• Member Since 15th Jun, 2019
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“There are three things all wise men fear: the sea in storm, a night with no moon, and the anger of a gentle man.” - Patrick Rothfuss


This story is a sequel to Three Second Chances

Despite all attempts, Cozy Glow still hasn't been shown a path to friendship. No pony has been able to get through to her, and she's only gotten worse with each attempt.

Reluctant to return the filly to stone again, Princess Twilight has one last option. One pony she hasn't tried. Or in this case? One person.

Sunset Shimmer.

Can Sunset do what no pony has been able to?

This tale is a spiritual sequel to Three Second Chances, by popular request. It follows the spirit of that tale, but is not a direct follow-up and so no prior knowledge is required.

Featured: 11/27/2019, 12/13/2019, 1/9/2020, 1/23/2020, 1/30/2020 and 2/6/2020!

Reviewed by PresentPerfect to earn a rating of Highly Recommended!

Featured in the Royal Canterlot Library!

And featured in Equestria Daily's 40 Fanfics to Read for Villain Day on 11/12/2020!

Chapters (12)
Comments ( 234 )

I'm tracking this for sure X3

Twilight laughed, throwing an arm around Sunset's shoulders. "I wanted to save Equestria, not scour it with flame."

"Hey, that worked the last time there were windigoes."
"That was the Fire of Friendship."
"I have friendship! I have fire! I fail to see the problem here!"

And Sunset immediately threw her hands up in surrender. "Joking! Joking! No laser-blasting children. Promise."

"But if she's still a monster when she turns eighteen—"
"Still joking!"

Those words sank in. Sunset turned to guide Cozy into the school - and a slow, dark smile came to Cozy's lips.

And without turning her head an inch, Sunset said, "Wipe that smirk off your face, young lady. I was giving slow, dark grins before your parents met each other."

Definitely looking forward to seeing how this goes. It certainly won't be easy, but it should go very well indeed... provided Sunset makes it clear to everyone involved that Cozy's a serial schemer. A fresh start is one thing; leading a wolf into the sheep pen is quite another.

Well this iscertainly a pleasent surprise. And already starting off so well. Can't wait to see how this goes.

Cozy Glow as a character has recently become very interesting to me, so I’ll definitely be following this. Looking forward to more!

Ooh this is AWESOME so far!!!!! This is definitely getting a favorite and track from me!

Sunset Shimmer wasn't in the background for the final Friendship Beam attack in "The Final Battle?" I thought she was.


Let us hope is a paddock of very well aware and cantankerous mountain rams instead.

Ooh, can't wait to see what happens next!


She was not. She did appear in the E26 montage, but not in the final battle.


"But if she's still a monster when she turns eighteen—"
"Still joking!"

"I'm not."

*Continues to sharpen overly gratuitous battle axe*

I could already tell this is gonna be good

As a note, I found my original notes with the intended chapter naming scheme and fixed the first one. Oops!

Great chapter! I loved all the character introductions. Everyone felt in-character. I especially loved thereactions Celestia and Luna when Sunset revealed Cozy's crimes and when Cozy revealed that she was turned to stone for them.

Can't wait for the next one.

Oof. Cozy seems like she's planning some evil stuff......................good luck on that, Crusaders.
This is a REALLY good story! You've made me laugh out loud so many times. :rainbowlaugh: You're very funny. And I can't wait to see what happens next!
Keep up the awesome work!

But Wait! If the alternate realities have copies of everypony in some shape or form, then...

*Flips open history text to Alicia 'Cozy Glow' Cappone'.*

"Well, as someone once said: Multiverse Theory's a Bitch."

"Are you including the time you were on the school roof and burst into flames while singing about overcoming your past?"

"Nothing else caught fire."
"You still set off the smoke alarms."
"Yeah, why are there smoke alarms on the roof again?"
"After Mr. Discord's uranium incident, we can't be too careful."

"Discord?," questioned Luna. "The art teacher?"

Ah. Just as good a subject for him as physics. And I hold by the uranium. It made for a lovely orange ceramic glaze in the early 20th century.

Well I'm never gonna have friends if the first thing you tell them is that I'm a criminal! You ever think about that, huh? Huh?!

"Kid, I spent years terrorizing this school before turning into a literal demon and mind-controlling half of the people here. Now they love me without magic. First impressions aren't everything."

In any case, definitely looking forward to more. Cozy does have a point; it'll be hard for people to make friends with her if they don't trust anything she says... but right now, they shouldn't. Still, benefit of the doubt is essential, and she knows the consequences of getting caught.

Of course, that just tells her she shouldn't get caught.


Next chapter: the Crusaders let Sunset down.


I was tempted to make Discord the philosophy teacher in a nod to CrackedInkwell's work, but that didn't make sense for a high school so I instead nodded to an earlier work.

And yes, Cozy does have a point. That's when she's most dangerous.


Now now, don't think so poorly of the Crusaders.

They've got two chapters before they let Sunset down.

And _not_ setting it a thousand years in the future allows you to avoid the complicated world-building that would be involved in the advanced MagiTech setting Sunset and Twilight (human) would have turned it into by that point. :raritywink:

Cozy Glow, meet Mister Motion Detector and Mister Low Light Security Camera.

Also meet Mister Silent Alarm, Mister Night Stick, and Mister Handcuff.

And we mustn't forget their buddy, Mister Cell Door.

All of whom are GREAT friends of Officer Armor.

I'm loving how Sunset's slowly introducing Cozy to the himan world, especially her description of the phone.

Not sure if chinese food with chopsticks was the best first food for her to eat though.

I can't wait till her plan falls apart


Sunset's description of the phone is partially taken from an old thread I remember reading.

It asked: If someone from the 1950s time-traveled to today, what would be the hardest thing for them to deal with.

The answer: A smart phone. It has several magnitudes more computing power than existed in the entire world then; it can instantly connect with almost anyone in the world through voice, text or video; you can read any book or any newspaper from anywhere; it can play any music you want to hear or let you watch any movie; it can guide you to any location you want with nearly perfect accuracy; and it can solve almost any math problem you can think of. We use it primarily to look at pictures of cats.

Seems like cozy glow wants to leave already

So why did you leave out that last part?

We also use its blue light to deprive ourselves of sleep, with that and social media abuse leading to an epidemic of depression, anxiety, and other mental issues. Particularly in young people whose development is indelibly colored by this.

Humanized ponies struggling with chopsticks will always be funny.

Celestia's in charge here, so she's probably got the tool with her or in her office.

Entirely logical deduction. Also completely wrong. To say nothing of how hard a nut Mr. Doodle might be to crack.

Which raises the fascinating question of how much the two Twilights tell each other, and what the local has told her family.


Which raises the fascinating question of how much the two Twilights tell each other, and what the local has told her family.

At least in my takes, not a lot.

Both Twilights are exactly the sort to go Prime Directive and not telling their alternate selves about possible future events for fear of polluting/influencing things. Rather, I can see them coordinating after the fact to see what has and hasn't lined up as an observational experiment in dimensional deviations.

(I also write human Twilight as being a bit jealous towards her alternate - teenagers have hard enough times living up to expectations and keeping a good self-image without being told that you could have been a magical flying hero-princess-horse that all your friends look up to. I like to leverage that a LOT in SunLight pairings. It's a good conflict source.)


Someone needs to introduce Cozy to the concept of nuclear weapons.

"This is an Ohio Class ballistic missile submarine. It's armed with twenty four trident intercontinental ballistic missiles, each carrying up to twelve W76 nuclear warheads rated at about 300 kilotons each. The missiles have a range of over six thousand miles, and each warhead carries the destructive power of all the princesses combined, and can destroy an entire city in one shot. So... just one Ohio class submarine thus has enough firepower to destroy two-hundred and eighty-eight cities at the same time."

"Th... That's crazy! And I was working with the most destructive creatures in Equestrian history!"

"Oh it gets better. There's not just one of these ships. There's fourteen of them.

"Tha- Two eighty-eight by fourte- over TWO THOUSAND CITIES!"

"Yep! Just one of these things could erase Equestria from the surface of the world. The whole fleet could erase every last patch of civilization from Equis in just thirty minutes."

"These apes are INSANE! What are these Ohios even FOR?!"

"Self Defense."

"Self DEFENSE?! Self defense from WHAT?! Hyper-Discord? What even-"

"Trust me, when it comes to making a mess, what you and those other two did don't hold a candle to what humans can do when you piss them off. Luckily, they're all aware of just how insane this kind of power is. They use it mainly to say 'don't mess with us, or we'll just END you.' It works surprisingly well."


"Hilariously enough, they have an acronym that fits. They call the whole principle Mutually Assured Destruction... or MAD for short. They aren't stupid. They know EXACTLY what they have."

"...Can I go back through the portal now? I promise, I'll be good. I'll be good, and help princess Twilight run Equestria. Anything so long as I'm nowhere near those kind of insane weapons."

"Awww.... But I haven't even told you about the land based silos..."

"...I'll even do a thousand years in stone without protest! Two thousand years! Anything!"

"Sorry kiddo! You're part of the crazy hairless ape club now. No backsies!"



I do admit a love for introducing characters to concepts that are foreign to them but basic to the reader - there's great comedy potential in there.

As for the Ohio-class - Introducing Equestrians to human military aspects would be one of the more... tricky parts of exposure. (I consider that well-trod however, it's been done a hundred times in scifi with 'alien culture that knows no war'.) I suspect the only reason we're as okay with it as we are is humanity's inability to really grasp the practical meaning of numbers on that scale. ("One death is a tragedy, the death a million is a statistic.")


It's less about the military aspects for creatures that don't know war, and more about the shock value of just how inconceivably insane that kind of power really is. To posit to Cozy Glow, who just recently was teamed up with beings that were manifesting just enough power to wreck a town if they tried really hard, that not only do humans have that power out-gunned, but have it so absurdly out-gunned that 'total global destruction' is a 'casual' term...

Then you explain to her that there is zero magic involved, and that the process is done using rocks. (Significantly simplified.)

Then you stick her in front of Youtube.

She either swears off villainy, or turns into a James Bond villain.

Yikes, starting with chopsticks? A knife and fork would have been hard enough...


Not true.

The best way to train is to train the hardest way possible that can still be successfully performed. It makes all other tasks easy in comparison.

Plus, chopsticks aren't actually all that hard. You just have to get used to, and remember that one stick is actually stationary and resting in the crook of your thumb, locked in a counter-forced clamp by your ring finger. And the other actually sets up using the meat of your thumb as a fulcrum that is controled by your index and middle fingers.

Personally, my form is a bit off, but once I run myself through it once, the tactile memory of what feels right settles in and I'm good to go. I even gave myself a queck form check while typing this with a pair of pencils, and easily picked up a snickers wrapper.

I eat with chopsticks all the time, and have for about fifteen or so years now, ever since I had a half-Chinese girlfriend in high school and so learned how to use them so I could actually eat when invited over to her house for dinner. Chopsticks are that hard when compared to simple slicing, skewering, or scooping with a knife, fork, or spoon.

The best way to train is to train the hardest way possible that can still be successfully performed.

I wouldn’t go that far. When I’m teaching people how to do a job at work I don’t start with the most difficult tasks, I start with the easy ones that can be intuited with minimal instruction first, and let them perform those tasks until they become rote. Then I step up to harder tasks that aren’t as intuitive, and scale up from there.

Ultimately it probably doesn’t matter too much; Sunset isn’t making anything remotely like a misstep here with Cozy.

Then again I suppose with how intelligent Cozy is starting with a harder task actually makes sense from that perspective. Cozy is smart, knows she’s smart, and enjoys being treated like she’s smart. So in that sense it definitely builds up their relationship.


Actually, the background of why chopsticks is a bit different. Other flatware exists in Equestria - we've seen forks, spoons, knives and the like at place settings so it's reasonable to assume Cozy is at least somewhat familiar with them. Chopsticks, however, we have not and their use is entirely dependent on having fingers. Equestrian 'sticky hooves' couldn't make them work, which meant they were a brand new exercise for Cozy to deal with.

Alternately, Sunset felt like take-out Chinese and the practice was a good excuse.

For such a short chapter, quite a lot went down in it.

First Cozy didn't waste any time getting back to her old tricks, did she?...though wonder what this stunt would help her accomplish. As for Luna's medication...why do I get the feeling Cozy's gonna mess with them sooner or later?

Sunset's gonna have to keep a closer eye on Cozy for now, it seams. I wonder how long till' Cozy antagonizes everyone in school.

Woah, are you saying in this story the EQG Nightmare Moon is Luna with a split personality?

The lack of hay did not go over well.

"Sigh. You get used to it..."

"Except for Mr. Cranky's in the second-last, um... slot?" She bobbled at the end, honestly unsure of the appropriate term.

Huh. I'd think the School of Friendship would work similarly.

Yeaaaaah, I don't actually see this going well for the perpetrator. The Crusaders can all corroborate each other's stories, and Celestia knows Ms. Glow is a manipulative little monster. Also, as long as Sunset is friends with one or more Crusaders, she may be able to see Cozy's MyStable activity. Sure, this looks bad now, but the consequences can backlash horrifically in ways Cozy both can and cannot anticipate. And frankly, I think Cozy may have cashed in the Crusaders' trust a bit too early. Humans aren't as forgiving as the baseline she's used to.

Of course, Celestia has other things on her mind...


Huh. I'd think the School of Friendship would work similarly.

Small admission: that was originally written because I could not for the life of me remember the appropriate word, stopped writing to go look it up and stopped writing for a good ten hours after I fell down a Wikihole. That part of the exchange just seemed natural after that.

Yeaaaaah, I don't actually see this going well for the perpetrator.

It is very not.


Woah, are you saying in this story the EQG Nightmare Moon is Luna with a split personality?

I'm not - as a writer I hate the split personality trope, particularly since it's frequently used in the dumbest/laziest ways by writers who are better than that.

However if the two dimensions map, Luna having problems with paranoia, delusions of grandeur and the like is entirely in character, as well as self-worth issues.

Seems like cozy glow is back to her old ways again

can't wait to see Cozy's plan fall apart......................
(also, LOVING this story.)

Or....you know....whenever you can. :twilightblush:
(All joking aside, I LOVE this!!!)


I'm trying (for once) to keep a one-update-per-week schedule, mostly so I can keep a few chapters written ahead.

With the holidays (plus three contests and four other currently in-process fics), it's tough to keep on top of things!

Oof. I imagine so. Don't push yourself! we'll be waiting for whenever you can post it. :twilightsmile:

Trying to get someone who is new to having fingers to use chopsticks? I’ve been trying to do that for years and still can’t figure it out. Cozy is great at adapting.

Why can't Cozy steal the geodes from them and throw them in a Garbage Truck and let a compacter do the rest?

Gaaaaah I love Sunset in this chapter. I love declaratory speeches and pontifications and stuff; I think that's part of why I like Aaron Sorkin's writing so much, as well as one of the main reasons why I love Babylon 5. The bit where Sunset is talking about what losing absolute power feels like was brilliant.

To play Cozy's Advocate for a moment, Cozy could have paid attention to the fact that Sunset's mentioned that there is magic here, either leaking in or in the hands of other exiles, and thus start looking for a way to overcome the Human-7. That being said Sunset's ability to just read her mind with a touch would make this extremely difficult to pull off. Just saying that while Sunset definitely put her in check here, she was not necessarily checkmated yet.

Firstly, because if the geodes go missing then the Human-7 are going to know exactly who did it, and even without their geodes they're seven reasonably fit seniors in High School and Cozy Glow is a Freshman with absolutely no special powers. I'm not even saying they could "beat her up", just that she has no real ability to stop them from shoving her back through the portal to a waiting Twilight in retaliation.

But secondly and more importantly, because it doesn't address the real problem, which is that Sunset and the human world in general knows her. Cozy Glow's "power" depends on her ability to manipulate others and that no one knows what she's really about or who she really is, but that doesn't exist here. It's the Rusty Bucket problem from "Frenemies" for her writ large. If someone doesn't want to do what she wants them to do she has no ability to force them (and Rusty Bucket didn't even know who she was and was genuinely friendly, he just had no desire to help her climb the mountain).


No, I agree. Cozy isn't out of the game, but she's realized that she's at least currently thwarted until a good (really good) opportunity presents itself.

Also, loves me some B5. I would love to write soliloquies as strong as that show had.

Well you're definitely not off to a bad start with Sunset there!

Oh, speaking of Cozy and chess, Jyc Row dropped this last week:

And now I find myself wishing I had any skill at animation because listening to it all I wanted to see was a video of Cozy playing a game of chess against herself, not unlike Xehanort is in the opening to Kingdom Hearts 3.

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