• Published 14th Dec 2019
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Altered Perspectives: The Long Way Back - CapNTilfy



The Friendship Games have ended, and the students and faculty of Crystal Prep must adjust to the fact that magic does indeed exist...

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Royal Pin

Royal Pin found a seat and sat down, then heaved a long sigh as he rested his head in his hands. Save for a few instances, he had been at a loss ever since the third and final round of the Friendship Games.

An alternate world. There was an honest to god alternate world. Populated by diminutive equines. Equines that appeared, for all intents and purposes, sapient.

It was all Royal could do to keep himself from going mad over it. He had to think of something, anything else.


Shortly after getting off the bus, Royal had noticed an unusual sight: two young women holding hands, their fingers laced together. A pale green girl was talking excitedly as her golden eyes sparkled with happiness. The other, a cream-colored girl, was listening intently as she scratched an itch in her pink and blue hair.

There was no other possible way for Royal to interpret that: those two ladies were a couple. He slowly walked up to them. "Pardon for interrupting," he said. "But are you... 'together'?" He had to ask. It would have been rude to simply assume.

The pale blue student tilted her head. "'Together'," she asked in mild confusion before realization dawned on her. "Oh! Yes, we're a couple," she said happily, then kissed her partner on the cheek, eliciting a giggle.

"Does the whole of Canterlot High know?"

"Pretty much," the cream-skinned student answered.

Royal blinked, then blushed. "Ah, forgive my manners. I haven't introduced myself." He held out a hand. "Royal Pin."

"Lyra Heartstrings," the pale blue student said as she shook Royal's hand.

"Sweetie Drops," the other girl said, "But most people call me Bon-Bon." She shook Royal's hand.

"Nice to meet you both." Royal's smile disappeared, and he heaved a sigh.

"What's wrong," Lyra asked.

"I... I must admit that I am a tad jealous of you both." Royal looked away. "Being..." he trailed off as he felt anxiety cling to himself. He could do this. Out with it, man! Out with it!

Lyra and Bon-Bon waited patiently as Royal struggled.

"Being... self-confident enough to not hide who you are." Royal closed his eyes, then took a deep breath. He exhaled, calming himself.

"Why would we need to hide what we are," Lyra asked. "Bon-Bon and I accept ourselves and each other," she said, gesturing to her girlfriend.

"And your fellow students don't shun you," Royal asked.

Bon-Bon folded her arms and rolled her eyes. "Oh, there's a couple of intolerant people in our school."

"But we have a saying," Lyra chimed in.

"'Ignore the ignorant'", they said together.

Royal blinked in surprise.

"If you ignore them, that takes away their power over you," Lyra explained.

"Yeah," Bon-Bon said. "And besides, if they don't accept us for who we are, that's their problem. Not ours."

"I... see..." None of those thoughts had ever occurred to Royal. All this time he had been worried about what others would think of him. The only reason he even came out to Neon Lights was because he knew he would not be judged.

Perhaps if Royal came out to more people... people he knew he could trust... he could find some sort of peace with himself. After all, if he couldn't accept himself for who he was, how could another man?

"L... Ladies," Royal said with some hesitation. "T-There's... another reason I approached the two of you."

"Yes?"

Royal swallowed nervously, then closed his eyes. He began to imagine a future for himself. One where he was more confident. Where he wasn't so afraid of what other people might think of him upon learning of his homosexuality.

"I-I..." Royal took a deep breath, then sighed heavily. "I... I'm gay... and I'm having self-esteem issues because of it."

Royal opened his eyes, and Lyra and Bon-Bon hugged him.

"That was very brave of you," Lyra whispered.

"And we accept you for who you are... unconditionally," Bon-Bon said.

Tears began streaming down Royal Pin's face, and the dam burst shortly after.


Royal wiped away a tear. Lyra and Bon-Bon had given him hope. Hope that he never imagined he'd have. They had told him of their group, and that he was more than welcome to stop by at any time. They also gave him their phone numbers so they could keep in touch with each other.

Royal sighed. If only Crystal Prep Academy was as nice and welcoming as Canterlot High was.

After he and several of his fellow Shadowbolts got eliminated in the first round, Royal found himself with some free time...


A few moments before the next round began, Royal found Neon and sat next to him.

"So, you got eliminated as well," Royal asked.

Neon sighed. "Yeah. It really sucks, because I'm more of an athlete than an academic." He turned to face Royal. "What about you? I figured you'd ace the ACADECA portion."

"I may have been... emotionally compromised."

Neon raised an eyebrow. "'Emotionally compromised'? What happened, man?"

Royal proceeded to tell Neon of his conversation with Lyra and Bon-Bon, then then finished with a faint smile.

Neon grinned widely. "That's amazing, Royal! I knew you'd find the courage someday!"

"Frankly, old friend, I did not. But those ladies were an inspiration. So much so that I'm going to try to set up a group, just like them."

Neon frowned. "I dunno, man. Cinch doesn't seem like she'd be the type to approve such a thing."

"Are you implying she might be homophobic?"

Neon shook his head. "I can't prove that, but you know how she is. If she thinks it does nothing to further her goals, she won't have any of it."

"At the very least, I have to try."

Neon smiled. "You've got my full support."

Royal snorted. "As if there was any doubt."


Royal smiled warmly. Always a true friend, that Neon Lights. He had no idea where he'd be without him, and he shuddered to imagine what life would be like for him if he was.

Royal actually shuddered as those beastly otherworldly plant creatures resurfaced in his mind. That was one of the most unnerving moments of his life! Neon had ran into the field, grabbed Sugarcoat by the hand and ran off the track before she could be eaten. After that, those two were practically joined at the hip for the remainder of the Games.

Shortly before the final event, Royal had encountered another couple...


Royal was still sitting down, not quite fully recovered from the shock over the plant monsters. Nevermind the fact that Crystal Prep actually lost the second round...

Before Royal could have another thought, a pair of young men passed him by. One was a tall and burly blue student with curly blue hair. His white t-shirt emblazoned with a tornado flapped as a small breeze passed through. The shorter of the two had brown hair in a bowl cut, and on his shirt just above the beast pocket was a picture of a red heart directly below a long division symbol.

Royal did a double-take upon noticing that the two were holding hands, their fingers laced together... another gay couple! He hurried over to them and gained their attention. "Terribly sorry for my forwardness, gentlemen," he said. "But I can't help but notice you both seem to be a couple."

"We are," said the shorter of the two, then raised his arm and kissed the back of his boyfriend's hand, eliciting a slight blush.

"I hope that isn't a problem," the taller student said once his blush faded.

Royal shook his head. "Quite the opposite, as a matter of fact." He smiled. "My name is Royal Pin," he said as he extended a hand.

"Curly Winds," the tall blue student said as he shook Royal's hand.

"Wiz Kid," the other student said after Curly finished his handshake. "So, you seem like you have more to say."

"Indeed I do," Royal said, then told the two of his meeting with Lyra and Bon-Bon including his coming out to them. He finished with with his plan to create a group at CPA.

"Yeah, Lyra and Bon-Bon are amazing girls," Curly said. "If it weren't for them, Wizzie and I might not have ended up together."

Wiz nodded. "We were just as insecure as you are when we first met, so we know where you're coming from."

"So Crystal Prep Academy doesn't have an LGBTQ group," Curly asked in mild surprise.

Royal sighed. "I'm afraid not."

"Do you think you'll be able to get one running? I think every high school should have one."

"Just look at all the good it did for us," Wiz said, gesturing to himself and Curly.

Royal smiled warmly. "I can see..." he trailed off, and his smile slowly faded. "Sadly, I cannot easily imagine the Headmistress accepting such a group."

"Why's that," Curly asked.

"Surely the both of you saw her up on stage. Can you easily imagine someone so haughty doing something to benefit others?"

Wiz chuckled. "We know someone who has a bit of an ego, but that doesn't stop her from being the most loyal friend you could ask for."

"Unfortunately, our Headmistress is loyal to nobody but herself," Royal said as he put a hand to his head. "Influence and reputation is what drives her. Nothing more, nothing less."

"Wow," Curly said with widened eyes. "That's... kind of sad."

"You're not going to let that stop you from asking, are you," Wiz asked.

"Of course not," Royal exclaimed. "There's no doubt in my mind that there are other LGBTQ people at Crystal Prep, and once they they're made aware of my group I will strive to make it a more welcoming environment for them!"

"Well said," Wiz exclaimed as Curly applauded.

Royal took a deep breath, then exhaled. "I must say, that was rather exhilarating!"

Clouds began to form around Canterlot High, and a chime sounded off from the school's PA system. "Attention, everyone! The final event is about to begin. Please head towards the front of the building!"

"Speaking of 'exhilarating'," Curly said.

"Indeed. Let's watch this spectacle come to an end, shall we?"

The three headed off to the front of the building, unaware of what awaited them...


For Royal Pin, what had followed was surreal and frightening. Miss Twilight Sparkle had summoned magic from her pendant and transformed into a mad winged sorceress! She tore open several holes in reality, then a student from Canterlot High transformed as well!

Adding to everything that had happened to him, Royal had been struggling with the fact that he finally cracked and fell victim to the overly competitive spirit of Crystal Prep! Even if Miss Sweet was right in her assertion that the blame fell mostly on Headmistress Cinch's shoulders, he felt responsible for pressuring Miss Twilight into releasing the magic!

Royal heaved a sigh as he put a hand to his forehead. He just wanted to go home, have a mug of cocoa and retire to his room for the night.

The bus slowed to a complete stop as it arrived at Crystal Prep.