FimFiction Link - Short ID: 437468/the-virgin-princess
Published: Apr '19
Magic dementia is about as scary as real dementia is.
'The Virgin Princess' is a ten thousand-word shortfic and the penultimate episode of the 'The Third Wheel' series. I have to preface this by saying that I haven't yet read the rest of the series as I just stumbled upon this story and only saw that it's a sequel after having finished it, but thankfully the way it is written does not require any previous knowledge for which I have to give props to the author. The story centers around Twilight, now an eternally young Alicorn as she continues to face friendship problems, solves issues with singing and freaking out every day about liking coffee. It sounds amusing, but the story is very quick to freeze the smile on your face. Twilight's immortality came with a cost, her psyche is frozen in time, her conscious mind stuck as the same teenager she was at the moment of her transformation. This causes her to continuously forget everything learned since and only be able to remember even basic new memories if someone or something reminds her. This predicament nearly alienates her closest relatives who try their hardest to support her, and due to this her house is full of sticky notes as she tries to cope with her situation. This story is not horror as say the infamous 'Cupcakes' is. No one gets hurt, no one's life is in danger, Ponyville is safe until the last chapter. This is pure psychological horror as the reader empathizes with everyone and their impossible situation. As someone who had relatives succumb to dementia, this story is truly horrifying.
But what is even more tragic is the fact that Twilight not only understands her situation, but despite having the means to undo it all, consciously decides to sacrifice herself so that others may live a better life. In this story the divinity of Alicorns is shown in a grotesque light: The reason why they are so perfect is because they are literally incapable of change and thus being corrupted. Twilight will spend the rest of eternity relearning everything again and again, because for her it won't matter, but for the others it will be worth everything. This along with the burning away of her notes in the last chapter were two gigantic slaps the author gives the reader. It hurts and it is a literary gem.
To give everything its due attention, the rest of the cast works nicely too, the Changeling-Pony couple is lovable and their interactions with Twilight as mentioned above is amazing. The parts of the story where it goes "that's not what this story is about" is an interesting way to broaden the world, but feel a bit out of place.
Overall: 9/10 In ten thousand words this story grabbed and yanked out my heart. It's not a perfect story, there are parts I found weird, but it doesn't matter, the core is drama of such quality which I did not expect to find on this page. I consider this story a must-read.