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Fanfic: Cadance Of Cloudsdale
Once upon a time, in the magical land of Equestria, there was a young pony princess named Mi Amore Cadenza. She's one of the only Alicorns in all of Equestria, so she lives in Canterlot Castle where she's surrounded by servants, luxury, and recieves her tutelage from Princess Celestia the only other known Alicorn and ruler of Equestria. Cadance has everything she could ever need to be happy.

However, she is most definitely not.

Cadance knows Equestria isn't her home. She knows that she has a destiny as a Princess. And she knows that Princess Celestia hides important information from her about her past. When one day Cadance can't take enough, she begs Celestia for a real political station, on befitting a young princess of Equestria. Eventually, Celestia relents, and Cadance is appointed Envoy to the City-State of Cloudsdale. These are the stories of how Cadance grew into the mare she is today.

The Cadance of Cloudsdale series is an ongoing Fanfiction project by Skywriter. Set a few years before the cartoon proper, it is a collection of Short Stories detailing Cadance's life as an ambassador to Cloudsdale.

The short stories, in order of publication:

  • How to Remove a Unicorn Tooth gives us a day in the life of Princess Mi Amore Cadenza, who considers her pampered existence to be a gilded cage. Desperate for some responsibility, she implores Celestia for a position and, after a series of startling events, gets it.
  • Lady Prismia and the Princess-Goddess details the end of Cadance's centuries-long upbringing in the secluded hamlet of Reduit. An invasion of phantom-like snakes leaves everypony drained of vitality. The young Cadence, somehow unaffected, ventures outside for the first time in her life in order confront the witch controlling them, and, in so doing, earns her cutie mark and also comes to Celestia's attention.
  • A Princess By Any Other Name is a much more humorous story set during Cadance's teenage years. Here, Princess Cadance engages in an epic battle with the Equestrian Bureaucracy in order to change her name from Cadence to Cadance. It's also a crossover with the Equestrian Civil Service series by GhostOfHeraclitus.
  • A Lot To Think About is a short scene chronologically after most of the cycle. On the eve of the Royal Wedding, Cadance (actually Queen Chrysalis) is alone and aloof. As this is Celestia's last chance before Cadance begins a new stage of her life, Celestia takes it upon herself to apologize for the missteps she made during Cadance's upbringing.
  • The First Time You See Her begins with a Perspective Flip of Shining Armor's scene in How To Remove A Unicorn Tooth and covers the ensuing hassle as he tries to report it to the higher-ups and get home to sleep. It is still ongoing, but it seems that Cadance will be making her way to Cloudsdale this fic, while Shining gets promoted.
  • In The Bleak Midwinter is a one-shot set either after or near the end of the cycle. Cadence, after a conversation with her majordomo, realizes that the Crystal Ponies have no concept of a positive winter holiday, and wonders if she's worthy to rule such a longsuffering population.

Semi-canon Recursive Fanfictions which are set in the universe:


These stories provide examples of:

  • Adaptation Expansion: Lady Prismia and the Princess-Goddess takes the one paragraph of Cadance's origins and turns it into an entire story, though some liberties are taken to stay consistent with the first story.
  • A Date With Doctor Hooves: Shining mentions using the a copy of one of Twilight Velvet's erotic alicorn series for more than just literary appreciation... and left evidence of his enjoyment on it.
  • Adorably Precocious Child: Twilight Sparkle, as "a young professor." Her child side shows when she finally removes her tooth, tearing up and needing an embrace from her foalsitter.
    • Cadance as well, from what we see of her. Not even the threat of being killed stems her optimism.
    • Twilight again, in The First Time You See Her. See Call Forward.
  • Amnesiac Hero: Since Cadance is the focus of the story and has no idea what happened to the Crystal Empire (or herself, for that matter), she qualifies.
  • Artifact of Doom: Lady Prismia's amulet, the jewel embedded cut from asterite crystals. Just like the Alicorn Amulet, it makes the wearer stronger but also corrupts them in the process, and can only be removed by the wearer.
  • Beleaguered Bureaucrat: Dotted Line in A Princess By Any Other Name, stuck between having to deal with a temperamental teenage Princess and a ridiculously complicated Royal Name Change Form that was actually fake. Celestia apologizes to Line for all that she went through.
  • Big Eater: We learned in chapter 3 of The First You See Her that both Celestia and Cadence are this. This includes being very messy eaters.
  • Black Comedy: In order to emphasis the necessity of removing of her loose tooth immediately, Twilight shows Cadence of a drawing of said tooth falling out while she sleeps, slipping down her throat, and then causing her to choke to death. Twilight even cites how her drawing counterpart has little x's in her eyes to signal how she's dead as a hammer.
  • Brainwashed And Hateful: Lady Prismia, actually. Her amulet amplified the negative aspects of her personality, causing her to be ostracized from Equestria when she became unbearable and driving her to steal love so other's can't be happier than her. She gets better.
  • Bratty Teenage Niece: Cadance in her teen years, resenting Celestia for the restrictions she places on her and throwing her weight as a princess around to try to make the Bureaucracy move faster.
  • Break the Cutie: Cadance realizes that the Crystal Ponies have undergone this, and worries she doesn't truly deserve to lead them.
  • Brick Joke: Dotted Line wonders out loud why she'd ever have to notarize Princess Celestia's signature when it came to royal name changes. Turns out, that step was very important, because Cadance later forged Celestia's signature in an attempt to secretly change her aunt's name to "Mrs. Big Stupid Meanie No-Pants Sun-On-Her-Butt".
  • Bullying a Dragon: Lieutenant Hot-Button chews out Master Sergeant Thunderous when the sergeant is too blunt in informing Shining Armor he has a special assignment. Right as Button notices his fellow officers suddenly gaining an interst in the complexity of the ground's texture, Thunderous explains politely that besides the fact that he is a longtime friend of both of the two's commanding officer and has served for longer than Button existed, the orders came directly from the afformentioned commanding officer and Button is grossly overstepping his authority.
  • Cassandra Truth: Cadance's father, the Snow King, became very paranoid later in life, believing he was being stalked by "insect ponies who could transform into other ponies at will." He was vindicated in his suspicions, 1000 years later.
  • Call Forward: A few already.
    • Cadance literally can't remember where she came from, since it's King Sombra's spell removing all traces of the Crystal Empire's existence.
    • Celestia is not amused when Cadance jokes that the older Alicorn acts as if Nightmare Moon might swoop down and gobble Cadance up.
    • Cadance mentions to Celestia that Twilight Sparklenote  is very studious, and will someday become a great user of magic.
    • Celestia will need a very special pony to help her stop Nightmare Moon in the future. She assumed Cadance was this pony, but she eventually concludes it will be someone else.
    • Changelings are mentioned, as Sister Thistle identifies their emotion-eating magic being used by Lady Prismia.
    • Twilight Velvet muses aloud that children are often more insightful than one would think, while ignoring her daughter, currently babbling away on how Shining's going to be a prince someday, and live in a castle far away.
  • Cerebus Retcon: Downplayed. Shining Armor's uncle's sash was used in "A Canterlot Wedding" as a throwaway prop to show the Impostor Cadance's Control Freak nature as she demanded it gone. here it's revealed it was actually a war medal from the Pegasi passed down from Shining Armor's ancestor, who earned it for the suppressing a rebellion in Cloudsdale.
  • Cheerful Child: Cadance as a filly. She doesn't let her village being hit by a Hate Plague dampen her spirits too much, and redeems Lady Prismia pretty much through her optimism and kindness.
  • Continuity Nod: Dotted Line, the Beleaguered Bureaucrat from A Princess by Any Other Name, makes an appearance in the third chapter of When You First See her, as Shining Armor and fellow officers work to protect his offices from that strange flood of salt water from the ceiling.
  • Covert Pervert: Twilight Velvet, a bestselling author that keeps a cozy little office where she lets her creative muses flow, writing stories like Daring Do and tons of erotica. Very, very explicit erotica.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Lady Prismia was banished from Equestria because her boyfriend grew bored of her and told an enormous lie about her that resulted in said banishment, delivered personally by Princess Celestia. But then Subverted, as Prismia's personality was changed bitter and resentful due to the Artifact of Doom she started wearing, and her Unreliable Narrator status means she was likely banished for a real reason.
  • Distant Finale: In the Bleak Midwinter could qualify, as it's set after the events the cycle concludes, instead being set after Cadance and Shining Armor are married and they're performing their duties as the rulers of the Crystal Empire.
  • Dramatic Irony: A Lot To Think About runs off this, as it's Celestia apologizing to Cadance over all the ways she's failed to be a good surrogate parent. Of course, Cadance is actually trapped in a cave a few kilometers underground, and it's Chrysalis insisting that it's all going to be okay.
  • Emotion-Eating Spell: Lady Prismia summons invisible, neon-green snakes that steal ponies' love from their hearts to gather it all for herself. Cadance, being the paragon of love, is immune to their effect.
  • Erotic Literature: Twilight Velvet is a bestselling author thanks to these, which her son Shining mentions makes him feel uncomfortable.
  • Feigning Intelligence: Twilight Sparkle acts like a "tiny professor," giving mock lectures to Cadance, drafting complicated contraption blueprints, and speaking in a very wordy manner. Not as negative as other examples, since she currently is just a little filly.
  • Fisher King: The Crystal Castle is the downsized version of this trope. Shining Armor knows that Cadance is in a worried mood when his horn catches on a chandelier, so finds his wife to comfort her.
  • Footnote Fever: There are tons of footnotes in A Princess By Any Other Name, adding more tidbits of humor for those who keep track of what the footnotes reference.
  • Genki Girl: Cadance as well during her extensive childhood, once demanding all of the monastery staff perform a dance over and over again before her Nap-Nap time.
  • Gilded Cage: Reduit, though Cadance was too young mentally to realize it for what it was for centuries. Eventually it's replaced by Canterlot Palace, though Cadance grows up enough to begin to resent it, and the plot kicks off due to her attempts of escaping it.
  • Hate Plague: The changeling spell Lady Prismia casts on Reduit takes all of their love away, making Cadance's caretakers bemoan wasting their existence dedicating themselves to her, villagers ignoring everyone else, and ponies not showing up for work due to not caring about their jobs anymore.
  • Hidden Elf Village: Reduit, a small hamlet hidden from the world. Cadance lived most of her life sheltered in a monastery there.
  • Jossed: Turns out, Cadance wasn't born an alicorn, and was became one after using her own love to stop Lady Prisma from stealing a nameless village's love. In this story, Cadance has always been an alicorn for several hundred years, but now integrates the canon by having that moment be when Celestia learns about Cadance's existence.
  • 100% Adoration Rating: The Crystal Ponies adore Cadance, thanks to her caring nature and the past few rulers being insane, absolute tyrants, or absolutely insane tyrants. When the Crystal Ponies realize how upset Cadance is how their culture has no positive winter holidays, within an hour they draft a resolution to introduce a new, happy holiday.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Cadance in her earlier years, but she's come to terms with her situation later in life. When she first invited Shining Armor to be her Praetorian Guard for her visit to Cloudsdale, she mentioned being sick of being called "Princess" by everyone and asks informally and politely if Shining will accept her offer instead of simply ordering him.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Cadance in In The Bleak Midwinter, when making preparations for Hearth's Warming Eve. The symbols she hung to celebrate a warm, festive holiday confuse the Crystal Ponies, who see winter as a time of bleakness and suffering and assumed Cadance was giving them a Secret Test of Character (that, or she had gone completely crackers).
  • Insecure Love Interest: Shining Armor at first, viewing Cadance as extremely out of his league, due to her being an alicorn and a princess. He's obviously over that mindset by the main series, and we see that paradigm shifting pretty early.
  • Jabba Table Manners: Cadance and Celestia's table manners are so atrocious that Celestia assigns higher security to their dinners than their government duties because of the major scandal that would ensue if those regal ponies were caught. However, Celestia machines events so Shining Armor gets a first-hand view, mostly to eliminate his preconceptions that the royal alicorns were goddesses rather than actual ponies.
  • Lies to Children:
    • A young Twilight Sparkle gushes as she asks Shining Armor what meeting Celestia personally was like. He had just been a victim of another one of Celestia's schemes which required him to fight his way through several guardsmen on bogus orders to catch both Celestia and Cadance gorging on like pigs on their dinner, and realized Celestia was an enigma that he'd never solve. He finally decides on telling her that Celestia is really beautiful and regal, but has terrible table manners.
    • Inverted in that same scene, as Shining reads Twilight some Quantum Physics textbooks as her bedtime story, and the young needs to dumb the jargon into something her older brother can understand. Twilight admits it's a gross oversimplification.
  • Love at First Sight: Shining Armor fell for Cadance hard after she bumped into him and yelled furiously after leaving Shining's house. He regularly fantasizes about her and hopes desperately for the chance to meet her again, which he obviously gets.
  • Master of Illusion: Lady Prismia's specialty. Her illusions are indistinguishable from reality, and she claims she can kill by terrifying somepony until their heart gives out.
  • Mood Whiplash: In the first story, the narrative reads like a cutesy slice-of-life piece, with Cadance helping Twilight remove her tooth. Then, having a semi-nervous breakdown, Cadance runs off and nearly freezes in a snowstorm. Cadance's situation improves, but the serious tone remains.
  • Mistaken For Spy: Cadance angrily tells off Cadet Shining Armor when she runs into him while leaving the Sparkle residence, thinking him sent by Celestia to monitor her. Celestia says it best:
    Celestia: The young guardstallion you startled outside the Shine residence was Twilight Velvet's son, on his way home after an unexpected reassignment. He is not a spy of mine. He was outside the house because it is his house."
  • Mundane Made Awesome: As a fresh officer, Shining Armor received orders to deliver Cadance a package, and literally had to fight through several experienced guardsmen just to bring Cadance her baby book.
  • Mysterious Waif: Cadance fits the definition to a T. Her home magically disappeared nearly a millennium ago, she's surrounded by mystery with her Winged Unicorn-ness, odd aging, and shrouded past. Finally, Celestia took her under her wing, to help Cadance discover more about her past.
  • The Neidermeyer: The extremely-green Second Lieutenant Hot-Button gets very unpleasant with a veteran sergeant as he comes to retrieve Shining Armor for a specific task. It's mostly bluster as nobody present respects what theoretical authority Button possess.
  • Never Grew Up: Played Straight, but then averted with Cadance. She was literally the princess of the Crystal Empire. As in, the one that disappeared 1000 years ago. When Celestia found her in an isolated monastery, she was only a filly. Once Celestia brought her back to Equestria, she continued developing normally.
  • Non-Indicative First Story: Sure, it involves removing a tooth from a unicorn's mouth, but that event is definitely one of the least significant plot developments, even in its own story.
  • Plot Coupon: Shining Armor's great-uncle's breastcollar with a built-in cloudwalking enhancement. Cadance needed a Royal Guard escort to guard her for her visit to Cloudsdale, and Shining's possession of it added him onto the list of candidates to be chosen. Effectively, that sash allowed Shining Armor and Cadance to get to know each other and falling in love.
  • Porn Stash: Downplayed, but Shining keeps an erotic novel about alicorns (written by his mother, no less) under his bed for "personal use."
  • The Power of Love: Cadance learns early on how powerful love can be, redeeming a bitter old witch by explaining its true meaning in a few words.
  • Praetorian Guard: Shining Armor becomes one for Cadance for her visit to Cloudsdale. As we know, they end up falling in love and marrying.
  • Precocious Crush: Cadance once foalsat Shining Armor when even she as a young princess could easily carry him like a baby. Shining guesses that's where his crush on her started, and we know how that ends.
  • Really A Thousand Years Old: Princess Cadance, actually. Not that she remembers much of it.
  • Recursive Fanfiction: Yep, they're out there. So far, the original author embraces them.
  • Retired Badass: Celestia had her fair share of combat in the past. She obtained the projecting crystal seen in The Crystal Empire - Part One when Sombra stabbed most of it into her. She still won.
  • Right Hand Versus Left Hand: Early in his officer's career, Shining Armor is assigned to deliver a parcel to Princess Cadance despite the fact his authorization is not considered valid by the guardsmen protecting her. Eventually, he needs to fight his way through them and pray that Celestia will pardon him when he reaches her. Actually, it was all just a Secret Test of Character.
  • Saved by Canon: Cadance never dies in any of these stories, no matter how dire the situation may be. Because she appears in the main series.
  • Secret Test of Character:
    • The over-the-top, ridiculously complicated name change process in A Princess By Any Other Name is actually not that over-the-top and ridiculously complicated. Rather, Celestia added a convulted mess on top of the already-valid name change form to test Cadance on her ability to deal with stressful and unfair situations. Cadance fails miserably.
    • Shining Armor is tasked by Sergeant Thunderous with delivering Cadance's baby book back to her, but is warned ahead of time that the Royal Guards in between him and the Princess won't accept his authorization to pass. Shining is forced to disable them and rush into the room and beg forgiveness before the guards catch up to him. Shining actually passes this test, as Celestia wanted to test his devotion to helping Cadance.
  • Self Insert: The subject of Cadance's bedtime story is a young princess who was taken in by her aunt princess after her kigdom disappeared, and is sad with her situation but is happy when she gets to foalsit a wonderful filly. Even as a filly, Twilight knows who the princess actually is.
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness:
    • Twilight is obsessed with becoming the best student ever, so she inserts advanced vocabulary into as much of her everyday speech as she can. It's definitely one of the more endearing examples of this trope.
    • Filly!Cadence spells "antideluvian" with her building blocks. At the end of the chapter she has corrected this to "antedeluvian"
  • Snipe Hunt: Sergeant Thunderous sends Shining Armor to deliver a parcel to Princess Cadance "with Harmony Level clearance," which would be trivial if not for the fact that nobody is permitted to disturb her during dinnertime and the clearance level is so new that the hulking Royal Guardsmen protecting the dining room don't even know what it is. Turns out, there was never a "Harmony" level clearance in the first place.
  • Spoiler Title: Much drama arises when Celestia denied Cadance's request to be an envoy to Cloudsdale. A look at the title of the series dispels it.
  • The Form Knew You Would Do That: Finally fed up with the Bureaucracy after learning that her current name-change petition was invalidated due to a technicality, Cadance demands Dotted Line just skip to the end and authorize the form. The final page is actually just a letter from Celestia explaining that this is a Secret Test of Character and that she'd be very disappointed in Cadance if she forced her bureaucrat to ignore the rules.
  • Throw It In: Lt. Weaselface's name was originally just a placeholder describing the unpleasant officer as the chapter was being written. It wasn't changed in the end, and it's hilarious.
  • Tome of Eldritch Lore: Cadance's baby book, which emanates a Lovecraftian aura at all times, has malevolent spirits that whisper to Dotted Line to free them of their imprisonment, and causes an inexplicable leak of salt water from the ceiling of Line's office.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Lady Prismia when explaining why she was banished from Equestria, claiming that her lover eloped behind her back and then slandered her out of Equestria when he grew bored of her, and that Reduit ostracizes her. Cadance correctly surmises that Prismia's Artifact of Doom altered her perspective on her treatment and that Prismia outright lied about Reduit ignoring her plight, as she prefers to seethe alone with her amulet.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: Shining Armor describes his magical talents this way. Despite being a proficient shield-user, the magic he uses is just the basic ethereal force, likened to foal's crayons due to the fact that unicorn foals will have mastered both by kindergarten. Considering his impressive feats in shield-casting, he admits "I am damn good with crayons."
  • Woman Scorned: Lady Prisma, a bitter hermit who decided to steal Reduit's love after her lover cheated on her and she was banished from Equestria.
  • The Woman Wearing the Queenly Mask: A less-dramatic variant. Cadance realizes how horrible fate has treated the Crystal Ponies, and combined with their adoration of her, she worries she can't be the Princess they deserve.
  • Would Hurt A Filly: Lady Prismia had no problem casting pain-inflicting spells on and almost slaying Cadance, who was a filly without a cutie mark at the time. At least when she's Brainwashed. Once Prismia comes to her senses, she's very remorseful.

Cadence In A MinorFanWorks/My Little Pony: Friendship Is MagicThe Cadanceverse

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