Octavia and Vinyl Scratch are fandom’s classic “odd couple” — and today’s story makes one of them even odder.
[Romance] [Alternate Universe] • 4,114 words
Two passengers on a train ride toward an uncertain future. One is a pony. The other only pretends to be.
FROM THE CURATORS: “A little bit of originality can take a fandom trope a long way,” Present Perfect said as we dove into this story, and he was right — Destination Unknown paid off on that promise in spades. “Vinyl + Octavia is one of the fandom’s most cliché and mismatched pairs, and yet this is a real romance with genuine depth and emotion,” Horizon said. “This story also made Vinyl more plausible to me as a changeling than as a pony. It’s rich with little details like the source of her love for dubstep that show a lot of care and craft. I really appreciate how it plays the two competing clichés off of each other to great effect.”
What sold us on this story was, simply put, the quality of its construction in a crowded field of fanon explorations. “I think most folks will come away from it with better feelings about fanfiction than they had going in,” Bradel said. “The execution here is much smoother than I see through most of this fandom.” Horizon agreed: “This one is simply exemplary on execution.”
While Present Perfect thirded that statement, he went even further — finding the story unexpectedly winning him over. “The writing is solid, and it’s far more melancholy than romantic,” he said. “You won’t understand the full gravity of this statement unless you obsessively take notes on my fic recommendation journals, but it’s a ScratchTavia fic I actually like.”
Read on for our author interview, in which Pale Horse discusses crazy lies, dragon development, and following your heart while naked.