Creator / the ultimateSora
is a Fan Fiction
author on Fanfiction Dot Net
. She has written eighteen fics for The Magic School Bus
. All her fics involve Arnold/Phoebe ships. As her work involves potential childhood memory crushing and this page contains unmarked spoilers, proceed with caution.
She has written seven multi-chapter fics and eleven one-shots, all of which are set in alternate versions of the same 'verse. Although each story depicts a different series of events, they all contain a number of interlinked themes, motifs and characteristics, as follows:
- Some of the stories depict Walkerville as being in Texas, but the more recent ones have Walkerville in Rhode Island. The fics are generally set when the gang is in high school to the end of their college years, usually mid-2003 to 2011.
- All of the characters have (naturally) developed from their third grade selves.
- Wanda has become sex-mad, foul-mouthed, heavy drinking and somewhat stupid, while retaining her essentially nice nature. She resorts to physical violence very quickly (occasionally suffering "rage blackouts"), although this is usually Played for Laughs. That's right, she's The Alcoholic Jerkass with a Heart of Gold.
- Phoebe has gained in confidence (depending on the story) and generally takes Arnold's virginity. She also tends to be the Butt-Monkey of the other girls' pranks. The fics portray her as being of mixed Irish-American/Louisiana French heritage. She generally either has A-Cup Angst or other characters are suggesting she should have. In later fics, she and Ralphie are step-siblings, her father married to his mother, and she has a peanut allergy. She's also always a Significant Green-Eyed Redhead who's covered in freckles.
- D.A. is still as intelligent, but now prefers politics and law to science. She's not as reliant on her research and enjoys a busy social life.
- Keesha has toned down her cynicism a bit, and tends to act as a sane and steadying influence on Wanda. She's also a bit of a hipster.
- Weekend Inventor and Pungeon Master Carlos has dropped the puns, but he's still a snarker. In most of the fics, he's a bit of a Casanova Wannabe, and he shares a close friendship with Wanda. He's also a wrestler.
- Tim has added musical ability to his drawing talent, now playing bass.
- Arnold is more confident than he was in the show (even playing sports, swimming usually being the sport), and tends to be preppy with a bit of his nerdiness mixed in. He also has a tree nut allergy in later fics. He still has a love of geology.
- Ralphie has lost his Agent Mulder tendencies. In more recent fics, he and Phoebe are step-siblings, his mother married to her father. He's also a popular jock as a football, hockey, and baseball player.
- Janet, when she appears, has graduated from Alpha Bitch to nymphomaniac Alpha Bitch. She also has a deep hatred for Phoebe, especially if Arnold's dating her.
- Mikey, when he appears, is close friends with the kids, despite being two years younger.
- Liz, the Bus and Ms Frizzle don't appear.
- The guys are all jerks towards each other.
- None of the kids use their catchphrases.
- Their birthdays are always between mid-1986 and mid-1987, which would have put them in Ms. Frizzle's class in the fall of 1995 (which coincides with the second season of the show).
Themes and motifs:
- Arnold is almost always the wealthiest among his friends, and he has a preppy style. This is usually an issue with Phoebe, who thinks she's "too poor" to be with him.
- Carlos is the shortest of the guys while Phoebe is the tallest of the girls.
- The others tease Phoebe and Dorothy Ann over their close friendship.
- If a story is post-high school, it's mentioned that Arnold and Phoebe dated in high school, broke up, and got back together (if they're a couple in the fic already).
- Phoebe's feelings for Arnold always began during the events of "The Busasaurus".
These are the ultimateSora's stories:
- 00's Comedown Machine: In-progress humor fic detailing the gang's eventful junior year of high school.
- Holiday Road: Four-chapter fic about the Terese-Tennelli family going on the road trip from hell.
- The Silver Trout and the Golden Rose: Six-chapter fic detailing Phoebe and Dorothy Ann's friendship over the years.
- Under Cover Of Darkness: A multi-chapter zombie-apocalypse fic inspired by The Walking Dead.
- Red-Headed Lefties With Nut Allergies: One-shot. Phoebe and Arnold are alone at her house one afternoon, but things don't go how you would think.
- The Worst Chrismukkah Ever: Follow up to The Best Chrismukkah Ever but not a sequel. A series of mishaps make it the worst holiday Arnold and Phoebe experience. This is the only fic related to any others, and it's only in name.
- Morning Time: One-shot. Arnold and Phoebe try having a nice morning in bed, which won't be easy with roommates like Carlos and Ralphie.
- Bromance: A one-shot following the Bromance between Arnold and Ralphie in a series of vignettes from pre-Kindergarten through to adulthood.
- The Spirit of Massachusetts: One-shot about the gang spending a weekend in Martha's Vineyard, written for a 'Slightly Risqué Challenge' that required participants to fit certain phrases into their entries.
- There Is No Canada Like French Canada: One-shot. Arnold gets the keys to his parent's holiday home in Vermont, and gives them to his girlfriend Phoebe so she and the girls can go up there for a weekend. They decide to hop across the border into Canada to buy beer, but it turns out one of them is waiting for a Green Card (it makes sense in context) and has to be smuggled back across the border. Hilarity ensues.
- Different Names for the Same Thing: Six-chapter story. Phoebe has a chance to get together with the teacher who was her first crush, but her ex might want her back. Angst ensues.
- The Best Chrismukkah Ever: One-shot. Arnold and Phoebe decide to jointly celebrate Christmas and Hannukkah. Carlos pranks Arnold. This leads to heartwarming moments and hilarity.
- Like a Mother's Mourning Dress: Arnold and Phoebe want to have kids, and think they've finally succeeded when Phoebe announces she's pregnant. Unfortunately, she miscarries and any further attempts end in failure. When Phoebe is diagnosed with cancer, Dorothy Ann steps in to act as a surrogate while Phoebe undergoes treatment and all seems well. "Seems" being the key word. Sadly, Phoebe doesn't survive the story. Has since been deleted.
- First Impressions Of Earth: Eight-chapter, 56,923-word Darker and Edgier fic. When Arnold's eighteen, he gets his girlfriend Wanda pregnant. They marry, and their daughter Jackie is born just before they start college. Unfortunately, Wanda's love of sex and partying means that she's a poor partner and a lousy mother, and Arnold's first girlfriend Phoebe ends up helping to raise Jackie. Before Arnold and Wanda's second wedding anniversary, they divorce (relatively amicably), largely because of Wanda's infidelity and sporadic violence towards her husband. And that's just the prologue. Arnold marries Phoebe, and thinks that this marriage will be easier. Twenty years of joy, angst, sex and mental breakdowns ensue. The Trope Namer for Official Couple Ordeal Syndrome. Has since been deleted.
- Kiss Me Now That I'm Older: One-shot. Humorous short piece detailing the events of Arnold's eighteenth birthday in a world where his girlfriend Phoebe, along with Ralphie and Wanda, were so much younger than everyone else in their third grade class that they're still underage.
- Popular Mechanics For Lovers: Humorous seven-chapter fic. Tim and Arnold love Phoebe. She doesn't love them. Wanda and Keesha love Ralphie. He has a girlfriend. Dorothy Ann doesn't know who loves her. Carlos seems oblivious to everything. Hilarity Ensues.
- Tell Him Tonight: One-shot. Phoebe stands in a corner at a house party, watching Arnold chatting up another girl and unable to tell him how she feels about him. Carlos decides to give her some friendly advice, in his unique Carlos fashion.
- That's Who Phoebe Terese Was: One-shot. She thought she was just everybody's awkward friend. Carlos loses a bet to D.A. because he thought she'd never progress beyond that mindset. D.A., of course, knows best.
- The Life And Times Of The Fantasmic Four: Nine-chapter fic. The four girls, aka, 'The Fantasmic Four' keep a scrapbook chronicling their time in high school. As they enter their last year, however, keeping it up to date is only a tiny (albeit increasingly difficult) part of their lives. Relationships are tested, copious amounts of alcohol are consumed, lots of sex is had by all, SATs are taken and Hilarity Ensues. However, said hilarity is mixed with incredible amounts of angst. Has since been deleted.
- The Musings of Miss Terese: One-shot. Arnold finds Phoebe's diary.
- My So-Called Life: One-shot. Phoebe's diary entries for one year of high school.
Note: As Under Cover Of Darkness
, The Worst Chrismukkah Ever
, First Impressions Of Earth
, The Life And Times Of The Fantasmic Four
, The Best Chrismukkah Ever
and Popular Mechanics For Lovers
have their own pages, this page deals with tropes that are prevalent in multiple works or only appear in the works that don't have their own pages.
Tropes that apply to the ultimateSora's works include:
- A-Cup Angst: Phoebe. Generally Invoked In-Universe.
- The Alcoholic: Wanda in every fic. Usually Played for Laughs.
- Best Friends In Law: At the end of Bromance, Arnold and Phoebe are married, and since Ralphie and Phoebe are step-siblings, this makes Ralphie and Arnold brothers-in-law.
- Betty and Veronica: Phoebe and Wanda to Arnold in a couple of stories.
- Bittersweet Ending: First Impressions Of Earth, Invoked in Tell Him Tonight and Popular Mechanics For Lovers.
- Catch-Phrase: Oddly, given the source material, this is an Averted Trope. D.A. lampshades her childhood Catch-Phrase in First Impressions Of Earth.
- Cluster F-Bomb: Whenever Wanda speaks.
- Coming-of-Age Story: All of them, especially the longer stories.
- Darker and Edgier: All of them compared to the source material, but First Impressions Of Earth is even by the standards of the other fics.
- Dating What Daddy Hates: Gender-flipped as Arnold's mother hates Phoebe in most of the stories.
- Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Wanda. Usually Played for Laughs. Not so much in First Impressions Of Earth.
- Everybody Has Lots of Sex
- First Kiss: In Red-Headed Lefties With Nut Allergies, Phoebe finally gets the courage to kiss Arnold, but due to her lack of any experience, it's awkward. It only gets more awkward when Arnold tells her he has a girlfriend.
- Genki Girl: Wanda.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: Phoebe in First Impressions Of Earth, Arnold in The Life And Times Of The Fantasmic Four.
- Hollywood Dateless: Arnold and Tim in Popular Mechanics For Lovers and Arnold in the middle stages of The Life And Times Of The Fantasmic Four. Justified by unrequited love for Phoebe in both stories.
- I Am Not Pretty: Phoebe thinks and/or says this is various stories, despite others (mainly Arnold) telling her otherwise.
- Ivy League for Everyone: In various fics, some of the gang (most often Arnold and Dorothy Ann) either apply or go to an Ivy League school, most often Brown (close to Walkerville) but also Harvard (because Arnold wants to be in Boston with Phoebe) and Penn (because D.A. wants to eventually go to their law school). It's mentioned in some fics that Arnold's father went to Yale.
- Jerkass with a Heart of Gold: Wanda, Carlos and Ralphie. Tim and Arnold can be this, depending on the story.
- May–December Romance: Different Names for the Same Thing.
- My Sister Is Off-Limits!: In Red-Headed Lefties With Nut Allergies, Phoebe finds out the reason Arnold has never been touchy-feely with her like he is with his other gal-pals is because Ralphie would "kill any guy touching his step-sister, even me."
- Official Couple Ordeal Syndrome: First Impressions of Earth is the trope namer.
- Rich Bitch: Janet, whenever she's present. Sometimes Wanda.
- Secret Diary: In The Musings of Miss Terese.
- Sex with the Ex: Different Names for the Same Thing and The Life And Times Of The Fantasmic Four.
- Shipper on Deck: Carlos in Tell Him Tonight. Wanda (and probably D.A.) in That's who Phoebe Terese Was.
- Ship Tease: All of them, especially The Life And Times Of The Fantasmic Four and Popular Mechanics For Lovers.
- Shout-Out: Several stories have made reference to Franz Ferdinand, The Strokes, Dallas (D.A.'s surname note is occasionally "Ewing"), It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Frasier, Will & Grace, South Park, That '70s Show, Family Guy, The Walking Dead, Misfits, A Song of Ice and Fire, Parks and Recreation, Archer, Arrested Development, and American Dad!.
- The Dandy: Arnold.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Wanda and Phoebe.