• Member Since 6th Jun, 2019
  • offline last seen Last Thursday


Hatch opens, stark light


Twilight Sparkle stops by Carousel Boutique for a perfectly ordinary teatime with Rarity.

Rarity knows it's anything but.

An entry to the Depth in Innocence Contest.

The original draft of this story was an entry for the Quills and Sofas Speedwriting Joy of Youth Contest. The prompt was "The Sound of Distant Thunder". This version has received significant expansion, editing, and refinement during the month of May.

Thanks to Undome Tinwe and Seer for editing.

Cover art by MalineTourmaline.

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 46 )

im bustin out the capitalization n everythin here

What can I say here that I haven't already, both about your work as a whole and this fic in specific? It's beautiful, crafted in delicate layers that fold and press against each other over time like a cross section of a rock split open by some unseen but powerful force. Your characterization is sublime, each line dripping with emotional potency. I love this, as a story and as a testament to who you are as a writer.

Amazingly well done. The juxtaposition of everything is so well written here, from the warmth of the tea to the storm outside, and from the weathered age of Rarity and Twilight to the innocence of the CMC. There's so much to unpack here and everything is arranged so delicately and brilliantly that the whole story is just enriched with so much detail. Everything from the swapping of their teacups to pain killers Rarity takes is so subtle and yet so important to the story. The characterization is so full and rich and you again reveal so much through subtly and implication while keeping the story moving at its own pace. Very well done!

This was so goooooood, Wish!!! I love your descriptions ;-;

Wolk #6 · Jun 27th, 2020 · · 9 ·

it's alright i guess, it'd be better if it were mroe dramatic it's too simple



Thank you for the kind words :heart:

That was really good! As others mentioned, the descriptions do a ton to set the mood. It's nice to see Rarity be such a good friend.

You know, with Rarity constantly bringing up Sweetie Belle in the narration, blaming the mess on her and wondering when she'd get back, I thought for sure there'd be a twist like Twilight saying, "Rarity... Sweetie's been dead for months." Well, up until the CMC actually showed up, of course.

Thanks for the kind words! Also, I never expected anyone would read it that way, so that's really interesting!

Simply amazing. This is my favorite kind of Rarity to see, the one who pays attention to the most minute of details to better assist her friends. The one who knows all the right words, even if she’s thinking ‘here we go again’ when it comes to Twilight and her breakdowns.

I do love Twilight in this and it brings up, once again, a constant thought of ‘Twilight never asked for this.’ Since her entrance exam, the rainboom, and Celestia taking Twilight on as her personal student, it seems her life has been determined for her. It would make anyone, much less an introverted and anxious bookworm, feeling immense amounts of pressure and inadequate. Thankfully, Twilight does have her friends to help shoulder the burden, and she’s even gotten better at accepting their help.

Overall, really great story and amazing writing :twilightsmile::raritywink:

Thank you so much!! :twilightblush:

Exceptionally well written. The character portrayal and dialog are especially praiseworthy.

Rarity is such a darling.

Now we just need one where Pinkie goes to Fluttershy for help.

Well, what's left to say about Chamomile that others haven't said better than I could?
Your character work here is superlative, and seriously some of the best I've seen. It's so rich with depth and subtlety, the way you lace the smallest details that inform the reader so much about the relationship of these two characters.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, the tea swapping mechanic is brilliant in it's simultaneous depth and simplicity. The way you can imbue such meaning into the slightest details of your stories is something not a lot of authors can.
Simply put, this is by far your best work yet, and I can't wait to see you surpass it :twilightsmile:



Thank you!! :heart:


Maybe someday :twilightsheepish:

Thanks for reading!


Not really a SoL fan, but I must say this was pretty good and realistic. I always imagined Twilight having doubts such as this, and you portrayed them perfectly.

Good job :raritywink:

Posh #18 · Jun 27th, 2020 · · 1 ·

>Earl Neigh

I refuse to read this as a form of protest. You and your puns must be stopped.


Thank you!


You know what? Valid.

Twilight weakly smiled. “Thanks, Rarity.” Her brow furrowed and she bit her lip. “But what if these doubts come back? What if they don’t go away so easily next time?”

“I’ll just have to remind you, then.” Rarity smiled. “And I can think of four other mares who would gladly do the same.”

What if I find a story with a better closing line than this? Well, that'll be near-impossible because your prose is perfection, but I'd just have to like it as well and remind them of your masterpiece here. And as of writing, I can think of fourty-five other people who would gladly do the same.

In short, thank you for a fantastic fanfic, the most ironic line ever spoken by a Cutie Mark Crusader (“Well, no… but it sounds super girly, which is, like, the opposite of cool.” Scoots, you silly billy, your idol is a frequent spa-goer and dress modeller for Rarity) and a possiblitiy for mane-y more from you.

(and puns. Always puns. :raritywink:)


Wow, thank you so much! That means a lot to me :heart:

Worst of all, though, was that despite her best efforts to keep a neutral expression, the corners of Twilight’s lips were ever so slightly turned down and emotions ran through her eyes too quickly for Rarity to name.

This is an emotion I've felt before. Where you're not quite crying and you're holding your face together just well enough to not break the dam of tears. I've not seen this done many times, and you've done it well here.

Rain finally began to fall outside, but Rarity only idly noticed it when the wind started blowing it into the window. It was soothing white noise, filling the space in the background as Twilight processed her words.

This was done with a very gentle touch but done superbly nonetheless. And before I get into the body of my comment, I need to remark that the selection, and prompt swapping, of the teas, was impeccably done. It shows that Rarity knows Twilight well, and knowing this, we know why Twilight went to her and not any other pony. Because Rarity understands Twilight. I also want to add a comment and commendation about how you mentioned thunder and lightning being separate, most only touch upon the booming or cracking of lightning. I also want to add how invisible, yet extremely fitting it is that Rarity would bite the inside of her mouth. That's brilliant. Now for the body.

While this topic has been touched upon before in many other stories and has been done a few times within the show's canon, the way you did this telling of it was very personal. It wasn't just Twilight being anxious about her reign and her anxiety being quelled. It was a very realistic and relatably emotional Twilight confiding in Rarity in ways that are very delicate and subtle. Rarity too is a subtle mare and knows exactly what to say, how to press and where, and beyond that, how her friend thinks and how to directly combat it. The way only somepony very close to Twilight could do, and that elevates this beyond drama and makes it into something more.

The way you told this story is literary finesse, and the tone and atmosphere were a gourmet dish with flavors at every level, that being, surface and undertone. Overall, I loved this. It deserves the success it has, the praise we give it, and the pride you must feel in accomplishing and garnering both.

Site Blogger

“Did you know that I’m still a unicorn in my dreams?"

In mine too, Twilight. In mine too.


:twilightsheepish: Thanks Rarity
:duck: Don't thank me, Thank Spike
:twilightoops: But what about you and the girls?
:raritywink: Spike can light a fire under your flank when you mess up
:twilightoops: He wouldn't!
:duck: Just as Discord would do anything for her, My Spikey will do anything for me.
:flutterrage: Discord get back here!
:moustache: I don't blame him


... Nothing else to add to what others have eloquently said, really.

Maybe one thing. I believe in you, Twilight. Always.

Really sweet story.

Not a word too long or short and this glimpse into the fear Twilight has, with the support of Rarity of course, is very heartwarming.


This... this is going right up there.

This is the best portrayal of Rarity I've seen in ages. And it's as sweet as tea can be.

Just like Rarity knew that she didn’t like chamomile much at all. “Would you like to swap teas?”

Twilight smiled. “I would, actually. Thanks, Rarity.”

This payoff was brilliant. This was a wonderful little story.

As someone who struggles with self doubt, I feel for Twilight in this one. The characterizations of Twilight putting on a front like Celestia and then melting back into her own self were great. The tea added to the effect rather nicely. Nice job, Wish. :pinkiesmile:

I'm not going to go into a lot of detail here because others have said it better than I, but I really like how you wrote this, simple yet ever so evocative, this is the sort of story where it almost feels that you can smell the subtle aroma of tea and perfume. I for one didn't mind too terribly much the whole Twilicorn thing, maybe because I joined the fandom only a few years ago so most of the early day drama had died off. That being said, I really feel for Twilight here.

I'll just wrap this up by saying that if you were to write a longer chapter-story that had this same kind of 4D level of detail, I'd totally read it.


I give a like just for the tea swapping. Beautifully subtle and deep. The best part is when you realize Rarity actually sipped on her tea when she knew full well she was gonna swap it with Twilight's. Well, an indirect kiss still counts as a kiss right Mono? :raritywink: 10305095

In all seriousness, this story is quite well-written. It can use a little bit polishing though.

The beginning kicks off a little rough. You should add one or two sentences at the start describing the clothes and the needlework Rarity was doing at a close glance (like how the needle and thread were moving) before taking off. It's like in movies. You can notice movies, especially emotional ones, usually start off with a scene closing up on something like flowers or leaves before the camera pans out to the bigger scenery and the actors. It's pretty much the same for writing. Describing something close up before panning out to set the mood, the environment and ease the readers into the story.

The pace Twilight "confessed" her problem is a little fast and abrupt. I think some more prying from Rarity to get it out of her, and Twilight slowly letting it out bit by bit would keep the pace more even with the first part.

Finally, this part:

“You are a remarkable pony, Twilight. Maybe when you look in the mirror you still see a humble bookworm with a talent for magic, and that’s okay.” Rarity pushed Twilight away from her shoulder to look her in the eye. “But you are so much more than that now. You have learned and grown so much in the years I have known you. And I know for a fact that everyone who knows you respects you because of who you are—” she placed a hoof on Twilight’s head “—in here—” she moved the hoof over Twilight's heart “—and in here, not because of some wings you grew or a crown that was placed on your head.

It's kind of a deflection from Rarity. Twilight had already come to term with "Let’s assume I am fit to rule." What she was having issue with now was "What if I don’t want to rule, then." The above paragraph by Rarity didn't actually address any of that. The previous paragraph did a little bit with "Simpler does not mean better." But I think it's not enough to settle Twilight's feeling. Rarity needed to point out to her that there were things worth looking forward to in her new position, or something like that. (Sorry, I kind of hate the idea of Twilight as sole ruler in the show, so I can't think of many good patch-up for this. Nevertheless, it needs something more.) Being forced into a position you don't want is a legitimate concern, and the story needs to elaborate a little more to justify it and convince Twilight as well as the readers.

Thank you for the kind words! Hopefully I'll have something longer ready soon :twilightsmile:

I'm glad you enjoyed the story on the whole. I agree with you, this story isn't perfect. I'm not really interested in editing or changing it any further, though. That being said, I appreciate your critique, and it's given me plenty to think about. Here's hoping my next story is more polished and that I keep improving!

This is a great, emotional piece. Twilight would definitely have an emotional response like this, as I think anyone would. To have one's life change so dramatically over just a few years (less than 10 if the show was implying that each season wasn't a year long each) would lead to this kind of emotional stress. We need our close friends in those moments. And while things might not get automatically easier, at least we know we're not alone.

Again, great work!

Love your avatar!

Reading every Depth in Innocence Contest entry: Story 5: Chamomile by wishcometrue

That was... straightforward. Just Twilight, Rarity and a conversation about the fears and the future over some tea. I was expecting some kind of twist, but no, that was it. Not that it was bad by any means, quite the opposite. A very well done little Slice of Life moment that wouldn't be out of place in the show itself.

While this kind of story is hardly my preferred reading material, and as a result I'm sure I've missed the finer nuances, but I can see why it has so many upvotes.

This makes me wish the show did dive into this kind of subject. Twilight...never really had a choice, did she? Personally, I never quite got around to the whole retirement business to begin with.

I agree with Secret Moon on that part; it feels like Twilight's own wishes get put aside for "the greater good." It might be selfless, but that doesn't necessarily make it good, you know? And I love how this fic makes you ask yourself these kinds of questions.

halcyon days

As a student of literature and history, I'm very confident in my vocabulary and ability to write. But by golly, there's a word of the day I haven't added to my dictionary yet.

And the story is nice as well. Sips tea. Ooh, how I do enjoy me some tea.

"A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." -Antoine de Saint-Exupery,

Wonderful story Wish, loved the characterization and the subtlety of the interactions throughout but I'm knocking some points off for allowing that trash heap Seer to edit.

Fug, has it really been two months since this was published? My bad lmao

So before the good, one minor nitpick: maybe too many semicolons for my taste, though I understand that's super preferential. Admittedly, I think this was a bit of a slow read, but that didn't necessarily serve as a bad thing since there's a lot of nuance: every detail is noticed, and Rarity, in line with the message she gives, keeps a busy mind -- she's focusing on her job, her friends and family, the weather outside, everything. In fact, I think what really made this fic stand out was how realistic Rarity came off. It's a very grounded and realistic portrayal, both far from the idyllic fantasy you'd expect from a cartoon and from an unrelenting and impossible future to face. In short, it's a reflection of everyday life: shit happens, and we gotta move through it.

It's this reflection of a constantly moving and varying atmosphere and setting, along with the clever use of tea as a way of opening the conversation that starts the fic off really well. What else I have to say has mostly been covered by other people, but here are a few thoughts I had along the way:

“Well, no… but it sounds super girly, which is, like, the opposite of cool.”

F for Twilight getting subtly roasted in the background

Twilight is a lot farther than she thinks. It takes a great deal of mental fortitude to have done the things she did, and to have the confidence to acknowledge them, whether in part or in full. Another piece in the puzzle of reminding herself of her past to bolster her confidence in the future.

"Did you know that I’m still a unicorn in my dreams?"

This entire paragraph is a big oof, really (but also Seer is rubbing his hands together while whispering "small town slice of life" repeatedly)

"not because of some wings you grew or a crown that was placed on your head"

Slightly off-topic, but in light of the DNC happening and all, I choose to believe that Biden stole a quote from this section: "... is prepared to lead -- not just with the example of our power, but the power of our example." :trollestia:

And finally, loved the conclusion -- there's nothing definitive (nor should there have been, that would probably be unrealistic lol), but it serves as a reassurance toward the future. And I think there is deep meaning in that.

So overall, great stuff! And grats on the 100 followers :)

This was reviewed here. Thanks for picking me as a reviewer and I hope you find what I had to say helpful!

Once that thought finally sunk in, Rarity scrambled to stand up and, in the process, smacked the back of her head. She cried out in pain and winced; the pain quickly faded from a sharp jolt to a dull ache. The knocking at the door became more insistent, and Rarity couldn’t suppress her groan as she finally accepted that she had been truly and utterly knocked out of the zone.

aww, a lot of little defeats at once for poor Rarity!

The showroom was a mess, with dresses that had been strewn across the floor after hurried fittings as well as ponyquines scattered around on their sides and backs—that part was her sister’s work, no doubt.

darn that Sweetie Belle!

Twilight held her muzzle high and kept her posture rigid in a very obvious attempt to appear regal; unfortunately, she looked less statuesque and more petrified. The weather ponies were filling the skies with dark and ominous thunderheads, which, combined with the fading light of the setting sun, served to frame Twilight in a gloomy light. Worst of all, though, was that despite her best efforts to keep a neutral expression, the corners of Twilight’s lips were ever so slightly turned down and emotions ran through her eyes too quickly for Rarity to name.

ooh that is ominous

Twilight picked up her tea and took a sip before grimacing. “You know, I never did like this tea.”

aww, Twilight shouldn't force herself to be so Celestia-like!

“Well, no… but it sounds super girly, which is, like, the opposite of cool.”

so true, that is the opposite of cool

Twilight clenched her eyes shut in shame. “No. I don’t.” Tears began to flow again. “Did you know that I’m still a unicorn in my dreams? I never asked for any of this, Rarity. It feels like my life has spiraled out of control and I don’t even know what or who to blame.” She stopped restraining her tears and sobbed. “Why couldn’t I have just lived a peaceful life in Ponyville with you and the girls?”

augh, what might have been! there is something to be missed about the smaller slice-of-life stakes in S1-3

They sat in silence for a moment as Twilight let all of that sink in. Rain still fell outside, but it was beginning to taper off.

closing out the thunderstorm that came with Twilight's entrance; fitting!

“I’ll just have to remind you, then.” Rarity smiled. “And I can think of four other mares who would gladly do the same.”

so true

really loved how Rarity herself was so overworked and frazzled in this, with her own back pain a subtle nod to her and her friends getting older if the acknowledgement of her three shops wasn't enough. Twilight may be facing the biggest of changes, but her friends have come a long way as well. and it's a nice showing of just how Rarity and the rest of them will be there for Twilight when she is a ruler!

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