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Lesson Zero, part 7
nervous breakdown, failed her SAN roll
The sun is getting low in the sky over Ponyville. No one, not even Princess Celestia herself, is more aware of this than Twilight Sparkle.

"Clock is ticking, Twilight. ClOcK. iS. tIcKiNg."

She paces back and forth in front of the window. "Keep it together," she mutters to herself over and over and over again. She can do this. She has to do this. The alternative is too horrible to contemplate.

But how? Rarity doesn't need help, Apple Jack doesn't need help, none of her friends need help...


"If I can't find a friendship problem," she says to herself, "I'll mAkE a friendship problem!"

She rubs her forehooves together in glee as she opens up her old toybox. She knows just the perfect tool for this job...

Lesson Zero, part 5
determined, gonna tolerate & love the SHIT outta you
Rarity doesn't need help. Rainbow Dash and Apple Jack don't need help. Fluttershy doesn't need help. Pinkie Pie wasn't even home when Twilight went to check if she needed help.

At a loss for anything else to do, Twilight has resorted to lying on a park bench, trying to keep herself from freaking out.

"It's fine. It'll all be fine. The day isn't over yet." She looks worriedly up at the afternoon sun. "But it will be over soon!"

Twilight groans and flops down on the bench again. "It'll be all over! My time in Ponyville, my advanced studies..." She stares down at her reflection in a rain puddle. She doesn't look like an advanced student of magic; she looks like a frightened, exhausted unicorn filly who just wants the day to be over. She pastes on her brightest smile. "Nono. You're a good student. You can do this." Ooh! But what if I can't? "You can. You just have to keep it together. Keep. It. Together."

She glares in determination at the pony in the puddle. Keep it together. Keep it together. Keepittogetherkeepittogetherkeepittogether.

She's vaguely aware of Spike saying something, but she's too focused to respond.



Twilight blinks up at Spike's angry reptilian face. "Huh?"

"Are you okay?"

...good question. Is she okay? She can still hear laughing. It's coming from three fillies playing jump rope, who don't seem to have noticed her in the slightest. She rubs her forehooves over her eyes, trying to clear her head.

Spike frowns. "Twilight, I'm really worried. I mean, this letter thing is really getting to you." He holds up a box tied with string--the box full of cupcakes from the bakery they got this morning. "Here. You've been so anxious all day that you completely forgot about the picnic. Why don't you just relax and go hang out with--"

"The picnic!" Of course! The picnic! All her friends will be there, and she can tell them her problem, and they'll be happy to help her out, right? Twilight telekinetically grabs the box and takes off for the field west of Ponyville. "I should go see my friends!"

Lesson Zero, part 3
"No need to panic," Twilight murmurs to herself. "Rarity is just one pony. I'm sure one of my other friends will need me..."


The noise is coming from the direction of Sweet Apple Acres. As Twilight approaches the farm, she starts in surprise as a chunk of wood comes flying across the path and nearly clocks her in the face.

"What in the world...?"

Lesson Zero, part 2
"You've got this, Twilight," says Twilight to herself as she trots through the busy streets of Ponyville. "You still have plenty of time to get that letter to Princess Celestia. There has to be somepony who needs the help of a good friend..."

Lesson Zero, part 1
It's already been an eventful day for Twilight Sparkle and Spike. They've been out running errands, making orders, picking up orders, returning borrowed items... everything on the lengthy checklist Spike made Twilight this morning. Sure, it might have taken less time if Twilight hadn't insisted on double- and triple-checking the checklist after every stop to make sure they hadn't forgotten anything, but you can't be too careful!

"Looks like that's everything," says Spike as they return home.

"Almost everything," Twilight reminds him, nodding toward the last item at the bottom of the parchment roll.

"'Triple check checklist to make sure we didn't miss anything when we double checked the checklist'? Uh... check." Spike winces and rubs his wrist. "Ugh... I've been holding that quill so long, I've got a claw cramp. Good thing we don't have anything to report to Princess Celestia this week... I don't think I could write another word!"

Twilight stops dead in her tracks. "We haven't sent a letter to Princess Celestia this week??"

"Why? Is that bad?"

"Bad?? BAD?!" Twilight shrieks. "Of course it's bad! I'm supposed to send Princess Celestia a letter every week telling her about a lesson I've learned about friendship. Not every other week. Not every 10 days. Every. Single. Week." She rummages frantically through her desk drawers, telekinetically lifting a dozen books at once. "Ohh, where's my calender, where's my calendar??"

"...where it always is?" Spike waves the item in question, then flinches as Twilight magically drags it over.

"When did we send the last one?"

"Last... Tuesday?"

"And today is...?"


Twilight yelps. "Nononononononono--" She dashes up the stairs to stare at the sun, which is already high in the sky. "If I don't send her a letter by sundown," she wails, "I'll be... TARDY!"

Spike is nonplussed. "What's that now?"

"Tar-dy, Spike! Late, I'll be late!" Twilight flops down on her bed, all four legs flailing in agitation. "Oh, how could I let this happen? I'm usually so organized. I've never been late with an assignment."

"Oh, please. You're the most studious student ever!" Spike protests. "I'm sure the princess will forgive you if you miss one little deadline."

Twilight shakes her head. "I'm afraid to take that chance, Spike. This is the ruler of all of Equestria we're talking about. The pony who holds my fate in her hooves! What if she doesn't forgive me?"

"Yeahhh, I don't think she--"

POOF. Twilight teleports down from her bed in a flash of pink light so she can be nose-to-nose with Spike. "What if instead she starts thinking I'm not taking my studies on friendship seriously?"

"Why would she--?"

"What if she makes me come back to Canterlot and puts me back in school and makes me prove I've been taking them seriously by giving me a test?? What if don't pass?!"

"But why wouldn't you pass--?"

"She's my teacher. Do you know what teachers do to students who don't pass? They send them back a grade! But she won't just send me back a grade. She'll send me back to... magic kindergarten."

She can already imagine it. Her, a fully grown mare, struggling to fit into a foal's desk, all the other students pointing at her and laughing...

"Twilight? Twilight!"

"Huh?" Twilight blinks in surprise as Spike's touch brings her back to reality.

"That is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard!" says Spike. "You're not going to be sent back to magic kindergarten."

"You're right," says Twilight, after taking a couple of deep breaths. "I have no reason to worry. Because I'm going to solve a friend's problem and get that letter to Princess Celestia before sundown! So..." She gives Spike her cheeriest grin. "Got any problems, troubles, conundrums, or any other sort of issues, major or minor, that I as a good friend can help you solve?"

Spike thinks. And thinks. And thinks. And thinks some more. "...I got nothin'," he finally admits.

"Then it looks like I'm going to have to find somepony who does." Twilight trots purposefully toward the stairs.

"This won't end well," murmurs Spike before setting to work on picking up the books and parchment scattered across the room.

My Fair Luna
Star Swirl the Bearded, Nightmare Night 2011
Fluttershy's cottage is one of the few homes in Ponyville that isn't decked out for Nightmare Night. Twilight hopes that's an encouraging sign for Princess Luna, an indicator that her would-be helper doesn't buy into all this 'Nightmare Moon' nonsense.

"Don't worry, Princess," she says as she leads Luna up the path. "Fluttershy can give you some great pointers. She's delicate and demure, with the sweetest little voice."

Twilight steps up to the door and knocks three times with her forehoof.

In Pursuit of Loyalty
chillin' with my fillies

"She's not here."
Without Rainbow Dash, we can't use the Elements!Collapse )

Return to Sender
OOC, cutie mark

Ohh, my stomach! Hahahahaha!Collapse )

The Elements of Harmony: a Reference Guide
sigh, facehoof

Okay, we're here, everyone please please please just go inside, pleeeeeease?Collapse )


"And what're you laughin' at?!"
Oh, you ponies are just the most fun I've had in eons!Collapse )