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Awesome / Triptych Continuum

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  • Rarity gets a chance to shine during the fight against the Flebian Rams in Triptych, demonstrating how a unicorn with strictly average field strength and a very creative mind fights — by using some of her longest sewing pins as missiles, taking out a ram's eye.
    "Dreadfully sorry!' she called out to the ram. "I would use much finer ones, but I don't know where the nearest shop is for a resupply! And normally I'd let you keep them, but I'm going to need those back for that same reason, thanks ever so...!"
  • Several more Triptych examples from chapter 26:
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    • Applejack kicked the flank of Pinkie's abusive father Igneous in a fosse, an earth-manipulating duel, to make him leave Pinkie alone. And she won because, although Igenous was far stronger, she was far more free-thinking and inventive with the use of her requests.
    • Earth pony magic is unique amongst all the tribes of Equestria in that it's additive; unicorns pretty much can never manage to combine their magical effects beyond maybe a small team of two or three members, and pegasi can only combine so many of their powersets before the magic becomes self-sabotaging, but the more earth ponies you get, the stronger they become. A whole town of earth ponies was able to instantly summon up an earthquake that completely destroyed a huge army of unicorn separatists and their mercenaries that sought to enslave them. Equestria remembers this as The Great Nearly War, and just chalks it all up to coincidence.
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    • Applejack was directly responsible for several of the "lucky coincidences" that helped the Bearers survive on their earlier adventures.
  • When you look at Rainbow's performance during the press conference in Sonic Rainbigot, consider that Celestia scripted every line in advance. Meet Princess Havehock.
  • Flitter's righteous condemnation of Caramel in The Hypocrisy of Tolerance. Seeing "Ponyville's Bitch In Residence" unload on a pony who genuinely deserves it is a joy to witness. That it gets him to pay back Fluttershy for vastly more than what he owed is icing on the cake.
    • And before that, 500 Little Murders. Fluttershy has euthanized five hundred pets and animals. She remembers them by name, remembers exactly why she had to kill each and every one of those five hundred friends. And she keeps doing it, despite the fact that it's not even her job, because the pony whose job it is refuses to do it, and somepony has to give that final mercy.
  • The way Rarity eventually handles a dirty cop in One-Tenth Bit.
  • Spike gets a pair in Goosed!, both in rallying everypony to help Fluttershy after a Power-Strain Blackout and delivering his personal answer to the Superhero Paradox.
    "So what are we supposed to do?" It was seldom reassuring, hearing that level of quiet resignation from Pinkie. "Just — stop? Because everything we could do just means more to do later, and sooner or later, it might turn into something nopony can do at all?"
    "No."
    And they all looked at Spike.
    He quietly regarded them from his position on Fluttershy's back, eyes placid, nictitating membranes well out of sight. "Because... if that's the kind of ponies you were, nopony here would have an Element at all. Things have to be done. And you guys do them. You do what needs to happen, and if anything shows up after because of it... that's just one more thing to do. Rainbow's right. The crystal ponies are worth some geese. Luna is worth watching for the next Nightmare, if that's even possible. All of you, and Twilight... are worth all of it. You acted, when nopony else did... and if you hadn't, where are we now?"
    "...alone," Fluttershy quietly replied. "...in the dark."
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  • In the finale of Stupid Direction-Face, Rainbow uses the temperature difference between the freezing cold air outside the dragon's cave and the boiling hot air inside, combined with the weave of magic used to separate them, to turn a tiny cloud (woven from her own sweat) into a lightning bomb, which she detonates point-blank in the face of an adult dragon. She then bluffs him into swearing the most powerful oath in dragon lore to both let her go and allow Garble to live after his failed attempt at hoard theft. This is impressive enough as it is, but keep in mind, this is Rainbow Dash; the mare whose Don't Think, Feel philosophy often makes her the Dumb Muscle of the Bearers.
  • Snowflake throughout Scootalift is just awesome. He actually manages to channel Scootaloo towards a more productive use of her energies, for starters, and even manages to get her to listen to him. Perhaps the true crowning moment is when he gets Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon back for picking on Scootaloo by flapping his tiny wings with so much strength that the wind blows them away.
    • Scootaloo reverently talking about how she "understands" afterwards that Snowflake won't fight for himself, lest he become a bully, but will fight for the sake of others, is both awesome and heartwarming.
  • Snowflake Shoe-Hare is another story dedicated to showing off how awesome Snowflake can be. From the simple fact he resists the urge to give Angel Bunny a sound kick even after the little monster wounds his ear to the showdown with an acid-spewing vinecat at the finale.
  • Of all the possible ponies, Diamond Tiara gets one in the final chapter of A Confederacy Of Dunce Caps, calling out Snips' mother and Snails' father during the parent-teacher conference with a detailed "The Reason You Suck" Speech — in front of witnesses. However, it just about instantly backfires: her telling Mr. Gastrope about his son's Obfuscating Stupidity plan convinces him that somepony has to move out of town in order to keep the boys apart (and clearly it won't be him). It's only the fact that he's also shaken (and stupid) enough to openly threaten that he may lock up his son which allows Cheerilee to call in Ponyville's child welfare services and essentially blackmail both parents into letting their sons openly be friends — and at the end of it, Mr. Gastrope's also stupid enough to openly call Diamond the worst filly he's ever seen.
  • At the end of Mechanical Aptitude, Rachette finds herself at the end of a long day. She's been repeatedly insulted by a noble who refuses to believe a pegasus could ever be a repairpony for devices — a question of logistics for most, but with a proven factor of racism for this particular unicorn, who's capable of denying the legitimacy of her mark. He refuses to listen to her attempts to warn him about a device that's been designed to collect blackmail material. Multiple individuals in Ponyville have advised her to just let him take the consequences. And left to herself on the train station platform — she recovers the duplicate Minder spool and takes it to the police. It's a low-key example of What You Are in the Dark, but also proves there's the occasional noble out there who deserves the name.
  • Despite his well-justified doubts in himself, Flash Sentry proves he can be capable of handling one of a Guard's most important duties when he gets out of his own way and actually listens to his mark. Chapter 3 of The Bounce Test shows him saving Iron Will's life through a near-instant combination of MacGyvering and Indy Ploy: he doesn't have the strength to lift the minotaur away from Sombra's death traps, but the crystal buckets which the bull is wearing as improvised hoof guards skid along the equally-crystal floor — so all he has to do is drive himself into the minotaur's back at top speed, sliding him out before the weight drives Flash into the ground. He manages to get the two of them back to the tunnel's entrance hole before the true collapse begins, which allows Shining Armor to levitate them out just ahead of the flames.
  • The short story collection of Sick Little Ponies (And One Dragon) has a pair.
    • Twilight's fight against the thieves in her chapter shows her capability for thinking on her hooves when ill and unable to deliberately focus her field into any kind of spell or deliberate manipulation. If she can't go after the mares through the orderly process of workings, she can target them with chaos: the random spark scattering of a field affected by Rhynorn's Flu hits the library's books and turns the entire tree into a deadly version of Dodgeball Is Hell. Twilight gets through it by camping under her desk, but the older thief suffers a broken foreleg, and the intruders are forced to retreat.
    • Rainbow manages to fly while suffering from a disease which induces severe vertigo while trotting, because it's the only way not to miss the Wonderbolts practical audition. She doesn't fly particularly well and her first attempt at a true stunt has her lose all control to the point of almost needing a rescue, but the mere fact that she managed to get in the air with Manière's impresses Spitfire enough to give her a second chance. However, there's also a touch of backfire, because the Wonderbolts' captain decides she's learned something else about Rainbow:
    "The second is that you're an idiot." Spitfire took a deep breath. "I'm going to remember that. The fact that you're stubborn, and determined, and stupid. Stupid in a way I don't think it's possible to measure, stupid in a way you can't teach and maybe stupid in a way you can't unlearn."
  • Even in a split from the central continuity, Fleur's badass credentials still establish themselves in Chapter 7 of Anchor Foal as she marshals everything she has into dealing with Discord on falsely equal terms, refusing to let him see how much he's terrifying her and verbally forcing him into formally introducing himself out of what might be close to sheer shock. It costs her — she sinks into the grass immediately after he vanishes, and the shaking doesn't stop for some time — but as long as he's in front of her, she refuses to be openly afraid.
  • Twilight's confrontation with Clear Coordinator in chapter 36 of Triptych. Sure, the exact reasons may be a different trope, but seeing Coordinator's web of blackmail and manipulation be torn to shreds by Twilight is still incredibly satisfying.
  • In an Offscreen Moment of Awesome, it's mentioned that after Pinkie Pie ran away from home, she survived for over a month in the wild zone. Virtually no pony can survive outside the settled zones on their own, and Pinkie was still a filly, had no supplies or training, barely understood her magic (and had only had it for a couple of months), and had suffered years of abuse, culminating in months of beatings and starvation.
  • Chapter 44 of Triptych gives Applejack, Rarity, Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy all a chance to shine.
    • Applejack manages to finally shake off her malaise at revealing The Secret, take a good long look at it, and admit that the Secret really has done more harm than good at this point, whilst at the same time coaxing a broken-hearted Pinkie Pie out of the depths of her despair.
    • Rarity once again displays her borderline Cool Big Sis status with Twilight to reassure Twilight that she's better than she thinks her is, and instruct her on how to make amends with Pinkie Pie.
    • Rainbow Dash, despite her self-professed social ignorance, manages to snap Fluttershy out of her despair and point out just what a hypocrite Gentle Arrival is. This then leads to Fluttershy's awesome moment, when she overcomes her crippling doubts and saves her friends by using her special powers to summon the rats/mice living in the walls of the dungeon to chew through their bindings.
  • Spike's attempt to rescue the imprisoned Bearers in Triptych. First, he's the only one to get away while the others are seized: while the conspiracy is ready to neutralize pony capabilities, they have nothing which is capable of automatically stopping a dragon. Using his flame in small bursts (and deliberate misses) clears enough of a path for him to get into the main castle. He then discards his desperation idea of allowing greed to overwhelm him and recreate his more destructive form, in favor of keeping his smaller size. This allows him to use stealth tactics, hiding near and inside furniture until he can spot an isolated servant, one old enough to know the secret passages. A teleported scroll serves as distraction for him to get on Softtread's back and start backlashing the horn, and then he gets the old unicorn to take him to the cells — arriving just as Coordinator's designated patsies are about to murder Twilight and Rarity. That sight makes him use his flame on the attack for the first time in his life, saving sibling and crush. It's an incredible effort, especially coming from a terrified child who's just trying to hold himself together long enough to do anything.
  • In chapter 50 of Triptych, Twilight manages to find her voice for the first time. And uses it to defeat Quiet's talent-granted imperceptibility... by using the one sense he would never think to block.
  • Chapter 52 is just one Moment of Awesome after another. The Mane 6 and Spike all work together, using their individual magics to break an otherwise impenetrable force field. And then, once Fluttershy finally uses Discord's gift to remove the pain of her transformations, she proceeds to utterly beat the crap out of her abusive father.
  • Twilight gets a little bit more in her moment against one of Murdocks' most frustrating reporters in the last chapter of Triptych. She decides to illustrate the difference between an Alicorn and a Princess, and follows with the major difference between a Princess and a Librarian.
    Twilight: I'm sure there are rules for royal protocol, which Princesses should abide by. Not that I trust your interpretation of them, but I could look them up sometime. They just don't matter, because they don't apply. A Princess facing you as a problem might have to follow some kind of protocol. But I'm a librarian, and when somepony gives me a problem I. Do. Research.
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