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Anise Verum

The former Lunar head chef — and, much to her fretting, current holder of the matching Solar post: she was cross-transferred after the events of A Total Eclipse Of The Fun. She's a young light green pegasus mare with an organic-looking eight-pointed star on her flanks (representing the actual anise seed) who's reluctantly taken up the (requested) assigned post of being Celestia and Luna's primary instructor in the culinary arts.

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  • Badass Teacher: It takes a lot of prodding and provocation, but she eventually reaches the point where she can yell at both sisters and not only get away with it, but make them back away from her. In concert. Along with kicking half-cooked dough into their faces.

Blending Stock

The former saucier of the Solar Kitchen and current junior sous chef in the Lunar, studying under Anise and working towards eventual promotion. He's a young earth pony stallion with an off-white coat, light yellow mane, green eyes, and a mixing bowl with ladle for a mark.

  • Klingon Promotion: Celestia offers him the position of Head Chef of the Solar Kitchen for having helped capture Chef Ramshead. Averted in that he turns her down, pointing out that whilst he's generally smarter than the Brinner Brigade (which admittedly isn't a high hurdle to clear), that doesn't mean he knows enough about cooking to properly fill in that role. Impressed, Celestia instead re-hires him as a junior sous chef under Anise Verum, head chef of the Lunar Kitchen.
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  • The Mole: He wasn't fired like the rest of the Brinner Brigade — he quit to keep an eye on them, because he knew Chef was stupid enough and controlling enough to lead the rest into trouble.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Lays down an epic third-person perspective one of these as he explains to Celestia that Chef is an absolute idiot and the only one who can reasonably be blamed for the Brinner Brigade.
  • Only Sane Man: He was the sanest and most stable member of the disaster known as the Brinner Brigade, and in fact was only ever along with it because he wanted to try and keep them out of harm's way.
  • Taking the Bullet: Leaps in front of a plate that Chef hurls at Luna during the eclipse to keep him from causing a double corona backlash — completely unaware of the hidden shield shell protecting the sisters.
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  • Walking Spoiler: A lot of what he ultimately does during his first appearance in A Total Eclipse Of The Fun counts as spoiler territory.

Chef Garleek Ramshead

The former head of the Solar Kitchen: he was fired for being one of the instigators of the riot during the first eclipse demonstration. Immediately decided the whole thing was just proof that the Nightmare had never gone away and formed the counterrevolutionary cell known to students of Equestria's History Of Morons as the Brinner Brigade. He's a unicorn stallion in late middle age: ash-blonde mane and tail with a dark brown body, and his field resembles fast-boiling water.

  • Book Dumb: He actually dropped out of school after a couple of years, confident he had learned everything he needed to know.
  • Everybody Calls Him "Barkeep": At his own insistence; nobody calls him anything other than Chef, even before the whole Brinner Brigade fiasco.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Absolutely nopony can stand him; the rest of the Brinner Brigade only follows him because they're so cowed that they instinctively obey him when he starts screaming, whilst the rest of the castle only put up with him before he got fired because they suspected he'd poison them if they stood up to him. It's telling that when he tried to go to ponies he knew at the castle for help during the work of the Brinner Brigade, every last one of them told him this to his face and kicked him out.
  • He-Man Woman Hater: It takes a special breed of misogynist to keep that view in Equestria, but Chef manages by focusing most of his hate against the idea of having mere mares working in professional kitchens. Sadly, this reflects a good part of human cooking culture. To him, Celestia (who truly can't cook, having never bothered to learn) is their "weak mess-up mare." Accept no substitutes. At least until he begins to dream of being given the thrones.
  • I Reject Your Reality: In a rather Lord Rust-ish fashion, Chef has a tendency to completely rewrite what's actually happening around him to match up with what he thinks is the way it should be.
  • Jerkass: It's made very, very clear what an absolute prick he is over the course of A Total Eclipse Of The Fun. Incredibly arrogant, aggressive, controlling, stupid, and (in Celestia's opinion) adept only at taking all the credit for other ponies' work.
  • Oddly Small Organization: At the head of one. Justified as the Brigade is composed of those fired or who quit after the demonstration and nopony else is both trusted enough to be allowed to join, and stupid (or drunk) enough to want to join.
  • Shout-Out: His name can be seen as a reference to Gordon Ramsay.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: He's a head chef, which is admittedly a fairly important job, but his ego far outweighs his actual position. For example, he was one of the instigators of the riot during the first eclipse demonstration, and his unabashed distrust of Luna was why he was fired afterwards, as he presumed that he somehow knew better on the matter than Celestia. To say nothing of how he starts to fantasize that, once he and his band of losers have somehow toppled Luna, he will be made undisputed monarch of Equestria... although, to give him some small credit, he's out of his mind on stimulants to keep him awake at the time.
  • Too Dumb to Live: After his capture, Celestia offers him a deal. He can go to trial for his actions as the ringleader of the Brinner Brigade... which, as he essentially tried to assassinate Luna, would be an act of highest treason and with presumably very grim punishment. Or, he can take what she feels is a fairer punishment; probation and community service for life, extensive psychiatric evaluations before the former begins (which means he may spend some time in an asylum), and if he is eventually declared fit to re-enter society, he will be given a position as a junior grade chef in some kitchen that is not the castle, where he will work under female superiors and will be attending remedial classes until he gains a standard school diploma. All with regular visits from Luna to see if he's actually learning anything from his punishment. Garleek Ramshead takes one moment to confirm that he would have to work under mares, and then demands he be put on trial.

Chocolate & Vanilla Bear

The medical specialists added to the team trying to help Joyous. Two male unicorns: one white, one deep brown. Chocolate (unusually muscular and solid for a unicorn, with a shaved-away mane) works as the surgical half of the team, while Vanilla (skinny and possessing a mane which may be able to lift more than he can) is the diagnostician. Despite their shared last name, they're not related: they were simply paired as roommates in college due to that coincidence and have worked together ever since.

  • Badass Bookworm: As shown in chapter 14 of A Mark Of Appeal, Chocolate won't hestitate to sincerely threaten the life of a rampaging minotaur for the safety of his friends.
  • Blessed with Suck: Invoked and downplayed; Chocolate Bear notes that he never did have the instinctive knack for surgery that Vanilla did, he always seemed to only learn best by cutting. Of course, he brings this up as a threat...
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Try to believe these are two of the most qualified doctors on the continent. Go ahead, try it.
    • However, like their originals, once you look past the personality quirks, they're actually good at their jobs. They're both able to refute the sisters' contagion fears in A Mark Of Appeal, and are the ponies who figure out how Joyous' talent actually works.
  • Combat Medic: Discussed and averted in A Mark Of Appeal; they're skilled medics, but they have absolutely no combat training and are otherwise really not suited for combat missions.
  • Expy: Let's all welcome Turk and J.D. to Equestria.
  • Godzilla Threshold: After learning that Joyous' problems stem from an encounter with a magical plant, only named so far as the minotaur drug "red-tinge", Vanilla openly starts to contemplate the possibility of infecting himself with its baleful curse, in hopes that its strengthening of his mark-magic affinity for medicine would let him succeed in creating a cure.
  • Imagine Spot: Vanilla is prone to slipping into them: the visible sign is a head tilt up and slightly to the right, followed by an extended freeze and non-sequitur after emerging. This isn't particularly reassuring when seen from the outside.
    "Is there something wrong with him?" Luna directly inquired.
    "It's — hard to explain..." Chocolate Bear awkwardly offered.
    "Try."
  • Laser Blade: It turns out that Chocolate Bear's personal spell (or 'trick') is to hone his telekinetic field into a surgically sharp "blade": he can create multiple such blades at the same time and in different areas with ease. This makes him a walking surgical kit — and a potentially devastating fighter in any situation where nopony's particularly concerned about the fatality count. Fortunately, his medical code of ethics prevents him from any such activity — unless, say, he has to defend Vanilla's life.
  • Mistaken for Gay: 'natch. However, they do admit they're a little bit married.
  • Secret Keeper: Two of only three living normal poniesnote  to know that there is no such thing as a naturally-born alicorn. This status gets them promoted to the rank of Royal Physicians at the end of A Mark of Appeal — in part because the palace wants to keep an eye on them.
  • Those Two Guys: They're always seen together. Justified in that they operate their own private medical practice.

Clear Coordinator

A unicorn pony with a below-average field strength, an addiction to power, and a positive genius at the use of rumor, manipulation, and blackmail.

  • Blackmail: Coordinator excels at finding out incriminating details about other ponies and delights in using this knowledge to force others into submitting to him.
  • Control Freak: There are aspects of this in his behavior. However, he seldom gets to openly wield power — and the one time we see him make the attempt onscreen, during his blackmail attempt on Twilight, it backfires.
  • Fantastic Racism: Chapter 30 of Triptych establishes him as a shameless, hardcore unicorn supremacist. He's also shown to be absolutely horrified by "the warped": ponies experimented upon by Gentle Arrival during delivery, and implied in various parts of the Continuum to have non-standard magical abilities and traits as a result.
  • Hoist by Their Own Petard: Unwittingly kills himself by drinking a booster he simply wasn't strong enough to handle in chapter 48 of Triptych.
  • I Reject Your Reality: Coordinator clearly rewrites the actual events of what happened to favor his own, more personally flattering, interpretation several times during his viewpoint moment in chapter 30 of Triptych.
  • Jerkass: Clear Coordinator may be the single most unpleasant, obnoxious, outright villainous character in the Continuum. Even the members of the "Great Work" so far have been more Affably Evil than him!
  • Karmic Death: Tried to cover up his attempt to assassinate the Bearers by forcing her to consume a booster so he could then set her against the Bearers, secretly hoping it might kill her in the process. Because she was in her earth pony form, she simply threw it back up, and Coordinator impulsively drank the booster himself. But he wasn't strong enough to handle the effects and it killed him, with Gentle Arrival giving him a "The Reason You Suck" Speech as he lay dying before abandoning him to his final moments, alone and unmourned.
  • Last-Name Basis: Nopony calls him Clear.
  • Obstructive Bureaucrat: Is playing at this role when he first appears in Triptych, but it turns out he reaches far higher up the chain of evil than that. He's at least partially responsible for arranging funding for The Great Work, and not all of the donating ponies are making contributions of their own free will. Additionally, he's been siphoning off some of that money into a private account.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: Whenever he can get away with it.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Coordinator has a massively inflated sense of his own superiority, and this is hammered in during his viewpoint semi-chapter in Triptych.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: In this universe, his single-hooved campaign to ensure that Twilight had no friends after she rejected his offer of "friendship" was responsible for Twilight becoming the anti-social recluse she was at the start of the show, and thereby defining the entire shape of the show and the Continuum.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Subverted; despite the initial impression one may get upon seeing him in action and learning he graduated from Celestia's School for Gifted Unicorns, the reality is he got through his days at the School entirely through Nepotism, cheating, and using blackmail to scare the other students into helping him cheat. He's got a distinctly below-average field strength rating, and in fact his field tends to wink out entirely when he's stressed.
    • Though this trope does apply to his political capabilities. Barring a major miracle, he will never have anything beyond petty power, and he knows it. But he is very adept at using what power he does have to inflict every last drop of torment, trauma, and denial possible.

Cluster

One of the Lunar Guards. Notable in that he's one of those who seems to serve as Luna's personal company: he watches over her during open palace sessions and has accompanied her during hoof trips through Canterlot.

  • Badass Gay: If you're a gay stallion who can dance around the edge of openly accusing the Diarchy of deliberate arson and retain your job, you qualify.
  • Happily Married: A stallion/stallion pairing with Josdien. (Joyous creating an If It's You, It's Okay in him is one of the things which alerts Luna to how much of a problem that out-of-control talent is going to be.)
  • Hero Antagonist: To Celestia and Luna in the story below. Initially, it's inadvertent. Initially.
  • Not So Above It All: When Celestia discretely suggests that maybe she and Luna wanted to get rid of the tapestry because it's absolutely hideous, he just stares blankly back and incredulously points out that "it's art!" Celestia comments to Luna after he leaves that his husband runs an experimental art gallery, so Cluster may be one of those ponies who legitimately can see some value in the repulsive thing.
  • Only Sane Stallion: The events of Trav(ap)est(r)y have left him convinced that he just might be this for the entire palace. Of course, given he's one of those ponies who actually think the tapestry being "art" somehow legitimately excuses the fact it's one of the most disgusting, ugly and unpleasant things ever produced, well, his sanity isn't entirely unquestionable.

Crossing Guard

Canterlot's head of the regional Immigration Department: a middle-aged dark blue unicorn stallion who's responsible for an undersized, underfunded staff which has to take responsibility for the interactions between pony citizens and non-pony residents (plus citizens-in-waiting). One of the most culturally aware ponies on the continent when it comes to the other sapient species, not to mention one of the most stressed out when those cultures inevitably find a way to clash.

  • A Father to His Men: It's subtle, but at one point, he refers to Gerald as "our Gristle." In general, he'll do anything to protect those under his charge. This even applies when they're wrong — so he can be the one who yells at them.
  • Badass Bureaucrat: On his better days. He does know how to maneuver through the system, has some pull of his own, and the fact that Luna has some small fondness towards him doesn't exactly hurt.
  • Beleaguered Bureaucrat: During the bad ones. The ID simply doesn't have enough ponies to cover every last trouble spot, especially in the city with the highest percentage of non-pony residents.
  • Category Traitor: Viewed this way by the more extremist elements within CUNET — which is to say, pretty much all of them.
  • Happily Married: With Tarter.
  • Odd Friendship: Luna likes him. He's not entirely sure as to why.
  • Teleporters and Transporters: Can move himself within a range sufficient to at least cover most of the city, but keeps missing chances to take the escort test. He mainly utilizes the working to dispatch himself towards trouble spots, relying on Canterlot's gatehouses to provide safe arrival points.

Gerald Gristle

A recent griffon immigrant to Canterlot, who fully intends to become a full Equestrian citizen after the five-year process ends. Oddly deferential, unusually calm for a griffon in a new environment, and an aspiring businessgriffon who sees a distinct gap in Canterlot's food supply chain which needs to be filled — namely, a state-of-the-art butcher shop.

  • The Exile: He can go back to Protocera — but after his attempt at running a fully public farmer's market, he's not particularly welcome.
  • Too Dumb to Live: He got chased out of Protocera for trying to run an open-air farmer's market to cater to both the griffon need for some vegetation in their diet and the dietary needs of the Protoceran ponies, despite the cultural posturing that makes eating vegetables "shameful". He then proceeds to immigrate to Equestria and do... exactly the same thing, just swapping the offensive food-stuff from "vegetables" to "meat". In fact, it's probably worse what he does in Equestria, as while griffons just object to vegetables as a result of cultural Testosterone Poisoning (if you consume too many plants, you've voluntarily descended to prey), the scent of blood and raw meat can potentially drive ponies into a flight reaction — which, if it spreads to the point where herd instinct takes over, could become a full-fledged riot.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: By pony standards. Feeling that everyone in the capital, non-ponies included, is entitled to purchase the highest-quality ingredients for a good meal... that's a perfectly reasonable position. However, when that ingredient is meat...

Joyous Release

A young adult metallic blue pegasus mare with a unique problem: her seeking out Luna at an open palace session to ask for help in solving it kicks off the events of A Mark Of Appeal.

  • Accidental Pornomancer: Shows just how horrifying this trope would be in reality. Anyone who interacts with her for more than a minute or two is consumed by lust, regardless of gender, sexual preference, marital status, or species. She has lived for years hiding in the fringes of the settled zones, trying to steal or scrounge what she needs to survive while avoiding all interactions with any fellow sapients. She has tried everything up to and including physically cutting out her mark to rid herself of her warped talent, to no avail. Finally, she seeks out Princess Luna as her last hope for a normal life - or any life at all.
  • Blessed with Suck: Can invoke arousal in any sapient being on the planet. Doesn't want to. Can't find any way to keep it from happening no matter what she does. If her talent truly does have the potential to eventually make ponies act against their personality, then she's at potential risk of sexual assault during every interaction — and if it doesn't, then she still has to fear running into exactly the wrong sapient. And even without real control, the right pony could potentially use this talent to run a good part of the planet — but Joyous just wants it gone.
  • Broken Bird: Let's count it off. She has a talent which she can't turn off and is getting more intense by the moon. That talent is for sex appeal and to date, has been universal in affecting anything sapient. Anypony (or, for that matter, anyone) sharing a room with her for ten minutes is pretty much guaranteed to make a seduction attempt. For some, it takes a lot less time and doesn't stop there. Her parents neglected her although this no longer appears to have been their fault, she was flown from settled zone to settled zone as a filly, never getting a chance to make or keep any friends, and when her talent turned out to be something which would get ponies to notice her, the whole thing started off by gradually turning bad and then getting worse. She can't be around others without risking her own safety and possibly having them lose their minds, nothing she's done has been able to find a cure, including approaching the Princesses for help — and if her condition is the result of a contagious disease, she's exposed them. If there are truly no ways to fix or eliminate her magic, her choices may come down to a lifetime of total isolation or suicide.
  • Curse: To all practical extents and purposes, she's under the effects of one; her problems stem from the fact she was exposed as a foal to a magical plant that's causing her mark magic to grow increasingly and uncontrollably potent. Sort of like Poison Joke, but much, much more dangerous.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: By the end of A Mark of Appeal, her Power Incontinence has been cured as has that of her parents. This gives her back her mothers and allows her to finally live a normal life.
  • Homosexual Reproduction: A result of it: both of her parents are mares, which makes Joyous a product of The Most Special Spell.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Came to Luna in hopes of finding a way to destroy her mark and magic — which for a pony, is just about the ultimate act of blasphemy.
  • Implausible Hair Color: In the Continuum, about one in every five thousand births produces a metallic: a pony with a coat which reflects light in the same way highly polished metal would. This comes with no special abilities of any kind (other than the one to be chased by ponies and publications which focus on that appearance): it's simply an extreme recessive trait for fur.
  • Power Incontinence: The defining plight of her dilemma; Joyous' Talent is to invoke arousal in other sapient beings, but, initially, she can't turn it off and so is constantly making ponies and others attracted to her.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Was already beautiful, but years of high-stress bare subsistence living in the fringe took its toll. Now that she's starting to receive proper food and rest again (combined with a tiny note of hope), she's quickly closing in on knockout.
  • Skilled, but Naïve: She survived in a wild zone's fringe for years, which has made her extremely adept with several of her techniques. She also completely missed out on all chances to advance her social skills during adolescence. As such, she can sometimes react as if she's somewhat younger than her calendar age, and is still working on figuring out certain levels of adult interaction.

Miranda Rights

Ponyville's chief of police: a unicorn mare, somewhat younger than most ponies would expect somepony in her position to be, with a coat which naturally blends into Moon-shadows.

  • Barrier Warrior: Played with. Her trick begins its operation when she projects her green-grey field around two subjects. The colors of the field then separate: one pony is encased in green, the other in grey — and then the two bubbles repel each other, with enough force to send stallions into walls. (While using that personal spell on Big Mac and Snowflake's combined mass required a double corona, just being able to pull it off at all indicates her field strength is well above average.) This allows her to break up fights very quickly.
  • Invisibility: A non-magical variant. If she's nude and keeping her eyes narrowed, she's genuinely difficult to make out in the dark. Rarity has to dress her in bright colors for eveningwear just so everypony knows she's there. However, this inverts under Sun: put her within daylight and she's impossible to miss.
  • The Plan: In Drunk Little Ponies, she and Mayor Mare drafted Twilight into the police force as a one-day cadet. This certainly adds an extra measure to law enforcement when it comes to taking care of the multitudes who get drunk during Festival. Coincidentally, it also takes Ponyville's most powerful unicorn caster out of the drunken side of the equation and prevents the police from having to deal with her.
    • When it comes to the Bearers, she's also capable of smaller manipulations. Having the mayor order Twilight to ignite her corona and show proof that she's sick doesn't work. Miranda asking Twilight to pick up the journals she just spilled does.
  • Punny Name: Possibly the single worst one in the Continuum — not that anypony in Equestria would know it.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Zigzagged. Sick Little Ponies demonstrates that she's not exactly a fire-and-forget type, making sure she has as much information as possible regarding a situation before committing to a move. However, Permanent Record suggests that the police department treats the Bearers with a little too much leniency, mostly from fear of having one or more leave Ponyville — and this partial protection extends to the Crusaders, as two of them are direct relations. This policy gives the Mane Cast a touch more leeway in their actions, but it's also assisted the Crusade in continuing far longer than it should.

Mr. Flankington

A dark green pegasus stallion in late middle age who runs a Ponyville restaurant as a one-pony operation: server, marketing director, menu coordinator — and, unfortunately, head chef. He's quite possibly the single worst cook in Equestria: most Ponyville residents eat at his place only once (and that if somepony doesn't warn them in time), and summer tourists who assume that any eatery must be run by someone with a cooking mark often find themselves in exactly the right place to be proven horribly wrong. And for all that, he's a very nice pony indeed, one who means no harm — so can he offer his apologies through treating you to dinner?

  • Born in the Wrong Century: He appears to be Equestria's first food chemist, with his mark supporting that theory: it's two crossed test tubes. Word Of Fanfic Author is that his special talent is making just about any kind of organic matter edible. He just can't make it tasty. Equestrian science/magic is too underdeveloped to let him fully express his Talent, which is keeping him from becoming a Founder — a pony who "pioneers" a new class of Talents and their related cutie-marks.
  • Determinator: No matter what happens, despite the many times he has been sued and lost, he keeps on working at perfecting his dubious culinary experiments. Deconstructed in that he keeps working at it because "that's what his mark is telling him to do", so it's not entirely voluntarily.
  • The Dreaded: For all of Ponyville, at least in any situation where food service might become involved. He's noted as being able to clear out a banquet hall in nine seconds flat, and that's through showing up as an invited guest.
  • Expy: A gentle-natured, friendly, non-evil pony version of Sheldon J. Plankton.
  • Gentleman and a Scholar: Very polite, appears to be well-educated — he's one of the only ponies in the settled zone to recognize what Twilight actually means by "escort service" — and is the lone local pony other than Twilight who reads Earnest Young's research works, even though he can't use any of the field-related portions. Orange Is The New Blue suggests he may be capable of reading Ancient Crystalia.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Goosed! has him actively working with the Bearers during the final push to get the Crystal Geese out of Ponyville: he has a treatment for boysenberries which causes fruit bats to recoil from the crushed fruit, which helps corral the colony while it's being herded towards town.
  • The Stations Of The Fanfic 'Verse: A Continuum exclusive, and the only station it has: if somepony new moves to Ponyville, they will eventually wind up entering his restaurant. Somewhat justified in that not only is he forever looking out for new arrivals who can provide him with taste-test results, but ponies automatically assume that any facility will be run by somepony with a mark appropriate to its operation — which means truly bad restaurants just don't exist. Why not go around sampling the cuisine in your new home? At the very minimum, it's guaranteed to at least be competent...

Murdocks

Head of the Murdocks Press Corps, dedicated to making the Diarchy look bad.

  • Ambiguous Gender: Surprisingly, despite the secretive nature of the character making it questionable if he is or isn't a stallion, it's averted: Celestia confirms in chapter 3 of A Total Eclipse Of The Fun that he really is a stallion.
  • The Ghost: Murdocks takes his privacy very seriously, to the point that even Celestia doesn't know what he looks like. His own staff are forbidden to reveal anything about him, and they take this seriously enough that simply being asked questions about Murdock freaks them out. That this is the only trope in this entry with any real detail says it all.
    • In fact, the only facts Celestia knows for sure are age, birthplace, and gender.
  • Strawman News Media: He's the head of the biggest anti-Diarchy newspaper in the country, using everything up to and including blatant libel to try and ruin their reputation.

Nightwatch

One of Luna's more prominent Guards: a dark-hued pegasus mare who can often be seen accompanying her Princess on trips outside the castle. Highly skilled with wind creation, to the point where the movements she uses to create the magic are minor and can often get past observation. Luna appears to use her for the occasional sounding board, and Celestia has been resisting the urge for cross-shift filching so she can do the same.

Quiet Presence

A unicorn noble who dwells on an estate in the unicorn-dominated town of Trotter's Falls. He's exceptionally small for a unicorn stallion, mostly painted in fine shades of grey which are almost impossible to distinguish from each other, and his mark is — there. Just there: it's possible to see that it exists, but it's just as grey as the rest of him and to date, nopony's been able to make out exactly what it is.

  • Abusive Parents: His parents did... something to his sibling shortly after that birth. Since that foal is never mentioned in a present tense, it may involve Offing the Offspring — and ultimately, Quiet doesn't even know her final fate.
  • Anti-Villain: More so than Gentle Arrival. At the end of the day Quiet just wants to protect future foals from being sent on like his sister was. Unlike Gentle Arrival he's not a bigot either. He's still a threat due to his loyalty to Gentle Arrival and his refusal to acknowledge the harm their Great Work is doing.
  • Benevolent Conspiracy: Maybe. He's a key member of the Great Work, and is likely bankrolling at least some part of it. Doctor Gentle refers to him as 'the most devoted,' and it's eventually explained that this devotion springs from his belief that discovering a way to change a foal's tribe is the only way to prevent any more foals from being sent on.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: His younger sibling was apparently born as something other than a unicorn, and his parents responded... badly. This may explain his involvement in the Great Work.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Has a very dry sense of humor. He's seldom laugh-out-loud funny, but wry observations flow from him with a completely natural cadance.
  • Despair Event Horizon: His parents sending on his sister traumatized him so badly that he has utterly given up hope of getting rid of tribalist prejudice. This is why he supports the Great Work: As far-fetched and improbable as the hope of being able to rewrite a foal's tribe is, Quiet still thinks it's more realistic than the possibility of doing something about tribalism itself.
  • Friend to All Children: Since his castle is several centuries beyond needing a barrier space to fight off invaders, it's surrounded by playgrounds and sports fields. (He also puts in some time as a referee.) Part of this may come from his current inability to have children of his own, and the rest may stem from whatever happened to his younger sibling. This turns out to be the reason he supports the Great Work. He wants to ensure that no future foal is sent on like his sister was.
  • Ill Boy: There's something wrong with him in the blood: not only are his physical strength and endurance low (with overexertion a hazard he actively avoids), but if he laughs for too long, it turns into a harsh coughing fit — one which threatens to break his ribs from the inside. (This can be stopped by applying hoof pressure to the right places along his barrel.) He's directly said that he won't have children until a cure is found, because he doesn't want to pass on that weakness to the next generation.
    • Softtread eventually explains a little more about the condition: the problem appeared a few days after Quiet's birth, and it's taken careful management just to get him to adulthood. However, he's not a hybrid: while Doctor Gentle delivered him, there were no special complications during the birth itself.
    • Given his family's strict standards for marriage, one suspicion is that he's suffering physical effects from the first stages of inbreeding. There just may not be enough "pure" unicorn Houses left.
  • Invisibility: Not exactly. From what Twilight and Rarity manage to mutually deduce, his talent allows him to project the emotional resonance of dismissal. He's not so much unseen as overlooked, and it's also extremely easy to just forget about him. During his fight with Twilight in Chapter 50, he reveals that his control over this ability is so refined that he can even choose which senses he can block. He blocks every sense but her sense of hearing so he can speak with her and reduces it enough so that she can't get a bead on him using his voice.
    • Though he cannot block true hearing, if only because he doesn't know it exists.
  • Meaningful Name: He can be extremely quiet in word and deed. Triptych has heavily implied that his mark talent makes it hard for ponies to notice him and may interfere with their ability to retain memories of his actions: he spent a good part of his childhood sneaking around the castle, and after his sibling vanished...
    • He has to hide. He has to hide. He has to hide.
    • When Pinkie has trouble remembering somepony's name, it's probably safe to assume something strange is going on.
  • Never Found the Body: Triptych ends with his status unknown. It's possible that Twilight's attack backlashed him to a state beyond recovery. He also might have struggled back to his hooves and gotten away from somepony who'd managed to perceive him. And if Quiet lived through it, his talent is going to make tracking him just about impossible.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: He may be a very small and frail stallion, but that doesn't mean he's harmless. He's able to give Twilight, an alicorn princess magical prodigy, a run for her money in chapter 50 thanks to his ability to become invisible to her senses. Twilight has to tap into her Earth Pony ability to listen to the earth to get a bead on him, and it's implied that only works because he isn't aware that Earth ponies can do that due to the Secret. If he knew about it, he potentially could have hidden from the earth itself.
  • Power Incontinence: It's implied that his ability to "vanish" from the perception of others and even disappear from their memories isn't something he can entirely control. Chapter 50 reveals that his control over this ability is actually very refined. He can even pick and choose which senses he blocks.
  • The Nondescript: There have been signs that ponies have real trouble remembering who he is and what he looks like. When an invading reporter threatens to find out just who's been turning her tactics against her, his reaction is a slight smile. And a few chapters later, the article she writes about the confrontation at the thaumaturgy shop doesn't mention him at all.
  • The Runt at the End: Quiet is somewhat smaller than Twilight — who's exceptionally short and slender for a full-grown unicorn (now alicorn) mare, leaving her initially shocked at the sight of a stallion she can outmass.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Gentle Arrival. Chapter 50 reveals that this is because his family's servant Softtread sent Quiet to Gentle Arrival to help him cope with what happened to his sister. Gentle Arrival took in the traumatized young colt and recruited him into his plan to ensure that what happened to his sister would not happen to other foals in the future.

Raque Marshdew

A reporter with the Palace Bugle, one of the pro-Diarchy publications in the realm — and, in her own way, just as bad as Wordia Spinner. The latter will never admit when the Princesses are right about something, but Raque can't make herself see anything else. If the sisters started a fire which took out three neighborhoods, she would immediately compose an article concerning population overcrowding and a very desperate need for land clearance. Celestia and Luna put up with it (because they have little choice), but are no more happy with her idea of coverage than they feel about her opposite number.

  • Arch-Enemy: To Wordia Spinner, the Murdocks Press Corps, and anypony or anyone else she sees as standing against the Diarchy.
  • Cult: A friendlier example than most, but there's still a hint in Naked Lunch that she may be a full-fledged alicorn worshipper.
  • Hypocrite: She's perfectly happy to write an article about how everypony should eat meat for a week to show how open-minded they are (which would fill every hospital in Equestria to capacity), but put a steak in front of her snout...
  • Not So Different: She's just as bad as Wordia Spinner, it's just she takes a pro-Diarchy slant to her anti-Diarchy slant.
  • Strawman News Media: She's literally the pro-Diarchy equivalent of the Murdocks Press Corps, which makes her just as bad and just as intolerable to the Princesses.

Ratchette

A young adult mare (steel-grey coat, copper mane, tail, and eyes) who runs Ponyville's lone fix-it shop, specializing in minor to moderate convenience and device repairs, along with general feats of engineering. She's perfectly qualified for that occupation: her mark is for devices. And in the eyes of many ponies, she's also perfectly unsuited towards it, which generally has something to do with the wings...

  • Expy: For a long time, she was a stealth one — but between her occupation and the eventual reveal of her magic's true nature, it's become apparent that she's Equestria's blood-powered version of The Mechanic.
  • Fantastic Racism: A frequent victim of it: more than a few unicorns (and others) can't get past the feathers.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: To a degree: she's a capable engineer, especially for the design phase, but she has trouble building some of what she creates. She currently uses a tongue-triggered, spring-powered prosthetic to make small adjustments on devices, trying to substitute for the fine manipulations of a field.
  • Inept Mage: Has an extremely weak pegasus field. She can fly and perch on clouds — and that may be about it.
  • King Incognito: She's a member of House Cumulus, which is the most powerful family of pegasus nobles on the continent.
  • Not Good with People: Has a hard time opening up to others: initially hired Twilight as her escort to a party just so she'd have somepony she sort of knew there — who would keep her from running away. As a House member, she's used to the idea of escorts as professional paid company.
  • Power Limiter: Her entire body. Ratchette's mark gives her a feel for devices and occasionally allows her to diagnose problems on contact, but her ability to express that talent is partial. Lacking any capacity to cast or tweak the actual spells, she can only repair items when adjustments to the physical elements does the job.
  • The Power of Blood: In Natural Conductors, she manages to accidentally reprogram a rammer (a device which normally takes hours to attune) in an instant by smearing some of her blood on it. We don't know what else she can do...
  • Wrench Wench: To the point where it's the chapter title. She's noted as being very attractive when she's cleaned up, although that can take five baths just to reach a normal level of dirty.
  • Wrong Context Magic: A trotting, occasionally flying sapient case of it. After A Series Of Egotistical Events formally introduced wonders (items enchanted by pegasi), readers quickly realized that if wonders existed, then it naturally followed that there are marks suited to being a repairpony for them — and Ratchette's shop isn't dealing with that category of malfunctioning magic. Instead, she focuses entirely on clockwork and unicorn devices, and her mark shows a typical flow pattern of power through a device.
    • A Bird In The Dryer... then suggested that she can't work with wonders. Ratchette finally openly admitted it in her Elements Of Elements story.

Sizzler

The current holder of the ''meat station'' in the Lunar Kitchen. He's one of the most distinctive ponies in Equestria: bone-white mane and tail, blood-red eyes and coat (with that last having something of a liquid quality to it), and a generationally-unique mark — namely, a steak. Sizzler is the only pony in Equestria capable of preparing carnivore dishes on talent alone. Which is a particularly good thing for this young unicorn, because he doesn't exactly have anything else going for him.

  • Beware the Silly Ones: After going through the Solar/Lunar Kitchen Wars, he's more magically capable than most ponies suspect. Among other things, he has the potential to break shields, as said Naked Lunch.
  • Book Dumb: He walked past a school once. Then he realized what he was passing and accelerated into full gallop before any of the evil learning could get him.
  • Easily Forgiven: Averted. He wasn't imprisoned after his jaunt with the Brinner Brigade, but he's under so many probation restrictions and requirements as to effectively give him an open-air jail sentence.
  • Carnivore Confusion: Averted. Regardless of what the rumors might claim, Sizzler doesn't eat or even really taste-test his creations. One aspect of his mark magic is to grant him a highly specialized sense of smell: he can identify the source of raw meat at a sniff, and finding out if something is currently medium rare or just medium requires a simple inhale. He enjoys all the scents at his station, but he still believes he's like just about everypony when it comes to consuming meat: he could force down a small quantity, but a full meal would make him ill.
  • Idiot Savant: Absolutely fantastic at preparing meat dishes (especially when you consider he's incapable of taste-testing the results) to the point where the griffon embassy keeps trying to hire him away. A total dimwit when it comes to everything else.
  • Interspecies Friendship: Not only does he genuinely get along with Gerald, but most of Canterlot's griffon residents know him on sight. He's always welcome during any barbeque at the Aviary.
  • Signature Scent: He apparently has a rather disquieting aroma. It probably has something to do with meat.
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Sizzler possesses a generationally-unique working — which allows him to keep meat fresh indefinitely. Really. It'll never go bad as long as he's around. He's very proud of that.

Stile

The extremely short earth pony first seen in Hearts And Hooves Day. In the Continuum, his special talent is for construction — specializing in the little touches which allows the two-thirds of the population which doesn't have a unicorn field to function in that world at all. This makes him a very valuable pony to have around, and he never lacks for bits. It's relationships which give him problems.

  • Gadgeteer Genius: When it comes to the construction of those fine touches — and tools: it's his talent working in conjunction with Ratchette's designs which allow the latter to have a working shop at all.
  • Meaningful Name: A stile is a small bridge used to move between pastures, getting over the fences which the occupants can't cross. In his case, it represents the ability to provide access for areas which would otherwise be blocked.
  • Relationship Revolving Door: With Allie Way. They're described as having breakups as regular and nearly impossible to reconcile as a seven-ten split.
  • Shout-Out: Word Of Fanfic Author is that he's named after the main character in The Apprentice Adept Trilogy.

Torque Power

Mazein's ambassador to Equestria: a big bull in late middle age who's managed to stay voted into the post for quite some time. He's on geniunely friendly terms with Celestia to the point where he doesn't play that much realpolitik with her. He's always looking out for the best interests of his nation — but with the state of long-range communications in the Continuum, he's also aware that his nation tends to be well behind the news and in no position to criticize what he's doing now when they just found out what he did two weeks ago, with no knowledge of anything in between.

  • Interspecies Friendship: Quite a few: he's naturally gregarious and likes to buy the Guards rounds after successful negotations. (Which tends to curb their tactics somewhat after Joyous puts him in a state where they have to hold him off.) Celestia considers him to be one of her friends (albeit with a little potential political distance): Luna is still getting to know him.
  • Interspecies Romance: Averted. Minotaurs and ponies can form friendships deep enough to take vows of handfasting, but they're just not physically attracted to each other. (It's also implied that he's a widower.) Joyous making Torque rethink that is one of the early signs as to just how big a problem her out-of-control talent is going to be.
  • Not So Above It All: Or so the sisters decide after going golfing with him and watching Torque deliberately send himself into a rage fit as a means of working out stress.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Whenever possible, although he's subject to the latest votes from the Senate.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Like all minotaurs: if he's truly angry, his eyes will flush red.
  • Secret Keeper: Kept all of the details about Joyous away from Mazein, fully understanding what could happen if certain parties learned of her existence: he simply tells Celestia that the pegasus is a weapon, and somepony has to either fix her or find a way to make the shields — then assists Equestria during the Mazein stretch of the story, doing whatever he can to help. (By the end, the shields have been discovered: biohazard suits and charcoal filters.)
  • Super Strength: A minotaur's magic is generally tied to their physical efforts, and he's not a small bull: Torque manages to force a pair of Guard fields into winking out just by straining against those corona loops.

Travel Track

A grizzled middle-aged earth pony (described that way because he reminds most ponies of an easily upset bear) who's the inventor of Equestria's railway system, along with being the Founder for all the train-related marks which followed. Very rough-edged, doesn't care about royal protocol (which Celestia finds refreshing), and takes great pleasure in proving everypony who called his ideas stupid wrong, generally by watching them board his trains.

Wordia Spinner

A unicorn mare who works for the Murdocks Press Corps as their lead Solar reporter, although she does interact with Luna during joint conferences and deliberate summons. Her job is simple: make the Diarchy look bad, no matter what the situation, cost, or reality — which is a little easier to do in a world which has yet to figure out the term 'libel law'. She has yet to be described in detail, except to note that only the cruelty of nature has kept her teeth from appropriate points.

  • The Alcoholic: Hinted at: Raque claims Wordia usually smells like a brewery, and Celestia gets a whiff in Trav(ap)est(r)y.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Raque Marshdew, and would love to be one to the Diarchy as a whole.
  • Strawman News Media: Oh, hells Yes. Like all of Murdocks' lackeys, she absolutely hates the Diarchy and does whatever she can in order to make their efforts look bad. The only reason she's kept a job is because Equestria, somehow, has yet to discover or implement anti-libel laws.
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