• Member Since 30th Apr, 2013
  • offline last seen July 9th


I write stories so that I won't be kept awake at night with a brain full of ponies.



Twilight Sparkle broke time when she got her cutie mark. Now Twilight and Sparkle are sisters from another time. Twilight is hailed as the potentially greatest light magician of all time, and already has a reputation as a hero by the time she goes to Ponyville. This isn't her story, not primarily.

Sparkle is an orphan - her dark magic killed her parents. She lives with her brother in Canterlot's industrial sector because they can't afford anything better. She can't leave either. She's a natural dark mage; while Sparkle won't go mad like Sombra, her reputation is hardly any better. Worse, the law doesn't see her as a good pony.

The fact that the dead don't stay dead around her, or that Thorn - Spike's double - is an undead, soul-eating abomination, are other matters altogether.

(Also has some Slice-of-Life, but fimfiction tags won't let me put it with Adventure.)

Has an ask blog to go with it: Ask Sparkle and Thorn.
Also has a TvTropes page: Split Second Tropes.

Featured on EQD.

Cover art by Swirling Line.

Chapters (51)
Comments ( 2679 )

Different, but certainly curious to see where this goes.

You keep approaching this rather nicely. Yet with enough shifts and fun differences, and I hope the muse runs this well for this.

Neat to see the talk between the darker halves.

Sparkle and Thorn still will live in Canterlot for this story. As such, most of what happens in canon will not be seen by Sparkle, as Trixie will be taking her place. The biggest changes will come from the two-part episodes.

Meanwhile, Twilight and Spike will be mostly following canon.

I've got most of the big changes planned out, except for it's about time. I either need to make a stable loop that involves both timelines, or I need to crash time again, leaving them with no memory of time travel and a splitting headache.

5526789 Ah! So thats how you plan on going about through it. The interactions between luna and sparkle should be very fun. But you've also got trixie as a person to use here you could tie into another show perhaps? or of something she does in another episode if the time line works out in planning?

This is pretty good! At times I felt it was a bit rushed, I wish you would have explained just a little bit more about how these universes work in general, but other than that a pretty marvelous job was done :3. Looking forward to the next chapter!

I'll show Trixie or Twilight explicitly when their actions contracts the show. For example, boast busters is coming up, but Twilight will only know the Trixie that is Celestia's student, not the show mare. Also, Owlowicious in this timeline will be named Gizmo.

If it's not explicit, then the events will pop up in dialogue or newspaper articles or the like.

5526911 Looking forward to it. I hope the muse stays strong here.

I have a long time to get into the nitty gritty of those details; I don't want to bogg you down straight away.

5526918 Ahh, see I was under the impression for some reason that this was just going to be the Nightmare Moon arch. Well then, I'm not doubly excited to see where this will be going! :D

I have plans that extend through season 4.

A second re-read cleared up the lovely issues. And certainly so to wonder where with luna and celestia respectively are going to be very interesting.

I like this, it's an interesting premise. Would love to be a fly on the wall for the conversation Twilight has trying to explain Sparkle to her Celestia and Luna.

Okay, you have my attention and my interest. And an upvote.

I look forward to the explanation she has to give Celestia.

God, now I have to write that. The reverse, Sparkle explaining Twilight, is rather dull compared to the scenes surrounding it, so that could be really funny. Hmmm...


I look forward to when they inevitably and accidentally swap places.


If there is no evil twin question I'll be disappointed.

Also the horror of Celestia in realizing that her perfect light student is only possible because another timeline where her not-student can only be dark instead should be amusing, especially if she realizes that Twilight supports Sparkle and vis versa, Sparkle is the reason Twilight is a minor hero by doing unethical things to get information Twilight can use. And that Twilight has been effectively teaching her dark counterpart Celestia's teachings, and thus hindering the other Celestia by proxy.

Sparkle is a good pony... In a very evil sort of way. Both were raised by the same parents in exactly the same situation for eight years and both have a royal guard for a brother and a princess as their former foal sitter.

Doesn't mean that Sparkle isn't a lovable asshole at times... One that has learned the joys of screwing with ponies.

And with historical evidence to support the idea tha she's just biding her time until her evil plan is revealed, most ponies aren't inclined to believe in her.


Ah, I didn't mean to give the impression that Sparkle is actually evil (she probably qualifies as grey morally and has little respect for authority (being biased against her), but that goes both ways in that she feels no guilt in attacking the guilty either, nor how she goes about that), hence my use of 'dark' in describing her.

But you know Pinkie or Rainbow would ask if Sparkle was Twilight's evil twin. Because come on, EVIL TWIN!

Now that I think about it, the ascension scene would be pretty interesting with regards to Sparkle, because The Elements Of Magic is the element of all magic. Not light magic only, and despite how they treat each other as sisters, they are fundamentally the same being split into two parts of a whole, aren't they?

she's just biding her time until her evil plan is revealed

Well technically with the connection she has with Twilight, it'd be incredibly easy to make that argument; by supporting Twilight, anything that increases Twilight's power (Element of Magic, Ascension to alicorn, general knowledge gained) would reflect back into her, and totally be unpredictable because everyone else can't interact with the alternative timeline.

It's just until The Mare In The Moon no one was certain how she was gaining power when she should have been crippled education wise

You hit the nail on the head with that description. That is exactly Sparkle and the perception of her.

Also, consider what I've said about Thorn. He's imbued with her essence, he grew stronger with the elements, he was created after the murder of several ponies, he's like a familiar to her...

You know, there was a popular book series that had something just like that... I wonder how that would play in to alicorn ascension. (Btw, spoiler but not really: Princess Beatrix Lulamoon is a thing.)

I also wonder what exposure to the full blast of an artifact of light would do. You wouldn't happen to have any of those lying around, would you? Maybe at the top of some stairs?


I also wonder what exposure to the full blast of an artifact of light would do.

To Sparkle? Well there, are two interpretations.

The first is Nothing Good because it's like pouring boiling water on ice cubes.

The second is that Sparkle is one half of a whole, which is split in all the dark magic goes to Sparkle and all the light magic goes to Twilight, so all hitting Sparkle would do with Light magic would just transfer it to Twilight and hitting Twilight with dark magic (from Sombra?) would transfer it to Sparkle.

She hoped.

Chills. Love this story.

Such a lovely macabre! And redclaw meets his little fitting end.

Correction that jumped out at me:

I can see that I would just be waiting perfectly good air


Dark magic specialty Twilight Sparkle? Uh...


Welp, I'm confused already, and I can keep up with Cultural Artifacts. Congratulations!

Hmm, why is the Dark Magic TS named Sparkle? Wouldn't it be better reversed? Twilight is the time between day and night...

natural white mage made her an excellent protector of harmony.

Funny thing, the usual trope of White Mages fits more along the lines of a Divine casting Necromancer than anything else. Also funny is how Necromancy is usually this horrible and dark thing.

Sparkle often found herself obvious to the rest of the world.


You have an excellent editor!

Well at least I understand what was going on with the whole two Twilight's now. Parallel timelines are so much fun to mess around with, aren't they?

They were eight when they decided on the split name.

I just finished reading this and was terrified for a moment that you had marked it complete. This has so much overwhelming potential, I can't wait to see what you do with it!

Will Sparkle befriend Luna or become her student?
Sparkle attending the Gala would be a laugh riot! :rainbowlaugh:
What will Discord's reaction to her be and vis versa?
Will she meet Cadence or has she already?
What happens to Sparkle when Twilight becomes an Alicorn? Does she too? Princess of Death?

Please continue this and update as soon as you can. I can't wait for this to continue. :pinkiehappy:

The editor is me. Obviously, me is not doing my job, so I must fire me.

Light/dark magic is not a good/evil dichotomy, but a restoration/corruption one.

Both Twilight and Sparkle already know Cadance. Cadance and Shiny are dating at this point.

Read previous comments for hints.

Nice story so far, I like the setting, but I think Sparkle could use a bit more of polish, she seems too overpowered right now.

Twilight is equally powerful because of their connection. Also, remember the Dread Necroptica? Sparkle has some of those books already, and those are a wealth of knowledge. She's also has been tutored by Twilight on everything Celestia taught Twilight. There are more details that I haven't released yet that will explain how she got to be the way she is. For instance, why does she wear that cloak? It's not for nothing.

Basically, I'm saying that she's earned every last scrap of knowledge through hard work, and every bit of raw power through training and exploiting the link to Twilight.

A side note, every pony is getting +5 magical ability (and +2 competency). Stronger earth ponies, faster pegasi, more powerful unicorns, etc. if you didn't catch it, Rarity shared magic with Trixie to cast a stronger shield, something Rarity has never done in canon.

...Alright, that ending right there was damn unnerving as all hell. Bra-vo good sir, you have my attention and my fave!

" Her eyes, so close to his own, made her jump back in fright, but he’d only taken a single step away before a force lifted him up by the collar of his jersey. Lifted off his hooves, it turned him round until he was face-to-face with the most terrifying visage he had ever seen, and a predator’s at that." Shouldn't it be 'made him jump back in fright' ?

But lovely evil chapter, practical and downright diabolical for what one shouldn't do.

I really should get an editor.

5535648 Glad to be of help. And its very blink and miss it.

The thing with "blink and miss it" things is, as the writer, you already know what it's supposed to say, which overrides what you actually see on paper. Things like that, where it is a single word off, are devilishly tricky to catch unless you're reading it for the first time.

5535669 Given the flow and structure, it comes across as He here.


...you didn't actually address Savannah's criticism :-\

Also, will the antagonists have a corresponding power surge? Because the true danger of a Mary Sue is not its power*, but the fact that everything goes the character's way even when it doesn't make sense.

That goes double if everybody hates and fears the main character for reasons the reader finds trivial.

BTW, I like this story, but you have to admit: you're on a Reaaaaaly slippery slope.

*for example, batman is a MASSIVE Mary Sue, but people still read and watch his stories

You're right.

Allow me to re-explain.

Yes. Everyone, good and bad, has taken a level in badass. Further, in this version of Equestria, a special talent magically augments that pony's ability to perform that talent. If two ponies with similar experience in an area compete, the one with the mark for the activity will always trump the one without it in a fair competition.

Twilight/Sparkle's talent is general light/dark magic. If she were to fight an offensive specialist, she would be crushed. If she were to attack a defensive specialist head-on, she would tire herself before she broke through. Twilight/Sparkle can do more thing than most ponies, but she can't do them better. It's a quality vs. quantity type thing.

Granted, Sparkle cheats if it's life-or-death, but then again, so do her enemies. And Twilight "cheats" because she is fed information that she otherwise couldn't have known.

Still, I will take your warnings to heart and do my best to keep them from being too overpowered, both physically and plot wise, and make sure that everything makes sense. The route I have planned for the plot will have Sparkle gradually facing tougher and tougher challenges, with only Thorn as a real ally. Twilight has her friends and the elements to support her; Sparkle is alone. Make of this what you will.

Explanations that are coming still:
-Where Sparkle gets her power.
-Why ponies originally and still think of Sparkle as scum, despite her actions to the otherwise.
-Why mistakes can hurt her so much.

I promise that any concerns you voice, I will try my best to use them to write better.

Twilight is identical to canon, personality-wise, in my non-professional opinion. Meanwhile, also in my non-professional opinion, Sparkle is a high-level nutcase. I feel the sudden need to reiterate that my opinion is non-professional, and is to be disregarded if it doesn't match yours. Or you could respect it, in spite of, or maybe even because of, the fact that you might not agree with it. Your choice.


...my non-professional opinion matched up with your vision for this story? WHAT MADNESS IS THIS?!:pinkiegasp:

...but seriously, this story is shaping up to be a great one. While I can't criticize it at this time, I'd be happy to do what I can to help once more chapters are posted.:twilightsmile:

Rumors said that this one week workshop was the hardest class taught at Celestia's School for Gifted Unicorns. It was one that every guard, regardless of tribe, took at some point in their career, and only guards could take it....

Defense Against the Dark Arts, by Sparkle and Thorn.

Wait a minute... Trixie mentioned this didn't she?

she has to help train the Royal Guard – or Princess Celestia's students, like Trixie – in Defense Against the Dark Arts, for minimum wage.

So the guards only have to go through it once, and Trixie has to go through it... repeatedly? Holy crap! I obviously haven't been giving Trixie enough credit, because if she went through the grinder more than once (or had private sessions), she must be quite the badflank.

And students of Celestia, implying more than one. Does that mean Sunset Shimmer had to suffer with it as well? I wonder what that means for Equestria Girls.

Sunset Shimmer predated Twilight/Trixie. Also, it was just a single private session, but Sparkle is capable of tormenting an entire room of 150+ combat hardened stallions at one time...

Also, I have no idea how to handle Equestria Girls. I think I'm going to just pretend those movies never happened.

I don't comment on stories often, but I felt compelled to say something short on this story: What you have going on here is unique and interesting, and you have managed to create a very like-able anti-hero (which is damn hard in of itself) in a very interesting world! The potential for this story is through the roof! In other words: keep up the good work!

EDIT: Will we see more from the class week interlude? Or was it just a single chapter inbetween? I found that chapter to be the most enjoyable.

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