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Twilight Sparkle manages to find the time in her busy schedule to visit her friends in Ponyville. Among other things, she finds there's a bit of tension in some of her friends' mixed-race families: Pinkie Pie's got a pegasus daughter (and another little winged bundle of joy due any day now) that she's been run ragged trying to keep up with, young Pound Cake recently got into a fight with some of his pegasus friends who were making fun of his sister Pumpkin, and even the Apples are a bit sorry they can't keep up with Fluttershy and little Windfall. But Twilight's been thinking this problem over and gets an idea for an invention that, with the help of Apple Bloom and Rarity, could be just the thing to solve it...
This fanfic contains examples of:
- Adult Fear: Pinkie Pie gets a dose of this when her daughter Tootsie wanders off, and she expresses worry to Twilight that being an earth pony with a pegasus daughter will cause them to drift apart.
- On a lighter note, Twilight has to deal with Spike constantly throwing himself off of tall buildings because he wants to test his new wings. She knows Spike is practically impervious to harm, being a dragon, but she can't help but fear for his safety.
- At the Opera Tonight: The Harmony Aeronautics gang attend Sweetie Belle's performance as personal guests of the Princesses, giving them a chance to propose the concept of the flight harness.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Seems to be developing between Applejack and Soarin.
- The settle their differences in chapter 10, and shift into Unresolved Sexual Tension instead.
- Berserk Button: Insulting Pumpkin is one for Pound -- his friends did it, and he beat them to pulps for it.
- Blessed with Suck: Normally Pinkie's stream-of-consciousness rambling is either endearing or annoying. Now it's driving her to pieces because her imagination runs wild when her daughter is missing.
- Brick Joke: When Pinkie is worrying about where Tootsie is after she runs off, she wonders if maybe she's running an illegal gambling operation. After her new baby is born, Tootsie lists all the things she can't wait to teach her new little sister, which apparently includes three card monte.
- Call Back: Nurse Redheart still has trouble keeping the Mane Six quiet in the maternity ward.
- In chapter 11, Rarity makes use of her fainting couch from "Lesson Zero" when Apple Bloom is overwhelmed by Pip complimenting her opera outfit.
- In chapter 12, Rarity is described as "the pony everypony should know" in the narrative, a nod to her song from "Sweet and Elite".
- Pip and Princess Luna have apparently maintained their friendship established in "Luna Eclipsed" over the years.
- Cerebus Retcon: Along with Pinkie Pie's imagination mentioned above, Soarin's eating habits in Windfall are what lead to his being cut from the Wonderbolts in Chapter 4.
- The Chessmaster: Rarity turns into this when it comes to playing matchmaker, as chapter 11 shows.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Apple Bloom once she actually hooks up with Pip, until Luna convinces her to ignore the adoring mares watching him from afar and focus on the fact that she's the one with him.
- Color Failure: Rainbow Dash and Applejack do this when Fluttershy gives them the Stare with both eyes. In addition to whitewashing their bodies, the grass they're standing on is immediately scorched black.
- Comically Missing the Point: Pip completely misses the point of Big Macintosh's little heart to heart.
- According to Word of God, this is because Pip is such a gentlecolt that the idea of intentionally upsetting a mare is completely beyond his comprehension.
- Twilight also completely overlooks Rarity's attempts at matchmaking.
- Cruel to Be Kind: Applejack berates Soarin for his self-pity and gluttony... so that he can shape up.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: Apple Bloom insists to Applejack and Fluttershy that she's not attracted to Pip, even if he is brave and handsome and charming and has flanks you can bounce a hoof full of bits off of...
"Well, I kinda lost track o' what I was gonna say, but [Applejack] don't know what she's talkin' about neither."
- Dogged Nice Guy: Soarin to Applejack, before the relationship shifts to full BST territory.
- The Drag Along: Applejack is not sold on the artificial wings and is most definitely not an opera pony, but in Chapter 5 she agrees to accompany the other ponies when they go present the idea to the princesses. Rarity argues that her skepticism about the wings would be a bonus in the princesses' eyes.
- Eureka Moment: Twilight first starts working on how to help non-pegasus ponies fly after conversations with Pinkie and Pumpkin, but doesn't settle on the idea to use artificial wings until she sees Sweetie Belle wearing a pair as part of her Princess Celestia costume.
- Evil Is Petty: Diamond Tiara, who has become Blueblood's trophy wife, can't focus on Ring of the Neighbelung and spends the entire show before the intermission glaring at the mane cast and the princesses after she sees Applebloom enter with Pipsqueak.
- Freak-Out: Rainbow Dash is initially horrified by Twilight's artificial wings project since she is convinced that this will make pegasi obsolete. Fluttershy and Soarin convince her that she is overreacting and her worries are misplaced.
- Freudian Excuse: It's eventually revealed that the real reason Soarin's so upset about being kicked off the Wonderbolts is because they're the closet he's ever had to a family (see Parental Abandonment).
- Freudian Slip: Apple Bloom keeps doing this about Pip.
- Gibberish of Love: Pip's initial reaction to Apple Bloom dolled up for the opera.
- I Did What I Had to Do: Inverted. Rainbow Dash uses this in the second person in Chapter 4 after Spitfire had to cut a fading Soarin' from the Wonderbolts. The decision clearly tore Spitfire up:
"I f-f-feel like I just s-sawed off one of my own wings." (Note that she was weeping when she said this.)
- If You Ever Do Anything to Hurt Her...: Big Macintosh wants Pip and Soarin' to know that he can easily crush a stallion head sized rock and hates it when anypony upsets his sisters.
- Imagine the Audience Naked: Rarity offers this advice to Sweetie Belle when the latter's stage fright threatens to flare up again. Sweetie Belle tries to remind Rarity that ponies don't normally wear clothes.
- Impoverished Patrician: According to Word of God, Prince Blueblood married Diamond Tiara for the money.
- In the Blood: Tootsie seems to have inherited her mother's Pinkie Sense, and Windfall has inherited The Stare.
- Jaw Drop: Twilight and Spike's reaction to the first Mama Bear moment listed below. Rarity is kind enough to close their mouths for them.
- Soarin and Pip's reactions to seeing Applejack and Apple Bloom in their opera outfits.
- Mama Bear: Implied with Fluttershy, who manages to get a crowd blocking her path to disperse by telling them that they're keeping her from delivering Windfall to a play date with Tootsie. And then we get to see a definite example of this when she uses the Stare to break up an argument between Rainbow Dash and Applejack that's upsetting the children.
Rarity: Everypony in Ponyville knows better than to get in Fluttershy's way where her children are concerned.
- Metaphor Is My Middle Name: "Danger" is Pipsqueak's middle name, or would be if "me uncle Algy hadn't taken precedence."
- My Biological Clock Is Ticking: Even though she's only thirty, Applejack is starting to feel old, and feels pressured to continue the family (even though Big Macintosh already has kids, she feels the need to have some herself).
- OOC Is Serious Business: Rainbow Dash is highly confused when Soarin turns down the offer of free food to focus on training.
- Our Dragons Are Different: According to Twilight, due to dragons being magic creatures, their physical forms change based on their desires. As an example, she mentions a dragon who lived by himself in the middle of nowhere who grew a second head just so he'd have someone to talk to. This is also apparently why Spike has wings now when he didn't during his greed-induced growth spurt -- he didn't want them back then, but has since learned to enjoy the concept of personal flight.
- Overly Long Name: Pinkie Pie's daughter, Tootselina Margaret Esmerelda Gummy Pie.
- There's also Peregrin Algernon Horatio Squeak, AKA Pipsqueak.
- Parental Abandonment: Soarin was apparently given up by his parents as a foal, with the dialogue suggesting he was born to earth ponies. Because of this, he's quick to support Twilight and Rarity's project, in the hopes that it'll prevent the same thing from happening to others in the future.
- Personal Raincloud: Applejack gets one when she's brooding after an argument with Soarin.
- Rule of Three: It takes three attempts for Twilight Sparkle to make working artificial wings. Of course, it takes a bit longer for her to figure out how to properly use them.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: The Apple sisters in their opera outfits, to the shock and joy of Pip and Soarin.
- Shipper on Deck: Chapter 10 reveals that Fluttershy ships Applebloom and Pipsqueak.
- Rarity actively ships Apple Bloom/Pipsqueak and Applejack/Soarin. Word of God states that she's also been trying to pair Twilight up with anyone in Canterlot for years, but has had "a success rate that'd make Wile E. Coyote feel good about his record."
- Ship Tease: Applebloom apparently didn't know Pipsqueak was back in Ponyville, or what a handsome stallion he'd grown into.
- Soarin seems to have developed a crush on Applejack despite (or perhaps because of) the fact that their first interaction involved her chewing him out for his self-pity.
- Slap Slap Kiss: Soarin and Applejack, though it takes a while to get to the third part.
- Something Else Also Rises: Soarin apparently gets a "wingboner" on seeing Applejack in her opera outfit.
- Stealth Hi Bye: Rarity's assistant Snips does this in chapter 11 -- Twilight points out that it has none of the tell-tale signs of teleportation, he just appears.
- Word of God says that he still maintains an interest in stage magic, making clothes with trick sleeves and secret pockets.
- Tastes Like Purple: When Pipsqueak is hired as Twilight and Rarity's test pilot, Twilight performs a few magical tests on him as part of a physical. One of these is scanning him with magic and asking him what color he tastes afterwords.
- Might be justified by the fact that we've seen that rainbows can be tasted and even have colors removed from them, first in Sonic Rainboom when Pinkie tastes several colors at once that were dipped on her hoof, and again in Hearts and Hooves Day when the CMC take colors from a rainbow as an ingredient for what they thought was a love potion. Apparently, rainbows have flavors, or at least the colors do.
- Twinkle Smile: Seems to be a Running Gag with Pipsqueak.
- Wacky Cravings: A pregnant Pinkie Pie appears to prefer pickled peppers.
- We Named the Monkey "Jack": Part of Tootsie's Overly Long Name includes a shoutout to Gummy.
- Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: Used by Sweetie Belle in Chapter 2 to get Bobbin (one of Rarity's hired help) to help her down to the ground, as she was dressed up as Princess Celestia and hanging in the air by harnesses.