• Member Since 23rd Jul, 2012
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The Albinocorn


One step at a time.

T

For a thousand years, the continent of Equus, divided between the kingdoms of unicorns, pegasi, and earth ponies, has existed in relative harmony. Within the enchanted land of Lumen, Twilight Sparkle has become the newest member of Class Zero, the kingdom’s best and brightest students.

A series of disastrous events leads to the threat of an all-out war between the races with Class Zero at its heart. And with the conflict comes a bitter chill not even the sun can warm. Twilight and her new friends will have to give it their all to defend not just their land, but the entire world.

But it'll take more than just unicorns to stop the coming storm. Because if the three kingdoms can't work together to find harmony, there may not be a home left to fight for...


Amazing cover art by Multiversecruise!
Gloriously edited by Novel Idea, DrakeyC, Cyrano, and Corejo!
Featured on Equestria Daily

Chapters (3)
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Comments ( 80 )
Gem

And so another fantastic Albinocorn story kicks off!

Huh. Interesting premise. I'll put it on the RIL.

Oh boy been waiting for this. The anticipation is real, lets do this.

Very, very good start! :twilightsheepish:
Looking forward to future chapters.

I know it's early, but character development is already pretty solid. There are so many of them, and yet they all feel pretty distinct (except Fleur at this point, but I'm not too worried).

This is gonna be pretty great; I can feel it.

“I’m still surprised Minuette loves them so much. One would think you would hate sweets since they’re bad for your teeth.”

Ayo, Colgate

Getting right into it, I see. I wasn't sure what to expect: either we'd get all the character introductions first thing or they would be spread out as the story went on. Either way is fine, but this way holds the advantage of introducing the characters we'll be following and building up anticipation for when they appear next. We get a touch of their personalities and will no doubt build off from that.

Heh, Moondancer would be Twilight's roommate. Kindred spirits, indeed.

Huh, seems this school has the grading hierarchy opposite of the American system. Rather than 12th grade being last, it appears one or zero is last. Though, I'm assuming the zero class is a special case in this world.

Wow, I didn't realize how much I've missed season one Twilight Snarkle.

Already looking forward to more!

Fantastic start; it has excellent pacing and character building, allowing us to get a feel on so many characters early on while leaving room to delve more into them as we venture forth. The imagery and ambience is well handled and gives the flair of being there. I'm looking forward to seeing what will happen next. :twilightsmile:

Nice easy start to what is likely to be an explosive epic.

8641175
Not exactly, since Monndancer is in Class 4, but is a freshman and will be taking course with mostly juniors and seniors.

The class levels here appear to refer to the level of difficulty of the coursework, where 9 is the easiest and 0 is the most challenging. So, I guess Class 9 would be more in the level of a junior college, while 0 is akin to an advanced doctoral program. Or something.

8641121
Beats so big I'm steppin on leprechauns

(Wow, these lyrics are weirder than i remember)

So, from what has been revealed, apparently Hearth's Warming happened, but the tribes didn't unify afterwards? Combined with Season 1 Twilight Sparkle stepping into what feels like the start of a University fraternity/sorority Club story?
...
...
I'm down with this combination.

I didn't know what I was expecting walking into this fic, but I know for certain I came out of it wanting more. Very well written, and very, very interested in where this will go. I love how real the characters are feeling right now.

And as someone else has stated, it feels almost revitalizing to read Vanilla Twilight. No Twilicorn. Nada. Feels so good.

The premise of the story also scared me a little with how similar it seemed to an idea I had just the other day involving a split kingdom. Wonder how that'll go. Maybe I'll write my story and see what happens there...

Can't wait to read what comes next!

Also, I couldn't help but notice that the CSGU crest has the stylised crescent moon from the title of Pokemon Moon in it.

Not sure if that is the stylised sun from Pokemon Sun next to it.

Ooh, interesting, very good start. Like the others have said, it's a fantastic introduction to the Class, though for me particularly I feel like Minuette and Lyra need some more differentiation in their characters. But, of course, it's only just begun, and I have full faith those two will become more distinctly different to me fairly quickly. Also of note, Vinyl being blind? Not something I expected, but it works in a way.

All in all, I'm greatly looking forward to more of this.

PS: Amazing cover art, by the way. Major props to Multiversecruise.

“Hey, if the new kid wants doughnuts, I say we get ‘em!” Lyra said. “Let’s go, Zero!”

I actually hope this catches on. Lyra has a good catchphrase sense, and I like the personality you’re giving her.

“Because doughnuts,” Minuette said with a flick of her hoof.

Minuette has impeccable reasoning skills.

The class got a wide variety, though Minuette had skewed it so a majority had sprinkles of some kind. Twilight picked up a maple glaze and bit into it with a happy hum, pausing for a moment to savor the sweet taste. She now knew why her classmates favored this place: this was the best doughnut she had ever tasted. The title didn’t stick long, as she bit into a white sprinkled one and declared this the best doughnut she had ever tasted.

So relatable. Also, I get the feeling someone’s going to make this joke with your stories. “This is the best MLP fic I’ve ever read!” *reads more Albinocorn* “No, this is!” Also, I’m glad to hear best pony has the same taste in doughnuts as I do, white with sprinkles. :heart:

I like the assortment of characters this has, and I look forward to getting to know Class Zero even more. Great work!

HOLY SHIT THIS IS THE BEST THING I'VE READ SINCE ANTHROPOLOGY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A Dahlia sequel and this!? You glorious free time thief you. :3c

Huzzah!

The premise immediately caught my attention, and the way you've arranged the characters definitely sets up a variety of subplots the characters could go through as the story progresses. It's amazing how seamlessly you introduced this AU without the exposition getting in the way, and it shows your excellence in the craft. I'll definitely follow this one. :twilightsmile:

8641409
I'm afraid the sun is not the one from pokemon. I didn't even remember where I'd seen a moon like that before until you brought it up! But thats a good eye you got there, i was afraid that the badge thingy would be too small and nobody would see the details!

“But then, I look to the foals. Those who aren’t quite cynical to the ways of the world. Those who still believe in hope and change. In power and potential.

“In friendship and magic…”

Ain't this a promising start?

That excitement dimmed as she stepped further away from her parents. In her fourteen years, she had never spent more than a single night away from them. Now, she would be spending months at a time here, with ponies she didn’t know.

She's 14? So, CSGU is a high school. GOOD LUCK.

Minuette had met Twilight and her parents upon their arrival, introducing herself as the representative of Class Zero,

Roll credits. *ding*

Twilight’s excitement died again. She didn’t come here to make friends, she came here to learn. She didn’t want to have ‘homework parties;’ they sounded distracting. She let out a quiet sigh, keeping a slow pace behind Minuette’s excited trot. She could only hopesomeonein Class Zero took being a student at Celestia’s School as seriously as she did.

I almost forgot how Twilight was like pre Season1, it's been so long.

What if they’re all lazy, or party goers? What if they’re jealous of my results on the entrance exam? What if theyaskabout the entrance exam?

Bare in mind that if they're here, it's for a reason.

A green aura enveloped his ear, and Minuette dragged him away, her smile more exasperated. “I said make her feel welcome, Blue, not court her.”

“I can’t do both?”

In time.

“Awesome! I’m Lyra Heartstrings, but you can just call me Lyra, everypony does! Isn’t that right, Vinyl? That’s Vinyl, she’s my bestie!”

Music horses!

They smiled as Twilight approached. The purple haired one said in a refined voice, “Hello, Twilight Sparkle, it’s lovely to meet you. My name is Rarity, and this is Fleur.”

French horse and fashion horse. Irrespectively.

“Trixie,” Minuette said from across the room, her voice like that of a scolding mother, “be nice. At least say hello.”

Trick horse.

To her surprise, relief, and gratitude, the room was spotless. Her suitcase and boxes sat neatly on her bed, leaving her side of the room unremarkable, while the other side contained a perfectly organized bookshelf, well-made bed, and tidy desk where a beige pony sat reading with the lamp on. She turned, showing off the topknot in her red and purple mane, and the tape holding her thick black glasses together.

BeigeBookHorse.

Just because we’re on vacation doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be studying.”

Blueblood smiled and wiggled his eyebrows. “Perhaps I could pay for you… if you called it a date?”

“Trixie would rather starve.”

Ouch.

“Eeegh, commoner food! And unhealthy at that!” Blueblood stuck his tongue out. “Why do you insist on going to that poor establishment?”

It's cheap and it's good.

Lyra narrated all of these details, though it seemed to be directed more to Vinyl than anyone else.

Maybe she's blind? Or likes it. Or doesn't care and Lyra does it anyway.

“I don’t like your tone, young lady. Am I going to have to take away your doughnut privileges?”

Trixie held her doughnut closer to her chest and stuck her tongue out.

That is the correct response.

“Which one do you want next, Vinyl?” Lyra asked, magic at the ready.

She shrugged. “Doesn’t matter. You know I’m not picky.”

Hm...

Twilight found the exchanges between them odd. Even moreso, the fact that Vinyl still had her sunglasses on indoors. She supposed it was none of her business, but it seemed impractical.

You know, I was joking about her being blind.

As the two started a playful argument, Twilight felt some of the tension leave her shoulders. While she still planned to study on her own, maybe, just maybe, this group wasn’t as bad as she thought.

WELP. I'm hooked.

Twilight's hiding something. I don't know what it is, but it has something to do with her entrance exam.
Where's Spike?

Well now. Color me thoroughly intrigued, especially since some characters are most notable in their absence. Of course, this is just setting the stage for something a lot more dire than a school drama. Eagerly looking forward to more.

Crowds of unicorns walked up and down one of the many thoroughfares that led to the central plaza, stopping to ogle at the stores and and vendors.

8642426
thats the mystery of the chapter. shes either embarrassed or feels unworthy because of something that got her to pass (which in cannon was the rainboom) happened again. nothing was said of her cutie mark, i think because shes older than that moment in cannon. shes still a shut in who doesn't know how to interact with other ponies that arent family. makes me wonder if the author intends to have cadance either be in this story, or involved in twilights life at all. she still has smarty pants after all.

that brings up another thing. has this twilight interacted with any other pony outside of her unicorn family in any meaningful way?

i'm loving the class zero interaction. having Minuette act as a dorm resident assistant was a good hand hold for me as a reader.

its been a while since a super intriguing story has popped up and i got the itch to hit a non-existing button to read the next chapter.

to the author: are we going to get info dumps on the world you got them running through or is the first "book" going to concentrate on twilight at school before the conflict against the wendigos/ hopefully nightmare moon?

Inkwell's lesson on magic reminded me of the schools of thought, and it does a nice job at describing how magic and spells work in this universe. However, I'm particularly fascinated by Trixie's character in the story thus far. She maintains her haughty personality from canon, but from her interactions with Twilight during this chapter in particular, I have a strong feeling that Trixie may be hiding something about herself that'll play a role in the future. Anyway, that was a nice chapter, and I'm curious to see where the story goes from here. :twilightsmile:

A very well done chapter that gave a great amount of information whether on their history or how magic works smoothly. All of the explanations were fascinating and thought provoking, showing just how much time and effort went into making this a natural part of the world. All the world and characters traits touched upon definitely make me wonder about where we're going to go, such as if we'll actually see a kelpie (or the reality the legend it is based on) and any other legends we might learn. It certainly is something to see how different certain characters are while still being the same, like with Trixie. And Twilight herself is continuing to show how well developed she is with how she takes studying, the costs of that, and how she handles pressure in tune with her magic.

A quick shower, a thorough brush of her teeth and mane, a polish of her horn. Twilight ran out of the bathroom, passing a still groggy Moondancer, her mane a nest of red and purple tangles. She pulled her school uniform from the closet, inspecting to make sure it was wrinkle free before putting it on. A purple shirt and gold skirt with a white neckerchief and a badge that proudly displayed her school and name. “Have a good first day,” Twilight said, tossing on her saddlebags. “I need to make sure I get a front seat for my first class!”

You are entirely too excited for this.

Twilight moved her head to the penultimate scene, the serpent lounging on his throne, its ebony color contrasting against the multi-chromatic assortment surrounding it. Six ponies stood before the monster, two from each tribe, and a glowing orb in each of their hooves. A brilliant rainbow of six colors burst from the orbs and overtook the serpent sealing him away forever.

Oh, how interesting. The Royal Sisters never took the Elements, but 6 mortals did.

But the damage had been done. Twilight sighed, looking at the final picture. The tower stood alone in the middle of the three kingdoms. The pegasi kept to their cloud cities in the west, the earth ponies had their crystal capital to the north, and the unicorns stood on the eastern mountains. So Equus had been divided, and so it had remained for a thousand years.

It seems this time, Discord managed to do more damage than in canon.

“Hmm? Oh no, that’s Professor Inkwell. She’s enchanted the chalk to write out the lesson plan everyday in case she forgets.” Minuette set her saddlebag down in the chair next to Twilight. “She should be here any minute.”

Smart.

“Well then, you and I are gonna be good friends!” She squinted her good eye. “Just don’t try to out-nerd me. I’m the first nerd! Minuette and Sunset Shimmer learned that the hard way.”

I like you.

“Yes. Chaos Magic is rare, but it’s dangerous and uncontrollable. While not inherently evil, we’ve yet to find a positive use for it. It goes without saying, I don’t want any of you messing with something that sounds like Chaos Magic.

I REALLY like you. A Reasonable Authority Figure, you're smart despite your old age and you're not going to outright dismiss Chaos Magic as evil just because of Discord.

Minuette wiggled a hoof. “Well, sure, but it never hurts to remember the basics. Without a strong foundation, everything else just crumbles apart.”

She has a point.

Professor Abra

So where are Kadabra and Alakazam?

Trixie did not reciprocate. “Thenyoucan take one of those. This is Trixie’s spot. Don’t think you can just waltz in here and take what’s Trixie’s just because you’re the school’s new favorite.”

Easy now.

Trixie smiled and dipped her head. As she headed back to her seat, she gave Twilight a haughty grin as well.

You're making it very hard to like you, Trixie,

Twilight slumped down, her shoulders sagging with relief. She had done it. One class down, hundreds to go.One spark at a time.

Seems she has some issues of her own, beyond her possible neurosis, which isn't seemingly played for laughs and tendency to think of worst case scenarios off the bat. This should prove interesting.

I liked as well, a nice touch, especially the bit where you see that Hearth's Warming still took place, and neatly explains something that confused me about the chapter 1 lead in - a note about all the ponies standing together before a tower, but now apparently divided.

That symbol Inkwell does, though...

Inkwell padded over to the black board and drew two triangles, one facing up and the other facing down, interlocked with each other. She then drew lines to connect the opposite points and drew a circle at the tip of each of them, finishing with a circle in the middle.

...tried to draw it and insert or even copy/paste with the snipping tool but it's not working...

Sounds kind of cool though, I'm just wondering if I have it right on my paint pad.

8643548
If you look closely at the page breaks, you can see the symbol at the top.

Interesting world building and character development I especially like Inkwell and how you describe the magic system

Fascinating, very fascinating. Good on you for establishing the different forms of magic early on. And an interesting interpretation/translation of the scene of Twilight's canon entrance exam, with her having difficulty actually casting magic... It suits her well, and I'm interested to see how she overcomes it. At least it seems like she's still getting private lessons from Princess Celestia. And it was delightful to see Twilight all young and massively nerdy and socially awkward.

Also, Trixie seems like the first level boss that Twi's gonna have to face. Something something earning her respect the hard way? Well, I'm looking forward to seeing how things play out between those two at least.

I'll comment on one aspect that some other's here haven't brought up. I'm guessing that with eight students and eight fields of magic, each of the Zero Class ponies will excel in one field more than the others. And given which ponies described each field, there's possibly some subtle foreshadowing as to which ones will excel in which.

I mean really, what's more perfect than Illusion for Trixie?

Till next time!

I wasn't expecting much when I started reading this story but you have gotten my attention. I love all of the characters so far. Minuette is fun and a blast. Lyra is basically unicorn Pinkie and I love it being able to play off Vinyl as a beautiful voice of reason for her (also I'm calling right now, Vinyl is blind). Blueblood is a character that I want to punch in the face, but that's intentional and I am certain given how great the characterization of the others in this chapter alone is. He won't stay like that forever. Trixie is interesting her asocial behavior toward Twilight when they first met took me a little off guard but that could simply be a person (in this case Trixie) not wanting to open up to someone that they just met but are more open with others that they have had more contact with and consider friends. I also love the fact that Trixie still refers to herself in the third person. I love Moon Dancer as a character and seeing her as Twilight's room made we squeal with excitement, god I love Moon Dancer. I look forward to seeing more of her even it is nothing more than as a supporting role with would make sense given the mane cast is definitely the Class Zero. I am really intrigued my Twilight and her internal dilemma and certainly look forward to seeing it grow in further importance and clarification. And one character that I am really intrigued by that didn't appear in this chapter is Sunset. Now I love Sunset, she is my second favorite character of the show (only behind Twilight) so seeing her in this would make my day. And based on the cover art I can certainly look forward to her in the future.

Anyway, great first chapter. The depictions were beautiful and really helped paint a picture in the eyes and mind of the audience. The characters are great and I certainly look forward to seeing them grow and develop further in future chapters. You certainly earned a like and tracking from me.

And on we go. Some nice worldbuilding and Trixie has a bug up her fat blue plot.

Interesting, very interesting.

I'm still certain that Vinyl is blind, but that's just me.

Anyway, to the meat of this if you will. This was very good. All of the characters are still very good. Not all of them are enjoyable, namely Trixie and Blueblood but like I said before they aren't really meant to be. At least not yet. I loved the ending with Twilight not being able to create magic, knowledgeable yes, good at in a practical sense no. I enjoyed her internal struggle as she relived her past strugglings. A great moment of characterization and really the audience begin to love Twilight as a character even if you knew nothing about from watching MLP beforehand.

I loved the world-building, and you did it the right way. The world, while a major focus, is also second next to the characters that are in the world. A piece of media and literature can have an amazing world but if the character that is in that world suck, then you're out of luck. The six schools of magic and chaos are an interesting addition to the world as a whole. I really enjoyed their induction and usually it the setup as a classroom works perfectly as it lets the audience learn about this important plot point without sounding like a massive exposition dump on them. I am also convinced that the Schools of Magic are going to the mirror to the Elements of Harmony and that Sunset is going to be the 'wielder' for lack of a better term of Chaos Magic.

After it is all said and done, great chapter. I am certainly looking forward to more in the future. Keep up the amazing work so far.

8643559

Ah, had it almost right - I had a vertical slash down the center also.

Hard to see though, that portion of the image is really tiny, but is there an all-encompassing sphere also?

My drawing had a circle at each point and one in the very center of the hexagram portion of the Star of David... adding another circle bounding the whole would be eight circles total... I'm probably reading too much into that though.

8643954
I don't think it's so much that she can't create any, but more that she can create so much without trying very hard that it's challenging to control, so she overthinks things and either can't concentrate or holds back so much that nothing ends up happening. Look at how much she fixates on the idea "just a spark."

I think I've said enough on this for now, honestly. I'll bet we'll find out exactly what happened at the exam. Maybe not right away, but soon.

(Goodness, it even feels like a JRPG, kind of. I love it)

Gah!” Twilight clapped her hands over her mouth

Man, that bit about history was sweet. Small differences, but boy did they really change things in the present day. I'm looking forward to the first time we meet earth ponies and pegasi.

Ah. Without alicorn Bearers to act as a symbol of unity, lowercase discord ultimately triumphed... though that raises questions about what Celestia is and has been doing. :trixieshiftright:

Huh. Chaos magic instead of necromancy. Interesting setup for this world.

Ah, dear, sweet, socially oblivious Twilight.

And so we see the issue. Twilight's magic is a lake behind a dam, and the key challenge for her is getting it to come out in a controlled stream rather than not at all or all at once. Well, she'll learn. Heck, she's managing even in the same room as Trixie. Compared to that, saving equinity should be a snap.

So this is the magun opus of the albinocorn eh? I look forward to reading it but first im going to let the chapters increase before i jump into the fray

Comment posted by Boromir deleted January 27th
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