• Member Since 26th Jun, 2018
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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!


Sam Winston is a small-town K-9 patrolman faced with some unexplained, and potentially lethal, events. Fortunately, he has backup... a very unusual kind of backup...

Reviewed by Admiral Biscuit in his Signal Boost blog series. Thanks, Admiral!

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 67 )

This leaves me badly wanting a followup where they end up bringing Sam to their world.

Thanks for the read! I did consider various endings, including Sam helping to fight some kind of disruptive force on the Equestria side, as well as it turning out the place Twilight linked to wasn't Equestria at all so she and Tempest remain stuck on the human side. But I decided to go with this ending, since it keeps the story from being overly long, and ends on a nice positive note. (But it's certainly an option for Twilight to re-open the portal from her side...)


Just cut to Sam browsing the internet and coming across Friendship is magic and losing his mind.

Or Twilight watching TV with Sunset in the EQG world, and a police drama comes on, and Twilight says "Wait a minute... I know that guy from somewhere..."

Best case scenario is to have both. That way the reader is just as confused as the characters, unless the reader is me in which case they'll just nod and say "yep, sometimes the multiverse really do be like that"

This was great. It leaves me wanting more in the best way possible, either a full-story set from Twilight and Tempest's POV or a sequel like what 10440757 suggested.

Thanks, JD! I decided to try a realistic/human-in-equestria story for once, though I wanted to come up with a way to do it that wasn't an Anon story, local human, self-insert, etc. And then the notion of Tempest climbing out of a K-9 van in full kit occurred to me. On some level, this entire tale is written to justify that one scene...

Fingers crossed you go for it!

This is so interesting to read. You really don’t get HIE stories like this.

And by this, I mean good. I’m going to chime in with everybody else. We need a sequel. Or, at least tell us what nickname the ponies came up for Sam.

A very enjoyable read. Well done.

Following and waiting for more. Cheers!

I'm divided between wanting more and finding this just fine by itself. It's self contained and heartfelt, a good story.

I just hope Sam didn't get too screwed from what he did :pinkiesad2:

Tempest nodded. "A lot more..." she agreed.


At the end of the day, Sam's compelling because he's just a man. A kind-hearted and gentle soul to be sure, but not a superhero and just a normal guy. So I think the story is perfect as it is

You could keep this story but then start one that picks up where the portal closing does. Instead he chooses to stay with all of his equipment (or the reopening of the portal) and learns to speak and all that jazz while still keeping the realism vibe that you were going for. To be honest the realism part of it really sold it. Great job

Fantastic story! I always wanted to write a buddy cop kind of story with a unicorn partner, but never got around to it, and honestly it wouldn’t have been nearly as good as this, because it never would have occurred to me to include Tempest Shadow.

I really like how you handled the language barrier, too. I can’t recall anybody ever doing it that way, and yet it’s consistent with what we see in the show.

Also, the scene with the armor was fantastic.

I’ve added this to story to my not-a-contest, since it very much qualifies :heart:

And then the notion of Tempest climbing out of a K-9 van in full kit occurred to me. On some level, this entire tale is written to justify that one scene...

I know that feel. I’m glad you wrote it.

Thanks so much! Particularly since, truth be told, you're my role-model in writing this. Your real-world, realistic-description stories are very detailed and well-written, and I attempted to bring a little of that into the mix here, though as usual I can't really avoid a character story using certain well-known ponies, plus a feel-good ending.

Thanks much for reading, and for your very kind feedback!

You took this idea for a story and executed it so very well! I love the way you committed to the language barrier with all their gestures and movements; you nailed the nuances in such a unique way. I'm even more appreciative of how you wrapped up the story in the final half. The characters and backgrounds are very well-covered, and the little spikes of personality to Sam go a long way. This isn't even bringing up all the delightful little segments between him and the ponies!

An overall awesome piece of two worlds in contact. Great work!


I really like how you handled the language barrier, too. I can’t recall anybody ever doing it that way, and yet it’s consistent with what we see in the show.

Thanks! That's deliberate, actually: part of the point here is that Sam is an animal manager, and hence is used to working with animals and likely quite used to picking up on non-verbal, emotional cues, so this story was in part an experiment to see how much leverage I could make out of using such non-verbal expression to communicate ideas, instead of relying on dialogue as I usually do. Plus it was a nice way to dodge the well-worn "Oh, you're ponies, and you talk..." trope. And, as you note, explain why every piece of writing in the canon episodes is in this bizzarely blurred, barely-readable typeface...

Most text in cartoons is deliberately blurred. However, they apparently start with real text under the blur effect; I caught a scene of the Batman/Harley movie where they forgot the blur and ended up with legible "Lorem ipsum" text onscreen.


No resolution with the missing kid, huh?

This was very well done. Well written, short, and sweet.

Oh, well, you see it turned out he'd been visiting with his grandparents, ate too much candy, and spent the night having pleasant dreams about colorful ponies. But that didn't seem like an exciting enough plotline to follow up on...
:twilightsmile: (So wishing there was a Discord emoji I could use here... or Luna, perhaps...)

at first i was going to pass on this story , but i was then shown it by a friend and told / as to give it a read.
i am vary surprised that this story is dam good and vary worth reading.
to the point i would say this needs a sequel that is way longer.
thanks for linking me this story AB

Thanks much for giving it a shot, and for letting me know how much you enjoyed it!
Comments from engaged readers are writers' fuel!

Very nice! The level of detail and explanation was just perfect, something that seems hard to achieve.

Brave new world with severe dyslexia and dysphonia (or whatever the terms are).
Beautiful story! <°U°> :twilightsmile:

Reading over this, I don't know what to think. My mind is too jumbled with how well-written this is.

The language barrier approach was certainly interesting. Although I can't help but wonder why Sam didn't have the idea of holding up random objects, writing out their names, and seeing if Twilight could figure out to do the same. Slowly build up a pool of words in english and pony language so she can go about learning how to read and possibly write in english.

Thanks for the read, and for your kind thoughts!

And sure, normally, that would be a good approach. My take on it (at least for this story) is that linguistics (speech and writing) is actively subverted by the cross-reality language barrier, though emotion/expression is not. Hence, neither Sam or Twilight can "hold onto" terms, in speech or writing, used by the other, and so they would not be able to establish a fixed lexicon to work with. It would be like trying to construct a chain using nothing but dry sand: it's not merely that it doesn't hold, it's that you can't form the links in the first place. This is somewhat arbitrary, sure, but the conceit hangs together just enough in order to justify the characters not being able to speak directly to each other.

Watch the recent movie "Arrival" sometime. It's a great take on the problems faced by linguists in communicating with non-human visitors, even when there's no cross-reality distortion mucking things up.

This story was great to read. The communication barrier was quite clever. Relying on nonverbal communication was great and you did it flawlessly. Thank you for sharing this.

APAP (All Ponies Are Princesses -- I mean, if we're going to trade extreme points of view...)


Only a Sith deals in absolutes.

I see you saw my KotOR playthrough

Hopefully Sam will get a birthday cupcake. :pinkiehappy: Or even a card.:derpytongue2:



I have not. I played the heck out of it, but it's kind of bland compared to the Tales of the Jedi comic series. People give Kevin J. Anderson crap, even though it and the Jedi Academy trilogy are some of the most important parts of the timeline. Darksaber... eh. It was alright. General Madine deserved better.

To this day, my favorite moment in Star Wars was Jacen Solo comforting Tenel Ka after her accident in Young Jedi Knights. It's heartbreaking how things would later go between them.

Fuck Disney and their totally noncanon bad fanfiction shit.

"I'm just glad Lyra didn't catch wind of what we were doing," said Twilight who was walking while shaking her head. "She's been so human-crazy about finding a way through the mirror in the castle again ever since Starlight told her about it. Thankfully, the security spells around it stayed intact while we were gone, or we'd have another mess to clean up."

"One trip into humanworld is enough for me," said Tempest Shadow, who had not missed one step while walking at her side even as she scanned the immediate area for threats. "A little fun, admittedly a challenge, but having everything smell like dog?" She gave Spike a quick and friendly fin-noogie and hip-bump that nearly knocked him over. "I think I prefer your fiery little friend, even if he does smell like smoke all the time."

"Hey, just be glad you kept your own forms," said Spike. He straightened his fins and trotted faster to catch up with their rapid pace. "Being a dog around humans is no fun at all. Other than tummy-rubs," he admitted quietly.

"Well, you'll never have to worry about that particular portal," said Twilight. "I closed and locked it solid once the nice guard was through. Although Lyra..." She stopped suddenly on the Castle of Friendship's steps and looked back at the scattered collection of Ponyville residents who had shown up for this week's entertainment. "Do you see her?"

"Nope," said Spike, scanning the ponies for a particular shade of green. "Don't see Bon Bon either, and she's always around."

"S.M.I.L.E. kits have an advanced invisibility generator," said Tempest, who was also busy looking. "And there may have been a few straggler monsters left hiding in the human town somewhere. Do you think the two of them--"

"Yes," said Twilight while turning for the castle again. "We'll give them two weeks to do any S.M.I.L.E. work that's leftover with the humans, and one more week for playing tourist, then I'll open the portal again and drag them both back here by their tails."

When he got back to his police Suburban, Sam took having a unicorn sitting in his driver’s seat in stride. And the other pony turned out to be an exceptional cook for the few weeks that they stayed, so it really was not all that bad at all.

Admiral Biscuit sent me and I'm glad he did. I liked your language barrier approach. Good job getting the characterizations across without any dialog. I agree with a few of the others; I wouldn't mind reading a sequel. Thanks for creating and sharing.

I like the idea of distortion of language that isn’t fully understandable.

I usually have the “this is what I heard but if it’s the actual lyric I will be shocked” experience.



Lady Mondegreen is a bitch.

Fantastic story, especially the language barrier - almost but not quite readable or intelligible.

Poor old Butler though :(

The Princess was focusing her magic, not on the crawling horrors in front of them, but on the larger unicorn, specifically on her broken horn. She was casting a cone of magenta force around it, almost like a prosthetic horn, made out of sheer magic itself.

That reminds me, I still haven't read Ring Around the Moon.

So... no one noticed the gates cropping up on satellites? Anomalous particle emissions? A teenager looking for views on Pinterest?

Of course the Equestrian gate opened from the Everfree... though I'm not sure why Twilight closed it from the Earth side. I suppose she thought she could open another one later?

It was as if the creatures didn't properly belong in this world, as if they were just a little too fantastic to exist here. Reality itself was rejecting their existence, isolating them in a private bubble of mutual comprehension, to which he wasn't privy.

Or their language is just almost but not quite yours. No need to be overdramatic, and that includes the "I'm too grizzled to speak Unicorn" interpretation.
... or, looking at the comments, it actually could be a case of clashing realities. This might be the first time I've ever proposed a more prosaic possibility to a fantastic problem rather than the other way around. :derpytongue2:

In any case, brilliant work in capturing the building despair and desperation, to say nothing of the triumph at the end. The town's isolation does feel off to me, but this was still a fantastic piece of urban fantasy. Thank you for it.

You've done it again <3

Problem solved, case closed, and yet...

This is awesome 😎

This was a wonderful, if slightly melancholy, story! This is how I would think ponies would actually react in the real world--though, ideally, they'd be able to communicate a little more effectively :rainbowlaugh:

Just a quick question about scale--how big are the ponies in relation to the humans? I thought they were the size of large dogs, but the fact that Tempest can grab the chief by the collar implies she's much taller.

Thanks! I think I mentally pictured Tempest being around chin-height with average humans, not counting her mane-plume, so she might have had to stretch a bit to grab the Chief's collar, with Twilight being somewhat shorter. But it's one of those details that's best left open to the needs of the moment...

Ah, that works! Thanks for the clarification!

I've always taken that most of the ponies of Equestria would be about as high as the belly button on an average height adult person, with some of the taller ones like Big Mac, Sining Armor or Cadance would stand about mid-chest level to an adult person, leaving the extridornarily tall ponies like Trouble Shoes, Luna and Celestia would stand nearly as tall as an average height adult man or maybe slightly taller. It would stand within reason that Tempest Shadow being taller than Twilight(especially in her armor) could with minimal effort, could grab the collar of an adult man by momentarily standing on her hind legs.


I can't really describe it, but the rarity of dialogue and the sincerity of Sam towards these strange and incommunicable creatures were just... delightful to read. :twilightsmile:

Love it.

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