|Today, Tomorrow, and Forever|
|Date published||March 28, 2011|
|Featuring||Derpy Hooves Dinky Hooves|
Today, Tomorrow, and Forever is a fanfic by Chopper's Top Hat. It focuses on the relationship between Derpy Hooves and her daughter Dinky Hooves.
The story is narrated in the third person, but told mostly from Dinky's perspective. It is bookended by two short scenes featuring Twilight Sparkle in her library. The last portion of the story features a rhyming poem which, in the context of the story, was written by Derpy.
Derpy Hooves is written in this story as speaking only in nonsense phrases consisting of random words. She can speak normally, but only with great difficulty. She is able to communicate flawlessly in writing, however. Beneath her odd exterior, Derpy is a highly devoted, loving mother, and the story is primarily about the tremendous sacrifices Derpy is willing to make to ensure her daughter's future. Despite this, it is implied in the story that Derpy does not consider herself worthy of being Dinky's mother.
Dinky Hooves is Derpy's daughter, normally cheerful and upbeat, but when her mother begins acting strange, she finds herself highly unnerved. Dinky seems to have no problem understanding Derpy's speech.
Autumn Scamper is an original character who plays a minor but vital role in the story.
Twilight Sparkle appears at the begining and end of the story, along with Spike. The two are not directly involved in the events of the story, but instead seem to represent how the average Ponyville resident is affected by Derpy's choice.
The story depicts a seemingly normal day marked by a single strange event: Derpy taking the day off. This leads to her daughter Dinky noticing her mother acting strangely, culminating when Derpy throws Dinky a birthday party, despite her birthday being months away. This causes Dinky to become scared, and eventually learning the tragic reason for her mother's actions.
Dinky learns that the authorities have decided to take her away from her mother due to Derpy's "unique condition," and that Derpy, though heartbroken, is cooperating with them because she believes Dinky can have a brighter future in a different home with a "normal" mother. Dinky protests angrily, until she is put to sleep by a magic spell and left in the care of the authorities. Derpy leaves Ponyville that day without explanation.
The story picks up a year later, when Dinky has fully adjusted to life with her foster family. Though happy, she misses her mother dearly, but understands the choice she made. It is revealed that Derpy writes Dinky a letter with a poem in it each day. The story closes with Dinky reading her favorite of these poems.
"And Together Forever" is an alternate ending/sequel to this story, written by Nova25. It reverses the ending of the original story by reuniting Dinky with her mother, allowing for a happy ending.
Several pieces of fan art related to the story exist. The poem which closes the story is often quoted in these artworks.
The story itself is a follow-up to "Special Derplivery," (by the same author) one of the earliest Derpy Hooves fanfics, which is not related in terms of plot, but establishes this version of Derpy's personality, and her talent as a poet.