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Returned From Sabbatical · FiM Minific ·
Organised by RogerDodger
Word limit 400–750
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Going Back to the Rest
Princess Twilight Sparkle, current ruler of Equestria, stepped out of the mirror portal well rested. Thanks in part from taking a suggestion from her friend Rarity, spending a month in the human world did wonders to sooth her stress. As she looked around, Twilight was not in her private chambers with her friends to greet her. Instead the room looked like a mostly destroyed beauty salon with two mare shooting beams of magic at each other. One was another purple alicorn (but with white hair) fighting an orange alicorn (of sorts, with pink hair). They seemed not to notice her arrival as they flew around the wreckage attacking each other. The tall alicorn mare sighed as she cast a spell and stopped the two in their tracks mid attack.

The orange one looked at Twilight with pleasant surprise as she squealed “Oh my stars! You made it back Princess Twilight! I'm so glad you are here! It’s me, Sunny Starscout! Your biggest fan?”

Twilight's left eye twitched on hearing this. She never had good experiences whenever some creature professed that.

The purple one across from them sneered “You, my nemesis Twilight Sparkle! I, Queen Opaline Arcana, will destroy you!”

Twilight's right eye twitched on hearing this. Again, she never had good experiences whenever some creature professed that as well.

“I just got back from vacation and this is what I have to deal with. Yikes. You know my name and I now know your names. Could somepony here explain to me what is going on?” Twilight asked as she felt a migraine coming on.

“Well... you were gone for a thousand moons and Equestria was cut off from the rest of the world without magic. Until me and my friends found your Unity Crystals,” Sunny explained.

“Huh, what?”

“Bah! You stole what was rightfully mine!” Opaline scoffed.

“Okay, what?”

Twilight thought for a moment and replied with “I am in my future, right? The mirror portal had an accident.”

The other two shrugged.

“I have no clue who you are, Opaline, but I figure we're gonna have a history together,” Twilight mused out loud.

“Oh yes, and it'll be horrible and...” Opaline tried to reply but her mouth was magically shut.

“Nope! Not going to allow you to give me information to tempt me into a time paradox,” Twilight interpreted her.

“Uhm Twilight? You don't know what the Unity Crystals are yet, right?” Sunny asked.

“Nope! But it looks like it's something I'm going to have to create now,” Twilight sighed.

“I'm sorry! Sorry! Didn't know time travel was going to happen at all. Or that you be coming back really. Think it's a long story that I shouldn't get into,” Sunny apologized.

Twilight nodded “Eh, it's alright. I should go back and see if I can't get home to my time period. Are you going to be okay if I leave her with you?”

“Me? Oh yeah, I was just buying some time for my friend's plan to take off as I distract Opaline! They should be coming back any second now,” Sunny assured her as Opaline fumed.

“Good! Sorry to have bothered you. Wish I could stick around, but time travel dangers and all that,” as she started back towards the mirror.

“Heh Twilight!” Sunny started.

“Yes Sunny?” the other mare turned around.

“Just want to say I'm sorry about coming from your vacation to this. Really wish I could get to know you better right now, but I... yeah, time travel is rough. You’ll see...”

“Been there and done that?  Know that I have, ” Twilight smiled warmly.

“Yup!  Could say that,” Sunny giggled.  

Twilight waved to her as she steep though the mirror portal and into the human world.  Where on the other side she landed on a human girl with pink hair. 

“Oh my stars,” said the familiar but stressed out voice.  “I fall into a mirror, get turned into whatever I am now, and now someone else fell onto me.  I’m so stressed out right now!  Err… are you okay?” 

Twilight laughed, "Yeah it’s been one of those days.  Sunny Star Scout I presume?"

“Uh… yeah.  How did you know my name?  Who are you?”  the now human Sunny asked.

“First time meeting me?”

“I think?” 

“I’ll try to explain.  In the meantime, I'll take you somewhere to relax.  Looks like we are going to have a history together,”  Twilight sighed. 
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#1 · 2
· · >>Rao >>Dubs_Rewatcher
I'll have to open with the caveat that I have not seen even a minute of the Gen-5 stuff, so this story is serving as my introduction to Sunny Starscout and Queen Opaline Arcana. So, unfortunately, there's probably a lot of context that's just straight-up going over my head.

Now that being said, I really like the scale of the character conflict of this piece. While I can't really comment on Sunny or Opaline, Twilight has got some nice character beats, especially the bit with her casually muzzling a supervillain just because Twilight's such a goody-two-shoes for the rules that she doesn't want to get tempted into breaking causality. Great little moment.

I think what's holding this story back for me the most (outside of not knowing two-thirds of the cast :P) is the payoff and pacing. As soon as we know we're dealing with flash-forward time travel, there's really no more development of that premise. The only additional thing that happens at the end is the reversal of the situation, but by then your wordcount is so stretched that you only have 100 words to introduce, develop, and payoff on this element. This is absolutely breakneck IMO.

Maybe there's an additional piece of next-gen content that contextualizes this in a meaningful way. But just from my own perspective, I almost wish the story spent its time with just one time-travel and focused its resolution there.

But I think it's clear that you wanted to have the ending be a reflection of the opening from the very beginning of the writing process. I think I can see what you were going for, and I like a lot of the character moments, even if the whole thing didn't quite nail its overall payoff for me.

Thank you for writing!
#2 · 1
I'm with >>Bachiavellian in that I'm behind on Gen 5. Give me a bit and I'll be back once I'm properly acquainted, I promise. Been meaning to watch it anyway. Just feels a bit like an affair, you know? Gen 4 treated me so well.
#3 · 1
I echo everything that >>Bachiavellian said, including that I haven't seen any Gen 5 stuff.

That said, I loved Twilight's eyes individually twitching for each character.
#4 · 1
I have not see Gen-5 too, so I’ll also wuss out of this one.
Being unfamiliar with the setup, I really did not connect with this one. It left me unconcerned, but that’s because I’m unable to relate with any character other than Twilight, which I found quite bland and lacklustre, to be honest.
#5 · 1
Okay didn't have time to hit the movie. Ironically, I was too busy spending time with my young nieces. They've all seen it but I hate spoilers and, you know. 3/5/7 year olds don't understand the concept of "no I don't want you to tell me everything that's about to happen I will literally die--no not literally please stop crying." Though that plays nicely into the story's theme, so I'll call that a win.

I dig this, even lacking some possible context! I sort of wish I hadn't backed away when seeing Sunny's name there. "We're gonna have a history together" make fantastic bookend lines. I absolutely adore Twilight being calm, composed, and not falling for any time traveling paradox nonsense.
“Been there and done that? Know that I have, ”
Excellent display of well earned confidence. She just nopes out without trying to change things, which is exactly the right thing to do in 9/10 time travel movies.

Strong contender for Gold, in my opinion.