A My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
fan fiction by Daemon of Decay.
When Twilight Sparkle slipped beneath the covers last night everything had been fine. She had friends whom she loved, a teacher she adored, and a bright future ahead of her. But when she woke up, her blankets and quilts had been replaced by hospital gowns and padded restraints. Everything is wrong and nothing makes sense; even her friends have changed. The doctors, they keep telling her she is sick, that none of it was real and it was all in her head. But they’re lying. She remembers a life far beyond the hospital walls. She couldn't have made it all up on her own. They must be lying… right?
Read it here.
It also has its own Ask a Pony here
This fanfic contains examples of:
- Adaptational Badass: One of the therapists has flying speed and agility rivaling a Wonderbolt. Who is this therapist? A young Pegasus mare named Scootaloo.
- Age Lift: Scootaloo is an adult in this story.
- All Just a Dream: According to the doctors of Broadhoof Memorial, most of Twilight's life has been this.
- In chapter 8, Twilight has woken up back in her library, and assumes that the hospital was just a bad dream. But someone comes to try and prove her wrong...
- Alternate Universe: Where (seemingly) a majority of Asylum takes place.
- Armor-Piercing Question: Therapist Scootaloo, to Rainbow Dash: “And if you get hurt, then what would happen to Fluttershy?”
- Berserk Button: Whatever you do, don't hurt Fluttershy in front of Rainbow Dash. Rainbow Dash WILL hurt you. For that matter, don't even try to interact with her since Dash is likely to take it the wrong way.
- Big Bad: It's someone. It's difficult to say who or what it is for sure, (or even if it's all just in Twilight's head) but the closest we have to this trope is either Other Twilight, or the "plague doctor". Or, if it isn't real, the Shadow menacing Equestria.
- Cuckoo Nest: Twilight is in a psychiatric hospital and is told she is crazy. However, she doesn't believe them.
- Driven to Suicide: Fluttershy tries to kill herself after one of her birds is accidentally killed. But, she fails.
- Every Scar Has A Story: Pinkie Pie has a nasty one on her cutie mark. She got it after accidentally starting a house fire when trying to make a cake for her first party after seeing the Sonic Rainboom; her father barely got her (and the rest of the family) out safely, and she developed an intense fear of hurting other ponies when she attempts to make them happier.
- Foreshadowing: in chapter 12 we are introduced to Rarity, Twilight's caseworker, who gets into an argument with Applejack about Nurse Ratchet; specifically, her views on Keratotomies, calling her a 'heartless butcher'. Later in the chapter, Twilight asks Rarity why she stopped being a fashion designer, and is told she 'had her reasons'. She then inquires after Sweetiebelle, offering to donate her old Smarty Pants doll to her. Rarity seems deeply offended and rushes off. In chapter 17, we learn that a Keratotomy is the Unicorn equivalent of a lobotomy- removing the horn, along with the part of the brain that channels magic. It is a common procedure, and could happen to Twilight if her treatment fails. Then, at the very end of the chapter, it is revealed that Sweetiebelle underwent such a procedure and is now a drooling vegetable.
- Flanderization: Done deliberately with Rainbow Dash's protectiveness of her friends and aggression and Fluttershy's shyness and cowardice.
- Hope Spot: Twilight would sometimes get a sense of comfort from elements of the world she woke up in are more familiar to her world before it hits her with a cold reminder that she isn't in her world anymore. One example is when she sees Pinkie Pie the first time (since she first woke up in the hospital) and is relieved that she is the same pony (sans her now always straight hair) she knew from Ponyville. The one difference that killed it was a massive scar covering Pinkie's cutie mark.
- Chapter 12 ends with Twilight hearing Princess Celestia's voice in the bathroom.
- Insane Equals Violent: As seen in Chapter 6, Rainbow Dash is a good example of this, shown to be throwing soup in Dr. Applejack's face, and then attacking her for pretty much no reason.
- Kudzu Plot: Thanks to the story's slow pacing, lots of characters haven't had all their behavior explained yet. See also All Just a Dream and Ontological Mystery.
- Malevolent Masked Man: The "plague doctor". Though Daemon of Decay hinted that he may not be malevolent-by which we mean that when one user suggested that because the possible "Shadow" that may or may not be real qualified as a plague, he might be trying to help, Daemon of Decay simply said "I wonder..." and then posted an image of Celestia with a trolling expression. So it could go either way.
- Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Twilight and all of Equestria could be at the mercy of some kind of shadow... or she could just be crazy. Who knows?
- Man In The Mirror Talks Back: Occurs in chapter 5.
- Ontological Mystery: In a way.
- Recursive Fanfiction: This has inspired a few.
- Teasing Creator: Daemon of Decay manages to keep the audience guessing right the way through as to whether the hospital is real, and she is insane, or there's something more sinister going on.
- Whole Episode Back Story: Most of chapter 3 has Applejack explain how she became a doctor and became Twilight's friend in this world.
- Wham Line: Spoken by Rarity as Twilight sees her attending to a catatonic earth pony or at least hornless filly:
“Would you like that, Sweetie?"
"Please, just call me Scootaloo.”
- You Wake Up in a Room: The way the fic starts. Also, while Twilight retains all memory of her life as Celestia's student, any memory of having been living in an asylum for (presumably) a decade is completely nonexistent.