• Member Since 10th Feb, 2012
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No one's ever really gone.



In an alternate Equestria, the city of Hope's Point stands as a beacon of light and hope against the darkness and misery of the world around it, ruled over by the ever-watchful, keen-minded, and iron-hoofed Queen Blackburn.

But Blackburn wasn't always the queen of Hope's Point - she wasn't even its first ruler - and she wasn't always the hard-nosed mare with an eye for details. She was young once, too, just like everypony else, and just like them she had to make new friends, go to school, make mistakes, find love, and everything else that goes along with growing up, for better or worse, and that's not even counting her royal responsibilities.

Witness the rise of Blackburn, Princess of Hope's Point, as she becomes the mare - the queen - she was always meant to be, as well as the friends and enemies she makes along the way.

Takes place in the CRISIS-verse as a prequel to CRISIS: Equestria.

Many thanks to Devnator and BeeAre for their help in editing and as creative consultants. Cover art by Starlight Spark.

Chapters (18)
Comments ( 55 )

Oh holy hell yes!
Crisis Equestria was amazing, this is going to be a fantastic treat.
Release schedule?

There will be a chapter released about once a week around Thursday/Friday

So to clarify, the same BeeAre that works with Bleedman?

Oh. This sure explains a lot.

Is this the only side story you're going to make?

This is a prequel story, and no, it's not the end of CRISIS; a short story is in the works, as is a large scale sequel, but those are a ways off at the moment, at least until this story runs it's course.

Now I know how Briarthorn felt in Chapter 29. Puzzle and kerpow indeed.

Guess the taste of raw Dolor varies based on who you ask. They all do seem to have a flavor in common though: disappointment.

It's honestly surprising this doesn't have more readers. This is an incredibly rich, detailed world that is so unlike Equestria that... well, it's pretty sweet. You've got a knack for coming up with interesting characters, too-- Blackburn especially. I don't think there's anyone else quite like her.

Regardless of whatever happens or whomever decides to follow you, I do hope you continue to explore this world. It's always a treat to see.

Thank you so much, I really appreciate the sentiment.

Don't worry, Blackburn. It could be worse, it could be raining. :ajsmug:

This was a pretty emotional chapter. Lockwood's backstory was interesting. Plus, Blackburn revealing who she really is to Lockwood.
And how Blackburn changed things in her relationship with Briarthorn. Very well written chapter. :moustache:

How many chapters long will this story be? Will it be as long as CRISIS: Equestria?

Seventeen chapters and an epilogue, not even close to CRISIS: Equestria's length, which I think is a good thing in the end.

Is... is that a ponified Gadget Hackwrench?

Moral of the story is, you don't fuck with Blackburn or her friends. :twilightoops::pinkiecrazy: I usually don't enjoy prequels that much. I have really enjoyed this story. As least as much as I have enjoyed reading the original Crisis. Love seeing how Lockwood and Blackburn first met.

For the most part, yeah, she is. I loved Gadget and the Rescue Rangers as a kid :pinkiehappy:

Thanks! I hope you're looking forward to the sequel story, too :raritywink:

Wow, this has been quite the journey! Loved all the little nods and easter eggs for CRISIS. Also thanks for fleshing out one of the best OCs in CRISIS.

Great to see another full story in this setting.

That Randy Savage pony.:rainbowlaugh:

Ahhh...and this is where she first meets Lockwood.

I have a strong feeling the gang's going to be encountering Cotton again in the future. Though unfortunately from a not-so-amicable perspective.

It had to change at some point...:applejackunsure:

...Well, I guess I was right about them winding up on the wrong end of Cotton after all.
That was one heck of a twist to get to that point.

Welp, that ended quickly and deservingly bloodily.

This was a great story.

I'm gonna be honest, Blackburn was never one of my favorite characters from CRISIS: Equestria. The know-it-all, authoritative, direct and possibly manipulative character archetype has never jived with me. This story though, this has added a lot more characterization. You've made her much of a complex, thinking and feeling person in my eyes. This was a very enjoyable read.:twilightsmile:

I find myself enjoying this story far more than I expected. The limited perspective, the characterization of everyone, it's all very "believable". Especially with how the main character acts smart yet young, and is actually called out on it. I'd like to see some consequences for it tho - seems like there haven't been many, yet.

I haven't read the original story yet, but this one hasn't had any obvious gaps that would have required me to read it.

He leaned up and whispered in her ear. “Wanna schedule some private lessons with ‘Captain Brairthorn’ for after the movie? I’ll show you how to do an unloaded extension. Maybe a little rolling scissors?”


PS: should I pm you these instead?

Naw, I appreciate the spotting! Good eye!

Shining Steel, Paramour and Crystal Heart. Hmmm...awfully suspicious names.

Don't worry Blackburn, Lockwood is simply utilizing the magic of friendship.

Circumstances. Tragedy. Feel bad for Briarthorn.

Comment posted by So_Many_Wonders deleted Feb 17th, 2021

well that's one way to end a threat and get vengeance.

Well this was a nice read. Time for the sequels.

Beside him was a personal bodyguard, a white unicorn stallion with a blue mane dressed in light, purple-and-gold metallic armor.

Hmm. Were this a universe where most of the major characters were alternate versions of canon characters I would guess this to be Shining Armor. It still could be, but it could also be a brand new pony.

Crossfire has one a tha heaviest inscribed southern accents ah've ever seen. Like he can't make it through a sentence without simplifyin' at least a word er two. They ain't normally typed out unless it's a substantial change.

Le gasp! How dare a professional entertainer make false claims and fake magic? It's almost as though magicians hone an almost entirely different skill set from mages! Heh heh, silly unicorn.

Rainbow themed stunt flyer! :rainbowdetermined2: Competition is sensed.
And she goes by the title 'fastest pegasus in Equestria'! I really hope those two do meet one day, though the odds are against it. We shall see.

Nopony noticed Crimson Dust leaving his seat.

That is incredibly ominous. Please Dust, don't be secretly evil and have sabotaged Blue's plane! You were so polite and friendly in the face of prince dude being a jerk, don't go all cliche evil business man from Evil City on us. You can be better than that. Also the whole I want Blue Blitz to live through the book.

Four paragraphs. ...It could be a red herring? ...But he probably just did that. Sigh, such is the way of things.

Well, so far the world doesn't seem quite as bad off as I was expecting from the intro, even if there are still problems. I was envisioning a totalitarian nightmare that was preferable to the outside only because the outside was so terrible. I like this better.

Normal ponies don’t talk the way she does! Normal ponies aren’t obsessed with the things she is!

Well normal is hardly a goal to strive for. I don't want my ruler to be normal, I want them to be exemplary.
Though she does talk weird.

Blackburn would never need to attend another council meeting while her father was king.

So, I wonder how they're gonna step up the timetable. Officially remove him from position or a tragic accident? From these folks neither would surprise me, but a sudden bout of mortality is my first guess.
Silly me, that's what the recorders are for. I really went off the deep end of conspiracy land on that one. Oops.

As Blackburn lifted Crossfire up, she lost her balance and tripped, sending her and Crossfire straight into the nearby cracked mirror. Crossfire’s back slammed into it hard enough to crack the glass that hadn’t yet been cracked. Blackburn hit it face first, right on a nasty crack that was already there; the glass sliced her face as she slid down, tearing into the right of her muzzle all the way across to just above her left eye.

Why in the world would they fight in close proximity to a broken mirror? I expected better sense from these guys. Move any sharp objects at least a few dozen feet away.

Blackburn, don't you think that was a tad harsh on Silver Glow? What if Solarian or Spark Plug had stepped in to check on you? Just because she isn't your mother doesn't mean she can't be concerned. Maybe she wants to become better acquainted with you.
Remember, she may have been picked by Stormchaser, but so was your mom. Broken clocks and all that.

The quartet sat through the previews of coming attractions: a highly-anticipated comic book superhero film that explored to origins of a fan-favorite mare who hadn’t gotten her own solo film; a thrilling action film focused on two hardass stallions facing off against a genetically-engineering supervillain, a spin-off from a popular franchise; another thriller about a trained assassin that had to face down his clone out to kill him starring an actor that hadn't had a good performance in ten years; and a live-action adaptation of a popular animated film from thirty years ago that didn’t change anything about the original, just cast live actors - a blatant cash grab.

I wonder, was this based on specific movies, perhaps even a single outing you made around the time of writing this chapter? Let's see, Black Widow, something, something, at least three Disney movies in the last decade.

and we’ll get started right away your Princessfulness,

I am fairly sure that Your Highness, and variations thereof, have your capitalized. And even if I'm wrong, you did so in multiple other places this chapter.

Some of this stuff is more advanced that anything I worked with when I was under Spark Plug.


where he descended and made and easy landing.


She looked to her left and right and Briarthorn had done to see what it felt like from her perspective;


but she couldn’t tell who. He was certain it was her father,

I'm pretty sure this should be she.

I don’t think your father wouldn’t want you walking around with something so unbecoming for a lady.


But you didn't fix it. Why?

Within the ship, not a single pony had a care in the world about the raging horrors outside.

Even though the shield requires months off a pony's life. The price they pay for their prosperity.

Utopian culture did not have the same stigma about nudity that the northern continent seemed to have,

I had noticed that the ponies we had met tended to wear a lot more clothes on average than from the show, but I'd thought it was just the circles we had seen.

New Pandemonium makes me imagine Corasant under Imperial rule.


the quarters were larger and more populated than Hope’s Point to an exponential degree.

You can't have one thing be exponentially bigger than another! You need at least three data points for it to be distinct from a linear progression, or even a logarithmic one!
Sigh. I've seen this particular error many places and it gets more annoying each time. This is basic algebra, easy to look up if you are confused. And if you don’t understand a word you shouldn't throw it around.
Okay, I'm done. I'll go back to this lovely story.

Wait wait wait. Is Fancy Pants the head of the Bitalian Mafia?

Yes, something is definitely up with Lockwood, but I don’t know what. Hmm, cutie mark of an umbrella. I can't think of any good connections between umbrellas and social climbing, but it could refer more to the signifying event than the talent itself. Or maybe his mark's got nothing to do with it. But I don’t believe he is unaware of whatever's going on with him. We shall see.

This was my favorite chapter so far. I think I've got a thing for undercover heroes working their way up through the dirty city, so this was right up my alley. I look forward to the next one.

Chief of Medicine himself, Doctor Blutsauger.

Dr. Blood Sausage? Sounds more like a back alley sort than Chief of Medicine.
Oh, Blood Sucker. That sounds about right for this place.

I think Lockwood's legit. I ain't taken my eyes off a him, but I think he really is a decent sort. If he and the others at the fundraiser really are what they seem to be, then they fall squarely into my belief that most folks are basically good, but not necessarily self sacrificing.

And maybe, just maybe, Lockwood's helping make the city a better place in his own way. One connection at a time.

So Solarian was placed on house arrest for doing something for free that was declared useful and good, but too expensive? Stormchaser is worse than just lax on security, this is foolishness most dire. The sooner he's removed from power the better.

Their plan to make the diffusion systems safer should work out, Pandemonium seems to have it worked out already, and they might be able to help smooth the ride some.

Hmm. I wonder if the chief engineer will record the council meetings now that Solarian's gone.

but she’d enjoy the time she had her as much as she could.


I've been suspecting it for a while, but the recently moved rug makes me rather confident. Lockwood's been taken against his will. Rival organized crime family? Police? Possibly the Fantisimo family, but rather unlikely since he should still be both good with them and beneath this level of response. They'ld have had him brought openly, not carried out in a rug.

Ah, Miracle Max. I do hope Lockwood doesn't hit mostly dead before he gets back.

Oh, he wasn't kidnapped, he was killed poorly. Hopefully he'll recover and have some answers for us.

Yeah, but y’all’re the one that made all that work. I sure as shootin’ would’ve been able ta convince Tommy Gun ta get us in with his boss. Took me two weeks just ta get him ta agree ta meet ya.

I think this is supposed to be wouldn’t have.

“She passed out when she saw Lockwood in his condition,” Blackburn explained. “She has a pretty bad case of hemophobia. Passes right out at the sight of even the littlest bit of blood. Usually takes a few hours to wake up.”

I'd noticed before, but if it's that severe... isn't that a major problem for a bodyguard? Seems like she would be as much of a liability as an asset in a real fight.

Yeah, there are some downsides of being pals with that sort of pony. Their enemies become yours. I hope Blackburn exercises appropriate caution chasing this.

Lockwood's frequent 'accidents', coupled with his account of the attack, make me think he gets roughed up pretty often. Is it just because he hangs out with the bigwigs of, let’s say, extralawful activities? Or something more...

Personally, I thought it was less 'stalker' and more remembering the deceased.
Oh! Not certain, but I've got a notion. Ever since the eyes were brought up I've thought they were blood relatives of Lockwood. At first I thought it was his sister, but now I think it's his mom. As for the nature of her affections, either Blackburn misinterpreted what kind of love or Lockwood is named after his father, who presumably would have died during the pregnancy.

Having read entry four: Yikes. I am betting that this is his father, and I don't think he died. Seems like the sort to abandon a lover who gets pregnant without helping support her. The 'forgotten' wallet is a bad sign, and convincing a young mare to forgo protection seems like a bad sign too. Frankly, the guy seems like a creep, and this lady seems like a naive young lovestruck fool. I'd need more details to be sure, but at this point I'd guess the biggest reason she sees Lockwood in such a better light than Zipline is because he's better looking/younger.

Read to the skip: Yep. I called it. Lady, I want to feel sorry for you, but between your foolishness and your belittling of everypony but Lockwood, I don't. I do feel all the more resolute in my belief that Lockwood Jr. Is a good and noble stallion, and I suspect that he has lingering issues with his biological father.

Post skip: :pinkiesick: I really hope I'm reading between the lines wrong in that last entry, but even in the best of scenarios he never knew his father, which was probably a good thing, and his mom went insane when he was about 6.
Broken home merely begins to describe this.
P.S. Yeah, I think I did misread that last entry's hint I thought I saw, or she died before anything came of it.

One thing I didn't like about this chapter: You use Blackburn, Gadget, and Crossfire in the narration when it comes from Lockwood's point of view. I feel that it would fit better if they were referred to by their cover identities at those times. That said, I understand that it's more a matter of opinion than a definite right and wrong way to do things.

Hmm. Maybe this world is meant to have lots of alternates. I've spotted canadates for Shining Armor, Rainbow, Pinkie, Fancy Pants, Fluer, and now Lyra. And I easily could have missed a few.

They should set up a signal that he wants them to intervene. Like a secret password or something.

Hmm. When they came in I figured they were Cotton's sisters real quick, honestly I'm a little embarrassed I didn't think of it the first time several gray earth pony mares were mentioned. Even so, I didn't expect that Cotton's death was faked, though it made sense in retrospect. I did suspect she was the traitor once I knew she was still alive.

And I see that the recorder was of a non-transmiting variety, so a code word wouldn't have helped anyway.

He gestured towards the across from the Don.

I believe that should be the chair across.


Virtuoso gave a tried wave with his hoof.


In the opening round one sixth of the... I'm gonna call them robots, were taken out, and one third of the mobsters. That's not a good sign, especially considering this was a sneak attack.
That the Don could only round up a dozen enforcers further drives home how hard this has hit him.

Okay, I knew they were competent, but I did not expect quite that level of skill from Gadget and Crossfire. This might not end as badly as I feared.

9985169, 9986249
Huh. I hadn't made the connection, though the name did remind me of her. I figured that it was just a coincidence, since an inventor named Gadget fits pony naming schemes. Once I thought about it I recognized the goggles on the picture as the right look, but I had to do a web search to verify her color scheme as matching.
She seems to be more specialized in electrical rather than mechanical, but that could be a result of the setting.

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