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Novel-Idea


"Do it right and do it with style." - Author, Designer & Project Lead of the story-driven DLC Gardens of Equestria: This Coming Storm - (Patreon)


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Don't you hate it when you're arrested, roped into a charity gala, and stumble across schemes to upend the entertainment industry's apple cart? All because you're the Princess's Apprentice? Sunset Shimmer sure does.



Historian’s Note:
Set in the Wavelengths timeline where the Sonic Rainboom didn’t happen, How Not To Use Your Royal Prerogative occurs about five years after Grading on a Bell Curve and about two years before the events in The Application of Unified Harmony Magics.

Knowledge of the previous tales is suggested, but not required.

Cast: Sunset Shimmer, Cheerilee, Moon Dancer, Minuette, Coloratura & Coco Pommel
Co-Starring: Spotlight, Security Chief Gateway, Vinyl Scratch and special guest star Octavia Melody


Stories set in the Wavelengths Timeline in chronological order:

Origins Arc
The Alchemy of Chemistry
Bards of the Badlands
Grading on a Bell Curve
Habits of the Equestrian Phoenix
How Not To Use Your Royal Prerogative

Applications Arc
The Application of Unified Harmony Magics
Princess Celestia: A Brief History
The Cloudsdale Report

Infatuations and Other Lies Arc
Tactics of Snowbound Unicorns
A Study in Chaos Theory (Coming Soon!)


Cover Design by Novel Idea
Coco Pommel Vector: DashieSparkle
Coloratura Vector: DashieSparkle
Sunset Shimmer Cutie Mark: Millennial Dan

Beta Reader & Editor Credits
Ebon Quill: Audio Director & Quest Designer on The Manehattan Project
Little Tinker: Master of Systems at Poniverse & Scripting Engineer on The Manehattan Project
Beltorn: Commenter-at-Large on FimFiction
Tchernobog: AppleDash Fanatic - My debt is paid
Cursori: Stolen Enchanted Library Editor
Painted Heart: Wife of the Author :twilightsmile:

Word Count: 64,000
Version: 12.54

Chapters (5)
Comments ( 136 )

“See, that’s your first mistake.” Moon Dancer grinned and winked. “You’ve never been to a librarian after-hours party.”

:twilightoops: And now I'm wondering precisely what Twilight missed when she raced off to Ponyville...

Ponies have an E3. I don't know why this entertains me as much as it does.

Interesting. Seems Rara doesn't have Svengallop working for her. Indeed, there's a lot going on here that I can see passing over my head. I'm sure later chapters will clarify that.

That's odd. I thought the timeline where Twilight became MC Sparklepants was three universes over from this one.

Huh. A false Sunset. Mere disguise, changeling, alternate universe instance? I supposd I'll have to wait and see. Looking forward to finding out.

:pinkiehappy:

Finally.

I must say, this is living up to expectations so far and I can't wait to see more. I can only imagine what Celestia's reaction will be when she learns that her pupil got arrested for trespassing...

I'll throw in time travel shenanigans as a possibility for the implied fake Sunset, although I admit it's a bit more of a stretch than her just being an impostor. Also of note was the unnamed mare with the light blue coat and the silver mane that Sunset thought seemed familiar; I don't recognize the description off the top of my head so for now she's going straight into my brain's 'suspicious character' folder.

Loved the final scene of Sunset running into Gateway, by the way. Comedy gold.

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Finally.

If only you would know the work that has gone into this. Novel gets major extra credit for his patience with the editing process.

HAHAHA I did not see that coming, what a brilliant ending to the chapter

I find it curious that she doesn't seem to recall what happened "three nights ago," or at least seems reasonably certain that what did happen is not what others seem to think happened.

This is going to be interesting.

Of course a bright orange-yellow unicorn would be good at sneaking around. Sunset doesn't need a spy suit or an eyepatch, heck she's brought her entire gang with her too. I wonder how this little expedition compares to the time she and Moon Dancer tried to find the eternal cake. Too bad this Sunset isn't head of the DSP, or else that would really be a party. And Cheerilee must still be new to Ponyville if this seems crazy to her (then again most of the Mane Six are probably in different roles than in canon so maybe Ponyville isn't quite so insane).

So, either somepony else already tried the "I'm an important person" line and ruined it for Sunset, or time travel or memory problems. I'm leaning towards the more mundane explanation at the moment, though always hard to tell with these stories how many clues there are. Minuette should probably bring up how many relevant conversations they just happen to overhear, as if due to a good GM. Though you'd think Sunset's look would be more distinctive (isn't she adorable?) or guardponies might just not care either. And a previous story did go into the mechanics of transformation/illusion magic quite a bit, so who knows.

It appears our very suspicious mystery-mare is better at sneaking in than Sunset and her crew.

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:twilightoops: And now I'm wondering precisely what Twilight missed when she raced off to Ponyville...

A great many things... :twilightblush: Then again... who knows what happened in Golden Oaks after closing time?

Ponies have an E3. I don't know why this entertains me as much as it does.

My editors asked if this was intentional. I was somewhat hurt by this.

That's odd. I thought the timeline where Twilight became MC Sparklepants was three universes over from this one.

Thirteen, actually.

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I'll throw in time travel shenanigans as a possibility for the implied fake Sunset, although I admit it's a bit more of a stretch than her just being an impostor. 

:trollestia:

Loved the final scene of Sunset running into Gateway, by the way. Comedy gold.

Heh. I loved that moment too. :pinkiehappy:

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You had a ton of good stuff in here. Most of my responses would be little smirks or trollestia comments, but I will point out one in particular...

And a previous story did go into the mechanics of transformation/illusion magic quite a bit, so who knows.

Somepony's paying attention!

Light blue and silver hair? This wouldn't be the Humble and Unimportant Trixie, butterfly victim, perhaps?

Great to see this return, I've enjoyed your work set in other pony timelines, but I've been missing this series.

Once again, this is an excellent job on the start of your newest story. The exchanges and characterizations were quite well done of course, as was the set up for the main story. And, yeah, I LOVE Cheerilee trying (not succeeding, but still trying) to act as the group's conscience. And, well, considering this is still years before Nightmare Moon returns AND most of the Mane Six are in different areas at this point, it makes sense that Ponyville would be quite a bit - saner - at this point than we know it.

At any rate, I will very definitely be looking forward to more of this. However, because I know real world concerns have to come first AND inspiration can be hard to come by, I am also quite willing to be patient.

Cast: Sunset Shimmer, Cheerilee, Moon Dancer, Minuette, Coloratura & Coco Pommel

Coloratura & Coco Pommel

Your Daybreaker story would've been enough to get me to check out your stuff, you know. You didn't have to suck up to my supporting character tastes or anything. But CocoRara content is still CocoRara content...

I've got a few thousand words of reading to catch up on, my friend. Thanks a lot. :rainbowlaugh:

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If you look all way back to my first story in Wavelengths, The Application of Unified Harmony Magics, Coco and Rara are both mentioned as friends of Sunset and the gang!

I've been planning this FOREVER! :pinkiecrazy:

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You've been waiting a long time for this, haven't you? :trixieshiftright:

“You’ve had a lot of bad ideas, Sunset, but this is probably one of the worst.”

I'm already smiling.

“See, that’s your first mistake.” Moon Dancer grinned and winked. “You’ve never been to a librarian after-hours party.”

Yeh. They are all themed. The last one had to do with a large and very specific number of hay bales. We were all feeling that party in the morning.

As if I could let a sentence with "wink" in it not have alewdcomment.

Stanchion storage. Why does one of them have a lanyard saying “Stan” on it? Whatever.

"Stanchion" According to google:

an upright bar, post, or frame forming a support or barrier.

  • a frame that holds the head of a cow in place, especially to facilitate milking.

Oh my

Because they know you’re destined for greater things. Good merchants are smart enough to try to earn favor with their betters.

*Contented Sigh*
I've missed this voice. Haven't been reading anything pony/Sunset Shimmer recently, so I haven't gotten to read this wonderful little creature in a while.

Minuette pirouetted, and placed her hoof against Sunset’s muzzle. With her other hoof, she pointed at her twitching ears.

When the Minuette in my imagination preformed this pirouette, she did so with 2 more spins than were strictly necessary to turn to face Sunny.

“I don’t care what it takes, Miss Beats!”

First name that occurred to me upon thinking about this character's full name was "Sick Beats". That poor pony. I, too, would go by "Miss Beats" if I were her.

There was a large sign on the door at the end of the hallway emblazoned with the words ‘Performers Only.’ They were impressive letters too. Bright red, with a giant exclamation point at the end. They were very intimidating… or would be if she wasn’t Sunset Shimmer.

Totally thought they were going to crack open that door and suddenly find themselves on stage. :rainbowlaugh:

Sweep Sweep Sweep Sweep

“I think what’s she’s saying,” Sunset interjected,

...leaning in to whisper in Cheerilee's ear, "is that there doesn't have to be a responsible one."

I really don't remember this Moon Dancer at all. It's been a while since I read any of your stuff, Novs.

All of this banter. I love Moon Dancer and Minuette constantly chiming in with random quips. "Help? Sorry, have we met?" and "We will?"

And as far as the guess for TSSSF, the cherries bit seemed too specific to be random, and the "Teacher's Scowl" seemed to remind me of something, tho that might just be the fact that there were a few "teacher" themed cards in TSSSF. So, y'know, off the top of my head, those are my guesses.

Actually, now that I think about it, the librarian bit at the beginning, maybe? The Stanchion thing?
Definitely guessing the Stanchion "Stan" thing.
Also it totally had a lanyard on it that Sunny could have used. Just sayin'. Keep your eyes open, Sunny. Prepping spells to cover for your allies screw ups is only half the caster's job.

And now that we have that out of the way:
*LE GASP*
Did someone CLONE Sunset Shimmer!?!
Or dimensional magical Shenanigans!?!
Or TIME SHENANIGANS!?!
IS SOMEONE MESSING WITH HER MIND!??!
Or did someone just steal a hair or something and transfigure themselves?
NO WAIT! CHANGELINGS! The cool ones. Not the tie-dye deer-beetle hybrids.

64,000 words? No wonder it took/is taking so long to finalize.

It's back! It was worth the wait... it barely even feels... :twilightoops: ... tardy...

That felt needed. We aren't at the point in this timeline where Twi can be here to join library night parties, but she's still allotted her two bits. Sounds like Sunset has more than that, which is good, she can hire an investigator to figure out what just happened. I know a couple mares who've worked that line before... though I dunno what they're doing in this iteration so... sorry Sunny, you're on your own there.

I had to google what TSSSF was, and whether I'm better for the answer I got is questionable, buuut I certainly have nothing on the reference. Alas, I'm am without pony points. I can't find the booth to reimburse 'em anyway.

I'm really loving Cheerilee as the 'I dunno, Sunset, maybe this is a bad idea' type. The group needed one and she fits the bill perfectly. Minuette and Moon Dancer are both enablers in their own way... or maybe even instigators is more accurate. Looking forward to seeing this play out.

I see you referenced the best music craze of 2016. :pinkiecrazy:

It sounds like Coloratura was spared the evil manager in this timeline; poor Sapphire, though…

Wait, is Coco Coloratura's manager in this timeline? Or does she have another role, like costumer? I guess we'll see. If she's not the manager, then it's probably this pony by the name of Spotlight (who I hope has a grey coat and purple mane).

Meanwhile, somepony faked being Sunset at the last tour stop; the most likely suspect is currently the mare that Sunset sort-of recognized, who may or may not be Trixie, who may or may not have been one of Old Sunset's many victims. It seems like a very odd way to get revenge, so it's probably just coincidence that Sunset ever found out about this impostor. Probably.

I'm so happy to see the next part of this series; I was starting to get a little worried.

Hey there, Novel Idea! I haven't read this first chapter yet, but I was wondering--do you have a planned updated schedule, like you sometimes do? I'm curious to know how often this story will update, if you know. Waiting is hard!

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For once, I do not! Chapter 2 is still in polish phase, but it'll be out as soon as it's done! Hopefully in a week or two.

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Thanks so much for getting back to me on that!

Hmm, hmm, I see, I see... Yes, Coco Pommel is indeed cute. Also adept at navigating this sort of situation, I see. I look forward to seeing more of her.

And the fake-Sunset mystery gets deeper, but also a little more lit-up at the same time? Some questions answered (or perhaps only seemingly answered), others raised. I like it :twilightsmile:

More ponies thinking the imposter incident is mysterious.

Will we be seing someone with a stylish hat blowing bubbles from their pipe in an upcoming chapter?

Sunset's already plenty adorable, at least when she hasn't got a huge chip on her shoulder. :twilightsmile: Although it is pretty tough to resist Coco too. And no one expects the Coco Inquisition. Sorry, couldn't resist.

Now one of them just needs to suggest they split up and then it'll be a proper Scooby Doo mystery. I'm curious to see how Coco is in this timeline, not to mention Rara.

Coco, you devious minx! I love what you've done with Hatbutt, Novel.

As for the mysterious impersonator, there are several possibilities. I don't feel I have enough data to make any hypotheses yet, but I'll definitely be reading the next installment with great interest.

For your timeline did applejacks depature to become an orange happen before or after her friendship with rara?

Hmmm... now the real question is... have you actually already met this imposter or not? Has it been in this story? Has it been in another?

Ah, what the heck. Might as well tell you. You've met this imposter in one of the stories I've published on FimFiction within the last year or so. :moustache:

Helpful, huh?
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Wheels within wheels my friend. Wheels within wheels.

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It's possible. It's definitely possible. :twilightsmile:

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That would be a bit more silly... but a lot less interesting than what I have in store. :duck:

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She could take over the world with cuteness. I'm sure of it. As for the mystery... see above...

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Hmmm. You know... I can't quite remember. I guess we'll just have to wait and see. Maybe Rara knows. We'll talk to her in the next chapter. :ajsmug:

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:pinkiegasp: It was Princess Celestia the whole time! :trollestia:

That aside, nice to know you've essentially narrowed it down to every character that's ever appeared in basically any of your stories. Though it did give me a bit of a spark that's left my best guess as that one student from, uh, Alchemy of Chemistry I think it was? I can't recall her name right now but I'm sure you know who I'm talking about; involved in another incident of Sunset being framed, her uncle or something was the headmaster or some other bigwig, something something difference between illusion and transfiguration/transmutation/whatever it is you're calling it, wanted revenge because Sunset ruined her chance at love or something, got expelled for it?

Admittedly that's probably wrong, but it does strike me as a potential motive and the set-up is certainly familiar. Also possibly related, that unnamed mare I mentioned in my comment on the previous chapter - I'm way too tired to check various descriptions again, but Sunset thought she was familiar and she's still suspicious to me because of it.

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That's definitely one theory. It may have come up during the development of Prerogative even... :rainbowkiss:

Hey there. Sorry I took so long, but I have to say, you once again did a great job on this latest chapter. I LOVED the meeting between Coco and Sunset and her group. Yeah, excellent work on the exchanges, characterizations and future chapter set-up in all the right places.

And, it could be just a coincidence, but it seems like every time somebody tries to impersonate Sunset, she ends up making AT LEAST ONE new friend. Of course, this is only the second time it's happened, so it IS still possible that it's just a coincidence.

At any rate, it will be very entertaining seeing Sunset and her friends investigate the impostor (which, I know, is the whole point).
'
I'll very definitely be looking forward to more of this, but will also be very willing to be patient.

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You know, I remember when Starlight Glimmer showed up, I shouted "Kill her now! She's bound to be totally evil!" Since anypony with a Thesaurus-Name of Twilight Sparkle has been totally evil. :twilightoops:

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What did Gloaming Gleam do to you? :applecry:

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See my previous comment. :rainbowderp:

Hmmm.... mysterious.... I am intrigued...

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Hmmm. You know... I can't quite remember. I guess we'll just have to wait and see. Maybe Rara knows. We'll talk to her in the next chapter. :ajsmug:

I'm getting the odd impression that the older mare that Coco is with is Applejack. The age seems out, but that could be a socialite AJ seeking to appear more refined.

Ah, what the heck. Might as well tell you. You've met this imposter in one of the stories I've published on FimFiction within the last year or so. :moustache:

I'm going to go with the imposter being one of the Sunsets from SunLight Sliders. It's not probable, but that multiverse is compatible with this universe.

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I'm getting the odd impression that the older mare that Coco is with is Applejack. The age seems out, but that could be a socialite AJ seeking to appear more refined.

I'll settle that one. Spotlight is not Applejack. Wavelengths is designed to be an alternate timeline, not a real alternate universe. Don't worry, I know where each of the Mane 6 (and pretty much everypony else) is around these parts. Heck, you might see one in this story at some point!

I'm going to go with the imposter being one of the Sunsets from SunLight Sliders. It's not probable, but that multiverse is compatible with this universe.

You're adorable. :rainbowlaugh:

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As I said, the age was off, but that could have been AJ seeking to make herself look older than she was to appear more refined.
I've read everything in this universe so far except for the early one that you didn't write, so aware that this is supposed to be a timeline caused by Starlight Glimmer's interferences.

With AJ out of the running, maybe Aunt Orange? Although I think her lighter coat means she doesn't match the description.

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All shall be revealed!

...eventually. :trollestia:

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I've read everything in this universe so far except for the early one that you didn't write...

:applecry:
Ah, well.

:twilightoops: Well, that was a bit of a rollercoaster there. Nice to finally meet Rara, though, and also catch a whiff of Applejack. Also nice to see that Rara's staying grounded.

But the real question right now is who would go to all that trouble to ruin Rara's shows? And why? Well, we'll find out in time.

One last note: it's kinda strange to me that Sunset would cite having too much apple cider specifically as the reason she didn't think things through, with the implication that she was a bit drunk when she came up with the not-so-bright idea. What with apple cider (as opposed to hard cider) being non-alcoholic, seasonal, and having a low shelf-life and such, and with both drinks being (presumably) present enough in Equestrian culture for a distinction to be made. Especially with Cheerilee there. It's just a minor detail, I know, but it sticks out to me.

Her voice was like Celestia's, singing an old lullaby, like the ones she used to sing for Sunset when she’d been small. Cheerilee’s voice carried the same comfort and warmth.

Insert Nicole Oliver joke here.

In all seriousness, I can understand Sunset's panic attack, even if we may not have yet seen the apex of her trauma.

Hmm. Potential divergence point on display, between the different manager and remembered advice from possibly-Applejack. Interesting.

This plot almost seems like an effort to discredit this timeline's most prominent Bearers before they ever get a chance to shine. Coincidence, or is someone privy to future history? Whatever the case, at least Sunset has an alibi for this latest accident. I just hope Spotlight survived it.

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But the real question right now is who would go to all that trouble to ruin Rara's shows? And why? Well, we'll find out in time.

Oh yes. You definitely will. :moustache:

One last note: it's kinda strange to me that Sunset would cite having too much apple cider specifically as the reason she didn't think things through, with the implication that she was a bit drunk when she came up with the not-so-bright idea. 

It was mentioned only once in the first chapter, but they actually were hard ciders. I should have done a better job at showing that. However, the girls are all old to drink (and there's a reason that I keep their specific ages nebulous. This is one of them. That being said, I do have a timeline showing how old they are to me.).

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Ahh, right, right, I guess I forgot that detail. Though I was never doubting that they were old enough to drink.

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Insert Nicole Oliver joke here.

:trollestia::scootangel::rainbowlaugh:

In all seriousness, I can understand Sunset's panic attack, even if we may not have yet seen the apex of her trauma

I'm glad. Panic attacks are a hard thing to write, though I will say that every single thing that happened to her (save the vision), I'm writing directly from experience. It's hard to fight against the voices in your head.

Hmm. Potential divergence point on display, between the different manager and remembered advice from possibly-Applejack. Interesting.

This plot almost seems like an effort to discredit this timeline's most prominent Bearers before they ever get a chance to shine. Coincidence, or is someone privy to future history?

Well, what's your theory? :trollestia:

from chapter 1:

“I don’t care what it takes, Miss Beats!” growled a male voice that would have been right at home with the so-called ‘elite’ of Las Pegasus. “I expect results! You’re lucky I happened to be here tonight to correct this mistake! I will not let that showboating wannabe and her senile manager ruin things for me and my client!”

“I am so sorry, I do not know how this happened!” the female voice trembled with fear. “We are all professionals here, and we—”

Their hoofsteps stopped right outside the door, and the stallion growled. “If your staff are as professional as you claim, they’ll get the job done! This place will be clear of anything to do with that… that… Coloratura by the time my client arrives, or I’ll make sure all of Equestria knows what a shoddy operation you run.”

I'm assuming Miss Beats runs the venue. The other guy seems to hate Rara. Maybe he lost money from her not wanting to be countess? Anyway, Gateway can pump up his security all he wants, it's useless if the venue owners themselves are the saboteurs.

Dun dun dun, and the situation escalates. Obviously the butler did it! Wait, Coloratura doesn't have a butler, never mind. Well, the first obvious candidate is the canon character who is missing from Coloratura's entourage, but that might be too obvious.

Well, magical detective Sunset Shimmer and gang are now on the case, they'll solve this for sure! Or burn down the building, which will end things pretty definitively too.

Hm, on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being Celestia and 10 being Blueblood, I wonder where old Sunset would rank. And would that voice in Sunset's head actually carry on a conversation with her rather than just being snarky and insulting all the time? Its probably really boring (and traumatic) for Sunset by now.

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Well, the first obvious candidate is the canon character who is missing from Coloratura's entourage, but that might be too obvious.

Might be, since BierKeks presented a more plausible theory right above you.

Hm, on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being Celestia and 10 being Blueblood, I wonder where old Sunset would rank.

20 on virtue of wanting to rule Equestria to the point of willingness to overthrow Celestia (and Luna if she returns first) if she (or they) get(s) in the way. I personally rank New Sunset a 3.

And would that voice in Sunset's head actually carry on a conversation with her rather than just being snarky and insulting all the time?

She would, if Sunset got back on board with the master plan and went back to who she was before.

These days, I'd rather see her being friends with the other one, Yellow. Red can go suck an egg.

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Anyway, Gateway can pump up his security all he wants, it's useless if the venue owners themselves are the saboteurs.

Yeah, if the people who have free run of the place are the ones messing stuff up, it's hard to defend against that. :trollestia:

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They only burn down the building on Mondays. Because Celestia hates Mondays. Stands to reason.

 Its probably really boring (and traumatic) for Sunset by now.

...you have no idea. :rainbowderp:

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20 on virtue of wanting to rule Equestria to the point of willingness to overthrow Celestia (and Luna if she returns first) if she (or they) get(s) in the way.

That's about what I'd rank her. Blueblood's just useless. Sunset actually had the smarts to do things other than be a fop!

These days, I'd rather see her being friends with the other one, Yellow. Red can go suck an egg.

Amen to that. Red is a jerk.

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I've said this a great many times, but literally, I'm expecting Sunset and Yellow to be great friends, chatting about the usual shit, known to, and even conversed with (best as possible) Sunset's other friends, among other things, all by the time Wavelengths Theorems gets started.

Once again, excellent job on this latest chapter. It may have taken a while, but was quite well worth the wait.

I absolutely LOVED the characterizations and exchanges so far. Again, you're doing a great job on the balance between humor and serious stuff at the appropriate moments. I particularly loved Sunset's self-argument and Coco and Rara's explanation of the situation.

I can also definitely understand the desire to NOT involve the police until it becomes an absolute last resort.

And the mystery thickens.

I'll very definitely be looking forward to more of this, but will also be completely understanding if it takes a while. After all, real world concerns have to come first.

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