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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!

Sequels1

E

This story is a sequel to Ring Around The Moon -- Part I


The Sun Celebration has arrived. The Nightmare returns. And with the help of some extra friends, Twilight, Tempest, and their fellow students are about to discover just how far the Dark Mare will go to have her revenge...

This concludes the Nightmare Moon series of Not Exactly Friends... but Twilight, Tempest, and their friends return in A Canterlot Engagement.

Chapters (5)
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Comments ( 131 )

Really:facehoof:episode 1

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Keep going... you may be surprised...
:twilightsmile:

Please use multiverses theory and multiple timelines:applecry::fluttercry::fluttershysad:

Ow. My brain hurts. I hate it when authors do that. Hope you're proud of yourself.

Great job on the first chapter of the finale of this series. Love the work that went into the exchanges, characterizations and future chapter set-up in all the right places. I especially liked the details concerning Starlight stopping herself from snoring and Trixie preventing herself from performing in her sleep, Twilight and Sunset's chat during the elements (and, how close they ironically came to actually activating them) as well as the discussion at the Summer Sun Celebration preparations.

On to the next chapter.

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Don't worry... I wouldn't short-change you!
:twilightsmile:

Oh. Damn. Right. Here we go, plunging into the story that has given me SO many ideas. If I don't come back after 2 hours... Wait another 2... Then send in the next vict-I meeaaaan Searcher. Yeah... Searcher. Ahem. >_> None shall escape, abandon all hope ye who enter!

Once more, this was a quite well done chapter. The work that went into the exchanges, characterizations and future chapter set-up were all well done in all the right places. I particularly liked Sunset and Twilight's meeting with the rest of the canon Mane Six (especially the little Mythology Gags to the actual first episode and Sunset's admission to where she knew these five ponies from), Cheese and Pinkie's teamwork in setting up the party and the discussion concerning the preparations in the event that reasoning fails.

On to the next chapter.

Simply splendid job on this chapter. Once again, the exchanges, characterizations and future chapter set-ups are all well done in the right places. I especially liked how the gang worked to reassure each other as well as that failed blackmail attempt from that former associate of Tempest, Twilight's admissions concerning her understandable fears about ruling and Twilight trying to comfort that guy who lost his family.

On to the next chapter.

"Okay, so what's first on our list?"

"Uh... banquet preparations!" he read.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

REALLY good job on the exchanges, characterizations, action and climax set-up in all the right places in this second-to-last chapter. I particularly enjoyed the details concerning Nightmare Moon's OWN preparations, as well as Twilight's ENTIRE group of friends (including Cheese and the canon Mane Six) all stepping up to the plate at the right times and the "contingency FOR the contingency" deal.

On to the final chapter.

Somewhere out there, beyond the mundane four dimensions, Ananke is laughing herself sick.

Hey, ya think we could get some more tension in here? I'm just not sure everyone's tightly-wound enough yet...

That was a beautifully bittersweet wrap-up to this story. The exchanges, characterizations and wrap-up were superbly done in all the right places. I particularly enjoyed the other Twilight's reveal of the details of how that universe's Nightmare Moon captured her as well as the reassurances to Twilight's entire group of friends that, while the paths might be longer and more complex, they would still lead to their lives getting changed for the better.

All in all, you did a brilliant job on this series as a whole.

"Though not by force, that never works. Trust me on this."

Sure it does, you just need to apply it at the right time and in the right place.

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Thanks, CK -- and I've really appreciated your in-depth feedback all the way through. A lot went into this, and it's helped tremendously, hearing your detailed reactions throughout. Thanks a million!
:twilightsmile:

So, this is the end of your series. I can tell this is going to be a good ending.

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Only if you can sustain it indefinitely -- because the other side usually has far more practice and far fewer scruples...
:twilightoops:

The alicorn Twilight shook her head. "Nightmare Moon's change in history only affects you, Twilight, and your close friends. For everyone else, either timeline is essentially the same. So no one else is affected. Only you."

Butterflies don't work like that, and you know it.

"But," the alicorn Twilight finished, "in doing all that, I'll be wiping out my timeline. I'll probably cease to exist... just like Nightmare Moon."

And thus creating a timeline-shredding paradox?

And then, with a melancholy smile, Princess Twilight flapped her wings and rose into the air. She swept up and away, into the sky. There was a brief, brilliant flash of light, as she activated the time-travel spell. Then she disappeared from sight.

Didn't you say you only barely remembered that spell? shouldn't you, I dunno, take some time to review your notes and recover from all the abuse Nightmare put you through?

"I'm proud of all of you, very proud. That was not an easy choice to make."

Well temporal omnicide one way, temporal omnicide the other way, either way you're condemning incalculable souls to summary nonexistence. Best not to think about it.

Comment posted by Venerable Ro deleted Feb 29th, 2020

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Well clearly that's the wrong time and the wrong place.

This was a very heartfelt chapter. Twilight and her group of friends meeting with her canon friends and announcing their plans to welcome Nightmare Moon back. I hope this goes well.

This has been a wonderful, glorious train ride from start to finish. Honestly, you should be proud. This could have been a Special or two on its own, and there's simply too many good things to say about everything here.

Course... I'm still quite sad this timeline is gone now. That's not gonna stop hurting anytime soon.

You make a guy wish for multiverse theory lol great job in the series

Not gonna lie, the way you ended this is the only thing preventing me from favoriting it.

"Of course," Starlight admitted tensely, "the single-stream theory has it that at the very moment she restores her timeline, everything here will just --"

I really don't like the implication that this whole series got retconned due to time travel. That basically ruins this story for me in its current state. I know you said you'd be willing to write more about this world, but with the current ending, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Sorry.

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Don't forget Starlight's other alternative:

"There are several competing theories. The multiverse interpretation holds that even when that Twilight returns her version of the timeline to its original course, ours will simply continue on, following its own independent path..."

I had Starlight carefully spell that out for a reason: there's always another fork in the path. But I did want to provide closure for "our" Twilight, showing she managed to get back to her own timeline. This story is the end of the arc, sure, but not necessarily of the characters -- with a little imagination...

Well that ending escalated quickly, and Nightmare Moon hasn’t even arrived yet.

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Thanks, NJDB -- given how big a role Trixie had in this story, I'm very grateful for your ongoing feedback as a GaPT fan!
:twilightsmile:

And it's not necessarily over -- I just wanted to wrap this story arc up properly. What do you think? If it continued, should I throw the Advanced Projects group up against villains like Discord or Chrysalis? Or would it be better to strike out from canon entirely? (Though it would be a challenge coming up with a satisfying "boss" villain on a par with the series baddies.) Personally, it might be fun putting a character like Discord through the Not Exactly Friends wringer, seeing what comes to light. But I'd love to hear what "repeat customers" of this series think!

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Personally, I like the idea of seeing the old favorites return. I'm also a fan of Discord secretly remembering alternate timelines. :twilightsmile:

By the way... I called it. The ending, I mean. :pinkiehappy: Wonderful, just wonderful story.

They never considered that while they were preparing for Nightmare Moon, she was making her own preparations.

Well that was an interesting ending to the series. It seems like everything is resolved and/or returned to canon, but at the same time it is open-ended enough you could continue with these characters if you wanted to.

I really like it, but the idea of everything going back to canon leaves a bad taste on my mouth, i for one would love to this time line continue as it is.:twilightsmile:

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Okay, let me ask you then: would you be interested in stories that revisit canon finales/villains in this alternate timeline? Or more slice-of-life kind of tales? Or something else entirely? I would love to continue with these characters, in stories folks would like to read, too, so it'd be great to get your opinions!
:twilightsmile:

Ok went in a different direction there. So basically Nightmare Moon from the first alternate time line Starlight made(The Nightmare Timeline) caught Twilight, used the time spell to try and make the "prime" timeline in one where she won. She tried to change Twilight's friend group to one that could not use the elements. She teamed with with this time line's Nightmare, both intent on betraying the other of course, but didn't realize this time line's Luna was interfering, Sunset would realize the missing element to the harmony field was friendship and Alicorn Twilight would just travel back in time allow herself to escape causeing Nightmare to no longer be of the Nightmare time line and dissolve into a trandimenshional paradox. This why you don't screw with time travel folks, one mistake and your obliterated by a paradox.

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If I can butt in here. I would LOVE to see how this group would handle Sombra. I still feel like he got the short end of the stick in the series and deserves a well... Proper chance. I mean hell, Discord got a redemption, Luna got her redemption, Starlight, Tempest, Sunset. They all got a redemption, but Sombra just got kinda... Thrown to the nines and left to rot. Plus that voice.shudder. So seeing this group tackle Sombra, the King of the Crystal Empire would be something else! (Plus some slice of life thrown in couldn't hurt either.)

As for this entire story. I loved the whole 'Twilight's got a Big sister in Tempest' thing and it warms my heart in a lot of ways. (Seriously, she makes a wonderful big sister role model for Twilight.) Seeing that get ripped away by this ending kinda just... Yeah. I can't express it entirely in words. In this, Tempest gets a little sister who loves her for who she is, protects her like nothing else, and is willing to die if that means her one link in a chain that can be called family is alive... Not that Twilight would ever allow that to happen to her B.S.B.F.F. cause let's face it. It's Twilight Sparkle.

But just think of all the fun little ideas of Tempest 'vetting' possible suitors going after Twilight. (If you're an "Anypony but Flash" shipper I mean... C'moooon! Personally I'm a Twilight x redeemed Sombra shipper, and a Mac/Dash shipper. My two favorite pairings and I will fight for their rights to exist! Seriously, I'm American, we've crossed frozen rivers on Christmas Eve to defend ourselves. It's in the blood!) Ahem! Anyhow, that dynamic would be a shame to throw away. Plus the rest of the gang now just sings even more proudly and it would be an absolute shame to throw this away on the single string theory! Multi-verse string theory for the win baby! YEEEAH!

I'm rambling a little but those just the FIRST in a long line of fun ideas your story brewed up and honestly. C'MOOOOOOOOON! You know you waaaannaaaaaa.

Fixed it! Knew I forgot that spoiler code somewhere. :twilightblush:

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Also, before I forget, if you need help coming up with a few baddies on par with the show, hit me up in a private message. I think you'll like some of the ideas I've got stashed away for a rainy day. Heh.. Heheh... Hahahaha... AAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAA!!! ... Thank God for sound proofing... Last thing I need is another noise complaint.

Wow kind sad this is over now. I really like what you how you were handling this. But good job on the end

I was liking g this story until you made it all convoluted by bringing time travel into it and making everything that happened here mean squat! NOT COOL!:twilightangry2:

Took me a while to comprehend what was happening and there was a point where I didn't like what was happening, but in the end, I liked it.

There have been several alternate mane six fics already and this bends it by making it Not Exactly Canon.

Kind of disappointed that it leaves out extensive post Nightmare, but this series was always about the pre Nightmare (which isn't covered in canon much) so it balances out.

If you want to keep doing this then I'll be here to read.

This is why I prefer multiverse theory
Resetting timelines to be "Cannon" always feels cheap :ajbemused:
Ah well besides the very end this was a fantastic series :twilightsmile:

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I hear you, gang -- this is a bittersweet ending for me as well, which is why I was careful to leave a path forward, if there's sufficient interest from the readership in continuing.

And regarding the multiverse, time-rewriting ending, the intent was always to send this series off with an epic conclusion that would be appropriately intricate and subtle enough to be worthy of HRH Princess Luna.

I know this kind of thing isn't everyone's cup of tea, so just think of it as being like Reichenbach falls -- there's always a safety net, if the readers demand the return of Sherlock Holmes!

:twilightsmile:

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The idea of these 6 and their friends dealing with mayor canon events without the elements is really good, things could go to totally different and with unexpected results. A Discord without having to worry about the Elements but careful of 6 overpower unicorns. A not so spontaneous Royal wedding with ponies who actually knows Candace and would never doubt Twilight judgement, can push Chrissy to do a better plan. I can totally see Tempest kicking Sombra's ass just to help Twi.

I've been following this series from the day I read the first installment. And I must say, it's been one heck of a ride (in a good way, of course).

I really, really hope that the multiverse interpretation is correct because I want to see more of this. So far, we've gotten to the part where episodes 1 and 2 had gotten in the original FiM. I want to see how this timeline could match up with the villains and conflicts that appear in the original show!

In short, I could say my opinion on this series in just one word: MOAR!!!! :flutterrage:

Oh wow, I honestly did not see this twist coming... and I was completely confused on what was happening for about half the chapter or so.

After reading the first installment all the way back then catching back up.

I would say this is very fitting end, but I wouldn’t say satisfying with all of it resetting back to canon.

Still I say the journey was worth it.

But if you could I would love to see this AU continue in its own timeline or universe. These ponies deserve it.

Although please do take your time. I would like the quality to be consistent.

P.S. If you do decide to continue, please just put it into one story instead of making a new story after every episode. Most people don’t notice it unless we spot it on the featured page.

Still love the story, while it’s sad to see it end (and in a confusing way that reset back to canon) This was still great series of stories to read. I vote for more and you deserve to be featured every time.

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Thanks so much for reading, and I'm glad the series as a whole worked so well for you!

I have a few ideas about where this might go next, but I do want to hear opinions from the readership as well, to help keep it interesting and keep the quality up. I'd like to be writing stuff that you'd like to read, after all!

Thanks again!
:twilightsmile:

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I, too, would like to cast my vote for the "multiverse" deal, so we can still occasionally see future adventures with this group - both big adventures and smaller-scale slice-of-life.

But, with the main series wrapped up, that means you can write future stories set in this universe at your leisure when you have the ideas to make them work and can find the time to write them.

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Yeah. These are REALLY good points. Plus, with Tempest's fighting skills and Sunset's knowledge of the human world, they might be able to come up with weapons that AREN'T dependent on magic, making them better equipped to fight Tirek.

And, the "letters deal" from the first few seasons can be alluded to by Twilight including letters to her Ponyville friends concerning the progress of her and the rest of her team.

Plus, it might be kind of cute seeing Applejack or Rarity inviting Twilight and her Canterlot friends to Cheese and Pinkie's wedding.

And, it might be interesting seeing Spike in the Gauntlet of Fire actually being tempted to STAY the Dragon Lord (reasoning that he could probably do a lot more good for ponies and dragons alike as the Dragon Lord than as Twilight's assistant), but appointing Ember his chief advisor so he can have a better idea of how to interact with other dragons.

And, maybe with Tempest already on Twilight's team, the gang could be on the alert concerning the Storm King, with him deciding that he needs to get them before they get him (but also realizing he needs A LOT of help, so he gathers other villains who know Tempest's friends so he can have a better clue of how to fight them).

And, probably more ideas still, but that will take some thinking time.

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Glad to help, if u might make a suggestion though for the future. Give a little more time on sunset and starlight. While they were hardly bad in this series but they both unintentionally got over shadowed by everyone else and their struggles.

Don’t get me wrong tempest and and Trixie are my favorite characters in their AU, but if you continue give starlight and sunset both something to do to keep them interesting.

And as a just a suggestion, sunset saw in the mirror verse how far technology can evolve without magic and I think that would be really cool to explore in Equestria because technology (in the show) has always been inconsistent.

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