• Member Since 26th Jun, 2018
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Lets Do This

We're going to build an exact copy of Ponyville... right over there! We've got less than a minute!



This story is a sequel to Without Your Cutie Mark

The Great and Powerful Trixie has her eye on a place in Twilight's circle of friends at Celestia's School... and then suddenly discovers it may be her only chance to stay at the School...

For more of this AU, see: Saving Sunset Shimmer (Note: You could also optionally take a detour through its backstory prequels: Sunset -- Part I and Part II.)

And check out the series, beginning with Not Exactly Friends.

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 86 )

...damn. Did not see that coming.

Well..." the guard nervously rubbed his neck with an armored hoof, then realized he was doing it and snapped to attention again. "Now that Your Highness asks, I did take note of it. It struck me as unusual at the time..."


"I think she might have given the name 'Trixie Luna Moon'..." the guard hazarded. And then he shook his head. "But that would just be ridiculous wouldn't it, Your Highness? I mean, what family would dare name their daughter... uh..."

:facehoof: There goes your ace in the hole, Woona.

Start: Oh yes please more of this AU!

Middle: Aw, I like this version of Trixie a lot!

End: .......Oh. Oh. Well then. Oh.


~Skeeter The Lurker

... Looks like I need some catching up to do. I started your little verse with this story instead of the beginning one.

But I like what I read here! Adorable unicorn fillies trying to perform beyond their means and threatening to topple the whole mountain over. You know, like fillies do.

Soooooo... did the group just invent the arc reactor in magic form?

Ouch, looks like things aren't going to be all sun and roses in future stories. I'm looking forward to them, though!

Yeah, that about sums it up.

And so the plot thickens.

Whoa. Downright excellent installment in this series. The exchanges, characterizations and future story set-ups are all well done in all the right places. Loved seeing Trixie bonding so well with Starlight (yeah, might have been motivated by giving herself an "in", but at least SOME of it was genuine). And, yeah, Trixie's pocketing her pride enough to ask for help was a wonderful touch (especially considering it shows she and Twilight have more in common than either of them want to admit [i.e. the extreme freakout over the prospect of disappointing Princess Celestia {it literally took Twilight YEARS in canon to learn to get over that}]). And, yeah, Tempest has better reason than even she realizes to NOT trust her. The group project scene was downright excellent and I DID enjoy the scene with Celestia and that guard at the end. And, yeah, Twilight and her group are really starting to worry Nightmare Moon if she is sending in a mole (though, somehow, I have a hunch that this is going to end up becoming a case of Becoming the Mask [i.e. Trixie will end up legitimately becoming friends with Twilight's group {ESPECIALLY Starlight} and, for extra irony, it will probably be right around the time that Tempest has enough hard evidence to prove her suspicions of Trixie}]). Though I WILL admit that IS just a guess and I'm just as likely to be wrong as right.

For a possible next story, there are A GREAT DEAL of possibilities. Especially with the possibility of Moondancer getting an "in" and bonding with Twilight's new friends. Or, with all those combined brains and power under one roof, found a way to travel to other universes and meet Sunset Shimmer. Actually, the first one might be good for the next story and the second one might be good for the story after THAT. Okay, REALLY sorry about that. I am just SERIOUSLY excited about seeing where this is going.

All in all, I am VERY MUCH looking forward to the next story, whatever it is.

Oh. Fuck.

Many thanks for reading, and for the detailed feedback -- it really helps! :twilightsmile:

There is a backstory to Trixie and Nightmare Moon, though that would be a whole side story in itself. I decided to go with Trixie's entry in the series first, to gauge if there was interest.

I have a plan for how to do Sunset Shimmer, although I'd probably need to ask your indulgence in telling the backstory there first, to set it up properly. (And for practice, since I haven't done a Sunset Shimmer story yet!) :twilightsheepish:

Well that ending was... ominous. :twilightoops:

Can't wait for the next entry! :twilightsmile:

Wonder if Celestia would actually notice Trixie’s stage magic or not.

My theory is that she would... but that she'd never hold it against a student for discovering such a serious flaw in the School's admissions process. On the other hoof, she's probably giving her admissions board a pretty stern talking to, just about now...


I have a plan for how to do Sunset Shimmer, although I'd probably need to ask your indulgence in telling the backstory there first, to set it up properly. (And for practice, since I haven't done a Sunset Shimmer story yet!)

More than interested to see where that goes. Starlight and Sunset happen to be the two most fascinating characters in MLP for my part (Followed by Luna, Tempest/Fizzlepop and Discord). The Mane Cast are all sort of out there on display, warts and all, from the beginning, so you know what to expect, but it's the reformed villains who have the real hidden depths and who's motivations aren't always quite so cut and dry, even after we've gotten to know them better through the course of the series('s). These are the character's who are willing to do the things others might consider wrong, but for the "Right" reasons, knowing the moral grey space they occupy and accepting it for what it is even as they struggle to do the right things when they can.

Even in cases like this series, where their paths are diverted well before when they're introduced in the Show(s), it's interesting to see the different interpretations on their nature vs. what their life experiences would have seen them become had they not been diverted. You've nailed Starlight: out there, willing, eager and Wanting to help and make connections with others, but here with the opportunity to learn how she can do so early on. Tempest, likewise, still has an ingrained sense of duty to those that earn her loyalty thanks to her experiences up to this point, but even though she's had a hard life before recently she's been diverted early enough where that core of softness that wants to see those she cares for smile in wonder hasn't been buried under a lifetime of cynicism and regret.

It'll be interesting to see where you take Sunset when you get to introducing her to the series, and your interpretation of her inner nature. I've already got my own headcanon for her, but I'll happily accept whatever you come up with as yours, even if it doesn't line up. I also don't want to impose it here (unless you really, Really want to know, in which case I'll gladly exposit until my fingers go numb).

It's also interesting to see what you've done here with Trixie, and definitely puts a different spin on her early interactions with Twilight, and why she seemed to have such an axe to grind with her before her Canon friendship with Starlight mellowed her out a bit.

Thanks so much for the feedback! It's great to hear from a fellow fan of these characters that I'm doing right by them. Trixie in particular is a challenge to write. I've really gotten to like her combination of ego and brittleness, and that hidden inner core of bravery and resiliance that only shows itself in really dire circumstances, but I don't tend to think like her, the way I do with Twilight, Tempest, and Starlight, so it's interesting trying to find her voice and get her various onion-like layers across.

Thanks again for the read, and I hope I'll keep living up to your expectations!

See, this is the sort of stuff I think everyone would love if it were an episode... and it feels like one. Amazing job!

Now... how will Sunset Shimmer wind up in Twilight's magical unicorn crew?

Ah yes, the fourth part of the extraordinary Magic Is Friendship series.

Question is, Moondancer or Sunset next? They feel like two opposite sides of the spectrum. Moondancer might be too easy and simple to shove in. Sunset Shimmer would be quite dimensional bending considering Equestria girls and the timeline.

Moondancer might actually be the real challenge here, since we can make some reasonable assumptions about Sunset's character as a filly, but we don't have much to go on about who Moondancer was back then... as opposed to who she wound up being after thinking Twilight deliberately ditched her party. With Sunset, all one has to do is bend space and time and rewrite the fundamental histories of two dimensions, easy peasy. For Moondancer, one would essentially have to create a near-OC that's likeable and can hold her own without feeling forced or sounding like a weak knock-off of Twilight. Now there's a worthy test of skill...

Yeah, I guess you're right. I was originally thinking of the fact that Moondancer was already Twilight's old friend. But then I just realised that why would she leave the other group when she doesn't have nearly as much of an excuse as Twilight.

Even in the flashback in "Amending Fences", we saw that Moondancer really wanted Twilight's friendship, enough to throw a party not even knowing if she was going to be there. And even then, Minuette and the others really had to work to help get her out of her shell. It would be interesting to figure out what happened to cause all that...

I'm really conflicted between the two groups because I always associate canon Moondancer with group B but the magic prowess and the search for six unicorns says group A.

...Not a fan of Trixie, but... Heel-Face Turn. Heel-Face Turn. Heel-Face Turn.

"A Klein bottle's surface is one-sided, since its inside is smoothly connected to its outside. And its surface can be cut twice without separating it into two pieces." Twilight paused briefly to consult her cards. "Thus, it is a non-orientable, Genus 2 surface."

Ah yes a Klein bottle. A classic example of an object that cannot truly be created in our universe due to the fact that it’s a four dimensional object and cannot exist in our three dimensional world.

Grin. The four-dimensional bottle is the weird thing about all this? :twilightsmile:

And to be clear, Twilight is presenting the projection of a Klein bottle into three-dimensional space, which definitely can exist, just as a wire-frame picture of a cube can exist on a two-dimensional page. (Heck, you can buy them on the Internet...)

Tell me something I don’t know.

Nightmare Moon was interesting, but the thing I was most curious about was Moondancer et al not being part of Twilight's inner circle (such as it was in the original timeline). So far the changes in this AU have been largely positive; I'd be interested to see some things happen that are worse (and on a low-key level, not just the spoiler thing).

Well, Twilight not hanging out with her original friends is a pretty significant change. That was an important reason, actually, for giving Minuette and company a cameo here: to show that not every change is necessarily a positive one.

Well, it's a positive one for Minuette, Moondancer, and Co.

I'm not too worried, at this rate Twilight is going to end up befriending Dark Snooty within a month.

That’s another interesting development. That ending with Luna (or should I say NightMare Moon?) and Trixie was interesting. I look forward to seeing how that could turn out.

It was also interesting to see Twilight’s old group of friends here and how they are without Twilight as part of their group. Though now I wonder how Moondancer is doing.

Twilight Sparkle's unicorn collection grows ever larger.

Well could easily see the loophole in helping Nightmare Moon, she's Luna and one can always say doing what's best for Luna is what Trixie agreed to. When the time comes what is best might not be why Nightmare thinks it is.

Man, this is more epic than I thought it would be.

Please, let there be a sequel.

Really good story. Nothing else needs to be said.

Character wise, I think Starlight has been a lost opportunity for the show. You see small hints to so much more in her backstory, yet they don't spend an episode or two exploring it. You see the Goth bedroom. The utter lack of her mother. The guilt her father feels for not being there when his daughter really needed him. Her never ending up in Celestia's school despite being so talented in magic (Which makes me think the reason she is so great at magic was she pushed herself to be that good when she was young in an attempt to get accepted into the school also but it somehow never panned out). 10 to 20 years of history we could have explored to see her journey to forming Our Town, because there was obviously a lot more to it, of which we only got to see the beginning and the end.

I have always said that Starlight does not have a bad backstory. They just failed to flesh it out. Something they could have done instead of leaving her out of most of season 6. There definitely was a couple episodes in that season that could have been replaced by a Starlight backstory one instead like Applejacks Day off and the Rainbow Dash zombie one, both of which were atrocious episodes.

(Like Bruce didn't become Batman right after his parents were killed. There was a journey where he learned all the skills to get where he is today. )

She took a bite out of the pretzel, chewing with satisfaction on an object that had formerly been a block of wood.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, NEVER eat transfigured food! When/if that spell wears off you'll have a hunk of solid wood lodged somewhere in your digestive system. Very unhealthy that.

"Hoof-magic," she said airily. "It gives you wonderful dexterity. You lose that if you rely on your horn for everything."

There's more than one way to levitate a playing card.

Very interesting, just how Nightmare's return is going to work out in the AU is something I can't wait to see. So far this is a great AU thank you for sharing these stories with us.

Thanks much!

Agreed, they could have done more with Starlight -- I think the issue there was that it takes time to warm up to her as a character, and see that she's more than merely a "replacement unicorn Twilight". It's not until "No Second Prances", when she teams up with Trixie, that the comedic possibilities of a stressed-out former dictator trying to play it cool and fit in really come into play.

And yeah, there were some weaker episodes they could have dropped in favor of more interactions between newer characters. "Applejack's Day Off" in particular - that was the first episode which seriously felt like a clumsy reach to me: they make an over-obvious point for fifteen minutes, then do the exact same thing again on Applejack's farm. It was like "MLP does Beowulf" -- come on, we got it the first time!

I liked "28 Pranks Later", though -- it was nice seeing Pinkie as the "responsible" prankster, and fun seeing Rainbow completely losing it for once. Cookies...


She took a bite out of the pretzel, chewing with satisfaction on an object that had formerly been a block of wood.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, NEVER eat transfigured food! When/if that spell wears off you'll have a hunk of solid wood lodged somewhere in your digestive system. Very unhealthy that.

Actually, I take transfiguration to be a transform between physical states, so it's a permanent change (at least until the caster applies the inverse transform). I base this in part on the subtle joke in "All Bottled Up" where Spike is washing a sinkful of Trixie's teacups -- if they would have simply reverted, he could have just left them and not bothered.

Plus, it was also a nice way of emphasizing the fact that Twilight was doing real transfiguration, whereas Trixie was only faking it -- she could only take a bite out of the apple because she hadn't really changed it at all.

Trixie's and Nightmare Moon's relationship gives me Ducktales vibes. And that is not a bad thing at all.

Hmm. Eventually I wish to have a confrontation between Twilight's old friends and new. Considering Moondancer and Twilight seemed to be friends even as fillies (based off the scene in the classroom, though friends may stretch it slightly) Though I wouldn't want it to just be Moondancer. I'd want the other fillies to get a chance to speak about it also. Moondancer caring about Twilight's friendship as a crush may be a thing, but I'm not sure if you'd want romance in these set of stories or not.

I'm intrigued to see how'd you do a Sunset in all this though too....

The fact that Twilight leaves the door unlocked to what others see as her exclusive clubhouse says so much. Poor thing.

I mean, we both know I wear my heart on my boxing gloves.

That is one of the most brilliant descriptions of Tempest I've seen. Kudos.

It's like they were hoping I'd show them up.

Implicit in every Kobayashi Maru test is the hope that someone will actually pass it.

And the exam ponies? They were looking for students with really strong magic, for some reason.

"Something about the Summer Sun Celebration and a prophecy? Trixie wasn't really paying attention."

"Ta daaaaaa...."


Fascinating bit at the end. And Nightmare Moon really needs to be more careful when commanding her underlings. "Never any doubt" easily covers having no doubts about rebelling against her. Thank you for another great installment in a fascinating setting.

Wow feels like something straight out harry potter. Except i know it will have a happier ending. So who next Sunset shimmer or moondancer

"I'd say you just figured out how to split the thaum, Trixie! That's incredible! Nopony's ever done that before! Not even Star Swirl the Bearded!"

I to, also love the days at school were I casually spit the atom.

Man, I really did not see that ending scene coming! On the one hoof, I foresee drama further down the line. On the other hoof, yay for future installments of this series! XD

Yes! I'm glad someone else saw the Ducktales parallels!

Now that most of the pieces are in play, it's time to introduce an overarching plot thread. Can't wait to see what becomes of this series!

Actually, one thing I hope gets touched upon is a reason why this version of Equestria differs from canon. There must have been some kind of the impetus for Starlight and Tempest to show up at Celestia's School that diverges from canon.

Trixie's pony moon moon. Headcannon accepted :pinkiecrazy:

That ending had way more drama than I expected :twilightoops:
Anxious to see where you'll take this universe next :rainbowdetermined2:

With Sunset all you have to do is give a way for she to come back early and a reason for her to do so. Or, if going for the "Sunset's an orphan and Celestia didn't quite adopt her as she should", a reason for the princess to seek her out. But that would be one hell of a side story to be told without stealing the group' spotlight.

Would love to read it though, no matter what is her background in the end :twilightsmile:

And you just lost a reader for this universe. I was fine with Trixie's bit, even though I hate the character, but then you had to drag Nightmare Moon into this as smarter than she ever was.

Probably would've worked better for me if this had happened years later during the Summer Sun Celebration, and she used Trixie's insecurities against her.

more! please, needs to be more in this line of stories!

The plot twist or the story? Just curious, since the comment could be read either way...

Luna, ela pensou. Minha querida, doce Luna ... o que você está fazendo agora?

stuck on the moon?:derpytongue2:

... never any doubt!"

"Never any doubt..." Trixie repeated, dutifully. "Trixie will remember."

and so in the future trixie will become loyalty, for she will never doubt standing beside her friends twilight, tempest shadow, glow of starlight
trixie = loyalty?
twilight = magic?
glow of starlight = goodness?
shadow tempest = true
? (I prefer it still pinkie pie, more and with you) = laughs
? = generosity (maybe rarity since she is also a unicorn and this is a UA, your parents can screen for canterlot study, more and with you)
so nightmare moon will take a beating

sorry bad english, online translator

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