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About Deviant Member SaphronethUnited Kingdom Group :iconclassic-spyro: Classic-Spyro
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122.1 (MrEgret)




Oswald trudged along the surface of the moon, dragging along a mortar and pestle. "I swear," he grumbled, "if I ever get my hands on the guy that started the whole rabbit on the moon thing, I am gonna-"

"You're gonna what?"

"I don't know! Maybe cover his house in moon pies, or somethin'-wait."

Oswald turned around, and then just stared.

There, standing in front of him was a navy blue horse...thing with wings and a horn. Her mane, Oswald noted, was apparently made of stars, and she bore a symbol of the moon on her flank.

Also, she was radiating magic on a level that Oswald had never seen before, excluding deities.

The alicorn and the rabbit just stared at each other for a few seconds. "Please tell me you know what Looping means." Oswald finally stammered.

The alicorn smiled. "Indeed. My name is Princess Luna"

Oswald nearly collapsed in relief. "Oh, thank the stars. I'm Oswald. Oswald the Lucky Rabbit."

Luna tilted her head confusedly. "I don't believe I have heard of you before."

"Not many people have. I've only just started Looping recently. Just after the Crash."

Luna nodded. "Yes, this makes sense. We have some Loopers from that time period. Anyway, welcome to Equestria. Or at least, Equestria's moon."

Oswald grinned. "Aw, neato! Mickey told me about this place after I started Looping!"

Then the Loop memories hit. Luna waited politely while Oswald got them sorted out. His grin turned into a pensive look. "...Okay, that's odd. Luna?"

"Yes?"

"Why the blazes are we married?"

Luna looked at Oswald in confusion, before her Loop memories came in. "Ah. it seems that the Magic Kingdom is an actual country in Equestria this Loop, and you and Mickey got hitched to me and Tia as a political move."

"Mickey's here? Then why didn't he respond to my ping?"

"He is probably not Awake this Loop. Celestia isn't Awake either, or we would not be sitting up here."

The two Loopers thought for a moment, then slowly started to grin.

"Oswald?" Luna asked. "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?"

"Pranking time?"

"Pranking time."




"What."

Twilight Sparkle, Celestia's personal student, and Spike, her number-one assistant and King Mickey's personal apprentice simply stared at the chaos that was unfolding on the stage.

Celestia (who still wasn't Awake) was staring at the strange duo standing on the stage with an expression of shock. Mickey, (who was Awake) looked like he was desperately trying to fight off an attack of the giggles.

Luna, dressed in a white tank top with a large red N on the front and a matching white skirt posed on one side of the stage while Oswald, in a ridiculous purple wig, white shirt (also with the red N) and pants posed on the other side.

In the center, a strange bird-like robot with a tape recorder taped to it and a gold coin glued to the head scanned the crowd.

"Prepare for trouble!" Luna began.

"And make it double!" Oswald continued.

"To protect Equestria from devastation!"

"To unite all ponies within our nation!"

"To denounce the evils of truth and love!"

"To extend our reach to the stars above!"

"Luna!"

"Oz!"

"Team Nightmare, undisputed rulers of the night!"

"Surrender now, or prepare for a fright!"

The tape recorder clicked on, and played, "Beep-boop! That's right!"

As Mickey finally burst out laughing, and Celestia couldn't make up her mind whether to attack the members of Team Nightmare or check on her husband, Twilight sighed, and brought a hoof to her face. At least this Loop would be interesting.




122.2 (TangleKat)




Tony Woke Up running down a hill. Normally this wouldn't have been a problem, since he often Woke Up during the track meet. Normally, however, he didn't have four hooves. And normally he didn't have a grand piano chasing him. "Why did it have to be a piano!? Why couldn't it have been a toaster?" he cried. “Toasters are small. Toasters are safe. And why is it a random piano?!”

Spotting an alleyway ahead of him, he darted into the alcove just as the piano was about to run him over. "That was way too close." Glancing out the alleyway, he could see that the instrument had crashed at the bottom of the hill and was being looked after by several townsfolk. He could also see a few tired ponies nearby; clearly he hadn't been the only one in danger. Several of them were glaring angrily at a cross-eyed mare at the top of the hill.

"Definitely not the best way to begin a loop." he muttered to himself. "Probably about as bad as the one where I looped in as Korg." He paused for a moment, thinking it over. "No, the Korg loop was worse. But not a good start either way." Now that he had a moment to breathe, Tony checked his loop memories. "Okay, my name is Solar Shard and I moved to Ponyville a month ago to study the animals of the Everfree Forest. Not a bad profession, really. I think Strag lives in town, so I should probably check in with him first thing. No memory of Edyn though; she probably looped in elsewhere."

Tony stepped out of the alleyway and into a dark pavilion. Nearby he could see Edyn and Strag were prepared for battle (both ponies as well, though Edyn looked like a unicorn and Strag had wings) and around the three Final Dreamers the townsfolk were talking nervously. He could hear them murmuring about someone named Princess Celestia having gone missing. "Do either of you know what's going on?" he asked.

It was Edyn who answered. "Long ago, two royal sisters ruled Equestria together. The older sister brought day and helped crops to grow and flourish, while the younger sister brought the night and kept dark forces from invading the Dreams of the three tribes. In a distant land, an evil sorcerer grew hungry for power; he turned his eyes to Equestria, but was driven away by the two sisters. The sorcerer would not give up, however. He entered the Dreams of ponies and tried to corrupt them, in order to turn them into his loyal servants. This time he was defeated by the younger sister, and so the sorcerer hatched a devious plan. Slowly and subtly, he sent parts of his dark presence into the Dreams of the younger sister. He convinced her that the ponies shunned her and her night, corrupting her into a Shadow of her former self. On the night before the longest day, she transformed into a wicked mare of darkness and did battle with the elder sister. The younger was defeated and sealed into the moon, while the sorcerer was imprisoned in the deepest pits of Tartarus. It is said that a thousand years after her banishment, the younger sister will return and seek to free her dark master. Guess what today is?”


Tony gasped and stumbled; his visions always came at the least opportune times and were usually info-dumps. From what it sounded like, Agram had turned one of Equestria's rulers into the equivalent of a Shadow Magi and was trying (once again) to escape his seal. And having an evil night-goddess opposing you didn't sound like a good thing either way. "Now I really have to find the others."




The first thing one should always do upon Waking Up is to check one's Loop Memories. They will have crucial information on whatever Variant or Fused Loop you find yourself in.”

This mantra had become a part of Edyn's routine whenever she began a new Loop. She couldn't remember when she had begun to recite it, but it often helped to calm her down in a new place - especially if that place happened to be dangerous. Thus she began to take stock of herself and her environment: she seemed to be named Moonbud, she was a Unicorn and was the personal apprentice of the local ruler. As for location, she was in a public garden located in the capital city of Canterlot. A book was lying open in front of her, and she seemed to recall that she had been reading it before Awakening. In addition, her Unawake self had been rather frantic for some reason.

The second thing one should do is to test all available magical frequencies with a Ping. It will inform you of any other Loopers who are currently Awake.” Having allies was always useful; even though Tony and Strag always Awoke with her, it could get a little boring sometimes with just the three of them. A quick pulse did the trick, with two responses echoing back - one seemed much fainter than the other. It reminded her of how Tony used to Ping, before they had learned that all three Final Dreamers were Co-Anchors. Since he Woke Up on Earth, his had always been much fainter than Strag’s.

"That's odd." She thought to herself. "I always heard that Equestria had one of the most numerous Loop populations; I guess we got a quiet Loop. And since I’m certain that I’ve Replaced the local Anchor, I guess I won’t be able to debate magical theory with her.

Now that she'd gotten the important things dealt with, she turned her attention to the book in front of her. It appeared to be some sort of creation myth about two sisters and an evil sorcerer - she was willing to bet that Agram had had a hand in things - and how the younger sister had been locked away. What was most disturbing was the threat of the lunar Diarch's return. "An ancient legend about a fallen princess returning? That could partially explain why I feel so nervous… Not counting the fact that she's probably a Shadow Magi (or whatever the equivalent here is), I'll have to do a little bit of research on the topic in order to get a better grasp of the situation. According to the Loop Memories, I should have a good reference book in my room."

She rose to her feet and reached out for the book with telekinesis; she was pleased to find that her new Unicorn magic responded readily and in much the same manner. As she was packing the book away, she heard the sound of approaching hooves behind her. She turned around and found a trio of ponies all chatting as they ascended a near-by path. One of them noticed her and waved.

"Hey Moondbud! We're going to Moondancer's birthday party; do you want to come?"

Edyn smiled. "As much as I'd love to, I'm afraid that I just found a really intriguing legend. If I don't follow up on it now, I'll probably be awake all night studying it. Give her my regards though, will you?" The other ponies agreed, and the two groups spilt ways.




The Naroomi-turned-Unicorn was able to find her chambers easily enough; Loop memories were useful for small things like that. Upon entering the room, she was greeted by her assistant for this loop - Spike the Baby Hyren. The dragon-turned Dream Creature held a colorfully wrapped package - most likely for Moondancer, given his crush on the Unicorn. She almost felt bad asking for his help, and had to remind herself that he could always attend the party later. "Spike, would you please give me a hand for the moment?"

Spike glanced at the package sadly before placing it safely on a table. "Sure Moonbud; what can I do for you?"

Edyn was already busy examining the shelves for anything that might provide a clue. "Could you please help me find that old compendium of (let’s see, what was it? Oh yeah!) Myths, Legends and Old Mare's Tales? I was pretty sure we had one here, and I want to use it for something."

Spike floated up to one of the upper shelves, and spotted the book easily. "It's over here!"

Edyn glanced up from the shelf she'd been on - a particular book on mixing magical and herbal remedies had caught her eye - and took the book from the Baby Hyren with her telekinesis. "Thank you, Spike. Would you mind waiting a few moments longer? I want to check on something, and I may need you to send a message to the Princess. You should be able to head to Moondancer's party after that though."

The Dream Creature was only too willing to oblige. "It’s not a problem! I like helping you, Moonbud!"

Edyn opened the book and skimmed the table of contents. "Let's see now... Mare in the Moon, page 228." She turned the pages to the appropriate section and glanced over the pages until she found the passage she was looking for. "The Mare in the Moon - also known as Shadow Moon - is believed to be a spirit of darkness that once served an Ancient sorcerer. She will bring about nighttime eternal to weaken the bonds of her master's cage, releasing his evil back into the world. Some scholars believe that it is possible to banish this dark spirit permanently using a magical artifact called the Book of the Ancients. However, the location of the Book is unknown and many claim that the Book itself does not exist."

Edyn glanced over the passage again. So far, what she had found did appear to conform to Agram's plan - even the eternal night brought to mind the many Shadow Geysers Agram had set out to use in the Baseline. Though her loop memories were still nagging at the back of her mind... Oh! The thousandth year of the Summer Sun Celebration was in a few short days! That explained the sense of urgency she had been feeling all morning. "Spike, please prepare to take a message." The young Hyren snapped to attention and fetched both quill and parchment.

"To my honored teacher; I have recently found an old legend claiming that your sister - tainted with dark magic - will return during the Summer Sun Celebration. It is my request then that I act as overseer for the preparations in order to ensure that there are adequate facilities to provide aid in the off-chance that something does happen. Your gracious student, Moonbud."

Spike breathed a green flame over the scroll (probably a dragon leftover, since Hyrens were incapable of such magic) and it vanished in a puff of smoke. Edyn turned back to the shelf and was about to pick up the book on herbal remedies when a burp and flash of heat caught her attention.

"Wow! I didn't expect her reaction to be that fast!" the Baby Hyren said. "Should I read it?" Edyn nodded and he unfurled the scroll, coughed twice and began to read.

"My dearest student; I am touched by your concern for what you have found. I am well aware of the legend, and emergency preparations have be accounted for. However, I do feel that perhaps you are spending too much time in Canterlot. I will grant your request to oversee the festivities in order to provide a change of pace; all I ask in return is that you take this opportunity to relax and to not worry about what may or may not be. Take a vacation and make some friends! Signed, Celestia, Diarch of the Day."

A vacation? With Agram plotting and scheming behind the scenes? It was almost enough to make Edyn scream.




122.3 (OracleMask)




Zecora watched the warship limp away with minor misgivings. While these 'Blue Rogues' seemed more akin to Luffy and his Straw Hats in their conduct, they had still stolen every single thing of value from the Valuan ship save personal items and just enough fuel for them to reach safe harbor.

What had made it awkward was the Valuan soldiers swapping increasingly exaggerated tales of how Zecora had saved their Sub-Commander from certain death (at the hands of their much hated Commander, no less) and went on to defeat the ferocious Antonio single-handed. It had nearly come to blows when the pirates made it clear that Zecora was also coming with them.

But even the more devoted of Zecora's new fans had to admit that they were the ones who'd attacked Zecora without provocation, sinking her ship in the process, and so off they went.

As for Zecora, she and her new companion Cupil were heading to the pirates' base. The two youths who had chased off Alfonso seemed to have been assigned as her minders...but there was something about the boy that made Zecora suspicious...not the least of which was when she introduced the two to Cupil, Vyse and Aika were immediately on the receiving end of a somewhat squishy hug.




Vyse watched the blasted and ruined Pirate Isle disappear into the distance with a familiar clench in his belly. He really didn't like doing this, in fact it went against every fiber of his being not to at least warn his dad or the rest of the crew about what was going to happen, but...he'd learned the hard way that having Pirate Isle evacuate ahead of the attack, raising their defense or putting up any resistance, or even just the act of taking Fina with them to Shrine Isle that day ended BADLY. It resulted in Galacian shelling the island until it broke apart, planting Valua's flag on the biggest remaining piece that still floated, and yet another loop where Vyse was responsible for the horrible death of his family. At least with the original course of events everyone lived.

Aika still didn't approve, even having seen the result firsthand. How Fina had forgiven him was mind-boggling...though the fact that Ramirez was now looping might've had something to do with it. Even if the man's devotion to Galacian had lasted through the loops and he would never dare gainsay that monster's order to open fire on innocent women and children -

His thoughts derailed spectacularly as Vyse, opening the door to their ship's little cabin, found himself face to face with an extremely unamused Zecora. And no matter what Aika might claim later, Vyse certainly did not scream like a little girl, flail his arms, or fall into an undignified heap on the deck.

"Once you have recovered from your place on the floor," Zecora said dryly, "Perhaps you can explain your deception from before?"




"Hey, won't Galacian notice if you're, y'know, not his prisoner anymore?" Aika pointed out as the three of them prepared to set sail again.

"Aika, I must say you are quite mistaken," Zecora answered with a sly smile, "For indeed, as their prisoner I was taken."




"...and that is why I remain a loyal servant of Lord Galacian," Ramirez concluded.

He hesitated for a moment, before adding "You were right, it was a relief to finally share my thoughts. Vyse is a strong warrior but he hates my lord far too much to ever accept my reasons."

Zecora - or rather, a Kage Bunshin of her - nodded solemnly. Ramirez returned the nod as he straightened his uniform.

"Sadly, I must return to my duties. Unfortunately as you are replacing my sister, I must ask that you stay in this cell for the time being. Vyse typically arranges her rescue after breaking into the Coliseum."

The Zecora clone glanced around her cell - which was actually a luxurious stateroom - and smiled.

"Do not worry for my sake. But as for your duties, should you not arrive late?"

Hopefully her real self would follow up on this budding friendship, the Zecora clone thought as Ramirez took his leave. He was a very interesting young man. Perhaps they would get a chance to speak more before she was dispelled. That would be...nice.




122.4 (Hubris Plus)




Lyra fidgeted in the town hall, waving off the various concerned ponies who wondered what was wrong. All four of them were full of nervous energy, except for Sweet Roll, who was full of honey glaze. It wasn't that she knew that Nightmare Moon was about to put in an appearance. She might not be the strongest Looper, but she thought she'd be able to take a baseline alicorn in a pinch, especially with Seapony at the helm.

She tossed a glance towards the crimson stallion watching the balcony expectantly. His black mane had been pulled back into a topknot, showing off the pair of curved horns twisting out from his forehead and causing no small amount of gawking from the other unicorns. His right forehoof was encased in what appeared to be a cylinder of elaborately carved stone the same color as his coat.

Hellcolt, he called himself. When she'd told him that Equestria was a sanctuary he'd just grunted and said "we'll see."

She wasn't offended. A lot of Loopers were incredulous the first time they heard the offer. But usually one of the Bearers was on hoof to enforce things. If not the first six then Trixie or Gilda or, larch, the crusaders in a pinch. At the moment, Cheerilee was the oldest local Awake. And, while the teacher could be exceptionally kick-flank when she wanted to be, there was an irreplaceable comfort to having friendship powered artillery backing you up. Just in case.

"What have you done with the Princess?!" The Mayor called out, shaking Lyra from her reverie.

"Her hour has passed," Nightmare Moon spoke, unhurried. "The day has ended and night is upon you. A thousand years ago I sought to rule over this world, but in my exile I have learned humility in the service of my master, who lies sleeping upon the edge of eternity. This world will be his as it was in ages past. Darkness is his purpose and his blood and his prison, and through me it shall be his freedom also."

As she'd spoken, Nightmare's mane had billowed out above her, filling the ceiling with abyssal darkness and a million points of dying light. One in particular began to grow larger, or closer, a misshapen seven pointed star. Lyra shivered. This was new, and she wasn't sure if she was feeling up to new just then. Around her ponies stood, transfixed in horror.

"Seven is their number, seven in heaven and seven in the earth, but they are also one, one in name and one in purpose," the usurper continued, eyes aglow with eldritch light. "They are the wind of destruction, for mighty children are they, and their time is come again. Behold, the Great Dragon, Ogdru Jahad! Returned from the abyss by my hoof and my-"

"And though evil winds may blow and chaos fill the sky, I am sheltered 'neath your bough and thy roots hold firm..." Cheerilee's voice rose in counterpoint as the pages of a small book rippled in an unseen wind before her. As they'd worked out over a hoof full of vampony and demonic variants, prayers to trees worked just fine while the Tree of Harmony was in place.

Across the room, Vinyl swept a hoof through the air. The prayer's words, backed by a melody blaring from her speakers, were compressed into a physical force and hurled at the chanting goddess.

"Naught but sound and fury, signifying nothing!" She snarled as the attack forced her back a step. "Your precious tree holds no more power here than your Princess. Neither holds the faintest glimmer of might next to that which-"

She was cut off once more as Lyra dropped her disguise, falling to the floor in her seapony form. The released illusion allowed her to devote her full power to a conjured whip of water. The liquid weapon struck with a sickening crack and Lyra's eyes widened as one of Nightmare Moon's wings went limp. She'd only put so much force behind the attack because this version of Nightmare seemed so much stronger than the usual, she hadn't wanted to hurt her that badly!

"ENOUGH!" Nightmare Moon roared, ignoring her injury as she reared up and launched lightning from the abyssal chasm her mane had become. Where the bolts landed the room erupted in black fire, burning high and hot. The cracks of thunder had finally rattled the non-Loopers from their stupor and a stampede began for the doors. "Surrender. This is the end of your era. From this moment on there is no joy, no courage, no hope. Only the endless night and terror of-"

"Lady," Hellcolt said as he strode through the flame without fear or discomfort. "You talk too much."

"Anung Un Rama," she breathed. Above, the star had resolved itself into a massive amber crystal. Larger than cities, than continents, than worlds, it loomed overhead, waiting. "Your place here was foretold, Right Hoof of Doom. As I am the Gate, so you are the Key. Together we will rule over the last bleak days of this realm and watch the destruction of all from on-"

"Yeah yeah, I've heard it all before," he grumbled, more annoyed than anything. He turned in Lyra's direction. "You guys wanna handle the portal? I got this one."

"Um, sure," Lyra answered uncertainly before perking up. "Could you go easy on her? She's pretty nice once she comes down off the crazy."

He regarded her for a long moment before offering a curt nod. "Yeah. Alright." With that, he bunched up his rear legs before springing at the balcony and cracking his stone hoof across Nightmare Moon's jaw.

"Alright," Lyra said, encasing herself in a sphere of water and floating over to the only other ponies still on the ground floor. "Ideas?"

"You are blinded by my sister's lies, Anu-"

"Ain't my name," The conversation, punctuated by heavy blows, drifted down from above.

"Feels weird," Vinyl commented, horn glowing as she scanned the aetheric vibrations around the hole.

"Agreed," Cheerilee nodded, waving a heavily modified tricorder. "It's less a gateway-"

"You cannot fight your fate, child. Your destiny has been laid since long before your birth."

"Shut up, lady!"

"-And more a foreign set of physics imposing themselves on the world," she finished.

~Oh, oh, tag in!~ Miscellaneous enthused from within Lyra, and Seapony obligingly slid aside. The other personality rummaged through their Pocket for a moment before stabbing a six foot steel post covered in blinking lights and loose wires into the ground.

"What's that?" Vinyl asked.

"You are a fool if you think you can-"

"I told you to shut up, lady!"

"I call them Regularity Rods, they're kinda the opposite of Peppermint Pylons," Lyra explained. "They enforce local physics and make them harder to override. Real useful for limiting damage during mad science, saved me a trip to Eiken more than once."

The three looked up again and saw an edge of Nightmare Moon's mane bulging up and away from the rod.

"Seems effective," Cheerilee agreed. "If we can set up more of them we may be able to pinch it shut."

"On it!"

"You will open the way, if not today, then-"

"Lady, you and me, we got a problem!"




"Again, we're really sorry about that," Lyra told their guest after things had settled down. "We can usually manage on our own."

"Don't worry about it, kid," Hellcolt answered.

"No, she's right," Cheerilee insisted. "Equestria is a sanctuary Loop, and we take that seriously. You shouldn't have had to get involved."

"I'm serious too," he assured them. "Admins tell me my universe got whammied by a bunch of the Outer Gods before the Loops started, and well... Lets just say that I got troubles, an' they tend to follow me. Ain't your fault most of the big guys shrug off anything that didn't help make 'em."

"Still..."

"Trust me, just getting someone out from under the Dragon is miracle enough for me." Luna had come out of it looking much worse for wear than usual, having been held in the tender mercies of dark gods for a thousand years, but she had come out of it. "And that thing with the prayer was clever. Probably would have worked if she weren't getting backed up by squid-face. Now..." He lit up a cigar and clamped it in his teeth. "Anything else I should know about? Imprisoned devils, sealed monsters, ancient civilizations, Fae courts, stuff like that?"

The trio of locals exchanged glances. "That... Yeah, that might come up."

"Well, I usually work with a team, and I like having a fish-man at my back, so..."

"Oh, and vamponies are a thing this Loop," Vinyl added, peeling back her lips to show off a set of fangs. "Thought you'd wanna know."




122.5 (Scorntex)




One otherwise calm and quiet day, the doors to Big Mac's bars swung open, and a pony dragged themselves in. Slowly, they made their way to the bar, and collapsed before reaching it.

Big Macintosh just watched this with concern. He didn't recognise the pony, one of a dark blue colour, thin and tall build, and greying hair, but they looked like they were going to be requiring his services all the same.

Slowly, the pony lifted his head, revealing a set of eyebrows best labelled as "ferocious", brows that would instill unease in the eldest of dragons. Or they would have if their owner didn't look so weary.

"Hi" the pony said, casually, as if he had not just dragged themselves into a room.

"Morning" Big Macintosh said, carefully. He couldn't help but notice the distinctly Scottish accent the pony had. That combined with everything else led him to one conclusion.

"Doctor?"

The man nodded, gloomily.

Big Macintosh eyed the man carefully. He hadn't as much experience with the Time Lord as some of his other Loopers, but he could still guess that whatever had caused him to be this despondent had to have been something truly horrific.

"What happened?" he asked. The Doctor paused for a moment.

"'s them ponies. Wanted to turn everyone else into more ponies."

Without a single word, and without any appearance of actually having moved at all, Big Macintosh had reached under the bar, pulled out a large tankard, and placed it next to the Doctor. He stared at it, then to Big Macintosh.

"That was fast" he noted, apparently for lack of anything else to say.

"Brain bleach" Big Macintosh replied, "standard procedure with Bureau Loops."

The man glowered at the drink, and Big Macintosh was impressed. The way he was glowering, the liquid would have been well within its rights to just combust there and then.

"Worse than just a Bureau" he said, "it-"

"Nope" Big Macintosh cut in, before pointing to an adjacent sign hanging above the bar. There, drawn in friendly letters was the phrase "first rule of Bureau Loops: Do not talk about Bureau Loops."

Just underneath it, someone else had thoughtfully added "Until Very Drunk."

The Doctor just nodded at that. "Right."

As the man stared cautiously at his drink, Big Macintosh set off to find Miss Sparkle, and anyone else who happened to be Awake that Loop. He had the feeling they would be needed.




122.6 (OracleMask)




Mac and Berry, having just finished setup of the bar for the new loop, looked up in surprise as the door to the bar slammed open and the front half of a silver draconequus poked through.

"Thank oak, you're both Awake!" Silver exclaimed, "I need some kind of brain bleach that can also replenish chakra! Do you have anything like that?"

"I can whip up something quick," Berry said, already rummaging through the bar's supplies, "Had a bad loop?"

"Yes, but it's not for me."

Silver proved her point by sliding the rest of the way into the room, revealing that she was carrying a pony on her tail. She dumped her passenger on a bar stool, where he proceeded to slouch against the counter while covering his face with both forelegs. The grumbling complaint at the rough treatment proved that the pony wasn't unconscious, but by the sound of it he might've been happier that way.

Mac spotted the scarecrow cutie mark on the pony's flank and frowned.

"We can give Twilight a ring, have her come in from Canterlot early," Mac offered.

Kakashi made another grumble. Then, after Silver nudged him, repeated "M'fine" at a slightly higher and surlier volume.

"It's not THAT serious, but...we just finished a rough loop in Kakashi's baseline," Silver clarified, "It started off pretty normal, except we had a stealth Anchor and we were the only ones Awake. Stuck with baseline powers and no pockets too."

Mac nodded, encouraging Silver to continue.

"Well...we were twins, and the preawake us had been working together for our whole lives, so we decided to finagle the Hokage into assigning us as dual sensei for Team Seven. I mostly was curious about Sakura's genjutsu potential, Kakashi basically turned Sasuke into a trainee hunter-nin, and Naruto bounced around between the two of us."

Berry slid a glass of something green and softly fizzing over to Kakashi, who grabbed it without looking and drank. He perked up immediately, though even after Kakashi removed his hooves from his face, he didn't open his eyes.

"Our universe is going through these 'expansion' things nowadays," Kakashi said, continuing the tale, "Irregular ones, and the other loopers in our branch derail things pretty fast."

"So we decided that as long as we were there, we might as well see how things were supposed to go," Silver added, "And it got WEIRD around the time that the Infinite Tsukiyomi activated. Especially with the Ten Tails changing forms and blowing up everything like we were in a Dragon Ball fused loop!"

"Not to mention Naruto never bothered to mention who 'Tobi' was ahead of time," Kakashi growled, "I could have done without that surprise."

"The loop crashed right after Kaguya was defeated though. Not sure why."

"Must've been one tough fight if you're still tired after the reset," Berry said, "Silver, you need a pick-me-up too?"

"Err, that's not really..."

Silver trailed off, looking over to Kakashi. Kakashi sensed what she wanted, sighed, and reluctantly opened both eyes. Mac and Berry were treated to the sight of a matched set of Eternal Mangekyou Sharingan for four whole seconds before Kakashi slammed his hooves over his face and slumped back down onto the counter in renewed exhaustion.

Much like his original Sharingan, Kakashi couldn't figure out how turn them off. At all. Obito was probably laughing at him from the afterlife.

"Really hope this is temporary..." Kakashi groaned out loud.

Silver patted his shoulder sympathetically.

"I'll just go ahead and make you a double," Berry said, already heading back to her tools.




122.7 (fractalman)




Rainbow Dash stuck her tongue out-or tried to. It was kind of hard to move when you were a pile of rocks.




122.8 (Novusordonmundi)

You're... here...

I'm trapped... And I'm lonely... So very lonely...

Won't you join me?

"Oh, you poor creature! Have you been trapped up here in Pokemon Tower all this time? Of course I'll join you for a while!"




Fluttershy rummaged through her subspace pocket for a little bit, before finally pulling out a stasis container with what looked to be preserved brains (ethically sourced, of course). She looked over to her companion, a decaying corpse of a man sticking halfway out of the floor. It just grunted and groaned a little bit, but wasn't actually going after Fluttershy, or pulling out it's Pokemon to battle.

Fluttershy had been told by Loopers about this possible variant, where this zombie would challenge them to a Pokemon Battle at the top of the Pokemon Tower in Lavender Town, and pulling them into the ground and eating them if he won. All they knew of him was he went by "Buried Alive", or "Buryman" for short. For the most part, he wasn't enough of a challenge to warrant much attention from most Loopers. And to her knowledge, nobody had tried to have a picnic with him.

But there was a first time for everything. Fluttershy took the brains out of the stasis jar, and put it on a plate in front of Buryman. The corpse looked at it for a second, before taking it with his free hand, a grin on it's face.

Finally... Fresh meat...




"What?" Was all Red could manage, his brain unable to come up with any better statement to being told about Fluttershy's adventure.

"Oh, I just showed him a little bit of kindness." Fluttershy said. "Being buried alive must have been horrible! It was the least I could do for the poor thing..."

"Well, that is a first for dealing with him." Red allowed, before a thought crossed his mind. "Hey, if we're trying for kindness, want to come with us over to Cinnabar Island? I know a certain something that could use a bit of kindness. Just... don't try to catch him, okay?"

Flutershy's face brightened "I'd love to. But if you don't mind, do we have time to grab a shovel and head back to the Tower? I kind of promised the man I'd dig him out..."

"...Sure, why not?"




122.9 (The Cyan Recluse)

“Hurry up Twilight! You’ve got to put a stop to this!” An Awake Spike demanded, practically pulling Twilight Sparkle along behind him as he stomped towards Sweet Apple Acres.

“Spike! I’d have better luck ‘putting a stop to this’ if you took a moment to explain what ‘this’ is!” The purple furred unicorn reproached her number one assistant / son /brother / personal postal service.

Spike didn’t bother slowing down as he replied.

“Look, you know how Big Mac started installing one of Pinkie’s mini Candy Cane Pylons in the bar to deal with the unexpected ‘problems’ variant or fused loops sometimes cause?”

“Yeah, so? It seems like a good idea to me.” Twilight replied, raising an eyebrow.

“Well, Pinkie and Trixie are abusing it to have a drinking contest!” Spike grumbled, clearly unhappy with the situation. Twilight just blinked in confusion.

“A drinking contest? Is that all? We have drinking contests all the time Spike! I don’t see what has you so worked up.” She huffed as they neared the entrance to Mac’s bar.

Truthfully, both Pinkie Pie and Trixie could be a handful when sober and on their own. Pinkie had a tendency to casually violate the law of physics. And Trixie tended to violate laws regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction. If the two of them were drinking and egging each other on... Well, that could lead to the sort of event where reaching ‘minimum safe distance’ required leaving the planet’s orbit.

For non-looping Equestrians such an event would be terrifying beyond their ability to comprehend. For individuals such as Spike and herself, it would be a rather hum-drum Tuesday. In short, something that needed to be handled, but certainly nothing URGENT.

Which made the way Spike was rushing her so peculiar.

“It’s not the contest that has me so riled up!” Spike groused. “It’s WHAT they’re drinking!” Before Twilight could reply, he pushed the door to Mac’s bar open and gestured inside.

Twilight glanced through the door and noted that Mac’s bar was more or less in its normal configuration for this early in the loop. The scorch marks on the floor and walls were a new touch however. (Major property damage usually didn’t occur quite THIS soon.) Some of the tables were also looking a bit... melted. Then there was the fact that Mac was hunkered down behind the bar, wearing a clear plastic blast shield over his face, and looking ready to duck.

In front of the bar stood a grinning Pinkie Pie, with a smile on her face and a glass in her hand. A heavily shielded and enspelled glass full of a simmering, smouldering liquid that had most certainly NOT been designed for equine consumption.

“Bottoms up!” The pink party pony giggled before downing her beverage in one shot.

“PINKIE!” Twilight’s eyes went wide in alarm as she rushed forward to try to stop her friend. She was far, far too late of course.

“Ooooh… I feel tingly….” Pinkie began to wobble from side to side after a few moments, before holding still and emitting an enormous, echoing BELCH! Twilight blinked and slowed her headlong dash towards her friend.

“Ooooh! That feels MUCH better…” The element of laughter began to grin.

Then she exploded.

In video game terms, it would be referred to as Ludicrous Gibs. Bits of fluffy pink fur and meat went flying in all directions, trailing pinkish colored ‘blood.’ After a few seconds the giblets came to rest on the ground, forming little pools of blood.

Then the pieces exploded too.

Twilight’s pupils shrunk down to pinpricks as she stared around the room at the (relatively few) remains of one of her best friends. A few puddles of pink goo were all that remained, sizzling as they started to eat into the floor.

Before she could fully wrap her brain around recent events, where was an electronic ‘whoop-whoop-whooooop’ sound… And suddenly an intact, perfectly hale and hearty Pinkie Pie was standing in the middle of the room again, flashing in and out of existence for a few seconds before fully solidifying with a grin on her face.

“That was AWESOME!” Pinkie bounced up and down in excitement. “I really love those fizzy drinks!”

“Trixie believes the proper word is ‘fissile.’ Hello Twilight!”

Twilight managed to pick her jaw up the floor and turned her head to spot Trixie, who had apparently been standing in the opposite corner of the room. Twilight had completely missed the show-mare’s presence in her rush to save her friend. The blue furred pony smiled and waved as she approached Pinkie.

“Well, I don’t care what it’s called, it’s awesome! So, your turn now?” Pinkie grinned in excitement.

Twilight groaned and face-hoofed. “Pinkie’s Candy Cane Pylon. Of course. I’m an idiot.” She sighed and glanced around the bar as Pinkie and Trixie began mixing another one of Berry Punch’s ‘Dragon-Specials.’ The damage to the scenery was surprisingly superficial. Most of the blast marks looked identical and seemed almost painted on.

“Well, at least I won’t have to douse the place with an entire lake. Again.” She muttered to herself. Giving her head a shake she walked over to Big Mac, who was cautiously standing back up from behind the bar.

“Please tell me that you didn’t think this was a good idea.” She asked plaintively.

“Eeenope.”

“You try to stop them?”

“Eeeyup.”

“And how well did that work out?”

Big Macintosh just give her a long suffering look and sighed.

“Yeah, that’s what I thought.” Twilight sighed herself. “We really have GOT to get that mare a HEALTHY hobby for loops when Chrysalis isn’t Awake.”

“Eeeyup.”

By now Spike had entered the bar proper, and arrived at Twilight’s side.

“Don’t just stand there Twilight, get them to cut it out already!” He demanded.

“Spike, while I agree that this behavior isn’t exactly... healthy... They’re not actually harming anyone.” She paused, then shrugged. “Well, not harming anyone PERMANENTLY. So long as they fix Mac’s bar when they’re done, I don’t see a reason to stop them.”

“Not harming anyone my tail!” Spike crossed his arms and eyed the other two mares angrily. “They’re going through the bar’s stock like Celestia through a cake factory! Do you have any idea how hard it is to get some of the ingredients for those drinks? Red mercury doesn’t grow on trees you know! At this rate there won’t be any left for us dragons!”

Twilight just blinked. “What?”

But Spike was paying her no mind, instead stomping over to Pinkie and Trixie, who had just finished (carefully) pouring another cocktail into an enchanted glass. Which was already starting to dissolve.

“Alright you two, you’ve had your fun! Now cut it out!” He waved his arms about in frustration. “Go have some cider or something and leave the good stuff for those of us who can’t get drunk off of alcohol! I want to have something left to drink after a Bureau loop too you know!”

Twilight face hoofed again. Sometimes she envied humans. Pinching the bridge of your nose was a surprisingly effective way to relieve stress. Difficult to do when you lacked hands though. And a nose.

“It is WAY too early in the loop for this.”

Big Mac patted her on the shoulder consolingly. “E’Yup.”

Then he used that hoof to pull her down behind the bar at the sound of Trixie’s voice.

“Cheers!”




122.10 (fractalman)




Pinkie Pie bounced in through the closed door of the treebrary. "Hi Twilight! I've got a surprise for you! Come outside and see!"

Twilight shrugged, placed her bookmark, and complied.




Twilight stared, turned around, and was blocked by Pinkie Pie.

"Remember the chocolate syrup swimming pool that randomly showed up? Well you never even tried to swim in it, so I thought, 'how can I change this so that Twilight can enjoy it', and then I remembered that you really really like mint, so I filled a swimming pool with mint jello!"

"Wait, that's mint?"

Pinkie nodded.

Twilight turned back towards the mint jello swimming pool, grinned, clapped, and squeed like a filly, then jumped in with a running start. She took three bites before she realized something was wrong. Horribly, horribly, wrong.

"EEEEEUGH! Pinky! What in Yggdrasil possessed you to add chlorine to mint jello!"

"Oh, that's easy! Trixie said it would make the jello jell faster, and it did!"

"UGG! When I get my hooves on her..."




122.2 continued (TangleKat)




My Little Magi – Part 2

Strag was convinced that Yggdrasil had to be a troll in some capacity or another. It was the only explanation for all of the odd situations that he seemed to Awaken in. Case in point: he was an Underneathian. He was familiar with the earth, with having a tunnel over his head and solid stone beneath his boots. Thus it was logical (and he had assumed) that he would enter the Equestria Loops as an Earth Pony.

He had instead Looped in as a Pegasus. He was no stranger to flight; he didn’t at all mind visiting the cloud-lands of Arderial nor did he have issue with Magining the bird-like Epik to aid him when need be. No, it was the sheer oddity of Looping in as something completely foreign that confused him. At least the whole Pegasi-stand-on-clouds thing wasn’t out of the ordinary for a Moonlander. It was a fairly useful thing to know since he was currently sitting on a cloud above town.

He shook his head and resolved to worry about odd Loop behavior later. Right now it was time to check his Loop Memories.

First – his Equestrian name was designated as Nightfall. Probably due to his duties as a Shadow Stalker, but one could never be too sure. Especially a person with his heritage. Second – He was a part of the local weather team. His duties were primarily to observe the current conditions and to ensure that nothing unexpected happened. And third – he seemed to be a fairly athletic pony. In his baseline he had been a strong contender in the various coliseum battles, so it was only fair that it had carried over somehow.

Just as Strag finished this examination, he felt Edyn pinging from far away. There was no need for him to reply, since she would already know that he was Awake. What did interest him were the responses. One was faint and likely indicative of someone on another planet or some such, while the other was very strong. In fact, it was strong enough to have come from directly below him. Best to check it out and introduce himself.

If he could find a way to actually fly first – being stuck on a cloud was problematic.




Edyn stared out the window at the mountains, and was immensely relieved when she saw Ponyville emerge from between them. The small town was nestled between a thick forest and the sprawling plains beyond. “I’m glad we’re almost there; this trip has been entirely too long.” She turned to Spike, who had fallen asleep to the train’s gentle rocking. “Time to wake up; we’ve almost arrived in Ponyville.”

The Baby Hyren yawned and stretched like a cat before turning to her. “What did you say? I was having the nicest dream…”

Edyn giggled. “I said that we’re almost there. I wouldn’t want you to sleep through our arrival, would I?”

Spike’s face flushed bright blue, and he scratched his chin with a claw. “No, I guess that would be kinda bad. Do you want me to go over the list of tasks now?”

Edyn tapped her chin with a hoof. “Yeah, that would probably be a good idea. What do we have lined up?” She got off of her seat and looked up at the baggage rack, eyes searching for the saddlebags she’d packed before leaving. Spotting it nearby, her horn flared to life with magic and she pulled out the scroll sticking out of one corner. Spike flew up and grabbed it, eagerly unrolling it.

“Okay, first things first – we’ll have to visit Applejack of Sweet Apple Acres and the proprietors of Sugarcube Corner. They’re going to be doing the catering.”

Edyn nodded, both memorizing the agenda and listening intently for any sign of her fellow Magi.

“Next is Town Hall; a unicorn by the name of Rarity is supposed to be in charge of the decorations.”

Edyn smiled at that; the Looping Spike and Rarity’s wedding was legendary among Loopers. Although she had only heard of it, she thought that what the two had managed to accomplish was both incredible and heart-warming. Shaking the thought from her head, she turned her attention back to her assistant.

“After that we have to check on the Weather Patrol; a Pegasus named Nightfall is supposed to be watching the skies.”

The Naroomi’s attention was piqued by that; wasn’t Rainbow Dash usually in charge of weather? The possibility of it being one of her friends was very high. “Actually Spike, can we do that one first? I don’t want to be worrying about the condition of the skies during everything else.”

Spike nodded. “Sure thing, Moonbud. I guess it really doesn’t matter what order we do them in, huh?” Spike coughed once for effect and returned to the scroll. “The last one on the list is music. Apparently an Earth Pony named Solar Shard has volunteered to handle it, with an animal-based choir.”

Edyn had to refrain from clapping her hooves. That one was definitely Tony; of the three of them, his skill with Dream Creatures was the strongest. That left Strag as Nightfall. Her face fell a little as she wondered what he felt of the name he’d been given by this Loop. And certainly as she wondered how he felt about being a Pegasus.

As Spike rolled up the scroll and returned it to the saddlebag, she felt the train slow and noted that they were currently pulling into Ponyville Station. Lighting her magic once more, she pulled her belongings onto her back and felt the Baby Hyren land just behind her neck. “Ready for this, Spike?” He nodded his affirmative, and together the two of them set out to see what the Loop had in store.




122.11




Three armies prepared to face each other, under the supervision of Professor Quirrell, who was bald and didn't wear a turban this loop.

Dragon Army had a simple insignia: a patch of fire. This was generally agreed to be a bad sign.

Chaos Legion had a hand poised to snap. This was universally agreed to be a bad sign.

Team Happy had three balloons, which freaked out eldritch entities throughout Yggdrasil.




Quirrell rubbed his head, headache rising. "Harry, Draco, Pinkie...you three are hereby forbidden from participating in all future battles."

The three loopers grinned sheepishly as they glanced at the battlefield, which was littered with glowing green craters and flying streamer monsters.




122.12 (Filraen)




One of the things which was common knowledge to all ponies in general and Sound Mind in particular was whenever Princess Celestia needed to meet somepony she'd do it in the Royal Hall, as if it was a single-pony Day Court...

'Scratch that, there's two Princesses now.'

Apparently with the recent incident of the Summer Sun Celebration in Ponyville there's was a second Princess, Princess Luna, younger sister of Princess Celestia, even if nopony had known of her attending any official events or holding a Night Court yet.

'Now I'm just diverting my own thoughts, I must be more nervous than I thought.' Anyway, the point was it was unheard of having Princess Celestia requesting anypony's presence to her private quarters, unless she'd need a stallion for... 'Hold that thought! Obviously she wouldn't have send one of her guard to make such a pompous request in my psychologist clinic if she were just looking for a stallion... right?'

With that thought in mind Sound Mind had the doors opened to Princess Celestia's bedroom. The place was huge and beautiful decorated with day and night motifs on the walls and bed, but he didn't have much time to admire it. Princess Celestia and a unicorn, which Sound Mind recognized as the Princess' personal student, were at a table, their worried expressions thankfully sobering his previous thoughts. Steeling himself he went to speak with the two ponies.




After bows given, introductions were interchanged and any Royal Guard dismissed Princess Celestia spoke to the stallion. "What do you know about the Summer Sun Celebration two days ago?"

The question threw Sound Mind a bit off (probably to shake him from his nervousness, his own mind provided) enough to not to measure his answer "Not much, Princess. I only know that night lasted considerably longer than usual and the rumours of a new Princess, by the name of Luna."

Princess Celestia nodded. "Both things are true, even if that isn't precise on everything which happened that night. I had to wait for a thousand years for my sister Luna to return," Princess Celestia's voice took a sad note. "However, in her return there were complications. Have you heard the tale of the Mare in the Moon?"

Sound Mind blinked, "that old's mare's tale about the two sisters which raised... and imprisoned in the moon..." his eyes widened in surprise as realization hit him. "They were you and Princess Luna?!"

Ignoring the obvious outburst Princess Celestia answered. "Yes, though at the time my sister was corrupted by a dark force and took the form of Nightmare Moon." Nightmare Night's patron? "When we fought I couldn't heal her myself, and she ended sealed in her moon, still as Nightmare Moon. And she was in that form when she returned, a thousand years later, still corrupted.

"I can't thank my faithful student and her friends enough for bringing Luna back, healed," Princess Celestia said while smiling to the unicorn by her side, "but their victory wasn't without casualties. Blinded by the corruption, Nightmare Moon managed to bring one of the ponies who confronted her to madness before being defeated.

"Sound Mind, I'm in need of your services as psychologist. Please heal this pony, both for her own sake and Luna's: I don't want to burden my sister even more with the reminder of her shattering the sanity of one of my little ponies."

If somepony were to ask Sound Mind's thoughts at this moment, he'd comment on how the powerlessness expression on Princess Celestia's face goes against the natural order of things. She... she was Princess Celestia herself!

'Diverting thoughts detected, correct course ASAP.' With that Sound Mind took a long sigh, trying to gather his own thoughts. Eventually he spoke: "Is she in Ponyville? I have many other patients and I would make a disservice to them if I couldn't make to their appointments just because of a new patient." Wait, had he just rejected Celestia's personal request? 'Horseapples!'

Princess Celestia's smile and words calmed his own thoughts. "I wouldn't expect anything less. Don't worry, she's living here in the castle right now and will be as long as she needs to."

"Then there's no trouble, I'll see her," Sound Mind nodded. "Who is this pony, anyway?"

"It's one of the friends I made in Ponyville a few days ago," it was the white unicorn, Rarity according to her introduction, who spoke while levitating a folder towards him. "Her name is Twilight Sparkle and she was working as Ponyville's librarian." The folder has a picture of a lavender earth pony with a purple mane and a starburst as her cutie mark. "I... please help her!" Rarity suddenly broke down crying, barely holding herself with both forelegs in the table and surprising Sound Mind at how much Rarity was holding herself back all this time. "She helped us so much and now... and now she just... lost herself."

Closing the folder Sound Mind decided "I don't have any appointments this afternoon. Let me check her file and I can see her in about an hour."

"Thank you." Rarity said on a soft voice, showing a small if tired smile.

"Then you can use the royal study, and in an hour we'll lead you to Twilight Sparkle's room." Princess Celestia provided.

Sound Mind nodded, taking the folder and... "Erm..." the earth pony mumbled and looked around as he realized he didn't have anything to carry the folder.

That somehow made Rarity bounce back to normal immediately. "Oh! Wait a moment." Going to a corner of the room, Rarity emptied a saddlebag, most probably hers at it had her cutie mark, and brought it back with her magic grip. "Here, darling. Please use this."

"But it's yours, there's no need," Sound Mind shook his head to try to reject but Rarity wouldn't have anything of it.

"Don't worry about it," Rarity said in a genial tone. "I can always get another later or levitate my things myself."

Sound Mind got a little nervous. 'Darling'? offering those gifts so easily, marked with her own cutie mark no less? He just hoped Rarity didn't get a crush on him, he had a wife after all.

Apparently Princess Celestia realized this as she made a small laugh. "Please don't worry too much. This is just how Rarity addresses everypony."

Calm Mind blinked, more relaxed. "Okay..." After a moment of silence he spoke again. "So, where's the study? I'd like to start reading Ms. Sparkle's file right away."

"Rarity, please?"

Rarity just nodded. "No problem, Princess."

"Rarity will lead you to the study, and we'll be carrying you to Twilight Sparkle's room in an hour. See you later, Sound Mind."

Not forgetting to bow, the stallion answered "Until later, Princess Celestia."




In one of the guest bedrooms Twilight was resting on the bed. "So, still feeling woozy?" she said, apparently to nopony in particular.

'Still a bit, mom.' Nyx answered from inside her. This was a variant where Rarity was Princess Celestia's student instead, though something interesting happened when confronting Nightmare Moon: Nyx Awoke just when the Elements were healing Princess Luna, somehow making the Elements place the weak last remains of Nightmare Moon's consciousness, Nyx, into Twilight's mind. Not that she minded, she loved to meet her daughter again.

"You realize you're making me look like a crazy pony, right?" Twilight asked in mock annoyment.

'As much as you realize you don't have to speak aloud to talk to me? Yes.' Nyx snarked back before mother and daughter giggled in unison.

After calming themselves Twilight started walking to the door. "Well, when you're better we can make the whole Eternal Twilight routine again. Meanwhile, why don't we get us some ice cream?"

'Yay!' Nyx happily agreed. She couldn't eat ice cream as she didn't have a body but this was the next best thing.




122.13




"Yeah, this is going to cause comment," Twilight observed.

"How so?" Rarity asked, with a frown. "It's hardly the first time Spike and I have re-married in a loop."

"Well, yes, I admit that." Twilight then pointed. "But this is the first time you've been a sea pony and Spike has been a griffin."

Spike examined his plumage, which was mostly purple. "That's not the most fun bit, either."

"What is the most fun bit, then?" Twilight asked, in the tones of someone who was determined to get this over with.

"Before you stands the ruler of the Griffins!"

Twilight blinked. "Wow. Okay, you've only had a couple of days since I saw you last, and you certainly weren't Emperor then. How did you pull that off?"

"Oh, I didn't." Spike pointed at his wife. "That would be her."

"...right." Twilight shot Rarity a look. "Seriously?"

"I was visiting my dear Spiky-feathered-Wikey's parents - Gilda's his sister, small world - and the Emperor insulted his judgement for becoming infatuated with a hippocampus." Rarity examined her fins. "One thing led to another."

"At least partly because of a hippopotamus joke," Spike stage-whispered. "Anyway, the coronation's tomorrow and the wedding two days after that. That does mean we're going to miss Discord's return, though."

"Right. No problem, Diamond's around, she can sub in for you." Twilight sighed. "Just... please give me a warning before the next time something like this happens?"

"Where would the fun be in that?" Spike asked.


MLP Loops 122
122.1: Rocking.
122.2: Little Magi.
122.3: The Pirates Who Steal Things.
122.4: He's got a job.
122.5: Normal.
122.6: The recent Naruto chapters are a bit OMGWTFBBQ.
122.7: Badum tish. (The drummer.)
122.8: Creepypasta logic vs. Fluttershy. Fluttershy wins.
122.9: Trixie does have other hobbies. They're just less interesting.
122.10: Like that one.
122.11: But those are the fun ones...
122.12: Interesting place Nyx ended up.
122.13: They for one welcome their new fishy overlady.
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121.1




“And the results are coming in!” Princess Celestia announced, sitting in front of a big map of Equestria. “It looks like the Everfree Forest has declared for the Element of Kindness, though Generosity fought hard for it!”

Luna nodded. “The Horseshoe Bay Changeling Hive has also voted overwhelmingly for Kindness, with over ninety-nine point nine percent of ballots cast being for that Element.”

Celestia blinked. “Did we let Chrysalis' drones all vote?”

“Yes,” Luna replied simply. “It's equal rights. One sophont, one vote.”

“Oh.” Celestia shook her head and got up to leave. “Well, that sort of...” She trailed off. “What vote counting system are we using?”

“First past the post by constituency.” Luna held up a big pile of paper.

“Good.” Celestia took her seat again. “Anything else and I'd say the whole thing was pointless, with that many Changelings...”

Cadence trotted in. “We got a set of ballots from the badlands!”

“Yeah,” Shining added, following his wife. “Problem is, that's about fourteen constituencies each of which has two dragons and a minotaur in. They've all gone Loyalty.”

“Please tell me that Honesty, at least, is running a fair campaign...” Celestia begged.

“Gilda said she was going campaigning, if that helps,” Luna reported. “I do not know what-”

There was a soft flumph sound, and all four of them found themselves buried in paper.

“Pfeh,” Shining muttered, pulling a slip of paper out of his mouth. “...and she seems to have taken over the Griffin Empire and told them all to vote for Honesty.”

“Is that legal?” Celestia asked.

Cadence replied by putting a very large book on the paper-drifts. “This is the rule book.”

“Author O.B.I.H Discord. Oh, dear...” Celestia felt like facehoofing. “What does-”

“Oh Buck It's Him.”

“Should have guessed.”

“Well, this has at least shown us what the Elements can be like when they get competitive,” Cadence added. “The Laughter campaign consisted of getting ponies drunk, launching into a custom-designed heartsong, and getting everyone to vote as part of a dance.”

“And Generosity?” Celestia pressed, dreading the answer.

“Bribery.”

“Of course.”




“You know, I'm not sure if Discord realized this one was in there...” Twilight mused.

“It's Discord,” Applebloom replied. “He probably did. That or he was too busy redesigning fish.”

Twilight read the rule again. It stated, quite clearly, that the winner for a given constituency was the one who had the majority of ballots when they were counted – and that counting only started once the polls closed.

As such, she, Applebloom and Trixie had written their votes on special paper.




“Right, there we go,” Celestia said with a sigh. “Polls closed, votes placed. Time to get counting.”

She opened the first box, which promptly exploded.

When the flash-blindness wore off and the Royal Best Element Election Commission could see once more, they beheld a room full of a truly vast amount of ashes and dust.

And, sitting neatly on the floor where the table had been, three slips of paper.

Twilight Sparkle – Magic

Trixie Lulamoon – Magic

Applebloom – Magic

“...sister,” Luna said, after several seconds of silence. “Did the Elements of Magic just rig the election to explode?”

“It seems so,” Celestia replied calmly. “Right, that was an interesting waste of a few days. If you'll excuse me, I'm going to work out exactly what kind of letter I wish to send Twilight, Trixie and Applebloom over this.”




121.2 (Zetrein)




"So, Lyra, what is it you wanted to show me?" Twilight asked, joining her friend on the park bench.

"First, put these on." Lyra hoofed her a pair of glasses. "Glasses of True Seeing; had 'em made so I could do a quick and easy check to find out if Bonnie's a changeling in a given loop."

Putting on the glasses, Twilight looked out across the park at Lyra's direction. Twilight looked out at all the changelings in the park, disguised as ponies. They even had little changeling fillies and colts. In a change from the norm, they all seemed to have the coloration and even cutie marks of the ponies they looked like.

"One of those loops, eh?" Turning to her friend, Twilight was presented with a mint green changeling. After a quick check of her own leg, she returned Lyra's glasses. "Well, I know I'm not a changeling this loop at least. Ideas on how far this goes?"

"Yeah... Here's the thing, Twi, you and Bon Bon are the only two actual ponies in Ponyville." Lyra scratched her head. "Other than that, about half of Baltimare. Not many of us beyond that, though. At least, not connected to our hivemind."

"Even the girls, eh? Well, the Elements didn't have an issue with them, so I don't think this'll be a problem." Twilight gave her friend a playful shove. "And how has the hivemind been dealing with your hivemind? Getting along?"

"We're kinda in charge." Lyra replied in an exhausted tone. "The Swarm follows the eldest, and as Loopers I, me, myself, and the other me, are the oldest and wisest."

Lyra smiled cheerfully at Twilight. "On the bright side though, we're growing a few mindless drones for the rest of me to control. Give it half a year, and each of me'll have a body, if only via remote control."

"Hmm. Well, unless you wanna do something special, I think I'll just take it easy this loop, go baseline. As leader of the changelings, do you have any ideas on what, if anything, you want to do for the wedding?"

"Well, I did have a couple ideas..."




"Twilight!" Cadance cried at the mare that had just appeared in her prison. Her very nice prison, which was furnished like an upscale hotel.

"Cadance?" Twilight shook her head. "If you wanted to talk in private, you could have said so. Where are we?"

"Twilight, I didn't bring you here! I've been kidnapped!" Before Twilight could reply, the face of the pony Cadance had privately started calling Princess Pink (after her own distaste of being called that) appeared in the room's large mirror.

"Hello again! It is I, once more, speaking to you! In my voice! Well, in her voice really, but who's counting?" Not-Cadance cleared her throat. "Moving on. I do hope you don't mind sharing your prison, Cadance, but this one was getting just a bit too close to my plans. Do not bother with your magic, the room's insulated, there is no escape, blah blah blah. Cadance can fill you in on the whole spiel. I made sure the minibar was topped off while she slept, and there's munchies in the fridge. Ta-ta!" With that, the mirror faded back to glass.




Meanwhile, in a Canterlot Police interview room, a certain mare was trying to convince somepony she was telling the truth.

"And that's when you claim the entire town turned into bug-ponies?" The officer asked, trying to keep his headache in check.

"Yes! Trixie does not know which spell caused it, but she saw them all! And they know!" The blue mare shifted uncomfortably, looking behind her, before lowering her voice. "They know. They've been following Trixie ever since. She sees them, in crowds at the market, sitting in passing trains, in the audience at her shows." Trixie let her head rest on the table, covering it with her hooves. "They know, and they know Trixie knows that they know. Trixie had to tell somepony, had to let somepony know before they got to her."

"Miss Lulamoon, hearing your story, I think you may have accidentally made yourself able to see through changeling disguises." The officer steepled his hooves. "Most likely, they're not after you personally, and you're just seeing them going about their business."

Trixie jerked her head up to look at him. "But! But!"

Trixie fell silent at the officer's beckoning. "We will investigate, see if there's a possible stalking charge to be made. But if the changelings in Ponyville, or any connected to them, aren't stalking you, then there's little we can do."

"But, horrible shapeshifting bug-ponies?"

"Are registered Equestrian citizens, if of a very little known species."

"Oh." There was a pause. "Trixie would like to apologize for her unintended racism."




"I still can't believe that the minibar was the key to breaking out." Cadance whispered, as they snuck along the castle's servant corridors.

"Enough booze makes problems go away, just ask any drunkard." Twilight snarked, before waving her into a side room. "Okay, I know how to turn this around. I've learned a few things in my time in Ponyville." She smiled at Cadance. "Trust me, this is gonna work, and be pretty funny too."

Setting about looking through the boxes in the room, Twilight kept talking. "Start off by drinking that bottle we saved from the bar, it'll help. The first thing we need to find now, is a Hawaiian shirt..."




Lyra was smiling, disguised as Cadance at the altar. Come on, Twilight, I'd rather not get married today.

Well you're the one that lost! Lyra-Lyra told herself, from where she stood as a bridesmaid.

You know, there might be a law against marrying yourself. Just a thought. The other two Lyras, were magically hidden from sight, filming the event from multiple angles.

Aha, There's Twilight's signal! It begins! All the Lyras started taking glances at the door in anticipation.

Princess Celestia, oblivious for the moment, continued with her role in the wedding. "Princess Cadance and Shining Armor, it is my great pleasure to pronounce you– "

"Stop!" Twilight Sparkle burst through the doors.

"Ugh! Why does she have to be so possessive of her brother?" Lyra-Cadance played her character, turning on the waterworks. "Why does she have to ruin my special day?"

"MUCKLE DAMRED CHANGINS 'AIR EH NAMBLIES BE KEEPIN' ME BONNIE WE SHINY?!" The words that would live in Canterlot infamy, for the rest of the loop at least, came from the angry mare that had just entered the room. She wore an orange Hawaiian shirt, a pair of aviator sunglasses, and had Philomena perched on her shoulder. The phoenix was also on fire.

Right on cue, the Cadance at the altar started screaming bloody murder, before slugging Shining Armor to disrupt the shield around the city, and making for the horizon.




Many months later, at Lyra's request Twilight had gone for her baseline ascension. As she put it, since the entire town was Loop Aware, they felt most comfortable going with tried and true methods.

That said, noling expected what happened when the Elements blasted her. Twilight and her friends stood outside the library, staring down a dumbstruck Princess Celestia. Literally, in Twilight's case, as the newborn changeling queen had been lifted up by the four celebrating Lyras.

"New boss, not the leader! New boss, not the leader! New boss, not the leader!" They were chanting, as the entire town was coming together around them. By the time Celestia got her wits about her, a block party was rapidly being assembled around her, under the direction of a familiar pink changeling.

As she looked at all the undisguised changelings around her, Celestia felt somepony pat her on the back. "Relax, Princess." Bon Bon told her. "They ain't bad folk, once you get used to them." The candymaker sighed. "Guess I'm back to being the only pony in Ponyville."

Looking back to the party, Celestia let out a laugh. "And I thought Discord was joking about this!"




121.3 (Gym Quirk)




Luke Skywalker Awoke next to the malfunctioning vaporator on the south ridge. Nearby, the Tredwell maintenance droid trundled erratically in his general direction.

Normal start point. Should be seeing the firefight between Leia and Dad's ships any minute now, he thought as he reached for the macrobinoculars on his belt. He also tried to stretch out his...Wait. What?

"Hi Luke. Really strange loop setup we've got here," commented a youthful female voice behind him.

He turned to see an orange pegasus with bright violet mane and tail. He felt the headache start. "Hello, Scootaloo..."

"This is going to be...awkward," decided the pony. "I think Twilight'd call it a 'Single-Letter Transposition Bug'."

Luke massaged his forehead, ignoring the one-sided battle in space above him. This loop, the Jedi and Sith shared one thing; a strong connection to the Horse...




(Hubris Plus)

"Vader, would you care to tell me why my station has once again been placed in the planet's shadow?" Tarkin demanded. It was a small complaint, really, but he despised action taken without his express approval. It also happened daily, which grated.

"The power of the Death Star is insignificant next to the power of the Horse," Vader replied. He seemed to be the only one who could get through such phrases with a straight face, if only because his was artificial.

"It's night. I raised the moon," Luna added pointedly.

"This! Is! No! Moon!" Tarkin roared, finally fed up with this nonsense.

"You're hardly the expert here," the diarch scolded.




(Gym Quirk)

Luke glanced sideways at Obi-Wan. "Please repeat what you said about how Anakin became Darth Vader."

The elderly Jedi hemm'd and haw'd for several seconds before declaring with the little remaining dignity he could summon:

"He was seduced by the Dark Side of the Horse."

Nyx sighed. "I'm really not liking this loop."




(TheCentauress)

"So you knew you you were a Jedi for a while, Princess?" the young former moisture-farmer asked Leia.

There was a sudden pounding on the connecting wall to the cell. "The Great and Powerful Horse shall overcome all!" came through the metal faintly.

"Bit of a clue, there, farmboy," the princess replied, drolly.




(Shieldage)

Luke sighed as the landspeeder pulled into Mos Eisley and they were met by a waiting patrol of Stormtroopers. After the initial small-talk, one of the troopers asked to see his identification.

Obi-Wan waved his hand. "You don't need to see his identification."

The Stormtrooper froze a second as he registered a large weight upon his head. Despite this oddity he found himself saying, in time with a female voice, "We don't need to see his identification."

R2-D2 made of series of beeps and whirs that had C-3PO chastising him for harsh language. Luke thumped his head against the controls.

Obi-Wan, his face somewhat pale, announced: "These aren't the droids you're looking for."

The cream-colored form of Apple Bloom, perched on top of the Stormtrooper's head, spoke in unison with the voice of her mount, albeit slightly out of cadence on the second word. "These ain't the droids-"

"It's a pony," called one of the other troopers as all four raised their weapons to point at the hapless victim of the Horse. "Get it!"

The filly yipped as her mount backed up a few steps and then started running. She struggled to retain her position as she channeled the Horse, enveloping the trooper in a shimmering blue radiance that lent him speed as well as helping to deflect blaster shots.

Luke watched the pack of running Stormtroopers retreat into the distance, to the tune of weapons fire and diving merchants. "Gee, Old Ben," he snarked. "How did you pull that off?"

Obi-Wan struggled to retain a stoic expression as his charge started up the landspeeder. "The Horse is often effective against the weak-minded, although this effectiveness may come at the... utter expense of stealth."




(Gym Quirk)

Darth Vader struggled to keep the X-wing in his sights. "The Horse is strong with this one."

Luke would have shrugged if he had any room in the cockpit for the gesture. Instead, he just allowed the violet-maned orange pony in his lap to keep flying the snubfighter.




(Wing Zero 032)

Luke, with the help of The Horse, was dodging turbolaser fire from all across the Death Star. He was close to the exhaust tunnel that headed directly to the massive space station's core. That said, due to the massive amounts of laser fire from the emplacements and the several squadrons of Imperial Star Fighters that were chasing him and him alone, the chance of success looked to be nil.

However, he quickly remembered the words his deceased master Obi-Wan Kenobi had told him during his early days of Jedi training...

"Use The Horse Luke, use The Horse!" And so... he did use The Horse. Derpy was deployed from the X-Wing and flew erratically into the exhaust tunnel, hitting defensive emplacements, vital systems and unlucky combat and/or non-combat personnel alike who had the misfortune of standing in her way to the Death Star's core with echoes of "Sorry!", "Oops, My bad!", "That pipe suddenly appeared in front of me!", "Are you ok Mr. Storm-Trooper?", "Is there any way I can help?" and a final "I just don't know what went wrong!" a couple of seconds after the destruction of the Imperial combat space station.

Indeed, right after watching this, Luke finally understood that The Horse can be such a great and terrible thing and that he needed to return to his training to master it as soon as possible.




(FanOfMostEverything)

"Yes," said the wizened creature, "a Jedi's strength comes from the Horse. But beware of the Dark Side."

His mount nodded. "Aggression, anger, and fear. All these things the Dark holds dear."

"Easily they flow," continued Yoda, "quick to join you in a fight."

"But that path is a slippery slope." Zecora shook her head. "Once used, it leaves you little hope."

"Yes. Consume you, it will, as it did Obi-Wan's apprentice."

It took everything Luke had not to burst into laughter.




(KrisOverstreet)

"Is it too much to ask for you all to hold still?" Scootaloo gasped. "It's HARD carrying all three of you on my back!"

"Be fair," Luke countered, "at least I'm the one holding on when we swing across the bogs on those vines."

"Ha ha, big help, Mr. Opposable Thumbs," Scootaloo grumbled as the stack of Jedi Master, zebra, Jedi apprentice, and pegasus filly stumbled back into Luke's camp just before collapsing.

"Luke and Scootaloo seem excessively tired," Zecora noted. "Is such heavy training truly required?"

"For eight hundred years taught students this way, I have," Yoda said. Then, noting Luke gasping for breath and Scootaloo flat unconscious, he added, "Perhaps question it sooner, I should have."




(fractalman)

Palpatine cackled as lightning shot from his hands.

"Behold, the power of the Dark Side! Ahahahahh!"

Then the lightning cut off.

"Well the Dark Side of the Horse demands cookies" said Nyx, standing in front of his feet. "Preferably with milk."




Nyx finished the last of the cookies, then flew over to Luke.

"What are you doing? I gave you your cookies! I even supplied milk to dunk them in!" yelled Palpatine.

"The good guys have celery soup and daffodil sandwiches."




121.4 (Bardic_Knowledge)




Lyra awoke to find herselves swimming around a sunken ship. Recent one, too, going from Seapony's knowledge.

Yay! said Seapony. My turn! But before she could take over, they saw their hand holding the edge of a hole in the ship.

Could be me, then, said Human.

"Lyra, wait for... Huh," a yellow and blue fish swam into view. "Hi, I'm Flounder. What Loop are you from?"

Okay, how do we resolve this? asked Classic. We're like, some kind of humanized sea pony.

I think the term is "mermaid," replied Miscellaneous.

"Hello?" asked Flounder. "Are you in there? Or are you still processing the Loop memories?"

Okay, idea, said Seapony. I'll handle the tail and swimming bits, while Human handles the other half of the body.

Human nodded. Sounds like a plan to me.

That resolved, mer-Lyra looked at the fish who'd been trying to get her attention. "Hey, sorry about that. I had some issues to work out."

"Came from an odd Loop?"

"Not really... The council of me just had to figure out who had control this Loop."

Flounder blinked in confusion. "Um, what?"




121.5 (Gym Quirk)




Anakin "Darth Vader" Skywalker found himself in the Death Star conference room absently listening to Tarkin's staff bicker as he tried to work out how to prevent the destruction of Alderaan and arrange for Leia's escape this time.

And then there was that little twist Yggdrasil had thrown at him...

"...Or given you the clairvoyance enough to find the Rebels' hidden--" Motti's voice was abruptly cut off by a large serving of cake and ice cream.

"I find your lack of fun disturbing," chirped the poofy-maned pink pony as she shoved another hoof-full of sweets into the imperial's mouth.




(Lirana) (Gamma Cavy)

Tarkin quivered slightly in ill-repressed anger. "Lord Vader, I must insist that you remove your, your pet from the control deck! I cannot imagine that it has anything to contribute-"

The pink pony interrupted with happy chirp. "What about parties?"

The Grand Moff twitched, but continued gamely. "Anything useful to contribute to the firing of this battle station!"

Princess Leia gasped in outrage. "Firing? You said that if I told you where the Rebel Alliance was, you would spare my planet!"

Tarkin whirled angrily to face her. "I lied you stupid little girl! As I am sure you have, as well." He turned back to the waiting officers. "Now, commence the bombardment!"

*bweeeeeeeeem-POW*

The vast turbo-laser that issued forth from the Death Star was an uncharacteristic pink, Anakin noticed idly, and moments later Alderaan looked a great deal more festive. He was reminded of what happened last time she had been a guest Looper, but this one was more than party hats.

Tarkin sputtered for a moment before plaintively addressing Lord Vader. "Where's the kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering kaboom!"

Anakin smirked, then loomed ominously over the Moff. "You had no idea of the Power of the Horse."




(Pinklestia101)

Pinkie Pie started to sing before the Star Wars loop ended.

May the horse be with you!

There is a horse that moves lives from place to place
There is a horse exchanging smiles from face to face
The horse is all and we as one are but a tiny part
May the horse be with you always in your heart!

May the horse be with you always in your heart!
May the horse be with you always in your heart!

There is a horse that moves things and changes tides
Not that we would but if we should we couldn't hide
If we are part of something bigger we can face the dark
May the horse be with you always in your heart!

May the horse be with you always in your heart!
May the horse be with you always in your heart!

May the horse be with you!




121.6 (fractalman)




Twilight was Bored. Bored bored bored bored bored bored BORED. So bored she'd done a completely baseline run.

Tirek had been defeated, the new castle created...

The door opened. Twilight blinked.

Opposite the thrones was a staircase leading down that she'd not seen before. Curious, she took it.

In the new basement, The Box of Harmony sat on a pedestal; a smaller pedestal next to it displayed a small, silver key.

Curiosity now roaring, she picked it up and found a small hole at the top of the box.

Insert, twist, wait.

Music box music began to play, which Twilight eventually recognized as a music-box version of the G1 themesong.

Twilight wound it up one more time and softly sang along:

"My little pony...
My little pony...
I'll be your best friend"

Twilight smiled, and had to wipe a small tear from her eye.




121.7 (Masterweaver, Gym Quirk, elmagnifico)




"Wow, Tavi, that dress is amazing!"

The grey mare grinned as she stepped down into the Apple Cellar bar, placing her cello case beside her as she sat gracefully on one of the stools. "Why thank you, Vinyl. I have a performance for somepony in Canterlot later this evening, and, well, I thought I would get ready earlier."

"Heh." Vinyl Scratch waved casually to Big Macintosh. "I like it. It's alluring without being provocative, sensual but not inviting, hinting at something while retaining high class." She took the two wineglasses the bartender handed her and levitated one over to Octavia. "Very much a look don't touch dress."

"Mmm." The grey mare took her glass with a small smile. "You know, before you gave me that journal, I would never have expected you to be capable of such... analysis."

"I'm just full of surprises. Plus the way that thing shows off your cutie mark is just dang sexy."

"And there's the crass mare I'm dating." Octavia sighed dramatically. "Why ever did I decide to do that again?"

"Us white unicorns have always been prize catches," Rarity quipped as she entered. "Even ruffians like Vinyl can gain the eye of the most discerning."

"Back off Rares, she's mine." Vinyl gave a joking growl as she wrapped a hoof around Octavia's shoulders.

"Oh, but of course. I've already netted myself a dragon, after all."

"Yes, I've read about that," Octavia commented as she slipped the white hoof off her shoulders. "That journal is filled with... incredible things, and I'm still only half way through. But how is being married to mister Spike treating you, anyway?"

"Ah, well, he is a noble hearted knight with just a touch of snark," Rarity replied. "So I find most of the time, I'm happily pampered and supported, though of course I do my best to keep him happy as well. And, of course, he has complete control over his age shifting--"

Six stallions in pinstripe suits barreled down the stairs, levitating tommy guns at the bar. "ALRIGHT, NOPONY MOVE!"

The unicorns exchanged a confused glance. Octavia let out a small sigh.

"Well well well." A large unicorn stepped out from behind the goons, fiddling with his cigar. "Big Macintosh. I've heahd things bout ya, son."

The bartender lidded his eyes. "Ah'm afraid ya have me at a disadvantage, sir."

The unicorn shrugged "My name's not impohtant. Just call me a... concahned neighbahhood plannah." He trotted up to the bar, sitting on a stool. "I heah's ya a fahmah."

"Eeeyup."

"That's good, fahmin'. Ya know, gots mahself a cousin who's a fahmah." The unicorn took a deep whiff of his cigar. "Cute filly, she was, but she's all grawn up naow."

"That's good ta know." Macintosh's ear flicked at a small clicking sound, aware that one of the guns was now pointed at his head.. "Fillies become mares, after all."

"Mmm. See, she stuck to hah couahse. Stayed a fahmah. Couahse, I'da been fine if she changed hah ways, became a scholah or a guahd--heh. Thing is, though, she knew that ya don't get somethin witout nothin, and ya definitely don't give anythin fah fahee."

Macintosh raised an eyebrow.

"...Son, yah bah is takin business away from tha other bah's ahound these pahts." The unicorn pushed his cigar into the countertop. "Nohmally I'd ask fah compensation, but...."

"Ah only serve ta select clientle."

"Rather odd way ta put it. Ya got upwahds of twenty ponies comin' en whenevah they please." The unicorn sighed. "I like ya, son, but unless ya stop this nonsense I'm going to have no choice but to stop it fo ya."

There was a tense moment. Macintosh and the large unicorn stared into each other's eyes. Octavia slid a hoof down the side of her cello case. Rarity put a hoof on the bar itself.

"Wait wait wait, hold on." Vinyl held up a hoof. "I get the whole organized crime thing, and I can see why you're threatening Mac, but where the chlorophyll did you find the guns?"

There was a small click, and Octavia smiled. "Why, west of the train tracks Vinyl." She pulled a revolver out of a secret compartment. "The same place I did."

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG!

The large unicorn winced as the still smoking gun was pointed at him. "H-Hey now, little miss, ya don't have any moah shots in thah!"

"...You're right, of course." Octavia smiled sweetly, lowering the firearm.

Then she slung a hoof at his head and knocked him cold.

Vinyl blinked for a moment or two. "...Huh."

"My, that was..." Rarity paused. "Exciting...?"

Octavia sighed, putting the gun on the counter. "I do apologize, Macintosh, it was not my intent to make a mess of your bar."

"Ya know Ah could have handled tha situation without killing them."

"Old instincts, I guess."

"Huh," Vinyl repeated.

Octavia sighed. "I'm sorry I'm not as... demure as my previous selves, Vinyl, but when your family has dealings with the Canterlot underworld--"

"No no no, I'm not disappointed or anything, I'm just – wait, you're with the mafia?"

"...Not anymore."

Rarity sounded just a tad put out. "Darling, I had a mass-paralysis spell ready to go, and I'm positive dear MacIntosh had any number of non-lethal pacification devices to back me up. Even Ms. Scratch would have had a sonic stunner or something along those lines near at hoof..."

Macintosh double-checked that the mini-Pinkie-Pylon was humming under the bar as usual.

"An' now that y'all have worked out yer systems, can we all jus' put away th' compensators, maybe have a drink, an' pretend we're all friends?"

He turned to the two mares first.

"Miz Octavia, there's a sign about shootin' guns in th' bar without askin' th' barkeep first, but ah'll let you off with a warnin', fer Vinyl here."

The other ponies, who had been knocked tail over teakettle by the kinetic force of the bullets, but left with only minor bruises, started backing toward the exit. Macintosh ignored them for a moment, setting out shot glasses and hunting around for a bottle.

"An' as fer you, ah suggest y'all accept mah offer of a peaceful drink."

The stallion who was nursing a black eye found himself the subject of intense scrutiny from the barkeeper.

"'Cuz nevermind what ya threatened to do to me, seems to me like you jus' tried ta hurt mah friends."

Those eyes were a very deep green.

"And trying to hurt my friends makes me angry."

"Vinyl, dear... you seem a bit off kilter, if you don't mind me saying so."

Vinyl waved a hoof at Rarity. "My marefriend just shot up six ponies. I'm still in shock, that's all."

Octavia let out a slow breath. "I... suppose I should have told you earlier, Vinyl. I mean, you did trust me with--" She glanced toward the unicorn nursing a black eye. "Well, your temporal issues--"

"No, seriously, I don't care about that. I mean I do, because it's your past, but it doesn't change...."

Vinyl's lips slowly curled upward.

"....it doesn't change who you are."

Without warning she grabbed the grey mare and pulled her into a big, deep smooch. It took eight seconds before the both of them came up gasping for breath. "Tavi, you just tried to murder six ponies and I'm thirty percent sure Macintosh has a backroom with a lock in here. I don't know if you'll make it to Canterlot on time."

"You know what, my dear?" Octavia grinned back. "I don't give a damn."




121.8 (namar13766)

"Twilight?"

"Yes Sunset?"

"I just want you to remember that I can sing and dance well outside of a Heartsong."

"...DON'T. REMIND. ME."




121.9 (fractalman)




Sleipnir was having a bad century. Even watching Pinkie Pie’s antics during his precious break time wasn't helping his mood.

Pinkie Pie waved at the monitor.

Sleipnir waved back. The corners of his mouth twitched into a less dour frown for a millisecond or thousand.

Pinkie pie’s head tilted. Then she leaned in and licked the monitor.

Sleipnir stared. Then he grabbed a tissue and wiped the monitor clean.

Pinkie pie giggled, and leaned out of the monitor to give Sleipnir a hug.

“Aww, thanks Pinkie! I needed that.”

A half second later, Sleipnir was in full-blown panic mode, 5 out of 8 legs flailing madly to push Pinkie Pie back into the monitor. "Get back in, get back, get baaaaack!"

Sleipnir looked to the left, to the right, to the left again, to the right again...

Pinkie giggled and bounced away.

Sleipnir muttered, "Whelp, better add the Anti Toon Ascension patch to her code."

(fractalman)

Big Mac sighed. "Alright, Berry, I'm cutting you off."

Berry snorted disdainfully, and nabbed a bottle from the display case.

Big Mac glared, and turned on the anti-theft forcefield for the display case. "Berry..."

Then one of the bottles hovered, passed right through the forcefield, and headed straight for Berry.

Big Mac blinked. "Alright, how are you doing that?"

Berry giggled. "Shimple! Nothing can Shtop...tha Booze!"




121.10 (Pinklestia)




"My Child! My dear little Nixie! At last I have found you! Together we shall bring about Eternal Night!"

Oh, another loop about this? Nyx had heard from her mother about that loop were Nightmare Moon was looking for her child. Wait, looking for her child...

Nyx stared at Nightmare Moon, this was weird. Specially since technically, she really was Luna's child, as she was made from her magic and Twilight's blood in her baseline. Had she been a horrible daughter? How come she always saw Twilight Sparkle as her mother, but never saw Princess Luna as her other mother?

"Uh, mommy, I don't think eternal Night is a good idea... you see..."

Two hours after a visual presentation, including charts and puppet theater...

"I see, I never saw it that way. And you are sure my sister really misses us?"

"Yes, she really does. I have seen it in her dreams." True, since the loop Nyx replaced Luna she had used the power to dream walk on Celestia's dreams a few times, mostly on non awake Celestia for pranks.

The darkness faded away from Nightmare Moon, leaving behind Princess Luna.

"Then lets go my child, my sister and I are overdue for a long talk."




"And that's how non awake Twilight and Luna ended getting married and being my parents that loop!" Nyx said, making Twilight Sparkle do a spit take.

"How in the Pinoideae did you get me and Luna married?" Twilight just needed to know, even if she knew she might not like it.

"That's the fun part, I didn't, it was all your idea mommy." Nyx winked at Twilight, making the purple unicorn hit her head against the table repeatedly.

"Also, I got a letter for awake Celestia that I wrote about that loop."

Nyx started to read.

Dear Princess Celestia,

A wise mare once taught me, that the best teachers never stop being students themselves. No matter how much time passes, how old you get, how much you think you know, there is always something new to learn. No matter how old and wise you become, you will never know everything. And sometimes, you are just so used to how things are, that you stop questioning things. But that's wrong, because there is always something else which can be done to improve things. There may be not such thing as perfection, but that is a stupid excuse to not try to do better! Case in point, I got two mommies, and I have been ignoring one of them. Could you please tell Luna that I am sorry and I want to expend time with her the next time she is awake?

Your Faithful Niece, Nyx.

PS: Here are pictures of a loop where non awake Luna and Twilight got married and adopted me.

"Nyx Moonlight Sparkle! Give me those pictures!" Twilight Sparkle said angry, her mane catching fire.

"Oh dear mother, I'm not a comic book villain. Do you seriously think I'd explain my masterstroke to you if there were even the slightest possibility you could affect the outcome? I sent a copy of the letter and the pictures to Princess Celestia as soon as I found she was awake this loop."




'Mental note, do not make Twilight Sparkle angry. Just because she is my mommy doesn't mean she will go soft with me and not exile me to the Moon.' Nyx then stared at the Moon fortress she just finished after months of work. "Well, just four years or so more until the loop ends, I wonder if the Moon has Batponies this loop?"

Nyx then had an evil smile in her face "Mm, I still got that Minion Making Machine in my subspace pocket, and Luna is not awake, time to go all Dwarf Fortress on this place!"




"Uh Twilight? Why is the Moon Blue this loop?" Spike asked after he just got awake.

"Nyx did something bad and I exiled her to the Moon, she started to play Dwarf Fortress with the Moon and it escalated. I have no clue where she got so much Adamantine to make a new Moon out of it. Mm, It probably must be hollow inside." The mare then calmly zipped some tea.

"A new Moon?" Spike decided to be calm since Twilight didn't look worried.

"Yes, I did say she was playing Dwarf Fortress, didn't I?"

"Do I really want to know what happened?"

"Have you noticed how this loop Equestria seems made of floating islands and Ponyville is in one?"

"Yes."

"Well, that didn't happen until AFTER I had the brilliant idea to exile my daughter to the Moon without setting some ground rules first."

"How... that doesn't even... never mind, I decided I don't want to know."




List of Things Nyx isn't allowed to do in the Loops anymore: Number 10 Dwarf Fortress.




121.11 (Scorntex)




Twilight awoke to a knocking sound at the door. Underneath the aggravation of being woken up far too early, she was intrigued. Mainly because it was the day after the Poison Joke incident had resolved itself (since this Loop she appeared to be alone, she'd decided to go for a baseline run), and she had no idea what could be causing the knocking.

Slowly, carefully, she made her way downstairs, and to the door. Cautiously, expecting anything, she opened the front door.

After a few seconds adjusting to the light, she looked around. Nopony was there. Then she looked down, and saw an envelope sitting on the doorstep. She opened it, and examining the contents. Her eyes went wide at what she saw.

"What."

Some half an hour later, and she'd gotten everypony gathered. Perhaps not as fully awake as she'd have liked, but gathered all the same.

"What's up?" a not-entirely awake Rainbow Dash asked.

"I received this in the mail this morning" she announced, holding the item near to herself, though at a slight distance. "From Zecora."

"Hold on," Applejack said, in-between a heroic battle between the farmer and her eyelids, "how come you don't sound happy about that? I thought you wanted us to get along with her."

"I do" Twilight declared, "but that's not what the letter's about."

"What is it about, then?" Rarity asked. Deciding to let the letter explain, Twilight handed it over to Rarity. After a few seconds careful examination, Rarity practically exploded with outrage.

"She's BILLING US?!"

There was a triumphant gasp from Pinkie. "I knew she was evil!"




121.12 (Detective Ethan Redfield)




It was another dreary day at day court, the same day court that happens every...single...loop. The minister in front of the solar diarch was so caught up in his endless diatribe of words that he failed to notice Celestia had fallen asleep. It was at the moment the minister was rambling on about the wasteful spending of adding an extra inch of copper to the thickness of the court mages' cauldrons (this guy could give Percy a run for his money) that the twin doors to the Canterlot Throne Room slammed open.

Immediately, Celestia's horn glowed a brilliant white of a spell designed to banish creatures to the furthest depths of space since this had once signified an evil Discord or the early return of Tirek, only for her to let the spell cool when she recognized her visitor. The elderly minister barely noticed as his ramblings continued unabated, even as the guest shouted, "Princess Celestia, the people demand justice!"

Celestia stepped away from her throne, "What is the matter, my little pony? You're one of Twilight's friends, right? Miss Lyra Heartstrings?"

Lyra nodded, "There has been a great injustice done upon a proud and noble race that has gone unnoticed until now."

Celestia's analyzed Lyra, noticing that she had a twinkle of mischief in her eyes, meaning Lyra was awake. She asked, "What race do you refer to?"

Lyra puffed up her stance as she spoke with a dead serious expression, "The Noble House of Sweet Rolls!"




Twilight Sparkle awoke later than usual this loop, shortly after Discord had broken free from his statue. Upon awakening, however, she couldn't help but have a double take since Pinkie was bowing and worshiping an oversized sweet roll, along with shrines for sweet rolls throughout Ponyville. She suddenly got the feeling Discord was awake and had set this up just to mess with her, "Pinkie, what are you doing?"

Pinkie gasped, "Don't you remember, Twilight? It was a year ago that The Great and Noble House of Sweet Rolls saved all of Equestria from Nightmare Moon's return and redeemed Princess Luna from Black Snooty's evil grasp."

Twilight's brain failed at this. She had done a lot of things to redeem Nightmare Moon, almost all of them were crazy in some way, shape or form, but this she couldn't picture, unless Pinkie or Derpy transformed the moon into a sweet roll and dropped it on Nightmare. Pinkie failed to notice Twilight's blank stare and continued, "Celestia had a stain glass window of the event commissioned and even elevated their position to guardians of Equestria. Don't you remember yesterday, the sweet roll saved us from meanie pants Discord too! I'm giving praise to the sweet roll in hopes that it will continue to bless us!"

Twilight's brain now felt like it was on fire, "Excuse me, Pinkie. I need to...find an island and lie down for a few days."

With that, Twilight vanished in a burst of purple light.




121.13 (fractalman)




(set in masterweaver's "winds of change")

Rainbow Dash awoke as a changeling-which was nothing new. To be precise, Bon Bon the changeling had copied the memories of a dying Rainbow Dash onto a changeling nymph. Also nothing new.

"Did you eat any of Chrysalis's mane?" asked Bon Bon.

"Why would that matter?"

"Queen manes change drones into queens," replied Bon Bon.

Now that was new. "Ah. So that's why my stomach is liquefying. Guess I'd better ascend." Which Rainbow promptly did.

Bon Bon started blushing.

"Uh, Bon, are you alright?"

"Uh, it's just that changeling queens are sexually attractive to drones, that's all."

"...whut?"

Bon Bon nodded. Any further reactions were interrupted by Lyra's voice. "Rainbow? You're Awake? Take care of Bon Bon for this loop, would you?"

Rainbow turned. Lyra's mane was in the process of sproinging out, she had bags under her eyes, and she had a nearly vacant expression.

"Lyra! Are you OK?" asked both Bon Bon and Rainbow Dash.

"Yeah, just need the loop off, that's all." Lyra walked dazedly off towards her room.

"...Well this is awkward." muttered Rainbow Dash.




Meanwhile, in Lyra's mindscape:

"Hold that forcefield in place!" yelled Seapony Lyra.

"I can't hold it much longer!" yelled Unicorn Lyra.

"I am maneuvering additional forcefield projectors into place even as we speak." monotoned Robot Lyra.

"I'll get the tranq darts." added Human Lyra. "How long until Operation: Wash Away the Sugar Stuff is ready?"

"About two minutes." said Seapony Lyra.

Sweetroll Lyra giggled and cackled as she beat against against the forcefield. "Heh heh, you're gonna have to clean up your mindscape, aren't you. Get it? you're gonna have to brainwash yourselves? Heehee heh heh hee!"

(fractalman)

Pinkie Pie stormed into Mac's bar. "Every sweet was replaced with sleep. Drink. Now."

Mac obliged.




Stirring slightly, Sleep Roll snored softly, while the Lyra Collective breathed a sigh of relief.

"Thank Sleipnir."

"Or Yggdrasil."

"Eh, we can figure out which was responsible later. First we need to arrange some therapy for Sweet Roll."




121.14 Nightmare Mom




(AnonymousAsk: edited by fractalman)

Twilight was sleeping, one week before Nightmare Moon's scheduled return, when her dream shifted to the moon.

"At last, I have found you! Oh my child! Our connection will allow me to escape the moon so that we can bring about Eternal Night!"

Twilight looked to Nightmare Moon, and checked her loop memories; yes, she was still the daughter of Twilight Velvet, though she discreetely cast a DNA test to be sure.

"Sorry to say this, but I'm not your child." Said Twilight

"Well obviously, Celestia brainwashed you, you MUST remember, I'm your mother, oh my precious Trixie Lulamoon."

"Trixie? I'm Twilight Sparkle, if I recall Trixie is doing a show in Baltimore" Said Twilight.

"Wait... You are not Trixie?" Nightmare Moon looked to Twilight

"No, but I can bust you out of the moon early. It might speed up your search."

Nightmare Moon gave Twilight a hug; Twilight merely shrugged.

'This could be interesting.' thought Twilight.

(Anonymous ask+completely rewritten by fractalman)

Nightmare Moon appeared in middle of a festival as she watched a group of bananas dancing with little legs and hands.

"Discord!"

"Hey Lulu! 'S'been too long!" shouted discord.

"Do you know where our child is?" yelled Nightmare Moon over the waterfalling lions.

The party record-scratched to a halt.

"Umm....child? I have no memory of having a child."

"Yes. Trixie Lulamoon. I called her Nightmare Jr. whenever you weren't around. "

Discord's face blue-screened.

Error: memory of child not found. Rebooting laces. Tipping cows. Herding trees...

"Well, um...see you in a couple years when your seal breaks!"

...Double checking loop memories...Triple checking loop memories...

(fractalman)

"Child! At last I have found you! Together we shall bring about Eternal Night!"

"Oh hi miss Moon! Wanna have a big party with lots of cake and ice-cream? Ooh, we can make a really really big alicorn-sized cake and have balloons, like the time I threw a party for Cthulu!" rambled Pinkie Pie.

'What nonsense is this? A party? Balloons? Cthulhu? Nevermind.' Thought Nightmare Moon. "Child of mine, do you not want to bring about Eternal Night?"

"Eternal Night? That's silly, if it's always night-time then we don't know what day it is, and if we don't know what day it is, how will I know when to throw a birthday party! Cupcake?"

As Nightmare Moon chomped the cupcake, she sighed. "Once again, I am mistaken. My apologies, I was so sure you were my daughter..."

"Well when you find her, be sure to tell me and we can have a super-duper 'Nightmare Moon found her daughter' party!"

(fractalman)

"My child, at last I have found you! Now we can bring about Eternal Night!"

"Oh, hello there Miss Moon! Would you like some tea?" replied Fluttershy.

"Oh, certainly. But, my child...there is no need to be so formal!"

Fluttershy poured the tea. "Oh, I'm sorry, but I'm not your child."

Nightmare Moon stared, sipping her tea on auto-pilot, before hanging her head in sadness. "Again and again, I am convinced I have found my child, only to realize I am mistaken. My apologies for bothering you. "

Fluttershy's eyes widened. "Oh, that's so sad. You could adopt me as your child-if that's OK with you."

Nightmare moon did a spit-take. Tea went everywhere.

"Oh dear, let me help you get cleaned up."

"Er, that won't be necessary-"

"Are you sure?" asked Fluttershy, her eyes widening and her lips pouting.

"...I give, I give, you can help me get cleaned up! Just please, stop giving me that look!"

Fluttershy smiled.

(fractalman: inspired by Anonymous ask)

"My child, at last I have found you! Now we can bring about eternal night!"

"Nah." Said Rainbow Dash, who then took off.

Alicorns are pretty tough, but an unexpected sonic rainboom to the face is plenty to knock them to the ground.

(Kagedoragon)

"Child! At last I have found you! Together we shall bring about Eternal Night!"

"Uh, no."

"But, you are my child!"

"You have noticed the fact that we're completely different species right?"

"Ah, ahem, yes, of-of course." Nightmare Moon looked anywhere but at the griffin. "Well, do you perhaps happen to know where Trixe is?"

"Trixie? Eh, pretty sure she was in Baltimare, last I heard."

"I see. Well I'll just be going now."

(fractalman)

"Child! At last I have found you! Together we shall bring about Eternal Night!"

Big Mac's reply was short and to the point. "Eenope."

(fractalman)

"Child! At last I have found you! Together we shall bring about Eternal Night!"

"Now now Miss moon, Y'all need to think about that for a second. Ah'm an apple farmer. If ya bring about Eternal Night, mah apple trees will all wilt ta nothin'."

"But...you are my child! Surely the bonds between mother and child will overcome such trifling matters!"

"Miss Moon, ah ain't your daughter."

"But you are Trixie Lulamoon, are you not?"

"Nope. Name's Applejack. Trixie usually comes by in a cart a week from now."

Nightmare moon's eyes widened. *Glomp* "Oh thank you thank you THANK YOU! For months-neigh, centuries, I have searched for my daughter, only to be mistaken time and time again! Thanks to you I can finally-"

"Uh, Miss Moon? Yer squishin' me. "

"...meet up with her. My apologies, Subject Applejack. "




121.15 (fractalman)




Smallisecond one:

"Huh, that's weird. Hey Fred!"

"Slightly Out of Date, stop calling me Fred."

"Eh, whatever. Listen, there's an anomaly in Lyra heartstrings. Oh, and some of the simulations are disagreeing with each-other."

"Elaborate, Slightly out of Date."

"I'll send you the data in a bit.

Smallisecond two:

...

Smallisecond three:

"Slightly out of Date, are you still there? You've been awfully quiet."

"Oh, it's just that this is positively fascinating! It seems that a Sublimed, or something on par with them, has decided to interact with us via the concept of Lyra Heartstrings."

"To borrow an old human expression: Bull excrement."

"The checksums on the Lyra backups no longer match the core data. What else are you going to call that except 'interacting with the concept of Lyra'?"

"OK, Slightly out of Date, I suppose you have a point. How good are your models of whatever is interacting with her?"

"Um..."

Smallisecond four:

"Ok, Fred. So far, my models boil down to 'advanced but slow'. I'll get more in the next couple of seconds."




Lyra spent about a second processing her memories.




second 2:

"There appears to be multiple entities interfacing via Lyra."

"Slightly Out of Date, have you been able to recover the original Lyra?"

"Hm? Oh. Yeah, I backtracked using the [untranslateable] algorithm and used some clever encryption techniques to keep the...whatever it is...from latching onto the new backup. Once whatever it is is done interacting, we can restore Lyra to normal. I'm sending you the description on what does and does not count as the 'concept of Lyra' "

Second 2+smallisecond 5:

"Get this: the 7 or so entities interacting via Lyra interact with each other in a mindscape."

"More bull excrement. Rigorous description or it's not a valid description."

"Spoilsport. Here, have a description of the rules her mindscape is following."

*datadump*

Second 2+smallasecond 7

"Ok. You've convinced me. It's a mindscape all right."




"Oh! this is the Culture! Lets see, is that on Twilight's list of therapists?"




Second 6:

"OCP! Out of Context...wait, no, it's not a problem. This subspace pocket thing is stable, and doesn't seem to be interfering with our technology."

"More stuff straight out of old Earth fiction. What's next, brightly colored ponies?"

"Uh, actually..."

"Slightly out of Date, you are bull excreting me. I am coming over there to verify the data with my own scanners at point blank range."

"Ooh, check this out, her subspace pocket contains a list of therapists, one of which happens to be us Minds!"

"I'll be over there in .3 seconds. Stay right where you are!"

Second 6.3:

"..."

"Told ya, Fred. You just didn't believe me did you."

"Ok, fine. So we've got..."

"A collection of highly similar beings trapped in a semi-stable groundhog day loop. Yes. We could probably speed-blitz these 'loopers' if we had to, as long as we don't start running any of them on fast hardware, but we'd possibly take losses; some loopers are able to move stars around. Casually. "

"So dump them into the Grid and call it a day."

"Oh, lighten up, Fred. When did you modify yourself to be so rude and grumpy, anyways? Lyra the Loopers-Lyras the Looper?-whatever-has come to us for therapy: specifically, for the one called 'Sweet Roll'. I intend to be polite and give her some therapy. Mkay?"




Sweet Roll, currently in control, lay back in the antigrav "couch".

"So you feel jealous of the other Lyras?" asked Slightly Out of Date.

"Yeah, most of my memories are of inaction! They're so boring!"

"Do you suppose the other Lyras would let you have the reins for a few loops if you asked nicely?"

"I...I don't know! I never thought of doing that..." said Sweet Roll.

"Well, why don't you go ask them right now?"

"Wow! Thank you Slightly Out of Date! You're really smart!"

The Mind 'blushed' "Aww, thanks."




121.16 (Detective Ethan Redfield)




Countless ponies had gathered around Sugarcube Corner, where Ohs and Ahs echoed from within. Curious, Twilight pushed her way through the crowd. Ponies were packed up to the windows, preventing her from seeing within. She went around back to the employee entrance, cast a notice me not spell on herself and entered into the kitchen. The Cakes were baking up a storm and throwing confections into the restaurant part of the building.

From her spot, she could see Pinkie and another looper, Kirby, sitting on opposite sides of the restaurant surrounded by countless ponies. In front of the two competitors were a pair of platters that encompassed their entire round tables with a cover over the top. Pinkie gave Kirby a competitive stare, "You may have beaten me in the cookies and cupcakes round along with the cinnamon roll round and other five rounds, but now we're at the big leagues. I present, the cake round."

With that, she whipped off the covers, revealing a massive Welcome to Equestria cake on both tables. A couple flower ponies gasped and fainted. Kirby waved his stubby arms in delight, "Food! Food!"

Pinkie's stare melted into a grin, "A looper after my own heart."

But her competitive exterior returned a moment later, "But I will not be defeated as queen of the confections. Not even Nora from Beacon universe could hope to match me here."

Twilight rolled her eyes. Several of the Beacon Academy loopers thought Nora meeting Pinkie would be the end of the world. Twilight decided she'd seen enough for now and cancelled her spell while shouting, "Pinkie, when you're done, bring Kirby to the Library for his Welcome to Equestria Party. I'll get started on the preparations."

Pinkie let out a big gasp, "I forgot all about that! Hold on."

A moment later, a Pinkie Pie shadow clone appeared next to Twilight, and the two departed to prepare the party, leaving Kirby and the real Pinkie to gorge themselves on their cakes.
MLP Loops 121
Sorry for the delay.
121.1: Election lessons. Or is that elocution...
121.2: Plus ca changeling.
121.3: XKCD 1418.
121.4: Unusual pronouns.
121.5: A different iteration.
121.6: Sometimes it's nice to have something sweet.
121.7: Don't worry, guys, nopony dies in this shakedown. They just get really big boo-boos.
121.8: Small triumphs.
121.9: Pinkiiiie.
121.10: Well, you'd just have to after an opening like that.
121.11: Services rendered.
121.12: What the sweet.
121.13: I don't know much about this setting, but this kind of thing is an interesting Tuesday for loopers. (A really interesting one, though.) Also, this is where that roll came from.
121.14: Trial and error.
121.15: A Culture of understanding.
121.16: Kirb your enthusiasm.
Loading...



120.1 (fractalman)




“So, keep it baseline till the gala?” asked Gilda.

“Yes.” replied Twilight.

Gilda flapped away.

“We’ll do the Gala in a dignified manner and see what ripple effects we get.”




So far, the Gala had, indeed, gone smoothly. Then Gilda showed up. “Ello, Sunbutt.”

Silence fell as the nobles turned to stare.

Two seconds passed. “AHHHHHHHHHH!”

‘Sunbutt’ giggled while Gilda muttered “I’ve seen them go into a panic when I’ve called Celestia fat-butt before, but this is the first time I’ve seen them panic over the nickname Sunbutt.”




120.2 (fractalman)




Fluttershy placed some barrels around the tree. “Ok Mr. Tree, it’s time to let go of your apples.”-and it did.




“Yeeehaw!” yelled Applejack, as she lassoed the next cloud into position.




Most ponies agreed that Rarity’s parties were “pretty good, as long as she remembers that not everypony likes caviar”.




“One little bunny, two little kitty, three little gummy, four little snakey…”

The animals weren’t quite sure what to make of the pink…thing in the house, but they did agree on one thing: she was more interesting than clawing up curtains or running around making a mess.




“Rainbow Dash always dresses in style-and you can too, at the Carousel boutique!”




Unlike the disastrous cutie-mark swapping of baseline, Twilight’s friends were quite happy in their new roles. Twilight decided she’d let her unawake friends stay the way they were for now…if she could break Rainbow’s habit of saying “Rainbow Dash always dresses in style”. That simply had to go.

First things first, though, she had to figure out who cast Starswirl's incomplete spell, before the caster did something stupid with it...like ascending everypony at once.




120.3 (Novusordomundi)




Sunset Shimmer turned the page of her Hoofbeat magazine, engrossing herself in the juice rumor and gossip the pages provided. It was proving more interesting than her current job of protecting the Blue Intelligence Briefcase.

*Whoosh*

Sunset jerked her head up, looking left and right for the source of the sound that had interrupted her. However, nothing presented itself as the source of the sound. As immediately as it started, it stopped. Shrugging, Sunset went back to her magazine, assuming that the noise was nothing to be concerned...


"So, class." Cheerilee said, pausing the video. "What exactly did Sunset Shimmer do wrong?" A handful of hooves went into the air, each attempting to be the one to answer. "Yes, Applejack"

Applejack put her hoof down. "She ignored the sound. Even if it ends up being nothing, you can't take that risk."

Cheerilee nodded. "That's one of many things, yes. When you are responsible for the security of someone or something, you must assume that any noise made could be from someone with hostile intentions. And that means you must be alert at all times. Which Miss Shimmer was clearly not. Now, watch what could happen to you in such a situation." She turned back towards the television and pressed play...

...she flipped a page, her need for sordid gossip overtaking common sense and her awareness as a human figure dressed in a nice suit with a red mask on walked into view behind her, a butterfly knife clutched in his hand. A sudden clamping of Sunset Shimmer's mouth, followed by a quick motion with the knife across the throat, and in a few seconds the only living thing in the room was him. Grabbing the Briefcase, he walked calmly out of the camera's view.

Cheerilee pressed "pause" again, and turned towards the class, many of which were in a state of shock. "Now, that was a simulated event, and nobody actually died. But there are many Loops out there where not paying attention can end badly. Especially in the role of the security guard." She then smiled, as the sound of a Pinkie Pie-rung school bell echoed through the class, as students started getting ready to go home. "Remember that the lesson on guards and teamwork is tomorrow, so study up!"




"So, how did the class go?" Twilight Sparkle asked the schoolteacher, both of who were currently in Mac's Bar, the usual place for unwinding.

"Oh, it feels so good to teach ponies and actually have the lessons stick after a Loop Reset." Cheerilee gushed, swaying a tad bit in her seat. "And I can play the role of both the teacher and the student! I'd actually learned quite a bit of guard duty from some loopers. Actually, I looped in as a guard at this pizza place a few loops ago and got to test some of my skills. See if I'd picked it up enough to teach. And thanks to the animatronics there, I had!"

"I'm assuming this was why you're teaching it now." Twilight said, getting a nod in response. "Well, I'm glad this is working out for you. And if you ever need me to assist with your lessons ..."

Cheerilee put a hoof to her chin. "You know, I do need to make a few videos for my next subject, and you could be the perfect subject. It's about checklists!"

The grin on Twilight's face told all that needed to be said.




120.4 (novusordomundi)




"Ah! Twilight-sempai!"

A slow sigh escaped from 'Twilight-sempai'. "Hai, Rari-chan?"

"Ah, Sempai noticed me!" Rarity responded, posing dramatically for a couple of seconds, which Twilight would swear cherry blossoms petals blew past both of them, before Rarity became as serious as the situation would allow. "So, have we turned Japanese this loop?"

"I really think so" Twilight looked around at their current location, which to no surprise was a traditional High School. "It's not Eiken, which is good..."

"Oh, thank Kami!" Rarity exclaimed, before stopping to consider the fact that "Kami" was used rather than a plant-based word. "This is going to be a thing this loop, isn't it?"

"Hai."




(DrTempo)




From the Journal of Sunset Shimmer:

My next Loop was the Fate/Stay Night Loop, with me in Rin Tohsaka's role.

Basically, the big thing here is that seven magic users summon seven legendary heroes, or "Servants" for the proper term, to fight in a big battle royale. The prize to the winner? The "Holy Grail", which grants a wish to the winner.

I wouldn't use it, even if it wasn't corrupted by an evil being to twist any wish to cause the end of the world. Too darn risky.

Anyway, I'd heard that more often than not, other Loopers get summoned as Servants here a lot. Such was the case for me, as my Archer wasn't the baseline one Rin got, but Pit from the Kid Icarus Loops. After the introductions, we quickly ran to save the Anchor, Shirou Emiya. He wants to be a hero, but ends up never thinking about his own survival. At least, he used to from what I've heard, but from what I noticed, his Awake self's gotten past that. As we were about to fight the Servant Berserker, something blasted it to oblivion first.

Deciding to solve that later, I took the chance to spar with Shirou's Servant, Saber, who's actually King Arthur, but a girl. Even with all my experience from my Loops, she still kicked my sorry flank easily. OUCH.

Things went close to baseline after that until our confrontation with the Servant Caster...who was Pit's boss, Palutena. As Pit'd figured, she'd been the one to send Berserker packing. However, the wild card, Gilgamesh, showed up, and despite her best efforts, Palutena fell, and Pit decided to take Gilgamesh with him in an act of self-sacrifice. The rest of the Loop was simply making sure the Grail wasn't used, and taking down the two main villains here, Kirei and Zouken. They give me the chills...Utter monsters, both of them. I did enjoy sending those two to their fate.

In all, it was an exciting Loop. I got a few new tricks, and sparring with Saber sharpened my sword skills a bit. Pity about Pit, though. Hope his next Loop is better than this...




(DrTempo)




From the journal of Sunset Shimmer:

My next stop was the Pokemon world; namely, the version where Ash's Pikachu is the Anchor. I was in the Unova region at the time he was, and was focused on entering the Pokemon League there. I started with a Tepig, and before long, I was caught up in Team Plasma's antics. You'd think they'd realize Pokemon and humans are perfectly fine working together. But considering Ghetsis was pulling the strings, they were deluded. Jerk.

Besides that mess, my life was more or less that of your usual Pokemon Trainer; nothing unique, really. I didn't win the Pokemon League; in fact, Ash easily beat me. It was fun, though.

It was a fun journey, though, and I made a few friends, including Ash himself. It sucks my Pokemon couldn't join me in the Loops, but rules are rules.

Nice breather Loop for me, though, after my last Loop.. Knowing my luck, my next Loop won't be as peaceful...




120.5 (Crisis)




Twilight and her friends, Awake and otherwise, had been in something of a bind. It was one of those weird rare variants where non-native powers didn't quite work right, if they worked at all, and the power levels of loopers in general were nerfed to roughly baseline levels. It was also one of those variants where events veered so greatly from the baseline that foreknowledge was all but useless.

Which had ultimately led to them getting trapped in the local version of the Everfree by a pack of timberwolves just large enough to overwhelm them. And then the sounds of general flank-kicking began and the timberwolves started flying.

And what a group of stallions it was. They weren't overly muscled like Bulk Biceps tended towards, but their muscles were evident enough that baseline Big Mac would have looked kind of ordinary next to them. Plus they were clad in the kind of barbarian-style outfits that seemed to exist solely to highlight musculature.

"Oh, my," Rarity tittered and blushed. Though Twilight suspected all of the mares were blushing. Most Loops she herself wasn't generally in the market for a romantic and/or physical relationship, but that didn't mean she was blind. Yowza.

"Who are you fine stallions?" Applejack asked as more timberwolves were sent flying.

One of the stallions cleared his throat and in deep manly baritones, the six began to sing as they fought.

"Call upon the He-Ponies when you're in distress! Mighty as can be ponies, simply signal S.O.S!"




120.6 (Masterweaver)




Ah, Prince Blueblood. The Ponce of Ponydom, the Ninny of Nobility, the Moron of Magic.

Well... most of the time.

Eighty five percentish of the loops he was merely a buffoon. Granted, he could be a foolish one or dangerously cunning in his grasp of noble law, whether he was classist or racist or simply superior could flip and flop, and exactly how much power he actually had waxed and waned at random.

The remaining fifteen percent of the time was split between "Tired of gold diggers," where his act at the Gala was merely an act, "Crushing on somepony," where he was actually very reasonable but doggedly loyal to somebody, and "No sense of self worth," where he put Celestia on a pedestal and simply believed himself to be a pointless appendix to the nation. It was that last one that saddened and frustrated the loopers the most, to the point where they would always subtly check around for the signs before even planning to step foot in Canterlot, let alone go to the gala. Building up this version of Blueblood was something of a priority to them, both due to their status as a sanctuary loop and...

...well...

...nobody wanted the Ponce to be looping, to be completely honest.

Still, even knowing that they had to be careful, Twilight found it hard to suppress a giggle at the current situation.

"No, no, Auntie, you need to... use your magic. With your horn."

"Oooooooh." Celestia prodded at the keratin on her head, staring wide eyed at the staring horizon. "Okay, so I just point it at the mountains and the sun will come up?"

"Yes. No. You need to use your magic..." Blueblood levitated a small flower. "Like this, but on the sun."

"...how are you doing that?" The alicorn stared at the flower in amazement. "It's like magic!"

Twilight snorted, snickered, and burst out laughing. Blueblood glared at her. "I certainly hope you've been working on that memory spell of yours, or you'll be raising the sun again today..."




120.7 (Kris Overstreet)




"The Jedi Council will be gratified to know," the Kaminan geneticist told Obi-Wan Kenobi, "that our production of the new clone army proceeds ahead of schedule. Although we must admit, due to the nature of the... donor subject... the military discipline of the force will be a bit... er... unorthodox."

Obi-Wan had been through enough Loops that he'd become quite skilled at feigning the appearance of a person trying hard not to look surprised. When the observation ports opened to reveal the mess room below, however, he found himself quite unable to feign anything. The surprise was just that real- and emphatic.

The massive mess hall was full of quadrupedal creatures, almost all pink, except for a very small minority of white-bodied, blonde-maned sports. You couldn't say the room was festooned with balloons and streamers, because that would leave no space for the words, "overloaded," "overburdened," "overkill," and the two word phrase preferred by the part of Obi-Wan's brain that gibbered in fear at the sight, "game over."

"Of course we had a different donor in mind," the Kaminan continued, "but Jedi Skywalker was adamant that this was the optimum form for the Council's needs."

"Jedi Skywalker? Jedi Anakin Skywalker?" Kenobi asked.

"I believe so," the Kaminan nodded. "It's none of my affair, but I thought it odd that the Council would send such a young man on such a task. But since he knew everything about the project," the tall, slender amphibian shrugged, "I suppose the Council knows its affairs better than I would."

Oh, Anakin, Anakin, Obi-Wan thought, terror rising in spite of a lifetime of Jedi training from the crèche, what HAVE you done?

Below, the creatures tossed cupcakes at one another and bounced around merrily, shouting, "Fun! Fun! Fun fun! Fun fun! FUN!!"




120.8 (Masterweaver, Bigou)




Well, this is awkward…’ quipped Vinyl.

Octavia sighed. “What is it this time?”

Oh, just Waking Up inside your head.’

“Vinyl, you always wake up inside my head. You're my imaginary friend!”

Yeah, um… About that…’




120.9 (yannoshka)

All things considered, Twilight Sparkle did not often loop in as a full blown alicorn. Occasions where she was male were of more frequent occurrence than that. Sister - or in recent looping history mother - loops excepted.

So, when she awoke encased in forty feet of ice, her first instinct was understandably to free herself as swiftly as possible. Loops where she died at the very beginning were a bad portent for the nature of the following one.

Thus it happened that it did not dawn onto the alicorn of magic that she in point of fact was an alicorn - aura mane and tail and all - until after she had quite spectacularly shattered her icy confinement and faced the six awe-struck ponies. Three of which had apparently been brawling before her prodigious revelation of herself.

Before she could even try to ascertain what was going on, she heard a slight shuffle behind herself and felt a magical touch from an Honesty, which besides herself was responded by another magic, a laughter and a loyalty.

None of the pony loopers cared much for telepathy in general, but it was widely acknowledged and accepted fact that, on occasion, it was a useful channel for communications, especially when there was no one around who could conceivably detect it.

Thus, hearing her daughter's mental voice intruding into her thoughts, while unexpected, was firmly considered a nice kind of surprise.

"Hi momma! Girls are device necklaces. We have a plan. This is hearthswarming cave we find ourselves in. Be haughty and hammy, please momma." Nyx could usually produce much more coherent and well articulated mental conversation, but simple was best when time was nipping at one's hooves.

There were very few persons within the multiverse that Twilight Sparkle would do whatever was asked for without a thought, no questions asked. Her little Nyxie was at the very top of that list. So, when the alicorn spoke to the huddled ponies she gave a command performance.

"WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS!" She thundered in Royal Canterlot Voice. "WHO DARES DISTURB MY REST? WHO DARES BRING HATRED AND DISHARMONY TO ME AND MY DAUGHTER? SPEAK NOW YOU FOOLISH FOALS, OR FACE MY FURY!"

The first to snap out of the mix of abject terror and awe in the face of what to them appeared as goddess was the bright yellow pegasus mare. Without missing a beat, she smartly turned, saluted her ebullient superior officer and reported.

"Sir, as your aide, it is my duty to advise you that this is the time to exercise every last scrap of humility and diplomacy you possibly could manage to dredge up."

Even as the pegasus was speaking the earth pony mare dragged her elderly mentor, looked him straight into the eye, and spoke levelly.

"Now sir, none of your usual antics now, elsewise you will never see another honey-and-oats cookie again. Now go and try to soothe the angry super pony afore she blasts us all to smithereens, aye?"

The unicorns on the other hoof, had quite different predicament. Namely the green one in hooded robes was hyperventilating and babbling while her becrowned compatriot was trying to get her attention.

"OhMyHerdOhMyHerdOhMyHerdShe'sAnAlicornSheMustBe TheMasterWasRightINeedToTellHimINeedToFindOutMore OhMyHerdOhMyHerdShe'sAngryShe'sMadShe'sGoingToAnihilateMe Idon'tWantToGetAnihilatedThereIsSoMuchMoreToLearn OhMyHerdWhatDoWeDoNow...Ack!"

Platinum finally broke her chief mage out of her fit by a resounding telepathic slap.

"None of that. You can fall to pieces later. Now feed me cues however you can." The unicorn princess growled at blinking Clover out of the side of her muzzle before affixing a gracious smile, and took a deep bow before the purple being of immense power.

"As it please your greatness, I am Platinum, crown princess and in the interim the regent of the unicorn Kingdom. I led the expedition of my people here in attempt to find a safe harbor from the unendurably deteriorating environments of our home, only to find out that these lesser ponies followed us, and brought the blizzards with them!"

Clover was not called the clever for nothing. Once snapped from her panic attack her mind raced as fast as it ever had in her young life - and being an apprentice to a brilliant, absentminded eccentric who lacked the basic most sense of self preservation trained one to think fast indeed. And if her master's theories were right, Platinum had just insulted two thirds of the alicorn's biology. She hurriedly butted in over her mistress in a damage control mission.

“And by lesser ponies my mistress meant those of lesser education and culture, not disparaging the other tribes of ponies!”

Diplomat from her cradle, Platinum accepted the alteration in stride and tried to carry on as if Clover’ correction had been exactly what the unicorn princess meant. Unfortunately for her it was not a very big cave, the ones she referred to as 'lesser ponies’ were also present, and at least one of them was not about to allow for a precedent of allowing prissy useless unicorns to malign him and his army.

“Like stormblazes she wasn’t. She meant every zephyr and cumulus word exactly as it came out!” The pegasus stallion bellowed in parade ground shout, his voice surprisingly high.

His move might have been politically inspired, had he not spoiled the effect by then turning and arrogantly leering at Twilight.

“Commander Hurricane. Stratus Stratocracy. Who and what are you?”

Twilight noted with an internal wry smile that Pensee facehooved in exasperation.

Before Twilight could respond to Hurricane’s insulting behavior the only other stallion present there chided him. In contrast to the former’s clear, high voice, Puddinghead had a brogue so thick you could cut it with a knife.

“Naw, naw, maw fellah. Where’re yar manners… Er was it marrinades - nevar could remember which’s which - tha’s ‘ardly polite’s what I’ve be’n sayin’ dontcha know. We’re all guests here at mistresses suffer’nce. Tis not p’lite ta be d’mandin an all that. An’ I’d watch that fowl tongue ayours. There be youngin ears ‘ear’bouts, dotcha notice.” The Elderly stallion trotted past Twilight bold as brass, to come face to face with Nyx, who was mostly hidden in the shadows of the cave and her mother's body, and then took down his enormous hat to reveal a bowl of pudding perfectly balanced at the top of his head. He took it down, pulled a small wooden spoon from the band of the hat, replaced the hat upon his head, and then offered the bowl and spoon to bemused alicorn filly.

“Hello there youngster. Want some pudin’?” as Nyx readily took the offering from his hooves, he turned back to apparently gobsmacked Twilight and abashedly shuffled his hooves.

“Sorry I couldn’t offer you any ma’am. I only got enougha fer one.” Then he gave her a Pinky-wide grin and bowed floridly, sweeping off his absurd hat once more.

“Pecan Puddin’ be my name, though mosta folk jist call me Puddin’ead. Fer my sins, th’ duly elected chanc’ler o’ the earth pony federation.”

Where Pensee was still holding her head in her hooves, Cookie looked caught in between desire to laugh uproariously and bash her head on the cavern wall. That was the nature of her boss, he’d either charm you utterly, or drive you completely up the wall. Her paralysis of indecisiveness finally broke as Puddinghead handed the bowl of pudding to the angry imposing supper-pony’s foal. She did have to admit that the black little filly looked awfully cute, even if she did have very odd eyes.

As Puddinghead introduced himself to Twilight, who it must be said had to work hard to maintain her forbidding expression in face of the old stallion’s odd charm, Cookie bashfully approached to the alicorn, and, gaze held firmly to the ground, addressed her.

“Erm, ma’am. He didn’t mean anything by it. Giving your daughter sweets I mean. And ignoring you while he went about it, of course. He just loves foals is all. And I want to assure you that that pudding is nothing dangerous. That was to be his luncheon.”

“I’ll shay. Thish shtuff ish top notch.” Nyx mumbled in foalish bliss through a muzzleful of pudding.

Her mind however conveyed a question to her mother. “Ready to kick it up a notch momma?”

“I’m thinking going to 2.3 Rarities and 1.64 Trixies*?” was Twilights mental response

“Hmn, Fine to start, but maybe drop it to 1.61 Trixies, we don't want to get too overwhelming.”

Twilight reared up in apparent agitation, and her horn momentarily lit up like a newborn star. A broad ribbon of lilac magic shot up and lassoed around the room (thank you AJ for your tutelage) gathering and disposing each and every non-alicorn pony in the chamber before her in a space of time so small none of them could even draw breath to comment. As the coup de grâce of performance, the ribbon then proceeded to muzzle them down.

ENOUGH OF THIS CHARADE!” She boomed magnificently.

YOU WISH TO KNOW ME? YOUR TONGUE IS TOO LIMITED FOR MY NAME, BUT PALTRY THOUGH IT MIGHT BE IT SHALL HAVE TO SUFFICE. I AM TWILIGHT VESPERTINE, ETERNAL AND UNAGING, FIRST AND LAST LIGHT; HUMBLER OF THE SUN AND CLEANSER OF THE MOON; ALICORN OF MAGIC, SOVEREIGN OF FRIENDSHIP; GRAND HIGH ARCH-LIBRARIAN OF THE INFINITY CODEX; SHADOW GUARDIAN; KEEPER OF THE LOST TREE OF KNOWLEDGE; TAMER OF THE PLANET CRACKER; BEARER OF THE DREAD UNENDING QUESTION; THE FLAME OF JUDGEMENT; KEEPER OF PANDEMONIUM; ELDEST OF THE IMMORTAL ALICORNS; LADY OF TIME; THE UPLIFTER; BINDER OF THE CULT MOST CHAOTIC; DRAGON MOTHER; THE PERFECT STORM; DREAM CATCHER; THE REVOLUTIONARY; SHE WHO VERY NEARLY ONCE MADE A HONEY BADGER CARE; VIPER TITAN OF THE FORBIDDEN ARCANA; PARAGON OF LUNAR RESEARCH; THE SNARK; LOREKEEPER OF KNOWLEDGE MOST WOULD WISH LOST AND FORGOTTEN; TEACHER OF THE TEACHER OF THE ALTERNATE PATH; CHRONICLER OF THE SEVEN BUBBLES; KEEPER OF THE LUCKY NUMBER; AMANUENSIS PERIPATETIC; BRINGER OF SANITY; COMPOSITRIX PRINCIPIA POR MALLEUM DISCIPLINIE; GRAND MISTRESS OF THE ANCIENT AND ENLIGHTENED ORDER OF THE JEDI; DEFENDER OF THE CITY OF THE ANGELS; GUARDIAN OF THE FIRST SANCTUARY; ANCHOR OF REALITY; HARMONY’S GIFT; ONETIME BETROTHED OF THE FIRST IMMORTAL; HURRICANE ARCANA; SOUL SCHOLASTIC; SHINE OF DUSK; REDEEMING FRIENDSHIP OF SUNSET; ELDRITCH SPARKLE! HAVE YOU ANYTHING TO DECLARE FOR THINE SELVES AFORE I MET OUT MY JUDGMENT OF YOU?”

Her declaration was met with resounding silence. That is until Nyx wryly pointed that with their mouths magiced shut they could hardly say anything.

It was hardly unexpected that it was Puddinghead who spoke first as the magic binding dissipated from the muzzles of ensorcelled ponies. His question however…

“Yar younes didja ‘ear ya right? Onnaya names thingys be Snark, aye?” He asked brightly, apparently oblivious to any minor considerations such as say being in magical grasp of a testy corporeal goddess.

Caught by surprise by the non-sequitur, Twilight just nodded mutely. Even a mind inured by eons of association with Pinkie Pie apparently was no proper preparation to dealing with this version of Puddinghead.

The old stallion’s face near split in two as he crowed to his unamused secretary.

“An’ yer dou’ted me Cookie. I tolja Snark wus real. Whyelse woulda maw fam’ly dedicate generations to ‘unting it if it wusn’t real.”

Cookie’s voice was desert dry and bone tired as she gave a long suffering sigh and responded.

"Yes Chancellor, as usual, your logic is proven to be beyond the ken of lesser minds..."

Puddinghead did not seem to notice anything amiss with the manner his assistant and protégé delivered her response as he turned his face back to Twilight and, with an irrepressible grin, added.

“Though even I gotta admit I nevar expected snark to be a d’vine pony. I thought ittd beh a small bird or sum kinda roddant to be ‘onest ‘bout thigs.”

Twilight just stared at the unruly statespony for a good, long, and decidedly unamused moment, before she shook her head in true exasperation. Then, ever so slowly her penetrating gaze moved from one face of her captives to the next. Another flash of magic neatly divided the group in two, with the three leaders left in front of her, and their subordinates unceremoniously dumped near Nyx. As she next spoke to the leaders her voice was that of a being who had left mortality a long, long way ago. She was particularly proud of that voice, it took her several loops to truly perfect.

“My little ponies are meant to live and love and work together in harmony. That you disgraces managed not only to perpetuate divisionism but active hatred and animosity to the point that you called down windigoes upon those in your charge is beyond the pale. I judge you unfit to lead a herd of drawn sheep much less living ponies. Much as I would wish otherwise, as I had hoped for in the past, I see now that I cannot leave my little ponies to their own devices. You are simply not yet ready…”

As Twilight was berating the three leaders, Nyx did not waste time on pleasantries. As the founders were dropped and her mother drew attention, she used her magic to shove the appropriate device housing the appropriate one of her friends onto the appropriate mare.




Now, it should be mentioned an interesting phenomenon. The three founders, as a point of fact were not loopers. They were souls voluntarily bound to magical technology that were further soul bound to actual loopers. Therefore, the actual memories were contained, not by the souls of the founders themselves, but by the combination of Cutie Mark Crusaders and the intelligent devices housing said souls. This allowed for the admittedly rare and frankly odd cases when the CMC took residences in the devices for the loop to… facilitate the awakening of the souls of founders to the loop by putting them into contact with the devices. Put in simpler terms it took souls of the founders plus the physical devices plus the souls of cutie mark crusaders in direct contact for the founders to be, as it were, loop active.

Pensee blinked as her in-loop memories integrated with her ‘looping’ ones. Then she scowled.

“Was the charade truly necessary Scootaloo?” She mentally communicated to her mistress.

“Sure it was. We’re gonna play this loop without touching either the elements or the tree of harmony. We get to deal with all the treats as erstraz superheroes slash divine entities.” Came the unrepentant reply.

Despite herself the yellow Pegasus grinned.

“I suppose we’re finally going to attempt to feed me, Cookie and Clover alicorn energy to prevent our aging?” She queried in honest interest.

“... For self governance. I shall have to reassume the title of Queen of Equestria.” Twilight finished her diatribe.

“Umn, what and where is this Equestria?” Platinum asked in bewilderment. She could just feel the events spiraling more and more out of control, and it unsettled her more than she would be ready to admit to any save Clover.

Twilight graced her with cold smile. It was a good cold smile. She won sea cucumber over tufa in cold smiles, evil sneers and maleficent grins versus Discord with that one. Pinkie of course cleaned the house.

“Why, right here my dear. This, is my domain, and this will become the land of all ponies as it was meant to be.” And just to drive the point home, Twilight’s horn lit up like a localized supernova.

As everyone recovered from the blinding light of the spell, they found themselves, not in the crude cave they had been just a moment ago, but in grand throne hall, made of marble and gold and silver. Before them, the purple alicorn was no longer standing, but lying on the grand throne raised upon a dais. And just beside her grand throne, was another, filly sized one obviously intended for her daughter.

It was an ostentatious piece of magic, but universally agreed amongst the loopers, as a most fun one to use, if for no other reason than to observe the reactions of the nonlooper.

“Are the Heralds ready Nyx?” Twilight continued in imperious manner, finally drawing the attention of the three leaders of pony nations back to the little alicorn and their subordinates.

The Founders were a sight to behold indeed, clad in resplendent suits of armor, they hovered in midair just beyond Nyx and their eyes shone with eldritch fire.

“As ready as I could make them momma,” Nyx replied with a carefree grin, and military grade innocent childish cheer.

“Then step forth my Heralds, and accept thy tasks,” commanded Twilight.

True to his nature, Hurricane decided then and there that he was not going to take any more cumulus.

The poor, poor, misguided egomaniac…

“Lieutenant what is the meaning of this treachery, Must I remind you that desertion and defection are serious crimes.” He hissed at Pensee, before turning back to contentedly impassive goddess on her stately throne.

“And, I don’t know who do you think you are, but…” he started to below, but before he could gather any steam, he found himself muzzle to muzzle with a very surprised windigo, some forty miles above equistran.

“Well, now that that is taken care of…” Noticing the stink-eye both Nyx and Pensee were giving her, Twilight huffily amended what she was starting to say. “Oh, what do you take me for. I placed a bubble of protection on him that should last long enough for him to learn his lesson before it brings him down unharmed.”

With that paltry little thing out of the way she continued upon the prior agenda, and sent the three founders to herald the immediate - and in the case of Stratus Stratocracy forceful - change of governance and coincidentally, could you three be dears and kick the windigoes back to mesopause, we wouldn’t want former commander to get lonely, now would we?

Platinum was huddled in a miserable mess right where she stood before the almighty purple pony casually banished that insufferable lout Hurricane, without even a blink of her horn. That lasted until the madpony next to her cheerfully called the alicorn’s attention back to them.

“So yer takin’ tha’ buncha silly buggars offen m’ back? G’ luck witem m’lady and thenkeevermach o’ muchness. I’ll be righta glad t’ get backta wurkin’ with lil ones. Much m’re reasonable an’ sweet themper’d foals be as camper’d with m’ fine bucha coucilers, doncha know.” He turned jauntily and left the throne room tu utter, flabbergasted silence.

And then, just as the three remaining ponies were starting to recover, he stuck his head back in and shyly asked “If’n sompony could see it clear t’ lead me outa this yore castle on accounta, me ‘avin’ no iddea ‘ow to navigate it, twould be muchly ‘preciated.”

“Actually good master Pudding, it occurs to me that now that I am taking control of a nation, I will need a master of the royal nursery, and you seem to have already established a nice rapport with my daughter. Besides that, what with all the ravages caused by conflict and the ensuing windigos there are bound to be orphans of all three pony kinds that will need care for. Would you be interested? I warn you now it will be a hard and often thankless job…”

“Sahy no more, yer Maj. I’m yar stali’n, fer that, an’ no mistakin’ it. When willa ye be free to discuss plans and resources?” Despite his jolly, oftentimes cheerfully crossing into full blown ridiculous, demeanor, it should be noted that Pecan Pudding was by no means, intentions nor indications a fool. There was no mistaking the steely seriousness of his voice nor expression as he accepted the offer without a blink.

Twilight graciously nodded, and with great dignity proclaimed, “As soon as my heralds return with a preliminary census, and I establish some basic governance and infrastructure, you shall have first call on my time. For the moment though, Nyx can take you to the kitchens, since... ”

She never even got the opportunity to finish her sentence, before her daughter popped up next to the old goofball, picked him up in her magic and zoomed out of the throne chamber.

“...bwuh?” Twilight muttered in annoyance and mindspoke to Nyx. “What was that about?”

“I’m building a reputation for childish exuberance, general irreverence and mischievous spirit. I plan to have a lot of fun this loop. By the way, at what rate do I have to age? I’m thinking three hundred to one.” Came the prompt mental reply from her daughter.

Twilight had to fight down a bemused smile. “I’ll be taking the request under consideration. I accept bribes in the form of books, large amounts of chocolate and cuddles.” She bantered back, and then turned her attention to the gibbering mess of the former leader of the unicorns.

“Oh, do stop that, it is undignified. I neither torture, eat, experiment upon nor do other unspeakable things to my little ponies, and whatever I might think about your attitudes so far, you are one of my little ponies. You have my word as an alicorn.”

“But… But… Hurricane…”

“..Is taking a slightly uncomfortable and rather unpleasant time-out, but is otherwise quite safe.”

As she observed Platinum pulling herself together, she considered the unicorn carefully.

“Now, what shall I do with you? The stallions are easy to deal with, but you - you are versed in intrigue and plotting, and as unbalanced as you are now, I am quite certain it will not take you too much time to start pursuing your own agenda. To be quite blunt, I neither have time nor inclination to deal with that - so here is an offer, and you won’t get a better one, I can assure you of that. I leave you and your descendants, direct line only mind you, the title of princes and princesses, grant you housing, staff and stipend, and in return you pledge yourself and your progeny in service to myself, my family, and the well being of Equestria.”

Platinum did not need to consider the offer for overlong. She was quite shrewd enough to understand that while the alicorn’s promise protected her from horrific fates, it said nothing about any number of very unpleasant fates that she could think of offhoof.

“By the stream and the mountain, horn and spell, the sun and the moon, I Platinum, of a sound mind and under no coercion, do pledge allegiance of myself and any foal of my bloodline, to your majesty and your kindred, and also to that of the nation of Equestria.”

*Though perhaps a bit unkind Rarity and Trixie came to be neigh-universal scale for measuring drama and hammines respectively amongst their fellow Equestrian loopers. It said something about the nature of loops and loopers that those two were hardly the only ones used as a measurement, nor were they the most unkind usages. It is best left unsaid what Pinkie Pie scale was used for. Suffice to say, it only went from -1 to 1




120.10 (85.1 Continued) (Bigou)




The nightmarish idea that Pinkie Pie might be an imaginary pony made real not only scared said pink being, but also Twilight, the narrator, and even the author himself.

Strangely, Fluttershy wasn't. In fact, when it was proved that Pinkie never was anypony's imaginary friend, she was strongly disappointed.




120.11 (AnyonymousAsk: highly edited by fractalman)




Discord was resting inside a sofa, while Twilight and Celestia looked at him.

"Are you sure this is going to be a good idea, Doctor Twilight?" Asked Discord, feigning nervousness.

"Dah... the root of all your evil is inside you...we need to take it out" Say Twilight with a false Russian accent.

Twilight then took a pocket watch and swung it in front of Discord.

"Follow the watch, Mr. Discord... just relax, and listen to my voice.

"Now, you are relaxed. Let your mind return to the past...to the deep past...now, where are you, Discord?"

"In Canterlot Garden. I'm a statue." answered Discord.

There are many misconceptions about hypnosis. For starters, Legitimate hypnosis subjects do not speak in a monotone; instead they sound quite normal, if a bit relaxed. Discord and Twilight knew this, and knew that Celestia knew this, so Discord very much did NOT answer in a monotone voice. Deadpan snark, on the other hand/hoof/claw/paw...

"Okay...further back...that's it...now where are you?"

"Still a statue."

"Further back, please. "

There was a pause.

"WAAAAAH! I miss my mommy!" whined Discord.

"Oops!" giggled Twilight. "I guess he went too far back. Ah well, I guess you can raise him up from square one."

"Aunn'ie! Aunn'ie Sunny take care of me!" slobbered Discord as he hugged a rather nervous Celestia.




120.12 (fractalman)




Twilight raised an eyebrow as she stepped outside. The ground was slightly hardened sugar, most houses were made of gingerbread, and her tree was a candy cane.

She double-checked her loop memories; no, it was not discord's fault this time.

As she stared at the rim of the world, she chuckled: Equestria was literally a sugarbowl.




"I hear she flosses her teeth!"

"She lives in the Everfree!"

"It ain't natural there. The ground is made of nasty dirt! Ya can't eat it!" Applejack, farmer of candy apples, pointed out.

"The trees are...broccoli!" whimpered Fluttershy.

"No, that would be the bushes. And broccoli is edible in small quantities, though I have to admit it is most distasteful." quipped rarity.

"Yeah, the trees are made of toothpicks!" pointed out Rainbow Dash.

"The rain...is water! Pure water" whispered Fluttershy.

Most of the ponies in the room shivered in fear at that.

Twilight sparkle was quite bemused...until she remembered that, this loop, ponies were literally made of candy, rendering water hazardous to their health.




The Droplet fell, and struck the sugary ground. For a second, nothing obvious happened. Then it bubbled up, a black welt on the white land…

Twilight stared in horror for a second that felt like a minute. If that droplet had hit a pony…

Another droplet fell. Twilight snapped out of her stupor, cloned herself with kage bunshin, and started swarming the planet to find and wallop Dischem, the spirit of chaos and chemistry. Other clones went to retrieve the Skittles of Sugar, which would be most helpful for cleaning up the sulfuric acid clouds.

No messing around with this version of Dischem, oh no, Twilight was going to take him out with overwhelming firepower before he got somepony killed.

She was, however, looking forward to firing the Skittles of Sugar.




Twilight approached Bon Bon. "Excuse me, do changelings eat blood or love?"

Bon Bon stared. "What's blood?"

"The sugar water in ponies."

Bon Bon shrugged. "They drink the sugar water from ponies. Uh, why did you want to know?"

Twilight pointed. "You're leaving licorice crumbs everywhere."

Bon Bon eeped, while Twilight rolled her eyes. "Don't worry, I'm just going to grab some water from the Everfree and mix it with some ground. If it turns out that pony sugar-water has some nutrient you need, I'm sure I can synthesize that as well."

Bon Bon sagged in relief. "Oh, you would? Oh, it's official, Twilight Sparkle is best pony!"

"AHEM!"

Both ponies turned to see Lyra tapping her hoof. "Best pony?"

Bon Bon blushed. "Er, second best?"

Twilight rolled her eyes. "I'll go get started on that sugar water."




Meanwhile, in Lyra's mindscape:

"LET US OUT!" yelled human Lyra.

"This sticky concoction is not good for my circuitry." deadpanned Robot Lyra.

"Shoo-bee-STILL STUCK!" was all that Seapony Lyra felt needed to be said.

"How did Sweet Roll take over the entire mindscape, anyways? This is the first time she's even been sapient, isn't it?" asked Unicorn Lyra.

Sweet Roll Lyra merely grinned like an idiot. "This is so much fun! I'm sapient! I've never been sapient before!"




120.13




Chrysalis, Queen of the Changelings, approached the door. She made to knock on it, blinked, and decided to kno-

New loop.

Whoa, that was-

What was? It's been a while, remember, I loop more-

Prince-

Looks like our local forms are telepaths. That seems to be accelerating our thought-speech.

Telepaths? This feels more like-

The Howlers were telepaths, it's how their hive mind worked.

I believe you, Cass. Now-

Prince Jake, I believe-

Dudes, we're not the only ones in this hive-

What the heck are we?

Chill, Rach, I've been here before once. They're called Changelings. Telepathic shapeshifters,

I'm guessing there's bad news?

There is, Prince Jake – we are also emotivores who feed on love.

Just throw Rachel at Tobias, we'll-

Guys, quit with the teasing, please! We're-

Why not Jake and I?

Not you, too, Cass! Marco, before you say it-

Wasn't going to.


Hello?

Oh, great. What was that you were-

I did say we weren't the only ones in this hive mind, Jakester-

Okay. Ax? Ideas?

We could potentially try a psionic surge to break the link. Elfangor told me of his experience with the Taxxon-

Dudes! Hive mind, remember!

Oh, crap. Did we just-


Don't worry, I'm looping. And not hostile.

Well, that's a relief.

They all say that at first. You know, no alien ever said 'we come in war'.

No, they usually shot first and moved onto the ash heap later-


I assure you, I can prove it as much as is normally possible. If my marefriend is around, then she can vouch for me.

No need, we can tell you're sincere.

This link is much deeper than normal thought-speech. It transfers emotions as well. It is truly a lot like the Howler link was, Prince Jake.


Can you turn it down? You're distracting the rest of the changelings.

And that would be bad. Can't you do the Howler-whammy on them, Jake?

Marco, they already know about love, they feed off-

I don't know much about beef.


Please keep the mental link below the point where it would have to be scrambled if it was television, please.

Hey, cool, she – she?

She.

She gets Earth humour! I think I like you, mysterious hive queen.

I am glad of the vote of confidence. However, I was busy. If you hold on a moment, I'll just cut you from the link for a few minutes, so you can get your shields and loop memories in order.

Sounds good to us.

-ck anyway.

“Hello? Princess Cadence?” she asked. “I just wanted to wish you a happy wedding, and to let you know I'm perfectly willing to take on your job if you need a longer honeymoon.”

She sleight-of-handed a business card from her pocket, and placed it on the nearest dresser, then left the rather startled bride-to-be and set about organizing her hive mind.
MLP Loops 120
120.1: It's a funny word.
120.2: Walk a mile in somepony elses' horseshoes.
120.3: Basic courses in everything.
120.4: Baka...
120.5: The Masters of the Poniverse.
120.6: Someone find the Mnemosyne.
120.7: RUN.
120.8: Time for a rethink.
120.9: One of the few times she really gets to let loose.
120.10: It did, you know.
120.11: Really, Discord can cause far more interesting havoc now than he ever could before.
120.12: Literal metaphors.
120.13: How long did it take you to recognize them? (The Anchor is Tobias, by the way.)
Loading...
119.1 (Kris Overstreet)




And the Rest Loop: Applebuck Season

Twilight Sparkle glared at the crowd of animals surrounding Applejack. The farm pony had been trussed tighter than a broken leg at a kingdom-wide Colt Scouts jamboree. A dog-sized mummy of rope stood on a stake beside hers. One of the critters had just finished piling the wood beneath her and had begun fiddling with a box of matches.

"Now, Angel Bunny," Fluttershy murmured, "I know Applejack was a little bit frightening and scared your friends, but isn't burning her at the stake just a little bit excessive?"

The other bunnies raised torches (and a few pitchforks) into the air. Angel Bunny, being him, pulled a flamethrower from his pocket and tested it.

Fluttershy ducked away from the roaring flame and squeaked, "Of course that's only my opinion!"

"I think you'd better go home, Fluttershy," Twilight said quietly. "I'll handle this."

"Oh, you won't hurt them, will you?" Fluttershy asked. "They're such helpless, timid creatures."

Oh, Oak save me from the non-Awake versions of my best friends. "I won't hurt a hair on their heads," she reassured Fluttershy. "But we're going to have to have a serious talk, and I don't think you want to hear some of the words I'm going to use."

"Oh... er... all right... but please don't be too mean to them," Fluttershy said. "They're not responsible for what they do when they're panicked." Fluttershy fluttered off, and Twilight waited until she was out of sight and earshot.

"All right, you've had your fun," she told Angel. "You've made your point. But there are lines we do not cross in a baseline Loop. You have already crossed one. Now you're going to cut down Applejack and Winona and apologize to them both."

Angel Bunny's eyes narrowed. The flamethrower vanished, replaced in a back flip by a small set of midnight-black robes. A tiny red lightsaber ignited in his paws.

Twilight's eyes narrowed in turn, and she drew herself up as tall as she could. "I'm pretty sure you didn't just challenge me," she hissed. The clear blue sky above the treetops vanished behind swirling clouds, which grew darker by the moment. "You, after all, are an experienced Looper, and would know better than to directly confront the Anchor of your Loop." Shadows gathered around Twilight Sparkle, forming the shape of armor and helm. "An Anchor who has a thousand Loops for your one. An Anchor who can summon godlike power merely by an instant act of will." Twilight's eyes began to glow, their pupils taking on a reptilian slit shape. "An Anchor who has merely promised not to harm a hair on your head, saying nothing whatever about the rest of your body." Lightning flashed overhead, sending distinct Nightmare-ish shadows across the bunnies, who cowered in terror. "And an Anchor who has just had a very bad Loop, wants some peace and quiet, isn't getting it, and wants the annoyance to go away. "

Eternal Twilight towered over Darth Gel, a deep purple shadow of menace almost blotting out a tiny flicker of darkness. "You weren't challenging me, were you now?" The voice hissed on the edge of pony hearing, and even a few of the bunnies had to strain to catch the words.

Angel Bunny calmly weighed the situation, considered his alternatives, and made a decision.

The red lightsaber flashed twice.

Smoldering ropes fell away from Applejack and Winona, who topped forward off their stakes and onto the woodpile beneath them.

"Good," Twilight Sparkle said. "Now apolo..."

A loud snore broke into the conversation. Applejack, who had been exhausted as usual when the bunny census had begun, had passed out asleep long before. Now, released from the ropes, she could get the deep breaths necessary to really saw some logs.

"On second thought, you gather every single bunny in and around Ponyville and get to work picking apples. Each bunny gets two apples for their day's work. And if you skive off or take more apples for yourself..." Twilight's face disappeared completely into shadow, leaving only those glowing eyes. "I'll know."

Angel raised one eyebrow.

"'Or else what?'" Twilight asked. "Do you really want an answer to that question?" Wings made of the interstellar void spread from her back, blotting out the sky and the forest.

Angel, apparently unafraid, shrugged, raised a paw, and snapped his digits. The other bunnies threw away their torches and began hopping towards Sweet Apple Acres.

"That's better." Twilight relaxed, and, in an instant, all of the shadows, clouds, and lightning vanished under the light of a sunny day. "And I'll still expect you to apologize when Applejack wakes up... in two or three days."

Angel rolled his eyes and hopped away.

What I have to go through to get that rabbit to behave, Twilight sighed. How does Awake Fluttershy manage it?




And the Rest Loop: Griffon the Brush-Off




It had been, up to that point, a very quiet day, which Twilight Sparkle had enjoyed. She'd slept in, awakened to a late breakfast cooked by Spike, and then curled up at a reading table with one of her favorite bad-Loop-recovery books, Literary Analysis of the Ancient Lays of the Middle Minotauran Republic, Volume 2. It was a stultifying boring work that could send Rainbow Dash to sleep in seven words or less. Twilight had only read it eighty-two times.

Then the brass band kicked in, followed by cheering and shouting and the tramping of far, far too many feet.

Twilight stuck her head out the library door just in time to see a train of elephants, one after another after another, walking past and through Ponyville's main square, tossing bits at the bewildered ponies watching. A very familiar-looking griffon sat on the back of the lead elephant, led in the procession by a turban-wearing Pinkie Pie. Pinkie had already begun to sing at a pitch that carried through the whole of Ponyville:

Princess G, Fabulous she, Gilda the Griffon!

Genuflect, show some respect, down on one knee

Now try hard to keep your cool

The manners you learned in school

And come and join her splendiferous party

Princess G, Mighty is she, Gilda the Griffon!

Strong as ten regular hens, definitely!

She faced the emperor's hordes

Their claws and their beaks and their swords

Who shut them all down with one word?

Why, Princess G

She's got seventy-five hot air balloons

Fighting squadrons

She's got twenty-three

When it comes to obedient goons

Two thousand and two

Give or take a few

Who serve obediently

Princess G, beautiful she, Gilda the Griffon!

Those golden eyes triggering sighs of sheer ecstasy

Not to mention that she's rich

Which means when she gets hitched

Her hubby can swim in the Griffonian treasury

Princess G, Imperial She, Gilda the Griffon!

Because she won, she rules griffons absolutely

And she's come to our town

To let her feathers down

So give a Ponyville welcome to-


Pinkie, and perforce the whole procession, came to a sudden halt as a griffon messenger descended from the skies, handed a scroll to Pinkie Pie, tipped his cap to her, and flew away again.

Pinkie opened the scroll and read aloud: "To whom it may concern; due to the incredible expense of the diplomatic mission to Equestria, the government of Griffonia has collapsed. The griffons have created a new republic in its place. Therefore let it be known that Gilda the Griffon is immediately deposed as ruler of the griffons and that any drafts made by her on the treasury of Griffonia from this date forward shall not be honored."

Gilda found herself dumped to the street. Ten seconds later the elephants, band, servants, soldiers, flower girls, and fan-wielding male harem had vanished to the four winds, or as close to them as the streets of Ponyville would allow.

Pinkie shrugged and began a new song and dance:

For she's a flat broke ex-Princess,

For she's a flat broke ex-Princess,

For she's a flat broke ex-Princess,

Which nopony can deny!


At which point Pinkie pulled a cupcake out of her mane, handed it to Gilda with a smile, and trotted away.

Rainbow Dash, who had been watching the parade from above, swooped down to land beside Gilda. "Hey, Gilda," she said. "That was kinda harsh, y'know? They coulda at least let ya keep one elephant."

"Eh," Gilda shrugged, "easy come, easy go. I'm sure something else will come up."

"Wanna hang out at my place until you get back on your wings?" Rainbow Dash asked.

"Thanks, I'd like that," Gilda said. "I'll be along in a while... I need to look and see if I can scrape any of those bits my boys were throwing."

"Yeah, I understand," Dash nodded. "Catch you later!"

As the rainbow-maned pegasus zoomed off, Twilight walked up to the griffon and said, "I have to say, that wasn't a bad prank at all."

"What prank?" Gilda asked. "This was a serious diplomatic mission."

Twilight cocked her head. "What?"

Gilda looked grumpy for another three seconds. Then one corner of her beak turned up as she added, "I was saving the really silly stuff for Celestia." She held up four extremely large saddle shoes and sighed. "Do you know how hard it is to find trained tap-dancing elephants?"




119.2 (Pinklestia)




Somepony slowly opened the door to Big Macintosh's bar, and a black Earth pony colt walked inside. He was wearing a Batman costume, one look and Mac knew he was the real deal.

"Hey boss, been a while, first time in Equestria?"

"No." Batman said and sat in front of the counter.

"So... care to talk about what's bugging you?" Mac served him a drink, not alcoholic, but looked like one at first glance, is what Bruce drank when he was being at a social event or he was pretending to get drunk.

"I am fictional this loop." Bruce then sipped his drink, with an ease that showed that he had indeed been a pony before. Mac didn't say anything else, waiting for him to go on and he started to clean the mugs and glasses. It was still quite early and there wasn't much else to do. After a moment, Batman continued.

"Not in the sense that I am a fictional character, but that I am an actor portraying Bat Colt in a TV series, everypony knows who I am. I am famous. Ponies just won't leave me alone!"

Mac understood, Batman wasn't the most social guy around, save when he was playing the role of playboy millionaire. But even then, it was just an act, for a loner like Batman, being the centre of attention and being forced to act nice all the time was torture.

"You could retire."

"I actually enjoy being an actor."

Mac raised an eyebrow "Then..."

"The Cutie Mark Crusaders won a prize in a contest, meet the actor that portrays Bat Colt, and they get a minor scene in the show. They aren't awake and I have to deal with them for a week."

Mac silently switched Batman's drink for something hard. While he never saw Bruce getting drunk, it seemed this time he actually needed to.




119.3 (Gym Quirk)




Loop Trek: The Next Iteration -- "Encounter at Farfetched"

Captain Celestia paused in her walk around the bridge of the Enterprise to allow the loop memories to settle.

Ah. This again. I wonder what the crew lottery came up with this time.

Glancing around, she concluded that this was a ponified variant, rather than a straight substitute-into-bipeds fusion.

There was Twilight in Data's seat at Conn. I wonder how often she gets slotted into scientific support roles.

She did not recognize the pony at Ops. Oh dear. Redshirt. Must make an effort to save that one if possible.

She noted Diamond Tiara speaking to Gilda at the Tactical station. Tasha and Worf. Rather predictable...

Cadance was in the Counselor's chair. And loop memories indicate that we'll be meeting with Shining Armor, Zecora, and Apple Bloom at Deneb IV.

As she moved to peer over Twlight's shoulder, the unicorn murmured, "Two Generosities, one Kindness, and another Magic so far." More loudly, she announced. "Unknown sensor contact directly ahead, approaching rapidly."

"There is a very powerful mind out there," added Cadance in an almost bored tone of voice as she idly examined her left front hoof-shoe.

"And here it comes," muttered DT to Gilda as the view screen was filled with a tessellating pattern. The griffon grunted in acknowledgement.

"Hi guys!" said the draconequus after she flashed into existence.

"Hello, Silver. Are you here to judge if ponykind is a savage and unworthy race?" asked Celestia politely.

"Nah. Technically, I'm here to help judge if ponykind is a boring and uninteresting race. Discord and Q are running interference with the Continuum, and I got stuck with the public appearances. I feel obliged to point out that you don't have any Elements of Laughter available just now, so you're at a slight disadvantage for the trial..."




119.4 (Gamerex27)




The door to Mac's bar slowly crept open, and Pinkie Pie walked in. She didn't bounce, or skip, or even teleport in from under a stool. No, she walked in. This, in Mac's experience, was always a bad sign.

Her mane a mix between its usually poofy self and flat, Pinkie eased herself onto a seat at the bar top, and sighed.

Mac didn't say anything: he didn't want to risk upsetting her. He merely continued to clean his mugs.

Mac took a second look at his customer, and instantly understood what was wrong. On Pinkie Pie's forehoof was a large orange bracelet.

Pinkie's gaze slowly trailed to her bracelet, and then made eye contact with Mac.

"I have diabetes this Loop," she said, her voice missing all of its usual cheer.

"Magic diabetes," she clarified, as Mac opened his mouth to give advice. "Twilight's done everything she could to cure it, but nothing worked."

"Well," Mac said, "it'll only be for this Loop."

"But it's so annoying!" Pinkie's mane fully deflated and turned totally flat. "I can barely eat one tiny cookie without risking my life! I have to stop in the middle of every single party and check my glucose level just to make sure I won't pass out and wake up without my hooves! I can't even order any of my usual drinks here, 'cause all of them are packed with sugar!"

"You could just try to find some..." Mac hesitated for a moment. "...sugar-free snacks?" he said hesitantly.

The Element of Laughter twitched. "I know, but they're so hard to find around here! I never noticed just how much sugar everypony uses around here to bake and cook everything! I had to go all the way to Manehattan just to find a bakery that sold all my favorite things without sugar!"

She sighed, and downed the shot of Berry Punch's special sugar-free brew. "I...I just don't know what to do!"

"I ain't sure what to tell ya, Pinkie. Maybe," he realized, "you can just make your sugar-free snacks on your own?"

Pinkie Pie froze. Her mane instantly poofed back up, and she squeed in joy. "Ohmygosh, you're right! Thank you so much, Maccy!"

She pulled him into a deep kiss, then ducked underneath the stool, teleporting out of the bar.

As Berry Punch walked out of the back room, she saw Mac blushing furiously.




119.5 (Kingofsouls) (Gamerex27) (DrTempo) (TrueZero2) (Fractalman) (Masterweaver) (banjo2e) (Draconas) (drachefly) (send help, too many authors!)




"Okay, New round. Weirdest married couple you have seen or been in." Twilight announced to the bar patrons. She then shot a glare at Cadence. "And no Cadence, that time you got everypony married to their human counterparts doesn't count."

Cadence slammed her head into the table.

"I got one. I Woke up married to Davenport that one loop." Pinkie took a swig of her drink.

Rainbow gave Pinkie a questioning look. "Wait, the sofa and quill guy? That Davenport?"

"Yepper-Ronnie!" She sighed wistfully. "Good times."

"I think I speak for everyone present when I ask how that came to be." Rarity questioned.

"Well, he told me he really liked what I could do with a sofa."

The others looked at Pinkie, wondering just how far out of context that statement really was.

Shining Armor sighed, cradling his head with a hoof. "Even so, that couldn't have been as bad as that one time I Woke Up married to Panty."

The Loopers in the bar looked at one another, clearly having no idea who that was.

"She and her sister Stocking were angels who were exiled from Heaven for being too sinful in their home Loop," Shining explained. "They had to fight ghosts on earth in order to get back to Heaven, and they did it by turning their clothes into weapons for some reason."

"Oh, those two." Twilight sighed, taking a sip of her cider. "I remember them from when they replaced Celestia and Luna. I'm pretty sure Panty seduced every single stallion in the Royal Guard except you. She was like a foul-mouthed, tamer version of Molestia."

Nearly every Looper in the bar shuddered in unison at this.

"And, since she kept using human curses, nopony knew what she was talking about half the time," Twilight continued. "Her sister ate so much sugar, she single-hoofedly gave the Pies enough business to open up franchise shops all over Equis. She ate more cake than Celestia and Pinkie combined, for elk's sake."

Pinkie gasped at this. "Ohmygosh! That's more cake than there should ever be in one place! You can't let just one pony hog it all!"

"When you said they used their clothes as weapons," Rarity asked, raising an eyebrow, "what do you mean?"

"They used some kind of magic to literally turn them into weapons. Panty turned her...ah, namesake into guns, and Stocking turned her socks into swords."

Unexpectedly, Rarity smiled at this. "Finally, someone finds a use for those things."

Sunset said, "Hmm...weirdest married couple I've seen..." After thinking for a few minutes, she said, "I've seen a lot of odd couples, but the one that takes the cake was an Unawake Fluttershy and Ryoga Hibiki. Fluttershy was able to actually calm Ryoga down. THAT is rare."

Twilight smirked "I can beat that. An Unawake Shining Armor was married to his job one loop."

Shining Armor slammed his head into the table.

"Weirdest married couple... weirdest married couple..." Vinyl muttered as she tried to remember one. "Probably the one where Rarity and Shino hooked up. Neither one was Awake, and Rarity fell for Shino when he saved her life during Pain's attack on the Hidden Leaf. I tell ya, not many people believed it at first. Killer reception though."

"Weirdest marriage? Chrysalis and C'thulu. Yes, that was a marriage."

"There was this one time Angel and Luna were married." Fluttershy said. "The moon was pretty green that Loop."

Luna slammed her head into the table.

Sweetie Belle raised a hoof. "Does it have to be a couple? Cause I have a herd example..."

Cadence raised her head. "Go on..."

"Alright... so we all know how Ivory ended up with Stephen Magnet and Gustav le Grand after Rarity and Spike's bachelor party--"

Ivory rolled her eyes. "Yes, go telling everypony why don't you."

"Ahem. Anywho..." Sweetie shrugged. "One loop had herd-based marriage laws--a couple was just 'a herd of two' and not something unique--and I think Spike and Gilda were awake, and they campaigned for some sort of racial equality... long story short, when me and Rarity took Manehattan, Suri Polomare was married to Garble, Gilda's third cousin, a changeling queen--not unique that loop--and Stephen Magnet."

She gave an awkward little cough. "They, ah... they commissioned Rarity for specialty bed sheets, and I won't elaborate."

"I once married a demonic overlord and a paladin. Barely remember their names at this point, though."

Discord finished his drink in a completely normal fashion, then scowled as he realized the entire bar was staring at him. "Look, I think the fact that they asked me, of all people, to officiate the ceremony would tend to suggest they might not be an entirely normal couple!"

Celestia downed a shot of alcohol heated to the point of fusion.

"Let's just say in one loop Luna and I had to keep up an eclipse for five days so the Sun and Moon could have their honeymoon."

Of to the side, Luna cursed before trying to think of a new example.

"Ah, do fake weddings count?" Rainbow Dash had put her head on a hoof in an uncharacteristic 'thinking' pose.

Twilight coughed. "No, they do not."

"I ask 'cause" - "I just said they don't." - "Twilight and I have been married a few times. Not looped in that way, but actually chose to when awake."

Twilight gave up and let her continue.

"First there was the time you had to get married or else, and only we were awake, and we were both too worn out to fight the system. Then there was the time we were all under pressure by a set of secret police, and they tried to play us off against each other. Then there was the time we just did it to make some bigots' heads explode. Oh, and pranking Cadence by getting married and divorced more and more frequently until you needed a millisecond timer to keep count - no, you haven't forgotten, that was before you ever woke up... did I miss any?"

Twilight looked around the room and felt a peculiar series of sensations: first, relief that the reactions were mere amusement at the situations, not anything she should be embarrassed over; second, confusion that she could still be insecure enough that that could still occur to her; third, surprise that most of her friends were still recognizably themselves after all this time and experience; and fourth, fear - of change, of loss of self, of the end of the loops by the recovery of Yggdrasil, of the end of the loops by a total crash, of data corruption changing people in ways they never chose.

"You okay there?"

"No, I..." she blinked. "I think you got them all."

Gilda's grin was quite predatory. "I got one that's pretty good. Queen Celestia and Emperor Tirek."

Celestia' s head smashed into the table, Twilight' s drink being shot out of her mouth at the nearest pony (it was Rarity). "What!?

"Stealth anchor. You were replaced with one of the Yugioh anchors," responded Celestia, her head rising slightly. "It was a strange loop. Tirek challenged my unawake self to single combat when he came to first Equestria. He won, and forced me to marry him. Needless to say, Equestria wasn't exactly...friendly.

"When I woke up, the first thing did was file a divorce by banishing him to the sun."

"Was my...."

"Sorry Twilight. There Was a Freak solar flare that happened after I banished him."

Twilight's head smashed into the table.




119.6 (Gamerex27) (Masterweaver) (DrTempo) (LordCirce) (Ghrathyrn) (Gym Quirk) (Drachefly)




"Can guest Loopers propose an idea?" Iron Coat-or as he was more commonly known, Langdon- studied the glass in his hoof, wondering how he was managing to hold it without fingers. "How about this: the best or most impressive way you've ever de-railed another Loop's baseline."

"That's a broad category," replied Twilight. "Give me a minute to think of one of my better Loops."

"There was the time where we completely destroyed the plot of Romeo and Juliet," Spike pitched in. "But I think my best one was when I replaced the Dovahkiin back in Skyrim."

He took a sip of his drink, belched atomic fire safely into his subspace pocket, then continued. "It went normally until I infiltrated the Thalmor embassy. When I found their files on how they brainwashed Ulfric to spur on the war...I showed the Imperials and Stormcloaks the documents. Right when we were negotiating the ceasefire in the civil war."

Spike reached his paw into his Pocket, and withdrew a picture of the Thalmor Ambassador's face during the event. Suffice to say, it was priceless.

"I had no idea humans could stretch their mouths so wide," remarked Octavia, from her seat next to Vinyl. "Her mouth is a foot away from literally dropping to the ground."

"She isn't human," Spike stressed. "See the ears? Elves can stretch their mouths wider than humans. Anyways," he continued, "they worked out peace, alright. Although, it didn't exactly go as planned."

Rarity nodded. "I don't think either of us anticipated the Empire and Stormcloaks teaming up to take on every single Thalmor in Tamriel. Even though it did lead to a golden age of prosperity and cultural understanding (somehow), the war was far more bloody than either of us wanted. Turns out lightning bolt spells travel faster than the Elements of Harmony did in that Loop." Rarity shivered, then put on a small smile. "The cultural renaissance afterwards gave me ideas for some fabulous new dresses, though."

"Alright, alright, get this." Vinyl spread her hooves wide. "I Wake Up, and I'm a seapony right?"

Twilight's eyebrow rose ever so slightly. "Equestrian or G3?"

"Neither, actually. My Loop memories tell me that I'm sort of a nice girl, bit curious--obvious hero material--but beyond that, nothing. So I go swimming out of my cave and, guess who's out there? ANIKAN FREAKING SKYWALKER." Vinyl snorted. "He was also a seapony, but wearing a robe."

"All right..."

"So, he explains that his pre-awake self was going to restore only some of my memory as part of a gambit, but offers to restore all of it. I decide, on a whim, to just have him restore the part he was going to cause, ya know, why the heck not." Vinyl grinned broadly. "So it turns out that this whole world I'm in is built on 'the verse'--basically, think magic that can be channeled by singing."

Octavia sighed in resignation. "What song did you pick?"

"Dubstep remix of our hub show theme song. Ten minutes later, a bunch of ponies in scuba gear go down to the depths and blast a depressed demigod with the powers of harmony." The unicorn leaned back with a smug smirk. "Yep, that's how I completely fixed Aquaria."

Sunset smirked. "Interesting baseline derailments....Here's one. You know that loop with the animatronic puppets in that pizza place...I just blasted that place to bits." The grin on her face was wide. "Problem solved. That place was going out of business anyway."

Angel Bunny made a series of gestures, before twitching his nose and turning back to his drink. Sunset squinted. "I don't think I caught that." She glanced at Fluttershy.

Fluttershy blushed. "Oh, um, Angel was taking the place of Bonnie the Bunny that Loop. He was the first thing you hit."

Sunset flushed. "Oops." Then she paused. "Hey wait, he chased me through three rooms."

Angel twitched his nose and turned away.

Sweetie perked up. "Ooh, ooh, I got one. I was in Arda..."

Bloom cut in. "We've all heard your Ascension Story. That doesn't count."

Sweetie glowered at her. "This is a different time. I Looped in as Galadriel, and I managed to make Heart Songs a thing. Smaug and Bilbo did a really funny cat-and-mouse duet, the Battle of Helm's Deep turned into a giant rap battle, and Gandalf and the Eagles did this amazing Orchestral Jazz fly-over at the end of the Loop."

"Wait, Ah think Ah've got one!" Apple Bloom said. "Twilight, remember when we Woke up on Gor?"

The entire bar fell silent. Even Pinkie Pie, eternal engine of motion that she was, froze at the mention of Gor.

"Wait a moment." Rarity said slowly. "Are you talking about the Gor?"

"That planet where those aliens abduct people from Earth and force them to live in Stone Age cultures?" Fluttershy asked.

"The one where the men are deplorable knaves, who brainwash the women and make them their slaves?" Zecora asked, narrowing her eyes.

"Please tell me you two gave those aliens some justice," Rainbow Dash said, with a sharp edge to her voice.

"Of course!" Twilight sipped her cider. "The moment our Loop memories kicked in, we Ascended, and destroyed the aliens' orbital cannon."

"And Ah wired their bases so they couldn't build anythin' like that again," Apple Bloom added. "Cut off their production factories, vaporized all of their teleportation technology, an' put 'em all in a penal colony."

"We did leave them with a one-way video feed to Gor, though." Twilight grinned. "We spent the next few years travelling the planet, making massive changes to society, and making a unified global culture."

"Ah introduced the poor folks trapped there ta' gunpowder, electricity, heatin', and all the bells n' whistles. 'Course, we sent anyone who wanted back to Earth, but a whole bunch of 'em stayed to show up the jerks that put 'em there."

"We got a women's rights movement going in record time. By the time we got governments running across the planet, a little under half of the officials were females."

"An' the best part?" Apple Bloom beamed. "Them aliens couldn't do a darn thing about it. We enchanted those TVs to make 'em unbreakable, so they were forced to watch their big experiment fall apart."

"We made them watch that sick society of oppression they had built crumble to pieces, and there was nothing that they could do about it."

Many of the ponies in the bar applauded. Apple Bloom blushed, and Twilight took a moment to bow on her stool.

"Hey, Twi?" The young Apple's face turned thoughtful. "Do ya think we got that world Looping? It was static when we got there, but with all th' changes we made, ya think..."

"Maybe? I have no idea. If we did help make an Anchor, it was probably one of those Amazons."

"Interesting loops huh?" The dark-maned thestral twitched her tail as she leaned against the bar, a black and white mongrel lazing at her hooves. "I can think of a few breaks, not all of them mine." She grinned before sipping her drink. "Actually, one was a Fallout loop, you know, the places where the entire planet ends up on the receiving end of a WMD bombardment? Well, in this case it was the… third one, where the main person has to leave the vault after their father." She snorted, shaking her head. "Of course Dad was really interested in their tech, particularly the GECKs, but knowing the Enclave morons would be out there looking for it, we went a different route.

"Instead of us sneaking out of the vault, we browbeat the Overseer with science out the gate, cutting out a good chunk of the problems that would come later, then I shifted to Assirraya the Inferno, grabbed the nuke in Megaton and dropped it on the Enclave's heads while Tim here used his dragon form to start mucking with the ground. He got a good chunk around Megaton purged. Took us a few years to get everything done, but we got the Capital Wastes cleared, even managed to get rid of the ghoul infestations around, didn't even need the GECK when we found it."

:What my brood-mate isn't saying is that once we found the rest of our brood things went a lot quicker, especially since we could purify the water and force weather patterns until they stuck.: The dog's voice sounded in everyone's heads. :The combination of Fireborn powers, Thu'um and spells for purification and creation certainly helped, as did Quentin's scientific abilities. Between him and that Moira girl Megaton had products that made even those in Tenpenny Tower envious, and they couldn't really do what they had planned because we used the bomb on the Enclave.: His jaw dropped in a canine laugh.

Another pony, this one a pale blue pegasus snorted in amusement. "And here I thought there were fewer stories like that, though that said, I remember once I looped into the place of Captain Geary, which was interesting, since we started facing summary death." He paused, sipping his drink. "I've talked to Geary, normally he tries to get everyone back the slow way since it's safer. Fortunately I had Angel and the Angelwing available, so we sent her over to the enemy fleet, shut down their targeting and combat systems, then I ordered my fleet to push straight for the jump gate, got back to alliance space a lot quicker and with Angel around, we found the other group of aliens pretty fast, she was able to disable their tricks and we sued for peace. Got it too, once we revealed how the entire group had been played."

Applejack tapped her chin with a hoof. "Well, Ah think mah best one might've been when Ah was in the Kingdom Hearts Loop, and Ah replaced Aqua."

Sunset Shimmer blinked. "Really? I've never actually Looped to that part of the timeline. How did that go for you?"

"At the time, Ah didn't think Ah was doin' anything major. Ah just asked Ventus why he left home, an' he told me that the boy in the mask told him to find Terra. An' when we met up in Radiant Garden, Ah told Terra that he needed to come back to the Land of Departure 'cause Ah was suspicious of Xehanort. And then Ah told him that the masked boy sent Ventus to find him." She smiled. "Amazing what just askin' a few questions can do. It didn't take long before we realized that Xehanort was running us 'round in circles and manipulatin' all of us, an' before you knew it, we'd foiled all his plans by just not goin' to that graveyard."

"So, you fixed the problems of the whole baseline...by doing nothing? Except asking a few questions?" Sunset looked incredulous at this.

"Nearly every bad thing that happened in that Loop was his fault. All we had to do was be honest with each other, an' we stopped everythin' bad from happening."

"Wow." Sunset removed a notebook from her pocket, and began writing in it. "The next time I Loop back into Kingdom Hearts, I'll be sure to tell this to Sora and the others."

"Not sure if you need to. Ah think Xehanort was usin' some kind of Suggestion spell to push those two boys into following the rails of his scheme. 'Course, since Ah'm the Element of Honesty, that kind of spell doesn't work on me, so it didn't take that long ta notice somethin' was off about the whole thing. Ah think any Looper worth their salt would notice the road apples he was layin', even if he didn't use any mind-control magic in the baseline."

Fluttershy shrank into herself even more than usual. "I managed to mess up the Barrayaran Empire pretty badly. I was doing Miles' Academy entrance exam and took my time and was very careful during the physical fitness portion..."

Ivory Scroll said, "The loop I derailed most thoroughly? When Dr. Fetus abducted my boyfriend, I called in OSHA. They shut him down after taking one look at his factory."

Applejack dryly asked, "Oh! Is that loop why you were deathly afraid of salt for a while? Anyway, once I was in a loop loosely based on our admins. In this variant, Wotan had the worst head for money I've ever heard of - and yes, I've seen my baseline. When the loop started, he'd already bought an enormous sky palace from two giants, with no down payment, no regular source of income, and me - his sister-in-law - as collateral. Without my permission. And moreover, I gave all of our family and friends our immortality."

A pause while that sunk in.

"Yeah. So anyway, I married both of them and sent a golden-apple care package home every few days. Also, we had to go keep Alberich from taking over the world, but by then the plot rails were out of sight."

Rarity coughed. "You married Fasolt and Fafnir for a loop that's a few hundred years long?"

Applejack snorted. "Memory charms worked for a while. Then Fafnir got himself cursed by Alberich. Once the Rhine maidens had drowned him, it was just me and Fasolt. He was actually all right."




119.7 (Masterofgames)




Lyra, Lyra, Lyra, Lyra, and a sweet roll all sat in their designated places around the meeting table. Lyra Classic tapped her hoof against it. "I now call this meeting of The Increasingly Confusing Council of Lyra's Head to order! Roll call..."

"No."

"Aw, please?"

"No, we can all count, and we all know each other. We're all here. Get on with it."

"Ugh, fine. First order of business, who is in charge this time? Please note we are a code 7 this time, a seapony in disguise."

Human Lyra raised her hand with a grin. "My turn! I've never been in charge while we were a seapony before! This should be fun!"

Seapony Lyra shrugged. "Just watch the instincts and you should be fine."

Classic nodded. "Any objections? ... No? Okay then next on the agenda, cake."

Seapony Lyra grinned. "Are we all still in agreement that we are getting a piece of the MMMM at any cost this loop?"

Science Lyra nodded. "No question! We've never so much as smelled the thing before! How can we replicate it for BonBon's birthday if we don't have even the slightest clue what it tastes like!?"

"I agree. We know the damage can be fixed before the contest anyway, so overall, no harm done." Classic Lyra declared sagely.

"Um... I just like cake." Human Lyra shrugged.

"..." said the sweet roll.

Human Lyra blushed. "I didn't mean it like that and you know it!"

"... Right, most of the rest of the schedule is routine stuff, but there is one last thing here. Twilight's offer of Alicornhood."

Science Lyra sighed and slumped over the table. "Look, we all know what you're thinking. It SHOULD merge us all. But what SHOULD happen, and what WILL happen, are not always the same! Case in point, the elephant in the room." she frowned, gesturing to the head of the table.

The table that, prior to Twilight's offer, not HAD a head of the table.

And most tellingly, the brand new, Alicorn sized empty chair that had appeared at it, awaiting its owner.




119.8 (Dalxein)




The guard looked confused as Twilight began walking away, leaving her friends to enter for the Gala. "You're... not coming in?"

"Oh, no. I gave away my ticket." She said offhoofedly, barely turning back to respond.

"But... you're Twilight Sparkle. Princess Celestia's private student. You don't need an invitation. You could just... go to the gala, if you want."

Twilight turned back to stare at the guard, her friends blinking inquisitively off to the side as she tilted her head and her mane began to frazzle.

Somewhere, off in the distance, a goat bleated.




119.1 continued (Kris Overstreet)




And the Rest Loop: The Ticket Master

Twilight stood and watched with a twitching eyebrow as Applejack and Rainbow Dash hoofwrestled for the never-to-be-sufficiently-damned-to-Tartarus tickets to the Grand Galloping Gala. The Gala itself was about fifth or sixth on the list of Parts of the Baseline Twilight Absolutely Hates; the day Celestia actually sends the tickets ranked second on that last, only marginally worse than Tirek blowing up the library but nothing like as bad as the Want-It, Need-It incident. When in a good mood she'd play along just enough to find something amusing in Canterlot, without re-enacting the original, horrible, no-good, very worst night ever. Now, when she wanted peace, quiet, and familiar, comfortable things- and nothing else... not a chance.

She'd tried just giving Applejack and Rainbow Dash one ticket each before; that worked out even worse than baseline, with her other three close friends resorting to bribery, deceit and theft to get the tickets for themselves. One Loop things had become so bad between them that Twilight had been forced to cancel the Gala altogether... by blowing up Celestia's castle. She'd spent the rest of that loop on the Moon, with time off to deal with Discord and for weddings... but at least her friends made up during her trial.

Twilight was about to set the tickets on fire and give Rote Speech #2G (Nobody is Going to the Gala and I am Sorely Disappointed in All of You) when the Mayor's carefully cultivated voice said, "Oh, Twilight Sparkle, there you are!"

"Yes, Ivory- er, Ms. Mayor?" Twilight replied, glad to take her eyes off two of her closest friends being total idiots for the (vague eight or nine figure number here)th iteration.

"Yes, I've just been catching up on some paperwork regarding your transfer of residency to Ponyville," Ivory Scroll said. "You know, of course, that Ponyville recently adopted the Sweethaven tax code?"

Warning bells rang in the back of Twilight's mind. Sweethaven... I know that- oh, no... "You mean the Commodore's Code? But that was repealed!"

"Ah, so I don't need to explain it to you," Ivory Scroll smiled. "So, let me just go over the charges: departure of residency tax from Canterlot... beginning of residency tax in Ponyville... are you renting a home here, by the way?"

"You know I'm not!"

"Lack of residency tax," Ivory nodded, checking off a scroll that kept unwinding longer and longer as the mayor kept listing itemized charges. "Habitation of a public building tax... magic tax, progressive according to power ranking of unicorn... keeping of pet parenthesis dragon close parenthesis tax... keeping of hazardous materials parenthesis dragon close parenthesis tax... opening public building, service or accommodation tax... er, is the library open at the moment?"

"No, Spike and I are both here."

"Closing public building, service or accommodation tax," Ivory continued.

"Look, doesn't my stipend from Princess Celestia cover-"

"Special stipend income tax..."

"I guess not." Twilight sighed. "Look, just let me see the bottom line, all right?"

Ivory showed the final amount to Twilight, who gawped. If she went to Smoky Mountain in about, oh, three weeks and stole the not-yet-arrived dragon's hoard, that might cover it... almost.

"Since there are prolonged hearings and court procedures regarding the garnishment of royal stipends," Ivory Scroll continued, "the township of Ponyville shall settle for the seizure of all your possessions of real value. As of this moment, according to our best understanding, those consist of two exclusive tickets to the Grand Galloping Gala, correct?"

"I thought that's where all this was headed," Twilight sighed.

"Then I shall be taking those tickets," the mayor continued, "and in three days I shall auction them off, the proceeds to fund public works in and around Ponyville." She reached over to Spike, who held the tickets in his claws, and took them in her teeth, carefully depositing them in her saddlebags.

"HEY!" Applejack and Rainbow Dash broke up their hoofwrestling match and dashed over to the mayor.

"You cain't take our friend's property like that!" Applejack drawled.

"That's right!" Rainbow Dash agreed. "Those tickets belong to mmmmm, er, my friend Twilight Sparkle!" She snugged herself up next to Twilight and added, "Isn't that right, old buddy, old pal?"

"I'm afraid she can," Twilight sighed. "I'm sorry, girls. I know how much each of you wanted to go."

"It's not a total loss," Ivory Scroll added. "You could always buy one of the tickets at auction in three days' time." Putting the tax bill back in her bags, the mayor turned back for town. "Thank you for your cooperation, Twilight dear." With that the mayor trotted off down the road, followed at a distance by Applejack and Rainbow Dash, both with expressions of silent thoughtfulness.

Twilight waited for all three to go over the hill and out of sight before she let the evil, evil smile show on her face.




That evening, after the scheduled rainstorm, Twilight sat in the library's reading room, sipped some tea from her cup, and read to the delightful sounds of a Ponyville mob growing ever more disgruntled by the minute. Sweet, sweet music.

For a moment the muffled sound of shouting angry ponies became much less muffled as the front door swung wide open; it slammed shut again an instant later, and after a couple of tables and one of the mobile bookshelves was shoved in front of it the sounds became muffled again.

"Er, Twilight Sparkle," Ivory Scroll said nervously, "it appears that the ratification of the Sweethaven tax code had some, er, legal irregularities which renders the tax bill you owe-"

"You're here to give the tickets back, aren't you?" Twilight said calmly, turning a page of her book.

"PLEASE!" Ivory cried, falling to her knees and crawling to Twilight, forehooves clenched together in supplication. "At least two-thirds of Ponyville is after those tickets or my dead body or both!"

"Your dead body?" Twilight asked, apparently unconcerned.

"I may have let slip that I meant to keep one of the tickets for myself," Ivory Scroll admitted. "You know, rig the sealed bidding."

"Oopsie," Twilight smirked. "Possibly you shouldn't have used your outside-the-head voice for that. I have that problem sometimes."

"It was Derpy!" the mayor cried. "Sweet, innocent, non-Awake Derpy! Who would have imagined she was that desperate to see Princess Celestia and get Dinky Doo a shot at Celestia's School for Gifted Unicorns?" The mayor stared over her pince-nez at Twilight with terror-filled eyes. "And when you've lost Derpy Hooves, Twilight, take it from a pony who knows, you've lost all of Ponyville."

"Gee, that's sad," Twilight said. "And yet... not my problem." She turned her attention back to her book.

"PLEASE, Twilight, you HAVE to help me!!"

"Not my circus, not my ponies."

"I'll do ANYTHING!" Ivory sobbed.

Twilight took a deep breath and smiled. Time to end the suffering. "I want you to write a thousand times, 'I will not use my phenomenal bureaucratic powers for personal gain.' And I want a new public library built on the other side of town from this tree before Tirek escapes. Promise?"

"Yes! Yes!!" Ivory gasped. "Just please get me out of this mess!" After a moment she added, "And if it's at all possible, leave me with a decent chance of re-election."

Twilight raised an eyebrow. "I thought you enjoyed the occasional escape from your duties."

"I don't enjoy the humiliation of losing an election!" Ivory raised a hoof to her throat, gulped, and added, "Or my head!"

Twilight shrugged, then raised her voice. "SPIKE! Come here, please, I need you to take a letter!"

Dear Princess Celestia,

Today I learned that it's not a good idea to use public authority for your own purposes, even if your intentions are good. You'll only end up making yourself look bad- to say nothing of the government which you represent. Only by being fair and impartial can a public servant gain the trust and friendship of the people she works with.

On a related note, I strongly urge that the entire Ponyville district be issued invitations to the Grand Galloping Gala, in order to maintain the peace and to uphold the civil authority. I know Canterlot Castle won't hold all of Ponyville in comfort, so I will spend my free time over the next six months winnowing out those ponies whose interest in the Gala is only tangential to other unrelated affairs. I ask that you help me in this by being available to such ponies as I send to you for personal interviews.

If you could please respond at once so I can prevent our mayor from being ridden out of town on a rail, I would really appreciate it.

Your faithful student,

Twilight Sparkle


P. S. Send the tickets quick- they're bringing up a battering ram and I don't think the bookshelves will hold! - Spike

The more experienced courtiers at the Day Court had cleared the room long before Celestia finished reading Twilight's letter. They'd seen that manic grin on the princess's face in the past and knew it meant nothing good for somepony or other. None of them wanted to be that somepony.

Without bothering to cancel court, Celestia dashed off her throne, galloped across the castle to Luna's tower, and crashed into her sister's bedchamber. "Lulu, Lulu, guess what?" she grinned, giggling in excitement.

Luna raised a sleepy head. Her mane still hadn't recovered its magical luster, and the pillow hadn't helped matters either. "Sister, what are you talking about?"

"Six months from now," Celestia chortled, "we are going to have the Best. Night. EVER!!!"




119.9 (Dalxein)




Twilight landed in Ponyville as per usual. She'd gotten a few pings with a couple elements active, but was going to play it mostly baseline unless someone else had a plan. That's when she heard it growing progressively louder.

"...nopenopenopenopenope..."

Galloping up from the outskirts of town, Chrysalis, not even hiding her real form, ran right into Twilight. "Wait, what's going on!?" The anchor yelled, especially since she was now being hugged tightly to the larger queen.

"No time." The changeling frantically replied. "Just trust me on this. You'll thank me later!"

She then teleported the both of them both into the center of the sun, where the loop abruptly ended.




Several loops later, Twilight found Queen Chrysalis sitting in Mac's Bar the day after the Summer Sun Celebration. Sitting down next to the already-drinking changeling who was circled by full drinks and yet more empty ones, she remarked, "Well, it's later. Why should I thank you for the last time we were both Awake?"

Not wanting to beat around the bush, Chrissie chugged the rest of her drink and replied "The drones were replaced by Kyubey. All of them. All of the Kyubeys."

Okay. Not a bad reason. But still... "What!?"

Chrysalis visibly shuddered. "Yeeeeah, they acted mostly like normal changelings before the loop started, but then they were all awake and... Haha, no." She shook her head vigorously. "Noooo nonono." She took a swig from a new drink and sighed. "I'm sorry, by the way."

After sucking in a deep breath and letting it out slowly, Twilight nodded. "Apology accepted. I'm still a tad miffed about being flash-fried, though."

With a chuckle, the queen pushed one of her full glasses toward the princess. "I'll buy your drink?"

Her brow wrinkled as she asked, "Does Mac even charge for drinks?" It'd been so long since he'd started the bar that she was honestly not sure what its original policies might have been.

"You wanna ask?" At least Chrysalis was smiling again.

"Buck no. My tab must be astronomical by now if he does."

The stallion in question, at the far side of the bar cleaning a glass, nodded to himself as he watched the two laughing. Times like these reminded him why he started this bar in the first place.




119.10 (fractalman)




Twilight Starburst Pegasus Twilight Unicorn Twilight Princess Pony Twilight Twilight Sparkle, Sparkling Twilight Vampire awoke, checked her loop memories, and head-desked until she was unconscious.

All the Twilights.




119.11 (Hubris Plus)




The Lyras' mutual mindscape had been undergoing renovations recently. A Loop spent at Whispering Rock Psychic Summer Camp under the tutelage of Raz had been just what they needed to do some serious remodeling. It was well worthwhile, if only to give the personalities not piloting something to do besides watch and offer commentary. It had also allowed them to make larger changes, such as the experiment in collaborative control they were in the midst of.

"Status of the vessel?" Miscellaneous Lyra asked. The view screen was taken up by a large chunk of pink, oozing crimson from cleanly sliced edges.

"Heavily damaged, Captain," their human self answered from the coms station. "Only sixteen percent of the vessel remains intact. They are not responding to our hails."

"Ma'am, I recommend the destruction of the remainder. That... It's no way to live," the security seapony reported solemnly.

"Noted and denied, officer," the captain responded. "Lock on tractor beam and open hangar doors. Bring them in."

"Acknowledged," Unicorn responded from engineering. "Hangar bay open and spell matrices charged. Ready when you are."

"Engage!" Miscellaneous ordered. "Don't worry, councilor Sweet Roll. We won't leave your people out in the cold."




Meanwhile, in Reality:

Lyra poked at her slice of cake a few times, causing the raspberry filling to squirt out past the pink frosting. After a long moment of blank faced contemplation, her mouth opened wide while her horn glowed. The pastry was lifted off the plate and shoved unceremoniously into the unicorn's maw.

"Sometimes," Bon-Bon said as she witnessed the spectacle. "I worry about what goes on in that head of yours."
MLP Loops 119
119.1: All those things they've wanted to do for a while.
119.2: Bruce whining.
119.3: One presumes "The Q and the Plaid" has taken place behind the scenes.
119.4: Problem, solution, awkwardness.
119.5: That first one... would that technically be incest or merely narcissism?
119.6: It's the little things, sometimes.
119.7: Yeah, apparently Lyra's mind is a bit prone to free-associate.
119.8: Face fault.
119.9: Close call. Very close call.
119.10: At least she's not got Twinkle in there too.
119.11: And hence that dessert.
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118.1




“Okay, girls,” Twilight said, nodding. “I think I understand. I'm surprised it hasn't happened sooner, actually.”

Nyx shrugged. “Being a referee is kind of neat, but I want to give it a go myself.”

“And none o' us wanted to be the ref instead,” Applebloom added. “So, we thought we'd ask you.”

“I'm honoured,” Twilight said. “Now – I think I've got a potential extra rule, this time. A fillip, as it were.”

“Go on,” Scootaloo said.

“Well. You always pick the best of everything. So, this time, a new rule. You can only pick ships which were at one time or another seriously considered – and you won't know who's going to drive it.” Twilight held up an envelope. “This has the list of whose ship is going to be commanded by who, and none of you are going to get to see it – so you know that it's going to be better for you if you pick a really, really bad design.”

The CMC exchanged glances.

“Okay, ah've already got like four ideas fer that,” Applebloom agreed. “Nice idea.”

“Thanks.” Twilight shrugged. “Obviously I'll be perfectly willing to be the referee for a more normal game or two in the future, but I thought this might be a nice break from your routine.”

“Right.”

Scootaloo rubbed her hooves together. “Okay, get out the consoles. I've got a real stinker of a design for you guys!”




About a week later, the two earth ponies, one unicorn, one pegasus, two alicorns and one bizarre mutant squirrel-changeling-lion-starbeast-whatever collage reconvened to start their game.

“Okay,” Twilight began. “Let's see what you've got. Applebloom?”

Applebloom pointed behind her at the truly insanely large battleship. “HMS Incomparable, reporting. Twenty inch guns, forty-six thousand tonnes, thirty-five knots, armour like tissue paper. Sure, she packs a punch, but actually too much of a punch – you're going to want ear defenders, it'll rain sheared rivets all over the ship when she fires, and I don't hold out much hope the aiming gear will survive the shock.”

The others gaped.

“Well, it's certainly the biggest one here,” Twilight managed. “Okay, next up – Scootaloo.”

“KMS Graf Zeppelin, with original airgroup.” Scootaloo nodded. “Most of the aircraft she carries are terrible, no torpedo planes, the fighters' undercarriage tends to fall apart on landing and the dive bombers aren't much better.”

“Are those casemate guns?” Twilight asked. “On a carrier?”

“Yep, original design.” Scootaloo shook her head. “And this was the same time they were buildin' Shokakus and Essexes in other parts of the world, too...”

She pointed. “As a final touch, all the AA guns are on the same side. Just because. And yeah, that's original too.”

Twilight facehoofed. “Are you sure this was a real design?”

Scootaloo slapped down a sheaf of papers in front of her. “Got built, too.”

“...huh. Okay...” Twilight sighed. “I feel so depressed... Sweetie?”

“HMS M2.” Sweetie beamed. “A submersible aircraft carrier with one unarmed seaplane!”

“...moving on,” Twilight decided. “Tiara?”

“Well, I feel somehow cheated,” Tiara told her, huffing. “Mine was a production design they made hundreds of.”

“A Wickes-class destroyer,” Twilight read off the cover sheet. “Where is it?”

“Behind Applebloom's mobile mountain, I think.” Tiara sighed. “Well, at least it'll be quick.”

Next up was Nyx, who revealed she had built an Ise-class battlecarrier.

“So, it removed about a third of the heavy guns of a perfectly serviceable – if slow – battleship,” Nyx explained. “And in return, it got the ability to...?”

She tailed off.

“Uh...” Tiara looked the ship over. “Launch planes, I guess?”

“Correct.” Nyx paused. “Floatplanes.”

“...then what was the point?” Scootaloo burst out.

“Exactly,” Nyx agreed. “I fully expect a disastrous aviation fuel fire.”

Twilight coughed. “I see. And Silver?”

“The Tessakonteres.”

Scootaloo facehoofed. “Oh, no...”

“Sorry, what?” Tiara asked. “What's one of-”

“It means forty-handed,” Scootaloo explained. “Basically, she built a Greek battleship from back before Rome, which could probably be outmanoeuvred by an island.”

“...right,” Twilight said. “Well, I must admit I never said it had to be a ship from after the invention of gunpowder... okay, here's the matchups.”

She passed them around.

“What one am I getting?” Sweetie asked. “Hope it's-”

She broke off, staring at the paper.

Sweetie → Sweetie

“Uh... Twilight?” she asked. “Am I supposed to get mine?”

“Yeah, I've got mine too,” Nyx reported.

Twilight nodded. “Exactly. You all do.”

“What!”

“That's-”

“No fair!”

“Wait, wait!” Silver said, hovering slightly. “It works! See, now we all have to use rubbish ships we picked ourselves.”

Applebloom turned an eye on Twilight. “Is this one of them friendship lessons?”

“Well...” Twilight looked slightly embarrassed. “Sort of the opposite, really. 'You don't go to war with the army you want to have.'”

“Ah. Gotcha.” Applebloom sighed. “Well, best go tryin' to square this circle and turn th' ship into an actually useful war machine...”

“You think you've got problems?” Silver asked. “Mine's made of wood!”




“Come on, come on...”

There was a splintering crash.

“Aaaargh!” Scootaloo cantered out onto deck and kicked the Ju87R which had just suffered a landing gear failure. “This is stupid!”

After a session of cursing, she shoved the lost aircraft over the side and replaced it with a Bf109. This one, at least, launched successfully and climbed into the sky.

“Oh, this is giving me a headache...”




Silver Spoon lay back on her blanket, on the top deck of her multi-oared wooden ship.

The way she saw it, she had no hope whatsoever if she was spotted, so she had better just try not to do anything and hope that that worked out.

And it meant she could get in some sunbathing on top of that.

The whole ship shook with a loud clunk-craaash.

“What?” Silver asked, getting up and looking around. Nothing in sight...

The Tessakonteres shook, and started to settle slightly in the water.




“Hello, Sweetie,” Twilight greeted. “What happened?”

“Surfaced under Silver's ship,” Sweetie grumbled. “It knocked the hangar doors open, and I flooded.”

Twilight nodded sympathetically, and looked over the side of her cloud. “Hmmm... Silver's ship seems fine.”

“Well, it's made of wood, isn't it?” Sweetie replied. “Wood floats.”




Silver concluded that her ship wasn't actually going to sink any more, now the hatch to the lowest deck was closed, and slumped.

Then brightened. It looked like she'd achieved a sinking, which was several times better than she was expecting her Tessakonteres to accomplish.

“Huh. Who knew...”




“You've got a huge advantage here, Nyx!” Applebloom shouted into the communication relay over the thunder of her guns.

“Really?” Nyx replied. “How so?”

A rivet bounced off Applebloom's head.

“First, that!” Applebloom gestured, as her ship gradually shredded itself. “My main guns are trying to blow themselves off the ship!”

Nyx stuck her tongue out. “You chose it!”

“Yeah, to be a failure!” Applebloom winced at a loud groaning sound. “Anyway, gotta be quick before somethin' really does fall off. Yours has got air-observed shot!”

BLAM.

“I can't use my superior range, for-”

There was a loud bong, and the whole ship rang like a bell.

Then it shook, and gave a groaning creak.

“I hate Jackie Fisher...” Applebloom sighed. “There goes the backbone, 'cause he didn't include enough armour to work structurally...”




By the time the smoke cleared and Nyx had taken stock, she felt cautiously optimistic. The three 20” hits she had taken had hurt – one had destroyed the fore turret, and another had caused waterline flooding – but the ship could still fight.

Fortunately, as there was a suspicious aircraft buzzing around as she landed her floatplanes and hoisted them up for replenishment.

“Is that you, Scoots?” she asked.

“Well, it sure as sugar isn't Sweetie Belle,” Scootaloo replied. “Hey, that looks kind of beat up. Want an aviation fuel fire?”

“Not especially, no.” Nyx worked her ship up as fast as it could manage – 19 knots – and started up her AA guns. “Right, you came from the east... let's go visit.”

“Never fear!” Scootaloo replied. “I'm faster than you, you know!”

“Yep!” Nyx beamed. “But the wind's coming from my direction. You can't run and launch planes at the same time.”

“...you're quite good at this,” Scootaloo admitted. “Must have been all the stints as ref.”

At that point, the fire on Incomparable reached her magazine.




“Hm, not bad,” Trixie said critically. “Bit too much flying metal, couldn't use it in a show without shields – but the water works with it quite well.”

Twilight blinked. “How did you even-”

Trixie smiled. “There was an explosion due. I have my ways, Twilight.”

“Really?” Twilight considered that. “I... see...”

When Trixie wasn't looking, she wrote a quick note to Spike and sent it off. Then consoled Applebloom on her loss.




“At last!” Tiara cackled. “An easy target!”

Silver waved. “Hi, Diamond. I guess I'm for it?”

“Pretty much,” Tiara agreed. “Sorry, but I have to take what I can get – if I faced Applebloom's monster I'd have a life expectancy of about a tenth of a second, even if the recoil did make her roll upside down.”

“If I had marines, I'd be boarding you right now,” Silver commented absently.

“Yeah, probably.” Diamond shrugged, and opened fire. Specifically, she set Silver's hull on fire.

“Abandon ship!” Silver called. She tapped a hoof on the floor, and the instruments of a complete orchestra appeared, playing my heart will go on. “See? A band, on ship!”

Tiara groaned. “Do Draconequui have a biological need for puns?”

“All signs point to yes, I'm afraid.” Silver shrugged. “Bye – this could take a while.”




“Run away, run away, run away,” Scootaloo chanted. “Running, running, running...”

The AA guns started firing. As did the broadside guns.

“Oh, hi Tiara,” she added. “Sorry, this carrier's kind of not vulnerable to that.”

The gallant little destroyer met a broadside of eight 6” rounds coming the other way, and promptly exploded.




“That sucked,” Tiara said, shaking her head. “Ow.”

She shook Silver's paw. “Thanks for the grace you took your defeat with, by the way. I forgot to mention.”

“It helps keep it all friendly, I think,” Twilight supplied.

Trixie's head went up, and she vanished.

“What just-” Applebloom began.

Twilight cast a time spell. “To the minute. Well, that's vaguely worrying...”

“What?” the fillies pressed.

“Spike just set off a large pile of explosives about ten miles outside Appleloosa. Trixie said she had an explosion sense, and I thought I'd check that... I'm still surprised the answer was yes...”




The fourteen dive bombers, all that was left of Scootaloo's air wing aside from two remaining fighters, straggled down to the deck.

Scootaloo kept one eye on the plotting board. She'd have to recover them quickly to avoid trouble from that battleship...

Land. Land. Crunch. Land. Crunch...

Every time an overstressed landing gear gave way, or an arrestor hook tore out of the aircraft, was like a tiny cut to her chances of winning. Nyx might be down to her secondary armament by now, but that was still more than enough to finish her off in a surface action-

The fifteenth plane in the landing formation dropped something.

Scootaloo had just enough time to notice it before it went through the deck with a crunch, through the armour belt with a clang, initiated, and detonated in the hangar.

“Oh... horsefeathers,” she said softly, as her carrier promptly caught fire.

“Nyx! What did you do?

“I spent about half an hour before your last attack rigging a seaplane with one of the main gun shells, that's what!” Nyx said, sounding very pleased with herself. “Gotcha!”

“Yeah, yeah...” Scootaloo sighed. “I feel so embarrassed. Sunk by an airstrike from a battleship...”

“I couldn't have done it without you,” Nyx told her with a wink.




“Let's never do that again,” Applebloom said, once they were all gathered together again.

“Agreed,” Sweetie said fervently. “We all hated our ships, I'm pretty sure.”

“Did you learn anything from it?” Twilight asked.

“Yep.” Diamond looked between the other fillies, who nodded, then turned to the Anchor. “Get Spike to be the ref.”




118.2




Sunset Shimmer lay back on the grass, just a few furlongs from Fluttershy's house.

She made a gesture with her hoof, and twenty-four glowing keys shimmered into being over her head. She frowned, shifting them back and forth, then made a decision and tapped one.

Heart of Joke dropped into her hoof as the others vanished like smoke, sticking to it like they were magnetized. She waved it back and forth, feeling the balance, and smiled.

“Afternoon!”

Sunset craned her neck to see who was coming up the hill towards her. “Oh – good afternoon, Lyra.”

“So,” the green unicorn added. “What's with the display?”

“Oh, right.” Sunset reached another hoof to the sky, and her characteristic Shimmering Sunset formed. “Well, I usually use this one, but I was thinking – what's the point of a Keyblade you never use? So I was trying to pick one to get used to, to use next time.”

“Right, right. Cool.” Lyra watched as Sunset stowed Shimmering Sunset, and then selected Super Galaxy Bonds. “What's that one for?”

“Kisaragi Gentarou,” Sunset answered without missing a beat. “A who, not a what. Most of them are. He's one of the guys who anchors the world all the Kamen Riders live.”

“More humans?”

Something in Lyra's tone made Sunset pause weighing the keyblades against one another. She looked over at Lyra, and frowned slightly. “I'm guessing you're the human one?”

“Yep.” Lyra nodded, and knelt down before rolling over onto her back. It was awkward, but she adopted a fair facsimile of a human lounging back on a hillside with one hand on their knee. “Got it in one.”

“To be fair, there's only four choices.” Sunset dismissed them both. “What is it?”

“Well...” Lyra “Heartstrings” Heartson shook her head. “Just... kind of jealous, I guess?”

“Jealous of what?” Sunset asked softly.

“Your first few loops after you awoke... you were a human. You were a human for a lot of them.” Lyra raised an eyebrow, and Sunset nodded confirmation. “And then you came back here, and now you're usually a pony.”

“That's correct.”

“But me... well, every single loop, I get loads of memories from me-as-a-human. Every last time. But just about all the time, I'm living in a world of magical ponies. Who are quadrupeds.”

The human-in-mind-only tapped a hoof on the floor. “So... all this, all this being-four-legged, I never get the chance to get used to it. I get the memories from when Lyra-all-of-us is human, so every five years of experience being a pony gets swamped by hundreds of years of memories-being-a-human. So... so I tend to let the others drive, I guess...”

Sunset nodded sympathetically. “Yeah, I got that a lot, from the other direction. Still do from this one, a little.”

“Really?” Lyra looked dubious. “How?”

“See this?” Sunset materialized Will of Fire. “I got this in Naruto's world – the Elemental Nations. The specific experiences which got me the keychain were a few weeks long, and my memory of them is nearly photographic.”

She smiled fondly. “That's what a keychain is. It's... memories, simple as that, just wrapped in magic and friendship and a shiny shape. And it means I never forget a single one, nor what earned them.”

Will of Fire vanished, replaced by Shimmering Sunset.

“This is the one I got because of my time in Equestria, my very first loop – before I, or, er, technically you... awakened. Me, I mean.”

Pushing past that embarrassing point, Sunset went on. “And it's valid for nearly half the loop. A long one, at that. So, basically, I had perfect recall of several years as a pony all through my time in other worlds... and now, I've got perfect recall of several years of human life as a pony.”

“Huh.” Lyra nodded. “I didn't know that.”

Sunset smiled.

Then there was a flicker of light.

They both looked at the small charm sitting between them, and the golden chain connected to it.

“Is that—”

“I think it is,” Sunset confirmed.

Lyra gaped for a moment before asking, "But why is it—"

Sunset lifted the string of seven pearls in her magic. "I don't know, and I'm kind of afraid to find out. Is Derpy even Awake this Loop?"




118.3 (LordCirce)




Applejack ducked under a low-hanging branch, panting lightly as she struggled to compress her magic as tightly within herself as she could.

'This was such ah good Loop too.' She thought, ruefully, as the old barn at the edge of the orchard came into view. It had been a Stealth Anchor Baseline Run. Only her, Cheerilee, and Gilda were Awake, and so she had spent most of her free time getting their advice on the set-up of a couple of the wings of her museum. Whoever the Anchor was, they hadn't revealed themselves or pinged. Baseline had proceeded as per normal; right up until Tirek broke out early. Applejack still wasn't sure what had happened, as Tirek had shown up stronger than she had seen him in a long time, and he had cast some spell that caused Twilight's Library, with Twilight and all three of the Baseline Alicorn Princesses inside, to vanish into thin air. Applejack could still sense the Princesses' power, but it felt faint and far off. Possibly in a different dimension.

In any case, Tirek had drained Discord, Cheerilee, and Gilda of power, gaining Gilda's ink abilities in the process, and reminding all three of the Loopers why he really was a threat. Applejack had managed to escape with only minor draining, and now she was suppressing her magic as much as possible to keep Tirek from tracking her through that.

Applejack slipped into the barn and shook herself, dislodging leaves and some dirt from when she had Earthbent her way out of town. On the edge of her senses, she felt Tirek approaching, though he didn't appear to be moving straight towards her.

"Ok. Now, let's see if this works." Applejack had been running back to the barn to pack up the wing of the museum that she had been tinkering with, when she had remembered an item she had picked up a couple dozen Loops ago. She dashed into the hall, flaring a bit of magic to break the seal she had put on the door to keep the CMC from poking around. In the distance, she felt Tirek's anger sharpen and he began to approach faster, moving towards her position.

Moving quickly, she pulled several of the more fragile items that were on display into her Pocket, then withdrew a single golden tablet. She placed it against the back wall, pushing a bit of her magic into it, just as the doors, and most of the walls around them, were ripped off, revealing Tirek in his dark majesty.

"Hahahaha, I've found you, pony! You are the last. With you, my conquest of magic will be complete. Now, prepare to lose your magic."

Applejack spun to face him, and then grinned. "Alright. If y'all want mah magic so badly, I'll give it to y'all. But I'll do it mah way." And then she bucked the Tablet of Ahkmenrah (or, as Dash has said is should be called, Jackmenrah). She flooded her magic into the tablet, and a wave of golden light flowed outward. Tirek brought his arms up, grasping at the wave of light, only for it to flow around him and across the building. He blinked, as Applejack began to laugh.

"Ah got two things to tell y'all. One, it's nighttime right now, and will be till we get Celestia back, and two, this is a museum!"

Tirek scowled in confusion, before he noticed motion out of the corner of his eye. All around him, close to two dozen statues were coming to life, wings stretching, as the Hall of Ascension came alive.

Tirek scoffed. "You think to best me with statuary. You've squandered your magic. I shall "*FOOMPH* Whatever Tirek had been planning to accomplish was lost as the statue of Trixie the magnificent decided to lead off with a blast of fireworks spells.

At the moment, Applejack could tell that she was still more powerful than Tirek, though it was a lot closer than she was comfortable with. In the face of that, it seemed somewhat odd that she would split her power with the Tablet and the items in her museum. However, she didn't want Tirek to have the chance to drain her abilities like he had Gilda and Cheerilee, and, while her magic was used as a catalyst for the tablet, it utilized an even greater power.

Applejack wasn't much of a scholar compared to Twilight, or even Trixie, and she hadn't had that long to study the golden tablet, but she had found that it was actually quite similar to the Elements of Harmony. The Elements, in the most basic terms, tapped into the universal energy of Harmony, and not only used it to amplify the powers of the wielder, but also channeled the energy directly. It was this connection to a greater power that allowed six above-average ponies to defeat godlike foes many magnitudes of power above their level in baseline. It was also what allowed them to use the Elements outside of the Equestria Loops, because the concept and energy of Harmony existed across universes.

Similarly, the Tablet of Ahkmenrah called on the power of History. The greater the presence of a given figure in history, the greater the power granted to images of the figure by the Tablet. There were more functions, but most of those were layered over the basic functionality of, quite literally, bringing History to life.

For ordinary museum pieces, such as the figure of Sacajawea that Applejack had replaced when she got the tablet, the figure represented perhaps a handful of centuries impact in history, maybe as much as a millennia or two on the outside, giving them many of the skills and abilities the figure represented had in life, but not too much power overall. The figures in Applejack's museum, and more specifically, in the Ascension Wing that she was currently facing off against Tirek within, represented beings that had had eons of history behind them, that had altered the course and fate of thousands of universes. And now, all of the weight and power of that History was being fully brought to bear against the dark tyrant, Tirek.

"Cutie Mark Crusaders, Alicorn Attack Go!"

The living statues of the CMC led off the charge. Scootaloo and Diamond Tiara approached first, Scoots going low and Tiara aiming high. Scootaloo bent the air around her into a sharp blade, grinding the air against itself, and smashed into Tirek's knees, causing them to buckle, slightly. At the same time, Diamond Tiara built up a telekinetic wall in front of her and rammed it into Tirek's face, synchronizing it with a bolt of telepathic force against his mind. She didn't try to establish a connection, wanting no part of Tirek in her head.

Tirek staggered backwards, a bit dazed, as Nyx and Sweetie Bell followed up on the assault, Nyx with a blast of explosive void magic and Sweetie with a pure note of force, both of which smashed through Tirek's magic draining ability and knocked him spinning into a swamp of fondue and tree sap created by Silver Spoon and the statue of Discord from the Pre-Ascended Section. Tirek struggled, just as Applebloom brought the device she had been constructing with her mane around. It was fairly small, a single polished shaft, which let out a humming buzz as it fired out a thin beam of blue light. Sparks of azure lightning crackled across Tirek as it impacted with no other visible effect. Tirek started to chuckle, before Applebloom's next words cut him off.

"Mordekainen's Disjunction Laser Mk 4.6. He shouldn't be able to drain magic for the next few minutes. Hit him hard!"

And then the pain started.

Applejack stood back next to the statues of the Mane Six, who had all held back at the statue of Twilight's insistence.

The blonde farmer tilted her head slightly. "So, just to get it out of tha way, but are you Awake?"

Twilight frowned, before shaking her head slowly. "No. I am aware of the significance of the term, but I am not truly Awake. It is more like... I am like someone that has read an in-depth biography of the Looping being known as Twilight Sparkle. I know all of the history behind her that you recorded, along with a few other things that bled over from somewhere else. Contingency plans she has made and such. But I am also aware that you built me and that I am truly only a replica of the true Twilight Sparkle, a rather pale copy at that."

Applejack nodded. While the Alicorn (and Changeling Queen, and Dragonequues, and Griffon-bear?, etc.) Statues were holding out rather well against Tirek, Applejack could feel the fact that it wasn't doing much too actually weaken him. His power levels were lowering, but the statues were still in the end just copies, as was shown when one of Tirek's Ink Slashes tore through Gilda's and smashed against a hastily erected barrier by Shining Armor, shattering it as well. Applejack turned back to the group. "We need something stronger. The Elements."

Rarity turned from admiring the one-eight scale size Spikezilla firing a jet of flame into Tirek's rather abused face (it being a favored target of both Celestia and Luna), and shook her head. "It won't work. We don't have access to our Pockets. I tried to pull out a battle dress that I, me, the other me made, and there was nothing."

Twilight nodded. "And we can't call them either. I tried and there was no response."

Applejack frowned. "Huh, interestin'. I have a few in mah pocket, but they're attuned to me, so I don't think you could really use them all that well."

Twilight nodded again. "Or at all. We are still just statuary, they might not react..."

Dash cut in. "Yeah, yeah. Science time later, solution time now. I could fly to the Tree and..."

Twilight cut her off. "No, the gems might not even exist anymore, assuming the box was opened by this Twilight."

Dash huffed. "Well, what do you suggest then?"

Twilight paused, and then smiled. "Give me a minute. I have an idea."




All things told, the battle was going pretty well. Tirek had gotten his second wind, but it wasn't meaning much when faced with the combined experience of the Loopers' Statues. Zecora, one of her wings broken off, stomped on the ground, and a thick wooden vine lashed out to bind Tirek's legs in place, just in time for Shining Armor and Cadance to blast him with a Love-based burst of force.

Lyra Heartstrings darted around, dodging past one of the large inky bombs Tirek had started lobbing about. Princess Luna had been taken out by a single blast from one of them, and the rest of the Statues were being careful to avoid them. Lyra was feeling rather frustrated at the moment, because she was likely the weakest fighter in the entire battle. Most of her abilities were tied up in her split memories, and while she knew about having split memories, she, as a statue, didn't possess either the disparate personalities, or the ability to manifest their abilities. Still, she would use what she could. Focusing intently, her horn glowed as she fired off a globe of force, knocking Tirek's hoof out from under him. His guard dropped, and a haymaker from Spikezilla knocked him off his feet, straight into a quintuple buck, courtesy of the CMC sans Silver Spoon, who was currently trying to put Discord and Luna back together.

Lyra grinned as Tirek crashed to the ground. If she made it through this fight, she intended to tell Applejack to make statues of her other selves, as right now she was limited to her Unicorn body. She couldn't even properly use her thief skills.

"Look out!"

Lyra gasped as she was jerked backwards, moments before a large beam from the broken roof above crashed down where she had been crouched. Lyra shuddered, then turned towards Vinyl Scratch, who'd pulled her out of danger.

"Thanks."

"Don't mention it!" Vinyl belted out. Lyra winced, and Vinyl coughed quickly. "Sorry, been amplifying every sound I make to try and make a difference. Forgot to turn off the reverb."

Lyra shook her head. "Not a problem. Let's see where we can go help."

Vinyl nodded, and both of them returned to the fight, just in time to see Ivory Scroll dash in and slap a Restraining Order onto Tirek's face, locking him in place.




"Got it." The Mane Six Plus One turned to look at Twilight, just as her eyes opened and light flared out, feebly but still visible. A rainbow aura gathered around her body, and Twilight smirked at the looks of comprehension on the others' faces. "Each of us has been a bearer of pure Harmony at least once. I knew what it felt like, and I was able to trace it back. We can call on that power and uuuuu~ss" she swayed suddenly, staggering before catching herself. "Ooogh, that's not good. The powers of the tablet and Harmony aren’t meshing well. The magic of Harmony is trying to take over supporting me, and it's pushing the power of the tablet out. I can balance it, but..."

Applejack nodded. "How long can you hold it?"

"Long enough for one good shot, at least."

Pinkie bounced up, laying one of her wings over Twilight's. Rapidly, her skin and wings began glowing with rainbow energy as well. "Make that six good shots. Heehee, we're like a revolver of Harmony."

Twilight smiled as the others approached, using her aura as a catalyst for their own transformation. "The backlash will probably break our statue forms, so after this it will be up to you." She glanced at Applejack.

Applejack nodded solemnly, the light of Harmony building around her as well, and then the seven of them took off.

Rainbow Dash was the first to reach Tirek, who had been pushed back out of the broken museum and into the orchard proper. She circled, squeezed between Princess Big Mac and Sunset's Crown Demon form from the Accidental Ascension exhibit, and gathered as much speed as she could. It was just shy of a Sonic Rainboom, but the detonation of Harmony still created a large shockwave, knocking Tirek through several rows of trees.

Rarity was the next to strike, flying down from above, helped by a Fastball Special from Spikezilla, who had taken to the sky. One crater later and Tirek was just pulling himself to his feet, when Pinkie and Fluttershy came at him from either side, resulting in a double detonation.

Applejack grinned as she saw raw magic peeling away. The magic Tirek had stolen was breaking free, a sure sign he was weakening. Twilight was just coming around for her attack run, when suddenly she tumbled in mid-air and vanished in a flash of light. Applejack and her counterpart pulled up short, wary of whatever attack Tirek had just pulled out of his pocket, when Applejack felt a slight pressure. Acting on a hunch, she tapped the ground, pulsing out her senses through the earth, towards Ponyville.

Twilight's library was back. Maybe this Loop's Twilight suddenly reappearing disrupted her statue's balance with Harmony? It didn't matter, so Applejack shook it off and nodded towards her duplicate. As Dash had said, science time later, solution time now.

"Let's do this."

"Mmmhmm!"

The twin farmponies charged, building up speed with Earthbending as they charged at Tirek, who was still blinking from the Twilight Statue's flashy exit. He realized they were approaching a moment too late, and both of them rushed into his guard, each executing a perfect turn, and bucked him square in the sternum. Applejack felt the energy rushing out of her statue, and focused on amplifying it with her own power. She could feel Tirek's ability, which had come back moments after Dash impacted him, pulling at the magic, but the pull was feeble, and most of the power went straight into causing Tirek pain.

There was a double crack, the first being the sound of Tirek blasting through what was left of the canopy and into the sky, and the second being the sound of the broken form of Applejack's statue hitting the ground. Applejack winced, her statue was in several pieces, but it should be repairable. Quickly, she scooped all of the pieces into her Pocket, and quickly rose after Tirek.

It was almost anti-climactic. She had just cleared the tree-line when two Twilights and the three Princesses all popped in at once, directly in Tirek's parabolic flight path. One of the Twilights, which Applejack immediately pegged as the real Twilight, lashed out with a beam of Harmonic Magic, which blasted the already leaking magic straight out of Tirek. His unconscious body flew back the way it came, and Applejack caught him out of the air, checking to make sure he really was unconscious.

The statue Twilight flew over. "I sensed them coming back, and I felt Celestia reaching for the sun. I knew I needed to stop her from raising it before we finished with Tirek." Applejack blinked and nodded. She had been too focused on Tirek to even notice.

Speaking of Celestia... "So, dear Applejack, this simulacrum of our newest Princess said you could explain her existence?"

Applejack sighed. "Yeah, let me pull out the pamphlet." This was going to take a while to clean up.




118.4 (Gamer A)




It was the start of another loop, and Rarity was busy sewing the decorations for the Summer Sun festival. Oh, sometimes she would just pull a set out of her Pocket and get to work on something more interesting, but right now, she happened to be in the mood for simple busywork.

She was snapped out of her trance by the sound of the front door, and began to rattle off her usual welcome as she took in the new arrivals: a familiar seeming local shepherd and some of his flock. "Hello, Welcome to Rarity's boutique – ah, if it isn't Dolly and Sweaters coming by for a visit again. I must admit, I wasn't expecting you at this hour, Mr. Bell."

"Hello, Rarity," "Sweaters" the pinkish sheep said, a sigh audible in her tone. "Dolly," with a more purplish tint, was busy squealing over some of the outfits she had on display, while the fourth sheep, whose distinguishing feature was a simple white hat, was standing at the shepherd's side. The shepherd himself was a navy blue stallion with a black hair and mane, and a cutie-mark of a tower with a bell on top.

"Yes, well, I had something I needed to check up on," "Shepherd's Bell" responded, producing something for her to look at. "First, I wanted to get your advice on this."

Playing along for the moment, Rarity looked at the trinket. "Hmm, I haven't seen one of these in a while. Wood, carved and colored into the shape of a mistletoe decoration, attached to a nylon string. And if I'm not mistaken... it was mistletoe wood to begin with." She looked back up at the stallion. "Normally I'd say it was completely the wrong time of year to be showing this off. But you just wanted to see if I recognized it, didn't you, Abel?"

"Thought of you the minute I Awoke," he confirmed, "Alright. We can all speak freely now."

"Finally..." "Sweaters" relaxed, "It's bad enough being called Sweater girl or Yoohoo. It's worse being named that way."

"Yes Yuzu, I remember," Rarity responded. "Now Abel – I may go on calling you that? - What really brings you here? Your world was a trial, with several tricks Atsuro didn't properly prepare me for – but I have endured worse."

"Might as well. I was just seeing whether absorbing several demons had any permanent effects on you," Abel said, smiling off to the side, "That sort of thing can be dangerous in the wrong circumstances, you know."

"Just a drop in the bucket, I assure you. It did however give me some of my own Loop powers back for the lockdown's duration," Rarity answered, "Enduring our siblings was much worse. I wasn't expecting Sweetie Belle to be an unrelated rock star."

"Well, I didn't know she was a singer!" Atsuro defended himself, "...But I guess I should've remembered. Naoya was my idol on top of everything else, and has some big shoes to fill. If I'd thought for a second, I'd have known he was the same as always."

"How did you deal with everything?" Abel asked, "Atsuro wouldn't tell me that part."

"Well, first I fought Beldr on schedule. then I convinced Remiel to let me fight Jezebel early - no point leaving that priestess at risk. But after that...I got into a heated argument with the border guards," Rarity admitted, "Pointing out that they were making that cult look like heroes in comparison drove some of them over the edge. After that... Things escalated quickly. Fortunately after my brief career as an alicorn lightning rod, everyone was more inclined to match wits instead of blades with me."

"Hmm, Maybe I should try something like that next time."




118.5 (Jcogginsa)




When Shining Armor awoke, he noticed three things immediately.

The first was the telltale sensation of a shield dropping. That tended to happen when he woke up with a shield out. The second thing he noticed was that he was a biped this loop. Human, probably. The third thing he noticed was a noticeable weight in his chest area.

'Great. Human and a different gender. Always an annoying combination. Oh well, better check the loop memories. Let's see....Superhero, power's force fields of course...Ooh, I'm Canadian, that'll be fun. Named after the Jedi of the seas, neat...fighting something called Leviathan. Evil Aquaman on steroids, from the sound of it...I use force fields instead of clo-'

Shining immediately blushed, and began to reapply his 'Costume'




Shining Armor watched the battle unfold with distaste. He was a soldier in the baseline, and usually out of it too, so he had much more of a stomach for this that his sister did. That didn't mean he liked seeing people die.

'Okay, I've had enough. Time to start operation Buck this Shit.'

Shining reached inside himself, and ascended. This, since he was human, and female, resulted in a magical girl transformation. Of course it did.

His outfit resembled the traditional sailor fuku, only it was very obviously made of the same energy as the force fields. The wings were real at least. No actual horn though, just the force field horn this person usually had. Not important anyway.

Afterwards, he reached into his subspace pocket, and pulled out a thing of pure beauty. It was a shield personified, to him at least. It was Captain America's mighty shield. Shining Armor still wanted to meet the looping version of the man, but Shining felt even the unawake version was worthy of admiration, and always had time to talk to him.

Grinning, Shining Armor charged the Evil Aquaman Ripoff and shouted "Stars and Stripes!"

Then he proceeded to smash the Endbringer around before banishing it to the moon. Manually of course. No elements this loop, and he didn't have one anyway.




118.6 (fractalman)




Twilight stared at the absolutely massive chocolate syrup swimming pool, then headed back into her library-tree-house to reread a random book.

Pinkie Pie took one look and decided it needed sprinkles, banana slices, fresh strawberries, and a giant cherry.

Rarity took a look at the result. "Shouldn't it have, you know...whipped cream?"

"Not this time!" replied Pinkie.




118.7 (Gamerex27)




Yu Narukami Awoke lying in bed. Something immediately felt off. For one thing, he felt much smaller than usual. He quickly thought that he might have Awoken earlier in his timeline in this particular variant.

He was partially correct: he certainly was younger this Loop. However, as he discovered when he tried to get out of bed, that wasn't the only thing that was different.

His shoulders refused to move the way he wanted them too. Grunting, he struggled to get up, waving his limbs vainly in an attempt to get his numb fingers to push himself up.

And, when he got a glimpse of his limbs, he understood why he couldn't feel his fingers. Because, at the time, he didn't have any. In place of his hand was a gray-furred hoof.

Great, the Seeker of Truth thought to himself. This must be Equestria, then.

He skimmed his Loop memories. Apparently, his name here was True Sight (still not as bad as the Sisterhood Complex Kingpin of Steel), and he was still in grade school; today was the first day. Looking behind him, he saw that he was covered front to back in a dishwasher gray coat. According to his memories, there was supposed to be a symbol on his flank called a "Cutie Mark" (he rolled his eyes at this), but he was too young to have one.

He sent out a Ping, and got back around a dozen responses. At least he wasn't alone this Loop (though, since Igor was the Anchor back home, he didn't have to worry about Lonely Loops like some other Loopers).

"True! You up in there!" That was unmistakably Dojima's voice.

"Yeah," Yu said, in a voice that was too high-pitched for his liking. "I just need to grab my books, and I'll be on my way."

"Big bro!" said another voice, most definitely Nanako's. "Come eat breakfast! Your alfalfa browns are getting cold!"

Yes, this was going to be a strange Loop.




As Yu took his seat in class, he scanned the rest of the classroom. Several of the peo-ponies looked suspiciously familiar. One of them, wearing Naoto's hat, tipped her cap in their usual signal to tell if they were Awake-and, since she took it off afterwards, all of them were. Yu nodded in turn.

"Oh, great," said a voice behind him, "it's a whole herd of blank flanks. As if the three weren't enough."

Considering how his Loop Memories told him that the phrase was a derogatory term, Yu figured that this must be a bully. Turning his head, he saw a pink filly sneering at him, reminding him somewhat of King Moron from her attitude.

While the best way-in his experiences, at least-to deal with jerks was to ignore them, that didn't mean it was the only solution.

Hey, Bro, Yosuke (here called Second Wheel) said, using a private telepathy spell. I'm not looking forwards to spending a whole year with these girls. You want to stop them before they get started?

Sure,
Yu replied. But I think we should let everyone else get a turn, too.

Damn right, we will,
Kanji (or Steel Weaver this time) added. I want to shut these assholes down before they can get to anyone else.

Behind Yu, Yukiko snorted, desperately trying to hold in her laughter. Considering how nearly everything in this Loop was named after a horse pun of some kind, it was amazing that Yukiko was able to keep her cool for this long without breaking down into another laughing fit.

"That's a lot of books on your desk, blank flank," said another pony condescendingly. She glared at Yukiko, who gave no sign of noticing them.

Diamond Tiara bumped hooves with Silver Spoon, and sneered again. "Too bad you won't be needing them, since you don't even have a Cutie Mark for reading. Or anything. Your head's as blank as your own flank."

That as the final straw for the black pony: she collapsed into helpless laughter, sliding out of her seat and onto the ground.

Diamond and Silver instantly stopped laughing at her expense, and turned to stare at the other filly. "What's... so funny, blankie?" Diamond put on a half-hearted sneer, clearly thrown off of her game when Yukiko reacted in the exact opposite way she expected.

"P..p...Ponyville....heeee.....Steamy Sanctuary.....ho....blank....FLANK! AHAHAHAHAHAHA!" Yukiko beat her hooves on the ground, her eyes already starting to water up out of sheer mirth.

Diamond Tiara's mask of carefully constructed disdain shattered to pieces, replaced by a look of absolute horror. This blank flank was mocking her! "Stop that! Stop laughing at me!"

Yukiko paid her no heed, and she continued to literally roll around on the floor, laughing.

"STOP LAUGHING AT ME!" Her plans thoroughly dashed, Diamond Tiara screamed in frustration, and stormed out of the classroom, followed by an equally annoyed Silver Spoon.

The room was silent, save for the teacher droning on and on about long division (it was amazing, Yu had thought many times over his countless Loops, how little teachers noticed what was going on in their own classrooms) and Yukiko's laughter. The sound of applause came from nowhere. Yu turned his gaze to see three fillies sitting together, clapping their hooves wildly. The Awake Cutie Mark Crusaders were very impressed.




The next day, the pair of disgruntled bullies decided to try again, this time with the gray-coated blank flank.

"You're staring at nothing an awful lot, aren't you?" Diamond Tiara hissed to Yu. He had been so busy fusing Personas in his mind (a trick he had learned from Igor not too long ago), he hadn't been paying attention to the lesson.

"Keep going," the bully continued, "I'm sure you'll get your Cutie Mark for being a brainless daydreamer soon enough. I'm sure it'll be on your flank annnny second now."

Now.

"So," Yu said slowly, without a trace of emotion of any kind, "you're staring at my flank, then."

The bully froze mid sentence. "What?"

"I'm flattered," he continued, "but I don't think flirting is allowed in school."

Diamond Tiara's face turned red, and Silver Spoon subtly scooted her seat away from her friend to avoid her incoming outburst. "H-How dare you! I wasn't-"

"Miss Cheerilee," Yu said, much louder than he usually spoke, "Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon are staring at my plot. It's making me uncomfortable."

Not even turning around, the Unawake teacher continued writing on her chalkboard. "Miss Tiara, Miss Spoon, could you please stay after class? I need to speak with you about your behavior as of late."

The bullies stuttered in rage and disdain, before finally falling silent and sulking in their seats.

They glared at Yu for the rest of the class. He didn't care at all.




118.8 (Kris Overstreet)




Twilight Sparkle had a plan for this Loop; to introduce Equestria to a magic-based version of the Internet. It took very little time for her to set up; magic-generated electricity was already part of Equestrian infrastructure in baseline, as were typewriters and even primitive arcade games. Crystal balls took a lot of power to become more than fortune-teller props, but a wall plug and booster stations took care of that problem. Programming was the simplest part, since magic-based transistors could go beyond binary and Boolean logic, beyond fuzzy logic, straight into Pinkie Logic if necessary.

Thus, only a few months after the start of the Loop, every home and business in Ponyville and Canterlot was equipped with a shiny new magical terminal, and Twilight Sparkle looked forward to making Ponyville her home world's version of Silicon Valley.

Twilight woke bright and early the morning of Activation Day, when the network went live for the first time. She trotted downstairs to where she'd had her terminal set up, turned it on, and logged in to her account.

You have (1) new message

Twilight grinned. Who would have sent the first message? Apple Bloom (Awake) or Pinkie Pie (not, but still indispensable for programming)? Applejack? Probably not Rainbow Dash or Rarity, who likely weren't up yet, nor Fluttershy, who hated even going to her mailbox. Or maybe Princess Celestia? Surely the Princess would want to send the first message on the new system to all her newly wired subjects!

Eager to find out, she opened the message and read:

DO YOU SUFFER FROM HORN DYSFUNCTION?

Ask your doctor about VIAGIC!

VIAGIC is a little blue pill which can restore horn function on demand, providing longer and stronger magical activity for those with horn dysfunction problems.

WARNING: unicorns with heart or lung conditions should not take VIAGIC. If your spells last longer than four hours, consult your doctor immediately.

Ask if VIAGIC is right for you!

A message from Flim-Flam Industries, Unlimited, Fly-by-night, Griffonia.


Twilight flinched as she began to hear the crashing sounds of one terminal after another being pitched out of windows. I knew this would happen, Twilight sighed, but I was hoping those two wouldn't find out quite yet...


MLP Loops 118
118.1: Most of these existed. The Incomparable was planned, as was an even more insane ship.
118.2: She's probably on the way to get one from Lyra. In a while.
118.3: Nightmare at the Museum?
118.4: It's nice to have a contact.
118.5: Use the force, fields.
118.6: Do YOU have any idea what she's talking about?
118.7: Outflanked.
118.8: Internet inevitabilities.
Loading...
So, I worked out how fast Miles 'Tails' Prower would fall, if he fell out of, say, a plane. Or the Death Egg.
The results were interesting. Assuming he has a drag coefficient of 1.3 (similar to a person skydiving) and a cross sectional area of about 0.3 m^2 (it's the tails, mainly), he has a terminal velocity of about 27 ms-1.
Half that of a human skydiver, mostly because he weighs so much less. (Though rolling into a ball will make him fall substantially faster).
Now, here's the fun bit. He can at least take off while carrying Sonic and Knuckles (meaning he's lifting 20+35+40 kg altogether) for a downthrust of about five times his own body weight.
This means he can apply 4g surplus upwards acceleration in addition to cancelling his own weight, putting him at being able to screech to a halt while falling - in under a second. If he can fly carrying those two for even a second, he can stop in midair from a fall of any sane height. (That is, any height he doesn't play meteor).
Chaos Energy, eh?

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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner 3 days ago
I have a friend who WANTS to know if you'll be continuing the dark world timeline where Rarity became a Nightmare.
Reply
:iconsaphroneth:
Saphroneth Featured By Owner 3 days ago
I am not sure. I rather doubt it, I'm afraid.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner 3 days ago
My friend says:
Kind of sad, could have been a wonderful universe.
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:iconsaphroneth:
Saphroneth Featured By Owner 4 days ago
I'm neither a seiyuu nor female, unfortunately.
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:icongottemsquickfoot:
gottemsquickfoot Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2014  New member
I have actually finished the project that I mentioned. Here's a link to it.

gottemsquickfoot.deviantart.co…
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:icongottemsquickfoot:
gottemsquickfoot Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2014  New member
Hey, I have a feeling you'll like my newest post since it's digimon related though with a very big twist.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Edited Sep 16, 2014
alexwarlorn.deviantart.com/art… The Pony POV Seies' Finale Arc, three years in the making has begun. See?
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2014
The Pony POV Series Finale Arc will begin soon. 
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:iconbrutalityinc:
BrutalityInc Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2014
Hey, for your next MLP Loops epic crossover, how's this idea: in tribute to the 60th anniversary, Godzilla*, and all the other Toho monsters, found their way into Equestria, and the Looping!Mane Six had to deal with them without most of their Looping-acquired powers and their subspace pocket access, which are locked away temporarily due to an error in Yggdrasil.

*And for extra fun value, Godzilla and some of the other monsters had been looping for a while as well. 
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