• Member Since 25th Sep, 2011
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"[FoME] manages the impossible combination of being an actual legitimate nerd while staying unabashedly pleasant." —Aragón


This story is a sequel to The Implicit Neighs

Obligation has always been a central pillar of the Orzhov Syndicate. The obligation of debt to one's lenders, duty to one's superiors, adherence to one's contracts. None are more obligated than the debt-foals, ponies sold into slavery so their families can be free. The most prestigious of them, Rarity Belle-of-Karlov, is held up as the ultimate expression of what a debt-foal can become.

Octavia Melody-of-Zolcov is most definitely not Rarity. After today, she might not even be herself.

Second place in the Sharktavia group's Sharktavia contest.

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 40 )

You maniac. You said you'd do it, and then you did!


This is a statement I reserve for Majin.

But, just... Why.

~Skeeter The Lurker

Lock up the doors and light the ceiling on fire.

It's time for Shark Party.



That was... huh.

Oh man oh man oh man

Okay, now that I've actually read this monstrosity...


I do love mad scientist Lyra. She's so adorable.

Also, would that ending mean Twilight can now be a dracogenius? I wonder if this was Niv Mizzet's idea, or if Twi wanted to be more like her guild's leader.

As for the card, it's a bit ambiguous. Is it 1 counter per life gained, or is it 1 counter each time you gain one or more life?

Lyra is just nutty. The tail hand is a nice trade off from what she had attempted before.
Octavia sounds somewhat nightmarish.
Would love to read about Twilight becoming a Kirin.
I greatly enjoyed this.

You're the best!

ThisLyra deserves the Ian Malcolm speech... Or a modified version of it.


I usually associate Octavia with octopi, rather than sharks. Octotavia and all that.

Lyra is best biomancer.

Lyra as a mad scientist is great.

Maxim 14: "Mad Science" means never stopping to ask "what's the worst thing that could happen?"


Well, unless your project is to create the worst possible thing.

One counter whenever you gain any amount of life, by the current wording. Compare Sunbond and Ajani's Pridemate.

8081495 Words to live by. And probably also die by

Because, as 8080983 noted, this idea has been lodged in my brain for more than a year. The contest gave me the excuse to finally flesh it out.

Sorry I didn't ask you to edit this one, but I wanted to get it out before I thought better of it. :derpytongue2:

Twilight just wanted to science things. In this case, that thing was herself. The fact that her goal would only work with one specific species across all of Ravinca's vast biodiversity only made her more eager to explore the mystery. End result: Congratulations! Your Bookhorse has evolved into Dragonhorse!

The Firemind was equal parts amused and intrigued. Spike thought it was literally the coolest thing that has ever happened in his life. Celestia and Luna—for they were and are close friends with Niv-Mizzet—were even more gobsmacked than when they heard about Sharktaviacorn.

And as Arkonfleight noted, it's one counter per instance of life gain regardless of how much life you gain.

Yeah, I can see how a flying, air-breathing, magic-wielding shark can be somewhat nightmare-inducing. Fortunately, this one still has the mind of an obsequious living entertainment system. Still, Octavia's definitely moved a few steps up the Zolcov estate's pecking order.

She's a member of the Simic Combine, creators of fish crabs, crocodile frogs, ooze people, and other delightful chimerae. Furthermore, they believe they should be doing this to ensure life can survive the planet-wide early Industrial Age urban environment that is Ravnica. Malcolm's speech would definitely fall on deaf ears. Indeed, most Simic would respond, "Of course nature will find a way. We're the ones plotting it."

You can blame/thank 8081489 et al. for introducing the concept to Fimfiction.

"Hold still unless you want fingers coming out your spine."
—Lyra Heartstrings, Simic biomancer

8082058 I forgive you this time. :twilightsmile:

When I see Orzhov, I think Pilvic managing bank Feather's bank accounts, an owl aven that's kinda annoying, snooty Teysa with her gimped legged, THRULLS, and a very angry Solifuge that will murder everybody when his servitude finally ends in like a thousand years or so. What in the hell am I about to read. An Orzhov Sharktavia crossover. Why do I think you've taken the crossover thing a bit too far, Foamy. This better not have Teysa in it. Please, I love that snooty bitch too much for her to be in something this absurd.

...I might or might not leave a parting comment when I'm done. It might have a lot of screaming madly into the abyss. Yay!

Given how you added the story to your Favorites about twenty minutes after leaving that comment, I assume it wasn't too detrimental to your sanity. :raritywink:

Eheh... I don't think whether a story affecting my sanity has any bearing whether I add a story to my favourites or not. I mean, I have shoved some stuff in there that is admittedly mind shattering to some degree or another. I mean, just have a look– actually, on second thought, that's a terrible idea. Don't. You'll have maximum regret. There's something that I find amusing about reading such things. Soaking in the mental turmoil. Brazenly flipping off normality and all that :derpytongue2:

Besides, for me to have not favourited, it would mean getting super angry at the story. And not in the fun kind of way. The fun way involves such things like wanting to strangle Sickoh for doing what he do's :flutterrage::yay:

Ok, glad Teysa was not in here :B

I forget, but the plane of Ravnica is all city with maybe some Gruul "parks". So there's no oceans. How would there be sharks. Wait. This is Magic. They would be flying sharks. Like, we have one plane where there are floating whales. This plane has floating leviathans. How much for sharks? And I think I made this idea far more crazier than it needed to be. Sharktavianado :B

You remember the cartoon Street Sharks? Yeah, that came to mind while reading this, along with Sharktavia swimming in the streets, plowing through pavement and cobblestone with her dorsel fin.

I think Sharktavia needs appropriate chase music.

This would work swell. Until you realize it's a taken directly from the PlayStation version of Vigilante 8. so instead of merely being chased around by a shark. On land. There's imagery of being chased by a shark that's firing a machine gun, while simultaneously blasting heat-seeking mortars and letting loose a rack of heat-missles. All while playing her cello held in her magical glow. And all of this is directed at you. Yay explosions and classical instruments.

My only disappointment was that there wasn't enough thrull to satisfy my fascination of thrulls.

I thought winning the genetic lottery might be a good thing. Y'know, not losing hair. Not getting cancers and tumors. Maybe getting an intelligence enhancement. And then I read this story and was convinced that even if I won such a thing, I should probably brace myself for hair loss when I get much older ;_; But sharks don't really need hair so iz cool :B

The oceans were and are still there. It's just that the city built over them. After the whole Kraj incident, the Simic were reorganized by conveniently appearing merfolk, who emerged from the now-buried oceans to see what the crap was going on. Hence why the new guildleader has lionfish spines. One of the Simic zonots—giant sinkholes OF SCIENCE!—basically presents itself as a national park, given the guildless a chance to go see and experience the ocean that the plane forgot.

Okay, so, when's that Ditzy's And Discord Theros Adventure thing coming?

Some sequel hooks never catch anything.

Huh. At first I thought this would just be a quick pile of shark themed nonsense, but that was quite entertaining.

When I expressed a desire for more Neighs, I hadn't yet reached Sharktavia in my reading list.


Why Lyra. Why must you tempt me back to the Simic side.

Because best guild. Best guild is why.

8112919 Simic was my guild back when I first got into Magic (during Gatecrash) but over the years I've been drawn to the Golgari side (which might actually turn out to be your fault, in the end). I'M SO CONFLICTED

"We're the ones plotting it." Sure, right up to the point where it (or rather they) turns around & 'plots' them into coldcuts, brood-incubators, and/or hapless quasi-symbiotic support organisms ala male anglerfish. Since this probably counts as a lower-end snafu by Combine standards (and this ficlet could've used a little action besides the unholy biomancy), I'm sure they happily glossed over Lyra's subsequent week having everything below neck level cloned & re-grafted.

This is why we need more ponies in Ravinica. I so want to read about their shenanigans! :pinkiecrazy:

Reread this because I'm working on a D&D Ravnica adventure (and because you directly reminded me of its existence). Still amazing and this better be canon to The Implicit Neighs.

Well. I am simultaneously horrified, amused, confused, and some fourth emotion I can't quite describe. :derpyderp1:

This starts out quite horrific, and then gets just plain weird. :derpyderp2:

"Miss Octavia, you have a visitor."

She blinked. "I do?" She set down her manebrush and moved the short distance to the door, trying to think of who might want to see her. Master Zolcov would have simply entered, and her parents' visits were strictly scheduled by the indenture contract.

So... she lives as a slave, doesn't have any friends who'd come to see her (Where's Vinyl Scratch in this continuity?), and her parents aren't even allowed to see her outside of scheduled appointments her "owner" sets up. :rainbowderp:

"I am a debt-foal, emphasis on foal. I've spent my whole life as Master Zolcov's servant. I wouldn't know what to do with myself if the Sisters paid off my contract."

That... that makes it about a hundred times worse. :twilightoops:

"Pontiff Zolcov requested a very interesting cosmetic package for you, [...] You'll even retain your previous level of sapience!"

"Oh. Eh. Ahahah, that was a joke, right? Biomancer-humor, right?"

". . ."

"...Right?" :applejackconfused:

At least Lyra seems sympathetic to the whole "being owned" thing. Makes me think she'd have helped Octavia get out of the place. Probably not without giving her some body modifications first to facilitate an escape (which would most likely have turned out to be completely superfluous or could have been easily avoided by using common household appliances instead of biological enhancements), but still. (Would've made for a cool escape scene though.) :pinkiecrazy:

....And in the end Octavia becomes a shark-princess. So, it all turned out for the best. :yay:

Or did it? I am still left wondering if her ascension to sharkicorn-hood did elevate her situation from slavery, I mean, this isn't a pony-society where wings+horn automatically equals royalty. :twilightoops:

I can only guess from context of Lyra's guild trying to keep it under wraps that they have some recognition of what an alicorn is, though I cannot say if they place any sort of status thereon... Hmmm. :applejackunsure:

Also, the entire time I was reading this, I kept thinking "What's the next meeting with her parents going to be like?" :derpytongue2:

I think the most pressing question regarding that campaign is this: Will there be ponies? And will there be a pony-shark krasis?

The debt-foal system was first introduced in the prequel story, and it's honestly typical of the Orzhov Syndicate. It's just a bit more up-front about the virtually inescapable indentured servitude than their usual methods. Well, their usual methods for the living. They don't sugarcoat how they handle the dead... at least until a ghost-killing assassin took over and waived their debt. Not sure what Kaya would think of ponies who choose to keep serving, come to think of it.

Everyone on Ravnica knows of alicorns due to the events of The Implicit Neighs.

And yes, Octavia became high-profile enough that Celestia and Luna started giving Pontiff Zolcov some very pointed looks. Then he double-checked his books, and would you look at that! Someone must have misplaced a decimal point. How fortuitous for the young mare. Compared to adapting to such a radically new body, adapting to that degree of freedom was comparatively minor.

(Vinyl, meanwhile, is presumably in the same troupe as this charming fellow.)

I sadly did not get to introduce ponies in my campaign. I am, however, planning to have the party fight a sharktocrab or somethings similar. And I made ponies playable in my Planet Mercenary campaign.

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