Fanfic: Starlight Over Detrot

Sic itur ad astra...
I've lived in the great city of Detrot all my life. Ambitions of traveling the world gave way to the cold-shower realization there weren't a lot of places out there more suited to a cop than a city full of crime.
Hard 'Hardy' Boiled

Monster attacks. Crime. Illegal hallucinogens made from electric fruit.

They say things didn't use to be like this. They say things were different, before Luna came back 60 years ago, but Detective Hard "Hardy" Boiled of the Detrot Police Department has never known any world other than that demarcated by the seedy streets of his beloved decaying metropolis; a world in which the coroners sing and dance, surveillance bugs have personality disorders, and the Chief of Police is a scarier entity than most of the eldritch things the city attracts.

The grey unicorn who turned up dead outside the posh High Step Hotel seemed like just another case, but her missing horn is the pointy tip of a very large and nasty iceberg. It's up to Hardy and his friends - a rejected monster hunter, a psychic cab driver, and an underground antiques heir - to find out whatís going on in an investigation that promises to turn Detrot upside-down and inside-out.

Especially if Hardy has anything to say about it.

Needs Wiki Magic.

Can be found here

The Side Story 'Nightmare Night' is available here

This fanfic provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Scarlet, as far as Hardy is concerned.
    • Later, Swift gets one in the Warden.
  • Abusive Parents: Shiny's father.
  • Achievements in Ignorance: the Detrot Tenth Librum Publicum
    "The story goes that nopony told the architect you canít build a bigger building inside of a smaller one... so he just sort of... did."
  • Alien Lunch / I Ate WHAT?: Swift's introduction to eating meat.
  • All There in the Manual: The Cutie Mark Crusades are referred to in the main story, but fully explained in the sidestory "Nightmare Night".
  • Ambiguously Gay: Aunt Stella.
  • An Arm and a Leg: If you count unicorn horns as limbs.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:
    A simple murder case had just turned into a potential gang-war.
    Blood would run in the streets.
    Death would stalk the shadows.
    I'd have to do a lot of paperwork.
  • Ascended To Carnivorism: Swift, after exposure to gryphon "fine cooking".
  • Back from the Dead
  • Bag of Holding: Hardy's coat has enchanted pockets that can "carry about a saddlebag worth of stuff in each and weigh about a tenth as much".
  • Baleful Polymorph: Apparently eating poison joke can permanently turn a pony into a giant-sized hamster.
  • Bar Brawl: The fight at the Plot Hole, even if it's technically a coffee bar.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: Jingle Jangle's brother's heart.
  • Berserk Button: Taxi goes crazy when you mention her (lack of) cutie mark. Swift flips out at the mere mention of Essies; the reason is currently unknown.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: Queenie, the Ladybug "diplomat".
  • Break the Cutie: Swift took Hardy's death especially hard.
  • Buccaneer Broadcaster: Gypsy, of Ever Free Radio.
  • Carnivore Confusion: The meat that griffins eat comes from non-thinking mammals, although in Detrot, one could buy anything.
  • City Noir: Detrot.
  • Communications Officer: Telly.
  • The Coroner: Slip Stitch. He's a little... off.
  • Covered with Scars: the Tortellini brothers
  • Crossdresser: Despite not wearing clothes, Stella manages to pull this off.
  • Dead Partner: Juniper is Hardy's.
  • Deal with the Devil: Cosmo's family made one when he was young to save his life. The original Cosmo, that is. He was born with a weak heart and wasn't expected to live long, so they made a deal with a zebra who provided him with a changeling heart, which would keep him alive so long as it was powered by the love between his parents. What they didn't know was that it didn't just run on their love, but drained it. Cosmo died when his family fell apart, and his doting big brother Jingle Jangle took his name and became one of Detrot's most vicious crimelords.
  • Disc One Final Boss: King Cosmo.
  • Door Stopper: At well over 500,000 words, it qualifies.
  • The Dreaded: Chief Iris Jade.
  • Dress Code: The Vivarium has one, and Hardy doesn't match up to it.
  • Drives Like Crazy: Taxi
  • Embarrassing First Name: Inverted. Swift Cuddles is perfectly fine with her first name.
  • Escalating Brawl: The fight at the Plot Hole might or might not have begun with Swift attacking Hardy, but by the time he's distracted from his opponent, everyone is fighting.
  • Extreme Omnisexual: Taxi has no qualms whatsoever about hitting on gryphons, minotaurs, or the like, so long as they catch her eye.
  • Fantastic Racism: Cosmo hates unicorns, to the point of breaking off their horns if they cross him. The Cyclones are fine with all pony races... but not with zebras, griffins, or anything else.
  • First Day from Hell: Poor Swift. Her second day is also bad, and her third day is even worse.
  • First-Person Smartass: Hardy.
  • Found the Killer, Lost the Murderer: the killer of Hardy and Cosmo, that is
  • Fun with Acronyms: PACT, in full Perimeter Aegis Control Taskforce; also, the Polite Enjoinder Against Criminal Enterprise (PEACE) cannon.
  • Gang Bangers: the Cyclones
  • Halloween Episode: "Nightmare Night".
  • Hardboiled Detective: His name is even Hard "Hardy" Boiled.
  • Healing Factor: One of the positive side effects of Hardy's resurrection.
  • Hedge Maze: The garden on the roof of High Steps Hotel.
  • Heroic BSOD: A three week long one, experienced by Swift when she killed somepony. Once she recovered from that, a far shorter one upon replaying that particular memory to herself.
    • Also experienced by Princess Luna in Nightmare Night, as explained in the Power High entry.
  • Hideous Hangover Cure: The Detrot Number Three is expensive on both cash and sanity, semi-magical, and causes copious vomiting, but it will bring you back to alertness.
  • Hoof Cannon: Swift is given one by her grandmother, named the Masamune; Hardy carries one everywhere, his grandfather's .45 revolver; Taxi is categorically prohibited from carrying anything of the sort, as she has no concept of collateral damage and has the aiming skills of your average Imperial Stormtrooper. It turns out that Hardy's revolver is in fact a crusader-class weapon, the firearm equivalent of an Infinity+1 Sword.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Practically everyone from the Vivarium.
  • Initiation Ceremony: "Frosting" the rookie, which Hardy tries to prevent Swift from going through.
  • Interservice Rivalry: The DPD and PACT. It's even explained in the second chapter's Opening Monologue. About the only things so far which they've managed to agree on are certain forms of weaponry.
  • Knight In Sour Armour: Hardy
  • Knowledge Broker: Don Tome
  • Literal Surveillance Bug: the Ladybugs, little critters based off the parasprites
  • Little Useless Gun: Swift's "standard issue" gun, given to her because she's so small. That's quickly turned around when she's given a Hoof Cannon named 'Masamune'.
  • Mad Love: Scarlet, towards Hardy - or he might just be trolling, or half-sincere. Hard to tell.
  • The Mafia: The Jewelers, effectively.
  • Magitek: through zebra runes and alchemy
  • Mama Bear: Swift's grandmother, After Glow.
    ...getting between After Glow and Swift would have been closely akin to getting between a mother bear and its cub, if the mother bear was endowed with the power to fling a pony into the upper atmosphere.
  • Meaningful Rename: The pony formerly known as Cosmo is now called Gale.
  • Might as Well Not Be in Prison at All: Hardy gets this impression of Saussurea (the architect of Supermax prison, who is herself imprisoned for crimes against ponykind) when she reveals that she knows a lot more about what's going on than a little old lady who's locked up in the deepest level of Tartarus Correctional should.
    Saussurea was a player. Deposed. Trapped. Chained. Banished to a hole at the bottom of the world. Still playing.
  • Mighty Roar: what a "Griffin Good Morning" involves
    It was a sound used to terrify prey and ward off competitors in the dangerous mesas of the the griffin homeland, but in a pinch, it's also a great adrenaline shot.
  • Minor Crime Reveals Major Plot
  • Mob War: one of the things the characters are working to prevent
  • Never Mess with Granny: After Glow.
  • Nightmare Face: the Warden, due to most of her skin being burned off.
  • Noodle Incident: how Taxi lost her cutie mark. All we know is that it has something to do with the dangers of undercover work.
  • Oh, Crap: Hardy and Taxi's reaction when they find out one of their leads takes them into a Diamond Dog neighborhood.
  • Old Cop, Young Cop: Hardy and Swift, respectively.
  • Opening Monologue: For each chapter, often from someone simply called "the Scholar".
  • The Paralyzer: Taxi.
  • Pintsized Powerhouse: Swift.
  • Power High: In the sidestory "Nightmare Night", Luna relates how she got one at a bad time, causing her to exult in it for just a second and let the super-lightning she was channeling slip loose and fry most of the small army helping her defend Detrot, leading to a Heroic BSOD (massacring "civilian" dragons by entombing them underneath Detrot and letting them suffocate) that she comes to regret.
  • Pretty Little Headshots: averted; the deaths of both Cosmo and his sniper are quite messy
  • Pressure Point: Taxi's favoured form of attack.
  • Scary Teeth: especially when you see them on an unconscious Swift
  • Refuge in Audacity: Most of Hardy's plans. His 'meeting' with Chief Jade at the start of Act 2 especially qualifies.
  • STD Immunity: Discussed in an opening monologue: ponies never had many genuinely dangerous STDs in their history, so compared to other races, they have a tendency towards more promiscuous behavior.
  • Symbol Swearing: Lampshaded, with a dash of Foreign Cuss Word thrown in.
    Taxi: Weíre not civilian traffic, you stupid @$&*#$!
    Thatís not censorship; Iím not actually sure what that word was, but it was unflattering and in buffalo. Or maybe zebra. Or possibly draconic.
  • Talking to Plants: Budding, when he starts to lose it. (Of course, since this is Equestria, that might be his secret to how well his plants grow.)
  • The Taxi: The Night Stalker, driven by a Checker-cab-colored pony named Taxi.
  • Trail of Bread Crumbs: Hardy uses old jelly beans, Taxi uses meditation pebbles.
  • Truth Serums: Truth Bloom, done with a twist: if you drink it you can lie, but it will make you violently ill if you do so for a half hour afterwards. Most persons take one sip of the 'Truth Bloom Special', and that's enough; Hardy drinks the whole glass, eliciting shock from the server.
  • Turn in Your Badge: Hardy gets fired by Iris Jade, and leaves his badge dangling from her horn.
  • Unproblematic Prostitution: Working at the Vivarium.
  • Vomiting Cop: Swift, when she sees her first violently-killed corpse. It's also her first day on the job.
  • Waking Up at the Morgue
  • War Is Hell / Shell-Shocked Veteran / Survivor Guilt: In the sidestory "Nightmare Night", Luna tells the tale of the Crusades to children because of her personal experiences, and subconsciously wanting somepony to hold her accountable for her atrocity.
  • We Can Rebuild Him
  • Wham Episode: The last chapter of Act 1, already a Wham Episode on its own, is completely overshadowed by act 2, chapter 44. Finally, some answers are given, and many of them are just stupifying. The last lines of the chapter in particular.
  • Wham Line: the end of Act 2, Chapter 43 - 'Her name...was Twilight Sparkle'
  • Who Dunnit To Me: One of Hardy's goals after coming back to life.