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Break The Cutie / Fan Works

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Ace Attorney
  • Irya's first case. It involves the murder of her friend.

Aladdin: The Series
  • Antiphony:
    • Laila. The suffering the girl goes through drives her insane and eventually turns her into an Empty Shell.
    • Morathai. At age six, his entire family except one sister is killed, his kingdom is destroyed and his mentor pulls a Heroic Sacrifice in the span of one day. Then he ends up living on the streets, has his kindness rewarded with betrayal, and is captured by slavers. Guess who ends up buying him?
    • Jasmine. Mozenrath’s false warnings push her to a Heroic BSoD trying to figure out his plan, to the point she starts alienating and lying to her friends in case Mozenrath has a way of watching what she’s doing. She then ends up losing her memories of Aladdin while delving into the Mirror of Fiereve, watching her father nearly die of poison, and finally is brutally Mind Raped by Mirage for a week. And yet despite all this, she keeps going.
    • Xerxes and Raniye, too.

A Song of Ice and Fire
  • Into the Wild: Marty kills the only person who ever cared about him.

Avatar: The Last Airbender
  • Blood Moon: Katara.
  • Cabin Fever: Katara. So very much.
  • Fractures (ATLA): Zuko.
  • Shadow of the Dragon King:
    • Zuko, dear Zuko.
    • Also Lijin, Yenzi's younger brother.
  • Traitor's Face:
    • Aang, when Mai temporarily betrays him.
    • Katara, after watching her mother and father get murdered by Fire Nation soldiers, and is taken away to the Fire Nation to be imprisoned — for 10 years.
    • Sokka, left to wither in his grief after his mother and father are murdered, and his little sister is taken away to be imprisoned.
    • Zuko, getting scarred by his father, and later losing his left eye completely due to infection.
    • Suki, for losing her parents at a young age and having to be raised by her abusive older sister, only to later be abandoned.

Axis Powers Hetalia
  • In A Castle of Silence and Bones Yao was invaded, defeated, humiliated, his siblings are dead and their people annihilated, he has seen the world break apart and countries perish over decades of war, now his obsessive younger brother is all Yandere for him, violating him, insulting his masculinity, keeping him trapped emotionally, mentally and physically. In the end, China shoots Japan and kills him.
  • Feliciano in Auf Wiedersehen Sweetheart, when Ludiwg gets imprisoned by the SS.
  • Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità: Between being beaten, nearly raped, being bullied, and witnessing his closest friends attempting to fight each other to the death within hours of each other, Italy sure had a tough day.
  • The Clockwork Stranger: In the case of both Alfred and (later) Arthur.
  • Human Curiosity: Poor Liechtenstein. Forced to leave her brother in the HCS facility (under his orders, but still!), nearly kidnapped a second time, and learning that her brother was killed. Oh, and when she tries to find some peace by seeing her brother's retrieved body, she finds that all of the Nations have vanished and that the floor is covered in blood and water. This understandably does nothing for her peace of mind.
  • China and Korea in Mistakes.
  • The Pleasantville Series: Chapters 3-6 of Compiling reveal that Francis was raped as a child by a caretaker who he trusted.
  • Vera Verse:
    • Feliciano, when told that Ludwig was captured by American forces.
    • Also, Arthur qualifies when he hears about Alfred's plane crashing and him being captured by special forces.
  • You Can't Take the Sky Away from Me: Oh, America.

Azumanga Daioh

Barney The Dinosaur
  • In Angel Of The Bat, The Seraphim wishes to capture Batman’s allies and force them to join his cult. He captures Cassandra and brutally tortures her, but ultimately fails.

Battle Royale
  • A Protector's Pride: Poor Momo.
  • In another fanfic
  • A comedic example in Uninvited Guests. Shiro-chan undergoes at least three separate nervous breakdowns. Eventually, it becomes an effective battle tactic.
  • Hanatarou in Winter War has witnessed Rukia's hollowfication and death, Byakuya's apparent suicide, been enslaved in Hueco Mundo, his captain is MIA after escaping the lab, had several of his squad members killed in front of him, including Ogidou, who had just saved his life, and currently has a collar around his neck that could detonate at any moment. And with all that he still manages to be the Only Sane Man half of the time.

  • Childhood's End spares the Gascoigne sisters, but makes sure that they don't get out unscathed by breaking them when possible. The biggest example comes when the girls and their protector Djura end up at Oedon Tomb and witness Eileen killing their Honorary Grandad despite them begging Djura to stop her, alongside finding their father's body. Adele, the eldest sibiling, is stunned from the shock, while her younger sister breaks down and starts screaming at Djura and Eileen how she hates them and wants her parents. Even worse, her screams end up attracting more beasts, forcing Eileen and Djura to grab them and run instead of burying Henryk and Gascoigne's bodies.

  • In A Monster's Nature, Caitlyn Connors, previously a normal twelve-year-old girl, is faced with a burden that would be incredible for anyone to bear, as she has to face the fact that the only reason the most powerful being on Earth hasn’t destroyed the planet yet is that he’s attracted to her.

Bubble Gum Crisis
  • The results of Nene and Bert's breakup are particularly harsh on Nene in The Bubblegum Zone.

Calvin and Hobbes
Camp Lazlo
Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Bardot does this to Penny in Play the Game not long after her and Rudy's capture. He tells her a detailed story of how her father was killed and even shows her his tooth, which Bardot ripped away from him. Then later, he pours salt in the wound by eating her father's severed arm right in front of her. Needless to say, Penny did not react so well to that.
    • Late in the story, he re-breaks her and breaks Rudy as well by having Droaw drag Penny out of the room, declaring his intent to keep them separated until they die. He then follows up by ripping Rudy's arm open.
    • He breaks Barney prior to the story. He hunts him down for information. At first, Barney refuses, which prompts Bardot to start his torture. He breaks his legs one by one, and when that wasn't enough, Bardot completely shatters Barney's spirit by tearing out his eyes. And just when things couldn't get worse for Barney, the hybrid zoner attacks him repeatedly over the course of a year and a half, torturing Barney again and again for information, even if Barney willingly gave it to him.
  • Rudy, Penny and Snap of ChalkZone all get brutal treatment in Sinful Behaviors, prequel to Play the Game, though the villain focuses more on the boys.

Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers
  • Under the Bridge explores Gadget's only canonical Berserk Button, namely when someone threatens or harms her friends and deceives her, and drives it to an extreme. After several attempts of her sister Widget to kill her and the other Rangers, one of which followed a staged but real rescue mission, she decides to take matters in her own hands. She decides that the only way to save herself and her friends from Widget is to kill the latter. So she acquires an illegally imported ex-Soviet 14.5mm machine gun round and modifies it into a torpedo with a magnetic guidance system with which she plans to sink Widget's submarine Albacore. Not few readers have declared this depiction of Gadget's quite Out of Character.

Code Geass
  • In Chapter 18 of Code Geass: Colorless Memories, it shows that Rai was a sweet, caring child who loved his mother and sister very much (much in the way Lelouch loved his mother and the way he dotes his sister) and got along well with his dad. Then came the attack on his town and everything went to hell for Rai from then on. And it didn't stop there as Rai then lost his memories thanks to C.C. mindwiping his mind for his own reasons and amusement.
    • Chapter 30 shows this with Kallen as well after her brother went missing on a mission a few years before the start of the series.
  • Code Geass: Mao of the Deliverance: Revealed in several flashbacks that Mao was just a Troubled, but Cute little boy until his Geass slowly drove him insane.

  • In Thieves Can Be Heroes!, Izuku has wanted to be someone who could save others with a smile on his face, just like his idol, All Might. But then he found out he was Quirkless and after knowledge of it came out, that hopeful dream became an endless fountain of mockery, bullying, and scorn that plagued him all the way through his middle school years as he was derided as worthless and useless. Through all of this, he desperately cling to his dream in hopes of one day being able to help others and prove everyone wrong. Then, without thinking, he runs to save a woman who was screaming for help as a slimeball tried to sexually assault her. This one act of altruism ends with the woman he saved accusing him of assaulting her, giving him a criminal record and making him miss the U.A. Entrance Exam. Then he has to move away to live with a complete stranger who doesn't shy away from telling Izuku that he doesn't care about him. Then the teachers at his new school treat him like the worst scum on Earth when he has only just met them. After telling himself for the past eleven years of his life that there had to be some way he could become a Hero, reality sets in and he breaks down into inconsolable sobbing during his second night at Leblanc as he finally admits that his stupid, childish dream is now (and probably always was) a complete impossibility for him. At this point, it's hard to blame him. Thankfully, getting new friends and becoming a phantom thief has helped him recover.

  • Aside from the main characters in Young Offender, there's poor little Ann Ember. Her mother's murdered, her father will be converted into 0011, and she's been raised by Black Ghost and the Gamos into a Tyke Bomb who believes the first generation cyborgs are to blame.

  • Despair's Last Resort has poor Shizuka Matsuki. Her mother was killed in an accident and she was bullied throughout her entire childhood. She thinks she'll get a break at Hope's Peak, but it's implied that she witnessed people die before she escaped. Then she watches the School Life of Mutual Killing and watches someone she was incredibly close to her die. Then when her memories are erased and it seems like she can have a second chance at happiness, Monokuma hijacks the trip and forces them to kill each other. To top it all off, she ends up killing two people and is executed. The girl needs a hug.
    • Kumiko Akamine gets pretty broken after her best friend Chiyo is found dead. She falls into a depressive state for most of the next chapter. It's implied that other events happened during the year at Hope's Peak that messed her up.

Danny Phantom
  • In Checkmate, Vlad puts Danny through one of these. After first injecting Jazz with nanomachines that kill her red blood cells, and only sparing her if Danny leaves behind his friends and family to join him, Danny is forced to live at Vlad's mansion. Due to disuse while there, his ghost powers begin to go out of control, eventually leading to them going completely berserk and forcing Vlad to use a device to short out his ghost powers to get him under control. Due to not only the agony of the powers going wild, but the dream he had throughout the whole thing (it mostly occurred while he was asleep), he ends up backing into a corner and sobbing with terror, ending up in a state that caused even the almost heartless Vlad to ask himself; "What have I done?"
    "Danny sat at the edge of the pool, crossed legged, watching carelessly the variety of fishes swimming about in the pool's surrounding aquarium. The tired and defeated expression on his face made him appear as if he had aged several years. There was no happiness or vigor in his eyes, leaving them a dull, lifeless blue. In short, he looked everything a broken hero would; and there was nothing more heartbreaking than that sight."
  • The Curator tries this very hard with Danny in The Collector.

Death Note
  • Promised with Digimon Rewrite being a Deconstruction.
    • Happenning already with Alison.
  • Digimon Xros Wars AU 02 seems to be putting Kiriha through the ringer with the Seven Swords arc. First Kiriha has to wait through a good portion of the six month time skip in the Digital World for Taiki and the others to return from earth; shortly before they do he learns that Deckerdramon is dying. Second: He has to watch MetalGureimon get broken apart by Dorbickmon's Aegisdramon's attack. Third: MetalGureimon is absorbed into Neo Vamdemon, and despite the fact that they get him out, MailBirdramon appears to be in a coma inside the Digi Xros at the end of chapter 35. Fourth: he sees Nene bleeding out in reality after being stabbed in a dream. FIFTH: it's heavily implied that in the gaps between chapters 45 and 46 that he tried to kill Nene, though the exact details aren't clear. FINALLY: After rescuing Kiriha and Gureimon from the grimdark clutches of Anubimon, Deckerdramon is killed by Anubimon via one of his throwing daggers. Poor Kid.
    • Akari gets a minor one in the Seven Swords finale when Shoutmon throws himself in the line of an attack to save her..
  • Mein Kamphy Couch: Poor Rochelle.
  • Tamers Forever Series: Multiple instances:
    • Rika starts as a Broken Bird, and it is shown that her Jerkass behaviour and suicidally competitive personality is actually due to very low self esteem brought on by her father abandoning her and from being ostracised by her peers in her old school, to the point where she has come to believe that she can't have any real friends and that the only real worth she can ever find for herself is by being the best Tamer. Then Takato comes along and for the first time she finds herself truly able to connect with another human being. But her aforementioned issues nearly lead her to shatter this relationship because she just can't accept Takato being a better Tamer than her, which coupled with her fear of rejection, leads her to repeatedly break both Takato's and her own heart because she just can't find peace with herself. It Gets Worse when, she finally let's go of her pride and truly falls in love with Takato, but although they share three days of happiness together, it's tainted by the horrible truth that Takato is slowly and painfully dying, and there is nothing Rika can do to save him, not even taking on twelve Diaboramon at once in order to protect him. She eventually breaks down as she grieves for his death, then there are hints that GOSPEL has plans to break her further.
    • Mimi: She is kidnapped, forced to undergo an unwilling abortion, and is left to wander the wilderness as her grief slowly drives her insane.
  • Tamers Requiem:
    • Takato- Watches Guilmon die IN THE FIRST BOOK; tries to recreate him, but ends up with a crazed BlackGuilmon instead; eventually gets killed himself near the end of Book Three and is split in to two separate kids, one of whom spends several years stuck in the Dark Ocean/Dark Area.
    • Noriko- Just start from the moment where she is sucked into the Digital World (without a partner), gets combined with Lucemon and BlackGuilmon, and proceed from there.
    • Impmon- When trying to make things right with Jeri, he learns that they can't extract Leomon's data from him (and give the girl back her partner) without killing the rookie (which they won't do, which does little to help his guilt). Not long after that, he gets infected with the X-Program, which is supposed to kill off most of the Digimon. And, from the description, it is not a pleasant way to go.
    • Jeri- Discovers she's still carrying a fragment of the D-Reaper, and is Mind Raped by UlforceVeemon to get at it. Oh yeah, and did we mention that Milleniummon is using her to resurrect himself?
    • Suzie- Done very deliberately by Prometheus in an attempt to have her Dark Digivolve Lopmon (and it worked by the end of Book Four). He throws everything at her from schoolyard bully, to an evil therapist, to a nightmare-inducing Digimon in order to drag up any doubts or fears she might have. This is the clearest example of Break the Cutie you can have.

Dragon Age
  • Wardens: Happens to Shatele and Lily in their backgrounds, though they don't seem completely broken...

Dragonball Z
  • Broly's Alternate Character Interpretation in the Fanfic Worthy of Legends had it broken quite a bit ever since he was a child. He was taken by Cooler so he could be raised as a killing machine under Cooler's command, and it is also implied that Broly is really an unwilling grunt of Cooler's army and views several of Cooler's actions as being completely despicable (e.g., forcing females to sleep with him or else he destroys their planet, or destroying a planet shortly after his troops enjoyed themselves). Shortly thereafter, Cooler tries to get Broly angry enough to actually fight him and unveil his strength by murdering his mother in front of Broly. It worked too well, as Broly also ended up giving Cooler a serious injury towards his knee that also resulted in Cooler placing a c-plate on his head. Later on, he was framed by Frieza during the latter's visit to Cooler's ship for murdering two dignitaries in a restroom (worse still, this happened right after Broly was sent to get red wine that was apparently something Cooler was saving up for an occasion, implying that Frieza sent Broly to get the wine specifically so it could match blood), and because of Frieza's control over the courts, he was sentenced to a hellhole planetary prison, specifically to break Broly enough to actually allow Broly to become a psychopathic killer under Cooler's control. The guards also injected him with a drug that acted as a poison that would cause his Ki to rot as a security measure to ensure he doesn't escape, and was denied any instance of a cure. His friend, Sauzaa (who, unlike in the movie, was also secretly against Cooler) also ended up sacrificing himself to save Broly by cutting himself (as his species' blood was necessary to cure the drug). He then goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge where he does a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown on Cooler that culminated in tossing Cooler into the core of the planet, before taking Sauzaa's corpse and the director of the prison who was also the half-sister of Cooler and Frieza (the latter because she asked to escape with him, and was implied to have done a Heel–Face Turn, although Broly didn't entirely trust her), and it was also implied that the fight as well as his transformation resulted in the planet starting to explode. Afterwards, he went to a planet to free some Nameks who were enslaved by a despot, and eventually murdered the despot quite brutally due to the latter giving off a smirk that was far too similar to Cooler in Broly's mind, which caused Broly to break down.

The Dresden Files
  • The universe of Fair Vote hates Dorje just as much as it hates Dresden. But after he took this job from Ava, he will never be the same.

Evillious Chronicles


Fate/stay night

Final Fantasy Tactics
  • The Lion of Ivalice:
    • Meliadoul, who heard her (possessed) father call her "and her mother a tramp in one sentence, and then tells her she is a disgrace". Ramza nearly had to drag her distraught self out of there alive. If that wasn't bad enough, she arrives back to Orbonne Monastery to see her brother dead, still not recovering from the bitter words her father said. What happens next leads to the Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds entry below.
    • Ramza himself counts; just think about it. His foster siblings (presumably) both die at Ziekden and it's his brothers' faults. He finds belonging and friends at the Southern Sky only to discover much later that not only is Delita alive, but he's become ruthless enough to massacre the Northern Sky for his own ambitions. He has to kill his demon-possessed elder brother. Many people he's considered friends or allies are either against him or in danger because of him. He's in love with a woman who's psyche has become fragile due to her beliefs being tested, and he ends up losing her to the Lucavi when her brother is temporarily killed, followed by losing his beloved sister. To top all that off, his desire to learn Dark Knight training has twice pushed him to the brink of cold-blooded murder and yet it's a key element of his strength. I'd say all that definitely qualifies as somewhat 'broken'.

Final Fantasy Tactics Advance
  • All over the damn place in Casualties. Points go to all of the kids from St. Ivalice in particular (the operative word here being 'kids').

Final Fantasy VII
  • Aerith's current personality is a result of her being broken long before Mother's Legacy began. For years, she was forced with train with Sephiroth, who dealt her a Curb-Stomp Battle every time as Hojo mocked her powerlessness before him.

Final Fantasy IX
Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance
  • Elincia gets broken severely in Queen Of Sorrow. Nephenee and Leanne also get their share.

  • Forward manages to break River all over again after she started healing at the end of the movie by having both River and Jayne captured and tortured by Niska, effectively undoing nearly a year's worth of mental healing for her.

Fullmetal Alchemist
  • Wrath, pre-story in Seven Names Of Envy Angevin. And, after chapter 21, Elysia counts as well.
  • Yeah, there's a lot of that in The Switch Glitch.
  • At Gates Edge:
    • Edward as he didn't survive the attempted resurrection of his mother and ended up dying to save Al. He was a peace with it only to end up as a ghost in a place he doesn't know, unable to communicate with anyone.
    • In the same story poor Alphonse lost his father, mother and brother and gave up alchemy in response.


Harry Potter
  • Almost everyone who is cute in any way gets this eventually in George Weasley and the Computational Error.
  • In The Ollivander Children, Mark probably gets this worse than any of the other characters. An American Muggle who happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, ends up mired in the British Ministry of Magic and charged with the crime of Presuming to be a wizard. He's imprisoned, found guilty, when he goes on the run he faces a Dementor attack, and then his Love Interest is kidnapped, and when he tries to rescue her, he ends up in jail again, which brings us to the start of The Ollivanders At War, where probably even more fun awaits.
  • The Screams series and Hermione Granger. Take one betrayal to Voldemort (by Neville, of all people). Add Ron's death, then mix in every torture method imaginable for her and Harry, including rape. What you get - well, in her words to Neville as he stood with Harry's wand pressed into the back of his neck: "I'm so looking forward to listening to your cries, Neville. Please fill me up and give me a lot of wonderful screams."

The Heroes of Olympus
  • The Jackson Legacy: In Road Of Defiance, we read a passage of Piper seeing a vision of an alternate Leo cradling Piper's dead body, and then suddenly breaking into laughter, implying that he lost his mind.

  • Most of the backstories in Brainbent.
  • Hivefled does this to Gamzee, and then some, in the prequel Reprise, and he's still dealing with the fallout from it. Word of God states it was specifically intended to invoke the feelings of "must hug poor suffering troll".
    • Happens to Eridan as well, albeit to a lesser extent.
  • Red Dead Virgo: Poor, poor Kanaya and Jade.
  • Unwanted Free Ugly Troll:
    • Karkat and Sollux's backstories, but the point of the story is to reverse it.
    • Cronus falls under this category as well after it's revealed that he spent the vast majority of his life as a test subject for Crocker Corp's experiments, which got him addicted to smoking and drinking.
  • in the post-Sburb fanfic Warbound Widow a few characters go through that, either leading up the war between the Empire and Earth or during it. Jane gets captured and subjected to torture at one point. Nepeta had it even worse, since she was caught by the Empire slave trade and by the time her friends free her she's far removed from her usual cheerful self, instead being standoffish and largely unemotional while absolutely littered in scars from the abuse she suffered.

How to Train Your Dragon
The Hunger Games
  • An Unsung Song: Namitha is very effectively broken by her allies' deaths.
  • The Capitol Games:
    • Several of the kids, notably Liotta, Holland, Britney, Faye-Anna, and Galaxy seem to be going this direction.
    • Minerva. Vinel gets there just a little too late...
  • Almost all of the characters in Claustrophobia. Brigan Knoll, Lux Solaris, Grey Slate, Darek, Maxim Bauer, Tambryn Delevinge, Harlow Bellamy, and Jayden all started off as nice characters, with some being particularly innocent (especially Grey and Harlow). As the story goes on and they get character development, they began to lose their innocence as they see their allies die and their situations groes even more dire.
  • Over the course of Some Semblance of Meaning, heroine Vale gets put through a lot of this. First, of course, she is selected to be in the 44th Hunger Games, alongside her younger brother's friend Kit... and crap only gets realer from there. She experiences great guilt over murdering a girl to protect Kit. Then, Kit falls out of a tree and is injured to the point where he can't walk... and is soon killed by a monstrous mutt, which traumatizes Vale. She makes new friends in the forms of District Five siblings Fen and Lark, but Lark dies by accidentally eating nightlock while under Vale's watch, and Fen leaves her to go on a suicide mission to attack the Career camp as a "take that" to the Capitol. Vale soon runs into the mutt that killed Kit, breaks down, and kills it in a berserker rage. She allies with the ex-Career Obsidian against her better judgment, only to realize that she is falling for him—which wouldn't be such an awful thing if it weren't for the Hunger Games. Oh, yeah, and she also worries that she may be going crazy from her time in the arena and has constant struggles to maintain her morality. All of this culminates into the final confrontation where, instead of killing Obsidian, Vale lashes out against the Capitol, knowing very well that the Gamemakers will forcibly and permanently silence her for it.
  • Survival: Poor Mary, Riley, and poor, poor Parker.
  • Magnum definitely qualifies for this in Twenty Three Cannons Trilogy. Alanna, too, albeit in a different way.

The Inheritance Cycle
  • The Storm Dragons:
    • Ravana started off sweet and innocent, which ended when he first met his people and they immediately tried to kill him for (to him) no apparent reason. Galbatorix on the other hand, didn't start off quite as innocent as Ravana did, but there's still a significant difference between him at the beginning and end in From White To Black and especially when you decide to add The Shadowed Throne or Dragon's Blood into the mix. Strangely he seemed to be much happier during Black Dragon.
    • From White To Black is essentially one long example of Galbatorix being broken over and over again.

  • Pretty much every character experiences this at some point in Memoirs.

Ivalice Alliance
Inside Out
  • Tales of a Reset Mind: Joy gets hit with this, hard, especially in Part Nine. She starts at her usual, lighthearted self...and then sees her home destroyed, Imagination Land in ruins, her fellow Emotions hurt, and Nico (the host) after he is Tortured by Mania. Then he gets impaled, and he asks her to Stay with Me Until I Die. Then, she watches him fall inside the Memory Dump after Mania throws him in.. She doesn't take it well

Kill la Kill
  • Happens to both Nui Harime and Izanami Nishimura in fairly vicious fashion in Maim de Maim.
    • For Nui, this happens when Ragyo has her prescription meds canceled, allowing her split personality to take over, undoing several years of care and progress.
    • For Izanami it was having her fiance killed and then being brainwashed into thinking Satsuki did it. Unlike Nui, the poor girl doesn't even recover.
  • Mako and Mataro lose their parents at the start of A Minor Miscalculation, and it rarely gets any better for them from then on. By the time chapter 14 rolls around, Mako is just shattered.

Kingdom Hearts
  • Chou back at the Feylinus nest in The Adventures Of Kiko Fluffy Pants.
  • The author of Fill the Moon adores this trope and uses it whenever possible. From her own OC, Senayax, who gets it the worst in incidents ranging from being forcibly impregnated by her lover, Zexion, who is also five years older than her and being forced to eat her own grandfather to survive, things like being Driven to Suicide and almost dying after her lover's Heroic Sacrifice after holding him and begging for him to Please Wake Up seem almost trivial in comparison.
    • After what happens to Demyx, both as a Nobody and as a "somebody," you just want to give the poor kid a hug. While his breakdown isn't as triumphant as Senayax's, trying to clean the castle even as your hands are bleeding, chemical-burned wrecks underneath you is sob-worthy.
    • And considering that he was emotionally and physically abused from cradle to grave as Myde, when Xigbar finally—finally—snaps, so does the reader. Good thing there's an adorable and Fetish-laden scene after Xigbar snaps.
    • The kicker? The one abusing him was his own big brother.
    • Considering Larxene was raped and abused by her husband of three years, and is implied to have had many other abusive relationships, she doesn't really catch much of a break, either. While she's still the same sadistic, snarky Larxene that is recognizable from Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, there's a definite air of Stepford Smiler about her, especially during her rape-based breakdowns.
    • To sum it up; everyone in this fic has horrible things happen to them. EVERYONE.
  • The Kingdom Hearts AU fic Lost Boys breaks Sora to pieces, and builds him back up in a twisted mirror of himself. After seeing his home and at least father get forcibly ripped away from him via X-Blade summoning by Ventus and Vanitas(the latter ends up possessing the former) he's hurtled off to Traverse Town as pretty much the only survivor, with his friend, Riku, of the Destiny Islands. Oh, and he's four at this point. Next eleven years he grows up into a mentally unstable teenager who is depressed, angry at the world, anti-social, suicidal, and pretty much everything he shouldn't be. He finally gets a break and life seems to get better: he meets Kairi, starts falling in love with her, gets a steady home for once, mentally recoops a bit. But then he fails to keep his promise to keep Kairi safe and watches her get kidnapped by Maleficent, shortly after nearly dies TWICE and experiences severe pain along with it, then he loses Riku, gets even FURTHER depressed, to make things so much better Maleficient mind rapes him by showing him how he's supposed to be canon-wise, and due to it, along with learning Riku's switched sides, attempts suicide. You think he'd finally get a break, right? NO, He DIDN'T die, as much as he wanted to. He finds Riku, who by now is possessed by Ansem, who "helps" him find Kairi. They later split up again, and when they get back together he ends up nearly losing his heart to keep her safe and experiences unbearable pain in the process. Then, when chasing after Ansem, he gets drawn into an illusion of the islands and breaks down into a maniacally giggling, teen-child psychological mess. Oh, and facing Ansem himself once and for all? He gets so broken, Anti-Form just leaps out and mauls Ansem to death while Kairi watches in horror, and Sora finally just ends up collapsing from the exertion. And this is just the first one.
    • Later in the sequel, Broken Heroes, you can add Ventus to the list. Ventus has lived in Sora's heart this whole time, and understands EXACTLY where Sora is willing to go with revenge. He feels nothing but regret for his life, and even though he has his spots of hope and happiness, he also feels Terra and Aqua are pretty much gone. He was so guilt-ridden he WANTED Riku to kill him with his own Keyblade when he awoke. To quote the author:
      "He is insanely guilt-ridden from the fact he killed so many people and ruined Riku and Sora's lives because of his choice. He just wants to feel like he hasn't screwed up, that people have gotten the justice they deserve. "
      • And then(much later after several adventures and still getting chewed out by Sora) Ventus is brutally injured by Saïx, who he still believed to be friends with, and ends up dying in Sora's arms still thinking he was unforgiven. He's brought back, thanks to Aqua, gets to see her one last time, then DIES AGAIN. Granted, Sora finally forgives and lets go of his hate because of this- being replaced with just depression and regret -but it's crippling to everyone who witnessed it. Especially Aqua, who goes from badass to broken in an instant.
    • This Troper dearly hopes you don't have strong feelings for Aqua. She gets her heart ripped out and into pieces too many times. A rather poignant example would be finding Xemnas and trying to cling to the thought of at least Terra still being alive that she goes against Kairi and Sora. Xemnas does play along, but he was lying.
  • In Omega Dawn, Both Ruxik, Riku's Nobody, and Maleficent attempted to break Kairi by killing Sora, defiled his body, attacking Destiny Islands, force her to fight a war against the Heartless, including Omegasis, the biggest and most ruthless heartless, who represent all evil, and later told her that they could bring back Sora, in order to make her stab herself with her own keyblade so she would become a Heartless and so, having the ultimate powers of the Princessess of Hearts at their hands. They almost succeeded on making her insane, but luckily, she regained her senses and fought back.
  • The Shrouded Path has several cases of this.
    • First, there's Aqua who ends up the most traumatized by Silent Hill. Not only does she face the general craziness of the town, but she is nearly killed by her best friend and breaks her keyblade in a fight against Pyramid Head. The resulting mental and physical damage then allows Vanitas to brainwash her into becoming his dragon. She was later freed from his control, but it's revealed in the last chapter that she is now suffering from severe PTSD.
      • Then just to drive the knife in, just when Aqua finally appears to be recovering in the sequel, Vanitas kidnaps her. Not only does he drag the Land of Departure into Silent Hill's otherworld, but he also viciously mindrapes her by forcing her to experience the pain and deaths of other people. He then devotes all his energy into convincing Aqua that her friends never cared about her. When Aqua's attempt to sleep with Vanitas to stop him from killing Ven winds up being the least traumatic experience she's gone through, it says a lot.
    • Between The Shrouded Path and its sequel, Sora goes through this. Not only are he and his friends drawn into Silent Hill, but he is taken hostage by Vanitas and used as bait for Kairi. She attempts to rescue him, but is defeated by Vanitas and ends up losing her heart in front of Sora. Then, when Sora finally escapes with her unconscious body, he is forced to leave Riku behind. Is it any surprise Sora's a miserable wreck?
      • In Those Who Fight Monsters, Sora returns to Silent Hill with Ven to try to rescue his friends. It isn't long before the town sends Pyramid Head after poor Sora.
    • Surprisingly averted with Terra. Although Terra's Dark and Troubled Past seems to indicate that he will be broken, he not only gets through his trials, but realizes that he can control his inner darkness and uses that to defeat Vanitas and rescue his friends.
      • As of the sequel, YMMV on whether or not he is broken
    • Master Eraqus can be added to the list with recent chapters. Most of his breaking took place off-screen, but the implication is that during the Time Skip between The Shrouded Path and its sequel, he had been wrestling with extreme guilt over the fact that he was the one to send his apprentices to Silent Hill. Come Those Who Fight Monsters, and he's navigating Silent Hill all alone in an attempt to rescue Aqua. Whatever he experienced there, it completely broke him and convinced him to give up being a Keyblade Master.
      • It's implied that while in Silent Hill, Master Eraqus was forced to kill a copy of Master Xehanort. At least we hope it was a copy.

  • Knight Errant: Done to Kirby when he finds out that he’s been manipulated into working for NightMare Enterprises for over a century, all while he thought he was helping the Star Warriors.
  • The Galactic Knightmare: Magalor receives a harsh one when he witnesses Kirby's tortured state, being held captive by Nightmare. It only gets worse when his soul is forcibly fused with Dark Meta Knight's in an incredibly painful display, and Marx giddily comments on how exciting it is. Later, Magalor is attacked by a Dark Matter drone and has to fight a being for control over his own body. And on top of all that, he's forced to witness his best friend in the world, Bandana Waddle Dee, die in his arms. Ouch.''

  • The Takotsuboya K-ON Trilogy, over the course of three interlinked stories, breaks most of the K-ON! cast, though it does give them some hope at the end. Mio's is mostly self-inflicted, Azusa's is the primary focus. Only Mugi escapes relatively unscathed.

Left 4 Dead
Left 4 Dead 2
  • Blind Mans Bluff: Poor, poor Rochelle and Ellis...
    • To date, Rochelle had to witness Chris getting his armed ripped off by a Witch when he saved her and Coach's lives. And then she had to hear his cries of agony as his arm was cauterized. And Ellis had his optimism in humanity challenged many times, starting with the ruthless female robber to getting almost tortured then slaughtered by Jerry. Then he had to watch Jerry die.

Legend of Korra
The Legend of Spyro
  • The Legend of Spyro: A New Dawn: Cyros manages to do this to Ember in one chapter, first revealing Cynder's anger towards her and forcing Spyro and Cynder to break her heart by revealing the truth about their relationship and tell her she can't be with Spyro. It continues next chapter were she's locked up in a mine and beat half to death by a Gargoyle. Thankfully, Siria the Phoenix Queen snaps her out of it.
  • In a prologue story for The Legend of Spyro: Zonoya's Revenge, Ember gets put through this due to her attempts to win Spyro's love. However, it ultimately does end up being for the better, as she realizes that Spyro isn't her true love after all, letting her move on and be with Flame, who really does love her.

The Legend of Zelda
  • Desert Fortress: Poor Ilia.
  • Fortitude: And how. Just when you think things can't get worse for Link and Zelda, they do.
    • There's numerous examples, but the most fitting is when the couple are told there is no cure for Link's illness, and Zelda has to face the prospect of losing her husband and raising Link's son by herself, despite doing everything she can to prevent this from happening throughout all of Fortitude.
    • Also, Heather. The poor girl gets whipped. Not only is this horrible for her, it's horrible for Zelda because Heather was taking punishment because Zelda defied Ashton.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: As Link sleeps over at Lon Lon Ranch, an armoured Gerudo breaks in and tries to strangle him to death for opposing Ganondorf. Link manages to get free before the Gerudo threatens Malon with a knife and acts like she's going to kill her if Link gets any closer. Link does so without thinking and all she does is step back. Taking this to his advantage, Link backs the Gerudo into Epona, who bites her and makes her throw the knife away. The whole fight culminates with Link accidentally tying a bullwhip around her neck, which gets caught in a ceiling fan and hangs her... all in front of Malon. Needless to say, she does not come out emotionally unscathed.

The Lion King
  • Happens numerous times in The Lion King Adventures:
    • Simba is devastated after his parents and kingdom are destroyed by the Vimelea in Series Four. This sets him on the path to evil in Series Five.
    • Nala temporarily goes insane after being tortured by Hago.
    • Haiba becomes distraught after the death of his cousin, Binamu.
      • That's nothing compared to him murdering Tama, though.
    • Tojo after becoming corrupted by Hago's staff. This leads to his death.

Littlest Pet Shop (2012)
  • Skeletons in the Closet: Kim, a hamster who lived a life of complete isolation, breeding and experiments. It's no wonder why Sunil wants to help her ghost find peace.
    • Sunil himself reveals the fact that he's so skittish is that he can see ghosts and has been a victim of Mind Rape. On top of this, he has to help Kim find closure by searching for her dead body hidden in the basement of Littlest Pet Shop. Finally, she requests he cries at her funeral. Sunil finds himself sobbing for 25 minutes in the pouring rain over the grave of a girl he barely even knows and later tearfully blames himself for ruining the happy atmosphere of LPS by helping find Kim's body. The icing on the cake is when Sunil gets molested the very same thing that mind raped him when he moved to New York City.
  • Happens to all the pets in The Times They Are A-Changin'.

Lost Girl
  • Happens to Lauren in Mad World, Trick uses his powers to write that the Garuda will be defeated by a champion (who turns out to be Bo). The Garuda is aware of this, and knows that Lauren will be involved. So it and Thane utterly destroy her life trying to prevent it. Thane brutally murders 19 of her colleagues/friends in the Congo, and then murders her. She is then brought back by the Fae, is subsequently informed by them she is now their slave, and spends the next 5 years as slave facing their constant racism. Thane returns murders an additional 20 people, who look just like the victims from the Congo (including her) and arranges the bodies in the same manner. He then finally captures her, subjects her to Mind Rape and horrific torture. She is left very broken by all this, and is distinctly unamused when Trick confesses his role in it.

The Loud House
  • Requiem for a Loud: All the Loud Sisters who are aware of Lincoln's condition suffer this in varying degrees.
    • Out of all the Loud sisters, Lynn has this the hardest because she is the reason why Lincoln is given another two weeks instead of being immediately dead in Chapter 1. Although Lincoln takes this as a good thing as it gives him the chance to settle things with his family and friends, Lynn believes she actually CAUSED Lincoln's condition when she hit him in the head with her ball. How bad is it? While her other sisters in the know are in depression but haven't done anything reckless to themselves, she overworks her hands during exercising to obvious self-harm and even denied medical treatment when offered, and starts picking fights whenever she can to vent her frustration.

Love Hina
  • Shinobu gets put through the ringer in For His Own Sake, but comes out a better person for it.

Lyrical Nanoha

The Magic School Bus
  • Phoebe in First Impressions of Earth.
  • Phoebe in Under Cover of Darkness, considering she woke up alone in an abandoned hospital after the apocalypse happens and the next day has to kill a friend to keep her from turning into a zombie. It has gone downhill from there, considering she gets impaled with an arrow, scars her face, gets her nose broken, breaks up with Arnold because he got another girl pregnant, loses half her ear from a mauler, is wanted for murder, and is tortured when arrested.

Marvel Cinematic Universe
  • In Still Alive Jen started out as a sweet dancer girl. By the time she wakes up in 2014 she's a slightly pyromaniac, morally grey, broken woman who only seeks revenge.

Mass Effect
  • For Tomorrow We Die:
    • Gabby, learning of Ken's death.
    • Tali, after the attack on the Rayya and the realization that no one in the galaxy is going to help them.
  • This happens to Tali in Mass Vexations 3 after an implied rape by an exile that had been allowed back onto the fleet.

Medaka Box
Miraculous Ladybug
  • Down thoroughly breaks Adrien. First, he confesses to Ladybug, even revealing his identity; she slaps him and runs off. Then at school, Marinette is absent and Alya keeps looking at Adrien like she wants to kill him. After school, he goes home to be scolded for this whole mess by his father for no other reason than it makes Gabriel look bad. Adrien's attempt at calling Gabriel out ends up getting the kid slapped, causing him to decide to treat Gabriel as a boss instead of a father. Plagg's attempts to make Adrien feel better earlier completely fall through and Adrien discards the ring, which, combined with his emotional state, leads to the poor kid getting akumatized.

Mitadake High
Monsters University
  • PostMU: Life's a Scream!:
    • Terry received a particularly bad one by a female monster named Merida Malicestorm that controlled a classic high school bully clique. The clique resembled PNK (albeit they were A LOT meaner) and pulled a prank on Terry specifically in a Carrie-like fashion that traumatized him and clearly shattered his perception on romance. This prank also resembled ROR's prank during the movie which implies that ROR's prank angered him so bad due to re-opening the wound.
    • Laura is hinted to possibly have something like happen to her in the past that had a lasting effect on her in the form of anxiety attacks
    • Each member of the Exceeda Zeta Sorority will experience this in subsequent chapters.
    • Katy was visibly distraught when her Love Interest Terri of the Perry twins was severely injured due to the accident at the science labs.

  • Mulan undergoes this throughout Hachin but ultimately comes out stronger for it.

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
  • Twilight goes through this in After That Fateful Night.
  • An interesting example is from After The Gala. It's interesting because of what event from the series, Fluttershy's eruption of anger at the Gala, is turned into one of these. When she calms down and realized what she did, the poor girl is hit with this hard and reduced to a sobbing wreck to the point her friends can't even begin to think of how to comfort her. Thankfully, she's unbroken by her friends and Princess Celestia.
  • All-American Girl: The Foalnapping Incident and misinterpreted "attempted rape" gave DJ PTSD; the subsequent custody trial a few months later shattered her psyche, pushing her over the Despair Event Horizon, giving her further grief and permanently changing her personality from cheerful and outgoing to jaded and sullen.
    • Though she's apparently regained some of her old personality over the years.
  • Applejack's Love is one long Break the Cutie experience for Applejack and Rainbow Dash. The ending is especially painful.
  • Twilight's gotten a continuous chain of these in the early chapters of Arad's Stardust, starting with witnessing a Chryssalid slaughter some civilians, then having to kill it in self-defence, and going on from there. It happens again in chapter 33 when she recalls Lana and Matt fighting the EXALT infiltrator and starts wondering if Shining Armor also has a killer within.
  • Two examples in-story in A Robust Solution:
    • Happened to Fluttershy four years ago in Fluttershy's Night Out. This story is about healing her.
    • Seems to have also happened to Rarity around the same time, but not as badly, and she's long since recovered from the bad event.
  • A Voice Among the Strangers: Jessica's first ponies she meets are the Flim Flam brothers, who are running a monster horror show. They added her to the monster roster, treating her poorly. This left her with a fear of unicorns and their magic, and a general distrust of ponies.
  • In Cadance of Cloudsdale Cadance realizes that the Crystal Ponies have undergone this, and worries she doesn't truly deserve to lead them.
  • The Chess Game of the Gods:
    • Gilda, Violet Melody, Celestia, and Octavia each have a moment.
    • A lot of chess pieces go through this, usually after they kill or watch someone die for the first time.
    • For almost twenty chapters, Arrell's all happy and upbeat...then comes the Dusk of Ice and Fire.
  • Collection Of Sacrifices is a good example of Break the Cutie. A little filly is kidnapped from her family, forced to join the army, watches a sadistic torture session and gets no sympathy or friends. The author has said that's nowhere near as dark as it will get.
  • The Conversion Bureau: The Other Side of the Spectrum has many instances of these.
    "In simple words, she had suffered a temporal stroke, leaving the two halves of her brain in separate time zones. One was always in the present, while the other... wandered. Sometimes she babbled about events that had yet to happen, or screamingly re-experience past horrors, not just from her own life, but of Eldritch nightmares from eons before Equestria's founding. It was a painful, debilitating and humiliating fate. But at times, the ability to experience the future before it happened was extremely useful."
    • Princess Celestia, briefly, after seeing Marcus' memories of the atrocities the TCB!ponies are committing against his people.
    • Prime!Lyra to a lesser extent. Not only does Marcus' account of what's happening to his world as well as finding out her counterpart was killed shake her up, but there's also how, in "War March and Past Sins", she realizes that she could have become an Unwitting Instigator of Doom if she had gone on that scuba diving trip where her TCB counterpart uncovered a shipwreck that held the Bag of Tirek onboard.
    • Each of the Prime universe versions of the Mane Six go through this in varying degrees, most especially Twilight Sparkle.
    • The chapter "For Whom the Bell Tolls" reveals this is the case for TCB!Twilight (and by extension, the rest of the Mane Six), owing to having their bodies hijacked by TCB!Celestia, who implanted dark personalities into their bodies and left the girls themselves imprisoned in their own minds, unable to do anything besides witness every atrocity the homonculi driving their bodies commit in the Queen's name. Twilight herself is all but reduced to begging and pleading desperately with Prime!Luna to kill her to end everyone else's suffering. And then Not!Twilight shows Luna the gruesome history of the ponification potion's development, capped off with the three thousand human test subjects it took to perfect it...
    • In the Asia Side Story, TCB!Comet Tail starts off as a pretty cheerful, carefree little girl, but it's clear her positive attitude is slowly getting darkened in response to growing up on the front lines of the war. Her Prime counterpart in The Other Side of the Mirror goes through a milder version of this for herself when she looks at the human culture exhibitions detailing the effects the war has had on Earth and TCB!Equestria.
  • Happens to all three protagonists in Corruption At Nightfall.
    • Lady Tourmaline, a classic Silk Hiding Steel aristocratic heroine is raped by Morion, gets a Hope Spot when she is able to escape to Equestria with her beloved Prince Crimson and develop a technology with him that allows him to compensate for his mutiliation, then gets broken all over again when she is forced to witness her lifelong lover's slow descent into madness and evil as Emperor Sombros.
    • Prince Crimson Quartz starts as a bright and loveable colt, becomes an idealistic Science Hero, and then suffers the rape of his lifelong love Tourmaline, maiming in the removal of the horn which lets him be a mage, and after his Hope Spot with Tourmaline in Equestria and on the battlefield defeating Morion, becomes increasingly evil and insane as a result of his traumas and finally merges with the Shadows to become evil Emperor Sombros.
    • Princess Luna, who has loved Crimson Quartz almost all his life, thinks that he finally returns her romantic love: instead he seduces her, pretends to love her, leads her down a path of depraved evil and madness, and in the end casts her out, SPECIFICALLY to destroy her attunement to the Elements. He succeeds, which forces Luna to instead help her sister kill Sombros. At the end of this, Luna's emotions and sanity are so utterly shattered that within two decades of increasing alienation from everyone, she becomes Nightmare Moon.
  • Equestria Total War. Oh so very very much.
  • Eternal: The war with Discord left serious psychological scars on Celestia. The Sun was also innocent, naive and trusting until Celestia snapped.
  • Fiona is one of the hardest hit by her transformation in Five Score, Divided by Four.
  • Fluttershy's Night Out has a teenaged (and very innocent even by her later standards) Fluttershy seduced and abandoned by a smooth-talking stallion. The strong implication is that this is why she's the half-crazed hermit we see at the start of the TV series: she's terrified of strangers.
  • Twilight Sparkle goes through this in Frigid Wings and Burning Hearts after Princess Luna comes to her for help. Though she tries her best, she doesn't fully trust Luna, in no small part because Luna insists her beloved mentor Celestia is actually a manipulative tyrant who rewrites history on a whim. ...And as much as she'd love to deny this, it at least partly explains the discrepancies she'd discovered in her own research. To make matters worse, she's immediately labeled a traitor by a cruel captain of the Royal Guard who wants nothing more than to watch her break under extreme torture... and one of his soldiers happens to be an old childhood friend.
    • Luna, meanwhile, comes almost completely pre-broken. Her past experiences have left her fearing that her own sister is a monster, causing her to assume the worst about everything she does. The real reason she went on the rampage as Nightmare Moon? A thousand years of solitary confinement left her unstable enough to fall under Celestia's Mind Control, forcing her to play the villain her sister had invented and get the Elements of Harmony unleashed upon her... an action that stripped her of her immortality. Learning that last bit completely shatters what little trust she had in her Celly. (Of course, it's more complicated than that...)
  • Getting Back on Your Hooves:
    • Happens to Trixie at Checker's hooves after she's become a nicer person. Multiple times.
    • Checker does this in the final confrontation, using their worst nightmares combined with Breaking Lectures to nearly drive the Mane Cast over the Despair Event Horizon. They manage to recover when they realize that both their loved ones are cheering them on and that they're in a dream.
  • Harmony's Warriors: Having your mother shot to death in front of you will do that. Poor Carrot Cake...
  • Hormones chronicles Spike's descent into the depths of depravity. He begins the story like a normal sexually frustrated teenager, and through a series of inviting opportunities, ends up committing some very perverse acts. This culminates in chapter 4 (titled: "Last Resort") where Spike molests Winona and is caught by Applejack. Fearing the consequences, he hangs himself.
    • exemplified to a lesser extent in Sunset and For Want of a Dawn, both by Ciroton.
      • In Sunset, Twilight is broken through a series of events that lead to her finding out that she is actually a golem Celestia planned to sacrifice, which causes her to almost murder both Luna and Celestia.
      • In For Want of a Dawn, The events of Sunset have come to pass, but Twilight is FURTHER broken by being taken to an alternate reality where everyone wants to kill her, including her friends; except for Rainbow Dash, whom she meets in hell after RD was killed by an alternate Twilight. Could be a happy ending except Rainbow is then killed AGAIN.
  • The Immortal Game: The Mane Six.
    • Pinkie Pie gets hit hard by this after she thinks that Wrong!Dash killed Fluttershy.
    • Twilight has to watch her Super-Powered Evil Side torture her friends and later comes to the realisation that Celestia was manipulating her.
    • Rainbow Dash gets Mind Raped into hurting her friends.
    • Applejack has healing Earth Pony magic. Awesome. She's traumatised by the amount of Body Horror she's had to heal. Not Awesome.
    • Fluttershy has lost her connection to the animals.
    • Carousel Boutique, Rarity's dream, is burned down.
  • Thoroughly to Pinkie Pie in chapters 10 and 11 of The Legend Of Mare Do Well.
  • Pinkie Pie's nightmare pretty successfully did this to her in The Light in the Darkness. She gets better.
  • Happens to both Quill and Filter in their backstories in Miscellaneous, but doubly so for Filter.
  • The Games We Play: Happens thoroughly to Pinkie Pie after Rainbow Dash rejects her feelings.
  • In Motherly Scootaloo, this happens to Scootaloo on a few occasions, but she is recovering.
  • Pinkie Pie in My Little Animaniacs because her Granny Pie died.
  • In the novel-length My Little Balladeer, this is attempted by Rowley Thorne againstboth Spike and the Cutie Mark Crusaders, by turning them into monsters and the Mane Six, by trying to force them to kill their loved ones.
  • In chapter 7 of The Order of Koaxia, Descartes begins their encounter by trying to deconstruct Fluttershy's worldview. He fails. Horribly.
  • Twilight in Pages Of Harmony subjects all her friends to this in order to extract the essence of the Elements from them. And each of them is broken in different, terrifying ways before they die. Even Sweetie Belle and her assistant Spike are subject to this due to being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
  • In Popped, This slowly happens to Pinkie Pie over the course of the story, culminating in her developing PTSD and eventually killing herself.
  • Nightmare attempts this several times in The Party Never Ended, on both Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie. By the end, this backfires epically when it comes to Pinkie.
  • In The Path of Absolution the Cutie Mark Crusaders are exiled from the town and it only gets worse from there.
  • Rainbow Dash is both this and Break the Haughty, and either way, she ends up broken in Pattycakes.
  • The Pony POV Series is notable in that, thanks to Discord, this has happened to every mane and side character in the show! This includes Trixie, who was broken personally by Discord to the point Twilight had to enter her mind and manually free her. Later on, and unrelated to Discord directly, Fluttershy gets broken and turns into a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds named Princess Gaia/Nightmare Whisper who serves as the second Big Bad.
  • Pony POV Series Chaos Verse: Fluttercruel breaks down crying after being forced to reveal her true form to Fluttershy to scare her out of the nightmare Nightmare Phobia put her in, ruining Fluttercruel's only chance to get to know her mother.
  • Basically everypony in Pony Psychology Series, but especially Twilight, Fluttershy, Pinkie Pie, Scootaloo and Spike.
  • This happens to Twilight and Rainbow Dash in the Alternate Universe Fic Rainbooms and Royalty, in which Rainbow Dash is Celestia's student, not Twilight. Since Princess Celestia was in Cloudsdale rather than in Canterlot (as in the show), Twilight's magic rages unchecked until she exhausts herself. The examiners for Princess Celestia's School for Gifted Unicorns admits her because they fear she would be a danger to society untrained. She feels that her cutie mark, which she earned during the fiasco, represents her potential to harm other ponies, rather than her talent with magic. Rainbow and Applejack soon set her straight. Rainbow is broken more than once. First, after Nightmare Moon forces Rainbow Dash, reeling from the loss of Celestia, to publicly plead with her to not brainwash Shining Armor, Ditzy Doo, and two Pegasus royal guards, only to do so anyway and reveal that she only wanted to humiliate the proud Pegasus before Ponyville. The second break occurs when the corrupted Shining Armor reveals that he knew all about Rainbow Dash's crush on him, and that there was never any chance of him reciprocating his feelings, as she was little more than a child to him and because he was already spoken for. Note that despite this, and despite the fic is darker than the show, it not too dark, and remains closer to the show's Lighter and Softer feel than that of a Dark Fic.
  • School Daze: Screwy in the last few chapters. She suffers internal hemorrhages of increasing severity whenever she tries to communicate normally. Narrowly averted in the end.
  • In Sleepless, Zippoorwhill is broken when she finds bodies of Alula and Twist in the Everfree Forest.
    • Babs Seed in one of the sequels, Manehattan Blues, when she's raped by the mafia boss and his bodyguards.
  • Swift took Hardy's death especially hard in Starlight Over Detrot.
  • Pretty much every humanized MLP character get's a moment like this in Stockholm.
  • Sunshine and Fire: The years have not been kind on Sunshine Fluttershy.
  • Time Stand Still is one long process of this for Fluttershy.
  • This nearly happens with Ditzy in Trails And Trials, being on the receiving end of Destiny's constant bullying in the first chapter and later breaking down crying in front of a crowd of ponies after accidentally spilling all of her undelivered mail. Once Twilight shows up, things start to slowly look up for her, until things take a turn for the worse by the end of chapter 5.
  • Twilight Then, Twilight Now Universe: It turns out that Ponyland-era's Applejack's "silly filly" behavior is due to her actually being the Equestria-era Applejack, who has been immortal for a thousand years and steadily traumatised by the increasing decline of ponies. Is it any wonder she is tempted by an offer to Set Right What Once Went Wrong, allowing her to prevent the Fall of Equestria?
  • Valkyr Studios:
    • Ascentia does this constantly in Doomsday Ascending. Explaining the harsh nature of the universe outside her little bubble to Twilight in the prologue. Explaining that war brings death with it to Fluttershy. Dragging Rainbow Dash away from what is insinuated to be a suicide attempt, sneering at her rationale.
    • In Spiritus Khayyam after Cadance is killed by Lord Ryder, Twilight calmly asserts "He needs to die."
    • Changing Times: Fluttershy, when she's eventually rejected. Rainbow Dash broke after rejecting Fluttershy. Twilight has her own moments, especially in chapter five.
    • Pretty much every humanized MLP character get's a moment like this in Stockholm.
  • Warming Up is an sexually explicit fanfic (the kind with an actual story) where Twilight and Spike starts having a relationship. What was initially a light-hearted (abet with explicit sex scenes) romantic fic takes a dark turn, when Spike is separated from Twilight, then due to him being in heat he starts attracting unwanted attention from the rest of the Mane 6, even getting raped by Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie.
  • Zenith as a whole is essentially one for Spike.
  • An author who uses this trope a lot is Kalash93, especially in his War Is Hell stories. See a cute, young, happy, innocent, naive, character? Let the breaking commence!
    • Welcome To The Brothel is a heartfelt letter written by the protagonist to his mother. By the end, it becomes obvious just how fucked up and broken the war has made him.
    • Its followup story, Relax, actually shows the "fixing" of a cutie from a shell-shocked mass of nerves into a stable youth. It's implied that the protagonist's sessions with the prostitute keep him sane.
    • His most triumphant example is Shell Shock. Fluttershy joins the army in order to protect her friends. She is sent into a war and Forced to Watch atrocities being committed. When she finally get her chance to save a single life, she instead chooses to kill an unarmed fleeing zebra to safe her own life. The fic ends with her a sobbing wreck.
  • Break the Cutie seems to be a trope invoked in general by the Friendship is Magic fanart and fanfiction community. Many of the longer stories out there invoke this plenty, and more than a few do so as a method to provide fetish appeal.

  • The first four chapters of A Hero's Journey are a great Trauma Conga Line Prolonged Prologue in which Naruto is systematically broken from his Cheerful Child personality, all being a necessary part of a prophecy for him to save the world.
  • Implied with Agent Diamond in Akatsuki Kitten: Phoenix Corporation Overhaul. The effects are obvious.
  • Chiro's backstory in Diplomatic Relations.
  • Epicfic Cycle: Poor, poor Sai.
  • Kakashi in The Girl From Whirlpool when Sakumo commits suicide.
  • Takeru attempts this on Yakata in In the Blood. When this first attempt doesn't work, he leaves the kid in the Forest of Death, alone.
  • The author of Introverted must hate the kids for the sheer amount of angst.
  • Quotidian is one long exercise in Hidan driving Temari to the breaking point by messing with her first mentally and then physically, (She contributes by taking so many stimulant shots her body breaks down and fails * just after* he decides he's not going to kill her yet. It works so well that she ends up attacking her brother Kankurou after hallucinating he's Hidan and then ending up in hospital and under psyche review (which she passes through merit of knowing the correct answers). If Hidan could be seen as a cutie, this could also work both ways as he ends up so obsessed with the idea she can kill him that he breaks down when he finds out she can't, and that his obsession is no sign from his god, just him being a bit of a Stalker with a Crush, even if he doesn't see it himself. Oh and he managed to agonize about betraying his beliefs in order to keep her alive (because he wants her to kill him later, naturally.)
  • The Wrath of a Woman Scorned have this as the Darkand Troubled Past of Naruko/Aki. After being tortured when she was younger, her canonical happy-go-lucky attitude is replaced by that of a psycothic Blood Knight
    Kakashi: "A Hidden Village is not a safe place for a little girl if nobody comes when she screams"
  • Wind Monk Banishment: Hinata was mentally bullied until she could no longer see Naruto as anything but the Kyuubi. She is to Naruto what canon Sasuke was to Itachi. It is that bad.

Neon Genesis Evangelion
  • A Crown of Stars: After the Angel War and the end of the world Shinji had to struggle to survive in the post-apocalyptic wastelands and help a semi-comatose Asuka to do the same. He became puppet of dictators, got beaten up and forcefully separated from his life’s love during three years while she was being raped by blood-thirsty monsters, got obliged to kill… when the story starts out he is very, very badly broken and he does not know whether things will get better.
  • Advice and Trust: When Shinji and Asuka open up to each other, Shinji tells how he got abandoned by his father after his mother's death, with no explanation or apology, grew up with no friends, has nightmares about it the whole time... and finds out that Asuka understands him too much well. They get together and his life is apparently and finally getting better... and then an Angel hijacks an Eva with one of is friends inside, Hikari gets absorbed into her robot, he and Asuka get fired...
  • The Child of Love: Shinji had endured his mother dying and his father abandoning him straight after and summoning him back ten years later to fight giant alien monsters. He roomed with a beautiful red-head girl that he loved even though she claimed disliking him. Then he got her knocked up and she became more hostile and meaner to him. After a while her behaviour softened, they got together… and right when they were happy at last he found out that his father was plotting something might kill Asuka and would take their daughter away him. Shinji got broken several times over, but ultimately he pulled himself together.
  • Doing It Right This Time: Meek, soft-spoken Shinji had been so thoroughly broken by the Angel War that after surviving the world ending he decided to kill himself. He got sent to the past instead, and although he is trying to change things for better he is very fatalistic about his chances.
  • Evangelion 303: Shinji was a pretty nice, considerate guy. However when he was a little kid his mother died and his father entrusted his care to another person and later sent him away to school. When the story begins he makes new friends and finds his life's love. And then her girlfriend's life -and his- went to Hell: Asuka's war plane crashes and she falls into a coma for several months. He spends most that time by her bedside, praying for she waking up. When she does, she is so unstable and wrecked with survivor guilt that she abuses him and herself. When she can not stand it anymore she tries to commit suicide. He stops her but she runs away straight after, intending to leave his life forever. Fortunately things got better for both from that point onward.
  • Ghosts of Evangelion: Shinji was severely broken during their teen years because of his mother's death, his father's abandonment and the War. After Third Impact he gets help and gets better, but his PTDS never really goes away.
  • HERZ: After the battle of 2015 Shinji had been so thoroughly broken that he attempted to kill himself at one point.
  • Higher Learning: Although Shinji had suffered a lot due to his missing mother and abusive father, Kaoru helped him to try and to get over his traumas and develop a more optimistic outlook. But even so Shinji still got to see Asuka breaking down and collapsing, and many of his friends getting hurt.
  • Played straight, averted, and subverted alike in Neon Genesis Evangelion R. While Lyn and Aoi both go through some pretty serious breaking (along with mainstays Asuka and Shinji) they may come out of it alright (depending on which ending you're following).
  • In Neon Genesis Evangelion: Genocide, Shinji wasn't a bad boy, but he was completely broken during the Angel War. When the story starts out, he's trying to pick the pieces.
  • Nobody Dies
    • Chapters 31 through 33, for Shinji, Mana, and Asuka (as if Asuka wasn't already broken enough...).
    • Chapter 36 takes the abuse of Asuka and Shinji even further.
    • Ichi at the end of the third "season" and the start of the fourth.
    • What SEELE's experimentation did to the Keiwaru.
  • The One I Love Is: In case that seeing your mother dying and being abandoned by your father before your fourth birthday, being blackmailed into piloting a Humongous Mecha to fight an alien monster, and being a child forced to fight a war against Eldritch Abominations were not traumatic enough, in this story Shinji has to see how the two persons he cares the most about fall gradually apart until one of them loses all her memories after trying to blow herself up and the other attempts to commit suicide and falls in a coma.
  • The Second Try: Shinji. After enduring parental abandonment, becoming a child soldier and surviving the end of the world, he managed to go past his issues, hook up with the woman he loved and become a father. And then he got suddenly thrown back in the past without his daughter, and he was forced to repeat everything.
  • Walking in the Shadow of Dreams: In hindsight, it probably wasn't the best idea to let a jaded and cynical Shinji guest lecture about his experiences as an Eva pilot. It's quite an accomplishment to make an entire room of trained pilots break into tears.

Once Upon a Time
  • The Golds: Being held hostage, having one’s heart ripped out and used as leverage against her own family and being called a monster by an angry mob could really be traumatizing for any adult, let alone a four-year old Bella. She gets better though.

One Piece
  • Dark Truth: One night, Luffy is tortured and nearly killed by his crew, who are possessed by the ghosts of a long-dead pirate crew who seek revenge on all captains traveling through their haunting grounds. He survives, but is a lethargic shell of his former self, and his crew can't remember what happened that night. Also contains Squick, horror, And I Must Scream, To the Pain, Fate Worse than Death, and especially Et Tu, Brute?.
  • One Piece: Parallel Works has Aki Chung-Feng, who has been through hell pretty much since she was born. In short, she's born as an illegitimate child, loses her mother to a Soap Opera Disease when she is sixteen, is forced to join the Capricorns with her cousin, Showtarou, so she can get to her aunt's house for her Arranged Marriage, is kidnapped by Kaoru and Mina before their Heel–Face Turn and the Baba Yaga, is forced away from the Capricorns to go through her arranged marriage, is almost raped while trying to save Enlai's sister, and she has to face a second Arranged Marriage, which is arranged by her own father. And, then there's the fact that she and Heathcliffe are Star-Crossed Lovers because of Aki's family.

The Order of the Stick


Phineas and Ferb

  • The Bitterness Trilogy:
    • Poor, poor Phineas...
    • Ferb too. He died from internal bleeding!
  • Inator Anniversary Contest has Phineas and Isabella get hit with the Depressinator, which caused this effect within seconds. And that's not even counting the fact that they have to relive that day many times over 6 years, unable to stop crying.

The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists!
  • Anachronism:
    • The plot revolves around Gloria being sent back in time to restart her Pokémon journey after it ends in bloodshed. Not only is Gloria troubled due to being sent back two years, but she also has PTSD from her past journey.
    • Unlike in canon, the optimistic Hop didn't bounce back from being constantly second-best to both Gloria and his brother Leon.
  • Arceus Archives:
    • While not exactly a Cutie in the first place, an incident with a pack of angry Luxrays left one of Holon's Gym Leaders much worse for wear. Cue the stacks of multipliers that made the next five years a living hell...
    • To a lesser extent there's Torsten "Tory" Lund, the twentysomething who as a child constantly had an inferiority complex to his brother Lor (in adulthood it turned into a belief that he had botched up in a major way and that he was frankly a disgrace to his brother, who he believed to be a great scientist). He was dragged off to work for Team BDV, subjected to the wrath of Lemmy on multiple occasions, and after taking a good long time to reflect upon himself and how much he messed up. The kicker? He does actually meet Lor somewhere down the line, and finds much to his horror that he's a mildly mad scientist and immortal, doing grunt work for the deity he once tried to control, and nowadays goes under the name 'Zero'. Naturally, he proceeds to give Torsten a Reason You Suck Speech and basically tells him to man up.
  • Between My Brother And Me: The Swordsmen's plan to do this to May goes like this: 1) grab her wrists and make her unable to move, 2) cut her arms up with sharp knives, 3) punch her in the ribs until they nearly crack, 4) track her down and don't stop until she's DEAD.
  • Cindy's Story
    • Cindy was such a happy little Cyndaquil. Then she met Anonimo...
    • Although Alyssa
    • The Quintuplets. Seeing Dad as a sadistic evil demon Pokémon and Mom in Blue Fire Frenzy really frightened them. Amber got it the worst...
      • Poor Blaze. He's been used and manipulated by his girlfriend to unleash Blue Fire Frenzy. brought it upon herself by taking Cindy in the first place, it's still harrowing to see a ten-year-old girl being abused by her own Pokémon. Eventually she snaps and gives Cindy a severe tongue-lashing. She does get better, though.
    • Jenna’s backstory reveals she was crushed when her trainer died, and Patch's flashback shows her breaking down when she realized where Kim's parents' arguments were headed.
    • Patch was originally Anonimo's Pokémon, and was named Snap. He was a firsthand witness to Anonimo's Start of Darkness, and broke down when Kim died and Jenna disappeared. Eventually, the use of his name disappeared, and he became bitter when Anonimo heaped abuse on a newly-captured baby Cyndaquil (Cindy). After said 'Quil's beating, he was chased off after his eye was harmed and his Pokeball was crushed. It hits him hard to the present day.
  • In The Dark Side Of Innocence, this occurs to possibly the most innocent Team Rocket member. Mondo starts out a spunky teenager and a low-ranking Rocket grunt. After he discovers he and James had been given potentially lethal drugs by Giovanni in order to make him more violent, he ends up meeting a Rocket scientist named Lana. The two become friends however Lana meets an untimely demise when she's mawled to death by a drugged Persian. Mondo feels heavy Survivor Guilt because he didn't help her and because he locked her inside the room when he fled. His horrified feelings only get worse after he's involved in the murder of his boss Giovanni and learns that Giovanni had a child. Being involved in so much death and leaving a child orphaned causes Mondo to become jaded, depressed, and apathetic.
  • Forsaken. Good Lord.
  • A male variant in Morphic. Gabriel is the "snap" variety; he does not take well to Brian's death.
    • Almost everything from Chapter 7 onwards could be considered Break the Cutie for Gabriel. His dad dies, he gets kidnapped, two of his friends die when they come to save him, and then he nearly dies after figuring out how to use fire attacks.
  • After what happened to Mitzi, Ree definitely qualifies for this in Playthings Series.
  • Miko was broken pretty badly in chapter 33 of Pokemon Academy: Dragon's Roar.
  • Pokémon Adventures: Ash Gray Chapter: Ash is pretty much set up as a more innocent Red, but he is pounded on throughout the entire story, possibly coming to a climax around chapter 15?
  • Krystal Spectrum going Shadow in Pokémon Sepia.
  • Poor Missy ends up going through a lot of crap throughout Pokémon: Storm Clouds. It's not until the very end that the author finally allows her to Earn That Happy Ending.
  • There seems to be an enjoyment in tormenting the main characters of Pokémon X-Cell.
  • Anabel and Olivia in Pokémon XD Enigma Shadow Series.
  • Poké Wars:
    • Ash and Tracy in The Subsistence. Oh boy, do they ever get broken!
    • Don't forget May, Drew, Solidad, Harley and Whitney.
  • Regret:
    • Mia, very much so.
    • Erra also qualifies.
  • Silver Blood: It's implied that Wally and Brendan suffered at least one traumatic event together. While Brendan managed to keep much of his old, bubbly personality, the innocent, adorable Wally shown in other media has grown into a much colder and more serious teenager.
  • The Sun Soul does this with Ash to no end. The story's overall feel is Darker and Edgier in every regard, but it seems like Ash was made for nothing if not to suffer one loss after another. It also contains multiple examples of Hero Killer villains, Wham Episodes, and Shocking Moments in general.
  • Symbiosis:
    • Sabrina is in the receiving end of the worst and most graphic so far.
    • Jesse and James could be an example, as they pretty much lost it after being tortured. Not much is known about them before that though.
    • While the "cute" is debatable , the story suggests that all Magikarpnote  go through this, and finally snap when they evolve.

Puella Magi Madoka Magica

Ragnarok Online
Ranma ½
  • Tegast from What Lies Beyond the Walls. His entire family is slaughtered in his debut chapter, forcing him to start wandering around Mossflower alone. At that point he's forced to kill, steal, and avoid contact with others all while trying to deal with the loss of his little brother. On top of that, a fox tries to rape him, and later on, he ends up getting stabbed after stumbling across Krassak's monitor lizards. Had he not found Grustur, he definitely would've perished.

Rise of the Guardians
  • Jack's already pretty broken inZastruga , but after Pitch makes him think he killed North things get much worse.

Rosario + Vampire

  • The main OC in this Scream fanfic goes through this. At the beginning of Arc One, she's a happy, if sarcastic teenage girl with friends and a caring family. By the beginning of the final arc, she's just...sad. And a bit mutilated.

  • In Crisis Chloe is physically abused and mentally shattered by Kal's sexual assault, but when you think it is bad enough, Clark admits that he is not being controlled and actually wanted to hurt her. Chloe tortures him with kryptonite but it only makes it worse because despite what he did to her and she would never admit it, she still cares for him and it hurts her to hurt him. Chloe and her father both lost their jobs thanks to Lionel, they are about to lose their house and the Torch is stripped clean.

Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Pretty much has already happened to Tails by the start of Journey Into Darkness.
  • Cinos does this to Amy in Sonic Evil Reborn Zero, though with positive long-term results.
  • Pretty much everyone from 'Sonic X: Dark Chaos are either pre-broken before the story even begins or become this. There are some particularly dramatic and heartbreaking examples though;
    • Cosmo is left even worse off than the original Sonic X show. Killing Tails at the end certainly didn't help.
    • Cream is utterly traumatized early on and eventually refuses to go to sleep because of nightmares.
    • Tsali's backstory/Start of Darkness was pretty much the mother of all cutie-breaking stories - he watched his family die and his entire world destroyed, lived through the Demon-Seedrian War, got roboticized into an android by his own adopted father Luke, committed genocide on the Seedrians, made a Deal with the Devil, fought a thirty-year galactic civil war, and then got betrayed by his closest friends. All at the age of ten. Needless to say, by the time the story begins, he's barely even remotely sane anymore.
  • Cosmo from Sonic X is broken enough in the series but Tails Returns breaks her further.
  • Physical abuse, mental abuse, emotional abuse... Mephy's been through it all in Teaching Darkness. And yet, he still finds it in his heart to be cheerful and forgiving.
  • Prison Island Break
    • Life in prison is not kind to Silver. He finds himself breaking his ideals to survive.
    • Amy is forced to perform lewd sexual acts for Mephiles.
  • Fallen Angel:
    • Optimistic Plucky Girl Amy gets the rug pulled from underneath her after she loses her "friend", an inanimate statue that ends up floating away by accident. It's only then that the reality of her situation sinks in: Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles abandoned her on the highway after Perfect Chaos' attack, she has no friends, she has no family, and her apartment is destroyed. Left alone with no one looking for her, Amy falls into a suicidal angst. Even after being rescued she's still bitter about her Friendless Background.
    • Original Character Sarah had this happen in her past. She's a Shrinking Violet loner but as a little kid she was happy and bright. Then Robotnik attacked her hometown of Starlight City when she was eight. Sarah watched her schoolmates and her boyfriend die in the disaster. Since then, she's been a quiet recluse. It's even worse since kids, unaware of her past trauma, bully her for her scarred eyes.

Soul Eater
  • Literally every test subject Medusa has captured has undergone this in Noir Ange.

South Park
  • Lex Talionis: Kyle, Tweek and Pip (although Kyle is definitely the most severe case).

  • Ultimate Spider-Woman:
    • Kitty Pryde is getting this trope in spades after being publicly outed as a mutant.
    • More generally, Mary Jane has been enduring this trope for pretty much all of her life. She's grown up in a broken home, suffered the stresses of being a Triple Shifter, been the target of public hate campaigns, been sexually harassed by men old enough to be her father, and nearly had her very identity shattered by Jack O' Lantern when he targeted her with a sophisticated revenge plan.

Spyro the Dragon
Star Trek
  • For some reason, Jim Kirk is given a Break the Cutie back story to explain his Jerk With A Heartof Gold behavior. Witnessing a massacre on Tarsus IV, child abuse, mentally ill mother, and rape as backstory are all favorite plotlines. There is even a link on the Star Trek (2009) fanfic recs to a Hurt!Jim site consisting entirely of fics involving Kirk getting hurt. Chekhov tends to take a lot of pain, too.
    • To be fair, the Tarsus IV massacre is straight from TOS canon.

Super Danganronpa 2
  • Swimming in Terror tries to do that in the first few chapters, but by chapter six, it quickly moves on.

Super Mario Bros.
  • With Big Shells and Wings:
    • Eddard. He's captured by Trowzer's forces (although rescued later on), some of his friends are killed, his village is burned down by Dracolin and his mother is presumably killed, he kills someone merely because he was angry, and then the only Yoshi he considered to be his father is executed right in front of him. To top all that off, Eddard gets his brains blown out, which is especially jarring since the author made it seem like he'd end up surviving through the story.
    • Black. It isn't until around chapter 51 that this trope hits him hard, and it gets worse as the story progresses. By chapter 55, Black is completely broken, and he even went as far as to list every single bad thing that has happened to him since Yellow died.
    • Geno and Kooper. They try so hard to drive out Trowzer's forces from Yoshi's Island, but in the end it proves to be pointless when both of them are cornered and later captured by Marcus' commandos. It doesn't help that both of them were forced to watch Ned get executed, which sent both of them into a Heroic BSoD.

Super Smash Bros.
  • Lucas in Attack of Giygas.
  • Many characters go through this a lot in The Subspace Emissary's Worlds Conquest, especially in the Werehog Saga.
    • Chris gets this whenever Lucario suffers from lethal injuries and is put near death.
    • When Ness dies, it put Lucas into heavy depression.
  • What Goes On: Lucas does unspeakable things to Toon Link when he feels like he's cramping him and Ness' style. That doesn't stop TL from joining the group eventually though.

Tales of the World
  • Radiant Mythology II Tribilin's backstory in . Subverted when Alex hears it, he says despite what happened, it doesn't excuse any of his actions.

Team Fortress 2

Teen Titans

  • Beastboy and Starfire in Avatar.
    • Just about everyone on the team is broken, physically or mentally by the end of Avatar.
  • Down the Rabbit Hole: Poor Kid Flash.
  • Teen Titans Ascension:
    • Beastboy and Starfire
    • Just about everyone on the team is broken, physically or mentally by the end of Avatar.

Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann
  • Nia basically shatters after Kamina dies.

That Guy with the Glasses
Time Squad
  • In The Kid's Going To Be Alright. Otto from the beginning of the fic is heartbroken by Tuddrussel and Larry, who seemingly abandoned him in the last episode, "Orphan Substitute". Larry and Tuddrussel stead-fastly make things worse for the kid as they try to understand what is going on with him. Otto becomes sensitive, withdrawn, irritable, and has a couple of breakdowns due to Tuddrussel's Jerkass behavior and Larry's motherly/snooping nature. First when Larry and Tuddrussel argue over Otto within earshot of him and Tuddrussel says some cruel things that drops Otto's emotions over the edge. Second being when Otto figures out that Larry and Tuddrussel had been snooping through his most personal possession, his scrap book from the orphanage and memories of Sister Thornly's abuse runs through his terrified mind. It's not until the info is dragged out of him by Tuddrussel that the reason why Otto feels so betrayed and hurt by Tuddrussel is because he allowed Otto to get kidnapped by his former caretaker, Sister Thornly, who whipped him for running away. But Otto didn't have the heart to tell them. Thankfully, with a little love and patience, he gets better.

Tokyo Mew Mew
  • Woof Woof Power:
    • Kish turns Ichigo into an evil alien queen after the death of Masaya.
    • Nhu/Mint’s backstory.
    • Mew Scarab, who starts as a shy and friendless girl, makes close friends with the rest of Egypt's Mew Mews. They then are torn away from her by a curse, and she hardens up, choosing to go on a solitary path for revenge.

Total Drama
  • Big Brother Blues: Watching the whole of World Tour is this for Melisa. She's never seen her older brother Alejandro acting the way he does in the show and is horrified.
  • A Codette World Tour: The eponymous pairing goes through a lot of this to eventually get them together.
    • Cody doesn't get on the same team as his crush Gwen, is vilified by Alejandro after his best friend Noah was eliminated by him, loses Gwen to Duncan and gets his heart stomped on by Gwen on TV, suffers from depression as a result, and then loses his new crush Bridgette to Alejandro's charms.
    • Bridgette breaks up with Geoff between seasons (and it's implied it was a painful decision for both), finds out her anger at Cody was misplaced (thanks to Alejandro's aforementioned vilification of him), sees her best friend Gwen turn into a jerk as a result of dating Duncan, and falls for Alejandro only to learn he sees her as a slutty bimbo for him to toy with and has hurt all her friends to win the season.
  • In Courtney and the Violin of Despair, the Violin spirit is initially content to repeatedly humiliate Courtney because it deems killing a little girl to be not worth the effort, but decides that humiliation is no longer enough when Courtney becomes a public figure.
  • In From Surfboards to Diapers, Bridgette gets pregnant with twins at 16, is disowned by her mother and kicked out of the house for it, finds the spark of her relationship with Geoff dying as her pregnancy progresses and ends up having an affair with Trent (to her own horror), and finally learns that her new mother figure suddenly passed away from breast cancer while Geoff misunderstands her intentions to downgrade their relationship to a platonic one and believes she's dumping him. And throughout the whole thing, she constantly believes that she does not deserve love and kindness because she feels she is a burden on her friends, knows she is betraying their trust, and has no idea how she'll manage as a mom.
  • Predator and Prey: In World Tour, a lonely and vulnerable Bridgette is raped by Alejandro during the flight to Egypt, causing her to develop Stockholm Syndrome as she becomes confused and scared by her growing feelings for Alejandro. And after her elimination, Geoff refuses to help Bridgette get over her unwanted feelings for Alejandro and instead breaks up with her despite Bridgette begging him to accept her apologies for cheating on him and to understand that the situation was far more complex than what was shown on TV.
  • Gwen from The Phrase That Pais.
  • Laura got subjected to these in Total Alternate Island even before coming to the island.

  • Towards the end of the first story in Gensokyo 20XX, and, after she escaped to the Outside World, while she waiting for her maternal figure, Yukari Yakumo, Reimu's health started to decline and she was soon hospitalized, caused by the stress, misery, and grief of all that is and has happened to her. To further drive the point home, she was starting to lose hope of ever seeing her maternal figure again and her declining health may not have permitted her to live.
    • In 20XXI, we have Eirin, which ends in suicide, Yukari, when she goes insane, and then Yuuka who just decided to leave Chen alone so she could walk off and die.
    • In 20XXII, we have Nitori, who attempts suicide
    • In 20XXIV, we have Ran, after she was nearly raped, leading for her to attempt suicide multiple times.
      • Also from 20XXIV, we have Chen, twice, with latter time driving her to the point of suicide. Towards the end of 20XXIV, apparently an age-regressed Reimu going through a Break the Cutie time when she starts to show signs of a mental illness.
  • Imperfect Metamorphosis:
    • Rin Satsuki has gone through many ordeals. In chapter 24, she has definitely snapped.
    • Yuuka pretends to be Remilia to drive Flandre towards the Despair Event Horizon, before killing her.
  • Koishi Komeiji's Heart-Throbbing Adventure:
  • Scarlet Masquerade: Kokoro, after learning of Tenshi's true intention. Her fox mask even shatters because of it.
  • Happens to poor Yuyuko in Touhou Tonari. Boy did she break.
  • Youmu in Yuyuko's Wonderful Midnight Snack Tour.

  • A Child Shall Lead Them: Poor Swoop…
  • Black Crayons: Annabelle, in chapter 11 of "A Child's Innocence," is reduced to heart-broken, crying child after witnessing the Xanthium explode.
  • Fallout (Transformers): Danny. By far the most idealistic of the group, just being with Wheeljack for the entirety of her childhood and never suffering any early losses. After she joins the main cast, though, Goddard dies early on. She grieves, but grows closer to Wildrider and the rest of the team. And then Wheeljack dies sending her and the rest of the group to another timeline. Like the rest of the humans, she gets professionally diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. And, like that isn't enough, she has to deal with meeting an alternate-universe version of Wheeljack when they shift to another timeline. Yeah.
  • The Transformers Animated O.C. Stand-in fanfic Paths Less Traveled By has the adorable, child-like Cosmos watch his father figure die horribly four different times. The fact it's All Just a Dream doesn't help.
  • Transformers Alter Verse: Quite a lot of cuties are broken and had their hearts crushed in this Transformers Fan Fiction.

Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE-
  • Reversal Of Fate might as well be called a Break the Cutie: The fan fiction as with each world, Sakura has experienced a lot of heartwrenching shit from physical to psychological damage to herself.
  • Shatterheart already has R!Syaoran pre-broken from the group's hatred and ostracization of him. In story, it gets worse as he gets his trust and heart broken by Kurogane, the only person who cares for him, kidnapped and tortured for sixteen hours by serial killers, suffer from PTSD and watch his loved ones die.



The Walking Dead
  • The Walking Dead: Real Monsters:
    • Poor, poor Vaughan. The combination of cancer and a zombie apocalypse is bad enough without having to deal with dying babies and lying doctors.
    • Casey catches AIDS on an exchange trip to Japan and is forced to forego medical treatment to hide it from his father.

Warrior Cats
  • One particular scene in chapter five of Hidden Prophices, in which Lilypaw attempts to do this to Gaypaw with... short-term results.
  • Plenty in Shattered , but Belladonna/Nightshade is probably the best example.

  • Witch Power: More like Kill The Cutie in regards to Irma.

  • Taylor goes through a lot of shit in the first chapters of Worm, but getting powers helps take the edge off it. In Gather, it makes it worse.

The Worst Witch
  • The Blood of the Covenant”- based on the 2017 series- opens with Mildred’s mother, aunt and grandmother dying in a bus crash which Mildred only just survived thanks to an instinctively-cast shield spell; naturally Mildred is left in an emotionally traumatised state after this loss, even if the staff at Cackles’ step in to offer their support.
  • In "Trauma", Mildred is raped over the school holidays, is provoked into telling the school what happened during an argument with Ethel, and loses the baby when she is attacked by Miss Gullett.

Wreck-It Ralph
  • The plot of Ghost Boy appears to enjoy putting Turbo through every misery it can get away with.
    • Now project that onto a close sibling and you'll see what Vanellope goes through.


  • Michelle pretty much starts off broken in Abigail and the Rats of NIMH. Abigail breaks soon after.
  • Ami in ABLU Haired Medic.
  • Ace Combat: The Equestrian War takes a darker turn since chapter 7 where Firefly meets Black Star, a griffon who burned her home, killed her parents and destroyed her dreams of becoming a Wonderbolt. Fluttershy is clearly traumatized in chapter 10 after she killed Razor while trying to save Cloud Kicker's life, but that's nothing compared to Rainbow Dash suffering a heart-wrenching Heroic BSoD after being beaten up and betrayed by Gilda. Medley becomes literally broken when Gilda breaks her wings.
    • And that's not counting many nameless ponies who experience the horror of the war.
    • Turned Up to Eleven in chapter 15. Two of Derpy's best friends die, with Carrot Top dying in her arms. In fit of grief and rage, she attacks Firefly (who tried to sympathize with her!), but due to Fluttershy's intervention, she calms down. After Derpy leaves to see Dinky, Cloud Kicker, unable to damp her emotions any longer, bursts into tears, scared of hearing about several ponies dying and the scene mentioned earlier. Additionally, she fears her best friend, Lightning Bolt, may die in the war as well. Yes, the most cheerful pony among the main heroines is briefly reduced to a sobbing wreck.
  • This certainly seems to be the direction the story is taking with Twilight in A Hollow in Equestria.
  • A Triangle in the Stars
    • This trope seems to have liked Steven Universe from the very moment he took Bill Cipher's statue in.
    • Also, in a way, Bill Cipher, the main antagonist of Gravity Falls, suffers from this. Or, suffered.
  • GLaDOS does this to most of the main cast in Better Living Through Science and Ponies.
  • Rapture is not kind to the Mane Six in Beyond the Sea.
  • Blood Raining Night: Reicheru's eyes get gouged out and her limbs get pulled off in a rack after her father throws her baby off a cliff in Chapter 22.
  • Blood That Flows:
    • Poor Lutecia. She never had a chance.
    • What Garoth did to Nanoha would leave lasting mental scars on her.
  • In The Boy with the Magic Notebook, Maxwell decides to use his experience from saving his sister and working with the DC Universe to help the heroes of Worm. While he certainly starts off with a good effort, the attack from Shatterbird not only brings him to the brink but his efforts to heal people accidentally make it worse, leaving him hiding in an alleyway and making Super Medicine for hours on end without stopping or rest while crying the whole time through.
  • Brutal Series:
    • Russia.
    • Amer.
    • Shiran comes dangerously close to this, almost losing all hope after being shot with an arrow. Winning the Games and meeting Amer seems to help him get somewhat better, though.
    • Feli. A process which apparently started with her sister's death.
    • Palis. Although it’s more like 'broken from the moment we meet her.'
    • Lili completely gives up and waits for death after Yao hits her the first time.
  • In Child of the Storm, there are several candidates.
    • Diana initially stands out. Murder attempts from Hera from infancy simply because of her heritage, developing Empathic abilities from a very young age making her Wise Beyond Their Years demeanour at best. Even after she comes under Odin's (or more accurately, Frigga's) protection as a Ward of the Throne of Asgard and is mentored by her aunt Athena, she still has to deal with being a Blood Knight (it's literally In the Blood), which can and does turn her into The Berserker. The Easter arc in the first book really puts her through the wringer - after briefly being aged up, exposure to the minds of truly vile monsters, she sees most of her few friends almost killed by a Killer Robot, one nearly incinerated by it. She steps in and nearly goes the same way, before snapping and tearing it in half. Mercifully, she's given a cool-down hug, but it's close. This isn't an exhaustive list. And when we meet her, she's about 12.
    • Carol also comes pre-broken. When we meet her, she's got a bad relationship with both parents, her father having serious Stay in the Kitchen tendencies sufficient that in the sequel he tries to get Harry to make her more compliant and classically feminine. Unsurprisingly, Harry goes nuclear, and her mother appears to be an Extreme Doormat. While it turns out that Carol had drastically misjudged her mother, and their relationship improves dramatically once they understand each other better, her relationship with her father is irreparably damaged, as he just doesn't understand what he did wrong.
      • Since she can pass for a 'hot college student' by the age of 15, she's experienced a lot of sexual harassment. This includes guys befriending her with only one aim in mind and other girls disliking her for the same reason. Separately, excelling in the sports that she loves (and embarrassing the jocks in an arm-wrestling contest) leads to her being tested for steroids. While she gets on with her fellow football (soccer) players, prior to meeting Harry she only has two close friends, Jean-Paul and Lex. The former is sufficiently reserved under the charm that he's more than once compared to the Black Widow, and the latter is her self-appointed Knight Templar Big Brother who she has to keep in check.
      • And then she gets swept up with Harry and company and ends up pulling what nearly becomes a Senseless Sacrifice, barely surviving, nearly being eaten alive by a giant werewolf and only surviving because she's rescued by the Winter Soldier. And then, later, she winds up in a truly colossal battle and actually almost dies again, only surviving because she's wearing what she is unaware is the dormant Green Lantern Ring, surviving only because it sparks into life and she proves literally too stubborn to die. Needless to say, she has Past Experience Nightmares afterwards.
      • And that's before the sequel; Harry - now her Best Friend who she has definite feelings for - ends up barely sane and on the verge of snapping and becoming the Dark Phoenix, while half the Bloody Night arc is about Dracula going after her for her Super Soldier blood which results in her friends nearly being killed defending her with Uhtred (temporarily) losing an eye, her younger brother being almost murdered (then almost knee-capped with a machine gun) horribly traumatised, and then her almost being drained to death by a magical chair designed for the purpose.
    • Ditto Jean-Paul. He's openly gay, a mostly closeted mutant and his twin sister is apparently insane and only really responds to him, is visibly discriminated against because of the former, and what little he reveals of his considerable Hidden Depths suggests that he's a Stepford Smiler under the happy-go-lucky camp Chivalrous Pervert persona. Oh, and he has secrets upon secrets, to the point where the comparisons to the Black Widow are admitted to be apt.
    • Harry himself becomes the chief example in the series, comfortably usurping Diana. First of all, under his father's and the Avengers' influence, he starts opening up, showing how much damage the Dursleys really did. A couple of examples are an apparently throwaway comment to the Avengers that he's not used to 'normal people' being nice to him and his tear jerking rant at Odin for, as he saw it, abandoning him (the truth is considerably more nuanced). It becomes even worse when it's revealed that Jean's family, who visited when Harry was about seven, had every intention of adopting him and raising him in a loving family (Jean in particular adoring him). They would have done if not for the telepathic intervention of Sinister, who preferred to have Harry at his immediate disposal in Privet Drive. As Dumbledore laments when he hears about this, 'so much sorrow could have been averted'. And that's all before Luna's death, his own brief death at the hands of Daken, Avengers Tower being destroyed, his father being put into a coma, running into his killer again, being possessed by Chthon... Really, it's a wonder the poor boy is sane.
      • And then, in the sequel, it gets worse. In the second chapter, he has to cross his personal Godzilla Threshold (Mind Rape) to save his friends from Voldemort, who's just toying with him. In Forever Red, he's tortured by the Red Room, starved and denied water for days, whilst believing that he'd been betrayed by the person (Maddie Pryor a.k.a. Rachel Grey) he'd been trying to save ( Maddie's memory had been wiped while she was trying to help him). And even when the two of them conspire to remove his mind from his body and protect it from being overwritten, it goes horribly wrong - the container for his mind is taken by Sinister, his Blank Slate is reprogrammed into the Red Son, the Winter Soldier's Superior Successor, who wreaks absolute havoc across two continents and is sexually abused by Yelena Belova as she perceives him as being something she can take from Natasha, her predecessor as the Black Widow. Harry, after his mind is restored to his body - which was beaten to a pulp by Magneto to put the Red Son down for long enough for that to take place, and infected with the Techno-Organic virus winds up with those memories and snaps, becoming the Dark Phoenix. And that's just in one arc. While this is undoubtedly the worst that he or anyone goes through, the repercussions - practical and psychological resonate for a very long time.
    • This happens to a lot of the younger characters, and this kind of horror is cited by Jean-Paul as being why he's keeping Clark away from his other friends and related groups, even though Clark would love to meet other superhumans like him - while it can be great, it comes with one hell of a drawback. It's also why Harry refuses to go anywhere near Clark after deducing the other's existence - and when he's forced to, the Kent family, seeing the Shell-Shocked Veteran side of him, admit that Harry and Jean-Paul had a point.
  • Children of an Elder God: Throughout the story Shinji has to fight Eldritch Abominations from the Cthulhu Mythos. In the process he gradually stops being human, loses his -blood and surrogate- family and almost all his friends and although they win, he and Asuka are so removed from baseline humans that they say goodbye to their last remainder friends and leave human civilization forever.
  • In the Massive Crossover Character Chronicles, poor Sora gets absolutely broken to bits.
  • Ryoko comes pre-broken in Chi and Chakra.
  • Oh dear heavens, the events in the first season of Children of Time.
    • Sherlock Holmes is the first character to get this treatment, being framed for murder and having his sentence carried out: having his consciousness pulled out of his body and his body put into stasis. Of course, with him being one of the heroes, he ends up physically okay but mentally shaken. Past Experience Nightmares are implied to follow.
    • In the very next episode, the Doctor gets this. The circumstances differ from "Human Nature"/"The Family of Blood", but his human self still does not want to die. His pleading with Watson is heartbreaking.
    • Beth Lestrade in the season finale: see Broken Bird for further details. Even worse, she undergoes this twice, the second time occurring off-screen between seasons.
    • Poor Sherlock gets one more time, himself, in a far milder but more tear-jerking way, also in-between seasons. He spends forty-two years waiting for his wife to return to him, and he barely gets through the first ten.
  • In the Code Geass/Warhammer 40,000 crossover Code Geass: There Is Only War, the sole fact that Shirley is in the cast makes you expect this trope. And it happens in the first chapter, Shirley accidentally kills Rivalz.
  • The Cries of Haruhi Suzumiya: Ok, Itsuki isn't exactly one, but seeing him breaking down is....rather unsettling.
  • The Dead are Undead has Karin Kurosaki subjected to nightmares unlike anything imaginable. Her world is turned upside down by a Zombie Apocalypse and worst of all Yuzu is shot in the face, right before her eyes. Then it just goes downhill as each new friend she makes dies in horrific ways including having their guts yanked out, being torn to shreds, being eaten alive and also Driven to Suicide.
  • Dead or Alive 4: The Devil Factor: Over the course of several chapters, Ayane is repeatedly Mind Raped by a newly resurrected, demonized Raidou, who sends her thoughts and nightmares about the loved ones she's lost to the point where she begins to question her sanity. It reaches its climax when he manipulates her into attempting to seduce Dante, who resists her attempts and gets her to snap out of it. By that point, however, Ayane is so scared and heartbroken over it all that she asks to stay with Dante for the night because she doesn't want to be alone.
  • Death Note Equestria: The first two Kiras were both nice ponies before a Karma Houdini villain made them hit the Despair Event Horizon, and the Third Kira only started killing after being forced into the role by Mer (and it seems to be taking a psychological toll).
  • Kari Kamiya/Celesta X during the War Games Saga of Digimon Fusion Kai. She recovers but delves into the darkside and becomes bloodlusted. She gets better again after that.
  • Alice, the little girl in Chapter 2 of Eagle's Fall who watches a GDI sniper die before her. By Chapter 7, the sheer fatigue of the war has left her drained of all emotion, which may have played a part in her mother committing suicide. And she doesn't even realise it.
  • Elfen Lied: Children of Destruction: Several cuties, actually.
  • Twilight Sparkle does her best to comprehend the Imperium of Man in The Empress Returns, but it all comes crashing down when a rogue Inquisitor captures her and her friends (almost shooting her in the head in the process). That alone isn't enough to break her, but getting attacked by orks, watching the transport her friends were on go up in flames (they survive, but Twilight doesn't stick around long enough to learn this), observing the scale of slaughter present in Warhammer 40,000 battles, and then seeing the rogue Inquisitor getting eviscerated and decapitated by an ork proves to be too much for her.
  • Equestrylvania has several moments where the main characters get broken. Twilight's brother gets bitten by the Giant Bat and is driven violently insane, Fluttershy's critter friends all go rabid and slaughter each other before going out and attacking Ponyville, and worst of all, Sweetie Belle sees her childhood come to an abrupt and terrifying end.
    As they run by a burning building, Sweetie Belle looks aside and sees herself and Rarity there, with their parents. It's a restaurant and everypony is having fun, laughing as the flames around them swallow them whole.
    Shooting down the next street, Sweetie Belle looks at Rarity and suddenly she is much younger, and pushing Sweetie Belle down this very street in her stroller she loved so much when she was not even a year old. There is an overturned stroller on this street, and as she runs by, Sweetie Belle looks into the eyes of the zombie stepping over it.
    They run by the lake, and Sweetie Belle sees herself and her parents there, feeding the ducks as strange, fishlike monsters jump out and begin to chase her and Rarity as they run by.
    • Roseluck gets Mind Raped by the Castle, reducing to a broken, paranoid wreck who has to be institutionalized.
  • Naruto/Rad in Eye Of The Fox, though he doesn’t really ‘break’ until Kira gets put into a coma, and even then he’s still optimistic since he knows Kira is going to wake up later on. Arguably Kira, when he was still 'cute'.
  • Bella in Face The Strange. She gets raped, blamed for the whole thing, and then murdered. Keep in mind that Bella actually acts pretty kind from what little we see of her in this story.
  • The Lucky Star/Fallout 3 crossover fic Falling Stars has this in spades. Kagami, Konata, and Tsukasa all get their turns being broken, and it is extremely jarring for anyone who enjoyed Lucky Star to see it happen.
  • Fallout: Equestria:
    • Poor Pinkie takes Twilight's Breaking Lecture about her drug addiction quite hard, but continues to take the Mint-Als, until she meets Littlepip through her boosted Pinkie Sense.
  • This is happening to Cobalt over the course of Fallout Equestria: A Child's Hope, and has been confirmed by Word of God to be pretty much the point of the story; show how the Wasteland would affect a child who can survive as well as an adult.
    • Happens to Hope during her imprisonment at a raider camp. However, she's soon back to being cheerful after getting back home.
  • Life in Fillydelphia is harsh in Fallout: Equestria - Murky Number Seven.
  • Fallout: Equestria - Project Horizons:
    • Happens to Morning Glory frequently, most notably when she is betrayed by the Enclave and branded a Dashite. Again later, when she loses a wing.
      • Yet again when the killing joke turns her into Rainbow Dash—possibly even including a bit of her personality—the one thing the Enclave hates more than a Dashite.
      • And again when her mother is revealed to be the leader of a violent cult and a monstrous cyborg besides, revealing this by brutally wounding Sky Striker.
    • Fluttershy. A moment of indiscretion from Goldenblood destroyed their relationship and cost them their unborn daughter.
  • Fate/megami atelier: Considering who they're crossing over with, this happens to pretty much the entire Atelier universe.
  • Forcibly United is a sort-of cheesy look at Ranma ½ crossed-over with Black Lagoon. Then the Rock's Little Sister arc drops.
  • Tali's Mind Rape in Guilty Sparks
  • In the second season of Halkegenia Online, the endgame is absolutely brutal to Louise pictures that TriggerHappy uses as inspiration state that Louise never smiled again.
  • In Hell is a Martial Artist, Ranma finally breaks after the failed wedding ceremony after he realizes several things, most of them relating to Akane.
    • First, Akane will always see him as a pervert for turning into a girl, even after he himself has come to accept his female side.
    • Second, Akane will never trust him as when she learns he has a martial arts student that's female, she accuses him of getting more fiances.
    • Third, Akane knew that their parents had acquired a cure for his curse and hid it from him.
    • Lastly, Ranma learns his mother will never truly accept him until he's fully cured of his curse, something he no longer desires. The last causes Ranma to run to Hild in tears and accept her offer of adoption.
  • The Hill of Swords: As a result of the dream cycle, Louise has been witnessing the many battles Shirou fought in back on Earth in all their glory, horror, and heartache. It also becomes Corrupt the Cutie as Louise can no longer see normal girly dreams as good dreams; If she isn't dreaming of swords and battles then she might as well be having unproductive sleep.
  • Happens to each of the mane 6 in I Against I, Me Against You as they're exposed to more and more of Project Freelancer's atrocities, but special mention goes to Twilight, who discovers that she's actually a magical A.I. created by Sunset Shimmer and the Director, and suffers the same fate as the Alpha A.I.
  • No so much as 'cute' in Kira's case, but after Chapter 9 of Infinite Stratos Prototype Spartan, things take a turn for the worse.
  • The Infinite Loops: The events of the failed initial Loops were not kind to the three prospective Anchors, Roll and Blues especially. The fact that they all somehow retain glitchy, corrupted memories of said events (which isn't supposed to be possible) doesn't help, either.
  • In Justice League of Equestria Brainiac designs the Sadistic Choice below in order to do this to Supermare, so that she's easier to assimilate into his storage machinery.
  • Justice Society of Japan: Sayaka gets hit with this a lot harder than in canon. Not only does Hitomi snatch Kyosuke, but she then gets a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown by Sho Minamimoto, and THEN she gets kidnapped by a bunch of monsters after trying to rescue Milly.
  • Just Joking: Joker tries to do this to Twilight. It is yet unknown whether or not he succeeded.
  • Lanterns Of Equestria Blackest Night: The Black Lantern attack on Sweet Apple Acres does this to Applejack, in part because her dead family and Zecora are among the Black Lanterns. The sight of Black Lantern Zecora also does this to Apple Bloom.
  • Last Child of Krypton: Although Shinji had spent ten years living alone after his father left him in the wake of his mother's death, he was getting better. And then Bardiel hijacked Unit-03. Asuka got emotionally hurt, Touji got one arm and one leg removed and Hikari blamed him for it. When he confronted Gendo his father used a kryptonite chunk against him. Shinji had to fight Zeruel straight after and he got blown to the Moon. Literally. When he returned he rallied his friends to stop Gendo together, but his father was prepared, their assault failed and Maya got maimed. And Kaji blamed him for it.
  • Magical Pony Lyrical Twilight:
    • Fate Testarossa. Also, to a lesser extent, Arf in MPLT.
    • Fate's case put a rather interesting twist on this trope. It was triggered by Princess Celestia in a safe environment via Armor Piercing Questions because she had noticed that Fate's psyche had been left balanced on a razor's edge by Presea. So she decided to prevent Presea from potentially causing irreparable damage to Fate's psyche when she would set this off by breaking her early on, but gently and in a situation where it would be easy to pick up the pieces.
  • Hibiki suffers from this in Muv Luv DYRL due to his time at a mental asylum. Not only was he subjected to be told his previous life was all in his head but he's also is disgusted with the xenophobia and racism by the Imperial Japanese forces.
  • Pinkie has a bit of a bluescreen when the party finds the dead scout in My Little Chrono Triggers Are Magic.
  • All of the Denarian's holders in My Little Denarians, to some extent, after they have realized what they did under the coin's influence.
    • An especially harsh example for Twilight. She was completely and utterly broken, in mind, body, and spirit.
  • In My Little Pony: Nakama is Magic, all of the mane six are traumatized after the run-in with Aokiji.
  • In One And Only Son Soran saw Marianne's corpse and a traumatized Nunnally before Cornelia covered his eyes.
  • In The Persistence Of Loss Xion undergoes a number of awful situations that gradually eat away at her naivete, the peak of which being when she has to kill Riku at Venus Lighthouse.
  • It seems that Peter's kidnapping will do this to him in Piracy! The Genetic Pirate Opera. So far, he seems unfazed by the events and sees it as an opportunity to defeat Arthur.
  • Pony Gear Solid has each of the mane 6 forced to face the kind of ponies they'd need to become to protect their loved ones, fitting with the War Is Hell theme of Metal Gear Solid
  • Trenchard Akari in Reflections Lost on a Dark Road.
  • Respect does this to Yayoi Kise after she fails to save a fellow Puella Magi and an attempt to teach The Bully a lesson goes horribly wrong.
  • The Return is so dedicated to breaking Usagi that it is verging on Humiliation Conga territory.
    • It doesn't help that her powers were significantly Nerfed with no reason yet given.
  • Sarah Squall gets hit with this trope in Rise of the Galeforces, when she is separated from her family and is forced to watch the plot spiraling off a cliff due to Ludlow's "intervention." Ludlow also tries to invoke the trope on Violet by turning her into a Tyrannosaurus rex, and predictably he fails miserably.
    • Played straighter with the baby T. rexes, albeit with potentially deadly consequences. When the protagonists meet them, they have been separated from their parents and each other, and it's heavily implied that Ludlow flat-out abused them before they were rescued. Then he shoots their father in the face, right in front of them, when he comes to their defense. Deconstructed in that this fills the babies with so much pent-up rage and hatred for Ludlow that the moment they're finally freed, they promptly turn on him and tear him to pieces.
  • Silent Ponyville Chronicles: And how. If what happens to Pinkie in 1, and Fluttershy in 2 doesn't qualify, then this troper can't imagine anything that DOES. And from the look of it, 3 is shaping up to do the same to Twilight...
  • England in Snakeskins, after Italy's death, he ends up crying over his best friend's mangled body calling out for his older brother.
  • Blaine in Solar Winds. Oh so much.
  • Soul Chess
  • Starlight: Lilo starts off the story dreaming about the deaths of her parents. Then, after her assimilation by the Borg, not only is she forced to assimilate hundreds of people personally, but then to attempt to kill her best friend. This leaves Lilo in an emotionless state of detached apathy after she is rescued and severed from the Borg Collective.
  • In Stars Above, Kagami goes through this in the 2012 timeline. Tsukasa is killed right in front of her eyes, with her death serving as a Start of Darkness that culminates in the destruction of the entire world.
    • Let's be frank: by the later chapters, everyone in Stars Above has gone through this.
  • In The Stars Will Aid Their Escape, Herald does this to Fluttershy through Break Them by Talking during the attack on Canterlot, and also tries it with Celestia and the other Element Bearers (and seems to succeed in Pinkie's case). He also manages to break Twilight by exploiting the fact that if you see him without his mask on, you go insane. Thankfully, everyone recovers by the time everything's done with.
  • Super Sentai vs. Super Sentai, the story provides a Crossover between old school and new school Super Sentai team members, and one of the team members is Dai Sentai Goggle Five's Miki Momozono/Goggle Pink, who in her original series kept being a cheery and caring but still responsible and headstrong girl in a Sentai series considered still Lighter and Softer. Then in the 11th chapter... she witnessed her mother (who was added solely for the fic) brutally murdered in front of her eyes by someone considered one of the worst Complete Monsters in Sentai history, Radiguet. It left Miki completely broken and started realizing fully that this time the enemy is much more brutal than Deathdark. She still tried to keep a strong face, but every of her friends knew she has been broken from the inside.
  • Superwomen of Eva 2: Lone Heir of Krypton: In case that being an orphan whose surviving parent is a bastard and being forced to fight giant monsters before being fifteen was not traumatic enough, Shinji gets targeted by all kind of super-powerful thugs and terrorists want to get him or the girl he is in love with.
  • Tails begins to suffer this in Tails of the Old Republic as he experiences the death and destruction around him.
  • Slade in Tekka Dread, despite his power had been put through the wringer after the mutiny on the Nirvana, then after witnessing the Melanos fleet fall before the Harvesters.
  • In Thieves Can Be Heroes!, Izuku has wanted to be someone who could save others with a smile on his face, just like his idol, All Might. But then he found out he was Quirkless and after knowledge of it came out, that hopeful dream became an endless fountain of mockery, bullying, and scorn that plagued him all the way through his middle school years as he was derided as worthless and useless. Through all of this, he desperately cling to his dream in hopes of one day being able to help others and prove everyone wrong. Then, without thinking, he runs to save a woman who was screaming for help as a slimeball tried to sexually assault her. This one act of altruism ends with the woman he saved accusing him of assaulting her, giving him a criminal record and making him miss the U.A. Entrance Exam. Then he has to move away to live with a complete stranger who doesn't shy away from telling Izuku that he doesn't care about him. Then the teachers at his new school treat him like the worst scum on Earth when he has only just met them. After telling himself for the past eleven years of his life that there had to be some way he could become a Hero, reality sets in and he breaks down into inconsolable sobbing during his second night at Leblanc as he finally admits that his stupid, childish dream is now (and probably always was) a complete impossibility for him. At this point, it's hard to blame him. Thankfully, getting new friends and becoming a phantom thief has helped him recover.
  • Through the Looking-Glass:
  • Total Magic Pony Island:
    • Happens quite thoroughly to Silver Spoon after her fight with Diamond Tiara, as she proceeds to watch as her mentor, Zecora, is eliminated next, quickly followed by her, just as she was in love with Spike.
    • Also to Apple Bloom, when Trixie turns her against Twilight for a short while before eliminating her just to stay in the game.
  • The Turn of Haruhi Suzumiya: Battler starts off pretty broken, and Haruhi breaks down over the course of the story, culminating in the Tea Party.
  • Noriko Takaya and Nanami Kiryuu in Undocumented Features.
  • In Unfamiliar Louise promptly goes catatonic after she sees Alex effortlessly and ruthlessly kills some thugs with his Lovecraftian Superpowers right in front of her.
  • Alicia and Hotaru go through quick and milder forms of this when they learn that their parents are monsters (figuratively in the former's case and literally in the latter's) in White Devil of the Moon; their friendship provides a shelter for them both.
  • Wander over Foster's AU One-Shot (Wander over Yonder, Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends): Downplayed with Wander. Being away from Sylvia takes a toll on the usually jovial fellow, but he doesn't completely break from sorrow. He instead becomes friends with others at Foster's.
  • The Flower Princess and the Alchemist:

  • Atoli in .hack//G.U. The Staircase to Nowhere.
  • Happens a lot in Armored Core: from the Ashes.
  • The whole reason for Gold Psy's actions in Blog Cast were to cause this for Power, in order for him to move on and grow to be the man he's meant to be; The Double Road Alchemist.
  • Chaos AU: Christine is a hacker who worked in a program for young computer programers founded by Nathan Ingram. She idolized him. Then her mentally ill father was killed in a police shoot-out. In front of her. Sadly, he was the parent who cared about her, her mother was an abusive alcoholic that presumably drunk herself to death. Out of sorrow, Christine becomes a junkie. Finch finds her and checks her into a rehab program in New York. A week later, 9/11 happens. Strangely, she's somewhat stable. Somewhat.
  • Crusade Paladins:
    • Empress Love.
    • Gretchen Faust in the first sequel's Good End Route.
  • Laura Silverman in Death Verdict. And how.
  • Game Over: Shard isn't the well of pure dark aura that DC desires so much because of Kumori, no. Because Shard's naive to the point of idiocy, she's never tapped into her inner darkness; because of this, it has never mixed with her light aura, resulting in a high delicacy for dark aura devourers like DC. In order to prevent DC's desire for her influencing his decisions, especially since his romantic interest has shifted, SC is working on a way to make Shard tap into her darkness, mixing it with light and preventing DC from finding it so appealing. So far he has a good lead: her crippling fear of being alone.
  • Pascha, Diaglo and Devlin in Officer Misako.
  • The Nickelodeon fanon series The Rainbow Blade has most of Web's friends getting killed, leaving Web a paranoid, vengeful, sociopathic wreck.


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