Yeah, that's my pony.
I don't want to spoil how the romance in this story goes but I find it interesting how so many "fanfics of fanfics" try to make themselves similar to the original. Some elaborate on backstory or show the lives of minor characters, but so many more would rather recreate the story "but more". They want to recapture the story's "mass appeal" (by a small mini-fandom's standards) so they make their story similar by default and rarely diverge from that templatee.
If the original tale featured a small lesbian unicorn with a big revolver and sniper rifle, here's a tale about an ordinary-sized bisexual unicorn with a bigger revolver and bigger sniper rifle and even bigger laser cannon, or a tale about a massive lesbian alicorn who keeps saying she "sucks at lockpicking" even though she just telekinetically tears locks open which always works and makes her the world's best lockpicker.
If the original tale featured a teenager who turns into a Lucario with an arbitrary chosen-one superpower tacked on that makes EXP grinding and pokemon attacks irrelevant while giving him infinite health/stamina/magic, fans make their own fics where teenagers turn into Lucarios or other primarily-bipedal Pokemon with similarly-overpowered god-tier superpowers that render actual Pokemon combat utterly irrelevant.
There's a fanfiction concept called "The Stations Of The Canon".
Basically, take any piece of media.
People might expect Naruto from me but I'll pick Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone for this.
The sequences of events in Harry Potter 1, where Harry does magic and gets a letter of acceptance to Hogwarts and meets Hagrid and goes to magicland and buys his wand at Olivander's and then buys a robe and then goes to hogwarts, the order in which he meets certain characters, the important plot beats from this story...
They are "The stations of the canon".
So a fanfic that seeks to answer "What if Harry Potter was raised by Tony Stark instead of the Dursleys?" would still show this story's "Harry Stark" doing magic and going to magicland and buying his wand and then his robe and so on and do these scenes in the same order as the original.
This fic's Harry Stark will meet Hermione on the train just like the canon Harry did, even though HS will talk and act differently from canon. Harry Stark will still meet Draco Malfoy when Harry Potter did, though Harry Stark might show off for the audience by calling Malfoy a faggot.
Despite what some say about a butterfly effect's wingbeats causing hurricanes somewhere else, the author is still using the original story as a guide and template when writing this story so it will take a shitload of changes piling up before things diverge from the familiar and comfortable Harry Potter 1 fans really just want to re-experience all over like they're kids again.
It's the same with Pokemon fanfics.
A Pokemon Trainer's goal is to catch and train strong Pokemon then visit the 8 major towns so you can fight their Gym Leaders and get their Gym Badges. After that you head to the Pokemon League, battle the Elite Four and Champion, kick all their asses in pokemon fights, and become the new Sinnoh Champion.
Looking at a map of Sinnoh for example (the red marks are cities/towns, the blue ones are towns or other locations) you might pick any town for your OC to start his journey from, and plan your own unique route around the region.
But in the Pokemon games and anime, assorted roadblocks block your path until you've completed certain objectives or found certain items.
Sometimes there's a small tree or rock blocking your path, and your Pokemon must destroy it using the Cut or Rock Smash move, and you'll need a Hidden Machine to teach that, so you must get that HM somehow. You'll need the HM for Surf to teach your water Pokemon to let you surf across the ocean. You'll need Waterfall's HM to climb waterfalls. Oh and you also need the Gym Badge connected to that HM for it to work for some reason.
Sometimes it's the arbitrary artificial NPC kind of roadblock where some prick blocks the only way out of town and says "Sorry, the bridge up ahead is broken!" until you go complete a story-event cutscene moment ten feet away, then he fucks off after you've done everything you can in the town.
So every adventure through the games is the same when it comes to where you go and what order you do stuff in.
Fanfics don't have to copypaste this limitation, but they do out of laziness.
So many rookie trainers start their journey in Twinleaf Town, get one of three approved Starter Pokemon (or an Eevee) from Professor Oak, and start doing everything exactly as it happened in the anime/videogame.
Because why be a rookie trainer from a big city like Jublife or Hearthome desperately trying to win fights with the shitty pokemon his unhelpful parents got him, when you could instead take the fatherless blank-slate protagonist's route just as literally as you take the turn-based RPG mechanics?
Even Naruto fics do this.
Naruto was born in Leafland, he did an escort mission to protect a bridge-builder from Shark-man and Ice-Notagirl, fought against Sandy Cuntman in the Chunin Exams, then Sasuke defected so he tried and failed to bring Sasuke back, then he fucked off. One timeskip later, he comes back home to Leafland and then Akatsuki shit sort of happens around him while he blathers about friendship. He fails to kick blonde bomberman's ass and his crush crushes Reverse Pinnochio with the help of an old lady who dies for King Sandy of Sandtopia. He fails to save Sasuke, who got snaked by snakeman. Eventually he gets a win against Your Heart Will Go On in the background of a story arc where Shikamaru's the real main character going through real shit. Eventually 5 kagays show up and eventually 3 dudes do everything wrong to start WW4 then assman's moon matrix then flashbacks then fucking moon-people.
AU fics change like 1-2 things tops while keeping everything else the same.
It's like a fucking game of Mad Libs.