• Member Since 30th Jan, 2012
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“If the youth are not initiated into the tribe, they will burn down the village, just to feel its warmth.” — African proverb



Equestria has been through a lot lately. An evil alicorn escaping from the moon. A mad spirit of chaos turning the world into his plaything. An invasion by evil shapeshifters. A monstrous lord of fear returning from exile. An attack by a vast, unstoppable mass of vines.

But nothing had yet compared to the ravages of Lord Tirek, who stands virtually unopposed in his quest to absorb all the magic of Equestria, especially now that even Discord, the Lord of Chaos, has betrayed the ponies and decided to help him.

Unopposed, that is, except for a single pegasus filly. Her name is Cozy Glow. And though neither of them realizes it yet...this is going to be the start of a beautiful FIENDship.

Chapters (14)
Comments ( 196 )

Now this looks interesting.

This is looking good. I always wanted a backstory for Cozy.

...Should I be concerned that this came out on April 20th?

Well, so far so good. I haven't read the comic/have no intention of doing so. Honestly the show failing for giving ANY sort of background for Cozy was a massive fail on their part.

Looking forward to seeing where this goes. Of course chess would play a pretty big role in Cozy's backstory, but this is an interesting way to do it. She's essentially stuck with a chess game in her head that she can't finish, against the one player she could never beat.

So, I was gonna ask if frogs and pigs in Manehattan was a reference to 'Muppets Take Manhattan', and yeah. It was clever. I love that movie. Been a bit since I've seen it.

Tirek, please kill the filly.


I've been waiting a long time for this!

Do you happen to have a list of moves of Cozy's and her dad's game? I'd love to see the PGN. A useful tool to generate it is https://lichess.org/analysis

Hah, I didn't see that coming!

Actually, have we ever seen Cozy attack somepony directly (while a pegasus)? I can't rememb er.


...Should I be concerned that this came out on April 20th?

Why would you be concerned about that?:unsuresweetie:

Sad start. If Cozy's Tartarus sentence is permenent in your universe then it seems that Fork might even get the fortune.

I like how Tirek is actually careful about not killing anyone.

Then she bucked Tirek in the face.

A wonderful start to a wonderful relationship.

This is very interesting so far. I can hardly wait for more!

The comics never touched on Cozy’s origin; the FIENDship is Magic series covered Sombra, Tirek, the Sirens, Nightmare Moon, and Chrysalis. Of those I’d say that Sombra’s and Chrysalis’ were good. Tirek’s was a little rougher but loaded with ideas. Nightmare Moon’s is the only one I would call unequivocally bad. The Sirens...on the surface it’s pretty terrible, but on the other hand it’s basically Star Swirl and the Sirens re-enacting “Beelzeboss”, with Star Swirl as Tenacious D and the Sirens as Satan. This is also the pre-Season 7 comic version of Star Swirl, so he was much more personable and likable if a bit irresponsible at times. So while on paper it’s not that great, I personally love it.

Hold that thought. It’s gonna get rough.

I actually do and am using a specific game of chess, but I want to keep the game hidden for now since how it plays out is important to the story.

Speaking of the comics, you can feel free to read into the fact Cozy’s dad was heading to Abyssinia. More on that later, after the story is finished.

No, not really. It’s just a coincidence.

She hasn’t even done anything yet!

I don’t think so; it’s not really her wheelhouse. Then again she’s never really been in a position where it might seem like a good idea.

Mix of practicality - he doesn’t want to have to clean pony bits off of his hooves - and also just the simple fact that of the three villains, Tirek has never been observed to be sadistic. He thinks and acts in straight lines for the most part. He’s not stupid by any means (In fact he’s brilliant) and perfectly willing to adapt to new situations and change his tactics, but at the same time we never really see him go out of his way to hurt people or make them suffer.

This isn’t altruism on his part. He just isn’t personally interested in it. It’s not his kind of villainy. He prefers to Get Shit Done.

Which doesn’t mean that he can’t take some time to himself every now and then, as we’ll soon see.

Pot Smoker’s day and/or Hitler’s birthday both fall on April 20th. To me it’s just another day, though.

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Thanks for the comments! You won’t have to wait long.

"Trouble at Midnight Castle" H Y P E :pinkiecrazy:

Can't fuckin' wait! Been chomping at the bit since "Tiatarta". This will do as an appetizer, though. : )

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What, did you not invent languages while you were imprisoned?

Heh. Probably wrote the Silmarilion in the original tongue while he was at it. Though with a lot more Maia putting their personal spin on the world, I'm sure.

Then she bucked Tirek in the face.

This would set the tone for their whole relationship.
in all seriousness, this is the most logical presentation of how these two met that I've ever seen. Brilliant work thus far. Looking forward to more.

So now I feel compelled to ask if you looked up athragared, or if you already knew it was Sindarin, or if you were just making a joke and hit on Tolkien as a coincidence.

Regardless, well spotted.

Looked it up. :twilightsheepish: I thought it might be an obscure English word and wanted to find the definition regardless.

I actually hated Chrysalis' and Sombra's. ;p Sorry, but casting an entire species as 'Always Chaotic Evil' is bullshit for me. I don't care if it's mythological or not as I've read you call it. And no, Thorax and Ocellus and what happens to them later in the cartoon doesn't matter for their origin. Sombra's was Anakin Skywalkerish and I am so glad the cartoon went with a different fate for the fucker.

It's Cozy Glow. She sucks. :p

Uncle Fork had asked Cozy Glow to not tell anypony about his and his friends’ plans to swear fealty to Nightmare Moon. He’d only wanted to be safe and to keep Cozy safe, but since Princess Celestia was back, nopony ever needed to know. Cozy Glow had decided that, all things considered, her Uncle Fork was right. He’d just been playing this safe.

Its almost like Fork is partially and unintentionally teaching her to be the manipulator she would end up being.

I think Cozy's enjoying the sight of her uncle's fear.

The centaur wasn’t sure why she was asking; he would have assumed she’d just take her good fortune. The novelty of it amused him enough that he pressed on, shaking his head. “Because you’re young ,” he said, and waved a hand at her hindquarters, “and don’t even have a cutie mark yet. It takes magic to take magic. I would have to consume more magic than I would gain to take what you have.”

I guess thats how she learned to weaponize her young age.

Tirek crossed his arms. “I am not doing that ridiculous routine. My word should be enough on its own. Besides…the way I see it, your uncle doesn’t have much of a choice, does he?”

I suddenly have a massive urge to see Tirek doing the Pinkie Promise routine.


I actually do and am using a specific game of chess, but I want to keep the game hidden for now since how it plays out is important to the story.

Ooh, very interesting. I look forward to it at some time!

The time skips back and forth across chapters are rather messy. Think you would've been better off doing things in a more chronological order. What you gain from jumping back and forth is less interesting then just doing things normally, at least thus far. Interesting start to more of this little universe though. Quite like how you're setting up Cozy.

Given how long the Tirek portion of the story was planned to be, I think it would have felt strange to have the flashback scenes in the front of the story, then closed it with a single long, extended Tirek chapter taking up half the fic.

At the same time, I didn't want to extend out the flashback portions past their welcome, with a lot of extraneous details. I do still have a first draft of the chess game between Cozy and her dad, though, that went on for about twice as long (2,120 words). However I decided that I wanted to write Cozy's chapters in a deliberately different style than I normally write things - something more blunt and beige, with shorter sentences and paragraphs and less flowery words. I think it gives them a more uneasy, unnerving feel, like something is intrinsically wrong but you can't quite put your finger on what. The same style, though, didn't feel like it worked when I tried to write Tirek like it.

It's an experiment. I love experimenting with my writing.

Heart attacks are her specialty.

Yeah, it's honestly a miracle more ponies didn't go mad after 9 seasons of this stuff.

And they say Discord is more redeemable then other villains.

Also nice to see the start of Cozy's unique view on friendship.

Really liking Cozy here. She already has such good chemistry with Tirek.

I like the slow shaping of Cozy: a filly who was aware of how her uncle sought to use her and, upon learning of power of the magic of friendship, tried to make friends (i.e., using them) in order to protect herself.

There's a reason why, as much as I love the show and its conventions, I just really wish that once--just ONCE--they emphasized the magic OF friendship, rather than the more literal interpretation that friendship IS magic ... by which I mean, I wish they would've won once because friendship is just that wonderful for bringing people together, rather than friendship powering the rainbow lasers. Which is still awesome, but a break now and then would've been nice.

Uncle Fork's a real slimeball. Please tell me he gets kicked in the face.

How old do you picture Cozy to be in the present, in human terms anyway? I just wonder because she seems a bit young in this chapter compared to the earlier chapters. I recognise that this is two years ago and that she's under a lot of stress which might regress her but I'd like to see what you think. My personal feelings are that Cozy normally acts younger than she is to make others underestimate her and although she's not an adult by any stretch of the imagination she may be in her early to mid teens.

Yeah. Discord's world of madness would've been a living hell times five-hundred.

I mean...at the risk of being snarky, the first paragraph in the chapter opens up with “eight-year-old Cozy Glow”. :derpytongue2:

My thought process is that Cozy in Season 8 is twelve, and then each season of MLP is about six months long, except the first three which instead take place over the course of 1 year (with the Summer Sun Celebration of Season 4’s opening being exactly one year after Season 1’s first episode).

So Cozy is 11 in Season 6, 10 in Season 4, and somewhere between 8 and 9 for Seasons 1-3.

(I pegged Cozy at 12 in Season 8 because I have a thing of comparing cutie marks to puberty, and between 10-12 is when most girls start puberty).

Royal Fork, just... go away now. :p

No that never happened in show. Had she done so it might have given her a much needed element of immediate danger. Had they gone that route, her being sent to Tartures might have made at least a little more sense.

Every adult pony in the city had been brought to the park…but what about the ponies already in the park? Tirek let out a small groan, rubbing his eyes. Discord had not considered that, most likely, which also meant that there were probably dozens, if not more, ponies who had been in the park and subsequently escaped into the city.

You didn't consider it either, pal. That's just poor management.

I love the depth Cozy is gaining without losing sight of the fact that she is very sincerely dangerous.

She was on a team with two ancient megalomaniacs and the only thing that made her valuable was her intelligence, which both of them had a degree of. Cozy is the one to be scared of on that crew and I remain unconvinced that Tartarus would have even held her. Even outside its Arkham-Class security.

Like, on a meta-level I wish they'd committed her to an asylum where she could get actual help, but I'm tired of people low-balling her just because she looks like Shirley Temple. She is satan. That's what even makes the cutsie design work.

Now THAT was pretty horrifying without goint to R rated places with Discord's return. Nice job that.

Besides. Letting ponies know that her Uncle Fork had been planning on swearing fealty to Nightmare Moon wouldn’t do Cozy andany favors at school. She might lose friends. And if the Magic of Friendship was real…

Before long, the game had seemed to move to a more methodical pace.

but Tirek was pleased to find that he remained skilled at perceiving hishits opponent’s moves before they could be realized.

I actually love Cozy for a variety of reasons. But as much common sense as she possess, she's not all that good of a liar or a long term thinker. She is quite simply, too inexperienced, too obsessive, and too emotional.

Consider when she signs her name to the letters she sends to Tirek (presumably because she wants him to know who conquered Equestria) never dreaming that the Main Six could escape. Or when she feels compelled to gloat to Starlight exposing her true goals to Sandbar and the CMC. Or when she gloats about her ultimate aim to Neighsay. Or when she explodes at Twilight, revealing her intentions to everyone in school.

Also when she lets her frustration at not being leader prevent her from uniting the villains in Freniemes. Or when she fails to use Rusty Bucket's chivalry against him, when he basically tells her his job is to protect ponies, even though she could have easily made up some story about a lost friend possibly further up the mountain, instead of blowing a fuse like she did.

Or when she charges into battle in Ending of the End Part 1 with nothing but Alicorn Magic and Grogar's Bell against three Alicorns and who know's how many guards and "surprise" gets captured. Or when (in that same episode) she grows to gigantic proportions, and yet it never occurs to her to simply use her massive size to simply bully her cohorts into submission.

I think Cozy has a real ability for picking up and learning various talents and skills. Also, because she's not nearly as much of a diva as the other villains, she doesn't make the same kind of mistakes that they tend to make. I think she has some pretty sharp insights for a kid her age. Great planning skills on the other hand? Not so much, at least in cannon.

I agree. This works great as a story on how they first met each other.

10194736 I have almost the exact same opinions on all 5 Fiendship issues. I liked the first 3, though Tirek felt like a ripoff of the Dark Crystal. NMM's was terrible, but the Sirens was campy and hilarious. I like the theory from Oliver that the Sirens Fiendship Origin is what you would get if someone (like Sunset Shimmer) interviewed Sonata Dusk about their origins, and recorded her version.

I actually got sort of a Greek myth vibe from Tirek’s. Tirek studies dark magic under Sendak the Elder but then he hears his father Vorak talking about how much Tirek is a dark kid who’ll probably turn on Vorak, with heavy implications that Vorak feels like he might have to act first and turn on Tirek. Not for the good of the nation, but for his own personal safety. And I also get the vibe that Tirek May have heard something similar from Vorak before which might have prompted him to seek out Sendak.

The whole thing just calls to mind Kronos and Zeus. Vorak’s own fears about Tirek prompted Tirek to turn into the thing Vorak feared. Tirek’s own fears about Vorak prompted Vorak to turn into the thing Tirek feared. There’s no way of knowing who is really to blame at this point, who started it — all that matters is who is going to finish it, and how.

10198757 That's an interesting point, when your son the crown prince is messing around with dark magic, clearly he's going to coup you at some point.

I always wondered about Discord being present at Vorak's court as well. That was ignored by most people after we saw it, because it doesn't fit with a lot of depictions of Discord. But then at the series finale where he actually needles Tirek about his daddy issues with Vorak, it really brings a lot of that comic together.

Interesting how Cozy's views on friendship keep getting more and more scewed.

This was quite the twist. Leave it to Cozy to keep her hatred for someone a secret for so long.

But Tirek was not cruel , not without reason, anyway. Not when there was no benefit to be had. So while he could see the truth of the matter plainly, Tirek decided not to press the issue. Instead, he nodded as he moved a rook down and captured a pawn.

Tirek always had an interesting sense of morality.

Knew this was coming!

Can't wait to find out exactly -how- he betrayed her...


Vorak’s own fears about Tirek prompted Tirek to turn into the thing Vorak feared.

That's the plot of a lot of Greek myths, isn't it?

yep, its the classic inescapable prophecy, where all attempts to prevent it only cause it to happen.

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