• 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 Sunset -- Part I

On the other side of the mirror, Sunset unexpectedly discovers a world that offers everything she could have hoped for and more... if only she could see the answer that's standing right in front of her...

An origin story for Sunset Shimmer, as a basis for her episode of the Not Exactly Friends series: Saving Sunset Shimmer

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 42 )

So Starswirl made a magic holodeck? Impressive.

Right, though a more exact Trek reference would be from TOS: the Guardian of Forever, since the Speculum actually links to a real time and place, not a hologram -- though whether the dimension it links to is created on the spot, or merely selected from the infinite variety of the multiverse, is an open question...

Awesome work here. Great portrayal of Sunset.

Is it wrong that, when I first saw this story, I thought the Not Exactly Friends series was a canon cartoon?

This is an interesting take on Sunset's story. I can't wait to read the next addition. :twilightsmile:

Sunset's free trial ran out.

" No, dear Sister... I don't mind in the sightest... if you say there can be only one Principal, so be it... "


As I've said before, I adore this AU. This particular story... Part 1 was pretty fantastic, but Part 2 has me all kinds of confused. There seems to be some pretty weird goings-ons, and I'm not entirely sure how it's all fitting together yet. I was worried at first that things were going too well, which... as a Sunset fan I'm always of the opinion that she really needed that butt-whupping that Twilight handed her in the Original Timeline. But I'm still 100% on-board with whatever happens next.

Excellent job on part two of Sunset's backstory. Loved the spin on the mirror portal (i.e. showing Sunset what she NEEDS rather than what she necessarily WANTS). And, I greatly enjoyed Sunset's interactions with the human counterparts of the canon Mane Six (sans Twilight, whose human counterpart is still at Crystal Prep). And, yeah, the chat between Sunset and Vice Principal Luna, again, had me sympathetic to both sides). And, yeah, I can understand the need to make things as bad for Sunset as possible before she meets Twilight and her new group of friends.

In general, the exchanges, characterizations, general episode wrap-up and future story set-up are all well done in all the right places.


I wonder if Sunset will come to try to pass off her story of what happened over the past couple days with her friends as some sort of vivid dream, since there's no portal magic helping her out anymore.

Also, if what I think is happening is going on, then that portal is more devious and dangerous than even Celestia knew. If I'm right, then it shows her what she needs to fulfill her goals and sets up a perfect storm of circumstances to give it to her, and then takes it all away to Test her, to see if she can achieve it all on her own, including taking away the "Easy Way Out" of going back through the portal and cutting off her only means of communication with anyone who would know what was really going on and could help her. I'm betting that the portal back in Starswirl's old workroom is either still open, and anyone could walk through it at any time, but since Sunset is in her "Test" phase of the portal's function, she can't go back, or the Test Phase only allows the portal to open under certain circumstances, such as the "30 Moons" we are told in the first EQG movie, and even when it does, since she's out of the Helpful stage it won't give her all the fancy stuff again when it does reopen.

Poor Sunset. She was making progress and was getting what she wanted through making friends, not by being a bully, then it got yanked away. I hope she will be okay, and not continue down a dark path.

This is a very intereting version of Sunset and what happened to her. Though I'm not sure how much it means coming from someone who thinks that canon Sunset is incredibly boring.

"Though ya never know... I got kinfolk in places I never even knew were places!"

True on levels she doesn't even realize.

By lunchtime Sunset just wanted to hide under her desk from all the attention.

Ah, irony.

"Flash," he said. "Flash Sentry. Yeah, I know, weird name, huh?"

Not at this school. Jeff the Uber driver had a weirder one by local standards... or that's just magic interacting oddly with the locals.

And Sunset starts making the same mistakes... but this time she was on the right track. Until the clock she didn't know about ran out.

This does paint Twilight's experiences beyond the mirror in a fascinating light. Especially given how Sunset didn't seem to have the same benefits as before. What would have happened to Twilight and people's conception of her if she hadn't been able to resolve the matter in time?

In any case, an excellent tragedy of circumstance, and one heck of a cliffhanger. I can only imagine how Celestia returned, and what she found when she did. The sisters seem to get along by the time Twilight gets there, but... :unsuresweetie:

Nah, it was just the rainboom shattering the mirror and with it the influx of magic... But not before her thoughts on the nightmare shifting things around just that little bit. She did say that the really created by the mirror sustained itself on the magic of the mirror - that is just not there anymore.

It did give her what she needed, friends. And she came that tiny little away from actually realising it. Maybe it was the Nightmare's influence, maybe only her empathy for Luna's place in the tale. But being dedicatedly evil? I doubt it.

It's my hunch that Celestia did see the message little after Sunset wrote it but the shattered mirror didn't allow for the magic to go back and deliver get answer.
Either that or it just didn't go through in the first place. No matter, Sunset just got into a really bad emotional spot right now, without any support. Worse, she knows it, and dl wants help... But the only one that could truly help is not there, and the friends that she made are likely to be the first victims. Or maybe there's just that little much juice in the mirror for it to make them be her anchor in this hard times.
Celestia was still there in the original universe, after all.

Your comment prompted me to go back and skim over the last scene of Part I, and the portal was still open when the guard came to inform Celestia of the goings on at the school via Twilight's Entrance Exam, so the Rainboom had already happened, but the portal was still open and stable. Celestia Did, however, mentally mention that she hoped Sunset would come back before the portal closed and she got stuck there, so she did know that the portal would likely close at some point, though the parameters under which it would are still unknown to us other than the potential "For three days every 30 moons". Also, Sunset went through the portal Well before the Rainboom, but it was "Helpful" immediately after she crossed the threshold, so that rules out Equestrian/Mirror Magic being helpful as a Result of the Rainboom.

Huh, must've confused it with another story then. So it's possibly the portal closing, or dunno.

Thanks for correcting my mistake, though :twilightsmile:

Oh, yeah, she thought. I do look better in these. No surprise there. It must all be part of the mirror-spell: Equestria's magic, reaching through the portal and shaping this world, making these things available to me right when I need them.

And so it begins
The personal-customized hell for someone who got a little high on their ego.

I knew this was the backstory for your AU, but I kind of thought it was written so it could be a prequel to canon if you wanted. I guess not. Oh well, this is really interesting anyway!

My intent here was to provide a backstory that could, with appropriate assumptions, lead to canon events as well (e.g. how does Sunset deal with Celestia's disappearance if she's on her own, and how does that affect her mood, leading to the Sunset we see on the screen). But yes, in practical terms I wrote this story as a means of working out a basis for Sunset, which I could then use in the Not Exactly Friends series.


I guess I was reading your intentions correctly, then. It's just that the ending doesn't really make sense without the explanation I just read in the first chapter of Saving Sunset. In the show's world, why wouldn't Princess Celestia respond to Sunset?

I'm assuming that any messages Celestia wrote to Sunset before the portal closed wound up in her journal, but Sunset, in her hurry, simply turns to the first open page of her journal, to pen her message to Celestia. (After all, the journal was always primarily a means for Sunset to reach Celestia, if she needed to, and not the other way around.) And by the time Sunset does write her message, the portal has closed, and the two time-streams become disconnected, so Celestia doesn't even see it until much later (and in canon, possibly after a point at which she's put the journal in the pile of books she donates to Twilight.).

Nightmare Principal: "The homework shall last forever."

Interesting. Love the idea that the portal alter reality to that degree when it is open.

Suffers a little bit from pacing issues. These three "stories" should have been a single one, and iirc there's a rule about chapters of a single story posted as multiple stories. It would have been better suited to be a little longer of a piece and with slower pacing.

"Sit speculum portal aperta ad planum tangens de necessitates."
portal is not latin, this should be "portale apertum"

Interesting follow up. Really fitting that Sunset ends up befriending the Humane Six here and she sees a literal mirror of her actions with Principal Luna. Though I wonder how Sunset was getting so much wish fulfilment with the Equestrian magic without getting corrupted with power.

Reading this, I had my own theory about why the portal was doing what it did:

Nightmare Moon is basically manipulating Sunset by giving her EXACTLY what she wants: a world where she is worshipped, wealthy, and powerful. The idea is to distract her from preparing for Nightmare Moon's eventual escape by throwing her into Sunset's idealized world.

But when Sunset stopped being distracted, Nightmare Moon took it all away from Sunset and shutting the portal in a bad to demoralize Sunset.

Is that what you were going for?

My thoughts on the mirror are that it's a trap devised by Starswirl to lour in any creature that could pose a threat to Equestria. We are told he defeated the Sirens by sending them to another dimension, but we are never told how he did it when they were so much more powerful then he was. My head-canon is that it works in ways similar to the mirror of Erised. It shows the person looking into the mirror the thing they most desire and when they go through in search of their desire they become in a fashion entrapped. Only by knowing how it works and/or understanding that it's a trick, can they hope to escape and return to Equestria.


I guess that could work, but in canon, the Dazzlings weren't living in their dream utopia. If they did, they would be ruling the human world, not merely scrounging for what little negative energy they could.

Except that dream utopia falls apart shortly after entering.

Hanging on the wall by the loft stairs were a selection of guitars, ranging from staid maple acoustic, all the way up to an expensive night-black axe that looked like one needed a hunting license just to pick the thing up.


Always nice to bring a smile to a reader's face!

I know how that feels. Wish there was something I could do to help...

You own this world Sunset.
You said so yourself.
You saw what was troubling her.
There IS something you can do to help.

Asking is easy, once you know what to ask for.
Knowing what to ask for, that's NP-hard...

Also, just want to say, that the powers sunset had on this side of the mirror, before she was cut off, Reminded me HEAVILY of this one cartoon I remember watching a lot when I was younger.
Where two orphans(or maybe foster children? Don't remember much) found(or were mysteriously given, poor memory on my part) special phones that would allow them to make a call to have anything replaced by something else, a boring teacher who they didn't learn very well from, offered his own dream job & replaced by a fun, quirky teacher who managed to get them to learn the subject much better, they then used the phones to have a stuntman as an adopted father, & a secret agent as an adopted mother.
Then the person they got these special phones from, and who they called when they are ordering these replacements, was actually their real father, who gave them these phones & did these things for them, possibly as a way to 'make up' for not being in their lives.
But I don't remember much more than that, as my memory of it has faded quite a bit

The Replacements. The show is called the Replacements.

Ah, thank you for telling me.


I'm sorry, but can someone explain to me what happened in this chapter? All I got was Human Sunset was a celeb, Pony Sunset popped in, used her human versions status to get some power, and then got trapped or something else. Can anyone explain it to me please?

It's all there, if you read carefully:
- Sunset goes through the mirror, which finds/creates an alternate world "suited to the caster's needs", which in this case (since she's still a student) is a school setting
- while the mirror portal is open, Equestrian magic allows Sunset to basically wish for whatever she wants to happen
- she wishes for a way for everyone to pay attention to her, and the world obliges by making her a pop-star, and providing the kind of home she feels is best suited to her, as well as clothes and skills she needs to accomplish her goals
- she realizes that since she chose/created this world, she is the Sunset Shimmer of of this world, not an Equestrian alternative for some other Sunset Shimmer that already existed
- remembering that her original goal was to fulfill her promise to Celestia, she looks for a way to reactivate the Elements, and finds one (though she doesn't realize it in time): the EQG versions of the Mane 6
- she wasn't aware that the mirror had a built in time-limit, and like Cinderella she lingers past midnight on the third day, at which point the portal closes on her, and the Equestrian magic she's brought with her becomes broken, such that she's no longer popular and the vengeful feelings she's awoken in Luna cause Luna to "take over" the School from Celestia
- she discovers the closed portal, and when she doesn't get an answer via the journal, believes her Celestia (the pony version) has closed it on her as a punishment
Now, at this point, in the canon timeline she decides she's been left on her own, and becomes the vengeful "bad girl" from the movie. (I assume here, though it's unstated, that with the portal remaining closed the broken magic eventually settles down on its own, and Celestia returns to take charge again.)
Whereas in the "Not Exactly Friends" timeline, Twilight and her AP friends journey through the mirror to find Sunset, as described in Saving Sunset Shimmer, which you should read to see what happens next.


That, was both very weird to piece together, and also a very good plotline at the same time once you do piece it together.

I assumed that this had followed the trope of it merely being an alternate dimension with their counterparts inhabiting it, but the idea that it was a manifestation of Sunset's desires was a good plotline itself.

Question: So, if the world was created to suit Sunset's desires, why does it still exist after she leaves it? Shouldn't it, I dunno, destroy itself because the character that it manifests a destination around is gone?


I assumed that this had followed the trope of it merely being an alternate dimension with their counterparts inhabiting it, but the idea that it was a manifestation of Sunset's desires was a good plotline itself.

Yeah, I was trying to answer some of the unanswered questions here, like why a school with teenagers, anyways? Why did there just happen to be duplicates of the Mane 6 (as well as a lot of other characters) in Sunset's alternate world? And why did "bad girl" Sunset turn out to have a basically nice personality once the pressure of being "The Best" was removed?

Question: So, if the world was created to suit Sunset's desires, why does it still exist after she leaves it? Shouldn't it, I dunno, destroy itself because the character that it manifests a destination around is gone?

It's an open question whether the mirror creates a world (i.e. stabilizes a timeline out of the background chaos), or simply finds one in the multiverse, like a car radio scanning for and locking onto a broadcasting channel with a chosen style of music. In either case, there's no reason the world has to evaporate if it's non-paradoxical, just as the Not Exactly Friends timeline could still exist after Nightmare Moon was defeated.

Plus, I wanted to leave open the possibility of Sunset returning to the EQG world later.

Ngl, this chapter was kinda difficult for me to get through, at least in the first half. I was really having trouble figuring out how the service function of the portal was supposed to contribute to Sunset turning “evil,” or if she even would be in this AU.

Well... Sunset thought to herself. This is an interesting development...

Nice use of that bit from the end of The Fall of Sunset Shimmer.

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