• Member Since 15th Dec, 2018
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AltruistArtist


✧ Artist, writer, and full time graduate student ✧ I illustrate all of my own cover art! ✧

T

On Flurry Heart's twelfth birthday, Cadance tells her daughter she will never die.

Haunted by the loneliness of her young immortality, Flurry Heart finds unexpected solace in the only other pony who could possibly understand her — the filly preserved for eternity within the Gardens of Canterlot.

Flurry could not have forseen that an apparition of that filly would appear before her, and only her.

Something brought them together. Flurry intends to uncover what.


Written for the 4th Annual Cozy Glow Short Story Contest where it took second place!

Prompts used: Flurry Heart and Cozy Glow develop a strong friendship that turns into something more and Possessions.

Cover art illustrated by me.

Gracious reccomendation/review by:
TCC56

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 80 )

If I had a dollar for every story where Flurry and Cozy fall in love, I could buy Hasbro outright :facehoof:.

I feel like this did a very good job at capturing what I always found to be the most off-putting thing about Cozy Glow in canon. Which isn't actually anything she did, but just how little anyone in the cast seems to care about her. Oh, sure, Twi seemed to love her before she was revealed as a villain and she was mostly pretty popular due to all the nice things she did, but the second she's discovered as a bad guy it all goes out the window. All she get's is Twilight's token effort to ask "Why?" but she's given up on the moment she gives her answer, with no attempt to change her mind. Despite all the lessons they've learned and all the enemies befriended and the fact that she is a child, none of them show any real desire to try and help her, or any hesitation about casually giving her some of the worst punishments they're capable of and leaving her to rot. It's always felt wrong and not at all like what I'd expect these characters to do.

This captured that feeling very well, that coldness in how they treat her and feel about her. The whole concept of "A life for a life" was a horrifying one. The idea of a new personality being created, purely for the purpose of taking the blame and the punishment so the original self could be forgiven. Made evil by their very nature with no chance to be anything else. It's even more horrifying when applied to Cozy, a fully real pony who isn't evil by nature.

I'd say Cadance was the real villain here, willingly sacrificing somepony else's life all so she could have what she wanted. But I'm sure even if her actions were discovered, she'd be forgiven. She is inherently loved after all, and it apparently doesn't matter what she does. I hope Cozy with her now eternal life eventually finds a way to save Flurry, to let them both live and to be capable of being loved as they deserve.

Time for the beeg sad

This was surprisingly good. It gave me a lot to think about. And I didn't really get all the implications until near the end. Quite bleak and tragic though.

Nice, very nice. May well be the best Cozy Glow backstory I have read. Gud werk!:coolphoto:

GahtDAMN!!! ok that was good. It got deep and dark. Very well done. My god the horror and implications of it all.

THIS IS NUTS ????????!!!!!!!!!!!!

VERY VERY GOOD

Nebbie #8 · Sep 28th, 2023 · · 16 ·

I like the idea of the dramatic premise, but have a lot of trouble with its execution prior to the climax. In particular, the characters seem very out of character, especially Cozy and Cadance, as Cozy starts off insensitive and judgmental and becomes way too nice afterwards, instead of seeming cunning, while Cadance just seems like she literally only cares about Flurry and nopony else.
Cozy's mom also seems...absolutely awful, as while it makes sense her perception is warped, she's bringing up little things that are no reason to see your daughter as a monster well before the one big event that actually supports that.
Twilight just seems like she's desperate to justify bad ideas, and a lot of the early stuff up to and including her really drags on too long (basically the only thing that happens in the first 5k words is Cozy's apparition appearing).

Overall, it feels in need of revision, especially trimming and characterization tweaking.

wow...WOW! Thank you for weaving such a truly haunting tale of woe.

You created such a beautiful backstop and weaved it masterfully... I'm at a loss for words, but you can have my tears instead :fluttercry:

This story is an awesome one-shot. One misunderstanding is all it takes for others to create a villain and how Flurry Heart was born because of a spell. It takes a life to create a life, Cadance should of used it on a life who was about to met their end naturally; their time is up instead of taking a fresh life. This story makes you think the show should have explore more villains’ backgrounds more and showed the dark consequences created by Equestria’s heroes and the magic of friendship. Not everything made by the magic of harmony always brings good results

Man.. now I want a sequel with this! This is an interesting premise and seems so unresolved.. :facehoof:

11707207
Did you read the damn story? Apparently not. "When you ASSUME, you make an A.S.S. out of U. and M.E.."

Besides, if you don't enjoy a ship, you can simply avoid reading it.
11707845
^ Exactly.

11707883
In a manner of speaking, Flurry did fall in love with Cozy. Not all love is romantic. Flurry did fall in love with Cozy, she loved Flurry so much as she learned about her. It just wasn't a romantic love. Yes this is a relationship that grew, feelings that formed, but it's not one of love and pairings and spending their life together.

But if you didn't read it that way, that's perfectly fine. I'm not being sarcastic here.

dov

The feels in this story...im speechless.

I really liked this! I think there were some moments where your choice of overly verbose words impacted the flow of your writing, but the plot and the story itself were excellent. Love me some flurryglow and this was a really cool, unique take on them.

needs a sequel :D

11708108
I'd love a sequel too, especially to see what Cozy does with Flurry's body, especially with the knowledge that Cadance was responsible for her curse all along.

11707707
I see where you're coming from, but the characters being unnaturally awful to Cozy Glow is a big part of the premise. Of course it'll seem like they act weird when she was cursed to be regarded as an unforgivable monster; I'd go as far as to say the characters should feel OOC, otherwise, why have it be a curse at all?

As for Cozy Glow herself acting "too nice" towards the end, well... She's been, and still was until the very last moment, trapped in stone for the past decade, and mostly only manifests as a ghost exclusively visible to Flurry Heart. Why would she be cunning when they're exploring her tragic backstory? Considering that Flurry is the only one immune to the curse, and the only one even remotely interested in giving Cozy a chance because of that, it's okay for Cozy not to be mean to her. (Also, for all we know, it's after the ending scene where Cozy gets back to being cunning. After all, it's only then that she can do things, at all.)

This story captures the idea that there’s more to living than just breathing all too well. When Cadence stole a life so she could have her baby… she never thought about whose life she was taking… she didn’t care as long as she got what she wanted. The way she’s treating Flurry hints at this as well… she’s an item the princess of love wanted… almost an accessory… I think Shining figured out something wasn’t quite right about Flurry and how Cadence was treating her… and now might be having second thoughts about his marriage.

This relationship between ponies and Harmony magic is also low key terrifying too. The moment Cozy lost her connection to it they were quick to alienate and assume the worst of her. Even her own mother abandoned her, first emotionally, then physically. Cozy hadn’t done anything, it also sounds like she was blamed for normal things, like plants dying around the house. Even just talking to her mom, it sounds like normal misunderstandings were taken as sinister at the drop of a hat, rather than normal mistakes that happen with children/foals. But because she lacks a connection to Harmony they stopped seeing her as a pony… even Twilight… I guess Cozy was hoping that without Harmony connecting “most” ponies, they’d have to learn to be friends without it… it might very well have been her only hope. Even with all the isolation and neglect, Cozy never killed anyone, she also showed an interesting kinship with Tirek and Queen Chrysalis. They aren’t good by any means, but they were likely the only creatures who could even have an inkling of her plight.

11708013
It seems to be the only way these two characters are ever in the same story together and interact, though. Even when it's not romantic.

So, I take it they merged? How much of Flurry Heart is left? Cozy and Flurry had around the same time spent alive, even if they have very different calendar ages, so it could be 50/50, but…

it doesn't seem like Flurry made it.

So does this mean Flurry was a Golem of sorts?

11708284

“You kind of look like her.”

Flurry started. Her attention spun to the little filly who had remained sitting on the rug below her. “What?”

Flicker’s eyes dropped. She hoofed a loose thread in the floorcloth, disrupting the careful work of some unknown weaver. “There’s a picture of her in the attic. That’s where Mom keeps her stuff. She doesn’t like when I go up there.”

With urgency, Flurry leaned down to Flicker and whispered, “Thank you.” Heedless of consequence, she teleported, envisioning the nebulous space above her, Cozy Glow held in her mind.

I don't believe Flurry is suppose to be a golem. Or some kind of terrifying flesh homunculus.

She might just be a biological carbon copy of Cozy Glow with some shared genetic traits / magical essence from Cadance and Shining

11708257
Maybe they've merged subconsciouses, and whatever speck that was left of Flurry's soul has taken a back seat?

Otherwise, I don't really see how things are going to improve much for an alicorn princess that suddenly can't recalled an entire decade's worth of memories and experiences without raising suspicion from both of her parents. Not to mention if Luna ever dream walks into one of her dreams/nightmares...

Poor Cozy might end up having to walk on eggshells for a long time, if not for the rest of her immortal life 😬

Well, that was interesting. I would hope Cozy and Flurry merged mentally so Flurry isn't exactly dead. Certainly they didn't switch places where Flurry is in the statue in Cozy's body, right?

Also, considering that Cozy Glow now hates Cadence with a passion, I'm not sure how New Flurry's life is going to go moving forward. She might try to kill her mom in her sleep.

11708375
Who says she’s staying with her “parents” after this I wouldn’t want to be anywhere near Cadence, Shining is implied to know something… so he might be complacent, as while upset he didn’t try to put an end too it. Cadence isn’t exactly a good pony here… even as a mother it seemed more about what she wanted, instead of Flurry. Staying around her even sans this merger, probably isn’t a good idea.

This is an interesting take on a Cozy backstory, as well as an explanation behind Flurryʼs existence. Itʼs very well-written and well-paced. I knew a twist was coming towards the end, but I could never have predicted what it actually was.

However, I have to agree with 11707707. The characters feel OOC. I have a hard time believing that Twilight would be as cold and heartless as you portrayed here, as that Cadance would willingly sacrifice someoneʼs life for her own wishes. It just goes against the very essence of these two characters. But thatʼs just my take.

Anyway, this was a good story. Creepily unsettling and chilling, hence itʼs why itʼs going into in my ‘Best of Darkʼ shelf.

Congrats on the feature and all the best in the contest!

11708404
100% Agreed. But I can't imagine how she could possibly run away from "home" without it instantly creating a massive equestrian AMBER Alert / Broken Arrow recovery with four alicorn princesses who'll be tirelessly searching the entire planet for her until the end of time.

Although, she might have a chance to get away from her immortal brethren if she used the Crystal Mirror to travel over into the human world, and become a delinquent 12 year old hobo / hermit.

Just gonna say it… I’d love a “part 2” for this…

I have no words. Amazing stuff, especially for your first story on this site. (Love the multi-talent, doing your own cover art as well). You do a great job of setting the right tone for the story. I usually don't like long dialogs but somehow I feel it works in this story. And this headcanon honestly seems quite reasonable to me, if dark and perhaps more of an "alt universe" than anything

Seems odd to leave ambiguous at the end, whether Flurry is now in Cozy's place, now merged with Cozy, or (less likely) now no longer exists.

11708013
I read it as them being two halves of the same whole, and was more referring to the comment rudely assuming it's a ship. It's much more than that.

This is one of the greatest stories I've ever read

Holy shit.

Now that is how you do a first story.

I must admit, I had a sense as the story progressed that Cozy was cursed by 'Monsters'. And when her journal entry mentioned that it occurred one day, it got me thinking: "When did it happen?" Twilight's book mentioned that the monster halves were banished like Nightmare Moon and the pony of shadows. I began to wonder "Where were they banished to?" And that's the direction I thought the story was headed. I was completely blindsided by the whole Cozy and Flurry are two halves of each other.

Very well done. I kinda wanna know what happens next. Will Cadence, Twilight or somepony else learn of what happened? Will they assume the worst? Will 'Cozy Heart' offer a chance of redemption to Chrysalis and Tirek? So many directions this could go from here.

We shall watch your career with great interest. :moustache:

Aw, man. I don't think I'm gonna win this contest. :twilightsheepish:

...I should clarify, that was a compliment. Just a bit self-pitying, but for the most part, I'm absolutely commending you on this story. You did a great job! :twilightsmile:

11707207
If you don't like it, then don't read it, mon ami.

This story's going to my favorites. Amazing work!

11708682
It directly says "she perished" when Flurry enters the statue though. I wouldn't call that ambiguous.

11709230
Yep, totally missed that. I saw the "she fell asleep", and must have skimmed the rest while focusing on the stuff below the line.

Thinking further on it, them fusing and Cozy having access to all of Flurry's memories and emotions is pretty much the only way this wouldn't end in disaster. Basically, it could be used to explain why Cozy sticks around and doesn't try to hurt Cadence. She hates her "mom" but Flurry inside of her loves her. All the happy memories Flurry had prevents Cozy from outright hating her, same with others like Twilight, who she also hated. Cozy wants to hate them and get justice, but Flurry's memories make her play nice. Who knows, maybe Cozy's new goal will be finding a way to bring Flurry back and seperate them once more.
Heh, could be funny if she succeeds, and Cozy and Flurry become two mortal fillies, a unicorn and a pegasus. They have each other back, neither has to deal with the worries of immortality any more, and Cadence has her big dream she was willing to murder for blow up in her face as she no longer has that immortal daughter to use as an emotional crutch for eternity.

On a different note, one plot hole I think I've noticed is that, the implication is Cozy had been severed from harmony, and as a result, ponies instinctively didn't trust or like her anymore. Yet, her whole first plan involved being trusted and liked a bunch to get away with her erasing magic plan.
Shouldn't Cozy have been under heavy suspicion and hostility most of the time she was in the school?

Overall a good story. Well written and clearly crafted with care.

In terms of prose, it is better than the majority of stories. However, I must say it is overly descriptive and flowery in vocabulary. At times it is good, contributing to the feel and the vividness of the scenes. The problem is when you apply it constantly, it cheapens the effects and hinders the flow of the story. At certain parts, it even distracts the readers from the impact of the important moments, such as when Cozy appeared before Flurry for the first time, which I also think should be more emphasized. Sometimes, the flowery words chosen don't exactly fit in terms of meaning or context.

In terms of plot, I must say I'm conflicted. The story does have a good twist, and does hit the feel. However, even as I'm an avid avocate for Cozy, I must say the explanation for Cozy's situation as being basically a curse just doesn't click with me. It's a good twist, a horrid twist, but I feel it's a bit too artificial to make her sympathetic. I'm more on the side of explaining her background in a natural way, one that's more reflective of real life. We don't lack examples of people driven into such cynical view because of situations and life choices that are completely sympathizable. Neglected, abused, betrayed, disillusioned, there're many routes that do happen in real life and could lead a person, or pony, down such dark path. A story that reflects life, that doesn't need to employ magical mean to justify things, would be more impactful.

11709724

In terms of plot, I must say I'm conflicted. The story does have a good twist, and does hit the feel. However, even as I'm an avid avocate for Cozy, I must say the explanation for Cozy's situation as being basically a curse just doesn't click with me. It's a good twist, a horrid twist, but I feel it's a bit too artificial to make her sympathetic. I'm more on the side of explaining her background in a natural way, one that's more reflective of real life. We doesn't lack examples of people driven into such cynical view because of situations and life choices that are completely sympathizable. Neglected, abused, betrayed, disillusioned, there're many routes that do happen in real life and could lead a person, or pony, down such dark path. A story that reflects life, that doesn't need to employ magical mean to justify things, would be more impactful.

Personally, I'd agree that when it comes to backstories for Cozy I prefer things that are a bit more "Real". But as I said in my first comment I think the strength in this story is more so in how it captures and explains everyone else. If you were to tell me about Cozy's character and actions prior to me watching Season 8 and ask me how I think the cast would deal with her, then my answer would have been that they'd try to help her, as much as they possibly could. If they gave up on her at all, it would only be after they'd tried everything to help her and she'd still proven too dangerous to be let go.

Yet, that's not what happens. The instant she turns out to be evil and Twilight doesn't get a good answer right away, they just give up. Not only give up, but happily toss her into Tartarus next to Tirek without a second thought. Nobody goes to visit her. When they find out she was kidnapped and manipulated and shoved into a cave with other villains by Discord, nobody cares. Then they happily turn her to stone along with the other villains, which is basically the closest thing to an execution she could get on the show. You even get weird moments like Celestia smiling as she thinks about Cozy being locked in Tartarus. No hesitation or regret on any of their parts.

That's always been weird. No matter how much some people like to brush it off, and I think this fic did a good job at capturing and explaining that aspect of it. I feel like the focus was more on not just explaining why Cozy is this way, but why everyone else is just so uncaring about her. You could try to explain that without a curse, but it's hard because how do you apply it to everyone? To the Mane Six, and the Princesses, and Starlight, etc? I've seen fics try to justify why they act that way to her but it always rings a little hollow because it felt uncharacteristic in the first place. This made it make sense, in a way that felt horrifying and tragic.

11709792
Yes, I would give it that.

But honestly, the way Cozy was treated in the show is so messed up that I don't even care about justifying it.

11709985
Justify was the wrong word. I don't want a justification for it either, it's just messed up. But I enjoyed how this fic focused on that strange OOC behavior of the cast and gave it such a dark explanation. Obviously what happened to Cozy is the most messed up, but it feels extra horrifying because the curse essentially warped everyone. Just most of them didn't realize, and that makes it even worse.

11710030

But I enjoyed how this fic focused on that strange OOC behavior of the cast and gave it such a dark explanation.

I would call that "justification". Trying to find a way to make those OOC behaviors plausible.

Normally I wouldn't be against it. I always love headcanons that explain elements in the show in plausible ways. But in this case, what was put into the show is so messed up that I think trying to find any way to justify, or explain it as you call it, aside from the horrid thinking and malice of the show writers just brushes away the seriousness of it.

Besides, if I am to be nitpicky, the curse still doesn't explain why Cozy managed to make friends with the CMC, or got in good terms with Twilight at first. It's still kind of dubious how it worked.

11710065

I would call that "justification". Trying to find a way to make those OOC behaviors plausible.
Normally I wouldn't be against it. I always love headcanons that explain elements in the show in plausible ways. But in this case, what was put into the show is so messed up that I think trying to find any way to justify, or explain it as you call it, aside from the horrid thinking and malice of the show writers just brushes away the seriousness of it.

Yes, it's a "Justification" in that way. I suppose I like it in this case because that's kind of the horror behind it. The fic acknowledges they're acting cold and merciless in regards to Cozy and that it's off-putting and wrong. I feel it works in this fic, with this context. In another fic with a very different context I'd find it cheap. If this were just some usual Flurry/Cozy shipfic or Cozy redemption story, it'd be an easy way to absolve the characters and I wouldn't like it. It does feel to me like it's still being taken seriously here though.

Besides, if I am to be nitpicky, the curse still doesn't explain why Cozy managed to make friends with the CMC, or got in good terms with Twilight at first. It's still kind of dubious how it worked.

That's true. I think this could maybe be explained by Cozy learning how to be manipulative enough and how to act to somewhat counteract the curse. She does mention at one point that she's only liked when she's on her best behavior. But that does mean she has to put on a flawless act and can't really be genuine.

There is a lot to think about after reading this fic. I've read the comments and have seen a few different things said. Some I can agree with. Some I can not.

For one there always seems to be a lot of folk who have trouble with how Cozy Glow was treated in the show. A lot of this I still feel is simply because she "Was a Filly" I must actually ask. If Cozy was a grown mare, would you feel the same? If everything happened the same but Cozy was grown up would you still feel the characters of the show were being out of character?

It never bothered me really how or what happened with Cozy Glow because simply. That's reality. You can google "Children who have done terrible crimes". There really are older siblings who have murdered their younger ones just for kicks. It happens. Childhood does not immediately equel innocence. Cozy Glow was not a good pony. There was never any fixing her, she didn't want or feel she needed fixing. When that happens what else can you do? Cozy Glow was a master at manipulation. She did something that nearly banished the very magic of the world away.

There isn't a better solution than putting her in Tartarus like they did. You can't put someone like that in a normal jail cell, it's too dangerous. Yes putting a filly like her in there was the only real option they had. The purpose behind her, Tirek and Chrysalis in the show is that sometimes you just can't help someone. They didn't kill her. They locked her up, again in the only place they really could for someone with her skills, with the dangers she could conjure up. Perhaps in time they'd have gone down and tried to see about freeing her. We'll never know.

She broke free and tried to do something worse. Now she's stone. She did have chances. Just staying in Tararus was a chance. She blew it.

Then there is the comments speaking of how Cadance seems OOC in this story. I can see where you are coming from, but I could totally see Cadance doing what she did in this story. To a degree anyway, but I'll get to that.

Why? Because I daresay a lot of you don't exactly understand, REALLY understand what it meant for her. Cadance was told she'd outlive her husband shortly after her wedding. She wanted to give birth to a daughter and was told it was impossible.

You very well might not understand just what it means to be in a situation you feel you can never get out of. A horrible situation you hate every moment you are in it.

Can you imagine one moment you would never want to revisit for as long as you live? Maybe you got beat up. Maybe you stood helpless as someone or thing crumbled before you. Someone or thing that meant the world to you and you could do NOTHING to stop it.

For some... maybe you realize that the life, the very form you wish so desperately to have. To really understand you never NEVER can because it's just impossible?

Imagine feeling that for the rest of your life. Every day, every hour, every minute every second. For as long as you draw breath. And you can do NOTHING to get out of that feeling.

It can lead good people to doing horrible things if given the opportunity.

Now with all that being said I must love this fic right?

Well... not really. Though I do feel it's mostly well down. Its creative, it's descriptive. It paints the picture it wants well and delivers the twist elegantly.

So... why do I say I don't really like it?

Part of it, a large part, might be because of it's somber ending. I don't really like stories with a depressing end. I get enough sadness and drama from life, I just don't want it in my escapism.

So what happens when I encounter something that ends up doing things I find disappointing like that? The only thing my brain can do. It applies logic to it. It combs it for logical storypoints I can disassemble and make myself feel better by saying: "Well this can't be because such and such doesn't work"

It's probably not a good thing, but sadly this is how my brain operates.

So what are my problems?

For one, a question I'm not seeing asked: "How in the hell was it that Cadance got married to Shining Armor and THEN is when Celestia decides to drop the bomb about: "Oh yeah you'll live to see him become a skeleton" Like... what the hell? It honestly sounds like she waited till the Honeymoon to drop that. Or at least I hope she waited till after, but really? What logic does that make? Celestia should know better. That just makes no damn sense to me.

Cadance made it so it chose a pony at random? No I'm sorry that's illogical. Even in her grief, she'd choose somepony that was horrible. I can accept her trying the spell. I can accept her accepting it'd likely kill the pony/creature who's life she used to finish the ritual to get Flurry Heart, but a random pony? No, her first thought would be. "Okay so where is Chrysalis?" Even if you argued that Crystalis wouldn't work for some reason due to not having innane goodness or something. She'd still seek out a pony who was doing bad things. Trying to justify that by snuffing that one soul out, she did more good from saving others from what that pony was doing, and it would lead to Flurry.

Pony at random is just too far and doesn't make sense.

Otherwise I think it works alright for what it wanted to do. Just not a fan of the ending as I said. Just makes me want to summon Anos Voldigoad out here to go: "Did you really think it was impossible to save you both?" and then BS some solution.

EDIT: out of the feature box already? That sucks, I may have my issues with this fic, but it deserves the reads it has gotten. I'm very much aware I went into a 'sad/dark' fic so it's somber ending should have been obvious. I didn't really touch upon the whole 'life for life' thing. It makes some sense the way the story tries to tell it, but at the same time it can lead to more issues if you dive too deep. Not the point of the story though.

I do not doubt I have unpopular opinions. You are free to continue disliking my comment. I will say however that I have not put a dislike on the story itself. It doesn't deserve it.

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