• Member Since 24th Apr, 2012
  • offline last seen 3 hours ago

Wise Cracker

Just some guy, who likes animated stuff. That's about it.



Everything has fallen apart for Scootaloo.

Her Cutie Mark will never come. The doctor said so. Her blood is just wrong.

As she stays in the Cutie Mark Crusader's Clubhouse, her friends show up. Now she has to explain that her crusade is over, and that there's even worse news.

Life as she knows it is over.

A/N: Kind of a sad story, with an upbeat ending. Listed as Slice-of-Life because it contains headcanon that makes some modicum of sense. Pretty light (Scoot's not even an orphan in this), and may have been done before, but this idea's been bothering me for too long, so here it is. Bonus points if you know what the title means. Avoid comments for massive spoilers, even if you do know what the title implies.

And yes, I do have some background in genetics, but I'm skimming it a bit for show feel.

Edit 28/7: Made the whole thing a little longer, and I think better in general. Hope you enjoy!

Watch out for the sequel, being worked on now.

Chapters (1)
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Comments ( 79 )

This idea had been nagging me for a while now. Just a bit of headcanon I'd throw out there. I rushed the writing a bit, some bits might need to be longer, and it definitely needs a picture to insert, but I can do that later. Hope you all enjoy it!

Edit 28/7 : It has now been edited to be a little longer, and some scenes that didn't make sense when first read have been altered to do so. Also some more pondering on the implications at the end. Figured that would add some more weight to the whole thing. Still need to get a picture up, though.


I DEMAND A SEQUEL!:raritystarry:

Little thick on the technical aspects, but a damn fine idea. :scootangel:

Nice.She might have to keep her Changeling ID hidden for her own safety.

U really should make a sequel to this

Scootaloo? A changling? Definitely original. I like how you pulled it off.:scootangel:

Probably the best jargon-laced story I have found here. Thus, I will give the Official Seal of Awesomeness:

I'm aware of that, but it had to be. For one thing: I needed an excuse to use this title. And apparently it caught on, because this is my most popular story yet, despite my thinking it's the worst written of the bunch. For another, if I use this idea, I needed a good excuse for it being the way it is. I like my Scootaloo to be not an orphan, since it's just too easy for a cheap shock. I'm aware of the hypocrisy in that statement, btw :twilightblush:

Anyway, she has pony parents, but turns out to have some changeling DNA. That means her parents have the DNA. How come they aren't that way? Homozygotes FTW? Still wouldn't explain why other couples don't have kids like that. Make it a trigger affecting mitochondrial DNA, then, since that's a far smaller level to be working on, and prolly the limit before moving into magic territory. And make the gene depend on population density, which was the whole point of the story. The sad part is: if the Changelings hadn't attacked, she could've gotten a Cutie Mark and grown up normal. Because the monsters revealed themselves, she is revealed to be a monster. That's the inner conflict I'm going for.

Also note that she's not the same breed as the Changelings that attacked Canterlot. The way I see it: Changelings evolved from ponies who were being plagued by diseases affecting their Cutie Marks, when they got them. We're talking child ilnesses here, so the ones who already had Marks were safe, but the ones who didn't were susceptible. At some point, ponies evolved without a cutie mark, but as a result they didn't have a fixed talent and more importantly, no fixed limit on what magics they could do (hence the alicorn look). The downside was that, after a few generations, they also lacked the ability to use friendship and love as a source of magical power. Except that didn't matter much at the time, since they were still loved by their friends and family. Kinda like how freshwater fish can make unsaturated fats, but marine fish can't, because they have algae to feed on who can. They didn't need to predate at first.

As for Scootaloo's case: the gene would only trigger in a certain population density of Changelings. Why? Suppose a new disease breaks out and it's killing off all the ones without a Cutie Mark by giving them unstable cutie marks (Cutie Pox, Talent Rabies, whatever). Eventually Changelings would be the only ones contributing to the gene pool, so a pony who becomes a Changeling in that population has an evolutionary advantage (surviving)...while still contributing regular pony genes once the disease is gone. This means Changelings who turned would still have pony babies once the disease was no longer a danger. In anthropology, such illnesses are called crowd killers and they change the course of history: they come in, and leave everyone either dead or immune. Here, immunity comes from either being a Changeling or suviving the illness. A small segment of 'pure' ponies could gain immunity and eventually the population would re-establish itself, and with the disease gone there's no need for potential 'lings to turn, so they can just get their cutie mark anyway. Since these things only hit blank flank kids, it would take a while, but it would work. Hence why she doesn't have holes: she's from a different breed. The attacking ones were an isolated population.

Honestly, I was expecting that reaction, but I want to finish the Flight Camp fic first (which is not related to this), and its sequel. I've also got a nice idea for a story with Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy discussing embarrassing problems. Main thing is: I have no idea what a proper sequel to this would entail. It's a simple enough idea to warrant an alternate universe, maybe, but a regular sequel that follows this?
Hmm...the only thing I can really think of is that she gets a coltfriend, who starts going a bit weak after a while. But I've written that sort of thing before in other fandoms, I want it to really twist, you know? I'll give it some thought.
Edit: Oh yes, the idea is there. And it is a good one. Sappy and disgusting, but good. If you think I was using obscure science with this one...just wait.

That chicken part made me giggle. :scootangel: Great story!

Thanks for the comment. I wasn't originally going to put that in, but then I thought: "I need a light note to end on, and this is just too damn easy."
So it went in. I'm surprised at the sudden influx of comments, though. Guess shorter stories are just more popular :derpytongue2:

893985 I wish I could help you then, but I have to get a chapter out by midnight Saturday and I have barely started it:ajsleepy:

I eagerly anticipate the sequel where Scootaloo is the subject of an anti-changeling witch hunt. :scootangel:

Somehow, I'm beginning to think some writers might beat me to that one. What I have in mind is a little more...out of the box, if you will.

Alright, pretty good. Nothing out of the ordinary, but good.

COOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL! :applecry::unsuresweetie:

Err...does that mean you approve or not? The CMC need some other emoticons, it gets confusing. I just figured that'd be their natural reaction. I mean, all things considered, it makes sense, no?

As said before, it was a little rushed, like written mostly in one afternoon after hanging around my head for months. I just wanted to broach the idea and put it out there. There wasn't much else to add to it without making an entirely different story.

905205 Yes it means I like it and yes the CMC needs other emoticons.

899818 try makeing her live her life as a changleing test her, streangths, weaknesses, limits, rage induced power flux, or get her to pwn DT and SP

:yay:SEQUEL!!!! seguel, sequel, Sequel!!!:flutterrage:

Flight Camp story first, then exams...then you get two sequels, both from different perspectives. If it works out, at least. I have the idea for my part, not sure what Moon_Fire's story will be focusing on, and if you liked this you'll love the next one. Rumbleloo romance with some tragedy mixed in, probably going to be mature for good measure. It's the obvious sequel idea, that's all I'll say.

But please, sending in Fluttershy to stare at me won't make it come any quicker. :applecry:

Thanks for your healthy (if frightening) interest!


You owe arcum42 a thank you for telling me about this story. ~I~ owe him a thank you for telling me about this story! As far as I know, this is the only Scootaling (Changeling Scootaloo) story on the entire Internet! Now we just need a crossover between this, Story of the Blanks/Bad End Apple Bloom (AppleBlank), and FiW Sweetiebot, and the Balooga ideal will be complete.

dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/Sweetie_Belle_lolface.png dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/Scootaloo_lolface.png dl.dropbox.com/u/31471793/FiMFiction/Applebloom_lolface.png

I shall enjoy this.

...This had some AWESOME lines!

I really enjoyed this. Very well done. I think you nailed the personalities of the CMCs and RD perfectly.

Thanks! Characterisation's always something that worries me.

Also, on your Scootaling story: very good of you to finish it and post one chapter over a fixed period of time. I used that trick on my very first fanfic, it appears to have worked.

Sweet, not really sad.

I know, but it's the closest tag I could find. And given the nature of what happens, I had to give some indication that there's a loss involved. So yeah, it's a necessary evil there.


First: About story.
“Now you can really be a chicken.” :rainbowlaugh:
All story goes from sad to comedy and back. And then... Just like in show. Smile :pinkiehappy:

Second: :scootangel:

I just linked that story as response to person who wanted "Moar!" :twilightsmile:
So... If it was bad thing to do, sorry :twilightsheepish:

But I say like this: Both stories are good.
I will try to recommend this story to people I know, but you already have Fave and Like from me. :derpytongue2:

I'm aware of the story, I'm just glad the author took the time to read this thing after he posted it and linked it. I'm sure quite a few people picked it up recently because of that (it's gotten a few more favs all of a sudden, and I doubt it's just because of Upside to your Backside being popular). I suspect the whole reason not more people read this is because it's not obvious right from the getgo what is happening. The title doesn't suggest it (to a science noob it doesn't, at least), there's no cover pic. It's supposed to be a surprise. Scootaling is...pretty obvious right from the start.

That said: the stories are just different. Main reason there aren't more Scootaling stories is because just having Scootaloo be a changeling isn't a story, it's a story aspect. I went with the story being how she finds out she's turning into one, hence the medical terms. Scootaling assumes she was born as one, and doesn't have blood relatives in Ponyville. It also lacks the medical aspects, as far as I can tell.

So yeah, now we have two Scootaling stories. The actually called Scootaling is more popular, there's good reasons for it.

What more should I say? :unsuresweetie:


Ah, no worries, then. I thought you wanted to bring it to my attention. No, people wanting moar is a sign of a good idea that can be executed in many ways. People find my story through that one, it's only fair the favour be returned.

Though between you and me, I suspect the feature box will take care of that nicely :derpyderp1:.

"these are not the ponies you're looking for

I see what you did there :rainbowlaugh:

Best ending EVER

This is freaking awesome! Any idea if there will be a sequel or a series based on the idea contained in this story?

The sequel is being worked on. It is 'Foal in Any Other Skin', which you can find in my stories list. It is a twinned storyline, with mostly the same events seen from two different perspectives. My side of it is a Rumble/Scootaloo romance plot that turns to tragedy due to... well, [spoilers]. The other side of it is a look at what happens when this occurs in a situation where there isn't such an acceptance. I should note, though, that oth sequels are rated mature due to a few questionable scenes I can't rate Teen under any circumstances. And just to reassure you: yes, these scenes are needed for the story to have its full impact, and no they are not full-on clop scenes.

So far only the prologues to both have been uploaded, the entire stories will be submitted when they are done. But since this is a double feature with two different authors (the other being Moon Fire, both of us need to synchronise the plots and agree on what to keep or cut. So it may take a while. If you liked this for the changeling aspect, you might like my Faux Pas story. It's got a different premise, but it's also got changelings and I'm told it's a fairly new take on them. Other than that, the Flight Camp thing isn't really Scootaloo-exclusive, so that might not be to your taste. That one's an acquired taste, really.

Anyway, I do also have a CMC/Octavia sleepover fic in the making, but it's on the slow track for now. Sequels first, feature bait second. And college thesis somewhere in between, of course :twilightsmile:.


She had to suck up a tear.
-Nice reference to "Hurricane Fluttershy"... I assume it IS a reference?

You could just pick one out and stick with it.
-Oh dear... that is actually a huge problem. Because she is likely to make a poor choice. Like the other two CMC, she never really got what a cutie-mark MEANS. She is likely to trap herself psychologically into something that she doesn't really love or isn't really good at. Of course, given that we know she eventually performs the Hammerhead, it won't be TOO bad in the long-run... especially since she did it as a blank-flank. Maybe she has ALREADY done it? Of course, there could also be no problem along these lines?

“I dunno, ask a gryphon or a mule. They never get cutie marks and they can handle it just fine,”
-That is actually good advice, and since it is coming from a fellow CMC, she might actually grasp it and internalize it.

a light burning started in her legs and what remained of her wings.
-Might have subconsciously read the next sentence before I hypothesized this, but this is probably her shape-shifting to another form. As I type this I realize it is probably to Changeling form, as she becomes comfortable with who she is. I wonder how much catching up she has to do on learning the theory and exercises to develop her magic? I wonder how different the non-shape-shifting changeling magic is from unicorn magic? I could definitely see her enjoying the "Meteor Dive" spell. And that could be part of The Hammerhead.

It did feel…final, though. Like that one step it takes to fall into a bottomless abyss.
-Much like getting a cutie-mark in a way, and triggered (at least in her case) by the same sort of self-acceptance.

She felt quite normal, actually.
-So... she shifted into her old self? I hope she can still shape-shift at the least. She will have to learn to be responsible with it, but that could be an interesting story (or aspect of the rest of this one) in and of itself.

Even worse if you consider it couldhave
-Missing space.

Dash wasn’t even sure if the filly would be able to live in Ponyville anymore.
-Because of prejudice? With all six of the Elements to keep tabs on her, I doubt Celestia is going to treat her like an enemy... unless, at her stage of development, she could be forced somehow by the "hive mind" or whatever. In which case keeping her away from the Mane Six so she can't further discover their strengths and weaknesses, might actually be sadly necessary. If it is just prejudice then I would think that since, Twilight managed to get Zecora accepted fairly easily, so this should be possible, if difficult. I wonder if there will be any concern about other changelings impersonating Scootaloo, so as to have an excuse if they set off any Changeling Detecting spells that might have been recently invented?

A green beam tore a hole straight through the clubhouse roof.
-Lost control of her horn? Or is another changeling tearing its way into the clubhouse to try to bring her "home"? If so, I am surprised that Rainbow Dash hasn't made some noise laying at least 5 of them out. Maybe she let "Fluttershy" come up behind her? But really, I'm betting on Scootaloo losing control of her magic.

Of course things would blow up; it was the Cutie Mark Crusaders, for crying out loud.

Her mane had turned a little pale, though, as had her tail. The horn didn’t look too big or weird, either, aside from the curling.
-This now her default look, or is she just still learning control? Maybe she acknowledged that she is BOTH, rather than just "I'm the same pony inside"? Which would be a good follow-on to the lesson of "Dash of Gold".

She actually had wings now, not feathered stubs.
-Yay! And her shapeshifting probably covers KEEPING that size should she wish to when in a feathered form.

Forget dressing up, if anypony asked, she cast a spell to get them.
-Eh, if she keeps them insect-like, I think full-disclosure, combined with Rainbow and Cheerilee reading the town foals the riot act might be the best policy.

That brought another thought to mind: she could cast spells now.
-Called it. Although it may still turn out that Changeling magic is very different from unicorn magic, so she may have a very slow road to travel in learning it, without knowledge base available to her. Then again, I imagine that the follow-up action after the wedding (to make sure they didn't just come right back into the outlying areas of Equestria again) might have netted Equestrian intelligence a few POWs. I don't know what the Equestrian Ethics on mind-reading spells is, but given how loose they are on mind-CONTROL (one day of chores for the Love Poison? That would be at least a month in Juve IRL... then again, maybe that was much more a matter of Big Mac and Cheerilee being extremely merciful). I suppose "Easily Forgivable" does not equate to "Acceptable Military Conduct". Of course, being simply being treated well could extract a lot of information from Changelings in theory, especially in the long-term. If one gets a MUCH more "hard core" I could see Princess Luna making their every sleeping hour (perhaps augmented in number of hours per day via magic or medication) horrific as an interrogation tactic.

Great, now she'd have start actually reading spellbooks.
-Again, implying the magic is very similar. Then again, it is quite possible that since the two aren't MUCH more different biologically than pegasi and earthponies, that the magic is the same. Given the short length of this story, I am betting on it never being mentioned. Could make for a good facet for sequel if you end up doing one... probably not a central theme though. Now learning about the shape-shifting OTOH... also, I wonder if this will give her Earth Pony talents as well? And the Hammerhead could be a fusion of all three talents in her case. Wings for thrust, unicorn power to start the shield forming, and Earthpony to stick to surfaces, especially those made of anything that "comes from the earth", which could be stretched to include metal and plastic... basically anything accept clouds, which the pegasus aspect could pick up the slack for.

Being called a blank flank was one thing, being called a cheese grater was another.
-...good point. Of course, since she lost and regained the horn I think she can still shapeshift.

t probably wasn’t too appropriate, since she wasn’t sure how the whole ‘hugging’ thing went to the ‘feeding’ thing yet. She really didn’t want any accidents of one turning into the other.
-True. I wonder if the point of questioning about leaving town will be if he will have to live with Princess Cadance to be fed without causing harm.

the mare pointed at the ground to illustrate the fact that her number one fan was finally at eye level with her.
-So... this is a separate continuity from your other stories? Or maybe it happens before "The Crusader and the Bullhead", and she wanted to learn how to fly in her birth-form, rather than having to trade off flight for being socially acceptable? I'm thinking separate continuity.

Now come on, we should get you checked up back at the hospital.
-Yeah, good point... hate to see her metamorphosis have forgotten to include kidneys or something like that. Plus running whatever unicorn-specific check-ups are necessary.

Same shape or make up a new identity?
-Same one. Much much better in the long run. Might start some paranoia, but only among idiots (assuming she IS safe to be allowed at large, which I think she is.)

Would anyone really mind if she decided to look like an alicorn from now on?
-Eh, Silver Spoon and Diamond Tiara will accuse her of being stuck up... but that is Silver Spoon and Diamond Tiara. As long as she remains relatively humble about it, there shouldn't be any problem with showing her true self. Plus I don't know if she can use any magic other than shapeshifting if she doesn't have her horn materialized.

Would it be considered poor form if she joined the hoofball team and kept her chitin armour under her uniform?
-Sounds like extra protection to me, not really a BIG advantage. Then again, I don't know Football (For our international readers: the American version) well enough to know.

Would ‘making boys cry’ fall under the header ‘playing with your food’?
-Well, since it isn't something one should try to do anyway... that road lies the path of the succubus, rather than the path of the "special diet required".

Actually…how was she supposed to handle boys at all?
-With honesty, full disclosure, and more frequent check-ups by both a physician and Twilight. Heck, the research data on the mechanics of feeding could be very valuable to both theoretical and military science. Maybe some other sciences too.

Would she get mind control powers? Just a few minutes as a Changeling and she was already pondering waving her hoof and going “These aren’t the ponies you’re looking for”. Would that work? And how would her shapeshifting go, exactly? Would it make a difference if she turned into a colt?
-Extraneous space before "Would". Also, I rather think that Chrysalis's mind-control was more in the way of horn-power, which generally has to be studied for most applications, rather than an innate thing shared by all Changelings. As for the limits and techniques of shapeshifting, that is a very good question. Unless changelings are predominantly a female or female-dominated society, I would say that cross-gender is probably possible at at least the cosmetic level, or the changelings that attacked the Mane Six couldn't have all turned into them... unless maybe Chrysalis formed an all-female unit just for that contingency to delay them until enough Changeling's reached The Elements.

More to the point…what could she get away with now?
-Flight and disguise in one day? Yeah, time to make disaster-proofing the town a VERY high priority. Might be best to have her only do it under supervision until the novelty wears off, just so she doesn't do anything TOO bad to Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon, especially if they call her "Cheese Grater Legs" despite the fact she lacks that particular feature.

Well, maybe not everything.

-I see you did a sequel. That seems best, although if your muse hadn't spoken up, it would have been best to leave it. We shall see what the quality of it is, but I am pretty sure it will be on your usual level. Actually, this is the least good of the three stories of yours I have read so far. Maybe you don't do "Short" well? It just seems to come out of nowhere for the beginning. Then again, "suddenly discover themselves to be a changeling" has to work like that and "they knew themselves to be a Changeling all along" has different dynamics to it.

Thank you for writing this.

No worries. Had I known the twist to the story had to be advertised instead of left as a twist, I'd have added this story to the appropriate groups myself. Oh well, live and learn :twilightsmile:. More is on the way.

Very cute and sweet. Kudos for the correct spelling of "faerie", and lol at the Star Wars reference.

I just had to LOL at the last "chicken" comment.

BTW, I must also congratulate you for having so many stories that have like-to-dislike ratios above 100:1. That's utterly outstanding, and will get me to follow you even before I read your stories.

Your timing is questionable. I take it you understand why the sequel is such a pressing matter? :pinkiecrazy:

Glad you like it, at any rate.

3416629 yeah, I liked it. I can't wait for a sequel that's more than a prologue... if you get my drift... hint hint hint...


That was... nontrivial. The main aspect was something new for me, and I am still a little surprised. But I liked it. Especially how you turn the end - everything negative became positive (for Scootaloo). Put aside the fact that this is probably the only fiction on this site, that uses words like "DNA" or "mitochondria", what is extra pleasant, because people tend not to mess up with pony genetic. Which is quiet sad.

“Now you can really be a chicken.”

You can basically feel the grin AB had on her face after that^^

Reactions in order of occurrence:
Whew, she's fine.
What?!? You mislead me!
:yay: Star Wars!
Shut up, Apple Bloom.

I had the exact same reaction but then i was like she sounds like she looks awesome i need to see a picture of this version of scootaling

Still learning Blender modelling and Inkscape. I might be able to do a pic eventually, but I can't make any promises. Basically imagine a black pony, shiny, slightly translucent mane and tail, no holes. It's on the long-term to-do list.

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