• Published 30th May 2017
  • 1,015 Views, 42 Comments

๐Ÿ’ฏWords Or Less - PropMaster



Starlight Glimmer wakes up to a town filled with nonsense. She has to get to the bottom of everypony's sudden bizarre, colorful aphasia.

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๐Ÿ—ฃ๐Ÿ’ฏ!

Starlight Glimmer and Twilight Sparkle sat quietly together, both of their heads down as they read through spell book after spell book in the library in Twilight's castle. Starlight had chosen to focus on the strongest counter-curse spells she could find, and so far had no luck with anything that seemed viable. Twilight had been pouring over tomes, pushing over spells as she found them for Starlight to consider, but they'd both agreed that nothing they had seen thus far was going to work. Starlight sighed, looking up from the latest tome and shaking her head slowly. She looked at Twilight and shrugged.

Twilight nodded, setting aside a book of spells. "๐Ÿฆ„โญ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ก, ๐Ÿ˜ต ๐Ÿคค ๐Ÿ“–?"

Starlight grunted, yawning, "Yeah, Iโ€”"

Twilight stared at her as Starlight's eyes widened as she slapped her hooves over her mouth. Twilight shook her head and smacked Starlight on the back of the head gently with one wing, and rolled her eyes. "๐Ÿฆ„โญ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ก!"

Starlight rubbed the back of her head, looking sheepish. She looked wistfully over at the empty cup on her desk. Twilight followed her glance and smiled. "๐Ÿฒ!"

Spike peeked over a stack of books he'd been sorting through, smiling, "๐Ÿ•Š๐Ÿฆ„๐ŸŒ™โ˜€๏ธโœจ?"

Twilight gestured towards Starlight's empty cup. "๐Ÿฒ, ๐Ÿฆ„โญ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ก โ˜•๏ธ."

Spike nodded, grabbing Starlight's mug off of her desk and scampered away. "โ˜•๏ธ, โœ”๏ธ!"

Starlight leaned back in her chair, rubbing at her eyes. They'd been at this for hours. Princess Celestia and Luna had been in and out of the castle, bringing them spell books from the Canterlot Archive. Twilight had managed to explain that they'd sent word to Princess Cadance that they were seeking a spell to break the curse. Cadance had responded with a pictograph-filled letter an hour ago, which told Starlight that this curse had effected the Crystal Empire as well. She wondered, idly, if their little pictographic speech was sparkly like they were. She giggled, which brought a raised eyebrow from Twilight. "๐Ÿ˜„?"

Starlight shook her head, rolling her eyes as she leaned forward, peering at the spell book again. Spike returned from the kitchen with a fresh mug of coffee. "๐Ÿฆ„โญ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ก๐ŸŒŸ, โ˜•๏ธ!" he chirped, placing it in front of her with a smile.

Starlight returned his smile and gripped the mug in both hooves, taking a slow sip of the dark brew. She sighed as she felt her senses realign, and she almost felt normal. Despite the weirdness of the day thus far, she'd actually been having a decent time. If she concentrated, she felt like she was starting to get the hang of understanding the rest of the ponies and their colorful new way of speaking. It was still annoying as Tartarus, but she was managing.

There was a clatter of hooves outside the library, and the double doors into the room were swung open. Shining Armor and Princess Cadance trotted in, flanked by a half-dozen crystal pony guards carrying boxes of books. Cadance smiled, "๐Ÿ•Š๐Ÿฆ„๐ŸŒ™โ˜€๏ธโœจ!"

Twilight gasped, jumping up, "๐Ÿ•Š๐Ÿฆ„๐Ÿ‘‘๐Ÿ’˜๐Ÿ’™!"

They both grinned, and proceeded to dance at one another, chanting as they danced, "โ˜€๏ธ, โ˜€๏ธ, ๐Ÿž โฐ! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿด, & ๐Ÿ•บ!"

Starlight giggled. That was pretty adorable. And the song still made sense! Sort of. Cadance and Twilight hugged, and Shining Armor stepped in right afterwords, hugging his little sister. "๐Ÿ•Š๐Ÿฆ„๐ŸŒ™โ˜€๏ธโœจ!"

"๐Ÿฆ„โœจ๐Ÿคบ! ๐Ÿ˜„!" Twilight said, hugging her brother.

"๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ‘“๐Ÿ“–? ๐Ÿ’ก?" Shining Armor asked, looking around at all the books piled around Twilight and Starlight.

Twilight shook her head. "๐Ÿ˜Ÿ."

Cadance, meanwhile, turned and smiled at Starlight. "๐Ÿฆ„โญ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ก๐ŸŒŸ! ๐Ÿ˜„!"

Starlight smiled and waved. Cadance giggled, patting her gently on the shoulder. "๐Ÿ‘Œ?"

Starlight nodded, and gestured to the books that Cadance's guards had brought with them. Cadance turned, smiling, and pointed to the desks. "๐Ÿ‘‰ ๐Ÿ“ฆ๐Ÿ“–๐Ÿ‘‡."

The guards saluted and dropped off the boxes. Cadance gestured to one guard, who approached nervously. She pointed to Starlight Glimmer, smiling at the guard. The guard seemed to understand, and he swallowed, licking his lips. "P-princess Cadance had me save my words, to tell you how much it means to all of us that you're trying to break the curse. Thank you very ๐Ÿ’ฏ."

Starlight looked startled as the dreaded one-hundredth word spilled from the guard's lips, and he let out a sigh. "๐Ÿ˜–."

Cadance gave him a gentle pat on the shoulder. "โœ”๏ธ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ‘."

The guard smiled, "๐Ÿ‘, ๐Ÿ•Š๐Ÿฆ„๐Ÿ‘‘๐Ÿ’˜๐Ÿ’™."

Starlight dug into the new stack of books alongside Twilight, and Cadance joined them. Shining Armor and Spike sat down a little ways away, chatting with each other quietly, symbols spilling from their mouths as they spoke. Starlight felt a little nervous. There were so many ponies expecting her to perform, and she felt like she had a decent chance of getting things right... if she had enough words left. By her estimate, she had about sixty five words to go before she ran out, so the spell that she needed would have to be right at 60, or a little below.


It took another hour of reading, but suddenly Cadance leapt up and pulled a spell book onto Starlight's table. "๐Ÿฆ„โญ๏ธ๐Ÿ’ก๐ŸŒŸ! ๐Ÿ‘“๐Ÿ“–!"

Starlight jumped slightly as Cadance slammed the book down on her table, startling her out of her reverie. "Woah!"

Cadance froze, staring at her. She bit her lip, embarassed at startling a word out of Starlight. "๐Ÿ˜Ÿ."

Starlight shook her head, sighing, and looked down at the spell in the book. She read the description carefully, nodding slowly, and her eyes widened as she read. This could be it! She clapped her hooves, waving Twilight over. Twilight leaned over Starlight, peering at the spell, and she started to tap the words of the incantation. Starlight counted along carefully. They got to the end of the spell and counted again. All three of them counted, carefully. Sixty words.

Exactly sixty words.

Starlight frowned, reading the spell again and again. She stood up, slowly. Cadance and Twilight took a few steps back, looking at her with expectant smiles. Starlight exhaled, placing the book in front of herself, and began to channel magic into her horn, building the charge needed for the spell. She smirked at Twilight, trying to feel confident, and then she began to speak.

"Though tongues shall spill out glyphs of shame,
the world will never be the same,
with letters true and tongues unbound,
I speak the truth, restoring sound,
The glyphs will fall, changing the place,
where magic writes out friendship's fate,
The end of words,
With pictures new,
My magic powers,
The glyphs undo,
And words will come
Now unto y๐Ÿ’ฏ!"

Starlight's eyes widened in surprise as the end of her last word was cut off by a blurted, bright red pictogram. Twilight's jaw dropped open, and she gasped, "๐Ÿ’ฏ!?"

Starlight squeezed her eyes closed, and her ears went flat. "๐Ÿ’ฉ!!!!"

Author's Note:

Count the words. Before the spell, she was at 40.5. Yes, .5! Read the first thing she says in chapter one.

I have no regrets.

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Comments ( 19 )

Wow that wa-๐Ÿ˜Ž๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ˜ง๐Ÿ˜ฃ๐Ÿ‘พ

8199954 Because everyone hates change.

I have to say that I too was pleasantly surprised by how well Twilight and Cadance's dance translated to emojis.

8200293 This guy gets it.

8200388 Use Firefox to see the emojis properly? If you're on PC that is.

This story made me horrified and sad.

welp, we doomed.

Have an upvote. If for nothing else than for doing something different.

Awesome. That was something unique. Have a like and a follow :twilightsmile:

ยฎโ„น๏ธ๐Ÿ…ฟ๏ธ

Damn, this story had me hooked. Great stuff!

Wait do the I's count as .5s? I thought the half words would be a .5?

Why didnt they just whrite what they needed on a piece of paper and figure things out from there?

Real fun story! Love the out-of-box thinking to step out from structure. Provided some fun deciphering and some big belly laughs. You had me in fits with Applejack's conversation :)

Sad to see so many downvotes though! Are folk so down on something fun and interesting? It was still nicely written.

Maybe the downvotes could have been because of the resolution? Part of me wants to say that an extra chapter might have been nice. Maybe to put in a few more gags or show how the girls might solve something with just emoji for communication. It is a bit of a downer to end with them stuck that way. Forever stuck spouting pictures at one another. Still a good story and a fun quick read regardless :)

8369222
Oh man, this story got so much hate because I wrote and published it the DAY that FimFic added emoji support, which everybody was HATING ON at the time. I knew what I was doing, lol, and I'm not even a little bit sorry.

8337321
Writing counts towards the total.

As an experiment to see just how far one hundred words can stretch, I am going to attempt to summarize my feelings on this story in less than one hundred words. And seeing as how I will have used fifty six words by the end of this sentence, I already get just how difficult that is.

The premise is entertaining, especially given when this fic came out.

Those emojis are a bitch to try and read, though. Other than Starlight's name, Twilight and Cadance's greeting, and a few smaller sentences, I couldn't follow a thing.

Applejack can only say Apples.๐Ÿ’ฏ ๐Ÿคฃ

Welp, time to go get Sunset Shimmer.

This was really clever and enjoyable, kudos on managing to make it work so well. And Applejack was god damn hilarious :rainbowlaugh:

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