• Published 6th Apr 2019
  • 1,783 Views, 355 Comments

Letters to Cozy Glow - Fluttercheer



Time after time, Twilight Sparkle tried to find out the reasons for Cozy Glow's actions and got rejected. But maybe a special team of ponies and creatures could succeed where she and her friends have failed. She was not going to give up so easily.

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Prologue: Princess Twilight Sparkle's Friendship Squad

Author's Note:

To new readers: Before you start reading the story, please read the blog entry that I linked below. It explains important things about the nature of this story.

https://www.fimfiction.net/blog/857357/letters-to-cozy-glow-a-few-explanations-and-clarifications-about-the-nature-of-the-story

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It was almost over. The end of the second school year at the friendship school was approaching fast. The school, and all of Equestria, had almost fallen to yet another villain who tried to conquer the kingdom. And this time, the villain was somepony who she had never expected to be a villain:


One of her own students.


Cozy Glow even was one of her most promising students. But her attempt at conquering Equestria and making it devoid of all its magic had shown that the lessons she received did not have the intended effect. The filly did not understand friendship, as much as she was pretending to understand, and it almost led to Equestria's fall.

But the crisis had been averted. Six other promising students of hers, students she could be rightfully proud of, had saved the day. The magic had returned to where it belonged and Cozy Glow had been captured and imprisoned in Tartarus, where she could do no harm anymore. Everything had returned to normal quickly and now, the finals were coming up for her friendship students.

But this wasn't what was on her mind right now. Not the only thing, at least. Not the most important thing. Something much different was on top of her priority list right now. And it had to do with the thirteen ponies and creatures that stood in front of her, here inside her throne room, right now.

They were all here. Despite that she had asked for them to come at such short notice, they had all followed the call. Even those who had to travel to Ponyville from a far away place. Twilight let her eyes glide over them, counted them and ticked each of them off on her mental checklist, just to make absolutely sure everypony and everycreature had arrived:



Starlight Glimmer


Tempest Shadow


Starswirl the Bearded


Stygian


Discord


Moondancer


Apple Bloom


Scootaloo


Sweetie Belle


Gilda


Thorax


Princess Luna


Trixie



As she found once again that no pony or creature was missing, Twilight leaned back in her throne. It was time to explain her plan.

“Thank you all for coming,” she began. “And I'm sorry that my letter was so vague. I know that some of you are busy with other important matters far away from Ponyville.” She gave a demonstrative nod to the unicorn with the broken horn that stood to her left. “But it was necessary to call you, because I am faced with a difficult problem that neither I nor my friends can solve. I need all of you as teachers.”

Now movement came into the group that had gathered at the other side of the map. Murmurs could be heard across the group, before one of them addressed the request.

“I feel humbled, Twilight, but I am already a guidance counselor at your school. Are you really planning to promote me?”

“Do you want all of us to become teachers at the school?” Scootaloo, who stood between her friends, asked in place of all three of them.

“No. Not exactly,” Twilight clarified. “I need you to help me with teaching one of my friendship students in particular. She is.....” Twilight lowered her eyes. “She is a little behind on the concept.”

Five of the thirteen faces cleared up and then became serious instantly. The other eight kept their curious expressions.

It was Apple Bloom who addressed the elephant in the room, after a few seconds had passed without anyone saying something. “Are ya talkin' about Cozy Glow?” The filly frowned.

Twilight closed her eyes and sighed. “Yes,” she said, opening them again. “I know this sounds impossible. Maybe even delusional. And if any of you don't want to help, you can say no and I will respect your choice. What I ask of you is a lot, but I believe that Cozy Glow is not a lost cause. She is young and she can learn.”

“That's not impossible or delusional!” Starlight spoke up. “Have you forgotten how I seemed to be a lost cause? But you didn't give up on me. You believed in me and now see where I am.” She stretched out a hoof. “Count me in! I will do all that I can. Maybe I can do for Cozy what I couldn't do for Chrysalis.”

Twilight smiled. “Thank you, Starlight. I knew that I could count on you. About the rest of you.....” She focused on the entire group again.

“I will join your cause, Princess,” Tempest Shadow said. “I owe you and Equestria something.”

The face of the Princess of the Night appeared cold, but the answer she gave was in contrast to this. “I know very well about the woes of young foals, Twilight. I see their inner conflicts and the demons that haunt them in their subconscious every night. These young minds often suffer from more mental atrocities than most adults dare to imagine.” It was not a direct consent, but Twilight understood.

The three fillies in the group exchanged glances. There was a very clear hesitation in their eyes. A minute passed until Scootaloo took it on her shoulders to answer.

“We'll do it for you, Twilight.” Left and right of her, Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle nodded.

“Trixie does not know this 'Cozy Glow' you're speaking of,” the stage magician chimed in. “But Trixie will help Starlight.”

“Far be it from to not help with guiding a young one back on the right path,” Starswirl implied his agreement with the plan. “But how exactly can each of us contribute to this plan of yours, Twilight Sparkle?” There wasn't so much doubt as there was curiosity in his eyes.

“I will explain it in a moment, Starswirl. Is there anyone else who wants to join?”

The heads of four of the remaining five nodded. Only Discord did not respond. The others turned at him in expectation.

As he noticed, Discord's eyes shifted. Literally, as they had left their place and floated across the room, past each pony and creature in attendance. “Oh, fine,” he said and snapped his claws. His eyes returned back into their sockets.

“Good.” Twilight nodded. “Now let me explain.” She leaned forward in her throne, placed her forehooves on the map and put them together. “I want that all of you talk to Cozy and tell her about what you learned. What Cozy Glow needs are different perspectives than those that me and my friends can offer. And I have faith in all of you that you can get through to her with your combined experience.”

She rested her eyes on Starswirl the Bearded. “Starswirl, you believed that Stygian had evil intentions when he took the artifacts from you and the other Pillars and you had to learn that you were wrong. You can teach Cozy how important it is to trust one's friends and to see things from their point of view.”

The old wizard's eyes remained as stoic as they usually were, but a nod signaled that he had understood his task.

Twilight's eyes wandered further to Stygian. “You, Stygian, know the pain of friends turning against you and you made the mistake of letting the darkness consume you in your time of weakness. You can pass on your story to Cozy Glow to warn her about treading this path.”

“I will do my best,” the low voice of the scholar rang out.

“Starlight Glimmer and Tempest Shadow.” Twilight looked at them. “Both of you lost touch with your friends or got even abandoned by them. And both of you made questionable choices because of this. You can teach Cozy Glow that friendship can't be forced and that one should never forget their ideals when seeking friendship. And, Starlight, you can demonstrate Cozy Glow that everypony deserves a second chance and that she will be welcome if she strives to be a better filly, with your ability to see the good in others.”

The two unicorn mares nodded, straightfaced and solemnly.

Next, Twilight looked to the middle of the group. “Apple Bloom, Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle,” she said. “I know you have the biggest reason to be wary of Cozy. But you helped her in true altruism when she needed you and this made her form a strong bond with you. You also selflessly helped Diamond Tiara despite all the trouble she caused for you. Your role will be to show Cozy that she has friends she can always rely on even in dark times and who will help her to get better no matter what. Your involvement might be the most important one.”

The three fillies looked uncomfortable with this and gulped, but they accepted their assignment with nods.

Twilight's eyes moved to her old friend. “Moondancer.” She paused for a moment. “You know how it feels when a friend you trust and rely on disappoints you. Cozy Glow disappointed her friends by abusing them for her goal and you can teach her how horrible such disappointment feels and what consequences it can have.”

“Thank you, Twilight. I will pass this on to her.”
Twilight smiled and then turned at Trixie. “You, Trixie, enacted revenge and it brought you to the dark side. This affected your mind in a bad way and you also know how hard it is to receive forgiveness for past actions. This makes you the ideal pony to let Cozy realize that being a villain can have consequences for oneself and you can show her that forgiveness is received much quicker when you work to earn it.”

“Trixie will see what she can do,” the mare answered.

Twilight addressed the only griffon in the group. “Gilda, you come from a society that does not hold friendship in high regards. You have plenty of experience with it how hard it is to inspire others to become friends who are not interested in true friendship. This experience of yours could be vital to make Cozy understand.”

“Leave it up to me, I'll turn this filly around.” Gilda chuckled and there was determination in her eyes.

“Discord.” Twilight directed her eyes at the draconequus. “You have been one of Equestria's biggest enemies in the past. But you were offered true friendship regardless and you took it. And when you relapsed for a short time, you had to learn how betrayal feels. You can teach Cozy that even the most nefarious actions can be forgiven and that the dark side is not worth it. Most importantly, though, you can help her see Tirek's true colors.”

“Very well,” he answered simply. Then he summoned a throne and sat down on it. “The Element of Chaos is on the case.”

Twilight turned at the changeling in their group. “Thorax, you left Chrysalis' hive, you made a true friend and you helped inspire all the other changelings to follow your example. You left your family and people to do the right thing. It will be up to you to assist Cozy in her struggle to choose between good and evil and to help her make the right decision.”

“Count on me, Twilight!” the ruler of the changelings spoke, optimistically.

“And lastly,” Twilight looked at Luna. “Luna, you have gained a special understanding of foals because of your dreamwalker duties. And you know how negative feelings can bring out the worst in us. I will need your experience and ability to figure out what potential problems have driven Cozy that far. But you have to do it without entering Cozy's dreams.”

The last sentence caused Luna to cock her head in surprise. “Pardon me, but why not?” she asked. “Checking on Cozy Glow's dreams would prove effective in revealing such problems quickly.”

“I understand and you are right, Luna. But I want that Cozy feels safe and that she develops trust in all of you. Spying on her dreams, against her consent, could ruin this for us.”

Luna seemed to ponder the thought for a moment. “I understand. I will stay out of young Cozy's dreams and use the means of normal conversation to find out as much as I can about her.”

“Thank you, Luna. Does anyone else have any questions?” Twilight looked at the group expectantly.

As no further questions were asked, she leaned back in her throne again. She appeared more relaxed, now that she had explained the proceedings in detail.

“There's only one problem with this plan,” she continued. “Due to Cozy's letter exchange with Tirek, the security level of Tartarus has been increased. Each letter that gets sent to a prisoner or that a prisoner sends to someone outside is now being read first. But the real problem is that no visitors are allowed behind the gates anymore. I could only get inside because of my connection to Princess Celestia, but she won't give permission to so many frequent visitors. But I have a solution for this.” She smiled confidently.

“What do we do?” Starlight asked.

“You will write letters.” Twilight smirked. “A nice way of using what Cozy did to our advantage and to cause something good. But, more importantly than this and the security level, is that I don't expect all of you to drop all their other obligations for visiting Cozy Glow in Tartarus all the time during such a long-term task. Especially those who don't live here in Ponyville.”

The idea found broad approval in the group.

“Excellent plan,” Luna confirmed the sentiment. “It is a pity I cannot enter into Cozy's dreams to bypass these restrictions, but written letters shall provide the young one with a documentation of our lessons.”

A smile formed on Twilight's lips. “Yes, Luna, exactly. This is another reason for why I decided to send letters to Cozy. There is not much to do in Tartarus and the more often she reads your letters, the better it will be for her.”

Twilight got down from her throne and trotted around the map. “Now you know almost everything that you need. Just two more things.” She stopped in front of the group. “Some of you don't know the extent behind Cozy's actions, so I will send you letters of my own to file you in. And once you start writing to Cozy, please stay in contact with each other and share your progress. A coordinated effort is necessary for this to work.”

The group nodded.

“Now.” Twilight approached Starlight Glimmer. “Starlight, I want that you start. You have dealt with Cozy once and you have the most sensitive approach. I need you to send the first letter.”

“Okay. I will do everything I can to lay the groundwork for your plan.” Starlight looked at her fiercely.

Twilight let her eyes wander over the faces of the ponies and creatures who had agreed to the effort.

“Are all of you ready for 'Operation Cozy Glow'?” she asked.

The answer of all the ponies and creatures was “Yes”. Her plan had been set into motion.

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