

Oh my, what a great little start... and there's more right off the bat.:twilightsmile: I'ts like Heart's Warming Eve.

Luminary wrote another fic? :pinkiegasp:

There's another Winningverse story out? :pinkiegasp:
Again, awesome.

Can't wait for more of this awesome squared story!

Hmm...if you don't mind me asking, what is this "Winningverse"? I have seen it many, many times over, but never found the "root" story, I suppose, and no one provides much explanation in their descriptions.

He seemed ready to question the clingy-thing.

I wanna question the clingy-thing... :rainbowlaugh:

start here: The Incredibly Dense Mind of Rainbow Dash

Then go here: The Life and Times of a Winning Pony

if those strike your fancy, go read everything else in this folder as you see fit: The Winningverse

You certainly do have the style down (Dresdenish really does seem to fit well as a qualifier and probably explains why I enjoy it so much) and I can hardly wait to get more of this.:twilightsmile:

'Tis basically taking early days Cloud, and seeing what would happen if she dodged the relationship drama. Then having everything come up Cloudy as she continues on with her... erm... free-spirited ways. Even through all the insanity of the Wedding.

I love the Winningverse and Kicky is awesome regardless of what story she's in, but once CK got deep into the relationship drama she kinda stopped being the mare we grew to love and the story jerked us away from the happy relaxing times that were a staple of the early story in favor of heavy introspection and angst.:pinkiesad2:

It may be blasphemous at this point, but I think I might be looking forward to this updating more than L&ToaWP. :twilightsheepish:

I found it funny how often Pinkie is mentioned in this and how so many are secretly pining for her. Apparently a bunch of ponies think Rainbow Dash is lucky (though Pinkie clearly thinks she is the lucky one).

Sir, may I just say, as a parenthetical enthusiast: that bracket system is a thing of beauty. :moustache::yay:

I got to the end of the second chapter and said "Nooooo I want more!" :raritydespair:

Always a sign of an excellent story.

Study's Winningverse canon, so that hasn't changed.

Holy hell has that story gotten big since I last checked on it.

I can tell that you and I are going to be best friends, Forevermore. I like the way you think. :duck:

On both counts.

Hells if I know. Stratego? Never played it! :twilightblush:
But we're kind of in a board game renaissance at the moment. So there's probably something pretty awesome and similar out there somewhere.

Heya Aburi! Thanks for the kind words. Was worried you'd vanished since your P, PR & E thread went into the mists of history. (As if I should talk!)

Didn't know you liked Winning Pony. Learn new things every day, I suppose.

Aww, sorry. This one was kind of aimed at long-time readers. Else I would be four times as long as I tried to explain things.

It's a drama story following Cloud Kicker, one of the background ponies from FiM. She's a snarky freewheeling ethical slut who finds herself actually facing a committed relationship (Which is good!) or two (Which is bad! Sorta) or three (erm.). And then gets caught up, via her family, in the siege of Canterlot (the one with the changelings).

It's a sinful sort of pleasure. Sort of like watching a really intense and entertainingly written soap opera. You know you really shouldn't be watching. But you have to anyway.

Webby pointed you at the start of it.

The clingy thing will either ever remain a mystery, or will be, like, the fifth romance in the story.

Thanks for your earlier praise, Dashie.
And yeah, both Chen and I are pretty hardcore Dresden fans. It's definitely been one of the draws for me.

Personally, I love the family and heavy drama of the later chapters. So I can't say Cloudy ever really got away from us. The next chapter of Winning Pony (due out soon) is a pretty huge milestone one in terms of framing and wrapping up character development. And I found it really satisfying.

But, yeah. I love the old Cloudy too. The raunchy, irrepressible one. And I guess AU Month just really gave a real incentive to try to grab it back. It's not to say I won't have character development of my own. But it won't really be so much Cloudy settling all her old demons. So much as Cloudy's adorably promiscuous philosophy expanding from what we saw at the beginning of WP.


Holy hell has that story gotten big since I last checked on it.

One chapter for every episode. Plus some extras to tide us over between the third and fourth seasons.

Pinkie's very much the soul of Ponyville, 'least in my mind. She should be mentioned, darn it. Besides, she and Cloudy have knocked horseshoes, canonically. Considering the raunch (totally a word) level of this fic, it couldn't escape mention. Also, This Platinum Crown apparently has infected me with the idea of PokeyPie.

Well, fret not, it's being worked on. Want to at least get the next chapter out, to make the direction of the story more clear before the end of the month.

Guess it kind of shows how long it's been. :facehoof:

OOOH that explains a lot of what I've seen, actually.

Thank you heartily for the explanation! I'll have to take a look when I have a spare minute.

I stopped taking open requests, though I still take on the ambitious project or two.

But I've been a fan of this universe for a while now, and I must say, this is a worthy addition!


Hey no complaints here I love it when a Winningverse story (AU or otherwise) mentions Pinkie. Heck the whole Pinkie/Cloudy thing is one of the mysteries that gave me a big surprise in a fanfic (was not expecting it at the time) and it is one of the things I look for hints to in the stories (though not as much as more Pinkie/Dash moments in these stories which I swear has to be one of the things that need to be hashed out before the end of all these stories it is what kick started this whole thing I feel its resolution should be important to its end).

Destiny is a fickle thing

Butts are fickle things.


A fine addition to the Winningverse. Fave'd

3835089 You'll need more than a spare minute to read The Life and Times of a Winning Pony, it's 325000 words and still going. A spare week is more like it.

“I bet the Royal Guard love it when ponies molest Princess Celestia.”

Do I sense a reference with that word choice?

Anyway, this is a very nice start, get right into the main story.

I will say I missed this Cloud Kicker. That said. Oh dear, aren't you trouble...
I also have to wonder about Blossomforth's relationship with Cloud in this story.

So many questions! I look forward to reading the rest of this story as it comes out.

We can totally test this one.
Fickle means readily changed.

Pinkie's butt is likely to be the most prone to change. With her high-fat diet and bouts of insane exercise.
Early Seasons:
Season 4:

Pinkiebutt appears unchanged. Ergo, butts are not fickle.


Well, we're heading toward wrapping-up time, it seems like. So you never know. Kicky did make a certain offer of education for Dash... who knows what'll come up then.

Thank you!

Ha! If there's a reference, you'd be the first to figure it out. Even before me.

Thanks Swift. And thusfar, Blossom doesn't have too much to worry about. It's still business-as-usual. Later? Yeah. But her tactics from WP won't exactly be as valid this time around.

And yeah, I missed that Kicky too, as much as I love the one that's grown and become more thoughtful, responsible and otherwise stable.

Grand start. This can only end in hilarity, or possibly me wanting to smack every pony upside the head depending on whether it veers towards the side story lines or the main story line...! Either, it should be entertaining...!

Well, finished reading the second chapter, and what a cliffhanger to leave us on. You'd better not leave us hanging, Lum. :p

Also, don't think I found any errors while reading through these, so well done to you and your editors in that regard.

But yeah, so far, this is well written, and I'm really curious as to how big this story will get. How far the story will go. I'm also curious as to how exactly you'll be using that Luna and Chrysalis tags there. Seems a bit spoilery to put those in so early, wouldn't you say?

I eagerly await more, Lum.

Don't get me wrong, I still love L&ToaWP and I'm looking forward to that next update. It's not that I don't like that CK has been evolving, but as you might expect from a 325K+ word story it has... shall we say changed tone a few times.:twilightsmile:

I like my stories a bit more on the light-hearted side and Life & Times started out so perfectly in the raunchy SoL buddy-comedy zone with interesting characters and world-building. It then morphed into a light-hearted romantic-comedy with the addition of Derpy and CK becoming a family; still pretty in my wheel house. Then it added a lot of relationship angst and morphed into a bit of an adventure story; at this point it had lost most of the light-hearted feel to it. Finally it has now become a much more serious character drama with a lot of angst & introspection, and pretty much needs to get away from CK any time it needs to lighten the mood (which tends to focus on StarKler).

These aren't necessarily bad things and the story is still wonderfully written, but the story has also certainly changed from the tone that attracted me in the beginning, which is why I'm enjoying your own AU story here so greatly.

It helps to have a proofer with a badass English degree with honors.

The title alone has to be a giant spoiler for Luna. :raritywink:
In any case, we'll get to her next chapter (Unless I go long on other stuff) So it isn't exactly giving out information massively ahead.

As for Chrysalis, well, I'll be going at least as far as the Wedding. And I guess you can see that Cloudy will still end up embroiled in that. But given that it's only a few weeks ahead of where we are now, I can't imagine that being too surprising.

As for the size, not sure. Depends how long I take getting where I'm going. At least six chapters. But then again, my chapters are usually, like 12-15k. This one was one just split in twain. So will probably be more.

I shall try to keep it light and fluffy, and not let you down! The plan was never to go all intense and dramatic. It might go in weird directions though. :trollestia:

As I've been saying, it's all for fun. That means I don't mind going a bit over-the-top.

And can't say we might not delve into light romance too. But I don't intend to 'fix' Cloudy's issues the way Winning Pony has.

Won't be following the main storyline. Well, except for the larger points of the canon FiM world. It's About Time won't be happening, since Cloudy has messed Twi's groove up enough to prevent the time travel. Most everything else will probably go forward in the world as expected.

Absolutely zero promises about stuff like the Wedding going forward as we see it in FiM though. I don't even need to keep the veneer of canonicity that WP does. :twilightsmile:

Cloud Kicker and the Pegasi Quest thing?
I'm not sure what you're talking about.

Want to get the next chapter (or two, if I split it again) out before the end of AU month next week.


I mean I gathered that she used to be in the army, for some high-octane, white-hoof adventure in the first story, then left or got kicked out. So, I feel like I have the gist of it, but then "AND AS WE ALL KNOW PINKIE AND RAINBOW DASH ARE A COUPLE NOW" comes along out of left field and I sort of just roll with the punches.

Honestly, I haven't run into anything plot-relevant that wasn't obvious. That said, I've only finished the first chapter, so far.

Also: This line is delightful

If I didn’t know for certain that Pinkie adored it, I’d think innuendo blindness was one of the prerequisites of using the Elements of Harmony. Maybe there was hope for our heroes yet.

I looked at your gif there and i noticed where Bulk Biceps was looking. it looks like it anyway. gave me good idea for another story.

Ha! I wrote this with the expectation that people would know Winning Pony already. I guess just the first few chapters would give you a basic idea. Though by then you might be hooked. :twilightsmile:

It's right down there. A little lower in the feature box than this one.

I'm sure the people who hate it are thrilled by two being there at once.

General idea of Cloud Kicker is that she's from a family with a strong military tradition. But she went AWOL just before graduation from West Hoof, an officer's academy and fled to Ponyville, and joined the Weather Team.

She went to Flight Camp with Fluttershy and Dash (and Derpy), wherein nastiness happened and Cloud's first relationship went tragically sour. Rather skewed her viewpoint on romance for the rest of her life. She's pretty much the queen of good-natured one-night stands and free love. Has all sorts of rules for herself to prevent messiness and attachments. Sort of the Ethical Slut type.

This kind of comes in right after Dash has promoted Cloud and Blossomforth, (let's all admit it) for hooking her up with Pinkie Pie.

Ahh, but none of that has happened here. And might happen differently. :twilightsmile:

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