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Fanfic / Guardian Blue

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Guardian Blue is an extensive, long-running Zootopia fanfic written by Alps Sarsis, comprising of multiple interrelated stories beginning six months after the events of the movie. Most prominently are the "seasons", all of which are told from Judy Hopps' perspective, but there are several side works - some of which are told from Judy's perspective, some from other characters'. However, these works all take place in a specific order, and many (Sarsis included) recommend that new readers read them in order - beginning with Thanks for the Fox.

Guardian Blue can be found on Archive Of Our Own as a series, but can also be found on Sarsis's page.

    Full List of Guardian Blue Stories in Reading Order 
  • Thanks for the Fox: After hearing the story of Nick's mother, Judy becomes determined to find her grave.
  • Who Writes This?!: A few choice remarks from Nick leads Judy to the discovery that mammals actually write fanfiction about them...
  • Season 1: The first true "season". It begins with Judy taking Nick to Bunnyburrow, but no sooner do they return to Zootopia than they are faced with new accommodations, new faces, and a new case.
  • Season 2: Begins immediately after the events of Season 1. As a contentious mayoral election approaches, Judy and Nick are left with the question of where they are going as a partnership, and with a new mystery that starts with a murder, but eventually takes them far beyond the Zootopia they know.
  • Fall Festival: A one-chapter work centering on Benjamin Clawhauser attending the ZPD Halloween Party.
  • The Duke of Absolution: Follows Duke Weaselton as he deals with the events of Season 1 and his role in them, and if he can even be a criminal anymore.
  • Winter Hearth: Judy and Nick return to Bunnyburrow for the holidays, taking Vivienne Wilde, Nick's mother, with them. However, there's still the question of how accepting the mammals of the town will be with Nick and Judy's recent marriage from Season 2, and what other developments might occur.
  • Season 3: With a new Acting Chief of Police, and a new dynamic in their relationship, Nick and Judy return to average police work. Compared to Seasons 1 and 2, Season 3 seems to deal more with their day-to-day lives as officers, bordering on Police Procedural. Still in progress as of Fall 2019.
  • Sheepless in New Reynard: A follow-up to the events of Winter Hearth. A few ill-placed remarks in Winter Hearth wind up sending Sharla Shearer, Judy's childhood friend, to the fox-dominated town of New Reynard in search of her missing brother, Gareth. Honey, the badger Sharla's been sent to meet, is hostile, but may just be her best shot at finding Gareth...

Sarsis has also published Guardian Blue After Dark: a series of two works that take place in the same continuity as the other stories, but because they are more mature stories, and because they are not necessary to read any of the other works, Sarsis hasn't linked After Dark's stories to the other works on the Archive Of Our Own version (on that site, After Dark is rated "E" - the other works are rated "T").

Contains unmarked spoilers for the movie!


This fanfic provides examples of:

  • Action Mom:
    • Bonnie Hopps (of all mammals) is shown to be able to kick a rather bigoted squirrel across a room.
      Nick (to Judy): “Your mom… just kicked half the letters out of that fella’s last name.”
    • Vivienne Wilde also counts. Putting an arrow into a Lanolin assassin definitely makes her qualify. The reason she hit the sheep's shoulder wasn't because she was shooting merely to wound - it was because her aim was getting rusty.
      Vivienne: “The next arrow’s a letter addressed to your face, Poufy. So go on… just give me a reason to lick this stamp.”
  • Actually Pretty Funny: During Judy and Acting Chief Tora's sparring match, when Clawhauser (of all mammals!) scares Tora out of the ring by throwing a cucumber in front of her, Tora remarks that there is to be no interference in the match, "regardless of how funny or well-intentioned," prompting Judy to briefly wonder if even Tora thought it was amusing.
  • Ascended to Carnivorism: Played for Laughs. A Running Gag is made out of Judy eating fish, either accidentally or on purpose.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: While Acting Chief Mayumi Tora may not be as brawny as her predecessor, her skill in martial arts makes her more than capable of holding her own in a fight, as Cherry learns the hard way.
  • Bad Ol' Badger: Honey tries to invoke this trope, but she is not antagonistic.
  • Beta Couple: Jack and Skye.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Immediately after Bonnie's Action Mom moment (see above), Yax shows that while he's content to go with the flow most of the time, he does not take kindly to guests at Mystic Springs Oasis antagonizing each other.
    Bigoted Squirrel: “I am not going out that door without a full refund.”
    Yax: “Huh huh! Oh, you don’t have to go through the door if you don’t want. Nangi, how far you figure you can throw a squirrel over the property wall?”
    Nangi: “I have no idea.”
    Yax: “Thirty-six meters and sixteen centimeters if it’s not too windy.”
    <Cue the bigoted squirrel beating a hasty retreat>
  • Big Bad:
  • Canis Major: Cherry is shown to be rather large by wolf standards. It's rather telling that she went toe-to-toe with an elephant and only lost thanks to intervention from Judy and Nick, and that's before she managed to take down half of Precinct 1 before Tora, Judy, and Nick managed to bring her to heel.
  • Cats Are Mean: Played with with regards to Acting Chief Mayumi Tora. She's somewhat abrasive with Judy and Nick (especially in their first meeting), but Season 3 establishes that it's usually not without reason, and if her reaction to Judy beating her in their sparring match is any indication, she's capable of eating crow.
  • Combat Pragmatist: How Judy defeats Acting Chief Tora in their sparring match in Season 3. For all the effort Tora went to to demonstrate that Judy was needlessly reckless, Judy responded by showing that yes, she could take down a tiger without putting herself in too much risk. How? By simply shooting Tora with a tranq dart.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: Honey. Her theories may not be so off the mark though...
  • Continuation
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Lanolin Enterprises was perfectly willing to kill innocent mammals in the interior just to protect their trade agreements.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: Nick Wilde, as always, as well as his mother, Vivienne.
    • Sam also counts, to a lesser extent.
  • Da Chief: Chief Bogo, as always.
    • In Season 3, after Bogo becomes Acting Mayor of Zootopia, the position falls to Acting Chief Mayumi Tora.
  • Denied Food as Punishment: A variation. Acting Chief Tora punishes Clawhauser for his intervention in her sparring match with Judy by replacing his food supply for more healthy alternatives. This is shown to be part of a broader effort to get Clawhauser to lose weight.
  • Determinator: Judy. The fanfic is by no means subtle that she'd (literally!) go to Hell and back for Nick.
  • Disney Death: Nick near the end of Season 1.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: Clawhauser is scared stiff when he has to use a tranquilizer gun. Judy figures that it's because the last time he tried to tranquilize a suspect, it resulted in the suspect dying, resulting in Clawhauser being put on perpetual desk duty.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Her: Despite being built up as a potential antagonist, Councillor Swinton is assassinated offscreen by one of Lanolin Enterprises' agents when it seems she's getting too close to The Conspiracy.
  • Fangirl: Kris is seemingly one to Nick, but it turns out that she's one to Judy as well. Her admiration stems from gratitude for their role in curing her uncle, Emmet Otterton.
  • Fantastic Racism: Carries over from the movie. We particularly see it in Pop-Pop. He gets better.
  • Free-Range Children: In Season 3, Judy and Nick are chagrined - and more than a little concerned - when Sam suddenly appears without warning at their apartment, having travelled all the way there from New Reynard.
    Nick: "Does your mom know you're here?"
    Sam: "No. Could you call her and let her know I'm here safely?"
    Nick: "Are you supposed to be here?"
    Sam: "My mom said it was okay, and you said I could visit you if I wanted."
    Nick: "I mean, you needed to ask... We have to... Sam, you can't just show up!"
  • Grumpy Old Man / Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!: Otto "Pop-Pop" Hopps - especially where foxes are concerned.
  • Happily Married: Judy and Nick as of the end of Season 2.
  • Heinous Hyena: Averted with Motti. She's quick to anger in her first appearance (in fairness, she'd just lost her adoptive brother), but after that, she becomes an invaluable ally to Nick and Judy, and later, to Honey and Sharla.
  • Hero Ball: ZPD Medic Surikata's decision to give Cherry a tranquilizer diffuser without giving Nick, Judy, and Pennington a chance to explain why the giant wolf was double-heavied. Tora royally chews him out for this afterwards.
  • Implacable Wolf: Cherry in Chapters 9 and 10 of Season 3, thanks to her being enormous by wolf standards, and especially since she's covered her fur in epoxy to make her mostly tranq dart-proof, making her capable of nearly beating Pennington - an elephant - and later half of Precinct 1.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Chief Bogo remarks that since Judy and Nick joined the force, all he needs to to is text "FB"note  to his wife to ensure there's a stiff drink waiting for him when he gets home.
    “It’s… gonna be a drinking night tonight.”
  • Interspecies Romance: Judy and Nick eventually, and also Jack and Skye.
    • Jack's parents, a hare and a hyena, also count.
  • Last-Second Word Swap: A variation.
    Flash: "My... brakes... are... out... standing!"
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: At one point, Jack Savage alludes to the fact that he originally hails from a very early draft of the movie.
    "Oh my god I’m stuck in a cutting-room floor draft, help me please."
  • Legendary in the Sequel: Nick and Judy achieve this status as the fic goes on.
  • A Lizard Named "Liz" / Species Surname: Well, naturally! This is a Zootopia fanfic, after all!
    • Mayumi Tora's surname is literally the Japanese word for 'tiger'.
  • Lost My Appetite: One of Judy's brothers swears off cheese forever after finding out where it comes from.
  • The Main Characters Do Everything: Subverted in Season 2. While Judy, Nick, and co. were being menaced by Lanolin's assassins, Chief Bogo and the rest of the ZPD were doing the heavy lifting in terms of arresting their bosses.
  • Mega-Corp: Lanolin Enterprises - they have a finger in just about every pie, and hold considerable political influence; influence they'll do anything to keep.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Downplayed. Jack Savage is meant to be the hybrid son of a hare father and a hyena mother, and a considerable amount of money and genetic engineering went into his conception. However, Jack explains that because of scientific limitations, he's not really a true hybrid; his birth mother was a bunny, and the only traits he got from his hyena side are sharper claws and stripes in his fur.
  • My Greatest Failure:
    • Judy considers her role in creating the Night Howler Panic during the movie to be this.
    • Season 3 reveals that Clawhauser has this as well. The reason he's saddled with perpetual desk duty is because he tranquilized a suspect, but it reacted badly with them, resulting in him being the only Precinct 1 Officer other than Judy to have caused a fatality in the line of duty. As a result, Clawhauser is terrified of using tranq guns.
  • Never Found the Body: Nick's "death" in Season 1. Oddly enough, Judy is looking for Nick's body when she finds him alive in Hell's Cauldron.
  • Not Now, Kiddo: ZPD Medic Surikata doesn't give Judy, Nick, and Francine a chance to explain why he shouldn't give Cherry a tranq diffuser until it's too late.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Vivienne inflicts this on Bonnie and Stu, pointing out to them that Judy's instinct to protect others and make the world a better place - even at the risk of her own safety - is most likely something instilled in her from her parents' love and protectiveness towards her and her siblings.
    “Who your daughter is today is absolutely the product of all the love and care you have given to her… You two should be scared because you never stopped loving and caring, but please understand… It is because of that love… that fear, care and worry that she became what she is. Sungura ya Shetani, clad in guardian blue. Were it not for the heart that you two cultivated in her, I would be without a son, and more than half the mammals in this room would be dead. The ZPD prepared her to be a cop. You prepared her to be more than that.”
  • Official Couple: Judy and Nick.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: In Season 2, Chief Bogo and the rest of the ZPD somehow blow the lid on Lanolin Enterprises' conspiracy while Judy, Nick, and the other witnesses are being menaced by their assassins in New Reynard.
  • Oh, Crap!: Skye, after learning she really did just lick Jack Savage's face.
  • Oh, Crap, There Are Fanfics of Us!: The central premise of Who Writes This?!
  • Only Mostly Dead:
    • Vivienne Wilde in Thanks For the Fox.
    • Also, Nick near the end of Season 1.
      • Nick lampshades this after his rescue:
        “Judy, you are now zero for two on finding dead foxes. It’s an exciting sport but I think you were better at Munch.”
  • Orphean Rescue: A metaphorical version - after Nick's apparent death in Season 1, Judy searches for his body in a place deep in Zootopia's climate control system colloquially known as "Hell's Cauldron." What she doesn't expect to find is that Nick is actually alive in there. This trope is what follows - complete with Judy kicking a hole in a parking lot surface and yanking Nick out of the ground with her. A newspaper headline about the rescue put it best:
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse:
    • Judy, a rabbit, is shown to be able to take down mammals many times her size.
    • Also, Finnick, as Darmaw's enforcers learn the hard way.
  • Planet of Hats: Just as Bunnyburrow is predominantly comprised of rabbits, New Reynard is predominantly populated by foxes. The occasionally mentioned town of Fenrir is presumably mainly wolves.
  • Police Procedural: The fic alternates between this and Cop Show.
  • Poor Communication Kills:
    • Innocent miscommunications erroneously lead Nick to believe that his mother was dead until the events of Thanks for the Fox.
    • In Season 1, the fact that Nick didn't tell Judy that he was an experienced Munch player or about his plan to raise money for the Tuber family makes Judy think he was essentially hustling everyone at the Munch game.
    • Also rears its head in Season 3 when ZPD Medic Surikata panics and gives Cherry a tranq diffuser before Nick, Judy, and Francine can explain to him that Cherry is incredibly dangerous. After the dust settles, Acting Chief Tora makes a note to pull the security footage of the incident as an example to ZPD trainees of the risks of poor communication.
  • Population: X, and Counting: After Nick expresses his concerns after seeing Bunnyburrow's incredibly high-number "Population" sign from the movie, Judy explains that the sign is really just a tourist trap, and Bunnyburrow's population isn't actually that high.
  • Put on a Bus: Chief Bogo makes hardly any appearances after Season 2. Justified as he probably has his hooves full running the city as Acting Mayor.
  • Rank Up: At the end of Season 2, Judy and Nick are both promoted to Sergeant. Additionally, Chief Bogo's simultaneous ascension to Acting Mayor of Zootopia may count.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Chief Bogo seems keen to avoid repeating his mistakes from the movie. In Guardian Blue, he makes sure to give Judy and Nick assignments that play to their strengths, and to their niche as the ZPD's two smallest non-rodent officers, even using their relationship to his advantage during an undercover investigation at Mystic Springs Oasis.note  He goes even further with this trope as he manages to take down Lanolin Enterprises (off-camera, no less!), and as of the end of Season 2, is tasked with running the whole damn city as Acting Mayor.
  • Reconstruction: Guardian Blue occasionally makes some of the more outlandish parts of Zootopia a bit more palatable.
    • Judy and Nick being able to become cops after Judy's resignation, Nick's tax evasion, and the damage they did while revealing Bellwether's scheme is explained with three things;
      • Chief Bogo instituted a media campaign that basically told the media that Judy's actions were as a private citizen on behalf of the ZPD.
      • Judy and Nick both refused to testify against Bellwether unless charges for the damage inflicted in the train chase were overlooked.
      • Nick's tax evasion was also overlooked in exchange for his testimony, and since Nick was going to be taking a government paycheque anyway as a police officer, it was agreed that he could pay back what he owed by having a cut taken out of his salary.
    • Season 3 gives us an explanation for Judy and Weaselton's chase through Little Rodentia. There are times that make it necessary for non-rodents to enter the tiny borough, but there is a standard protocol for mammals Judy and Nick's size to enter that Judy hadn't followed when pursuing Weaselton.
    • Season 3 also tackles Judy's Cowboy Cop attitude, with Acting Chief Tora calling Judy out on her reckless behaviour during the movie. During Judy and Tora's sparring match, Judy responds by proving that yes, she can approach a dangerous situation without needlessly putting herself at risk.
  • Refitted for Fanfic:
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Darmaw's willing to turn a whole parkful of elephants savage if it means getting back at the police.
  • Running Gag:
    • Judy eating fish - intentionally or otherwise. It Makes Sense in Context.
    • Nick or Vivienne making use of the "GOT YOU" coin, or related mentions of "getting" characters (read: playing jokes on them).
    • Whenever Chief Bogo delivers bad news he puts on his glasses. Nick always notices, and gives an appropriate, comical This Is Gonna Suck reaction. Nick can tell even when they're talking on the phone.
    • Judy's growing reputation for being an unstoppable, reckless force of nature with no concept of limits, and her own denial about how true it is. She hates it and to her credit tries to do things by the book, but can never seem to, and it's constantly played for humor as her friends crack jokes about it, criminal and pranksters alike flee in terror of her, people jump to the assumption that she's going to do crazy things, and eventually the whole city (and beyond) starts to believe it. It reaches its zenith when she has to beat up half a village in self-defense, leading everyone there to start calling her "Demon Rabbit."
  • Savage Wolves: Cherry is enormous, stalkeriffic, delusional, an adrenaline junkie, and not afraid to torture her ex-boyfriend, or take on cops (even elephant cops or other wolves).
  • Seldom-Seen Species: African Wild Dogs, or Lycaons, as they are called in-universe, feature prominently in the Interior arc of Season 2.
  • Shout-Out:
    • With regards to fox culture, plenty to Disney's Robin Hood (1973), by virtue of having a fox version of Robin who occupies a similar place in Zootopian mythology that real-world Robin Hood does in ours.
    • When the ZPD needs to alert officers to a situation that's too complicated to efficiently explain over the radio, they name the type of situation "a Foalkien" after "an equine writer known for writing out painstakingly every detail."
  • Shown Their Work: In Season 3, it's mentioned that once upon a time, 80% of Zootopia's bat population was wiped out by a fungal disease. This is a reference to a real-life epidemic called White-Nose Syndrome that as of 2019 is spreading among North American bats.
  • The Shrink: Dr. Carlisle, a skunk, and Precinct 1's resident therapist. She's moderately effective at her job from what little we see of her, though Judy and later Nick does take issue with how her and Nick's joint sessions with her have to have a divider between them, and with Carlisle calling Nick "Nicholas." Though Carlisle doesn't object when Nick knocks the divider over, or when Judy demands she call Nick "Nick" in Season 3.
  • Smelly Skunk:
    • During Season 3, Judy and Nick have to deal with drugged-out skunk who passes out in a museum, and winds up spraying the entire lobby when he has a seizure. Nick takes the spray square in the face.
    • Averted with Dr. Carlisle, for whom no mention is made of her ability to spray.
  • Squee: How Clawhauser loses his bet with Judy in Fall Festival
  • Squick: Judy's reaction to discovering an abandoned gas station filled with knockoff "celebrity cheese" (that is, cheese that supposedly came from the milk of dead Zootopian celebrities). Even more so when she discovers that she was one of the celebrities in question (they were aging 'her' cheese in advance).
  • Suicide by Cop: Finnick explains to Judy that Nick's selling Mr. Big a skunk-butt-rug may have been a subconscious attempt at this.
  • Straight Man: Jack Savage generally plays this role beside Nick, Judy and even Skye (who plays this role instead when he's not around). It's telling that the movie star is the most normal one of the group. His default emotion tends to be "stunned and confused about the madness around him."
  • Title Drop: Vivienne drops one near the end of Season 2.
  • Tranquilizer Dart: Frequently used by the ZPD, but they're shown to have their limitations.
    • In Season 1, part of the plot revolves around the season's Big Bad spiking elephants' ice cream with a substance to render them immune to tranq darts after he turns them savage with Night Howler pellets.
    • In Season 3, Cherry armours herself against tranq darts by spraying her fur with epoxy. The first time she takes on the ZPD, Judy and Nick only manage to take her down by putting darts in her joints - the few areas she couldn't epoxy. The second time, Chief Tora has to pin her down before Judy and Nick tranq her again..
    • Also from Season 3, it's mentioned that tranquilizers can be health hazards, which is why ZPD Medic Surikata panics and gives Cherry a tranq diffuser - though he should have asked why they'd dosed her so much.
      • Judy also figures that the reason Clawhauser is the only Precinct 1 officer other than her to have killed someone in the line of duty is because he tranqed a suspect and it reacted badly to them, resulting in their death.
  • Unfortunate Implications: A played-with, in-universe example. The game of "Munch" - popular in Bunnyburrow - is essentially like a game of Tag. Only, only one person can be considered "it," and this person is designated the "fox" of the match. Naturally, Judy is worried about running into this trope when Munch is brought up during her and Nick's visit to Bunnyburrow.
    • However, this is Subverted in that Nick has actually played the game himself - won trophies in it even.
  • Walking Spoiler: Vivienne Wilde. The fact that she's even alive is a massive spoiler for Thanks for the Fox, and has major ramifications for the remainder of the series.
  • Weirdness Magnet: Judy and Nick seem to attract cases ranging from the shocking to the just plain bizarre. Lampshaded in Season 3:
    Pennington: “Oh my god, Fangmeyer was right. You’d have taken down the Department of the Interior even if the Chief gave you parking duty! This stuff comes and finds you!”
  • What Were You Thinking?: Mayumi Tora's reaction to Surikata giving Cherry a tranquilizer diffuser without letting Judy, Nick, and Francine tell him why they had double-heavied her, which had resulted in half of Precinct 1 getting trounced by a mentally unstable wolf.
  • Wholesome Crossdresser: Judy, Nick, Jack, and Skye all attend the ZPD Halloween Party, with Judy and Nick dressed as Jack and Skye respectively and vice-versa, with their fur dyed to complete the look. It's so convincing that Wolfard tries to flirt with "Skye".
  • Wolf in Sheep's Clothing: Inverted literally in Sheepless in New Reynard. Big Bad, who Honey, Sharla, and Motti believe to be a wolf, is in fact a cover for Gareth - a sheep!
  • Work Off the Debt: A variation. After Bellwether's arrest, it was decided that since Nick was going to be taking a government pay check as a police officer anyway, he could pay back the debts from his tax evasion by having a chunk taken out of his salary.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Darmaw, as demonstrated by his taking a wolf cub hostage when cornered by Nick and Judy.
  • Wretched Hive: Happytown, a predominantly predator-populated area, has this reputation in-universe.
  • Yandere: Cherry. Suffice to say, her ex-boyfriend has every reason to fear her.
  • You Killed My Father: Why Darmaw holds a grudge against the ZPD.
  • You're Drinking Breast Milk: In Bunnyburrow, Nick winds up unwittingly drinking breast milk that came from Judy's sister Eli.
    • Becomes a heartwarming Brick Joke later on, when Eli sends via the family a bottle to Nick as a humorous "get well soon" gift when he gets out of the hospital after Judy rescues him from Hell's Cauldron; when he finally gets to gulp it down, we have this scene:
      Judy: Nick, please say that was just regular milk.
      Nick: Nope. Sweet. Definitely grade-A bunneh!
      Judy: You know that’s not for foxes, right? Why would you drink that?
      Nick: Did you ever drink it?
      Judy: Yeah, of course. First couple years of my life, like most kits. But I’m a bunny. I’m supposed to.
      Nick: Yeah, well, you drank it for two years... and you carried a mammal twice your weight more’n a mile upward through the guts of the city with your shoulder out of joint and then kicked a freaking crater in the road in front of Palm Market just to drag me back into the light... so yeah - Imma drink the milk. I’ll suck down every drop of it that gets handed to me. I figure I’ll be able to fly if I drink enough.
    • Also, there's the fact that in a world where just about every mammal is sentient, eating cheese may count as this. The full extent of this becomes apparent in Season 3, when Judy and Nick discover an abandoned gas station filled with counterfeit 'celebrity cheese' - cheese that supposedly came from the lactations of Zootopian celebrities. Judy is not amused when she discovers that she was one of the mammals the cheese supposedly came from. Nick just wonders if it tastes the same as rabbit milk.
      Kris: It's heartless!
      Judy: It's greed at its worst!
      Kris: It's unconscionable!
      Nick (chomping on "Swinton Premier"): It's actually goat cheese.
      Judy: Stop eating that!
      Nick: I'm investigating!